Simmer Down/The Random Tea Room & Curiosity Shop

I’m not sure where this lil diddy has been hiding but I found it in my personal tea and tisane stash and knew that it was calling my name during our most recent snow storm!

Simmer Down from The Random Tea Room & Curiosity Shop. How could you go wrong from a store situated in Philly and has a lovely Etsy shop to boot!?

If you are looking for relaxing and calm in a cup you have come to the right place! The ingredients in this blend of herbs include: chamomile, lemon balm, motherwort, peppermint, lavender, and passionflower. It says it’s designed to assist the body in alleviating stress and worn nerves. Since I hate winter weather AND snow…I thought I would put that to the test!

First and foremost I could smell the chamomile. Full disclosure? I’m not a chamomile fan…but…I won’t let that stop me from trying a tea or tisane at least once.

Upon first sip? I was pleased! It was more than ‘just chamomile’. It was nicely paired with the peppermint…and I’m a HUGE fan of peppermint, folks!

At this point…I’m a instant fan! The peppermint saved the day! The lemon balm helped with the follow thru on to the aftertaste of this herbal. I thought it was nicely played. The motherwort, lavender, and passionflower all played a small part and seemed to help round out the overall flavor but those three didn’t seem to be the starting players…more like 2nd strings…if you are into sports analogies.

Yup! I could see myself sipping on this tisane most evenings. It’s probably one of the top herbals I have tried in the past several months! Highly recommended!


Want to Know More About This Tea?

Leaf Type:  Herbal

Where to Buy:  The Random Tea Room & Curiosity Shop

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 even more about this tea and tea company here!

Organic Greek Mountain Tea by Klio

Steeping time 4 minutes, 1/2 cup boiling water, 2 g of tea leaves and stems.

I have always been an avid herb gardener (although not, alas, always a successful one) and today I noticed what exactly it is about this type of tea that I found familiar. The leaves are similar in appearance (silvery and fuzzy) and even similar in shape to Lamb’s Ear, and I think the fragrance may be similar as well, although Lamb’s Ear  is not actually well-known for its smell. (Plus, I can never manage to keep it alive so I don’t actually have a Lamb’s Ear plant to compare right now). When I looked it up, I discovered that the two plants are in the same family, i.e. the Mint family . . . but then so are hundreds and thousands of other plants, so that doesn’t mean they’re actually closely related. I guess it’s just the type of family resemblance that sometimes shows up unexpectedly between distant cousins.

The other thing that the leaves remind me of is licorice, or at least those licorice-flavored herbal teas that you drink when you’re sick with a cold. (Actually I may be thinking of the combination of licorice and slippery elm flavors? But I’m not positive.) It’s not an unpleasant fragrance, and I can imagine this tea being pleasant to drink.

As I steep the tea, the fragrance emerges more, but not at overpowering levels. The tea liquid itself does not appear to change color greatly, and after steeping appears slightly yellowish but not extremely so. The fragrance hasn’t gotten much stronger in the last couple of minutes.

The first sip is not quite as flavorful as the fragrance, but it does support my impression of this tea as being similar to an herbal tea used to treat colds. It tastes slightly sweet in the back of the mouth. It doesn’t seem all that viscous, but it’s probably giving my throat a nice protective coating as I drink it. It doesn’t need sugar, which is a good thing because if you’re going to drink it every day for your health then you wouldn’t want to add sugar or you’d counteract the health benefits, right? It definitely tastes healthy, but in a good, gentle way, not in a bitter-green-smoothie type of way.

I’m not going to say that I want to replace my regularly scheduled tea breaks with this herbal tea, but since it’s caffeine free I bet it would be a great nightcap. Plus, it does have quite a soothing and calming effect, so add that to its other benefits (such as its health benefits) and it turns out to be quite a valuable beverage!


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Herbal
Where to Buy:  Klio Greek Tea
Description

This variety, Sideritis Scardica, comes from the legendary Mount Olympus, in the Balkans, situated between Thessaly and Macedonia.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Dark Forest from The Jasmine Pearl Tea

DarkForestTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Herbal

Where to Buy: The Jasmine Pearl Tea Company

Tea Description:

A great coffee alternative! Smooth dark and rich this blend of chicory, cacao, cinnamon and many other delicious herbs create a satisfying brew for morning or afternoon. Due to the presence of cacao nibs, which contain caffeine, don’t drink Dark Forest near bedtime.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

I have loved every tea that I have tried from The Jasmine Pearl Tea Company.  Their teas are delicious and just knock your socks off sort of fantastic. This particular blend I am trying is their Dark Forest Herbal Tea. Now the description from what the tea consists of online and what I have in hand is different so I think they may have changed up the formula. The blend I have consists of chamomile, ginger, eucalyptus, lemon myrtle, and peppermint.

To begin with, I am not a huge ginger fan. I do like it on occasion but it isn’t my favorite. I know ginger is great for the body so I will drink ginger teas and even enjoy it in food every once in a while, but I do not go searching for it.

So let’s talk about the journey it was to actually drink this tea. First off, I dropped the bag and half of the contents fell out. Ugh.  I boiled the water and forgot about it. Boo. And I measured way too water for my new Doctor Who mug and I had tea all over my desk (I used a gravitea steeper).  Yep.  It seemed like this tea was doomed from the start. By the time I was able to take a drink of this tea I was ready!

