1277 Tasting Notes

91
drank Vanilla Caramel by Custom
1277 tasting notes

And another gone and another gone, another one bites the dust. This time Adagio’s vanilla that got the last act of mercy. I didn’t even have a full teaspoon left of this. Nearly but not quite, so I decided to mix it with the caramel from Luka, my local shop, which is a mix I know to be awesome. Since I usually do it half and half and couldn’t do that this time, I tried adding little vanilla sugar to the mix. I tell you, it feels utterly weird to stand there and stir a teapot!

I have no clue how that last additive will influence the flavour. I figure the worst that can happen is it’s a little sweeter than usual. I need to try the vanilla tea from my local shop and see if it’s better than Adagio’s. I liked Adagio’s to begin with but have found myself using it primarily to mix into other stuff.

Probably shouldn’t have added the vanilla sugar. It’s quite vanilla heavy now and the caramel is a bit overpowered. Now whether this is because I used too much vanilla sugar or if it was because adding just doesn’t work, I can’t really know.

It’s still delicious, though.

For those of you who own Adagio’s vanilla and find it a bit lacking in the vanilla department, perhaps a little bit of vanilla sugar can bring it out a bit more?

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50
drank Apricot by Adagio Teas
1277 tasting notes

Another one bites the dust. Like with the blueberry, it’s a bit stronger than I would normally have made it because of the amount of leaves I had left.

I see I gave it a mediocre rating, and that sort of thing always surprises me with a fruit tea. Did I really mean that? I have learned to start trusting myself with this though. Sometimes I push the rating up, but most times it’s left alone.

It’s steeping now and the pot is standing with the lid off (because I’m lazy and I can’t be bothered to search for it) about an arm’s lenght away and I can smell apricot all the way over here.

Yes, I was right about the rating. Again. It tastes like apricots, yes. But it’s a sort of creamy kind of apricot flavour. It actually tastes like there’s milk in it and there isn’t. It’s the wrong sort of sweet. I could have wished for some freshness. So while it does have apricot flavour, fresh apricots don’t taste like this.

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91
drank Blueberry by Adagio Teas
1277 tasting notes

This is to kill the last dill remnants from that awful cucumber stuff. Unfortunately this is also the last of my tin. I made it a bit stronger than usually because there wasn’t enough leaves left for a small pot if I didn’t.

Didn’t hurt it any, though. If anything the blueberry flavour is even more clear, making me wonder if I’ve actually been making it too weak before?

The first few sips tasted a bit odd, mingling with the lingering aftertaste from the white cucumber. Dill/cucumbers + blueberries = bad match. Just saying. Half a cup down now though, and it’s helping considerably.

I need to get some more blueberry tea. I’ve never met a blueberry I didn’t like. Now I get to explore various brands and shops that are more readily available to me than Adagio is.

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4
drank White Cucumber by Adagio Teas
1277 tasting notes

Goodmorning Steepsterites.

Word of the day is ‘BRRRRRRRR!!!!’
I’m having an unplanned day off because my city looks like a christmas card (Look! http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/iwBGrA_DuCCny_0D9mhQfw?feat=directlink and http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/AS7NtzJwc9yVtSMUwALKsw?feat=directlink)
and the train service is unreliable enough today that I got a bit worried about whether or not I’d be able to get home again if I managed to fight my way to work. So I gave up and went home. It’s actually more or a hot cocoa day rather than a tea day, but I haven’t got any milk, and hot cocoa made on water is not worth the effort.

What better time than now to give this white cucumber stuff that Ricky sent me a whirl?

The leaves look fairly normal and of a good size. Some of them are pretty dark. I have to say I agree with other reviewers though. They absolutely reek! They smell like pickles and vinegar and something kind of chemical and it’s the same thing in the finished brew. I was rather imagining fresh cucumbers. Not pickled ones.

