• Reviews

    Handmade Tea Maia Lemoniou

    Country of Origin: India and Sri Lanka Leaf Appearance: dark, varied shapes Ingredients: Assam, Ceylon, glazed lemon peel Steep time: 5 minutes Water Temperature: 212 degrees Preparation Method: ceramic teacup and mesh infuser Liquor: dark reddish brown As you can all tell, I’m terribly behind on tea reviews. Life just seems to get in the way sometimes. This blend was the May shipment from +Handmade Tea. What I love most about their teas is that they are truly blends, no additional flavoring beyond the basic ingredients. This one is made up a 50/50 blend of Assam and Ceylon along with some glazed lemon peel. The taste was bold yet mellow with just the…


  • Reviews

    Tea People Russian Caravan

    Country of Origin: China and Taiwan Leaf Appearance: varied black and green Ingredients: black and oolong tea Steep time: 3 minutes Water Temperature: 212 degrees Preparation Method: porcelain teapot and mesh infuser Liquor: dark amber This is what I affectionately refer to as a “kitchen sink” tea. It’s a blend of Keemun and Lapsang Souchong along with a Formosa oolong for good measure. The taste was actually quite a bit softer than I was expecting. It had the requisite smokiness but in a more subtle way. There was surprisingly little astringency. A subtle hint of brown sugar sweetness lingered in the finish. Perhaps that came from the oolong? All of the Russian Caravan…

  • Reviews

    The Tea Spot Mile High Chai

    Country of Origin: India Leaf Appearance: small, dark with lots of spices Ingredients: black tea, ginger root, cardamom, cinnamon, allspice, peppercorns, cloves, natural chai flavoring Steep time: 5 minutes Water Temperature: 212 degrees Preparation Method: ceramic teacup and mesh infuser Liquor: dark brown Somehow the word chai became synonymous with spiced tea here in the U.S. even though the word is actually Hindi for tea. Therefore when you are in line at Starbucks and order a chai tea, you’re really asking for tea tea. The correct term would really be masala chai, which indicates the typical spices used in this type of blend. This rendition from The Tea Spot was a fairly typical, plenty…

  • Reviews

    Lochan Tea Doke Black Fusion 2014

    Country of Origin: India Leaf Appearance: dark, wiry with golden tips Ingredients: black tea Steep time: 2 minutes Water Temperature: 205 degrees Preparation Method: porcelain infuser mug Liquor: dark amber One thing that I love about the teas that I’ve tried from +Lochan Tea Limited is that they are never quite what I expected. Of course, I mean that in the best way possible. The dry leaves were mostly whole with some golden tips interspersed. I was surprised to find a depth and complexity that I’ve never really gotten from an Indian grown black tea before. The taste was robust with notes of molasses, rose and a pleasant bit of maltiness. It wasn’t exactly what…

  • Reviews

    Happy Earth Tea Yunnan Gold Supreme Organic

    Country of Origin: China Leaf Appearance: small, tippy and golden Ingredients: black tea Steep time: 3 minutes Water Temperature: 212 degrees Preparation Method: ceramic teapot Liquor: deep reddish brown You all know that +Happy Earth Tea is my go to when it comes to Darjeeling but they also have a very nice selection of teas from other growing regions as well. I love Yunnan red teas and this one was very nice. The leaves were mostly whole leaves with a nicely mottled golden color to them. Love those fuzzy buds! The taste was earthy and sweet with a pleasant maltiness. Subtle notes of chocolate, fruit and even florals added a nice level of complexity. It…

  • Reviews

    Whittard of Chelsea Assam Hazelbank

    Country of Origin: India Leaf Appearance: small, dark Ingredients: black tea Steep time: 5 minutes Water Temperature: 212 degrees Preparation Method: Teavana Perfect Steeper Liquor: reddish brown I really enjoy a good Assam. It’s a full-bodied breakfast tea that puts a little hair on your chest. I was initially attracted to this particular one from +Whittard of Chelsea because the estate name is given. It’s still not very common to see but I’m glad that this practice increasing. The dry leaves were small but good quality. They were mostly unbroken with scattered golden tips. The taste was bold and flavorful with lots of malty pep. This is definitely a tea that can stand up to…