Vacations are an opportune time to relax and make memories. While some people choose to remember the area they visited by buying a souvenir, I remember places by purchasing tea. I can relive the trip by brewing a cup later, I cannot think of a better souvenir! It was a weekend trip to Traverse City, the cherry capital of Michigan. Traverse City is one of my favorite places to visit in the Spring, with the sandy Sleepy Bear Dunes, delicious fish to eat, and a unique local Tea Farm. Needless to say, My family and I bought a lot of tea. I thought it would be fun to show off the tea that we brought back from Traverse City and review them for you guys!
Wild Cherry Black Tea: Since Traverse City is known for its cherries, I needed to purchase some cherry tea, of course! This tea is from the Cherry Republic which is a very well known local store (somewhat chain) in Michigan that sells all cherry products. I had expected the tea to be in looseleaf form, but it was actually in sachets! The flavor of the tea was very simple: plain black tea with some cherry flavor. I mostly tasted the cherry on the tongue like 5 seconds after taking a sip. As the tea cooled down more, I was really able to taste the entire flavor profile. This tea was fairly inexpensive as well, $4.95 for 10 sachets.
Ingredients: Select Black Tea, Natural Cherry Flavoring
Cherry Green Tea: Cherry Republic had a few other flavors as well. My mom and I were indecisive about which tea to choose, so we bought both. We thought green tea might highlight the cherry flavor a bit more, but a good black tea could really compliment the cherry flavor as well. The Cherry Green Tea tasted like very nicely brewed green tea with a subtle hint of cherries. I thought I would taste more of the cherry flavor but it ended up being a nice balance of each flavor. I cannot pin why, but it was very difficult to dislike this tea (which is a good thing) and I kept picking it up over and over to drink it. The tea was priced the same as the black tea, $4.95 for 10 sachets.
Ingredients: Sencha Green Tea, Rose Petals, Natural Cherry Flavoring
Lavender Peach Tea: I bought this herbal tea on smell alone, it was so fruity and aromatic that I had to buy it straight away. I brewed a large pot of this tea and even as it sits next to me when writing this, I keep getting whiffs of the fruity scent. It smells fantastic, I really do not know how to describe it. This tea is from the Spice & Tea Merchants. I believe they are a company who take wholesale tea and sell it then in their store. The tea was very delicious but did not taste exactly how it smelled, with it being weaker. The aroma stuck around the tea after it was brewed though. I was still missing a little bit of taste, but I wonder if this herbal tea needed to be brewed a bit longer than I usually do. But the tea still tastes quite delicious and delicate. The price was fair at $6.99 for an ounce of tea.
Ingredients: Lavender Buds, Rose Petals, Marigold, Cornflower, Organic Apple, Papaya flavor.
Hummingbird Nectar Tea: THIS IS MY FAVORITE TEA EVER. My family purchases a tin every time we are in Traverse City. It barely lasts us a year and it is a very large 5.5-ounce tin. We just love brewing it and have been drinking it for the last four to five years. It tastes exactly like it smells which is what I look for in my teas and is great both hot and cold (it is quite refreshing in the summer when cold). It also can be double steeped. The tea is from Light of Day Organic Tea Farm. It is fairly expensive at $48 for 5.5 ounces. But honestly, worth every penny.
Ingredients: Montmorency Cherry, Hibiscus, Blueberry, Grape, Currant, Elderberry, Maple Syrup bits
Relaxation Blend Tea: This tea is from the same tea farm as the Hummingbird Nectar Tea – Light of Day Organic Tea Farm. This tea was my dad’s pick. It is a chamomile mint tea and I thought it would be perfect to drink before bed. The taste and smell reminded me of Celestial Seasonings Sleepy Time Tea, the tea that I drank as a little kid when I was sick (I used to put so much sugar into the tea). I definitely felt relaxed when drinking it and snuggling up to a good book before bed. It was the perfect way to end my day. Since Light of Day prices by weight, this tea is more price conscious at $17.50 for 1.5 ounces.
Ingredients: Chamomile, Raspberry leaf, Spearmint
I think buying teas as souvenirs will be what I do to remember vacations or places I have been. I never liked to get little trinkets or t-shirts. I will just have to continue to buy the local tea and be able to repeatedly experience the locations as I drink my tea later. What do you normally get when on a break? Exotic teas? Postcards? Let me know! Happy Brewing!