865 Tasting Notes

99
drank Matcha (100g) by Lupicia
865 tasting notes

My matcha needs make me do questionable things… I’m in a new relationship which is long distance and that’s putting an even larger strain on my wallet. I’m so tight on money right now… I won’t even be purchasing my chai for a while. But… I needed my matcha so I did some research and found this- it’s only $15 (not including shipping)/100g. Now I know a lot of you must be thinking… that can’t be good. I even had my reservations (and even more so when I realized it wasn’t even in the data base), but I’m desperate.

The aroma of the bright green powder is quite strong. Of the matcha and matcha like products I’ve tried I think the aroma is closest to Den’s Tea’s powdered sencha.

2 large scoops in 16oz water as a appetiete suppressant waiting for dinner.

I need to mention that their directions were simply 1-2 teaspoons matcha and hot water (although the picture showed a chashaku- quite disappointing from a Japanese company.

Once the matcha and water kiss it reminds me of 52teas’ matchas. The color is darker and not a dingy olive, but the 2 instantly incorporate and the matcha begins to froth even before I whisk.

The flavor is very sweet- possibly the sweetest matcha I’ve had. It tastes green- not vegetal. It tastes like fresh cut grass would smell (sweet) and not like it might taste (bitter or astringent).

The mouth feel is thick, and rich, and creamy- also like 52teas… not like the watery experience I was fearing. All I could think of is when you wring out frozen spinach in a towel. I am SO glad my budget forced me to try this and would absolutely recommend this to a person on a tight budget. I could make a joke here, but I know Jason would get on my butt so I won’t lol.

??Edit: After doing a side by side color comparison in my chawan, I discovered that the mandarin is lightly brighter than the strawberry)

P.S. All their other matchas are named, but I wanted to make sure it was distinguished- that’s why I added the amount to the tea name in the database entry.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C
Peggie Bennett

I’m glad you tried it! I really love Lupicia, have had nothing bad from them. And in the store, everyone is fantastic!

Cofftea

Peggie, maybe next time you go in you could mention the poor instructions. As a Japanese company they should know how to make matcha.

Peggie Bennett

I always tend to think some things are lost in translation. :-)

Peggie Bennett

But I will get the matcha there next time I go! :-D

Cofftea

Eh, these were by far the strangest matcha directions I’ve come across (well maybe other than the wiki ones which are totally fubared lol).

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96

I made the 1st infusion for my mom so I can’t give a complete review of it, but I did want to write about my 2nd infusion. But 1st.

I think my bad shipping experiences might possibly be over after 2 packages that took over two weeks to get here and one got lost, my replacement matcha (and another package of this- I hadn’t yet recieved it so Frank wanted to make sure it didn’t get lost as well) only took 2 days and my original Cucumber Melon showed up today after “only” 9 days.

The 2nd infusion is still quite dark in color. A typical 3 min steeping color, green with gold and brownish tones. The flavor is quite surprisingly strong as well for a 2nd infusion. All 3 components are equally balanced.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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96

Made the 1st infusion for my mom so I can’t review it yet.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 0 sec
LiberTEAS

I actually quite enjoyed this tea. It is one of those ones that surprised me a bit when I liked it… because I didn’t expect to.

Cofftea

I love it- but then again I love Adagio’s white cucumber (the one that everyone hates and compares to red hots lol). Although I like this one hot more than I likethe white cucumber hot. I can’t wait to try this one iced. I hope Frank does a white tea version of this.

LiberTEAS

I haven’t yet tried the white cucumber… and I don’t even remember if I ordered it the last time I placed an order from them… I ordered so many of those little sampler tins that I don’t remember all of them! LOL (I really, really have a problem when it comes to ordering tea… there should be a 12 step program. “Hello, my name is Anne and I’m a tea shopaholic. I haven’t ordered tea for 18 hours”

Cofftea

Haha… I can do 18 hrs… it’s the not making at least 1 purchase a month I have a problem w/. And it’s all the fault of newsletter coupons. I actually cave on SS items very rarely.

