Woodland Trek by Beach House Tea Company. . . . .

I steeped this tea for 8 minutes at 212 degrees with 1.5 teaspoons of leaf in about 6-8 ounces of water.

After steeping, the tea is an interesting peachy color-pinkish-orangeish-amber. It smells mostly of honeybush and a little of hops. The flavor combinations available here are quite intriguing!

First sip: SUPER sweet. It has a light, airy quality to the flavor. It’s not as “earthy” as I’d expect with so much honeybush in it (honeybush and rooibos usually ground a flavor pretty well in my estimation).

The flavor is also much more complex than the fragrance, rather than being dominated by the honeybush and hops flavors. It has the sweetness and woodiness of honeybush, but also a touch of lemony/citrus flavor (which brightens it considerably), just a hint of minty or piney freshness maybe, and some other difficult-to-describe notes.

After consulting the list of ingredients (it’s a relatively long one for a tea blend, although not super-long like a processed food or something) I’ve worked out that the sweetness is probably boosted by the marshmallow leaf (although honeybush is sweet on its own too) and the licorice; the bee pollen is probably what I see dancing in the tea liquid, giving it this peachy color; and the cedar is probably what I was mistaking for minty/piney freshness. All taken together, these notes make a fascinating flavor that’s worth exploring!

I’m really glad I got to try this tea–the dried leaf didn’t smell nearly as appetizing as the tea liquid turned out to be, and I’m glad I gave it the chance to bloom (figuratively speaking, that is–this wasn’t what they call a “blooming tea”).

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Honeybush/Rooibos
Where to Buy:  Beach House Tea Company

Woodland Trek 100% organic loose leaf tea is crafted with honeybush tea with a rich undertone of licorice and sage and snap of organic Oregon hops and a hint of sweetness from bee pollen. This outdoor-rich blend with organic cedar tips invites you to reminisce memories of evenings spent camping or hiking the cascades.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Hi! My name is Tabitha and I’m an uprooted PNW native living in the South with my husband and my cocker spaniel.

My favorite teas are usually dark and strong and go well with milk and sugar. I like to combine tea-drinking with all of my favorite activities, such as listening to music, reading YA fiction, knitting, and writing blog and website content for businesses. Because I’m a well-rounded person, I also have other interests, such as wearing mismatched socks and pretending to be ambidextrous.

Lemon Blush from Zhi. . . . .

This was a pleasantly zen tea! I tried it hot, at directed concentrations, steeped for six minutes, with no additives. I could envision this tea being enjoyable cold for those that love fruit infused water.

Unlike most lemon teas I encounter, the lemon was present, but not overpowering. It required no sweetening, and my sweet teeth are rather demanding, so that’s saying a lot! It is supplemented with stevia leaf, and unlike the dietary sweetener, was not at all off-putting. The hibiscus brings a beautiful deep blush of color to the cup, and a mild flavor addition. I honestly did not detect the clove, but perhaps my teaspoon missed it!

It is a moderately aromatic tea that could serve double duty as a calming aromatherapy. Calming, but not sedating, the aroma and taste would serve well as a morning or bedtime tea. At longer steep times (twelve minutes), the tartness and tanginess of the lemon and hibiscus are stronger, but still remains one of the most gentle and subtle lemon teas I’ve experienced, and now one of my favorites!

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Herbal/Tisane
Where to Buy:  Zhi Tea

Straight from customer feedback , suggestions of lemon myrtle and more sweet healthy tea, comes this crafty and refreshing herbal tisane. Great for an afternoon with a book or a friend, this inventive blend certainly has a cool personality.

A lightly sweet, quite lemony, mildly tart cup with a soothing aroma. This blend is designed to balance; it is at once calming and gently energizing.

Organic lemon grass, hibiscus, rosehips, lemon myrtle, stevia leaf, and organic lemon extract.

100% organic caffeine-free drink. Great hot or cold!

