Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy: Murchie’s Tea & Coffee
Murchie’s Coconut Cream Banana Tea combines fine black teas with coconut and bananas. This cup of tea is ripe with the flavour of the islands and is as decadent as banana cream pie!
Learn more about this tea here.
This one comes from a tea friend of mine on Steepster; the store it comes from is located in British Columbia, and not one I’ve had much experience with – just tried different samples in various tea swaps. Their website seems quite nice though, and pretty easy to navigate!
This one definitely has a very banana heavy smell with somewhat of a pudding like quality to it; so I guess that comes from the ‘cream’. I cold brewed this one ‘cause that’s just what I do; it definitely was a lot like I expected it to be but did have a few surprises.
The banana was certainly one of the stronger notes, and very candy like. In addition to having somewhat of a pudding like flavour it reminded me quite a bit of those banana marshmallow candies that you can find in convenience stores for five cents. People tend to have polar opinions on those; you either love or hate them. Personally, I can’t get enough. If you put a big bowl of them in front of me I would lose all self control and eat every last one, and probably get really sick as an added bonus.
The coconut is also very strong, though it tastes a touch off. It has an almost oily or greasy buttery flavour to it, which I find is something I’ve come to associate with shredded coconut that’s just starting to turn bad. Despite not totally meshing, it did sort of work with the tea though; that buttery flavour I dislike tied in a bit with the banana marshmallow vibe to create something that kind felt a little more confectionery instead causing me to feel wary.
I didn’t like the black base a whole lot either; I felt like it was noticeably a lower quality base with a lot of flavourings intended to cover that up – some I kind of observed with another flavoured black from this company, though it wasn’t as noticeable with that blend. And, something about the use of it here reminded me a little bit of ash. Only very lightly; but that’s still not a flavour you necessarily want to be experiencing with a “Banana Cream” tea. As for the all spice, that’s actually one thing about this that I felt pretty neutral about; it was barely present but what I could taste was nice and meshed fairly well with everything else going on. Though, I don’t think an absence of the allspice would have really affected the flavour either.
But I’m honestly probably making this out to seem a lot worse than it was in reality. The truth is I drank the entire 25 oz. cold brew with very little complaint or criticism until after finishing it and it wasn’t all that difficult to just tune into the fun, sweet banana notes. Overall, this probably balances out to be a relatively average tea. Wouldn’t necessarily recommend or serve it, but it’s not like I’d deliberately avoid it either.
Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy: The Secret Garden Tea Co.
A playful blend of baby rosebuds, vanilla, and bergamot that reminds us of childhood tea parties. Proceeds go to BC Children’s Hospital.
Ingredients: Black tea, rosehip pieces, rose petals, blackberry leaves, natural flavors.
Learn more about this blend here.
After reading the ingredients listed and then opening the sample pouch of this tea, I was a little surprised to immediately recognize a chamomile blossom. I see the rosehips and rose petals and blackberry leaves, but they need to update their ingredient list to also include chamomile.
This is a tasty blend. The black tea base has a robust flavor and it melds nicely with the notes of vanilla to create a really rich, creamy flavor that is both malty and vanilla-y sweet. The sip starts out really smooth yet strong, and it remains smooth to the finish where I pick up on a slightly dry astringency.
The bergamot is a little less distinct than the vanilla and even the floral notes in this blend. When one reads the description of this tea, they might be led to believe that this is a “Earl Grey Creme” type of tea, but I wouldn’t call it that. It’s more of a flowery cream type of tea than it is a creamy bergamot type of tea.
The floral notes are soft and sweet. I like the way they contrast with the silky vanilla tones. I don’t taste a lot from the aforementioned chamomile blossoms, not even that distinct apple-y flavor that I usually pick up on when I drink something with chamomile. The strength of the black tea and other flavors seems to cancel out the chamomile – but that certainly doesn’t disappoint me. What I do taste is the rose and it’s quite a nice flavor. It starts out rather delicate and by the time I made my way to mid-cup, I was noticing more and more rose essence emerge in every sip.
I’m also so pleased to find that this tea is a tea that benefits the BC Children’s Hospital. I like that Secret Garden Tea Company has found a few favorite charities and offers help to them through the sales of their lovely tea blends.
This is a really nice tea. It has many different layers of flavor and what I think I’m realizing now that I’ve just passed the mid-cup point is that every sip seems to be just a little different than the one that preceded it. I might notice a really strong presence of the black tea in the first sip and with the next sip, I pick up on more vanilla. The sips that follow allow my palate to explore other flavors: hints of bright bergamot notes, a rose essence that develops, and the creamy-malty flavor of the vanilla and black tea flavors.
It’s quite an interesting tea – I’d recommend this to anyone who is looking for a blend that’s a little less ordinary!