LiberTEAS

Well, for many years, while I considered myself a tea purveyor, I did not buy a lot of teas from my “competitors” – it’s only been in this last year that I’ve started becoming more open to trying other people’s tea. And since I decided to close LiberTEAS, I have gone crazy with ordering. It’s like someone opened the gate and I’m running free with my credit card. LOL

Cofftea

If you ever open LiberTEAS again I’d love to see what you can do w/ flavored matchas- maybe you’ll give Frank a run for his money;)

LiberTEAS

I might have to try it sometime. I am still blending teas occasionally. The one I’m working on at the moment is a green tea blend of Jasmine, Passionfruit and Orange. I am loving it thus far… I may do a special, limited-edition run of it.

Cofftea

I would definitely consider buying some.

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100
drank Strawberry Matcha by 52teas
865 tasting notes

MATCHA MATCHA MATCHA MATCHA MATCHA!!!

Ok… back to acting like a 24 year old…

My matcha finally came today. Now this is not the matcha I ordered the day it came out- this is my replacement. I still have no clue what happened to that 1st package… and it’s not so much my not getting it that bothers me… it’s the thought that no one will ever enjoy it and that makes me want to cry.

I didn’t try this the moment I got it in the house because just as I came in my boyfriend called. I hadn’t talked to him all day and some things (people) come before matcha.

The matcha looks like the Mandarin- a fine olive colored powder. When I finally opened the package I could smell the strawberry instantly. It smelled like strawberry bubble gum.

As soon as I get matcha, especially a flavored one, I always think more, not thicker, is better so I made this just the way I did the 1st time I tried Mandarin Matcha- 2 scoops of matcha w/ 16oz of water (the full capacity of my chawan).

Like the Mandarin, it instantly mixes with the water and froths even before I whisk it. Under the light colored foam is a dark, but not electric, green liquor.

Oh WOW! The strawberry is definitely there… and it tastes like I used strawberry jello water (jello before it solidifies) to make it. Now yes, I know I’ve always said “liquid jello” like it’s a bad thing when it comes to tea, but this ABSOLUTELY works. I think it’s because of the texture- like the Mandarin, it’s thick, and smooth, and creamy. But I also think it’s because there’s much more to the flavor profile. Unlike some fruit tisanes and even some decanted fruit flavored true tea (fruit flavored whites are especially notorious for this), there is ABSOLUTELY the rich, vegetal, sweet, slightly astringent flavor that matcha is famous for. Truly amazing.

And what’s even MORE amazing is… my mom actually tried it! While I was making it, I asked her to “just smell it” and I wouldn’t make her have any. Well she thought it smelt VERY GOOD… so i asked if she wanted some and she was like, “eh… I dunno… it’s green…” So I asked if she just wanted a spoonful… she was still unsure. Once I had it whisked I told her to “come humor me” and told her this was pay back for making me try really gross foods as a child (lol!) and I gave her a soup spoon full. I could tell by her facial expression that she was absolutely shocked that it wasn’t completely vile. Infact her exact words were “Wow, that’s actually pretty good”. I’ll never make her a bowla and I don’t think she’ll regularly try mine, but now I do have hope of her trying my Mandarin and even plain matcha. And an extra bonus- all that yummy matcha in my stomach was enough to cut my hunger so I only had 2 very small pieces of flat bread pizza for dinner.

Just a packaging suggestion Frank: Since this was only an ounce it looked like I was cheated based on the packaging used (I, of course, know I wasn’t) so you might want to have your packaging in direct proportion to the amount of tea to prevent doubt and skepticism from your customers.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C
Ricky

What!??! Something coming before matcha, that’s absurd. It’s matcha! Mat-cha!!!!

Cofftea

God and Grant come before ANYTHING. Decanted tea I could drink while talking to him, but I haven’t figured out how to hold my chawan w/ one hand yet and I hate speaker phones.

I ♥ NewYorkCiTEA

I hate BEING on speaker phone but I don’t mind using it myself. Yay @ Strawberry Matcha success!!

Cofftea

I knew it would be- the yay part is being able to experience it!:)

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100
drank Yunnan Pu Erh Gold by Adagio Teas
865 tasting notes

Based on the fact that I purchased more pu erh (sheng) as well as my 1st pu erh knife today and Jenn-cha’s own pu erh tasting note I decided that it was time to just break down and try this.

Maestro Collection: Set 2, Tea #4

I completely disregarded the suggested steeping parameters and used the one in the Editors Note.

3 oz cup.

The raw leaf looks nothing like the sheng or shu I’ve seen before- it looks more like Yunnan Golden Curls than Pu Erh… and smells as such. The aroma is very light w/ an even lighter earthy note.

