Black Bear from Banff Tea Company. . . .

In the winter – I’m sort of a hermit. Or I tend to want to hibernate like a bear. Regardless – that is what this tea remind me of…a nice tea to sit down and hibernate with. A nice tea to sip on when you are overly frustrated with winter, too, because one sip will having you thinking SPRING is right around the corner.

The tea I’m writing about today is Black Bear from Banff Tea Company. It’s flavored black tea with enough caffeine to light a figurative fire under your butt in the morning. “This blend is indeed black and contains enough berries and leaves to satisfy any of the Park’s locals,” according to the company website.

The origins hail from Sri Lanka and the ingredients are Black tea, blackberry leaves, elderberries, dried blackcurrants, hibiscus, mallow flowers, sunflower petals, cornflower petals, natural Flavoring.

I’m not a fan of hibiscus so when I tasted the berry and realized this flavored berry tea did NOT contain hibiscus in it I nearly jumped for joy! This is a nicely done berry flavored black tea. The flavor ratios are very pleasing.

This is great iced but very good hot, too! It’s naturally sweet on its own and a delightful cuppa!

 


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy: Banff Tea Company
Description

This blend is indeed black and contains enough berries and leaves to satisfy any of the Park’s locals.

Caffeine Level: High.

Origin: Sri Lanka.

Ingredients: Black tea, blackberry leaves, elderberries, dried currents, hibiscus, mallow flowers, sunflower petals, cornflower petals, natural flavouring.

Steeping Suggestions: 1 teaspoon (3g) of tea per 6oz cup of water, 90°C (194°F) for 2-5 minutes.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Puerh from Pinky Out. . .

The further I delve into the world of tea the more I am astounded by its depth. Behind every tea, every brand, dear I say even every leaf, lies a story.While on a recent cruise I read The Tea Girl Of Hummingbird Lane. This book is not only well written but also truly enlightening on tea. More specifically though on Pu Er; which of course is what this tea is.

Complex is understatement. And Pu Er is only a sub category of Dark tea! I have to admit I wasn’t really a fan of pu er but perhaps that is only because I tasted a fake or something to the same accord. Though I don’t mind this one. I honestly do not smell anything from the dry leaves. One who has looked at plenty of leaves can tell this is different then black tea but the differences between ripe, aged, raw are something I … have no idea. There is a mild smell in the wet leaves. Something I can’t quite define, something of the earth. The liquid is quite a bit darker then I was expecting. Some say it tastes like dirt but then I wonder what type of dirt these people are chewing on. It has a bit of a heavier body in my opinion complete with some unique earthy flavors.

Part of me wonders where this one was harvested. The general public would say, “China of course!” But those who love tea know there is more to it then that.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Pu Erh
Where to Buy: Pinky Out
Description

Pu-erh is said to have originated during the Eastern Han Dynasty in the Yunnan Province.

Pu-erh was traded heavily along what was known as “The Ancient Tea Route” or “Tea Horse Road”. Around a thousand years ago Yunnan, one of the first tea producing regions traded Pu-Erh along the route. The tea traveled a long road by horse, mule, and even person. Pu-Erh made an excellent tea for this sort of travel, as it did not spoil easily during the long trips. In fact it was found that Pu-Erh actually improved with time boasting yet another advantage for the Yunnanese.

Sourced from China no matter how far our Pu-Erh has to travel before it makes it to your cup, you can be sure it will still boast the same authentic flavor and health benefits sought after during the time of The Ancient Tea Route.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Daryl Dixon Fandom Blend from Adagio Teas

This is a fandom blend from the wild west of build-your-own blends on Adagio Teas.  I couldn’t find an exact match on tea flavors and fandom styling on the website, so I am going by look and taste for this tea.  (Don’t worry there are a few other Daryl Dixon blends on the site if you need to get your fandom fix).

The character of Daryl Dixon kicks plenty of zombie butt on the Walking Dead, so it is only appropriate that his tea blend is driven by high-caffeine yerba mate.  This mate is the green (unroasted) variety, and brings a little fresh citrus note into the brew alongside all its usual earthiness.

I believe this blend also contains a flavored green tea that helps brighten up the lemon undertones even further.  As is appropriate for any gory zombie show, this tea also features a dose of Blood Orange herbal tea. The proportion of blood orange is small, so it adds a bit of juicy orange flavor without taking over the blend.  The brewed tea is green-yellow in color, with only the tiniest hint of pink from the powerful hibiscus.

This is a blend that packs a punch without being too bold or bitter.  When you need an unconventional pick-me-up, try brewing a cup like this yerba mate Daryl Dixon blend.

 


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Mate
Where to Buy: Adagio

Description:  This blend is no longer available but click below for blends that are.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Christmas in September: Winter Cheer from Virginia Tea Company

I’m a bit out of season to review Winter Cheer from Virginia Tea Company, but today is a grey and dreary day so a cup of tea with “cheer” in the name feels like a good fit.

This blend features black tea, peppermint, and cinnamon.  Even in the dry leaf you can smell all three distinct flavors.

Having peppermint and cinnamon in the same blend is like sitting in a snowbank next to a campfire: there are both cooling and warming elements happening at the same time.  I enjoy blends that make use of these flavors. Beyond their flavor profiles, both peppermint and cinnamon bring their own type of sweetness.

Peppermint has a creaminess beneath all its icy mint, almost tasting like vanilla.  Cinnamon has a more earthy, herbal sweetness, more in line with cloves or licorice.

With both of these flavors set against the robust backdrop of black tea, you get a full-bodied brew with a very tactile mouthfeel, both cooling and warming. This is a fresh take on the “spiced black tea” trend that pops up every fall and winter.  The mint and cinnamon together really make this unique and festive.

I’m feeling full of cheer already!


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy: Virginia Tea Co.
Description:

Sit back and relax with your family this holiday season while sharing this delicious, guilt-free tea.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Orange Raspberry Green Rooibos from 52Teas . . .

The word I’d use to describe this blend is “tangy.”

It’s a pleasing mix of tart and sweet. You can taste the bite of the citrus, the dance of the raspberry, and the wink of the rooibos. All of this flavor, none of the tireless, tedious bed-flipping evenings that come as a consequence of caffeine.

This reminds me of something moxie-bright I might have chugged as a child. It is sunshine and playing tag, bottled. It’s like Van Gogh’s brushstrokes have swirled this flavor profile into being.

All in all, this is a charming companion to sit by your bedside as you drift off to dreamland.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Green Rooibos/Herbal
Where to Buy:  52Teas
Description

This tea is no longer available but click below for teas that are.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!