George Daddy from A Quarter To Tea. . . .

If you know that there’s always money in the banana stand, you’ll likely understand this tea.

If you don’t? I mean, it’s still a delicious chocolate-banana-graham tea, but you’re probably gonna be a little weirded out by the name.

I’ll be honest: though so many of my fellow Sororitea Sister have proclaimed their love for banana teas, I’ve been skeptical. I like bananas. I don’t OMG LOVE them. I really like frozen, chocolate dipped bananas– does that count? But I am decidedly NOT a fan of fake banana flavor– banana runts? No thanks. Banana gum? Gag.

So you can bet I was a skoosh skeptical when I sniffed this tea right in the bag– it is pretty powerfully banana-flavor-scented. But the lingering background chocolate notes intrigued me, and the large chunks of chocolate graham cracker was enough to set me over the edge. Brewed, this one is a bit murky-golden, with a little visible oily-film on the top. The scent is still pretty strongly faux-banana, but I was pleased to find the taste to be more authentic. This needed no sweetness added, it was the perfect balance of flavors without any bitterness. I wish I had enough of this one to try it iced just to see how Bluth-family-banana-stand authentic the flavors actually were, but I still slurped up the whole hot cup, regardless. Would I repurchase? Maybe not– as human who’s fairly meh about bananas, I don’t know that I need it in my cabinet. But for a banana lover– or a Bluth? This one needs to live in your banana stand (er… tea cabinet).

Here’s the scoop!

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

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

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Spiced Mulled Wine by Simpson and Vail. . . .

I steeped this tea for 3 minutes at approximately boiling temperature, with one teaspoon per cup of water.
Looking at the tea leaves I see bits of orange peel among them, as well as blue flower petals. This is a nicely scented blend, although it doesn’t really smell like what I imagined mulled wine would be like (I’ve never actually tried mulled wine though so maybe that’s why).  My first sniffs did detect a sort of depth that hinted at pu-erh, though, although it doesn’t actually have pu-erh in it.
It doesn’t look like pu-erh once steeped, either. It’s quite reddish, like a  blueberry or citrus/rosehip tea, but doesn’t smell acidic or berry-ish. (Reading through the ingredients I discovered that this is likely due to the beet root in the blend.)
First sip: Pleasant flavor, not super strong, and definitely not acidic. It doesn’t taste alcoholic either, but does have a sort of sweetness at the back of the throat. I can’t really taste the orange peel, although it may be lending a slight freshness to the blend (not really a detectable citrusness, though). The black tea base is obviously one that plays well with others; it’s not shoving floral or malty flavors to the front, but instead providing a comfortingly well-rounded sip that warms nicely.


From the way the back-of-mouth sweetness is behaving, I wondered if this tea has chamomile or mallow in it, so I checked the ingredients and there are malva blossoms! Yeah, I wondered what that meant too, but apparently they’re a type of mallow, so maybe that’s where the flavor came from (don’t quote me on that though).


The tea base is also a light one since the tea itself ended up clear but red, not brownish or dark. (So clear that I could easily see the bottom of the mug.)
I added milk next, which didn’t curdle thankfully but did turn the whole thing raspberries-and-cream pink. I like a lot this way too, despite the fact that it probably tastes nothing like mulled wine now. <3

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Black
Where to Buy:  Simpson and Vail

Looking for a winter concoction without the alcohol? Then, this brew is for you! The blend produces a reddish cup with a sweet fragrant aroma and taste. The tannic taste is reminiscent of red wine and it is perfectly complemented by the light spice taste and the earthy undertones.

Ingredients: black teas, orange peel, beet root, spiced mulled wine flavoring and malva blossoms.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Cream Flavored Black by Adagio Teas

I steeped 1.5 tsp of this tea in 10oz. of water (just about boiling) for three minutes.
Adagio is a fantastic way to get into the loose leaf tea world! Also, I love their loyalty program, which pays me several cents’ worth of “points” every time I submit a tea review! I mean, my day job pays more, but still. Plus, Adagio is super user-friendly, so much so that I’ve gotten one or two of my (less-tea-nerd-ish) family members ordering from them as well!
Anyway, back to the cream-flavored black tea. The tea is fragrant while steeping, and after steeping it’s become a darkish cedar color. It smells of black tea (excellent-just as it should) and vanilla-like sweetness.

The first sip tastes of vanilla/cream flavor. It isn’t the same as having actual cream in your tea but it is very nice, kind of floral and sweet. The black tea base is great too; it’s quite solid, not bitter, but somewhat astringent and very flavorful. It’s good for mornings or afternoons, I’d say, but afternoons especially, in my opinion. Also it would probably be great for adding your own flavors (for example, some would consider this sacrilege, but I personally sometimes add a few drops of Ghirardelli chocolate syrup to my tea in place of sugar).

