Happy International Tea Day. This has to be one of my favourite days of the year. I’m a lady who loves her cups of tea so much so that I decided to add tea reviews to my blog. Looking back I am so pleased that I did. My blog now features Tuesday’s New Tea Review every week which has proved to be very popular. Over the last year I have been lucky to sample a variety of new teas some of which I have loved and others not so. Here’s a quick snapshot of this years highlights. I found out that I had made the Feedspot Top 100 Tea Blogs and went straight to being number 49!
I fell in love with Chai tea. I visited an Indian restaurant and had a traditional tea and since then I have been hooked. I have been very lucky to try a variety of chai teas but my favourite has to from Basilur. Their masala chai was a light refreshing tea with comforting winter aromas and flavours.
I have also been making a continued effort to reduce my caffeine intake. I have developed a new love for rooibos tea. My overall favourite was The Tea Makers organic vanilla rooibos tea. The flavour of this tea was subtle and not overpowering which was just right for me. The slight vanilla flavour alongside the rooibos resulted in a nice comforting tea.
My favourite tea still has to be Earl Grey and I have tried a fair few this year. A surprise favourite for me was Dragonfly Earl Grey rooibos tea. On sipping the tea my taste buds immediately got hit by its smokiness intermingled with a hint of grassiness. It’s a great caffeine free version of my beloved earl grey tea. This was proceeded by a citrusy undertone from the bergamot. All three elements worked really well together.
I discovered that there are monthly subscription boxes dedicated purely to tea. My favourite has to be Tea Tourist as you get a new selection of six teas form a variety of UK based tea companies. I have been able to try wide selection of teas that I may otherwise might not have had the opportunity to do so. I now look forward to the date when I know the next box will be arriving.
Sadly I have also discovered some teas that didn’t quiet hit the spot. The most disappointing one this year comes courtesy of Marks & Spencer with its festive tea, which to me tasted like a cheap everyday black tea.
I don’t want end on a negative so I hope that you manage to make the most of International Tea Day. I would love to know what teas you have been drinking today, or if you have any recommendations for me to try. Happy sipping C.
Now I am a girl who loves her cups of tea. Not a day goes by when I don’t help myself to a cup of tea. It’s fair to say I’m a bit of a tea addict. Blogging has enlightened my tea palate encouraging me to try a variety of new teas. I love tea subscription boxes as they are a great way to discover new teas. So when I was lucky enough to receive Tea Tourist October’s selection of teas I couldn’t wait to dive in. Tea Tourist is a Derbyshire based subscription service that sends you a selection of loose leaf teas that you might not find delivered to your door each month. They choose from a range of companies from around the UK.
Onto the contents within the box. You get six resealable packets of different teas which contain 3-4 cups worth of tea. You get a card detailing the information about the tea that you have received. Each tea has its own tasting card with details of the company, a little about the tea, how and when best to steep the tea and a section for you to add your own notes, creating a nice little reference guide.
Mazawattee Earl Grey Tea by Mazawattee
I choose this tea first as it is one of my favourite teas. It is described as delicate blend of Faitrade black teas infused with orange and lemon peel. The tea produces a zesty and aromatic brew that’s naturally high in antioxidants, making it great for boosting your mood and supporting healthy digestion.
There are no allergens highlighted in the ingredients list or no may contain warning.
On opening the packet I was greeted by a strong and very inviting citrus aroma, it reminded me of a quality bergamot. I added freshly boiled water to the tea and infused as instructed. The aroma was as I had anticipated that being of a strong quality black tea with fairly strong undertones of citrus noted. This intensified slightly on my famous close up sniff test. On sipping the tea it was fairly strong and well balanced and the subtle undertones the lemon and orange peel broke this up slightly resulting in a nice refreshing tea. I love a nice cup of earl grey and this certainly ticked all of the right boxes. It had the perfect balance of both aroma and flavour that I associate with a nice earl grey. I would definitely recommend this tea.
Mint Choc Royale By JollyBrew Tea Co
It is described as a peppermint blend infused with chocolatey flavours that delivers a truly mouth watering brew which tastes just like everyone’s favourite after dinner mint. It’s the ultimate guilt-free sweet treat, perfect for those with a sweet tooth.
There are no allergens highlighted in the ingredients list and there is a warning that nuts are handled on-site.
On opening the packet a I was greeted with a fairly strong peppermint aroma with a fruity yet chocolatey twist. I added boiled water to the tea and infused as instructed. The aromas of the peppermint and fruity chocolate intensified resulting in the aroma from the black tea getting a little lost as a result. On sipping the tea I initially got hit with the taste of a good quality everyday black tea but this didn’t last long. The peppermint and fruity chocolatey flavours soon kicked in. It was like my taste buds were getting hit from all angles. If I am honest I found it a little overpowering although I think some one with a sweet tooth may think differently. Sorry Jolly Brew this tea just wasn’t for me.
