Tea The North: A DAVIDsTea Review

Celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday with this juicy blend of white tea, watermelon, coconut and rhubarb. Sweet, tart and packed with red and white, it’s a fireworks-worthy infusion. Happy Canada Day!

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$10.98/50g

#Canada150…

Tea the North

(Melon, pineapple, coconut, white tea, hibiscus, sweet blackberry leaves, apple, rose petals, rhubarb, safflower blossoms, natural watermelon, rhubarb and coconut flavouring.)

What happens when you throw three incredibly overdone flavours together? Well, in this case, you get Tea The North, a cheesy play on words of We The North… in true DAVIDsTea fashion. Here, melon and coconut come together in a limited edition blend, created in honour of Canada Day and its upcoming 150th birthday. It is packed full of ingredients that are meant to represent the colours of our nation’s flag: red and white. Red? Hibiscus, rose petals, rhubarb, safflower blossoms. White? Coconut, apple, melon, and of course the white tea. The loose leaf contains shavings of coconut, plenty of dried fruit and flower petals, with the white tea base laying amongst everything else. It doesn’t look completely red and white per se, but I suppose it’s close enough. The dry note is strong and powerful; it really tickles the nose if you get close enough. It’s mostly the coconut and watermelon that you pick up, but there is also a slight floral hint from the rose petals.

After four minutes, it steeps to this reddish orange colour, that kind of looks like diluted watermelon juice. Thankfully the aforementioned potent aroma has toned down significantly. The white tea isn’t really present, and there’s no bitterness at all, which is certainly a plus. The other flavours here clearly dominate and camouflage the base. In sipping, the following tasting notes come through: sweet, creamy, and tangy. It’s admittedly a nice mix. As excepted, the coconut definitely stands out alongside the other ingredients, but the fruitier aspects help to keep this blend in check. I appreciate that there isn’t a heavy tartness or need for additional sugar. But even with that being said, if you don’t enjoy coconut, Tea The North is probably not the tea for you. Yes, it is the summer time, but overall, this tisane comes off as a half-assed attempt at being patriotic. Tea The North definitely had a ton of potential to be great, decent even. But it was like a bunch of red and white looking ingredients were just thrown together blindly and forced to co-exist.

 

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Vanilla Bergamot: A DAVIDsTea Review

This refined blend of luxurious white tea, creamy vanilla and citrusy bergamot is like Earl Grey’s classy aunt. Laced with white chocolate and rose petals, it’s pure elegance.

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$9.98/50g

Just add pearls…

(White tea, apple, white chocolate, rose petals, vanilla, bergamot peel, artificial cream, vanilla and bergamot flavouring.)

Bergamot (a fragrant citrus fruit the size of an orange, but the colour of a lemon), the key component in Earl Grey tea and vanilla (without a doubt the world’s most popular aroma and flavour). Two delicious and well-known flavours coming together to create an even yummier tea, that just so happens to be called Vanilla Bergamot. Out of the two new Mother’s Day teas, this is definitely the one that sounded the most promising to me, because I had a pretty good idea of what I was getting myself into, and I also love London Fog lattes! You can see pretty much everything in the loose leaf… The white tea leaves, the whole pieces of vanilla bean, chunks of apple, dried rose petals, and more. The bergamot peel, as opposed to just flavouring, makes for a super strong scent throughout.

This smell increases even more so after close to five minutes of steeping, with a nice twist of vanilla.   The white chocolate listed in the ingredients, leaves its usual oil film at the top of my cup. But the creaminess that it ultimately adds to this tea is lovely. The tangy note brought on by the apples, on the other hand, is another story. So far, I’ve tried Earl Grey (from DT) as a black tea, green tea, and a rooibos, and I think that this white tea version is really something else. I would have never imagined to pair this light base with the more notable qualities of the vanilla and Bergamot. Thankfully, the rose is not very detectable; it has been greatly overshadowed by the bergamot. If you like Cream of Earl Grey, and maybe want to try something similar, this could be easily one of your new favourites!

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Moonlight White: A DAVIDsTea Review

This exquisite white pu’erh tea is delicate and smooth, with a sweet honey finish.

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$24.98/50g

Can’t fight the moonlight…

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(White tea from Yunnan Province, China.)

The original Chinese name for this tea is “Yue Guang Bai”, which quite literally translates to Moonlight White, word for word. Yunnan, a province of/in China that is known for their pu’erh tea, is the source of this special tea blend. And I say tea blend, because people often get confused on whether Moonlight White is in fact a white tea, or is it Pu-erh? The answer is both, technically. Even though it has been lightly processed just like your typical while tea, you can steep this as if it were a pu’erh, ultimately making it a “white pu’erh”. Its appearance is comprised of white silvery leaves, complete with a black underbelly, which the Chinese believe mimics the glow of the moon. Not to be ignorant, but to me, Moonlight White has the standard “white tea” scent: light, fresh, and vegetal. Kind of like a green tea, actually.

The fact that you can steep Moonlight White up to 7 minutes if you wanted is pretty refreshing. I have often accidentally burnt a white tea (or six), because I forget how delicate they can, and this tea helps take some of the stress out of that process. After four minutes, this tea brews up to a beautiful golden colour. Although I bet more time would have brugh t forth a rather toasty, brown shade. The aroma wafting off the cup now smells a bit like warmed cream, oddly enough. As for the taste, super smooth. And the pu’erh aspect gives it this malty depth. It’s a little bitter as you make your way to the bottom of the cup, but it’s really not so bad, because there’s a nice honey finish with each sip. Quite the tea experience, but it’s very limited edition, so get some while you still can!

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Raspberry Meringue: A DAVIDsTea Review

This vibrant raspberry and vanilla-scented white tea tastes like a dessert in a cup.

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$10.98/50g

Berry nice…

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(White tea, apple, mango, pineapple, green tea, sugar, sweet blackberry leaves, raspberries, chamomile, natural raspberry, vanilla and caramel flavouring.)

Conceptually, Raspberry Meringue makes the most sense being included in the new Macaron collection from DAVIDsTea. For one, macarons are a French meringue-based concoction that are both dainty and bite-sized, while raspberry is a pretty traditional/common flavour used for macarons. So it will be interesting to see how this tea compares to the real deal. The smell is quite nice, like raspberries and creamy vanilla, but there is something else that I can’t quite put my finger on. The caramel perhaps? The loose leaf has a real minced appearance to it; you can see the bits of green tea, white tea, raspberry, little chamomile flowers, the candied fruit, as well as the sugar crystals scattered throughout.

This tea can best be described as Raspberry Cream Pie’s distant relative. It has a similar look; after close to five minutes, you can expect your cup to be filled with a deep caramel-esque colour that looks slightly milky. The first sip delivers a delicate, fruity flavour. The brew tastes very true to actual, fresh raspberries: tart, but sweet. It definitely has a nice lightness to it, which makes it even more of a refreshing cup of tea. The white and green teas blend well together; thankfully the chamomile doesn’t really come through, which was something I was a little worried about. While the combination of the vanilla and caramel flavourings really impart Raspberry Meringue with this rich, dessert tea feel, in addition to the natural sweetness that is subtle and just sweet enough. Unfortunately, at the end of the day, this tea leaves me feeling indifferent. It’s really nothing to write home about, but if you found RCP to be a little too much, this might be a better alternative for you, with a hint of caffeine to boot!

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