It turns out to be lovely with milk, as well; it makes the milk taste extra-creamy but still has a bit of vanilla-like flavor, or maybe that’s the tea base’s floral notes I’m catching now? Either way, it’s very pleasant, satisfying and comforting, and a flavor that I’m sure I’ll savor on many afternoons to come. <3

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Black
Where to Buy:  Adagio Teas

Which comes first, the cream or the tea? If you’re not sure, don’t worry… neither are the English. However, its unanimously agreed that, whether you prefer your tea first, or cream first, this dairy-free cream flavored Ceylon black tea is a treat for your teacup! Sweet, inviting and warm, with a delicate creamy consistency and aroma of fresh black tea. Pleasantly brisk and very refreshing. Teatime calls…

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Monkey King Jasmine Green Tea from Numi. . . . .

Steeping specs: 170° with one teabag in one cup of water for about 2 to 3 minutes

This green tea is a great responsible option for travelers who need the convenience of a teabag but don’t want to go with a low-quality commercialized option. This one has fair trade certified ingredients (tea leaves infused with jasmine that is also certified organic) and a biodegradable teabag. So there’s some social responsibility for you.

The tea water while steeping turns a yellowish color and immediately gives off a very very floral scent from all that jasmine. Jasmine is actually quite a piercing sent, unlike the green tea flavor in the tea (which I can’t smell at all due to the heady flower fragrance). This particular batch of jasmine flavor, though, is actually much more approachable than some that I’ve tried recently. It’s not so penetrating that you want to run and hide, and it doesn’t make you feel like a perfume shop. It just lingers around the tea and makes everything sweeter.

I should probably also mention that I am almost unable to taste any green tea flavor over the jasmine once I start drinking it. Not quite unable, though. I am finding a bit of astringency that could only come from the tea itself, and there are a couple of other notes that may be tea-related, although it’s a little hard to tell this point. In addition, the Jasmine actually makes this tea really really sweet, which means it doesn’t need sugar (making it even healthier to drink and even more convenient for traveling).

Overall I’d say this is a very exceptional option considering that it came from a tea bag (I try not to be too much of a loose leaf snob, but some teabags make it so easy). The leaves in the teabag are chopped up pretty finely but still manage to deliver excellent flavor, especially excellent Jasmine flavor.

I would be careful with the directions given on the packet though, since they’re a little unspecific. It says to boil your water and then allow to cool slightly before steeping. What you really need to do is allow to cool significantly to about 170-180° or you’re likely to end up with bitter tea. My tea was steeped at about 170F and is almost verging on bitter already. Of course you can always add sugar if it starts to get bitter too.

So as mentioned above, I think this is a great option for traveling, what with its socially responsible packaging and convenience of use (and higher-quality ingredients than other conveniently packaged teas), or you could even keep it around the house for a great flowery-tasting option when you’re in a hurry or don’t want to bother with loose leaves.

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Green Tea
Where to Buy:  Numi Tea

This tea is not currently on the website but click below for teas that are.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

A Honeybush Cookie Dessert Tea. . . #52Teas

Being honest, i’m scared of molasses. I use it when i’m baking gingerbread, but I just refuse to eat it on its own. I don’t know how some people just pour it over their pancakes, I feel like it smells salty and weird and it really just freaks me out. So when I saw the name of this blend I totally held off on trying it. Although, the blend did smell like spice cookies….so I decided to give it a try anyways.

I could really smell the honeybush once this tea was steeped. I absolutely love honeybush and I actually tend to favor it over rooibos. I feel like it is so much sweeter and less woodsy tasting. Its a bit hard to describe but once you’ve tried it a few times, you’ll be able to point it out without even knowing that its in the tea. The sweet/honey/nutty flavor of the honeybush really blended well with the spices and cookie flavor in this tea. I can’t really speak on how accurate the molasses flavor in here is because I’ve never actually tasted molasses on its own, only in cookies or gingerbread.

I do know, however, that the flavor of honeybush was very strong here, and the spices and cookie/vanilla flavor (and the molasses) was very much in the background. That’s not to say that this wasn’t still enjoyable, because it was. I just think that the honeybush was the most dominant flavor here. I added a little agave, and then a little more, and I definitely think that that helped bring out the cookie flavor and spices flavor a bit.

Either way, if you like honeybush I think that you would find it difficult to not enjoy this blend. I do wish the spice cookie flavor was a little stronger but this was still a yummy blend.

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Honeybush
Where to Buy:  52Teas

This blend is no longer available but click below for blends that are.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!