Sunday, May 10, 2015

Trader Leaf: Orange Grapefruit Herb Blend, A Tea Review

Everyone should feel really bad for Espeon, she has had a very rough day. See, it has been a gloriously stormy day (that I slept through, mostly) and it has been terrifying her! One of those storms that has a decent amount of rain, little wind, and a nigh constant soundtrack of explosive thunder. Like a lot of cats (and dogs too) she is kinda terrified of loud noises (Tao, on the other hand, can sleep through anything and could care less, she is so zen) so after each massive boom I heard a sad little wiffle of a meow. Half asleep I called her into bed and then after each boom she crawled further and further up the bed (having started at the foot) until she was more or less under my pillow. It was adorable and sad, because according to the weather, the storms are not quite finished for today.

So, funny story with today's tea, it was sent to me as a challenge by Trader Leaf Tea! I told them I was not so much a fan of hibiscus and they sent me Orange Grapefruit Herb Blend in hopes of changing my mind. If you have been reading my tea ramblings you know I really hate hibiscus, now true I do occasionally run into a blend that has it included that does not send me screaming for the hills, so ok, challenge accepted! This tea is a blend of quite a few things: apple pieces, carrot flakes, blackberry and eucalyptus leaves, beetroot pieces, hibiscus flowers, lemon grass, flavoring, tangerine pieces, and orange slices, so not one of those blends that is super heavy on the red death...and there are a few things I am rather fond of (hello eucalyptus and citrus things!) According to my notes (and my nose, since I just took a refresher sniff) this tea is a sweet citrus and eucalyptus explosion! Very sweet and refreshing notes of different citrus notes (lemon, orange, and grapefruit reign supreme) and a very cleansing note of eucalyptus. It opens the nose and lungs and allows for sneaky notes of beetroot and carrot to creep in at the finish.

One thing I will say about hibiscus, it sure is pretty to steep, that vibrant red color that starts pink and turns maroon is lovely to watch. The aroma of the soggy bits is super strong citrus and eucalyptus, I am not really getting anything else, I think I will use this as a breathing aide next time I have a cold because wow! My sinuses are certainly cleared now. The liquid is much the same, lots of citrus (especially lemon and orange) and eucalyptus, with a honey sweet undertone.

Now if you are the kind of person that finds this intense sinus and lung clearing and cooling type teas unpleasant, this might not be the brew for you, I love strongly camphorous like aromas and tastes, they make me happy. The taste is surprisingly sweet, like biting into a fresh orange, but mixed with a touch of sourness and tartness. The eucalyptus is strong, but it is not a taste, more the cooling and very refreshing sensation of eucalyptus. Towards the finish there is a combination of earthy carrot and beet notes, along with metallic notes from the hibiscus. Ok, you were right to challenge me, because I do not hate this tea, granted the hibiscus notes are pretty faint, so that certainly gives it a big win in my book.

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