Tea Runners

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Recent Tasting Notes

April Sipdown Alphabet Challenge: “L” Tea
This was another tea in my box that I was really looking forward to. It’s a raspberry herbal tea without hibiscus! I like this one though I do wish they had used real raspberries here instead of natural flavoring. The natural raspberry flavoring does come across as a tad medicinal. Always happy to have another caffeine-free tea in my cupboard to balance it out more. Short notes in between working on my 3 essays that are due soon.

Flavors: Medicinal, Raspberry, Wood

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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April Sipdown Alphabet Challenge: “I” Tea
So I finally have an “I” tea now for the challenge. I’ve never had a yellow tea before as far as I can remember at least. I’ve always wanted to try one though so this a nice surprise!
The description of this tea compares it to a green tea but I’m not sure I agree with that?
Don’t remember much about it other than I liked it and it resteeped well. I’ll have to write another tasting note on it with more details.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Cameron B.

I’ve had some yellow teas that remind me of green teas and some that remind me of Yunnan black teas…

derk

My experience as well.

Lexie Aleah

Interesting

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68
drank Kanchanjangha Black by Tea Runners
5879 tasting notes

Sipdown (258)

K is for…Kanchanjangha Black

I really need to say thank you to Mastress Alita because her alphabet sipdown challenge has done wonders for my sipdowns!! I think I am at 28 empties for the month already. Plus, it makes figuring out instagram content for the Sororitea Sisters blog so simple. Thank you Mastress Alita!!!

Also thank you Sil for this “K” tea. It is one of 3 K teas I have and so its nice to have some variety. This is the only caffeinated one in the mix.

Tasting it now, it’s an okay tea. Nothing particularly interesting about it. It’s a sort of standard darjeeling profile – a little on the greener side though not metallic at all. Smooth. A touch vegetal/floral. Fine. Meh. Still always fun to try new things though!

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75
drank Black Rose by Tea Runners
5879 tasting notes

Sipdown (266)

Thank you Sil for sharing this one with me. I was surprised by how much I enjoyed it. Despite the name and the many petals, this was a malty vanilla black tea. Smooth and really quite nice. Not overly floral, which is weird since its a rose tea.

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April Sipdown Alphabet Challenge: “E” Tea
Quick little write up more next time though.
This smells just like rootbeer before steeping I can’t stop sniffing it. Once steeped it definitely is a lot more of an herbal rootbeer flavor and with chamomile. It’s good but not as good as it smelled. I still will be playing around with it and really enjoying my pouch of this.

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Sipdown

This is like an earthy ginger tea with cardamom. I usually find turmeric too earthy for me but I don’t hate it here. I don’t think this is something I need more of but it’s a cozy enough cuppa for watching Into the Spiderverse with my brother-in-law tonight. Thanks Sil!

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89
drank Herbal Root Beer by Tea Runners
997 tasting notes

This tea smells absolutely amazing, exactly like root beer. The flavor is authentic too. The spearmint is so clear and delicious, and there’s almost a feeling of carbonation. I never really drank root beer, but I’m loving this tea version! It’s so refreshing – I grabbed the last servings from the tea box, and I’ll have to track down some more! It isn’t quite perfect – I feel like maybe some added vanilla or something could really make it great, but it’s quite good.

Mastress Alita

Mmm, I love rootbeer teas!

Tiffany :)

I don’t know that I have any experience with root beer teas AJRimmer and Mastress Alita but for very rare times I drink soda I do like root beer, so this must be something I didn’t realized existed in tea form and must now investigate! :D

AJRimmer

Simpson & Vail has root beer rooibos that I’m definitely trying on my next order!

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Cold Brew Sipdown (1377)!

Discovering this tea as a cold brew was both a blessing and a curse – as soon as it became a part of my stash it was out because it’s just damn good as a cold brew. Basically just straight up rootbeer, but with a bit of wintergreen poking through that delicious quality. Kind of wish I had more…

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Cold Brew!

Decided to give this one another go, even though it lost its bracket in my sipdown tournament. I think it’s much better suited to this form of preperation, and I completely see the root beer comparison that Mastress Alita made. In fact, root beer was practically all I could taste: just this wonderful translation of the wintergreen, sassafras and other ingredients in the blend.

Dangerously enjoyable with this method!

Tiffany :)

Hmm. I love rootbeer and I love wintergreen. Even though the first ingredient is “Chamomile” and one the last in the long list is “stevia” (and those two are the bain of my existence) I may just have to see if this company does samples…

Mastress Alita

I loathe chamomile and don’t taste it in the blend at all.

