Organic Root Beer Float from David’s Tea

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  David’s Tea

Tea Description:

As far as we’re concerned, the root beer float is king of the soda shop. The crackle and fizz of root beer, the cool richness of vanilla ice cream – what could be better? Well, what if we brought the malt shop right to your tea shelf? With black tea, vanilla, cinnamon and white chocolate, this sweet, lightly creamy black tea blend tastes just like the classic treat. For the full experience, try it as an iced latte with lots of foam.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

I’ve tried a few different root beer and/or root beer float teas/tisanes over the years, and some were better than others.  This one is good, but not what I’d call great.  It has a distinct root beer-ish taste to it, but, it is kind of light on the float-y flavor.

The root beer flavor here is nicely translated, it tastes like root beer.  (and, yes, it is a little weird drinking root beer hot)  It also tastes like tea, but, the root beer notes outweigh the tea notes by a wee margin. It lacks that certain fizzy, bubbly taste which perhaps might be a little difficult to obtain in a tea, although I’ve had a couple of soda inspired teas that did, in fact, taste “bubbly” like a soda pop, so I know it is not impossible.

I personally think that the root beer flavors could have been even better if there was sarsaparilla in this, or even some anise and wintergreen.  I think that these ingredients could really take the root beer taste from good to great.

But, this is not supposed to be JUST a root beer flavored tea, but a root beer FLOAT flavored tea, and the float part is definitely lacking in my opinion.  I taste a hint of vanilla here, but, it does not have a strong, creamy presence that I feel it needs to have to be called a root beer float.  As it is, it tastes a bit more like a soda fountain drink.  Instead of adding a scoop of vanilla ice cream, this tastes as though someone took a mug of root beer and added about a half a shot of vanilla syrup to it.  It’s got a little bit of vanilla, but it needs a little more!

Overall, this is an enjoyable tea, I like the root beer elements to it, but, I think it could certainly be improved.

Butterbeer from 52Teas

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  52Teas (there’s still a few of these in stock, as Frank recently reblended it!)

Tea Description:

I got my recipe directly from The Three Broomsticks: Premium black teas blended with a bit of essence of rootbeer, a bit of butter vapors, some licorice root, chichory root and a touch of magic. Our Butterbeer tea is the beverage of choice for wizards of all ages, and if you have no idea what I’m referring to, please go on about your muggle life, this blend is for Harry Potter fans only. Well, okay, I guess muggles could enjoy it too. It is truly unique and delicious. A blend worthy of the 52teas brand of creative flavored teas. Enjoy!

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

My friends, I have a confession to make.  I am a Harry Potter fanatic.  I read all seven books (several times each), and own each of the movies and am slowly developing my “ultimate” blu ray dvd collection of them.  When the books first came out, I would keep reading and wouldn’t put the book down until I finished it – taking only those types of breaks that would not wait (aka bathroom breaks).

Yeah, I guess I’m a nerd.

But, there are times that my nerdiness is advantageous.  Consider a recent email conversation with Frank (aka the Chief Zoomdweebie from 52Teas … aka the Willy Wonka of Teas).  I suggested that he make a Butterbeer tea.  I suggested using the flavoring that was used for his Pot o’ Gold tea and then adding some root beer flavoring or perhaps some sarsaparilla, and some anise to give it a touch of licorice … not a heavy note, but, I just felt like a touch of licorice needed to be in there to give it a hint of magic.

This Butterbeer blend is what he came up with … which is not exactly the way I had suggested, but, it ended up being even more delicious than I anticipated.  Frank, you did good!

The black tea base is good and strong (this is Frank’s new black tea base, and it’s a winner!  I enjoyed the previous base, but it sometimes proved to be a bit too harsh, this one is so smooth and delicious – not at all bitter or harsh!) and it is enhanced with the addition of chicory which doesn’t really add a strong flavor … instead what it seems to do is help fill-in the background, giving it a very round, pleasing flavor and just a hint of coffee-like taste.

Imagine root beer that’s been magically improved by wizard folk.  What would it taste like?  I think it would have a basic foundation of classic root beer flavor, with a touch of creamy butter (butter makes it better!) which gives it a hint of butterscotch-y taste.  Maybe add a drop of coffee to it for a touch of that rich, bold, roasty-toasty warmth and to help offset the sweetness of the butterscotch taste.  Perhaps … one of those licorice snaps just happens to bounce its way into the brew.  Now add the goodness of black tea, and you have yourself one winner of a tea … this tea.

