Persimmon Tree Tea’s Rooibos Vanilla Chai

Yes, tea again this week! I’ve been so busy the past few weeks that I’ve had little else to write about.

Until now, my knowledge of chai tea was limited to knowing it was on the menu at most cafes.

Well, that’s not entirely true; I had a vague idea of what it would taste like, based on the ingredients it contained.

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Based on that limited knowledge, I predicted that the slightly cinnamon-like flavor of rooibos would be well-suited to a chai tea, and I’m proud to say that even as a tea novice, I was right.

The package boasts of traditional masala chai spices, but it has a few extras, too. A hint of vanilla adds a bit of sweetness to the aroma, though it’s hard to detect in the tea itself. It also has bits of orange peel, which add a little tang. I thought the inclusion of orange peel was odd, since chai is traditionally served with milk, but I was brave and tested it. While it adds a little flavor, it doesn’t add enough citrus to curdle the milk. And milk definitely helps this tea be all it can be!

The flavor is very bold when it’s straight, but most of what you taste is cinnamon and anise. I’m not very fond of anise, but that flavor fortunately is mellowed when milk is added. With milk in the cup, what I tasted was mostly cinnamon, a hint of vanilla, and a note of something almost minty.

I shamelessly added sugar, too, since it’s common for chai to be sweetened. Just a hint was plenty to make it taste great, a pleasant blend of warmth that would be great to sip on a wintery morning. The warm flavor makes me less likely to want this in the summer, but I’m sorry I won’t be able to add this one to my shelf.

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