The colour is sort of yellow with the slightest hint of green, and surprisingly, because of the smell, it actually tastes more like fresh cucumbers than it does of pickles. It’s so weird! It’s got that same sort of bitterness that cucumbers can have, especially in the peel, and I’m picking up a strong note of dill too. I’m always happiest with something that will leave me with a good aftertaste, but this is a bit much. My mouth tastes like I’ve just been chewing a wad of dill and it feels all green. If I go and look at my tongue in the mirror, I’d probably be surprised that it was still red. As it is, I keep catching myself searching for a note of fish that isn’t there, of course.

I’m glad I only made one cup and it only got worse as it cooled. I’m so not a fan of this. Spitty! Spitty! I’m going to go and make something else to take the bad taste out of my mouth.

JacquelineM

I’m sorry about your nasty tea, but GOSH your city looks utterly charming.

Angrboda

Thank you. The last ice age gave us a good number of hills in this area. The center of the city where I live is down in the hole. I live on the second floor (or third, depending on how you would count the ground floor) and those two pictures are taken from my balcony, the view in both directions. :)

Ricky

Chug it! Don’t waste tea! Haha, it does look like a Christmas Card =D

Cofftea

Sad day! Isn’t it interesting how someone and love something and the next can hate it? How do you feel about cucumbers in general?

gmathis

Absolutely beautiful photos—-in my part of the world, we tend to get ice rather than snow. I’m with you—-hot chocolate with marshmallow creme would be appropriate.

teaplz

Ewwwww. And gorgeous photos, Angrboda!

Angrboda

Oh gosh, some of my last comments appears to have gone missing. It’s supposed to say that those other pictures are pretty dark because I took them shortly after having given up on the train and that they’re blurry because I’m not very good at keeping the camera still. Too impatient.

Ricky, I didn’t waste it, don’t worry. I’m glad it wasn’t a very big cup though.

Cofftea, cucumbers for me are the same as peaches. Good to eat, bad to drink.

Gmathis, we don’t get this much snow very often either. Usually it’s just slush. When we get decent amounts it’s 10-15 cm. I reckon I’ve got about 30 cm today, and just a few kilometers south from here they have about 35 cm. Parts of Funen has upwards of half a meter.

Teaplz, I quite agree with the ew, and thank you. :)

LENA

wow…that’s such a lovely view!

Angrboda

Lena, thank you. :) I quite like living in a hole like this. I sometimes think my rent is a bit on the high side, but I guess I’m paying for a view like that. And for having the pedestrian street almost literally just around the corner.

Auggy

I kind of wish I had gotten the dill flavor out of it instead of Red Hots.

Angrboda

Auggy, I don’t know what Red Hots are, but I’m thinking it’s probably the same flavour that we’re interpreting differently. I’m just glad I didn’t succeed in finding the herring flavour I couldn’t stop myself from searching for. :D That would have been even more disgusting.

Auggy

Red Hots are little red, button-like cinnamon candies. They don’t taste like real cinnamon so much as synthetic cinnamon (the same cinnamon taste that cinnamon liquor tastes like, if that helps?). I pretty much hate them. But I don’t discount a certain similarity to dill. I kind of want to eat some dill to compare now. Maybe if I have some at home. I am greatly intrigued (in a train-wreck sort of way) by the idea of herring tea. It does sound like it would be all sorts of wrong!

Angrboda

I couldn’t really think of it as cinnamon at the time, but now I definitely think it was the same note we tasted. I can sort of see the resemblance even if I can’t taste it.
Herring tea, ewwww!!! I’m not entirely certain that wouldn’t be illegal. It should be.

I ♥ NewYorkCiTEA

Lovely snow photos.

takgoti

Must ditto the comments on your photos. Absolutely picturesque.

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85
drank Pai Mu Tan by Luka Te m.m.
1277 tasting notes

I saved the leaves from this morning on this one, and I’m switching tea-gears mid cup. I’ve just received some hugely bad family news, and I need a cup of this. Not in the way of a celebratory cup, but a comforting cup and a calming down cup, because I’m so angry right now.

