514 Tasting Notes
So, it’s been a long weekend. I went to a socially awkward party, had to move everything in my kitchen out of it and then back in (roach spraying, yuck), got about 6 Ezpass violations in the mail (apparently there was a problem with our transponder) and fought with my boyfriend. All in all, not one of the better weekends.
But there’s always my loyal friend, Tea, to turn the day around! Tonight, it’s Adagio’s Silver Needle. This is the third Adagio white tea I’ve tried from the sampler pack.
The dry leaves have that familiar hay smell, but the leaves themselves are very different! I’m sure for all you out there that have had white tea countless times, the long and skinny white-haired leaves aren’t that interesting anymore. But I thought they were wicked cool! It was that much more fun to measure out the tea leaves. I can’t believe how pristine and uniform they are. But on to the tasting…
Slightly sweet, slightly vegetal. Definitely getting artichoke. Overall, a very pleasant cup of tea. It’s not amazing and probably not my favorite of the three (white peony takes the cake). But I can feel the stress melting away. I think I’ll need about 11 more cups to be back to my normal self. Time to find out if this tea is up to the challenge!
Mmmm!!! Uber spicy!!!
Starbuck’s Chai Tea Latte doesn’t leave anything to be desired, except more when your cup is empty. It’s delicious, hot, creamy, and ultra-chai spicy!
The cinnamon wasn’t overpowering, so I was still able to taste the other spices underneath. That’s uncommon in chais I’ve had, where usually the predominant (and sometimes only) taste is cinnamon.
This latte was so spicy it actually burned my throat a little on the way down! Not a bad burn. More like piquance. Totally unexpected!
This is a good place to start if you’ve never had chai before. It’s a great experience and woke me up for work. I ordered it with skim milk, and it was still frothy and creamy and delicious. Two thumbs way up! :)
Pro: great blend of chai spices. Con: not very strong.
This kind of tastes like watered down hot apple cider. I wish it were stronger. The spices are nice, and I can taste the apple. But it’s just not quite there enough for my liking.
I added a small amount of milk & sweetener, and it did bring out the apple a little more. But I think I’ll make this again with 2 teabags.
Overall: good, not great.
The dry leaves smelled very hay-like, quite similar to the White Peony. But as soon as the leaves were wet, they smelled completely different! More like steamed vegetables. The liquor is very pale and almost colorless.
The taste actually mimics the flavor of the dry leaves. Primarily, I taste hay in the sip and steamed veggies in the aftertaste. I’m actually surprised how long the flavors linger. And the flavor just keeps changing, even though there’s no tea in my mouth! It’s insanity!
It’s sweet and complex and delicious. There’s one element I’m tasting that’s almost like half and half, but very light and subtle. So good! This tea just keeps changing and showing me new dimensions.
Hmm, but the second steep is a little disappointing. It seems to have lost all of its complexity and layered flavors.
I’m a little confused on steeping time though. I’ve seen completely contradictory information on the Internet. One site said to steep the leaves for over 5 minutes, even up to 15 minutes on the first steep. Another site said to steep the leaves for only 1 minute or less. What gives? Can anyone give me some advice?
Here’s what I did: 1st steep at 185 degrees for 2 minutes. 2nd steep at 180 degrees for 4 minutes. 3rd steep at 180 degrees for 9 minutes.
WARNING: Read the label before drinking this tea!
Where to start? This is my first Yogi tea. This one in particular was recommended to me by a friend. It’s advertised to “ease tension and promote relaxation.*” The asterisk elaborates that “These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.” Fairly standard language. I actually work for the FDA, so I’m used to seeing this kind of disclaimer on products. What I wasn’t prepared for were the major warnings listed on the tea packet:
“Ask a health care professional before use if you have or have had liver problems, frequently use alcoholic beverages or are taking any medication. Stop use and see a doctor if you develop symptoms that may signal liver problems (e.g., unexplained fatigue, abdominal pain, loss of appetite, fever, vomiting, dark urine, pale stools, yellow eyes or skin). Not for use by persons under 18 years of age or by pregnant or breastfeeding women. Not for use with alcoholic beverages. Excessive use or use with products that cause drowsiness may impair your ability to operate a vehicle or heavy equipment.”
JEEZ!!!!! And these warnings are contradicted by the advertisements on the box:
“We think before we blend. How will our recipes work with body and mind?” And “Health is found in nature. We work with what nature already offers rather than trying to concoct it. We don’t have laboratories. We have kitchens.” And “For a stronger effect, use 2 tea bags. On especially challenging days, drink 3 to 4 cups.”
So, first you warn me not to drink it excessively. Then you tell me to use 2 tea bags and drink 3-4 cups a day. Isn’t that somewhat excessive?
Additionally, you tell me not to drink it if I’m taking ANY medications at all. How can you expect the average consumer not to be taking any medications at all? What specifically are you trying to warn me against combining? Should I not drink this if I take an Advil? Should I not drink this if I’m on birth control? Should I not drink this if I’m on cholesterol or blood pressure medication? Does this tea really interfere with ANY medication that I take? Giving a warning that vaguely lumps all medications together seems fishy.
