Product Review: Organic Lime Pomegranate Lightly Sweetened Iced Green Tea from steaz

LimePomsteazProduct Information:

It starts with certified organic and fair trade green tea sourced from around the world – we then brew our tea with the most flavorful fruits that are rich in antioxidants and finished with a hint of organic cane sugar for a healthy and delicious refreshment that will enhance your senses.  And becuase our farms are Fair Trade Certified™, we ensure equal pay, better health care and equal opportunities for our farmers – so they too can reach new heights as well.  

Learn more about this product here.

Taster’s Review:

I’ve said before that I’m not the biggest fan of RTD (Ready to Drink) teas that are available in just about any convenience store or grocery store.  Most of them are crafted primarily of sugar or other sweeteners.  They tend to be so full of sweetener and flavoring that the drinker can’t even taste the tea!

Occasionally, I come across one that’s different or at least, I come across one that seems to promise to be different.  This can of Organic Lime Pomegranate iced green tea from steaz says “Lightly Sweetened” on it, and that’s what immediately caught my attention about it.  Other eye catching features:  “Organic” and “Fair Trade.”  Two other things that I appreciated.

So, I’ll give it a try.

The description above states that there is a “hint of organic cane sugar.”  However, the ingredient list tells a slightly different tale:

INGREDIENTS: Filtered water, organic evaporated cane juice, natural pomegranate & lime flavors, organic lemon juice, fair trade certified™ organic green tea.

When the ingredient is second on a list five ingredients, that suggests to me that maybe there’s a little more than just a “hint” of sugar in this.  Also, after reading the ingredient list, I’m a little disturbed by the fact that the green tea is the LAST ingredient on the list!  What?!?

And unfortunately, with this tea, you can taste the ingredients as they’re listed.  I taste more sweetener and flavoring than I do green tea.

That said, this drink does have some redeeming qualities.  It is a tasty drink.  The lime is the strongest of the flavors, but I taste a sweet-tart pomegranate note in there too.  While I do taste more sugar than I do tea, it isn’t TOO sweet or cloyingly so.  This isn’t as sweet as say … the typical soda pop would be.  My teeth don’t feel as though they’ve been coated with sugar as I drink this beverage.

It’s a tasty, refreshing beverage.  I do wish I could taste more tea than sugar or pomegranate and lime.  I feel like this has been marketed as a tea product and as an organic product for the health appeal without any real focus on the tea.  Those who are trying to make “healthier” choices while shopping would probably buy this.  This isn’t a drink for tea drinkers, it’s a drink for those who probably have never really tried green tea and think that this is what green tea is supposed to taste like.

Just Charming Chai Blend from Just.Organic.Tea

justorganictealogoTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  Just.Organic.Tea

Tea Description:

Spicy and full of flavor. Our premium black teas mingle with cinnamon, clove, cardamom, and orange peel for an intense full-bodied flavor. If you like your chai spicy and rich, pick this blend. Or, for more tea flavor and less spice, mix with our Oothu tea to fit your taste. Fair trade & organic certified.

Learn more about this tea here.

Learn more about Just.Organic.Tea here.

Taster’s Review:

I love a good, spicy chai, so when I read the description above, that’s exactly what I envisioned.  Unfortunately, this isn’t quite as spicy as I hoped for.

Oh, it’s still very good!  Don’t get me wrong.

It’s just not quite as boldly spiced as I thought it would be based upon the description above.  The spices are nicely balanced, though, and I like that.  I taste cinnamon, cardamom and clove.  These three spices have been assembled in a way that no one spice overpowers the other.  It’s a warm medley of spice.  Very nice.

I also taste hints of orange from the orange peel.  When I first read that this tea has orange peel, I thought that this might just be their Just Outstanding Orange Spice packaged under a different name.  But they are two different teas.  Here the orange is a very subtle touch of flavor, whereas the orange spice blend has a much more pronounced orange flavor.

This is really quite a tasty blend.  I think that if they want to really go bold with the spice though, Just.Organic.Tea should consider adding some black pepper and ginger to the blend.  That will give it a really nice, zesty kick.  As it is, it’s a nice chai, on the mellower side of chai, but not quite as spicy as the above description would suggest.

This blend is one that I didn’t find on their website, perhaps it’s a blend that’s being rethought?  I would love to see this company have a chai blend though, because I do love chai!  In the meantime, I think their Outstanding Orange Spice blend is really good, and I also noticed that they have a Pumpkin Spice Chai – oh!  I’d like to try that one!

Just Tulsi with a Twist from Just.Organic.Tea

justorganictealogoTisane Information:

Leaf Type:  Tulsi

Where to Buy:  Just.Organic.Tea

Tisane Description:

Tulsi, Lemon Myrtle, Ginger, Peppermint, Cinnamon & Pepper

Learn more about Just.Organic.Tea’s stance on Social Responsibility here.

