Blueberry Custard customized from BlendBee.com

Confession: I‚Äôm completely fine with drinking alone…. Tea, of course ūüėČ But drinking with friends offers some undeniable benefits – laughter and memories made, more importantly a spread of tastebuds that offers better insight than just one picky tongue.*

There are so so many beautiful ingredients in this custom Blueberry Custard from Blendbee, I needed all the help I could get to do it justice! First off, I highly recommend using a clear brewing system (gravity steeper or mason jar) to be able to fully enjoy the making of this majestic Purple infusion. (Fortunately I had just cleaned the hard-earned tea patina off mine with baking soda and vinegar, so it was even more beautiful than my usual cuppa!)

Between the three of us sipping, only one added sugar and it really took away from the innate sweetness of this mix, hmmm better off just trusting the blend maker on this one. Some of us were crazy about this tea, but others found the herbals to be unpalatable. So we looked into what exactly were imbibing…

With Blendbee, you can create your own mix weighing anywhere from 1 oz to ¬Ĺ pound. You start with a choice from 15 tea bases, and here they chose the China Green tea.

Next there are over 90 categorized ingredients to choose from (though it’s recommended to stick below 8). Must be a tough decision from all those options!  This blender chose 7:
Earthy and pungent category: yarrow flower;
Mild and fruity category: elder berries;
Herbaceous herb category: strawberry leaves;
Mild and nutty category: ashwaganda root;
Mild and herbal category: agrimony herb, and coriander seed;
And one uncategorized, marshmallow root.

Next the website offers additional extracts and flavors (up to 3 per blend). Here the blueberry and custard flavor extracts were used. (It was argued at one point that this put the ingredient count to 9, above the recommended 8, but that person is a stickler for semantics and didn’t like the tea anyway, so read that with a grain of salt).

Some of these herbs strike me as acquired tastes, beyond that, I would’ve preferred having actual blueberries instead of the extract, though I didn’t see it as an option (yet) and the extract probably consistently offers more flavor in a smaller space.

This organic blend featured so many different flavor profiles, it was a… memorable… experience for well-developed sippers, and newbies alike.

*The best part of sharing with friends is finding a loving home for leaves that aren’t your favorite (yet). Thanks H.R.!


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Green
Where to Buy: BlendBee
Description:

Create custom teas, with more than a hundred quality and organic ingredients to choose from.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Dragon’s Dream Tea (Signature Blend) by Adagio Teas

DragonsDreamTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Green, Black

Where to Buy: Adagio Teas

Tea Description:

In the lair, a dragon dreams sweet, sweet dreams of glittering treasure, ponies, and those who lurk. And destruction. This warm and spicy brew is full of musical depth and fire.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

The other day I walked in my living room to see my boyfriend had the second Hobbit on TV. . .again. . for the 10th time. . and I of course had to watch right along with him.  My 9 year old son came in a little after and he was also drawn in to the movie.  He had never seen it before so it was fun to enlighten him on all things Hobbit related.  His eyes lit up when Smaug came on the screen and was rooting for the dragon to destroy the merry band of traveling warriors.   Yep. . he is totally my kid.

While we were watching the movie, I remembered that I had this blend and hadn’t tried it yet. ¬†This one was created as a Fandom blend for the Hobbit. ¬†Honestly, I am not a fan of the Adagio teas on their own, but I do really enjoy them when they are in the Signature Blends.

This one is a interesting and different blend.  Green Chai, Assam Melody, and  Cinnamon (black favored tea).  Not flavors I would have paired together.   It smells very much like a cinnamon cake.  When brewed up, it tastes like a buttered up sweet potato with cinnamon on it and a tart like finish. Maybe even some sort of sweet potato pie.

It is a unique flavor. That is for sure. ¬† I did overleaf it after I checked out some other reviews about this blend on Steepster. ¬†A lot of the other reviews said it was bland and “meh”. ¬†If I hadn’t dumped in about 1 1/2 tsps more I can see that being the case. ¬†I did brew this up at work with my coffee pot water spout and then dumped the tea into ice for a iced green chai. ¬†Maybe if I messed with the steeping parameters more I could bring more flavors out. ¬†As it is, ¬†the cinnamon and spices don’t over take the tea like some chai blends I have had before. ¬†It is a very subtle and enjoyable chai blend with a rich buttery sweet potato finish.

A ‘Vampire Lemonade’ Custom Blend Tea from Adagio Teas

VampireLemonadeTea Information:

Leaf Type:  White Tea & Herbals

Where to Buy:  Adagio Teas

Tea Description:

Blood orange tisane outshines white tangerine (20 percent) and lemon grass (20 percent) in this delicious, refreshing blend. Try it iced for a homage to summer, or drink it hot to reminisce on winter days.

A Carolynne Keenan Custom Blend.

Learn more about this custom blend here.

Find more Carolynne Keenan blends here.

Taster’s Review:

I steeped this tea at 190¬įF for 5 minutes and even with that short a steep time, the liquid looks super dark ruby red (like hibiscus) and the texture is thicker than I hoped for. ¬†Too much hibiscus in this!

