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treat

Cherry Marshmallow Treat Genmaicha from 52Teas

Please check out my Kickstarter Campaign to Take Over 52Teas!

Cherry-Marshmallow-Treat-GenmaichaTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Green

Where to Buy:  52Teas

Tea Description:

Following the popularity of our other marshmallow treat genmaicha blends, we’ve created a special one for Valentine’s Day, with real freeze-dried cherries, marshmallow root and organic marshmallow and maraschino cherry flavors. This is a treat for your sweet tooth.

Learn more about this tea here.

Learn more about 52Teas’ subscriptions here.

Taster’s Review:

After tasting a couple of cherry flavored teas lately that tasted more of cough syrup than tea, I cringed just a little (just a little!) when I read the announcement for the tea of the week of February 9th.  But I was hopeful that this Cherry Marshmallow Treat Genmaicha from 52Teas wouldn’t go the same route as some of the other cherry teas I’ve tasted consumed in the past weeks.  I hoped that this would taste as wonderful as it sounded, because the idea of having a cherry flavored marshmallow treat sounds delightful!

In fact, it sounds so delightful that before I brewed the tea, I asked my youngest daughter if she might be interested in trying the tea with me.  She apparently thought it sounded yummy too, because she said yes.  So, I brewed the whole 1/2 ounce package in my Breville One-Touch, using 1000ml of water.  I set the temperature for 175°F and the timer for 2 1/2 minutes.  These smaller 1/2 ounce pouches are just the right size for a teapot to share with a friend (or daughter!)

After allowing the tea to cool for a few minutes, I took my first sip.  Mmm!  I’m happy to say that while I taste cherry, I don’t taste cough syrup.  This cherry flavor seems to have just the right balance between sweet and tart cherry flavors, because I’m getting a little bit of sweet and a little bit of tart.  The tart tickles my taste buds in the aftertaste.

The genmaicha has a light, slightly grassy taste and adds a nice, toasty flavor and the rice notes add a rice cereal kind of flavor.  The marshmallow adds a little bit of fluffy, creamy taste but I find myself wanting just a tad more marshmallow in this.

Overall, this is really tasty.  My daughter enjoyed it too.  I still favor the “Original” Marshmallow Treat Genmaicha – which I’ll be reblending when I take over 52Teas!  Please take a moment to stop over at my campaign and support my efforts to save this small business while creating fantastic teas!

Marshmallow Treat Genmaicha Iced Tea from Southern Boy Teas

Marshmallow-Treat-GenmaichaSBTTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Green

Where to Buy:  Southern Boy Teas

Tea Description:

Premium Organic green tea with organic flavors. Each 14g teabag will make one 2-quart pitcher of DELICIOUS iced tea. Re-steep the teabag and you can get a full gallon out of each one.

Learn more about this tea here.

Learn about SBT’s subscriptions here.

Taster’s Review:

Wow!

The first thing that blew me away with this blend is the smell!  The aroma of the dry sachet – it smells like a marshmallow treat!  And the brewed tea smells like that too.  The brewed tea smells a bit more like genmaicha than the dry sachet did, the dry sachet smells like a fresh batch of marshmallow treats.  Mmm!

This is seriously good iced tea.  If you liked the original Marshmallow Treat Genmaicha from 52Teas, you’re going to like this iced tea version from Southern Boy Teas.  It’s sweet and tastes like the name suggests.  It tastes like a marshmallow treat with a little bit of green tea flavor in there too.

Genmaicha is not usually a tea that I usually think of when I think “iced tea” because the toasted rice has a very warm flavor and it’s been something that I think tastes better when served hot.  But, this really works well as an iced tea.  It does have that delicious roasty-toasty flavor of the Genmaicha, along with the light, fresh green tea taste of the green tea.  The rice of the genmaicha gives this just the right amount of warmth to give this marshmallow treat a “homemade” sort of taste (and homemade marshmallow treats taste better than those commercially packaged treats!)

To brew this, I heated a quart of water to 170°F and let the sachet steep for a 1 1/2 minutes.  Then I strained the tea into my iced tea pitcher and resteeped the sachet in the second quart of water, adding 30 seconds onto the steep time.  (Then I stashed the sachet in an airtight container and put it in the fridge so that I could steep it again for another pitcher of tea.)

