Leaf Type: Honeybush
Where to Buy: Nothing But Tea
Honeybush is gaining a lot of attention at the moment for its benefits. This blend sees honeybush blended with strawberrys, kiwi, elderberry, passionfruit and rosehip for a new take on the fruit infusion.
Learn more about this tea here.
Hello fellow tea lovers.
Today I’m reviewing this Honeybush Malaika which I have to admit that I have not had a lot of Honeybush tea compared to the likes of Rooibos. So if you’ve heard of it but don’t really know what it is or much information about it then hopefully this will help.
Some brief information on Honeybush: The name of this plant is Cyclopia but it is better known as Honeybush purely because it’s flowers smell sweet like honey. While Cyclopia is one plant it has many different cultivars, all of which originate across South Africa. Technically speaking Honeybush is not a tea but a tisane and considering this; is also low in tannin. Similar to Rooibos in flavour but Honeybush is considered to be sweeter and with a fuller body, though similarly it is also caffeine free.
Comparing it to Rooibos is interesting as I don’t usually like Rooibos but the few Honeybush I’ve had I loved. Rooibos has a chemical flavour (at least in my opinion) and that tends to overpower any flavours added to it. Honeybush does not have that issue and while it is perhaps a little sweeter I find it does not dominate additional flavours but rather enhances them.
Back to this tea in hand. I received a sample pack of 10g from NBT a while ago as an exclusive pre-release taster before it was launched on the site. Now it’s up for sale I decided the best thing for me to do was ice it to try and get the most flavour from it. So for two days I have had 10g of this blend steeping in my fridge using 1litre of water. Coldsteeping is much softer and keeps delicate tones, it’s my preferred method of icing tea/tisanes.
I haven’t mentioned much about the look or scent of the blend but honestly there was not much to it. The blend looked floral and multi coloured which bared a subtly sweet yet herbal scent. The fruit was too delicate for me to really say much about it and I decided to let it’s flavour speak instead. So I waited for the outcome with enough time to thicken with flavour.
Today is the morning I try this and the resulting liquid is a light brown/orange colour with a delicious sweet, fruit scent. Particularly like apple and strawberry with honey. A real contrast to it’s unsteeped scent. It’s flavour is just as wonderful! Sweet honeyed fruits with a touch of floral after tones that leave my mouth feeling sweet and refreshed. The fruit tones are mixed but notable berry with a touch of sourness with an exotic fruit affair behind them.
Honestly this tisane gave me a lot more pleasure than I thought it would and I’m happy to say this Honeybush blend is a winner. I don’t think I would have liked this if it was a Rooibos base and the Honeybush really does make this blend stand out.
Until next time,
Leaf Type: Herbal
Where to Buy: The Random Tea Room
A blend of chamomile, lemon balm, motherwort, peppermint, lavender, and passionflower. Designed to assist the body in alleviating stress and worn nerves. Very relaxing. This is calm in a cup!
Learn more about this tea here.
First off, I am not a fan of lavender in teas. I feel that the lavender adds a bite to the tea and creates a overwhelming fragrance to the tea. When I received this tea and noticed that there was lavender in it, I was a bit worried. Lately I have been really trying to get myself to not drink the teas that I know I will like. Like how you encourage a child to try different foods, I’m taking that same plane of thought in my tea drinking. I have been trying some pretty unusual teas and having a fantastic time. I have discovered that I enjoy rose petals in tea. After having this tea, I am ok with lavender now being in tea.
This tea is presented in a marvelous tin. The label on this package is awesome. I love the way The Random Tea Room packages their teas.
I added two scoops of tea into my Breville One Touch and hit the herbal button (212F-5 min). Once the tea was ready, I poured the liquid into two mugs, admiring the coloring of the tea. There was an almost purple color to it.
Jason and I took our first sips and we both looked at each other and smiled. First sip and I’ve fallen in love with another tea. This tea is a perfect herbal tea. Relaxing, soothing, comforting, and cooling. Everything you would want in an herbal tea and more. The chamomile provides a baked dessert background while the peppermint (which is subtle) adds in just a touch of a cooling aesthetic. There is also a touch of a fruity flavor through the sip and the lavender delivers an ever so slight floral note. A lot of flavors in this blend, but they all work together and play nicely in my cuppa. I’m impressed with yet another of The Random Tea Room’s blends.
