Osmanthus Ceylon/Zesta Tea

Osmanthus is one of my favorite florals and makes an excellent spring tea. If you’re not expecting it and are accustomed to mild florals, it’s little overwhelming. Osmanthus is really sweet and usually doesn’t need any kind of sweetener! (Some milder variants go well with honey but this one, in particular, is on the sweeter side.) Stick to the 3-minute steep time—it doesn’t need anymore. If it’s too sweet, you might enjoy a second steep.

The first steep is very sweet, fruity, and almost overpoweringly floral. It’s not as tangy as Ceylon normally is, so you’re left with this smooth, mild sweetness reminiscent of apricots. It also kind of reminds me of honeysuckle, but slightly less of a woody flavor.

The second steep is a little better and has a more rounded flavor. You get a bit more of the tangy flavor typical of Ceylon, slightly bitter, with hints of apricot and a light floral taste. It’s definitely one of those teas I would share with a friend who has a sweet tooth. Pour the first cup for them and hold the second for yourself!

I like this one in moderation. It was a bit too sweet for me to enjoy in any frequency, but the second steep definitely won me over. I’d recommend this to anyone who is a fan of sweet and floral teas.


Want to Know More About This Tea?

Leaf Type: Black

Where to Buy:  Zesta Tea

Description

Native to Asia, Osmanthus flowers are famous in China for their flavour and scent. This tea combines handpicked flowers with fine Chinese black tea to brew a cup which is fragrant yet pleasantly light with a slightly fruity taste.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Dragon’s Tooth/Swallowtail Tea

First off, I have to say that this tea is nothing short of amazing—it ties in everything I love about greens and oolongs in a perfectly smooth, sweet cup of tea. I expected something a little more vegetal/grassy with how green the leaves were but I was pleasantly surprised with a nice floral taste.

While this might go good with honey, I wound up not adding anything to it. Any sweetener would cover up something that tastes perfect on its own, detracting from sweeter floral notes.

Part of the sweetness of this tea reminds me of fresh spring water. There’s a hint of minerality, but it doesn’t leave an aftertaste. I got two steepings out of this one and may even try a third, as the flavor didn’t change much aside from losing a little of its floral flavor. It was still about as bold as the first brew.

This one’s a keeper! I’ll definitely be adding this to my “must have” list.


Want to Know More About This Tea?

Leaf Type:  Oolong

Where to Buy: Swallowtail Tea

Description

This wonderful Mao Xie oolong has dramatic floral notes of lilac and jasmine, with the complexity of butter, stone, and steamed greens.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Jasmine Rose/Calabash Tea & Tonic. . . .

We’re in that seasonal stage now where it’s technically spring and everyone wants to act like it’s already warm outside, but it just isn’t yet. I am not immune from that urge. The long slog of winter has made me dream of sunshine and singing birds. I’m still waiting for springtime to hit the air, but in the meantime I can brew it up in my mug.

This blend is perfectly spring in a cup. Calabash lists the ingredients as jasmine flowers, Turkish roses, and first-pluck sencha green tea. First-pluck sencha usually comes out in April or May, so this is literally a spring tea. Plus I always think of flowers as a sign of spring (although I looked it up and it seems jasmine primarily blooms in summer and most but not all types of roses bloom in spring).

I like the choice of sencha as a base tea here. Its lightness allows the florals to shine. Rose is definitely the prominent flavor here, with jasmine playing a supporting role. It doesn’t have that chemically, artificial taste that some floral teas do and it’s not over-the-top. I also like that it’s only two flowers, so it’s not too busy. I get two solid steeps out of the leaf before it loses flavor.

This tea is the perfect way to tide me over until springtime arrives for real.


Want to Know More About This Tea?

Leaf Type:  Green

Where to Buy:  Calabash Tea & Tonic

Description

Hand-plucked jasmine flowers and Turkish roses compliment our exclusive first pluck sencha green tea & Love

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Raven’s Blend from Friday Afternoon . . . . . .

Hello dear readers! I have recently come across a quite delightful tea company that was sent to me as a secret Santa gift and I was amazed by the quality and of course with the tea selection. I had a whole lot of tea to chose from in the care package that was sent to me but after some consideration, I picked up Raven’s Blend.