Roswell Strange

I tasted the chamomile hot, but not at all cold brewed.

Mastress Alita

Even hot I don’t taste it. I just taste hot rootbeer, heh.

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March Sipdown Madness

In my brackets, this tea was paired off against Kusmi’s White Anastasia.

This was actually my first time trying this tea, and based on the dry leaf aroma I had very high expectations for it. Despite an ingredient list featuring a lot of things that I’m not a fan of, the aroma of this tea is pure, robust and sweet wintergreen extract. Like, it goes HARD on the wintergreen. That seemed right up my alley!

Unfortunately, steeped the intensity just doesn’t match the dry leaf aroma. I could probably sit and smell the dry leaf for hours without tiring of it, but the steeped tea is just fine. Certainly not unpleasant, and most of those touchier (for me) ingredients don’t come out in the taste which is a relief. Just not nearly the punch of wintergreen I had anticipated. Not close.

Ultimately, I picked White Anastasia as the winner.

Mastress Alita

This is one of my favorite teas. I just get “rootbeer” from it; must be the mix of cherry bark/sarsaparilla/wintergreen. I recently sipped down my stash just because I’d rather restock fresher, but it was an enjoyable few months of evening cuppas.

DrowningMySorrows

I’m not all that familiar with Tea Runners. Do they blend this themselves? I ask because I was under the impression that it was a Montana Tea & Spice (in Missoula, MT) creation. It’s sold EVERYWHERE here under the MT Tea & Spice name but it wouldn’t really surprise me if they were trying to claim credit for someone else’s blend, honestly. Other MT Tea & Spice teas I’ve had are seriously underwhelming but people here rave about them because it’s a local company.

Mastress Alita

TeaRunners are out of Portland and wholesale tea from several different sources. TeaSource sells Evening in Missoula as well (which is where I get it) and they are out of Missouri. Considering Montana Tea & Spice has a pay-by-the-pound retail catalog on their website (and I don’t see anything else) that seems to indicate they are a wholesale supplier (that is, they sell their tea blend to other tea businesses/companies, who may resell in their own packaging, price points, and even rename the blends) which is very common in the tea industry.

DrowningMySorrows

Thanks, Mastress Alita. I get confused about the origins of some teas with the giant wholesalers and companies putting their own brand name on things.

Mastress Alita

I do too! It could also be that all three of those are getting the blend from yet another source… it can be hard to tell sometimes!

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50

Grandpa Style!

I’m pretty sure this is wholesaled from Rishi – they carry a Tuo Cha style under this same name, and I recognize several of the other pu’erh blends on the Tea Runners site as Rishi catalog offerings, like the Pu’erh Ginger and the Vanilla Mint…

I only point it out because I actually tend to really like the pu’erh offerings from Rishi; they usually feel so well balanced and the quality of the tea leaf itself is really good for wholesale. I’ve not tried these tuo cha direct from Rishi, but assuming (and that feels like a safe assumption) this is the same… it’s not good, and that caught me off guard.

For starters, the leaf itself is so finely cut/mulchy and light that it didn’t actually sink in my mug when I attempted to brew it grandpa – something pretty shocking for a compressed style pu’erh like this. So, I ended up having to basically use my front teeth as the filter for the leaf as I drank – definitely annoying. The taste!? Not off at all, but pretty boring. Not the standard I’ve come to expect.

Yeah, this was a miss for me.

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I can’t help but wonder if it’s the type of cinnamon that Tea Runners is using, or maybe just the quantity of it, but regardless NONE of the “cinnamon teas” I’ve tried from them thus far have actually tasted like cinnamon… it’s almost like they’ve forgotten it in the blend.

That said, the orange in this blend is divine. Very sweet and juicy, with a natural brightness to it that coats the whole palate following each sip. It tastes familiar, and I can’t put my finger on exactly why – but whatever the reason, I was very into that quality of the blend. It was especially nice with the sweet notes of the honeybush, too. I can’t even picture how it would have tasted with cinnamon though; that feels like it would have been a really weird juxtaposition if the cinnamon notes had come through for me.

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drank Lavenderberry by Tea Runners
11133 tasting notes

Cold Brew!

