Cottage Cozy Earl Grey from A Quarter To Tea. . .

TODAY SIMPLY ISN’T HAPPENING, GUYS. THE PARTS ARE NOT COMING TOGETHER TO CAUSE A PLEASING WHOLE.

You know what that calls for? A pleasing new flavor. It’s time to BREAK OUT A NEWBIE.

I’ve opted for “Cottage Cozy Earl Grey” due to its name. “Cozy” is exactly where I’d like to be right now, spiritually. I want that mellow, hygge lifestyle. I want thick socks and a novel.

This blend is a very sweet earl grey, leaning heavily on lavender, which jingles lightly on a smoky assam base. It’s a playful duo.

I’m not getting a lot of the bargamot or the rooibos flavor here, but that might just be the Luck Of The Scoop. (It’s like the luck of the Irish, but for loose leaf tea enthusiasts. Not every scoop has every ingredient in a faithful representation of the whole. This keeps things exciting.)

That said, the lavender and the base are a good duo. They remind me of any classic comedy, with one goof and one straight man. If this were Planes, Trains, and Automobiles, the assam would be our straightforward Steve Martin and the lavender would be the loose cannon John Candy. (Am I old? Is this a hip reference?)

And honestly, I do feel better now. Even a little bit cozy.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Black/Rooibos blend
Where to Buy:  A Quarter To Tea
Description

Sweeter and more floral than a normal Earl Grey, this is the perfect companion to rainy days and long books. Mellow but brisk.

Like all Earl Grey, takes milk and sugar well.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Death Eaters Tea Club Specialty Box from Riddle’s Tea Shoppe

Bring out your inner good or bad wizard with a box of wizarding-world-themed tea goodies. Riddle’s Tea Shoppe offers quarterly boxes alternating between the Death Eaters Tea Club (canonically, the bad guys) and the Auror Tea Society (the good guys). The 2018 spring Death Eaters box was my first hands-on experience with Riddle’s Tea Shoppe, though I’ve long admired photos from afar.

This box was jam-packed with well-designed surprises. My box featured a canister of Basilisk Egg tea bags (spicy, earthy chai with lemongrass and peppercorns), a bag of loose Devil’s Snare tea (rich black tea with dark berry and cocoa flavors), and a bag of loose Venomous Tentacula tea (a decaf blend of black tea and rooibos with strawberry marzipan flavors). To pair with my tea was a vial of shimmery Unicorn Blood (simple syrup). Each treat featured original artwork or uniquely designed labels to make them feel extra magical and make them suitable to display in your tea shelf.

Beyond tea, the box included a laser cut wood bookmark and enamel pin, featuring stylish typography of favorite evil wizard spell words. There was also a print of an original watercolor painting of the Chamber of Secrets from Riddle’s Tea Shoppe’s creator. Of course, the Death Eaters Tea Club cute-and-creepy skull logo is on the box itself and various stickers and labels.

This box gave a lot of experience and beauty for a modest price. The one challenge is ordering before the pre-orders sell out, and waiting while the materials are assembled and shipped. To keep up-to-date on the next box, check out Death Eaters Tea Club (@deatheatersteaclub), Auror Tea Society (@aurorteasociety), and Riddle’s Tea Shoppe (@riddlesteashoppe) on Instagram. Also check on Riddle’s Tea Shoppe on Etsy for non-box goods related to tea and fantasy fandoms. The shop updates randomly, so check back often.

 


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: various
Where to Buy: RTS Quarterly
Description: Each box contains:
– 1 canister of tea [Caffeinated]
– 2 small tea samples (10g each) [1 decaf / 1 caffeinated]
– 1 enamel pin
– 4 additional surprise items!

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Hood River Rooibos from Beach House Teas. . . . .

Hood River Rooibos from Beach House Teas is a delicious decaf herbal blend with rooibos, ginger, and honeycrisp apples. I love the fall, and sometimes I love extra honey sweet apple teas with lots of cinnamon and flavoring, but Hood River Rooibos has me re-thinking what I want in my herbal apple teas this season.

