Onto my next packet of 2017 tea from Snake River Tea! Snake River Tea called this tea “Bronco Buzz” (after Boise State University’s Broncos, likely because it already has the orange and blue petals included, the team colors, giving it a “local tie-in”) but it is a very popular wholesale blend called “Mate Carnival” from International Tea Importers; I’ve found a ton of tea shops that carry this that I stuck on the entry list that you can check out, and if you search “Mate Carnival” on Steepster you can already find tons of reviews that have been put up under a handful of those individual tea shops.

So, coffee teas. I know they are not very favorable. Folks either like their coffee, or they like their tea, and there seems to be a consensus that the streams definitely SHOULD NOT CROSS. I was a big coffee drinker for years before I became a teahead, so I don’t really have such strong aversions. I do find that I haven’t really gone back to coffee these days because with the GI issues I have from migraines (yes, migraines aren’t just a head problem, they affect your whole GI tract) coffee doesn’t sit well in my stomach (I will still partake in a rare mocha since the thick milk can help with that). But I figure something like this should be fine, as it is mostly flavor, and not actual coffee that could feel all acid-like in the tum; and I have never fallen out of love with the aroma or taste.

The brewed tea has a strong coffee aroma; it also smells a bit of wood and roasted nuts. It is actually a quite pleasant flavor from the sip, with a strong coffee note, but I’m also getting a hint of wood and nuts and toward the end of the sip a sweeter touch of cinnamon spice and honey; I think the rooibos is actually complimenting the roasted mate in just the right way here to bring a fuller flavor profile to cup so the coffee flavor isn’t too overbearing and there is some natural sweetness coming through. I think my one complaint is the coffee flavor is just a tad artificial… like, it feels slightly syrupy on the tongue, somehow? Or just a little too obvious that it is added to the cup, even though the flavor itself is a rather decent replica. On the whole it is still a nice blend for a coffee-flavored tea.

Flavors: Artificial, Cinnamon, Coffee, Honey, Roasted, Roasted Nuts, Wood

185 °F / 85 °C 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 350 ML

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Hi! I’m Sara, a middle-aged librarian living in southern Idaho, USA. I’m a big ol’ sci-fi/fantasy/anime geek that loves fandom conventions, coloring books, simulation computer games, Japanese culture, and cats. Proud asexual and supporter of the LGBTQ+ community. I’m also a chronic migraineur. As a surprise to no one, I’m a helpless tea addict with a tea collecting and hoarding problem! (It still baffles me how much tea I can cram into my little condo!) I enjoy trying all sorts of teas… for me tea is a neverending journey!

Favorite Flavors:

I love sampling a wide variety of teas! For me the variety is what makes the hobby of tea sampling so fun! While I enjoy trying all different types of teas (pure teas, blends, tisanes), these are some flavors/ingredients I enjoy:
-Sweet/licorice root/stevia
-Bergamot (in moderation)

Disliked Flavors:

There are not many flavors or ingredients that I don’t like. These include:
-Bananas/banana flavoring
-Hemp/CBD teas
-Smoke-scented teas/heavy smoke flavors (migraine trigger)
-Perfumey teas/extremely heavy floral aromas (migraine trigger)
-Gingko biloba (migraine trigger)
-Chamomile (used in blends as a background note/paired with stronger flavors is okay)
-Extremely spicy/heated teas
-Medicinal flavors/Ginseng
-Metallic flavors
-Overly strong artificial flavorings

With the exception of bananas and migraine triggers, I’ll pretty much try any tea at least once!

Steeping Parameters:

I drink tea in a variety of ways! For hot brews, I mostly drink my teas brewed in the western style without additions, and for iced tea, I drink teas mostly brewed in the cold brew style without additions. Occassionally I’ll change that up. I use the https://octea.ndim.space/#/ app for water-to-tea ratios and use steep times to my preferences.

My Rating Scale:

90-100 – Top tier tea! These teas are among my personal favorites, and typically I like to keep them stocked in my cupboards at all times, if possible!

70-89 – These are teas that I personally found very enjoyable, but I may or may not feel inclined to keep them in stock.

50-69 – Teas that fall in this range I enjoyed, but found either average, lacking in some way, or I’ve had a similar tea that “did it better.”

21-49 – Teas in this range I didn’t enjoy, for one reason or another. I may or may not finish them off, depending on their ranking, and feel no inclination to restock them.

20-1 – Blech! My Tea Hall of Shame. These are the teas that most likely saw the bottom of my garbage can, because I’d feel guilty to pass them onto someone else.

Note that I only journal a tea once, not every time I drink a cup of it. If my opinion of a tea drastically changes since my original review, I will journal the tea again with an updated opinion and change my rating. Occassionally I revisit a tea I’ve reviewed before after a year or more has passed.


My Cupboard on Steepster reflects teas that I have sampled and logged for review, and is not used as an inventory for teas I currently own at the present moment. An accurate and up-to-date listing of my current tea inventory can be viewed here: https://tinyurl.com/xjt9ptx3 . I am open to tea trades (within the United States only!) at this time. Note that I will not trade teas that I currently have in a quantity less than 50g (samplers, 1oz packages, etc.) or any teas that are currently still sealed/unopened in my cupboard.

Contact Info:

Feel free to send me a Steepster PM, or alternatively, check the website URL section below; it goes to a contact form that will reach my personal e-mail.


Idaho, United States



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