I was NOT prepared for this! When I opened Day 21 of the Bird and Blend advent calendar and read the name I think I probably rolled my eyes at least a little. “Sure – a green tea that tasted like Panettone,” I thought. “That sounds great, but highly unlikely.” Then I smelled it and – instantly, I was transported.

My family is one who typically buy a panettone every Christmas. It sits in its little box right up until Christmas morning, hidden away so as not to tempt anyone, and then sliced up and divvied out, inevitably for everyone to probably at least once find themselves chewing on a sneaky slip of paper casing. And here was this green tea, smelling just like it – buttery, fluffy, cakey, even zesty, it was all there. No way, I thought, could it hold onto all that into a brew.

I’m not sure why I seem to have so little faith in flavoured green teas. Maybe I’ve never given them enough of a chance, or maybe I just haven’t encountered enough of them. But this Panettone tea absolutely held onto all those notes of flavour as it steeped.

Every time I sipped, I was again transported back to my childhood home, surrounded by family, so clearly I could honestly imagine someone slipped something into the flavour profile of this tea to mimic that rogue piece of paper casing – I could taste that too! And every time it happened, I had to take a second and say to myself, “That’s crazy they did that so well.”

As with its edible namesake, sometimes this tea seemed just on the verge of too buttery, as some others have noted, but for me it didn’t really detract but rather it added to the illusion. (Also, I’ve had David’s Tea’s Butterscotch Chai, which I’m pretty sure is just liquified buttered toast with sugar, so if you ever want to overdose on butter flavour, well, that’s my cautious recommendation. Or avoid it – your call.)

This was one of those lovely experiences where I tried to make the cup last, while struggling to make sure I didn’t let it get cold, and hating it would be over soon… But also fighting not to just chug it down. Again, as I said, I’ve not had a lot of faith in green teas – Bird and Blend have been surprising me in the loveliest ways in that regard, and I found myself very surprised to love this as much as I did.

If you’re not a fan of Panettone, it’s likely you’d give this a miss anyway. If, like me, however, you are, it’s worth it just to experience the craziness of how well they did on this blend. I could definitely come back to this again most happily, especially when I’m feeling like cozying into some nostalgia, or, you know, if I happen to have a craving for some paper cake casing. Either/or.

Flavors: Butter, Cake, Citrus, Lime

175 °F / 79 °C 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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