Tassimo T40 Mini Review.

Hello Internets, it’s been a while, so I shall move straight into a few requests for posts that I have had, firstly, a few people have tweeted that they would like my thoughts on my magical coffee/tea/hot chocolate making machine that Santa bought me for Christmas, so I will start with that!

Tassimo T40

I have a Tassimo T40 hot drinks maker, they retail for about £120, but are regularly reduced to half price in supermarkets and electrical retailers like Argos and Comet, so keep an eye on those if one takes your fancy.  You fill the tank located at the back with cold tap water, pop a T-Disc in the top, close the lid and press the button and the machine reads the barcode on said disc and brews/dispenses the beverage at the correct temperate into your cup.  There are many manufacturers offering similiar machines, but I went with Tassimo purely because they have a partnership with Twinings tea, and as most of you are aware, I am a tea fanatic, and I don’t actually drink coffee at all.

Thing I love about it;

  • The range of beverages on offer…there are 30 varieties of coffee, about 10 different teas and 3 different hot chocolates to sample from the UK Tassimo store, the discs are also available in supermarkets although the range is much more limited.
  • The ease and simplicity, I don’t have to worry about how long tea has been brewing, the machine takes the guess work out of things.
  • The taste…perhaps the most important thing, all the teas have a very clean, fresh taste, almost like they are filtered, I’m guessing this comes from the fact the discs contain tea leaves and the water is always fresh.

Things I don’t like about it;

  • The price of the T-Discs, 16 teas are £3.80, which is cheap when compared to say, Starbucks, but not cheap when compared with tea bags.
  • Descaling the thing every few months takes 30 minutes! It’s an automatic programme, but definitely takes a while.

The benefits definitely outweigh the costs for me (pun intended) but I do consier it to be a luxry item or considered purchase, if you’re in the market for a single serving drinks maker, then I highly recommend you look into this one.

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Twinings Light & Delicate Green Tea

Ladies and Gentlemen, after much searching, I have finally found a green tea I enjoy!

Usually I find green teas to be a little bit too…erm leafy, for want of a better description. But the new light and delicate green teabags from Twinings are perfect for when I want something a little different, and slightly more refreshing than my usual teas of choice, which are black teas.

Name: Twinings Light and Delicate Green Tea.

Type: Green Tea

Ingredients: 100% Green Tea

Facts: Key difference between green and black teas? Green isn’t oxidised, whereas black tea is (“oxidation” is just the natural reaction of the tea with air that affects strength and colour in black teas). Green tea is a natural source of antioxidants that may help protect the body from damage caused by free radicals.

Brewing: Boil water & allow to cool for about 3 or 4 minutes. Brew for just 1 to 3 minutes (or to your taste).

Tasting/Aroma: I often find green tea a little on the bitter side, but this one is a perfect balance of light and leafy. Refreshing, and great as your mid afternoon cuppa. Slightly grassy taste, but not so much that it reminds you of some of the less appealing detox teas avaliable. For seasoned green tea fans, this offers a lighter cup, for those who are yet to discover green tea, it’s the perfect place to start.

Final 3 words: Smooth, Mellow, Delicate.

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Twinings Morning Detox

In keeping with my attempt at being a little more health concious this year, I have sampled a detox tea this month. And yes it wasn’t the most plesant tasting tea ever. Let’s delve into the review.

Name: Twinings Morning Detox

Type: Fruit and Herb infusion/Teabag

Ingredients: Lemon Peel (35%), Lemon Verbena (24%), Limeflowers (21%), Liquorice Root, Ginger Root, Milk Thistle (5%), Peppermint.

