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Rum

Sangria White from A Quarter to Tea

sangriaTea Information:

Leaf Type:  White

Where to Buy: A Quarter to Tea

Tea Description:

Hold on to your summer year round, with this cuppa. Combines the flavors of cherry, apple and blueberries with a hint of rum and wine to make the perfect sangria year round.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

This is my second sample from A Quarter to Tea! I chose it for a couple reasons; the big one was that the other two samples I picked out were oolongs and I wanted to get to taste at least one of Lauren’s other tea types. However, I was also interested by the fairly unique ingredients. I’ve never seen Sangria with blueberry, for starters. Finally, I wanted to find a Sangria tea that was an improvement on the other two I’ve tried. DAVIDsTEA had a seasonal Sangria blend which I didn’t mind but didn’t love, and Red Leaf Tea has a Sangria flavour of matcha I currently own but don’t particularly like. And the idea of Sangria with a white base sounds awesome, too!

It was hard to form much of an impression of the tea dry: I could see several chunks of the dry ingredients in the blend, but there wasn’t a distinct aroma. Part of that, I feel, is that in the package Lauren mailed to me the Cherry Chocolate Latte was really a dominant flavour and I think possibly may have contaminated the other teas it was packaged with or, at least, “cancelled out” their aromas – which weren’t as potent/strong. Since Lauren suggests on her Etsy page to ice this and since Sangria really is a drink best consumed cold I decided to go with a cold method of preparation. However, instead of icing I went with cold brewing because that style of preparation is a favourite of mine.

I do find this tea to be very mildly/delicately flavoured overall, with softer and less prominent notes of apple and blueberry and a jammy stonefruit quality which I suppose is the cherry. I want to point out that mild and subtle isn’t actually a bad thing, however Sangria doesn’t have a ‘delicate’ flavour to begin with so it’s not reading as the most accurate flavour profile. Plus it’s a little odd for me to neither taste “orange”/citrus which is such a common Sangria flavour or the wine/rum. As such, while I really like the flavour that I do taste, I find it very hard to drink this and think of it as ‘Sangria’ flavoured. The name just doesn’t seem to match, you know?

I’d be interested to see this tea rebranded as another flavour, maybe even some kind of ‘punch’? This is a refreshing, light, fruity cuppa but in my ‘quest’ for the perfect Sangria tea my expectations just haven’t been met.

Chocolate Boozer Black from Luhse Tea

chocolateboozerTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy: Luhse Tea

Tea Description:

Arrr! You’re a rum drunk pirate. Those that mess with your chocolate booty will walk the plank!

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

Luhse Tea is a very interesting company that plays around with the idea/theme of a teabag “Prohibition” in order to free you, the consumer, from the restrictions of bagged tea and allow you the freedom of exploring loose tea. Their site is very fun to navigate, and seeing the way they’ve tied this theme into each blend is definitely entertaining and worthy taking the time to check out. This is one company that has definitely figured out their ‘brand’ – and that’s not a bad thing! I’ve been personally wanting to order from this company, to sample teas, for a while now but I actually received this tea in a swap. This tea has journeyed from the United States to the United Kingdom to Canada and finally into my mug!

Steeped up hot and enjoyed during a heavy rainfall, this definitely has a well rounded, smooth flavour and clean mouthfeel. I was nervous the mouthfeel would be rather oily because this blend uses chocolate chips instead of nibs or shells but that wasn’t a problemHonestly, I feel like I’m getting more flavour from the base tea than anything else though; there’s a nice mild malt note that carries through all of each sip, and some baked bread notes. I’m not complaining, ’cause the base is really nice, but generally with a flavour tea I expect at least some aspect of the added flavour to be the strongest element.

The chocolate flavour is totally present, but while I was expecting something some rich and indulgent, this is pretty gentle. It’s more just a hint of cocoa, with a sort of powdery taste/mouthfeel which I’ve grown to associate with French teas. I also expected the rum to be stronger, and instead it’s very mild and watered down. Combined with the chocolate it’s a little like a very dull/lackluster rumball – the kind my family always makes around Christmas.

Initially I was quite disappointed by the flavour distribution: for a tea that’s describing the drinker as a “rum drunk pirate” I felt more like I was drinking tea with my Grandma around the holidays. However, I took a moment to set aside my disappointment and preconceptions about what the tea ‘should have’ tasted like, and after I did that I was able to appreciate the brew a little more. It’s not bold or vibrant, but the flavours it does offer are smooth and tasty, and it’s a comforting, mellow brew with hints of both chocolate and rum. I can appreciate that.

I’m still excited to explore the company a little more; but I can probably scratch this one off my wishlist. Though I’ll enjoy finishing the rest of what I received in that swap.

Nice Coconuts White Tea by Luhse

NiceCoconutsTea Information:

Leaf Type:  White

Where to Buy:  Luhse

Tea Description:

STORY:

Unbeknownst to most, Queen Song longs for the day when she meets her island mate, King Kong. She has recently taken up hula dancing to keep fit and has begun wearing sexy, eye-catching outfits to attract attention. Despite the gang’s misgivings, she can be found wearing risque coconut bras when she is not at work. 

TEA DESCRIPTION:

Coconuts have migrated into your cup of tea. 