This is scary! My first impression was that the tea smelled weird. There’s something a little off about it. But I generally get that impression with herbal teas, so I didn’t dwell on it. I took a sip and found that even though it smelled funky, I could only taste hot cinnamon water. I’m really not getting any other flavors at all. Just cinnamon.
But after reading the box, I’m afraid to drink any more of it! Especially because I can’t taste that funky thing I’m smelling. I’m afraid of what this “tea” will do to my body. I don’t drink alcohol very often, but just the possibility that drinking this tea will hurt my liver is a huge concern!
I thought tea was supposed to be healthy. I thought tea was supposed to be good for you. All I’ve ever heard are the positive impacts of drinking tea (with the exception that it inhibits the body’s ability to absorb iron).
What the heck is this in my cup?? I personally have not had any ill effects from the two tiny sips I’ve consumed today. But I warn everyone out there, beware of Yogi teas!
A tea that requires this much warning before consumption isn’t normal. I’m tempted to alert my FDA colleagues to this tea just because a warning label might not be sufficient for keeping an unsafe product on the market.
It’s a Tazo tea day!
Hmm, this doesn’t taste much like a green tea. The liquor is very dark, golden/amber in color. It reminds me of the color of honey.
It actually tastes a little like honey too. But not the honey from bees, more like agave nectar. With a little sweetener, it’s drinkable. But not delicious.
Strange, this. I’m getting a bitter taste that’s reminiscient of oversteeping a lower quality tea. Really no grassy greenness at all. Not much in the way of floral lotus either (unless lotus smells/tastes like agave nectar).
It’s too bad they market this as a green tea. The average American consumer who has never tried real green tea will be led astray by this imposter.
It’s back to my loose leaf stores at home! No more mass marketed bagged teas for me!
This is one of the best drinks I’ve ever had in my entire life! Don’t bother to drink this tea hot without the lemonade. Suffice it to say, it’s not a pleasant experience (see oozing rose hips: http://steepster.com/Charoma/posts/85951).
But this, THIS is my one true love!
This tea has me a little frightened. It looks like red wine, and rose hips oozed out of the tea bag when I squeezed it! Here we go again with the oozing rose hips!!!
I’ve had this tea before as an Iced Passion Tea Lemonade at Starbucks. But I’ve never tried to drink it hot and by itself.
Wow! That is tart! I think it needs the lemonade to dilute and sweeten it. This is much stronger than I would have expected from an herbal tea.
I’m actually not even sure if I can drink it like this. It’s giving me an instant headache. I think I’ll stick with the Starbucks creation instead.
It’s so strange because it is AMAZING iced with lemonade. This is a completely different experience. If you told me this was the same tea as in the Starbucks creation, I wouldn’t believe it. Crazy.
If it goes down the drain, it gets a rating of 10 or less. Sorry Passion tea. :(
The dry leaves smell just like hay, but that’s a positive for me (I grew up riding horses). The brewed tea has a light hay smell with an added component. The tea, I’m assuming.
Wow, this tea is interesting. I’m getting so many flavors! One of the flavors is almost like lightly toasted pumpkin seeds. Yum!! Of course, now that I’ve picked out that flavor and identified it, I can’t taste anything else.
Mmm, but this is good. Really different from any of the other teas I’ve had. I’m not even sure I’ve ever had white tea before! This might be my first!
I didn’t know what to expect, but I guess I thought it would be like an oolong. More vegetal, but less grassy. That’s what I thought anyway.
This isn’t grassy or vegetal at all. It’s a unique flavor all of its own. I’m really impressed, and I think I’ll be drinking this a whole lot more. First white tea is a success!
The dry leaves smell exactly like grape fruit snacks. I can’t stop sniffing the bag! The aroma of the brewed tea is heavenly! I can still detect the grape smell, but it’s underneath a lovely grassiness from the oolong. I can’t wait to try this!
Oh, wow! I think this is going to be a new favorite. I can’t believe how good this is! (Thus, the overuse of exclamation marks)!!!!
This is Lupicia’s tea of the month, and therefore a free sample. Grapes seem to be the theme. The newsletter lists all of their grape teas and talks about how grapes have been added to tea for years.
I’ve tried Lupicia’s Muscat tea, a grape-flavored black tea, in the past and found it undesirable. The grape was too overpowering and candy-like.
But this is delicately flavored! I can still taste the grassy oolong underneath (which actually makes it taste more like a flavored green tea than an oolong). The grape is much more subtle in the taste than in the aroma. The aroma is like gummy snacks, but the taste is more like the grape taste in wine. In fact, it could do with a little more grape!
I’m not so sure about that “clean, crisp finish” though. The finish is a little bitter to me, thus the lower rating of an otherwise wonderful tea. Perhaps a shorter steeping time would remedy that?
Nonetheless, adding this to my list of teas to buy…Thank you, Lupicia!