Arbor Teas’ Orange Spice Lemongrass Tisane

Orange Spice Lemongrass Tisane by Arbor Teas
Herbal Infusion / Flavoured
$9.95USD for 2.5oz

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Arbor Teas has provided me with Orange Spice Lemongrass Tisane for the purposes of providing an honest review. I received this product at no charge to me and received no other compensation.

First Impressions

When I read the list of ingredients for Orange Spice Lemongrass Tisane, I was thinking to myself that I needed to keep this for when I have a sore throat or an upset stomach. The ingredients that make up this herbal infusion are: organic lemongrass, organic orange peel, organic cinnamon, organic ginger root, and natural cinnamon and orange flavouring. Typically, you can find a lot of lemongrass and ginger in herbal infusions that are meant for people feeling a bit under the weather. I know that for me, growing up, my mom made a lot of batches of ginger tea that had a bit of lemon and not quite enough honey to kill the spice of the ginger that she would slice up to put into the water. That said, let’s get into it!

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The packaging is the same as the other sample that I received from Arbor Teas (Silver Needle), so I won’t be getting into about how their packaging is very cool and compostable (which I think is fantastic for the environment). This blend has a great lemongrass aroma to it as soon as I cut open the packaging. The lemongrass, orange peel, ginger root and cinnamon are all very obvious visually in this blend, with lemongrass clearly being the star. I can smell the lemongrass, orange, and ginger. It definitely reminds me of the lemon-ginger-honey ‘tea’ that my mom would make for me when I was sick, this leads to a very comforting feel the aroma of this blend.

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Preparation

Arbor Teas recommends steeping Orange Spice Lemongrass Tisane in boiling (100°C/212°F) water for 5 to 7 minutes. My initial steep of Orange Spice Lemongrass Tisane was for 6 minutes.

The nice thing about this being an herbal infusion is that you can’t really “oversteep” this. With tea blends that have tea leaves in them, you run the risk of ‘burning’ the leaves or oversteeping them, which can lead to very bitter or very astringent cups of tea. With herbal infusions, there are no tea leaves so you can’t really do much damage to them. That said, the longer you steep this blend, the more intense the ginger and cinnamon flavours will be, which may lead to a spicier cup.

First Taste

Orange Spice Lemongrass Tisane has a very bright fragrance to it – the orange and lemongrass play nicely together in bringing forward bold citrus scents, while the ginger is in the background with just a hint of spice. I can’t really smell the cinnamon after this has been steeped, but that’s fine by me as I didn’t really smell it in the dry leaf either. This herbal infusion steeps to a nice bright yellowy-orange, I quite like it! It’s a very cheerful colour. The taste is primarily lemongrass, with hints of orange and ginger. The ginger has a bit of spice to it, which was to be expected.

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A Second Cup?

I typically don’t resteep herbal or fruit infusions, but I did try this one for a resteep. I found the flavours in the resteep to be very mild compared to the initial steep. The impact of the lemongrass wasn’t as strong, and the orange was hard to find in my cup. The ginger wasn’t as strong either, which led to it being a bit disappointing. I would say that this tisane is good for one steep.

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My Overall Impression

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I thought that Arbor Tea’s Orange Spice Lemongrass Tisane was just okay. This isn’t an herbal blend that I would have picked out for myself, mostly because of the lemongrass and ginger. It definitely does make me feel like I should have an upset stomach or be feeling under the weather while having this tisane because of what my mom used to make for me when I was sick. That said, the lemongrass and ginger flavours are strong and they go very well together. The longer you steep it, the stronger the ginger flavour will be in the resulting cup. I think that Orange Spice Lemongrass Tisane would be great if you’re looking for something to tame an upset stomach, or if you’re looking for a caffeine-free alternative to tea or coffee.

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The Key of Tea’s ImmuniTea

ImmuniTea by The Key of Tea
Herbal Infusion / Flavoured
$8.00USD for 2oz

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The Key of Tea has provided me with ImmuniTea for the purposes of providing an honest review. I received this product at no charge to me and received no other compensation.

First Impressions

ImmuniTea has an excellent punny name and the Key of Tea’s website states that this blend is of immune-boosting herbs. ImmunitTea consists of: elderberry, rosehips, peppermint, lavender, sage, hibiscus, ginger root, and echinacea. The ingredient that really stands out the most to me when smell the dry herbal blend is the ginger. Ginger in general can be a pretty strong ingredient, so I’m not surprised that it overpowers the other ingredients before it’s been steeped. It’s a very pretty blend though, I love how I can see the individual ingredients in the blend.

