There are a lot of minty candy-cane inspired teas out there this time of year, so I was excited to try a more focused, herbal take on mint tea, with Jack Frost from Bluebird Tea.
This herbal blend is mainly spearmint and eucalyptus with a hint of sweeter flavors like coconut and vanilla. That hint of sweetness makes all the difference– pure spearmint tea has a bit too much icy bite, feeling more like medicine than a calm cup of tea. Jack Frost was smooth and cool without being too fierce or leaving me frozen.
It might sound odd to drink a mint tea at a hot temperature, but I’ve found it very calming both in my mind and in my cookie-crowded stomach. Mint is supposedly good for your digestion, so it’s been a nice blend to have on hand with all the rich eating of the holidays. If nothing else, the crisp, minty feeling on my tongue helps me feel refreshed during the bustle of the winter season. Since Jack Frost is an herbal blend, it’s naturally decaf and perfect for that before-bed brew.
The first time I brewed this tea, I was a bit baffled to see blue-green glitter in my mug. Had my holiday crafting spilled over into my tea? It turns out that the extra sparkle is from the snowflake sprinkles in the dry leaf. Once heated, the sprinkles melt and add a little shimmer and a little sweetness to the lush, green spearmint.
Jack Frost is a great blend for when you want to clear your mind and have the power and focus of fresh, clean, winter snow.
Here’s the scoop!
Leaf Type: Herbal
Where to Buy: Bluebird Tea
The mischevious Jack Frost is a crisp, cool cuppa. With icy spearmint, frosty coconut + snowflake sprinkles, Jack Frost will sure nip your nose + toes!
Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!
Leaf Type: Black
Of all the mint chocolate teas we’ve tasted, this one is at the top. This is a dessert tea for pure tea lovers. The mint is gentle and the chocolate is natural. Think rich dark chocolate rather than sweet milk chocolate. Simply delicious.
This tea is available from Amoda Tea.
It’s also part of Amoda Tea’s Holiday Box!
Learn more about subscribing to Amoda Tea here.
I’m trying the second tea from the Holiday Box that Amoda sent me. It took a lot of willpower to save this tea for second instead of trying it immediately, but because I didn’t get the mail until after my ‘black tea’ time in the day, I decided to hold off and try this when it would be more suitable for me to drink a black tea.
I have found that when I drink black teas late at night, I end up lying in bed awake and unable to drift off. I can drink some other teas without experiencing this so I’ve come to realize that it’s the caffeine level of the black tea that keeps me more alert at night and unable to get drowsy. So, I find that I need to stop drinking black teas about four or five hours before I plan to head to bed.
But this is one of the teas in the Holiday Box that I was especially eager to try! Chocolate! Yes please!
And when it comes to chocolate teas, I find it difficult to wait until the tea cools. I have to have just a sip of what’s to come! So I took a small sip and even though it was too hot to keep on drinking, I could definitely taste chocolate and mint. Mmm!
This is very crisp and minty. A bit more minty than it is chocolate-y, in my opinion. But there is a nice amount of chocolate to this tea. If I were to adjust anything about the tea, it would be to lighten up on the peppermint just a tad and add more chocolate.
But what I’m enjoying most about this is that the black tea base is solid. It’s a strong background of flavor. It’s well-rounded and the flavor of the tea complements the flavors of mint and chocolate nicely. The chocolate is rich and tastes of dark chocolate to me. It’s smooth and has a deep, deliciously chocolate flavor.
The three components all work very well together and it’s a well crafted cup of tea. It’s strong – robust enough for early morning if you need a flavorful boost. But it’s also flavorful enough that it tastes like dessert. So it’d be like having dessert first thing in the morning and as far as I’m concerned, that would make everything right with the world so early in the day!
Leaf Type: Oolong
Where to Buy: Butiki Teas
Our Nilgiri Frost Oolong originates from Nilgiri, in Southern India and is graded TGFOP (Tippy Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe). Since this tea is grown at a high elevation, the leaves are exposed to a light frost during some nights of the winter months. The long thin chocolate colored leaves are hand twisted and produce a weighty body. This smooth tea has notes of citrus, peach, pecan, and oak. There are many qualities similar to a Nilgiri black tea; however, the frost oolong is much gentler and sweeter. This tea is produced in very limited quantities due to the short harvest period and special conditions that must exist.
Learn more about this tea here.
This is not your average flowery Oolong! In fact, this is the Oolong I’d recommend to those who tend to shy away from Oolong teas because they find them to be too floral tasting or too delicate. This has a smoother, robust flavor that reminds me a bit of an masculine, aged bourbon that has been aged in an oak cask … but without that strong alcohol taste!
OK … so that is more of me imagining what a good, strong, aged bourbon might taste like, because I’m certainly no connoisseur, and hopefully, I didn’t come off sounding like I had no idea of what I was talking about. For all I know, bourbon doesn’t taste really masculine or woody or anything else. I’m just shooting from the hip here, imagining how this might compare to the flavor of a top-notch bourbon.
But, what I do experience – immediately – when I taste this tea is the peach tones. So distinct and sweet and yummy! There are also notes of citrus, just as the description above suggests. At first, the citrus notes revealed themselves to be the sweeter side of citrus, but, as I continue to sip, I notice a clear sour note that hits right before mid-sip, and just as quickly as it appears, it disappears. It seems to just drop in for a moment, to offer an interesting contrast.
Nutty flavors, yes, I get those too. Lovely woody notes as I mentioned earlier… and virtually no floral-y notes whatsoever. Even if this does not measure up to the bourbon qualities that I mentioned earlier, this is definitely masculine and absolutely fantastic. And , actually, I think it doesn’t HAVE to measure up, because I’d rather drink this than the finest, most expensive bourbon that’s out there!
This is definitely one of the best “darker” Oolong teas I’ve ever tasted! If you love Oolong like I do, you really MUST try this one.