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Recent Tasting Notes
Oh hot hibiscus, how I love you!
Okay, really this isn’t as bad as I was expecting. Sure, it’s making my mouth pucker and dry up like a raisin but the flavor’s alright with a little honey thrown in. And of course it tastes better as it cools. This is the last of my opened herbals, so I’ll be moving on to a few teabags next. Glad to get these marked off my list. My husband can have the rest.
Flavors: Astringent, Cherry, Dust, Tart
When RoT describes this as ‘Cuppa Cake’, believe that it’s really leaning into the bakery vibes of still-warm, squishy cupcake crumb. The taste and scent alike are both very buttery and soft with a hint of lemon rather than this being a lemon-forward tea with buttery notes. I can definitely get where some reviewers caught a little grassiness. In my humble opinion, this one tastes better as it cools off, if you can wait that long.
Flavors: Butter, Grass, Lemon
This really is like eating a piece of vanilla cake! The caramel comes in in the aftertaste like caramel frosting. The flavor here is pretty accurate, which I’m really enjoying! I will say that it’s a little artificial and definitely tastes more like an herbal than a black tea. I don’t mind these things in a tea, but I can see where all the negative reviews are coming from.
Sipdown! (42 | 115)
I recently swapped with @thismorningstea on Instagram, and she sent me a few wrapped teabags of this tea. I used all three bags in my 16-ounce teapot.
This is… meh. It’s extremely grassy and I can barely tell there’s matcha added. It mostly just tastes like a cheap Chinese sencha.
Flavors: Dry Grass, Grass, Smooth, Straw
I’m just going to put this out there: for someone who doesn’t like rooibos as much as I don’t like rooibos, I sure wind up drinking a lot of it in the form of dessert blends. What can I say? I’m not smart, but I’m also desperate to keep myself warm during the dregs of winter and decaf is the only way to accomplish that without giving myself a heart attack.
Where to start? This is an odd one. It smells dusty in the tin. Without any addition of cream or sugar, the brewed tea is mostly not-too-sweet strawberry with a dash of funk you can’t quite place. You neither like nor hate it, and yet you can’t stop drinking it. Why? You search yourself for answers at the same time you fire up your kettle for yet another cup. You don’t know. It makes your mouth dry. Why are you doing this?
Maybe you’re wondering where the 65 rating comes from, and I’ll tell you: the addition of cream and sugar changes /everything/. I resisted the obvious additions for so long because I don’t typically like adding anything to any tea, but this is one where I clearly recognize the superior choice. It’s like drinking an entirely different bag. The dust and must disappears, the taste of cocoa turns to a surprisingly smooth milk chocolate, and the tart of the berry levels out. It’s hard to oversteep this one at this point.
Overall, a niche sip that’s nice when I want something a little more indulgent, but not necessarily one I’ll be reaching for as a regular drink.
I love RoT’s Earl Greyer Vanilla more than most, so I jumped on the Estate blend hoping for another earl grey creme that would knock it out of the park. It smells pleasantly like a creamsicle in the tin, but brews up smelling mostly just like heavy vanilla cream with a floral hit. If you’re not a fan of big bergamot flavors, this is right up your alley.
The verdict? It’s…fine. Yeah, it’s fine. It didn’t knock my socks off, but it’s a smooth sip for what’s shaping up to be a sunny day after a snowy hellscape. It’s inoffensive, takes well to cream and sugar (this one is especially poised for cream addition), and will be enjoyed, but inevitably not replaced once it’s gone.
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Flavors: Bergamot, Earl Grey, Vanilla
Hands-down the best tea I’ve ever had. I should probably stock up on this since it’s limited edition. It smells heavenly and tastes wonderful too. This makes me think I’m sipping tea in an English country garden (and not just because of the marketing appeal).
Flavors: Blackberry, Blueberry, Strawberry
Beauty Sleep is a chamomile-rose peaflower tea. The honey flavor in this completely overpowers the rose- it is but a faint aftertaste. If I hadn’t prepared it myself, I would have believed at least 4 tablespoons of honey went into my cup.
Fortunately, the tea itself is palatable. It’s ‘sweet’ enough to drink without sugar, but adding a bit of sweetener helps bring out the rose a bit more. A bit of milk might make for a satisfying latte.
I don’t know whether this blend is actually good or that I’m just so happy to be done with RoT’s 12 Days of Sipping thing that’s making me feel generous, but I dunno, this is pretty good. A note for the herbal ignoramuses among us: lemon balm is not the same thing as lemon. I was very surprised by both the fragrance and my first sip. =) Surprised in a good way, though, ‘cos I didn’t want anything tart.
As you may know by now, I like teas that say, Hi, I’m here! Prepared plain, this blend has a nice, bold—and yes, very "herbal"—flavour. I’ve tried loads of herbal blends and this flavour feels unique. It’s a standout, and worth trying for that reason alone. Grateful to have ended this adventure on a positive note.