Advent Tea 23: Gingerbread Cookie

Days 22 and 23 of the #24daysoftea

Days 22 and 23 of the #24daysoftea

Second last day of the tea calendar! Today’s tea gingerbread cookie was the only tea (I think) in the calendar marked as “stimulant” and is a mix of rooibos and green rooibos.  It has flavors of cinnamon, pineapple, ginger, and maple.  Despite all the sweet ingredients the rooibos taste of the tea holds up well. And I thankfully really didn’t taste any pineapple in the tea.

The smell of the brewed tea reminds me of the very distinct smell of the Old Stanton Stores that were once prolific in the area I grew up in.  I’m not exactly sure what that smell is, but it’s comforting.

If you’re in the midst of getting in the Christmas mood check out The Small Glories rendition of The Huron Carol.  Cara Luft and JD Edwards are awesome and this is a great version of the classic holiday tune. Cara also annually does a video of a Christmas tune — typically played on the banjo. Her 2014 carol, “Unto Us A Child is Given” can be seen here.

Advent Tea 22: Snow Day

The ground outside has a decidedly un-Christmas feel.  Everything is green and snow has hardly graced the ground at all so far this year.  This “Snow Day” tea is a chocolate-mint tisane that is marketed as a nice tea to curl up with while watching the snow flutter to the ground.  But lack of snow didn’t stop me from drinking it.

The smell of this tea is wonderful.  A perfect mix of chocolate and mint smells.  I was worried it would be too chocolately (yes – that’s a thing).  But the chocolate flavor was more of an after-note with the mint flavor taking the main seat.  Of the three chocolate teas featured in the calendar this one was my favourite. Yum.

Advent Tea 21: Cardamon French Toast

French toast in a cup! Well kind of. This black tea has cinnamon, lemon peel, coriander seeds, cardamom, coconut sugar, and cane sugar.  This tea was a rich black tea with a slightly buttery tone and a hint of spice.  I’m not sure what liquid french toast would actually taste like but I imagine this is a fairly close (albeit mild) version of that.  And I’m not about to blend up actual french toast to find out.

I had this tea in the evening but think it would pair well with a morning snack or breakfast.  It’s mild enough that I could drink it early in the morning without being overwhelming by the non-tea falvours. A decent tea.

Advent Tea 20: Moment of Zen

The name of this tea reminded me of Buddha’s Blend – same calming idea behind the name I suppose. This green tea is scented with jasmine, blackberries, mallow blossoms, cornflower blossoms, natural blackberry flavouring. The loose leave tea was pretty to look at it had pops of blue and purple among the darker tea leaves.

This was a fruity green tea and had a dominant blackberry taste with a hint of jasmine. It brewed a nice green colour and had a fairly fragrant floral smell.  An okay green tea but leaned fairly heavily toward the herbal tea side.

Advent Tea 18 & 19: Forever Nuts and Dark Chocolate Delight

Day 18 and day 19 were two very different teas. Forever Nuts was another fruit infusion that doesn’t have any actual tea in it. It is a mix of apples, almonds, cinnamon, beetroot, and artificial flavor. It reminded me of the banana nut bread tea though this was apple fruity instead of banana. It poured a light red and you could smell the cinnamon. It reminded me of apple cider.

On the other hand the Dark Chocolate Delight tea was actual black tea infused with spiced dark chocolate, blueberries, cocoa shells and a mild chocolate flavor. I even convinced Andrew to have a taste of this one — it was too tea tasting for is like but not bad. I found his description funny as I was wishing there was more of a tea taste. Different preferences in hot beverages! This selection was a mild version of Hot Chocolate tea… with a barely noticeable hint of blueberry.

So basically day 18 and day 19 felt a bit like repeats to me. They were both very similar to teas already included in the advent calendar.

