Creamsicle Oolong/Little Woods Herbs & Teas -VariaTEA-

Advent season 2020 sort of got away from me. My original intention was to make my own advent calendar using teas I already owned so that it would force me to drink my own stash. I did that. I also bought 6 other advent calendars. Oops.

This particular tea, Creamsicle Oolong by Little Woods, was part of my DIY advent calendar. It is a tea that was shared with me by one of the sisters, Nichole/CuppaGeek, that I had not tried by the time I was making my own calendar. As such, it found its way into the calendar and was a pleasant surprise the day I pulled it out.

Citrus is not actually one of my favorite flavors in teas. It’s one of those flavors that my reaction will depend on my mood. Sometimes I crave citrus and other times I am just tired of it. As far as citrus goes, however, creamsicle tends to be one I like. I think that is because its not just citrus but instead citrus and vanilla/cream. These flavors combined are dessert-like and anyone who knows me knows that I like dessert teas.

When I steeped this up, I was taken aback by an almost-roasted scent that was coming from the tea. I know there are roasted oolongs or oolongs that have that flavor, but I did not expect that in a creamsicle tea. Creamsicles are frozen and sweet and bright and “roasted” doesn’t fit into that picture. Plus, this uses a milk oolong which are typically creamy, not roasted. With that said, my nose did not deceive me because there is definitely a roasted flavor in this tea.

I would describe the flavor as orange and roasted oolong with an aftertaste of vanilla creaminess. I want to like it but the roasted quality really takes me out of the idea of creamsicle. It’s also more tart and savory than it is sweet and that seems off for me. Perhaps if it were branded differently I would be less disappointed and more accepting of the overall flavor. While personally I am more likely to purchase a creamsicle blend, I find it a lot worse when I expect creamsicle and instead get roasted orange, than if I were just given a blend called roasted orange and that’s what is delivered. As it is, I am disappointed with this blend – which is not a bad blend, but also not creamsicle.


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Leaf Type: Oolong

Where to Buy: Little Woods Herbs & Teas

Description

A special blend using a Taiwanese Milk Oolong as the tea base. It is creamy, tart, and great with milk and honey.

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Cotton Candy/The NecessiTeas- VariaTEA-

I have heard such amazing things about this tea. It seems to be loved by so many people on Instagram and it has taken years for me to get my hands on some since it always seems to be sold out. However, our sister, CuppaGeek came through for me with a sample of this tea.

I brewed the sample per the NecessiTeas recommended steeping parameters. I steeped the tea in boiling water for 5 minutes. The smell of cotton candy filled the air.

I think it is safe to say that given the hype and the smell, I had pretty high expectations going in. Unfortunately, it did fall a bit short for me. It’s top note is definitely a sugary candy. It could be cotton candy but it could also be pixie sticks. It’s a nostalgic flavor. However, it is not the only flavor. There is a lot more fruitiness here that I did not expect. Under the sugary top note, I am getting a lot of the apple flavor. That apple flavor is a touch waxy and thus distracting.

At the end of the day, this has a bunch of potential and I can definitely see why people enjoy it. However, I would want to explore some other steeping parameters and brewing techniques to coax out more of the cotton candy while toning down the fruitier notes.


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Leaf Type:  Herbal/Fruit Tisane

Where to Buy:  The NecessiTeas

Description

Ohh Sugar Sugar

Cotton Candy reminds me of the county fair. The long strands of pink and blue spun sugar are a special treat. My kids and I have always been fans of the sugary novelty which inspired me to create a tea blend that would be just as delicious and sweet.

 

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Feenduft/Floragold – VariaTea-

One of my tea friends was super kind and gave me a bunch of tea pyramids by Floragold. There was so much variety and while I typically prefer loose leaf, I’ve been enjoying the convenience of being able to grab a tea bag and brew up a cup with such quick clean-up.

If I am being honest, I had low expectations of the quality of the teas. I think there is an underlying tea snob in me that always expects less from a tea bag/satchet/pyramid than I do from loose leaf teas. However, these Floragold teas have been pretty good so far.

This tea, Feenduft aka Fairy Fragrance, is a green rooibos that is meant to taste like strawberry kiwi. Personally, I think that flavor is quite spot-on. The green rooibos base compliments those flavors nicely as well. All elements are present and floral and light, which makes for a nice cuppa.

Of the Floragold teas I have tried, this one is one of my favorites. It’s convenient and the flavors are lovely. It could be a bit stronger on the strawberry kiwi and a bit less base, but that is more a personal preference for my tastes. Besides that, I am a fan.

 


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Leaf Type: Rooibos

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Melonade/DAVIDs Tea

The weather is warmer which means more and more reaching for summery blends. That means a lot of fruity blends become more appealing and I start picking up lemonade for a super refreshing beverage, tea lemonades.

Tea lemonades are actually how I got my sister to drink tea. Technically, I suppose it was the staff at DAVIDsTEA who got her to drink tea by giving her a sample of their Frozen Raspberry blend, iced and mixed with some lemonade. She liked it so much, she actually purchased the tea and it is one of two blends she keeps stocked. Personally, I am not the biggest fan of that tea so instead I reached for this one, Melonade, to go with my lemonade craving.

I was not sure what to expect from this green tea with apple, melon , carrot, roasted chicory root, sweet blackberry leaves, apple pomace, lemon peel, beetroot, passion fruit granules , marigold blossoms, citric acid, and natural and artificial flavouring. I was a little hesitant mostly because I usually don’t like chicory or blackberry leaves. With that said, I am happy to report that as a tea lemonade, this is really quite nice.

This tea lemonade can only be described as juicy. It is like sweet, fresh melon just overflowing with juice. I have actually had a lemon drop melon before which is a melon version of lemon drop candies and this tea lemonade reminds me so much of that – sweet melon, kept from being too sweet by slightly tart lemon. It really is refreshing and just Summer in a cup. Yum!


Want to Know More About This Tea?

Leaf Type: White

Where to Buy:  DAVIDs Tea

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Palas Supreme/BOH Tea – VariaTEA-

Palas Supreme is one of two BOH Teas I got to try courtesy of my Sororitea Sisters. The other tea was Bukit Cheeding No. 53. Both are orange pekoe teas and since that isn’t necessarily my favorite kind of black tea, I decided to have some fun with this one.

This tea was made both as a plain tea and also as an iced tea using tangerine lemonade ice cubes as a play on the classic black tea with lemon. Both preparation methods were steeped for 3 minutes in 200F water.

The plain hot tea is very floral and much smoother than Bukit Cheeding No. 53. The Assam in this blend gives this tea that little touch of malt while the Ceylon keeps it bright and citrusy. At times that citrus can get pithy and astringent but typically it is sweet and smooth. A really nice and clearly high quality orange pekoe. One that needs no additives.

The tangerine lemonade iced tea is an interesting experience. Unfortunately, the lemonade really takes over, drowning out the black tea. This might have been better to try with a stronger tea such as Bukit Cheeding No. 53 because this tea is really taking a back seat to the lemonade additive. More than anything, the tea is making the lemonade more floral and brisk, which is weird given the plain tea is not particularly brisk on its own.

I have to say I am surprised by this tea because I did not expect it to be as smooth as it is. Having tried Bukit Cheeding No. 53 first, I expected something more akin to that tea which was on the robust and drying side. It is interesting how both teas are so different despite both being orange pekoes. This really has a high quality to it and it certainly puts the “supreme” in Palas Supreme.


Want to Know More About This Tea?

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  BOH Teas

Description

Click below to view BOH Teas offerings.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!