Main Squeeze: A DAVIDsTea Review

Meet your new main squeeze, an orange-y blend of maté and fruits.

st

$7.98/50g

Greet the day…

Main Squeeze

(Green yerba mate, candied papaya, pineapple, safflower petals, natural flavouring.)

What’s your beverage of choice when it comes time to start a brand new day, and head downstairs for breakfast? Is it milk, is it a green smoothie, is it coffee, or is it good ol’ orange juice? What if I told you that there is a tea that combines the best parts of a cup of coffee and a glass of freshly squeezed OJ, into a fruity blend with a nice (and probably much needed) boost of energy? It’s called Main Squeeze, and it may just become a new addition to your morning routine. The dry leaf smells sweet and citrus-y. Even though the orange is most likely hidden in the “natural flavouring”, it is still prominent in the nose of this tea. With slight tropical notes from the pineapple and papaya too.

Once steeped for close to five minutes, Main Squeeze takes on a golden green liquor with just the slightest cloudiness to it, almost as if it were a green tea. The earthy yerba maté base comes through more so in the scent, with a lingering of fresh citrus. I cannot fully commit and say that it tastes outright like orange juice, but it is somewhat similar. Kind of reminds me of a popular powdered drink from my childhood, Tang. The fruit flavour is not super overwhelming, but it’s strong enough to dampen the earthiness that mate possesses and any possible bitterness. It also has a natural sweetness generating from the candied fruit, so it’s really not necessary to add any additional sugar. I feel like overall this is a great way to ease your way into mate teas, if you’re new to them. Yerba mate is a naturally caffeinated drink from South America, so there’s no need to worry about crashing or getting the jitters.

3cups-2

Serenity Now: A DAVIDsTea Review

This soothing blend of lavender, strawberry and hibiscus is a one-way ticket to your happy place.

zero

$8.98/50g

Zen and sensibility…

10494dt01var0027541-bi-1-46

(Currants, rosehips, apple, lavender, spearmint, hibiscus, blueberries, rose petals, strawberries, quince, natural rose water and strawberry flavouring.)

Nothing evokes feelings of  calm and pure relaxation, quite like lavender. The aroma alone can put you at ease. It is one of the most fragrant and highly versatile herbs that you can grow. Not only is it used in aromatherapy as an essential oil, it is utilized in traditional herbal medicine, in the kitchen as a culinary herbal, as well as in tea blends like Serenity Now from DAVIDsTea. This pretty purple flower acts as the base to this herbal infusion that also features strawberries, hibiscus, and spearmint (which happens to be in the same family as lavender, interestingly enough). The floral aspect is not as potent as I originally expected, it actually smells quite soothing. Somehow you can pick on several different components here and there, but it’s mostly the sweet strawberry and floral lavender that come through the most in the dry leaf nose.

After four minutes, Serenity Now steeps to a really diluted, red colour that is also transparent looking. Its initial fruity/floral scent remains in tact, but it is subdued. Did you know? Lavender comes from the Latin verb, “lavare”, which means to wash. And a little definitely goes a long way. Otherwise you may end up with a taste in your mouth, very similar to that of a fancy soap, your grandmother’s signature perfume, or even potpourri. I feel like there’s something sophisticated about mixing lavender, mint, and strawberry. But it’s also a very hit or miss tea. Serenity Now, admittedly, has a lot going on and a very complex flavour profile. Sweetener (may that be agave, cane sugar, honey, or otherwise), is what is going to bring out the fruitiness and tone down the intense floral and tart hibiscus notes present here. Even if you’re not the biggest fan of lavender or teas that are too perfume-y, this is still a worth try, especially iced, when it transforms from soothing to incredibly refreshing.

 

2cups-2

 

 

Sparkling Sangria: A DAVIDsTea Review

This sweet tropical sangria sparkles with papaya, mango and pineapple. Just add wine!

zero

$7.98/50g

Patio not included…

Sparkling Sangria

(Apple, papaya, mango, pineapple, hibiscus, cornflower petals, rose petals, artificial passionfruit flavouring.)

