1323 Tasting Notes

drank Green Tea by Unknown
1323 tasting notes

I’ve been gathering courage for this. After dropping a certain package off at the post office I was attacked by sudden drowsiness. Initially I thought, “bad time for tasting a new tea”, but then I thought, “half unconscious is probably a pretty good time for tasting a new and intimidating tea, actually…”

For Christmas I got this great big mug with the word ‘tea’ on it (which btw isn’t very good to drink from. Too large and unwieldy), some biscuits, a tea measuring spoon and a tin with these bags in it. I can’t find anything about which brand it supposedly is or which type of green tea it supposedly is.

It looks like dust and fannings in the bag, so I’m not getting my hopes up about the quality. Also, it smells rather a lot of salt water and seaweed. Like, when I smell it, I can almost hear the seagulls. It smells like something you ought to drink on a blustery day while standing in the dunes and looking out towards the sea.

Oh look, it’s radioactive green tea again! That must mean there’s a good chance for it being a japanese green, but then it quickly turned a much less amusing sunny yellow, so now I don’t know.

It still smells pretty salt waterish, but not as blustery-day-in-the-dunes-ish. It’s more like after you’ve gone home again and you’re feeling all blown through, so you need something warm so you can feel like a person again, while waiting for dinner to be ready. The dinner bit comes from a buttery note in the aroma.

Okay, there’s no way out, so I’m taking a sip. Aaaaaaaaand we’re back on the beach. Very strong note of seaweed in the flavour here. To continue with the blustery-day-at-the-beach scenario, a fricking seagull just flew off with my dinner so now I have to make do with seaweed in a cup! And not that fancy sushi stuff either. I’m actually finding myself wondering what it would have tasted like if it had been brewed on lightly salted water instead of just tap water. (I’m not even remotely dumb enough to actually test that particular theory out, though)

All that said, I’m not actually completely disliking it, it’s just different. It’s a pleasant enough sort of taste once you’ve reconciled yourself with it. If you expected something sweet and grassy, you would be hugely unhappy with this. But if something like this was what you were expecting, it’d probably be quite nice. Having remembered to take a good sniff at the bags before steeping, I had a fairly good idea of what I was in for, so I’d probably give it around 65 or so.

This isn’t the first unknown green tea I’ve had and others might need it too, so I’ll refrain from using the rating slider.


Sweet the mysterious package is making a journey around the world! Hopefully it doesn’t get stuck in customs when the time comes ;D


I crossed off ‘gift’ on the customs sticker, so I’m hoping it shouldn’t happen. :)


I love to read your tasting notes. Such vivid writing! Thanks!

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drank Assam Deluxe FTGFOP by A C Perch's
1323 tasting notes

Goodmorning Steepsterites.
The last of the three Lexitus-teas.

Somewhat oversteeped and gone a bit cold due to me being distracted, so I’ll have to try again for a proper post and rating later.

The initial impression is promising though, and it may indeed live up to the ‘Deluxe’ and the *F*ar *T*oo *G*ood *F*or *O*rdinary *P*eople.


I think I will make up my own words for all those letters after the assams too! I like yours!!!


I can’t take credit for it. Lexitus asked what they meant and I looked up the indian grading system on Wikipedia. That’s where I found it. But it’s a good and easy way to remember the correct sequence of letters. :)


:) :) :) I love a good joke, wherever it comes from! I am going to try and have some fun with the assams I have at home!


J -> I am still laughing (in a, laughing with you sense, not laughing at you) about your interpretation of those letters, it is completely perfect, well done!

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This is a Lexitus-tea that I got for Christmas. It’s one that I saw on AC Perch’s site and wanted to try and he remembered that, so yay him.

It’s a very interesting tea for me, this one. My first ever tea from the South American continent so I have little clue as to what to expect taste- and quality-wise. AC Perch’s say it’s similar in flavour to Japanese greens, but I have little experience with them, so it doesn’t help me much.

The leaves are large and very dark, so at first glance it looks like an average non-jade oolong. A fair amount of twigs in there too. The aroma of the dry leaves is fairly typical green. Not overwhelming in strength and sort of leafy sweet, a hint of nuttyness. Due to the leaf size it’s a bit difficult to scoop so I’ve fallen back on the same way I scoop my Pai Mu Tan. For one small pot with farm animals on it: Plenty.

AC Perch’s recommend a steeping time of six minutes, which I thought was rather a lot for a first go, so I’ve given it a little less, and since I can’t empty the whole pot into this cup in one go, I’ll get a second cup with a longer steeping time so I can compare there.

The colour is very light, and it’s one of those funky coloured once that makes you wonder if it might actually be mildly radioactive. A pale yellow greenish sort of glow-in-the-dark colour. You know those white stars? It’s nearly that colour. It has a very special smell too. There is an extremely sweet note to it that if I didn’t know any better, I’d think there was a lot of sugar in it. It’s kind of vanillaish, and maybe just a touch, the slightest little bit of something salty or seaweedish. It’s very very very little though, and the primary aroma note is the vanillaish sweetness.

It tastes nothing like it smells. There’s a typical green sort of nuttyness and not really any vanillaish sweetness. It’s got a good kick to the flavour, a bit more woody than grassy. It’s actually rather nice, but it’s not a tea that you can keep on discovering. What you see is what you get.

