333 Tasting Notes


Sipdown! Today’s cup is gonna be interesting. I wound up with a rather small amount of the genmaicha for a cup, so I threw in some of the plain Laoshan black since it’s used as the base…

Of course it tastes fine, since both teas involved are delicious. I wish I’d picked a smaller mug today so that I could really enjoy the genmaicha without having to throw more base in, since the base flavor kind of masks it in greater proportion. Ah well.

It also just occurred to me that I get paid on Black Friday.

…This could be dangerous.

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drank Yunnan Gold by Adagio Teas
332 tasting notes

What the heck, Adagio?!? You have to leaf the everliving heck out of this to get any flavor! And then it’s still pretty subtle. Leaves are golden and pretty, though. And the aroma is amazing; it reminds me exactly of black dragon pearls. The flavor, though… it’s hard to pinpoint. There’s a bit of cocoa-ness there, but it’s more dark fruit-y. Maybe a mite bit peppery, too.

I don’t really know how I feel about this one. Good, but not one of the better ones out there. It has hints of greatness but it’s just too light.

Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

Ha! That’s how they get you to use it up fast, and then they cross their fingers that you’ll replenish the stock.

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drank Vanilla black tea by Zen Tea
332 tasting notes

I’m trying a new morning schedule. Starting today, I’m waking up an hour and a half before I have to leave for work rather than an hour, which was resulting in me being cramped for time, not getting enough breakfast, not being able to make tea, looking like poop when I left the house, and being late anyway.

I am happy to announce that I have been left with enough time to make and enjoy a nice, big cup of tea. The thing I like about this tea is it’s simple. I don’t have to feel guilty when I make it wrong and can’t taste any of the little nuances. Also, I am surprisingly close to a sipdown!


I’ve been trying to take time in the morning for tea as well. It’s amazing how much better my day goes when I’m not rushed!

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So I went to the gas station while I was on break to get some form of coffeenated beverage to take back to work for the closing shift, and I decided on the cold Starbucks mocha frappucinos that you get in the glass bottles, and there was a little bottle and a big bottle, and I was thinking “Get the small one, you don’t need that much coffee,” but then I was like “No get the big one, that way you can save part of it for later,” and then I drank the whole damn thing in the span of two and a half hours in the evening.




And I’m opening tomorrow. siiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiigh

So tonight’s tea had to not be black. I can’t remember how this wound up in my collection. I think it was from the bachelorette party from two years ago. The one wedding I have ever been in or at, the bride’s bachelorette party was a tea party, and she provided enough different kinds of tea that each bridesmaid got to take home a tea of her choice, and somehow or another I wound up with this one. I think. Or I may have come home with it after the last time I visited them. I don’t know. One way or another, I was organizing my tea shelf, picked up the big honkin tin that I thought was empty and went, “Wait – there’s tea in here. Well then.”

I did not account for the oldness of the tea in the leafing. The leaves are pretty; small, rolled, green, very fine. I’m not getting a ton of flavor. It tastes… grassy. Fresh and grassy. With that slightly weird burnt-y edge, I probably overdid it a bit. I’m not a fan of grassy.

I’ll have to give this a more considerate go before I give it a final rating or a number.

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It’s actually been a bit since I’ve had this tea. This used to be my absolute favorite; now I think there are some others that are starting to join it. Still the comfort tea it needs to be.

Uggggh Monday.

Boiling 4 min, 30 sec

Ugggh – You said it!

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I’ve been craving this tea all day. When I start craving a tea, it’s officially a top-tier choice. I almost made some this morning and decided to sip down another one instead. Now this hits the spot while I finish watching an old (50’s) film adaptation of Les Miserables. Which is not Russian. But yes. This tea goes well with old movies.

I really wish we had some clear or light-colored cups in the household. I can tell this tea has a really dark, opaque liquor; wish I could see it better.

The big honkin bag of this is my best impulse tea buy to date. I’ll be seeing more of you, Russian grocery store next door to my work.

Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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This morning’s cuppa is a sipdown! Thanks again to Nicole for the sample. I still think I’d go for Mahamaosa’s EGC over this, but I wouldn’t mind having it again. Substantial yet dainty. Yes, that’s how I’d describe it. :)

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So the store I work for has four different locations around the city, and we have a district-wide meeting at a store (not the one I normally work at) 45 minutes from my house, 2.5 hours before we’re supposed to open. And then I work open to close. So I’m up WAY earlier than normal and gearing up for an 11 hour work day. Fun!

After weighing a couple of different options, I decided to go with this for my “first breakfast” because I have more than enough of my sample left to make a heaping cup. Wish I had more time to enjoy it, but it’s nice to have some piping hot comfort tea before the “butt-crack of dawn.”

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Gotta love waking up with a headache… bleh. :/ Anyone got any good natural headache remedies? Ibuprofen works about 95% of the time for me, but I’d like to find something that doesn’t involve a blood-thinning pill.

Anyhow, this is such a great tea for a draggy morning. Potent enough to be a little bit of a wake-up Cher-slap, fragrant and rosy enough to be a treat. I still think it tastes like a different era in time. Definitely perking me up, along with my mood.

Terri HarpLady

The best headache cure for me is to alternate between an ice pack (usually a bag of frozen peas or corn. We never eat them, we just keep them around for ice packs) & a heating pad (or rice filled tube sock, heated in microwave). :)


For me, hydration, caffeine shock, and something sweet brings me out of it. Chug a Mtn Dew and eat a doughnut first thing in the morning. :)


I drink any tea with peppermint – sometimes it helps!

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drank Laoshan Black by Verdant Tea
332 tasting notes

In contrast to yesterday, I’m moving pretty slow again this morning. No particularly good reason. It probably has to do with knowing I have to go to work. Eh. At least today’s a shorter one. And I have tomorrow off!

I’ve reviewed this one a lot, so I don’t think I need to do it again. One thing I’m learning with these teas, though, you gotta have ‘em when they’re hot. More flavors come out when they’re cooling, but they’re just not the same once they hit room temperature and they’re not warm comfort anymore! Still very tasty though.

Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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The name’s Holly. 27. Work for a small IT company. About to finish a Master’s degree this winter. ISFJ for what it’s worth. I play various instruments (mostly bass guitar right now), attempt to write songs that I’m too scared to play for anyone, and I’m currently taking voice lessons. I also enjoy starting various hobbies, wearing monochromes, writing, cooking, taking walks, and various and sundry other things…

I’ve been a tea drinker since spring of 2013. Tea is a source of happiness, positivity, curiosity, and relaxation (…and caffeine) for me.

I’ve been on and off this site over the years, and I even had a separate tea blog at one point. For now, I’m just working on getting back in the habit of enjoying tea regularly and to its fullest.

Love: Malty Chinese black teas, shu/ripe pu erhs, soft flowery teas (esp. jasmine teas)

Like: Japanese green teas, sheng/ripe pu erhs, white teas

Still trying to get into: Most oolongs, chai teas

Not crazy about: Roasty teas, fruity teas, rooibos, many (not all) herbal teas

90-100: YEAH!
80-89: Nice! This is good stuff.
70-79: Respectable tea.
60-69: Not bad.
50-59: Middling. Not really worth it.
25-49: Eeeeeugh. Not good.
0-24: Did you know you can use tea leaves as odor absorbent?



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