T By Daniel’s Orange Creamsicle

Orange Creamsicle by T By Daniel
Herbal Infusion / Flavoured
$8.50 for 50g

T By Daniel’s Orange Creamsicle came to me as part of The Sugared Teacup’s August themed subscription box.

First Impressions

I always get a little excited when I get a T By Daniel tea in one of my subscription boxes from The Sugared Teacup because I’ve really liked the teas that I’ve tried previously from this Ontario-based company. Orange Creamsicle honestly smells just like its namesake. If you’re not familiar with orange creamsicles, I feel a bit sad for you as they were often a nice summer treat when I was a kid.

Orange Creamsicle consists of: apple pieces, rosehips, orange pieces, hibiscus, sunflower petals, and natural flavouring. I can see a lot of the ingredients, including some fairly big dried orange pieces throughout.

Preparation

T By Daniel recommends steeping Orange Creamsicle in 100°C (212°F) water for 5 to 6 minutes. My initial steep was for 5 minutes.

First Taste

Orange Creamsicle steeps to a very bright pink. Despite the fact that I know that there is hibiscus in the blend, I’m somehow still disappointed that it isn’t a neon orange colour like the actual orange creamsicle product. It’s not exactly a rational expectation, but it is what it is. The aroma from the tea is still very reminiscent of orange creamsicle. On the first taste, I taste sweetness, orange, with a touch of tang and tartness. The orange flavour is pretty spot on, and the tartness leads to a nice mouthpucker thanks to the hibiscus.

A Second Cup?

I attempted to resteep Orange Creamsicle and found the flavour to be lacking compared to the initial steep. I would say that Orange Creamsicle is good for just one steep.

My Overall Impression

I loved T By Daniel’s Orange Creamsicle. From the dry leaf aroma to the steeped tea, I found this herbal infusion to be very accurately named. The flavour is really spot on and I think it would be great as an iced tea or cold steeped, although it is pretty tasty when drank hot. I do wish it resteeped a bit better, but I’m not too disappointed since I do know that it is an herbal infusion. I still wish that it steeped to a bright orange instead of a pink, but the flavour is great and it’s really well done.

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Trader Joe’s Harvest Blend Herbal Tea

Harvest Blend Herbal Tea by Trader Joe’s
Herbal Infusion / Flavoured
$1.99USD for 48g (20 sachets)

First Impressions

Another one of my cross-border tea haul items! I actually went to Trader Joe’s for the first thing in September and basically was in awe of All The Things – I definitely need to make another trip now that I won’t be (as) overwhelmed by the selection of items. First of my Trader Joe’s tea finds is their Harvest Blend Herbal Tea. It was only $1.99USD, which pretty much sold me on getting it since it was cheap for 20 sachets.

Under the cellophane, there’s the cardboard box – and inside of that is a clever resealable wax paper bag with the tea bags inside. The tea bags are square, no string or tag, not really worthy of a photo. However, the aroma from the sachet is very strongly of cinnamon. It reminds me a lot of cinnamon heart candies that are so popular around Valentine’s Day. I can just make out the aroma of orange peel and ginger.

Harvest Blend Herbal Tea consists of: cinnamon, ginger, hibiscus, natural cinnamon and apple flavours with other natural flavours, chamomile, roasted chicory, and orange peel.

Preparation

Trader Joe’s recommendations for Harvest Blend Herbal Tea are to steep in boiling water (100°C/212°F) for 4 to 6 minutes with optional sweetener. My initial steep of Harvest Blend Herbal Tea was for 5 minutes.

Fun fact, the steeping instructions are on the inside of the box on the flap.

First Taste

Harvest Blend Herbal Tea steeps to a reddish brown that’s a bit murky in colour. The flavour of the herbal infusion has a nice sweetness to it – I can make out the apple, cinnamon, and ginger flavours. It has a nice balance – there’s a gentle heat from the ginger, but it’s not too much that it’s spicy. I really like the sweetness because I wasn’t really expecting it, and there’s a light tartness from the hibiscus that helps keep it interesting.

A Second Cup?

I attempted to resteep Harvest Blend Herbal Tea and found it to be a weak ghost-like version of the initial steep. I would say that Harvest Blend Herbal Tea is good for just one steep.

My Overall Impression

I loved Trader Joe’s Harvest Blend Herbal Tea. I really enjoyed the flavours in this herbal infusion – it’s really nice to find a seasonal tea that isn’t full of pumpkin or spice (sorry to all the PSL lovers out there…!). I found that the apple flavour was perfect and well-balanced with the ginger and cinnamon. It really made me to think of autumn without being hit in the fact with a pumpkin pie. While I wish that the tea could be resteeped, I’m not to fussed about it since it was such a great price for what will amount to twenty cups of tea. I do think this packaging could do with a little bit of a work, although I do understand that the cellophane is for freshness (and to also prevent product tampering). The resealable wax paper bag is nothing short of genius and I love that the box itself is created with recycled material – almost makes up for the cellophane!

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Tea Side’s 2016 Moonlight White Tea

2016 Moonlight White Tea by Tea Side
White Tea / Straight
$9.00USD for 50g

Tea Side has provided me with 2016 Moonlight White Tea for the purposes of providing an honest review.

First Impressions

I received 2016 Moonlight White Tea from Tea Side in a silvery foil package (not resealable, which is unfortunate!). The leaves are big, they look like they were just laid out to dry and then were scooped up into the package. There’s some visible downy feathers on some of the leaves, which vary in shades of brown.

2016 Moonlight White Tea has a very subtle floral aroma to it, and it’s fairly obvious that there aren’t any other ingredients in with this tea. As per the Tea Side website, the 2016 Moonlight White Tea was harvested in Thailand at 1200m above sea level from tea plants that are between 300 and 500 years old.

Preparation

I couldn’t find any steeping instructions for 2016 Moonlight White Tea, so I opted to steep in 85°C (185°F) for 2 minutes. If you’re ever stumped for trying to figure out how long to steep a tea for and in what temperature, check out my steeping guide! And if you’re steeping a tea blend (e.g. white and green tea), always opt for the temperature and length of time that is less.

First Taste

2016 Moonlight White steeps to a beautiful light golden yellow. I found the aroma to be floral, which did match the flavour. There’s a light floral flavour with a smooth texture. This white tea is easy to drink with the slight sweetness that lingers in the mouth. I think it would pair well with each sweet or savoury dishes with how clear it tastes.

A Second Cup?

I resteeped 2016 Moonlight White Tea a total of 5 times, adding an extra 30 seconds for each subsequent steep. I found that the flavour intensified for the first resteep and then slowly started to fade with each steep. The colour of the tea became more of a deep golden yellow for the first two resteeps.

My Overall Impression

I loved Tea Side’s 2016 Moonlight White Tea. I found the flavour to be really enjoyable, and the white tea resteeped really well and kept a good flavour throughout the steeping session. The floral notes and the light sweetness throughout really made for an enjoyable steeping session, and the fact that the leaves resteeped so well was a nice touch and really showed off the quality in the tea leaves.

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