DavidsTea’s Cream of Earl Grey Matcha

Cream of Earl Grey Matcha by DavidsTea
Green Tea (Matcha) / Flavoured
$9.98 for 50g

First Impressions

Cream of Earl Grey Matcha was one of those purchases I did because I had decided to get the Earl Grey Matcha already so… why not? Full disclosure, I’m not a huge fan of most Cream of Earl Grey tea blends. I find there just to be something a little bit off about it that doesn’t make me enjoy it as much as I do a ‘plain’ Earl Grey blend. Which is a bit interesting, since I love trying out inspired by Earl Grey blends that have an assortment of other ingredients added into it (e.g. lavender, rose, orange). What can I say? I guess I’m occasionally a contradiction.

That said, I really do smell the Earl Grey in this Cream of Earl Grey Matcha. In comparison to Earl Grey Matcha, the bergamot is not as strong and there’s a bit of creamy or buttery quality in the aroma, which isn’t unexpected. Cream of Earl Grey Matcha consists of: cane sugar, matcha green, natural (cream, Earl Grey) flavouring. The colour is a nice spring green, there’s not a whole lot of sparkle in it despite consisting of cane sugar.

Preparation

DavidsTea recommends whisking Cream of Earl Grey Matcha in 85°C (185°F) water. I followed the preparation instructions.

The nice thing about a matcha drink mix is that it easily mixes in heated water. You don’t necessarily need a fancy whisk to make it work.

First Taste

Cream of Earl Grey Matcha isn’t the prettiest green colour when mixed into heated water. It has a bit of yellow-green colour to it that reminds me an awful lot of pea soup. It does settle somewhat quick, which was surprising to me, and I needed to give it a stir to get the colour more uniform throughout. It was easy to suspend into the water though, and there were zero clumps despite not sifting the powder. The aroma is that of Earl Grey, the flavour is a creamy Earl Grey with some grassy undertones from the matcha, but the cane sugar is very prevalent and the sweetness does overpower the matcha throughout each sip. It’s definitely a sweet drink!

I couldn’t resist turning Cream of Earl Grey Matcha into a latte. It definitely helped it out a bit – adding even more creamy flavour and tempering down the sweetness that the cane sugar naturally brings to each cup. It made it more of a treat and made for a nice twist on a London Fog.

A Second Cup?

As Cream of Earl Grey Matcha is a suspension, there was no second preparation with the same powder.

My Overall Impression

I liked DavidsTea’s Cream of Earl Grey Matcha. I was pleasantly surprised by Cream of Earl Grey Matcha, mostly because I’m not generally a fan of Cream of Earl Grey preparations. I found that the flavour to be nice, but I did find myself wishing for more of the bergamot to shine through over the cream notes in the drink. I greatly enjoyed it as a matcha latte, and definitely think that I would have it again as a latte drink over having it straight up, as I do think that the cane sugar was added with a heavy hand. Overall, I found it tasted like Earl Grey, with a big helping of cream and just hints of matcha throughout. It’d definitely be perfect for the match and Earl Grey fan with a huge sweet tooth.

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DavidsTea’s Gyokuro Yamashiro

Gyokuro Yamashiro by DavidsTea
Green Tea / Straight
$22.98 for 50g

Gyokuro Yamashiro was sent to me by DavidsTea, a review was not requested by the company.

First Impressions

One of the ways to my heart is with some tea, and the DavidsTea team was very kind in reaching out to me and asking if I’d be interest in receiving a care package from them. Several other tea bloggers on Instagram also received one, and it looks like each of us received different teas! I had received Gyokuro Yamashiro, Anji Green, and Emerald Jade (previously written reviews linked!) – along with a Perfect Spoon and a glass Nordic Mug. Someone on the team definitely did some clever sleuthing though, to determine that I love green teas and I was pretty excited to dig into the box.

As always, Gyokuro Yamashiro came to me in a sealed, resealable silver pouch. There is that familiar colourful label on the front. As always – I still find the print is unfairly small in size, but the printing quality might have been sharpened up because it seems a bit crisper in comparison to some older packaging labels that I have at my house. Gyokuro is a form of green tea from Japan that is grown with the plants being shaded – so it is a form of sencha, but involves more labour in the growing process of it. The tea leaves are dark, short, flattened in appearance but an overall uniform shade of dark pine needle green. The leaves have a sweet grassy aroma to it, and it appears to be all leaf pieces, with minimal or no tea dust. Gyokuro Yamashiro consists of organic steamed green tea from Kagoshima, Japan with no other ingredients. As per the packaging label, this product is organic as standards in the USA and Canada.

Preparation

DavidsTea recommends steeping Gyokuro Yamashiro in 80°C (175°F) water for 1 to 2 minutes. I opted to follow the steeping instructions and do an initial steep in a pre-warmed tea pot for 1 minute.

To pre-warm (or pre-heat) a teapot, pour hot water (plain) into the tea pot to allow the glass or ceramic tea pot to warm up. Then pour the water out, put in the tea leaves (in an infuser…?) and pour in the water for steeping the tea. This allows your tea pot to hold the tea at a warmer temperature for a longer period of time.

