The Good: Tastes good, Caffeinated, Decent ingredients
The Bad: Not the strongest blueberry flavor
The Basics: Redeeming itself for "True Blueberry," Celestial Seasonings puts forth Blueberry Breeze, a delicious blueberry tea that is more subtle in flavor.
For those who might not follow my tea reviews, I am a huge fan of Celestial Seasonings teas and each year, I take a trip to Celestial Seasonings' factory in Boulder, Colorado. I love that part of my trip home from Las Vegas and last year, I didn't even take the tour at the factory, I just went and bought tea at the shop at the factory. It's a good trip and the gift shop is pretty awesome. The thing is, as Celestial Seasonings reboots it packaging, I've been dreading this year's trip to Boulder. I'm not sure what flavors are still being made, as many of my local distributors have stopped carrying a number of my favorite flavors.
In their place, though, I keep finding new flavors to sample and review. One of my grocery stores has cut back on virtually every Celestial Seasonings flavor, save the green teas. So, when I was craving some new tea yesterday, I picked up a box of Blueberry Breeze green tea and I've been drinking it all day. This is a very flavorful blueberry tea and it blends the flavors of blueberry with green tea leaves quite well.
Originally, I had some trepidation about trying this tea because I had not been wowed by the True Blueberry tea by Celestial Seasonings (reviewed here!). Fortunately, Blueberry Breeze is a sufficiently different tea and one that satisfies where the other disappointed.
Blueberry Breeze is a tea from Celestial Seasonings. It is a 100% natural green tea that is caffeinated and made to embody the flavor of blueberries. Blueberry Breeze comes in Celestial Seasoning's standard stringless tea bags, which are paired together with easy to separate perforations that allow one to separate the tea bags. When I make pots of tea, I tend to use two bags and leave them connected. A box of Blueberry Breeze comes with ten pairs (20 individual) of tea bags.
Blueberry Breeze is marketed as a blueberry-flavored tea and it lives up to that. The flavor of blueberries, which is easily recognizable to me as I have a blueberry patch in one of my gardens out back, is very real in this tea and it is a wonderful flavor. The flavor is of actual blueberries as opposed to the sanitized, mass produced flavor most people know "blueberry" as these days.
Ease Of Preparation
Blueberry Breeze is a green tea, which means preparation is as easy as almost boiling a pot of water! Green teas, as the directions clearly state, require water that is not quite boiling. Boiling water cooks the tea leaves and ruins the flavor, so water used for green teas like this one must be kept below a full boil. A single tea bag will make the standard 8 oz. coffee mug worth of tea, though reusing the tea bags yields little more than hot water. These tea bags cannot be reused and even credibly call the result "tea." Indeed, the second pots I've tried were incredibly weak, tasting neither like Blueberry nor even the lighter taste of green tea. These bags are one-use only. I tend to make my tea using a 32 oz. steeping tea pot and that works well, though it is impossible to get a decent second pot out of the bags.
To prepare Blueberry Breeze, simply heat up some water, and pour it over the tea bags in a cup, mug or steeping pot. This tea is recommended to take three to five minutes to steep and after a couple cups and pots, I've found that with almost boiling water, the tea is ready at the five minute mark and letting it steep longer does not truly change the results. Letting the tea steep more than six minutes does not net any additional flavor, nor does it denature the flavor of the tea. This is a very balanced tea, tasting both of the blueberries as the dominant flavor and the green tea as the undertone flavor to it.
Blueberry Breeze has a surprisingly faint bouquet and the scent is vaguely fruity and more generic than the taste. Fortunately, the flavor of the tea is actually blueberry. Unlike many blueberry products, though, the flavor manages to retain an authentic blueberry flavor without the sour nature of blueberries. This is a fine line as there is some tartness to blueberries. However, with Blueberry Breeze, the green tea appears to cut the acidity of the blueberries and make the flavor of the blueberries persist without it.
Blueberry Breeze does have a slight aftertaste to it that is a little sour and a little dry. The dry mouth aftertaste is emblematic of most green teas in my experience and Blueberry Breeze is no better or worse in that regard.
With sugar, Blueberry Breeze becomes sweet while retaining the fruit flavor. It is, however, remarkably easy to overwhelm the tea with sugar and I recommend no more than a teaspoon (not a heaping one) be added to cut any lingering sourness from the taste and aftertaste.
Iced, Blueberry Breeze actually collapses into a remarkably bland tea. The green tea flavor dominates the blueberry and when sugar is added to the tea cold, it only accents the green tea nature more. It is good, but cold, it does not evoke the flavor of blueberries well.
It is somewhat surprising that the dominant flavor of Blueberry Breeze is blueberry, considering that the primary ingredients are: green tea, hibiscus and natural blueberry flavor (with other natural flavors). Actual blueberries are near the bottom of the ingredient list, yet the flavor works so it is very hard to complain! Blueberry Breeze tea is all natural, gluten free, and does contain caffeine. The brand new packaging does not include a caffeine meter to define clearly how much caffeine is in this, but it does seem like it is sufficient to keep one awake..
Were it not for the sugar I add whenever I make pots of Blueberry Breeze, this tea would be devoid of any nutritional value. It contains no calories, fat, sodium, carbohydrates or protein.
Blueberry Breeze is a green tea, so it comes out much lighter than other teas. As a result, cleanup is rather simple. The mugs and steeping pot easily rinse out. One supposes this tea will stain if it is left on fabrics, so simply do not let the tea cups or mugs linger on light colored materials that might stain!
Blueberry Breeze is easy to clean up after - the tea bags may be disposed in the garbage, or composted if you have a good garden and/or compost pile. One of the nice things about this tea - like most - is that so long as it is kept cool and dry, it can last for a long time and it is easy to clean up.
While just a little sour, Blueberry Breeze is a delicious tea that manages to retain the flavor of actual blueberries in this tea. It is delicious, mild and a more subtle tea than some, making it ideal for anyone who likes blueberries and tea.
For other tea reviews, please visit my reviews of:
Tangerine Orange Zinger
Red Safari Spice
Cranberry Apple Zinger
For other food or drink reviews, please be sure to visit my index page by clicking here!
© 2011, 2008 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.