Teapro Subscription Box: ‘Black and Yellow’ December 2019

Christmas time, mistletoe and wiiiiiiiine… or tea? Yep, it’s December and this month in the Teapro subscription I’m opening a box full of tasty black and yellow teas.

Honestly, I’d have put chai in the December slot if I was in charge of the Teapro calendar, but I’m not. And sometimes a simple hot cup of black tea is just what you need to wash down the sugary sweetness of Christmas anyway!

Here’s my full and honest review of the Teapro Black and Yellow tea subscription box.

Quick Summary

A good box, but not as much variation as I would have liked. Black teas are so numerous that they could be 10 boxes all by themselves. Instead, we only have 3 black tea blends (all of which are vaguely similar) and 1 yellow.

I’d recommend it for: those who want to try black teas that aren’t your standard PG Tips! This is a great box to discover more about black tea.

Pros – good amounts of tea.

  • Tea is flavoursome and fresh.
  • Yellow tea is unusual and it’s nice to try it.

Cons – not up to standard.

  • Not great value for money compared to other Teapro subscription boxes.
  • 3 black teas are quite mineral tasting (so you’re screwed if you don’t like that profile).

What’s in the Box?

black tea subscription teapro

Despite the early December delivery date, Royal Mail delivered my box on-time. That’s one of the great things about this tea subscription – it never seems to fall on any holidays that could delay its delivery. In this month’s box:

  • 16g Gold Dian Hong Pagoda
  • 20g OP1 Rukeri Rwanda
  • 16g Supreme Meng Ding Yellow Buds
  • 12g High Mountain Wuyi Wild
  • 2x cork mug coasters
  • 1x sticker for December subscription
  • Black & yellow tea booklet with details about the 4 specific teas included

If this is your first Teapro box, you’ll also receive a tasting wheel, sticker booklet and 3-piece glass infuser included. Read my review for those in the June 2019 teapro subscription review.

Black and Yellow Tea Booklet

The booklet is pretty basic and honestly not that useful this time. In previous boxes, we’ve had useful booklets that have included recipes for the tea, brewing instructions, interesting health benefits and more.

In the Black and Yellow Teapro booklet, you’ve got a little summary of each tea, including the history behind it, as well as some flavour notes to give you an idea of what to expect. There’s also a section on tea history and how it’s processed – nothing you couldn’t find online with a quick Google session.

I would have liked to have seen more info on yellow tea, as that’s something I know little about.

Cork Tea Coasters

teapro cork coaster

Since opening the tea box, I’ve been using the coasters every day. While they’re getting plenty of use, I don’t feel like they’re very good value for money. In the upcoming matcha box, for example, you’ll receive a porcelain matcha bowl and artisan bamboo whisk… for the same price.

Nonetheless, the cork coasters work well for hot drinks and they’re biodegradable so that’s a plus. For glasses of cold water, they do tend to stick to the bottom of your cup a bit.

Teapro Yellow and Black Tea Reviews

With 16g to 20g of tea per packet, I feel like the tea in this box is a decent amount. You can re-steep each tea two or three times. Unlike some of the lighter teas we’ve had in previous Teapro boxes (white and green spring to mind), these darker black teas do well when re-steeped multiple times.

Let’s dip into my reviews for each tea.

Organic Gold Dian Hong Pagoda Black Tea

organic gold dian hong pagoda black tea
Izzy's Rating
4.4/5
  • Amount: 16g
  • Flavour notes: Macadamia nuts, subtle honey sweetness, hydrating
  • Brewing instructions: 1 pagoda, 90°C, 2 minutes
  • Quality: Excellent

These are unique and very interesting – and that’s just to look at! So, it’s no surprise that I started with this tea. Gold Dian Hong Pagoda black tea is described as sweet, honey, nutty and mineral by Teapro. I found a subtle honey sweetness to the tea with notes of macadamia nuts.

Mineral notes were kept to a minimum, for which I was grateful as I’m not a fan of that in my black teas. I also found chamomile notes and a hint of brown sugar in the aroma. Delicious!

