Razzleberry Green from 52Teas

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Green

Where to Buy:  sorry, this limited edition tea is no longer available…

Product Description:

Our buttery sweet Chinese sencha green tea with real freeze-dried blackberries and raspberries and all natural flavors. This is a great treat for these waning days of summer. I think I’m going to make another big icy stein of it right now.

Taster’s Review:

Even though 52Teas is one of my favorite tea companies, I’ve only become familiar with their teas within the last two years.  So the limited edition teas that had sold out before I started becoming an avid customer – like this Razzleberry Green – were teas that were sadly out of my reach.

Fortunately, back in February, 52Teas offered some sample size packages of some of their retired blends.  The samples were random (I didn’t know which samples I would receive), but I was so happy to find this one amongst the samples I ordered.

This is really delicious.  The Chinese Sencha is light-bodied, buttery and sweet.  The “razzleberry” flavor is a combination of raspberry and blackberry, and it is a subtle flavor that slowly develops as I continue to sip.  The sweet “razzleberry” flavor seems a perfect match for the creamy flavor of the Sencha.

It is delicious hot, but even better as it cools.  A very refreshing iced tea!  This blend has a light sweetness to it, so I found it unnecessary to sweeten it when it was hot, but as it cooled, I found that a little sweetener (just a tiny drizzle of agave nectar) really brightened the fruit flavor.

This is a delightful tea.  I wish it were still available so that I could tell you to order some!  But I will say this:  you should visit 52Teas website and watch for their tea of the week updates (or better yet, just subscribe to their newsletter, you’ll receive an emailed update with information about each week’s tea, as well as updates on any mid-week specials).  If you love outrageous flavored teas, there is no tea company out there that does them better!

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Watermelon Green Honeybush from 52Teas

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Honeybush

Where to Buy:  52Teas

Product Review:

Our New Tea of the Week for the week of January 10, 2011

This week’s tea of the week is a special treat. Here’s green honeybush with natural watermelon flavors. If the cold weather has you yearning for a taste of summer, here’s your chance. I’m enjoying a cup of this as I write this. The green honeybush base is soft and pleasant with light citrus notes. The watermelon is sweet; I can almost feel the juiciness of it.

This is the last of our green honeybush, so don’t miss out; this will be a limited edition blend!

Taster’s Review:

I am sitting here with my Libre Mug filled with Watermelon Green Honeybush from 52Teas and the aroma is absolutely delightful.  It reminds me of the scent of Watermelon Jolly Ranchers – a smell I’ve loved since childhood.  The smell alone is making me happy that I decided to order this tisane!

So I’m overjoyed by the fact that the flavor of this tea is just as delightful as the fragrance!  This tastes just like fresh, juicy watermelon.  It tastes so much like watermelon that I can almost feel the watermelon juices running down my arm.   YUM!

I haven’t tried too many green honeybush blends, but I am really liking this one.  Honeybush typically has a honey-esque sweetness to it (hence the name), but where the “red” honeybush tends to have a somewhat nutty tone to it, this one has a fresher, lighter taste to it that is somewhat citrus-like and that citrus note really brightens the watermelon flavor.

This tisane is very summer-like to me, so I plan on keeping the rest of this pouch for my summertime ice tea brewing.  As delicious as it is hot, it is perfect as an iced tea.  It is as exhilarating as the fruit itself!

On the 12th Day of Christmas … from 52Teas

Happy Holidays to everyone!

First of all, sorry this will end up posting a little late.  I was up LATE last night doing the final preparations for the holiday morning, and I had figured I’d be up earlier than this!  My youngest actually slept until about 9 am Pacific Time!  I couldn’t believe it!

Anyway… I was especially excited for today’s tea, because it was one that I hadn’t yet tried!  This was the one brand new blend from the box, and from what I understand it will soon be featured as a tea of the week.

Without further mumblings from me… The CHRISTMAS Tea of the Day is…

GINGERBREAD CHAI

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  52Teas

Product Description:

Ingredients:  Premium black teas, ginger, cinnamon, cardamom, pink peppercorns, natural flavors.

Taster’s Review:

Well, as I said before, this was the tea I was most excited about because I knew it was a new blend.  Of the other 11 teas, there was only one of them that I hadn’t yet tried, but was definitely on my on-going list of teas to order when finances allow. (The one tea I hadn’t tried being the Chocolate Chai from Day 2)

Anyway, on to this NEW chai!  Wow!  It’s really tasty!  It really tastes like gingerbread and chai married in one teacup!   I can taste the baked cake-y taste in the cup, and I must say that in the time that I’ve gotten familiar with 52Teas blends, Frank (the head zoomdweebie at 52Teas) has improved with achieving the pastry and/or cake-y flavor for the tea.

Not surprisingly, the ginger is dominant in this cup.  But, it doesn’t taste over-ginger-y either.  That is to say, it doesn’t taste like Frank just got really happy with the ginger root.  It tastes like gingerbread, not an overpoweringly-ginger-flavored chai.

