Leaf Type: White
Where to Buy: A Quarter to Tea
Hold on to your summer year round, with this cuppa. Combines the flavors of cherry, apple and blueberries with a hint of rum and wine to make the perfect sangria year round.
Learn more about this tea here.
This is my second sample from A Quarter to Tea! I chose it for a couple reasons; the big one was that the other two samples I picked out were oolongs and I wanted to get to taste at least one of Lauren’s other tea types. However, I was also interested by the fairly unique ingredients. I’ve never seen Sangria with blueberry, for starters. Finally, I wanted to find a Sangria tea that was an improvement on the other two I’ve tried. DAVIDsTEA had a seasonal Sangria blend which I didn’t mind but didn’t love, and Red Leaf Tea has a Sangria flavour of matcha I currently own but don’t particularly like. And the idea of Sangria with a white base sounds awesome, too!
It was hard to form much of an impression of the tea dry: I could see several chunks of the dry ingredients in the blend, but there wasn’t a distinct aroma. Part of that, I feel, is that in the package Lauren mailed to me the Cherry Chocolate Latte was really a dominant flavour and I think possibly may have contaminated the other teas it was packaged with or, at least, “cancelled out” their aromas – which weren’t as potent/strong. Since Lauren suggests on her Etsy page to ice this and since Sangria really is a drink best consumed cold I decided to go with a cold method of preparation. However, instead of icing I went with cold brewing because that style of preparation is a favourite of mine.
I do find this tea to be very mildly/delicately flavoured overall, with softer and less prominent notes of apple and blueberry and a jammy stonefruit quality which I suppose is the cherry. I want to point out that mild and subtle isn’t actually a bad thing, however Sangria doesn’t have a ‘delicate’ flavour to begin with so it’s not reading as the most accurate flavour profile. Plus it’s a little odd for me to neither taste “orange”/citrus which is such a common Sangria flavour or the wine/rum. As such, while I really like the flavour that I do taste, I find it very hard to drink this and think of it as ‘Sangria’ flavoured. The name just doesn’t seem to match, you know?
I’d be interested to see this tea rebranded as another flavour, maybe even some kind of ‘punch’? This is a refreshing, light, fruity cuppa but in my ‘quest’ for the perfect Sangria tea my expectations just haven’t been met.
Leaf Type: Oolong/Green
Where to Buy: A Quarter To Tea
Roasty enough to appease the coffee lover in you! The blend of hojicha and oolong makes a robust, coffee like base without the jitters. Mellowed out with chicory, chocolate, and cherries. What could be a better start to the morning?
Learn more about this tea here.
A Quarter to Teas is a fairly new tea store selling on Etsy that feautues seasonal and limited edition blends such as the blend I’m trying now and many other unique flavours like Strawberry Jalapeno Salsa. The owner, Lauren, was kind enough to send a few samples my way. I have to say my email correspondence with Lauren was incredibly impressive – she was so prompt in replying to my messages and very pleasant overall. Without even taking a sip of tea yet, I’m already impressed with the company on the grounds of their customer service alone.
That said, getting into the tea itself this smells AMAZING. I was totally expecting more of a coffee/chocolate with a subtle cherry because most blends that attempt to do cherry blends in which the cherry isn’t the sole flavour never really nail it. Instead, the smell is indicating this will be the opposite: cherry tea with more subtle coffee and chocolate. I am SO on board with that idea!
And I am so gleeful right now because the taste of the infused tea IS very strongly cherry! And it’s not some kind of gross cough syrup cherry either! Instead it’s sweet, dark cherry. So yummy and indulgent! Of course, there’s more going on here aside from the cherry even if that is the element of the tea which I’m most excited about. The chocolate notes come through well too and the pairing is a match made in heaven. However, it’s a little thin and I think that’s probably because this blend uses chocolate chips. If I could make one suggestion it’d be to use either cocoa nibs or shells instead. I think that’d kick the chocolate factor up a lot and also make the mouthfeel a little cleaner. Finally, the “coffee”. Personally I think this is the mildest element of the blend but I’m more that ok with that. As much as I don’t hate coffee and am cool with the flavour being in my tea I still prefer the tea itself to be the most dominant flavour. On that note I definitely taste the hojicha more than the oolong. I really love the idea of pairing the hojicha with the oolong as well; it ups the roasty notes up quite a bit and adds a whole new layer of flavour into the tea.
This tea is absolutely phenomenal! I’m very impressed, and I really look forward to trying the rest of my samples from Lauren. As far as first impressions go, this was a really good one.
Product: Ready-to-Drink Black Tea Beverage
Where to Buy: Cheribundi
We made our name with juices that pack 45 tart cherries into each bottle. Though we love these products, one gets the urge to spread their all-natural-juice-loving wings once in a while. This time, our juice makers looked east. To the far east, to be exact.
To the source of fine black tea. The range of benefits in black tea have been touted for centuries. It’s the perfect partner for the nutrients in our cherries.
Learn more about this tea here.
I love summertime. I love the longer days, the hot weather, the chance to dip my toes in the ocean, and the visits to the Farmer’s Market. Going to my local Farmer’s Market might be my favorite thing, especially when the cherries arrive. For a few short, wonderful weeks there is a plethora of lovely bright red cherries at many of the stalls, and I buy several bags of them for my family to enjoy. In my opinion they are one of the perfect summer fruits. Unfortunately, cherry season is very short here, so I’m often left looking for something with a real cherry taste that I can continue to enjoy throughout the summer. Thanks to Cheribundi I’ve found not only a great cherry drink, but a great cherry tea. Win!