Wow… um… yeah… the rinse is a very light pinky orangy color. Maybe my water wasn’t hot enough? That likelyhood increases when I see my 1st infusion. The liquor is back to being exactly what I expected, a rather dark brown- although by far not the darkest I’ve seen, w/ a reddish hue.

The aroma of the tea is much like that of the raw leaf (which wet is now the color of the liquor), although a bit stronger- both in the smoothness and earthyness.

No surprises here. The flavor is very sweet and smooth with the faintest hint of earthyness. Definitely not what I’d expect from a shu- if this is indeed a shu.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec
Cofftea

2nd infusion, 20sec. Smells and looks like coffee. Tastes a bit like I would imagine a coffee pu erh to taste like as well.

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100

Ugh. I found an aspect of summer that I hate. The sun wakes me up waaay too flippin early when I don’t need to be up way to flippin early- and I am not a morning person. Funny though, this is the 1st year I remember this happening.

I have a sore throat today so I decided to ignore their “don’t steep over a min” warning and steep it for 3min. The result it a merky, watery pea soup like cuppa. Pretty darn good. It is just a touch bitter, but it was before. I like that- it keeps teas from getting overly sweet. It says this is made from Japanese loose tea… but based on their suggested I can’t figure out which one. I’ll email them and find out then next time I can steep it according to proper steeping parameters for the base tea.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec
Cofftea

Note: I found out this is regular grade Japanese sencha.

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100
drank Mandarin Matcha by 52teas
865 tasting notes

Talking to Chrine about an 8oz bowla made me want one! 1 scoop, smooth and frothy. And remember what I said about it separating? A friend called just as I was making it so it did separate requiring me to rewhisk. Quite ironic:)

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C

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49
drank Peanut Butter Chai by 52teas
865 tasting notes

I wanted chai so I decided to prolong the life of my Mayan Chocolate Chai and drink this.

1tsp in 6oz (instead of the suggested 8) near (instead of full) boiling water.

I’m not surprised this chai is quite opaque, and unfortunately I’m not surprised at the light color (it is orange though, which surprises me)… I had 5 peanut butter chips in my serving and while it makes sure the peanut butter flavor is there- that doesn’t leave much space for tea or chai.

It smells like… pumpkin pie. Yeah I know weird. Especially since the raw leaf smells like peanut butter.

When I take a sip it tastes like peanut butter… I have to admit when I was trying to wrap my idea of a peanut butter chai, the only thing I could imagine was when peanut butter gives me indigestion and it burns coming up. And it vaguely reminds me of that, but it is definitely a peanut butter chai. I’m just not a fan of solo peanut butter though, it needs chocolate. Wait… crap… I spoke too soon. The 1st taste was great… but after that it just tastes like watery pumpkin pie (yes, pumpkin again)…

Frank, I can see potential w/ this. While I know it wouldn’t be as visually appealing, I suggest chopping the peanut butter chips to make it easier for the peanut butter, chai spices, and black tea base to be more evenly distributed.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 0 sec
Lori

I tried his PB chocolate tea and I had the same problem…Sometimes, the PB flavor was not evenly distributed throughout the tea- maybe the chips were too big.. and some portions had PB flavor and others didn’t…

Cofftea

And not all the chips melted even after 5 min. That’s a lot of wasted flavor.

Kristin

You should try adding some mini-semisweet chocolate chips to it.

Cofftea

I only have enough to try it one more way and I want to try it w/ milk as I review all chais both ways. But I will be adding peanut butter chips to my Mayan Chocolate Chai some day… and caramel, and butterscotch:)

Lori

Now that’s a good idea- adding chips either PB or choco to chai…Still waiting for my Mayan Chai to come in but it is finally in the mail…

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67
drank Green Ginger by Tazo
865 tasting notes

I got a surprise w/ LiberTEAS’ vinegar black- 2 bags of this! Now, as I said, I would normally not choose to steep this at home but after being deprived of it last time I attempted to order it and being very blessed by LiberTEAS’ generosity I decided to steep it right away. It went perfectly w/ my Tortilla Crusted Fish Lean Cuisine.

1 bag (2.25g- talk about a perfect proportion/6oz water nuked for 2 min.)

