Tea Tasting

DAVIDsTEA 24 Days of Tea – 2015 Advent Calendar – Part 2

December 7, 2015
24 days of tea

My last DAVIDsTEA 24 Days of Tea post was beginning to grow too long so I decided to break the posts up a bit.

Instead I will be doing 4 posts with 6 tea reviews each.

You can read Part 1 of the 24 Days of Tea by DAVIDsTEA here, or skip ahead to part 3 or part 4 here.

You can also skip directly to the 24 Days of Tea list here.

Without further ado, lets get started with today’s tea! 

Day 7: Organic North African Mint

I was really surprised to find out that today’s tea sample was a green tea and mint tea mix. I absolutely love love love mint tea and green tea, yet I never thought of combining the two together. I was really curious to find out how this would taste.

I noticed the smell was very strong. It actually put me off a little bit. It smelled like there were a ton of spices and a hint of mint.

When I opened up the gold tin can, it looked exactly like it smelled; like a lot of spices with some mint mixed in. There is a lot going on here! I could see the green tea leaves, small traces of dried mint leaves, cardamom, dried fennel, cloves, and several other spices.

organic north african mint davids tea

The back of the box provides useful instructions: Boil water to 85 degrees Celsius (or 185 degrees Fahrenheit) and steep for 3 to 4 minutes. Organic North African Mint is a green tea blend and contains a small amount of caffeine in it.

sweet almond green organic back

This tea had a very interesting taste to it. I found the spices in it to be very strong. It tasted like it was mostly spices with a bit of mint mixed in. I actually forgot I was drinking green tea as I was so focused on thinking and tasting about the different flavour of spices. I found the taste of cloves and ginger to be fairly prevalent. The tea also left a noticeable spicy aftertaste on my tongue, due to the black peppers in it. The liquid was a dark yellow/light to medium brown colour, and it reminded me of the colour of apple juice.

organic north african mint brewed

In my review of the Organic North African Mint tea, I was not a huge fan of it. I really wanted to like it since it combined two of my favorite types of teas, but there were too many spices. Neither the mint nor green tea was very prominent. It pretty much felt like I was drinking spiced tea. I may have to try this tea a couple more times for it to grow on me, but for now I will not be buying more of it.

Organic North African Mint ingredients: Green tea, ginger, peppermint, cardamom, licorice root, fennel, clove, black pepper. Kosher.

Day 8: Cherry Blossom

Moving onto day 8 already! December is sure starting to go by fast.

This is the first time I have ever had white and green tea together. That mixed in with cherry flavouring should make for an interesting cup of tea.

Cherry Blossom literally smelled like cherries and flowers. It had a fairly strong cherry smell, and at times it reminded me of the cherry cough syrup. I know a lot of people dislike the taste of cherry cough syrup, but I actually don’t mind it. I think me and this cup of Cherry Blossom tea will get along just fine.

The individual pieces look like dried white and green tea leaves, with some dried cherries and rosebuds.

cherry blossom davids tea

As always the back of the box provides handy brewing instructions: Boil water to 90 degrees Celsius (or 194 degrees Fahrenheit) and steep for 4 to 5 minutes. Cherry blossom is labeled as a white tea, but there is also green tea mixed in as well. This tea blend contains a small amount of caffeine in it.

back cherry blossom

Once brewed it has a light yellow liquor to it. The taste of the tea itself is also cherry and floral. It tastes mostly like cherries with the florals more in the background. The cherry smell is also more subtle once brewed, compared to the aroma of just the dry tea leaves. Apparently there’s also coconut in the tea but I couldn’t taste it at all. The tea overall is very subtle tasting. At times I would get a hint of sweetness, and other times a small hint of tartness.

cherry blossom brewed

Overall in my review of the Cherry Blossom tea, it is a nice tea. ‘Nice’ comes to mind because that’s the word I think of when I think of flowers and cherries and cherry blossoms. The taste didn’t ‘wow’ me like the smell did, but it was still a good tea. I would be curious to try this tea as a cold brew as well.

Cherry Blossom ingredients: White tea, green tea, cherries, coconut chips, rosebuds, natural and artificial cherry flavouring. Contains coconut.