I was able to get about 4 infusions out of this one session with this tea. Even tried it iced and thought this herbal tea delivered a solid flavor. You can’t ask for a better herbal!
Leaf Type: Herbal
Where to Buy: WayGood Tea
A delicate herbal infusion kissed with fragrant rose petals & jasmine flowers.
Learn more about this tea here.
Dry, this Lemon Jasmine Cleanse Tea from WayGood Tea smells more like sage and rosemary than it does lemon or jasmine (or any other ingredient in this herbal tisane). But I don’t mind – I like sage and rosemary!
To brew this, I placed one sachet in my teacup and poured 8 ounces of near boiling (195°F) water over the sachet. Then I allowed it to steep for 6 minutes. The brewed tisane is a golden hue and smells pleasantly of sage and rosemary with hints of flower and subtle notes of lemon. Similar to the dry tea – the fragrance is primarily rosemary and sage but more of the fruit and floral notes are coming through now.
The flavor is interesting. I can’t say that I’ve ever tasted a tea or tisane quite like this. That’s not to say I’m not enjoying it. To be honest, I think I need another minute or two of writing about it before I figure out if I really do like it!
I taste sage and rosemary – not surprisingly based upon my experience with the aroma – but I also taste rose. I appreciate that even though the sage and rosemary are dominate fragrances in this tea, their flavors do not overwhelm the cup.
I’m kind of surprised that the name of this tea is “Lemon Jasmine Cleanse” but of the ingredients in this blend – jasmine, rose, lemon verbena, alfalfa, sage, rosemary & lemon peel – the lemon and jasmine are not very prominent flavors in the cup. The only thing I taste less than the lemon and jasmine here is the alfalfa.
I really can’t recall ever having tasted brewed alfalfa – I very well may have in another tea in my years as a tea reviewer, I just can’t recall having tasted it. So, I wouldn’t know what to look for in the flavor here as an identifying note for the alfalfa.
As I continue to sip, I notice more jasmine and lemon notes, but they never really offer a strong presence in this drink. Despite this, I’m finding this to be an enjoyable tisane. It’s certainly different, but in many cases, different is good! And it certainly has proven that to be the case with this. I’d be happy to sip on this again!
Leaf Type: Herbal Tisane
This tea does exactly what its name promises – brings serenity to your day. Ingredients like chamomile, jasmine and lavender really do have that affect. We taste the apple-like flavours of chamomile, a perfect lemon squeeze and smooth mint. There’s tart and sweet florals playing off one another and hints of relaxing lavender that come out mid-sip.
Learn more about subscribing to Amoda Tea here.
After my first few sips of this Serene Herbal Tisane from The Honest Leaf, I found myself contemplating whether or not I actually liked it. I didn’t dislike it but I wasn’t too sure whether or not I was enjoying what I was tasting.
That is to say, it’s quite unlike other teas I’ve tried.
Now that I’m about halfway through the cup, I can say that yes, I do like this. It’s different, it’s tasty and I like it.
The flavor starts out quite subtle. I notice a soft lemon-y note from the lemon peel and flavoring. This flavor develops over the course of the sip – starting off with a delicate whisper of lemon. The finish is bright with lemon notes and the aftertaste is quite lemon-y, as if I had just taken a sip of lemonade. The aftertaste lingers a while.
After the subtle introduction of lemon, I pick up on flowery notes of jasmine, lavender and passion flower just before mid-sip. These floral notes are also quite subdued. They don’t develop the way the lemon does, but I do pick up on a few more floral notes mingling with the lemon notes in the aftertaste.
Just after mid-sip, I notice the crisp peppermint. I like that the peppermint follows the example set by the flowers and lemon and is understated. The cool peppermint is a nice contrast to the lemon-y flavor, but the mint doesn’t slap you in the mouth with it’s minty presence. It’s just a slight ‘peppy’ sort of flavor that perks up the flavors of the tea without tasting like someone spilled a little bit of mouthwash in my teacup.
I didn’t really notice the chamomile until I reached mid-cup. The chamomile is more of an undertone, offering a indistinct apple note and hint of honey. I can smell more chamomile in this than I can taste. After the mid-cup point, the chamomile notes develop somewhat, but they never become a strong, prominent profile to the cup.
