Dessert by Deb’s Pumpkin Caramel Danish

Pumpkin Caramel Danish by Dessert by Deb
Black Tea / Flavoured
$6.00 for 25g

I received Dessert by Deb’s Pumpkin Caramel Danish as a subscriber of her Tea & Sweets Subscription Boxes. Pumpkin Caramel Danish is part of the Little Cottage Bakery Collection and is available to non-subscribers.

First Impressions

Pumpkin Caramel Danish comes in a lovely matte dark bronze pouch that’s sealed and resealable. I really love the look of that matte dark bronze colour because it’s such an autumnal colour that goes well with the pumpkin vibes. On the front is a colorful label that I’ve come to know and love (and be familiar with). Pumpkin Caramel Danish has a very spice-forward aroma that reminds me a lot of pumpkin spice, as well as having a heavy sweetness that mingles well with the spice notes.

This black tea blend consists of organic: black tea, coconut, apple, cinnamon, toasted coconut, brown sugar, cloves, and pumpkin pie spice (cinnamon, ginger, clove, allspice, mace, nutmeg, and cardamom). I think the addition of brown sugar really helps add to that ‘baked goods’ fragrance because it just has such a familiar aroma that goes really well with the pumpkin spice.

Preparation

Dessert by Deb recommends steeping Pumpkin Caramel Danish in 212°F (100°C) water for 4 to 6 minutes. I opted to do an initial steep of 6 minutes, mostly because I forgot about it for an extra minute.

First Taste

Pumpkin Caramel Danish steeps to a bright orange colour, with a very strong spice-forward aroma. There’s some nice sweetness coming off in the fragrance. On first sip, I taste the spices first – a lot of cinnamon, ginger, cardamom. Then there’s the brown sugar and sweetness from the apple that just goes really well with all of those spice notes (probably because those are also spices that can be found in an apple pie…). These are definitely spice flavours that I would expect to find in a pumpkin spice pastry, and that brown sugar definitely lends that sense of authenticity to it. The black tea base doesn’t really shine through, because of all the other ingredients, but the coconut flavour does add a sense of ‘lightness’ to a tea blend that might otherwise feel really heavy and rich. I feel like that black tea base just kind of holds everything up without being too obvious.

A Second Cup?

I did attempt a second resteep of Pumpkin Caramel Danish, but found that it didn’t really do well with trying to extract more flavour out of the ingredients. I would recommend Pumpkin Caramel Danish for just one steep.

My Overall Impression

I loved Dessert by Deb’s Pumpkin Caramel Danish. I think the blend is really artfully done – with the balance between the spice notes and the coconut, apple, and brown sugar. The addition of brown sugar really makes it a dessert blend, while I think that if you were to turn this into a tea latte, the use of a vanilla syrup or vanilla flavoured agave, would really kick it up a notch in making it really taste like a pastry. That said, the balance of flavours is really good, and it’s a great candidate for a tea latte since the use of a black tea base lends itself really well to that.

Curious about the cup rating system? Click here to learn more.

Tea by C’s Tea Tasting Triad

Tea Tasting Triad by Tea by C
$52.00 USD for 3 Teas (6oz) & Accessories

Tea By C has provided me with the Tea Tasting Triad for the purposes of writing an honest review.

Tea by C’s Tea Tasting Triad is ready for the holidays and I was quite pleased when Claire asked me if I would be interested to take a look at it. This box consists of three teas (more on that soon!), a tea tasting guide and flavour wheel (the rolled up poster at the top), and a tea infuser for any cup of teapot that you might be using. It all fits quite neatly into a sturdy mailing box and makes for a good presentation if you’re going to be having this mailed to someone as a gift – I would be happy to open this up!

Also included with the box are three tasting cards about each tea: Dragonwell Green (green tea), Blue People Oolong (oolong tea), and Rose Buds (herbal tisane). They’re quite nice quality – sturdy cardstock, lots of information about each one, and there’s a bonus card about tea in general – a nice touch for those who are receiving this kit as a gift who are new to tea or don’t know a lot about it yet.