This tea is simple and delightful.  The woodsy rooibos is flavorful without caffeine or bitterness. A touch of ginger root adds just enough sweet spice to make you think you’re drinking something special and seasonal.

The honeycrisp apples are really the ingredient that shines. The naturally sweet fruit flavor of the apples doesn’t need any sugar or honey to taste indulgent and refreshing.  Because there aren’t any powerful spices like cinnamon or cloves, you get to taste all the apples for themselves. Even a chai-lover like me doesn’t miss the cinnamon in this blend.

This tea makes me nostalgic for the fresh fall apples in the orchard of my hometown.  This is the perfect blend to warm you up when your picking apples off the tree, or when you’re just daydreaming about fall and all its wonderful flavors.

 


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Rooibos
Where to Buy: Beach House Teas
Description:

Hood River Rooibos is 100% organic rooibos tea blended with ginger root and Pacific Northwest Honeycrisp Apples. This combination of sweet apple mixed with the heat of ginger and the earthy flavor of rooibos is perfect for the winter season.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Raspmonade from TeaTaxi. . . .

This has been the first day in a while that I have had the opportunity to relax. To me, that means sitting by the fire while drinking cup after cup of tea. Now, as much as I like to say I am not impacted by caffeine, I know it is good to switch it up a bit. To that end, I like to mix in a rooibos, honeybush, or herbal infusion amongst all the mugs of black tea, green tea, and oolong.

I brewed up my entire sample packet (5 grams) of this Raspmonade tea by TeaTaxi as a hot tea, steeping it in near boiling water (200F) for 3 minutes, 2 minutes shorter than the recommended steeping parameters as the rooibos began to smell quite strong.

As I drink now, the rooibos is strong but more so because the other flavors are so subtle which leaves little to taste other than the base. I get some berry flavor from the raspberry leaves but lemon comes through mainly in scent.

I don’t know if my understeeping is at play here but this lacks the flavor I was looking for when I brewed this up. I wanted sweet raspberry and bright lemon and I got generic berry rooibos. Definitely not what I was hoping for but still fun to try something new.

 


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Red Rooibos
Where to Buy:  Tea Taxi
Description

Delight in this amazing concoction of raspberry flavored with lemon. A fruity euphoria you can drink hot or cold!

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Let’s Go Bananas Again! Recent Tastings of Banana Teas

Check out my first Let’s Go Bananas tea posting.

It’s no secret I love the flavor of bananas. I like the taste in pastries, candy, breakfast, the fruit itself, and of course, the taste of bananas in tea! Here is another round of tasty banana inspired teas I’ve tried lately

Banana Split from The Necessiteas

Leaf type: red rooibos

This red rooibos blend has all three essential components of a banana split, with pieces of strawberries, bananas, and carob bean (“chocolate”).  The strong red rooibos compliments the sweet and tart fruit pieces in the blend. The chocolate is an undertone, taking a backseat to the driving banana and strawberry flavor combination. The blend benefits from sweetener and milk to make it feel more like a dessert and bring out more of the bananas.

 

Perles de Antilles Rooibos Blend from Camellia Sinensis distributed by Amoda Tea

Leaf type: green rooibos

This tropical green rooibos blend has pieces of dried banana, pineapple, and coconut. All three fruits are prominent, and no one ingredient takes the lead. Banana and coconut are the sweet components, bringing creaminess and body to the blend. The pineapple adds a much-needed pop of tartness to balance the blend. This tea is the most refreshing as an iced tea, and drinking it iced helps support its summertime tropical vibe.

 

Banana Marshmallow Treat Genmaicha from 52Teas

Leaf type: green

52Teas has a whole host of delicious flavored genmaicha teas. Being the sucker for banana that I am, this was one of my favorites. The sweet cream of the marshmallow pairs well with the banana, almost like a banana cream pie. The toasty flavors of the puffed rice help this blend from being too sweet, and if keeping with the pie analogy, the rice makes up the crust-like component of the blend. All the warm, roasted flavors of puffed rice and gentle green taste of genmaicha with creamy marshmallow fluff and banana.

 

I know there are still banana teas out there that I haven’t tried, so I’ll need to fill up my mug and go bananas for banana tea all over again!