The dry leaf reminded me of a sweet pumpkin spice bar.  The mixture just smelled heavenly. I prepped my water and allowed the tea to steep for about 5 minutes.  And I would recommend that being the time you allow the tea to steep if aren’t a fan of ginger like me. I have a feeling any long than that and the ginger would overtake the tea.

My first sip of this tea and I was surprised and how lovely it was.  I was afraid the ginger would overpower and leave the rest of the flavors behind but that wasn’t the case at all.  Each flavor was noticeable at different times and mingled together so nicely.  The ginger was light but there to spice the tea up, the lemon myrtle provided a bit of that citrus undertone, the chamomile was giving the tea a familiar herbal feel to it and the peppermint gave the tea a fresh flavor.  Really well done. Who would have thought those ingredients would make such a lovely herbal?

As delicious as this was, the new upgraded blend sounds just as good! I’m going  to have to try that one soon!

Another impressive tea from The Jasmine Pearl!

 

Orange Grapefruit Herb Blend from Trader Leaf

orangegrapefruitTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Herbal

Where to Buy:  Trader Leaf

Tea Description:

This mild creation is given fruity sweetness by the apple pieces and carrot flakes and a touch of freshness by eucalyptus leaves, lemon grass, tangerine bits and a nuance of hibiscus. Beetroot pieces lend their color to the cup along with a slightly earthy note. Dried orange slices are an optical reminder of the fresh citrus flavor of this absolutely perfect composition.

Ingredients: apple pieces, carrot flakes, blackberry and eucalyptus leaves, beetroot pieces, hibiscus flowers, lemon grass, flavoring, tangerine pieces, orange slices.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

Being sick is just too much! Especially after having a wonderful wedding and fantastic honeymoon.  The last thing I needed was to come home and get sick. Blah! Oh well! The way she goes boys. . . .  (Any Trailer Park Boys fans out there?)

I was excited to see this blend in my newest box to review.  The only flavor that I have been wanting lately is grapefruit.  Coffee and other teas right now just don’t have that same draw only because of this wicked cough and sore throat I’ve got going on.  This tea sounded like heaven!

Brewed this up with boiling water and allowed it to brew for about 10 minutes or so.  I wanted to get as much flavor as I could out of the sample.

Poured the brew into my cup and just sat and admired the gorgeous pink appearance of the tea.  I took a sip and my heart sang.  This tea tasted so good on my poor throat.  Soothing and refreshing.  I couldn’t pick up all the flavors that are listed in the description but the two that I could really pick up where the citrus flavor and the eucalyptus.  They both had such a soothing and calming manner about them. Such a lovely fruity flavor that stays with you even after your last sip.  I was so pleased and happy!

I’m not sure how I would like this tea when I’m at 100% but this would be a great one to keep on hand for those days where you just aren’t feeling up to your old self.  My cup was gone in no time and I headed straight back into our breakroom to prep more water.  This tea is definitely a keeper! Can’t wait to try this tea when I’m feeling more like myself again.

Tulsi Orange Cranberry Ginger Organic Tea from Simpson and Vail

tulsiorgcrangingerTea Information:

Leaf Type: Herbal

Where to Buy: Simpson & Vail

Tea Description:

This Tulsi tea blend is caffeine-free and combines herbs that have vitamins and anti-oxidants. This organic herbal blend of Tulsi, orange peel, hibiscus, rosehips and ginger root brews to a reddish amber cup with a mellow minty, fruity taste and light, sweet ginger notes. A well rounded brew that’s great for afternoon or evening enjoyment.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

I have been on a herbal kick as of late and loving it.  Herbals are something that I think you either love or hate depending on the ingredients.  I know chamomile and hibiscus blends are sometimes referred to as vile, but I love them.  About the only tea I don’t care for is red rooibos blends, but beyond that I’ll try anything.

Work has been nuts lately and I wanted something to be refreshing yet soothing so I grabbed my sample of this Tulsi blend from Simpson & Vail.  I was crazy impressed with their Cozy Comfort blend that I tried the other day (tasted like monkey bread!) I had high expectations but once I took in the fragrance from the dry leaf mix, I had my hesitations. The ginger smelled like it was going to be strong.

Brewed this up in my Sei Sei Tumbler and allowed it to steep for about 5 minutes in boiling water.  Poured the brew into my cuppa and sat down to go over what I needed to to for the day.  As I took my first sip, I literally thought, nope, I will not be reviewing what I need to do today.  I am going to sit right here with my feet propped up on my desk and enjoy my tea. And that is exactly what I did!

This tea hit the spot in so many ways.  I wanted a soothing blend that touched the soul, so to speak.  Once that would refresh and calm me but also be vibrant enough to deliver that kick I would need to keep going.  This tea did all of that. No, I’m not going to say it will cure what will ail you, but in that moment of time, this tea delivered everything I needed.

What I loved the most was the citrus flavor that had a tart twist at the end of the sip with the ginger floating in and out.  The ginger wasn’t overwhelming like I was worried about and actually became the flavor I was seeking each sip I took.  Which is very surprising to me.  I am not a huge ginger fan.  This tea had such a cozy charming feel to it with the tart and sweet contrast that I found myself wanting more of this tea right after the cuppa was gone.  I ended up drinking this tea for the remainder of the day, letting the flavors really give me that cozy feeling I was wanting with that kick I desperately needed.

Tea #2 that I have tried from Simpson & Vail and another tea I am adoring!