Witches Broom Pu erh/New Mexico Tea. . . #spookyseason

Photo Credit: New Mexico Tea Company

Generally not much of a pu er drinker but every once in a while I stumble across an interesting name like this one and find it difficult to not want to try.

This one definitely looks interesting, bundled as it is. But once taken out of the bundle it just becomes another large leaf tea. Kinda.  Unlike some other teas this one has the longest stems I have ever seen.

The initial aroma is very woodsy (when the hot water first hits the leaves).

10 second rinse. Now the wet leaf aroma is medicinal with a touch of…. vaseline.

After the first steep the aroma changes to hay and barn. The flavor begins with bits of stone fruit but then changes to hay.

On my fourth steeping here I am starting to find more wet woods flavors. Cedar.


Want to Know More About This Tea?

Leaf Type:  Puerh

Where to Buy:  New Mexico Tea Company

Description

A bizarre and wonderful tea. This aged green puerh tea is made up of extraordinarily large tea leaves that have been gathered into small bundles that resemble traditional brooms, hence the name. It has a marvelous flavor and delivers a light, woodsy aftertaste. We recommend six to eight leaves per cup with multiple steepings.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Autumn Mist Green/Adagio Teas

Photo Credit: Adagio Teas

Continuing on our fall/spooky theme- I thought I would try a tea that I have quite a bit of- Autumn Mist Green.  Autumn Mist Green tea is a blend of gunpowder green tea, dried apples, and creme brulee flavoring. Once I saw that- I think my excitement won over vs my wallet and I ordered the big bag.

But since I took a bit of a hiatus from tea, I hadn’t really taken a moment to enjoy the blend.  So over the weekend, I brewed up a pot to enjoy while watching a few spooky movies.

Brewed with water at 180 and allowed to steep for a few minutes- this tea is a unique blend that I can’t really say is what you would think of as a fall blend, but nevertheless, I really enjoyed it.

First sip in and you are greeted with a sweetness that masks the smoky flavor you usually get from gunpowder green tea.  The sweetness reminds me of caramel more than creme brulee but I’ll take it.  I do see the big chunks of apple and what I’m assuming is cinnamon but those notes are not really coming across.   I wish they were, this tea would be a sensational caramel apple tea.

I did do a second steeping and I actually enjoyed this cuppa a bit better.  The flavoring wasn’t as strong and the gunpowder notes were coming in a bit stronger. I still didn’t get any of the apple notes but the cinnamon did pop a bit more.

I’m planning a proper cold brew for this blend and I’m excited to see how it turns out.

All in all, a great tea if you are looking for an alternative to the typical chais or pumpkin flavored teas you usually see during the fall.


Want to Know More About This Tea?

Leaf Type:  Green Tea

Where to Buy:  Adagio Teas

Description

Autumn is a season of transition. For many, it marks the end of summer break and the start of the school year, for others a transition from shorts and tank tops to warm sweaters and blankets. It’s when the leaves start to change colors and when farmers switch from the growing season to harvest. For many tea drinkers, it also marks the shift from iced teas to hot, from tall, cool glasses to steaming, palm-warming mugs. So fill up your thermos, put on your best flannel, and get ready to fall for fall. It’s tea time, y’all.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Decaf Pumpkin Spice/Stash Tea. . . #spookyseasontea

Photo Credit: Stash Tea

I have a confession to make. I don’t really get the pumpkin spice craze, other than the fact that is feels good to welcome autumn and cinnamon is just so nostalgic, evoking lots of warm cozy memories. But I think of these spices more in cake than in beverages.

Add in my love of good black tea to that, and you will see why I expected this decaf to fail. And it did. At least, it failed as a stand alone cup of black tea for me. It was a big old cup of disappointment. It tasted like hot water with cinnamon and spices. I couldn’t taste tea at all.

Realizing that most people add milk and sugar to their flavored tea, I decided to salvage this cup with a tiny splash of milk and just a wee bit of sugar – probably a half teaspoon. Now that’s more like it! This went from blah to ah! Nice! Is it a great black tea? No way. But as a hot, cozy beverage for a chilly night, I could enjoy it this way.

But I really think this is just crying out to be a latte. Next time around, this will be steeped in just hot milk or half water/half milk. It only takes a tiny bit of sugar to sweeten it with the cinnamon and nutmeg that is here, and the ginger is nice and not too hot and spicy.

Plain? No thanks! As a latte? Any chilly night!


Want to Know More About This Tea?

