Black Bear from Banff Tea Company. . . .

In the winter – I’m sort of a hermit. Or I tend to want to hibernate like a bear. Regardless – that is what this tea remind me of…a nice tea to sit down and hibernate with. A nice tea to sip on when you are overly frustrated with winter, too, because one sip will having you thinking SPRING is right around the corner.

The tea I’m writing about today is Black Bear from Banff Tea Company. It’s flavored black tea with enough caffeine to light a figurative fire under your butt in the morning. “This blend is indeed black and contains enough berries and leaves to satisfy any of the Park’s locals,” according to the company website.

The origins hail from Sri Lanka and the ingredients are Black tea, blackberry leaves, elderberries, dried blackcurrants, hibiscus, mallow flowers, sunflower petals, cornflower petals, natural Flavoring.

I’m not a fan of hibiscus so when I tasted the berry and realized this flavored berry tea did NOT contain hibiscus in it I nearly jumped for joy! This is a nicely done berry flavored black tea. The flavor ratios are very pleasing.

This is great iced but very good hot, too! It’s naturally sweet on its own and a delightful cuppa!

 


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy: Banff Tea Company
Description

This blend is indeed black and contains enough berries and leaves to satisfy any of the Park’s locals.

Caffeine Level: High.

Origin: Sri Lanka.

Ingredients: Black tea, blackberry leaves, elderberries, dried currents, hibiscus, mallow flowers, sunflower petals, cornflower petals, natural flavouring.

Steeping Suggestions: 1 teaspoon (3g) of tea per 6oz cup of water, 90°C (194°F) for 2-5 minutes.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Chocolate PuErh from Numi Organic Teas

Numi’s Chocolate Pu-erh bags are the perfect intro to flavored Puerh: organic yet inexpensive, and bagged for easy travel. In fact it was the very first tea I pulled from my very first sampler, an inexpensive add-on in my amazon cart. This is also sold loose leaf by the pound.

I have to admit I was skeptical because not only did I dislike chocolate, but I also had heard “fishy” things about the fermented tea. But as a scientist, I had to test these assumptions, and the evidence supported the null hypothesis. This was a light bodied, full flavor tea, that I’ve found is impossible to screw up in the brewing process.

This silky brown infusion reminds me of a hot cocoa with toasted marshmallows fresh from the campfire, and ooooooh that tiniest hint of that nutmeg. Alton Brown would be proud.  As a final touch of perfection, cue a chef’s kiss, no sweetener was needed!


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Flavored Pu-Erh
Where to Buy: Numi Tea

This velvety infusion combines black Pu∙erh tea and organic cocoa. Accented by whole vanilla beans and sweet orange peel, this decadent blend is rounded off with nutmeg and cinnamon for a spicy finish.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Orange Raspberry Green Rooibos from 52Teas . . .

The word I’d use to describe this blend is “tangy.”

It’s a pleasing mix of tart and sweet. You can taste the bite of the citrus, the dance of the raspberry, and the wink of the rooibos. All of this flavor, none of the tireless, tedious bed-flipping evenings that come as a consequence of caffeine.

This reminds me of something moxie-bright I might have chugged as a child. It is sunshine and playing tag, bottled. It’s like Van Gogh’s brushstrokes have swirled this flavor profile into being.

All in all, this is a charming companion to sit by your bedside as you drift off to dreamland.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Green Rooibos/Herbal
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!

Hood River Rooibos from Beach House Teas. . . . .

Hood River Rooibos from Beach House Teas is a delicious decaf herbal blend with rooibos, ginger, and honeycrisp apples. I love the fall, and sometimes I love extra honey sweet apple teas with lots of cinnamon and flavoring, but Hood River Rooibos has me re-thinking what I want in my herbal apple teas this season.

This tea is simple and delightful.  The woodsy rooibos is flavorful without caffeine or bitterness. A touch of ginger root adds just enough sweet spice to make you think you’re drinking something special and seasonal.

The honeycrisp apples are really the ingredient that shines. The naturally sweet fruit flavor of the apples doesn’t need any sugar or honey to taste indulgent and refreshing.  Because there aren’t any powerful spices like cinnamon or cloves, you get to taste all the apples for themselves. Even a chai-lover like me doesn’t miss the cinnamon in this blend.

This tea makes me nostalgic for the fresh fall apples in the orchard of my hometown.  This is the perfect blend to warm you up when your picking apples off the tree, or when you’re just daydreaming about fall and all its wonderful flavors.

 


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Rooibos
Where to Buy: Beach House Teas
Description:

Hood River Rooibos is 100% organic rooibos tea blended with ginger root and Pacific Northwest Honeycrisp Apples. This combination of sweet apple mixed with the heat of ginger and the earthy flavor of rooibos is perfect for the winter season.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Raspmonade from TeaTaxi. . . .

This has been the first day in a while that I have had the opportunity to relax. To me, that means sitting by the fire while drinking cup after cup of tea. Now, as much as I like to say I am not impacted by caffeine, I know it is good to switch it up a bit. To that end, I like to mix in a rooibos, honeybush, or herbal infusion amongst all the mugs of black tea, green tea, and oolong.

I brewed up my entire sample packet (5 grams) of this Raspmonade tea by TeaTaxi as a hot tea, steeping it in near boiling water (200F) for 3 minutes, 2 minutes shorter than the recommended steeping parameters as the rooibos began to smell quite strong.

As I drink now, the rooibos is strong but more so because the other flavors are so subtle which leaves little to taste other than the base. I get some berry flavor from the raspberry leaves but lemon comes through mainly in scent.

I don’t know if my understeeping is at play here but this lacks the flavor I was looking for when I brewed this up. I wanted sweet raspberry and bright lemon and I got generic berry rooibos. Definitely not what I was hoping for but still fun to try something new.

 


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Red Rooibos
Where to Buy:  Tea Taxi
Description

Delight in this amazing concoction of raspberry flavored with lemon. A fruity euphoria you can drink hot or cold!

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!