Sunny Ceylon Flavored Black Tea from Tea People

sunnyceylonTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  Tea People

Tea Description:

Ginger and lemon flavours are a match made in heaven. Add to that luxury Ceylon,which by the way, are considered an aphrodisiac. And you have your perfect honeymoon tea! Of course you don’t have to be on your honeymoon to have our Sunny Ceylon. With bits of pineapple,sunflower and calendula petals, it is guaranteed to bring you a taste of warm sunshine in the  gloomiest of days. 

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

I’m always excited to try teas from a new-to-me company, and this Sunny Ceylon Flavored Black Tea is the first that I’m tasting from Tea People!   I chose this tea to try first because it’s been so cold and gray over the last week – not that I dislike this kind of weather, I actually prefer it to the sunshine – but, after a week of not seeing the sun, it’s kind of nice to have a bit of sunshine in my teacup.

When I opened the package and smelled the tea, it has a very sunshine-y kind of fragrance:  bright and lemony!  The brewed tea is not quite as citrus-y as the dry leaf, but I can smell the ginger and hints of lemon along with the distinct aroma of black Ceylon tea.

The flavor is nice!  Even though the bouquet of the dry leaf suggested that this might taste very strongly of lemon, it’s not quite as powerful a flavor as I expected.  Oh sure, I can taste the lemon in every sip, but, it doesn’t overpower the other flavors in my cup and that’s a really good thing.  I can taste the ginger, I can taste the lemon … but mostly, I taste Ceylon tea!

It is a brisk tea with a medium body with an astringency that I’d categorize as fair to moderate.  It is a cleansing astringency – after I’ve taken a sip, my mouth feels clean and dry, like it’s ready for another sip!  But don’t mistake astringency for bitterness, because this isn’t bitter.  (Although, as with any tea, I wouldn’t recommend oversteeping it because that could cause it to become bitter.)

The lemon adds a bright, sunny taste to the cup (hence the name!)  The ginger is very mellow here, adding just a hint of warmth to the cup without tasting spicy.  When I slurp the tea, I can taste very subtle whispers of pineapple which accentuate the lemon nicely.  There isn’t enough pineapple here to offset the two primary flavors:  lemon and ginger; there is just a hint of something a little extra that intrigues the palate to explore.

As the tea continues to cool (and I continue to sip) … the lemon becomes more apparent, and now that I’m about halfway through the cup, the lemon almost tastes as though I squeezed a thin slice of fresh lemon in my teacup.  it’s very bright and juicy!

A really nice tea, and it turned out to be the perfect choice for this rather gray day!  I can taste the sunshine in my teacup even if I can’t see it when I peek out my window!  This joyous tea experience makes me look forward to trying some other teas from Tea People!

Nina’s Paris from Nina’s Paris

Nina's Paris from Nina's Paris
Nina’s Paris from Nina’s Paris

Tea Information:

Leaf Type: Black

Where to Buy: Nina’s Paris

Tea Description:

Blood orange, peach, strawberry, cherry,
This tasty blend will fill you with its exquisite fruity flavour. Orange, peach, strawberry and cherry brightened with sunflowers to please all tastes.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

Nina’s Paris from Nina’s Paris tea company is their signature tea.

Upon steeping Nina’s Paris provides a lovely colored cup of an amber burnt orange hue.

The aroma is delightfully fruity with orange essence being most prominent.

The initial sip evokes the cherry flavors in such a pleasant way. Nothing like a medicinal cheery or artificial cherry flavor. As a matter of fact the flavors in this tea are delicious and quite natural with no residual “oily” look or texture floating on top of the cup. In fact the tea is so clear that I am highly pleased as I anticipated some type of oils from all the varied flavorings.

The best way to describe the flavor of this tea is sunny. It will bring a smile to your face. With all the different flavors one may think it is very powerful or strong on the palate but it truly is not. Its flavorful without being overwhelming and has a graceful subtlety.

It is wonderful how lovely the flavors meld, I can distinctly pick up all flavors of peach, strawberry, and cherry, and they blend in harmony.

I do believe this would make a scrumptious iced tea although you would want to use plenty of extra leaf to get it strong enough. It is a cheery, bright, sunny, yummy cup of fruity goodness!

Gui Fei Oolong from Butiki Teas

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Oolong

Where to Buy:  Butiki Teas

Tea Description:

Our Gui Fei Oolong was sourced from Lugu Township in Nantou County, Taiwan and is a particularly unique tea. Green leafhoppers are allowed to bite the tea leaves which causes the leaves to begin the healing process which creates the honey notes in this tea and also begins the oxidation process. This tea utilized traditional Dong Ding processing techniques. Gui Fei Oolong has a natural sweetness to it and produces no astringency. Notes of honey, lightly burned toast, raw almonds and apples can be detected.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

Good Heavens! This tea smells DIVINE! Seriously I have had this in my stash for ages now and just never got around to testing it out. I am angry with myself for waiting so long! I am kicking myself!

