1327 Tasting Notes
It’s wednesday, my regular day off and I’ve taken the rest of the week off as well. (This, btw, has nothing to do with illness, it was already planned, so no worries there). After the restorative power of yesterday’s Assam, I felt like giving this on the that TeaEqualsBliss sent me.
I didn’t really find any aroma to speak off, but my nose feels a bit like it’s considering acting up a little bit, so I don’t fully trust my sense of smell. I don’t think it’s all there at the moment.
The flavour, however, reveals the cardboard-y note of Assam. I probably wouldn’t really have picked that one out so easily if it hadn’t been for yesterday’s Assam and the revelation that was the cardboard note. (Sometimes I feel like I’m nicking all of Auggy’s words, but they’re such good words!).
It also has a surprising sweetness. Smooth, almost creamy. I’m not the sort of person to put milk in anything, even if it is recommended to me. I always try it plain first, and usually that’s the way I’ll drink it. Milk is an added occasional luxury. Maybe that’s why, to me, it doesn’t take very much for a tea to taste like it already had a drop of milk in it.
Maybe it’s some sort of phantom flavour. Like phantom pains where a patient may still feel the sensations of the amputated limb. I can almost taste the flavour that isn’t there. Or something.
It’s not really something that I would connect with a Ceylon, though, so I think that’s because of how the blend is coming together.
Funny thing is that if I were to break this apart and have the Assam on its own and the Ceylon on its own, then I don’t really think I would be more then fleetingly impressed with either of them. But together it’s a different story and they come together quite well.
I have a good amount of this and it could easily become one of my stable teas, but I have put the Irish Morning Tea from A C Perch’s on my shopping list for when I run out. The European Adagio shop carries the Irish Breakfast, but I thought it would be nice to get some comparison and some
different perspective on it. (Besides A C Perch’s is probably quicker and cheaper for me, what with being a danish company. Especially since I’m shopping there anyway)
Of course I had to add the A C Perch’s blend to the site first, and then I unleashed the full force of OCD on the A C Perch’s teas already in the database. They all have pictures and proper descriptions now, except the one that I couldn’t seem to find. (I hope I didn’t accidentally step on anybody’s toes with this) I even discovered that the genmaicha I had from them wasn’t their genmaicha at all, but a variation. The things you learn…
Anyway, this Irish Breakfast. Quite surprisingly yummy. I don’t know what’s going on with that, I’m supposed to prefer Chinese!
Stomach is fine now. Head, not so much. A good strong black is needed, to-be-finished pile be damned. Nothing is working properly inside my skull today. I tried checking my dashboard, and JacquelineM’s post about the (by now) infamous and tres yummy raspberry oolong was on top. After that one though, I suddenly found myself realising that I was just scrolling and forgetting to pay attention.
This has a strong wood-y sort of aroma which promises a kick in the rear and a clearing of the mind. After brewing the aroma turns towards the sweeter and more honey-y, but still as strong, and still definitely the same smell as the dry leaves. Just altered a little bit.
I’m suddenly beginning to understand what Auggy means when she says Assam has a cardboard like flavour. There is a strong unmistakeble cardboard flavour here. It’s not unpleasant, it’s just… odd. This is uncomplicated. It’s an Assam that tastes of Assam and that’s really all there is to it. If I had been more in favour of Indian teas over Chinese, I’d probably have rated this better.
Not sure if it really helped my mental state much though. It might be just placebo.
Really messy post, this. I’ll just stop it here and go away and go back to being a sporadic presence for another few days. I’m sure you won’t mind.
I’ve had nothing but water and peppermint tisane to drink since mid-morning saturday. I am absolutely dying for a cup of proper tea now. I was already yesterday, but I was still feeling delicate enough that I didn’t dare have anything with caffeine in it. The only decaf I have was given to me in swaps and they deserve more attention that I would be able to give them while sick. Today I’m down to the monumental headache that always shows up post illness, so I’m having a tentative go at a small cup of tea.
Just in case, though, I’ve chosen a cheap and mediocre one. It wouldn’t feel as much of a waste.
Mediocre or not though, you lot have NO IDEA how good this is right now!!! This could have been the worst quality tea in the world and it would still have been lovely. If this had been the first time I logged this one I would have given it a 100. I don’t care about the semi-synthetic melon or the way that the tea is only barely present underneath. Just having a cup of tea is enough, and any tea will do.
