Power Breakfast/Stash Tea. . . .

I received this sample a few months ago and honestly I put off trying it. I just don’t use caffeine to wake up in the mornings. I had mate once or twice before and didn’t care for it much, and I am afraid that if I drink a lot of caffeine at any time besides breakfast I won’t sleep for days.

Today was the day. I had a sweet breakfast planned and an early work schedule. It seemed the perfect time to try it and I figured I could always sip it and toss it if I didn’t like it.

Then I smelled it while it was steeping and said, “Oh, baby!” It smelled like coffee at first and I don’t even drink coffee, nor I am particularly attracted to the smell of coffee. But this was calling my name. Another sniff or two and finally I pulled the bag out and gave it a sip.

Lapsang! That was what my first thought was on tasting it. And I love lapsang as long as the base is nice and strong, instead of smoke laid over weak and watery tea. And this had a solid breakfast tea base.

Maybe a real coffee drinker would not agree, but I get a hint of coffee, lots of lapsang-like smoke, a little toasted nut, and definite breakfast tea aroma.

This was really good, smooth, and very drinkable with no additions but able to take milk and sugar if you like it.

While this isn’t a highly nuanced cup with layers of different flavor notes to tease out, it is a really good, serviceable cup of tea that gets down to business and satisfies.

Because this seems to be unavailable at present on the Stash website, I am linking to a vendor who still has this available. You can still find it here and there online.


Want to Know More About This Tea?

Leaf Type:  Black/Mate

Where to Buy:  Stash Tea

Description

Wake up with this tasty brew. The bold, rich flavor of premium black teas is complemented by the smooth taste of yerba mate. Delicious iced or hot, plain or sweetened.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Spotlight on Fraser Tea Bags

Sustainable business models are so hot right now. Seriously, Zoolander aside, I’m all about capitalists that care about future generations. Fraser Tea sells organic tea blends in corn-based, sustainably produced pyramids. I think it’s a great option to consider bringing in to your cubicle or on vacations. I received several of their pyramids in my tea mail this month, so their spotlight is a little from Column A and a little from Column B…

Spicy Chocolate Chai – flavored puerh

First things first, a girls gotta have her chocolate. There were oils on top of brew, which always equate to having been carefully handled and thus retain more of the goodness we expect from full leaf teas. A sneaky Chai taste followed by a  mellow chocolate aftertaste. The tiniest bit of sweetener rounded out these flavors. I want to point out for later on, those of you hardcore readers, that this tea has 60 mg caffeine.

Chamomile Dream – herbal

To me, Sleepy-time teas are the most swoon-worthy. There’s always something about them that is so restorative and comforting.  This pyramid has sweet smelling dry leaves. As soon as that scent connects in my brain, there’s that instant calming response. I know i’m not the only one!

The blend of wet leaves smell just as sweet, and I notice an enticing hint of a berry red in them now. This tastes like soft, pillowy, dreamy meadows… full of sheep, so many sheep, mmm and it feels like time to say goodnight.

Turmeric Ginger Green – flavored green

Ok, preface, turmeric and I got off on the wrong foot when it stained my gravity strainer for no good reason. I have been suspicious of its health claims ever since… but that’s a personal bias which does not discount dozens of peer-reviewed scientific studies…  I also need to state that my toddler helped me brew this and ripped the bag 😬 kay, so still waiting for the great feelings. Moving on, I found I prefer this ingredient in bag form because it eliminates my first problem with staining. So my palate has started to open up to tea for health reasons, as opposed to familiar tastes. There is an acquired taste to this tea, but it is not in your face. It certainly would be a perfect finish to a savory lunch.

Yerba Mint – alternative tea

Until now I never realized how powerful other plants could be in the caffeine department! I guess I should have known that from coffee beans, but I never put it all together until I saw there was 70+ mg caffeine in this non-camellia sinensis plant!!! Yikes! That probably explains a few restless nights after “just some herbal” tea… The juxtaposition between earthy and gentle is juuuuuuust right here. I can imagine putting this over ice would be a delightful way to ignore a humid summer.

 


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Variety
Where to Buy: Fraser Tea

https://frasertea.com/products/organic-spicy-chocolate-chai

Spicy Chocolate Chai Organic Pu-erh Tea is a fusion of cocoa nibs, spicy chili peppers, and delicate, sweet oranges combined to craft a flavor sensation with maximum health benefits. Striking a delicate balance between heat and sweetness, spicy chocolate chai is a smooth and flavorful tea that supports weight management and wellness.  Enjoy any time. Try it as-is or add milk and sugar.

https://frasertea.com/products/chamomile-dream-organic-herbal-tea.

Chamomile Dream Organic Herbal Tea soothes the mind and body.  Supporting health and digestion, this relaxing organic tea blends gentle, floral notes of chamomile, cleansing and bright lemongrass, tart hibiscus and refreshing peppermint. Try it anytime throughout the day, with a book before bedtime, or following a restorative meditation practice. Chamomile Dream offers gentle, soothing relaxation for mind, body and spirit.


https://frasertea.com/products/organic-turmeric-ginger

Turmeric Ginger Organic Green Tea delivers a multitude of health benefits in a delicious and flavorful way.  Green tea is blended with cinnamon, ginger, pink peppercorn, lemongrass, and turmeric offering a sweet and unexpected fresh taste. Known as a “superfood”, turmeric’s list of health benefits include boosting your body’s immunity, anti-inflammatory properties, improved brain function and heart health.

https://frasertea.com/products/organic-yerba-mate-mint

This Yerba Mate Mint Organic Herbal Tea is an energizing blend. At Fraser Tea we formulated this vibrant tea to maximize focus or help make the most of your daily workout. We combine the South American yerba mate plant with invigorating peppermint, a sophisticated green tea and an array of floral’s to amplify the natural benefits. Yerba mate is considered the healthy wonder drink grown in South America thanks to its energizing effects. Traditionally yerba mate is consumed with a gourd and a straw, however you can use your favorite teacup. Our Yerba Mate Mint tea is delicious iced or warm.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Yerba Mate Mint by Choice Organic Teas . . .

