Bigelow

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Recent Tasting Notes

Spring break and a quieter pace at work made it possible for me to do some much-needed office cleaning, especially the tea bin, which had turned into “the dump for stuff I didn’t think was that great at home.” I did a little shameless thinning and pitching, and I may need to do more, as evidenced by this musty bag of Bigelow.

Had it been fresh and steeped with a little more care, I could’ve liked it. Bigelow is pretty good about not overdoing things—both berry flavors were primarily “just berry,” even though hibiscus was a primary ingredient. (Why, people, why?) Oh, well…another one bit the dust!

ashmanra

Twinsies! I am working on my tea stash today! Free samples, gifts, swaps, impulse buys….thinning and rearranging so th8ngs don’t get lost in the shuffle as much. (Ahem. Hopefully.) Also reaaaally being firm with myself about being “on restriction.” (We all know how that turns out…)

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As I have droned on for the past several reviews, the novelties of winter have long lost their twinkle and we’re cold and tired, and for another day or so, more or less iced in. Even the cats have claws-trophobia. (You knew that was coming, didn’t you?)

This is just the season for comfort tea. Constant Comment takes me back to the farm kitchen—back in the days when it didn’t seem so small—drinking a cup out of Mom’s Corelle coffee cups and then curling up under two or three quilts to watch whatever February miniseries was hot that season (Shogun!)

You don’t see the decaf version on store shelves around here very often, so I was glad to grab a box. It mirrors the warming orange rind and cloves of the original very nicely, and unlike the fully leaded version, doesn’t have a tendency to get pithy and bitter. (Unlike the writer of this review ;)

Michelle

Hmmm is claws-traphobia better than being catatonic? Asking for a friend.

mrmopar

This was my gateway to tea years ago. And who could forget Richard Chamberlain.

gmathis

a) Better yet, his comrade/rival was John Rhys-Davies in his early days. I am going to have to go dig out that DVD!

b) CC was my gateway tea, too. I’m trying to figure out how it branched out from there. Probably a Celestial Seasonings thing or two…back in the day, it was what you could find at the store or what you could find at the store.

c) Catatonia, please! I’m tired of cleaning up this-is-my-territory messes!

tea-sipper

Whoa, makes me think how tea buying was probably impossible before the internet!

gmathis

Lipton might’ve had a few flavored varieties in the 80’s as well.

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100

This is lovely, simple sweet smell that is relaxing. A wonderful cup for an afternoon in the garden

Flavors: Chamomile, Mint, Rose

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76
drank Cranberry Harvest by Bigelow
1471 tasting notes

Thanks to tea-and-cats for this bag! It’s a nice warming, perfectly tart cranberry/hibiscus flavor. It’s pleasantly spiced and tasty. It’s better than most bagged teas with this flavor profile.

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85

I’m not gonna lie, this tea lowkey slaps. Especially if you’re feeling under the weather (and nauseous).

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 8 min or more 1 g 8 OZ / 236 ML

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45
drank Salted Caramel by Bigelow
1215 tasting notes

Easy to drink while hot and leans into that chicory taste pretty hard. It reminds me of artificially flavored brownies with artificially flavored caramel, also toffee-ish? Pretty mineral, too. Once it starts to cool, the mineral turns metallic and what might be perceived as a grain of salt turns into rosehip tang. The black tea doesn’t have much life.

Serviceable, barely

But If I want salted caramel, I will eat salted caramel

Because no flavored tea will ever taste like salted caramel.

Flavors: Artificial, Caramel, Chicory, Chocolate, Coconut, Metallic, Mineral, Tangy, Tea, Toffee

Leafhopper

You’ve just described why I don’t gravitate toward dessert teas. :)

gmathis

Well said. Not my favorite either but I have a few bags to power through. Milk, maybe.

derk

Some things a tea can’t replicate. Similarly, I have a lack of desire for fake meat. Meanwhile, my roommate can’t get enough of it. We all like different things.

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85

1/24/22
sipdown of my last two teabags! This is a good teabag version of this type of blend. Not as strong as a builders brew, but not as light as an afternoon tea. Somewhere in between. I prefer this one to the Twinings, which is my mom’s favorite.