Day 9: Organic Cinnamon Rooibos Chai

I was thrilled when I found out today’s tea was Organic Cinnamon Rooibos Chai. I love cinnamon! I feel like cinnamon makes everything taste better (disclaimer: last night I literally stuffed my face with 2 large sized cinnamon rolls. They were absolutely delicious. So my opinion towards a cinnamon based tea may be slightly biased at the moment). There’s just something about cinnamon that makes it feel officially like the holidays!

The first thing I noticed was the delicious smell. There is a very noticeable aroma of cinnamon when you roll off the lid. This to me is ok since I like cinnamon, but maybe not so much for those who do not.

Looking at the individual loose leaf pieces, I could see rooibos tea leaves, tiny pieces of cinnamon, and small chunks of apple.

organic cinnamon rooibos chai

The back of the box provides helpful brewing instructions: Boil water to 96 degrees Celsius (or 205 degrees Fahrenheit) and steep for 4 to 7 minutes. Organic Cinnamon Rooibos Chai is a type of rooibos herbal tea and is caffeine free.

cinnamon rooibos chai back

Once brewed the tea has a nice dark orange, maple syrupy colour to it. What’s nicer than the colour is the taste. It’s delicious! It’s very sweet and has lots of cinnamon in it. While there is cinnamon, it is not overpowering. I found it very smooth to drink, and could also taste hints of apple as well. I found it so good that I drank the tea right away, instead of slowly nursing it like I usually do.

organic cinnamon rooibos chai

In my review of the Organic Cinnamon Rooibos Chai, I found it to be a delicious holiday drink. It is sweet, has lots of cinnamon but not too much in that it takes over the drink, and has bits of apple. This may be a good tea to have in the mornings since it has a bit of a kick to it. I will definitely be ordering more.

Organic Cinnamon Rooibos Chai ingredients: Rooibos, apple, cinnamon. With natural cinnamon flavouring. Kosher.

Day 10: Organic Nepal Black

Woohoo, another black tea to try!

I’m really glad I picked up the DAVIDsTEA 24 Days of Tea advent calendar this year. I was so excited, I even made a video about it (in case you couldn’t tell, I’m a huge nerd when it comes to tea). So far I’ve gotten to try a lot of new teas in a short time period, one of them being the Organic Nepal Black tea.

This being a black tea and all, I was really curious as to how it would stand up against the classic Orange Pekoe.

The first thing I noticed about this tea was the smell. It smelled like your usual black ‘tea’ with a hint of something I couldn’t really put my finger on. To me it smelled like it had a whiff of grassiness, although I’m not sure if that would be the correct description for it.

The tea leaves also look very interesting. They are long, rolled, pieces of black tea leaves. They look like they could have been hand rolled, but that is just my speculation.

organic nepal black davids tea

The back of the box provides handy brewing instructions: Boil water to 96 degrees Celsius (or 205 degrees Fahrenheit) and steep for 4 to 7 minutes. Organic Nepal Black is a type of black tea, and contains a medium amount of caffeine.

back organic nepal black

Once I finished steeping the tea, the liquor had a nice dark honey/ medium to dark orange colour to it. It really reminded me of Orange Pekoe.

The leaves also fully expanded. I was actually quite surprised to see how large the leaves were, considering how compact they looked when they were all rolled up. This tea would have been a fun tea to watch steep and unravel in a clear glass teapot.

The taste was delightful and was really smooth. It had a hint of sweetness in it which made me think of honey. At times I could also taste a bit of malt in the aftertaste but I didn’t mind. I didn’t notice any bitterness or astringency with this tea at all. I drank this tea black in order to experience the full flavour, but I’ll have to brew this one again to see how it tastes with milk and sugar added in (which I can only imagine would be delicious).

organic nepal black brewed

In my review of the Organic Nepal Black, I found it to be a delicious unflavoured black tea. Trying this has made me curious in trying more teas from the Nepal region. If you are a big fan of Orange Pekoe and are looking to shake things up a little, I would consider giving this tea a try. It’s a nice tea to have if you’re looking for a change but still want a straight black tea.

Organic Nepal Black ingredients: Black tea from Nepal. Kosher.

Day 11: Hot Chocolate

Hot chocolate! Say it ain’t so!

