Leaf Type: Herbal
Where to Buy: Simpson & Vail
This refreshing blend brews to a bright cherry red color with a sweet, tart taste. Comprised of hibiscus flowers, mango, papaya, lemongrass, safflower, mallow blossoms and acai and pomegranate flavors, this tea is fabulous both hot and iced.
I’ll be honest, this tea scared me a little bit… a quick look at the ingredients made me think that this would be just a little too sour for my taste buds. So I put off trying it until now…
Yes, it IS a bit tart … BUT… it is also very tasty! It has enough sweet fruit flavor to it that it smooths out the tart edge just enough so that it’s agreeable.
The key, I think, is to not allow it to steep too long. I steeped it for just 5 minutes. This is enough time to extract flavor from the herbs and fruit without allowing the hibiscus to offset the delicate balance of this cup. Another important factor is that I served it iced. The chill allows the flavors to mellow out without dulling them too much. When it is hot, the flavor is much more potent.
But… let’s get on to how this tastes, because it is really quite tasty. I can taste mango and papaya, pomegranate and açaí. The lemongrass offers just a hint lemony taste, and it is just the right touch to the sweet-tart blend of fruits.
The hibiscus offers some body to this blend – but because I only steeped it for 5 minutes, it isn’t a thick, syrupy consistency. It is also not overwhelmingly sour. It offers just the right level of tart to create a very delicate balance between tart and sweet.
Simpson & Vail has a very intriguing recipe for this tea – Burgundy Blast Fizzy Drink – which can be found here. It looks absolutely delicious!
I enjoyed this tea very much and it was just the right tea for today, because even though the calendar says it’s autumn, the weather is very summer-like. It was HOT today! Drinking this as an iced tea was very refreshing!