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Don Quixotea by Novelteas

I steeped one very heaping teaspoon of dry leaves in one cup of 210 degree water for about 4.5 minutes. (I decided to be generous with the amount of leaves I put in, probably because it just smelled so amazing and I was in the mood for something strong.) I could see whole cloves and bits of cinnamon bark in the dry leaves of this tea–lots of them. I always enjoy trying out new chai blends and seeing which spices come to the front and how the chosen spices blend together and so on. This one seems to be heavy Read More

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Hot Cinnamon Spice Tea by New Mexico Tea Company

I steeped 1 tsp of this tea for 5 minutes in one cup of 212 degree water. First of all, this tea isn’t kidding when it says “hot.” (Currently I’m able to smell the cinnamon flavor through the bag even though I double-bagged it, which means it has about the same strength as lapsang souchong). You can clearly see, when measuring it out, that there’s tons of cinnamon in the tea leaves. The ingredients list says it has natural and artificial flavorings too in addition to the three types of cinnamon–I didn’t know three types of cinnamon existed, did you? Read More

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Sensiblyscript’s Tasting Notes on Passion Berry Jolt by Tiesta Tea. . . .

I steeped 1tsp tea for 4 min. in one cup of water at 200-205 degrees, which  produced a cup of tea with a nice dark amber color. Though there’s no berry coloring, there’s plenty of berrylike fragrance. The tea leaves themselves are attractive, with marigold and cornflower petals providing some nice color contrasts. The berry smell blends with the black tea fragrance surprisingly well. (On a side note, I’m glad they used a high-quality black tea for this blend, as I tend to tire easily of “black tea” bases that have no actual tea flavor so that all you can Read More

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Sensiblyscript’s Take on Lapsang Chai by Bluebird Tea Company. . . .

Steeping specs: One teaspoon at 212 degrees for 4 minutes in 1 cup of water. This was an exciting idea for a tea. I’ve tried actual lapsang souchong once and couldn’t get through my mugful (maybe it was a bad idea to add milk, but I couldn’t stand it without milk either so I figured it couldn’t hurt anything). It’s not because I don’t like smoky flavors, either. I love smoked meat (I mean, BACON, right?), and I love campfires although it’s true I don’t eat them. But combining smoky tea with other strong spices that I know I like Read More

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Charles Dickens’ Black Tea Blend by Simpson & Vail

Steeping specs: I steeped a heaping teaspoon of this tea in about 10 oz. of boiling water for three minutes. I tried some of this tea before looking it up, so I didn’t know what to expect but then realized it was rather unusual so I checked out the background and steeping recommendations so I could give it a more “proper” review. Apparently it’s a combination of black tea, oolong tea, and natural flavoring (plus cornflower petals, which add visual interest). I found it to be quite a memorable blend. (Combinations of black tea and oolong intrigue me . . Read More