Facts: Naturally caffeine free

Brewing: Steep for 2 to 3 minutes (or to your taste) to release all of the flavour

Tasting/Aroma: I will admit, I did struggle a little with this at first, as it has an intially very herby taste, then is a little milky. However, once that calms down, there is a mild lemony aftertaste which is gentle and pleasant. I wouldn’t advise adding anything to this tea as the flavours really are very delicate but Twinings advise adding honey to sweeten if required. Although not the most pleasant tea to enjoy drinking it’s very digestable and did genuinely pick me up a little on a morning in which I was struggling to start the day. Recommendeed for seasoned herbal tea fans but maybe not for the black tea lovers among you.

Final 3 words: Light, Herbal, Healthy.

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Brew review: Darjeeling

Darjeeling

A trip to Westfield shopping centre recently was perked up by the pleasant experience I had whilst visiting the Twinings Tea tasting bar.  The lady asked for my tea preferences and if I was looking for anything in particular. I said I would love to be able to appreciate black teas without milk but always find them too bitter. She recommended Darjeeling, so I thought it fitting to detail my thoughts;

Name: Twinings Darjeeling

Type: Black/Loose leaf

Origins: Darjeeling is a Himalayan city in the Indian state of West Bengal, lying approximately 6000 feet above sea level. Tea grown in this area is classified as seasonal and is only harvested at certain times. It is considered the “champagne of teas” because only tea from the region may carry the Darjeeling name.

Facts: Darjeeling teas are traditionally classified as black, however the method of processing in which the tea is not fully oxidised, would technically make it an Oolong.

Brewing: Recommended 3 mins, but my personal preference is 2 mins.

Tasting/Aroma: If I could advise you to try one loose tea, it would be Darjeeling, it’s rich like a black tea, but light and refreshing like a green tea, and has a distinct fruity property (slightly grape like.) I geuninely feel adding anything to the tea spoils it, which is interesting as I usually add, at least a splash of milk, or slice of lemon into tea. Not something to wake you up in the morning perhaps, rather something to refresh your afternoon, or something lighter after a heavy meal. A perfect tea for the spring summer season I would say too, and a good bridge from black tea to green tea, and vice versa. I must note here that the teabags however were almost undrinkable, so my advice would be to stick to the loose tea, which is actually reasonably priced. This is the perfect tea for the “milk and 2 sugars” brigade to start with, to widen their tea horizons too. Let me know your thoughts if you give this one a try.

Final 3 words: Light, Refreshing, Fruity.

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Brew Review: Lapsang Souchong

Dry Lapsang Souchong

Thought I would kick start the reviews off with one of the most controverisal teas with regards to preference. Reading about this tea hints that it is very much a love or hate thing, so I was very curious to try it. Here’s the details;

Name: Twinings Finest Lapsang Souchong

Type: Black/Loose leaf

Price: £5.00 for 125g loose tea

Origins: Lapsang Souchong comes from the Wuyi Mountains of the Fujian province in China.

Facts: The tea is only made by a few producers in the mountains, and the method is considered to be a highly crafted skill. After picking, the leaves are dried over pine wood fires and then placed into barrels after being rolled, they are then placed into wicker baskets on shelves above smoky pine fires to absorb the aroma and dry completely.

The smokyness was apparently a happy accident when workers needed to dry a tea crop out quickly they lit pinewoood fires and produced this result.

The name Souchong means “small leaf”

LS Brewed

Brewing:Recommended 3 mins, but my personal preference is 2 mins. Can be drunk with or without milk.

Tasting/Aroma:I was immediately hit by the smoky aroma, but further investigation also reveals a peachy smell too. Taste wise it is unlike anything else, without milk it’s quite fruity, with milk, it’s a smooth, smoky liquor.  However it isn’t long before the smoky aftertaste hits, and that is where this love/hate thing comes in. For me, I did not enjoy the smokyness, others love it and I can understand the appeal, especially during the colder winter months or following a big meal.  For me however, I wasn’t a fan, but will rate this on tea quality and the tasting experience, not just on personal preference, so I conclude with the thought that every tea drinker must try this at least once, it truly is unlike anything else, I’ve tasted before.

Final 3 words: Bold, Smooth, Smoky.

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