Bee's SoulteezEdit Company
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Recent Tasting Notes
Finished off this freebie sample a few nights ago – it’s not something I would ever order for myself, because of the chamomile, but it was a very nice and classic chamomile and lavender combo. A touch more lavender in the taste, though it looks more chamomile dominant in composition. No complaints at all; just not my typical preference of flavour.
Had this one yesterday morning – I got up early to finish off a large handful of household chores that were building up and stressing me out, and I needed a cup of tea to help push me through that…
This was so nice – and I’m not sure if it says anything about me that on a miserable morning of chores I turned to an alcohol flavoured tea blend for comfort. I felt like it was a bit more whiskey-ish than rum, but there was still a rum quality to be tasted. Also hints of orange, which I liked a lot in combination with the malt and cocoa of the black tea and the boozier notes. Also held up well to my having slightly over steeped it.
Dipped into this tea last week, and was surprised by how pleasantly boozy/rum like it actually tasted! From the smell of the dry leaf, I was actually expecting a little bit more of an orange flavour – and while it does taste a bit of orange, it mostly reminded me of a very mildly spiced type of rum. Sort of like the Captain Morgan’s I drank in highschool? But in a nostalgic sort of way. Smooth, and enjoyable overall.
Almost a sort of smoky starchiness to elements of this tea using this prep method which was a little bit of a surprise to me; I think it’s from the base itself and nothing to do with the added in flavours or banana chips. Does still have the mild but dense sweetness of the banana/plantain that plays off the rest to give an illusion of a more moist banana bread or cake. More base emphasis overall, though. Still enjoyed it!
This tea was very different in taste profile made as a cold brew and, though I still liked it, I was pretty startled by the shift in flavours. The base was much, much more forward in flavour and had a darker earthy and almost smoky note that hasn’t really come across when steeped hot. That starchy plantain/banana flavour was still present but a bit more in the background and almost more of a baked-style, making me think a little bit of banana bread.
I prefer it hot, but it was really interesting seeing these changes from the steeping differences.
I’m not sure if I’ve had a tea with plantains/inspired by plantains before now but I really love the concept and I was excited to try this one out!! I discovered a restaurant over the summer, here in Montreal, called Lloydie’s and they have some of the best fried plantains I’ve ever had and I’ve basically just been obsessed since…
It very good!! Definitely the starchy sweetness of a plantain, and the rooibos is an incredibly smart choice for a tea base because it leans into that flavour profile really smoothly. However, there’s also that sweet banana taste that so closely rides the line between banana and plantain. It feels balanced, and is topped off with a subtle kiss of chocolate and a cakey quality that yes, truly, is best described as “moist”. It also feels a bit boozy – almost like a realllyyyyy good banana/plantain cake that’s also been soaked in maybe a rum!?
I’m super into it, and it’s very impressively conveyed IMO.
Cold Brew Sipdown (1251)!
Finished off this kindly gifted sample around the beginning of advent season, and I was so busy with work and advents that it actually took me two evenings to finish off the same cold brew. It was nice though – I felt like brewing it this way brought out more of the creaminess of the hazelnut than what I got in the hot cup, as well as a bready/grainy quality, malt, and a bit of a waxier mouthfeel. I wish I would have tried it with milk, but I didn’t think of it in the moment.
A free sample from my recent order! Thank you!
I’d not totally sure what the name is a reference to – I would have assumed maybe cardamom pods but I think this is just a pure/straight up hazelnut flavour and I definitely don’t see any cardamom in it…
Hazelnut is hard. I think that, in general, it’s just a more challenging nut flavour to accurately convey, and I’m probably a little bit biased because I’ve been drinking so much of DT’s Hazelnut Chocolate lately which has one of the best hazelnut flavours I’ve ever had in a tea. It feels wrong to compare though, because the approach is very different. This is almost a little bit toasty versus a raw or creamy hazelnut which are the ways I usually see the flavour presented.
There’s absolutely nothing wrong with the tea – it’s straight forward, clear and it does taste like hazelnut. It’s just not really my favourite thing either. I’m definitely going to finish the sample though, and it will be easy to finish off because it was enjoyable!