So I decided to let it cool for a while and see how it would fair as an iced drink because as a hot tea, I found the hibiscus to be too overpowering for me to enjoy it. ¬†As the tea cools, I can pick up on some of the blood orange, tangerine and lemon-y notes from the lemongrass. ¬†The hibiscus enhances the tartness of these fruit¬†flavors¬†which is nice. ¬†I’m not usually a big fan of tart-y beverages but when it’s “lemonade” a bit of tart is OK.

I don’t taste a lot of white tea. ¬†This tastes more like a citrus-y punch than it does a tea. ¬†Which is OK I suppose but I’m more of a tea drinker than a citrus punch drinker.

Overall, this isn’t my favorite tea from Carolynne Keenan’s collection of custom tea blends with Adagio Teas. ¬†I think that if there was a little less hibiscus and more of the fruity flavors, this would be better. ¬†I would also prefer it if it tasted more like tea than like hibiscus. ¬†Then again, you know how I feel about hibiscus. ¬†Not a bad drink, just not my favorite.

Autumn Chai Custom Blend from Adagio Teas

autumnchaiTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  Adagio Teas

Tea Description:

This blend combines candy apple tea with spiced apple chai and caramel tea for an autumn explosion! Add sugar for a Halloween treat too. I added a pinch of cinnamon black tea and this chai completely rocked! If you’ve got some cinnamon tea on hand, add it for an extra kick; or blend freshly ground cinnamon for an autumn adventure.

A Carolynne Keenan Custom Blend.

Learn more about this custom blend here.

Find more Carolynne Keenan blends here.

Taster’s Review:

As I was brewing this¬†Autumn Chai Custom Blend (created by Carolynne Keenan) from Adagio Teas, I was surprised by the scent of apple! ¬†Yeah, it says in the description that there is Spiced Apple Chai¬†in the blend, but, with the other ingredients, I didn’t expect the apple to offer such a prominent fragrance.

I could also smell notes of cinnamon, cloves and ginger, with the cinnamon being the most pronounced of those aromatic spices.  The brewed tea smells strongly of spice with hints of apple in the background.

This is pretty good. ¬†As I’ve said more than once before, I’m not crazy about the black tea base that Adagio uses as it tends to come off tasting harsh. ¬†And even though the custom blends seem to be less harsh (and sometimes not very harsh at all), I’m getting some of that harshness here. ¬†Not as much as if I were drinking one of the single flavored teas from Adagio (as opposed to the custom blends), but, there is still some of that brash¬†astringency¬†to this cup.

Fortunately, that harsh note isn’t too aggressive, and I am enjoying the other flavors that this drink has to offer. ¬†The cinnamon and other spices are fairly well-balanced. ¬†The cinnamon is the strongest flavor, but it doesn’t overwhelm the other spices. ¬†I taste notes of ginger, clove and cardamom. ¬†Then I get a smooth, silky sweet note of caramel. ¬†Mmm! ¬†The apple comes through shortly after I notice the caramel. ¬†In the distance, I notice a bright note of orange.

Overall, it’s an enjoyable chai. ¬†Not my favorite, because even though the harshness isn’t terribly assertive, the fact that I’m detecting it means that I’d rather it not be there. ¬†And the orange … while it does perk up the cup a little bit, it seems a little out of place. ¬†It is certainly tasty though and something I’d be willing to drink again.

Wonderland Custom Tea Blend from Adagio Teas

wonderlandTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  Adagio Teas

Tea Description:

As part of the Wonderland series of tea, this blend mixes spearmint, cinnamon and candy cane for a refreshing – if bit mad – concoction of tea. The taste is extraordinary; minty, mad and yet crazy fun – just like Wonderland.

A Carolynne Keenan Custom Blend.

Learn more about this custom blend here.

Find more Carolynne Keenan blends here.

Taster’s Review:

The name of this¬†Wonderland Custom Tea Blend from Adagio Teas designed by Carolynne Keenan is what interested me about this blend. ¬†I’m a fan of Alice in Wonderland, so I was intrigued by this blend. ¬†I don’t know if I would have selected the Cinnamon, Candy Cane and Spearmint teas to create a blend called Wonderland, I guess because in my mind, they seem to go together so well, and I would think that Wonderland would be a bit more wacky.

That said, this blend is very tasty. ¬†A really good balance of flavors has been achieved. ¬†It’s got a zesty flavor from the cinnamon, but not too much. ¬†There’s a fresh, minty flavor from the peppermint and spearmint, and a sweetness from the candy cane notes and it all melds in a way that is very pleasing to the palate. ¬†It’s got a crisp, lively flavor to it.

And while I do taste the black tea, it’s more of a background note and not a real dominating force in this cup. ¬†And given some of my past experiences with Adagio’s black tea base, I’d say that not experiencing that harshness from the black tea is all for the better. ¬†It’s a good thing!

I drank about half a cup of this without any additions, and then I tried a full cup with about a half a teaspoon of sugar. ¬†I found that the sugar really brought out the candy cane-ishness of this tea, and I enjoyed that. ¬†It’s good without sugar, but better with just a little bit of sugar to bring the candy cane flavors to life.