First Taste

Gyokuro Yamashiro steeps to be beautiful sunshine yellow colour. It’s vibrant – that’s the only way to describe the colour. The tea has a delicate flavour to it – lightly floral with a honey sweetness, grassy and ends off each sip with a buttery/creamy quality to it. Gyokuro Yamashiro has a slightly thickened mouthfeel to it with zero bitterness or astringency. It’s just a very pleasant cup of tea with all the flavours that I enjoy and would want to highlight to someone.

I would hazard a guess that Gyokuro Yamashiro might do even better with a cooler steeping temperature and even shorter steeping time, as a lot of green teas do. I’m definitely going to save some of this to do a cold steep with because I think it might be really good as an iced tea (when the weather warms up a bit more!).

A Second Cup?

I resteeped Gyokuro Yamashiro a total of seven times (eight steeps total with the same leaves). I used the same water temperature, and started off my first two resteeps at 1 minute each, and then added 30 seconds to each subsequent steep. The colour stayed that sunshine yellow for most of it, although waning at the end. The flavour remained true to the initial steep, although getting more buttery by the end. I would recommend resteeping Gyokuro Yamashiro to get all that flavour out of those leaves.

My Overall Impression

I loved DavidsTea’s Gyokuro Yamashiro. I’m often a sucker for a good quality traditional/straight tea, and Gyokuro Yamashiro is no exception to the rule. The flavour is well-balanced, the leaves resteep well, and the tea just resteeps well. This is definitely one of the more expensive offerings from DavidsTea, and I’m really pleased that they decided to send a bag of this my way to try out. I know there are some people who are shy about trying more expensive teas (because why spend $23 on 50g of green tea when you could spend $10 or less on another green tea?) – but the difference in price is often a reflection of the quality and this tea makes up for the price tag by resteeping beautifully and making many cups of tea from the same leaves.

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Dessert by Deb’s Minty Matcha Meringues

Minty Matcha Meringues by Dessert by Deb
Green Tea (Matcha) / Flavoured
$6.00 for 25g

Minty Matcha Meringues came as part of my November/December subscription box from Dessert by Deb.

First Impressions

Minty Matcha Meringues came to me in a lovely pale pink matte metallic sealed (and resealable!) pouch. Yes, this was from my November/December box, yes, it’s holiday-themed, and yes, I’m aware that it’s March in two days. That said, this cookie-inspired tea is still available on the Dessert by Deb website, if you’re wanting to give it a try. Nice colourful label – lets me know the important details (ingredients, steeping instructions, the recommendation to prepare as a latte), and is easy to read – my favourite type of product label.

Minty Matcha Meringue consists of organic: green tea, coconut, toasted coconut, peppermint and ceremonial matcha. So when I first opened the packaging, the first thing I smelled was the peppermint. This shouldn’t surprise anyone – mint is a very strong aroma. It’s very recognizable and just very capable of overpowering other ingredients. Then I smelled hints of coconut and the familiar grassy notes that could be attributed to either the green tea or the matcha. I just love how the matcha coats everything though, look at the coconut!

Preparation

Dessert by Deb recommends steeping Minty Matcha Meringues in 200°F (93°C) water for 4 to 5 minutes. I followed the steeping instructions and did an initial steep for 5 minutes.

First Taste

Minty Matcha Meringues doesn’t exactly look the prettiest when it’s steeped (see, below). It’s a bit of a murky yellow-green, there’s some oils floating on the top. Coconut naturally has oils in it, so the oils isn’t surprising, nor is it excessive like when you try to dissolve sprinkles or chocolates in a tisane or tea. The aroma of the tea is primarily mint, with some grassy undertones. I found the flavour to be a bit curious. I could definitely taste the peppermint, along with some of the coconut and some grassy and vegetal notes from the green tea and matcha combination. It doesn’t really scream meringues to me though, because I think of meringues as being very sweet and sugary and hurting my teeth. This… doesn’t. Which isn’t a bad thing. I do wish that the coconut flavour was more forward compared to the peppermint, but mint flavours are just always at risk of taking centre stage in comparison to other ingredients.

Since Dessert by Deb recommended having Minty Matcha Meringues as a tea latte, I had to give it a go. My general rule of thumb for creating a tea latte is to go with one third frothed milk to two thirds steeped tea. I also add sweetener to the tea portion of it. It does add a level of decadence to the tea (doesn’t improve the colour situation though, if anything it might make it worse). I did had some sweetener (vanilla agave syrup) and topped with frothed milk. It adds some creaminess, and the vanilla in the agave helps me think of it more of a baked good, which helps me think of meringues a bit more.

A Second Cup?

I attempted to resteep Minty Matcha Meringues, but found the flavour to fall a bit flat – I think a lot of the flavours that I enjoyed in the initial steep were just all used up in the initial steep (like the mint, the coconut, the matcha). I would recommend Minty Matcha Meringues for just one steep.

My Overall Impression

I liked Dessert by Deb’s Minty Matcha Meringues. There are aspects of this tea that I really enjoyed – the mint forwardness, the matcha undertones, the hints of coconut throughout – but it didn’t really make me think of meringue. It really needed some extra sweetener (and if you can get your hands on some vanilla syrup or vanilla agave, it really takes it over the top) to make me think of meringues since those are just sugary sweet and cavity-inducing desserts. I would recommend following Deb’s recommendation of turning this into a tea latte – it just makes it that much better and helps temper down how forward the peppermint is.

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