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Recent Tasting Notes
This is the last tea from my November TeBella order. It’s been a pretty awesome batch, and I saved this one because I suspected I’d like it a lot. The flavor is quite desserty and sweet. There are coffee beans in it, but it doesn’t really taste like coffee, which is a relief for me. Maybe just a hint of it. Not sure I would order it again, but it’s quite a nice dessert tea. A very sweet rooibos for sure, though I wouldn’t say the name is necessarily accurate.
The grapefruit flavor is strong and sour and sweet in just the right combination. The tea is also given depth through the herbaceous ingredients, my favorite definitely being the eucalyptus. In some cups it all works really well together. Sometimes I find it to be a bit too much. I definitely give it points for creativity and freshness of flavor. It’s best cold.
I see prickly pears every time I go hiking, but I’ve never tried cooking with them. Based on how tasty this tea is, I might need to change that! Hot, it’s a bit sour, but cold with sugar, this tea really, really shines. The flavor is so bright and interesting. It’s sweet, tart, fruity, and refreshing. I’ve been drinking it every day. Green rooibos fruit blends are a particular love of mine.
With a name like this, I had to order some. It’s like many other peachy teas. It smells very strongly of peach rings. The flavor is like peach candy, not ripe peaches. It’s pleasant warm or cold, though I feel like when it’s cold I can sense a little bit of dessert/parfait flavor creeping in there with the peaches. It’s not my favorite peach tea, but perfectly sweet and nice.
The scent of this tea is just intoxicating. It actually brews up rather pale orange. The flavor is light and refreshing. It’s quite a nice blend of cherry and coconut. You definitely get both flavors, and it’s done really well! I’m not noticing any kiwi, but I’m okay with that since the other flavors are pretty tasty. I know I won’t have any problems finishing my 2 oz of this one.
The pictures of this tea looked so enticing that I had to buy it. Fig pieces and actual meringue?! I’m happy to say that it’s rather delicious – definitely the best lime tea I’ve had in recent memory. The flavor is mostly lime, but sort of lime desserts rather than pure lime. Since it’s leaning a little desserty, I find myself wishing it would lean even harder, but it’s definitely enjoyable.
TeBella doesn’t list ingredients on the website, which is a bit frustrating. The scent here is totally ripe pear. Hot, it tastes a bit like alcohol. As it cools to room temperature, the pear flavor makes an appearance. This has turned out to be the most authentic pear tea I’ve ever had! Pear isn’t a super strong flavor, but this tea is pulling it off quite well. It’s like nice brown cooked pears.
I’m terrible at logging teas…
Anyway, my boyfriend and I went to Tampa yesterday to do literally ONE thing. We had to drive an hour for something that took 20 minutes and he wanted to go home. I told him that we should swing by the Oxford Exchange to get coffee or tea to at least make our Tampa trip worth it!
We ended up spending almost 2 hours at OE, him with coffee and me with tea, and catching up with one of our best friends who lives out in the area! I had just a matcha latte but ended up taking 2oz of their Jasmine home. Surprisingly enough, the Tebella at OE only has the Jasmine Silver Needle on their tea menu, no green Jasmine! Jasmine is my absolute fave and I can never go wrong with it!
At first I was a bit skeptical of this tea in particular because the more I smell it, the more artificial it seemed. I ended up steeping it at 160* for about 5 min and all the artificial flavor that I initially smelled went away! It’s a beautiful Jasmine tea, very delicate with what you’d expect a white tea to taste like. Does have more of a flavor compared to other Jasmine White Teas I had.
Thanks so much for the tea swap, AJ Rimmer! I love being able to try teas like this one, from tea shops I’ve never heard of! The black tea doesn’t result in too dark a mug. It’s more of a lighter cup, but I think the base pairs well with the flavors that are going on. I’m not entirely convinced the ‘shortbread’ is noticeable in the flavor (which is interesting because AJ Rimmer totally notices the shortbread), but I was enjoying this cherry or light grape flavor that was most present in the cup. I’m not sure if the cherry/grape is from the black tea itself or was part of the flavoring. Sometimes I can get a cherry note from a marzipan flavoring, I guess? But there was definitely some marzipan. I’m not sure if I noticed the rose or pistachio. I liked the experience of this tea overall. It’s certainly something unique that I don’t have in the cupboard. The closest thing might be some of those Dammann Freres teas that sometimes seem to be cherry.
Steep #1 // 1 1/2 teaspoons for a full mug // 18 minutes after boiling // 2 minute steep
Steep #2 // just boiled // 3 minute steep
2019 Sipdowns: 62 (one of my pouches of Zen’s lovely Phoenix Pearls)
Flavors: Cherry, Grapes, Marzipan
I bought this one when I was still obsessively buying every almond tea I could find. I’m happy to report, though, that this one is pretty great. It needs to cool to room temperature in order to fully appreciate the flavor. If you have it hot, it’s mostly just a fake marzipan flavor. Cooled, it’s pleasantly bready and so true to its name. I was falling asleep watching Netflix, so I drank some of this to stay awake and ended up talking a 2.5 hour nap, so it’s possibly not the most caffeinated tea ever, but I prefer low caffeine anyway (or maybe this was just a fluke, who knows). Anyway, this tea is very tasty. I love bready teas.
As soon as I smelled this tea, I knew I would be a fan. I love carrot cake teas. The flavor is sweet, savory, and spicy in a wonderful combination. This one is different from the Simpson & Vail version, but I like it almost as much. And you can rebrew the leaves for a really nice second steep. I’m not sure I can taste the carrot too clearly, but it is like drinking dessert – love it!
