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75
drank Cocoa Rooibos by Yawn
187 tasting notes

Yawn Advent Calendar: Day 20

The cocoa/chocolate flavor here is not too bad, despite the dry leaf having that “stale mocha” smell I associate with chocolate tea. Once it’s steeped, it smells and tastes pretty decent — especially after adding a splash of oat milk. That gives it a little body and seems to round oat the cocoa flavor. The rooibos base is surprisingly absent — I say “surprisingly” because all the other rooibos blends in the Yawn calendar have had that medicinal, syrupy aftertaste.

Yeah, I’m not mad about this one!

Flavors: Chocolate, Cocoa, Coffee, Mocha

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67
drank Cardamom by Yawn
187 tasting notes

Yawn Advent Calendar: Day 19

Not much to say about this one. It does indeed smell and taste like cardamom, although I was sad that there weren’t any actual cardamom pods/seeds in the blend. The black tea base is pretty weak and unobtrusive; I’d like a little bit more flavor there.

It’s fine but I wouldn’t seek it out again; I’d be more inclined to add cardamom to a favorite black tea of my own.

Flavors: Cardamom

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72
drank Cranberry Apple by Yawn
187 tasting notes

Yawn Advent Calendar: Day 18

I was not thrilled to find a fruity hibiscus tisane and put off drinking it for a few days. But it’s actually pretty good, all things considered! The tartness works with this flavor profile, and I actually am getting cranberry notes followed by a mellow honey-like sweetness from the apple. It doesn’t really excite me, but it’s fine for what it is.

Flavors: Apple, Cranberry, Hibiscus, Honey, Tart

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70
drank Chilly Willy Chai by Yawn
187 tasting notes

Yawn Advent Calendar: Day 17

I’m wrapping up the first semester of a part-time grad program, and this morning I banged out a draft of my final paper. I was powered mostly by a pot of this chai.

Despite a robust ingredient list, most of the spices here fade to the background behind pepper, ginger, and an unexpected creaminess. Yeah. It’s like a peppery caramel on a weak black tea base. I wonder how it would work with chili pepper instead of peppercorn — I feel like that would make sense, given the name!

As it is, I… weirdly kinda like it?

Flavors: Caramel, Ginger, Pepper, Peppercorn, Thin

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65
drank Capputtino by Yawn
187 tasting notes

Yawn Advent Calendar: Day 16

OK, this is ostensibly a coffee-flavored rooibos blend! Interesting! Most of the coffee flavorings in tea tend to remind me of old, stale coffee, not a fresh, aromatic cup. But the coffee in this one actually seems decent. Unfortunately, I’m barely getting any of it, either in small or taste. It’s more a suggestion of coffee.

That said, I can see what they were going for with the cappuccino inspiration. The sweetness of rooibos actually works alongside a gentle creamy, almost caramel flavor to suggest frothed milk. But every flavor is just SO dang light — it needs to be bolder!

Points for trying!

Flavors: Caramel, Coffee, Creamy, Rooibos

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45
drank Frosted Fruits by Yawn
187 tasting notes

Yawn Advent Calendar: Day 15

This tea is woefully misnamed. I went in expecting something light and, um, fruity, with sweet, creamy notes of vanilla frosting. Instead I got a floral nightmare! Maybe it’s the amaranth petals at work, but some kind of alchemy is making this blend taste like rose with just a hint of cinnamon, which is not a particularly nice combination. A real disappointment.

Also, the website suggests that this one is meant to evoke “sweet pear and plum.” OK, so it’s like a plum pudding blend? Fine… but name it as such! And also fix it, because it tastes of neither pear nor plum.

Flavors: Cinnamon, Drying, Floral, Perfume, Rose

ashmanra

Ashman says pear tastes floral to him, and while he likes jasmine and dislikes rose…and really dislikes pear because he says it is a floral he doesn’t like. I wonder if certain pear flavorings are more floral than others?