The other spices are very well balanced and they carry a full-flavored taste that fills the palate with warm spice.  The black tea base is a little understated here but not so much that it can’t be tasted.  That’s not a complaint!  I like that it doesn’t try to intrude upon the other flavors.  The tea is there, it just doesn’t overwhelm the cup.

Because what really makes this chai outstanding is the gingerbread flavor!  It really is yummy, I love the cake-y taste!  It adds such a delightful dimension to the already delicious chai.

When I had originally ordered this sampler box for myself, my initial thought was “great, I can just order the sampler, and since I will have a small sample of the new Christmas blend, that will be one tea from 52Teas that I won’t need to buy because I will have already tried it!”  But, as it turns out, this is one tea that I WILL have to order, because of all the chai teas that I’ve tried from 52Teas, this one is the BEST by far!  Gee, thanks Frank.  My wallet thanks you too.  Yeah.

Merry Christmas, everyone!  I hope that Santa brought you LOTS of tea to enjoy!

 

On the 11th Day of Christmas … from 52Teas

Today is Christmas Eve… and I still haven’t finished all the holiday preparations.  I still have presents to buy!

Yeah… I’m not the most organized individual you’re likely to meet.  That’s putting it mildly!

It may not appear so by just reading these words, but … I’m about to have a panic attack!  Good thing I have some tea to help soothe my nerves!

And the tea that I’m enjoying today is …

NEAPOLITAN HONEYBUSH

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Honeybush

Where to Buy:  52Teas

Product Description:

Our caffeine-free African Honeybush (If you are still not familiar with honeybush, it is very similar to Rooibos, but a bit sweeter and without the woody aftertaste that rooibos frequently has) blended with organic vanilla beans, organic cacao nibs, freeze-dried strawberry pieces and all natural flavors. This is a real treat hot or iced!

Taster’s Review:

I can’t believe that I haven’t yet written a review for this tea!

Well, no time like the present, eh?  This is a tea that I’ve had on hand for some time now.  I am not going to say its my favorite tisane from 52Teas, because it isn’t, but, I do like it quite a bit!  I think I like it even more now than I did when I first tasted it.

For those of you that have one, I recommend brewing this in a Libre Tea Glass (or similar type vessel).  I put the leaf into the main chamber of the glass, screw on the straining lid, and sip the tisane through the strainer.  This enables me to keep the honeybush in the liquid as I sip it, and the flavor continues to intensify.  This tea just keeps getting better and better the longer it steeps!

After steeping just six minutes, my first few sips were delicious.  I could taste a good combination of chocolate, vanilla and strawberry, together with the somewhat nutty/honey sweet taste of the honeybush.  But now, after continuing to steep some additional 15 or 20 minutes after those first couple of sips, the flavor is even better.  The chocolate – RICH!  The strawberry – SWEET!  The vanilla – CREAMY!  I think I actually like this tisane better than the ice cream after which it was created!

The flavor is really smooth and creamy, just like ice cream.  The only real difference is the temperature and the slightly nutty taste that comes from the honeybush.  I have tasted this tea hot and iced, and it is really tasty either way.  I found it to be very refreshing this past summer when I iced it.  Right now, I’m finding it to be particularly soothing on the nervous tension I’m experiencing due to my shopping dilemma.

This tea is such a wonderful treat!

On the 10th Day of Christmas … from 52Teas

Wow… just 3 more sample packages left.  I am going to miss this!

It’s been a lot of fun – these mystery samples, even though I’ve already tried all but one of them previously.  It’s a bit like visiting an old friend.

And when I think about it, I don’t know that I could have had enjoyed this experience with any other company.  Having tried so many offerings from 52Teas and having not yet found one that disappointed me, I knew that I would enjoy this package of 12 mystery teas.

So, thank you, 52Teas for being what you are!  A great company dedicated to creating the most interesting tea blends possible.  I wouldn’t want it any other way!

On the 10th Day of Christmas, 52Teas gave to me…

STRAWBERRY ZABAGLIONE

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  52Teas

Product Description:

This was a suggestion from one of our customers, and I spent an hour digging through my email folders and searching our facebook page, but I couldn’t find the original suggestion anywhere, so I couldn’t put his or her name on the blend.

Anyway, when I first got the suggestion, I realized I was going to have to MAKE some Zabaglione to try, because not only had I not tried it before, but I had never HEARD of it before. Well after trying it (for those of you who never have, I would say it is something like a custardy (flavor, not texture) whipped cream with a hint of wine. After trying it, I was not at all sure that we would be able to make a tea that hinted of the complexity of Zabaglione, but after some trial and error, we now have… [Strawberry Zabaglione]

Taster’s Review:

Well, today, I’m going to try to keep this short and sweet, mostly because I have an appointment this morning and time is ticking away!

I have previously reviewed this tea, and you can read that review here.   This is another favorite from 52Teas.  The flavor is amazing!  The strawberry tastes authentic – just like a fresh, juicy strawberry!  The creamy “zabaglione” tastes very custard-like (which is what I understand a zabaglione is supposed to taste like).

The black tea base is strong and supports these flavors well. Together, it is a delicious treat!  Drink it in the morning to enjoy dessert at the breakfast table!  Drink it in the afternoon for a delightful pick-me-up.  A splash of milk will bring out the creamy tones of the custard!

