Category Archives: black
Another tea my friend Liz brought me from Tea Time Scottsdale was Passion Berry.
From the package, Passion Berry is a black tea.
I don’t know precisely what is in the Passion Berry tea, but when I opened the package all I got was delicious tropical aromas. I sort of assume what I was smelling was passionfruit flavor, and there were obviously petals that smelled of apricot. Actually, when I opened the package it reminded me of fruit roll ups from my childhood. But I mean that in the best way possible! Once brewed it smelled a bit less fruity, and I definitely got a hint of the black tea. The taste was sweet, but very tropical. I think this would make a great summer iced tea, although it was a delicious mid-afternoon treat!
Last week I got to meet up with my friend Liz and she brought me some delicious teas to try from her local tea store, Tea Time Scottsdale. I have tasted teas from them in the past, and they’re delicious, so I was looking forward to trying these.
The first blend I tried was Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake. From the package, it includes black tea, organic cinnamon chips, apple pieces and orange blossoms.
It appears that the online store website isn’t up right now, but I bet you could call and place a phone order if you wanted to try this one.
When I opened the package all I could smell was the lovely cinnamon smell. This tea was strong enough that once brewed, it filled my house with a delicious aroma. I could definitely taste the apples and cinnamon and it was both sweet and strong. It was a delicious cup on a cold day. I would highly recommend!
Figgy Pudding is a black tea with figs and Acerola cherries.
It is available in a variety of sizes: 2oz for $9.95, 4oz for $19.90, 8oz for $37.81, 1lb for $71.64 and 2lb for $135.32.
When I opened the package I smelled the deep rich aroma of the figs and cherries, which definitely reminded me of warm holiday treats. Upon tasting this one, I was a little disappointed in that I only really got the cherry flavor. It was a good strong black tea, and the fruit flavor was nice, but I think I wanted a bit more fig flavor and it seemed to be overridden by cherry. That said, it should be a good tea for these cold holiday nights!
With the Thanksgiving holiday, the season is set into full swing and Black Friday heralds the opening of shopping season. I wanted to pull together a few suggestions for the tea and knit lovers in your life.
At the top of my list are subscriptions for wonderful gifts that keep on giving all year long.
For the tea lover in your life, you might consider a description to the Plum Deluxe Tea of the Month club. Club memberships are done on a quarterly basis, so you can give anywhere from 3-12 months of tea to someone special in your life. Send them one tea a month for $10 per month, or double their pleasure with 2 teas a month for $20 per month. I’m a member and have been enjoying the surprise in my mailbox each month!
For the knitter in your life there are too many options to choose from!
You could check out Yarnbox.com for a variety of knitting box subscriptions. Each month your favorite knitter will receive a box with yarn, a pattern and some fun extras at his or her door. Boxes range from $19.95 to $69.95. I haven’t personally tried this one, but I’ve heard good things and see beautiful items people receive!
If you’re looking for one special gift for your special someone, advent calendars are a great idea.
I particularly love the David’s Tea Advent Calendar which is 24 days of delightful tea and can be snapped up for $40. Get this one quickly because they always sell out!
For your knitter friend check out the Opal Advent Calendar box for 24 miniskeins of colorful Opal yarn for $60. The knitter could make ornaments for his or her tree, or a wonderful pair of stripey socks!
Black Friday Tea
If you’re planning to partake in a little Black Friday shopping, I could point you in the direction of a few of my favorite black teas!
- No. 5 Winter Blend from Churchmouse Yarn and Teas, 4oz for $14.00 (review here)
- Snowflake Tea from Lana’s The Little House, 4oz for $12.00 (review here)
- Downton Christmas Blend from Republic of Tea, Tin of 36 teabags for $12.00 (review here)
And finally a few knittea related items I have seen this season:
From the package, Spiced Apple Chai contains black tea, cinnamon bark, ginger root, cardamom, orange peels, cloves, and apple pieces.
Spiced Apple Chai is available in a variety of sizes: sample for $3.00, 3oz for $8.00 and 16oz for $24.00.
When I opened the package I smelled both the sweet apple and the savory spices. I love a good spiced tea so I had high hopes. The tea itself tasted wonderful – lots of apple cider-like taste, with a heady kick of spices. I will definitely be adding this to my rotation. It’s a perfect blend of tea, fruit and holiday spice!
