Review: Tealicious OM

Cardamom Tea, Cinnamon Tea, Fennel Tea, Ginger Tea, Lemongrass Tea, Licorice Root Tea, Rose Tea, Saffron Tea, Tealicious Add comments
Chelsy’s Teaview Snapshot
Thumbs up!"Cold and hot brews of this herbal are like night and day. Try them both, pick your favourite and prepare to smile. I preferred the cold overnight brew."
Chelsy’s Teaview: 8.7/10
Other Teaviews: CJ gave it 5/10
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Om is an herbal blend of a troupe of aromatic ingredients such as: cardamom, cinnamon, fennel seeds, ginger pieces, lemon grass, licorice root, rose and saffron- most of which you can clearly see in the chunky tea. Tealicious doesn't list an explanation of how this tea is supposed to taste, but the ingredient list- for the most part- speaks for itself according to yours truly. The only thing that I was a little leery about was the inclusion of saffron in the ingredients list. Saffron is the most expensive spice in the world. The reason behind all of the money symbols is that saffron is the stigma of a specific crocus flower, Crocus sativus and each flower only has three of the little crimson threads. Each saffron strand must be hand plucked and it takes a lot of C. sativus flowers to make even an ounce of saffron. Furthermore saffron adulteration has been a common problem through out history, so if you do buy saffron, please make sure you're getting the real thing.
Attempts to standardize quality have been made, but it is still a work in progress. There are four grades of quality (1-4, one being the finest and four being the poorest), and these grades are determined by the crocin (colour) that is measured by spectrophotometry in a labratory. The general rule is that crimson is best, red-orange tends to be okay and yellow is low quality. Saffron has a spicy, bitter and pungent taste to it, and is commonly used in Middle Eastern and Asian cuisines. In beverages and confections safflower is often a less expensive substitute for saffron and provides a like taste, with less pungency. True saffron also has a very forceful odour. All that to say that the saffron like threads in OM are yellow.
The saffron is the only ingredient that I am skeptical about though, because this herbal blend is lovely. This tea is advertised as an ayurvedic (Hindu medicinal) tea that promotes calming and tranquility. Personally, I find most teas soothing, so it matters very little to me what a tea is said to do for my nerves. I brewed 1 slightly heaping teaspoon in 8 oz. of water for 7 minutes in 185 degree water. I also cold brewed this tea in the same proportions in cold water in my refrigerator for about 8 hours overnight. The results of the hot and cold brew were very delicious and interesting. However, like day and night, I brewed one in the a.m. and one through the night, and they were just as drastically different as day and night. The hot brewed tea was very sweet- which I am attributing to the licorice root. The spice mix- which is not unlike masala used in some of my favourite Indian dishes- was muted to very subtle notes, tucked in tightly behind the sweetness of the cup. This is surprising because there are quite a few green cardamom pods in the dry tea, and cardamom is a fairly pungent savoury spice. After breaking these open, I discovered that most were devoid of the little seeds they carry (the seeds would have afforded more cardamom flavour in a hot brewed tea because of their chemical make-up). The fennel was barely detectable, the lemongrass mum, but the rose did contribute a floral flavour that helped to counter the acute sweetness.
The cold overnight brew was my favourite of the two, and was deliciously spicy with dauntless pangs of cardamom, lemon, fennel and a splashy rose finish. There was still a subtle sweetness, but it played third or fourth fiddle to the amazing grande forte of the nighttime brew.

— To purchase Tealicious OM, 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: Chelsy Chelsy
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