Monthly Archives: October 2013

Why I love the fall

Latest post from my new blog, “Life’s a Cup of Tea”: What I like about fall.

Life's a cup of tea

Fall is one of my favorite seasons of the year. The weather cools off– but not too much, just enough to wear that cute and cozy sweater and cuddle up with a cup of tea and a good book. The leaves change to fiery shades, and there are pumpkins and apples everywhere. There are so many reasons to love autumn.

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Soothing Sips: Spiced Apple Cider Rooibos is the perfect autumn tea

Stephanie Sokol for The Pit

Today I finally purchased a tea I have been lusting over since its release a few weeks ago. Teavana’s Spiced Apple Cideris fall in a cup—the blend of rooibos, apple, cinnamon and clothes warms you up on a crisp, fall day.

Teavana’s Apple Cider Rooibos is a delicious combination of apple, cinnamon, plum, hibiscus and hickory. PHOTO/Stephanie Sokol

Teavana’s Apple Cider Rooibos is a delicious combination of apple, cinnamon, plum, hibiscus and hickory. PHOTO/Stephanie Sokol

After adding about 2 tablespoons of the blend to my infuser, and half a tablespoon of rock sugar, I poured slightly cooled boiling water over the tea. The aroma is lovely—smells like fall, maybe even Christmas, with cinnamon standing out and apple following behind to add sweetness to the spicy scent.

After steeping about 6 minutes in hot water (some people like to bring water to a certain temperature, but I just use slightly cooler than boiling), I removed the tea and took the first sip. Cinnamon is the first flavor that stands out; this tea is spicy. Apples are tasted next, along with cloves and sweet rooibos. Hibiscus and plum are bottom notes in the beverage, leaving interest to the blend.

Spiced Apple Cider is one of my favorites for fall. I have always enjoyed Bigelow’sApple Cider Spiced Herbal tea, which is heavier on the apple. Teavana’s cider is much spicier, though both are good in their own way.

This festive flavored brew is one of my favorites from Teavana so far. If you enjoy cider, this is a great alternative. Apple cider is one of my favorite fall traditions, though it sometimes bothers my stomach. This tea blend gives me the taste without as much sugar and acid. It will probably become an autumn staple to my tea collection, as the perfect way to warm up when the weather grows cooler. But for now, it’s filling that void in my life from missing the cookie tea.

Wondering about a tea flavor? Questions about steeping? Contact Soothing Sips’ Stephanie Sokol at stephso2010@aol.com or follow her on Twitter @StephanieSokol

Farewell, Cookie Tea

Stephanie Sokol for The Pit

Tonight was a somber evening. I had to say goodbye. As I brewed and drank my last cup of Cookie Dough tea from David’s Tea, I knew that things would never be the same.

Cookie Dough is a discontinued tea from David’s Tea. Stephanie is currently seeking a cookie tea substitute. PHOTO/Stephanie Sokol

Cookie Dough is a discontinued tea from David’s Tea. Stephanie is currently seeking a cookie tea substitute. PHOTO/Stephanie Sokol

The loose white tea, which was a splurge purchase during a trip to San Francisco, was one of my favorite teas of all time. Steeping the blend in 208 degree water gives you the taste of cocoa, walnuts and chocolate chips—it was like drinking a cookie, with a taste of tea. The beverage did not even need any sweetener, it was naturally on the sweeter side. And the aroma was deliciously comforting, like that of warm cookies fresh out of the oven. It smelled like chocolate, happiness and childhood.

With cookies being one of my favorite foods, and tea a favorite beverage, I should have thought to order more. Cookie flavored tea just is not something you see everyday. But it never occurred to me that it might not always be there. After I prepared that last cup, however, I visited the David’s Tea website to order more (they only have a few locations in the United States, non of which being Michigan), only to find that the tea blend had been a limited edition seller.

I’m not sure why it was not popular. People love chocolate beverages,

Who doesn’t love some good chocolate chip cookie dough? Now imagine drinking it.  PHOTO/Stephanie Sokol

Who doesn’t love some good chocolate chip cookie dough? Now imagine drinking it. PHOTO/Stephanie Sokol

and this one was the perfect balance of tea and dessert. And people love cookie dough. Name one person you know who doesn’t like to sneak cookie dough when baking, or buy it just to snack on. Now just imagine that, in beverage form, without sugar or calories? How could it fail? But the fact is, my favorite tea is gone, so I will have to find a way to manage.

Everyone who knows me knows that I am a tea junky. I enjoy other beverages as well, but give me a good cup of tea and I will be happy. Some of my favorite blends are loose teas, this tasty tea being one of them. What will replace Cookie Dough in my tea collection? Looking at the David’s Tea website I see a few possibilities. There’s red velvet cake, another dessert brew—a black tea that brews to a bright red shade. That one might be tasty. Or maybe birthday cake, a rooibos blend with freeze dried ice cream and sprinkles – maybe I can have my tea and eat it too. Both sound interesting and tasty enough, but they aren’t cookie dough. I might order them to replace the void in my life, but today starts a new journey—the search for another cookie tea.

Stephanie Sokol is currently taking recommendations for a replacement for cookie tea. If you have some tea tips, comment below, email her at sasokol@oakland.edu, or tweet to her @StephanieSokol.