Cotton Candy Honeybush Iced Tea From Southern Boy Teas

SBT-HONEYBUSH-Cotton-CandyTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Honeybush

Where to Buy:  Zoomdweebies

Tea Description:

Our cotton candy iced teas have been a big hit, so I decided we really should have a caffeine-free, honeybush version.

Learn more about this tea here.

Learn about SBT’s subscriptions here.

Taster’s Review:

I love the cotton candy teas that Zoomdweebies creates.  So I was confident that I’d enjoy this one too.

And I do.

I way, way oversteeped this – but because it’s a honeybush blend, I wasn’t worried.  When I say “way, way oversteeped” what I mean is that I infused 1 quart of water with the sachet for over 30 minutes.

I forgot to set my timer and I stepped away and then I looked at the clock a half an hour later and remembered that I had this tea steeping!  Yikes!

But again, no worries.  And no bitterness.  Honeybush just doesn’t get bitter.  The same is true of rooibos.  However, I’ve found that if you use too hot of water to steep either one, the leaves may impart a funky, sour wood kind of flavor that I don’t really enjoy.  But since I heated the water to 195°F rather than boiling, I didn’t have to worry about that funky flavor either.

The sweet, sugary cotton candy flavor is strong and I like it with the honeybush base.  The lightly sweet flavor of the honeybush highlights the sweet candy notes.  I don’t taste a strong nutty or woodsy note from the honeybush.  I taste some background flavors of the honeybush, but it doesn’t overpower the fluffy notes of cotton candy.

This flavor works really well with the honeybush, in fact, I think that I might prefer the honeybush base to either the black tea or the green tea versions of cotton candy iced teas from Southern Boy Teas!

Another yummy iced tea.  Very refreshing!

Cotton Candy Iced Green Tea from Southern Boy Teas

CottonCandyGreenSBTTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Green

Where to Buy:  Southern Boy Teas

Tea Description:

Premium Organic green tea with organic flavors. Each 14g teabag will make one 2-quart pitcher of DELICIOUS iced tea. Re-steep the teabag and you can get a full gallon out of each one.

Learn more about this tea here.

Learn about SBT’s subscriptions here.

Taster’s Review:

Mmm!  OK, it was pretty much a given that I’d LOVE this flavor of iced tea from Southern Boy Teas.  I love the original 52Teas version of Cotton Candy, I loved the Cotton Candy with the White Tea Base.  And of course, I loved the Cotton Candy Black Iced Tea from SBT which was part of their original series of iced tea pouches.  So, I was really confident before I even poured the first glass of tea that I’d love this too.

And I do.

It is sweet and refreshing.  The lighter base of green tea is perfect for the Cotton Candy flavors which tend to be on the delicate side.  The Cotton Candy notes are able to shine through nicely.  And the buttery notes of the green tea work really well with these flavors.

I find myself emptying the glass of iced tea almost as quickly as I can refill it!  It just tastes so good, but even though it’s crafted as an homage to one of my favorite carnival treats, it doesn’t taste sickeningly, sticky sweet.  It’s sweet, certainly, and those of you who don’t like sweet beverages might find this to be a bit cloying, but for those of you with a sweet tooth, this cold drink might be right up your alley.

To brew this, I hot brewed the sachet in 1 quart of freshly filtered water that was brought to 170°F.  I steeped the sachet for 1 1/2 minutes, and then I poured the brewed tea into my iced tea pitcher.  Then I repeated the process – same amount of water and the same temperature, but this time I steeped the sachet for 2 minutes.  And what I LOVE about the green teas from Southern Boy Teas is that you can resteep it for another half gallon of tea!  I just stash the sachet in the fridge in an airtight container, and then I resteep the sachet at the same temperature (170°F), 2 1/2 minutes for the first quart and 3 minutes for the second.  I get a full gallon of delicious iced tea out of this.

It tastes fresh and light and it’s a very invigorating glass of refreshment.  This one is definitely one I’ll be reordering in the future.  With the next one I buy, I want to try cold-brewing the sachet to see how it fairs!