I’m beginning to think I actually like the second steep of these leaves better than the first. It seems smoother and sweeter. More pat-on-the-head-everything’s-going-to-be-okay like. Or is that just because I’m using it in this particular situation?

Auggy

Uh oh. I hope things work out well and you’ll be using this tea as a celebratory tea again soon!

teaplz

Awww, Angrboda, I hope everything is okay!

Cofftea

Praying for you! If there’s anything any of us can do to for you, PLEASE don’t hesitate to ask. You have people’s emails now:) Take care of yourself, make time for tea when you can. If you need to put off the travelling tea box for a while, we totally understand. You’re far more important!:)

LENA

I’m sending you some positive vibes right now. Hope everything is alright.

Alannah

Ditto, I’m thinking of you! Take care of yourself.

PeteG

Take care.
Warm Thoughts…

takgoti

I hope that things are on the mend if they haven’t already righted themselves. Preferably that they have righted themselves, though. Sending an e-hug to you.

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100
drank Black Powder Blend by Luka Te m.m.
1277 tasting notes

Christmas shopping is all finished and done (except one thing, Lexitus!) and now I’m in bad need of a cup of this to warm me up again.

I was shocked at how little I had left! Someone must have been nicking it behind my back, it’s just not okay! I should have stocked up on it while I was out anyway. Maybe one small pot’s worth left.

I’ve grown quite addicted to this. A little while ago I had a cup of plain Lapsang Souchong, which I have otherwise loved, and suddenly it just seemed… less. Something was missing. There was just the smokyness and nothing else. I kept catching myself searching for the smoother, stronger base of the green tea and the English Breakfast and it just wasn’t there. Plain Lapsang Souchong just doesn’t cut it anymore, and here I am with nearly 100 g of the stuff.

This, though. This is the stuff. The smoke, the black base, and the green freshness. Yum. It’s great for a cold winter’s day. (And frankly, any other sort of day too)

Boo Boo Rocks Out

You know I find it interesting that you compare a gunpowder to a Lapsang Souchoung. You’re right on with the smokiness they share. The gunpowders do generally have more balanced smokiness (which comes from their pan-fired processing) verses the Lapsang which can be campfire in a cup sometimes. Especially if you factor in that smooth green taste against a fully oxidized black tea.

Angrboda

No no, don’t confuse it with gunpowder. This is a blend that I get from my local shop, a supposedly secret recipe containing English Breakfast Blend, Lapsang Souchong and an unknown green tea (which I think is Chun Mee, because inspite of the name, it doesn’t look like gunpowder). The name of it is directly translated from the danish name which is Krudt-blanding. Krudt=gunpowder.

Auggy

Not the place for it but since the discussion thread was gone, figured you’d see it here… The scotch site is connosr.com.

Angrboda

Thank you so much. :)

Auggy

No problem – I hope he likes it!

Rex Barrett

I’m growing to enjoy the smoke meshed with a green tea more than a black tea. This might be a great combo to try!

Angrboda

Rex, this is where I wish you had access to my local shop. I strongly recommend trying to recreate this. I don’t know what the mixing rates are, but I would guesstimate about 2 parts english breakfast, 1 part green tea and 1 part Lapsang Souchong.

Rex Barrett

Thanks Angrboda! I’ll get a local shop here to play around with that mix. Should be fun to figure it out.

Angrboda

I can’t tell you what the green tea they’ve used is. Supposedly it’s a secret recipe, but the only secret thing about it is the identity of the green tea. In spite of the name I don’t think it’s gunpowder though, because it doesn’t really look like it to me. The leaves are twisted right. I’m suspecting Chun Mee at the moment, but I think any strong flavoured green tea should work here.

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85
drank Pai Mu Tan by Luka Te m.m.
1277 tasting notes

The problem with a celebration tea is that it’s all too easy to think of things to celebrate. Today for example it’s snowing on my city. The real deal! White stuff falling out of the sky! Winter, REAL winter, has come to Denmark at last. I hope it’s snowing in Copenhagen too, just to give some of those state leaders from far away countries an experience. Some of them might never have seen snow before in real life.