The second cup, which had a longer steeping time (longer, probably, than the recommended six minutes) is darker and much more yellow in colour. The aroma is pretty much the same, but strangely enough it’s not even remotely as strong as the aroma in the shorter steeped cup. The flavour has lost much of the nuttyness and gained quite a bit of astringency instead, and a sourish note too. I definitely liked the shorter steep better, but I feel that this bodes well for another couple of steeps.

ETA: Interesting. Second steep, although nearly forgotten and therefore severely oversteeped is actually still quite nice. It’s got a bit of a bite, but nothing like the second round of the first steep. Mostly it’s pretty smooth, I think.


Good for him for remembering, indeed! This sounds interesting, I haven’t had Bolivian tea before. I have seen that light-green-almost-neon color before, though – reading that made my brain immediately go to Adagio’s citron green.


I’ve seen that colour before too, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen it in as radioactive a shade as this one though. :)


You should test it in the dark!


tests Oh poot! It doesn’t glow. But it’s the sort of colour where I actually surprised myself with being surprised. (yes, I tested the glow-in-the-dark-factor in my bathroom for realz)


Lots of Japanese Teas have that radio-active looking color…..always freaks me out initially…especially if its steeping in a clear pot as I glare at it from across the kitchen :-p. . . .gotta try this Bolivian one out.


EvaPeva, perhaps that’s one of the reasons they say it’s similar to Japanese green teas. I really must broaden my horizon with Japan. It might be fun to do some more direct comparison.


I have lots I can send you. . . most will not have any English on them…but I can send you a variety!


@Angrboda That is awesome.

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drank Black Powder Blend by Luka Te m.m.
1323 tasting notes

HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!! After the sadness of using the last of this yesterday, I have today been fortunate enough to leave work some 3½ hours early due to extreme boredom. By around noon we had received the grand total of ONE sample, so we drew lots on who got to leave early.

On the way home, I stopped in at my local shop in the intention of stocking up on this one. I have stocked up. BOY, have I stocked up!!! O.o Turns out I’m pretty much the only person who buys it, so they took it off the shelf to be discontinued. They had some half of a sales tin left of it in the back, and the guy made me an offer I couldn’t refuse. He let me buy the lot and when that runs out, all I have to do is stop in and say, and he’ll order another lb for me the next time they order stuff home AND he promised he would try to get a little discount for me. Everybody say awesomesauce!!

Yeah, I just bought 1½ lbs of tea. Of just one blend. Tin has been filled, Great Big Bag of Tea has been safely stowed away in a suitable place.

And I am celebrating with a cup. Right now.

Rating is already in top, but if it hadn’t been, I’d have given it a notch upwards for awesome customer service.




That sounds like a word to add to the Steepster Dictionary post in the forums! LOL


I can’t take credit for it though. It’s one I’ve picked up elsewhere on the interwebs. I just like it because it sounds good to say. :)


It doesn’t have to be an original! LOL


Awesomesauce indeed!


Serious awesomesauce! Going home early, the shop telling you they’ll order tea just for you? If that’s not a day full of win, I want to know what is.


They took over the shop in the fall, maybe the previous owner told them about me. :p Or maybe it was my O.o face when I thought they didn’t have any. (Or maybe he just wanted to get rid of his leftovers and isn’t really counting on me ever coming back to ask for more once I’ve worked my way through so much of it :p )


You’ll have to share the wealth with some of your fellow Steepsterites, we don’t want it going bad on you after all….. ;)


Happy belated Awesomesauce! o

Phil Hovatter

Awesomesauce, indeed! I’m a big believer in buying gobs of things I like and use — when the price is right. I just bought a pound of my beloved Adagio peach oolong, six ounces of Gunpowder, and some other things. Supposed to arrive today. I sit by the door and wait…

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drank Black Powder Blend by Luka Te m.m.
1323 tasting notes

I have armed myself with my laptop, my atlas and a large cup of this tea (using the very last of my leaves, sadness!).

Guess what I’m doing now.


Yay! Route planning. Have you considered using Google Earth to help with the planning?


Nah, too much technical hassle with figuring out how stuff works and windows open. I’ve got a list and my atlas open on eastern USA, and then I can switch people around. Google Earth often has the same effect on me that Wikipedia does. Distractions galore! I always end up following a load of links in the text and ending up on an entirely different subject. I’d just get stuck trying to find everybody’s houses. :)


I soooooo appreciate you doing all this planning!


Thank you, Jacqueline. :)


I appreciate you also. In truth, I suspect everyone appreciates the work you are doing on this.


Thank you Carolyn. :)


Wow, you’re using an atlas?…That’s so hardcore.

Seriously, I am SO EXCITED! Thank you so much for organizing this!


sweet! i’m excited! thanks so much for putting it all together.


Hyrulehippie, I have to. :) I know the approximate whereabouts of the various states but I’m not THAT strong in american geography. And google earth and such would just have me trying to find everybody’s houses and I’d never get finished. :p

Hyrulehippie & Lena, thank you, you’re quite welcome.

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drank Fujian Baroque by Adagio Teas
1323 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.


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 :)


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


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!


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.


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!


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 :(


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?


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.


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


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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drank Pai Mu Tan by Luka Te m.m.
1323 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.


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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drank Queen's Blend by A C Perch's
1323 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.



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


Happy New Year!


Happy New Year!

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drank Russian Caravan by Tea Center
1323 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.


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


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


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


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.


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?


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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drank Christmas by Pickwick
1323 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.


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

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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





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