Yum!  I’m glad this tea was a part of this package because it definitely is one of the shining stars from 52Teas accomplishments this past year!

On the 9th Day of Christmas … from 52Teas

This isn’t the only “12 Days” type of thing that I’ve chosen to become involved with this holiday season.  I am also in a 12 Days of Christmas art swap through a Yahoo! art group that I’m in.  You can learn more about that swap here and see some of the art pieces that I’ve received in that swap, as well as the art piece that I made for the swap.

Both of these 12 Days “thingies” have been a lot of fun for me … and there is a part of me that is just a little sad that they are both almost over.

But rather than think about when it will end… I think it is much better to focus on the here and now.  And right here and now, it is time to unveil the tea of the day for today!

BUTTERED CINNAMON RAISIN TOAST

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  52Teas

Product Description:

So, a raisin flavored tea is pretty unique in and of itself; cinnamon-raisin tea: a bit cooler, but at 52teas, we don’t just push the envelope, we shove. So, I’m happy to present our tea of the week for the week of January 4, 2010: Buttered Cinnamon Raisin Toast flavored black tea.

We started with our premium Indian black teas base, added just a touch of smoked Assam teas for a tiny bit of toastiness, then we added real golden raisins, cinnamon stick bits and natural raisin and cinnamon flavors. We topped it all off with just a hint of natural butter flavoring. The result: Well, you will have to try it to believe it.

Taster’s Review:

I was a little surprised to find this tea in this 12 Teas of Christmas box.  Pleasantly surprised, but surprised nonetheless; mostly because this tea is not one of 52Teas permanent collection teas.

However, I think it SHOULD be in their permanent collection, because it is so good.  I tried this tea when it was first introduced (and you can read my first review of this tea here), I mean, how could I resist?  It just sounded too unusual and interesting to pass up.

One thing that I really like about this tea is that it is a little different each time I brew it.  When I first reviewed it, the cinnamon flavor was a little subtle, this time, as I sip it, the cinnamon is front and center.  The butter is a little lighter this time around, but still present.  The raisin flavor is a little stronger, and I am getting a little more of a smoked/toasty taste too.  The overall cup is still sweet, but it is a little more spiced with a stronger cinnamon note.

One thing that I did say in the previous review that remains true today – this is definitely one of 52Teas most interesting blends!  I am so happy that I got to revisit it!

On the 8th Day of Christmas … from 52Teas

Yep… you read that right.  Today is the 8th day.

I still can’t believe it’s Christmas already… this year seems to have flown by!

So much has happened this year… my first born graduated from high school, and she got engaged to a wonderful guy.  I’m thrilled he will be joining our family.  My youngest started 4th grade!  It’s been quite a year.

Anyway, enough of that, or I shall be writing this review with teary eyes.  To avoid the tears, lets get to the tea of the day, shall we?

MALTED CHOCOMATÉ

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Yerba Maté

Where to Buy:  52Teas

Product Description:

This is roasted yerba mate with organic cacao nibs and all natural chocolate and malt flavors. It is one delicious energy kick! If you missed our last yerba mate blend, you can read more about mate and it’s properties here. This is our first roasted mate blend. The previous mate blends were made with green yerba mate. The difference in flavor is similar to the difference between a black and a green tea, though the roasted mate still has tiny bit more of a vegetal taste than black tea.

Taster’s Review:

Another favorite from 52Teas, and for good reason.  With this one, it’s all about the chocolate, baby!  Of all the 52Teas I’ve tried thus far, this one is by far the most chocolate-y (although, if you are a chocoholic like I am, I also highly recommend the Chocolate Malt Honeybush from My Sweet Honeybush, which I would say is probably neck and neck when it comes to chocolate-y-ness).

I previously reviewed this tea for the Tea Review Blog, and really my feelings about this delicious tisane have not changed.  It is still just as rich and delicious as it was when I wrote the review.

The Yerba Maté does have a vegetative quality to it but I don’t find it distracting.  What is especially nice is how well the roasted aspect of the Yerba Maté enhances the flavor of the chocolate.  The flavor is sweet, pleasantly toasty, and decadent.

To be quite honest, I would prefer this to a chocolate ice cream malt any day, if for no other reason than that I find tea to be infinitely more soothing and comforting than ice cream.  Don’t get me wrong, I love ice cream (and malts!), but if given a choice between ice cream and tea… I’d choose tea every time.  And even though this is not technically a “tea” because it’s made from Yerba Maté leaves and not tea leaves, I still love how wonderful this really is.

And even though it is rather soothing and comforting, the Yerba Maté definitely is rather invigorating!  I wouldn’t recommend sipping on this just before bedtime.  I find the caffeine in Yerba Mate to be more stimulating than that in tea, but without the “jolt” that coffee delivers – and without the inevitable nausea (at least for me) that follows the coffee jolt.

This is truly a delicious blend – one that is definitely worthy of its place in 52Teas permanent collection, one I am glad was featured in this 12 Teas of Christmas box, and one that should definitely be on the shelf of every chocolate lover!  It’s so good!

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