Sarsaparilla Float Honeybush Blend from 52Teas

Sarsaparilla-Float-HoneybushTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Honeybush

Where to Buy:  52Teas

Tea Description:

This here is some stunningly good stuff! We’ve blended organic honeybush with sarsaparilla root (who knew it was spelled that way? I mean, really, how do we get the common pronunciation from THAT spelling?), marshmallow root and organic flavors. This is delicious and refreshing. I dare you to get some and tell me I’m wrong.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

After I brewed this Sarsaparilla Float Honeybush Blend from 52Teas and started sipping, I tried to figure out what I thought about it.  Did I like it?  I didn’t really have an immediate answer for that.  But now, the cup is nearly finished and I’ve not even written a whole paragraph.  So, I’m guessing that yeah … I do like it.

I’ve had the root beer blends that 52Teas has created in the past and quite enjoyed them.  And when I think “sarsaparilla” – I think “root beer.”  But this tastes different than the root beer blends I’ve had.  It certainly has some similarities to the root beer teas of the past but this tastes somewhat earthier than the 52Teas I’ve had before.  This almost tastes like  something I might buy off one of those old-time medicine wagons or perhaps something I ordered at an old tavern filled with cowboys.

Not that I’ve ever bought anything off of one of those old-time medicine wagons or had anything to drink at an old tavern.  I’ve never even seen an old-time medicine wagon except for on television and the only thing that would resemble an old tavern is the Western bar photography props at Knott’s Berry Farm.  I spent a lot of time there as a kid growing up in California.

But let’s get back to this tisane.  I’m definitely tasting a root beer like flavor here, although it is more earthy, as I said.  I taste a woodsy note and a hint of the nutty, honey-esque notes from the honeybush.  At first, I wasn’t sure if I liked the way the root beer-y, sarsaparilla notes played with the honeybush, but now, I think I do.

As the tea cools somewhat, the float-ish type flavors start to emerge more, I can taste the fluffy, creamy vanilla notes and it’s quite yummy.

So getting back to my original question.  Yeah.  Yeah I like this.  It’s different than I was expecting, but I like it … and as I sip it, I kind of feel like I should be wearing a cowboy hat and boots with spurs on ’em.  And knowing me, I’d trip over the spurs and hurt myself.  So maybe I should just stick to my Vans.  What can I say?  I’ll always be a California girl at heart.  And by feet, too, I guess.

Be sure to stay tuned for an announcement concerning 52Teas.  My previous Kickstarter didn’t get fully funded, so I’ll be launching another Kickstarter soon!  I hope you’ll help me take over 52Teas!

On the Sixth Day of Christmas, Southern Boy Teas Edition!

I’ve decided to hot-brew the rest of the iced teas for this countdown.  I figure it would be the best way to capture the flavors as they were intended by the blender … plus there’s a little less wait time!  I now only have to wait as long as it takes to hot brew the tea (much faster than cold-brewing!) and then the wait time to let the tea cool.  A couple of hours in the fridge will do the job.

I hot-brew this like so:  I drop the pouch in 1 quart of boiling water and let it steep first for 2 minutes.  Then I bring another quart of water to a boil and re-steep the pouch for 3 minutes.  This produces a very flavorful half-gallon of tea.  I probably could get away with adding 1 quart of ice or cold water to the first 1 quart of brewed tea and still have a flavorful pitcher of iced tea, but, I feel like I’d be missing out on a lot of flavor that way.  When prepared this way, the flavor is strong but it isn’t too strong either.

Root Beer Float Iced Tea

RootBeerFloatSBTTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  52Teas

Learn more about Southern Boy Teas here.

Taster’s Review:

As some of you are probably aware, I’ve already tasted and reviewed 52Teas “original” Root Beer Float flavored black tea, but this tasting is my first of the SBT iced tea version.

This is good.  I think that the aforementioned original Root Beer Float tea is a tad more … something.  Perhaps it’s the marshmallow root that is in the 52Teas version that I don’t think is in this that is making the difference.  This still tastes root-beer-ish and there is a certain creamy element to the taste here, but, it isn’t as creamy and “fluffy” as the 52Teas version.

However, this is very tasty.  I am getting a delicious root beer flavor.  I even taste notes of “carbonation” in the taste, where I can taste the ‘bubbly’ taste of a root beer.  And I do taste a light creaminess to this as well, giving it a sort of “float” type of taste.  And yes, I can taste the black tea in the background too.

Overall, this is a very refreshing, delicious tasting iced tea.

On The Third Day of Christmas, Southern Boy Teas Edition!

