San Francisco Herb Co.Edit Company
Popular Teas from San Francisco Herb Co.See All 23 Teas
Recent Tasting Notes
I had this with lunch, but it is a very generous sample from Michelle and there is enough left to share a pot another day with Ashman since he really enjoys dragon well teas.
There is no sour grass here nor bitterness. It is not the most complex or full bodied dragon well I have tried, but is immensely drinkable and enjoyable. This is a nice, fresh grass and sunshine sort of green and it goes down very easily. Worth purchasing as a daily drinker. Thank you, Michelle!
This is another tea from Michelle! Many thanks!
I had this with lunch today because I have felt like staying cozy today. This is a good tea for cozy time. The vanilla seems much lighter than Harney’s Vanilla Black, but overall this is a really comfortable, drinkable tea. This is the sort you can sip lots and lots of while enjoying a book. It isn’t flashy, more immediately familiar and undemanding like an old friend. I think I found this one to be more of a cozy comfort than the tea of that name.
Thank you, Michelle!
After the toooo minty chocolate mint from teeccino (or my own brewing issues) I wanted a nicely balanced easy drink cuppa. This one is more mint to me than licorice, but I like that anise taste so I don’t mind it. And I guess Licorice mint has a better ring than Mint with a little licorice. SF Herb don’t make it easy to sample their teas, this is a bulk order that I was happy with and did order again. A cupboard staple for me even if its only two notes long.
Flavors: Licorice, Mint
Thanks so much, Michelle! I am always willing to try ANY and ALL vanilla teas. This is another bargain from San Fran herb. I was really trying to spy the vanilla pieces in this blend but they must be hiding in that black tea. It’s vanilla, it’s black tea – to be honest this seems to scream at me that it’s a forceful Ceylon tea – like it just wants to be over the top and above that Ceylon flavor profile. Some may love that, but it’s not my favorite. So without this vanilla, I would probably pass on this tea. Like Michelle says in her note, it’s like an ice cream type vanilla, so there must be some flavoring here as well. Two steeps that resulted in fairly similar in flavor.
Steep #1 // 1 1/2 teaspoons for a full mug // 25 minutes after boiling // 2 minute steep
Steep #2 // just boiled // 3-4 minute steep
Michelle sent me some teas recently! Mostly puerh from Rich’s puerh stash, which I specifically wanted to help Michelle out with. :D Thank you so much for the lovely package! I just HAD to steep this one up first as I love trying any Yunnan in my path. On first sip: “AH, now THAT is Yunnan tea”. Every flavor note you expect to find from a good Yunnan is here. It’s hard to describe other than it’s just the general flavor of Yunnan. When I think of Yunnan, this is exactly the nuanced flavor I think of (which sounds weird, but sometimes Yunnan teas do taste completely different than what I think Yunnan should be.) The second steep was a bit harsh, but I have a little bit of this one to get that correct tasting second steep.
Steep #1 // 1 1/2 teaspoons for a full mug // 30 minutes after boiling // 2 minute steep
Steep #2 // just boiled // 4 minute steep
A sipdown! (M: 1, Y: 63)
I never thought that vanilla tea can be so tasty and not artificial. This is a perfect example I got to try thanks to Michelle
“There is something with vanilla, isn’t it?” asked my dad us yesterday when I prepared it and it was steeping.
“Yes, I have a vanilla tea.” I have replied.
“Well, it smells very natural and nice.”
Indeed it is natural and nice tea, as I wrote, not artificial at all, creamy and smooth; as I have described, long steeps aren’t a trouble for this tea. As ashmanra wrote, it’s a familiar tea (and it was even trying it for first time); enjoable when reading a book or doing something cozy.
Definitely tea I will miss, but getting it in bulk? No, thanks :)
I don’t crave often for dessert tea. But when I do, it is tea from Michelle recently. Thank you!
Yes, it is my second cup of this tea. First one reminded me cocoa, but maybe it was a bit affected of puerhs it was sent with. Or my taste (and smell) buds were off. Happens to me somehow very often recently.
But this second steep was… just great. I steeped one tea spoon in 400 ml mug. I let it steep for 4-5 minutes, as I haven’t been too much attentive to time. It was so pure vanilla in aroma. And even better, there was no artificial note. It was like a pure vanilla pod (or it is bean in English?).
In taste, however, the base tea was present. Not so much, no flavours or scents from it, but it wasn’t pure vanilla. That isn’t a flaw though. I liked it was reliable tea base and complements the vanilla very, very well.
Vanilla in taste was mellow, sweet and creamy. The last adjective was the most present in my mind while sipping. Yum!
Flavors: Creamy, Sweet, Vanilla
Ah. Potpourri. I could set this out on my counter and no one would know. Smells so nice. Warming, calming, fruity. Slight reminiscence of apple cider. The wet aroma is incredibly spicy. Like a chai with lots of black pepper. A nice way to clear ones nose before consuming the cuppa. The liquor is smooth on the palate. Perfect for watching The Polar Express. It fills the heart with a warmth of happiness (the taste and the movie). It is sweet, fruity but mainly spice forward with a unique spicy hint.
Y is for… Yunnan.
From Michelle. A really delightful chocolaty cup.
8 ounces water + 212 degrees + a really long steep
This second mug is almost as flavorful as the first, with a little nuttiness thrown in.
