Ball & Chain Oolong Tea from Indie Tea

Ball-and-chainTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Oolong

Tea Information:

This is a fantastic flavoured oolong. A rare find. There’s a natural sweetness from the Se Chung oolong that is enhanced by the infusion of the sweet medjool dates. There’s a cool roasted, nutty flavour present in the oolong and a faint stone fruit nuance. Love it.

This tea is available from Amoda Tea.

Learn more about subscribing to Amoda Tea here.

Taster’s Review:

Amoda Tea is back, baby!

Amoda Tea disappeared for a while to revamp their business.  Last month, they announced that they’d be back with subscriptions again, and I was overjoyed!  I loved receiving their box every month!

Their new (and improved) monthly subscription includes:

  • small (3 cup) size samples of 4 different teas
  • DIY loose leaf tea bags
  • “tasting notes” of the teas included in the box
  • A “visual Stellar” story link that allows you to listen while you sip
  • A treat from Sweet Petite Confectioner:  a chai infused marshmallow!

I love the 3 cups of 4 teas format.  I like the idea of the stellar story, but I took a few minutes to listen to some of the tracks and not my thing.  I’m more of a Guns N’ Roses tea sipper and I’m not so much into the indie stuff.  But hey, different strokes, right?

This month’s box: 4 teas (this is the perfect size for this tea taster!) a “scroll” of DIY tea bags, a marshmallow, and tasting notes!

Last but certainly not least:  I love that I have a chai infused marshmallow sitting in front of me, taunting me to eat it.  Should I eat it now?  Should I wait until my sweet tooth is beckoning?  (Right now my sweet tooth has been satiated as I already had a chocolate-y dessert treat a little while ago.)

Since I think I’ll wait until the sweet tooth demands me to eat it, I’ll move on to the review…

I have already sampled and reviewed this tea, but it was a while ago (a year and a half ago!) since I tried it and since it’s part of this month’s Amoda Tea box, I thought it’d be fun to revisit it.

This is still as tasty as I remember it being.  I like the way the dates are represented here:  I get a good, solid date flavor.  Sweet, almost caramel-like in flavor.  I get that sugar-y sweetness of the date.

If you’re one who generally sweetens your tea before you taste it, I’d recommend not doing that with this tea.  Taste it first.  The sweetness from the dates is really a strong sweetness and you might find that this is just right, the way that it is.

The Se Chung Oolong is an ideal choice for the base of this tea because it’s roasty-toasty, slightly smoky character melds very nicely with that sweet, caramel-y date flavor.

I enjoyed this both hot and cold.  After I brewed it and drank about half the cup, I was side-tracked and got busy doing something else and when I returned to my cup of tea, it was cold.  But this is delightful served either hot or cold – and I’d have a hard time saying which I prefer!  That’s kind of a rare thing for me when it comes to Oolong teas, because usually, I want my Oolong tea hot!  But, this is delicious either way.

I’m really glad that this tea was in this month’s box because it’s been a while since I’ve had this one and it’s really tasty.  I’m happy I got to revisit it!

I have to be honest here and say that when I subscribed to this box, I was hoping that maybe this month’s box would be this Holiday Tasting Box, but I guess you have to order that separately.  Oh, well.  I’m still really happy with this box and I’m thrilled that Amoda Tea is back with subscription boxes.

What I’ve always loved about the subscription box from Amoda Tea is that it’s like getting a gift every month.  The mailbox is always jammed full of stuff we don’t want:  junk mail, bills, etc.  It’s nice to get something fun every month and really, what’s more fun than tea?

And I feel like the box is even more fun now than it once was with the addition of the thoughtful inclusions.  Even though the visual/musical story at Stellar wasn’t exactly my thing, I appreciate that they put something together to make this an all encompassing experience.  I also LOVE that there’s a sweet treat in this box!  I don’t know that there will be in every box, but I like that I got something a little special.  It’s stuff like this that make these monthly boxes so much fun.

Ball and Chain Oolong Blend Tea from Indie Tea


Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Oolong

Where to Buy:  Indie Tea

Tea Description:

“Till Death” Is Oolong Time, But When You Pair Together Lots Of Dates and Flowers, The Old Ball and Chain Might Actually Be A Lot More Fun.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

Yum!  I love dates, but they are a fruit that I don’t partake of very often because … well, to be honest, I’m not sure why not.  I guess because when I find them in my usual “thrifty” grocery store, they don’t look very promising, and when I’m shopping at my higher end grocery store like Whole Foods or Chuck’s Produce, I don’t usually think about dates, because I usually go in there with a set list of items that I’m purchasing … and well, dates usually just are not on that list.

So, when I find a tea that is flavored with dates, like this Ball and Chain Oolong Blend Tea from Indie Tea, I get excited and want to try it!

And this is really a tasty blend!  The Se Chung Oolong is sweet and has a nice, roasty-toasty kind of flavor that melds really nicely with the flavor of  the Medjool dates.  There is a slight smokiness to the Se Chung … not an overpowering smoky tone, but just enough to keep things interesting.

There is also a stone fruit kind of flavor to the Oolong … and together with the smoky, toasty, nutty tone, it almost tastes like a roasted or grilled fruit.  Think fresh, juicy peaches that have been grilled to a slight char over smoky charcoal!  Yeah, now that sounds yummy, doesn’t it?

The date flavor is not an overpowering note – it doesn’t overwhelm the Se Chung Oolong … and that’s a good thing.  The date flavor is strong enough to taste that sweet, sugary note that is very “date-like.”  The flower petals do not add much to the flavor of this, in fact, there is very little floral tone to this at all.  If you slurp the sip enough to aerate the tea on the palate, you might notice the faintest whisper of a floral quality to the tea, but it is so very faint.  But, the date flavor and the smoky, toasted nut flavor of the Oolong is so tasty that you won’t miss the floral tones to this tea!  It’s quite nice just the way it is!

A really enjoyable Oolong blend … and another tea from Indie Tea that you should add to your shopping list!