Harney & Sons

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Recent Tasting Notes

drank Florence by Harney & Sons
15 tasting notes

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88

I have received two small pouches of this tea from White Antlers, so again thank you!

It looks very differently to its What-cha counterpart. It is like only the golden tips used. And those are much smaller leaves too.

It’s very much different, smell is more malty and more floral. Same with taste — it’s more floral and less complex. It’s not a bad tea though! Just not that perfect. Four minutes steep, as recommended was maybe too much and produced very malty tea. While I do like malty teas, I couldn’t notice much else. Of course, florals were in taste too, but probably way too hidden under the malts.

It isn’t bad, that’s right. But not that great as What-cha one. Less complex and maltier flavour profile.

Flavors: Floral, Malt

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 10 OZ / 300 ML
ashmanra

I got some from White Antlers, too, so after seeing your tasting note I decided to have it with my breakfast! Malty and good!

Mind Duck Japan Podcast

Hi, we featured your tea review on our podcast. The last episode is all about tea, check it out: bit.ly/3gjazND – Mind Duck Japan podcast

Martin Bednář

I am pleased to hear that, Mind Duck Japan Podcast. But, it would nice to hear it beforehand that my tasting notes will be used.

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55

I really thought I would like this tea, so I bought a lot of it. Oops. It is proving to be not to my taste for reasons I can’t quite figure out. The scent is very floral and full of peach blossoms, and the ginger is definitely present in the aftertaste. There is nothing wrong with this tea. And yet…nope, not doing it for me. I’ll drink my way through what I have of it – it’s not objectionable – but it’s definitely not going to be a tea I grab for when I want comfort-tea or pleasure-tea; this is what I’m going to drink when I go, “I need a cup of something warm and decaf and I don’t care what it tastes like.” (I got the decaf version. That shouldn’t be part of it, but it might be.)

Possibly I’ll decant a bunch of mine into smaller tins and give them to friends who also like peach and ginger. It’s possible it will work for them in ways it does not work for me. Oh well – can’t win them all.

Flavors: Floral

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drank African Autumn by Harney & Sons
2362 tasting notes

I baked a loaf of cranberry orange bread this afternoon (don’t get excited; it was a mix) and can’t touch it because it’s to serve at work tomorrow—-but it smelled so good, I broke out its tea equivalent.

Previous reviewers don’t give it a lot of love, but I think it’s a nicely balanced triad of rooibos, cranberry, and orange. The berries aren’t tart, the orange isn’t bitter. I drank it outside in the glider watching my new little pot of lemongrass grow. (And once it does, wouldn’t that be a nice addition to this combo?)

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60

Sipdown! (21 | 225)

Swap tea! This one was on my wishlist to try from Harney, so I’m thankful to be able to try a bit from a swap.

Honestly, it’s not my favorite. I feel like with each cup I like it less, which is never a good thing ha ha. The maple tastes quite artificial to me, and leaves a weird aftertaste in my mouth. The base tea is fine, with some woody and earthy notes. A bit thin perhaps?

I even tried it with milk (unusual for me) as it’s a breakfast blend, but I found it didn’t really help with the artificial taste. So not for me, unfortunately! So grateful to tea friends and swaps so I can try things in small quantities. :)

Flavors: Artificial, Earth, Maple, Sweet, Wood

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 16 OZ / 473 ML
Martin Bednář

What a shame :/

gmathis

Bummer—it sounds so promising!

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82

Yesterday I have received an huge envelope with Harney teas (and one from Whispering Pines) from White Antlers. As a surprise and I was surprised indeed! Thank you!

And today, after an exam that I, apparently, passed (Mathematics II course exam, but still waiting for official results in the Uni system). I decided to make myself a treat + I worked in the garden after the exam till lunch.

So yeah, I am sitting here — smelling this very aromatic tea. I had it maybe twice, maybe more often… as they sell it on board of private comapany trains here. They use the sachets instead though, but loved it from first experience. This one is regular old school tea bag though. But honestly not sure, if it is in my tea bag wrapper collection! And enjoying it for first time at home!

