Warming from Balcony Tea. . . .

This herbal tea is one that I wouldn’t normally try, but (spoiler alert), I’m so glad that I did.

This blend includes ginger, lemon balm, lemon verbena, orange blossom, orange peel and cinnamon. It is truly “warming”, just like the name. The word “bright” comes to mind when smelling the dry blend. The thing I appreciate, though is that it isn’t overwhelming. In my opinion, the herbs and spices are very well balanced. Upon stepping it up, a light citrus scent is a bit more prominent.

I find that the spicy ginger and cinnamon notes come first, followed by a touch of citrus. To be honest, most of the ingredients in this blend are usually very touch and go for me. I either love them or find them totally vile. If you don’t find citrus teas to be your favorite, I recommend that you try this. It includes just the right amount of citrus to be pleasant, without becoming bitter or sour. Same thing with the spices. I found them to be just right.

It’s very rare these days that I find a tea that I truly don’t have any criticism for. I guess this tea is a bit of a unicorn. All I know for sure is that it’s comforting and very tasty! I wanted more the moment I finished my cup.

This tea is available from Balcony Tea now and I highly suggest that you pick it up! It’s a versatile blend that is good for any time of day, but with its slight spice kick, can give you a boost.


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Herbal
Where to Buy:  Balcony Teas
Description

Escape long rainy days on our “Warming Balcony” with sun-kissed citrus flavour and a hint of spice.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Warming from Balcony Teas

Up in the Midwest, we’ve recently swapped from unseasonably warm days to the kind of bone-chilling, rainy autumn weather that makes me want to take up residence under my coziest blanket for the next five months and not move a muscle.

warmingOne particular grey and soggy Sunday, I was forced out of my blanket fort and into the world– and let’s be real, I wasn’t too happy about it. Digging through my teas to choose one to take with me (if I had to face the real, soggy world, of course I was going to do it with tea in hand), this cozy, herbal blend from Balcony Tea looked like just what I was searching for.

Warming is a perfectly-spiced herbal with notes of ginger, lemon verbena, lemon balm, orange blossom & peel, and aromatic cinnamon. Right out of the gate, the leaves in the pyramid bag jumped out to me– this may be a pre-bagged tea, but full leaves are visible, along with slices of orange peel and what I suspect might even be little nubs of ginger. The verdict?

It was the perfect blend to warm me up on a chilly day! No sweetener needed, the ginger and lemon is bright and upfront, with a nice herbal balance on the finish to round it out. I truly felt the warmth in my bones as I ventured into the cold. The encroaching winter might not be quite so intolerable with this tea in your mug!


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Herbal
Where to Buy: Balcony Teas

Description

Escape long rainy days on our “Warming Balcony” with sun-kissed citrus flavour and a hint of spice.

Ingredients:
Ginger – Spicy and warming; traditionally used to help circulation and ease stomach issues. Lemon Balm – To help you feel relaxed and refreshed. Lemon Verbena – Bursting with lemon flavour. Cinnamon – Naturally sweet and comforting. Orange peel – Beautifully aromatic with a true Mediterranean feel. Orange blossom – Deliciously fragrant with delicate floral honeyed notes.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Chocolate Chamomile Curiosity Brew Black Oolong from Verdant Tea

chocolate-chamomile-curiosity-1588-LARGETea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black/Oolong

Where to Buy:  Verdant Tea

Tea Description:

This blend is inspired by the connection we see between fine chocolate and fine tea. Our Laoshan Black and Wuyi Big Red Robe have strong natural notes of cacao that we wanted to bring out and play with. The end result is a rich, sweet and sparkling brew that brings out the best in both the tea, supported by the cacao nibs. Marigold provides a richness that complements the sweet flavors of chamomile, cinnamon and fennel, while the mint gives just enough of a clean sparkle to counterbalance the flavor of raw cacao. Enjoy this curious brew hot or cold and add a touch of buckwheat honey for a real treat.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

Thanks to my SororiTea Sister TheLastDodo for the sample! I’ve actually been quite curious about this one for a while (pun not intended), but Verdant isn’t a company I’ve had much chance to explore and I’m wary of blends with chamomile so getting the chance to try a small quantity of this one was just perfect!

The dry leaf smells faintly of milk chocolate, and has even fainter fennel and mint notes as well. I know from the ingredients list that the mint in this blend is Spearmint; but based on scent I wouldn’t be able to differentiate.

Steeped this one up hot; it’s a lot softer than I expected and very, very smooth. The chocolate is the focus here and it’s accented quite nicely by the cinnamon and the fennel which are subtle but add a delicate, sweet spicyness. The natural malt from the Laoshan Black is delicious; and the spearmint creeps in right at the finish to add a lovely, refreshing coolness. Also, thankfully, I can’t taste the chamomile!

