Whistling Kettle Review #2

Like I told you in the last Whistling Kettle review, I had already bought more tea by the time I finished writing that review. So here goes the review for the second batch of samples I ordered.

Earl Grey Cream

I’ve only tried Earl Grey one time prior to this and it wasn’t pleasant. It was in a K-Cup sample set that I received when we bought our Keurig. I did not like it. It was burnt and very bitter tasting. I vowed then that I would never drink Earl Grey again. Now I know that loose leaf teas are different from bagged teas and it’s all about the steeping process. So when I ordered my second set of samples, I decided to get an Earl Grey this time around.

One thing I learned about Earl Grey while actually reading about different teas, is that it’s supposed to mimc a floral and fruity taste, partially due to the oil from the citrus of the bergamot fruit (a sort of orange.) From that Earl Grey K-cup I tried, I could have never known this unless I tried it again and read about it, it did not have any floral or fruit notes at all. However I can happily say that the Earl Grey Cream I purchased from The Whistling Kettle, pulled through with those flavors and more. I absolutely loved this tea. I wanted to drink it all day, I didn’t, but I wanted to. Along with the floral and fruity notes there was also a hint of cream that made it such a smooth drink. I’ll definitely purchase this one again.

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Scottish Caramel Toffee Pu-erh Tea

Pu-Erh (pronounced Poo-Air, and yes the inner child in me laughed) is a type of tea that goes through a unique fermentation process that’s not like other teas. It’s meant to be an aged tea and the older it gets the better it is. The microorganisms that are created during this aging process gives Pu-Erh properties that help with digestion. From what I read, people in China drink this tea after rich meals to “cut the grease.” And like other teas it is also high in antioxidants which help with the prevention of cancer and heart disease.

This was one type of tea that I had yet to try, so I figured I would give it a go. The name, Scottish Caramel Toffee, is what intrigued me because I love caramel and toffee. The smell was so creamy and caramel like and I was extremely excited to take my first taste. While the smell was wonderful, the taste was a little strong. It wasn’t bad and I got the hint of caramel and toffee. The problem for me was that it tasted a lot like coffee and I’m not a fan of coffee at all. While it was slightly more drinkable than coffee, I still had a hard time finishing my mug. Honestly I’m just so conflicted because I wanted to love it so much and parts of it I did, I just couldn’t drink much of it. I’ll of course finish this sample bag but I don’t know if I would ever buy this one again. However if you like coffee and are looking to try out some teas, you may love it.

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Purple Tea –

I had never heard of purple tea until Whistling Kettle had posted about it on their Facebook page. I was immediately intrigued. Purple tea is a tea mainly grown in Kenya and it has all the health benefits of green and black tea, plus more. It’s grown at a high elevation and due to that it gets higher levels of UV and it causes the plant to produce very high levels of anti-oxidants. The tea can have a purplish hue to it and this is due to a unique genetic mutation that produces anthocyanin, which is the same powerful anti-oxidant found in blueberries, but at a high percentage. It contains 1.5 percent anthocyanin compared to .1 percent in blueberries. Anthocyanin is particularly known to be beneficial in the prevention against cardiovascular diseases, as well as providing anti-cancer benefits, improving vision, and aiding in cholesterol and blood sugar metabolism.

So since I like to try new teas, I purchased some plain purple tea, wanting to try it with no additions. While steeping it smelled very much like other teas and it tasted just like most teas as well, very earthy. At first I wasn’t sure I could drink a whole mug because admittedly I’m used to teas with some kind of flavor addition. But after I sat the mug down and went about making my breakfast, I found myself wanting to drink more. I liked it and the health benefits are a bonus. I think next time I’ll get one of the mixes.

IMG_0772IMG_0773IMG_0782(In this picture you can’t really see the purple hue, but in person you can. And when I was done with my mug you could see a little purple sediment at the bottom of the mug.)

Peach Nectar Turmeric –

I ordered this turmeric tea before I went to Hendersonville to see my mom. I had no idea that I would end up buying tea at Spice It Up or that I would be getting turmeric tea in my sample set then. If you remember from my Spice It Up review I was not a fan of the Turmeric Ginger tea. So I immediately regretted that I had bought the Peach Nectar Turmeric from The Whistling Kettle. But hey, how was I supposed to know?

When smelling this tea, both in the bag and while it was steeping, all I could smell was the turmeric. I immediately knew I wasn’t going to like it. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a fan of turmeric in my food but not so much to drink. I took a small sip at first, just to kind of brace myself, and it turned out not to be too bad. The peach, which was dried before steeping, definitely came through and was the winning flavor note. The turmeric was there but it wasn’t too overpowering. I did learn that the weird aftertaste I got from the last turmeric tea was not the lemon oil, it’s the turmeric. I got that same weird feeling and taste in my mouth with this tea. I wouldn’t go as far as to say that I liked this tea but I didn’t dislike it. Most likely I’ll finish up the sample I have and probably never buy it again. I only drank half a mug because I was craving some Earl Grey, but I did drink it!

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Chocolate Cake Honeybush – 

Honeybush is like a Rooibos just slightly sweeter, according to what I’ve read about it. It’s caffeine free and has all the other health properties that Rooibos has.  I decided I wanted to try this one out and see if it would kind of feed that chocolate craving. While it smelled delicious and was very smooth tasting with just the right about of chocolate taste, I don’t think I could use it to substitute for a Snickers craving.

I really did enjoy it. It had beautiful flavor notes and was a nice way to wake up in the morning. However it did have a slight coffee taste and I mentioned before that I’m not a huge coffee fan. So while I will totally finish the sample that I have, I don’t think that I would purchase it again. I’m sure others would love it though!

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Rankings:

1st – Earl Grey Cream

2nd – Purple tea

3rd – Chocolate Cake Honeybush

4th – Scottish Caramel Toffee Pur-eh

5th – Peach Nectar Turmeric

While I wasn’t super in love with most of these teas, besides the Earl Grey Cream, I still love The Whistling Kettle. It has to be my favorite place to order tea from. Obviously I was not going to like everything they have and I’m sure that there will be purchases that I don’t like, but it still is the best place. If you haven’t checked them out yet, you should!

Next week I will be reviewing my second subscription box from Tea Runners!

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