Maybe I can even have some real food today too…
It’s really stupid at this hour, but I just didn’t feel like I was done with tea tonight. I fought against it as long as I could, but only managed to become more and more convinced that I should try one of these plum things that TeaEqualsBliss sent me.
I had too look this one up to tell what sort of tea it was. Nothing about that on the little envelope holding the bag.
The bag has a funny spicy smell that I wasn’t expecting. I couldn’t quite place it at first, but when looking it up I saw that it contained cinnamon and all the little wheels and cogs in my head clicked into place. I wouldn’t say I thought it was obvious cinnamon, but it was close enough.
It strikes me as a funny combination, plums and cinnamon. I can’t really imagine that. The cup smells rather like chai when steeping too, but I’m pretty sure I’m picking up some fruity sweetness underneath the cinnamon-y sweetness. It’s actually rather christmas-y to smell!
The taste is surprisingly good. I would never in a bazillion years have imagined that these two flavours would work that well together but they do! It’s like two kinds of sweetness keeping each other from being too much.
It’s not perfect and there is a certain level of syntheticness, but apart from that I’m rather impressed with this one.
My immediate leader in the lab also happens to be one of my best friends at work in spite of her being a couple of years older than my mother. We are so similar in so many ways. Today after work we went and saw the Percy Jackson film and ate a lot of sweets. A LOT of sweets. Let’s put it this way, I have more or less had sweets for dinner, okay? Things got out of hand.
I need something to wash all that sugar down and yes, I’m aware of the irony of having chosen a chocolate tea for the purpose. I just really wanted this tonight. Fortunately I still had one of the two bags that Jillian sent me AND TeaEqualsBliss also remembered that I liked this one and added a bag of it to the package I got from her yesterday. So I’m having it now and I still have a bag left. Lovely.
Oh, and the film? If you like adventures like Harry Potter and similar, go see it. It’s
awesome and I need to read those books like whoa! It can seriously not go fast enough.
Look at me with a tisane! Be sure to pay attention, Steepsterites, as this is not something that happens that often, but it’s too late really for tea when I’m trying to re-learn getting to bed at a proper hour, and I wanted to try something else of what TeaEqualsBliss sent me.
I dipped my sleeve in the cup (no, not on purpose), so it’s not starting well.
It smells strongly of spearmint and I can’t really find any tarragon. It’s like a mix of toothpaste and that chewing gum that my mother prefers. Daunting… Maybe it can help on my stomach reflux though. (Oh avocado… so yummy, yet so deceitful!)
It tastes a bit like that chewing gum too, but it’s not as overwhelmingly spearmint-y as I had expected. I think it’s because the tarragon is lying down a base and controlling it. It’s just spearmint-y enough to give me that prickling on the tongue and brief fresh mouth sensation. The latter doesn’t seem to last very long after swallowing, but then again, it’s a tisane, not a tooth-paste replacement.
Tisanes don’t really interest me at all, and I don’t buy them unless for someone else or because I want to mix with stuff. Although I’d be unlikely to purchase this if the brand was available here, I still like it rather more than I thought I would.
A case of mistaken identities have placed a hand-delivered non-signed envelope of creepiness in my letterbox today. Print outs of someone else’s private email conversations of a personal nature. In place a VERY personal nature. It’s creepy enough that I’ll be saving envelope+contents for a while and see if anything else happens, because my immediate guess is that somewhere out there there is a betrayed wife thinking that I’m someone else. And she knows where I live. And she doesn’t know that I’m not Not-Me even though Not-Me has the same name as me.
Luckily I have also received a package from TeaEqualsBliss which is MUCH less creepy and in which I found among others this tea with which I will try to calm myself down again. I was stumped by the amount of choice available to me! Eventually I decided that since I needed some fairly quick nerve-settling a bag was the thing to go for this time. I picked this one by closing my eyes and choosing one at random.
I’m a bit wary of the brand. I’ve seen a lot of posts about this brand and most people seemed to find it somewhat mediocre.