This was a nice tea to drink but it wasn’t my favourite. The nutty, honeyed notes are something I enjoy more in green tea.

For a beginner, though, I can see this tea being a big hit.

Organic OP1 Rukeri Rwanda Black Tea

Organic OP1 Rukeri Rwanda Black Tea
Izzy's Rating
4.5/5
  • Amount: 20g
  • Flavour notes: smooth, light, sweet, slightly malty
  • Brewing instructions: 1tsp, 90°C, 1-2 minutes
  • Quality: Excellent

I do enjoy African teas. They have a fullness and richness that only Indian teas can typically keep up with. The fact that this tea from Rwanda is organic just makes it even better.

Teapro describes this one as spicy, nutty and sweet. I didn’t get that. I found it to be very smooth, light and sweet with malty hints that add some lovely warmth to the tea. There wasn’t a distinctive flavour note like nuts or honey that sprang out at me.

Nonetheless, it struck me as a pleasant, easy drinker to have with breakfast, mid-afternoon, or any time of day, to be honest. Sometimes simple is best. I’ll be finishing this biodegradable package of tea instead of shipping it off to a friend.

Organic Supreme Meng Ding Yellow Buds Tea

Organic Supreme Meng Ding Yellow Buds Tea
Izzy's Rating
4.1/5
  • Amount: 16g
  • Flavour notes: Light, complex sweetness, minerals
  • Brewing instructions: 1tsp, 85°C, 1-2 minutes
  • Quality: Excellent

My first yellow tea! I was so excited. As you’ll find out in the tea booklet, yellow tea is a famous type of Chinese tea with a rich history.

Teapro describes it as floral, sweet and nutty. I found sweet and nutty notes. The aroma had hay notes in it as well. It’s hard to describe a new tea. You’ll find it to have a complex flavour, full of depth and sweetness with mellow mineral notes.

I enjoyed it, sure, but I felt like it wasn’t all that it was built up to be. It was a good intro to the world of yellow tea but I’m eager to find better quality yellow teas from other suppliers (I’m currently keeping an eye on What-Cha’s yellow tea section in case it’s restocked).

Organic High Mountain Wuyi Wild Black Tea

Izzy's Rating
4.1/5
  • Amount: 20g
  • Flavour notes: Mineral, fruit pits, malt
  • Brewing instructions: 1tsp, 95°C, 1-2 minutes
  • Quality: Excellent

I’ll be honest, I usually stay away from black tea from the Wuyi Mountains as previous experiences have left me with strong mineral notes in my mouth, which I find unappetising.

But I shouldn’t have judged this one so quickly. Dry, the aroma reminds of an Assam tea, with bready malt notes. Brewed, it smells of minerals, rust and red berries – a promising aroma! Finally, the flavour was very nice indeed. Yes, there were mineral notes, but also this fruit pit/stone flavour (like a plum or apricot stone) and more malty notes.

It wasn’t mind-blowing but I was happy to sip this one to the end of the cup. I like that it’s a wild-grown tea, picked from tea plants growing in the forests of Fujian province.

Is This Teapro Box Worth the Cost?

No, I’m not entirely sure that it is.

Yellow tea is supposedly more costly than other tea types. And yet I don’t feel like the added cost of yellow tea balances out the cheap coasters included as your extra in this Teapro box.

If you were looking to buy a one-off Teapro box to see what it’s all about, I’d recommend starting with another. Chai, Matcha and Fruit Tisane were all good boxes that I thought were a better value for money.

Final Verdict

Despite the lower value for money, I don’t feel like this slightly disappointing box was bad enough for me to cancel my subscription. You also need to read this review with a pinch of salt, given how I’m not a fan of mineral-tasting teas and most of the tea in this box had at least a trace of mineral notes.

I still recommend you check this out, especially if you want to learn more about black tea in particular.

Check out this box on Teapro or search for black teas on Amazon to find them yourself.

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