Steeping specs: One teaspoon at 212 degrees for 4 minutes in 1 cup of water.
This was an exciting idea for a tea. I’ve tried actual lapsang souchong once and couldn’t get through my mugful (maybe it was a bad idea to add milk, but I couldn’t stand it without milk either so I figured it couldn’t hurt anything). It’s not because I don’t like smoky flavors, either. I love smoked meat (I mean, BACON, right?), and I love campfires although it’s true I don’t eat them. But combining smoky tea with other strong spices that I know I like sounds like a very clever idea. I only wish I’d had it. In fact, I think I might have the rest of that sample packet of Lapsang somewhere; maybe I should go experiment with mixing it with various chais.
After steeping for four minutes I took a good whiff–it smells tantalizingly smoky. This could be either a good thing or a problem, as mentioned above. The color is amber-ish–on the light side for a chai, I think (and I do have the unfortunate tendency to judge my tea’s strength by its color! I’ve been known to waaaaay over-steep my tea just because it didn’t look dark enough to me). A few crumbs of leaf have escaped my basket, so maybe I’ll use the finer mesh next time I steep this. What’s really exciting is that although the smell is smoky, I can smell spices too! Cinnamon, ginger, and possibly clove, I think.
First taste: it’s definitely not tasting like liquid smoke here, which is good! The flavor combo is hard to describe, though. The smoky tang and the warmth from the spices hit me at approximately the same time with each sip, which means it really has a kick! It’s not a super spicy chai, though, so if you’re sensitive to spice that probably won’t be a problem (depending on just how sensitive you are, of course. Some people manage to complain of spiciness in foods that taste basically bland to me).
The smokiness combines especially well with the ginger notes for some reason. Does ginger have a smoky component normally? I don’t know. I just know that this tastes really, really good. The smoke lingers a bit after each sip, but like I said, it’s not overpowering.
Here’s the scoop!
Leaf Type: Black Tea
Where to Buy: Bluebird Tea Co.
We like to do things a bit differently at Bluebird. Our latest infusion is a thoughtful blend of Lapsang Souchong, malty Assam + aromatic masala chai spices. A BREWtiful blend of tea + culture alike!
Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!
Leaf Type: White/Green Tea Blend
Where to Buy: Della Terra Teas
A smooth, flavorful blend of vanilla and pineapples with Pai Mu Tan white tea.
Eventho Snow Fairy Tea From Della Terra Teas is currently out of stock I thought it was still worth a mention. Snow Fairy Tea From Della Terra Teas has the following ingredients within the loose leaf tea mixture…Pai Mu Tan White Tea, Chinese Green Tea, Vanilla Bits and flavor, Apple Bits, Pineapple Bits, and Red Peppercorns.
I love that this is a perfectly blended green tea and white tea blend. The green tea to white tea ratio couldn’t be more even-steven! The vanilla flavors are not overdone and contribute nicely to the overall flavor of this blended tea. The red peppercorns have a subtle punch but they lay quiet and comfortable in the background. The apple bits and pineapple bits are appreciated and very much welcome. They put this blended tea over the edge with their sweet and tart notes.
Snow Fairy Tea From Della Terra Teas may be one of my favorites from this company! I hope they get it back in stock at some point!
Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy: Della Terra Teas
This black tea has the wonderful, crisp taste of lemon with the spiciness of pepper! Our Lemon Pepper Mélange has a taste that will let you know that spring is on its way!
Ingredients: Black tea, lemon bits and flavor, red peppercorns, ginger pieces, orange peels, bits of apple, lemongrass and cinnamon
For more allergy info visit our FAQ
Suggested brewing tips:
Serving Size: 1 level tsp./6oz serving
Water Temp: 210°F
Steep Time: 2- 3 minutes
Learn more about this tea here.
I won an ounce of Lemon Pepper Melange from Della Terra Teas on their Facebook page. If you do not follow Della Terra on Facebook I suggest that you do. They often run drawings for tea, and always post their most current sale there. Anyway, I was the lucky winner of this tea and I love it, not because it was free, but I really love it. So what is wrong with this picture? Well the fact is, it has lemongrass in it! Some of you may know how much I despise lemongrass. This is not a tea I would have ever paid for in a million years, so it is a good thing I won it because I would have been short changing myself from a stellar tea!
This tea is so perfect. The lemon is the obvious leading role in this blend but the pepper and spices give it a nice kick. Some of the spices in this tea remind me of a chai blend, while others a fruit tea blend. This would be delicious on the holidays, but I am thinking it will be an amazing tea to drink iced this summer too. This is so fresh, lemony without being sweetened, which is nice because the fruits give off the perfect amount of sweetness naturally. There are very nice spicy notes here too, and the pepper kick is the right amount. It tastes very fresh and is refreshing as well. A great morning or anytime tea.
You know, really the lemongrass does not bother me at all in this blend. I really do not notice it is there and trust me I have tried to find it! In a way, and this may sound bizarre, but I believe it is the lemongrass giving tea blend an almost bubble gum like flavor at the very end of the sip. Not that I have ever thought lemongrass, on its own, taste anything like bubble gum. But with all of the fruits, the spices, the black tea, somehow at the end of the sip I get this bubble gum type note that I really feel comes from the lemongrass. Maybe I just convinced myself of that. Anyway, for someone who has literally sworn off ALL lemongrass teas, Della Terra has opened my mind, my eyes, and my taste buds. I tell you what though, if anyone could do this it would be Della Terra as they have some of the most stellar tea blends.
Now I do not feel I will be trying every lemongrass blend I come across or anything, but Della Terra does have a few others I have skipped over that I think I will give a try now. Maybe in one of their Try Me packs.