Anyway, prepared as recommended. 5 minutes in boiling water. Oh my…

I don’t recall being it that sweet! Sweet cinnamon and sweet clove, with orange beneath. It’s so strong I don’t notice any base. But it’s a treat for me today. As it cools down the sweet clove note is stronger. Even making my tongue tingling a bit. Or it’s cinnamon? I dunno.

Anyway, I see why it’s my favourite — but I assume the sachet version a wee better. Or maybe drinking it in smaller volume.

Flavors: Cinnamon, Cloves, Sweet

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 0 sec 10 OZ / 300 ML
tea-sipper

Congrats on passing your exam! And it’s fun you originally had this on a train.

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74

Suprisingly well made tea. Tea received from White Antlers, thank you! Received in pyramid sachet.

I am not much fan of those two ingredients together. Ginger is usually fiery and Turmeric isn’t a flavour I like too much.

But…
this is a mellow and yellow cloudy tea. Ginger isn’t fiery at all, but present; it was kind of sweet, as well. Turmeric was present in taste but not anyhow overpowering as well. I noticed a little bit of lemongrass. It was just quite well made. Trader Joe’s version I had earlier wasn’t that good.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 10 OZ / 300 ML

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85

Sipdown! (15 | 219)

So happy to get the chance to try this one via a swap, as I was very interested when I saw it on the Harney website, but wasn’t willing to pay $15 to try it.

This is definitely the best gingerbread tea I’ve had. It really does taste like a cookie, and has oodles of molasses flavor to really sell the gingerbread angle. The spicing is light and sweet, a nice mix of ginger, cinnamon, and a touch of clove.

I’m not sure whether I’ll order it or not… It’s a bit on the expensive side and I honestly don’t really crave spiced teas often. But I could definitely see picking some up once fall and winter come around again!

Flavors: Butter, Cinnamon, Clove, Cookie, Ginger, Molasses, Smooth, Sweet, Wood

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 16 OZ / 473 ML
AJRimmer

I’ve never seen this one on their website before! I’ll have to order a sample at some point.

Cameron B.

Unfortunately, it only comes as a tin of 30 sachets at the moment…

ashmanra

I just got a $10 off $30 coupon from them, and you are tempting me….

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88

G is for … Green Tea with Coconut!

Let me tell you I am not a huge green tea fan at all, but when I steep these tea bags just right, I am obsessed with these light, coconut flavored teas! I was gifted a baggie of four a while ago in a swap and this was my last one, sad to see them go but there’s another blend I get to see leave my collection. I won’t be officially counting this as my empty until I finish the last green tea by Harney that I kept in the same baggie. It’s not the coconut blend, but it is some mystery green tea I have loved!

Flavors: Coconut, Grass

Preparation
160 °F / 71 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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68
drank Emerald Isles by Harney & Sons
2245 tasting notes

“An Ode to Tea” Alphabet Challenge – E

So this is from my rather large Harney order near the end of last year. Don’t ask my why I thought it was wise to buy five tins of teas that I’d never tried before… (facepalm)

Anyway. This is a citrus and spearmint green tea. Honestly, it’s a bit bland? I’m not sure if I didn’t use enough leaf or what, but I’m not getting a lot of citrus. More like a hint of grapefruit and that’s about it. The spearmint is definitely there, but still quite mild.

So really, I’m just getting a mildly spearmint-y generic green tea. It’s not an unpleasant base, I assume it’s a sencha by the look, and it does have that dry grassy flavor to it. Needless to say, not very impressive. Well, I have plenty of leaf to try it again, ha ha…

Flavors: Citrus, Dry Grass, Grass, Smooth, Spearmint

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML
gmathis

Iced tea season is upon us…you can use it up in great big wads that way.

Tiffany :)

gmathis I was coming here to write the same thing :)

Cameron B.

I’m not much of an iced tea drinker, but maybe I’ll try it out after I finish off my Kusmi spearmint green tea.

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85
drank Royal Palace by Harney & Sons
2245 tasting notes

Sipdown! (5 | 209)

Another swap tea from Instagram!

