A ‘Vampire Lemonade’ Custom Blend Tea from Adagio Teas

VampireLemonadeTea Information:

Leaf Type:  White Tea & Herbals

Where to Buy:  Adagio Teas

Tea Description:

Blood orange tisane outshines white tangerine (20 percent) and lemon grass (20 percent) in this delicious, refreshing blend. Try it iced for a homage to summer, or drink it hot to reminisce on winter days.

A Carolynne Keenan Custom Blend.

Learn more about this custom blend here.

Find more Carolynne Keenan blends here.

Taster’s Review:

I steeped this tea at 190°F for 5 minutes and even with that short a steep time, the liquid looks super dark ruby red (like hibiscus) and the texture is thicker than I hoped for.  Too much hibiscus in this!

So I decided to let it cool for a while and see how it would fair as an iced drink because as a hot tea, I found the hibiscus to be too overpowering for me to enjoy it.  As the tea cools, I can pick up on some of the blood orange, tangerine and lemon-y notes from the lemongrass.  The hibiscus enhances the tartness of these fruit flavors which is nice.  I’m not usually a big fan of tart-y beverages but when it’s “lemonade” a bit of tart is OK.

I don’t taste a lot of white tea.  This tastes more like a citrus-y punch than it does a tea.  Which is OK I suppose but I’m more of a tea drinker than a citrus punch drinker.

Overall, this isn’t my favorite tea from Carolynne Keenan’s collection of custom tea blends with Adagio Teas.  I think that if there was a little less hibiscus and more of the fruity flavors, this would be better.  I would also prefer it if it tasted more like tea than like hibiscus.  Then again, you know how I feel about hibiscus.  Not a bad drink, just not my favorite.

Blood Orange Tisane from Chai Diaries


Tisane Information:

Leaf Type:  Fruit/Herbal Tisane

Where to Buy:  Chai Diaries

Tisane Description:

The first thing you’ll notice about this holiday blend is the color: a vibrant amaranth red that grabs you by the lapels and demands your attention. Then the aroma: enticing vanilla, sophisticated orange peel, hints of rose and lemon all tangle for a share of the stage in this bold elixir. Finally, the first divine sip.

Learn more about this tisane here.

Taster’s Review:

I have to disagree with the above description … the first thing I noticed about this Blood Orange Tisane from Chai Diaries is not the color.  What I noticed is that this is not a one with an overload of hibiscus!  Yes, there is hibiscus in it, but, after steeping for six minutes, the tisane is not heavy, thick or syrupy the way a tisane with too much hibiscus would be.

The fact that the hibiscus is not overdone gets bonus points from this reviewer … because as you are probably aware (if you’ve read very many of my tisane reviews!) I don’t like hibiscus!  In small amounts, hibiscus can be beneficial to a tisane.  It adds a little bit of body and color to the brewed cup, as well as a distinct flavor – tartness! – not to mention significant health benefits.  But too much hibiscus can mean a very tart, syrup-like thickness to the brewed tisane.  Not very appealing, at least, not to me!

This tisane, on the other hand, is very appealing because the hibiscus is done the right way … as are the other components to this tisane.  It is sweet with enough tartness to keep it interesting.  The vanilla in this adds a very enjoyable creamy note to the cup, tasting a bit like a one of those creamsicle frozen treats!

While it is good served hot, I found that I preferred it iced!  I recommend brewing it stronger when you want this one iced, because the flavor softens a bit as it cools.  And brewing it stronger means adding more dry leaf to the teapot … not steeping it longer.  Keep the steep time to 5 – 7 minutes to minimize the hibiscus’s impact on the final product.

This is sweet enough that it doesn’t need any sweetener – and this would be a fantastic alternative to overly sugared sodas for the kids (and adults!) in the summer!

Blood Orange Flavored Black Tea from Mahamosa


Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  Mahamosa

Tea Description:

This mild China-Ceylon black tea blend evokes the Caribbean.  Comprised of light-yellow orange peels and orange-red blazing safflowers, this tea creation has a sweet, firm, fresh and tangy flavor. A sip of this tea will bring to mind the fervent red flesh of sun-ripened blood oranges.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

This Blood Orange Flavored Black Tea from Mahamosa delivers exactly what it promises!  The sweet, juicy flavor of Blood Orange!

The black tea base is a mellow tasting black tea – and before even reading the above description, I could tell just from the taste that this this was a Ceylon … or at the very least, a blend that included Ceylon, and according to the aforementioned description, it is a blend of Ceylon and black teas from China.  The flavor is a little “deeper” than a typical Ceylon, I attribute this depth to the China tea.  It has a good, solid flavor, but it isn’t what I’d call “bold” or “robust.”

