1268 Tasting Notes

61
drank Fujian Baroque by Adagio Teas
1268 tasting notes

OMG I just noticed this morning that Ricky’s no-icon-uploaded-icon isn’t actually, because it’s mirrored! Never realised that before.

I’m feeling a little more human today, so I’ve made a pot of one of the remaining Bethany-teas.

I’ve tried sniffing the leaves, but they didn’t really seem to have much in the way of a smell. Pouring a few out in my hand, all I could really smell was my skin. I’m fairly certain the leaves aren’t actually supposed to smell like me, so I’m assuming it’s actually me smelling like me.

My expectations based on other people’s posts about this are dangerously high, so I’m a little worried about that. It’s always better when it’s the other way around. Low expectations → pleasant surprise. I’m also dangerously impatient and tempted the start before it’s really done steeping, even though I know that this rarely gives a good result.

Right, it’s ready now. Cocoa notes, check! And I’ve only poured the first cup. Fruity notes, check! They’re loud too. It smells a bit like when I was little and my mother made homemade jam from the blackcurrant bush we had in the garden.

What a surprising flavour! It’s very fruity in flavour. I’m surprised that this is supposed to be a plain tea. It definitely tastes like there’s been some sort of addition to it. I’ve checked the other teas that Bethany sent me, and I don’t think it sounds like any of those have rubbed off.

First there’s a little bit of a peppery sort of note, just a hint, and then there’s the tart fruity flavour. I can’t pick up the cocoa in the flavour, only in the aroma. Or maybe there is a small hint of it on the finish, but I’m not finding that on every sip, so I’m a little in doubt as to whether or not it’s something that I’m convincing myself that I can find because I really want to find it.

It’s good, but my enormously high expectations haven’t really been fulfilled. I could have lived with the fruit note not being quite this strong.

(Are we sure there isn’t any flavouring in this?)

ETA: I’ve pushed the rating down again as I’ve been drinking. This fruityness is getting a bit… much.

Ricky

Haha, yeah I couldn’t figure out an avatar (steepster really needs some default ones for us to choose :D) so I was like why not be different and reverse the little blue teapot :)

Micah

gasp…. I noticed that once but I didn’t think anything of it. Not so good at connecting the dots over here…

teaplz

I noticed that, and I got really confused, because I was wondering HOW you did that. I thought it was maybe because you were a male, and they got a different teapot… but I was WRONG. Nice job, Ricky!

Auggy

This makes me wonder if the blackcurrant smell I get off of my Teance Yunnan Gold is actually in the tea or from sitting next to a blackcurrant tea when I first put it in my pantry. Because the smell seems to be getting stronger since it has been in the tin, but at the same time, it just seems… wrong.

Angrboda

Ricky, I feel like I totally outed you now. :D

Auggy, that makes me wonder if we ought not try and get some of our mediocre teas at least twice from different suppliers/shopping rounds… You know, to see if it’s consistent. But if it was mediocre, why would we want to spend more money on it? Dilemma!

Ricky

Ahhh, my secret’s been blown! I’ll think of a new icon soon enough. Actually, I was given this icon, because the steepster gods wanted to play tricks on me :(

takgoti

One of these things is not like the other, one of these things just isn’t the same…

@Angrboda Too bad there weren’t cocoa notes in the taste. I feel like that would have really toned down the fruit. Was it cloying? Or just…loud?

Angrboda

Takgoti, I wouldn’t say it was cloying the way the vanilla note in the ML Orange Jasmine thing was towards the end of the pot (don’t know if you’re familiar with that one. It’s from Mighty Leaf), I’d say it was more just loud. A sort of flavour that was okay in smaller quantities but after a while it was just too sour and sort of un-ripe. Bit like if you add some salt on food, for example, and accidentally add a little too much. In the beginning it’s fine, but after a while it’s just too salty. So, okay, maybe a little cloying but not all the time. Or something. If any of this makes sense. I feel like I’m contradicting myself a lot here.
If I had been blind-tasting this one, I would have sworn it was some sort of berry flavour.

takgoti

Ah, okay. I’m not familiar with ML Orange Jasmine, but I completely get what you’re saying with the salt thing.

sophistre

This is an unexpected review for this tea, but interesting. It has definitely been on my list of stuff to try. Since I don’t normally go in for overt fruity flavors, maybe I should stick with a smaller sample…thanks for the useful info!