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A word of advice, some herbs can interact with prescription medications so it’s always a good idea to talk to your physicians/pharmacists and let them know that you’ll be taking any herbal supplements. Here is an image of the retail packaging, provided by The of Key of Tea:

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Preparation

The Key of Tea’s website didn’t have any preparation recommendations for ImmuniTea, I used boiling water (100°C/212°F) and steeped it for 5 minutes.

First Taste

ImmuniTea steeps to a very pretty reddish-orange. I love the smell of it as I poured it into my tea cup – the smell of ginger, lavender, and peppermint wafts up to me and it just puts me into a really good mood! There’s just something about it that smell delicious and inviting. On first sip, I note that ImmuniTea has a light sweetness. There’s a strong ginger flavour, with a freshness at the end of each sip. I found that the combination of ingredients makes for a nice warming sensation.

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A Second Cup?

I resteeped ImmuniTea twice with an additional 30 seconds for each subsequent steep. I found the first resteep was a bit milder than the first, and the second resteep wasn’t as good. I think that ImmuniTea is good for a total of two steeps.

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My Overall Impression

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I loved The Key of Tea’s ImmuniTea. The warming sensation was a delight, thanks to the ginger. I loved the freshness at the end of each sip, that I attribute to the peppermint. The sweetness of this herbal blend adds a little extra something to it, and makes it a tasty delight. It’s a good blend of herbal ingredients and I do enjoy a good herbal tea from time to time because the lack of caffeine means I can drink it at 9pm and not feel energized all night long. The ginger is the strongest ingredient in the dry leaf and steeped tea, and it’s just so good and works well as a pick-me-up.

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The Key of Tea’s Tummy Love

Tummy Love by The Key of Tea
Herbal Infusion / Flavoured
$7.50USD for 2oz

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The Key of Tea has provided me with Tummy Love for the purposes of providing an honest review. I received this product at no charge to me and received no other compensation.

First Impressions

The Key of Tea describes Tummy Love on their website as being a “warming blend of herbs and spices to aid in digestion” and looking at the list of ingredients I can see why that might be the case! Tummy Love is an herbal blend that consists of lemon balm, cinnamon, lemon peel, ginger root, fennel, and dandelion. When I opened the sample bag, I can definitely smell the lemon, ginger, and cinnamon. I can’t really make out the fennel or dandelion in the aroma of the dry leaf, but I can see them and I’m not surprised that I can’t smell them with the strong fragrances of the other ingredients. It looks lovely though, and I can see the different ingredients which is quite nice.

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Claire of The Key of Tea provided a photograph of the retail packaging for Tummy Love:

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Preparation

There weren’t any steeping instructions on the website or packaging, but Claire of The Key of Tea recommended steeping the tea at minimum 5 minutes. I steeped Tummy Love in boiling water (100°C/212°F) for 5 minutes for the initial steep.

First Taste

Tummy Love steeps to a really nice yellow colour, it reminds me of sunshine in a cup and it’s just very cheerful. The herbal blend has a strong lemon and ginger aroma to it after it’s steeped, it smells quite inviting. On first sip, I’m surprised that the lemon isn’t as strong as I had expected. The ginger flavour is the strongest out of all of the ingredients and it’s the first thing that I notice when I drink it. I love the strength of the ginger, it has a great warming quality about it that I appreciate from ginger.

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I did add some honey to the tea to see how it would do when sweetened. I found that Tummy Love did great with the honey – the ginger was more toned down, and it tasted like candied ginger, and the other ingredients were able to come out when the ginger was toned down so I could taste the lemon and cinnamon.

A Second Cup?

I resteeped Tummy Love a total of three times – I found that the first two resteeps were quite good and had great flavour, the herbal blend was tapped out of flavour by the third resteep, so I would say that Tummy Love is good for two resteeps. With my usual steeping pattern, I added an extra 30 seconds per additional steep.

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My Overall Impression

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I loved The Key of Tea’s Tummy Love. I found that the herbal blend smells delicious, and I really liked the ginger flavour. I found it did great with the addition of sweetener, and the honey did help to temper the ginger and let the other flavours shine through. That sad, Tummy Love is great without sweetener and has a really nice, strong ginger flavour.

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Urta Islandica’s Iceland Tea

Iceland Tea by Urta Islandica
Herbal Infusion / Straight
1.152 kr for 20g (10 tea bags)

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First Impressions

I am incredibly lucky that I have friends who help to support my tea habit! One of my friends went to Iceland (lucky duck!) and came back with some tea for me to try that she purchased on her travels. This is Iceland Tea from Urta Islandica (and yes, there is a webshop!). The packaging tells me that it’s made from traditional herbs and this herbal infusion consists of four ingredients: birch, angelica seed, Iceland moss, and arctic thyme.