The real star of this cup is the Blood Orange flavor.  It is so BRIGHT and refreshing!  It tastes authentic … it tastes true to the fruit.  So if you’re fond of citrus-y teas, this one would be right up your alley.  It’s got a little bit of tangy appeal to it, but mostly, it’s just sweet and juicy like the fruit itself.

I found this to be really tasty … something that would be good to have around when the weather warms up and you want a really delicious iced tea.  It makes a really nice hot tea too, it has nice, natural sweetness to it, but, I found that just a pinch of sugar really brought out the natural orange notes just a little more.  Really YUM!

Blood Orange Cranberry Rooibos from The Boston Tea Co.

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Rooibos

Where to Buy:  The Boston Tea Co.

Tea Description:

A sweet-tart blend that is going to leave you dancing for joy! Now in a silk sachet you’ll be thrilled to take your new favorite tea with you wherever you go! Sip and savor this blend any time of day, it’s naturally caffeine-free!

Learn more about this rooibos blend here.

Taster’s Review:

This is a tasty rooibos blend that I find more enjoyable as I continue to sip it.

The cranberry and blood orange flavors are about evenly matched and play well together, offering a taste that isn’t too tart or too sweet.  The finish is tangy from the berry and the citrus, and overall, I find the cup to be pleasantly fruity, and really quite smooth despite the tart and tangy notes.  There is a really enjoyable smoothness to the flavor.

However, I do find myself wishing that I wasn’t tasting so much of the woody/nutty flavor of the rooibos.  The autumnal nature of the rooibos does meld well with these autumn fruits, but, I’m tasting just a wee bit too much rooibos and not enough fruit for my personal taste.  That’s not to say it’s bad or it’s good – it IS tasty – I just think it would be even more tasty if the fruit flavors were a bit stronger to help mute out some of the rooibos flavor.

Overall, an enjoyable cup of tisane, and something I’d drink again if it were offered.  Not my favorite cuppa from The Boston Tea Co. … but it’s still a decent cuppa.

Cranberry Blood Orange from Jade Monk

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Green (Matcha)

Where to Buy:  Jade Monk

Tea Description:

A thousand years ago in Shinto belief, the Tengu were dangerous spirit-animals. Over the centuries they’ve evolved into benevolent protectors and allies of humans. This particular Tengu-Cranberry Blood Orange instant matcha green tea powder-employs the impossibly potent antioxidant potential of Jade Monk®. Matcha, the tang of cranberry and bright citrus of blood orange, with a dash of sweetness. Traditional, pure, entirely natural ingredients with the fortified polyphenol strength of Jade Monk®-that’s a spirit to believe in.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

This is the second flavor that I’ve tried of the four flavors that Jade Monk offers.  And as I continue to try these instant green tea powders, the more I learn about them.  With the Palau Peach, while I did enjoy it, I found that the stevia offered a bit of a funky taste to it.  Because of that, I decided that I’d try preparing this Matcha mix with cold water rather than the traditional chawan & chasen method.  I poured about 12 ounces of cold water into a tall glass, and stirred the Matcha mix into the water … stirring vigorously.  It took about a full minute to stir this and get it completely mixed (there were a few clumps that rose to the top of the glass, but these were easy to break apart with the back of the spoon, and the clump then easily dissolved into the rest of the tea)

Prepared this way, this tastes a bit more like a green tea power drink than a Matcha.  It is sweet, fruity and refreshing.  It doesn’t taste strongly of tea, but I do taste the green tea in the background.  I do still taste the stevia (and I am still left wishing it wasn’t there), but it tastes much better with the cold water rather than the hot.  And, as far as alternative sweeteners go, I’d rather this be sweetened with stevia than something like aspartame, which I cannot consume.

What I really like about this flavor particularly is the combination of cranberry and blood orange.  The blood orange is sweet and tastes juicy, and it offers a very pleasing contrast to the tartness of the cranberry.  Overall, it is just tart enough to keep it interesting, with the tartness really emerging at its strongest in the aftertaste.  But mostly, it is sweet and refreshing … and very energizing.  I can feel the power of the Matcha really working, even if I the taste of the Matcha is not very strong.

While I don’t expect tea purists to find much enjoyment from these tasty little power packs, I do think that they’re enjoyable.  If you want the powerful benefits of Matcha but find that pure Matcha tends to be a bit too much for you (it is a rather unique flavor and not something that everyone enjoys!), these Matcha products from Jade Monk would be the perfect alternative for you!