I like it a lot!

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

We’re already past the halfway mark on this countdown!  Time FLIES!

Cotton Candy Iced Tea

CottonCandyTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  52Teas

Learn more about Southern Boy Teas here.

Taster’s Review:

This is a tea that I’ve previously reviewed, because this is one of the “original” Southern Boy Teas that were made available to the public a couple of years ago.  (I think that Southern Boy Teas started out as a company to provide restaurants with iced tea options for their customers.)

But I’m happy to see this tea in these 12 iced teas of Christmas, because it’s one of my favorites.  It is so delicious.  It is a sweeter tasting tea – so if you’re one that tends to prefer your teas on the plain side, this is definitely not the iced tea to put in your fridge!  But, for the rest of us that love a flavored iced tea – this is one of the best that SBT has to offer!

I’ve been really happy with this countdown thus far.  If for no other reason, it’s encouraging me to keep iced tea in the fridge all the time, and that isn’t something I used to do year ’round.  I’d usually cut off the iced tea brewing around the end of September, when the weather starts to turn cooler.

So yeah … it’s a little weird for me to be drinking iced tea at Christmastime.  This is new to me.  I’ve always been more of the “tea is a hot beverage” sort of girl, but I like having that pitcher of cold refreshment in the chill box waiting for me when I want something to drink with my meals.  I still drink cold drinks in the winter, just not as often.  So, why shouldn’t those cold drinks be iced tea?

Usually, my only cold drink during the winter is water, because I don’t drink soda or juice very often.  Even less than not very often.  Like it’s a rare occurrence for me to drink a soda or juice.   So, I like having the iced tea readily available to enjoy when I want a cold drink.

And this Cotton Candy iced tea is one of the tastiest teas from Southern Boy Teas!

Cotton Candy White Tea from 52Teas


Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  White

Where to Buy:  52Teas

Tea Description:

Premium shou mei white tea with cornflowers and organic flavors.

Learn more about this blend here.

Learn more about Zoomdweebie’s fundraising campaign to reopen the Tea Bar here.

Taster’s Review:

I LOVE this Cotton Candy White Tea from 52Teas!  Oh my goodness!  It is so good!

Of course, I had no doubt whatsoever that I would … after all, I loved the Cotton Candy Black Tea that 52Teas created way back when, as well as the Cotton Candy Black Iced Tea from the Southern Boy Teas collection, so I was confident that I’d like this one too, and part of me was thinking that I’d probably even like this one better, because the delicate quality of the white tea will allow for more of the delicious cotton candy flavor to come through … and YES it definitely does just that.

The aroma of the dry leaf is interesting.  I smell notes of bubble gum, flowers, and an earthy essence.  It smells a bit like the cotton candy cart at the fairgrounds … imagine that the fairgrounds is downwind from a flowery field, and a gust of gentle wind rustles over the flowers and brings that fragrance to your nostrils, and you also notice hints of hay from the fairgrounds … and of course the cotton candy as it’s spinning!

The cotton candy flavor comes through so nicely here.  The white tea tastes very light, and yes, I can still taste it.  In fact, it isn’t at all overpowered by the flavors, instead, the flavors and the sweet, hay-like notes of the white tea meld beautifully together … like they were made for each other.  This tastes just like a freshly spun puff of cotton candy at the county fair, where the scent of hay fragrances the air.  Yum, yum, yum, yum, yum!  There is an aftertaste that is vaguely reminiscent of a berry-like taste, and I find that quite enjoyable too, it’s sweet with a hint of tart, and I like the way it adds a different element for the palate to enjoy.

It is sweet but not cloying.  Don’t get me wrong, if you’re not a fan of sweeter beverages, this is probably not going to be to your liking, but, it’s not as sickeningly sweet as a fountain soda.  The earthiness of the white tea cuts through the sweetness just enough so that this doesn’t feel like a mouthful of sticky cotton candy (and really, that’s all that this is lacking is the sticky texture of the cotton candy … otherwise, this is like liquefied cotton candy that has been added to a cup of Shou Mei!)

