Cranberry Apple (Tea Store; 241 Princess Street, Kingston)
Ingredients: Dried apple, hibiscus, rosehip and sweet orange peel.
Serving size: One tea spoon to one full mug of water.
Raw aroma: Very sweet. Strong notes of apple, light cranberry and rosehip.
Brewing aroma: Citrusy. Smells of cleaning product.
Steeping time: 8 minutes (I steep between seven to ten minutes for a strong herbal).
Remember: Don’t steep tea with freshly boiled water. Instead, pour the desired amount into a cup and let it cool for a minute or so. Hot water can burn tea leaves and distort the taste; this is often to blame for herbal teas which come out bitter.
My first sip of the now cloudy purple/red cup was bland. The second instantly gave me a rush of citrus and went down tasting slightly of cider. A few gulps in and the flavour has settled into a cranberry orange blend with only a faint apple aftertaste.
Overall, it’s a mediocre cup of tea. It certainly isn’t awful but I wouldn’t serve it to anyone with a fussy palate. Light and decaffeinated, I would probably drink this with a basic hummus-and-pita sort of lunch. Frankly, the brewing aroma was too reminiscent of Mr. Clean to make me comfortable with the first sip.
Update: I steeped my next cup for ten minutes and it improved the taste slightly. Much stronger notes of apple. Verdict: 4/10.
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