Marshmallow Assam from 52Teas. . . .

Let’s talk about campfires for a sec. (Stay with me, this is going somewhere.)

It’s a summer night. You’re sitting around a crackling fire with friends. Lightning bugs are buzzing around, filling the dusk with a whimsical twinkly glow. The smoky woodsiness of the fire fills the air, and you’re blessed out on late-summer good vibes.

And what else has to be there? (This isn’t an easy one, friends.) Toasted marshmallows, of COURSE. And what do you do when you can’t be living in this midsummer fairytale? You sip this tea, of course.

This Assam is bold and malty, as they should be– but it also perfectly captures the perfect, spun-sugar-vanilla flavor of marshmallows. Beyond that, it brings that delightfully toasted, starchy flavor of a toasted marshmallow straight to the surface (especially when served with cream) in a way that’s way more layered than just aspddinf vanilla to a tea and calling it “marshmallow”. 52 Teas has truly knocked it out of the park with this one. If you’re a marshmallow lover (or a campfire enthusiast, as I so clearly am), this one needs to live in your cabinet!

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Black
Where to Buy:  52Teas

This tea is no longer available but click below for teas that are.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Organic Assam Black Tea by Mana Organics

 I haven’t bought from this tea company before, but it seems to have a social conscience. Mana Organics isn’t just focused on producing organic tea and selling it, but instead takes a more holistic approach to getting the products from farmers to customers. They focus on community development and sustainable farming in rural areas, then help the farmers get products out to the world by doing marketing and retail work. So I’m really excited about this company and I’m planning to do more research and potentially start sourcing some of my tea from here.
But on to the review!
I steeped this tea at 212 degrees for about five minutes, using 1.5tsp of leaves in about 10 ounces of water. It turns out to be a handsome teak /cedar color after steeping. It smells deep, malty, and strong. It’s very aromatic, promising good things to come.
First sip: It’s astringent, but not puckery, with a deep and bright flavor profile. There’s just a hint of bitterness at the back but then it’s gone (fortunately; it’s not my favorite thing when bitterness hangs out with me all day). But on top of that, I’m detecting sweet potato and baked squash notes! Nice. Next to chocolate, I think this is one of my favorite flavor types for black teas. Actually I’ve been looking for a good squash/sweet potato flavored tea so this is good news.
Anyway. With milk, which brings baked-squash and maltish flavors to the front, this tea is just great. In fact I’m almost finding it has a little brown sugar flavor to go with the squash flavor. So fun! (Come to think of it, I hope I’m not the only person who thinks it’s funny how similar sweet potato and baked squash flavors are. Isn’t that just strange?) There’s no bitterness now, and practically no astringency; milk is an excellent buffer for such things, which is one reason I almost invariably have milk with my tea. (Another reason is that I sometimes drink tea when I’m hungry, or even in lieu of a meal, and the milk helps keep my blood sugar from crashing.) I’m also thinking maybe I’m detecting a hint of a floral note? But then again maybe I’m making that up–it was too fleeting to be sure.


All in all this is a solid, strong, great tea blend and goes well with food at meals (or even without food at meals if you’re like me) and is excellent with milk. <3

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy:  Mana Organics

A brisk tea with a malty, honey-sweet aroma followed deep character of taste and a pleasant pungency that will please even the most discerning of palates.Only Tippy Golden Flower Orange Pekoe Premier Grade (TGFOP1) Assam tea direct from our family’s estate, Chota Tingrai.  Healthier for you and the environment thanks to our USDA certified organic practices.  Packed onsite in re-sealable bag so you get that garden-fresh taste again and again.  Tastes, smells, and looks so delicious that we got an award in the Global Tea Championship 2017

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Mayfair by Bruu Tea. . .A Monthly Tea Subscription Box

This tea came from the February 2017 Tea Club box from Bruu Tea. Unfortunately I got a little backlogged due to a hellish couple of months. While this tea is not for sale on the website, it may be in the near future.

Thanks to the card I have a little more information on this blend:

A careful blend of Assam and Kenyan black teas are mixed with a sprinkle of calming Safflower petals to produce a wonderful, full bodied tasting tea with a slight mellow astringency. It’s a high-class breakfast tea that should be savoured and enjoyed. Origin: Assam, India (2016 2nd flush) and Kericho, Kenya (2016) grown 6500ft above sea level.

Opening the packet I see the leaves are small and loosely chopped with bright red safflower petals scattered throughout. It bares a strong, sour wood scent.

Brewing Instructions: 1tsp – 100C – 3 minutes

Once steeped the tea is burnt red/orange in colour and bares a sour wood scent, similar to it’s raw form.

The first few sips reveal a rich body with some sourness and a dry finish. Pleasant enough without milk nor sweetener.