Flavors: Caramel, Malt, Tea

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 30 sec 2 tsp 24 OZ / 709 ML

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58
drank Pumpkin Spice by Bigelow
68 tasting notes

1/20/22
Another sipdown! I bought this in that holiday set with the cranberry herbal tea from yesterday. I’m not a huge fan of pumpkin spice, btw, so this is not something I would buy individually for myself! This tea is just ok. It’s slightly pumpkin and slightly spiced, but mostly some sort of ambiguous artificial flavoring. That being said, I gave this to a lot of friends for Christmas and they pretty much all loved it. I think if you like pumpkin spice things, you’ll like it.

Flavors: Pumpkin, Pumpkin Spice, Spices, Tea

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 15 sec 3 tsp 24 OZ / 709 ML

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90

1/19/22
Delicious cranberry herbal tea with the right hint of spice. Perfect hot in the winter time and fabulous cold in the warmer months (which it is right now in Louisiana lol). I’m drinking this iced, and it is another sipdown!!!
I bought a holiday sampler so I could give holiday tea to some of my friends for Christmas. This was one of my favorites from the entire sampler.

Flavors: Apple, Cinnamon, Cranberry, Red Fruits, Rosehips

Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 24 OZ / 709 ML

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50
drank Vanilla Caramel by Bigelow
68 tasting notes

Drank 1/15/22
This is not a tea I would have picked up for myself, but it came as a freebie with a candle order I made in October, so I thought I would try it.
Strangely smoky undertones, heavy on the caramel and vanilla in a “dollar store knockoff candle scent” sort of way. Somehow both strong and watery? I can’t tell if it is a problem of not liking the base tea or the combination of flavors, but it wasn’t for me. Not terrible, but not good.

Flavors: Burnt Sugar, Caramel, Cardboard, Oak, Perfume, Smoke, Vanilla

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 15 sec 1 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

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70
drank Premium Ceylon by Bigelow
1269 tasting notes

Skysamurai’s TTB Thank you!

Tea #3

I won’t lie, I picked this up mostly because the outer tea bag wrapper; which is new for my collection.

And it is plain tea, which is very welcomed in the afternoon, when I am all tired and I don’t want to discover depths of the teas.

This one is exactly that. Plain, Ceylon tea, not much to write home about. Two minutes steep are sufficient, even for larger cup than usual.

As I wrote, not much to write about. Basic, and luckily not bitter nor too astringent, so, in the end… pretty much decent plain black tea in tea bag.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 0 sec 14 OZ / 400 ML

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70
drank Jasmine Green by Bigelow
1269 tasting notes

A tea bag I believe from derk. Stupid me I tried to save space in my cupboard and mixed up tea bags from derk and Michelle. Thank you!

Hm, Truly basic, light and refreshing jasmine green. Do not expect much and it is fine. Expect more and you will be disappointed. Luckily it isn’t harsh, jasmine is not overpowering green tea base; but overall rather average.

Flavors: Grass, Hay, Jasmine

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec 10 OZ / 300 ML

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drank English Teatime by Bigelow
1230 tasting notes

I don’t know why this tea is in the stash; I have no memories of ever acquiring Bigelow; is it one of those items that every household secretly has if you look hard enough? A mystery, but a good one, as it turns out this is the tea bag that goes well with lemon and honey (and dark, caramel-like Kraken Rum). I liked the result so much I made two cups (one without rum and one with). The final result admittedly may taste a little like flat vanilla coke (so strange, not questioning it).

The tea itself smells pleasantly of broken black tea (from what I can tell) and tastes like one would expect – straightforward, astringent, and malty-sweet. This is the perfect base to add the lemon slice (which bubbles as it steeps), honey, and (optional) a little rum (but not too much because the cough meds don’t play well). I may revisit this even when I’m not sick (the hot toddy-like drink finally won me over).

Flavors: Astringent, Bitter, Malt, Sweet

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 16 OZ / 473 ML
Evol Ving Ness

So pleased that you gave this a whirl! Too bad about the cough medicines interfering with my father’s approach to scaring evil badness germs and their effects away.

