Spiced Brandy Shou Mei

Tea type
White Tea
Anise Seeds, Black Peppercorn, Cardamom, Cinnamon, Clove, Natural Flavours, Organic Flavours, Shou Mei White Tea
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Edit tea info Last updated by Pyroxy
Average preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 4 min, 0 sec 10 oz / 303 ml

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18 Tasting Notes View all

From 52teas

This week’s tea is a spiced brandy flavored shou mei with cinnamon, cardamom, clove, black peppercorns and a little anise seed. It’s like a hard apple cider without the apple, or maybe you’d rather think of it as a brandy flavored white chai. However you think of it, it’s a spicy cup of warming goodness, guaranteed to take the chill out of your bones on a crisp autumn day.

Our Tea of the Week for the week of October 1, 2012

About 52teas View company

At 52teas.com, you will find unique, hand-blended artisan loose leaf teas: a new limited edition creation every week of the year. We pride ourselves on offering truly unique, one-of-a-kind tea blends that you won’t find anywhere else.

18 Tasting Notes

4843 tasting notes


The dry leaf smells like bubblegum. The spices aren’t real dominant in the dry leaf. But, once brewed, the spices really come forward, I SMELL ANISE! Yay!

Unlike some others who dislike Anise, I love LOVE love it. LOVE it. I love licorice, I love Anise, I love Fennel. It rocks my socks. It made me put this song on: http://youtu.be/HTTAPCUtbc8 and I don’t know why.

And I love that Anise is a strong component in this. The cinnamon, cardamom and clove seem to be sort of equally balanced, with the anise stepping just outside of their neat little box. Coloring outside the lines. The brandy flavoring is also strong, and as the tea cools slightly, I find that I like this even better than when it’s served hot. I like it sort of warm, not cold, not hot… warm. It warms me up better than when its hot, and it tastes like a warm, mulled brandy. Except that they put some extra anise in the mulled spices. And that makes me happy.


Ooooh I love licorice/anise


Sounds amazing!! I love anise too. Made anisette cookies this weekend. They are delicious. Here’s a link if you’re interested. http://www.italian-dessert-recipes.com/anisette_cookies.html

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6107 tasting notes

Bleh. Unfortunately, another bust with this tea, this time due to the anise. When I opened the packet, I was hit with an overwhelming licorice smell. I guess I had interpreted “a little” anise seed to mean just that, and was expecting it to be very mild (say, like in Butterbeer, where it was nearly indistinguishable). I drank this cup quickly, so can’t really remember any nuances in flavours, except that behind the overly present licorice flavour, there was a nice light spiced chai that I actually quite liked. I admit that I definitely did find this one easier to drink than Graveyard Mist, and when the licorice faded (it was more of an initial flavour), the cardamom and other spices left quite a nice aftertaste. Can’t say I’ve ever had brandy, so I have no idea if it was true in flavour to that…

Also, there was a weird smell emanating from the bag when I opened it, and the tea when freshly brewed. It was a familiar non-food aroma, but I couldn’t put my finger on it. My roommate said it reminded her of play make-up she used to use as a child, but I don’t think that’s what I’m getting.

Anyways, do not pick this one up if you have an aversion to licoricey aromas/flavours or chais (stupid Autocorrect tried to correct that to “chaos” three times!) but for those of you who do like such flavours, I imagine it’s quite good! Rating withheld because of a hated ingredient and therefore heavy bias.

195 °F / 90 °C
Invader Zim

I thought about getting this one and am now glad I didn’t considering my dislike for licorice.


Funny, autocorrect always tries to capitalize the word “chai” for me. It’s not chai, it’s Chai! Silly human! (At least, that’s what I imagine it saying). ;)


Hahaha, one of the biggest annoyances for me with autocorrect is when I’m trying to say I’m working in the lab, and it autocorrects to LAN. (Perhaps I’m actually typing lan to begin with, but…. it doesn’t need to capitalize it! i do know btw what LAN stands for, but still…)


Local Area Network. Basically, it just means WIFI, I think. Like when I was a gamer in college, we would have “LAN parties,” which meant that everyone would bring over their laptops and game in the same room.

