Bowcaster Brown/Adagio Teas – Skysamurai-

If Chewbacca drank tea, what would he drink?

We know they drink brandy, which is great mixed with a strong black tea and honey for colds, and can hold their liquor better than many other species.

Perhaps being a brandy loving type they would go for a more oxidized leaf such as this one. It’s simple but has enough caffeine kick to get you going in the morning. The toasted mate rounds it all out nicely while the added flavoring gives the aftertaste a pleasant caramel savoriness.

I can see Chewbacca, having finished his pre-flight duties, sitting in the cockpit waiting for Han while sipping on a cup of this.


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Leaf Type:  Black /Mate

Where to Buy:  Adagio Teas

Description

Caramel mocha, in tea form. Mocha Nut Mate is joined by Tiger Eye and Caramel black teas, resulting in a beverage brimming with dichotomies: familiar but new, caffeinated but chill. This blend is suitably robust, and can be relied upon to get the job done.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Whisky Tea/Whittard of Chelsea -VariaTEA-

I have never been a fan of whisky. My step-dad likes it and so when a young me meandered up to the side of of my mom’s bed and looked at the glass of whisky on the night stand and then at my mom and then back at the glass and back at my mom, my mom had no qualms about giving me the okay to taste it. Why? Because I reacted in the very way she expected…I took the tiniest sip and then spat it out and yelled “EWWWWWW!!!” I did not like it then. I still do not like it now. So when a tea friend sent me a whole bunch of this Whisky tea by Whittard of Chelsea, I had no idea what I was going to do with it.

That is until the other day when my family made pulled pork, which required 2L bottles of coke. My mom bought the off-brand coke figuring it was going in the food and wouldn’t really matter thus no sense spending the extra money on actual Coca Cola. So when there was a bit leftover, we were unsure of what to do with it. I felt inspired and decided to use it in a teapop. That left me with the question of which tea to use and it was this one that came to mind.

I brewed up both a plain hot cup of the tea and a teapop. Both were steeped for 3 minutes in 200F water.

The hot cup is malty. Malty but brisk. The underlying flavor is dry, like alcohol. It is like a breakfast tea but with alcohol. Definitely not the tea for me. I like softer and more dessert-like flavors. Astringency and briskness with a touch of alcohol is just not for me. However, for those that like breakfast teas and whisky, this could be right up your alley.

As for the teapop, it’s more of the same but with the off-brand coke, it has a pretty strong medicinal quality. It latches on to the dryness and gives this a bit of a cough syrup element. Like cherry cough syrup but without the cherry.

This tea smelled good in the bag but ended up being quite the bust. I think that is more due to my personal tastes than a reflection on the tea. Plus, it was not helped by the off-brand coke flavor since I am a Coca Cola girl through and through. So while this was not good for me, I do see that it has potential for those that enjoy these flavors.


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Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  Whittard of Chelsea

Description

Specially for those who love a tipple, we’ve concocted a rich black tea laced with flavours of fine Scotch whisky, adding a highland fling of heather petals in true Scottish spirit. With its warm, rounded flavours and malty sweetness, this tea is as good as any hot-toddy – so you won’t be needing that hip flask after all…

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Autumn 2019 Special Grade Laoshan Black/Verdant Tea

Please do not mind me as I sit here and gaze at this pulchritudinous tea.

It is somewhat difficult for me to describe the color of these brilliantly twisted leaves.

It is dark brown with hints of grays and greens. The aroma is fresh, toasty, and warm. The wet leaf aroma is vegetal.

Slightly musty. What a unique flavor.

Toasty notes are the forerunners. Followed closely by a chocolate and cream sensation. If steeped too long it takes almost like burnt chocolate.

The after taste is a bit mineral and this really shows when it comes to the feeling it leaves on the tongue.


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Leaf Type: Black

Where to Buy:  Verdant Tea

Description

Pioneers and community leaders in Laoshan Village, the He family was one of the first to plant tea on the misty ocean-facing slopes of the Taoist Holy Mountain they call home.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Review: Lion’s Blend/Friday Afternoon

This afternoon I felt like getting woke — both energetically and politically — so I chose Lion’s Blend from Friday Afternoon Tea.