I’ve enjoyed this one!
Flavors: Chocolate, Cocoa, Nutty
V is for… Vanilla Tea.
From Michelle. Thank you!
I think next time I might try steeping this at a higher temperature, maybe boiling, to see how it comes out. Michelle’s instructions gave a range of 190° – 212° so I’ll play around with it. This has a really authentic vanilla bean flavor!
Flavors: Marshmallow, Vanilla
Did you know that most Dragonwell doesn’t come from the actual Dragonwell origin? It’s a tiny area. This is most likely one of those. To be fair, not many companies will do their research to figure that out, but as consumers do not be tricked by companies claiming a true Dragonwell unless they can really go in-depth on the farmers. That being said the aroma for this one was good so I had high hopes. Somewhat grassy with passion fruit notes. The flavor though just can’t seem to lift off the ground. The grassiness shines through a bit but not nearly as much as I would hope. The color of the leaf is fairly dull too so I figured it wouldn’t be as tasteful as other greener varieties I’ve tried.
Should I do something special for my 100th tasting note, or is it just another cup of tea?
How my tea tastes have changed since my first few reviews when I thought Teavana and Mighty leaf were the best teas, through the Steepster Select experiment, to now when I look for tasty bagged tea or a chocolatey yunnan black or a creamy shu puerh.
I thank the Steepster community for introducing me to Butiki, traveling tea boxes, and secret pumpkin swaps. So many yummy teas I have discovered since logging onto this site!
I do love a bargin, and this Vanilla Tea is just that. To me a bargin is quality at a lower price, and I like the challenge of paying less for a similar good product that others may pay more for. I have tried many steeps looking for a flaw in this tea, could it be an aftertaste, a bitterness, too much astringency? I haven’t found much negative here, its a single note tea, but it does it quite well. It reminds me of a Bryers Ice cream natural vanilla, but not so sweet. This is comfort food at its best, the reason why vanilla is a favorite dessert flavor, and why do other vanilla teas end up with a weird after taste? I am still impressed by every sip and have been unable to oversteep. Is it the vanilla bean or the vanilla flavor that is spot on? Maybe my only complaint is the black tea base isn’t really there, its just a conveyance for the vanilla.
I will order this again, and I will savor the sips of this comforting tea that only needs one flavor note to be delicious.
A little goes a long way with this tea. SF Herb says its 4th grade dragonwell tea, and I’m not sure I could pick it out as tasting different from other dragonwell teas I have drunk before. Perhaps this tea only has a one note profile, and other dragonwell teas are more complex. It is fresh, green, tastes like cut grass. Its what I think a cup of chlorophyll would taste like. I’ve not gotten a bitter brew from these tea yet, even with questionably hot water (I get impatient). I added a dab of honey to the second steep and its quite a yummy cup to me. I do tend to reach for a black tea in the morning instead of a green tea, but I should drink more of this for a change of pace.
Flavors: Cut Grass, Green
I’ve been sipping down this tea for a while, and have finally gotten around to a review. I use twice the leaf I would for any other Lapsang, and the flavor is still not that strong. This is a decent tea and I tend to add lemongrass or other herb to make it taste a bit more interesting. Today I had it plain and the first steeping was smoky with a hint of licorice. No complex undertones going on here, and oversteeping to bitterness is not an option. The second steeping was a bit more bland. I will sip down the rest of this tea, but I’m not sure I’d buy again, there are better Lapsangs out there.
Flavors: Licorice, Smoke
There is nothing subtle or delicate about this tea. It’s not very complex, astringency and metallic tastes dominate. Not any lingering maltyness going on here. But I like this tea for what it is, a strong robust cup when I want a morning jolt of caffeine and a taste that will standup to any spicy breakfast burrito. I’d call this a daily drinker though I’d certainly get bored if I drank it every day. I will continue to reach for this when I want a bracing morning cup as I know what to expect, it goes well with cinnamon and lemongrass too.
Flavors: Astringent, Metallic
This is my favorite tea from my first SF Herb order. I only got 1/2 pound, but it’s the one I have sipped down the most, and the reason I made a second order. I have yet to over brew with too much leaf or steep too long. This tea is very forgiving and this is a bonus for me as I often over steep tea in my go cup. This tea is smooth and malty with a hint of cocoa. I would not call this complex, and it won’t steep past two steps, but I think it’s great for a daily drinker, and cheap enough to add lots of leaf for a strong morning cup.
Flavors: Cocoa, Malt
This was my first order from SF Herb Co. and I was amazed at their low price per pound, and a bit dismayed at the shipping charge. This is not a company to be getting samples from, their minimum sizes are 1/2 pound or a pound. I was looking for some cheap drinkable tea as I have calculated in my head that I drink upwards of 10 pounds of tea a year and would like to lower my overall tea cost but still buy new or favorite types of expensive tea.
This Keemun is just ok. I expect a Keemun to be velvety, chocolate, hopefully with other flavors too, and there are hints of this in the first steep(western brew), but any cocoa taste is long gone by the second steep. I find myself using twice the leaf I normally use, and still I don’t get a lot of flavor in this one, and the second steep is more astringent than any particular flavor.
I am glad I tried this Keemun, I did get a whole pound of it, so I may end up blending with other tea or herbs to make it more palatable.