drank Winter Storm by Royale Tea
226 tasting notes

Backlog from yesterday.

I made a pot of this last night, since it seemed to be the right occasion—we’re getting the first snow storm of the season, and the snow began falling earlier yesterday, around 11:00. I’m not used to snow, nor temperatures that don’t get above freezing for days on end, but I suppose I’ll have to get used to it this winter. Lucky for me, I’ve got this tea to help take the chill off. :)

This tea smells strongly of orange peel and clove, which makes me think back to my childhood holidays, when my mom would let me and my sisters poke whole cloves into the skins of a few oranges, to make the house smell nice. We’d always try to make some kind of design, with varying degrees of success. Anyway, there are other spices there, too: cinnamon and cardamom, mostly, with a floral note, and perhaps some vanilla.

The spices don’t taste overpowering, so there’s plenty of orange in the flavor. The flower petals add a nice touch, and the vanilla is much more present in the actual brew. This tea is just enough of a not-quite-boring-orange-spice tea that it’s really quite enjoyable. The black tea is a… Ceylon? I really don’t know my black teas well enough. It’s light-bodied and complements the fruitiness quite well. Yum!

195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 15 sec 1 tsp 9 OZ / 266 ML

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I very clearly remember my first experience with tea. It was in a Target near my house, and my best friend handed me a cup of chai from the Starbucks inside the store and said, “Try this.” I believe I was about 12 at the time, and from then on, I was completely hooked.

Anyway, as my increasingly weirded out family will tell you, my obsession with tea has (almost) steadily escalated since then. I discovered the world of tea slowly, first with just chai, and then with bagged teas I could get from supermarkets and specialty stores, and then with loose leaf teas. I mostly shop for tea at Teavana, but I also patronize other local shops that I’ve discovered within the last couple of years. I’ve ordered a smattering of teas from a few online places, but I’m always leery of buying tea online, since most of how I select teas in person is by smell… unless I’m at The English Tea Room.

My favorite types of tea are blacks and flavored blacks. And oolongs. Right underneath that are rooiboses and whites, and then greens and herbals, and then mates. I’m always looking for a new favorite, but I appreciate rediscovering old favorites. I like to blend teas, but I never store them that way, mostly because I like to leave myself options.

I prefer nutty/sweet/rich teas to fruity/light-flavored teas or bold/full-bodied teas, but I do try to drink some of everything to widen my palate. I’m always willing to try any tea at least once (except this one tea that Teavana mercifully discontinued… the loose leaf smelled like cheese, I swear). I do perhaps rate teas a little leniently… because I’m not very picky. I will try a tea at least three times before I pronounce that I hate it, and I will always focus on the good aspects of a tea rather than the bad. That’s just how I roll. :3


Colorado, USA

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