The Quintessential Selection – TeaTourist Monthly Review (March 2018)

Hey there Teacups! It’s time again for my monthly TeaTourist Box review. Before I get into my review I just want to apologise for this post being a few days late I hate falling behind on my blogging schedule it really get’s on my nerves. From now I’m going to do my best to make sure all of my future posts are up on the right days and at the right time. I love writing and introducing you all to newts and tisanes and I want to keep everything I’m doing consistent. If ever a blog posts is going to go up late or on a different day the best place to find out that info will be on my twitter (@teaisawishblog).

This months box houses the quintessential selection every month before the boxes are released the TeaTourist team give little hints as to what kind of teas are going to be in each box and when I found out that 4 of the 6 teas in this months box were black teas I was incredibly excited. You all know I’m a huge fan of black teas so their couldn’t really be a box that was more perfect for me and my taste buds.

March 2018 – TeaTourist Box Review | Quintessential Selection

March is special. It signals the beginning of Spring in the North, marks the onset of Autumn in the south and is the anniversary month teatourist became official in the eyes of the law! So, they felt it only fitting to line up an adventure just as significant. From timeless classics and trendy traditionals to go-to brews and daily staples, this collection is packed with all-time favourites from bygone eras of quintessential tea drinking.

Earl Grey 1833 | By Chash the Fine Tea Co | Flavoured Black Tea

Made using the finest black tea leaves infused with pure bergamot oil, this classic blend is produced exclusively in salute of Earl Grey’s 1833 charge to abolish slavery across the Empire. It’s a peerless Earl Grey of distinction.

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Ingredients: Finest Ceylon Black Tea & Pure Bergamot Oil.

You’re probably all sick of me saying this now but I love Earl Grey so I couldn’t have been happier when I saw that TeaTourist had included one in their quintessential collection. Because to me Earl Grey is an everyday tea and you will always find at least one kind in my tea collection so for me this really wouldn’t have been a quintessential Collection without one. Knowing how much I enjoy Earl Grey I knew that no matter what I was going to end up discovering a new favourite when it came to trying this blend, you just can’t go wrong with a classic. When first trying this I used 3g of tea and managed to get 2 full steeps out of the same leaves using my T2 Teamaker, it’s an incredibly smooth Earl Grey and has clearly been blended with lots of care and attention as it perfectly balanced and surprisingly considering how strong the bergamot was in the aroma it was actually quite subtle in the taste and allowed for the Ceylon to be the shining star. Like most black teas it was a little dry mouth feel wise but it wasn’t bad enough to really affect my experience with it. I had this straight to start with but after a few sips I added a little honey and splash of lemon – Not because it wasn’t naturally sweet but because that’s just how I have my Earl Grey and I couldn’t change it.

Morgan’s Brew Tea | By Morgan’s Brew Tea Company | Black Tea

Chosen by customers as the company’s flagship launch tea in 2006, this beautifully simple East African blend delivers a truly wholesome cuppa. Strong and refreshing, it’ll take you back to the bygone ear of 1940s traditional tea drinking!

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Ingredients: East African black tea including Kenyan, Ugandan and Rwandan.

This is a really well balanced blend of African black teas and I really did enjoy it. It actually took me by surprise a little bit because it was much more earthier than I thought it would be. I’ll admit now that before trying this my inner tea snob did come out and I did assume that it wasn’t going to be as good as a full leaf tea or a broken leaf tea and while you could definitely tell a difference in quality it’s not enough of a difference to make me completely write off this tea. Would I reach for it before anything else .. no I probably wouldn’t but I wouldn’t turn down a cup of it because it does have a nice well rounded flavour too it. I do understand why this was included in a quintessential collection thought because it really does take you back to 1940’s traditional tea drinking where you really wouldn’t have had much choice in the quality of tea you were drinking.

Safari Oolong | By Nothing but Tea | Oolong TeaA hand-plucked, naturally-harvested oolong tea with a smooth floral flavour and honey notes. Crafted in small batches by Kenyan cooperative in the Nandi Hills region of Kenya, profits help local farmers build better communities.

