Oolong Black Pearls from Tea Mania


Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Oolong

Where to Buy:  Tea Mania

Tea Description:

This Oolong originates from Doi Mae Salong and is also known as GABA Tea. This because of its high GABA. Oolong Black Pearls is a hand-picked and rolled Oolong # 12 which was oxidized 100%. Therefore, it’s a black tea too. But, the flavor isn’t bitter like some black tea. It’s more floral and honey-like. Quite comparable with a Darjeeling. The preparation is classic Oolong style: Rinse, first a short infusion, second infusion a bit longer, third infusion even longer, etc. Can also be infused cold as ice tea.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

I’m always excited to try teas from new-to-me companies, like this Oolong Black Pearls tea from Tea Mania.  And what a delightful tea this is!

The tightly wound leaves look like a green Oolong (and like the picture above) but, they are much darker in color.  I think that perhaps the website has the wrong photo linked for the tea … these leaves are much darker, reminiscent of a rich chocolate color.  They are quite fragrant with lovely floral tones.

It is very flavorful … and I agree with the above description.  The flavor is quite similar to a Darjeeling, but the body and texture is a bit thicker, more like an Oolong.  There is no bitterness whatsoever, it is sweet … sweet like honey!

There are lovely floral notes to the flavor, but they are not as prolific as in a greener Oolong.  This has more of a fruity note to it, reminiscent of a ripe, juicy apricot.  For those who tend to shy away from the greener Oolong teas because of their strong floral essence, I think that you’ll find this Oolong to be more to your liking … it’s much more like fruit than it is like flower.  There are still floral notes there, and I find them to be more pronounced if you slurp the cup to aerate the tea over the palate.  I find these floral tones complement the fruit tones and they enhance the sweet honey notes as well.

There are subtle hints of earth to the flavor as well as slight woody notes.  It’s really quite complex, with so many delicious layers of flavor to discover.  A really wonderful Oolong – I’m so glad I got to try it – and it’s one I’m happy to recommend to all the Oolong enthusiasts out there!

Coconut Almond Cookie from Spire Tea

Tisane Information:

Leaf Type:  Rooibos

Where to Buy:  Spire Tea

Tisane Description:

Do you like cookies? We certainly do and that’s why this sweet and nutty combination of rooibos, coconut and almonds tastes like the real thing!

Learn more about Spire Tea on their website.

Taster’s Review:

Yummmm!  This tisane is definitely all about coconut and almond!  The “cookie” part … well, the nutty, sweet flavor of the rooibos does sort of offer a warm, bake-y sort of flavor so yeah, I sort of get that … but, really, the cookie seems to be more of a flavor that comes with the power of suggestion rather than an actual taste of this tisane.

It’s still really yummy though.  The flavors of coconut and almond go together very well, and they are pretty evenly balanced in this blend.  The almond is strong, sweet, and toasty, while the coconut is also strong, with a smooth, creamy taste.

I think that this tea could use a touch of “buttery” flavor that might propel the tea to another level where the “cookie” would not be such a stretch of the imagination.  As it is, it is tasty … but I think that the enhancement of a real cookie-like flavor would really make this blend amazing.

I do find this to be very enjoyable though.  It has a comforting kind of flavor, the kind of tisane that you want to curl up to while watching television at night.  It will help curb those late night sweet cravings, and because it’s naturally caffeine free, you don’t have to worry about it keeping you up past bedtime.

Jolly Jellybean from David’s Tea

Tisane Information:

Leaf Type:  Rooibos

Where to Buy:  David’s Tea

Tisane Description:

One sip of this sweet, rich rooibos blend and you’ll know spring is here. It could be the sunny taste of pineapple, or the exotic creaminess of coconut. It could be the pretty calendula and cornflower petals. Then again, it might just be the jellybeans. You heard us right, jellybeans – that’s what gives this tea its irresistibly sweet and fruity kick. So why do jellybeans remind us of spring? Because they make us happy. Why else?

Learn more about this rooibos blend here.

Taster’s Review:

I think I should start off by explaining that the sampling I received of this tisane had no Jelly Bellys in it (I’m told that this is the type of jelly bean that David’s Tea uses in this blend), and since I recently acquired a large jar of Jelly Bellys, I added a couple of Jelly Bellys to the sample before the large jar of Jelly Bellys became an large, empty jar.

At that point, I felt it was important to brew this tisane as soon as possible, as this sampling (prior to brewing) contained the last three Jelly Bellys in the house, and I feared for their safety.

YUM!  This is really tasty.  Not surprisingly, it is sweet.  The Jelly Bellys melted and added some sweetness to the cup, as did the red and green rooibos – but thankfully, I don’t taste that funky red rooibos sweetness in this!  The pineapple, strawberry and coconut also contributed some sweetness to the cup as well.

This is very fruity – like a handful of Jelly Bellys that have been liquified and served hot.  I taste hints of the strawberry, but the most pronounced fruit flavors are that of the coconut and the pineapple.  I don’t taste a lot of flavor from the rooibos.  I do taste a slight woody/nutty note from the rooibos, but, it is subtle, and doesn’t interrupt the sweet, fruity goodness that I’m enjoying.

This tisane toes the line of tasting very candy-like, and I can see how it might not be for everyone … those who don’t like sweet drinks might not really enjoy this.  But if you have a sweet tooth and find great joy in jelly beans as I do, you should definitely try this!  It’s yummy!