83 Tasting Notes
For some reason, my whole town ran out of tea — Tetley, Lipton, Red Rose, Twinings, Tazo, and even the ever-present Stash. With our tea stash withered down to herbals and greens, my family got desperate and decided to get a box of Great Value from Walmart.
To be honest, it’s not that bad. Good for mornings when you don’t have time for loose-leaf, and ok for iced tea. Lots of tea dust, though, and my mother didn’t like the aftertaste. If there’s ever another tea shortage in my area, I wouldn’t mind picking up another box — but only if it’s the last choice.
So my throat is sore today, and I’m chugging tea and gargling Listerine in hopes that I’m only coming down with a light winter cold. Despite the low ratings that this tea gets, it’s really great for under-the-weather days. Citric acid makes this tea a bit (erh, quite a bit actually) on the antioxidant/vitamin/lemony side, so it’s definitely not something you’d want to drink in the evening or put milk in. It’s sour, yeah, but it’s made my throat feel better. It tastes horrible with honey, but it really works well to ease cold symptoms.
I would actually suggest not drinking this tea every day, as it’s probably quite acidic and may negatively affect dental health. I actually get heartburn from it if I don’t eat something afterward. Despite that, it’s a really easy cold treatment that doesn’t involve pharmacies or NyQuil.
I think that this is the oldest box of tea in my stash. …It was actually from my mum’s stash. The box has the old red/white/blue ballerina art, not the cutesy purple fairy stuff. I mean, late 90’s/early 2000’s. I could probably sell this in the vintage part of Etsy.
….To be honest, it still tastes the same as it did 5+ years ago. That is, kind of like potpourri. Perhaps it has mellowed a bit, which is probably a good thing. I always brew it for about 2 minutes, then add a used black teabag for about 2 more minutes to kind of make a lazy person’s blend.
I wouldn’t be consuming this tea if I didn’t have a complex about food waste. I guess it’s just that sugared fruits, candied fruits, and applets/cotlets/Turkish delights/heavy sweet fruity winter things really aren’t part of my culture? Perhaps this tea is imbued heavily with Tchaikovsky elements, which means that I instinctively shy away from it? I don’t know. CS really isn’t my favorite company to begin with (but I really appreciate their packaging and production beliefs), so I’m not that broken-hearted. …Though I do have at least 4 more bags of this. …
I figured out the ladoo taste — it’s the spearmint and cardamom together. It’s kind of silly that I didn’t instantly point out the cardamom.
I’ve had this tea for the last three days, and I haven’t been able to sleep that well, mostly because I’m super awake after drinking this. I have some dried Valerian root that I’ll put in tisanes, and I’ve noticed that it makes me hyper. …Does anyone else have this problem? I feel like I still have the endocrine system of a child.
Once upon a time I was working 22 hour days at least 3 times a week, and it nearly killed me (it was more the work than the length of time, but still). I’ve realized that I get really off balance if I get less than 4 hours of sleep per night, so I checked out Yogi’s Bedtime tea during my year of evil work days. Sadly, after a few boxes, the local co-op decided to cut Bedtime. However, they brought it back and even put it on sale this last week! After long nights of mad NaNoWriMo typing, I kind of need to get back my normal sleep habits…
I couldn’t remember this happening before when I had Bedtime, but I was surprised to note that both the dry teabag and the tisane itself smells exactly like ladoo. Not the dry, chunky, airy kind, but the dense, buttery kind that you have to fish out of the vat of sugar syrup. I even made my mum smell it, and she actually asked if there was any rice in there. While it’s obviously not as sweet as ladoo, the stevia actually makes it taste more like it (and I actually kind of like it in this blend, which is honestly amazing). I know that part of this scent/taste is clearly the spearmint, which I love, but other than that, I’m just happy I’ve found something that’s like ladoo! It’s hard to want to go to sleep knowing that liquid ladoo exists.
Teabag tag quote: “Trust creates peace.”
*Note: Here’s a relatively healthy version of ladoo, in case you’re unfamiliar with this wedding staple: http://www.tasty-indian-recipes.com/indian-dessert-recipes/sweets-recipes/besan-ladoo-recipe/
The last time I rated this tea was last December. The local co-op has finally stocked Organic India tulsi teas after a massive tea cutback to make room for the ever-expanding coconut/palm/wheat/corn/soy/nut/gluten-free cooking section. It was a bit depressing at first, because they cut out all the teas I was interested in, but they’re finally building more diversity into their selection (yay!).