If you ask me, Sangria is very representative of the summer months, having fun, and enjoying the company of friends. This popular Spanish beverage is like an adult version of “punch”: wine is typically mixed together with a number of different fruits, a hard liquor of some kind, and at times soda water to make it nice and fizzy. The great thing about Sangria is that the selection of fruit used is entirely up to you! In Sparkling Sangria, a cocktail inspired infusion, DAVIDsTea revamps their classic Sangria tea by opting for a sweet, more tropical flavour. Candied pineapple, papaya, mango are all accounted for in this tea. But there’s also the usual culprits as well: apple pieces, hibiscus, and flower petals for a bit of decoration. Its light champagne fragrance reminds me a lot of Pineapple Mimosa from last year.

The dark, red wine-like colour that produces after just over six minutes, looks just like actual sangria. It doesn’t smell as much like alcohol anymore, though the fruity notes are now stepping forward. I am wholeheartedly digging the exotic spin on this version of Sangria compared to last year (with its more traditional take), and that aspect of the tea comes through very strong and clearly. Some of the blends that have been released as of late, that have claimed to have a tropical essence, have failed to hit the nail on the head with that like Sparkling Sangria does. You can very much taste the sweet fruitiness of the pineapple, passionfruit, and mango (papaya too!), with the hibiscus contributing a nice tang to round things out. It’s both undeniable and addictive. Sparkling Sangria has a full, robust flavour profile that doesn’t require any additional sweetener. But with some wine added, or even made into a tea pop, it would be absolute perfection – because sangria is nothing if not versatile.

3cups-2

Sour Appletini: A DAVIDsTea Review

With its fresh and tangy taste of green apple, the sour appletini is the ultimate summer cocktail. And we made a version you can sip anytime, anywhere.

zero

$7.98/50g

An apple a day…

Sour Appletini

(Apple, beetroot, blackberry leaves, artificial apple flavouring.)

Shaken, not stirred… That’s how James Bond preferred to have his martinis made, but this well-known cocktail is traditionally dry gin and vermouth stirred together, with an olive garnish (or even a twist of lemon). In comparison, the “appletini” is a fun variation on a classic, featuring a bright, eye pleasing green colour and a flavour that leaves the taste buds absolutely zinging. DAVIDsTea’s latest collection includes Sour Appletini, a fruit infusion that captures this unique sour apple flavour, which can be hard to do without coming off too artificial tasting. But added flavouring is inevitable, because this tea is simply bits and pieces of what looks to be Granny Smith apple, blackberry leaves, and beetroot. That’s it. Straightforward and to the point.

The aroma is quite potent, and definitely delivers on a green apple scent. Oddly enough, once steeped for 7 minutes, Sour Appletini loses a lot of its apple smell, and takes on more of a citrus-y smell, but that could just be the citric acid coming through. And it steeps to this appealing candy apple red colour. I’m glad there isn’t anything else in this tea to distract from the fact that it is an apple based/inspired blend. That being said, if you are a lover of sour things like myself, Sour Appletini succeeds in being mouthpuckeringly satisfying, with a taste just like a green apple Jolly Rancher. It’s plenty tart as is, so you may feel inclined to add some sugar. But the longer the steep, the greater the pucker! If you enjoyed Sour Watermelon from the recent summer collection, there’s a chance you’ll enjoy this one too. Although, I kind of wish this tangy tisane could have turned green somehow… #enoughwiththeredteas

3cups-2

Rosé All Day: A DAVIDsTea Review

This delicate and mildly fruity pink tea tastes just like a chilled glass of rosé wine.

zero

$7.98/50g

Make me blush…

Rosé All Day

(Apple, sultanas, hibiscus, elderberries, red currant, blue mallow flower, blueberries, black currants, artificial wine flavouring.)

Not red… not white… but pink! Rosé is a type of French wine that incorporates some of the colour from the skin of red grapes, but not enough to qualify it as a red wine. This year’s cocktail collection features nearly a handful of new teas, including Rosé All Day, a fruit infusion that possesses all of the components that make this vino so darn yummy, but without that pesky morning-after headache. There are an assortment of berries, both black and red currants, apple pieces, hibiscus, flower petals, as well as sultanas. Fun fact: Raisins, sultanas, and currants are all sweet dried fruits that stem from different varieties of vine-grown grapes, are used in similar ways, but ultimately they have their own unique traits. 2/3 of these make up the all important grape aspect of Rosé All Day. And you know what? It smells just like wine too! Mind blown.

