Citizen Tea

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79
drank Black Pearls by Citizen Tea
4486 tasting notes

I guess my previous cups of this were at work/unlogged. Ah well. It’s not a stellar tea; tastes a bit on the lighter side of what I’m used to from black pearls, although the familiar chocolatey, malty flavours are present. I only used 4 pearls, though, for an 8oz cup, so it might be a little underleafed (I have 5 pearls left for the last cup).

I’m not sure if it’s the power of suggestion, but I just read a tasting note mentioning cigars, and I swear I also tasted a bit of that acrid, ashy taste as well (not really in a bad way). Not bad, but I’d probably go for a different version next time. I think YS and Teavivre both have black pearls; likely many other companies as well.

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47

When I realized I had an English Breakfast that wasn’t just a sampler, I was like, “Oh hey! More black tea for my hair rinses!” Because yes, that is a thing I do. I brew up black tea with pure sage leaf and a bit of apple cider vinegar and dump it on my head. So this is likely going to be a… uh… rinse down? once I’ve used up the leaf taking showers. But then I realized I hadn’t logged this, so I was like, “Oh, I suppose I should make a cuppa while I still have the leaf and do that.” So I’m doing that.

This is a CTC English Breakfast blend that is Assam, Ceylon, and Sumatran teas. My favorite breakfast blends always include a bit of Chinese black in the mix, so I already know this isn’t going to be one I want to “hang onto” (I’m pretty sure it’s between Steven Smith Teamaker’s “British Brunch” and Bird & Blend’s “Great British Cuppa” for the English Breakfast blend I plan to eventually permanently stock in my cupboard of all the ones I’ve sampled that best match my personal tastes), but I’m still willing to give it a sample. I used 2.8g for 350ml of water and a 2 min. steep. The aroma is malty but has some strong citrusy notes, a bit moreso than many other breakfast blends I’ve tried.

This is a strong tea, maybe the strongest I’ve had other than the Whittards of Chelsea blend I sampled… it is at least tied with it. Is it from the Sumatran black tea? I don’t think I’ve ever had a breakfast blend that included that type of black tea in it before. But this is definitely more robust than my particular preferences. It has a quite bitter taste to it, and is very astringent. I get notes of malt, burnt toast, lemon citrus, and black pepper.

I definitely had to finish off this cuppa British style, with a bit of honey and some almond milk. It was too dark and bitter for me otherwise. And I’ll definitely be finishing off the rest of the bag as a “rinse down.” Black tea is great for shedding issues!

Flavors: Astringent, Bitter, Black Pepper, Burnt, Citrus, Lemon, Malt, Toast

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 0 sec 2 g 12 OZ / 350 ML

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drank Hemp by Citizen Tea
8325 tasting notes

I can’t help but wonder if the selling point for this is more so the ‘novelty’ aspect of drinking hemp tea or if it’s the supposed wellness/health benefits?

I mean, it’s got to be one of the two because I find it impossible to believe that someone would be into this for the taste alone? It’s like a sour, grassy/spinach-y hay taste that is so, so unpleasant. More tolerable as it cooled down; but still not good. But hey, it’s another number on the list of things I’ve tried!

Mastress Alita

I’m so glad someone tried this, because I’d been wondering about it, what with everyone telling me CBD/hemp is oh-so-great for migraines (I tried the oil before without much success though) and then I started getting a bunch of adverts for this tea and kept thinking, “That has to taste like shit, right?” Glad to know I wasn’t wrong in thinking that!

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93
drank Tiramisu by Citizen Tea
555 tasting notes

Trick or Treat!

Augh, so exhausted tonight. For the last several days I’ve had to wake early to be able to call a pharmaceutical company right when they turn their phones on before my shift at the library starts, just to be transferred around, disconnected, and get no answers. My lunch breaks have been more of the same, with lots of sitting on hold and pretty much starving myself. But today, finally, after first being denied by my insurance, I now have pre-auth approved insurance for Aimovig and have Aimovig approval for two free auto-injectors and co-pay assistance to follow, which should lower the $100 co-pay from my insurance to $5 a month. This is a brand-new treatment for chronic migraine, a once-a-month injectable antibody that bonds to the CGRP receptors in the brain to help with migraine prevention, and I’ve been following the studies on it since 2005. It just now got FDA approval this year. It has been such an exhausting battle, but I’m just so happy to finally get to try this stuff…

And now that I’ve bored everyone with personal details, tea! I got this sampler from a Citizen Tea order last January and just felt like trying it as my nightly herbal. It brews up a bright yellow, which makes me a little surprised that I’m actually getting a coffee liquor aroma from the brew. I’m also noticing some bittersweet, dark chocolate and tart green apple from the warm scent coming off the cup.

