2245 Tasting Notes

58
drank Juniper Mint Honey by Tazo
2245 tasting notes

Sipdown! (30 | 234)

This one seems so intriguing to me, so I was so thankful to get a few bags in a swap! I love pine and juniper, so I’m always happy to try more teas with those notes.

Unfortunately, this is not for me. It’s mostly honey, and the flavoring is fairly artificial-tasting. There’s also a sort of cloying floral note that I assume is part of the honey. I do get a bit of mint, and it’s nice and cooling and refreshing. Juniper? Nah, not really. There’s a weird bitterness in the aftertaste as well.

So mostly it’s artificial floral honey. Womp womp.

https://www.instagram.com/p/CNqgdjKgNNv/

Flavors: Artificial, Bitter, Floral, Honey, Mint, Perfume, Sweet

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 5 min, 0 sec 12 OZ / 354 ML
Mastress Alita

Well, that is disappointing. I wish I could find more juniper-forward teas, as well. (Also, I conceptually find honey as a flavoring kind of weird… like… if I want my tea to taste like honey, I can just put honey in it…?)

Shae

Bummer, I pulled this one to drink for my ‘J’ tea this week. And I agree with Mastress Alita – if I want honey, I’ll just add it myself so why?

Cameron B.

That’s true, but to be fair, you could say the same thing about maple flavoring.

Shae

Hmm, good point about the maple. I hadn’t thought about that. I think maybe if there were an authentic honey flavor I would enjoy it, but I haven’t found that yet.

Martin Bednář

If you guys hate it so much, send it my way… I will use the outer wrappings at least! Haha.

Shame it’s so poorly made. It sounds so interesting!

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72
drank Neptune by Lupicia
2245 tasting notes

“An Ode to Tea” Alphabet Challenge – N

I was looking through my (physical) cupboard for some milk tea candidates, and realized I hadn’t tried this one from the group order yet. And how perfect for ‘N’ day!

This is a strange one. If I didn’t know better, I would swear it was a rooibos blend, because it has that medicinal taste that I sometimes find with red rooibos. Woody, medicinal, maybe slightly fruity in a fig jam sort of way? I don’t really get honey per se, more of a jammy dried fruit sweetness. I almost taste a hint of lavender as well, but maybe I’m just making that association because of the similarity to Dammann’s Noël en Provence. Okay, now I’m getting a hint of wildflower honey in the aftertaste.

Anyway, it’s fine. There’s less honey than I would expect from the description, but I do get the dried fruit part and the flowers. Certainly not a favorite!

Flavors: Dried Fruit, Fig, Floral, Jam, Lavender, Medicinal, Sweet, Wood

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML
AJRimmer

I thought I didn’t have any N teas, but I forgot I had some of this one! Whoops!

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68
drank Lanikai by Lupicia
2245 tasting notes

Sipdown! (29 | 233)

Finishing what’s left of this as a giant iced milk tea in one of my pretty DAVIDsTEA tumblers!

I definitely added just a touch too much sweetener, but it’s delicious, hah. I can taste more of the peach than the mango with this preparation, and it reminds me of peach ice cream. The mango comes in a bit more near the end and adds a nice tropical hit that keeps it from being too much of peaches & cream and takes it more into smoothie territory. Also I think I taste coconut, which I don’t remember being there before.

Very yummy! And hooray sipdown!

Flavors: Coconut, Mango, Peach, Sweet, Tropical

Preparation
Iced 3 min, 0 sec 6 tsp 20 OZ / 591 ML

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80

Sipdown! (28 | 232)

Another swap sample!

To me, this tea tastes very similar to a tippy Yunnan black tea. It’s smooth, malty, a touch earthy, and has a lovely fuzzy apricot note at the end of the sip. Perhaps there’s some extra nuttiness? There’s also a touch of floral, which is maybe less common in my experience.

Anyway, it’s good! I’m just not sure I would know it’s a yellow tea. It’s interesting because I’ve had some yellow teas from Teavivre that were much closer to green tea (in my opinion), and this one is quite different. It’s tasty, but not terribly special.

Flavors: Apricot, Astringent, Earth, Floral, Malt, Nectar, Savory, Smoke, Smooth, Thick

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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88

Sipdown! (27 | 231)

Since I enjoyed this one so much last time, my friend on Insta sent another sample of this in our recent swap. :3

So fresh and yummy! This is very different from any other peppermint tisane I’ve ever had – it has such a clean peppermint flavor, almost like a mint or candy cane, while others are usually more herbaceous. It’s like a milder peppermint Altoid, ha ha.