Kelmishka

Ahh, that could definitely be it!

Nattie

I assumed they meant wintery frost rather than frosting frost, so assumed winter fruits, but I wouldn’t exactly class pear as a wintery fruit either!

Kelmishka

Haaaa, duh, of course it’s winter frost! :D

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85
drank Sleigh Ride Tea Toddy by Yawn
187 tasting notes

Yawn Advent Calendar: Day 14

Ooh, this one’s a winner in my book! A smooth black tea base with lots juicy, fruity notes. I’m not quite picking out apple specifically, but I think I do get some pomegranate! There’s also a light creaminess that’s very pleasant and almost marshmallow-y, although overall I’m finding the blend just a tad thin.

I really appreciate that there aren’t any traditional winter spices in this one; it’s a nice palate cleanser from the many other holiday blends that are inevitably heavy on the spices.

I’m not sure this screams “hot toddy!” to me, but then again, a hot toddy is what you make of it! I bet it’d be delicious with a dash of whiskey or even maple liqueur.

Flavors: Creamy, Fruit Punch, Fruity, Juicy, Marshmallow, Pomegranate, Thin, Vanilla

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57
drank Spiced Tulsi by Yawn
187 tasting notes

Yawn Advent Calendar: Day 13

This blend had the tiniest, most adorable little star anise… pods? fruit? …I’ve ever seen! There’s lots of good stuff going on in here, but somehow the flavor was weirdly sweet and herby with a spicy afterburn from the pink peppercorns. I also swear I saw chili flakes in my cup, but they’re not listed in the ingredients. Maybe they were just crushed peppercorn bits.

Hmm, this one reminded me a little bit of that accursed Sweet Ginger blend, actually. Not a fan.

Flavors: Ginger, Herbs, Spicy, Sweet

Nattie

Alexa tells me that star anise pods are pericarps, but I don’t know what that means! XD

Kelmishka

Alexa, explain what pericarps are! :D

Nattie

Oh no, I looked it up and now it’s weird…

Kelmishka

Hahaha, you’re not into ovary fruit?!

Nattie

I don’t know why, but it makes me uncomfortable haha.

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68
drank Buddy's Eggnog by Yawn
187 tasting notes

Yawn Advent Calendar: Day 12

Hmm, this one smells more noggy than it tastes! It’s odd to me that the blend doesn’t include any nutmeg, because to me that’s the quintessential eggnog spice — not cinnamon or ginger! And there’s really no creaminess to evoke the rich mouthfeel of a ’nog.

That said, this is still pleasant enough. But 52Teas’ Coconut Eggnog does it better. ;)

Flavors: Cinnamon, Spices

Nattie

No nutmeg no nog!

Kelmishka

Words to live by!

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65
drank Ruby Amaretto by Yawn
187 tasting notes

Yawn Advent Calendar: Day 11

Turns out that the syrupy, medicinal rooibos favored by Yawn can only be countered by a marzipan-y, amaretto-y flavoring! I don’t love this combination, but it’s not as overwhelmingly sweet as I’d feared it might be.

Flavors: Amaretto, Marzipan, Rooibos, Sweet

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70
drank Cookie by Yawn
187 tasting notes

Yawn Advent Calendar: Day 10

This was a tasty enough blend, but I didn’t really get cookie vibes? Just a mildly malty black breakfast tea.

Flavors: Malty

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63
drank Chocolate Orange by Yawn
187 tasting notes

Yawn Advent Calendar: Day 9

My partner doesn’t drink a lot of tea, but when he does, I like to play “tea concierge” to pick out a blend I think suits his mood/taste. Last night we landed on this one because he wanted something caffeinated and seasonal. I was tempted to dig into my stash for a more traditional winter spice blend but then swerved to go with the coordinating day’s advent choice. I think chocolate oranges are nice and wintery!

Alas, it’s nothing special. It’s got that artificial chocolate liqueur flavor rather than deep, malty, rich chocolate. And then the orange… well, it’s barely there. This isn’t BAD, but it’s also not… much of anything.

