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Tag Archives: Banff Tea Co

Tea: Iron Goddess – Tieguanyin

Tea. Photo by Modomatic

Tea. Photo by Modomatic

I brought one of my little tea-chests to work not too long ago, mostly filled with gifted teas – one of which is Iron Goddess.

Since it was a gift, I don’t know where it comes from (though I have my guesses..) but I found a few write-ups online about this oolong tea, including a charming story on Enjoyingtea.com:

Legend of Iron Goddess:
Centuries ago there lived a poor farmer in the Fujian Province of China. He lived by a temple that was dedicated to the Iron Goddess of Mercy. The temple was in poor condition since it wasn’t kept by anyone for a long time. The farmer cleaned the temple and burned incense to honor the Goddess. Touched by the poor farmer’s devotion to her temple, the Iron Goddess appeared to him in a dream and told him to find a treasure left for him behind her temple. The farmer woke up and searched all over the temple for the treasure only to find a small tea bush. When the farmer made tea from this bush, he noticed a unique fragrance and wonderful sweet taste. Delighted, he grew this tea bush and gave some of it to his neighbors so that they can also enjoy this treasure from the Goddess. Word spread of this wonderful tea and thus the Fujian Province became famous for the origin of this tea.

The taste is just slightly sweet, and very mellow.  I am not a huge fan of green tea, so oolongs seem to split the difference for me – plus they have less caffeine than black teas!

 
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Posted by on April 18, 2015 in Tea & Beverages

 

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Dark Iron Budda tea

Dark Iron Budda tea

Dark Iron Budda tea

This is just another super-short post. Unfortunately I don’t have a lot of time right now to write here, and I haven’t been checking out many new places to eat in Calgary lately either. 😦

Dark Iron Budda from Banff Tea Company is really good – mild tasting oolong tea – I’d get it again (the next time I’m up in Banff that is!)

 
 

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Tea: Kusmi Violette

Kusmi tea

Kusmi tea

One of the teas I picked up at the Banff Tea Company ages ago was the Kusmi brand Violette tea.  I had heard and seen a bit of Kusmi tea, but didn’t know much about it until reading a bit about it in the shop.  You might remember I tried some of the Kusmi Almond Green tea last May as well.

Kusmi teas were first established in 1867 in St. Petersburg, and in 1917 the company moved to Paris where it continues using “high-quality teas with natural essences to create subtle aromas and flavours“.  Teas come from India, China, and Ceylon, while the essences come from around the world.

The little mints – I’ll get them next time!

I had seen some violet candies in the candy store only a little while earlier, (but not picked them up, as I was only getting things for someone else.. and no sweets for myself) and so the chance to try violet tea was too enticing to pick up (even if the cost was quite dear! eep!) According to the Kusmi website (the Canadian site is all in French, so I am referring you to the English USA site instead) the tea is from Chinese black tea leaves and violet petals.

Scent

Dry, the tea is distinctly a black tea, with a light floral violet scent.  It doesn’t look particularly pretty – though the tin itself is especially pretty!  Although the Banff Tea Co. website doesn’t list the Violette in-stock, they did have a few tins, though only the large size – they did have some smaller tins of different flavours and variety packs of smaller tins, so it’s worth calling ahead and seeing what they might have in stock before making the trip.  I’m sure I’ve seen the tins on the shelves of other specialty tea/coffee shops as well, so you can likely find it locally as well… (though next time you’re in Banff, you know where to go!)

The scent while steeping is similar to any other black tea, with a slight floral scent – though the violet isn’t especially distinct.

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Posted by on April 17, 2014 in Out of town - Alberta, Tea & Beverages

 

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Piña colada tea slushie

I picked up a small amount of piña colada tea from the Banff Tea Company when visiting the beautiful mountain town in August. It was the sample of the day, and was delicious!

Piña colada tea

Piña colada tea

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Posted by on September 18, 2013 in Out of town - Alberta, Tea & Beverages

 

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Tea: Bingo Blueberry

Even in a closed pouch, the blueberry scent of this tea from the Banff Tea Company seeps out, making your mouth water with the promise of those sun-warmed summer berries…

When I first saw it, and gave the sample tin a little sniff, I was immediately reminded of their Lady Hannah’s Whole Fruit, but with that dark, rich, blueberry scent alongside the fruity goodness.  It visually reminds me of Lady Hannah’s Whole Fruit as well, with big chunks of berry and fruit, this time accented with pink hibiscus petals and blue cornflower petals.