I’m planning to order some herbal tisanes from Harts of America to see how they are, but first I’m making myself finish a couple of the ones I already have…

Flavors: Honey, Menthol, Mint, Sweet

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 5 min, 0 sec 16 OZ / 473 ML
Tiffany :)

I adore Harts of America they are actually one of my subscriptions.. $7.98 a month including shipping for two 2 oz bags of tea! :) (Danielle aka @teaandmeblog on IG introduced me in 2019(?) via her Instagram) I’m excited to see what others think of them.

Cameron B.

Their tisanes seem so inexpensive! It boggles the mind ha ha.

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65

Sipdown! (26 | 230)

This one is just a bit blah for me. Which is a shame, because the name sounds so yummy.

But I don’t really get any apple, and only a hint of orange. Mostly this is just a clove rooibos. And I guess the spicing does, in a way, remind me of apple butter, which I guess means apple butter has cloves in it.

But it’s not apple butter, it’s just the “spiced” part ha ha. Bye-bye, tea!

Flavors: Clove, Rooibos, Spices, Wood

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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72

I picked this up on a whim at Whole Foods, because I love pear and a pear green tea sounded just lovely!

Honestly, it’s pretty good for a teabag. The pear is a bit candylike, but it does taste crisp and pear-like to me, maybe teetering on the edge of apple. For some reason I’m getting banana though? And not actual banana, but Laffy Taffy banana. So that’s a bit distracting, ha ha! The base is actually quite nice, mellow and nutty without any bitterness.

Quite good! And I can imagine it being delicious as an iced tea… Ironically, I just received another pear green tea today, in the form of B&B’s Jasmine Poached Pears. So that’ll be interesting to compare!

Flavors: Apple, Banana, Candy, Grass, Hay, Nuts, Pear, Smooth, Sweet

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 0 sec 16 OZ / 473 ML
Courtney

I went through a pear green tea teabag phase a while ago haha!

Cameron B.

I love pear! Can’t wait to try the B&B blend.

Mastress Alita

Jasmine Poached Pears is a favorite of mine!

Lexie Aleah

Interesting I like this one and definitely get the candy pear from it but don’t recall ever tasting banana. Now I want to make a cup of this… (:

Tiffany :)

This and their loose leaf pear tea are on my list.. if I don’t get to it before then I suppose there is always WFM in Austin. (On my “to do” list for my Austin trip)

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70
drank Maple Dream by Dollar Tea Club
2245 tasting notes

Sipdown! (25 | 229)

“An Ode to Tea” Alphabet Challenge – M

I actually have samples of this tea from two different swaps, so I’m counting them as separate sipdowns. And there’s nothing you can do to stop me, nyah! :P

Anyway, this is okay. I will say I’m pleased that the maple flavoring is more on the subtle side, after that New England Breakfast I tried the other day, I was a bit nervous. The base is quite brisk at a 3-minute steep, next time I would go shorter. But overall, it’s flavorful enough with some nice malt and almost vegetal tones, I assume from the green tea.

It’s fine, but not quite good.

https://www.instagram.com/p/CNn_YeYg4li/

Flavors: Astringent, Bitter, Malt, Maple, Metallic, Sweet, Tannic, Vegetal

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML
Tiffany :)

haha, I’m pretty sure I have some duplicates in my gifting from online tea friends, like the “Butter Brew” I’m doing for B I think there are 2-3 people who sent some to me.

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68
drank Lanikai by Lupicia
2245 tasting notes

“An Ode to Tea” Alphabet Challenge – L

Yay, caught up! This is another one from the last Lupicia group order that I haven’t tried yet.

Apparently this is supposed to be peach, mango, and orange. Mostly I get a generic tropical flavor, which could be mango-esque. There is also something that reminds me of Peachy-O’s, so I suppose that would be the peach.

Overall, it’s a muddled sweet tropical fruit sort of tea. The base is partially CTC, so it’s a bit too brisk for me. I’ll have to try it as a milk tea though!

Flavors: Astringent, Candy, Fruity, Peach, Sweet, Tannic, Tropical

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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82
drank Karigane by Ujien
2245 tasting notes

“An Ode to Tea” Alphabet Challenge – K

Ughhhh so tired. I started making bento for lunch again this week, and I feel like I’m spending so much time in the kitchen. I guess I just haven’t gotten into the groove yet.