The dry aftertaste increases to become moderate, which is perhaps the most negative aspect of the tea. The sour wood is nice though and has some natural sweetness.

It’s a nice, strong tea but I think a splash of milk is probably for the best. It’s too dry for me but the strength is desirable so it just needs a little help to be a great tea. This would be perfect for a breakfast tea.

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy: Bruu Tea (Mayfair is not currently for sale)

A high-class breakfast tea that should be savoured. A luxury blend of Assam and Kenyan black tea that is produced at over 6500ft above sea level.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Nutty Healthy Butter Pecan Tea Hand Crafted by BlendBee. . .Pecan Assam

This blend is interesting…and healthy! I like healthy teas, who doesn’t? The product description says that it includes black tea, milk thistle seed, dandelion root, eleuthero root, and butter pecan flavor. I was really curious about what all these healthy ingredients do and what they would taste like. Apparently, milk thistle seed is mild and nutty and detoxes, dandelion root is earthy and nutty and also is good for detoxing, and eleuthero root is mild and sweet and is good for detoxification as well. My assessment: this tea is great if you’re looking to detox and also seems to be a good source of energy.

Smelling the dry leaf, I could definitely smell the nuttiness from the herbs and flavoring. Smelling the brewed liquid, marzipan came to mind. I am going to attribute that to butter pecan flavoring. I would describe this tea as woodsy, nutty, light, sweet, and buttery. I think it definitely embraced butter pecan flavor, but also added to it with the sweet and nutty flavors of the herbs.

It’s really interesting because healthy teas do not generally taste good. Oftentimes they taste quite medicinal and you kind of have to gulp them down and then move on. With this blend, I actually enjoyed drinking it. The sweet, nutty, and buttery flavors reminded me of butter pecan ice cream with a hint of woodsy herbs. I definitely recommend this blend whether you are looking for a healthy concoction to drink or not. If you are looking for a detox tea, this is definitely one of the better tasting options for sure. But, if you just want something yummy to give you a boost of energy, this tea with deliver.

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Black Tea
Where to Buy:  BlendBee

Filled with roots & seeds designed to help cleanse your body and soul. This butter pecan infused Black Assam Tea will be the perfect go to tea after a night of fun, or anytime you want a pick me up.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Sensiblyscript’s Take on Lapsang Chai by Bluebird Tea Company. . . .

Steeping specs: One teaspoon at 212 degrees for 4 minutes in 1 cup of water.

This was an exciting idea for a tea. I’ve tried actual lapsang souchong once and couldn’t get through my mugful (maybe it was a bad idea to add milk, but I couldn’t stand it without milk either so I figured it couldn’t hurt anything). It’s not because I don’t like smoky flavors, either. I love smoked meat (I mean, BACON, right?), and I love campfires although it’s true I don’t eat them. But combining smoky tea with other strong spices that I know I like sounds like a very clever idea. I only wish I’d had it. In fact, I think I might have the rest of that sample packet of Lapsang somewhere; maybe I should go experiment with mixing it with various chais.

But I digress. . . .

After steeping for four minutes I took a good whiff–it smells tantalizingly smoky. This could be either a good thing or a problem, as mentioned above. The color is amber-ish–on the light side for a chai, I think (and I do have the unfortunate tendency to judge my tea’s strength by its color! I’ve been known to waaaaay over-steep my tea just because it didn’t look dark enough to me). A few crumbs of leaf have escaped my basket, so maybe I’ll use the finer mesh next time I steep this. What’s really exciting is that although the smell is smoky, I can smell spices too! Cinnamon, ginger, and possibly clove, I think.

First taste: it’s definitely not tasting like liquid smoke here, which is good! The flavor combo is hard to describe, though. The smoky tang and the warmth from the spices hit me at approximately the same time with each sip, which means it really has a kick! It’s not a super spicy chai, though, so if you’re sensitive to spice that probably won’t be a problem (depending on just how sensitive you are, of course. Some people manage to complain of spiciness in foods that taste basically bland to me).

The smokiness combines especially well with the ginger notes for some reason. Does ginger have a smoky component normally? I don’t know. I just know that this tastes really, really good. The smoke lingers a bit after each sip, but like I said, it’s not overpowering.

I also tried this tea with milk and sugar and found it still enjoyable, although less unique. That could just be due to the fact that I have a tendency to put milk and sugar in all my tea, though the milk does seem to muffle the brightness of the spice notes a bit too.

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Black Tea
Where to Buy:  Bluebird Tea Co.

We like to do things a bit differently at Bluebird. Our latest infusion is a thoughtful blend of Lapsang Souchong, malty Assam + aromatic masala chai spices. A BREWtiful blend of tea + culture alike!

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!