Taster’s Review:

Just Tulsi with a Twist is a blend that isn’t currently available on the Just.Organic.Tea.’s website, but I really like this company, and since they did send me this sample, I figured I’d try it and tell you what I think about it.

Here’s why I like this company:  I like that they are a company that isn’t just “talking” about making this planet a better place for us and for future generations, they’re doing something about it and their products prove that.  They strive toward selecting organic and sustainable products, and they choose those products that are Fair Trade certified.  Sure, it’s easy to find products that are less expensive, but, I like that this is a company that won’t compromise like that.  I appreciate that.

And I’m really enjoying this Tulsi blend!  It’s sweet, lemon-y, and with just enough of a warm spice kick to keep the taste buds happy.  I’m a little surprised that I’m not tasting more from the peppermint than I am, usually, peppermint is a very assertive flavor.  But the blenders at Just.Organic.Tea. have blended this in such a way that it has a gentle minty note that plays well with the other flavors in this blend.

I like that I’m tasting each component in this blend.  I taste the basil-like notes of the tulsi.  The slight “minty” note of the tulsi is accentuated my the soft peppermint-y flavors.  It tastes herbaceous but not overly so.  I can taste the cinnamon and the ginger and the pepper, and these give the cup a pleasing, soothing warmth.

What I taste most is the Lemon Myrtle, and it gives a really lovely lemon-y note without the pucker.  It’s like that sweet-tart lemon flavor you’d find in a lemon curd.

A really nice blend from Just.Organic.Tea.  I hope that this will eventually return to their collection of teas that they offer, because it’s one that I think that many tea drinkers would enjoy.  It’s a tasty caffeine-free alternative, especially nice after dinner.  I found it to have a calming effect on the tummy after a meal … bonus!

Just Awesome Assam Black Tea from Just.Organic.Tea

AwesomeAssamTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  Just.Organic.Tea

Tea Description:

A bold, malty black tea. Looking for a stronger black? You’ve found it. A great breakfast tea with a caffeine kick that won’t leave you groggy. Our Assam tea is sourced from the famous Banaspaty estate in India. Fair trade & organic certified.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

This tea was Just.Exactly.What.I.Needed.Today!  OK, yeah, that was corny.  Sorry.  But, corny or not, the sentiment is true.  I needed a good Assam kick and this tea delivers!

The description above pretty much nails it.  This is a bold, malty black tea.  The kind of tea you want for that first cup of the day.  The kind of tea that helps you shake the sleepies, and gets you moving!

Because it is an Assam, I recommend steeping it with some care.  I bring the water to a boil and I steep it for just 2 1/2 minutes.  I find that if I go any longer than that, the tea starts to hint at becoming bitter, and the longer it steeps, the more bitter it tastes.  Assam is one of those “persnickety” type of teas but it’s worth the extra effort because it delivers a really solid, hefty flavor that is malty, sweet and delicious when brewed properly.

And this tea is all those things:  malty, sweet, and delicious!  It’s got a solid, hefty flavor that would take the additions of milk and honey well if you like to add those to your morning tea.  It also tastes great straight up.  When I encounter a lovely Assam like this, I sometimes indulge and add a drizzle of real maple syrup to the cup and Mmmmm!  Heaven!

I’m not only loving this tea, but I’m also loving that it’s organic and fair trade certified.  And I really love that Just.Organic.Tea. focuses on these things.  This is a company I feel really good about supporting!

Just Epic Earl Grey from Just.Organic.Tea.

JustEpicEarlGreyTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  Just.Organic.Tea

Tea Description:

We’ve blended our premium black teas with a generous amount of oil of bergamot for a rich sensory experience. If you like Earl Grey, you’ll love Earl Greyest. Fair trade & organic certified.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

Yay!  Earl Grey!  Since Earl Grey is a beloved favorite of mine, I decided to schedule this review for my birthday.  A good way to celebrate the day, right?  With a cup of Earl Grey!

The bergamot notes are a bit softer than I would like them to be – both in aroma and taste.  That said, I do like this blend quite a bit.  The tea base is a rich, robust, full-flavored black tea, and it is nicely complemented by the tangy-sweet notes of bergamot.

The black tea base starts off strong.  As I continue sipping, the flavor of the bergamot develops on the palate.  The bergamot never becomes incredibly strong, and even though I usually prefer a stronger bergamot presence in an Earl Grey tea, I am liking this the more I sip it.

I like how the bergamot builds.  I also like that the bergamot tastes like something more true to the fruit, although, I’ve never actually eaten a bergamot orange.  So I guess it would be more accurate for me to say that it tastes more like something that I think is more true to fruit.  It doesn’t taste fake, chemical-y, or perfume-ish.  It has a tangy overtone with sweet undertones, and it tastes like a citrus fruit.  It doesn’t taste artificial at all.

A pleasant Earl Grey. This is the Earl Grey I’d recommend to those who want a subtle bergamot note to their Earl Grey tea.