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807 tasting notes

This one is not for me. I am not a fan of the Anise unless only slight but this is far too much for me. I am sending back to the lovely LiberTeas because she sent it to me, she adores it and they may not make more of it. Thank you LiberTeas for sharing some with me!
No rating as it would be unfair since I really do not like anise.

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892 tasting notes

Welp…. I’m so close to finishing this tea off. I have about one more pot of it left. Nice flavor and pretty enjoyable.

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103 tasting notes

I was afraid to open this and smell it because I thought it might be weird. Brandy spice tea? Am I ever glad I opened it! To me, it smells like eggnog. I love eggnog. When I prepared and drank it, I thought that it was a nice, smooth, spicy tea, but I didn’t taste any brandy. I loved it, though. I wanted another cup right away, which is unusual for me—I usually like to mix it up. Warning, if you have an aversion to licorice/anise, you will likely not enjoy this one.

180 °F / 82 °C 6 min, 0 sec

I’m sad to hear the anise is so strong. Now I’m afraid to open & try mine…


I am so excited to hear that the anise is strong! (Sorry Janefan!) I love licorice and anise, and I sometimes get frustrated with teas that go wimpy with it, glad to hear that this one has some licorice-y taste.

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361 tasting notes

I’m 90% sure I got this from KallieBoo in a mystery swap, but my swap drawer got all messed up so I’m not 100%. If I got it wrong, I apologize to whoever it was who sent it to me, if i got it right, Thanks KallieBoo!

I actually am quite surprised to say that i really like this! I haven’t liked pretty much any white teas I’ve had lately, but this one is very tasty. Reminds me of the gingerbread coffee cake a bit. Yum!!!

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1908 tasting notes

I think I got this tea originally as a free pouch that came with a promotion Frank was doing. I’m not sure I would have chosen it on its own as I’m pretty ambivalent towards brandy and brandy-flavoured things generally.

The scent of the tea is like a spicy orange with a distinct licorice note from the anise. The flavour is almost chai-like with the brandy as sort of an aftertaste. The anise thankfully isn’t as strong as the scent would suggest though I can still pick it out. There’s also a faint bitterness that I’m not sure I care for – I think this tea would benefit from some sweeter flavours. It’s not a bad tea but not my thing, I think.

175 °F / 79 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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181 tasting notes

From the LiberTEAS sampler I bought a while back

Post-steep this one actually smells a little chai-esque. I’m a fan of spiced brandies, so hopefully this one will manage to live up to my expectations.

One sip in and I’m…not exactly impressed. I saw a cardamom pod in the mix, but there’s something off about the smell and it tastes a little bit woodsy, but not in a good way. There’s some lingering dryness and a sticky mouthfeel that goes right along with the “I’m not sure what I’m tasting” thing I’ve got going on.

I’m not sure if it’s me or the tea, but this just isn’t hitting the right notes for me. I’m going to let it cool off a bit and see if better flavours emerge.

And it’s cooled off and still tastes like bleh. Not my tea, apparently.

175 °F / 79 °C 4 min, 15 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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75 tasting notes

Unfortunately, this tea is not for me. It has a strong anise flavor that overpowers the other flavors for me. And, I don’t like Anise very much, unless it is playing a subtle supportive role. Into the swap box this goes. Anyone interested in it?

adagio breeze

I am! I’ll be visiting my parents in the US in a little over a week, so you can send it to me there rather than pesky international shipping. Let me know if you see anything in my cupboard you like :)

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67 tasting notes

Another fantastic blend by 52teas! The cinnamon, cardamom, clove, black peppercorns and anise mix creates a aromatic spice mix which is not unlike a chai tea – which I am a very fond of. The white tea base is a perfect choice to allow all of the subtle notes of this blend to shine through with a smooth finish.

185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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