The aroma is peach and honey. The dry leaf is nuggety and a few stems while the moist leaf is still quite dry and I hope for more steeps to follow! The cup is a beautiful sunny orange color.

My first sips emote honey, peach, and candies almonds. What a pure and simple delight! This will be consumed regularly until it is time to reorder. Still angry at myself for sitting on this one!

Subtle notes of oak are peaking through. I do not detect any apple notes but perhaps in the second infusion. I am getting a mouthfeel of brandy like consistency. Thick and syrup like yet not clinging to my mouth like syrup, much brighter than that – not heavy just very juicy and refreshing in a sweet rich sort of way.

There is some astringency to this cup and it is a tad sour on the after taste much like a peach that is not fully ripened yet, but as you wait a little the flavor tames into almost an oak moss flavor and then the sweetness comes back around. There is a palate cleansing effect that follows.

My second steep is still deep in color perhaps even more so which is surprising. The steep turned into more of a reddish orange rather than a bright sun colored orange. The astringency still exists, which is something I have found in Butiki Teas oolong more so than others but it is nice as it reminds me of a black tea’s astringency even though the flavor description says there is none but again, I don’t mind at all. I am now getting a savory sweet note like apples and sage that I often cook with together.

I decided that I needed to “pair” my tea with a chocolate truffle. Okay I was making excuses to have one but hey I wanted a truffle! This brought out the peach notes in the tea by truck loads! Literally it was like a truck load of juicy ripe peaches drove into my mouth! Okay not literally but figuratively. Regardless it was amazing! Now I could easily use this new discovery of the paring as an excuse to have another truffle but alas I would prefer to savor my third steep allowing it to stand on its own.

Steep three although not necessarily the final steep but the last I will write about still has a lovely color to it. It does not seem to be weakening at all! The flavors are still very present with the peachy notes, along with the wood notes. It is becoming more oak-y in flavor now however and a little less sweet. Now it is settling into a tea that one would kick back and really relax with and it may even be making me a little sleepy due to its easy going qualities – no not sleepy but grounded. Like a good meditative tea!

End result is this tea has many layers of flavors to offer someone willing to sit down and contemplate it. One could easily suck down cup after cup and just enjoy and embrace the goodness however for me, I am finding this tea one that I will build a relationship with and discover more depth through each steep as I know there are many more left to uncover! The wet leaf still has more love to give, still some dryness within them, and they still smell strongly of flavors!

Very good tea!

Temi First Flush from The Tea Horse

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black, Orange Pekoe

Where to Buy:  Tea Horse

Tea Description:

Temi 1st Flush is officially a black tea, but is less oxidised and much lighter than usual blacks – to drink, somewhere between a black and a green tea. Its grade is SFTGFOP1 (standing for Special Finest Tippy Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe grade 1). A bit of a mouthful but it makes for a lovely tea!

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

I love a good Temi First Flush. I recently sipped down the last of my favorite first flush from another company so I was excited to dig this sample out of a box of teas from my SororiTea Sister Anne.

I  was waiting with anticipation to fully immerse myself in this cup. The first thing I picked up was the astringency which was not unpleasant but more prominent than what I am used to in this style of tea.

Then the notes develop into a background flavor of straw that has been sitting in the sun light which is a note I personally enjoy, added to that a slightly vegetal flavor but not as one expects in greens, not that prominent. More of the flavor of fresh straw blade that you picked out of a field to stick in your mouth to chew on like country folk. The tea is in fact quite “sunny” in its flavor and has a bright mouthfeel.

This is a light tea and I don’t think I would try adding any milk or cream to it however it could go quite well with a little sugar, or honey.

As for spicy notes, they are present but they are not very intense and while I appreciate subtle notes in teas this tea somewhat leaves me wanting just a little bit more. Its not a bad tea by any means and I would not dump it out so I don’t want to give the impression that it is unpalatable but it does seem to lack some of the complexities and fruity notes I appreciate in my regular Temi First Flush. Now with that said, while I do not pick up the fruit notes I was desiring, it is a “juicy” tea. The tea does tend to have a burst like sensation in the mouth that is quite lovely.

So there are some high notes and low notes to this tea in my opinion however for me, ordering this tea may be more trouble than it is worth due to it being a U.K. company, and I am in the U.S.A. I would love to try some of their other blends though as they have a couple that caught my eye. I would say that if ordering were a tad easier this tea was a good introduction to their company and would indeed make me want to order from them again.

Its just that sometimes we love another tea of the same type and that love can be difficult to beat. That is the case with this specific tea.

It is however light, bright, and quite thirst quenching, and there is nothing wrong with any of those things.