This is my fortifying cup before going out in the winter weather (SNOW!!!) and getting the last of the presents. It’s a bit understeeped today because I’m impatient and I wish I could say that it wasn’t damaging it any, but it is a bit watery. At least with the cup I’m using today I couldn’t drain the pot entirely, so I should be able to top it up with some more properly steeped tea.

Still good though.

takgoti

Hee, I say it’s better than having a celebration tea and NOT being able to think of anything to celebrate. Snow is important!

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90

ARGH! I knew I should have copied my text before hitting post seeing as I had been poking about with other stuff on the site in a different tab, but I forgot! Starting over then.

I think this was the name of the brand. I asked in the cafe, but couldn’t write it down at the time and I thought I’d be able to remember. Now I’m a bit uncertain and I can’t seem to find anything about it online. So if anybody is familar with the brand, feel free to correct me.

Anyway. My colleague and I finally got to go to Sofie’s Parents, our favourite cafe in the city after work today. You may remember I tried to get their English Breakfast blend a couple of weeks ago and was served a rather disappointing Earl Grey instead. Well, today we did manage to successfully get a large pot of the English Breakfast Blend. The details given about it said that it was a mix of Ceylon, Assam and Kenyan teas. (The latter surprised me somewhat. I thought it was more often Keemun in EBBs?)

You should have seen the amount of leaves used when they made this! It was amazing! I don’t know what they had been thinking when preparing the tea, but something had definitely been going on in the kitchen because they don’t usually try to steep some 25g of leaves at the same time. O.o It was our good luck that my colleague didn’t want to risk it starting to get bitter so we took it up before the time they told us.

Firstly, the scent: Very strong honey note in this one. I like that in English Breakfast, and it’s both a smell and a flavour note that I’ve always associated with English Breakfast. So that’s a big win with me.

Secondly, flavour sans milk: It’s got a touch of smoke. Not as rough as in Lapsang Souchong, but definitely some pricklyness there. We thought this was probably the Kenyan ingredient.

Thirdly, flavour with milk: Still a note of smoke, but the prickly is smoothed out by the milk. I can’t actually decide if I liked it best with or without milk, but I’m leaning towards without.

Fourthly, development: As you know, tea continues to develop even after the leaves have been removed. This turned significantly darker and as it did, the Assam came out more, dominating the (assumed) Kenyan. I liked this. It kept the tea interesting.

All in all, I liked this a lot. (And you should have seen the piece of strawberry cake I had that tasted of real strawberries. OMG Cake Heaven!)

Travelling Teabox Reminder! Don’t forget to send me your address at [email protected] before Dec. 31st if you want to participate. There is a thread at the forum with all the details and guidelines.

Mike

At what point are we North Americans allowed to be jealous of the European selection and shipping cost to this continent. It only seems fair… I don’t even know if this company ships teas, regardless, my point still stands :)

Angrboda

Smug Mode Engaged. That is all. Seriously, I can’t say anything more. I haven’t checked but I think I’m still bound by my promise to Jason to not complain about shipping for a whole month…
I don’t even know if they do online sale anyway. I can’t find the brand anywhere online. Quite annoying because I’d like to check the name. :/ It bothers me that I’m not sure.

TeaEqualsBliss

I’m in on the Traveling Tea Box…responded to the thread and sent you and email…

Keemun

…love your comment (AGAIN). In Cafes, when I have no control over what is happening to the, in Europe rather prizy, teas I tend to be rather sceptical.
To 85% I give up straight away and order a damn Cappucchino…as I always remember those 15% where I ended up either with the smalles tea bag in the biggest tea pot ( of course posh label on the bag…Eilles, Munich or Fortnum&Mason,London) or with loose tea leafs that were overportioned or underportioned…infusing time, hell knows how long the thing is soaking already in the kitchen…“Sofie’s Parents”…mmmh, do they have a webside?
Is it one of those cozy Cafes in a 150year old building right at the market square…with a hughe cake counter…mmmh, Europe sight

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79

Grinnyguy posted about Earl Grey. I got a fit of inspiration even though Earl Grey is normally not my first choice. Most days I find it kind of dull and every day-ish. Maybe a little overrated as a type. Classics don’t seem to hold much appeal to me.

