Review: Culinary Teas Canadian Breakfast

Black Tea, Culinary Teas Add comments
Lynn’s Teaview Snapshot
Thumbs up!"The flavor was bold, bright, brisk, malty, oaky, and still insisted on making me imagine a pinch of nutmeg and allspice in the mix."
Lynn’s Teaview: 8/10
Other Teaviews: Vanessa gave it 7/10
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Culinary Teas’ Canadian Breakfast black is an unassuming tea, visually. The nearly black leaves have been chopped or broken into almost granular pieces, reminiscent of the fannings used to make teabags. The aroma promises better, however—sweet, bright, and malty. As it happens, I know a thing or two about Canadian tea. Half my family was Canadian, and lived just across the northern Maine border in New Brunswick. We visited the various great grandmothers and aunts and uncles often and tea drinking was a given. “You’ll have a cup, won’t you, dear?” Of course we would.

My Canadian-born grandmother relocated to the US side when she married, but always kept a supply of her mother’s Canadian brands on hand—King Cole, Canadian Red Rose (vastly superior to the US version of the day), and others that smelled very much like this Culinary Teas offering. Some of my fondest childhood memories involve watching her prepare it in her old brown teapot with spring water she hauled in plastic jugs from a spring ten miles away because Caribou “town water” from the tap tasted funky. It did, too.

The Culinary Teas website offered little information beyond how the tea was supposed to taste (“malty” and “oaky”), so I channeled Gram and brewed a rounded teaspoon of the dry leaf in a cup of 208F water for five minutes. The coppery liquor smelled remarkably floral and bright, with strong notes of sweet spices. If I didn’t know better, I’d have assumed it was a spiced tea. The flavor was bold, bright, brisk, malty, oaky, and still insisted on making me imagine a pinch of nutmeg and allspice in the mix. The finish was roundly malty, spicy, and oaky. For such an undistinguished looking tea, it was surprisingly good. Very good, in fact. Gram and Aunt Edith would have approved. And at $6.35 for four ounces, which makes a lot of tea, it’s an excellent buy. Recommended.

— To purchase Culinary Teas Canadian Breakfast, 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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