I don’t usually buy bagged teas for myself anymore (unless I’ve tried it elsewhere and loved it) but I am always thrilled to try something new that is a gift!
I was given some bagged teas as a gift, by Tea forte, and one of the teas included in the set was a spiced black tea, Sweet Orange Spice.
The most important part is the taste of course – I had the tea as a morning tea with sweetener and skim milk, and it was definitely sweet (although I didn’t use a lot of sweetener) and spicy in the way that chai tea is spicy. I didn’t taste any orange though, which was a bit disappointing, but it still tasted good, and I could smell a tiny bit of citrus fragrance. As far as bagged teas go, it had lots of flavour on the first infusion. (Since I had just dumped out a weak bagged tea at work that didn’t have any flavour at all, this was a very good thing…)
The second infusion had considerably less flavour (which isn’t unusual for a bagged tea) but still had a bit of a sweet taste with a mild spicy tang. I would say that the spice overpowered the spice a little bit – but really the whole thing had very little flavour. If I hadn’t been so lazy (and crazy-busy!) I would have gone and made a fresh cup instead of drinking the weak tea.
Less important than taste, but what makes this a cute tea for a gift or for entertaining is the packaging. It’s not just a plain boxed bagged tea – instead each of the tea bags is individually packaged in a little tall, skinny paper pyramid. Topping off the pyramid is a wired paper ‘tea leaf’ – super cute! Inside the bag is a mesh fabric (rather than paper) tea bag pyramid with LOTS of room for the tea to expand as it steeps. The tea inside is fairly large pieces of tea leaf – rather than just the tiny flecks of tea dust (fannings) often found in bagged tea. The individual tea bags are not labelled though – so if you did have multiple flavours all steeping away in individual cups, it would be tough to know which flavour was which.
Comparing the wet and dry forte tea bags – look at the expansion!
Tea Forte describes this tea as “an enticing rich black tea with the sweet, exotic taste of mandarin oranges, accented with zingy notes of cinnamon.” http://www.teaforte.com/store/gourmet-tea/black-tea/sweet-orange-spice/ The ingredients are Chinese black tea, Indonesian cinnamon, orange peels (from Spain), and cloves. Really, I’d say that after the flavour of the tea itself, the cloves are the most dominant taste, and the oranges the least.
If you like a mild change from a warm cup of chai tea, this one might make a great alternative – but if you are looking for a juicy, fruity tea – this isn’t for you.
Have you tried any other teas from Tea Forte? Which ones are worth checking out? Let us know in the comments below!