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499 Tasting Notes

97

I’m not exactly sure which year this tea was harvested. The sample package just said “autumn.” But since it’s fairly late into 2013, I figured this must be from 2012. The dry leaf aroma is floral green oolong at its finest! The brewed tea aroma is more subdued since I did a quick one minute infusion.

The first sip was like an explosion of flavor in my mouth! At first, it was super sweet and creamy. Then it morphed into a floral, silky, green oolong. Finally, the aftertaste had a metallic tang to it. This is mouthwateringly good! Mmmm! I can tell that I am going to thoroughly enjoy this sample.

The leaves completely unfurled during the second infusion for two minutes. The flavor has changed slightly, but it’s difficult to describe how. I suppose it’s a little less metallic and a little more floral. In any event, it is still super yummy! I did a third infusion for three minutes and a fourth for five. Mmm mm! I could drink this every day!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 1 min, 0 sec

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100
drank SBT: Pink Lemonade by 52teas
499 tasting notes

O-M-G!!! WHAT IS THIS??!

IT IS MAGICAL!

IT IS AMAZING!

IT IS THE BEST ICED TEA I HAVE EVER EVER HAD!!!!

Man, and I thought the other SBT iced teas were amazingly delicious. How could tea ever be improved upon again? Well, Frank did it. This is perfection! Frank has made THE BEST iced tea IN THE UNIVERSE! I can’t even describe what it tastes like. It tastes like Heaven. It’s naturally sweet without being sugary (unless you add sugar, of course). It’s slightly lemon-y…and a whole lot of delicious! Ahh, sooo good! :D

Preparation
Iced 3 min, 0 sec
Fjellrev

This is the ONE new one I wanted to try. I take it by your note that it’s pretty good hahaha.

CHAroma

Frank seriously needs to blend some more ASAP. My in-laws came to visit this weekend and drank all my iced tea! :(

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98
drank Cotton Candy White Tea by 52teas
499 tasting notes

Guys…I think I may have a problem.

See, it all started with this tea. Frank just HAD to blend another cotton candy tea. Don’t you know I’m broke, Frank? But I allowed myself this one little bag because I know it’s going to be awesome. Well, that’s how it starts right? Next thing I know, I’m buying two more packages of this one, three of the SBT iced teas, Turtle Cheesecake Black Tea, and the S’mores Chai re-blend. What have I done??! Oh jeez. I just can’t help myself!! Do they have a Teaophile Anonymous? ‘Cause I think I need to go.

Why did this tea have to be so good??? My initial reaction upon sniffing the dry leaf was, “Hmm, this is a weird chicken.” The dry leaf aroma is weird. The brewed tea aroma is weird. The taste? A little weird. LOL! The aftertaste is sweet, melt-in-your-mouth, spun sugar! But while the tea is on the tongue, it’s mostly white tea with some added component I can’t quite describe. The aftertaste is perfect cotton candy though.

The second steep for 3 minutes was really tasty too. The cornflower is more apparent, while the cotton candy flavor is softer. And the white base is simply beautiful! This is heaven in a cup. No bitterness or astringency at all! I probably do like the black base better, but not by much. Let’s face it, Frank could add cotton candy to just about anything and I’d drink it.

I also find that I can drink this tea like water. It goes down super smooth, and I can imagine this being divine iced. I’m really sad each pouch has only an ounce. It seems like very little tea. (Thus, the spontaneous shopping spree on the 52teas website to buy a couple more bags). Y’all better hurry up and purchase this before there’s none left! And at the rate I’m shopping…that’s very little time indeed.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 0 sec
Sil

haha i was really tempted by the turtle cheesecake and the smores chai….must. resist.

Ze_Teamaker

It’s ok. One does not simply resist buying a few of Franks teas; it really is hard to just get one flavor.

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80
drank Big Apple by DAVIDsTEA
499 tasting notes

A friend of mine broke her foot, so I sent her a care package of teas. I also received a swap package from Sil last week. So, what does that mean for my cupboard? Well, the exchange would have evened out…until I decided to buy the DAVIDsTEA fall collection sampler, 52teas’ new Cotton Candy White Tea, and then found a couple undocumented samples in my cupboard. *Sigh

I’m going to pick up where I left off with my sipdown number because I think I’ll probably sipdown quite a few teas without writing notes about them. Sometimes, you just don’t have anything new to say about a tea, and I’d rather not have my sipdown extravaganza be the sole reason for logging a tea.

ON TO THE TEA!

This is a sample I’ve had since our mini-moon trip to NYC. Sadly, I think I used too hot water on it. I mean, it said to use really really hot water. But it’s a green and white tea blend. I should have followed my instincts. Oh well, I have plenty left to experiment with.

I added a bit of sweetener to combat the bitterness. I like it a lot better this way. It’s definitely an apple tea. It’s nice to see that fruit come across strongly as it often doesn’t, even in blends where that’s supposed to be the primary flavor.

This tea is slightly sweet, slightly bitter, slightly floral, and mostly fruity. It’s not a bad combination, just different from what I was expecting. The second infusion for 4.5 minutes has no bitterness at all and is still quite tasty.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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77
drank Copabanana by DAVIDsTEA
499 tasting notes

Sipdown #54

I’m researching the London part of our upcoming honeymoon. There are so many options for day trips from London! It’s really hard to choose. We have it narrowed down to include at least Bath and Stonehenge. Now we have to decide between adding Windsor (with Lacock optional), Salisbury, or a mystery UNESCO World Heritage Site.