R is for… Raspberry Earl Grey!
I had a lot of raspberry teas to choose from and I didn’t want to focus on them too much, but I did want to at least make one aside from the Peace Tea I’d had the day prior. I don’t think this is as nice cold brewed as it was hot, but it still works pretty well. The top notes of the sip are much more of a sweet pop of raspberry, but then the bergamot kicks in and the body and finish are more of a weighty black tea and long lingering/coating bergamot. I love the way the raspberry comes across with this prep style but it’s a little too much emphasis on the bergamot in the end of each sip for my own tastes.
Still ticking off tea companies from the Black Owned Tea Companies list that I wanted to order from – I just got a small order from Bee’s Soulteez and I’ve been exploring it a bit over the last day or so…
I picked this because, even though I’m not a huge EG drinker (though more so recently), I remember that I once got a Raspberry Earl Grey from Amoda and I actually deeply loved it. I saw this on the site, and I felt like it could maybe fill the small void that was left after I’d finished that sample years ago.
That is a lot of pressure to put on a tea, but at least today with this mug I do feel like the blend is living up to it. It’s smooth and soft, with a sweet and mellow raspberry top note that transitions into a more typical citrus-y bergamot body with coppery, brisk black tea flavours. I do feel like it’s a touch thin, but I think I could have upped my leaf and steep time both just a smidge and that would have compensated.
Probably would be dreamy and delicious with milk, and a spot of honey.
This was one of three random free samples from Bee’s Soulteez. Thank you!
This mate blend is a lot gentler than I expected it to be and smells deliciously fruity after sitting in the fridge overnight. The hibiscus is a mild berry note – it’s fruitiness accentuated by the apple. Rosemary is refreshing here and has an effect similar to lavender (floral, fresh, herbaceous). Mate is slightly earthy, pairs well with the rosemary, and is a nice pick-me-up when coupled with the juicy and floral profile.
Flavors: Apple, Berry, Earth, Floral, Fruity, Herbs, Hibiscus, Rosehips
So, this one doesn’t taste at all like Amaretto. I probably should’ve expected that when the blend consisted of cranberries as opposed to cherries or marzipan pieces, but still I’d hoped. No surprises that it tastes mostly cranberries and almonds, even when sugar and/or milk is added. C’est la vie.
It did taste like Amaretto after I added Amaretto liqueur though! So, yeah. Not my favourite.
Flavors: Almond, Cranberry, Malt
As per the description for this tea:“the classic ginger bite” is probably the thing that turns me off this kind of sencha base. However, I have to give it props here; it pairs nicely with the subtle papaya and rich pecan notes. The aftertaste leaves a mouthful of provocative and warming fruity nut and honey-like flavours. The aroma (nutty) is also lovely.
My mother was an even bigger fan than me (doesn’t have my Chinese sencha bias). She rates it a 9/10.
Just be careful not to overleaf or oversteep; this green base can get nippy!
Flavors: Cream, Fruity, Ginger, Grass, Honey, Nutty, Olive Oil, Pecan, Tropical
This tea has tea has two ingredients I’ve never heard of and didn’t bother to look up before placing my order. These are Maca (Peruvian ginseng) and Pau D’Arco (South American tree bark).
I’m combining two different drinking sessions in one note.
First Attempt: 8 minutes, two teaspoons = oversteeped
The aroma of both the blend and steeped cup is 99.9% cinnamon and apple, with a hint of sweet nutty earth. Cup flavour profile is vibing on baked cinnamon apple. There is an initial strong liquid maple syrup drip, that tones down a bit over time, as well as a dry woody and tangy lingering quality, not dissimilar to green apple. This builds.
I don’t “the dry” but do think this would make a particularly lovely cup on a wet fall evening. I’m going to try and play with the steeping parameters (meaning I will obey them this time, lol) to see if I can mitigate “the dry”.