Ya know when you’re a little kid and you love a particular food… til you find out what’s in it? Well, this is one of those times. Drinking it at Starbucks never gave me the chance to look at the wrapper til now. It has lemon in it… and a hint of pear??? It’s still a very good tea w/ ginger and green tea being the strongest flavors… but now I’m tasting the lemon. :( I don’t taste the pear, but that’s fine cuz I didn’t want a pear tea… and I have no clue where the pear would come from anyway…

Preparation
3 min, 0 sec

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100
drank Mayan Chocolate Chai by 52teas
865 tasting notes

Ok, ok… so I finally did it… I sweetened my chai. But only because it’s traditionally sweetened. Unfortunately, I didn’t have any traditional sweetener so I used stevia. 1 packet in a 16oz cuppa. This is only the 2nd time I’ve had sweetened chai (that wasn’t made from a mix). I had it (sweetened w/ honey) at Panera once. It wasn’t too bad. Yep. It’s a sweetened chai. The sweetener does nothing to change or inhance the flavor in anyway. It’s just… well. Sweeter. I prefer my chai (especially of the Mayan Chocolate variety) rich and decadent. This was more sweet and spicy… but at least the spicyness remained- actually I think it’s more so because the chocolate no longer has the savory notes to balance out the spice. I’m not completely ruling out sweetening chai, but I think I need a flavored sweetener like brown (or even raw) sugar, caramel or butterscotch ice cream topping, or ROT’s chai honey. But that’s not surprising since one of the reasons I drink tea is I have absoflippinlutely no motivation to drink plain water. Why drink something that has no flavor even if it’s calorie free?

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 6 min, 0 sec
Melissa

I really need to try this one sometime. I also tend to prefer my chai’s unsweetened unless it’s one of those extremely high calorie chai latte’s at my school’s coffee stand.

Cofftea

I’m just waiting for the space and the $ to by a full 1lb bag of this stuff- it’d only last me 40 days.

Ricky

Sweetened your chai!?! Uhoh what’s next? Milk in matcha =P

Cofftea

Gags… never… But then again the only way I like milk is in espresso and chai lattes. I probably would like matcha lattes if I liked milk more. Sweetening chai is like adding milk to matcha- both seem to dumb down the flavors… what a waste.

LiberTEAS

Stevia does nothing to really enhance the flavor of a tea, all that it will really do to a tea is sweeten it. Since you are not crazy about sweetened tea anyway… well, I can see why you weren’t really crazy about it. If you wish to enhance the flavors of a tea, you need a natural sweetener like honey, agave nectar or sugar. For a flavored tea such as this, I wouldn’t recommend a “flavored” sweetener as I think it would interfere with the other flavors of the cup – unless that is what you want to do. For example, with a chocolate tea, a caramel topping would be an interesting addition… because it may harmonize well with chocolate.

Cofftea

Stevia is a natural sweetener- as it tastes exactly white sugar, I have no desire to use that either. I only wish to add things that add extra flavor. ROT’s chai honey wouldn’t interfere w/ the flavors in the chai as it would echo the spice. Some people may think that caramel or butterscotch would interfere, but I love the combo. I’ve never had agave (except in tequila lol) and have no desire to try it due to its high caloric content. Hmmm… tequila in chai…

teabird

That is one of the main reasons I also drink tea! Water is unappealing, unless I am hot and noticeably dehydrated. Also, I find that stevia does have a flavor, but it’s not a good one; more like sucralose (Splenda) than white sugar. But as for sweetening chai, if you want something more flavorful than sweet you might like raw honey (I find it less sweet and more interesting than standard honey). I could definitely see caramel or butterscotch working in chai, too. Or maybe a nice dark maple syrup? I’ve had a chai blend that included maple sugar before, so I know the flavor combo can work…

Cofftea

An ex friend sweetened chai w/ vanilla and caramel ice cream syrups all the time. I don’t really like honey so I think the only one I could really enjoy would be ROT’s chai honey.

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Bio

Are you a company or tea blender on sites like Adagio that would you like your tea reviewed? If so, please e-mail me @ [email protected].

What I most enjoy from obtaining samples from companies to review is that it helps me to better learn to drink and review teas from a more objective perspective, meaning more of the “This tea is…” point of view rather than the “I like/don’t like” this tea. I feel objectivism in tea reviews is EXTREMELY important because no two tea drinkers tastes are exactly the same. I’ve also been extremely surprised by several teas. I love recieving a sample I think I will be only writing an objective review on, only to completely fall in love with it upon tasting it.

