[sponsored REVIEW] Special. T by Nestlé – advent calendar

read in german

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Good evening everyone,

the holidays are over, as well as the daily opening of the Nestlé Special. T – advent calendar. Today I want to give you my in-depth review, show you all the teas and tell you my honest opinion on it.

Please also check out my two other Blog posts in which I showed you all the products that Nestlé was kind enough to send to me (here) and my first glimpse of their advent calendar (here).

In this post:

  • short introduction to the advent calendar by Nestlé
  • list with all the included teas
  • my opinion on the teas
  • conclusion

Disclaimer: advertisement – products were sponsored by Nestlé

As you’ve already seen, the Nestlé Special. T advent calendar came in a small rectangular box, which was decorated with gold detailing and on top showed this absolutely beautiful christmas theme.

When opened you could see a general listing of all the tea that was included. The teas were covered by a sheet of paper, which had the order printed in which the tea was supposed to be taken out of the box.

I could not pass up the chance to take the colorful capsules out of the packaging and start a small photo session.

The calendar is fundamentally different from most of the other tea advent calendars I have seen. Of course, all teas come in the usual tea capsules, not in teabags. In addition, it consists of 25 and not only 24 “doors” to open. Due to the style of the packaging, you don’t even actually have to open them, you can simply remove the tea from the little compartments. The beautifully designed sheet of paper, which shows the corresponding numbers for the 25 days, should be kept to see which tea can be enjoyed on each day.

What I also enjoy very much is the presentation on their official website. For each tea variety it shows a small graphic with the capsule. The calendar contains 10 black teas, 8 green teas, 4 fruit / herbal teas, 2 rooibos and each 1 white and blue tea.



For those of you who do not follow me on Instagram, I created an overview of all the days and corresponding teas that were included in the calendar. In addition I added some information and my opinion on them.

day 1 – Ceylon

Ceylon is the first of the 10 black teas. This high-quality tea comes from the organic plantation Idugashinna in Sri Lanka. Thanks to the special harvest, in which only the finest tea leaves are picked (Flowery Orange Pekoe), this black tea offers a particularly rich and refreshing bouquet. I can definitely confirm that, fun fact – in 1996 I actually visited Sri Lanka with my family and we went to different plantations where we learned a lot about tea and were able to try them. I also wrote a detailed report for school back then. The tea really tastes like the ones we were able to drink in Sri Lanka back then. Of course, this little piece of memory is something very special.

day 2 – Rose Amour

The first of the 8 green teas is Rose Amour , which combines the subtle balance of delicate rose and raspberry flavors with Chun Mee and Gunpowder green tea. You can enjoy it hot or cold, I found it really delicious.

day 3 – French Brunch

A breakfast tea with character is French Brunch , another black tea. Yunnan, Assam and Kenya combined to create a cup full of delicious smoke, malt and cocoa flavors. Personally, it was a bit too strong for me, but my boyfriend really enjoyed it. Of course, it’s always a matter of taste.

day 4 – Japanese Sencha

The second green tea is Japanese Sencha, a high quality organic green tea from the Japanese tea island Kyushu. Japanese Sencha captivates you above all by its wonderfully fresh flavor. It is grown in Kagoshima Prefecture on the island of Kyushu (鹿児島県) and treated for a short time with hot steam according to the old Japanese custom. I love Japanese tea, which is why I love this one very much.

day 5 – Rooibos Orange

Rooibos Orange is an exotic, intense South African rooibos tea with fresh orange zest. Although I usually like fruit teas, this one was not really my cup of tea (pun intended). The combination of rooibos and orange did not harmonize for me.

day 6 – Mint Marrakech Style

Inspired by Moroccan tradition, the smoky note of Gunpowder green tea mixed with the bouquet of fresh mint and subtle spices can also be enjoyed hot and cold. Since I do not like mint teas, this too went to my boyfriend and he liked it.

day 7 – Verbena

Due to the selected lemon verbena leaves, the Verbena herb tea is the pure taste of nature. The verbena plant provides a particularly fresh and delicate aroma. I liked it very much, because I really like fruity lemony flavors.

day 8 – English Breakfast

English Breakfast offers all the elegance of a true Assam black tea with a malty, full-bodied flavor.
A tea classic, ideal for breakfast says Nestlé. I generally prefer green tea, but this black tea was actually just right for my breakfast.

day 9 – Pai mu tan

This white tea comes from the Fujian region of China, which is known for the highest quality of white tea. The name of the tea, in Chinese Pai Mu Tan, means “white peony”. It is picked in spring as soon as the first flower buds open. Its silvery white shimmering leaves exude a unique aroma. For me it was my first white tea – at first definitely different and yet very delicious.

