Downton Abbey Christmas Tea from Republic of Tea. . . .

Downton Abbey Christmas Black Tea is a delicious blend that tastes like chai-meets-mulled-cider. It’s spicy, rich, wine-like, and a little bit fruity.

“Wine like?” you ask anxiously. “If it’s Christmas… I am looking for wine-like.”

Yes! Unfortunately, there is no liquor within it, but it tries. It gets pretty close.

And trust me, folks: I understand the holidays making you want to reach for the booze.

I type this post from my family’s home in Virginia, where I violated a Time of Tea Law. I settled in with a novel and this book at around 7 p.m. after dinner, and was admonished.

“Tea is with dessert,” my mother said. “We have that at 8 p.m.”

“I could make myself another tea… at 8 p.m,” I said, confused.

My father, who came back from walking the dogs, spotted the mug in my hand and said, “TEA? ALREADY?”

And I said “WHY SO MANY LIMITS ON THE TEA AROUND HERE?”

THAT is the kind of family interaction we celebrate at the holidays! Granted, this is Thanksgiving week, but I’m sure there will be similar interactions on my husband’s family’s side at Christmas.

Feel free to drink this whenever you get frustrated with your family and imagine it’s something stronger.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Black
Where to Buy:  Republic of Tea
Description

This blend is a holiday blend but click below to learn more about all of Downton Abbey Blends that Republic of Tea offers.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Chocolate Cherry Bomb! from The Tea Spot

Chocolate Cherry Bomb!

It’s a special day when you get to drink a tea with an exclamation mark in its name!

I loved the aroma of this one as soon as I opened the pouch. The first impression I got from this deep black tea was that it was boozy, rather than sweet candy. Then I was reminded of the smell of cherry pipe tobacco, which is one of my favorite scents ever. When I see Haley Mills sniffing her grandpa in “The Parent Trap” to ‘make a memory’ as she put it, this is the aroma I imagine, even though she said he also smelled of peppermints!

Steeped, this is a strong and brisk black base with chocolate foremost and cherry after. And hallelujah! The cherry tastes like cherry instead of like horrific cherry cough syrup!

This would be a good breakfast tea thanks to that hefty base, and can easily handle milk and sugar. I do recommend that you let it cool a little before you sip. When I sipped it piping hot, I tasted chocolate but no cherry. With just a little cooling, the cherry flavor came out very well.

Don’t overleaf this one! The base is strong enough to stick with a level teaspoon for eight ounces.

 


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Black
Where to Buy: The Tea Spot
Description

Think hand-dipped chocolate cherry truffle… sweet, plump, juicy, decadent – without the calories. Its cherry scent and velvety smooth chocolate notes work to enchant, but not overwhelm. Handcrafted from two black teas this is a dessert that you can enjoy for breakfast.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Root Beer Float Black Tea from 52Teas. . .

I am lactose sensitive. I can have some dairy and be perfectly fine but too much and I am sick. This is especially true with ice cream. That is why I was particularly surprised when my mother took me to a restaurant called Jackson’s and happily let me order a Root Beer Float that came with a pitcher of root beer and a pint of vanilla ice cream. She’d been there before and knew what I was getting into…I did not. Needless to say I had to force my stepdad to help me out with the ice cream. Doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy it though because root beer floats are awesome!

In light of my enjoyment of root beer floats, I was pretty pleased when this Root Beer Float Black Tea arrived as a sample in one of my orders from 52 Teas. Even more exciting are the delicious sounding ingredients of black teas, marshmallow root, sarsaparilla root, vanilla beans, calendula petals, and natural flavors. I made this as both a latte and a plain hot cup of tea.

My latte, though a bit watered down due to my inaccurate measuring, has a great sarsaparilla flavor. More than just the sarsaparilla which captures the root beer note, the vanilla beans and fluffy marshmallow combine with the milk to create a silky and creamy vanilla ice cream flavor. As a whole, the entire concept of root beer float is expertly captured in this tasty tea latte.

The plain tea is much more root beer than float. Granted there is a nice dose of vanilla and some softness from the marshmallow root, it is more heavily weighted towards the base black tea and the sarsaparilla root.

All in all, this tea (which is not currently available on the site but could be reblended) is a great take on the popular root beer float tea. Though it is good both ways I had it, I personally recommend the latte for a more accurate float. Just add a bit of whipped cream and a maraschino cherry and you got a treat worthy of any soda shoppe or 50s diner (but with much fewer calories :P).


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Black
Where to Buy: 52Teas
Description

This tea is no longer available but click below for teas that are.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Pumpkin Gingerbread Trifle from A Quarter To Tea. . . .

It’s that time of the year when it is still very much Fall so pumpkin is every which way you turn. You can’t go two minutes without seeing pumpkin this and pumpkin spice that. However, we are near enough to Christmas that those holiday flavors are popping up too. Just two days ago I enjoyed a Gingerbread Lindt Truffle while trying my first ever Pumpkin Spice Latte from Starbucks. It is a flavor experience that I am delighted to try again.

As per usual, A Quarter to Tea has just that combination with one of their teas, Pumpkin Gingerbread Trifle, a flavored black tea with notes of pumpkin, gingerbread, and custard. I steeped this up for 3 minutes in 200 degree water as per the recommended parameters.

The smell as I take my first sip is 98% gingerbread and 2% pumpkin sweetness. It’s got a great spice to it and I am disappointed that flavorwise, it is not as strong. There is still a gingerbread flavor but it is not as sharp as in the scent due to the stronger pumpkin flavor. Tastewise it is like a sweet pumpkin (not to be confused with pumpkin spice) drink with a ginger kick lingering in the background. The aftertaste has the baked good flavor of a gingerbread cookie. Custard seems to be lacking but between the other components there is enough going on that it isn’t missed.

Personally I wish there was more gingerbread and less pumpkin but I can’t fault it for delivering what’s promised due to my personal preferences. It is a nice tea even if it is a little unsure whether it wants to be sweet or spicy. Fall and the holidays are one in this tasty cuppa.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Black Tea
Where to Buy:  A Quarter To Tea
Description

This tea is no longer available but click below for teas that are.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Cottage Cozy Earl Grey from A Quarter To Tea. . .

TODAY SIMPLY ISN’T HAPPENING, GUYS. THE PARTS ARE NOT COMING TOGETHER TO CAUSE A PLEASING WHOLE.

You know what that calls for? A pleasing new flavor. It’s time to BREAK OUT A NEWBIE.

I’ve opted for “Cottage Cozy Earl Grey” due to its name. “Cozy” is exactly where I’d like to be right now, spiritually. I want that mellow, hygge lifestyle. I want thick socks and a novel.

This blend is a very sweet earl grey, leaning heavily on lavender, which jingles lightly on a smoky assam base. It’s a playful duo.

I’m not getting a lot of the bargamot or the rooibos flavor here, but that might just be the Luck Of The Scoop. (It’s like the luck of the Irish, but for loose leaf tea enthusiasts. Not every scoop has every ingredient in a faithful representation of the whole. This keeps things exciting.)

That said, the lavender and the base are a good duo. They remind me of any classic comedy, with one goof and one straight man. If this were Planes, Trains, and Automobiles, the assam would be our straightforward Steve Martin and the lavender would be the loose cannon John Candy. (Am I old? Is this a hip reference?)

And honestly, I do feel better now. Even a little bit cozy.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Black/Rooibos blend
Where to Buy:  A Quarter To Tea
Description

Sweeter and more floral than a normal Earl Grey, this is the perfect companion to rainy days and long books. Mellow but brisk.

Like all Earl Grey, takes milk and sugar well.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!