I’m going to keep my rating the same, but this time is a bit different from a year ago. Firstly, I noticed the smell of the tea straight out of the bag wasn’t as heavenly-amazing as last time. Sure, it’s still some sort of amazing, but not super-amazing. However, I will add that I like the flavor a whole lot more this time. The tulsi is a nice, warm base for the bright rose overtones. I can’t taste any stevia sweetness, which is always a plus, and I think the floral rosy taste satisfies my desire for any kind of sweetener. I did add milk (I’m stubborn like that, I know), and that rounds out the flavors a bit.
…..And I have to note that NaNoWriMo was a success this year, despite the fact that I didn’t get a cohesive novel again. That’s what happens when you pants 11k on the 30th. ….I’m not even sure folks outside of the biological sciences will understand it. Sadly, I feel a bit empty now that it’s over, since I created my characters more or less in a pantsy way, so I had just gotten to know them (and hadn’t killed any of them yet). The nice thing, though, is that this year’s NaNo has sparked me to get back into the evil crafty/artsy hobbies that I had to give up in grad school.
I started drinking this tea when I was in grad school (since grad school should be renamed “The Secret 10th Level of Hell”). My sister started up on it since it’s a bit chocolatey, so it’s kind of been a staple in my house. I don’t like the carob taste, but the Sister does. I like the cinnamon taste, but she doesn’t. I can’t stand the stevia, but she loves it.
I decided to have this tea because the world has decided to engulf me with all the worst things ever except getting a pink slip (I’m just going to continue part-timing and not ever get a real job, it seems). I kind of needed this today, and I’m almost thinking that just the thought of having a stress relief tea relieved my stress. Yeah, I calmed down even before I started sipping. The scent has really grown on me, but I can’t drink this tea unless I cut it with milk. The cinnamon is a nice mid-tone, but the stevia is way too much for me.
I’m 3/4 through my cup, and I’m pretty durn calm/sleepy now. The tag for this cup of Kava Stress is: “Love what is ahead by loving what has come before.” ….So I’m going to try to love Eugenics, War, and Slavery. I’ll see where that takes me (actually, I think that’s a pretty interesting quote; the stress is just making me sarcastic).
I started drinking this tea a few years ago just because it was one of the only green teas available at that time. This may insult some, but it tastes like hay! …Actually, hay and oatstraw. Some of you city folk may be disgusted by that, but I grew up in Idaho and that means that it’s pretty durn tasty. It reminds me of winter, actually — probably because of harvest season and usage of straw in barns. Considering that it has already snowed here in the Palouse, I probably just want to drink this because of association.
This is something huge in the nerd world, but I’m not sure if the more refined know: November is National Novelist’s Writing Month. Everyone in the nerd world knows this, too, but by saying that, that also means that November is NaNoWriMo* time! Every November, silly nerdy people challenge themselves to write a 50k novel in 30 days. And Epicness ensues.
I’ve participated in NaNoWriMo for 6 years (I started 8 years ago, but had a 2-year break during the Evil that is grad school), and won each time! Yes, I can fluff. There tends to be tangents that include bison and squirrels. And, every day, there is a whole lot of tea to be consumed.
I’m writing a post-nuclear post-apocalyptic literary post-genetic-renaissance Dystopian Scientific Romance. It’s pretty scientific, but not that romance-y. All this science and writing and dystopia calls for Blueberry Slim Life tea! I’ve been drinking this tea for about 2 years, and while I can’t say it’s helped me lose weight, I can definitely say that it’s pretty tasty as an iced tea. I know, I’m lame when I can’t have milk in my tea, but still. It’s still good hot, but I’ve noticed that it makes me thirsty unless I dilute it (thirsty = drink more water = feel full = eat less = lose weight?). It’s not sweet, but it definitely has a blueberry overtone that’s bright and very evident.
That’s really good during NaNo, because I’d be snacking otherwise. More tea = less food = not as much weight gain during mad typing month.
*Go to nanowrimo.org if you’re nerdy.
I tried this tea again with a longer steep time (~ 1 minute) and less milk (75% water, 25% milk). I’m still getting tree bark, but I think the candy taste is more throat lozenge. …It’s like menthol without the cold effect. I think this might be the note that throws people off, but I’m starting to appreciate it now that I’m able to pick apart the complexity.
…Considering how much I’m enjoying the tree bark taste, I think I may want to research whether poplar and aspen can be used as tea…
Edit: Aspen bark and leaves can be used as a tisane to treat urinary tract infection, and poplar inner bark tea can be used as a sedative/inflammation reducer. It looks like salicin plays a part in these effects.