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

Another Luhse sample from my recent order. Nice Coconuts is a white blend, flavoured with coconut. The dry leaf smells amazing – strongly of coconut, with an undertone of creaminess, and a hint of something almost rum-like. Alcoholic, at the very least. The dry leaf looks to be a mixture of silver needles, which are white and downy, and white peony, which is blackish-brown in appearance and not particularly fresh looking. There’s a predominance of broken leaves and twigs. Scattered throughout are red safflower and blue cornflower petals, and a smattering of dried coconut shreds. There’s enough leaf in the pouch for about two cups, although if your cup is larger than average you might want to use the whole sample (about 3 tsp), as per the recommended parameters. My cup is on the smaller side, so I went with 1.5tsp of leaf, and gave it 2 minutes in water cooled to around 175 degrees. The resulting liquor is a medium yellow-green; the scent mildly coconutty with a floral undertone.

To taste, this one is deceptive! I wasn’t convinced at all by the scent of the brewed liquor, but it’s actually very pleasant. The initial sip is all coconut cream; sweet, tropical amazingness! It has remarkable depth of flavour, with just a hint of rum rolling around the mid-sip, and an almost thick mouthfeel. It’s like a decadent dessert – rum babas, maybe, with a side of coconut ice cream. It’s possible to taste a little of the white tea towards the end of the sip, although it’s by no means prominent. Just an edge of floral, hay-like sweetness. Mostly, the white tea seems to contribute most towards the mouthfeel, and doesn’t at all overpower the sometimes-delicate flavour of coconut. This really is a delicious, summery cup. I’m impressed with this blend, and it’s definitely one I’d consider repurchasing in the future.

Pina Colada Flavored Honeybush Iced Tea from Southern Boy Teas

SBT-HONEYBUSH-Pina-ColadaTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Honeybush

Where to Buy:  Zoomdweebies

Tea Description:

Premium organic caffeine-free honeybush with organic flavors.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

I’m not big on alcoholic drinks.  In fact, I can’t tell you when the last time was that I last had a drink but if I were to guess, I’d say it’s been several months and that would have been one drink and I probably didn’t even finish it.  I’m just not big on alcohol, I much prefer tea.  I’m drunk on tea.

But I do like this Pina Colada Flavored Honeybush Iced Tea from SBT!  It’s really tasty.  The honeybush base is ideal because it adds a pleasant honeyed sweetness and the nutty notes of the herb add a nice dimension of flavor to the tea.

The pineapple is sweet and balanced with the flavor of coconut.  I like that these two flavor profiles are so well matched.  They aren’t competing with one another and one doesn’t overpower the other.  They are content partners in this tropical tea-tail.  I’m picking up on light notes of rum too.  A light touch of rum that allows the tropical flavors to shine through.

And I love how easy it is to brew these teas from Southern Boy Teas.  I hot brewed this pitcher of tea, bringing 1 quart of water to 195°F and steeping the large sachet of tea for 9 minutes.  Then I poured the hot tea into my favorite glass iced tea pitcher and brought a second quart of water to 195°F and resteeped the pouch for 11 minutes.  Because honeybush is a tisane with low tannins, you can steep it for longer periods of time without bitterness.  This is the best way to get a full flavor from the tisane.

This is a really refreshing tisane.  I almost wish I had tried it a couple of months ago when we were in the middle of one of the hottest summers I can remember.  It would have made a great summertime “escape” for the taste buds.  Then again, it’s kind of a nice getaway for the taste buds now that we’re experiencing a rather wet autumn.  Hey, I still need some cold refreshment on days like this, don’t you?

Rumchata Genmaicha Green Tea from 52Teas

Rumchata-GenmaichaTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Green

Where to Buy:  52Teas

Tea Description:

Our friend LiberTEAs was a big fan of our Rumchata honeybush, but suggested that a Rumchata genmaicha would be even better.  It was one of those head-smacking moments for me when I tried to imagine the toasted rice in the genmaicha with the horchata and rum flavors.  Of course it would be awesome.

So here it is.  Thanks to LiberTEAs for the suggestion.

Learn more about this blend here.

Taster’s Review:

I’ve been excited to try this one!  After I tried the Rumchata Honeybush from 52Teas, I couldn’t help but think that these flavors would work well with a Genmaicha base.  (And I even mentioned it in that review!)  And while I do really enjoy the Rumchata Honeybush, it is even better with the Genmaicha.

The sweet, buttery notes of the green tea offer a nice creamy texture and taste to the flavors of horchata and rum.  The toasty rice notes meld beautifully with the notes of almond and cinnamon.  The result is a warm, cozy, delightfully delicious beverage.

It is sweet and creamy.  It is warm and gently spiced with cinnamon.  The nutty flavor of the almonds and toasted rice are perfect together.  There is a mid-note of rum that is there from the start of the sip to the finish and it lingers in the aftertaste … just like if I were to take a sip of an actual Rumchata (after trying the Rumchata Honeybush, I decided that I should try a Rumchata.  I liked it, but I think I like the tea versions better.  What can I say, when it comes to alcohol, I’m just a wimp.)

I love this!  A brilliant tea … even if I do say so myself!  (haha!)