Two weeks ago, I received an email from Adagio Teas advertising a holiday giveaway. I went to the site and sure enough I won 3oz of their Cranberry blend with my next order. I’d been meaning to order more new teas to try, and the holidays are approaching, so I did!
From the package, Cranberry contains black tea, raspberry leaves, natural cranberry flavor and cranberries.
It is available in a variety of sizes: sample for $2.00, 3oz for $7.00 and 1lb for $19.00.
When I first opened the bag I smelled the raspberry leaves most strongly, but also a hint of tangy cranberry towards the end. Once brewed the tea had a very berry aroma. The tea itself was fairly smooth and strong, with a nice raspberry flavor. I wish the cranberry flavor were a little stronger, but there is a nice hint of it at the finish. I’m tempted to brew this one over the holidays, maybe with some mulling spices?
A few weeks ago I received an unexpected package in the mail from Lana’s The Little House. Worried that I might be tea shopping in my sleep, I opened the box with a bit of trepidation. What I found inside was a lovely note from Lana herself.
Apparently when I reviewed my previous order I had noted that one of the samples I received was fairly light. Now I have gone back and looked carefully at the current site and there doesn’t seem to be a defined amount for the sample size, so I guess I must have been comparing that particular sample to the other one that I ordered and also reviewed. Regardless, this surprise package contained a note from Lana apologizing for the small size of the sample and as well as a few other samples of her tea to try. I don’t think an apology was necessary, but I appreciate the thought and thank Lana for her excellent customer service.
Chautauqua Blend contains black tea with a combination of strawberry bits, raspberry bits, orange peels, and other fruit flavors.
It is available in a variety of sizes including 4oz for $12.00 and sample size for $3.oo.
When I opened the package I smelled the berry flavor and it reminded me of summer. Once brewed I got more of the black tea aroma, but it still smelled like summer fruits. The tea was smooth with just a hint of sweet. It was delightful as an afternoon cup of tea, but I also think it would be wonderful iced in the summer months.
Again, I would like to thank Lana for her thoughtful package and I encourage you to try some of her offerings (including her Snowflake Tea which I love!).
Sweet Orange Spice contains black tea, cinnamon, orange peels, clove buds, natural orange flavors, and natural cinnamon flavor.
I was able to purchase 2.1 oz of Sweet Orange Spice in a beautiful tin for $13.50. It doesn’t appear that you can order from The Perfect Blend Yarn & Tea shop online, so I include a link to Tea Forté’s Sweet Orange Spice page.
When I opened the canister I could smell the cinnamon and cloves and my mouth watered. I absolutely love spicy teas! Once brewing I could smell a bit of the orange. The taste was wonderful. It was sweet, but not too sweet, and the cinnamon and cloves added a spicy undertone. This was perfect for a chilly afternoon.
When I placed my last order with Churchmouse Yarns & Teas I was excited to see that they had a Steve Smith Teamaker Sampler. So far I’ve enjoyed the Steve Smith teas I have tried, but it’s always nice to get to try a bunch of teas without buying 4oz of each before you know what they taste like.
The Smith Teamaker Sampler is “a thirteen-cup tour of Steve’s best blends” and includes selections of black, green and herbal teas. I’ve already shared a few with friends, but I decided to take the rest of the pack to work and work my way through it.
The Smith Teamaker Sampler is available for $14.00.
The first tea I decided to try was the Kandy blend. This boasts a blend of Ceylon teas. This one was very mellow and smooth. It was a strong black tea without being bitter. It was a great afternoon treat.
The second tea I tried was the Mao Feng Shui green tea blend. This one can potentially “improve your outlook on life.” This one was very light and fresh. I found it a lovely start to my day.
Overall, I can highly recommend trying a sample pack. The only problem I have is deciding which ones to order again!
From the website, the China Black blend contains Yunnan tea.
It is available in the following sizes: 4oz for $10.00, 8oz for $20.00 and 1lb for $40.00. China Black is currently on sale for 20% off – don’t wait much longer because those prices won’t stick around!
China Black, according to Churchmouse, is the Chinese version of Assam; a strong black tea. But, Yunnan is somewhat mellower and doesn’t require milk. I enjoyed this one. I thought it was a strong black tea with just a hint of smokiness. I added a bit of sugar and it was sweet and mellow. I will definitely be back for more of this one.