All in all, this was a great tea! It had a rich flavour, but not an in your face one and with the chocolate and mint pairing it made me think of a really fancy, well executed tea version of an After Eight chocolate. Mmm!

The Fifth of November from The London Tea Room

Fifth of November from London Tea Room
Fifth of November from London Tea Room

Tea Information:

Leaf Type: Black, Green

Where to Buy: The London Tea Room

Tea Description:

We invented this blend in honour of our childhood memories of Bonfire Night in England. Smoky gunpowder, wild winter berries, vanilla bean and a touch of lapsang souchong. Remember, remember…

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

The fifth of November from The London Tea Room is not a tea I would drink all day every day, but there is something so special about it that every now and then I get an intense craving for it.

This tea just makes me happy. Reminds me of the Renaissance – woodsy smoky flavors with a light berry undertone which is perfect. Add a little sugar in the raw or not – its great both ways. It has a wonderful Lapsang Souchong base that is not over the top. I have sampled many Lapsang Souchong, some far smokier than others, this one lays politely in the middle range of smokiness. The berry notes are balanced perfectly so that you get a good taste of berry without it becoming a directly berry flavored tea. The vanilla really helps to meld the two opposing worlds and brings all of the flavor notes together in harmony.

I have had this specific tea in my stash for over a year now and it has not lost any flavor so it is hardy and one of those teas you can in fact buy for the every now and then cup without fear that it will go stale on you. I have found gunpowder green to be that way, lasting much longer than other teas, especially green teas, so maybe that is one of the reasons.

WIth today being a rather gloomy day, in spring, even though I do not mind the weather being this way, this tea was exactly what came to mind. It is warming, toasty, roasty, and friendly. Yes friendly, tea can be friendly right? It just makes you smile, kick back, and enjoy the moment you spend with it. This is the tea to have when you may otherwise have hot cocoa, you know, a cuddly tea for a cuddly moment. It does make you think of bonfires, or campfires, melting marshmallows, good friends, and good times. Or romantic moments in front of a fireplace. Yeah, I really love this tea, even if I have to be in the “mood” for it, I am so happy that I have it in my tea stash when those moments come along.

Supreme Phoenix Dancong Snow Flake Oolong from China Cha Dao

Phoenix Dan Cong Snow Flakes from China Cha Dao
Phoenix Dan Cong Snow Flakes from China Cha Dao

Tea Information:

Leaf Type: Oolong

Where to Buy: China Cha Dao

Tea Description:

Phoenix Dan Cong, a Famous Oolong / Wulong Tea from Chao Zhou Province in China.

Tea comes with a superb aroma and sweet taste!

The Phoenix Dan Cong are noted for their ability to naturally imitate the flavors and fragrance of various flowers and fruits, such as orange blossom, orchid, grapefruit, almond, ginger flower, etc…

Dan Cong is a botanical term that refers to the morphology of the tea plant. Most tea bushes emerge from the ground as a cluster of branches, however, the uncommon Dan Cong variety emerges as a single trunk that branches off higher up the stem.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

Supreme Phonenix Dancong Snow Flake Oolong from China Cha Dao (deep breath) is …. a mouthful! A mouthful of goodness that is.

This is not necessarily in line with my favorite flavors in a tea, but I absolutely appreciate it for what it is. The flavors range from citrus, to sandalwood, floral, to astringent.

The aroma is that of flowers, orange, and grapefruit. The liquid should be rather pale, be sure not to over steep this one. Gong Fu brewing is recommended.

I prefer the second steep to the first, and in the future would probably even do a quick rinse, like one would do with pu-erh, before sipping.

This is a unique tea with a completely different flavor profile from any oolong that I have ever had. I can see where some would adore this tea and where others may not care for it. I think those who adore it will want it in their stash at all times, however for those we do not, they should at least experience an oolong like this once.

I feel as though this years Snow Flake picked up plenty of citrus elements, and then secondly floral aspects. I really had hoped to pick up the almond flavor, but could not.

The leaves of this tea are long, full, and lovely but do expect some stems as well.

Steeped Leaves of Snow Flake from Chia Cha Dao
Steeped Leaves of Snow Flake from Chia Cha Dao

China Cha Dao started on Ebay but they now have their own website and it is designed quite well. Their teas are sold in larger quantity 4.4 Ounces or 125 Gram being the norm, with Worldwide Free Shipping. The site even has a language translator in the upper left corner of the page.

What I have noticed about this tea that is also unique is the heat retention. My cup seems to have stayed warm for far longer than most teas do using the same cup. It also is a heart warming tea, meaning that I feel as though I am warming up from the inside out as I drink it. Seems perfect for a winter harvest!

Be sure to check out their Chinese New Year Sale here.