I’m leaning toward the mystery. I normally don’t like not knowing when it’s about something as important as a trip abroad. But the company who offers that tour is rated very highly, and everyone says you’ll definitely enjoy the mystery site. So, I don’t think I’m really taking a risk. I really want to see Windsor, but I also want to give it the amount of time it deserves. Most people agree you can spend half a day to an entire day there. So, I think I’ll save that one for our next trip to England.

ON TO THE TEA!

This was a free sample with my online DAVIDsTEA purchase from a while back. I really dislike banana-flavored things. So, I’m confident that this will not be a winner for me. The dry leaf aroma was nice and fruity with coconut and banana being the most recognizable scents. The brewed tea aroma was, again, mostly coconut. The tea was very oily and scummy. It looked a lot like chicken broth.

Hmm, the banana is fairly light in this. Mostly, I can taste almond, apple, coconut, and then a hint of banana. Phew! I don’t know how I managed to avoid banana in a banana-flavored tea, but I did! I suppose that should be a negative thing since this tea is called Copa_banana_ and people buying it are likely looking for a prominent banana taste. But for me, this worked out nicely in my favor.

I should note that the more I drink it, the more I get that scratchy feeling at the back of my throat that I sometimes get with DAVIDsTEA blends containing Stevia or artificial flavoring. Nevertheless, I quite like this cup, especially after the abominable Coffee Chai. Who knew this would be drinkable?!

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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29

Sipdown #55

Yeaaaaah, I don’t know about this combo. Coffee and chai? Well, the husband will probably drink it if I don’t. He’s a coffee fanatic! The dry leaf aroma is about as weird as it gets. I took a sip and immediately said, “Oof, that is gross!” So yeah, this is not my cup of tea.

At first, it has a weird coffee flavor. The spices don’t help this taste more like tea. It’s just strange. Once the coffee flavor ebbs, the aftertaste is all chai spices. That’s the only redeeming quality of this tea. I am afraid coffee beans do not belong in my tea. This is just gross.

Not surprisingly, the husband does enjoy it. LOL! Well, at least someone will drink this free sample. :) My husband did want me to note that he didn’t enjoy this as much as the North African Mint tea he had earlier today. He rates this one at 50, while I’m giving it a whopping 8 for being undrinkable. That nets this tea a rating of 29.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec
Fjellrev

Blech. This one just sounds wrong from the get go. Can’t imagine the flavour. :/

CHAroma

It’s not good. LOL!

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78

Sipdown #56

My husband said he doesn’t like chai. But then he tried this one and said he really liked it! So, maybe he’ll drink the Coffee Chai sample I just found in my cupboard…Hmm, perhaps my sipdown goal will be accomplished with his help. ;) Is that cheating?

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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70

Sipdown #57

I really dislike red rooibos. But I can never turn down trying a new tea. So, I brewed this one up with only 1 tsp for 3 minutes. And you know what? It’s not horrible! LOL!

The mint and chocolate flavors are stronger than the base. But I still get that little twinge in the front of my forehead that reminds me this is rooibos. It feels similar to the start of a headache. So, I’ll drink this cup and then pass along the remainder to a friend. I always enjoy trying new things though, and this tea surprised me. Thanks to Shmiracles for sharing her stash!

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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76

Sipdown #58

I decided to give this tea another chance before passing the rest of it along to a friend. This time I used only 1 tsp and steeped it for 2 minutes. I enjoyed it sooooo much better! I added a splash of skim milk but no sweetener, and it is delicious! The hazelnut is much lighter and more authentic tasting this go-around. Now I understand what everyone has been raving about. Upping the rating from 44 to 76. Thanks again for the sample, Shmiracles!!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 0 sec
Shmiracles

all these fandom blends don’t tend to blow my mind, but definitely grow on me. also yes, i learned that for me less steeping does do better. yay glad you tried it :)

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78
drank Genmaicha by Kusmi Tea
499 tasting notes

Sipdown #59

Mmm, I really enjoyed the last two cups of this one. They were especially toasty and flavorful. I’m surprised how long you can steep these leaves without it going bitter. My second infusion was for over 6 minutes and it yielded a delicious cup! No bitterness or astringency at all. This genmaicha has grown on me, and now I’m sad it’s gone. :( But I am happy to have another sipdown accomplished! :) Thanks again for the sample, Shmiracles!!

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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Bio

Entering the sweet blissful world of tea aromas!

Having discovered this website at the end of July 2011, I’m so excited to share my tea adventures with all of you! I grew up with my grandmother serving Twining’s English Breakfast with cream and sugar.

But on a trip to Seattle in 2010, I stumbled into a Chinese teashop and tried my first oolong tea. I was forever changed! I embarked on a startling new love for green and white teas.

With a world of teas to discover, I was inspired to keep a tea journal to record my thoughts and new favorites. Let’s get brewing!


My ratings are completely subjective and 100% my opinion. All ratings are given in relation to each other (ie. teas are rated in the order of my enjoyment of them). Therefore, my ratings will constantly change as I try more teas.


I love swapping!!! If you see something in my cupboard you’d like to try, just send me a message. If you’d like to trade, anything on my shopping list will do or feel free to send something else entirely. I’m willing to try almost anything (although I’m not really a fan of honeybush, red rooibos, pu’erh, Lapsang Souchong, & banana-flavored teas).

Location

Maryland, USA

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