I’m going solo this Valentine’s Day yet again for another year but I’ve got hot tea to keep me warm inside instead. Well, it’s better than nothing! My mom did give me a new teacup with my initial on it so that was quite nice!
I’m starting my night with a second tasting of my Teavana Pumpkin Spice Brûlée Oolong to see if it impresses me differently this time around. The caffeine content for Oolong tea is slightly less than black tea at 50-70 mg per cup versus 60-90mg. The loose leaves mixture smells very spicy with strong cinnamon, cloves and pumpkin scents.
The cup infuses to a medium dark brown color and smells just as strong as the tea leaves did of cinnamon, cloves and pumpkin. It smells like autumn. I’m particularly fond of putting coffee creamer into pumpkin spice tea as my homage to the British tradition of milk in their tea and I usually use Italian Cream creamer. However, the store didn’t have that on sale the last time I went shopping for groceries and I got Sweet Cream coffee creamer instead which is almost the same thing.
It’s a tasty tea. Full of flavor and spiciness. The creamer mellows it out and adds sweetness. I do really enjoy the cup. However, my grocery store Celestial Seasonings Sweet Harvest Pumpkin tastes very similar to this. Maybe this is a little more flavorful but the price is too outrageous to purchase again.
It’s going to be a night of second chances here so I’m going to try the other Teavana flavor I have next, S’mores Oolong Tea. The last time I got a pumpkin spice impression from it. The loose leaf mixture has little marshmallows in it and this time I put quite a few of them in my finum brewing basket. The blend smells of cinnamon…wait, what? Yeah, I look at the label and it says cinnamon is in it! Okay…so this explains a lot. Cinnamon is not a s’mores flavor. No wonder why I thought I got pumpkin spice from it last time. The label says it has white chocolate and regular chocolate in it but I couldn’t taste it last time. Let’s see what I get this time.
It infuses to a medium brown shade and smells lightly of cinnamon. I’m not getting any chocolate scent from the cup. The taste is much less spicy this time but the cinnamon is still strongly the most present flavor and no chocolate flavor. The extra marshmallows I put in the infuser has given it a creamier flavor than last time and that is making it much more pleasant. But it’s the dang cinnamon that is ruining this tea and lack of chocolate flavor that bothers me. The Teavana tea blend mixologist should have pumped up the chocolate flavor by much, much more to make this one great. I’ve got other chocolate teas from Stash and Republic of Tea and they have awesome chocolate flavor so I know it’s possible. Teavana has really missed the boat on this one with the blend.
I’m ready for my third cup and this second chance comes from last years birthday bundle. Last year I got five new teas and four were bum losers that I had one cup and put away forever. This year I bought 14 new teas and 2 were underwhelming and one was a total disaster. My odds are getting better! This tea is Republic of Tea Almond Coconut Macaroon Red Roobios Tea. Roobios, which is pronounced rye boos, is naturally caffeine free. I just adore macaroons which is why I love Lana’s The Little House Snowflake Tea because that tea truly tastes like a real macaroon. I’m remembering that this tea tasted nothing like the cookie. However I think I used water that was too cold and steeped it too long.
The teabag smells earthy, kinda like dirt. I’m trying hard to get a whiff of vanilla, almond or coconut but nothing comes forth. Now I would stop right there if this wasn’t my night of second chances. However my mind has been made up to this choice of tea next and I’m going forward. It infuses to a medium auburn color and smells just a bit coconutty with a funky twang.
It has a much more pleasant taste than last time but as far as tasting like a macaroon it just doesn’t compare to the Snowflake tea from Lana’s. It’s got a mild kinda fake coconut flavor and a weird funky taste that I chalk up to the red roobios. However it is caffeine free and I can find out if my son likes it and find an audience for it that way since he cannot drink the Snowflake tea.
The final second chance cup of tonight is Republic of Tea Cuppa Cake Teas Lemon Chiffon Tea. This tea is a combination of green roobios with lemon, vanilla and coconut flavors which sounded delicious but I remember being very disappointed in this one last year when I got it for my birthday. I’m going to make the adjustments in water temperature and steeping time and see if I can improve the taste this time.
The teabag smells kinda like buttered popcorn with a hint of lemon. Strange. I’m not sure how this is going to go but I’m determined to continue. The tea becomes a medium yellow shade and smells lightly funky, still reminding me of buttered popcorn and the light lemon scent is gone now. It’s definitely more pleasant this time but it’s still not great and I don’t taste any lemon in it. Just a fake coconut taste like the macaroon tea. It’s also got the same weird roobios flavor but it’s not as strong as the macaroon one. It’s got to go back in the vault for my son to try out and see if he likes it. Just maybe he won’t mind it.
So this night of second chance tastings has been as disappointing as my current love life…a perfect way to celebrate Valentine’s Day! Tomorrow I will have to try some tried and true favorites to make up for this one. Please join me! Remember pinkies up, 🍵