Endurance Citrus Mint from Sportland Tea Co. . . .

This is my first time brewing matcha powder and leaves together, and I wasn’t quite sure what to do with it. I didn’t want to whisk fibers out of the leaves, but I also didn’t want to lose out on any matcha goodness in a filter bag. I settled on using a gravity brewer to trap the leaves but let matcha through.

This Endurance citrus mint brewed a unique opaque army green. We start with a definite mint smell, but I don’t taste it…and it’s subtle on the green tea … perhaps my tastebuds are too busy with the strong lemongrass flavor? There’s a soft aftertaste tingle on the tongue that travels down the throat with a gentle ginger zing – hello, I’m awake now! The density of the particles in this tea causes a heavier, fuller mouthfeel, to the point where I felt as if it were starting to coat my tongue. This was especially true on those last, sediment-rich sips.

I love the idea of matcha teas as a midday or workout time pick-me-up. I’ve seen some brands who sell pure fine-ground matcha, who also sell this hybrid with larger flavor bits at a lower cost. Though I am frugal, I’m too much a traditionalist at heart to be able to fully embrace this ”best-of-both-tea-worlds” bag and powder offering from Sportland Tea Co.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Green Tea and Matcha
Where to Buy: Sportland Tea Co.

Sportland Tea Co.’s Endurance Blend is a unique mix of matcha green tea and herbs. With ginger, mint, and ginseng. This blend is an invigorating option any time of the day.

Drink approximately 15-30 minutes before a workout, run, or when you are having a long day at the office. Try it over ice for an even more refreshing and hydrating option!

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Matcha Ice Cream from DAVIDs Tea. . . . . .

There’s no doubt that matcha has been all the rage in recent years. Brewed in traditional ceremonial style, mixed up as a latte, flavoring everything from macaroons to yogurt, you kind of can’t go anywhere *without* seeing it in some capacity. I’ve been a fan of matcha lattes especially for a while now– something about the verdant green-ness of the powder balanced with the creaminess of milk is especially heavenly. You can imagine, then, when I saw David’s Tea’s most recent matcha re-imagining included a matcha ice cream flavor– well, I was all about it.

The dry leaf is beautiful– matcha powder-coated green tea leaves, with big slivers of almond and tiny swirls of what I’m assuming is white chocolate candy (I mean, it’s *ice cream* tea. It was never going to be healthy). What I pictured: dreamy, vanilla-almond creamy green, perfectly balanced with a dash of milk. What I got: kind of vanilla-almond-y, with OMG STEVIA, YOU GUYS STEVIA IS HERE JUST IN CASE YOU MISSED IT, STEVIA. (Isn’t that how stevia always shows up in tea? Loud and proud?) I’m not an across-the-board stevia hater, but here, it just doesn’t work well for me. It’s harsh and takes me out of the otherwise lovely flavors, and leaves that funky-sweet almost aspartame-y aftertaste that’s just not my jam. Now if you’re wondering– why even review this tea if you’re thinking it’s just super not for you, Mary? Let me tell you, friends– the one saving grace of this particular blend is that is *does* work well with milk, which helps temper the stevia taste fairly well– particularly when it’s foamy, latte-style milk. Overall, once this sample is gone, I won’t be re-purchasing. I think I’ll just stick to my matcha ice cream by the scoop, please and thanks.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Green
Where to Buy:  DAVIDs Tea
Description

This white chocolate and almond green tea contains a double scoop of healthy matcha.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Kappa Matcha from Wendigo Tea Co. . .Heaven in a Cup!

It is no secret.  I adore, love, and admire all things Wendigo Tea Co.  From the moment I first saw their website, I was hooked.  After trying their tea, I was in love.   From the high quality teas to the crazy adorable tea names to the amazingly created art work for each of the teas, this company has always been one of my favorites from the start.

Recently, Wendigo Tea announced they would start selling a high grade ceremonial matcha.  Once I saw the adorable artwork for Kappa Matcha, I was smitten.  But I will be the first to admit, I have not always the best of luck with matcha.  Maybe it was how I was prepping the matcha or maybe it was that I just didn’t have the right matcha.  Regardless, I had high hopes this go around.

I prepped my water right around 180F, scooped half a teaspoon of matcha in my bowl, added in 6 oz of the prepped water  and went to work whisking away.    After whisking for a few moments, I was ready for my first sip.

Right away you notice this gorgeous smooth creaminess that flows right to the very end.  There are notes of a very subtle vegetal tone here and there.  I eagerly gulped the matcha down and set about to make another cup.  Not something I’ve traditionally done in the past with matcha.

This go around, I wanted to try I topped my matcha with a froth french vanilla creamer and after taking a sip, I was in instant tea heaven.  That rich smooth matcha became this incredible matcha latte.  After having one sip, I guess I sighed and said “Heaven in a Cup”.  My husband just looked at me and laughed.

Kappa Matcha is insanely good.  No other way to really say it.  I have drank so many variations of different matcha drinks over the last few days, I think I’ve lost count.  This will be a staple in my tea cabinet going forward and part of my daily routine for sure.