It’s awesome!  Frank managed to exceed my expectations of what Butterbeer should taste like.  I still won’t try Bertie Bott’s Every Flavor Beans (I’ll stick to the muggle Jelly Bellys, thank you), but, this is fabulous.  Everyone – muggle and wizards alike – should try this tea!

Iced Tea Series from 52Teas, Part 5: Root Beer Flavored Black Tea

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  52Teas

About This Iced Tea Series:

Here are FIVE unique iced tea blends we’ve created from high quality Nilgiri CTC teas. These are uber fine teas, so they are not as pretty as our whole leaf teas, but they steep up a bold, rich, flavorful iced tea. We’ve packaged them in one ounce pouches, which is just enough for one gallon of iced tea (more if you re-steep) so you can just rip them open, dump them out and steep. No measuring required!

Taster’s Review:

This is the fifth and final tea in this iced tea series (and I am hoping that 52Teas will release another series soon!) Of the five teas, this one is probably my least favorite.  That being said, it is still pretty darned tasty.

The root beer essence is strongest in the aroma, and it seems to lose a little bit of something in the taste.  It has a root beer taste … it just isn’t quite as root beer-ish as the scent.  Perhaps it is the lack of carbonation?  I don’t know if that’s it, but as I type this, I am contemplating brewing a super concentrated batch, and using soda water to dilute it and see how that fairs.

The flavor of the black tea and the root beer flavoring are pretty well-matched.  The black tea doesn’t overwhelm the root beer, although I must admit that with my first batch of this, I thought it did.  Now as I reconsider that batch, I think what I was missing was the “bubbly” effervescence of root beer, rather than the actual flavor of it.

The black tea is strong but not bitter and has a bit of astringency that is lightly drying.  The root beer flavor tastes very much… well, like root beer.  It is sweet with a caramel-like undertone, and a spicy, almost licorice-like note.  It’s quite yummy.  Even though this wasn’t my favorite blend of this series (they can’t all be my favorite, can they?) it is still quite good and very refreshing!

Root 66 Tea from Monterey Bay Spice Company

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Herbal Tisane/Spice Melangé

Where to Buy:  Monterey Bay Spice Company

Product Description:

Roasted dandelion, chicory root, and sarsaparilla root get you started towards Root 66 Tea. Creating a robust and dark infusion, this herbal tea exudes a mouth-watering natural earthiness. Good for your liver, Root 66 Tea also twists in a bit of the exotic: the lively sweetness of coconut and the slight chocolate taste of carob. With lingering licorice airiness, this herbal makes a fantastic coffee substitute or a dessert tea!

IngredientsSarsparilla root, chicory root, roasted dandelion root, carob pods, cinnamon, fennel, crystal malt and coconut.

Caffeine Free

Taster’s Review:

I’m sure I’ve mentioned this before, but I’m always a little leery of herbal blends such as this.  I’m always afraid that they’ll taste too medicinal for my personal taste, so I find myself always putting off trying them.

And I am really sorry that I put off trying this one as long as I did, because it’s rather tasty!  It has a sweet, root beer-like taste to it which is enhanced by the spices and malt.  It has a slightly roasted taste to it too, and I like how the coconut and sarsaparilla taste together.  It’s really much better than I imagined it would be.

The Sarsaparilla root gives this tisane its root beer taste.  The licorice-y taste of fennel and the cocoa notes of the carob enhance the sweetness of this cup while the cinnamon gives it a nice warmth in the background.  There is a roasted note to this as well from the chicory and roasted dandelion root which adds depth to the cup.

But what really makes this tisane special is the coconut.  I love the combination of flavors – it’s sort of like a chocolate and coconut flavored spiced root beer!

This tisane has a little bit of an herbal/medicinal aftertaste that I would define as almost peppery – it’s the dandelion!  However, this aftertaste doesn’t linger very long.  And because I enjoy the flavor of the tea so much, I can overlook the aftertaste.

I am sipping this now as a hot beverage – it is cold and wet outside and I am enjoying the warm, cozy comfort of a hot tea, but I think that this blend would be even better iced – it would be a great substitute for soda!  Just a little pinch of sugar will enhance the sweeter notes and make it an irresistible treat for the kids.  It’s naturally caffeine free, so there’s nothing to overstimulate them, either!

This is YUMMY!