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85
drank Pai Mu Tan by Luka Te m.m.
1268 tasting notes

I got green tea for christmas from my little cousin and I got three kinds of tea from Lexitus also (and a cd and a book. I gave him tea and a cd. We gave each other nearly the same things.) I also have some Bethany-teas that I haven’t tried yet.

But I’ve gone for this one because I’m too tired what with being social and having trampled around in the forest for two hours to be able to taste anything properly and that would be a shame with any of the new ones. I’m not currently in any sort of position to do them justice. So, something familiar and uncomplicated. This is the one I’ve logged the most times, so it seems a good choice. The fact that it’s one of my all-time favourites, doesn’t hurt either.

Also, Takgoti and Teaplz both had it recently (although a different brand) and both mentioned a note of walnuts. It was one of those things that just clicked for me when I read it. Of course there’s a walnut note. I just have to check you know? And confirm it in my head.

Yup, there it is. And it’s loud too! I can’t believe I never thought to connect it with walnuts before, it seems so obvious now.

Should also go well with Midsomer Murders which starts in five minutes or so. Whether it’ll suit the ice cream flavour that I got (Chunky Monkey) is a different matter. Well, it has walnut bits in it, so maybe it’ll be awesome in combination with the tea.

takgoti

Hee, that’s so funny about your respective Christmas gifts. Also funny about the walnut note. Sometimes there are so many things going on in a tea that it takes someone else mentioning it for it to hit home for me, too. Or really, even when there aren’t so many things going on in a tea. I have a tendency to miss the obvious.

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77
drank Queens Blend by A C Perch's
1268 tasting notes

Happy New Year Steepsterites.

We’re at about 9.31pm now around here and my dad just called to wish us happy new year. Well. I say us. Mostly they seemed to want to talk to Lexitus. Right. I can see I’m no longer interesting. huffs

Anyway, we’ve just made tea. A brand new addition to my hmm larger than I thought collection. AC Perch’s claim the queen actually drinks this.

It’s got a reddish sort of colour, bit like a dark honey, and the aroma is very Earl Grey-ish. I can’t seem to find any of the Gunpowder there.

The flavour is also mostly Earl Grey-ish, but it’s got some sort of flowery more leafy kind of note to it which I’m assuming must be the Gunpowder. Somewhat astringent too which makes me wonder if it might have been better with a shorter steeping time.

LENA

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

It’s only 2:45pm here, so I still have several hours to go.

takgoti

Happy New Year!

Carolyn

Happy New Year!

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78
drank Russian Caravan by Tea Center
1268 tasting notes

Okay, so tidy-ness plans for New Year’s? Not gonna happen. But Lexitus should be used to the level of chaos that constitutes as ‘tidy’ around here, so he’ll just have to deal with it. I’ve only had that foul dentisty christmas tea so far today and I want something proper.

So I’m jumping into the last of my Jillian-teas. I can’t remember where or what the situation was, but Jillian said something somewhere at one point about what actually went into a russian caravan blend and it made me think that if you took a russian caravan and stuffed a measure of green tea in it, you would get something similar to my dearly beloved Gunpowder blend (which, again, has nothing to do with the green tea known as Gunpowder), so now I’m probably going to have a few difficulties with not imagining this containing an unknown green tea and comparing. Did any of this make sense?

It’s a golden colour, much lighter than I had expected. I was expecting something reddish. The aroma is dominated by Lapsang Souchong and the smokiness. It’s not as prickly as a plain Lapsang, but I still can’t really find anything else in the aroma. Maybe the best way to describe it is that it smells a bit like a Lapsang Souchong with milk in it as opposed to a Lapsang straight up.

Nope, it’s definitely nothing like my gunpowder blend (which has nothing to do with Gunpowder as in the green tea). This seems thinner and weaker for one thing. It doesn’t have the same kick in the backside. I’m picking up some strong Darjeeling notes in the flavour and the Lapsang seems only barely there. I’m only getting the smokey prickly sensation in the very beginning of the sip and after that it’s just Darjeeling.

It’s been a good while since I’ve last had a russian caravan, but this tastes nothing like I remember it. It’s good, yes. But it’s not really what I was looking for.

ETA: The second cup, somewhat harder steeped, now THAT’S what I’m looking for. It’s much more pronounced on the smoke and the Keemun is coming into play too instead of just being dominated by the grassy Darjeeling.

Note to self. Oversteep on purpose in future.

EvaPeva

wow….so many abstract observations here! Very intriguing.

Angrboda

Heehee, when it comes to rambling, one does one’s best. ;)

Ricky

The combination of all these teas sounds ehh intriguing… lapsang and darjeeling.. doesn’t sound like it would mix well together.

