Review: The Necessiteas Green Chai

Anise Tea, Cardamom Tea, Chai Tea, Cinnamon Tea, Clove Tea, Fennel Tea, Ginger Tea, Green Tea, The Necessiteas Add comments
Raven’s Teaview Snapshot
Its OK"Even though not all are listed as ingredients, it's a nicely suited blend of spices for the mild green tea and the vanilla sweetens the harmony. "
Raven’s Teaview: 6.8/10
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Even though I do love Chai, I can’t help feeling something seems a little naughty or forbidden about green chai. I'm not quite sure why but I haven’t quite decided if they work so well together so I continue the quest. The Necessiteas has such a creative spin on blends and their Green Chai is no different, mixing things up with both sencha and a roasted green Darjeeling base. To chai up that green, the tea includes vanilla, cardamom, cloves, cinnamon, rose petals and natural flavour. However, that’s where things do get a bit naughty as nefarious minions seemed to have nibbled at the tea’s description which isn't quite complete. Amidst the assortment of greens of the larger leaved pieces of rolled sencha and flat pieces of darker Darjeeling, there is a flutter of pinks from a few rose petals and the occasional small square of cinnamon, whole clove or cardamom seed but there are more fennel and anise seeds about, along with some small cubes of ginger. Fortunately, I’m not a spice chauvinist but I’m not quite as keen on licorice spices in my chais so had I bought this based on the Necessiteas website, I would have been rather dismayed. But, regardless of the what-nots of the mix, the tea tumbles in ever sweetly to convince of its charms. While it is a spicy blend, the cloves bring most of the sweetness, the cardamom some camphorous lift and the fennel a light herbal, bay leaf kind of green that is gently perfumed by the rose with a petal delicacy, more so than a strongly rose tone. Closer in, one can tease out some dry ginger and the cinnamon seems to zone into the cloves. There’s much less cinnamon than many chais have which gives it more of a tonic-like, cleansing vibe, which comes together nicely with a fresh oomph.

Naughty or nice, to get to the matter of the brew, The Necessiteas happily includes the brewing instructions on the package as infusing one teaspoon of tea with cooler than boiling water for three to five minutes. After a four minute steep, the tea sweetly calls. Like the dry tea, the spiciness draws on cloves and fennel more so than cinnamon, yet brewing draws out the vanilla, that is such a lovely complement to spice. The spiciness doesn’t have zing and it’s more cooling than warm, in a way, from the elemental notes of the cloves. Yet, the anise, fennel and ginger do have some earthy and herbal glow to balance the spice that it does remind me a little of pumpkin pie spice. The flavour has just as much ease, with a soothing spiciness to the light to medium body. A touch of floral from the rose and vanilla accentuates the fennel’s herbaceousness and unifies the spices well, which similar to the aroma, pick up more of the cloves flintiness. The other spices still sing lightly in the background for a sense of mixed spice permeating the sip, to also be a bit close to pumpkin pie, although the tea seems a bit simple. It may be in part, that the green tea doesn’t make a strong stand against the spices with just a mild viscous flavour that’s almost oil or buttery flavoured but not quite. As such, the tea has a light finish with little aftertaste. Yet, the tea is pleasantly sweet with a bit of a different blend.

As is often the case with chais, the leaves rustle up a second cup, although a third doesn't really seem to have enough going on. In the second, the vanilla continues to weave some lovely sweetness into the bouquet with a lighter, leafier, flinty spiciness. In the cup, the spiciness is milder than the first but fuller bodied, which is a bit of a surprise as spices often come out more once warmed up. The flavour falls mostly on the cloves and fennel with less of a rounded spiciness or flavours from the green tea and no aftertaste but it remains enjoyable.

While The Necessiteas Green Chai sips more nice than naughty since the spices have more of an herbal temperament than a fierce one, it is fitting for the mellowness of the green tea. Although, not including all of the ingredients in the tea’s description is a bit naughty for buying teas online, the tea’s warm sweet swing still makes for an easy going brew fit for any mood.

— To purchase The Necessiteas Green Chai, or for more specific information on ingredients or the story behind this particular tea, click here to go directly to the manufacturer's web site.

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