Oh! The aroma had me expecting something on the bittersweet side, but this tea is surprisingly sweet. It’s actually very caramelly, which I was not expecting at all! The base is making me think of a light caramel/toffee that has a sweet apple note to it, and the mid-sip pulls in some subtle hints of a lighter milk chocolate/cocoa flavor and coffee, but they are more subdued than the aroma lets on. The flavor that lingers on my tongue is more of a caramel/butterscotch flavor.

I wouldn’t say it reminds me in a major way of tiramisu, but I can see what they were going for, and even though subtle, the flavor notes are there. Love that slight coffee aroma from the cup every time I take a sip. And as a dessert tea, it is very tasty; I do tend to be generous with my leaf with chunky herbals like this, but the flavor here is very good, and is really hitting the spot as a sweet-tooth indulgement before bed. And there are just days where one really needs that. Today was definitely one of those days for me.

Flavors: Apple, Butterscotch, Caramel, Cocoa, Coffee, Sweet, Toffee

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 15 OZ / 450 ML
mrmopar

Glad you had some good luck! Hope it will help as migraines suck!!

Mastress Alita

I have grown pretty cynical over the years having tried everything from every prescription treatment to every homeopathic treatment to everything in-between and snake oil for good measure, but I’m going to remain hopeful this time. :-) It was a long battle this time but got there in the end! Thank you!

derk

I’m sorry it was such an ordeal to get the medicine you need but so glad to hear your persistence has literally paid off. Hoping the new med works for you and increases your quality of life! Also, this tea sounds really good.

evol-ving

Good to hear of this breakthrough. It’s so difficult to have to fight for what you need to potentially heal/cope with chronic health issues. A friend is on this merry go round currently, waiting for approval forb
Botox injections for migraines.
, hoping that something will eventually work, or at least, somewhat.

tea-sipper

I hope this helps your migraines!

Mastress Alita

Thanks guys!

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75

Sipdown (643)!

Alright – I’ve been putting off writing tasting notes that were sipdowns all week because there’s still a handful of teas that I got from VariaTEA last Tuesday that I haven’t been able to add to my cupboard yet because their Steepster pages are stuck on the mobile view/they’re experiencing that ‘cacheing glitch’ but I’ve got all of them but two added in now so… fuck it!

Just know that my cupboard number right now isn’t perfectly reflective of the number of teas I own – it’s two teas off. (I’m sure this bugs ME more than anyone else)

Anyway, I received this one a while back from Kittenna – I was storing it in a little box of other samples wrapped in tin foil because they all have REALLY strong aromas and because I was storing it in that box away from the rest of my samples I forgot about it for a long while. It’s quite nice, though! I don’t know that it’s the kind of thing that I would personally end up buying from Citizen because the chocolate notes are really strong and I don’t tend to lean towards chocolate teas in a way that warrants me having them around in larger quantities, but it’s a very nice rich milk chocolate note accented by sweet, toasted hazelnuts. It gives off this decadent chocolatey ‘brittle’ sort of taste! Very full bodied and robust, and the mouthfeel almost seems thicker and more velvety too. There is just a hint of astringency in the finish, but it’s light enough that to me it just reminds me of the natural dryness that you get from the ‘skins’ on most nuts.

I like this one! It’s a nice dessert tea.

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36
drank Blueberry by Citizen Tea
8325 tasting notes

Iced Tea Sipdown (551)!

An easy sipdown, and one more tea under my belt. I have high standards for blueberry black teas – they tend to be some of my favourite flavour pairings. This one wasn’t great though; very astringent with an almost bark-like black tea flavour. It had very little blueberry flavour to it, even after I added a pump of agave to the last half of it to boost up the fruity aspects. I did very little, apart from mellowing some astringency.

Boo.

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drank Sleep Well by Citizen Tea
561 tasting notes

Tastes mostly like licorice and peppermint. I will enjoy my cup but I am glad it was only a sample.

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drank Calming by Citizen Tea
561 tasting notes

There were tiny bits of this tea and it got through my Davidstea filter which is usually pretty good at keeping stuff inside it. I do not like the taste of this tea.