I was pleasantly surprised to find out that today’s tea was a hot chocolate tea. I had high expectations for this tea because tea and chocolate together has to taste good, right?!

Right away the first thing I noticed was the delicious smell. I could smell lots of chocolate!

This makes sense since there are three different blends of chocolate inside: cocoa nibs, chocolate curls, and chocolate chips! Not one, but three different types of chocolate!

There was also pu’erh and black tea leaves mixed in also.

hot chocolate davids tea

The back of the box had useful brewing instructions: Boil water to 96 degrees Celsius (or 205 degrees Fahrenheit) and brew for 4 to 7 minutes. The DAVIDsTEA Hot Chocolate is a type of pu’erh tea (with some black tea leaves mixed in) and contains a medium amount of caffeine in it.

back hot chocolate

Once brewed it still has its delicious hot chocolate aroma. The liquor is a chocolate-y brown colour.

I was half expecting it to taste like hot water and chocolate, but it did not.

It was a delicious tea that was very sweet, chocolate-y and rich. It was a little earthy from the pu’erh but wasn’t full-on pu’erh (which makes it a great tea to dip your toes into if you’re new to pu’erh). You could taste the stevia in the aftertaste a little bit, but I did not find it overpowering (although I still would have preferred to add in my own sweetener instead). I’m not sure if stevia was really needed given that there were three different types of chocolate inside.

hot chocolate brewed

All in all, in my review of the Hot Chocolate tea, I was very impressed and it did not disappoint me. There was plenty of chocolate in its flavour and it was a very sweet and rich tea. It definitely satisfies the hot chocolate craving but without the insane amount of sugar that usually comes with it. This tea made me reminisce about the good old care free days as a child building snowman’s and snow forts, and coming inside to warm up with a nice cup of hot chocolate. I will definitely by adding this to my tea collection.

Hot Chocolate ingredients: Pu’erh tea, black tea, cocoa nibs, chocolate chips (sugar, chocolate liquor, cocoa butter, soy lecithin, vanilla), chocolate curls (sugar, cocoa butter, whole milk powder, chocolate liquor, whey powder, lactose, soy lecithin, vanilla), stevia extract, natural and artificial flavouring. Contains milk and soy. Kosher.

Day 12: Organic The Spice is Right

Its day 12 already and that means we’re already half way through the DAVIDsTEA 24 days of tea! December is sure going by fast and I haven’t even started my Christmas shopping yet…

Today’s tea is Organic The Spice is Right. Upon the first sniff the smell reminded me of a gingerbread cookie, which was a delicious smell to come across on a Saturday morning. Right away I could tell that this would be another tea with lots of cinnamon. I could also smell small hints of oranges as well.

The individual pieces were made up of cinnamon, green tea leaves, cloves, orange peels, and chili peppers.

organic the spice is right davids tea

The back of the box provides helpful brewing instructions: Boil water to 85 degrees Celsius (or 185 degrees Fahrenheit) and steep for 3 to 4 minutes. Organic The Spice is Right is a type of green tea and contains a low amount of caffeine.

back organic the spice is right

Once brewed the liquor was a pale yellow colour and still had a strong cinnamon aroma.

The taste was a sweet, strong cinnamon, and spicy aftertaste. Every time I took a sip I would taste sweetness, and then the taste would shift into a spicy aftertaste. You could definitely taste the cinnamon and cloves, and I believe the chili pepper is what you taste at the end. You couldn’t really taste the orange but it was more in the background as a subtle flavour. It is a tea that is sweet and spicy at the same time. The spiciness tends to linger in your mouth afterwards as well. I would have preferred a little more orange and a little less spice.

organic the spice is right brewed

In my review of the Organic Spice is Right, I felt like I was drinking liquid valentine cinnamon hearts. It was definitely a spicy, cinnamon-y tea. It was enjoyable but was a little too spicy for my liking. Unfortunately the spice wasn’t right for me.

Organic The Spice is Right ingredients: Cinnamon, green tea, orange peel, cloves, chili pepper. With natural flavouring. Kosher.

Skip Ahead: 24 Days of Tea PART 3, 24 Days of Tea PART 4

Skip Back: 24 Days of Tea PART 1

Which one of these teas are your favorite and why? Would love to hear your comments below!

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