day 10 – Earl Grey

A unique blend of Keemun and Ceylon tea flavored with bergamot from the Calabria region of Italy. This Earl Grey black tea is ideal for a small feel-good break at any time of the day. Although I don’t like many black teas, I really enjoyed this one.

day 11 – Happy Fruity

With its superfruit notes, which are known for their natural antioxidant and vitamin richness, this organic fruit tea immediately puts you in a good mood. I really loved the intense fruity smell and as an absolute fruit tea fan, I was surprised that it tasted just as fruity as it smelled. It tastes wonderfully sour, because of hibiscus and superfruits like elderberries, pomegranates and cranberries. Since then, it has been one of my favorites, Red Fruits Delight, from Special. T.

day 12 – Jasmine Flower

Another tea from China is this Chung Hao green tea flavored with freshly picked jasmine flowers. Personally, it also didn’t match with my personal taste preferences, I guess it’s because of the jasmine aroma.

day 13 – Masala Chai

Masala Chai is a combination of elegant black tea with five fine spices – cinnamon, clove, ginger, cardamom and vanilla. My boyfriend loved it, for me it was a bit too strong again.

day 14  – Lemon Sorbet

A refreshing organic tea with sparkling lemon and fruity rosehip. A delicious fruit cocktail, hot and cold. An aroma reminiscent of lemon meringue, dominated by citrus and orange notes. Rosehip, elderberry and mint perfect this refined fragrance palette. I am very happy that I wished for a regular 10 pack as well, so I can enjoy it even more.

day 15 – Genmaicha

I was especially looking forward to this tea, because I already knew it from Japan and love it. The very popular Genmaicha (= rice tea) combines green tea and roasted puffed rice that creates a delicious popcorn note. This green tea is a specialty of the Japanese region Shizuoka and is generally enjoyed during any meal. I know the original taste and can say that the one from Nestlé comes very close. Too bad the 10 pack was not available at the time I wished for it. Unfortunately, I only had one capsule to enjoy.

day 16 – Red Fruits Delight

A harmonious blend of Ceylon and Keemun black tea, flavored with the tantalizing aroma of raspberry and sour cherry. A delicious tea creation for all fruit tea lovers like me. I love raspberries and cherries, so this combination with black tea is a real treat for me.

day 17 – Caramel Gourmand

This black tea blend is characterized by an irresistible caramel flavor, based on powerful Assam and subtle Ceylon tea. I love caramel, which is why this tea was a must-have for me. So I also wished for a 10-pack of this tea as well. I do not regret it, because this combination is absolutely delicious.

day 18 – Lemon & Ginger

A refreshing chinese green tea with lemon and ginger flavors, which my boyfriend really liked again – I did not like the ginger unfortunately.

day 19 – Oolong Fujian

Delicious Oolong Ti Kuan Yin from Fujian in China, from whole rolled tea leaves with biscuit and fruity plant flavors. I was particularly interested, because I often drank Oolong Cha in Japan. Its name as Blue Oolong comes from the slightly fermented leaves with their blue-green glow.

day 20 – Intense Mint

Intense Mint embodies century-old oriental tea traditions. The perfect combination of fresh mint and Chinese Gunpowder creates a naturally light smoky aroma. Since I always associate mint with being sick, I’m not a fan of mint tea. I only enjoy it in alcoholic mojito or non-alcoholic mosquito. Therefore, I brewed this my mother – she found it very delicious.

day 21 – Good Night Kiss

The soothing combination of aromatic lemon balm, linden blossom, delicate rose and sweet vanilla results in a decaf tea for the evening. It was tasty, but not one of my favorites. Still very relaxing before going to bed.

day 22 – Royal Yunnan

Originating from the famous Chinese province Yunnan, the typical leather and smoke notes of the Royal Yunnan are reminiscent of noble old red wines – accentuated by truffles and black pepper. Nestlé says it’s a striking tea that tastes like a fine wine. I think for black tea lovers, this tea could be something very special. For me, these are usually too strong, sometimes slightly bitter. But maybe I just have bad taste haha

day 23 – Pink Pamplemousse

An intense freshness with sparkling grapefruit. This exclusive organic tea creation is pure refreshment! Fruity aromas of grapefruit and lemon, flanked by rose hip and passion fruit, rounded off with lemon. For me as a fruit junkie a great tea.

day 24 – Good Morning Sunshine

A bright, sunny black tea blend of Darjeeling, Assam and Ceylon with the perfect balance of fruity, malty and floral aromas. Good Morning Sunshine is the breakfast tea par excellence and even I enjoyed it’s taste.

day 25 – Blueberry Muffin

Blueberry Muffin is an exclusive tea blend with the fruity-yummy aromas of muffins and the subtle-malty notes of Assam and Ceylon tea, with a bouquet of blueberry and strawberry notes flanked by vanilla notes. Maybe this combination is the reason why I liked it so much.

