Review: White August Tea Company Emerald Ice

Calendula Tea, Cornflower Tea, Fennel Tea, Fruit Flavored Tea, Ginger Tea, Green Tea, Marigold Tea, Sunflower Tea, White August Tea Co. Add comments
Raven’s Teaview Snapshot
Thumbs up!"Don’t be fooled by the name, the gem of this blend is all golden, with the sparkling pineapple papaya lift and sweetness of the jasmine and marigold. "
Raven’s Teaview: 8.6/10
Other Teaviews: Melanie gave it 8.5/10, Vanessa gave it 9.4/10
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Dorothy may not blink but you ask a gemologist for a cup of Emerald Ice and he may get very excited….diamonds and sapphires and emeralds, oh my! But Emerald Ice does sound fresh out of Oz served up on the golden brick road, or fresh off a van driven by Jimmy the Peeps. As Jimmy could tell you, decking your cup out with a string of pearly whites, amber oolongs, garnet blacks or ebonized pu erhs might be easy enough hot (stolen) but one might get arrested when the trail goes cold, for many a tea can only stand the heat and caves with lackluster flavour when that thermometer drops. So to bring that bling back to a cool cup, White August has a line of several teas designed for icing, including their Emerald Ice. This bauble, as the name suggests, is a green tea, bedazzled with jasmine, ginger and tropical fruit flavours. Although, White August doesn’t provide the appraisal of ingredients which would be nice, the tea's tropical design in a green setting was one I just had to try on.

There’s no actual jewels in the tea but the leaves bring their own bit of glamour with colour to catch the eye. For the glimmer, pale bluish purple cornflowers set off golden petals that seem like sunflower and marigold petals. These play off an earthier setting of the dark blackish and dark clay green green tea and blend into the beiges of the small ginger pieces and fennel seeds. Although not quite Emerald like or so so green, the green tea is a mix of pieces of loose gunpowder like rolls and smaller leaves to seem like different kinds. The range of colours and textures provides a lot of visual interest though. Yet, the tea really begins to shine once the leaves are out of the package in the light. The tea’s bouquet is just wonderful. It’s a medium strong scent, fragrantly sweet with a delicious twist of sour. The jasmine envelops the marigold petals’ fruitiness for a marvelous tropical fruit scent that seems like fresh pineapple with a bit of passionfruit and strawberry lip balm. The scent is completely unified, as a mixed tropical fruit, so you don’t really get distinctive notes of ginger or jasmine separately but the bouquet has an infectious liveliness to catch the nose as much as emeralds catch the eye.

White August offers general steeping instructions for their green and white teas as 160-175°F for three to four minutes but specific instructions for cold brewing their iced teas, as overnight in the fridge, either way using one teaspoon of tea. After steeping the tea hot at 175°F for three minutes, the tea brings on the bling. A gemologist might frown for the colour and clarity of the brew, but the medium dark goldy orange is vibrantly aromatic. Hot or cold, the aroma is very similar to the leaves, although it becomes a bit more floral. Still sweet and fruity, the bouquet has a lemony brightness to a pineapple-like glow with a hint of strawberry lip balm. However, chilled, the scent loses the touch of waxy notes. The fruitiness draws from the fusion between the jasmine and marigold so some petal notes edge the fruitiness but the bouquet isn’t overly synthetic and the tang gives it a scrumptious perk. Surprisingly, the green tea nor the spices seem to carve out their own facet in the aroma but the fruity florals have a full, vivid shape.

On ice, the tea sparkles most in the cup, as the flavour remains bright and poignant. It has a sweet cheeriness, easily drank without further adornments, except perhaps a cute drink umbrella. The jasmine is much more floral, as if touched with rose, and not as lush as the pure naturalness of jasmine blossoms yet it melds with the marigold’s lemony papaya kind of nature, so naturally. Like the aroma, the flavour seems more united than faceted, but it is delicious, with a pineapple passionfruit fruitiness, perfected with just enough almost tang to keep it lively and engaging without being tart. Since everything falls in together, rather than finding different twists unraveled in each sip, the other ingredients presumably feed into the flavour, although the fennel seeds and ginger aren’t really noticeable. A zing of ginger or spiciness would have been a lovely compliment though. The green tea is also rather low-key which is usually bothersome but as a beverage, with the full flavour, one doesn’t miss it, but as a tea, I do a little. The green tea does add a light dryness, though, to guide the flow while the light to medium body also leaves a polleny tingle on one’s tongue. This makes it a bit less refreshing but it still has a tantalizing zest in its flavour to give it quench appeal.

Certainly enough to make it none too soon to string up the leaves again. Re-steeping doesn’t disappoint, as the brew still has a full caret bouquet. Just as sweet and fruity, the aroma continues to delight with the tropical fruitiness of the jasmine and marigold. The flavour also hardly waivers, maintaining a dynamic verve of almost tang from the sunflower petals. Still sweet and sassy with fruit, the green tea remains a mute setting while the pineapple lingers long in one’s mouth. But there are more baubles to ogle as another infusion also brings just as brilliant a cup as the glimmering colour, with a medium bouquet and complete flavour. The green tea remains restrained without any further dryness or its own shape while the flavours’ profile endures, vivid and tasty.

They say diamonds are forever, well, White August’s Emerald Ice sure doesn’t melt. Although it’s not near an actual emerald’s dollar, the tea does cha-ching of luxury, particularly for a blend. But then again, perhaps, it is called a precious stone for a reason. Yet, the tea is versatile for enjoying hot or cold and keeps on giving through several infusions to add value. It’s a bit of a shame the spices and green tea aren’t as lively or dimensional as the jasmine and marigold petals but they do create a marvelous combination. And with its sweet, sassy, shimmer in its scent and flavour, White August’s Emerald Ice is a gem, anyone could treasure.

— To purchase White August Tea Company Emerald Ice, 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.

Teaviews Member: Raven Raven
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