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drank Fit Active by Citizen Tea
561 tasting notes

The herbal taste is strong with this one. Too strong for my tastes-glad it was a sample and I do not have to drink another cup of it.

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drank Memory Enhancer by Citizen Tea
561 tasting notes

I am definitely tasting mostly mint in this blend followed by a hint of licorice. I am loving mint and licorice together. I am also discovering that I am a huge fan of herbal teas. This one is a part of their Wellness tea blends.

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drank Pina Colada by Citizen Tea
561 tasting notes

When I opened the package, I was hoping for a nice pina colada scent. Instead, I got a big whiff of cranberry (which is weird because it is not listed in the ingredients list). It also tastes a lot like cranberries with coconut. It is so bitter too. This has got to be the worst Pina Colada tea that I have ever tasted.

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69

Pre-birthday cuppa. My long-time friend who is now also a coworker makes the best cookies, and he knows my love affair with Nutella, and always uses it as an ingredient in the batch of birthday cookies he makes me and brings me at work. Today is birthday cookie day (this year are some yin-yang peanut butter-Nutella cookies! Mmmm!), since this Saturday (St. Patrick’s Day) didn’t fall on my Saturday schedule. So I grabbed this chocolate hazelnut sampler I picked up from Citizen Tea to accompany!

It’s good! The base is chocolately, but has a warm nuttiness to it, too. It’s very smooth and sweet. I think my only issue is it that I wish the tea felt a little fuller and the flavor a little richer; I’m getting the impression that I’m going to have to double-leaf this to get the kind of experience that I’m currently craving out of this, based on my initial cup. Some decent flavor notes are there, they just aren’t popping enough to really wow me, and the base feels a little weak. I’m of the personal opinion one shouldn’t need to use extra leaf for an average cup, so I’d say that’s my one complaint with this otherwise tasty tea.

Flavors: Chocolate, Nutty, Smooth, Sweet

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

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55
drank Yerba Mate by Citizen Tea
555 tasting notes

Green March! Since this mate isn’t roasted… eh, I say it counts! (May not be green tea, but it is most certainly a very green leaf!) Honestly I’ve always been too sissy to try plain yerba mate, because I’ve read everywhere that it tastes terrible and is very much an acquired taste, so I’ve strictly stuck to roasted mates and flavored mate blends, but this little sampler came with my Citizen Tea order, and I decided to make a large cup this morning and do a quick sipdown.

Honestly, it wasn’t at all what I was expecting (to be fair, from everything I’d read about the taste being terrible, I was expecting it to be unpalatable, and it wasn’t at all). Perhaps there are much stronger mates out there, but this was a quite easy drink for me, and I didn’t find it unpleasant at all. I’ve heard the word “bitter” used to describe it often, like coffee, and while I can kind of see the coffee comparisons (especially from what I’ve had of the roasted variety) it was far too vegetal for me to really get my head around that from this plain green variety. Really all I was tasting was a very mild astringency in the finish, but I’d say it was far less than I get from a really strong black tea breakfast blend, and didn’t really come off to me as particularly bitter. What I was getting was a strong resemblance to gunpowder green tea. It had a very similar body and mouthfeel, and the flavor had this vegetal, grassy/hay taste with hints of tobacco and smoke, which is the same sort of taste I get when I’m drinking gunpowder greens. There was also a sort of minty flavor to it, but less of a brisk, pepperminty taste and more of the menthol, and far more subdued.

All in all it was a pleasant cup, but smoky flavors aren’t my favorite, so I think I’ll stick to roasted mates and flavored blends after all. Still glad I got to try a plain mate, since it is something I’ve been curious about, but not the sort of thing I’d be inclined to spend my own money on.

Flavors: Astringent, Grass, Hay, Menthol, Smoke, Tobacco

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 6 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

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72
drank Chai Mate by Citizen Tea
555 tasting notes

I first made this tea last week when I had a very early morning meeting to take on a car trip; I made a big thermos of it the night before, two parts tea and one part milk, put it in the fridge to ice over night, and was surprised that my thermos was so powerful it kept the tea from fully chilling over night, so it still had a slight, lukewarm edge to it! It wasn’t bad, but hardly the best iced tea I’ve ever made, and now I know I’ll have to make my “roadtrip” tea in a mason jar and move it over to the thermos the next morning, even if it is a little more inconvenient.

