Day 20: Vanilla Orchid

Hello friends!

This blog post comes to you on the train from Ottawa to Toronto! I’m headed home for the holidays and Brooke is busy with birthday celebrations, so a solo post will have to do! I promise I’ll make it interesting. Here we go!

Tea: Vanilla Orchid

Vanilla Orchid from DAVIDsTEA

Description: A Sweet Romance

We’re still searching for the secret to eternal bliss, but we’re pretty sure one cup of this blend will get you at least five minutes’ worth. It all starts with the very best leaves: a premium oolong from China’s Fujian Province called Huang Jin Gui. A popular wedding gift in China, Huang Jin Gui is prized for its pretty yellow colour and romantic floral scent. Here we bring out this special leaf’s orchid aroma with a touch of vanilla. The result? A perfectly balanced, subtle cup that’s equal parts rich, creamy and floral. Feeling blissful yet?

Ingredients: Huang Jin Gui Oolong from Anxi in Fujian Province, natural vanilla flavouring.

Steeping Prep: 1 tsp, 92°C, 3-5 min (or hot water from a train station and a guesstimate on the amount of tea leaves)

Stacey: Well it smells like vanilla. And it also has a very stong earthy tone to it. Hmm I hope I can carry this thermos along with my luggage…

*sip*

Stacey: Oooh that’s some smooth vanilla. Very smooth indeed. And subtle too! The oolong really comes through and the two flavours work nicely together. My train ride is going to be quite pleasant sipping on this brew!

Stacey: Brooke would like this one a lot I think. Her mom and my dad would probably want to add some sugar though. It’s not very sweet at all. Just the way I like it!

Stacey: I feel like I’m talking to myself. Or I suppose I’m thinking to myself. That’s not weird right?

Stacey: Oh! Just read the DAVIDsTEA description. They were right on the money–I am feeling quite blissful! I had a busy day playing with, I mean testing kids all day (I know, I have a tough job), so I am quite tuckered out. But this tea is a perfect way to unwind. Oh I just love it! And I’m headed home for the holidays! What could be better? Hmm…there’s an empty seat beside me…maybe a handsome man will sit there at the next stop. Let’s wait and see!

*we arrive at next stop*

Stacey: Nope…an empty seat it remains. Oh well, at least I have this tea and Nelson Mandela’s autobiography ‘Long Walk To Freedom’ to keep me occupied. (A MUST read by the way)

Tea Vibes

Stacey: I’d put this in the category of ‘zen-out tea’. It would be the perfect drink for after yoga or unwinding after tough day at work. The subtleness of the vanilla makes me want to curl up and take a little ‘me-time’…or take a nap, but that could be because I was running around with 2-year-olds all day. If you want to treat yourself, I’d give this specialty tea a try. 4.25/5

Well readers I’m going to unplug and veg out on this relaxing train ride. I hope you have a lovely evening and if you have not done so already, wish Brooke a happy birthday.

Until next tea,
Stacey

image
Happy birthday Brooke!’

Advertisements

Day 1: White Chocolate Frost

Happy December 1st one and all! It is that time of year again: winter is in the air, Christmas music can be heard from every corner, and Brooke and I are back for another round of 24 Days of Tea!

Brooke: We’re doing it!
Stacey: But we don’t even know! (hugs the box)

We excitedly opened the box and took out tea #1.

Stacey: Oh my god!! I’m so excited! White Chocolate Frost!
Brooke: Ooo they are started off in luxury!

Tea: White Chocolate Frost

white chocolate frost

Tea Description: Warm up to Winter

Say what you will about winter, but it might just be our favourite season. We love getting good and chilly out in the snow. And warming back up with a comforting drink is even more fun. So we created a cool, creamy drink that brings together everything we love about the season. It has peppermint for a burst of freshness. White chocolate for comfort and warmth. And pretty peppercorns just to make you smile. Sweet, comforting and refreshing, it’s a warm hug and a cool winter’s day – all at once. Limited edition.

Ingredients: Peppermint, white chocolate, pink peppercorn, stevia leaf, natural sugar flavoring, natural and artificial white chocolate mousse flavoring.

Tea Instructions: 1.25 tsp of tea in 96 degree water and let it steep for 3-5 minutes.  *Stacey disclaimer: this tea is a herbal so feel free to enjoy as many cups as you like!

*Sip*

Stacey: Oo that is such a Christmas tea, why are they doing that to us so early? It really does make me think of winter. I just want to go outside and jump in the snow…
André (oops! He’s here, too!): Well, I like it!
Brooke: But…but…you want your peppermint teas to be refreshing! The creaminess knocks me off.
André: I kind of like that though, it’s like drinking silk.
Brooke: I like the idea of a creamy tea, but I just like my peppermint teas pure. And this tea is too sweet!
André: Yeah I would never want to put anything else in this. Imagine making this into a latte.
Brooke: Gag me with a spoon.
Stacey: Do you taste the peppercorns at the end? The flavour really stays in your throat.
Brooke: Hmm yeah. it starts with peppermint, then the creaminess, then ends wih the peppercorns.
André: I think the peppercorns on a winter day would be kick ass.
Brooke: Yeah, you know, I’m thinking if it was a winter day and I had a 20 minute walk ahead of me this would be nice in a thermos.
Stacey:  I thought it was going to taste like peppermint white hot chocolate… definitely not what I thought it would be. Wait…is there stevia in this?! No wonder it’s so sweet! Whew!