Bingo Blueberry tea from the Banff Tea Company

Bingo Blueberry tea from the Banff Tea Company

The ingredients of this tea include: apple pieces, dried elderberries, dried currents, dried blueberries, cornflower petals, hibiscus petals and natural flavour.  It’s a very heavy tea, so unfortunately a little doesn’t go as far as some other teas. I only picked up a small 50 gram bag of the tea on my last visit, and it’s not nearly enough!

The tea smells delicious, and tastes fantastic too – juicy and flavourful – highly recommended!

 
 

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Tea: Ice Wine tea

Not long ago, Connie and I went to Banff and of course had to pop into our most favorite tea shop – where she picked up a few new flavours for herself as well as a few favourites. (Of course, I did the same!)

Recently, while over for a visit, she brough with her some of her picks, and shared with me a few that she thought I would like.

One of the teas that she brought by is Ice Wine, described on the Banff Tea Company website as: “Add a dash of sugar and have organoleptic journey to the winter vineyards of Niagra. A delicious, fresh, and piquant white grape flavour with hints of exotic fruit.“  It has both black and white teas from Sri Lanka, freeze dried grapes, Ontario ice wine, and `natural flavours`.

Ice wine tea leaves

Dry the tea smells first slightly fruity, then a little smokey, and then finally a bit wine-y. (Is that a word? Let’s say it is!) The scent when it has steeped is almost identical, and the liqueur is a lovely clear amber.
The taste is fantastic! The scents carry over into the flavor really well – first the slight smoky-fruit flavour, then the tea flavour, and finally just a tiny taste of wine. I had mine with a bit of sweetener (after all, ice wine is sweet, right?) and it’s perfect. Definitly something I’ll pick up next time I’m in Banff. Well, as long as I drink up some of my other teas soon – I’m swiftly running out of room – and the area where I store all of my tea is starting to overflow!

Ice wine tea

The second cup I had using the same leaves was just as good – some of the smokiness was reduced, but the fruity taste (and wine taste!) was still there.

Of course, in exchange, I traded some of her tea for some of mine – some Romeo & Juliet Green Tea Hearts (a green tea pressed into the shape of a heart) I know she loves (and that the Banff Tea Company is no longer carrying!).

 
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Posted by on August 15, 2012 in Out of town - Alberta, Tea & Beverages

 

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Tea: Milky Coconut Oolong

While at our favorite tea shop in Banff, Connie was picking out some new flavours to try, and was curious about the Milky Coconut Oolong. Since I adored the Milk Oolong I had bought from David’s Tea a few months earlier, I suggested she try it – but since our tastes are different, what I adored, she wasn’t fond of.

So, we traded – some of my Romeo & Juliet Green Tea Hearts (a green tea, pressed into a heart-shaped mold, that no longer seems to be on the Banff Tea Co. website)  for her Milky Coconut Oolong.  Luckily – I LOVE it – so tasty!

She didn’t like the ‘milky’ taste, but I think it’s fantastic, and I made some up for a Monday-morning pick-me-up with sweetener and a touch of milk.

With the Milky Coconut Oolong, the coconut really isn’t very strong, it’s the milk taste that really takes center-stage with this tea, so obviously if you are a fan of milky, creamy, gentle, soothing teas, this one might be more enjoyable than if you prefer crisp, precise flavors.  (Which I think generally describes the difference between my preferences and Connie’s!)

Not the greatest iPhone photo of the Milky Coconut Oolong taken at work (no natural light) 😦

The ingredients are just milk-oolong tea and shredded dried coconut (no additional milk flavouring according to the ingredients listed on the website).

Steeping away in my Tuffy strainer at my desk at work.

In my previous post about milk oolongs, I mentioned some ‘controversy’ about additives.  What do you think about tea companies adding artificial flavours to their teas to enhance or create flavours?  Are you a purist? Or do you just like whatever tastes good…?  Let us know in the comments below!

 
 

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Tea – Blue Mango

Tea. Photo by Modomatic

Unlike Connie, I’m not a huge fan of green teas.  I generally find them a bit bitter; I usually prefer sweet, spicy, or creamy teas.  One of the exceptions is Blue Mango, which I picked up from the Banff Tea Company.  This tea is made from luxury Sencha green tea leaves, and has pieces of dried pineapple and little blue mallow blossoms.