This morning I made a proper warm cuppa. I was too much a zombie on the day of my twilight hour car trip to try to really appreciate the tea beyond, “yerba mate… give me CAFFEINE!” I enjoy roasted mate for having such a smooth, roasted base, free of the astringency of black teas, so I actually really like this as the base of a chai. The most recent chais I’ve tried have been very unbalanced, but this chai is very well-rounded; I don’t find any particular spice overpowering, they all blend well together, and the spices don’t leave a lingering or unpleasant heat in my mouth (and I’m a very spice-sensitive person!) so the tea goes down very smooth. This is the sort of chai I can drink plain, without having to add a ton of milk and sugar, because the spices are blended so well. However, it still takes milk and sugar well if preferred that way, as I drank it iced and latte-style the other morning and found it enjoyable that way (despite being lukewarm) as well.

A solid chai if looking for a mate alternative!

Flavors: Cardamon, Cinnamon, Clove, Ginger, Pepper, Roasted, Smooth, Spicy, Sweet

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 6 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

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84
drank Chocolate Hazelnut by Citizen Tea
4486 tasting notes

Sipdown! But literally no recollection of what I thought while drinking it. I’m guessing it was a reasonably-flavoured black, but nothing that stood out, otherwise I would have remembered. This is likely age-related, as I previously quite enjoyed this tea.

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84
drank Chocolate Hazelnut by Citizen Tea
4486 tasting notes

Yeah this was delicious. A tasty, sweet, rich flavoured black. Could be a little more hazelnutty but I was pretty pleased.

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drank Detox Evening by Citizen Tea
561 tasting notes

I am really loving herbals lately and this one doesn’t disappoint. I am tasting mostly licorice and peppermint (a lovely combo together in my opinion). I can also slightly taste the green tea (decaffeinated btw). A lovely blend of ingredients in this cup of tea.

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87
drank Strawberry Basil by Citizen Tea
2747 tasting notes

(this review is for the iced tea pitcher pouch)

About 20 minutes in a 1.5 L container. The teabag pouch was about 2-3 times larger than most teabags, and you could tell it had brewed up something wonderfully flavourful because it smelled like berries and juice.

The primary taste is the fresh strawberries. It tastes like a strawberry smoothie-very bright and no artificial taste. The hints of basil are well hidden, and the tea is flavourful (tea flavour) but not very green/grassy. For people who like fruity iced teas but hate hibiscus, this is a good choice. I didn’t expect to like this blend, but I actually love it.

Flavors: Fruity, Herbs, Strawberry, Tannin

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drank Rooibos Chocolate by Citizen Tea
561 tasting notes

This was pretty good as a latte. Got a faint banana flavor mingled with a slightly stronger chocolate and rooibos taste. It cut down the sweetness of the rich chocolate I had with it so that’s a plus. I think this tea would have been awesome if the banana and chocolate flavors were more intense than they were in this cup.

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drank Chai by Citizen Tea
561 tasting notes

This is a mild chai-the spices are so weak. I will finish my cup but I am so glad this was a sample pack and I used it all up to make this latte.

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83
drank Snow Dragon by Citizen Tea
1759 tasting notes

Definitely vegetal with a nice soft yet delicate base. Not as crisp as white peony, but there is a slight clear mineralish tinge that I really enjoy. Definitely a mood tea. I quite enjoyed this. Only two infusions and I forgot to write down my notes.

Also, the leaves were made dragonwell style, super flat and long. Very pretty!

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44
drank Tiramisu by Citizen Tea
652 tasting notes

Sipdown that was sitting in my cupboard for probably a year. I didn’t care for this at all. I find it sour instead of desserty. Also coffee and apples? Not sure how those two things can be expected to combine to mimic tiramisu.

I’m glad it’s gone now.

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85
drank Keemun Royal Op by Citizen Tea
1759 tasting notes

After my bad experience with the David’s tea version of Keemum, I approached this tea with a bit of wariness… I find they can be boring, for my tastes sometimes and others they really hit my sweet spot. This time? Perfection.
Complex, bready, malty, noms.
I made it through six infusions, combining two at a time in a large mug. The last two were pretty weak so I let it sit there for an hour. End result? weak… but the aftertaste of sweet molasses is pretty awesome.

Fjellrev

Six is uber impressive!

Indigobloom

The last two I wouldn’t go for again, unless I overleaf more. But it was far more than I expected :P

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Meant to review this one there other day, so this is going off of memory. I made this as a latte with my hazelnut agave and it was pretty good. It was a bit strong and a bit too sweet as I went a bit nuts on the sweetener, but whatever. I did enjoy it. I’m not sure if I Would get this one again or not…

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