So what I’m trying to say is that Sky (owner of Wendigo Tea Co.) has once again offered us another amazing tea to enjoy every day.  I’m quite obsessed with Big Foot, Nessie and Yeti.  Now I can add Kappa to that list!


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Matcha
Where to Buy:  Wendigo Tea
Description

Welcome! I am the incredibly smooth Kappa Matcha.

This elegant beast is one of the highest quality Ceremonial Grade Matcha teas produced in Japan. I am organically grown close to the river, where the soil is very fertile giving me a mellow and deep taste, then am kept in shade the last 20-30 days until being stone ground and sealed with Nitrogen to give you the freshest and cleanest matcha possible. You can taste the difference. It is perfect for Koicha (thick and strong matcha) and Usucha (thin and weak matcha).

Compare me to any other matcha.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Lemonade Matcha from 3 Leaf Tea. . .

Today was one of those days that screamed- You need to drink Matcha. With the weather turning to winter and the days a bit more gloomy, I wanted a tea that would brighten up my mood, taste buds, and just overall provide a bit of sunshine into my day. That’s when I grabbed my sample of Lemonade Matcha from 3 Leaf Tea.

3 Leaf Tea specializes in amazing flavored Matcha blends and hot chocolate flavors.  Flavors like Banana Hot Chocolate, Mint Matcha, and Pumpkin Spice Matcha just to name a few.  Even though Lemonade Matcha cries for being made into an Iced Matcha Latte, I wanted something warm.

Brewed my water up to 175F, added a few scoops into the my mug, poured the water in and began whisking away.  The matcha whisked beautifully.  Pretty soon I was greeted with this gorgeous matcha beverage that craved a latte topping. I poured a bit of cream into my frother and when it was all set, I poured a generous amount on top of my matcha, creating a lovely Lemonade Matcha Latte.

As weird as a warm Lemonade Matcha Latte sounds, this concoction absolutely works. The matcha is lovely flavored, not too much but just enough that the lemonade flavor comes through. Bright pops of lemon and this vegetal sweet yet slightly bitter flavor mix perfectly with the cream frothed topping.  A touch tart but with the cream, you almost get this lemon meringue style note.  This latte is definitely telling me to grab a book, a blanket, and settle in for some much need me time.

Flavored matchas for me are very hit or miss. Sometimes the flavors are just too overwhelming for the matcha itself- not allowing the beautiful flavors that matcha naturally provides.  They also have a tendency to be very artificially tasting. That isn’t the case at all with this particular flavored matcha.  The flavors taste like they belong together. I never would have thought about adding lemon or even lemon juice into my matchas but I might just have to start. . .or I’ll just have to go the easy way and pick up more of this Lemonade Matcha.

This experience reminds me of how much I do love flavored matcha and need to put in an order to pick up some of 3 Leaf Tea’s Pumpkin Spice Matcha before its gone, along with a few other flavor offerings.  Maybe even a few hot chocolate blends too.  I can’t imagine a better way to bring in the winter weather!


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Matcha
Where to Buy:  3 Leaf Tea
Description

Bright, Tart, Fresh

All of the flavor of freshly squeezed lemonade without the added sugar. Bright and refreshing, a perfect treat.

INGREDIENTS:

Premium grade matcha infused with natural lemonade flavor

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Matcha from ZenTei . . . . .

In the last wave of summer weather, I brewed up a cup of matcha from ZenTei.  It was an easy choice, after my eye caught a glimpse of its beautiful packaging on my tea shelf. This matcha is a hand-ground, organic green tea.

The powdered tea is smooth and green, though a bit muted in color.  Matcha is best at its freshest and greenest, and I should note that I’m tasting this sample after a friend, so it’s possible my sample was just a little past its prime.

In the warm weather, I tried this iced, unsweetened and without milk.  The matcha is very vegetal, leafy, and grassy.  This is a culinary grade matcha, so it’s best when paired with other flavors in baking, or when mixed with juice smoothies, or in a foamy milk latte.

I definitely preferred this tea as an iced latte with vanilla almond milk.  The sweet, nutty, frothy milk helped add more dimension to the grassy matcha, and added a touch of much-needed sweetness.

This is a versatile tea.  Mix it in your next batch of cookies, prepare it in a traditional whisk and bowl, or shake it up in a milkshake bottle.  Just don’t shake up a hot latte or you’ll be dealing with a matcha bomb; cold water matcha-shakes only.  Perfect for a high-caffeine, iced latte, pick-me-up on a hot summer morning.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Matcha
Where to Buy: ZenTei
Description:

Culinary-Grade Matcha has a stronger tea flavor than a traditional Ceremonial-Grade and allows the Matcha flavor to shine through even if mixed with other ingredients.  Traditionally whisked into a frothy beverage, Matcha can be blended into smoothies, green tea lattes or green tea lemonade.  Matcha is also perfect sprinkled over fruit or yogurt, added to salt to create a savory seasoning, mixed into baked goods recipes or added to ice cream.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!