It’s got a strong bergamot smell. That slightly bitter citrus-y smell that I’m learning to recognise. Kind of sweet, but not the way oranges are, and it’s not a bitterness like the kind you find in grapefruits. It’s sort of prickly and when you know what you’re looking for, probably fairly easily recognisable.

Apart from when I’m at Lexitus’, the last time I had Earl Grey was a few weeks ago when I was at the cafe and they gave me the wrong tea. I remember finding that one rather too bitter and smelling strongly of citrus as soon as I poured. This one is very much more controlled when it comes to citrus scent. It’s there, clearly, when you smell it, but it doesn’t invade your nostrils when your nose is an arm’s length away.

Citrusy, but not sour and without making you feel like it might as well have been a lemon tea. It’s got just a touch of bitterness on the swallow, but not nearly as much as the presumed Kusmi had. Of course I haven’t brewed this as strongly as they did that day in the cafe.

As for the cornflowers, I can’t pick them out in the flavour, so I don’t know if they actually have any effect on it at all, or if they’re just there for show. I like to think that they smooth it out some, but even if they are just there for show though, I’d still get this version. Just because they’re pretty.

My local shop beats Kusmi by several horse lenghts.

Angrboda

Hey, this is the third Earl Grey post in a row on my dashboard tasting notes page! :D

Ricky

I’m going to make a cup of Earl Grey right now xD, j/k.

Jillian

Have you started the Earl Grey Ecstasy (or something)? :D

BTW, I honestly don’t think the cornflowers are there for anything but show.

Angrboda

No, mine was the third of the lot, and only because I saw Grinnyguy post about an Earl Grey. So I think it must have been him wot started it. :)

Peggie Bennett

I love Earl Grey! That bergamot gets me every time! I love that bergamot smell so much I bought the Laughter perfume by Space NK because it has a bergamot smell! Whomever that Earl Grey is, he smells good!

Grinnyguy

You can blame me if you like. Any time when I inspire tea-drinking is a little success for me, although I’m preaching to the converted here! I like Earl Grey because the Bergamot taste is nice, but cheap tea companies use it as an excuse to use poor quality tea leaves and assume the bergamot taste with overpower everything. Getting the right tea and the right amount of bergamot must be difficult.

Peggie Bennett

That’s interesting, I didn’t know that bergamot was used that way. Can you recommend a good Earl Grey for me to try to see if I’ve been drinking crap flowered with bergamot?

Grinnyguy

Oh I make myself sound like an expert when I’m really not. Try asking Betsvc, whose tealog is almost exclusively reviews of different earl greys. I also slightly made up the thing about using bergamot to cover up a bad cup of tea, but I have strong suspicions that it’s true

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87

Ah Chun Mee, the green tea I really wanted yesterday. Remembered that today and made me a small pot.

I like the leaves in this one and how they’re twisted. They’re cute!

I’m currently waiting for the second infusion to steep. It’s very light in colour compared to the first one, but it’s nice all the same. I’m not sure how many steeps I think it’s possible get out of this one though. I think maybe one or two others, but the first time around was definitely the best.

(Additionally, is one of you trying to add me as a chatbuddy on Gmail? I’ve posted my email address freely here a few times, but I can’t think of anywhere else someone might have come across it as I use a different address for other things.
Anyway, if it’s one of you, could you drop me a comment, please? Otherwise I’ll just say no. I’d rather not have random strangers on my chat list….)

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Profile

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

Denmark

Website

http://angrboda.livejournal.com

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