The scent first of all is absolutely delicious  – it almost smells like a tropical fruity candy when dry, and when steeped the mellow green tea scent mingles really nicely with the overall bouquet to create something that smells fruity and flowery, without smelling overly sweet.  The flavor is similar – there’s a bit of a ‘dry mouth’ green tea taste, but it’s not overwhelming.  The fruit flavor mellows as well, but blends nicely with the tea, and there’s an overall floral flavor, more so than a mango or pineapple/fruit flavor.

This isn’t ever going to be my every-day tea, but if you aren’t a huge green tea fan (and have someone in your life who is) I’d suggest picking up a small amount and giving it a try.  While I don’t think that it would convert a green-tea-hater to the army of green tea lovers, I think it’s worth trying out.

Not in Alberta and want to try out this tea?  T|Nik also carries this same tea (though I haven’t purchased it through them) in their adorable little tins, and I also found it at Culinary Teas  and the Tropical Tea Company online (whom I also have never purchased it through).

With the fruity/floral flavors, I wonder how this would be as an iced tea?   The Culinary Tea website, and the Culinary Teas Blog suggests that it’s really good iced – I might just have to give it a try one of these days! If you’ve tried making iced tea from Blue Mango or a similar fruity green tea, let me know if it was successful or not in the comments below!

Want another reviewer’s opinion?  Vanessa over at teaviews.com said that this tea is much more flowery than mango flavored, and thinks that if you’re looking for a strongly flavored mango tea, this one might not be for you – but that it’s still a good tea.

 

(Sorry, no photos for this post… I kept forgetting to photograph it – and then finished off the last of the tea!)

 
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Posted by on November 2, 2011 in Out of town - Alberta, Tea & Beverages

 

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Tea: Turtle Tea

I just finished off a package of Turtle Tea, and thought that I should blog about it while it’s still on my mind.  This is another tea from the Banff Tea Company; a black tea with almond slices, butterscotch & chocolate chips (white and milk), and sunflower & calendula petals.

Turtle Tea

I would likely put this tea in the same kind of category as White Chocolate Mousse and Jazz Cats Meow; a black tea with chocolate flavors.  This one has both white and milk chocolate chips, plus almond slivers with the black tea, so with a bit of sugar and milk it’s sweet, warming, and satisfying.  It’s a very nice dessert or after-dinner tea, though I have enjoyed it more in the mornings to make Mondays a lot more pleasant.

Turtle tea (before dressing)

However, although it’s similar to two of my favorite black teas, it’s not quite the same, and not quite as good.  White Chcolate Mousse just seems richer somehow, and Jazz Cats Meow has the lovely bergamot in it as well.

While I would recommend Turtle Tea, it’s just not ~quite~ as good as the other two.

I didn’t find any other bloggers who reviewed Turtle Tea from the Banff Tea Co., but I did find a review on the SororiTea Sisters – who tried a caramel chocolate turtle tea from Culinary Teas.  They gave it a choco-holic’s thumbs-up!  Have you tried it?  What do you think?  Let us know in the comments below!

 
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Posted by on October 23, 2011 in Out of town - Alberta, Tea & Beverages

 

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Tea: Ginger Rooibos

Yep, another ginger post!  I love ginger, and I picked up this Ginger Rooibos from the Banff Tea Company not too long ago.

Ginger Rooibos

It’s definitely another nice-to-look-at tea, though not as pretty as some of the others I’ve featured.  Their ingredient listing on the website only lists “rooibos, ginger & natural flavors” which is a bit misleading – you can tell that there are more things in this tea.  Being a rooibos, it tends to escape most of my strainers, so it’s a bit fussy that way too – but the flavor is very nice.

The ginger really pops out when the tea is hot, with the rooibos giving a nice smokey kind of flavor after the spicy ginger.  It’s when it’s cold that it’s even better in my opinion (or perhaps it’s only because I had it on a really hot day when iced tea was MUCH nicer than hot tea!) because the ginger is even more noticeable – sharp and spicy, while the rooibos flavor mellows out a lot more and becomes less noticeable.

Ginger Rooibos

Have you tried ginger rooibos tea?  Wifey woman tried some (not this brand though) and gave it a 5/5 review on her blog.  I like mine when my stomach is a little unhappy, because of the idea that ginger is supposed to help settle your stomach.  I don’t know if it always works, but it sure is tasty!

 
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Posted by on September 11, 2011 in Out of town - Alberta, Tea & Beverages

 

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