392 Tasting Notes

drank Honey, I Dew by DAVIDsTEA
392 tasting notes

This is the Mystery Tea that DAVIDs had for their naming contest a while back. I don’t recall it being available to buy when I sampled it during the contest, but then a few weeks ago I was in one of my local DAVIDs and there was a big container of “Mystery Tea” on the shelf. I figured I’d pick some up and this is the name it rang up as.

The dry leaf is heavy on the fruit pieces, though still has a good amount of white tea in it, unlike some other white fruit blends. It smells very light, summery and fruity, with melon, apple and hints of eucalyptus.

Steeped it smells somewhat medicinal, reminiscent of the distinctive melange of fragrances that you find in a shop that sells traditional Chinese medicine. It isn’t overpowering, but layered over the fragrance of melon.

On the palate, the finish is sweet, but the rest of the sip is surprisingly not. There’s a touch of woodiness, with lots of melon and apple notes. Very mild astringency, and a bit of back of the tongue bitterness, that’s subtle, but also slightly off putting.

It’s not bad but I’m feeling kind of ambivalent about this tea. There’s not a lot of actual tea flavour to it, at least not in a really pleasant way, and I kind of wish the fruit was juicier tasting. I’ll probably finish my sample, but I doubt I’ll rebuy.

Flavors: Apple, Bitter, Eucalyptus, Fruity, Medicinal, Melon, Sweet, Wood

195 °F / 90 °C 4 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 7 OZ / 207 ML

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Dry leaf is light in colour, smells like hay, animals, barn yard, slightly musty.

Steeped leaf is green. Hay, smoke, sticky rice, must.

Liquor is clear and gold. Rice is the dominant fragrance.

Rinse, let sit, 30s, watery, rice, like congee. Hint of sweet, touch of earth. A touch of vegetal on the finish, very subtle.
35s, Tuo is starting to break up more, very similar to first steep but there’s fermentation flavour on the finish
45s, 50s, 35s combined. Earthy, rich, mushrooms, astringent. Pretty intensely bitter.
30s, sweet, mushroomy, rice

Flavors: Astringent, Barnyard, Bitter, Earth, Hay, Mushrooms, Musty, Rice, Smoke, Sweet

Boiling 3 OZ / 100 ML

try shorter steeps and lower the temp. Sheng is good at 195-200F 5/7/10 sec ;-)


Thank you for the tips! I haven’t had a lot of puerh and I’m just figuring out how to make the best of it. I picked up three of these mini tuo, so I have a couple of more shots at steeping this better.


sheng gets bitter easily. i recommend to make the shortest steeps possible, flash steeps until you feel more comfortable with the taste. ;-)

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Ugh this is sooooo good. A touch of vegetal on the palate, and copious honey fragrance and flavour. I love it. I’m so glad I was able to swap for some more, and not have to ration my tin stash so desperately.

This did get a touch over steeped at 3 minutes. I think 2:30 or even 2:45 would have been better, but there’s only the faintest bit of bitterness and astringency and it’s not spoiling the cup at all.

Seems I’ve been in a real white tea kind of mood the last few days, and I actually don’t have that many white teas. While I definitely should NOT get more tea, part of me thinks I should totally get more white tea (what I should do is finish sampling everything from my What-cha order, which contains at least three white teas.)

But! If anyone has any of this that they want to swap to me, please let me know!

Flavors: Honey, Vegetal

180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 7 OZ / 207 ML

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drank Blue Mountain Twirl by DAVIDsTEA
392 tasting notes

Agh, why didn’t I buy some of this for myself when I bought some for my sweetie?? I wonder if any of my local DAVIDs has it still.

This is so lovely and unique. Today’s cup was sweet grape, lychee and malt. So delicious!

Flavors: Grapes, Lychee, Malt

185 °F / 85 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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A quick morning cup before work. 80C, 2min. Light and sweet tasting, with notes of hay and honey.

Flavors: Hay, Honey, Sweet

175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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I was going to throw out yesterday’s leaves so I could make a different tea, and then I smelled them and decided that these deserved to be resteeped.