It has that slightly caramelized note of the cooked and spun sugar floss, and just a hint of bubble-gummy kind of flavor that I guess kind of is interchangeable with “cotton candy” flavor.  I mean, really, how does one distinguish one from another.  They’re both sweet and candy-like, right?

Absolutely delicious – and a perfect tea for someone with a sweet tooth!

PS:  the deadline is approaching for the fundraising campaign to help Zoomdweebies come back!  Please consider contributing what you can to help, and if you can’t contribute, please help by spreading the word!

Boo-Berry Cotton Candy from 52Teas

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Green

Where to Buy:  52Teas

Tea Description:

Just in time for Halloween! We’ve blended Young Hyson and Gunpowder green teas, freeze-dried blueberries and organic flavors to create the most amazing blueberry cotton candy flavored green tea EVER. I will NOT be able to reblend this one right now, as this used up the last of my green teas for the moment, so don’t miss out!

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

It may seem a little weird to be reviewing a tea called “Boo-Berry” in December, especially for those of you who – like me – are fans of the General Mills Monster cereals that are re-released every year around Halloween.  Yeah, I’m a bit behind on reviewing my 52Teas … but I am trying to get to them in order of their release, and I do like to wait a little while for the teas to have time to cure.  Something that I learned from my days as a tea artist is that when you flavor and/or blend a tea, the flavors need time to develop.  I found that three weeks is usually sufficient, but as I said before, I am a wee bit behind.

So that is why I am reviewing this tea now and scheduling it for December 9, two months after it’s release for the week of October 8.

But I am glad I did wait a while, because based on the review I read from my SororiTea Sister Azzrian, this tea seems a bit different from what she tasted back when she did her review of it.  I can taste the flavors and they’re strong!  The cotton candy shines through, as does the blueberry.

The combination of Hyson and Gunpowder give this tea a pleasing dimension of flavor that is sweet, slightly vegetative and what I want to call “perky.”   Yes, I said Perky!  By that I mean – it has a vibrant, invigorating and even uplifting kind of taste.  I feel it perk me up as I sip it.

Of the two flavors, I taste the sweet, sugary notes of the cotton candy just ahead of the blueberry, and only the sweetest notes of the blueberry.  I find that this does lack some of the tart, tingly notes that I’d expect from a blueberry, this tends to taste more like the candy-ish blueberry taste of Boo-Berry cereal, which seems appropriate since that’s what inspired this tea.  I notice a tart note in the aftertaste only … and only after waiting about a minute into the aftertaste do I notice it.  In other words, if you want that tart blueberry taste, finish the sip, and then wait about a minute, and you’ll feel the tingly berry note develop on your tongue.

But, don’t take that as a criticism or complaint, because it isn’t intended to be.  I don’t want my cotton candy to taste sour or even very tart.  And I’m glad this doesn’t.  Overall, I’m really pleased with this cup, it’s certainly a very good representation of what I would think a Boo-Berry Cotton Candy would taste like.

Now, if you’re getting ready to rush over to the 52Teas website to purchase some of this tea for yourself, you’re going to be a bit disappointed to learn that this tea is now sold out.  That happens a lot with 52Teas blends.  He only blends a limited quantity of each blend, and since he does a new blend each week (hence the name 52Teas) … he couldn’t possibly keep all the teas in stock all the time.  So, if you are fed up with wanting to order a tea from 52Teas that ends up sold out before you can get to it, here’s what I recommend doing:  Subscribe to their tea of the week or monthly tea package program.  That’s what I do.  That’s how I’m able to try each and every tea that they offer.  Now, I’m not going to lie and say that I fall head over heels in love with every single tea that they create.  I don’t.  But, I do at least enjoy most of the teas that they create, and there’s never been one that I just do not like.  And occasionally, there is one that I’m crazy about.  And best of all:  I never have to worry about the teas selling out before I have a chance to snag a pouch for myself.

PS:  The subscriptions also make killer gifts!