469 Tasting Notes
52teas 12 Days of Christmas Sampler 2012 – Day 1
Woot!!!! There couldn’t be a better tea to kick off this year’s 12 Teas of Christmas!! I LOVE this tea!! It’s the best tea on the planet! As soon as I opened the pouch, I was greeted by a sugary, floral, familiar aroma. YES! I feel like I just hit the jackpot. Ka-ching! I let my kitty smell the pouch and he didn’t seem to want to stop. :) So cute. If kitty approves, I do too!
When it was finished brewing, I added a little bit of Truvia and skim milk. Mmmmm, this is just as delicious as I remember! It re-steeps wonderfully too. Better than any other 52teas’ blend. I just tried Red Leaf Tea’s Cotton Candy Matcha for the first time last night. It’s fantastic, but this tea is better. ;) This has a much more recognizable cotton candy flavor. It’s also a stronger flavoring, which I prefer. It overwhelms the tea in a perfectly delectable way.
This tea deserves three cheers for awesomeness! Hip hip hooray! Hip hip hooray! Hip hip HOORAY!!! Thanks, Frank! And happy holidays to everyone!
OMG!!! The dry leaf aroma is spot on cotton candy!!! I gave it to my fiancé to smell and he said, “Ooh that smells good!” I asked him what he thought it smelled like, and he quickly and confidently replied, “Chocolate!” LOL! Well, so much for his opinion. I think that it smells exactly like sugary, slightly caramelized, spun sugar. Yum!
I bought the classic matcha with robust flavoring. Hmm, the taste of this one is really interesting. It’s not nearly as sugary as I would have thought from the aroma. The grassy matcha flavor is actually still quite strong, and the cotton candy flavoring lends the tea a natural sweetness. I had expected more in-your-face sugar. But this is delightful!
It’s so amazing to me that this tea has no added sweeteners. How is that even possible?! A peek at the ingredients list reveals “pure matcha powder from green leaves” and “cotton candy natural flavor.” It definitely tastes natural. But it must be a sweetener or sugar or Stevia or something!
This is definitely not one to get with a lighter flavoring level or I’m not sure you’d taste it at all. Maybe I’ll be bold and go for the “There’s Matcha in there?!” flavoring next time. :D Don’t get me wrong; I can definitely taste cotton candy. But the cotton candy flavor and the matcha flavor seem to be almost equal. Soooo delicious! I’m off to make a second cup because this one disappeared rather quickly. It’s just too yummy!!
Oh yeah, you can get yours here: http://www.redleaftea.com/matcha-tea/cotton-candy-matcha.html
Tried it again with 3 teaspoons this time (three times the recommended amount). Now this is yummy! Still no burnt sugar or vanilla custard. That’s sad because I love crème brulée. But it’s still a delicious pumpkin tea that pairs perfectly with my cinnamon sugar toast this morning. Mmm, yum! I sucked this cup down! Second steep for 3.5 minutes was still super yummy! What a treat!
I haven’t tried an Earl Grey green before, but I’ve heard good things! So, I picked up a sample of this back in June when I visited DAVIDsTEA in New York City and have held on to it ever since. It’s time to try it!
The aroma of the dry leaf is strong bergamot and citrus. The combination of the two reminds me of soap. Let’s hope it doesn’t taste like that! The brewed tea aroma is even more potent. But I can’t be afraid. Not of tea!! Here goes nothing!
First sip…phew! This tastes pretty much exactly like it smells. There’s virtually no green tea taste. Just lots of bergamot and lots of citrus. I guess if you love those two things, then this would be spectacular. But I’m finding this bergamot to be a little too powerful for me. It feels like I’m drinking it through my nose instead of my mouth, kind of like getting water up your nose when you go swimming. Not an entirely pleasant feeling.
