Bellocq Tea AtelierEdit Company
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February Sipdown Prompt – a flavored white tea
It absolutely blew my mind to look up this tea and see that there is not a single note for it from me. I have had this for a very long time. Anything with bergamot takes a long time to sip down because Ashman doesn’t care for it and neither did my tea party guest, so it was up to me to drink it all, and because I myself do not often reach for Earl Grey type teas. I like the ones with other interest like cream or berry flavors, and the ones on a smoky or Keemun base, but they still are not my go-to.
This is a very nice one and I actually have had it twice today. I flash chilled a bit to go with lunch, and thought I had enough leaf to account for the extra liquid from the ice but I didn’t. Honestly, my lunch glass tasted almost like pure white tea so that was a feat in itself.
Since I hadn’t made it well enough to truly taste it, I decided to have a hot cuppa after lunch with a few squares of a raspberry creme flavor Milka bar. This was much better and had more flavor. This is probably my oldest white tea other than one for aging, but the white tea part is still robust and the bergamot is very nice with no tartness or bitterness, no chemical or perfume taste.
It is a very nice tribute tea for David Bowie, indeed. And furthermore, I think Ashman would dig this one, so I will serve it to him soon and see.
Thanks to Cameron for sending this one along!
I was surprised to see a rose petal in this mix, but perhaps one won’t have too much of an effect…
The steeped scent is really lovely – like a freshly baked holiday baked good.
Hmm. The good news is that I don’t really get any floral from the rose petal. The base mixes well with the flavours, but it may be just a touch clove and anise-heavy and that covers some other flavours that may have had a chance to balance the blend. The tea overall seems quite thick and malty. It is reminiscent of a baked good with just a bit too much spice.
This has a strong base that is a bit astringent and smoky. I found there was an Earthy/lightly roasty flavour (kukicha). I did see in the loose leaf there were juniper berries and cedar tips, but I did not taste anything piney or resiny. I was really hoping to taste that cedar. It ended up being a generic black tea made slightly interesting by the kukicha.
Flavors: Astringent, Earth, Roasted, Smoke, Tannic
Thank you, Cameron, I had this last night. I finished all your samples except one (the peppermint cream) and enjoyed them all so much!
Interesting and yummy tea. Unfortunately, I accidentally threw out the tea after the first infusion. Doh. I was cleaning out my other gaiwan and went on cleaning autopilot. At least I got to drink the first infusion. I do not know what juniper or cedar tastes like but whatever all the flavors in this tea, it was tasty and different. It was sweet, had honey, smoke, malts notes with a nice roasted-toasted comforting flavor. I enjoyed it so much. Thank you again, Cameron B.!
Flavors: Honey, Malt, Roasted, Smoke, Sweet
Thank you Cameron B. :D for today’s daily sipper choice.
At first, I was apprehensive trying this tea. I only like mint if it’s mild… This is subtle and it’s well balanced with the other ingredients. It’s creamy, slightly minty, with a spearmint taste more than peppermint, only because it has a less cooling effect and because of that, it melds really well with the other ingredients so one ingredient isn’t standing out. It’s not strong like Wrigley’s Spearmint Gum (thank goodness). I also feel and taste a little spice, like black pepper or something which really makes it interesting. It’s slightly sweet, I can’t really taste the vanilla. It was a nice surprise.
Flavors: Anise, Creamy, Mint, Pepper, Smooth, Spearmint
Ahahahaha, sounds like this was originally from Crowkettle, and came to me via Sil, so thanks to you both! It’s marked “Floral Death”, which I think is hilarious. (I recall being apprehensive when I saw it in my bag the first time, but my flavour preferences have shifted a bit since then.) The tea contained rose petals, which worried me, but to my absolute delight, it appears to be much more heavily lavender/jasmine/not rose (I don’t like rose). So this one-cup sample was very much enjoyed by me, as lavender teas seem to have a calming effect on me, and I could use some calming. Haha. The white base was excellent here, with the florals; I would just prefer the tea to be even more heavy on the lavender.
Sipdown! (6 | 458)
Wow, this seems to be quite a polarizing tea! Much lower rating than I would expect and a couple of very unfavorable notes ha ha.
I happen to really enjoy it though. The anise is probably the strongest spice, maybe that’s why it’s not well-liked. But there’s some cardamom and clove as well, and a nice sweet warmth from the cinnamon. The Darjeeling base is delightfully bready but not too thick or heavy. It somehow ends up being a somewhat light tea despite all the spices.
