2245 Tasting Notes

72

Sipdown! (12 | 85)

Another one from Courtney!

So I tried steeping it a bit less for this second pot, because the first time I didn’t find much bergamot here. But the shorter steep doesn’t seem to have helped much.

The rooibos here is nice, it has a biscuity sort of quality and doesn’t taste medicinal at all. And there’s just a little hint of bergamot, but I would like a lot more.

So pleasant enough to drink, but not something I would order for myself.

Flavors: Bergamot, Cookie, Smooth, Wood

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

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drank Passage by August Uncommon Tea
2245 tasting notes

Sipdown! (11 | 84)

I really should stop ordering teas with chocolate flavoring…

There are some elements of the chocolate here that are pleasant, like the tinge of bitterness that makes it seem a bit more authentic. But there’s a booziness that knocks it all the way back to the other direction, into super fake chocolate territory… Also the base seems rather thin and flavorless.

I do enjoy the roasty nut flavor here. But otherwise it’s a no for me.

Flavors: Alcohol, Artificial, Bitter, Chocolate, Cocoa, Hazelnut, Nuts, Roasted Nuts, Sweet

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

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78

Sipdown! (10 | 83)

This smelled nice and tart-fruity in the packet, so it was chosen to be tried next.

I didn’t look at the description before trying it, and was confused by the somewhat strong toasted nori aroma with the tart fruit. It turns out, it actually is supposed to be seaweed-like, which makes me feel better. I’m not familiar enough with gooseberry or sea buckthorn to be able to comment on those, but the fruitiness here is tart and bright, and it comes off a bit green apple candyish? Not quite, but that’s the closest thing I can think of. Somewhere between pineapple, green grape, and green apple?

It’s pleasant and I’m enjoying it! The seaweed isn’t actually very strong in the taste, so it’s mostly the fruity element. Yummy!

Flavors: Candy, Dry Grass, Fruity, Grapes, Grass, Green Apple, Pineapple, Seaweed, Sweet, Tart, Umami

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 30 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML
Dustin

I have a cape gooseberry plant. The berries taste like a mango coconut mix. Not sure if all varieties of gooseberry are similar in flavor.

Martin Bednář

I don’t think that cape gooseberry is similar to “pure” gooseberry. It has been ages since I had it; but certainly I wouldn’t call it mango-coconut like. Rather similar to unripe grapes I guess.

Courtney

The gooseberries and sea buckthorn I’ve had definitely have a tart element. :)

Cameron B.

Unripe grapes sounds about right for this tea, Martin. I’ll have to see if I can fine gooseberries at the store sometime…

Martin Bednář

I wonder if you will be lucky to get them… while here they were actually quite common, I can’t recall seeing them in stores!

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52
drank Maple by Tea Hippie
2245 tasting notes

Sipdown! (9 | 82)

The last Tea Hippie tea from Courtney! I admit, I’m not looking forward to this one, as the base tea in the other two wasn’t great.

Yeah… The base tea here is just so disappointing to me. It’s like a super generic Ceylon with quite a bit of astringency even with a short steep. And honestly I’m not getting much maple at all, perhaps a vague sweetness toward the end?

I added milk and a drizzle of maple syrup to the rest of the pot to finish it off. Somehow it came out tasting a bit like banana, which is odd lol! Happy to be finished with it though.

Flavors: Astringent, Metallic, Sweet, Tannic

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 2 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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78
drank Four Red Fruits by Kusmi Tea
2245 tasting notes

Sipdown! (8 | 81)

It’s nice to finish this one off, this was a box of sachets that I must have bought on clearance or something? Otherwise, why sachets?

Anyway, it’s a tasty tea! The flavoring is a bit more subtle than I would like, but it has a nice cranberry-like tartness to it that I really enjoy. The base is very smooth and lightly earthy with some woody notes to it.

I really like having a red fruits black tea around, so I’ll have to figure out which one to reorder. Maybe I’ll try a new one from Dammann!

Flavors: Cranberry, Earth, Raspberry, Red Fruits, Smooth, Tart, Wood

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

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72

Sipdown! (7 | 80)

Another one from Courtney (and VariaTEA)!

Black, green, and white tea? Really…?