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Ingredients: 100% Oolong tea from Tumoi Teas in Mandi Hills (Kenya)

I’ve never heard of or tried a Kenyan oolong and I was incredibly intrigued when it came to try this for the first time. The dry leaves had almost no aroma and I really didn’t know what to expect from it, the only aroma it had was a slightly sweet note but other than that I couldn’t pick anything else out at all. This oolong tea is meticulously crafted in small batches.  Hand-plucked, withered, tossed, panned, rolled and then dried. This is such a unique tea because it tastes like someone has mixed a floral oolong with a malty black tea. It’s smooth and floral but it’s also malty and has a honey like sweetness. I didn’t expect to love this tea after being so underwhelmed by it’s aroma, it just shows that you should never judge a book by it’s cover or should I say you can’t judge a tea by it’s aroma.

Green Tea with Jasmine | By Pure Leaf Tea | Green Tea

A beautifully simple green tea made using the finest long-leaf Chinese green tea leaves. Layered with real Jasmine flowers as they dry, the leaves produce a majestic brew with a delicate floral fragrance and smooth, light finish.

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Ingredients: Chinese green tea & Jasmine flowers.

I know I always talk about black tea being my favourite but green tea comes a close second but unlike black tea I almost always have it iced. (Not that I don’t enjoy hot its just much more refreshing iced)Green Tea and jasmine go exceptionally well together and I knew as soon as I saw this in the box that I had to have it cold brewed/iced. So when I opened this sachet I steeped it hot like I did all the others but I also put some into my cold brew infuser jug to steep overnight (I just had to try it both ways – something just told me it would be perfect iced)And whatever that something was wasn’t wrong this blend was perfect iced with a little bit of honey – I’m going to be buying so much more of this to have throughout the summer It’s such a perfect iced tea. While I did enjoy it hot it just wasn’t the same it just tasted so much better and well rounded when it was cold brewed. When jasmine is steeped hot it overpowers everything and I don’t like it at all and that was the case when I steeped it hot. I also found it to be much more drying on my mouth when I steeped it hot.

Bright Afternoon | By Bright Teas | Black TeaA blend of luxury Chinese classic with a naturally sweet and floral taste. Deep autumn brown in colour, this tea has a traditional earthy flavour with subtle tones of smoky woos chips, dried autumn flowers and tangy tinned peaches.

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Ingredients: Chinese Keemun black tea, Chinese Mao Feng black tea & Chinese Yunnan black tea.

I have to admit that every part of me wanted to love the blend but sadly I think it’s Smokey notes just weren’t to my taste and I didn’t manage more than a cup of this. It’s a slight sweet, woody floral and smooth with Smokey notes that come through mainly in the after taste. I enjoy all of the teas in this blend of their own but my tastes buds just didn’t enjoy them all blended together I even added a little honey to this and even that didn’t help to mellow its stronger notes. This is a great tea for people who are fans of strong black tea but it was just far too robust and strong for me.

Ceylon Tea (Pekoe Fannings) | By Cheeky Chai | Black TeaA fine leaf Ceylon tea that delivers the rich, traditional black tea flavours and aromas we all know and love. All natural with nothing added, it’s wonderfully light on the tongue, making it perfect for anytime of the day. A truly fabulous tea!

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Ingredients: 100% Small Leaf Ceylon Tea (Pekoe Fannings)

You all know I love Ceylon so there wasn’t even  chance that I wasn’t going to thoroughly enjoy this tea from cheeky chai. It was just as you would expect a Ceylon to be it’s a classic that you really can’t go wrong with – I had this with A dash of soya milk and it took me back to when I first started drinking tea as a child. Like every household in England we always had tea bags in the house and this tea is very similar in taste to those they were where my love for tea was founded and to be able to revisit those years through this tea.

This month Teatourist teamed up with Carryme Cup to help raise awareness of the growing wastage issue in the take-away drinks industry and promote their answer to an alternative with an exclusive offer. This is my favourite collaboration that TeaTourist have done since I started working with them, it’s nice to see companies take important things like wastage issues into consideration and put into place an offer that will help so many people to start learning about how they can help the environment. So, from now until May 31st gift any of TeaTourists tea adventures and use the code CARRYME to get your very own CarryMe Cup. (I’ve also teamed up with CarryMe Cup and a more In-Depth post all about them and their cups will be coming up on my blog soon)

You can find out more about TeaTourist and re-order this quintessential box here. Remember to use the code TEAISAWISH to get 25% off your first box with TeaTourist. As always if you have any questions at all either stick them in the comments or send them to me on twitter (@teaisawishblog) and I’ll answer them as soon as I can.

Speak to you all on Saturday. Happy Steeping! – Kimberley

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