Really, really good.  I’m glad that this tea is now offered on the website (it was originally created as a “thank you” for the Kickstarter supporters) because I’m going to want more of this!

Kettle Corn Maté from 52Teas

Kettle-Corn-MateTisane Information:

Leaf Type:  Yerba Mate

Where to Buy:  52Teas

Tisane Description:

If you could smell this through the internet, we would be sold out instantly. This is an amazing blend of roasted yerba maté, freeze-dried corn, marigold petals and organic flavors including popcorn and honey flavors. This is a seriously comforting cuppa. It’s all the goodness of kettle corn, but it won’t get stuck in your teeth. =)

Learn more about this tisane here.

Taster’s Review:

I was glad to read 52Teas’ announcement of their tea of the week for the week of July 14.  Not because of the “Kettle Corn” part (although, that sounds amazing) but because of the Yerba Mate part.  It’s been a while since 52Teas released a Yerba Mate blend (or a Guayusa blend!) so I was excited to try another Yerba Mate blend from them.

When it comes to Yerba Mate, I usually go with a slightly lower than boiling temperature – 195°F – and steep the leaves for 8 – 10 minutes.  This time, I went with 8 minutes and I’m pleased with the results.  Because Yerba Mate doesn’t have the tannins that Camellia Sinensis leaves have, you don’t have to worry about the cup becoming bitter from oversteeping, so take advantage of that and get as much flavor as you can out of this tea!  It’s worth the effort!

Because this is yum!

When the cup is piping hot, this doesn’t really taste much like Kettle Corn, but as it cools (slightly – you still want the tea to be hot!) those flavors begin to develop.

At this point, I feel I should mention that my experience with Kettle Corn is limited to the few times that I’ve had it from the commercially packaged offerings that I can find in the grocery store which add up to probably fewer than a handful of times, and the once or twice that I’ve had the Kettle Corn varieties of microwave popcorn.  I haven’t ever had Kettle Corn at a fair, then again, I don’t attend fairs.  Not my kind of thing.

But from the Kettle Corn experiences I’ve had, this is very similar to what I remember.  I can taste the sweetness of honey and the flavor of popcorn.  A pinch of salt added to the cup will help to accentuate the “sweet and salty” aspect of the Kettle Corn experience, and this really helps the popcorn notes shine through as well as give the cup a really intriguing contrast of flavors (I absolutely LOVE the combination of salty and sweet).

The Yerba Mate is a good base for these flavors.  It’s got that robust, roasty-toasty sort of flavor that ties in well with the popcorn notes.  It adds warmth to the cup which enhances the whole experience and gives it a “freshly popped” popcorn type of taste.

After having tried this both hot and iced, I have to say that I prefer it hot.  It’s alright iced, but the flavors become somewhat muted in the process.  When served hot, the Kettle Corn flavors seem truer – as if someone had liquefied some Kettle Corn and added it to my cup of Yerba Mate.  When cold, the flavors seem to all meld together and it’s difficult to discern what I’m actually tasting.  It tastes more like a cup of caramel-y … something.  It’s still good, but it doesn’t taste like the Kettle Corn Yerba Mate that the hot cup offers.

Tasty!

Product Review: Chai Caramels from Big Picture Farm

big-picture-chaiProduct Information:

Where to Buy:  Treatsie

Product Description:  

Big Picture Farm’s goat milk chai caramel won the gold medal in the prestigious 2013 Good Food Awards. The team at Big Picture makes this exquisite caramel with organic chai supplied by their friend Neil Harley of Chai Wallah.

Learn more about Treatsie’s Subscription Box here.

Product Review:

As you may be aware, I previously reviewed another product that I recently purchased from Treatsie.  I bought these caramels at the same time, because … hello, Chai Caramels?  Yeah!  I gotta try ’em!

I’ve previously tried (and reviewed on my now inactive foodie blog) the goat’s milk caramels from Big Picture Farms, and I really enjoyed those.  Goat’s milk caramels do taste a little different than caramels made with products other than goat’s milk, and it’s a taste that isn’t to everyone’s liking.  I personally like the flavor, because goat’s milk has a certain “tangy” quality to it and I like that contrast to the sugary sweetness of the caramel.

