Wai Tisane from PONOinfusions

PONO_LooseLeafTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Herbal/Fruit Tisane

Where to Buy:  PONOinfusions

Tea Description:

Wai will refresh you with a tranquil infusion of herbs & botanicals, inspired by breathtaking waterfalls, streams, and fresh water pools, all preciously vital to life in Hawai’i.  Made from certified organic and fair trade ingredients and caffeine-free, Wai immerses you in a marriage of mint & berry.  Wai means fresh water in Hawaiian—a precious resource in Hawai’i’s fragile ecosystems.

To learn more about efforts to conserve wai and the native plants & animals who call Hawai’i’s wai home, such as the endangered pinapinao (Hawaiian damselfly) and the uluhe fern featured on this package, please visit the Native Flora & Fauna section of our website.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

PONOinfusions is a company I only very recently discovered. So far, I love everything about them from their use of organic and fair trade certified ingredients to the incorporation of Hawaiian ingredients in their blends, creative themes to their teas, incorporation of Hawaiian culture and most importantly the strong emphasis on the fauna and flora in Hawaii which are endangered or at risk. On each tin you can see some of these species highlighted in the packaging, and a portion of their sales go to support working to sustain and preserve Hawaii’s natural resources and plant and wildlife.

As described on their site, ‘pono’ means ‘the right thing to do’ and my first impression here is that Alex and Andrea are certainly doing their best to do that for Hawaii! I am very excited to get my first taste of one of their blends.

PONOpackageThe tisane I’m trying today (and not all of the teas in their line are tisanes) is called “Wai” which means fresh water, and the feature fauna and flora on their package’s design are the Hawaiian damselfly and uluhe fern. As I taste this for the first time, I’m definitely keeping the intended ‘theme’ in mind and will be seeing how the flavour compares to it.

My first impression of the taste is that it’s very familiar in a really comforting way. Breaking down the flavours I can see why; a lot of the ingredients are ones I like a great deal individually and they’re working very well combined. The body of the flavour of comprised mostly of the mint in the blend. I know this uses both peppermint and spearmint, but the spearmint is definitely more of a dominant/concentrated flavour than the peppermint is. Layered under that is the raspberry. It’s not raspberry in a really obvious way; but a gentle, subtle soft hint of raspberry that provides contrast from the mint. The nettle leaf is a little earthy and unrefined, it seems to roll in and out of sips as a flavour that I’m noticing. Finally there’s a floral aspect that finishes the sip. It reminds me of a mild jasmine though as far as I’m aware there isn’t actually any jasmine or floral ingredients in the blend.

While none of these ingredients individually make me think of fresh water there’s something about the way they interact with each other that’s very calming and tranquil and reminds me of seafoam, and skinny dipping with friends in the middle of July as the sunsets. Additionally, I remember reading a poem not too long ago that compared the ocean to a womb, first and foremost giving life and that’s the kind of feeling I get from drinking this tea. I want warm waves to wash over and cradle me.

Overall, I really like the overall taste of this tisane but more importantly I love the way it makes me feel. I haven’t been this excited about a newly discovered company in a really long time, and I’m excited to hopefully try more of their blends (in particular I’m hoping I get to try Nahele) and I very, very much recommend checking out their website! Definitely a cool company, and I think they deserve a little more attention.

Strawberry and Vanilla from Lupicia

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Green with Matcha

Where to Buy: Lupicia 

Tea Description:

Green tea with matcha is flavored with sweet fragrance of strawberry and vanilla.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

When you open the bag the aroma that will strike you first is strawberry cupcakes! So amazingly yummy of an aroma to be greeted with! It makes me feel joyful and child like!

I was almost giddy the first time I sipped this tea and months later I still get that same feeling when I treat myself to this Lupicia offering!

I have several teas from Lupicia but to me they are like the champagne of teas and I only tend to bring them out when I have enough time to truly savor the cup! Then I am faced with the dilemma of which Lupicia tea to enjoy! I have yet to be let down by any flavor I have chosen when ordering from them!

Now granted I have not loved every sampler I have received in their tea magazine that comes with any order over 30.00. You will get the magazine for a year. More information on that here.

However, when I have selected my own teas based on my flavor choices I have absolutely never been let down! But I digress, back to this selection.

Strawberry and Vanilla from Lupicia is a delight! If you love strawberry tea I can not stress enough how well Lupicia has captured this flavor in all its natural glory in this and every strawberry tea they create! Add to that a lovely vanilla backdrop and the beautiful presence of roses, a perfect green tea with matcha base, and you have magic in a cup! It takes well to sweeteners although I find them unnecessary. The rose lays perfectly in a gentle unassuming manner gently scenting and flavoring the cup yet would not offend those who are not partial to floral teas. The matcha lends a gentle grassy flavor that is not overwhelming and does not come across as too vegetal. The soft buttery note of the green tea lends toward the bakery sensation this cup provides.

At Lupicia you can opt to get this tea in 50g or 100g in a tin or bagged. Prices vary depending on your choices.

The end result is – I love it – there is no other way to say it other than gentle sweet bliss. Try some. It is light, delightful, and refreshing! Also wonderful chilled!