Anyway! This is a tea that I randomly picked up in Osaka. Karigane is essentially just kukicha, but made from gyokuro stems. It has a lovely smooth and sweet flavor, with some nice pops of vegetal intensity that remind me of kabocha. There are also some light grassy notes that are very refreshing.

Overall, very mellow and gentle, but also with elements of gyokuro. And quite lovely for when you want a lower maintenance Japanese green! :)

Flavors: Freshly Cut Grass, Kabocha, Smooth, Spinach, Squash, Sweet, Thick, Umami, Vegetal

Preparation
160 °F / 71 °C 1 min, 30 sec 5 g 16 OZ / 473 ML
Kittenna

I read bento and instantly got a sushi craving. Ugh.

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Profile

Bio

Hi, I’m Cameron! I’m a 30-something software engineer currently living in Austin, Texas with my husband and our two pugs, Gobo and Ume. I tend to cycle between my different hobbies, and they include knitting, video games, board games, miniature painting, bento, baking, and – of course – TEA! But really, what I’m best at is collecting hobby related-things… ;)

~ 2021 SIPDOWN CHALLENGE! ~
~ April Sipdowns: 35
~ Total 2021 Sipdowns: 239

I prefer my tea lukewarm or at room temperature and without milk or sugar. I will often sweeten iced tea. I brew Western style, and fluctuate between using mugs or teapots with small cups depending on the season. Occasionally I’ll brew Gongfu style when I’m in the mood. I also use a kyusu for Japanese teas.

I am always up for a swap! Just let me know if you’d like to try something in my cupboard.

Current Subscriptions:
Bird & Blend
Dessert by Deb
Kyoto Obubu Tea Farms

Tea Preferences:
I enjoy both flavored and unflavored teas in many forms. These days, I drink mostly flavored teas, and I tend to gravitate most toward black, green, and oolong varieties. I do have a special fondness for straight Japanese green teas, however. I also enjoy maté, rooibos, honeybush, and herbal tisanes. I love matcha and drink it often!

Fruit: All of them! My ‘go-to’s tend to be in the red fruits, stonefruit, or citrus spectra. I also really love apple, banana, berry, fig, lychee, melon, pear, and rhubarb flavors. Tropical fruits aren’t among my favorites, but I still enjoy them once in a while – especially passionfruit, mango, and pineapple. I am not generally a fan of coconut in tea, though there are some exceptions.

Dessert: I love creamy vanilla and marshmallow flavors, along with anything in the caramel family such as butterscotch, toffee, or maple. Chocolate is also a favorite, though I’m often disappointed by it in tea. And don’t forget anything buttery, cakey, or cookie-y!

Floral: I’m a little bit more particular in this category. I very much enjoy jasmine, even strong jasmine, along with sakura and chamomile. But I’m not crazy about rose or lavender flavors, and I prefer hibiscus in moderation only.

Spices: I don’t generally find myself drawn to masala chai, but I do enjoy spices combined with other flavors. My favorite spices are the warm ones, especially cinnamon, nutmeg, anise, and cardamom. A bit of heat from black pepper or chili is okay too, as long as it’s not overwhelming! Ginger can be a lovely accent, but I find it difficult to drink as a starring flavor.

Aromatics: I’m obsessed with Earl Grey! I also love cooling flavors such as mint (especially spearmint), pine, juniper, and eucalyptus. I am not a fan of strong rosemary or sage in tea.

Favorite Purveyors:
3 Leaf
Bird & Blend
Dammann Frères
Kusmi
Kyoto Obubu Tea Farms
Lupicia
Taiwan Tea Crafts
TeaVivre
Yunnan Sourcing

Tea Rating Scale:
90-100: Outstanding! Permanent cupboard resident
80-89: Great – a possible staple
70-79: Good, but I wouldn’t buy it
60-69: It’s decent
50-59: Meh… I may or may not have finished the cup
40-49: Ick. Couldn’t finish it.
00-39: Repulsive, I spat it out

I will sometimes refrain from rating a tea if I feel I’m too biased due to my personal dislikes, or if I suspect the sample has been compromised by age.

Cupboard Spreadsheet:
https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1ZEuKf1-ppR-VXajO4vV39zU1N3zjFJteEPAynqD2yl0/edit?usp=sharing

Location

Austin, Texas

Website

https://www.instagram.com/tea...

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