ShakTea’s White Grape

White Grape by ShakTea
White Tea / Flavoured
$12.50 for 50g

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First Impressions

White Grape was one of my acquisitions at the 2017 Vancouver Tea Festival back in November, and it was one of the teas available to sample at ShakTea’s booth – so I knew I liked it before buying it. White Grape came to me in this small silver tin, the tea was in a plastic package inside of it prior to me opening it (I wound up pouring the dry leaf directly into the tin. This tea has a remarkable aroma – it’s floral, fruity – undeniably grape, with the pleasant fragrance of a light tea. It’s a very inviting aroma that this dry tea has.

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On the packaging, it states that White Grape consists of white tea and grape bits. On the product page (at the time of writing), White Grape consists of: white grape flavour, rose hips, blackcurrant, mallow flavour, cornflower blossoms, and white tea. I’d say the latter is more accurate as I can very clearly see cornflower petals and blackcurrant in the white tea blend.

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Preparation

I didn’t find any preparation recommendations on either the packaging or the website for this tea, so I steeped it at 185°F (85°C) for an initial 2 minutes.

First Taste

White Grape steeps to a very pale yellow. The aroma from the steeped tea is primarily that of sweetness and grapes. When I tasted the tea, I noted that the white tea base has some grassy flavours to it – thankfully smooth and not bitter when steeped for the 2 minutes that I did. Zero astringency was noted with this tea, and I happily continued to drink it. The grape flavour is sweet, and reminds me a lot of purple grapes (and thankfully not raisins) with just a touch of tartness. I found that the aroma of this tea kept me wanting to have more and more of it.

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A Second Cup?

I resteeped White Grape twice. I found for the first resteep, the flavours were still present, although a bit weaker. For the second resteep, the flavours were mostly waned and I was left with the white tea base flavour. To be fair, the grassy notes from the white tea are quite delicious so if you’re a white tea fan, you’ll still be able to enjoy the tea without the grape notes.

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My Overall Impression

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I loved ShakTea’s White Grape. I really enjoyed this white tea when I first sampled it, and I was quite happy that I still liked it when I steeped it at home. I just really enjoyed the mix of sweet and tart with the flavours that were blended in with the white tea, and the grassy notes were pleasant. As it is a white tea, I was quite cautious regarding burning or oversteeping the leaves, and was happy to find that it steeps nicely to a smooth, pleasant tea. I think the fruity flavour would lend itself well to being cold steeped or iced, as well as being paired with sweets.

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ShakTea’s Morning Dew

Morning Dew by ShakTea
Green Tea / Flavoured
$7.50 for 50g

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First Impressions

My first experience with Morning Dew was at the Vancouver Tea Festival back in November of this year, where I smelled a sample of the dry leaves and just fell in love. The best way to describe this scented green tea is it smells fresh – which makes me think that it’s an appropriately named green tea. Morning Dew came to me in this cute metal tin – the tea was in a plastic bag inside, which I emptied out into the tin.

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There’s a brightness to the aroma that smells like roses and citrus. Morning Dew consists of “Japanese sencha, sunflower bits, cornflower bits, rose petals, and fruit essence”. Now I’m not too sure what “fruit essence” is, but I imagine that some part of it must be citrus based since the aroma of citrus (primarily oranges?) is very much present in this tea.

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Preparation

There were no steeping instructions on the packaging, and I didn’t find any recommendations on the ShakTea website. I used the green tea setting on my Breville IQ Kettle (175°F/80°C) and steeped the tea for 3 minutes.

First Taste

My initial steep of 3 minutes was far too long! I found Morning Dew to be much too bitter and nearly undrinkable. So I restarted the process and steeped it for 90 seconds. I found that the green tea steeped to a nice yellow colour, while having a very bright aroma. I could smell the floral sweetness wafting up, along with the presence of citrus – so bright and refreshing smelling! My first sip of Morning Dew (the second time around) was sweet, with an underlying flavour of saltiness, which I attribute to the sencha base. There’s a mild citrus flavour that isn’t as strong as the floral flavours – I believe that to be the case because it’s fruit ‘essence’ versus the flower ‘bits’.

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A Second Cup?

I resteeped Morning Dew for a quick 2 minutes, and found the flavours to be quite muted in comparison to the initial steep. I found the citrus flavour to be quite dilute, but the floral and sencha base are still very much present. It’s a slightly less bright version of the initial steep. It’s still tasty, but not quite the same.

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My Overall Impression

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I liked ShakTea’s Morning Dew. I do think that this is a very delicate green tea blend, and would highly caution against using water that is too hot or steeping too long, because it just gets to be very bitter, very quickly, if you’re not careful. I really enjoyed it once I tried steeping some fresh tea leaves, because the flavours are quite nice. I found that the initial steep was the best, although the second steep allowed the sencha base to shine more on its own. The added citrus in this blend is nice, I really liked how bright it made the tea feel. ShakTea’s website suggests that this can be enjoyed hot or iced – I feel like it would be a great candidate for cold steeping so you don’t accidentally oversteep the leaves in hot water

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