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Kristina has found life is best handled with chocolate in one hand, tea in the other, and a warm fuzzy creature nearby. She lives where it is ridiculously cold most of the year (Minnesnowta), and survives by having a hot cup of tea ready for defense. When it does warm up, ice tea keeps things from getting too out of hand! Herbal, blended and green teas are usually considered her favorite, but she is wildly adventurous, so has a rather eclectic cupboard of resources. Her most recent discovery of enjoyment in the tea realm is smokey flavored teas.
Besides admiring her tea collection and daily angsting over which to drink, she manages a menagerie of creatures, her “magical unicorn hair”, and getting into trouble in the great outdoors. When trouble cannot be found, she consoles herself with a book and a cup of tea!

Vista Blend from Plum Deluxe. . . .

There is so much Yes going on with Plum Deluxe! I discovered them when my Sororitea sister sent me a surprise cuppa their Pomme Blossom White tea. It’s a discontinued exclusive so I won’t tease you with too much detail. This was a very colorful blend with some “furry” white leaves. What was so exceptional was that the second steep tastes even better!!! Which is usually not my experience with flavored white teas.

I ordered another, not sold out, white tea blend of theirs called Afternoon “High Tea”, which is a peach and pear blend that also held up to resteep. It was a completely different taste profile than the Pomegranate and berries that I fell in love with earlier, but it was still very posh tasting. All their teas are made with organic ingredients — no sulfites, no artificial chemicals, and non-GMO. Eco-Friendly for the Win!

I ended up subscribing to Plum Deluxe’s tea of the month club. It’s only $10 for one exclusive bag of hand crafted tea, plus access to their amazing Facebook community. And Yay for supporting local PNW businesses!

The real star from this month’s shipment was a sample of their Vista Blend Herbal Tea.

This definitely tastes like the uncaffeinated sister of the Pomme Blossom. I’m not sure what the common element is, but it could be the Love and Gratitude they blend into their creations? This company likes to send out smiles.

The infusion slowly turns the color of a summer sunset, and the beautiful sight is complemented well by the apricot flavor. A creamy lavender taste leads into a mellow citrus that lingers nicely for quite some time after drinking.

The naturally sweet Honeybush base made a scrumptious treat cold brewed, and no sweetener was needed, which for me is saying something. Double win! I don’t want this cup to end, so I will definitely be buying more of this with next month’s mystery blend.

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Honeybush
Where to Buy:  Plum Deluxe

The apricot + lavender “Vista Blend” is inspired by one of our favorite things about nature — the views. This tea reminds us that we can have a beautiful view wherever we are, if only we slow down to appreciate it.

We use a base of earthy honeybush tea, paired perfectly with Oregon lavender and apricot essence. The fruit and floral pair to create a calming influence.  It’s just delightful — and especially refreshing on ice. Originally this tea was a seasonal-only blend but based on your demands, we’ve elevated it to a signature blend so you can get your Vista cuppa anytime of year.

All Plum Deluxe teas are hand-blended and infused with love in Portland, Oregon. Each 1oz packet makes 15-20 cups. All organic ingredients — no sulfites, no artificial chemicals, non-GMO

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

My favorite tea is always changing, like a typical Gemini. When I was a teenager, my native Washington Starbucks coffee was forbidden, but I occasionally snuck in a chai latte, so black teas have been my go-to morning drink when I feel feisty.

As an adult, I spent 3+ years living in China and Japan where I learned about green, white, oolong, and pu’er teas origins. I was even prescribed traditional medicinal teas while I was there and that’s a taste you don’t soon forget! But it didn’t scare me away from herbals – I really like cold brewing rooibos and tisanes now because I can share them with my toddler.

I am back in school to become a geologist, and these science textbooks can be difficult to get through without a strong cuppa. When I’m not studying, I love pairing my teas with my BFFL and salted caramel macarons, or having existential chats with my dad.

Gingerbread Rooibos from Market Spice. . . .

I was a little nervous about this one. Like I’ve said before, I don’t usually like ginger. So I definitely approached this blend with trepidation. I wasn’t sure if it would be too spicy, like ginger sometimes is. I also don’t usually like rooibos, it sometimes has too much of a woodsy taste, too earthy. My hopes for this tea was more of a gingerbread cookie with icing.