(As for my partner, he’s congested and couldn’t really taste it, but he said it was fine for his purposes!)

Flavors: Chocolate

Nattie

I always associate chocolate oranges with Christmas, I think because we used to get one in our stockings as children

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67
drank Pumpkin Whoopie by Yawn
187 tasting notes

Yawn Advent Calendar: Day 7

Having accomplished a bit of schoolwork first thing in the morning, I’m taking it super easy today: wrapping presents, watching Netflix, and drinking gallons of tea! Maybe I’ll finally catch up on all my advents… heh.

This smelled really nice coming out of the packet, like a baked chocolate cake! Brewed up, it’s fine, but nothing special. I don’t get any pumpkin, just a strong, astringent black tea base with a hint of cinnamon and maybe a bit of pastry. Again, fine, but not as promised and not very memorable.

Flavors: Astringent, Cake, Cinnamon, Pastries

Nattie

That sounds like a good day!

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55
drank Movie Night Popcorn by Yawn
187 tasting notes

Yawn Advent Calendar: Day 8

This one is 100% buttery red rooibos. I’m not getting any grain notes or toastiness that might be evocative of popcorn, either in the scent or flavor. Kind of a shame, because this could be a fun blend if done well!

Thus far, Yawn’s rooibos blends haven’t impressed me. They use a really syrupy, medicinal rooibos that overtakes the other flavors. Not a fan. :(

Flavors: Butter, Medicinal, Rooibos, Syrupy

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57
drank Toffee Apple by Yawn
187 tasting notes

Yawn Advent Calendar: Day 6

I’m a total sucker for anything caramel/toffee, and I love apples, so I’m into the concept of this one!

So, there’s a pleasant toffee flavor, similar to the one from the Candy Cane Popcorn blend, but unfortunately the hibiscus just totally takes over! The tart hibiscus also obliterates any apple flavoring that might be here; even though apple is the first ingredient, I really don’t taste it.

I feel like they could call this one “Sour Toffee Apple” or “Toffee-Covered Sour Apple” and get away with it, but as is, this one totally lacks the candy sweetness of a toffee apple. :(

Flavors: Hibiscus, Sour, Tart, Toffee

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83
drank Candy Cane Popcorn by Yawn
187 tasting notes

Yawn Advent Calendar: Day 5

OK, this is another oddball from Yawn! But… in a good way. I got that same almost plastic-y scent in the dry leaf that I did from Santa’s Milk & Cookies, but the flavor profile is pretty different. There’s the same assertive black base with a hint of soapiness, but in this one it’s layered with just a bit of toastiness from the popped rice and just a bit of sweetness from the apple bits. But the dominant flavor is a sort of burnt caramel, which I dig. It’s exceptionally smooth and mellow and definitely reads more as caramel corn than candy cane — there’s no mint whatsoever! Which isn’t a BAD thing, but I don’t really understand the name. Just call it Caramel Popcorn or Candied Popcorn or something! Then add an adjective like “Cozy” and, boom, it fits into your advent theme. Heh.

I like this one a lot for what it is, even though the name is misleading. I have never made a tea latte but I bet it would be delightful as such!

Flavors: Burnt Sugar, Caramel, Caramelized Sugar, Sweet, Toasty

Nattie

Cozy Caramel Popcorn is 100% something I would drink! I also highly recommend trying a tea latte (:

Kelmishka

Now I want to make ACTUAL caramel corn! :D

Nattie

Do itttt!!!!! :D

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45
drank Sweet Ginger by Yawn
187 tasting notes

Yawn Advent Calendar: Day 4

Oh dear. I don’t understand this tea. The ginger is nearly nonexistent; instead it’s a mostly medicinal rooibos mess, with extra sweetness from the blackberry leaves. And a mysterious note of orange? I don’t even know.

Urgh, it’s not great.