This countdown is a bit more difficult for a couple of reasons.  First, it’s iced tea.  I don’t drink a lot of iced tea, especially in the winter, although I certainly do drink some.  But, drinking a whole half a gallon in a day?  No, I don’t usually drink that much each day.

It’s also a little more difficult because it takes a little longer to produce a cold-brewed pitcher of iced tea.  It needs to sit and brew for at least a few hours to get full flavor out of the tea when it’s cold-brewed, and I usually leave the tea in the fridge overnight.  So, the difficulty becomes … waiting for the tea to brew.

Butter Beer Iced Tea

ButterBeerSBTTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  52Teas

Learn more about Southern Boy Teas here.

Taster’s Review:

When 52Teas/Southern Boy Teas first introduced this tea as an iced tea, I got very excited, because the original Butter Beer Tea from 52Teas is one of my FAVES from 52Teas.  Partly because I asked Frank from 52Teas to create a butter beer-ish sort of tea (yeah, I’m a Harry Potter nerd), and part because it’s just so dang good.  So, I was very happy that he decided to add this to his iced tea line.

Cold-brewed, the flavor is a little underwhelming with this tea.  Perhaps the issue is that I loved the original Butter Beer Tea so much that maybe this just isn’t living up to that.  But I remember that tea being so much more … Butter Beer-ish.

It’s still good, but, it’s a little less than what I envisioned.  The black tea base tastes nicely round, and I can taste a butter-scotch-y sort of taste with the flavoring.  I’m not getting a whole lot of the chicory notes that were in the original, and I don’t taste a lot of licorice either.  I taste hints of root beer, but this tastes more like a cream soda flavored tea than the Butter Beer Tea that I remember.

The hot-brewed, re-steeped tea pouch produces a much more flavorful pitcher of iced tea than the cold-brewed first steep.  This tells me that this particular flavor (just like the pink lemonade flavor) should be hot-brewed instead of cold-brewed.  But, based on this re-steep, I would say that it’s certainly worth it.  This is more of the Butter Beer flavor that I was looking for.  I still don’t taste much of the chicory, but, I do get a lot of the butter-scotch-y notes and hints of root beer-ish notes.  I find myself still looking for some licorice and the chicory.

When I get around to hot-brewing my second pouch of this tea, I’ll be sure to update you on how well that comes out.  In the meantime, this one is good, but, I think that the original was better.

Root Beer Rooibos from Trail Lodge Tea


Tisane Information:

Leaf Type:  Rooibos & Honeybush

Where to Buy:  Trail Lodge Tea

Tisane Description:

This tea was made by using some ingredients that were used in old fashioned home made root beer. We added honeybush to the rooibos to give it a natural sweetness. This way you can have an all natural, chemical free alternative to soda. If you do want the extra sweetness found in root beer, just add some sugar or natural sweetner and you will still have a natural treat. Caffeine free. Ingredients: Fair Trade CertifiedTMorganic rooibos, and honeybush, Fair Trade CertifiedTM Organic Whole Cloves, and Organic Cinnamon, Organic Ginger, Organic Star Anise, Orange Peel, and Organic Natural Flavoring.

Learn more about this flavored rooibos here.

Taster’s Review:

This Root Beer Rooibos from Trail Lodge Tea is quite tasty!  It’s actually a whole lot better than I anticipated it to be.  I like that they chose to use a base of organic rooibos and honeybush, I think that the slightly woody/nutty flavors of these two herbs seem to heighten the overall root beer taste, and the natural honey-esque sweetness makes this a very pleasant beverage.

A quick review of the ingredient list, and one might think that they’re about to drink a chai blend, but, this doesn’t taste like the typical chai, despite the ingredients.  It definitely tastes more like root beer than it does a masala chai.  The spices used here really do create a very “root beer-ish” kind of taste, and they are skillfully blended to keep the drink from tasting “spicy” – rather, it tastes like … well, like I said, it tastes like root beer!  All that’s missing is the bubbly carbonation.

I do think that this root beer taste could be elevated even more if just a touch of spearmint was added to the blend.  Not enough to make it minty … just enough to give it that zesty note of root beer.  As it is though, it’s really quite tasty.  It’s good served hot (even though it does seem a little weird to be drinking a hot cup of root beer) but it’s even tastier iced.  If you decide to go ahead and ice this, I recommend adding some sugar (go with turbinado sugar!) to bring out the flavors in the chilled tisane.

If you’re a fan of root beer (and really, who DOESN’T like root beer?), you really should try this.  I’m wondering how this would taste if I added a scoop of vanilla ice cream to make a float … I’ll bet it’s amazing!