471 Tasting Notes
Having a tall iced glass of this. YUM! The strawberry is especially prominent this go around, scrumptious.
I thought it’d be a good time to review this matcha since it’s currently on sale! It’s actually the last one from my previous order to try, for some reason I didn’t really feel compelled to try it out until a few days ago. When I ordered it I was super excited, but once it arrived I was like “meh, peanut butter.” So it took a while to get enthused about it! I got:
Size: 30 grams (small)
Base: Classic Matcha
Flavor Level: Distinctive
So, I don’t like peanuts very much. They’re my least favorite nut! But I LOVE peanut butter, and peanut butter themed things (like reeses!). In the bag this smells like, well, peanuts… not a great start. And at first sip, it’s just kind of peanutt-y. Red Leaf actually has a straight Peanut matcha, and I was really really hoping this one would be different.
Thankfully, about halfway through the mug I got a really strong peanut butter taste! Toasty, nutty, buttery, smooth and creamy. Mmm, peanut butter! This is an exceptionally thick matcha, and I think it’s best as a latte which really brings out the creamy qualities. This definitely turned out better than expected, and if you like peanut butter it’ll be right up your alley. I think it would also be really good for baking—peanut butter matcha cupcakes perhaps? You can get some here:
This one is… an oddity. I’m not getting chocolate really, maybe some malty notes, and there’s no floral aspect at all. Maybe this could have benefited from a longer steep, though the strawberry is really prominent. It kind of reads like a regular strawberry black. I really love rose teas but this one just isn’t strong enough.
Finally getting to my samples from Makers Tea! As Azzrian suggested, you really should use the entire sample for a cup. They’re kind of small, and I’ll admit that I was a bit disappointed. I mean, you have to pay $5 upfront, I was hoping they’d be a bit bigger so I could play around with them more. But you really only have one shot: this makes me nervous with flavored teas, because they don’t resteep well usually so you have one chance to get a good cup out of it. And the suggested steeping time is… 7 minutes?! That seems way too long for a black.
This is a nice caramel tea with a smooth, tasty flavor but I’m just not getting much salt. The caramel is really really good, but I was hoping for more of a salty bite and I can’t taste it at all! And the base is just okay, nothing really outstanding. So a good tea, but nothing really spectacular.
Having an iced latte of this, I really can’t emphasize enough how damn tasty it is! Caramel, butter, matcha, milk… ugh, this is sinfully good. I seriously think this is my second favorite of the Red Leaf matchas, Pumpkin Pie is still my #1 though! I wonder what would happen if I put them together…
The original 52teas Cotton Candy is one of those blends I hoard and store up for special occasions. I mean, it’s not every day that you get to drink a glass of pure cotton candy goodness! I’ve been keeping an eye out for similarly flavored teas, but the Red Leaf matcha is the only one that comes close. So of course I had to snag their new cotton candy tea! I mean, I love cotton candy, blueberries, Halloween-themed things AND 52teas so nothing could really go wrong.
I cold brewed this (because who wants to drink hot cotton candy?!) and holy WOW. At first sip I thought the blueberry was too strong and kind of dominated. And in a way it does—while you are drinking, it’s pure juicy and very authentic blueberry (not surprising since there are so many dried berries in the mix), followed by a mellow green tea taste. A little vegetal, a little sweet, but nothing to write home about. Then, BAM, at the end of the sip my mouth was filled with delicious cotton candy taste!
This is the perfect blend of cotton candy and blueberries—both are dominant flavors, and indeed both get a chance to “overwhelm” the cup, but you get them both in equal and delicious amount. Definitely a tea to be savored, I think you’d miss a lot of you chugged this one down. Another winner from 52teas! They’ve really been on a roll recently, between them and Red Leaf I feel like all my recent tealogs have had scores in the 90’s haha
I’ve had the 52teas Caramel Cheesecake for over a month now and still haven’t logged it. I don’t know why, it’s good, it’s just… exactly what I expected, and nothing more. So I was really on the fence about this one, since it’s essentially the same blend with pumpkin flavor. I ended up getting it (okay, the bf ordered it since he’s in love with Caramel Cheesecake) when it was briefly reblended. Best tea-related decision I’ve made in a while!
This has all the flavor elements you’d expect: spicy pumpkin pie flavor, rich caramel, and an undertone of tangy cheesecake. A lot of people complain about not tasting the cheesecake on the 52 cheesecake blends, but that’s never been an issue for me (except in the Apricot one, where it seemed to be blatant for everyone else haha). Here I think it’s especially prominent: really creamy, and with a nice tang. The pumpkin flavor kind of dominates, adding a decadence to the cup. Combined with the caramel this is an over the top comfort tea. I tried it hot and iced (I know, pumpkin tea iced, I have strange tastes!) and both ways I actually felt full after a cup with no added sugar or milk. This is a rich tea! But delightfully so: often the problem with dessert teas is that you still, you know, want pie after drinking them. But not here! It’s desserty perfection, but not for the faint of heart. It took me 2 hours to finished the iced cup…. yeah, it’s that rich.
