Vietnam Ha Giang Organic Black Tea from Simpson and Vail

Vietnam Ha Giang Organic Black Tea from Simpson & Vail – didn’t last long in my tea stash – that is for sure. Good problem for S&V…bad problem for me!

My own personal default for black tea is double the amount for a short time because I like it STRONG! End result was an dark amber cup with slightly smooth taste. But don’t assume by me saying this was smooth that it was lacking a nice rich flavor because that couldn’t be further from the truth.

The leaves were crispy and slightly tippy and just what I crave in the morning and what my body needs to kick the afternoon lull, too!

S&V’s Vietnam organic black tea comes from the Ha Giang province in northern Vietnam along the Tay Con Linh mountain range (at 1300, above sea level) – deep within the ancient forests of Shan tea that have been growing for hundreds of years. Shan tea is a specialty in this region and the investment helped farmers to preserve this tea. A nursery of seedlings was created and workers were taught how to use crop rotation, green manure and biological pest control to sustainably develop this tea. Monies were also put towards new production facilities to ensure a consistent, high quality leaf. The area went through an economic revival in 2010 with a serious investment in the community. The goal of the investment was to achieve a better, higher quality tea using modern production techniques coupled with organic farming practices. This investment has more than paid off and the people living in this area have seen steady increases in production, quality and pay.

Improvements like these really get me energized about the region, the product, and the people behind the leaves and the cuppa! I can’t wait to see and TASTE what other teas comes from Vietnam and how it continues to grow in the coming years!


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Black
Where to Buy:  Simpson and Vail
Description

The black, slightly tippy, leaves of this Vietnam black tea brew up to an amber cup with a mild astringency and a smooth, slightly earthy taste. A delightful afternoon cup!

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Passion Fruit de la Crème from 52Teas. . .

I iced this blend with dinner tonight. It was the perfect accompaniment to a summer salad. The vanilla and white hold hands as the background to a lovely fruity top layer. It’s a chilly, sweet cream flavor that sparkles.

This berry-and-sugar-tasting blend is the Wonder Woman of teas: quiet yet tough, feminine yet sturdy. And, like Wonder Woman, it’s a summer blockbuster that’s stolen my heart.

I realize that calling a tea “feminine” might turn people away from it, which isn’t a result I want. There’s a weird bias against men liking “girly” things that doesn’t apply to women liking “manly” things. Which I think is a bunch of hooey.

So implore the dudes out there: try this tea. Get in touch with your Softer Side. Let the creamy, fruity deliciousness wash over you.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  White
Where to Buy:  52Teas
Description

I’ve not done a passion fruit tea before – so I thought it was about time to change that! Because passion fruit tends to be a tart fruit, I thought the perfect tea base would be a sweet Bai Mu Dan from the Yunnan Province. Then I added some vanilla bean for some extra sweetness and a touch of creaminess.

This is really quite nice, I love the way the sweeter components soften the tart fruit just enough so I’m not puckering – but not so much that it obscures the flavor of the fruit. It’s going to make a really lovely summertime refresher!

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

The Unicorn! from 52Teas. . . .

For my 25th birthday, my family surprised me with a sweet table. An entire sweet table! Not just any sweet table though. It was a unicorn themed sweet table and it was amazing. So, you can be sure that when 52 Teas came out with a unicorn tea, I would be all over it. Lucky for me, I didn’t even need to place an order because I won a contest and this arrived at my door. I would say it was meant to be.

This tea was inspired by the limited time frappucino from a certain coffee shop. It is a black tea blended with marshmallow root, vanilla bean, mangoes, blueberries, and strawberries. It also has adorable heart sprinkles that make for one lovely tea. I steeped it for 2.5 minutes in boiling water as per the recommended steeping parameters. I then let it cool for a bit before I started drinking.

The tea really is lovely. The yunnan and assamica is smooth and malty while the vanilla adds a creamy note. The marshmallow is fluffy and the whole tea has a nice fruity flavor to round everything out. Each fruit flavor pops from time to time but overall the marshmallow, vanilla, black tea, and fruit just come together so beautifully to make one awesomely flavored dessert tea. Also, having tried the drink that inspired this, I would say this definitely surpassed its inspiration given it doesn’t have a year’s worth of sugar and therefore is not overly sweet. Instead this has enough flavor to be interesting while not being over-the-top that one would easily bore of it.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Black
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!

Cucumber Mint Limeade White Tea from 52Teas. . . .

White teas and I have been best friends as of late.  And this tea is the reason why.

I love the fresh flavors that a lime can bring to a beverage or really food in general. Add in the refreshing flavors of mint, crisp notes of cucumber, and soft subtle floral base of a white tea, and you have yourself a tea to remember.

Because this is a white flavored tea, I prepped this tea up at 170F and allowed to steep for about 4 minutes.   After that, I allowed the tea to cool for a few minutes, allowing the flavors to settle in. The first flavor you really get from this tea is the spearmint. Refreshing and cooling. A lovely burst of minty freshness without being too overpowering.

After the initial mint blast, the other flavors start to take shape. I can’t say that I can pinpoint the cucumber but I can pick up the limeade and base white tea flavors and that combination is insanely delicious.  Such a bright and vibrant blend of flavors.  Almost like a mug of sunshine waiting for you to indulge in. I personally can’t get enough of the lime and spearmint flavor combo with a white tea twist added in for good measure.

This tea is hands down one of the best takes on a limeade tea that I’ve had. And I’ve tried several.  This is one of those teas that I have literally emailed 52Teas to ask how much inventory do they have left so I can gobble up the remaining pouches.  Luckily for me, 52Teas was able to come up with a few more pouches for me to enjoy but I will sadly be finished with those shortly.

Because that is the heart breaker of it all with  falling in love with a tea from 52Teas. I fell in love with this tea from the first to final sip of each cuppa. And sadly, unless I beg our friend Anne to re blend the tea or she happens to re blend the tea, this tea will always be in my heart but that will be it.

Let’s cross our fingers for a reblend because this is just the sort of tea that will help with those winter time blues!


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: White
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!

Kumquat Cheesecake from 52Teas. . . . . .

One can always count on 52 teas for their unique blends.

This is a winner and needs to actually be made into cheesecake as it would be delicious. They did a wonderful job of capturing the kumquat flavor without any of the bitterness that can be found in the rind. Fruity with hints of citrus and cream.

The honey bush blends perfectly with the aforementioned flavors like a selfish ninja. You know it’s there but it won’t truly show. The liquid is a beautiful color.

When you brew be sure to use something clear. The rose color is quite a delight.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Honeybush
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!