Angrboda

I wouldn’t call it entirely successful, but it’s not a disaster either. I think, if I hadn’t been expecting something different, I’d have liked it a lot better.

EvaPeva

i know….makes me super curious..so much going on! but im guessing Lapsang was just a faint hint? (as you mentioned)..so maybe its alright?

Angrboda

It was for me on the first cup. I came out much better on the second cup which had had a longer steep. I got it from Jillian, though, and if you check out her notes on it, she got something entirely different out of it, which I think was pretty interesting.
If you like or tolerate Lapsang, you might like this. If you absolutely don’t like Lapsang at all, I’m not sure you would appreciate this one much either. Depending, of course, on how long you steep it. I didn’t think I gave it a particularly short steeping time on the first round, I’m pretty sure it got at least five minutes, but there you are. (I don’t time it, so I wouldn’t know for certain)

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13
drank Christmas by Pickwick
1268 tasting notes

I’m bagging it this morning on purpose so that I can get my chores done instead of hanging around on Steepster all day, writing novel-length reviews.

In the season spirit I found this ancient bag of christmas tea which I figured I’d be able to drink without the urge to elaborate on to the usual extreme.

No clue what’s in it, but being a christmas tea I think we can all make some educated guesses. I find that it smells like cinnamon, cardamom, ginger and dentist. No, really. That smell when you walk into a dentist’s clinic. There’s something orange-y underneath also, I think.

It kind of tastes like dentist too. You know that stuff they use when they polish the teeth? Imagine that cinnamon-flavoured. I think, though, that if the bags hadn’t been as old as they are, the dentist-y flavour would have been different, hopefully not present at all. I’ll finish my cup because I need it, but I can’t rate it higher than this.

takgoti

Tea that reminds me of the dentist’s office would make me a little depressed.

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77
drank Orange Jasmine by Mighty Leaf Tea
1268 tasting notes

I made a second steep of this after having had a pot of it earlier today, and I stuck it in the fridge. It’s chilled now, and it’s just right!

Preparation
Iced
takgoti

Oooh. Will need to remember this if I ever try it.

Angrboda

It certainly helped with the almost cloying vanilla sweetness. I didn’t even sweeten it before putting it in the fridge. (I didn’t dare!)

Cecilia Tan

Most of the tea blends I’ve had from Mighty Leaf seem to feature a lot of vanilla. Which is fine if vanilla is what I’m in the mood for.

Angrboda

I’ve never had anything from them before, but now that I’ve found that swedish sister site they’ve got, I’ll definitely keep that in mind.

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69
drank Black Frost by The Simple Leaf
1268 tasting notes

Another Bethany tea. I remember picking this one for my wishlist for her, because I have never had tea from the Nilgiri region before. I have no clue what to expect, but I’m expecting something akin to Ceylon, since that’s relatively close.

It’s got a nice golden colour and a very grassy aroma, almost like a newly mowed lawn. A spicier than that, though. Underneath it I’m picking up a sweet note, almost caramel-like, and all in all, it’s reminding me more of Darjeeling than it does of Ceylon. Or both maybe. Like a middle thing between Darjeeling and Ceylon. I’m not really sure, I change my mind every time I sniff it.

It’s very vegetal in flavour and very sweet in an almost sour-like way. Like citrus-fruit, without actually having even a hint of a citrus flavour. It tastes kind of green the same way that a Darjeeling can taste green and it definitely doesn’t remind me of Ceylon in flavour at all. It’s almost like… like it’s not quite ripe yet.

I’m not sure it’s something I would seek out as a type all that eagerly again, but it’s definitely drinkable.

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77
drank Orange Jasmine by Mighty Leaf Tea
1268 tasting notes

I found a swap package from Bethany in my letterbox yesterday when I came home from work. I’ve spent the time since at war with myself over which one to try first. Eventually I resorted to Ippy-Dippy and landed on this.

Quite fitting actually since I was wanting something orange-y recently and didn’t really have any.

I forgot to take a look at the dry leaves before brewing, so you’ll have to do with out. After steeping, though, they smell sweetly floral. Like jasmine and just a touch of sweetness from the orange. The tea itself smells pretty much the same way, just stronger and sweeter. It kind of reminds me of orange chocolate. It’s got a nice clear and deep amber colour in the cup.

The taste is like sweet oranges. Almost orange juice-y but with the floral notes of the jasmine just underneath. I like how the jasmine is understated in this one. I’m still holding on to that orange chocolate impression too. I swear I haven’t added any sweetening agent to the cup, but it tastes like there’s something there. Don’t know what it is, but it’s not sugar. I’m leaning sort of towards almonds, which I actually think would fit an orange quite nicely.