I used 96C water and steeped the leaves for at least 7 minutes, maybe longer. At first I didn’t think I was going to get a drinkable cup out of these, but with a good long steep it was nice and flavourful. Not as complex as the first steep but still really nice.

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drank Indian Summer by DAVIDsTEA
392 tasting notes

Yay tea swaps! This has been a favourite of mine for ages, and I was down to my last cup, just hoarding it. And then I got a bunch from Janelle, and last night, a friend gave me a bunch of teas, including this. (They just let me riffle through their tea cupboard and gave me pretty much everything I was interested in!) So I’m back up to having 26g of this, and a reminder that I should actually drink, and not just hoard, my favourites. (Though I have been caught up in trying new stuff lately, which is also fabulous.)

So mmmm, sweet, melon, cherry, fig. It smells like candy but has a much more natural sweetness to it. Happiness in a cup.

Flavors: Candy, Cherry, Fig, Melon, Sweet

195 °F / 90 °C 7 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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Today we checked out a little hole in the wall Chinese restaurant for dinner, and it was pretty excellent. Good pho, Shanghai noodles, ginger beef and these spectacular fried jumbo shrimp. Mmmm. The accompanying tea was just jasmine bagged tea, I think the stuff that comes in the yellow box with the red and white writing, but it was a pretty great accompaniment to a good meal.


Can I ask where you went? I adore “little hole in the wall Chinese” restaurants. Would hate to think that I’ve missed a good one….


Ding Ho on William and Isabel.

If you haven’t been to East Ocean on Hargrave that one is also super amazing.


Thank you!!!! I’ve been to Ding Ho and agree it’s really good – but if we are in that neighborhood we usually go to Pho No. 1 – more Vietnamese than Chinese but FANTASTIC!!! (it’s Isabel and McDirmid ish). I’ve never even heard of East Ocean, so need to check that one out.
My all time favorite Asian restaurant in the city is Sun Fortune (in the strip mall just before Winners on Pembina Highway). :))

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drank The Spice is Right by DAVIDsTEA
392 tasting notes

I wasn’t paying too much attention when drinking this cup, as we were playing Red Dragon Inn, but I do recall a lot of cinnamon and less orange than I was hoping for.

Flavors: Cinnamon, Orange


Oooh, Red Dragon Inn! Do you do the voices when you speak the cards? :D We do, haha.


Yeah we do them mostly in character :)

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I grew up drinking jasmine green tea with meals, but really fell in love with tea on a trip to Britain in elementary school. My first great love was Earl Grey, and I still adore it and all its variants.

I discovered the beauty of loose leaf tea much later, when, on impulse, I picked up a few teas that were on clearance at a home store. My introduction to loose leaf teas were Masala Chai and Provence Rooibos by the Metropolitan Tea Co and an unknown brand of kukicha and gyokuro (little did I know what a precious treasure I’d stumbled onto with that.)

At the time I was lucky to live in a place with multiple tea shops and several places to have afternoon tea, which is a delight I still miss.

Tea is part of my daily ritual and a nice, affordable way to appease the collector in me.

I enjoy distinctive whites, greens and oolongs, flavoured blacks, and herbals that are heavy on the citrus, lavender or mint.

Rating rubric, to give myself some consistency:
0-15 Yuck, not even drinkable.
16-30 Disappointing, not really inclined to give it a second try.
31-45 Disappointing, but maybe there’s potential? Worth one more try, prepped differently.
46-60 Mediocre, not terrible but not memorable.
61-75 Not bad. I’ll definitely finish what I have and might buy again.
76-90 Very enjoyable. Tasty, complex, it’ll keep me coming back.
91-100 BEST! I love everything about it and I will drink it forever.

Beyond tea, I’m a sex educator, polyamory activist, and radical queer. I love backwoods camping, abstract painting, baking & cooking, nail polish, cats, ceramic sculpture, and home nesting.


Winnipeg, MB, Canada

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