It definitely smells jasmine-y while steeping and not synthetic. So that’s one point in favour. The flavour is a bit… brine-y and a bit flowery. It’s not like the jasmine green to end all jasmine greens. But it’s nice enough.
And was it capable to stop my imagination getting out of control RE post intro? To an extent yes, so that’s another point in favour.
This one again. It’s in my to be finished pile. Some of you will remember my first experience with it. Well, my colleague gave me the rest of what she had since she would never get around to using it herself anyway, not being a very big tea-drinker.
So I got the rest in a cleaned marmalade glass and can now inform you that she must have stored this in her spice cupboard. It’s the only explanation I can come up with, because she swears the glass has only ever contained marmalade before and I can’t really imagine that anyone in their right mind would make curry flavoured tea.
I sincerely hope it only took on the curry in the aroma and that it will go away upon brewing!
I’ve used more leaf this time, for a more authentic experience, and am steeping the bejeezus out of it at the moment. One heaping teaspoon per cup (and then some, because the leaves are large and my teaspoons don’t heap that well) and at least a fifteen minute steep in only half the amount of water.
The result is nearly as black as coffee, even when diluted half and half with freshly boiled water. The aroma is very tea-like and very very dark. Just by smelling it I can almost feel my tastebuds cowering in fear. There is, unfortunately, still a note of that blasted curry. Woe ruined leaves!
Authentic turkish tea is always taken sweetened with sugar, which I’m sure you could guess from the steeping parameter and dosage of leaves, but I am either fearless or remarkably foolish (the latter being more probable) so I gave it a test sip before sweetening.
ARGH! Astringent! My tongue is dead! I think it just turned to dust and disintegrated or something! Astringency, however, should not be confused with bitterness, of which there is none. As for the curry, I’m not sure. I feel like I can pick up a hint of it, but I’m not sure if that’s not just because I know it’s there and was half expecting to find an unauthorised flavour.
One teaspoon of sugar helps. Two is better. Three is perfect. There’s still a lot of astringency there, but it’s sweetened so much that the sugar go rather well with it. Like the astringency means it can handle more sweetener before it gets cloying and the sugar and astringency in combination sort of bring out each other’s best qualities. Bit like in a sweet and sour sauce.
My tongue is all prickly and confused, though. It can’t seem to decide between ‘AAAAH! Astringent! Shrivel!’ and ‘OOOOH! Sugar! More!’ It’s a strange sensation.
Also, having tasted carefully, I definitely can’t pick up the curry. Maybe smell contamination isn’t such a serious thing when you give the leaves such a harsh treatment.
I stand by my initial rating. It’s much different from what I normally understand to be tea, but it’s still quite nice. It’s not a brewing method I’ll be using very often, but it’s fun enough to do once in a while for the exotic experience.
It was one of those days. Clumsy like a very hot place. At mid-afternoon I was thinking if we couldn’t just skip the rest of today and go straight on with tomorrow. I needed a cup of tea really badly and actually had one planned until I came home and face to face with the to-be-finished pile. Right then. My conscience bid me to look through that first, and as I did I discovered a tea from Bethany that I had completely forgotten I had! First win of the day. No, really. First win.
I actually needed a cup so badly that I just brewed it up and quite forgot to even look at the leaves. I didn’t even think to look up what sort of tea it was. Let’s just say that I was lucky it wasn’t a fragile green…
After having steeped it though, I looked it up and read the description. The colour was golden as promised and the aroma was floral and somewhat wood-y also as promised. There were some talk about notes of tropical fruit too, but I couldn’t find any of that.
The flavour had the same sort of wood-y, almost rooibos-y note. What is it with me finding rooibos-y notes in indian teas lately? First that decaf indian vanilla thing from Numi the other day (the one with the Cup of DOOM!) and now this? Again, nothing on the tropical fruit front, though.
I’m not a fan of the wooden rooibos note, especially considering that there isn’t any rooibos in it at all. I like oolongs but I swing towards the greener chinese ones, generally. I have yet to meet an indian oolong that I fell for. This one is from Darjeeling and even though a lot of black Darjeeling teas are technically borderline oolong, an actual oolong from the area just tastes kind of unfinished. I’ve had a Darjeeling oolong before, but that was years ago and I honestly can’t remember anything about it, so I can’t tell if this is characteristic or not.