Flavors: Medicinal, Orange, Sweet

Kelmishka

Hahah, exactly.

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74

Yawn Advent Calendar: Day 3

OK, so the dry leaf has this weird, almost plastic-y smell that weirds me out a little bit. But then in the brewed cup, it transforms into something that is definitely reminiscent of a sweet milk — but not in a sour dairy way, just an evocative, milk-and-cookies kind of way. Like malty cereal milk, maybe? Of course I say all this not having had dairy milk in 13+ years, so!

The flavor is interesting! In a good way. There’s a definitely cookie note to it, maybe like Oreos? I think I oversteeped it the first time, so the black base was the strongest element of that first cuppa — very drying and sharp. My second steep was maybe a little weak. I don’t think I managed to coax the perfect flavor out of this one, and I wish I had more so I could try again — it’s really interesting!

Flavors: Cookie, Drying, Malty, Milk, Milk Chocolate, Oreo Cookie

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63
drank Apple Crumble by Yawn
187 tasting notes

Yawn Advent Calendar: Day 2

Gahhh, I am so behind on my advents! Missing those first three days was killer. And then I procrastinated on trying this one because I just KNEW it was going to be tart hibiscus nonsense and I was not looking forward to it.

Steeped it up this evening while watching Murder, She Wrote. It’s better than I expected. Does it taste like apple crumble? Not in a million years. But it’s also less tart than it could’ve been, and there are some pleasant warming notes of clove and cinnamon. I wish I got at least SOME apple, though! :(

Flavors: Cinnamon, Clove, Hibiscus, Juicy, Tart

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85
drank Black Forest by Yawn
187 tasting notes

Yawn Advent Calendar: Day 1

Treated myself to this calendar because I’ve wanted to try this company for a while! I also got one for my sister so we can do it together (from afar), since her birthday is at the end of November.

I wasn’t totally sold on this blend based on the scent alone — it has that not-quite-chocolate scent that sometimes turns me off and often translates to a lackluster flavor. But the brewed cup is actually delicious! It’s got big chocolate-covered cherry vibes, moreso than cake, but that’s not a bad thing. The cherry is super present and juicy, much more than I’d expected. I steeped it for about 4 minutes and it’s on the verge of being oversteeped, so I’ll probably adjust for my second cup. I might also try it with some NotMilk, because I imagine that’d round out the flavors nicely.

Overall, a great start to this calendar and a really yummy dessert tea.

Flavors: Cherry, Chocolate

AJRimmer

I had this calendar a few years back (when they were called Tea Revv) and considered buying it again, but I haven’t yet. It was definitely a mixed bag, but there were a few in there that I really enjoyed!

Kelmishka

AJRimmer, yeah, I’m curious how it’ll balance out! My sister is further along than I am and she’s enjoyed everything so far.

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drank Buddy's Eggnog by Yawn
200 tasting notes

This blend comprises black tea, cinnamon, ginger, and clove. These are not what occur to me when I think of ’nog. The cinnamon, maybe. But ginger and clove? Nah.

Flavors: Clove

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML
gmathis

Nutmeg is the only other spice that comes to mind when I think about eggnog. With ginger and cloves, you’ve got pumpkin pie without the pumpkin!

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72
drank Ruby Amaretto by Yawn
200 tasting notes

I love amaretto, so I was very happy to see it in a blend, but I’m not entirely sold on the rooibos base. It’s nice, but I think I’d like a black-tea base better.

Flavors: Amaretto, Rooibos

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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80
drank Cookie by Yawn
200 tasting notes

Once again, Yawn take a bunch of flowers and turn them into cookies. I support this sorcery 100%.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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drank Chocolate Orange by Yawn
200 tasting notes

I enjoy chocolate + orange, but I prefer keeping things simple. Tea, chocolate, orange. I didn’t find the basic formula improved by the addition of more ingredients. It could be that my palate isn’t sophisticated enough to appreciate it. =)

Flavors: Chocolate, Orange

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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