I am very happy with the selection that I could try through the calendar. However, I would still be interested to try Tropical Passion , Ô green and Harmony .

 

conclusion:

Today I have a very detailed conclusion for you. I liked a lot of things – but I also have two things that could be optimized. I hope I was able to voice them constructively.

Many of the teas were really delicious and I’d like to incorporate the ritual, to treat myself to something special during the day, more regularly. For me, the tea capsule machine with its teas is definitely something special and in a sense luxurious. I keep it at home, which is why I continue to use loose tea or tea bags at work. I believe that the exact temperature and time of extraction is not as important for fruit teas, which I drink mainly at work, as it is for black tea or green tea. If I want to enjoy these, I prefer my MY T. lights. For everyday use, with the mass of tea I drink, the capsules unfortunately produce too much plastic waste. I drink about 3 liter a day, almost only hot tea during the winter and a mixture of cold tea and tap water during the summer. Now imagine how many capsules I would use if I only used the MY T. lights. I therefore wish there was a more environmentally friendly alternative to the plastic  packaging because I know Nestlé is strongly criticized for that.

Furthermore, I would like to emphasize the positive and not so positive things in terms of the advent calendar, which includes that I love the idea an advent calendar with tea! I have enjoyed drinking one of these high quality teas every day and have always been looking forward to trying out a new taste everyday after work. The calendar contained 25 tasty teas. Even though here and there they included teas that did not quite meet my taste, I never felt that they were undrinkable. The selection of black tea, green tea, fruit / herbal tea, rooibos and even exotic ones like white tea and blue tea was really nice. There was only one thing I found a bit disappointing about the calendar. If you check the website you can see that Nestlé is offering a taste box that basically seems to be the same. It seems as if they have only changed the cover of the box and added a sheet of paper for the individual days. That leads me to the next point of my conclusion. The price / performance ratio: generally I find such a tasting box great. Especially customers who are new to the topic and could not try the tea so far, would really appreciate the opportunity to do so before buying the 10 packs. What I would find even better, would be if all of the offered varieties were included in this taste box. Nestlé Special. T currently offers more than 35 varieties, in the box however are only 25 teas. That still leaves the remaining 10 that you would have to order in a box of 10 to taste them and find out if they match your personal preferences. Some customers have commented critically about that on the website as well. A regular pack of 10 tea capsules costs 3.70 € – so the price for a capsule including the packaging is 37 cents. If you calculate that to the 25 capsules within the calendar the price is at 9,25 €. The advent calendar / taste box costs 28 €, which is why the mentioned customers have asked if the price is really justified.

Nestlé says:

Our “taste box” offers you the opportunity to discover 25 extraordinary teas. The manual processing of this box is associated with an additional work and therefor extra cost. Nevertheless, we have made every effort and the delivery costs are always free when ordering the taste box. Rest assured that we are always looking for potential to optimize.

That makes sense, of course. After looking at the website you will find the information that the free delivery is offered for online orders of 15 packs (order value of 55,50 €), as well as for all orders that include a machine or tea accessories (except water filter). Personally, I think the price would be completely okay, but I think it would have been great if package wise they’d have come up with something more fitting for the advent calendar. To me it should match the feeling of that special time. Maybe they could change the shape of the box, for example a triangular-shaped box similar to a pine tree. This way it could also be put upright and we could remove capsules that way from their compartments. Of course, they keep the packaging as minimal as possible, but I think it’s too bad that they basically offer an existing product (which you can get all year-long) with minimal modification. To me this takes away the feeling of it being something special for the advent calendar time. It would also be amazing if they could add tea that would only be available within the advent calendar. For example, add new tea creations and see if the customers love it. This way they could come up with new tea to add to their existing varieties. Maybe most customers do not care what the design of the calendar is – let’s face it, it was definitely appealing. When I held the box for the first time I was completely in love with the motif on top and overall I like really like the content and the calendar, but it could have been a bit more special.

Finally, I would like to say that I find both the calendar and the teas, as well as the machine really great. The review for the machine will be published soon. It is important for me to always express my honest opinion, no matter if I have bought products myself with my own money or they have been unconditionally provided to me, as in this case by Nestlé. I believe that as long as criticism is expressed respectfully and above all constructively, it serves the desire for optimization by Nestlé. I think for companies it is always important to hear independent, honest opinions from customers in order to improve or optimize their own products.

I would really like to know what you think about the calendar or the try-out box. Maybe you disagree with me, so let’s talk about it in the comments!

I hope you have a wonderful evening and hope you found this review helpful.

 

Have a great weekend

 photo Mara2.jpg

 

 

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