And these caramels are not only made with goat’s milk, but also organic chai tea supplied by Chai Wallah, another product that I’ve previously reviewed!  I was happy to see that Chai Wallah was the supplier of the chai for these confections, because this company makes a very memorable chai.  I’ve tasted a lot of chai in the past, and Chai Wallah makes some of the very best that I’ve tried.

So, I was confident that I’d enjoy these treats from Treatsie!  The caramel is super-fresh, I can feel the freshness as I unwrap the candy:  it feels soft and gooey, and there isn’t even a trace of hardness on the exterior of the candy.  It’s soft and pliable.  When I bite into it, it seems to melt in my mouth (and of course, stick to my teeth a bit – hey, it’s caramel, it’s supposed to do that!)

The first notes I experience are the caramel notes, you know, that “burnt sugar” taste that’s sort of … incredible and delicious?  Then I pick up the tangy notes of the goat’s milk.  Then I start to taste the notes of chai.  The spices hit the palate as I’m chewing on the confection, and they linger in the aftertaste.  Now that I’ve finished the bite of chewy, delicious, caramel-y goodness, I can still taste notes of cinnamon, cloves, ginger, cardamom and pepper.  Mmm!  So good!

Yeah … you gotta try these!  If you’re a fan of chai, you’ll love them.  If you’ve got a sweet t00th, you’ll want more than just the 10-piece pack!  (Trust me on that.)  If you just want to try something that’s a little different than your average caramel … get some of these!

Product Review: Tea Assortment of Hard Candy from Raley’s Confectionary

raleys-teaProduct Information:

Where to Buy:  Treatsie

Product Description:  

Tea-flavored hard candy.  Flavors include Lemongrass Green Tea, Chai Latte, Arnold Palmer and Mango Black Tea.

Learn more about Treatsie’s Subscription Box here.

Product Review:

I know I’ve confessed it before, but, I’ll confess it again:  I have a sweet tooth.  And I find myself particularly attracted to sweets that are tea inspired, like these yummy hard candies from Raley’s Confectionary.  While recently perusing the Treatsie website, I came across this tea flavored hard candy assortment, and you know I couldn’t resist!

I recently discovered Treatsie, and they’re a subscription box (similar to the box that I get every month from Simple Loose Leaf), so every month, I will get a box full of yummy treats.  (And chocolate.  Did I mention chocolate?)  You can also shop for the products individually and there are some really interesting curated boxes that you can buy at Treatsie too.  I bought these tea flavored hard candies separately, because as I said before, I couldn’t resist when I saw the words “Tea Flavored Hard Candy.”  Um … yes please!

My separately purchased products (not the Treatsie subscription box) arrived this afternoon, and I’m really pleased!  It was packaged beautifully, and I even got a “thank you” treat tucked inside – another package of Raley’s Confectionary’s hard candies – these little “thank you” candies actually say thank you right on them, and they’re pomegranate flavored!  Yum!

These tea flavored candies are really tasty.  The Mango Black Tea candy has a very distinct mango note and I can taste a softer black tea note in there too.  The Lemongrass Green Tea has a lemon-lime-ish sort of flavor to it, with a background of a sweet, grassy green tea note.  The Arnold Palmer tastes more of lemonade than it does of tea, but every once in a while I taste a slight tea-ish flavor.  I like the tangy note of the Arnold Palmer, though, it seems to balance out the other sweeter tasting flavors of the package.

And then there is my favorite of the four:  Chai Latte!  I think I’d be happy to have a whole package of just the chai latte.  They have a gentle spice to them (these aren’t strong in spice!  They’re more sweet than spicy!) and I can taste the black tea as well as a creamy note to them – they’re like a sweet little chai latte!

I love that the flavors that are promised are the flavors that are delivered.  Sure, they’re sweeter than what you’d experience if you were actually drinking a cup of chai latte or a mango flavored black tea – but they ARE candies, after all!  They’re supposed to be sweet.  What I love is that these are not just something that satisfies the sweet tooth in me, but also the tea lover in me too.

So, now I’ve found this sinful company that will send me sweet-tooth indulgences once a month … how do I say no to that?