This is a lovely, light citrus tea. The base is very gentle – earthy with some wood notes. The citrus here is a combination of grapefruit and lemon, which I can definitely taste. The grapefruit is mild, not the zingy sharp variety. Both citrus taste very authentic though, just softened a bit. Somehow the combination leaves me with a pleasant honeyed note at the end of the sip as well.

What a lovely tea for the afternoon! I’m not sure I need this in my cupboard since there are a lot of citrusy Earl Grey variants that I enjoy, but it’s definitely up for consideration.

Flavors: Citrus, Earth, Grapefruit, Honey, Lemon, Smooth, Wood

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 8 OZ / 236 ML

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100

Very nice strong breakfast tea. Added cream (well, whole milk) and a demerara sugar cube. Delicious.

Flavors: Earth, Malt

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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76
drank Apricot by Harney & Sons
996 tasting notes

Sample from the tea box. It’s a nice balance between light black tea and juicy apricot. I expected it to be a little richer and more flavorful, but really, I quite enjoyed this cup.

gmathis

I remember ordering and relishing this years ago…it occurs to me that if I were able to reorder every tea that made me happy over the years, I’d need a barn for the selection!

AJRimmer

I know what you mean! I almost never reorder teas in favor of trying new ones, but I probably should!

ashmanra

I had a sample of this many years ago and loved it, and never bought it. A recent review made me pick up a tin on my last trip to the Fresh Market!

gmathis

Ooh, we’ve been chatting about a day trip to Arkansas which always includes a Fresh Market run. I’ll have to look.

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100
drank Royal Palace by Harney & Sons
11 tasting notes

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45

The dry leaves had a faint wintergreen aroma, and I was so eager to get into this brew! I used a mere 1.5g in an 8-oz cup of boiling water for 2 min. Got a lovely gold-brown liquor, but with a very off-putting aroma! Only after I kept reminding myself that this was a wintergreen smell did it become more pleasant. And that same flavor dominated the entire session. The leaves were fairly well spent, and a second steeping of seven minutes produced a week tea with cardboard box flavor. I dumped it. Ultimately, I have decided the tea tastes more mediciney—think BenGay—and not something I care to drink for a while. On the upside, it might be perfect for times when sitting at home recovering from a cold. I would try adding some lemon, honey, and milk. Totally changing the flavor profile! We shall see… . For now, not well-appreciated. (But still much better than Rooibos.) At least it was an inexpensive experiment!

Postscript I’ve updated the Harney description by adding their “details” section, which is more comprehensive. Especially in that they’ve don’t say just “mint” but now explain it as a wintergreen flavor, which is technically more accurate. Some of the older reviews note not tasting the claimed mint, and this may be why.

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec 2 g 8 OZ / 236 ML
White Antlers

Wintergreen is not in the mint family. It’s an aromatic shrub. You were spot on with the BenGay reference, as wintergreen oil is one of the components of that smelly analgesic. Wintergreen oil contains methyl salicylate. The primary metabolite of that is salicylic acid, used in aspirin, making this, as TEGH said, a good sipper for colds.

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75
drank HarSha by Harney & Sons
45 tasting notes

An interesting blend; fairly astringent possibly because I used a big spoonful of leaf for the mug. But also flavorful with apricot notes coming through this morning. Seems to be doing the job of waking me up! Lingering malty assam flavor in the back of my mouth between sips, to stimulate both the senses and and the mind.

Postscript: Makes a superb iced-tea, sweet or unsweet!

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp
TeaEarleGreyHot

The one thing I dislike is the name of the tea. Sounds “harsh” rather than blissful. Perhaps I’m pronouncing the foreign word wrong, but as a monosonic anglophone, my abilities are limited. So I try to keep an open mind.

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90

Although it’s a CTC, don’t look down your nose at it. Quite delicious, very fast to brew (1 minute is enough). This is what I want tea to taste like when I just want it to taste like tea! Except when I want it to taste like keemun, or Earl Grey, or dragonwell, or cinnamon spice, etc….you get the idea! Okay, It’s just one song in the album— but it’s a good song!