For full effect, in future when meds are not in play, use black builder’s tea, a whole lemon, juice and pulp, two big spoons of pure organic honey, buckwheat if available, and two good glugs of dark rum. Drink hot-Ish and go to bed.

Funny, my father, who was an abstainer, would always deliver this rather potent drink to whomever was ailing. It always did the trick.

CrowKettle

I need another whole lemon lol.

gmathis

Buckwheat! Never heard of that.

CrowKettle

Yeah, the addition of buckwheat would be interesting (I like buckwheat but don’t have any on me right now)!

Evol Ving Ness

Buckwheat honey or wildflower honey. NOT buckwheat the grain.

CrowKettle

Oh.. that makes sense. Buckwheat honey is nice too (buckwheat “tea” powder would’ve added thickness to the concoction).

Evol Ving Ness

Haha, sounds like you are coming back to yourself. Yay! Clearly, the tea worked :)

gmathis

Sorry … four days on Sudafed has turned my brain into one giant cobweb. Buckwheat honey makes sense! Oy.

Evol Ving Ness

I hope YOUare coming back to yourself too.

CrowKettle

Yes, everyone take care! :)

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72
drank Eggnogg'n by Bigelow
2725 tasting notes

I found a holiday tea! :O

I had given up after never finding any near me, and not seeing any when I went to visit my mom either. But yesterday we were walking in the store randomly, not even near the tea section, and bam! Bigelow holiday teas on the side of an endcap! Not even the brand I was looking for, but I was just excited to see any. They had several flavors, but this is the one that sounded yummiest to me, and I certainly wasn’t going to buy multiple boxes considering the state of my cupboard…

Anyway! This is tasty. It doesn’t really say eggnog to me though, because there’s no nutmeg, which is kind of the main flavor in eggnog… Mostly it tastes like some sort of creamy egg custard with a dash of cinnamon. It’s actually reminding me of something specific, but I can’t quite put my finger on it… It’s slightly artificial tasting, but nothing extreme. There’s something almost Biscoff-like about the spicing, which is pleasant.

I’m not in love with it, but I’m just happy to have finally found some form of holiday tea at the grocery store. I guess next year I might as well just order some online, ha ha… :P

Flavors: Artificial, Cinnamon, Cookie, Creamy, Custard, Sweet, Vanilla, Wax

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 16 OZ / 473 ML
ashmanra

How is it eggnog without nutmeg? I’m all about the nutmeg.

Cameron B.

I could be crazy, but to me it’s missing the nutmeg part ha ha.

Evol Ving Ness

If no nutmeg, this is just begging for a good glug of eggnog for balance.

gmathis

Milk does help this one. I used to be absolutely in love with it and snagged multiple boxes at a time when I could find it. I’m maybe a little less enamored these days, but I do appreciate the reminder to hunt out my remaining bags and get ’em sipped down!

Sakura Sushi

In total agreement with the review and the comments. Custardy, yes. Artificial, but in a good way, if that makes any sense. I, too, am all about the nutmeg, so, why not just add a little nutmeg of your own to it? Just sayin’. I was enraptured with this one a few years ago and can’t seem to find it easily this year. There are still two bags of this hanging out in the cupboard at my mom’s house for when I visit. That being said, if I don’t end up seeing any more to buy, that’s OK – it was a guilty pleasure and I’ve got more than enough of those. Besides, I’m pretty much doing Lupicia’s White Christmas these days. And yes, definitely milk with this.

gmathis

Sometimes I forget how easy it is to doctor up a tea. There is nutmeg under my roof. I can do something about it!

Evol Ving Ness

:)

Gmathis, I suspect we are all like this to some degree.

CrowKettle

I’m a fan of adding extra spices to lacklustre chai or as “toppings” on lattes :)

Cameron B.

I guess I’m more likely to put a tea into my rehoming box than to doctor it up.