The tins are lovely, and the lids are quite tight on, which is great for maintaining freshness of the tea and preventing the leaves from going stale. I actually had the opportunity to review all three of these teas last year, and wrote full reviews for each Dragonwell Green, Blue People Oolong and Rose Buds. I enjoyed all of them, and I had a nice cup of Blue People Oolong while working on this post.

I used the metal tea strainer that was included in the kit – it’s easy to use and similar to one that I used when I first started exploring tea. The thing about these strainers is to not overfill! Tea leaves need room to expand, so you don’t want to overfill half of the ball because the leaves won’t have room to move and open up their leaves. I would fill the half sphere about half full in order to give it space.

The loveliest part of this kit for a beginner to tea is the Flavour Wheel. A flavour wheel is incredibly useful for those new to trying to decipher how to describe tea. I didn’t want to share the whole wheel, but it’s quite lovely and a full 360° of descriptions for you to consider. For example, for vegetable flavours, it includes things like spinach, bean sprouts, peas, green beans – all with their own distinctive flavours, but also provides you with a reference because if you’re unsure of what your tea tastes like but know it reminds you of something vegetal, the wheel can help you pinpoint a word.

I loved Tea By C’s Tea Tasting Triad. It has a nice combination of teas to start off (green, oolong, tisane), the inclusion of a flavour wheel and an infuser really make this a great starter kit, beginners gift box. The tasting cards are a really nice touch to help someone really learn about each tea thoroughly. I think the flavour wheel and the tasting cards really make this box a wonderful idea, because it helps someone to immerse themselves into the teas, the language, and learn how to think about tea has having the ability to have a myriad of flavours. This would be a wonderful gift for a friend or a gift to yourself if you’re new to tea. All it needs is a cute seasonal or holiday themed mug or cup and saucer set and you’ll be good to go!

Biskwi’s Waffles

Waffles by Biskwi
Baked Goods
$2.00 for 400g (10 cookies)

First Impressions

Stroopwafels are one of my favourite things that I discovered in the last couple of years. For those that are unfamiliar, stroopwafel is a Dutch wafer cookie sandwich with two waffle cookies with a layer of caramel between. It’s great with a cup of tea because if you put the cookie over a cup of hot tea, the heat warms up the cookie and caramel and it ends up being a delightful sweet treat with your cup of tea.

I was in Dollarama and spotted these on the shelf because I needed to make my way down a one-way aisle in order to go down the next one-way aisle. I was surprised to see stroopwafel on the shelf because it seems like such an odd item for a dollar store to carry (and I’m mentioning Dollarama by name, because the Biskwi Waffles are imported by Dollarama so I’m not sure if you’ll be able to find them anywhere else). The cookies come in a plasticky bag with a wired tab to close/open the packaging. Inside it consists of 10 cookies. I’m not terribly surprised that they’re called Waffles instead of stroopwafel because if they’re trying to appeal to more of the public, having a name that’s familiar is an easier sale than one that is not.

Waffles consists of: sugar, wheat flour, vegetable oils, barn egg, salt, soya flour, whey powder, emulsifier, caramel, raising agent, cinnamon, natural flavouring, citric acid, water. For allergen warnings, the packaging does mention that this product contains: milk, eggs, soya and wheat. And that it also may contain tree nuts (I assume through cross-contamination).

Preparation

Biskwi recommends placing the waffle over the top of your hot drink for 2 minutes.

First Taste

Waffle becomes soft as it sits over a cup of hot tea. You’ll know it’s ready because the middle begins to sag downwards. The Waffle becomes warm, and the caramel softens. The cookie itself has a nice sweetness with the caramel layer, and some nice cinnamon notes. It’s tasty and goes well with a cup of Hong Kong-Style Milk Tea (if you’re wondering what I had this with).

A Second Cookie?

Not going to lie, I was impressed with my first Waffle and had another (and another).

My Overall Impression

I loved Biskwi’s Waffles. I like the affordability factor ($2.00 for 10 cookies), which makes it a nice little treat to include with your daily cup of tea. It has a good amount of sweetness, without being too over the top. The flavour is nice, and the caramel gets to a nice softness within the 2 minutes spent warming on top of a cup of tea. I do wish that they had opted to call their product Stroopwafel instead of just Waffles, because that is the traditional name, but I’m not too fussed about it.

Curious about the cup rating system? Click here to learn more.