#PeruvianSpiceBerry from #IncaTea

The dry leaf smells like mulled wine, with fragrant elderberry, cinnamon, and cloves. Pour a bit of water on these leaves and they brew up fast!  Wow, what a dark red berry brew after only a few seconds!

Brewed, this tea gets much more tart, thanks to the powerhouse of hibiscus flowers.  The ingredients list also include purple corn.  I’m not sure how it adds to the flavor, but the brewed tea is a vibrant purple-pink color.

This tea is best served warm, though the fruitiness might be suited for an iced tea, I’m not sure all the spice is appropriate in a cold beverage.  I’m of the opinion that cinnamon and cloves are best suited for a drink from a hot mug.

The cloves and hibiscus dominate this tea, which were a perfect combination for a cold, grey, rainy day when I brewed this cup.  Drinking Peruvian Spice Berry made me feel like I was tucked in on a cozy autumn day, warming up with peppery cloves and dark currant flavors.

This is definitely a tea for fans of mulled wine and hot toddies.  Or, if you just want to be able to say that you tried a tea made from purple corn!


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Herbal
Where to Buy: Inca Tea
Description:

An enlivening herbal, fruit tea blend of purple corn, berries and spices. Caffeine free. This is our Original blend to characterize the true ancient Incan recipe.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Sangria White from A Quarter to Tea

sangriaTea Information:

Leaf Type:  White

Where to Buy: A Quarter to Tea

Tea Description:

Hold on to your summer year round, with this cuppa. Combines the flavors of cherry, apple and blueberries with a hint of rum and wine to make the perfect sangria year round.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

This is my second sample from A Quarter to Tea! I chose it for a couple reasons; the big one was that the other two samples I picked out were oolongs and I wanted to get to taste at least one of Lauren’s other tea types. However, I was also interested by the fairly unique ingredients. I’ve never seen Sangria with blueberry, for starters. Finally, I wanted to find a Sangria tea that was an improvement on the other two I’ve tried. DAVIDsTEA had a seasonal Sangria blend which I didn’t mind but didn’t love, and Red Leaf Tea has a Sangria flavour of matcha I currently own but don’t particularly like. And the idea of Sangria with a white base sounds awesome, too!

It was hard to form much of an impression of the tea dry: I could see several chunks of the dry ingredients in the blend, but there wasn’t a distinct aroma. Part of that, I feel, is that in the package Lauren mailed to me the Cherry Chocolate Latte was really a dominant flavour and I think possibly may have contaminated the other teas it was packaged with or, at least, “cancelled out” their aromas – which weren’t as potent/strong. Since Lauren suggests on her Etsy page to ice this and since Sangria really is a drink best consumed cold I decided to go with a cold method of preparation. However, instead of icing I went with cold brewing because that style of preparation is a favourite of mine.

I do find this tea to be very mildly/delicately flavoured overall, with softer and less prominent notes of apple and blueberry and a jammy stonefruit quality which I suppose is the cherry. I want to point out that mild and subtle isn’t actually a bad thing, however Sangria doesn’t have a ‘delicate’ flavour to begin with so it’s not reading as the most accurate flavour profile. Plus it’s a little odd for me to neither taste “orange”/citrus which is such a common Sangria flavour or the wine/rum. As such, while I really like the flavour that I do taste, I find it very hard to drink this and think of it as ‘Sangria’ flavoured. The name just doesn’t seem to match, you know?

I’d be interested to see this tea rebranded as another flavour, maybe even some kind of ‘punch’? This is a refreshing, light, fruity cuppa but in my ‘quest’ for the perfect Sangria tea my expectations just haven’t been met.

Dornish Wine from Margaret’s Fine Imports

DornishWineTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  Margaret’s Fine Imports 

Tea Description:

Ingredients: Luxury Black Tea, Dried Grapes, Blueberries, Currants, Apple,Hibiscus, Cornflowers, Rosehips, Pineapple, Papaya, Brambleberries, Strawberries, Black Berries, Raspberries, Natural Flavors

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

Tonight is the night! Game of Thrones finale! How exciting! This season has been an intense one.  We really haven’t had any filler episodes.  Each episode has been in your face with pure action and have been emotionally driven.  Love this show and I’m sad this season is about over.  It feels like it just began!