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Some facts that are printed on the packaging include: birch leaf is a diuretic and used for detoxifying, Arctic thyme and angelica seed are sweet and thought to be good for colds and coughs, and Iceland moss is a “world famous health herb” that is good for mouth and throat irritations, as well as for the stomach. The tea bags themselves aren’t anything to write home about, as they’re simple squares. I did cut it open to see what was inside. The tea bags have a strong thyme smell to it, that’s sharper than the thyme that I’m used to. There’s a subtle sweet smell to it. I’m not entire sure what angelica seed or Iceland moss is supposed to smell like, so I can’t be sure I can smell it.

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Preparation

The label suggests steeping for 8 to 15 minutes, no mention of a water temperature. I steeped mine in 100°C (212°F) water for 10 minutes.

First Taste

Iceland Tea steeps to a nice golden yellow, there’s a strong smell of thyme that almost has me wondering where the rosemary is since it’s such a classic flavour combination in cooking. There’s a mild sweetness that I can smell as well, and I do wonder if that’s from the angelica seed and Arctic thyme.

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On first sip, I notice that there’s a very subtle taste to this after having steeped for 10 minutes. Iceland Tea has a nice gentle warming sensation as I drink it that reminds me a lot of ginger but without the heaviness spiciness. There’s a smooth texture to the tea, with a mouth coating feel. Because this herbal infusion has a natural sweetness to it that’s light, I don’t think it really needs additional sweetener.

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A Second Cup?

I resteeped it once, as the packaging suggested that the tea bag could be reused for a “milder” version of Iceland Tea. I find it has a very similar taste to the first cup, but because the first cup wasn’t heavily flavoured, I feel that the second steep wasn’t that flavourful. I would say that it’s good for one steep only.

My Overall Impression

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I liked Urta Islandica’s Iceland Tea. It has an interesting flavour that I haven’t had before in previous herbal infusions, and I can see why the herbs are suggested to be had when feeling a bit under the weather. It’s a tasty, and the thyme is a delightful in a cup. I think if I was having this while having a cold, I would steep two tea bags. I feel like I might appreciate this herbal infusion a bit more if I was having it while nursing a stuffy nose or an upset stomach because I would love the warming sensation from this tea, and I think it would be great if I had a sore throat.

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24 Days of Tea: Spiced Apple

Spiced Apple by DavidsTea
Fruit Infusion / Flavoured
$7.98 for 50g

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First Impressions

I’m getting quite sad as I realized that after today there’s only 3 more days left to the 24 Days of Tea advent calendar! It’s day 21 and the tea today is Spiced Apple, which is another fruit infusion. The first thing that I noticed when I opened the tin was the smell of cinnamon and star anise. I couldn’t really make out the apple, even though I could see visible pieces of dried apple in there.

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Spiced Apple consists of: apple pieces, figs, cinnamon, star anise, chicory, cardamom, cloves, black pepper, natural apple and spice flavouring.

Preparation

For this fruit infusion, DavidsTea recommends steeping Spiced Apple in near-boiling water (90-95°C/194-203°F) for 4 to 7 minutes. I did my cup (and I wound up using the whole tin) for about 5 minutes.

First Taste

While Spiced Apple was steeping, I could smell cinnamon and star anise on the forefront, with apple playing second fiddle. It steeps to a beautiful golden brown though, it’s very inviting. I found that the spices to overwhelm the apple flavour a lot. I was expecting it to be a touch sweeter, given that there is fruit in it and fruit infusions tend towards the sweet side. I find Spiced Apple to be rather sour, and I wound up adding some sugar to it and it helped immensely with tempering the sourness of the tea. This one has the spices that I was looking for in Apple Cider, but Apple Cider had more of a punch when it came to the apple flavour.

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A Second Cup?

I don’t resteep fruit or herbal infusions.

My Overall Impression

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I thought that DavidsTea’s Spiced Apple was just okay. With a name like Spiced Apple, I really did expect the apple and the spices to balance well together, but sadly I was left a little lacking with my cup of mostly spices and minimal apple flavour. I think this tea would benefit from more apple flavouring (perhaps steeping it with a mix of water and apple juice to add a punch of apple flavour in there?), but as it stands as a straight tea, it is a bit disappointing. The spices, oh the delicious spices, are very much present and very much appreciated. I think perhaps a mix of Spiced Apple and Apple Cider would probably taste quite good as each one brings something to the table that the other lacks. Unfortunately, I used my entire little tin of Spiced Apple for this cup, so I’m unable to try the two together.

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