I love a ripe nashi pear, and Lupicia Honey & Pear Hojicha captures its sweet, juicy, crispness elegantly. Another nashi pear tea is Teavana Sweet Asian Pear White Tea. Its description entreats you to –
Slip in to serenity with this soothing, flavorful and “oh-so-delicious” white and oolong tea blend. Kissed with elderflowers, the sweet Asian pear, passionfruit, peach and silky smooth citrus combine to create a blissful and calming experience, certain to keep your head in the clouds as you sip your way through daydreams.
Infusing 5 g or 1.5 – 2 teaspoons for 2 minutes in 200 ml of 85°C water yields a lightly golden liquor with a floral and slightly fruit aroma. On tasting, there’s a first hit of acidity from a hint of passionfruit that blooms into a more sweet tropical flavour reminiscent of papaya with floral notes recalling elderflower and lychee. Towards the end of the body, though, the flavour of cooked nashi pears emerges, along with an unpleasant bitterness that builds in the tail and lingers long in the aftertaste. The bitterness isn’t like that from an astringent tea, but the bitterness of grapefruit pith or the lychee skin with the sweetness and acidity of cooked pears.
Evidently, its name Sweet Asian Pear White Tea is a misnomer, and you’d be disappointed if you expected bright notes of fresh nashi pear. A peek at the ingredients list confirms that there are nashi pear pieces –
Apple pieces, white tea, oolong tea, pear pieces, rose hip peels, natural and artificial flavoring, citrus slices, peach pieces, jackfruit, candied papaya pieces, citrus peels, orange juice pieces, candied pear pieces, orange petals, elderflowers, grapefruit, candied peach pieces, passionfruit pieces, passionfruit crispies, lychee pieces
A taste of the nashi pear pieces from the infusion confirms they’re the origin of the cooked pear notes, and I’d hazard a guess that the earthy notes of elderflower combine with the sweetness and acidity of the numerous fruits to create that bitterness. With such an ingredients list, I’d sooner call this a tropical fruit salad tea, like T2 Fruitalicious, whose taste it recalls but without the bitter aftertaste. Dialling back the confusing mix of flavours, and focusing on championing the titular flavour is key, and Lupicia is a master of that art.
This tin of Teavana Sweet Asian Pear White Tea contained 57 g. It was packed in the United States of America and gifted by friends visiting Honolulu, Hawaii, the United States of America in 2014.