I steeped this tea for 4 minutes at 175 degrees with one bag in about one cup of water.

The packet says to steep for 4-6 minutes but it smells plenty strong enough at 4 so I stopped there. Plus, since mint can get bitter if oversteeped, I didn’t want to wait too long.

It smells nice and minty while brewing. I can’t really distinguish it from plain peppermint tea by the smell. After steeping is over, the tea is a yellowish cedar-like color and not noticeably viscous.

First sip: Surprise! It tastes just like mint herbal tea–to me, anyway. Or at least not different enough that you would be positive there’s something else in there rather than just a variation on the minty flavor. (Maybe if I had prepared a cup of plain mint tea at the same time to compare against, that would have helped me pick out any differences, but alas–I didn’t think of that until it was too late.)

What that means is that this could be a clever way to have something caffeinated in the morning if you’re an herbal tea drinker and don’t care for green or black tea or coffee! Or if you only drink black tea with milk (like me) and are avoiding milk because you have a cold, but still need that caffeine boost. (I know that sounds oddly specific but it happens to me more often than you’d think!)

The mate isn’t roasted, I’m guessing, so maybe that’s why it doesn’t have a strong enough flavor to dominate this tea blend (after all, peppermint is a very powerful flavor and it’s hard to overcome that). So if you like peppermint tea, you’ll probably like this!

With sugar: It’s still good and minty, nice and easy on the throat (which means that it’s both good for colds and for vocal health if you’re trying to relax your voice and stay hydrated, although I guess caffeine is a little bit controversial where vocal health is concerned).

Overall this blend is both useful and enjoyable when prepared as a hot tea beverage, and it seems to have plenty of potential as a cold brew as well, although I didn’t try it that way.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Yerba Mate
Where to Buy: Choice Organic Tea

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Honey Bear from East Indies Coffee & Tea. . . . . .

I first had this at a child’s birthday party and totally wasn’t paying attention. I was like “I’m gonna TAKE NOTES in my SKETCHBOOK and write an ELOQUENT POST UPON MY RETURN.” But then I got sucked into pizza! cake! balloons! reading children’s books aloud! putting outfits on toys! The only thing I vaguely remembered was the thought that I wanted MORE HONEY from the tea.

So this time I made it again, carefully, at home, with zero distractions* and a tiny half-spoonful of honey.

*Except for my dog trying to jump on the couch and falling off. I laughed.

This is a really tasty sweet mix. There’s the honey in the tea, plus the honey I added, plus this roasty, mellow, underlying mate.

A good mate is like hardwood floors. They’re a classy base for whatever you’re putting on top. Are you going to get some classic furniture? Some showy furniture? Everything looks good on hardwood floors.

If I were to continue this metaphor (and there’s nothing I love more), the honey in this tea is the big puffy couch with lots of pillows that rests on that floor. It’s straight-up hygge.*

* That’s the Scandanavian word for sitting around drinking tea in a blanket, enjoying the comforts of winter.

So take it easy, Internet. Drink some honey with your honey tea and just devote the afternoon to enjoyment.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Mate
Where to Buy:  East Indies Coffee & Tea
Description
  • honey taste with teddy bear sprinkles and flavoring

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Burgundy Yerba from Tea Dude

Are you ready for a Yerba Mate review? Next up is…Burgundy Yerba from Tea Dude! I have to admit that Yerba Mate is down on my list of priorities when consuming and reviewing. It’s not that I don’t like Yerba Mate it’s just that I like so many other teas more regularly and it’s hard to fine interestingly-flavored Yerba Mates that I really want to try!

burgundy-yerba-looseBurgundy Yerba from Tea Dude was pretty good but I had to do this one ICED. WHY? You guessed it – because of the Hibiscus! I think this was a little heavy on the Hibiscus and that is coming from someone who isn’t fond of that particular ingredient so you might find it to be fine and dandy!

Having stated my dislike for Hibiscus MANY times I will say that Burgundy Yerba from Tea Dude was pretty good ICED. I really loved the addition of the orange peel which was probably my favorite part in this. The natural flavor of Yerba Mate was stomped on by the hibiscus and orange peel which was ok especially if you want to consume more Yerba Mate and aren’t specifically looking for the taste of Yerba burgundyyerba2Mate.

Another thing I really liked about Burgundy Yerba from Tea Dude was the end sip and aftertaste. It was very pleasant. It was fruity
but didn’t leave a funky aftertaste like some fruity and hibiscus teas and tisanes tend to leave behind.

The energy boost of Burgundy Yerba from Tea Dude wasn’t too shabby either. That’s the TRUE reason I do enjoy Yerba Mate when I do consume it. All-in-All I found Burgundy Yerba from Tea Dude to be pretty tasty and satisfying


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Yerba Mate
Where to Buy: Tea Dude

tea-dudeDescription

Yerba Mate with hibiscus flowers and orange peel added for flavor. Love the health benefits of Yerba Mate, but not the taste? I fixed it for you! Great as a weight loss supplement! Use approximately 1 tsp. per cup.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!