Overall impression? Not good. First impression was maybe a 62. But upon further reflection (and further sips), this one is really too bergamot-y for me to enjoy so it’s getting a 45. Oh well, it was worth a shot. Maybe another Earl Grey green will be more to my liking. Or maybe this just isn’t a good combo for my taste buds. Either way, it was fun to try! :)
I’m giving this tea another shot! Pistachio is an interesting thing to add to a tea…I don’t think I’d have come up with that on my own. Very creative, Stacy!
Well, here goes nothing! The green tea base is very grassy, which I was afraid of at first. That’s not my favorite flavor. But you know what? Pistachio and grassy green tea go well together! Of course, Stacy already knew this, but I’m a recent convert. ;)
This is a wonderful flavored sencha, just not my favorite. The flavoring is subtle and light and not very complex. Don’t get me wrong, it’s still delicious! This is a much better experience than the first time I tried it. Freshness makes all the difference with this tea.
Still though, I’m getting nothing in the way of ice cream here. There’s no milkiness, creaminess, or sweetness to speak of. It’s pretty much a nutty, grassy tea. So it’s not bad, it’s just false advertising. Raising the rating from 50 to 72. I used 2.5 teaspoons in 8 ounces of water and drank it straight with no additions. Second steep for 4 minutes is virtually flavorless. This tea seems to have only one good infusion in it.
I’ve been on a Butiki Tea marathon ever since my package arrived. I can’t get enough! I randomly picked out the next tea to try and this is it!
The leaves are very cool and look like flattened leaf tips. I used about 2.5 teaspoons in 8 ounces of water. The aroma of the brewed tea is very vegetal. And the taste? Like steamed artichokes. Yummy! It’s also very clean tasting. I know that sounds weird, but that’s the only way I can think to describe it. Vegetal, steamed artichokes, and clean.
I’m loving this! It’s definitely a very high quality tea. I’m not getting any astringency or bitterness at all. I did a second infusion for 2.5 minutes and a third for 3 minutes. The first steep was my favorite and the most flavorful. The others were still good, just not quite as good. ;)
Overall, this tea is outstanding! And this is one of my least favorite types of tea too!! But this is too good to rate anything other than what it deserves. De-lish! I highly recommend it (and strongly suggest that you pick it up in your next order). You’ll love it too. :)
Oh my goodness!!!! I’ve been waiting for this ever since I knew it existed. A while back (like maybe a year ago), I had some delicious maple pecan granola. I’ve never been able to find it again, and I always thought it would make a great flavoring for tea. Then I accidently stumbled across this tea here on Steepster and knew I had to purchase it ASAP!
And that brings us to today. It may not have the black tea base I was imagining or the granola flavoring, but it’s pretty darn close! I brewed this 10 degrees hotter than recommended because I thought 170 was too cool. I don’t even use that cool of water for matcha or white tea! So, I’m definitely not doing that for oolong.
I’m not sure where this oolong is from. It’s definitely not the green oolong that I love. I usually dislike the dark Formosa oolongs, which I assume this to be. But it actually works! The leaves are dark and thin. If I had to guess, I would have thought they were black tea leaves and not oolong! I used 2 teaspoons, and the resultant liquor is a light brown.
The flavor is awesome! But I knew it would be with a winning combination like maple and pecan. ;) The dark oolong adds a nice woodsy element that complements the pecan nuttiness perfectly. This tea really needs sweetener in my opinion. With just a little sugar, the maple really POPS! Even the third steep for 5.5 minutes is delicious! Oh, I’m so happy Stacy decided to make this magical creation! I’m in love!
I got this Darjeeling because I’ve had very little experience with Darjeelings in general. I had one bagged version that was horrible. I had another loose leaf version that was delicious! So, here’s hoping this one is like the latter. On to tea #3!
This is classified as a black tea, but it’s really more like a white tea in my opinion. I used an extra half teaspoon than is recommended. The liquor is a very light yellow color. Honestly, I’d say it’s near colorless. It has that slightly floral, slightly dried grass, white tea flavor.
Why is this considered a Darjeeling black tea? I suppose maybe it’s because of the muscatel. I think I can detect that in this cup. But that’s also a new quality that I’m still trying to grasp, so you may want to refer to a more seasoned Darjeeling taster.