 

 

Advent Tea 17: Mulled Wine

MulledTeaMulled wine tea.  Interesting.  This oolong tea has apple, orange peel, cinnamon, clove and ginger.  It has a citrus cinnamon smell with a holiday feel. The smell and colour reminded me of apple cider.  Once steeped I was surprised the light colour of the tea — I’ve only have mulled wine made from red wine before making me thing that this would have more of a redish colour when steeped.

There is a slight perfuming taste to the tea that wasn’t too appealing and the oolong tea is overpowered by the other flavours.  It’s not horrible but nothing something I’d buy.  I’m headed to a Christmas party tonight where there were promises of actual mulled wine. Deliciousness awaits.

The Critters

Around our home we have a couple of pets who keep us entertained and sometimes keep our feet warm on a cold night. As they are cats they also help keep our previously mouse infested home somewhat less covered in mouse dirt.  The first cat we got was found through an ad on Kijiji.  The owners were moving to a new home that wouldn’t accommodate their 3 cats so they were giving them away.  The other two had already found their new homes when we went to meet “Kaley”.  While there we happened to notice a sign on a door in their home.  “Please keep bathroom door closed or cat will poop in shower”.  Hmm this could be interesting we thought.  After we brought the cat home we didn’t really feel the name Kaley suited her.  Krista and I couldn’t help but notice the cat’s well fed girth so she ended up with the nickname Chub Chub.  Eventually that was shortened to CC and that’s been her name ever since.  Oh, and yes, she is the cat that poops in the shower… once in a while when she feels the need to let us know she isn’t pleased.

A few years later we were visiting Krista’s parent’s farm where they have a continuous stream of new barn cats being born at any given time.  This particular visit there was a litter that included a little gray runt with a funny high pitched meow.  The barn cats are often given table scraps to eat and one day while we were there a plate covered in bacon grease was left out for the cats.  The little gray one decided that a good roll on the plate was what she needed and for weeks following she smelled like bacon.  On our next trip down to visit we decided to take that little cat home and she’s been known as Bacon ever since.

So there you have it, the story of CC and Bacon, the cats of Oslicken Acres.

Advent Tea 16: Japanese Sencha

I love that this tea is simply green tea.  No added ingredients no attempt to be something it isn’t.  Just wholesome green tea. After reading about the tea I was careful not to over steep the brew and tried to make sure my water wasn’t super hot.  It steeped a nice light green and had a lovely grassy earth flavour.  A good green tea.

Despite my watchful eye while steeping I should have used one of my finer infusers.  The one I used this morning has larger holes that some of my finer metal based ones which resulted in my tea having bits of leaf floating around in it.  Not a huge deal, but something to remember if I brew it again.  The bit of floating leaf actually reminded me of being served tea in Ireland and it taking me a second to realize that it was loose leaf and I needed to pour through a filter.

Advent Tea 15: honey, I do

HoneyIDoOh the puns! This white tea is fruity smelling and fruity tasting.  The punny name comes from the honeydew melon in the tea it is accompanied by Apple, pineapple, mango, rose petals, natural watermelon flavouring.

The rose petals struck me as a little odd in this fruit heavy mix but I didn’t notice their taste when drinking the tea. The mango and pineapple are also pretty subtle with the honeydew and apple being the main taste of the tea.  Despite the fruit content the tea isn’t overly sweet, which is nice.

I think this would be good steeped cold in the summer, it has a light taste and the fruity notes would transfer well to a iced tea. This might be because the tea flavouring is pretty mild in this, it tastes more like a fruit infusion than a white tea.  Tasty though.

Advent Tea 14: Alpine Punch

The name of this tea made me think of someone on skis attempting to punch someone else. I may have taken the name too literally. To be fair the colour of the tea combined with the smell of cinnamon did remind me of winter and snow.

I tend to be slow to warm up to red rooibos teas but this one was mellow enough to be tasty.  I was hesitant about the fact this tea contains rose blossoms and two different types of coconut.  My fears were unfounded I didn’t taste any coconut and the floral note wasn’t overpowering.  I like that this was subtle and that the fruity, floral notes weren’t over the top like so many of the other advent teas have been.

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