Anyway, I quite like it. I probably won’t reorder it though, just because the price is somewhat high ($17 / 57g) and I don’t love it enough to justify that. National Parks Dept., however, is a different story… ;)
Flavors: Anise, Bread, Cardamom, Cinnamon, Clove, Licorice, Malt, Smooth, Sweet
Home – 7:30 PM
Another (highly overpriced) blend from Bellocq.
This is quite good though. The base tea is thick, malty, and bready. I was surprised to learn that it’s a Darjeeling. The spicing is nice, and it complements the base tea as opposed to lying on top of it. I would guess a combination of clove, cardamom, and fennel or anise. There’s a very subtle floral note, I’m not sure I would know that it’s rose. I don’t really get any vanilla, but it could be the age of the tea.
Tasty, but definitely not worth the price!
Flavors: Anise, Bread, Cardamom, Clove, Fennel, Floral, Malt, Smooth, Thick
My second-oldest tea, from December of 2016!
I love this one, and it’ll definitely go straight onto the reorder list when I finish it off. Such a lovely combination of malty black tea, toasty and subtly smoky hoji-kukicha, and softly evergreen cedar tips. I’m also getting a touch of dark fruitiness this time, I assume from the juniper. There are also some gentle honey notes.
Sorry for neglecting you, poor delicious tea! I’m thankful to be sipping on this while it still has plenty of flavor left, even though it’s four years old.
Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Berry, Honey, Malt, Pine, Roasted, Smoke, Smooth, Sweet, Wood
Pulled this one out today after seeing a note from amandastory516 for a similar tea. I admit to not having the highest of hopes, due to this being somewhat old, though it turns out it’s only two years old which I wouldn’t consider to be that bad…
This tea always makes me chuckle a little bit when I’m scooping it into the steeping basket, because it literally looks like I picked up whatever was on the forest floor and put it into my cup. There are giant cedar tips and big twigs, along with juniper berries. The black tea seems a small volume by comparison, so I used more tea than I generally would for my 12-ounce mug.
I am so happily surprised to find that this still has plenty of flavor left, and a very pleasing woodsy flavor at that. The base tea is a little bit astringent, and I think it’s likely an Assam based on the flavor profile. But mostly here it provides body and a nice base for the added ingredients. I get the light roasty autumn leaf note from the twig kukicha. The cedar tips have such a nice evergreen flavor, but also a light aromatic woody note like one would expect from cedar or sandalwood. I’m not sure whether I get juniper? It’s hard to say since it has a bit of a piney flavor to it as well. There’s a lovely cooling sensation as I exhale.
So happy this is still viable, especially given the price… But honestly I would order it again because it’s such a unique tea. And it’s perfect for autumn and winter with its lovely, slightly toasty woodsy notes! This is one of the few teas that really takes me away to a different place as I sip.
Flavors: Astringent, Autumn Leaf Pile, Bitter, Earth, Forest Floor, Malt, Mineral, Pine, Resin, Roasted, Tannic, Tobacco, Wood
Home – 5:00 PM
This is a beautiful tea – big pieces of cedar, twigs, juniper berries, and pretty blue cornflowers mixed in with black tea leaves. It really does look like the forest floor.
It tastes like the forest floor too, in the best possible way. The black tea here is strong and malty, and a bit brisk. There’s also a nice roasted flavor, I’m not sure whether that’s coming from the cedar or the stems. I’m not sure that I can taste juniper, but the cedar is a nice accompaniment.
I will say I’m surprised at how astringent this came out, especially since it’s not bitter. I wonder if the astringency is coming from something other than the tea itself?
Flavors: Astringent, Autumn Leaf Pile, Cedar, Forest Floor, Malt, Roasted, Sweet, Wood
Work – 2:00 PM
Bellocq is one of those websites that pulls you in with its lovely photography and carefully curated collection of blends. I’m not sure that any of their teas are really that great (and a lot of them have rose and/or lavender, which are both no-nos for me). Although to be fair, I do really enjoy their National Parks Dept. and White Wolf teas, and they are somewhat unique blends. But their teas are also quite expensive.
This one is a fairly standard Moroccan Mint blend – gunpowder green tea with mint. Supposedly there is citrus essence here as well, though I’m not sure I pick up on that. The gunpowder green tea is earthy and a bit smoky, with a touch of bitterness in the aftertaste. The mint tastes to me like a combination of peppermint and spearmint? I get the herbaceous, almost musky taste of dried peppermint through most of the sip. Then at the end, I get a hit of chewing-gum-like spearmint. Or maybe I’m just imagining it!
It’s tasty enough but certainly not worth the premium price. And next time I may ignore their directions and steep this at 175° to reduce the bitterness.
Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Bitter, Earth, Peppermint, Smoke, Spearmint
Sipdown! (40 | 170)
Another of my oldest teas done! So nice to finish these off, and this was my only remaining tea from 2016, so now everything is from 2017 or later (lol, as if that’s saying something…).
I don’t think this one has held up quite as well as National Parks Dept. The anise in particular is quite muted, more so than I think it was originally.
But this is still a very pleasant cuppa – light and fluffy as a cloud with a touch of creamy vanilla and gently refreshing spearmint and evergreen notes. The bai mudan base is perfect, equally soft and airy with a mellow hay and oats flavor.
Yummy. Another one that I would consider reordering from Bellocq in the future!
Flavors: Creamy, Evergreen, Grain, Hay, Mint, Oats, Smooth, Spearmint, Thick, Vanilla
This is another one from my oldest teas sipdown box! It’s also from December 2016. (gulp) I’m new to this way of prioritizing sipdowns, and honestly it’s so nice that these first few are teas that I really like and just didn’t drink often enough. It feels meant to be! :3
Anyway, I really like this one. It’s a very light tea, and I’m sure its age hasn’t done any favors to the strength of flavor here, but it’s so relaxing and yummy. The white tea is perfectly soft, airy, and creamy with tasty oat, grain, and hay notes. I’m not sure if I’m tasting the vanilla or if it’s just the creaminess of the base. The mint and cedar are both here, but subtle enough that they just add a touch of crisp and cool menthol and evergreen flavor. I think I can taste a hint of anise, but I’m not sure whether I got any in my scoop. Next time I’ll pay closer attention to make sure I’m getting all of the ingredients.
I still love this one. The medley of soft and slightly sweet flavors combined with a thick and silky mouthfeel make this such a lovely evening tea. I’ll have to add Bellocq to the list of places to order from in the future, I’ve only tried a few of their teas and they’ve been so unique and delicious.
Flavors: Anise, Creamy, Grain, Hay, Mint, Oats, Pine, Smooth, Spearmint, Sweet, Thick, Wood
Home – 4:00 PM
Ahhhh, relaxing on the couch with a nice afternoon tea… What a lovely end to the weekend. ❤
I think I may have underleafed this a bit (I was afraid of overleafing), but it’s still perfectly nice. The base tea is smooth and creamy with classic soft hay notes. The mint and anise are a lovely pairing, adding sweetness and light mint notes with a bit of spice around the edges. As for the mint – there are the both fresher, crisper notes suggesting spearmint, and the more herbaceous tones characteristic of peppermint. There is a bright, refreshing mint aftertaste that lingers for a moment on the tongue.
This is a light and subtle tea, suitable for quiet contemplation in the afternoon.
Flavors: Anise, Creamy, Hay, Peppermint, Round, Spearmint, Sweet
I am seriously eating my words about this tea. Well, changing my mind. I had ordered it because ONE PERSON described it as floral somewhere. The company doesn’t describe it that way, and the ingredients wouldn’t lead you to believe it is. But I love me some floral tea and wanted something I could drink late at night.
The first time I reviewed this I remarked that it is good tea but not what I had hoped. Now I really like it. It is sweet, it is good hot, and it is really super poured over ice even with no sugar added. I like tulsi and anise and cardamom and the rose really adds sweetness. Not rose flavor, just sweetness. Dang it, this stuff is expensive but I think I may have to keep it around.
I bought this because I needed a caffeine free tea that would also help with stress. I hoped it would taste floral to me like it did to another reviewer, because I used to add lavender to plain Tulsi and enjoyed it that way.
I am disappointed to say that this tea tastes exactly like the description from the company says. I get very little floral taste and lots of spice. It could be my mix came out a little different and I got more spices than flowers. Cardamom and anise rule the day here with the savory Tulsi. It isn’t bad, it is just what Bellocq intended to make but it isn’t what I was hoping. I may try adding some of my lavender or purchase Teavivre’s rosebuds and see if that brings this into line with what I was looking for.
If you are looking for Tulsi with exotic Indian spice, you’ll dig it.
ETA: youngest tried it and loved it.
This was a nice morning cup. I did overleaf a bit, but it was a little heavy on the Ceylon for my taste. At last, I feel like I’ve made progress in my palate development when I can identify a note that I do or do not care for by region :) I am hit or miss when it comes to Ceylons, admittedly heavier on the miss side. I haven’t found many that are anything that really stands out to me with the exception of silver tips and Amba estate Ceylon. This was nice to try, thanks, Sil! Bellocq has such a lovely website… makes me want to buy a lot of tea… :)