Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Tasty Tuesday's - Tea Sparrow

It's time for another Tasty Tuesday!  I'm writing about Tea Sparrow today. Tea Sparrow is a monthly subscription box that sends you 4 different teas every month.  A cousin gave me a 3 month subscription as a Christmas gift and I have to say that I loved the first month! This was a phenomenal gift :)

Here is some information about the company from their website.  "From tea growers to blenders to world-leading sommeliers, our community includes people at every step of the process. We taste dozens of teas each month, with no affiliation to blenders, and chose the blends that inspire us most to share with you. We do this by having our team of tea connoisseurs and sommeliers sample and score the teas for look, region, aroma and of course, taste. We take pride in delivering a variety of world-class blends to your door every month – we feel we deserve it, and so do you!"

The package ships on the 17th of the month and the packaging is pretty simple, which I like.  I didn't feel like there was a lot of extraneous shipping material to just make it take up a bigger space.  It just comes in the below compact package, which is small enough to fit in our mailbox.

When you open it up, there is a small note from the company and the four separate brown bags of loose leaf tea.

Each bag of tea has the name of the tea, whether it's caffeinated or not, the category of tea (black, green, herbal, rooibos, etc.) and a complete list of ingredients.  It also has detailed brewing instructions which include how much tea per cup to use, how long to brew and the ideal temperature of the water.

I followed the instructions exactly (except the water temperature, I just boiled the water in my kettle) and all of the tea turned out delicious. Here is a photo of the various teas I got in my first box.  Starting on the left, Buddha Bamboo is an herbal tea. Then on the top is a chocolate Pu-erh.  On the right is the White Wedding tea. At the bottom is a Blood Orange Rooibos.

As you can see, it's an interesting variety.  From their website, it looks like every month includes 2 caffeinated versions and 2 without caffeine.  Three of the teas were absolutely amazing.  The Blood Orange Rooibos was only ok for me, but I'm also not a big fan of rooibos in general.  The White Wedding was my favorite of the bunch.  I would go so far as to say this is the best tea I have ever tried.  Here is the description from the Tea Sparrow website.

"White Wedding Tea is a celebration of fresh white tea leaves & caramel notes of roasted chestnut. A sweet bouquet & tiny white flowers adorn this full leaf white tea. These Bai Yun tea leaves impart a great body & flavor which lasts over multiple infusions."

One of the interesting things about Tea Sparrow is that they don't provide tea independent of the boxes.  So if there is a tea that you really like (such as the White Wedding) and you want more, you have to contact the manufacturer directly.  You cannot get more through Tea Sparrow.  But I kind of appreciate that the company is just focusing on curating the monthly boxes and not necessarily selling you more of a certain tea. 

 I also have to comment on their customer service.  They had some delivery issues with their January box in the US (they're based in Canada) and they proactively sent out an email to let people know the box would be late.  They were very transparent.  In addition, I had some questions and they responded very promptly with the information I needed. The customer service seems wonderful.

I just received the February box last week and can't wait to start trying the teas! This box was a wonderful present and I'm planning to continue my subscription once my three month introduction runs out.  If you enjoy teas and trying new ones instead of sticking with your tried and true favorites, I strongly recommend this box. The cost is $20 per month and the subscription can be paused and re-started as needed.

I'm linking up with Lean Lena for Tasty Tuesday and will be linking up with Deborah and Tina for Meatless Mondays.