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71
drank Ginger Snappish by Bigelow
696 tasting notes

Etsy Tea Ad=vent Calendar Day 21

This was a pleasant evening tea. Not outstanding, but pleasant. The ginger flavor was a bit muddled, but I expect that is me, not the tea. I enjoyed it more as it cooled. I won’t rush out to buy a box of this but if it was one of a selection of bagged teas at a hotel or restaurant I would drink it again.

gmathis

Good evaluation. Decent, but not stellar. I was once really in love with it, but now we are just friends. (But it is a nice, gentle nightcap and does a good job when you aren’t feeling well.)

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drank Peppermint Bark by Bigelow
1165 tasting notes

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75
drank Blackberry Citrus by Bigelow
1471 tasting notes

I put this in the fridge to drink later, and it’s pretty tasty. The berry flavor is gentle, but nice. I don’t taste a lot of citrus, but whatever is in there combines pleasantly. There’s no sourness, just gentle fruitiness. Thanks for the lovely package tea-and-cats!

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drank Benefits Citrus & Oolong by Bigelow
2572 tasting notes

I don’t know that I’ve ever had a citrus/oolong blend, but the fruitiness of the oolong in this bagged Bigelow version is a really nice frame for the citrus. Grapefruit and lemon are both in the ingredient list, but it skews grapefruit to me. Even with inattentive office steeping, there’s no bitterness in the oolong.

This afternoon pick-me-up was sponsored by Michelle, with my thanks! (And on the look-for-it-locally list it goes!)

Michelle

I like this for an afternoon pickmeup too, and its very forgiving when you forget you’re steeping said pickmeup.

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67
drank Ginger Peach Turmeric by Bigelow
734 tasting notes

Drinking this one hot. Have been working through a harder-hitting bout of seasonal affect disorder than usual this month, and so low-maintenance bagged hot herbal teas are the order of the day.
Unsurprisingly, this tastes mostly of peach and ginger, with a warming, brothlike mouthfeel. Perfect for cold & flu season, as it’s slightly medicinal, loaded with all kinds of healthy herbs and spices.

Flavors: Fruity, Medicinal, Spicy

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100

This is the tea I grew up on in the 70’s!

gmathis

My first tea. Same era. Same warm fuzzy affection for it!

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When I ordered this along with my groceries I was under the impression that it was an herbal spearmint tea. So I was surprised when it arrived and was labeled as a black tea.
I made a cup of this today with a bit of non-dairy milk added. I over-steeped it so I figured the milk would fix it. I actually quite like it this way. It’s nice and minty and the milk helps smooth the base tea/ hide it. I bet this one would be good iced during the summer.

Flavors: Spearmint

gmathis

I never thought about adding milk to a minty tea, but done properly, that would make a nice little cup of creme de menthe! This is a favorite among my less tea-centric work friends.

Lexie Aleah

I like adding milk to mint teas to make it more of a creamy less intense mint. Usually I only do it with peppermint teas such as Twinings Buttermint. In this case I figured it’d be a good way to fix my mistake of oversteeping.

gmathis

No, wait…I lied. Bigelow has (had?) (will have?) a seasonal minty Peppermint Bark. I do prefer that with milk to whip the licorice into submission.

Mastress Alita

I love Twinings Buttermint!

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This doesn’t get much love from other reviewers and I feel sorry for it. This was in my “random scavenged bags” caddy that I generally save for my Sunday kids on Tea and Cocoa Day, but I was craving lemon last night.

It’s bagged and its decaf, so you can’t expect much from the tea base, but I do like Bigelow’s dainty hand with the lemon—gentle; not so tart it stings your tongue and makes your eyebrows sweat.

Of course, a few minutes of peace after a crazy adrenaline day made it taste that much better.

Martin Bednář

I am pretty much sure I have a tea bag from this tea in my collection and the name always made me smile.

gmathis

It cheered me up :)

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75
drank Sweet Dreams by Bigelow
68 tasting notes

Very nice, calming tea for the nighttime. I typically don’t like teas that are overpowered with mint, and this one fortunately has just enough to be pleasant. Definitely puts me in a sleepy mood :)

Flavors: Chamomile, Flowers, Mint

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