Red Rose Original Orange Pekoe & Pekoe Cut Black Tea Review

An staunch tea fan for more than twenty years, I’ve consumed several boxes of   Red Rose Original Orange Pekoe & Pekoe Cut Black Tea   in recent years.

My mother drank orange pekoe tea daily, for many years.  So I bet I got my love of tea by watching her enjoy it so much.  They also served much black tea (with similar flavor to this one) at my high school.  So tea holds lots of nostalgia for me, so that nowadays, it’s a comfort beverage in my house.  Plus, with lots of tea available, I don’t overeat as often.

Picture of a 100-count box of Red Rose Orange Pekoe Cut Black Tea, Front View.
Red Rose Orange Pekoe Black Tea, 100-Count Box, Front View

As black teas go, this Red Rose orange pekoe and black tea is among the best I’ve sampled.  I like its clear, deep orange-red color with virtually no bitterness.  Unlike green tea, you can steep this tea for a very long time without noticeable increase in bitterness.  Red Rose sweetens well with stevia or agave nectar, and for a name brand tea, Red Rose tea is pretty cheap and easy to locate.  Plus, it stock piles well, for years in a cool, dry pantry. Note that orange pekoe tea is a particular preparation of black tea.  So orange pekoe tea is indeed black tea. I have here an 8-ounce, 100 tea bag box of this full flavored tea for review.  Find my impressions of it below.

Benefits, Pros, Advantages, and Features

Great Reputation.  Red Rose is a well-established name in the tea producing business, as they’ve been growing and packaging tea since 1890.

Found Everywhere.  As such, it is ubiquitous; no doubt due in part to the highly popular orange pekoe tea line that they’ve sold for decades.  So, national brand teas are thus available at most any grocery store for a reasonable price.

Forever Shelf Life.  Keeps for years without notable flavor degradation, as the box comes wrapped in virtually air-tight cellophane.  The best-if-used-by date is roughly two years out from the date I purchased my box.  But I know from personal experience that it will keep for longer without losing much great flavor.

Mature Tea Production Technology.  This is a typical orange and black tea in that so many other brands taste a lot like it.  It seems that many producers have mastered the art of growing delicious tea these days.  The art of growing and packaging tea is now quite mature.

Quenches Hunger As Well As Thirst.  This tea works reasonably well as an appetite suppressant, although not as well as green tea in my body.

Encourages Dropped Pounds.  Most any tea promotes weight loss to some degree in my experience, if for no other reason than that tea in general contains zero calories, and when you’re drinking a zero calorie beverage, you’re not consuming anything higher calorie.

Sweetens Easily.  Sweetens up very well when stevia is added.  Stevia sweetens without destroying the signature orange pekoe  tea flavor.

Great with Honey.  Unlike the green teas I’ve tried, you can put lots of honey into this orange tea without destroying its not-so-delicate and stronger flavor.  Adding a bit of half and half also highly compliments the flavor here.

Natural Caffeine Source.  Harvested from mountain estates, this high quality tea has considerable caffeine. So it will indeed wake you up in the morning, or retrieve you from those 2:30 PM after lunch blues at work.

Inexpensive.  This is a low-cost yet excellent tasting beverage for both hot tea and iced tea settings.  Each serving costs less than three cents.  Sometimes, you can find a big box like the one pictured above, for less than $2.

Strings and Tags on the Teabags for Convenience.  No fussing with spoons or sticking your fingers into the hot brew, just to fish out the teabag when steeping is complete.  The included tags and strings make very simple, teabag removal from the cup.

Teabag Strings Stay Attached.  They use real metal staples to fasten the string and tags to each tea bag.  So these assemblies virtually never come apart, unlike some other brands that use a metal-free bag-string-tag construction.  Rarely will you ever have to fish a tea bag out of your cup with a spoon because its string came off.  So keep using the metal staples Red Rose.

Disadvantages, Cons, Problems, and Concerns

Teabags Not Wrapped Airtight.  The tea bags are not individually wrapped, and neither is the box once the cellophane is removed.  The bags are lined up in four rows of 25 teabags each in this 100 tea bag box I’m examining right now.  So as soon as you open the box, and assuming that the tea inside is fresh, you get a strong smell of orang and black tea.

Gives Caffeine Highs.  Particularly when I’ve not taken any tea in recent days, I can become “wired” when I again consume it, and can feel sick when riding in a car after drinking it.  It can make me feel quite nauseous when I’m gone without it for several weeks.

Can Stain Teeth and Clothing.  Being darker in color than many green teas, especially when you steep it for a long time, this beverage can stain clothes if you accidentally spill it on yourself.  If this happens, rinse it out with clear water right away if the affected clothing can be washed.

Non organic.

Brewing Instructions

By The Cup

Each tea bag makes one cup of black tea.

  1. Boil enough fresh water for the number of cups of this tea you wish to brew.
  2. While waiting for the water to boil, put 1 Red Rose tea bag into each cup you’re making.
  3. When water boils, immediately pour it into each cup.
  4. Steep for three to five minutes or until it becomes strong enough for your taste.
  5. Discard the tea bag(s).
  6. Sweeten tea as desired.
  7. Enjoy.

By The Pot

  1. Use hot water to rinse out tea-pot prior to brewing, to warm it.
  2. Again, determine how many cups of this premium Red Rose black tea you wish to make.
  3. Put the desired amount of fresh, filtered water in your kettle or pot.
  4. Put the kettle or pot on your stove and turn on the heat.
  5. While waiting for the water to boil, remove labels from the Red Rose tea bags, to avoid possible contamination of the tea with ink from the tags.
  6. When the water achieves a rolling boil, immediately add the tea bags into the pot of boiling water.
  7. Remove pot or kettle from heat and turn off the stove.
  8. Allow bags to steep in the pot for three to five minutes.
  9. Remove the bags from the pot with a straining spoon.
  10. Pour the tea into cups, sweeten to taste, add milk, lemon, lime, or orange as desired, and enjoy.

For Iced Tea

  1. Take 4 tea bags and remove the labels from them.
  2. Put these teabags into a tea-pot.
  3. Then, in a separate container, boil four cups (1 quart) of fresh, filtered water.
  4. Once the water boils, remove from heat and turn off the heat source.
  5. Pour this water into the teapot over top of the tea bags.
  6. Steep for five minutes.
  7. Add sugar, lemon, orange, and/or lime as desired.
  8. Fill desired number of glasses with ice.
  9. Pour steeped tea into these glasses.
  10. Enjoy.


Black tea.

Nutrition Facts

  • Serving size: 1 tea bag (2.2 grams).  Makes 8 Fl. ounces.
  • Calories: 0, 0% DV.
  • Total fat: 0 grams, 0% DV.
  • Sodium: 0 milligrams, 0% DV.
  • Total carbohydrate: 0 grams, 0% DV.
  • Sugars: 0 grams.
  • Protein: 0 grams.

Product Rating

In closing then, this is my current favorite black tea.  It’s simple to prepare, easy to flavor, and quite good tasting and smelling.  It’s a perfect beverage.  So I’d therefore rate it at 99 out of 100.

Where To Buy Red Rose Original Orange Pekoe & Pekoe Cut Black Tea

Look for this black tea in the black and teal blue box with white and red Red Rose logo at your favorite grocery store.  Most stores carry Red Rose teas.  I’ve bought it at Walmart and Giant Eagle.


Revision History

  • 2014-12-02: Added picture and whitespace, and touched up the content.