52Teas’ the 12 Teas of Christmas – Day 2-Spoilers!

Day 2!

I am a big fan of 52Teas’ genmaicha flavors.  They blend them with a bit of marshmallow root to take the slightly savory toasted flavors right over to marshmallow treat territory.  I haven’t met a 52Teas genmaicha I didn’t like, so I was so excited to see today’s tea was Candy Cane Marshmallow Treat Genmaicha.

This tea works with their classic marshmallow treat genmaicha base and adds the vanilla mint flavors of a candy cane.  This is such an unusual pairing. The roasted puffed rice in genmaicha evokes such a warm and toasty feeling in my mug, and now it is paired with the other end of the spectrum with frosty peppermint.

The mint pairs well with the green tea, and the vanilla candy flavor goes with the marshmallow root. The puffed rice adds a little bit of sweet breakfast cereal notes in the background. Another tasty genmaicha from 52Teas and a fresh take on the holiday candy cane tea.

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Green
Where to Buy: 52Teas

This is our first NEW tea of our 12 Teas of Christmas box (we reblend 8 teas every year, and create 4 new blends – but this year we did things just a little different . . . more on that on Day 8 of the countdown!) and this new tea is something special! Every year, I like to include at least one minty tea in the Christmas box because mint and the holidays just seem to go together, right? Last year, we didn’t have a minty tea in the Christmas box, and it wasn’t until I started working on the teas of the week for December that I realized that I hadn’t crafted ANY minty teas for the holiday season so I needed to come up with something quick and that’s when I came up with the idea for the candy cane white tea which I loved, particularly because of the candy canes that I used in that blend, an organically crafted, all natural, vegan, gluten free and allergen free candy cane. I simply fell in love with these things so when the holidays approached this year, I ordered some and then came up with the blend for which I’d be using them!

Also, I was a little surprised that this year, none of the Genmaicha blends were outstanding vote catchers in our poll especially considering that last year, we had two stand out Genmaicha vote getters – and since I do have quite a few Genmaicha fans out there, that suggested to me that people needed a new, interesting Genmaicha blend!

And here it is!

I started with organic Genmaicha and added peppermint, vanilla beans, marshmallow root and of course some bits of the aforementioned candy canes. The result: a yummy marshmallow treat-y cuppa with crisp, cool notes of peppermint! It tastes like a holiday marshmallow treat! So good!

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Tea of Inquiry from Allegheny Coffee & Tea Exchange. . . .

Fun facts about genmaicha tea:

– It’s tea cut with rice, including popped rice (“popcorn tea”).

– It’s consumed all over the world.

– It used to be associated with the lower class, because they couldn’t afford straight tea.

– It might be an appetite suppressant. People with less money would drink it when they couldn’t afford food.


If you’re like “I want to get on board with green tea, but I can’t even begin to deal with all that GREEN flavor,” give this a try. It’s a workaround. It tastes like toast/popcorn/rice. It has a robust, grainy/nutty kind of flavor. The “green”ness is cut down significantly.

Plus, I mean, you’re getting down with the proletariat. You’re supporting the REGULAR FOLK on PRINCIPLE.

I don’t have a lot of experience drinking this new favorite type of tea. If you’re a connoisseur, I can’t tell you whether Allegheny Coffee & Tea Exchange’s “Tea of Inquiry” is a stellar example of the genre. But I think it’s delicious. I recommend trying it or another gemaicha today! It might be for you.

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Green
Where to Buy:  Allegheny Coffee & Tea Exchange

A special Japanese blend of fine green tea and toasted rice.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Harmony Tea from Mellow Monk. . . .

I am a black tea sort of girl. Black just seems to work best with the flavorings I tend to reach for so typically when I am shopping, I hang out in the black tea section of shops. This has always been the case and though I have grown to enjoy other types of tea, I do still tend to gravitate towards black. However, since starting my tea journey, there has been one exception and that is genmaicha teas. Something about genmaichas just called to me and I made it my mission to try them all. This is one I have not tried so when I saw the familiar roasty rice and popcorn pieces peeking out of the traveling teabox I had, I immediately got the kettle brewing.

After just two quick minutes in 175 degree water, I had what my sister described as a canary yellow. Then she told me its like the color of a canary singing it’s melodic song that hints at its mellow nature. This is why I continue to ask her how she would describe the colors of my tea. I would have probably just said “yellow”.

As far as genmaichas go, this is a nice one. The first thing I noticed is that this has a strong roasty rice flavor. There is a touch of umami but mostly it is a rich, roasted note. The base is buttery and smooth and a tiny bit vegetal which provides the perfect counterbalance to the popped rice flavoring. Harmony tea seems to be a fitting name for this Mellow Monk blend since the flavors blend harmoniously (see what I did there?!).

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Green
Where to Buy:  Mellow Monk

Harmoney Tea™ is a genmaicha — green tea mixed with roasted brown rice. The rice imparts a nutty, toasty flavor that makes genmaicha one of the most popular types of green tea in America. Unlike some tea growers, this artisan roasts his own rice, which he buys from local farmers. (During roasting, some of the rice grains pop like popcorn. This popped rice is also included in the mixture to enhance the flavor.)

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Toasted Maple Green from TeaSource. . . .

I don’t know why, but the smell and taste of this blend reminds me of flavored coffee. Maybe that’s because back when I was a coffee drinker I used to drink this blend that was called “maple sleigh” so now I just associate maple with coffee. I’m not sure, either way this blend definitely has a strong maple scent. I steeped this one and it is actually very dark for a green tea, and that is because it is a houjicha blend! I have tried one other maple houjicha blend, and both were delicious but I feel like this one has a much stronger maple flavor. This one also includes almond slices in addition to maple flavor and I really enjoyed that aspect!

This blend is really smooth and creamy maple, kind of like maple walnut. The almonds give a nutty component and the houjicha gives a nutty and toasty component, and of course the maple adds that sweetness. All in all, these components are in perfect harmony with one another. This is another one of those blends that are absolutely perfect for a cold winter day, curled up by the fire eating sugar cookies and listening to Christmas music. Why, oh why, is it spring?! I know that most of the readers here are probably psyched for spring/summer, and I am too, except for the fact that I keep drinking all these fall/winter teas and its making me want the Holiday season instead.

Anyways, I will always highly recommend Tea Source because I have not tried a blend I disliked and I will definitely recommend Toasted Maple Green because it really is delicious!

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Green Tea
Where to Buy:  TeaSource

Full-bodied (especially for a green tea), very aromatic, very maple-y, naturally toasty, and slightly sweet.

Contains: Japanese hojicha green tea, almond slices, flavor, calendula petals

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!