Cheribundi’s Tart Cherry Black Tea Refresh is made from fresh pressed cherries and fresh brewed black tea. The flavor is simply amazing. The cherry juice and tea are well balanced. The tea is brisk while having some depth. There’s a bit of a malt flavor that pairs well with the cherry. The cherry juice gives the tea some sweetness, but since tart cherries are used it’s not an overly sweet flavor. I enjoyed the balance that Cheribundi managed to achieve with this drink. I like that I was drinking a high quality black tea with a super fruity cherry kick. This is so much better than many of the cherry teas I’ve tried that either ended up tasting like cough syrup (yuck.) or highly artificial and candy-like. Having real cherry juice in my iced tea is an absolute yes for me. Now that I’ve tried it I can’t believe I haven’t been drinking this for years!
If you are a fan of cherries then I highly recommend trying this drink. The quality of the tea is top notch, and the added cherry juice adds a refreshing twist on an already tasty beverage. Well done, Cheribundi!
Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy: Teavivre
Dian Hong black tea, also known as Yunnan black tea, is one of China’s most famous black teas. This is the highest grade Dian Hong generally available in China – called Golden Tip Dian Hong. It has lots of orange pekoe in the dried tea, and brews into an absolutely great tasting, golden coloured tea, with very rich taste and aroma.
Learn more about this tea here.
This tea really wowed me from start to finish. You begin the cup with such attractive, even dry leaf that has a breath taking proportion of golden tips to it. I would agree that you can see the orange pekoe quite clearly in the leaf and I can’t help but wonder what the grade is – I’d guess at least TGFOP? It’s easily one of the most aesthetically pleasing black teas I’ve gotten to try in a long time.
Of course, the grade really has very little to do with the actual taste of the tea; it only describes physical aspects of the leaf and not the taste of the brew – that said, this brewed up bammin’ slammin’ delicious.
There were a lot of flavors going on but they were all so harmonious; the big one for me was the sweet taste of stonefruit that gave the tea an overall jammy quality. It was very much like overripe dark cherries and it easily stood out the most to me. Cocoa, molasses malt, and honey/light caramel notes were all present too – mostly as top notes, with the exception of the molasses which I thought was a bit stronger near the end of the sip. The body was, in addition to being quite fruity, rather starchy as well but in a sweeter way, like from yams.
This easily stands out among the majority of pure black blends I’ve had in the last month – if not longer. There’s no need for sweetener either; Yun Nan Dian Hong has such a solid and nuanced flavor profile all on its own. I absolutely recommend this tea to just about anyone and I look really forward to revisiting it.
Leaf Type: Herbal/Tisane
Where to Buy: DAVIDsTEA
Looking for a new way to satisfy your sweet tooth? This sweet and tangy tea is where it’s at. With sour cherries, kiwi and coconut, it has all the taste of a candy shop treat – at next to no calories. Brewed over ice, it’s a deliciously fruity, kid-friendly summer treat. And brewed extra-strong then topped up with sparkling water, it’s an unbeatably refreshing TeaPop. How sweet is that?
Learn more about this tea here.
This is part two of a five part review of the DAVIDsTEA Summer Collection.
This year I found myself relatively interested in all five teas offered from DT’s Summer Collection so I decided to do a review of the whole collection here on SororiTea Sisters. Not all the teas are going to be prepared the same way; I decided to go with my gut and prepare each in the way I thought that they were best suited for. Now, because DT has marketed/designed these blends to be prepared iced that does mean most of the five teas were tried in a cold preparation style.
This is not an exception; for my first taste of the summer collection I decided to cold brew this one. Based on the initial stream of reviews on Steepster this blend seems to be pretty well liked; as of writing my review there aren’t really any bad reviews of this tisane. That’s definitely unusual, and it has me quite curious especially since this is the blend I was least interested in initially.
Dry I think this has a really intense aroma, and it reminds me a lot of Lipsmacker’s Strawberry Kiwi flavour. It’s very over the top, and really candy sweet. And as long as this doesn’t mysteriously pick up a ‘waxy’ taste then I think that’s a good thing because candy is obviously what DT was going for. I’m not totally sure where I’m getting strawberry from though since that is definitely not one of the ingredients in this: but it’s distinctly strawberry and NOT cherry or cranberry.
Steeped up and strained this has a powerful flavour; it’s incredibly sweet with just a hint of tartness. The first thing I noticed was actually the absence of a flavor – coconut in this case. DAVIDsTEA is really heavy handed with coconut as an ingredient, in fact three out of five of this seasons blends have coconut as an ingredient! It’s only the returning blends that don’t, and I can’t help but wonder if they were maybe so popular because of the lack of coconut. I definitely anticipated the coconut to be strong though – and I’m not getting it at all. It’s really weird, actually. And thinking about it, I don’t remember seeing any coconut shreds in the measured out leaf either.
The first flavor I’m actually tasting though is the kiwi – it’s much strong than I thought it would be. It’s followed closely behind by very plump, juicy cherry, cranberry and – yes, strawberry notes too. It tastes A LOT like Strawberry Kiwi Lipsmacker, no matter how hard I try to shake the comparison. Another popular comparison with this one is Jolly Ranchers; both cherry and watermelon. I can understand the comparison, but I don’t necessarily agree with it. Although, it’s reminding me a lot of a summer cold brew favourite of mine: Prickly Pear from Tea Desire, and now that I’m thinking about it not only do both teas have intense kiwi flavour but Prickly Pear also has a rich melon flavour so maybe I am subconsciously drawing melon comparisons too.
I may be the first ‘negative’ review of this one though; while I didn’t think it was bad I did think that ultimately there was too much going on about about half way through my cold brew I was just getting really sick of the intense sweetness and artificial fruit flavours. I get why it’s getting good reviews so far, it’s different from a lot of other tisanes from DT; but I’d call myself neutral at best. It’s not going to be a restock for me.