My verdict? Definitely enjoyable, but not at all what I expected. If you’re looking for a strong black tea, this isn’t the one for you. But if you’re looking for a Darjeeling white tea, this could be it! Very yummy!
The Butiki tasting marathon continues! The dry leaf aroma is pumpkin spices. The brewed tea aroma is a baked pumpkin confection. Boy, I can smell butter. So excited!!!
Surprisingly, it’s pretty bland straight. I added a little bit of sweetener and that’s when it had flavor. I’m not getting anything in the way of crème brulée sadly. I’ll reserve final judgment until I try it again with more leaf. As it is, I used about 2 teaspoons in 8 ounces of water, which is twice the recommended amount.
Granted I had high expectations, so I don’t want to be overly harsh. But if I could only have one pumpkin tea for the rest of my life, I’d choose DAVIDsTEA’s Pumpkin Chai.
I added a couple more pumpkin chips to the second infusion, which was 4 minutes. I also added both milk and sugar this time. It’s definitely an enjoyable cup of tea. It’s just not my perfect pumpkin tea.
Yay!!! My (very large) Butiki order arrived today!!! Thank you so much to Stacy for providing that awesome Black Friday/Cyber Monday deal that made me pull the trigger on this long awaited purchase. Luckily, I got home before the fiancé. So there was time to hide the new arrivals among my stash. Hehehe.
I really do have too much tea. There’s no room for this giant box!! What to do??! I ended up having to get out the step ladder to reach the highest cupboard in the kitchen. LOL! Well, there’s virtually no chance he’ll find it now. I’m going to dispose of the invoice though, just in case he goes snooping. ;) I’m so bad, but I can’t help myself! It’s tea time! EEEEEEEEEHHH!!!!
I don’t know what to start with first! Maple Pecan Oolong, Pumpkin Crème Brulée, Pistachio Ice Cream. Oh MAN!! Well, Cantaloupe and Cream finally won out the honor of first steeped tea, which you’ve obviously already realized since that’s where this review is logged. So much for suspense. :P
I carefully opened the little package and peered in. Y’all weren’t kidding. These leaves are pretty! Giant clusters of yellow Helichrysum blossoms lay amongst huge whole bai mu dan leaves. I kind of felt bad dunking the flowers in the hot water, watching them shrink up. Poor little things. Ooh, I can’t wait to try this tea! The dry leaf is heavily aromatic with cantaloupe. I swear it smells just like cutting into a big juicy melon!
I followed the suggested steeping parameters by Butiki, even though they’re a little longer than I would normally do a first infusion for a white tea. I also didn’t precisely measure the leaf ‘cause I was afraid of crushing it. So, I just eyeballed it. It’s probably a little more than recommended, but I like strong tea. Ooh, I can hear it beeping! That means it’s done steeping, and I finally get to try it!
Wow!!! The aroma coming off this cup is juicy! This is insane, and I haven’t even had a sip yet! OMG! This tastes just as good if not better than it smells! Holy Butiki! No wonder this won an award! My life is forever changed. Super sweet, super mouthwatering, super delicious! Juicy really is the best word to describe this tea. It’s like drinking sweet warm juice dripping from a melon that’s been left out in the sun. Ohhhhh mmmmmyyy gggggoosshhhhh!!!!!!
Cream? Yes, there’s definitely a creamy element to this tea. And as it cools more, the lovely bai mu dan flavor comes out strong, especially in the aftertaste. There is absolutely nothing about this tea I would change, except I’d probably give it first place instead of third in that tea championship. ;)
Second steep for 4 minutes is just as flavorful as the first. Perhaps the bai mu dan comes through a little more. But that’s the only noticeable difference. Sooo yummy!! The third steep was for 5 minutes. The added flavorings were definitely quieter in this infusion, but it was still a delicious cup of tea. Can I drink this forever? ‘Cause I seriously want to.