Just Elderflower from Plum Deluxe

The elderflower flowers look like micro chamomile blossoms, yellow and spherical.  Though the elderflowers are so tiny, it almost like a bag of pollen. The small blossoms are a golden color and very fine in texture.  When brewing this tea, be sure to use your infuser with the finest mesh or smallest holes.

Brewed, this tea is surprisingly earthy and savory, and not very floral.  The tea has a woodsy fragrance like crushed dried flowers or cut hay. Some of the flavor notes remind me of the brighter pu erh teas I’ve tried, so if you aren’t a floral tea fan, this blend might just be your favorite exception.

The taste of the brew continues to support the earthy, dried grass tones, but coupled with a new, buttery flavor.  The taste is a bit more vegetal than the scent, with a crisp, celery note. As the brew cools, and the more I drink, the more I detect a sweeter, brown sugar undertone.  Plum Deluxe recommends the brew with a bit of sweetener, which helps bring forward the toasted sugar or brown butter flavors even further.

Just Elderflower is a unique blend in appearance and taste, making for a thoughtful and flavorful one-ingredient brewing experience.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Herbal
Where to Buy: Plum Deluxe
Description:

Just Elderflower is part of our “just” line of thoughtfully-source, single ingredient herbal teas.  Elderflower is a curious, floral, and fragrant tea ingredient. Despite its delicate nature, it steeps up for a wonderful, calming, curing beverage.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Cup of Love from Big Heart Tea. . . . .

This tea has two ingredients, rose petals and tulsi, also known as holy basil. On paper, this seems too sparse. I mean I like tulsi quite a bit but I’ll be the first to stay that it shines when balanced with other herbs and flavors. Looking at the leaves in the bag, I’m slightly more encouraged. The rose petals are vibrant and numerous, and the tulsi is lush and green. Lots of big leaves, no crushed tea powder here.

Brewed, there is a lovely cinnamon-like flavor in the smell and taste. Since there is no cinnamon in the blend, I must attribute this surprising spiciness to the tulsi.  Beyond this first warm cinnamon burst, there is the familiar earthiness and sweet-herbal basil flavor of the tulsi. The rose petals are gentle, just a hint of something lighter and more romantic, which keeps the earthy tulsi from being too sour or herbaceous.

As someone who is skeptical of rose teas, I will say this one does it right: not at all perfume-like, but plenty sweet and floral.

I’m impressed by the full flavor of a this two-ingredient tea. Robust and drinkable, and a caffeine-free herbal blend to boot.

It is also a very beautiful-looking dry leaf, and with all the bright pink rose petals, which may make it a great gift for a tea-loving friend who can show off its colors in their tea cabinet.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Herbal
Where to Buy: Big Heart Tea
Description:

Cup of Love is a mild, nurturing, naturally sweet rose tea. Crafted by hand to reduce stress and soothe your soul. A floral olfactory release, just like a hug from your grandma.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Honeybush Malaika Tisane from Nothing But Tea

honeybush-malaikaTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Honeybush

Where to Buy: Nothing But Tea

Tea Description:

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.

Taster’s Review:

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,

Happy Steeping!

Simmer Down from The Random Tea Room

simmerdownTea Information:

Leaf Type: Herbal

Where to Buy:  The Random Tea Room

Tea Description:

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.

Taster’s Review:

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!

Lemon Jasmine Cleanse Tea from WayGood Tea

LemonJasmineTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Herbal

Where to Buy:  WayGood Tea

Tea Description:

A delicate herbal infusion kissed with fragrant rose petals & jasmine flowers.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

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!