Tea Vibes:

Stacey: White chocolate frost makes me think of playing in the snow and coming inside to enjoy something warm. Unfortunately, I think the sugar is just too much for me and I would prefer something that was the basic ingredients of peppermint, white chocolate, and peppercorns. If you’re someone who likes their teas on the sweeter side, I’d give it a go—it’s just not for me. 1 star/5. (That’s right, we’ve moved to the star system this year, people!)

André: I agree that it’s an extremely sweet tea but with the right ambiance it could work. Walking outside in the snow with a thermos, for example, would pair nicely with this tea. I also think the ingredients are well balanced: you have the peppermint, the creamy chocolate, and the heat of the peppercorns. I like that progression of flavours, but I can see what Stacey means that she wants it to be simpler. I don’t think it’s one I would buy a tin of but if I was walking home and wanting a tea I might buy it. Maybe 2 stars.

Brooke: This tea would be great for someone who enjoys exploring new flavour combinations and wants to try something new. Starting refreshing and ending smoothly it’s a delight to anybody who enjoys the sweet side of tea. Sadly, that wasn’t us! 3 stars.

Well dear readers after our long hiatus it feels great to be back! We are going to try our best to review as many teas as we can this month and hopefully we won’t end up with Christmas in July!

Until next tea,
Stacey and Brooke (and André)


“Honey, have you heard? The Tea Connoisseurs are back!”

Checkmate

Hello again readers,

Well, after a delicious meal of maple salmon and roasted potatoes (we promise we’re not a couple… even though technically we *are* common-law), Stacey and I were feeling like a tasty tea to finish off our day. We popped open tea #16 and after retrieving it from the floor (they’re slippery!), we were both thrilled with what we picked up. Checkmate! Stacey had been eyeing this once since we bought the set over two months ago, so she was pretty excited. Oh boy.

Checkmate from DAVIDsTEA

Tea: Checkmate

DAVIDsTEA Tea Description: Game on!

This tea isn’t like a chess game of black versus white, it’s black and white working together. When you mix white Bai Mu Dan with black tea, coconut and chamomile flowers, it creates a rich, satisfying, chocolate flavour. You’ll swear you’re drinking a cup of hot cocoa, even though there’s no chocolate in the blend. It’s so delicious it’ll hold any king or queen in check – now that’s a winning move any way you look at it.

Ingredients: White tea, black tea, coconut, Roman chamomile flowers.

This tea… smelled delicious. We steeped 1.25tsp for 4 minutes in 98°C water and then let our teas cool. By the time they were drinkable, though, I realized I was going to be late for my improvised comedy practice so we improvised (HAH!) and poured our brews into our trusty thermoses for later.

When I got back, it was after 10PM and Stacey was a little hesitant to do the review.

Stacey: No we can’t, the caffeine!

Brooke: *Sip*. Oooh. Oh but it’s SOO good, Stacey.

Stacey: I.. I just.. *sip*

She seemed confused.

Brooke: No? You disagree? You don’t like it?

Stacey: I don’t know, I’ve just never had a tea like this before. I’m trying to figure out what it is.

Brooke: Ah but it’s got such a light nice coconut vibe. I’m digging it.

Stacey: Are there figgs in this? It just reminds me of DAVIDsTEA Apres Ski.

Brooke: I always wondered why white teas were way more expensive than blacks and greens…

Stacey: They do something different with the leaf!

Educational break! White teas are actually made with the bud of Camellia sinensis along with the leaves. The plant withers in natural light, then gets plucked and lightly processed. This stops any further oxidation of the plants tissues. Since there’s such a small amount of processing, white tea contains many more nutrients than its black or green counterparts. It’s all very special. Hence the price.

Stacey: You know, I wouldn’t say there is a hot chocolate taste, nor even a cocoa taste, but there’s a hint of SOMETHING chocolatey. Hmm.. I like it!

Brooke: I just get the balmy feeling of coconut and I love it.

Stacey: I just don’t GET it!

At this point it was late and Stacey was nervous to continue for fear of sleeplessness in the night [Stacey: Hey, it’s a thing, Brooke!]. Unfortunately, our busy lives prevented us from enjoying our brews together the following day  so instead, following a trip to Toronto for me and a weekend of skating on the canal for Stacey, we sat down to have one last cup each to finish it all up. We always make time for tea. And each other. Aw.

Tea Vibes:

Stacey: You know, I would describe this tea as yin yang:  two completely opposite flavours that work well together. On Friday, I brought my thermos to work and was very sad when it was empty. I’m happy we got to have another. : ) I totally get the image of a chess board too. That’s what they were going for with the black and white tea, I bet. I really like it- what a neat mix! I want to buy this one next. 9/10

Brooke: You seem to have really taken liken for it, haven’t you? The coconut flavour is delicious but it’s the only aspect that I really do taste. It’s not too wild- I get how you could fall in love with it. The flavour of chocolate is very faint but the chamomile flowers are an excellent touch. This is most definitely a nice dessert tea to have after a big meal. Yum! 7.5/10

We’ll have to see if this winds up in our cabinet, especially with all our new Nourish Tea loot we recently aquired. In any case, it was well received all around. Maybe you should try it?

[Stacey: my vote is yes! MmmMmm]

Until next tea,

Brooke and Stacey

Knight to E5, baby Ron.