Flavors: Tea

Preparation
Boiling 1 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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64

Bought this “Halmari Full Leaf Assam” around Halloween 2020, so I guess it is from the 2019 harvest, which must be sold out since it’s been delisted from Harney’s site. I’ve brewed this 4 or 5 times, Western, and agree with tea-sipper’s review. Good strong malty-caramel Assam flavor on the top and back of my tongue, but WAY too astringent for my likes. It lingers pleasantly in the mouth after the briskness has subsided. Harney’s CTC Assam is far smoother and less than 1/3 the price. Still, I’ll be swilling it down on bleary-eyed, early mornings. If you love brisk and care not about cost, this might be the tea for you! Some day I’ll try cold-brewing this, and will also play around with using less leaf or shorter steeps.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 30 sec 2 g 8 OZ / 236 ML
White Antlers

I highly recommend harney’s Mokalbari Golden Assam. No astringency and when I drink it early in the morning, sometimes I can hear angels sing.

TeaEarleGreyHot

That’s a glowing endorsement, W.A. Singing angels would be quite an experience, though with my luck they might turn out to be frolicking rodents in the attic…. Nevertheless I’m going to order some and give it a sip! Eager to see how it compares to the Brandy Oolong Assamic (Taiwan origin) from Tealyra, which itself can induce frolic, so much do I like it! Thank you for the (golden) tip.

White Antlers

Hey TEGH! if you send me a message and give me your address, it would be my pleasure to send you some. Even if you don’t hear heavenly beings upon sipping, a sample will let you see if you like before you buy.

TeaEarleGreyHot

Well golley, W.A., thank you for the kind offer. As it happens, I had a handful of items in my Harney cart and I just tossed in a tin of the MGA and was delighted to find an unexpected $10 “points” discount when checking out, so the whole shebang didn’t sting at all. I’ll let ya know when it arrives and we can listen for angels simultaneously! Generosity is nice though, and if I’ve posted something you’d like to try, I’ll be happy to send a sample, especially if it helps you avoid a giant shipping charge!

White Antlers

Thanks for your offer, TEGH. If you read my bio, I am doing my Swedish Death Purge. I don’t review or swap, but I do give tea away so if you would ever like a surprise parcel, send a message. Several folks here will vouch for my integrity and sanity. : )

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70
drank Vanilla Comoro by Harney & Sons
156 tasting notes

Sipdown! This tea is easy to brew too strong, and is less astringent as it cools. It has a nice , soothing vanilla taste, with creamy caramel undertones. But there is a harshness to the finish, and it is more pronounced if more leaf is used. If it were more forgiving, I’d be tempted to get more, but I’m not sure I need this decaf blend in my cupboard.

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90
drank Bamboo by Harney & Sons
892 tasting notes

I’ve had this one for so long and have been super afraid to try it. I thought tonight was a perfect time because I’m up cleaning the kitchen and wanted an herbal tea. But not the herbal teas with super flavors to them.
This one is actually reeeaaalllyyy good. It reminds me of a buttery vegetable green tea. It has a nice, full body and has no hint of bitterness. This one will surely be missed when it’s gone.

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96

Just as good as the regular. I bought this for a nighttime alternative to the black tea version. It’s just as great. But I love rooibos tea. Though you MUST use a fine mesh steeper or be prepared for tea bits!

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drank East Frisian by Harney & Sons
2362 tasting notes

Pleasant things about waking up at 5:30 a.m. on a Sunday:
a) Mork and Mindy on Antenna TV
b) Not having to hurry
c) Time to ponder over a cup of East Frisian, which has been on my tea bucket list for a long while. Bucket filled, courtesy of ashmanra :)

This is hefty, beefy, and malty and I think I’m in love. Dark rye or pumpernickel with a little brown sugary uptick on the tip of your tongue, and the uptick is upgraded by a little bit of milk. It smells heavenly—I think that’s the Darjeeling talking. Delicious to wake up with.

ashmanra

So glad you liked it!

derk

nanu nanu

gmathis

I had toe socks the color of Mork’s suspenders. For future reference, toe socks are the most uncomfortable form of footwear ever invented. But they looked good with my gauchos.

ashmanra

I had rainbow suspenders! No toe socks until recently and they are Yoga ones. And you are right – they can be uncomfortable at times!

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75
drank Jasmine by Harney & Sons
1 tasting notes

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