Adagio Teas’ Samurai Mate

Samurai Mate by Adagio Teas
Herbal Infusion (Yerba Mate & Rooibos) / Flavoured
$8.00USD for 3 oz

First Impressions

I got this sample packet of Samurai Mate as part of a promotion that Adagio Teas was putting on when Teavana Teas was closing. The packaging and label is nice and simple – very on point with their branding, and the label tells me everything that I need to know about the tea – steeping instructions and ingredients. Bonus points for being resealable, Adagio Teas! Something I greatly appreciate. Resealable packaging helps keep the tea fresh and ready to go for the next time I want to make a cup. If you’ve ever heard of Adagio Teas, it might have been their fandom teas (of which they have many…).

Samurai Mate has a strong almond aroma, which the cardamom, ginger, and orange in the background. There’s fruit in the blend as well, and lemongrass, that I can see, but I can’t pick out those aromas. Samurai Mate consists of: yerba mate, green rooibos, cinnamon bark, ginger root, cardamom, orange peels, lemon grass, aniseed, almond flavour, spicy cinnamon flavour, mango pieces, papaya flavour and pineapple pieces.

Preparation

Adagio Teas recommends steeping Samurai Mate in 212°F (100°C) water for 5-10 minutes. My initial steep was for 7 minutes.

First Taste

Samurai Mate steeps to a beautiful golden orange colour. There’s a rich ginger and cinnamon aroma from the steeped tea, which I do taste as well. Along with the ginger and cinnamon, I taste the cardamom with a light sweetness – which may be from the fruit. I can’t taste the almond, which is unfortunate since it was so present with the dry leaf. The tail end of each sip has just a hint of bright citrus notes, which makes for a tasty cup.

A Second Cup?

I attempted to resteep Samurai Mate, steeping for a total of 10 minutes. I found the colour and the flavour to be quite dilute compared to the initial steep. I didn’t really enjoy the resteep of the same leaves.

My Overall Impression

I liked Adagio Teas’ Samurai Mate. I really enjoyed the warming flavours of the ginger, cardamom, and cinnamon in the blend. The sweetness from the fruits was a nice touch, but I was a bit disappointed that I wasn’t able to taste the almond in the steeped tea. That said, I’m really grateful that I couldn’t taste the rooibos in the base as I’m normally not a very big fan of rooibos. The citrus just added a touch of brightness to this blend, which made it quite delicious! I just wish that it had resteeped better since it was so enjoyable for the initial steep.

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24 Days of Tea: Jumpy Monkey

Jumpy Monkey by DavidsTea
Yerba Mate / Flavoured
$7.98 for 50g

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First Impressions

This is about to be the worst review ever, because I’m going to start by stating that I did not actually try this tea. I hate coffee (I know, I know…). I really cannot stand the smell of coffee on a good day. Up until maybe 4 years ago, the smell of coffee made me sick to my stomach.

Jumpy Monkey has a bitter coffee smell to it, I don’t really smell any of the chocolate that is supposed to be in there (I also don’t see it at all). With all the coffee that’s supposed to be in it, this is not an infusion of any sort that I want to try, but I am posting about it because it is part of the 24 Days of Tea.

The ingredients of Jumpy Monkey are: roasted yerba mate, green yerba mate, white chocolate, carob, baba budan coffee, green peaberry coffee, Brazil green coffee, Kenya green coffee, chicory, olive leaf, almonds, artificial vanilla flavouring.

My Overall Impression1cup-2

I did not try DavidsTea’s Jumpy Monkey, so I can’t give it a proper rating. I’m just really not a coffee fan at all, and the idea of drinking something that may make me feel sick to my stomach is not why I started One More Steep. If you’ve tried Jumpy Monkey before, let me know below in the comments how you feel about it! Is it something that a coffee hater might actually like, if given the chance?

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Teavana’s S’mores Oolong Tea

S’mores Oolong Tea by Teavana
Oolong Tea & Yerba Mate / Flavoured
$9.98 for 2oz

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First Impressions

I am going to preface this review with the fact that I, perhaps unfairly, have high expectations for this tea. I love s’mores. I love camping, and roasting marshmallows, and the ooey-gooey marshmallows with graham crackers and slightly melted chocolate. The smell of the dry tea is interesting – the only smells that I can pick out are chocolate and cinnamon, with perhaps a touch of vanilla. There’s a whole host of other ingredients that I’m not getting.

The ingredients for S’ores Oolong are: cocoa kernals, white chocolate pieces, carob pieces, cinnamon, chocolate flakes, chicory root, marshmallow, oolong tea, roasted maté, artificial flavouring, bourbon vanilla pieces, and marigold petals. I wasn’t able to make out the tea bases at all, the aroma of the chocolate and cinnamon definitely overpower the oolong and maté

Preparation

Teavana recommends steeping S’mores Oolong in 195°F (91°C) water for 3 minutes. I steeped mine for 3 minutes.

First Taste

When S’mores Oolong is steeping, it has a heavy chicory root and cinnamon smell, surprisingly I can’t make out the chocolate at all. I would recommend that you use a filter bag instead of a stainless steel filter basket, unless the mesh of your basket is very fine – I wound up with a lot of small bits in my tea. The tea is quite cloudy, and smells strongly of chicory root and cinnamon, it smells sweet and has an oily film from the melted chocolate floating on the top.

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S’mores Oolong smells of cinnamon and chicory. It’s a cup of watery cinnamon and chicory root, with a little taste of chocolate, but it isn’t overwhelming in terms of flavour. There’s a bit of sweetness (from either the chocolate or the marshmallows), but I can’t taste either base (oolong or maté). It doesn’t taste very good to the point where I did not finish my cup because it just does not taste good (or taste like any kind of tea or beverage that I’d want to finish). I looked into the steeping basket after I had poured out a cup and realized that there was actually very little tea in the tea itself – the majority of what was left was just all the ingredients that show up before the oolong (aside from the marshmallow, that melted away).

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A Second Cup?

I did not steep S’mores Oolong a second time.

My Overall Impression

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I didn’t like Teavana’s S’mores Oolong Tea. It does not remind me of s’mores at all, the chocolate doesn’t come out as strongly as I expected from the dry tea. The overall flavour is underwhelming because the chicory root and cinnamon are strong and I can’t taste the base at all. If I were to try this tea again (and that is a very big if), I would probably add more tea to steep, in hopes of getting more flavour, but it isn’t a very promising tea at all. I wouldn’t recommend S’mores Oolong.

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