More than five minutes later and you have a gorgeous blush rose colour filling your cup, all thanks to the hibiscus. Smell-wise? That slightly alcoholic hint is still very much there. The fruit notes are on the milder side, but pair nicely alongside the more refreshing, tart notes. There’s definitely a “bite” to this tisane, but it’s not at all unpleasant, and the wine flavour profile lingers right into the aftertaste. For someone who is not particularly a big fan of wine, I was quite surprised by not only how much it actually tastes like its namesake, but how much I enjoyed it, especially when prepared iced with a touch of sweetener. Only then, do you get the full effect of what Rosé All Day is trying to capture. Who knew that “artificial wine flavouring” was a thing? I sure didn’t, but it seems to have helped get the job done. How you manage to get a tea to taste exactly like wine, but still be non-alcoholic is beyond me, but I can definitely picture myself indulging in this tea all summer long!

3cups-2

Green & Fruity: A DAVIDsTea Review

A super refreshing, hydrating blend of green rooibos and tropical fruits.

zero

$7.98/50g

Now that’s fresh…

(Green and red rooibos, apple, candied papaya, mango, natural and artificial flavouring.)

Consumed in South Africa for centuries, rooibos (pronounced ROY-bos), also referred to as “red bush” tea, is a miracle plant that has gained popularity in recent years, and not just because it is caffeine free, rich in antioxidants, and naturally hydrating. (But you have to admit, those are pretty great selling points, right?) The loose leaf is composed simply of chunky pieces of dried tropical fruit swimming in a sea of mostly green needle-like leaves (with a sprinkling of red). It’s a little tempting not to pick out a piece of papaya and pretend it’s a piece of candy and eat it straight from the tea. It smells incredibly fruity and sweet, but there is a slight earthiness yielding from the base. It’s really as self-explanatory as its name.

After five minutes, the colour of this tea can be best compared to that of a straight black tea. It has that same kind of orange-y hue, and a strong fruity quality to the scent, but the rooibos has come through a lot more. I personally would have preferred if it was merely the green rooibos alone, not a blend, but at least the red doesn’t manage to completely dominate the green, and is still somewhat light and refreshing. On top of all the other fruits showcased in Green & Fruity, there is some peach coming through, which may be hidden in the ‘artificial flavouring’ aspect of this tea. I love its smooth taste and the natural sweetness it possesses. Overall, Green & Fruity’s rooibos base is nice and delicate, which allows the fruitier notes to have their moment in the spotlight. Sadly, this tea is being discontinued, so stock up while you still can!

2cups-2

Raspberry Mojito: A DAVIDsTea Review

Is there any way to improve on a classic mojito? Sure… Just add raspberry!

zero

$8.98/50g

Gimme some mo’…

(Apple, raisins, hibiscus blossoms, carrot, beetroot, peppermint, lime, raspberries, rose petals, natural and artificial strawberry flavouring.)

We can all thank the city of Havana, Cuba for the creation of the mojito, one of the oldest mixed drinks still consumed today. The mojito is a classic cocktail that brings mint and lime together with a splash of white rum. And for a fun, summery twist, why not add in a handful of sweet raspberries? Resulting in a fruity, minty, and oh so refreshing mix! Just like Raspberry Mojito, a DAVIDsTea returning favourite that is officially the “new” featured tea of the month for May! There is something seemingly different about this fruit infusion compared to last year’s release, that is just so much more bright and lively… from the appearance to the aroma right to the flavour. You can see every single ingredient in the loose leaf. The whole raspberries, the rose petals, the bits of carrot, the raisins, the peppermint leaves, as well as huge pieces of lime.

This blend has a very strong, robust scent. It’s obviously very fruity, due to the raspberries, but also citrus-y and pleasantly minty. After five minutes, it steeps to a beautiful, deep pink colour, that is actually closer to red, to be honest. When Raspberry Mojito is prepared hot, the combination of raspberries and the hibiscus blossoms produce a not-so-surprising tart taste. Sugar is definitely needed to help smooth out the intense tang of this tisane. Both of the aforementioned ingredients are very much at the forefront, delivering a one-two punch to your taste buds. While the peppermint settles into the aftertaste adding a fresh, cooling effect. The lime is unfortunately not as prominent as I’d personally like it to be, it seems like it gets lost amongst the other flavour components. For me, Raspberry Mojito doesn’t completely live up to its namesake, mostly because there is not enough mint or lime for my liking, but this still remains one of my very favourite iced teas!

3cups-2