Sipping this one currently and not totally sure what to make of it. The dry leaf smells delicious; very “pastry raspberry” with a bright sweetness and hint of honey/nutty aroma from the rooibos with undertones of lavender. The taste, however, is very lavender forward. It initially compliments what is a well rounded, sweet red fruit note and a nutty and mineral note heavy rooibos profile. It’s very “Rooibos de Provence” in its flavour profile, just without the typical blueberry in that composition. However, while the taste starts quite delicious it finishes a bit too lavender heavy for me – it lingers on the back of the throat, and is a smidge perfume-y.

My gut tells me it might work a bit better hot.

Mastress Alita

Ah, I didn’t know Tea Runners sourced from TeaSource. I always really liked this one. I’m really crazy for lavender, but unless they’ve changed their ratios, my warm cuppas always tasted “too light” on the lavender to me and more like strawberries ’n cream.

Roswell Strange

It gets a bit weird in terms of tea sourcing, because there’s definitely SIGNIFICANT overlap between TeaSource and Tea Runners. One possibility is that Tea Runners is buying from TeaSource, but I think the more likely is that both Tea Runners and TeaSource are buying from the same wholesaler; at least partially, anyway. I only say that because I know that, for sure, some of the TeaSource blends are catalog – but I’m not well enough equated with the entirety of what TeaSource carries to know if it’s all coming from that wholesaler or just partially. Tea Runners definitely uses at least two wholesalers that I know of though – and one overlaps with the same one I know TeaSource is purchasing from.

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So Darjeeling teas for some reason are just not my cup of tea and unfortunately that is also the case with this one here. So this will be either for swaps or given to a friend/family member.

Preparation
1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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This tea came in my first Tea Runner’s February 2021 Classic Subscription Box that was a gift from a family member.
This one is somewhat underwhelming it’s not what I was expecting it to be. The name and description of the tea don’t really fit the tea itself.
It just tastes like a nice and smooth malty assam. Similar to that of Steven Smith’s black tea offerings. While the dry leaf does have some pretty rose petals, and rose hips added it doesn’t come through in the flavor. According to the website there are also supposed to be some heart-shaped sprinkles but I dug around in the pouch and didn’t find any. I don’t think that would necessarily change the flavor though. It’s a nice black tea if a bit simple but not something that makes me think of Valentine’s Day. It’ll be nice to have another plain black tea to drink in the mornings.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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A coworker gave me a bunch of teas from Tea Runners this week that she didn’t want, so I’ve been trying my way through some of them over the course of the week. I’ve got a handful of teas from Tea Runners from a group order with VariaTEA but this has really been my first exposure to their flavoured teas and blends…

I like the idea of this one a lot – a bold breakfast style black tea with a subtle flavour addition sounds nice! There’s roses in the blend, which I’m into, and even a few cinnamon heart candies scattered sparsely throughout. The taste though!? Underwhelming – to put it sharply. The black tea itself isn’t actually bad, though it’s not exciting either, but there’s really just no flavour to the cup – and while I wasn’t expecting a lot I was expecting some. It’s just a touch sweet, and maybe a fleeting hint of cinnamon in the top of the sip. Sadly this just felt flat.

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drank Sweet Kisses by Tea Runners
650 tasting notes

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71
drank Black Rose by Tea Runners
12347 tasting notes

Sipdown! The rest of this is over to VariaTEA for her and roswell to share. I suprisingly enjoyed this one more than i thought i might. I don’t like floral teas but this was light on floral and overall was pretty tasty.

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71
drank Black Rose by Tea Runners
12347 tasting notes

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71
drank Black Rose by Tea Runners
12347 tasting notes

Funny that the other two reviews of this tea don’t speak highly of it while i, who HATES floral tea found it actually kinda nice. Not sure what possessed me to pick this one in my latest tea runners box but i did. While there are far too many flowers in this one for my liking and the aroma from the brewed tea was too much “rose,” the actual brew was kind of a nice vanilla rose black tea. I think it helped though too that i did NOT brew this for the recommended 4 mins, opting instead for 3.

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80

The initial smell was good. Filled with deep earthy notes. The wet leaf smells so heavy! Slight black licorice along with heavy rain notes. The storm approaches! Tastes of compost filled with decaying leaves and twigs and clean dirt. (Apparently, I had a penchant for dirt when I was younger so my palate must know it well). It is smooth on the palate with a unique sweet earthy aftertaste.

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Tearunners really hyped up this tea (they seem to be good at that).
This isn’t my favorite. I’m getting notes of tobacco, honey, and savory miso broth. Unfortunately, I didn’t really care for any of the offerings in my first TeaRunners box, so probably won’t be continuing with the subscription.

Flavors: Honey, Salty, Tobacco, Vegetable Broth, Vegetables

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