The chunks in here are a lot bigger than I expected! It looks like it’s mostly orange slices, which was surprising considering the name. I drank this warm with lots of sugar and was happily reminded of Teavana’s mandarin mimosa, which is one of my favorites. So the flavor is a very refreshing orange with no mango to be seen, but I don’t mind since it tastes like one of my favorites. This is one I would order again if I ever make another order from TeBella.
I finished Adagio’s green rooibos bonita and wanted another fruity green rooibos, so I opened this. You definitely have to overleaf this one or else it turns out pretty weak. The flavor is quite light, but it’s pleasant. I expected more of a sour citrus flavor. The fruit is light and pleasant, kind of tastes like a creamy orange. Doesn’t really work for a rebrew. So I like this, but I prefer Adagio or Simpson & Vail green rooibos blends.
In the bag, this tea smelled just amazing. Brewed, it smelled more like wine. Hot, it tastes kind of like tart nothingness. I put it in the fridge, hoping for a better experience the next day. Happily, when I had it cold this morning, it was really nice! I did have to put sugar in to battle the tartness. I’m not sure it really tastes like blackberry specifically, more like just general berry. So anyway, I’m happy to finally have a TeBella tea that I’ll actually be able to finish my 2 oz of without too much struggle. I’ll keep pitchers of it in the fridge to take to work, and it’ll disappear in no time (:
Hot, the flavor tastes like rather plain rooibos. I added milk, and that ended up tasting a little strange. I had almost given up on this tea, but I tried it cooled with milk and sugar, and…it isn’t bad? There’s a flavor in there that I’m not a fan of that I can’t quite pinpoint. The berry flavor is super light. I wish it had been stronger, so next time, I’ll mix in a blueberry herbal tea that I have. To sum up, this tastes like a strangely flavored rooibos, which is a shame because I really like the idea of this tea.
I love a good melon tea, but this one is a bit weak. It was light and generically fruity, but I wish I could taste a distinct melon flavor. It was just kind of eh. I’ll see if I can do anything to make my next cup of this more exciting. I really wish this had been great! I’m still looking for a truly satisfying melon tea.
The smell of this tea is heavenly – zesty and sweet and the almonds really come through. I was a little worried that it would taste artificial or overpowering, and that was not the case at all. It’s a bright, white tea with zesty notes from the orange and a hint of spice from the peppercorns. The almonds give it a smooth finish and the flavor get’s strong as it cools.
Flavors: Almond, Citrus
This was another sample from Kaylee. The dry leaf smelled so good! I got a big whiff of bananas as soon as I opened her swap package (and the scent even seems to have gotten into the Praline Horizon tea that was next to it). Sadly, as soon as the water hit it, the chamomile took over. I taste a little bit of creamy banana, but mostly chamomile. Glad I had a chance to try this, but I’ll have to keep hunting to find a replacement for my Butiki Banana Walnut Butterscotch!
Flavors: banana, Cream
I split 2 oz of this with my hostess when I went to Tampa a few months ago. It smells fabulously banana and creamy. It brews up a little weak, but overleafing + rice milk = creamy banana flavorful goodness. There’s just a hint of apple in the background coming from the chamomile. It works well with the banana. Overall, this is a nice evening dessert tea.
Flavors: Apple, banana, Cream
I had a cup of this at TeBella’s tea bar at the Oxford Exchange in Tampa. At $3.75, it was a little pricy for the area but you really pay for the atmosphere at OE. Lots of wood paneling and comfy couches, tasty-looking food and carefully curated elegance at every turn. I was tempted to get Afternoon Tea but it was $26/person for a traditional tea ($20 if you only want scones). So I opted for a single cup and taking some loose leaf home. The loose leaf is the Banana Creme. It’s tasty and I’ll review it eventually, but in retrospect I should have gotten the Key Lime Ginger instead.
The flavoring in this blend is just really spot on. I’m particularly impressed because I often can’t distinguish between “lime” and “key lime” flavor but here it’s very clearly key lime specifically. Tart and juicy. The ginger balances it beautifully. The rooibos kind of just chills out in the background playing a supporting role while key lime and ginger are the romantic leads in a performance where everything ends happily ever after. This is definitely a blend worth revisiting.
In a month, I’m going to Tampa basically for a hockey game then coming back. Actually we’ll have Saturday entirely down there, and so I did a Yelp search for tea, and TeBella came up. Bonus: it’s 2 miles from the hotel for that night! (They jacked up Friday rates so we’re staying in Clearwater then, darn I know.)
I then remembered that Autumn Hearth offered me this in a swap so I gladly took it as I love coconut. After looking at TeBella’s website, it looks like some of their teas are Art of Tea blends, like this one, but that’s totally okay by me because I won’t order directly from them again probably, though I like some of their teas.
I haven’t had this in awhile (I have it from Art of Tea and then maybe Persimmon Tree? Somewhere else w/it, that’s all I know) so I can’t really tell for sure by taste but I can by look.
It’s sweet, first and foremost. The coconut isn’t too strong in this cup as a coconut flavor, but it is definitely amplifying the creaminess of the tea. Definitely agree with everyone who says delicate but flavorful, that is a fact.
I’m glad I bought buttercream flavor oil for lip balm today. I was already thinking coconut chai and now coconut frosting is happening too. I’m just REALLY in a coconut mood and this tea is making it worse.
Special thanks to Rachel for this delicious coconut confection for day seven of the 12 days of Christmas! Rachel recommended pairing this with Thai curry or mango at the bottom of her note. No one has to tell me twice to eat Thai or Indian. This went amazing with my Thai spring rolls and saag paneer( both from the frozen food section). Perfection! It’s a more floral coconut white than a spice or fruit that I’m used to, but it was very smooth and creamy, I think the cornflower helped here.