On Canada Day, I was looking for a festive tea to celebrate with when I happened upon this tea…Canoe Lake Blend by Pluck Teas. This tea that Pluck calls “a truly Canadian blend” is made up of black tea, rooibos, sunflower, jasmine, calendula petals, real maple syrup, licorice root, cocoa, safflower petals, cornflowers, and natural flavour. Meant to remind you of campfires and sugar shacks, I thought it was worth a try.
I brewed it at 200F for 4 minutes as the recommended steeping parameters of 5 minutes in boiling water seemed like it might be a bit much. Using my method, this tea definitely has a smokey campfire flavor to it. Smoke and maple sweetness. There is also a thick caramel sweetness here that is almost a bit burnt and a little bit stale. It hits you at the back of the throat and is a little offputting for my tastes if I am being honest.
I am surprised there isn’t more going on here given the list of ingredients that seem odd and out of place. What jasmine and sunflower had to do with a smokey maple/caramel tea is beyond me and though I know licorice root is often used to add sweetness, I am glad I can’t actually taste its cloying flavor. Plus, the cocoa is lost as there is no chocolate to be found, though it may be adding to the offness of the caramel since cocoa can sometimes read dusty and stale in teas.
I think this tea is trying to capture a relatively simple flavor with too many ingredients. Unfortunately, I think it suffers for it. Though it is not bad perse, I certainly found myself disappointed by the flavors promised versus the actual execution of it. It was fun to try but ultimately this tea just isn’t for me.
Here’s the scoop!
Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy: Pluck Teas
Jennifer’s Tasting Notes
Notes of caramel, maple sugar, and pine smoke interwine in this rooibos and black tea blend. Memories of campfires and sugar shacks… a truly Canadian blend.
Black Tea, Rooibos, Sunflower, Jasmine, Calendula Petals, Real Maple Syrup, Licorice Root, Cocoa, Safflower Petals, Cornflowers, Natural Flavour.
Blended and packed in Canada by real people
Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!
Duchess’ First Love from Tay Tea is part of their black tea collection altho it is made up of a blended base of black tea and rooibos.
Tay Tea says Duchess’ First Love is perfect for chilly days. I’d agree with that statement! It has a creamy and dreamy Earl Grey flavor that is a bit on the mellower side blended with herbal rooibos and has sweet notes of caramel to boot!
I have to say I really enjoy the teas I have tasted from Tay Tea. After ten years of being in business in Andes, NY, they moved to their new home on upper Main Street Delhi, NY in 2016! They converted a warehouse building for their growing business. The front area, which houses their twelve foot tea bar, has a dual purpose and serves as their tea tasting and staff training area (for wholesale clients) as well as their retail shop, which is open to the public on weekends.
Tay Tea also hosts a variety workshops and events and if I lived closer I would TOTALLY be addicted to attending them! To read more about some of their recent events check out this page.
Is it wrong to say that I can feel my attitude change while drinking this tea? I think not…I really needed this today! Duchess’ First Love is a KEEPER!
Here’s the scoop!
Leaf Type: Black/Rooibos Blend
Where to Buy: Tay Tea
Perfect for chilly days, this creamy Earl Grey blended with herbal rooibos has sweet notes of caramel.