Anyway, the first time I tried this one it mostly tasted like a generic peach green tea to me. Inoffensive but nothing special. Odd, because there’s no peach here.

This time, though, I’m getting more of a grapefruit and quince situation, which I like much better. I’m also getting more of the hay notes from the white base. There are some nice honeyed notes too, and perhaps a bit of rhubarb?

Anyway, it’s tasty! Not something I would order because of the weird base situation and the inconsistency, but I enjoyed the second cup.

Flavors: Dry Grass, Grapefruit, Grass, Hay, Honey, Peach, Pear, Rhubarb, Sweet

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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70

Sipdown! (6 | 79)

Another cold-brewed turmeric tisane!

I really do find these quite palatable this way. The earthy turmeric is somehow very refreshing, and the lemongrass is nice here as well. Luckily the licorice is quite mild, though there is a slight sweetness that creeps up at the end of the sip. I could probably do without the black pepper, happily it’s not very strong.

I dig it! I’m so relieved to have found a way to finish off these Vahdam turmeric tisanes, I was really dreading them…

Flavors: Black Pepper, Earth, Herbaceous, Lemongrass, Licorice, Smooth, Spices, Sweet

Preparation
Iced 15 g 34 OZ / 1000 ML
Courtney

Goodbye turmeric!

LuckyMe

Good on you for finishing all those turmeric teas. On the bright side, your immune system must be turbo charged now

Tiffany :)

I enjoy turmeric but casually, not like 64082433942 times in one calendar as Vahdam did to all of you last December! Also it’s really a pain for cleaning mugs, steepers, pitchers, etc.

Cameron B.

I still have 4 (?) to go unfortunately… T.T

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58

Sipdown! (5 | 78)

So this one just never worked for me…

The apple and hibiscus pretty much take over the cup and it’s just a bit tart and one-note. This last cup has a bit more maple and/or sugar to it which helps a little, but mostly it just tastes like a very acidic apple tisane.

Certainly not my favorite from Deb!

Flavors: Apple, Hibiscus, Maple, Sour, Sweet, Tart, Wood

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

I felt the same!

Silent Kettle

Ou! I never got to try this one and I believe it has been discontinued! :( But I am not sure I would have liked it since I only like hibiscus if it is used sparingly like in Deb’s ginger berry crisp tea.

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78

Sipdown! (4 | 77)

I finished all of my subscription teas, and that section of my countertop organizer was conspicuously empty. So I decided to fill it with my remaining swap samples from Courtney and work on finishing them off!

Without looking at the description, I thought this was a rhubarb and cream sort of tea. I wasn’t that far off I suppose, but actually it’s red fruits with vanilla and toffee. Maybe it’s the combination with the rooibos that’s making me think of B&B’s Rhubarb + Custard.

Anyway! It’s perfectly tasty, though I could use just a bit more flavoring and I don’t really get toffee at all. It’s fairly rooibos-forward, which isn’t a big issue for me, but I know it could be for other people. It’s not one that I would buy because of the similarity to Rhubarb + Custard, but it was enjoyable to try. Thanks, Courtney!

Flavors: Caramel, Cherry, Cream, Raspberry, Red Fruits, Rhubarb, Rooibos, Smooth, Strawberry, Tart, Vanilla, Wood

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

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78

Sipdown! (3 | 76)

Despite butterscotch being one of my favorite flavors, I found this one just a little disappointing?

I think it’s because I don’t really taste the rice much, if at all. The rooibos base and the strong flavoring are just overpowering it, I think. So it ends up being sort of a one-note butterscotch rooibos tisane. And don’t get me wrong, it’s still perfectly tasty, but I guess I was hoping for a bit more?

I had ordered a 50g bag of this, but that order still hasn’t moved from the UK and it’s been over six weeks now. So mostly likely it’ll need to be replaced and I’m sure they don’t have any of this one left by now. Oh well.

Flavors: Butter, Butterscotch, Caramel, Rooibos, Smooth, Sweet, Wood

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

oh no, I hope B&B fixes your order for you!

Cameron B.

I’m sure they will! I had the same issue with a previous order around the holiday season, and they ended up replacing it and adding freebie samples! :)

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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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