I’m pretty sure my post office is trying to drive me insane. I was lucky enough to win a whole tin of this in KaiMatcha’s contest, and I noticed about a week later everyone was posting tasting notes, but mine hadn’t arrived. I assumed it would come soon… but nothing, for one whole week! I checked the tracking info on October 10th and lo and behold it got to my local post office on the 1st. Which means it was just sitting there for 9 days! What the heck! I went there to pick it up and they told me it wasn’t there and they couldn’t fully check without the tracking info (which I didn’t have on hand). Furious, I filed a complaint and the next day a slip to pick it up arrived in my box (though no delivery attempt…). Seriously, I am so fed up with them! They mark boxes by what day they arrive and you could clearly see it originally said 1st but they crossed it out to say it got there the 10th. Aargh.
Anyway, of course right after I got it NYCC started up and I was too busy to do a tasting note, and then I got consars and my tastebuds went all wonky. Judging from the other reviews I knew this was going to be good, so I didn’t want to waste it on my flu-y tasting abilities. But the time had finally come to dive right in! Well, I planned on savoring it and taking time to taste it, but mysteriously my first mug vanished rather quickly…
As others have said, this is what matcha is all about. It’s true ceremonial grade, better than any other pure matcha I’ve had! I was actually quite surprised when I took my first sip. It’s not that grassy at all, with a full, buttery almost umami-like mouthfeel. It’s mellow and vegetal, with just a hint of delicious sweetness.
The foam is amazing too! So frothy and delicious, and it sifts like a dream. No clumps, no lumps, just smooth amazing matcha-ness. I’ve had this 3 times since I first opened it (straight, iced latte, hot latte) and it’s just amazing no matter what you do to it. Matcha at its purest!
When I saw that this was being reblended, I practically jumped out of my chair with joy. It’s on my (long) list of 52tea desires: the ones I’d love to try, but were made so long ago or were so popular that I have no hope of ever getting a sample. And here, right in front of me, the opportunity to buy an entire pouch?! Thinking back on it, I should have gotten 2, but money’s been tight this month so I went with just one.
Opening the pouch for this is a transcendent experience. It’s marshmallow treats all right, with SUCH a strong marshmallow smell but some nice toastiness too. I’ve had this hot and cold brewed since I got mine, and both ways are beyond divine. The marshmallow flavor is thick and delicious and creamy-sweet, but it’s balanced so well by the genmaicha base. I think marshmallow can easily be an overwhelming flavor, bordering on sickly-sweet, but 52teas balances it so well with things like nutty genmaicha, lemon, and mint. So you get just enough marshmallow without feeling nauseous.
The genmaicha base is what really makes this tea perfect. It mimics the crunchy, crusty flavor and texture of a marshmallow bar so perfectly. Just like in the Cherry Cheesecake Genmaicha, when it was the perfect “crust.” I think most people wouldn’t imagine it as the perfect base for a dessert tea, but I wish there were more genmaicha blends! And more marshmallow blends as well, since this is… heaven. I can’t get enough of it! One of my favorites from them for sure. If you have this, give it a try cold brewed: you won’t regret it.
The tasting notes on this one have been SO good, I kind of had super high expectations going into it. I mean, Azzrian’s favorite matcha?! As the current matcha queen of steepster, I really trust her opinion so yes, I had high hopes for this one! I snagged one as soon as it went on sale. As a side note, I hate my post office! The tracking info on stuff coming to me is totally messed up, and it keeps saying stuff is in transit after it’s arrived or that it’s been sitting in my post office for a week and hasn’t been delivered, it’s so annoying! I think they held this one “hostage” for a while, since it took way longer than usual and I only got it after I went there and bugged them. But anyway, back to tea! I got:
Size: Small (30 grams)
Base: Classic Matcha
I’m not sure why I went with delicate over distinctive (my usual), I just had a feeling that it’d be best with a light flavor. The smell in the bag is amazing, caramel and popcorn and BUTTER! It reminds me of the microwave caramel popcorn they used to make… they still make some kinds now, but this one came with a huge chunk of caramel to put in the bag after you warmed up the popcorn so instead of some caramel glaze it was ACTUAL gooey, delicious caramel on your popcorn. That stuff was soooo good, but I guess it’s just cheaper to skimp out and glaze them. Sigh.
I whipped this up last night as a hot latte, and holy moly it is just… perfect. Amazing! You can taste ALL of the levels of flavor, even with the delicate option. There’s rich, fresh-made caramel flavor, reminiscent of (unsurprisingly) caramel, one of the classic and most-loved Red Leaf flavors. Then there’s the popcorn, without the crunch but with that almost fluffy, airy taste. Then, BUTTER. I can’t believe there’s actual slightly salty butter flavor in here! It makes this sooo rich and delicious and just perfect. No mistaking what flavor this is! It so reminds me of the old caramel popcorn, it’s like having it back finally!
Of course because I went with delicate, the matcha flavor isn’t overpowered but makes for a nice base of sorts, keeping the caramel flavor from getting too heavy. And as much as I totally love this one, I REALLY want to try it with a black base with the distinctive level of flavoring… just thinking about adding those chocolate cookie notes to this makes my brain explode! If you love dessert matchas like me, get this. Heck, if you love matcha, get this. If you love tea at all get this! Really, it is just perfect.