Teas of the Week for June 5, 2017: The Unicorn! (Black Tea) & The Dragon! (Green Tea)
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This week, we're doing something different because it's the first week of our anniversary month! We - Amethyst & I - took over 52Teas 2 years ago! Yay! So to celebrate our anniversary month - we're kicking off the first week with two teas of the week instead of just one.
The two teas are a spin-off of a certain coffee shop's celebrated drinks - I decided to take that idea and give it my own spin.
Tea Description: According to everything I've been seeing online, it seems to be the Year of the Unicorn Food. Everyone seems to have a unicorn something or other - there's Unicorn donuts and Unicorn ice cream, Unicorn cheesecake and let's not forget about the Unicorn whipped drinks from that popular coffee shop.
I've always loved unicorns and I had a rather impressive unicorn collection at one time in my life - so I decided that this was a trend that I wouldn't mind taking part in.
So here's my answer to this latest frenzy: The Unicorn! This is a black tea (a blend of Golden Yunnan & Assamica from the JingMai Mountains) blended with marshmallow root & vanilla bean for a creamy note with the 'rainbow' flavors of mango, blueberry and strawberry.
I added some purple candy sprinkles because I think the Unicorns would want it that way.
ingredients: black teas & vegan candy sprinkles
organic ingredients: mangoes, blueberries, strawberries, marshmallow root, vanilla bean & natural flavors
This is deliciously sweet but not overly so. Creamy ... fruity ... somewhat evoking thoughts of a smoothie except that I'm drinking it hot - so it would be a hot smoothie and I'm not sure how well a hot smoothie would work with fancy beverage drinkers. But as a tea - it definitely DOES work in my teacup!
When drinking it hot (after that 10 minute cool time, of course!) I find that there's a pleasant balance between the mango and vanilla/marshmallow notes - it's sweet and creamy. The berries play more of a secondary role here - with their flavors popping in and out throughout the sip and lingering in the aftertaste with that tingly berry note.
Not wanting to be outdone by the flavors, the black tea offers a bold, rich flavor to the cup. The malty tones from the Assamica plays well to the vanilla notes.
A very tasty cuppa!
To brew: I think it's better not to over leaf with this - but do make sure that you get an ample amount of leaf in the presence of so many pieces of fruit! I found that it's helpful to measure out the tea without fruit in the measurement - a little over a heaping teaspoonful to 12 ounces of water - and then add the chunks of fruit to the dry leaf once you've measured out the leaf.
Steep in boiling water for 2 1/2 - 3 minutes. Strain and allow to cool for 10 minutes. Enjoy!
The sprinkles will add some sweetness to the cup, so I found that I didn't really need additional sweetener. If you're one who likes your tea a little sweeter - go for it! - but do be sure to taste it before you sweeten it to make sure you don't over-sweeten your cup!
Tea Description: That same aforementioned coffee shop has an 'off the menu' Dragon whipped drink that answers to those who are anti-unicorn. As I am both pro-unicorn and pro-dragon, I thought I should include The Dragon Tea in my anniversary week of teas!
The dragon is a green tea (a blend of Chinese Sencha and Dragon Well) blended with marshmallow root with lime, raspberry & blackberry.
No candy sprinkles in this one because the Dragon has no need for such bedizenment.
organic ingredients: green teas, raspberries, blackberries, limes, marshmallow root & natural flavors
This is a really fun blend! So deliciously fruity with both sweet and tart notes and a smooth mid-note from the marshmallow.
I wanted the focus to be primarily on the berries here, with lime offering a strong accent and the marshmallow softening the edges just a little so it wasn't too tart and I think I managed to pull it off!
The green tea is light and slightly vegetal and just a hint of a buttery/nutty taste. The lime hits the palate first and it's a bright, tangy note. Then it makes way for the berry flavors of raspberry and blackberry. These seem pretty balanced to me - sometimes, I think I taste more blackberry while others, I think I taste more raspberry. It's very juicy and not overwhelmingly sweet. The marshmallow does what I added it to do - softens the overall flavor so that it's not too tart.
This is good hot, but it's best when it's iced - this will make a really nice refresher during the hot summer months ahead!
to brew: I suggest going with a heaping teaspoon of tea (make sure that you get enough tea leaves in the measurement because there are quite a few berries in the blend!) with 12 ounces of hot water (heated to 175°F) and let it steep for 2 1/2 - 3 minutes. Strain and let cool for about 5 minutes.
This tea is plenty flavorful without sweetener - but if you're one who likes to sweeten your tea - I'm sure it'll be great that way too!