This tea is essentially an Earl Grey with added rooibos & orange. The rooibos in Lion’s Blend gives a nice vanilla/sweetness that balances out its citrus/bergamot flavors. (I’m a huge fan of red rooibos, which I think throws in creaminess and joy to any cup.) Despite the rooibos, I still find this blend a little astringent. I like it, but it’s not on my must-have re-buy list.

However, I’m super happy I bought this blend because the proceeds go to an important charity that assists trans people with getting their mental health needs met (https://seattle.eater.com/2020/6/8/21284453/seattle-cafe-friday-afternoon-tea-donates-trans-mental-health-funds-jk-rowling). All of Friday Afternoon’s Harry Potter themed (https://fridaytea.com/collections/j-k-rowling) teas’ proceeds go there.

For those of you who haven’t been keeping up with a children’s book writer from 20 years ago, Jo (J. K.) Rowling has been saying a lot of transphobic things. You can Google it if you want. It’s mean stuff.

Friday Afternoon Tea saw this and decided to use its teas and the fans of her work to show that the fandom is progressive and kind! I love this. It’s a win-win situation.

It’s possible to love someone’s work without loving them. I also feel this way about horror/fantasy author HP Lovecraft. (He was really, REALLY racist. He thought Hitler had some good ideas.) It’s possible for people to be geniuses in one way but very, very behind in others.

That’s where this tea comes in.

Thanks, tea. You always give me balance in a crazy world.


Want to Know More About This Tea?

Leaf Type:  Black/Rooibos

Where to Buy:  Friday Afternoon 

Description

Lions, tigers, and griffins, oh my! This tea is dedicated to our bold, righteous Gryffindor brethren. They can find courage and happiness in the darkest of places, especially when bolstered by the bright citrus notes in this tea!

Ingredients: Rooibos, Assam black tea, orange peel, marigold, natural flavorings

All of our teas available online are gluten-free and sourced from organically certified farms. Most are vegan, but some may include honey (indicated in ingredients).

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Review: Pu-erh Hazelberry/Adagio Teas

This tea’s loose leaf smells like a chocolatier’s shop in the late afternoon. The sun is low and the ochre dust motes ease in waves through the air. Ah. It’s old, it’s new, it’s sweet, it’s familiar.

As you steep the tea, it turns amber. When I saw the color, I thought “amber!” and then I thought “WHICH IS WHERE DINOSAUR DNA COMES FROM.” (Being a tea reviewer does not mean I will grow up.)

The resulting flavor is a chocolately, muted-berry, cream affair. The berries, despite being pretty prominently mentioned in the title of the tea, have been repressed — possibly by the patriarchy. It’s usually the patriarchy.

The primary flavors of this are a sort of chocolate/vanilla/hazelnut mix that remind me of protein shakes.

I’m not one to dis protein shakes! They’re an easy breakfast I eat most days!

But I’m not sure it’s what I wanted for my tea. This would be a great starter tea, though, for a person who really likes protein shakes and isn’t sure if they’re going to like tea. The “tea” itself isn’t the point. It’s more of a support for the chocolate/vanilla/hazelnut flavor that sits on top.

That said, there’s definitely a time and place for this tea. It’s inoffensive and unchallenging and sometimes that’s simply what you want. This tea is the sort of thing I’d contentedly drink while needing caffeine (it’s pu’erh!) but in the mood to focus on my work instead of the intricacies of what I’m drinking.

Not everything needs to be difficult or sophisticated. Take it from the girl who referenced Jurassic Park in a tea review.


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Leaf Type:  Puerh

Where to Buy:  Adagio Teas

Description

The earthy smoothness of Pu Erh creates a warm foundation for the rich flavor of hazelnut while playful, tangy-sweet strawberries peek through the nutty opulence. A hint of cream adds a soft, dreamy note to the blend.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!