The pros: Trader Joe's Tea Party is a somewhat different variety pack of teas than last year's Tasting of Ten Teas.
The cons: This does not come with its own infuser, you'll want to have one ready. This is cheaper than last year's tea gift set. Trader Joe's does not currently sell the flavors individually. Directions are a bit unclear as to how much tea to water you should be adding.
The verdict: Normally, I don't like to compare different gift sets, but in this case I almost have to. Last year's Tasting of Ten Tea's was a lovely gift set that my nerdy side enjoyed. You see everything look like fun test tubes. Even the infuser. However, those fun shapes quick became it's down fall as well. The infuser on last year's set was almost unusable. I threw mine away. I did not enjoy eating my tea. I like to drink my tea. Tea shouldn't have THAT much texture to it. While it was a large variety pack with ten tea, this set is not much smaller in terms of weight. Best of all, this won't lighten your wallet as much since last year's set retailed for $12.99. This set is a full $5 less, but keeps some of the same successful teas found in last years set as well.
These mini canisters are much easier to open and close. Best of all, they are easy to measure out the desired tea. If you are feeling artsy, I'm pretty sure you can do something else with the canisters once they are empty. Now, you are getting a few repeats from last year's set: raspberry flavored black tea, vanilla rooibos, lemongrass rosehip herbal infusion, and bergamot flavored black tea. All four of those are solid choices. Last year, my husband and I went through the black teas first. Both are subtle in flavor and do nothing to overpower the taste of the black tea. The vanilla rooibos is assertive in flavor and will test out the capabilities of your tea infuser. This is a very fine tea, so make sure you have a fine mesh to your infuser. The lemongrass herbal infusion I found to be quite strong, but it had good flavor to it. A little goes a long way. In fact, my biggest criticism of this product is the directions. How do you omit how much hot water to add? That 1 tsp over powered an 8 ounce cup of tea. For my 20 ounce mugs it was the right balance.
So that leaves two new flavors: Morgina Matcha and the calming herbal infusion. The Morgina Matcha was a lot more moringa than matcha. It brewed to the color of a green tea and only had mild flavor of matcha. So real matcha fans will still want to reach for the matcha packets. If you've tried Trader Joe's Morgina Mango tea and liked it, then you'll probably like this. It was earthy and an easy tea to drink. The calming herbal infusion reminded me of Trader Joe's Well Rested tea. It had nice chamomile flavor. For $7.99 this isn't a bad set for the price. If you are going to get this for someone, I do highly recommend making sure they have an infuser (and a good one at that). The Vanilla Rooibos will test the limits of most infusers. My recommendation is this infuser from Amazon.com
Here is the visual run down of what you get if you buy this product:
The package of Trader Joe's Tea Party:
And from another angle:
How to prepare:
Would I buy this again? For me, Trader Joe's Tea Party would only be an annual purchase, but seems like a good gift at a reasonable price.
Want to see more items I've reviewed from Trader Joe's? Click on Thoughts & Reviews of Trader Joe’s for a searchable list.
Did you try it? Let me know what you think in the comments section!