If I taste really carefully I can pick up the tea itself underneath too. Sort of nutty and with that special sort of flavour that puts me in mind of an oolong. I like this, but I made a large pot and I’m not entirely certain I’ll like the last cup as much as I liked the first one.

And the best of it all, guess what! I just discovered that Mighty Leaf has a swedish website too that ships to ALL of Scandinavia! I expect it’s probably somewhat smaller than the american site, like the two sites that Adagio has, one for America and one for Europe, but still. For the freaking win! WOOT! I shall decipher the swedish and have a closer look at that later.

ETA: I’ve realised what the sweet stuff in it is. It’s vanilla. And lots of it too. I think I could have lived without the vanilla. At least in this quantity.

Bethany

I had a very similar to reaction to this tea – I was really surprised by how sweet it was, and I couldn’t shake that orange chocolate taste, along with that touch of jasmine. The sweetness was a bit overpowering, but I liked this overall.

Angrboda

It’s helped now that I’ve realised where the sweetness is coming from. It struck me when I read ML’s description of it and they mentioned the vanilla. I’ve saved the bag for a resteep which I’m planning on chilling. I think that would work really well because it’s so sweet and fruity.

Micah

Just the name Orange Jasmine is enough to make me want some of this. And judging from your review it’s definitely worth a try. I hope I can find it as a single tea bag at the on campus grocery!

Angrboda

I quite liked it. A bit cloying towards the bottom of the pot what with the vanilla, so maybe a big pot wasn’t the best way to go. It was really good chilled too though.

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74
drank Oolong tea candy by Unknown
1268 tasting notes

I may be pushing the limits with this one. I debated whether or not it belonged on the board or in one of my own posts, but eventually I decided that since it’s made of primarily real tea and it’s built pretty much like my other posts so here it is.

Once upon a time I was in a travelling teabox, the very same that inspired the one I’m organising here (note! Sign up for the Travelling Teabox by emailing address and steepster username to me at [email protected] before dec 31st! Guidelines for participation can be found in this thread (http://steepster.com/discuss/102-travelling-teabox) on the board) and someone added these candies that I nabbed a couple of. Two red ginseng candies from Korea, containing sugar, maltose, red korean ginseng chunks, raw honey and peppermint, and two oolong tea candies from god knows where in Asia and containing oolong tea, maltose and sugar. (There were also a couple of maple candies which I’ve eaten long ago)

I’ve never had the guts to try either of these, but tonight I happened across them and I was feeling brave. It’s a sort of greenish dark grey colour and it smells vaguely of tea. It definitely does taste like a sweetened proper oolong tea, though. It’s like a dry cup of tea. It’s like…. sucking on the leaves after brewing. It tastes like the inside of the pot smells after a number of good steeps. I wish I could get my hands on more of these, because they’re really kinda yummy! One is definitely enough, but I could get addicted to these things.

(The ginseng ones didn’t actually have tea in them, smelled rather bad, and tasted worse… it was like sucking on a bit of dry toothpaste. The less said about those the better.)

Carolyn

I came across this today while looking at pu-erhs: http://www.puerhshop.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=105&products_id=725

They’re called pu-erh candies. I’m not certain whether they are actually candy or not. All I know is that they definitely have pu-erh in them.

Cofftea

Oolong and pu erh candies! WOW!!! I’ve only seen green tea ones before! I would agree w/ the “pushing the limits” (at least for current steepster usage, I’m praying we’ll some day be able to offically log tea food items/accessories/wares)- but this is just too cool! This is the very reason I want that idea implemented:)

Cofftea

@Carolyn, it isn’t actual candy. It’s brewed so I’m thinking they use the word candy instead of cake maybe?

takgoti

I can totally see myself becoming addicted to these.

Angrboda

Carolyn, those look awesome. Just right for travel sized. Although I can just see someone getting one and try to eat it. LOL! :D

Takgoti, I am blessed with not knowing how to get more. Really. If I knew, I might get myself in trouble.

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64
drank Raspberry Chocolate by Custom
1268 tasting notes

Home again! At last! Visiting family is nice and all, but nothing really beats coming home and sitting down in your own furniture with your own door closed behind you and just… breathe… out.

And now I just needed some good honest solid invigorating proper tea. And then I make this mix of Adagio’s Chocolate and Adagio’s Raspberry in more or less equal measure. Yeah, I can’t really see any logic in the choice either, but there you are.