Second Attempt: 6 minutes, 1 1/2 teaspoons
I forgot about this one so drank it lukewarm to cool. Cinnamon Apple is still No.1 with a hint of beet, honeybush, ginseng, and thin maple. I still think the broth is on the thin side, not dissimilar to how thin maple syrup is, but the dry is much more manageable. Huzzah!
Flavors: Apple, Apple Skins, Bark, Cinnamon, Drying, Earth, Maple Syrup, Roasted, Wood
This session is pretty different from my earlier one. There are far more tea leaves to fruit in this last serving. The fact that this is a roasted oolong is much more noticeable, and it brings out the dried goji berries more while diminishing the impression of ripe melons and sweetness.
I still like this quite a bit particularly as it cools. It’s almost caramelized/ slightly creamy but also fruity and roasted. I’m having a hard time describing it and it’s not consistent enough a thing to pinpoint.
Steep Count: 2
Flavors: Cream, Floral, Goji, Honeysuckle, Melon, Mineral, Roasted, Wood
This was one of three random free samples from Bee’s Soulteez. Thank you!
When I saw goji berries I wrongly assumed this would be a slightly nutty-tart vitamin-c oolong blend. What I actually got was an awesome bright and sweet goji berry/ honeydew melon-like profile, with floral notes of honeysuckle. The flavour held up for at least four steeps and probably would’ve gone for longer if I hadn’t neglected the fifth.
Also, I was not aware that wolfberry was another name for a goji berry.
Steep Count: 4
Flavors: Berry, Floral, Goji, Honeydew, Honeysuckle, Melon, Mineral
This was included as a random free sample from Bee’s Soulteez. Thank you!
This is a pretty standard chocolatey mint tea, and has a smooth and satisfying After Eight profile, but more natural/less candy-like than some of its peers. It definitely hits the spot after overeating (Final essay stress + butter chicken = max, possibly unhealthy, level of indulgence. Whoops). The creamy-fresh peppermint aroma alone seems to help right away and provides a soothing back-drop to (hypothetical) writing and plotting. Off I go, I guess, while most of the “jitterys” are subdued. lol
I tried this first straight up, but it’s even better with milk. Amplified the creaminess.
Flavors: Cream, Dark Chocolate, Malt, Peppermint
Bumping up the rating on this one. I forgot about this one and totally oversteeped it, and it actually improved. On a blind test, my mom was a big fan too. It’s so smooth and boozy. A brown sugar-like sweetness is also peaking through and it’s delicious with the pineapple. It makes a perfect tropical, but hearty, latte for these overcast and rainy summer days that our Northwest Coast weather system seems to be churning out lately (this also lowers the chance of forest fires so none of us are too mad, I don’t think. The Cedars, Firs, and Spruce love it too and they definitely deserve some happiness after the last few killing summers).
Flavors: Brown Sugar, Malt, Nutty, Pineapple, Rum
Taken with milk.
This one is pretty nice, with a satisfying combo of pineapple, coconut, and malt notes. The coconut is a little baffling, because it’s not a listed ingredient, but I swear you can taste it; the nutty element may be attributed to the sunflower, as well as my brain’s tendency to pair pineapple with coconut! The tea also delivers on the booze, with an aggressive astringent nip.
All in all, I enjoy this one, even if I wish the base was something more special! I enjoyed the far sweeter Buttered Rum from David’s Tea+, and the more perilous but fancier One Night in Rio! from Camellia Sinensis (always scared coconut will expire and become soap), so not too surprised I like this one as well. I’m going to play around, and potentially make it into a Rum Hot Toddy or a Sweet Tea Rum Punch (Note to self: https://food52.com/recipes/77603-sweet-tea-rum-punch).
+Buttered Rum: A spider (Edit: probably wasn’t a spider as ashmanra points out) somehow made it’s home in my last tin. Needless to say I didn’t get to savour my remaining 40 grams, because.Webs.Everywhere. I’m still heartbroken but at least we have other rum teas!
TMI or TW: If bugs make you uncomfortable you probably won’t want to read the comments on this note!
Flavors: Coconut, Hay, Malt, Nutty, Pineapple, Rum