Cold Brew!

Strained this one this afternoon to sip on; it’s basically just a raspberry/blackberry black tea so I was expecting a very clear berry flavour and maybe a little bit of tartness? That sounded like it’d make for an interesting cold offering.

I found it very, very boring almost immediately though – sure, it had a mixed berry sort of flavour to it but it was really flat/dull and kind of watered down tasting. I’m not exactly sure where the black tea base comes from but I wouldn’t be surprised if it was just a run of the mill Ceylon; it’s got that sort of generic/mild and relatively flavourless black tea taste (though with a hint of something floral) that makes Ceylon teas such a good canvas for added flavour. It was like sipping at blackberry with all the life sucked out of it though; I knew I had to do something to give this some life.

So, I made it into a “Brambleberry Lemonade” of sorts. I cut a lemon in half and juices the one half straight into my strained cold brew and then I took the other half and sliced it up into wedges which I just dropped into the mix to infuse alongside everything else. Obviously, the flavour of the tea is now really lemon heavy with some tartness – BUT the blackberry and raspberry notes that come through after that wave of lemon suddenly feel like they’ve been given new life! They come off as sweeter, and more pronounced. And the contrast between the two flavours – lemon and berry, is exactly what this needed to feel fresh, and interesting.

Actually worth the time it takes to drink it.

It’s a shame I had to take such drastic steps to get there though; and you can’t really rate a tea on how good it is when you’ve done so much to change it up from its natural state. On its own, this just isn’t a pleasant tea and that counts for A LOT. I’ll try it again though and see if it’s any better as a hot tea.


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Hello! My name is Kelly, though many people in the tea community call me Ros or Roswell.

I am a mid-twenties tea addict, blogger, and all around nerd. I grew up in the Prairies, but a few years ago I relocated to Quebec to pursue a career with DAVIDsTEA in the tea industry! I’m still working on getting my French language skills down…

My first introduction to tea, in any form outside of instant and bottled iced tea, was about seven years ago when I happened to stumble upon DAVIDsTEA while looking for a birthday present for a friend! I tried their Birthday Cake rooibos blend, and I’ve been hooked on tea ever since! In those seven years; I was introduced to the online tea community, expanded my interest in flavoured teas to include a deep love and appreciation for straight teas and traditional brewing methods, got a tea themed tattoo, started reviewing teas, amassed a sizable tea and teaware collection, became a TAC certified Tea Sommelier, & even came full circle by beginning a career in the tea industry with DAVIDsTEA!

I consider myself a Jack of all Teas, and strive to have a knowledge and appreciation of all tea types, formats, and styles of drinking. I don’t like to feel boxed in to just being a “flavoured tea” or “straight tea” drinker – my expectations may vary depending on the type of tea or how it’s been processed/prepared but if it’s good tea, it’s good tea no matter how it’s been made!

You name it, I probably drink it- and I’ll absolutely try anything at least once.

My default method of preparation is hot, Western style, and straight – but I’m not opposed to additions if I’m in the right mood. If I ever add something to a tea or use a different method of preparation I will ALWAYS call it out in the tasting note though.

I like to listen to music when drinking tea, especially when I’m brewing a large pot at a time or steeping Gongfu. Often I curate very intentional tea and music pairings, and sometimes I share them here in my tasting reviews. Music is something that I find can deeply affect the experience of having tea.

I’m also one half of the “tea and fandom” podcast GeekSteep where, weekly, we discuss newly explored fandoms over tea as well as try to figure out the perfect tea to pair with each fandom. You can find us on Spotify and Apple & Google podcasts.

Favourite flavour notes/ingredients: Pear, lychee, cranberry, cream, melon, pineapple, malt, roasty, petrichor, sweet potato, heady florals like rose, hazelnut or walnut, sesame, honey (in moderation), and very woody shou.

Least favourite flavour notes/ingredients:
Lemongrass, ginger, strongly spiced profiles (and most Chai in general), mushrooms, seaweed, chamomile, stevia, saltiness or anything that reminds me too much of meat that isn’t supposed to taste like meat…

Currently exploring/obsessed with: Sheng from Yiwu, Yancha (Qilan in particular), anything with a strong sweet potato note. Also, I need to try ALL the root beer teas! Searching for a really good caramel flavoured blend, ideally with a black tea base.

Please contact me at the instagram account listed below if you would like me to review your teas.

Currently I’m employed in the tea department of the DAVIDsTEA head office. While I’m still sharing my own personal thoughts on new & existing DAVIDsTEA blends, I am no longer numerically rating them due to the obvious conflict of interest. Any comments expressed are a reflection of my own thoughts and opinions, and do not reflect the thoughts and opinions of the company. Any DAVIDsTEA blends you currently see with a numeric score were reviewed prior to my being hired there and have not been adjusted since becoming a DAVIDsTEA employee.


Montreal, QC, CA



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