For starters, this tea is very light given its black tea base and I believe that is thanks to the white tea wingman. There is also blue cornflower in this tea which adds a delightfully light floral taste. To those who are familiar with the taste profile of Lady Grey, it is like that but more delicate. I feel like I say this a lot because most teas are relaxing but I find that this one can be paired with just about any relaxing activity. But it also can spark creativity, giving your brain a needed boost. Which makes sense because its namesake is derived from the Ravenclaw house in the Harry Potter series. Which, funny enough is my actually my house.

Now on to the pricing of this beautiful blend. There are a total of four sizes to choose from; 1 oz which is priced at $10, a 2 oz which is priced at $14, 4 oz for $25, and 8 oz for $45. There aren’t any individual samples that you can order outright but I do know for certain that you can email the shop and ask for individual samples at $2 per sample. If you want to be more adventurous there is a mystery sample pack for $13 with four options (high caffeine, no caffeine, moderate caffeine, mixed caffeine) and an educational sampler pack for $35 that comes with steeping notes that has five options to choose from; black teas, green teas, oolong teas, pu-erh teas, and medicinal teas. Lastly, if you are in the Harry Potter fandom, there is a Wizarding Collection that you can purchase for $25 that features .5-.75 ounces for each of the teas from each of the four houses.

For the final thoughts on this tea, I believe it is well worth the money for the taste and the woman behind it is also great from my experience. From what I can tell she is very active with her consumers and is constantly adding new products to her online and physical store. There is also an option to make your own custom tea blend for $35 either by email or at the physical location. Also, as I was writing this review, I made a fresh cup of Raven’s Blend and I will possibly make another one! I fell in love with this tea company and you better be ready to see more reviews of this company in the near future!

See you for the next cuppa, Kara


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy:  Friday Afternoon
Description

In wise old Ravenclaw house, “Wit beyond measure is man’s greatest treasure.” This medium-bodied, floral black tea is designed especially for you bibliophiles. High caffeine levels prepare you for those all-night study sessions and sharpen your focus while you devour the written word. Also fabulous while you read (or reread) your favorite novel, curled up in your favorite armchair or reading nook.

Ingredients: Black tea, white tea, and blue cornflower

All of our teas available online are gluten-free and sourced from organically certified farms. Most are vegan, but some may include honey (indicated in ingredients).

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Jasmine Pearls from My Tea Guy. . . .

Floral teas done just right can really deliver an experience like no other tea can.  There is something so romantic, so alluring, so down right comforting about having a floral tea that delivers.  And after the last few weeks of constant meetings and trainings, I needed some comforting.

So while I was organizing my stash I saw this delight that had gotten stuck behind a few other blends.  Jasmine Pearls are typically a tea that I gobble up eagerly so to say the excitement was real would be an understatement.

Brewed with water prepped right around 175 and steeped for about well, the tea is still steeping because I’m using my Wall mug (from Boreal Wildcraft- do yourself a favor, check out this mug and get one. Game Changer!)  Even with the tea constantly steeping, this tea is simply perfection.  Soft subtle green tea notes mingle with stronger floral flavors to present this romantic combination that I have fallen in love with yet again.

What I adore most about this tea is that even with using this unique brewing vessel, the tea is not overwhelming or giving me that really overpowered floral note that makes the tea too harsh to enjoy.  Each sip is just providing so much enjoyment and allowing me to really dive into the tea while enjoying watching the tea sit at the bottom of the mug.  Simple, beautiful, and comforting.  All the attributes you want to find in a good cuppa tea.


 

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Green
Where to Buy:   My Tea Guy
Description

Jasmine Pearl tea is a fragrant, refreshing tea made by combining jasmine flower blooms with green tea leaves. The flowering jasmine plant originated in Persia and was brought to China around 300 A.D. Tea scented with jasmine became popular during the Song Dynasty between 960 and 1270 A.D.

 

Our Jasmine Pearls are hand-rolled under the supervision of tea master LIN ZHENG KAN (The fourth generation tea family descendant). The spring picked tea leaves are hand-rolled into pearls and then dried until summer when they are blended with unopened jasmine flowers which bloom overnight, releasing their aroma into the tea. The flowers are then removed and the process is repeated several times.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!