Spiced Orange Pekoe Tea by Spice Kitchen
It is described as a black tea blend inspired by Eastern European and Russian cuisine that balance the zesty flavour of orange peel with the spice Ines of cinnamon and cloves to deliver a heart-warming brew that’s perfect on a cold winters day.
There are no allergens highlighted in the ingredients list or a may contain warning. On opening the packet I was greeted by a very pleasant aroma of citrus and cloves with a subtle hint of cinnamon noted.
I added freshly boiled water to the tea and infused as instructed. The first thing that I noticed was the colour of the tea it was slightly weaker and a lighter shade of brown than what I had expected. Don’t get me wrong it looked like the perfect colour to me. Then came the aroma the orange, cloves and cinnamon took centre stage and was very inviting. It reminded very much of a nice chai tea. On sipping the tea my experience was the same the strength of orange, cloves and cinnamon intensified with the flavour from the black tea taking second place. I enjoyed everything about this tea from its aroma through to its flavour. It was a comforting yet refreshing tea that would be perfect in the colder months. I would definitely recommend this tea.
Vika Tea by The Tea Expereince
To is described as A Scandivian-inspired black tea blend infused with sweet flavours of vanilla and floral notes of marigold blossom. Originally developed for Harrogate’s Nordic-themed cafe, Baltzersen’s it’s perfect to enjoy on a starry winter nights.
There are no allergens highlighted in the ingredients list or a may contain warning.
On opening the packet I was greeted by a very pleasant aroma of vanilla, with a faint flora noted. I added freshly boiled water to the tea and infused as instructed. The aroma of the vanilla intensified slightly. It was clearly the predominant flavour to this tea yet it was not too strong or overpowering or artificially sweet. This intermingled with a subtle floral element from the marigold blossom. On sipping the tea it was a very mild black tea that had a subtle sweetness from the vanilla with a slight floral kick. The three elements to this tea complimented each other perfectly with the right balance to each ingredient. I enjoyed everything about this tea from its aroma through to its flavour. It is one of nicest vanilla teas that I have tried. I would definitely recommend this tea and purchase it in the future.
Turmeric Revival by MD Tea
It is described as a soothing herbal blend with sweet spice and soft citrus flavours that come together to creat a heart-warming brew with a smooth, creamy texture and fragrant aroma of autumnal nights around the fire.
Onto the ingredients list liquorice is listed and there is no may contain warning.
On opening the packet I was immediately struck by the ginger and liquorice aroma. I was pleasant but I was a little disappointed by this I was hoping to be greeted by the turmeric and a hint of cinnamon. I added freshly boiled water and infused the tea as instructed. On doing so the aroma of the ginger and liquorice intensified and seemed to overpower the other aromas from this tea. On sipping the tea my tastebuds got hit by an even balance from the ginger and liquorice followed by a subtle floral aftertaste. I was disappointed that I was unable to distinguish the turmeric or cinnamon element to this tea. I am afraid that I really didn’t enjoy this tea I found that the aroma and flavour from the ginger and liquorice just overpowered the other ingredients in this tea. I’m sorry MDTea but this tea just wasn’t for me.
Time For Winter by Caley’s Apothecary
It is described as an organic herbal blend that balances the sweetness of liquorice, spicy zing of ginger and earthy floral notes of thyme and elderflower to deliver a soothing brew that will keep you cosy warm on cold winter evenings.
There are no allergens highlighted in the ingredients list and there is a warning that asteraceae.
On opening the packet the I immediately got hit by the delightful aroma from the sage. It was a little stronger than I had anticipated and slightly overpowered the aroma from the other ingredients from this tea. I added freshly boiled water and infused the tea as instructed. The sage aroma intensified and was intermingled with the liquorice. I was a little disappointed as I was unable to distinguish the elderflower of ginger root elements to this tea even on my close up sniff test. On sipping the tea it tasted just like its aroma. The sage and liquorice were quiet strong and seemed to drown out the elderflower and ginger root. I am afraid that I really didn’t enjoy this tea. Whilst I loved the initial aroma from the thyme the combination of this with liquorice impacted on the other elements to this tea. A mixture of thyme and liquorice just isn’t for me.
So would I recommend this subscription box? Yes I would. I really enjoyed the opportunity to try a diverse range of teas that Tea Tourist offers. It allowed me discover a new variety of tea companies without having to hunt them down myself. It’s a great and convenient way to try new teas. I can’t wait to try the next box.