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Are you interested in redoing or starting your own tea related website or adding Search Engine Optimization? If so, please contact me at my work e-mail address: [email protected]
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Tea tastes:
I will ALWAYS pick loose leaf over tea bags. I only drink bagged tea if that’s my only choice or I find a flavor that I can’t find a loose leaf version for. When I do drink bagged; however, I always weigh my bag and am constantly curious as to the weight/flavor ratio- sometimes I am quite surprised by the flavor punch of light bags.

I have a preference for organic and fair trade teas (preferably both), but would never pass up an amzing tea just because it isn’t organic and/or fair trade.

I love savory teas.

I’m currently searching for a chai flavored soy powder or a soy based chai mix (either already mixed or a recipe).

I hardly EVER sweeten my teas. I feel that sweeteners (unless flavored like tea honeys, brown sugar, ice cream topping syrups, flavored coffee syrups, etc) do not add anything to the flavor profile of tea- in fact, I’ve found that they dumb down the flavors.

I NEVER serve my tea over regular iced cubes- I always make tea cubes.

I LOVE cooking w/ tea and making smoothTEAS.

I LOVE tea blending.

I rarely drink herbal teas unless they are mixed with true teas. My favorite herbals to mix with true teas are: spearmint, peppermint, lemongrass, rose hips, and gingeroot.

I can’t stand anything w/ fennel or anise. Hot black teas (except orange pekoe bagged tea that you get when you go out to eat and chai teas) tend to upset my stomach.

I drink matcha daily and love flavoring it. I’m also in a constant search of preflavored matchas.

I’m constantly searching for information on how to prepare tea authentically according to its country of origin.

My Tasting Notes Ratings (edited 8/8/10)
1: I can’t even stand the raw leaf enough to make this (I’ve never owned a tea w/ this rating, but I’ve smelled some before buying resulting in me NOT buying them that were that bad)

2: I steeped this tea but couldn’t stand the aroma enough to get it past my nose

3: I immediately gagged at the 1st sip and spit it out.

4: I manageed to get the 1st sip down, but I tossed the rest.

5: I drank the 1st cup but I can’t bring myself to resteep

6: Made it thru the entire set of infusions but I can’t bring myself to tinker w/ the parameters and won’t be making it again.

7-10: Does not taste anything like the ingredients or name suggests (i.e. Adagio’s Sour apple)

11-25: I can taste some of the ingredients, but the flavor is severely lacking

25-49: Teas that I would not consider bad in their flavor profile, but certainly below average

50: Average.

51-69: Teas above averge, but I wouldn’t go as far as calling them “good”.

70-75: Very good, but still room for improvement

76-85: Above average flavor profile

86-90: REALLY good flavors

91-99: Almost PERFECTLY achieves the goal of the ingredients and name of the tea.

100: Abosolutely perfect teas!

Other Interests: GOD! and all things pertaining to Him and His children, my dog Madison, travelling, and coffee.

Favorite Music: ANYTHING Christian. I don’t normally listen to secular music, but I do love jazz and swing.

Favorite Movies: Romantic comedies mostly. My Sister’s Keeper, P.S. I Love You, Fireproof, National Treasure Trilogy (I CAN’T WAIT FOR THE 3rd ONE TO COME OUT!), Night at the Museum 1 & 2, Sister Act 1 & 2, Yes Man, Bruce & Evan Almighty, rarely watch animated movies but LOVE anything 3D.

Favorite Books: THE BIBLE!!! & My Sister’s Keeper

Favorite Quotes: “A sad soul can kill you far quicker than a germ”- John Stienbeck "

Criticism is something we can avoid easily by saying nothing, doing nothing, and being nothing”- Aristotle

“You should always carry burdens, but they should never be your own”- me

“You have enemies? Good. That means you’ve stood up for something, sometime in your life.” ~ Winston Churchill

“Mom was right, ‘because I say so’ is enough- at least when it comes to God.”- me

Favorite Foods: fried calamari, lemon chicken, anything w/ buffalo sauce.

Favorite Places: WA state, Switzerland, Orlando

Places I Want to Visit: Hawaii, Africa

Anything Else: I was born with a birth defect called Spina Bifida which is the failure of the spinal column to close en utero. Because of this I am a parapelegic and use a manual wheelchair.

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