I could have sworn I had tried this mix before, but I couldn’t seem to find it in my logs. I must have been confusing it with something else.

It smells mostly of chocolate. Milk chocolate actually. I think the raspberry is sort of smoothing it out and adding sweetness, although it doesn’t actually smell like actual raspberries the way the dry leaves do.

While the smell is awesome, the taste is kind of watery. With that sort of smell I was expecting something more viscous like milk, so the first mouthful actually seemed kind of watery. It tastes quite nice but just not of chocolate. Or of raspberry, really. It’s like it’s sort of cancelling itself out.

I really can’t understand if I haven’t done this before, though!

takgoti

My mom is obsessed with these chocolate raspberry cremes from Sees and so whenever people come back from out west, they bring her some. We got a box for Christmas this year, and you’ve inspired me to go nom on one.

Also, you can’t underestimate the power of having a space all your own. Especially after a lot of family time!

Hyrulehippie

I always feel like that after a family visit. It’s nice to see them, but it’s seriously draining.

Angrboda

Takgoti, oooooh nummy! Fruity chocolate is so awesome. I’ve been eyeing a blueberry chocolate that I’ve seen when grocery shopping. I haven’t allowed myself one yet, because of and attempt to try and save money, but soon!

And both, as for family time, I totally agree. It’s not relaxing in the same way that being at home by yourself is at all. Even when you find a moment to do something quitely by yourself, you still have one ear out to jump to whenever someone says. Besides, there are other factors (health problems and the like) that make spending extended time with family a little extra stressful, although it wasn’t really that bad this year. I accidentally offended my mother a bit once when I wanted to leave a day earlier than they had expected, and I heard myself saying something about also wanting some ‘time off’ before going back to work. Stupid thing to say, really.

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Bio

Ang lives with Husband and two kitties, Charm and Luna, in a house not too far from Århus. Apart from drinking tea, she enjoys baking, especially biscuits, reading and jigsaw puzzles. She has recently acquired an interest in cross-stitch and started a rather large project. It remains to be seen whether she has actually bitten off more than she can chew…

Ang prefers black teas and the darker sorts of oolongs. She has to be in the mood for green and white, and she enjoys, but knows little to nothing about, pu-erh.

Her preferences with black teas are the Chinese ones, particularly from Fujian, but also Keemun and just about anything smoky. She occasionally enjoys Yunnans but they’re not favourites. She has taken some time to research Ceylon teas, complete with reference map, and has recently developed some interest in teas from Africa.

She is sceptical about Indian blacks as she generally finds them too astringent and too easy to get wrong. She doesn’t really care for Darjeelings at all. Very high-grown teas are often not favoured.

She likes flavoured teas as well, particularly fruit flavoured ones, but also had an obsession with finding the Perfect Vanilla Flavoured Black and can happily report that this reclusive beast has been spotted in a local teashop near where she works. Any and all vanilla flavoured teas are still highly attractive to her, though. Also nuts and caramel or toffee. Not so much chocolate. It’s a texture thing.

However, she thinks Earl Grey is generally kind of boring. Cinnamon and ginger are also not really a hit, and she’s not very fond of chais. Evil hibiscus is evil. Even in small amounts, and yes, Ang can usually detect hibiscus, mostly by way of the metallic flavour of blood it has.

Ang is not super impressed with rooibos or honeybush on their own. She doesn’t care for either, really, but when they are flavoured, they go usually go down a treat.

Ang used to have a Standard Panel of teas that she tried to always have on hand. She put a lot of thought into defining it and decided what should go on it. It was a great idea on paper, but in practise has been discovered to not really work as well.

Ang tries her best to make a post on Steepster several times a week. She tends to write her posts in advance in a word doc (The Queue) and posting from there. This, she feels, helps her to maintain regularity and stops her from making five posts in three days and then going three weeks without posting anything at all.

Angrboda is almost always open to swapping. Just ask her. Due to the nature of the queue, however, and the fact that it’s some 24 pages long at the moment, it may take a good while from she receives your parcel and until she actually posts about it.

The Formalities

Contact Angrboda by email: [email protected]
Contact Ang on IM on Google chat

Find Ang on…
Steam: Iarnvidia (Or Angrboda. She changed her display name and now is not certain which one to search for. She uses the same picture though, so she is easily recognised)
Goodreads: Angrboda
Livejournal: See website.
Dreamwidth: Ask her

Bio last updated February 2014

Location

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Website

http://angrboda.livejournal.com

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