My wish was granted! Once steeped, this blend smells like I am baking gingerbread cookies and mixing vanilla icing in my kitchen! I was so happy because the rooibos is basically undetectable. Its super smooth and sweet with a hint of cookie. The ginger is less spicy and more sweet, like the kind of ginger you taste in gingerbread cookies. I did add agave which definitely cut the spiciness and added some sweetness, but this blend definitely was reminiscent of cookies regardless.

I finished my cup in less than 5 minutes that’s how delicious this was. It was smooth and reminded me of those little gingerbread man cookies covered in vanilla icing. I actually love this blend so much that I wish it was caffeinated so that I could have it in the mornings. If it had caffeine I think it would be one of my favorites, especially in the fall/winter. I would really recommend trying this even if you don’t generally like rooibos because it definitely wasn’t a typical rooibos tea. Very yummy! This was the first blend I tried from Market Spice, but I will definitely be trying more in the future!

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Rooibos
Where to Buy:  Market Spice

This tea doesn’t appear to be available now but click below for rooibos blends that are.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Hi, my name is Sophia. I am a first time mother to a beautiful little girl who will be 1 in July 2017. I spend my days at home with her and when I get a minute to myself, I usually spend that time making, drinking, or researching tea! My love for loose leaf tea is relatively new. When I was pregnant with my daughter, my mother (a tea addict herself) brought me to DAVIDsTEA. I enjoyed a cup of their Coconut Cream Pie Oolong and was instantly hooked! Since then, my addiction has grown to fill entire cabinets, and shows no sign of stopping.

I am the creator of the Facebook group CommuniTEA where we have one big tea discussion. It is a great group for those new to the tea-world. I feel strongly about spreading the joy of loose leaf tea. I like making instructional videos and helping those that are new to the art of tea-making so that they, too, can share in the happiness that tea brings. I am excited to see where this hobby takes me and I will continue to spread the joy!

For Lemon-Lovers – #Limoncello from #TheNecessiTeas

Heads up for you lemon-lovers out there, this tea is definitely for you!

The namesake of this tea, Limoncello, is an Italian liqueur made from the zest of lemons.  It’s known to be a sweet drink, despite the yellow citrus fruit’s sour reputation.  This tea definitely tastes like distilled lemons and keeps the perfect sweet-tart flavor balance of citrus and cream, very much like tart lemon dessert bars with powdered sugar.

In the dry leaf, this tea smells strongly of citrus, but the lemon myrtle in the blend keeps the flavors natural and herbal, rather than smelling too much like lemon cleaning products. Along with all the zesty fruit flavors, there is something creamy and dessert-like in blend as well.  Sweetness comes in the form of almost-caramel, brown sugar notes.  This tea reminds me of the classic lemon drop candies or even luscious lemon meringue pie.
Despite being a green rooibos tea, this blend still brews up potent and flavorful.  This would be a great iced tea lemonade companion, or a great surprise sweetness in an unconventional cocktail.  I had to pucker up and kiss this tea goodbye after I blew through my sample size.  Order a good size package of this sweet tea, you won’t regret it!

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Green Rooibos
Where to Buy: The NecessiTeas

The Italian dessert drink has made its way into a tea. Imagine lemon meringue teasing your taste buds, while sweetly melting in your mouth with a blend of vanilla and brown sugars. The lemony brightness shines through with lemongrass and a sprinkling of golden marigold petals, all topping a green rooibos tea.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Growing up, I drank herbal teas like fresh ginger tea during New England’s harsh winters and iced blueberry tea during its humid summers. Over time, I was tempted into trying a wider variety of loose leaf teas by the fandom-themed blends available online. I have since gone on to design my own blends, and I greatly enjoy drafting up flavor ideas and drawing tea labels.

When I’m not thinking about tea I can be found reading novels and comic books, playing video games, or watching movies; my favorite genres being history, humor, sci-fi, and fantasy.

Generally, I prefer bold teas: spicy chais, rich black teas, even smoky lapsang souchong on occasion. But I have also dabbled in herbal rooibos, flavored oolongs, and traditional matcha. I’m glad to be expanding my palette by tasting and reviewing new teas and blends.

Find me on Steepster: http://steepster.com/A2shedsjackson

Fandom blends: http://www.adagio.com/signature_blend/list.html?userId=292149