Leaf Type:  Black Tea

Where to Buy:  Stash Tea

Description

Leggings, UGGs, foliage, and of course, pumpkin everything. It’s the season you’ve been waiting for and along with it comes our seasonal Pumpkin Spice tea.

You’ll notice forward notes of bold black tea and a smooth aftertaste of–you guessed it, pumpkin. Hints of cinnamon and spices will engage your senses as you sip. This blend is the perfect accompaniment to a slice of pumpkin pie or pumpkin bread. The possibili-teas are endless; you could even try combining it in your favorite pumpkin bread recipe.

This pumpkin spice tea has been scientifically proven (wink) to taste best when consumed on chilly autumn afternoons. But since it’s a decaf tea, really any time of day or night works.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Black Magic Matcha/Bird & Blend Tea Co.. . . Spooky Season Continues!

Photo Credit: Bird & Blend Tea Co.

Bird & Blend Tea Co’s Black Magic Matcha is a mix of activated charcoal, cocoa, and matcha. It is a mess! Seriously!

My hands? Black.
My counter? Black.
My frother? Black.

Black EV.ERY.WHERE! Just covered! But it is worth it because this is one tasty matcha. Plus, the mess is easy to wipe away with a damp cloth, so no harm done.

Sipping away at this matcha mixed in milk is like sipping on a low-cal glass of black chocolate milk. It is eerie but delicious and perfect for spooky season. No chalkiness. Just smooth, chocolate milk goodness, which is particularly surprising since the powder has definitely separated out a bit (both settling on top and at the bottom of the glass) while I have been drinking. This seems to be the case with most Bird & Blend matchas though so don’t be surprised when the powder settles.

I should note that this matcha does come with a warning (from Bird & Blend’s site): “Activated charcoal can interfere with medication. We recommend that you wait at least 3 hours after taking medication before consuming the matcha. This also applies to the contraceptive pill.” So while I definitely recommend this matcha, I do hope people consider the warning to ensure no mishaps occur as a result. Weird thing to have to say about a tea, I suppose, but better safe than sorry.

Also, if you are interested in giving this a try, I highly recommend picking up the Rainbow Matcha Collection which provides samples of five of Bird & Blend’s many matcha offerings (Black Magic Matcha, Mermaid Matcha, Pina Colada Tea Powder, Turmeric Tea Powder, and Orange & Passionfruit Matcha). You can find that available here.


Want to Know More About This Tea?

Leaf Type:  Matcha

Where to Buy:  Bird & Blend Tea Co.

Description

A delicious activated-charcoal matcha with creamy cocoa, this antioxidant-rich potion creates a magical black liquid once made up. Essentially flavourless, activated charcoal further boosts the antioxidant properties of our signature pure matcha rich in umami – the Japanese word for the delicious ‘fifth taste’, after salt, sweet, sour and bitter.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Fuji Apple & Ginger/Pure Leaf

Continuing with the spooky/fall theme. . .Fuji Apple & Ginger from Pure Leaf- reviewed by our amazing VariaTea. . .

Photo Credit: Pure Leaf

I am very particular about my tea which means I don’t usually let anyone else make it for me. I don’t often drink teas in restaurants and bottled teas have never appealed to me. However, a lot of my friends have been enjoying and recommending Pure Leaf.

While in the grocery store the other day, I passed by Pure Leaf’s Tea House Collection. I decided to pick up the Fuji Apple & Ginger Green Tea, mostly because I LOVE fuji apples and that is not often the apple of choice for apple-flavored things. I got curious.

This is made up of brewed organic green tea, organic cane sugar, natural flavors, citric acid, ascorbic acid, brewed organic apple and brewed organic ginger.

Drinking it, I would not exactly call this tea. Upfront, it is all sweet, juicy fuji apple deliciousness. That gives way to a ginger flavor, without any burn. The apple-ginger then ends in a slight astringency. My guess is that could be from the ginger or the green tea. Other than that astringency, there really isn’t any sign of the green tea base.

If I am being honest, this is more like apple juice with a touch of ginger and a slight astringency. So if you want something sweet, this could be a nice option. Then again, so could regular apple juice.


Want to Know More About This Tea?

Leaf Type:  Green Tea

Where to Buy: Pure Leaf

Description

The delicate flavors of USDA-certified organic green tea are accented by hints of crisp Fuji apple and ginger for a refreshing iced tea experience. It’s a play on flavors that only our tea masters could achieve.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!