In honor of tonight’s episode, I am going to review Dornish Wine, a GoT inspired tea from Margaret’s Fine Imports.  I have tried almost all of the GoT inspired teas.  So far, the Wilding White has been my favorite.

Dornish Wine is an interesting blend. The dry leaves had a very berry smell to them.  There are several different kinds of berries in this blend.  I was excited when I saw the dried grapes in the lineup.  The blend itself was very pretty.  Lots of deep reds.  I wonder if this is how the wine tastes in King’s Landing.

I steeped this tea like a traditional black tea.  Brewed up this blend tasted more like a very dry red wine.  It did actually taste like wine.  I couldn’t believe it.  Somehow Margaret’s Fine Imports actually found a way to make their tea taste like wine.  How fun!

Unfortunately I am not a dry red wine fan, but I added in just a bit of honey from Bee Local and this tea was just a delight.  I couldn’t really taste each individual berry flavor, but this had that berry profile to it.

Fan or not of this show, this tea was a fun experience! Having a tea that actually tasted like wine was pretty impressive and the fact that they were able to capture the dry feature of the wine was even more impressive! This may not be my favorite of the GoT line up, but I”ll keep some on hand to experiment with and see what I can come up with maybe with cold brewing.

Regardless, Winter is Coming . . . . . .

Blackberry Sangria Iced Black Tea from Southern Boy Teas

SBT-Blackberry-SangriaTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  Zoomdweebies

Tea Description:

Our amazing organic Iyerpadi iced tea base blended with the organic flavors of blackberry, red wine, and citrus fruits. This will delight your palate and the palates of your guests. A great iced tea to share with your holiday guests.

Learn more about this tea here.

Learn about SBT’s subscriptions here.

Taster’s Review:

It’s a tasty iced tea, but as someone who typically doesn’t get all that into alcoholic beverages, I’m not finding the flavor combination of fruit and red wine all that alluring.  It’s just not my ideal flavor combination.

But it is tasty.  The blackberry notes are very forward which I am enjoying, and I taste notes of red wine.  I like that the red wine isn’t a particularly strong flavor, it reminds me a bit of the wine flavor you’d taste if you were drinking a wine cooler.  Yeah, I used to drink those.  They were pretty popular when I was younger.  Boy, I just aged myself, didn’t I?

There’s also a background note of citrus.  These flavors add more ‘tang’ than a real focused citrus-y flavor.  A little bit of contrast to the sweet notes of blackberry.

The black tea is tasted among these other flavors, and I appreciate that as well.  I can’t say that this is my favorite iced tea flavor, but I’m enjoying it.  It’s refreshing and fruity and my palate finds it pleasing.  But if I were to sit down and place another order, I don’t think that this would be one that I’d put into my shopping cart.

But Southern Boy Teas does have a lot of other teas that I’d put into my shopping cart (more than I’ll allow myself to buy! ha!)  Have you checked out their Indiegogo campaign yet?  They’re looking to take their brand to new heights with this campaign, so please consider contributing and helping them reach their goal!

Momijigari Black Tea Blend from Lupicia Tea

momiTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  Lupicia Tea

Tea Description:

 Vibrant autumn leaves are blended into black tea. A sophisticated flavor of apple and apricot is limited to the autumn. Limited Quantity & Period Only

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

As I sit here, smelling the wonderful aroma that wafts from my teacup, I am reminded of autumn.  This Momijigari Black Tea Blend from Lupicia Tea smells … like autumn!  Like the smell of the air and the leaves and the apples.  There is a distinct wine-like character to the fragrance as well, with the faintest hints of smoke.

This is one of the more unique flavored teas that I’ve tasted … and it truly tastes like autumn to me.  It has notes of apple and apricot in the flavor – two fruits I think of when I think of harvest.  I like that while these are distinct flavor profiles here, they do not overpower the cup.

I’m also tasting a wine-like flavor – it is rustic and warm – like mulled wine without the spices.  I taste the faintest hints of smoke … reminiscent of the air that I would experience in the autumn as the air begins to cool and smoke is wafting from the chimneys.

And the black tea is not absent here either.  There is a warm, earthy tone to the background … not an aggressive or strong black tea flavor … but just enough to support the other flavors.

This is a very enjoyable cuppa from Lupicia Tea!