Happily, I notice no hibiscus in this, unless the hibiscus acts as a ‘tart’ agent to help amplify the tartness of the lemon, because the aftertaste does have a tartness to it. Not too puckery, though, but as I said, I do get a lemonade-y sort of experience in the aftertaste.
Overall, I found this to be a relaxing, enjoyable cup. It’s certainly different than the typical ‘nighttime’ type of tisanes, and different is good!
Leaf Type: Green
Where to Buy: Piper’s Loose Leaf Tea
A delicate tea, our unique JASMINE blend is made with the finest Japanese Sencha (pan fired green tea), whole jasmine flower blossoms and enhanced with pure jasmine oil. Take a moment out of your day to savor its sweet aroma and classical floral tastes.
Learn more about this tea here.
I just received the most lovely package from Piper’s Loose Leaf Tea. When I contacted them, they asked me which teas I’d be most interested in and I noticed they had a jasmine green so I told them that I usually enjoy jasmine.
So I want to start by telling you about the packaging of Piper’s Loose Leaf Tea, because I’m a sucker for awesome packaging. The teas arrive in a large muslin pouch like the one on the right. They even took the time to write a note card to me. I appreciate little gestures like that. It means a lot when a tea company takes the time to do something as simple as writing a few words onto a thank you card. It’s a simple thing to do but it means a lot and it’s something that a lot of tea companies overlook.
Note: the muslin pouch can be reused as pu-erh storage.
Then I read the card.
I wish I would have read the description of the tea before I told them that I like jasmine tea because this description is scaring me just a little bit. First of all, Japanese Sencha? Traditionally, a jasmine tea is made with Chinese green tea. So, I find myself puzzled by this choice. But, hey, it could still work.
But then I read this:
enhanced with pure jasmine oil
Here’s the thing. I have said (often) that the best jasmine teas are the ones that have been layered with the jasmine blossoms while they’re in the freshly harvested stage. Before they’re shipped out to us here in the states. While they’re still there in China, those tender leaves are processed with jasmine blossoms. They are scented with the essence of jasmine. They aren’t flavored with jasmine oil.
I love flavored tea. I’ve enjoyed many a flavored tea and I’m working to take over a tea company that specializes in making a brand new flavored tea every week, so you know I’m not one to turn my nose up on a flavored tea.
But there are some oils that should never be used on teas. One of them is jasmine oil. This is an essential oil that is used for perfumes and similar uses. Not for tea. Never for tea. Using jasmine oil on a tea turns a perfectly good tea into something that tastes of perfume.
On the other hand, a scented jasmine tea (that is, the tea that’s been layered with the jasmine blossoms) doesn’t taste of perfume. It tastes lightly, delicately, beautifully of jasmine. It’s a sweet and exotic taste but not soapy or perfume-ish.
So I sit here, before I’ve even brewed the tea, in turmoil and worry. Fearful that I’m about to brew a cup of perfume. But it’s not like it’s going to kill me. I might as well give it a try.
To brew this tea, I used my Breville One-Touch. I added 2 bamboo scoops of tea to the basket and 500ml of water to the jug. Then I set the parameters: since I could see that this was indeed a Japanese Sencha, I set the temperature to 170°F and the timer for 1 minute.
I also thought that by setting the timer for just 1 minute, that maybe I wouldn’t get too much of the jasmine ‘oil’ (aka perfume) taste and maybe just get some of the jasmine essence that I want from a Jasmine tea.
And I was right. I got just enough of the Sencha flavor from the 1 minute steep and not too much of the jasmine oil. I get a light, jasmine-y flavor without a perfume-y taste.
The Sencha is light and buttery. Smooth and not overly astringent. It isn’t bitter or too grassy.
Given all my misgivings and uncertainty about this blend, this is actually pretty good when prepared according to the above parameters. It made me a little curious about if I had steeped it for the suggested 2 minutes.
In the meantime, I’m happy enough with this cup of tea that I thought I’d try a second infusion of the leaves, adding 30 seconds onto the steep time. With the second infusion, I started to pick up on more jasmine oil. It didn’t taste perfume-y, exactly, but it tasted like maybe someone put a drop of jasmine oil in my Japanese Sencha and I didn’t really enjoy it. I much prefer a scented jasmine.
Overall, this is alright. It’s drinkable, but it’s not something I’d recommend.