700 Tasting Notes

96
drank White Rhino by Butiki Teas
700 tasting notes

This is both my 400th tasting note, and a sipdown (well, until both my Butiki order and Shadowfall stash sale arrive).

This tea is such a delight. There’s a nice thick mouthfeel that’s both creamy and malty. I love creamy teas. I’m also getting the hay flavour. And of course that natural sweetness, which is very subtle, and not quite like some of the honey-sweetness in my favourite black teas. It all combines so wonderfully. I didn’t think there could be a white tea that encompasses such perfection. It’s even great as it cools. I want to order more and more of this and have it all the time, but I think a part of what makes it so amazing is that I drink it so rarely.

I had a moment this morning where I saw the rating wasn’t as high at some of Stacy’s other teas and I feared the worst, but then I reminded myself that’s it’s a newer tea and perhaps that’s due to not enough people having tried it yet.

On an unrelated note, I’m running low on my maple butter. I had maple syrup in my oatmeal this morning instead, so as to begin the hoarding process until I’m home again in the summer and can pick up more. I knew I should’ve gotten the bigger size jar!

Flavors: Cream, Malt

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 15 OZ / 443 ML
Sil

congrats on 400!

__Morgana__

Congrats!

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88

This one turned out perfectly this morning. The lower temperature really is the key I find. This one has been finicky for me in the past, but when it works out I absolutely love it. I’ll definitely be ordering the reblend, and possibly more of this one before it’s gone. Does anyone know when this blend is on it’s way out?

Also, this is my first tasting note to check out the upgrade and all these options are handy! The amount of tea and water volume are a delight.

Flavors: Cream

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 15 OZ / 443 ML
Stephanie

Don’t give me the rest of yours then! Keeeep it :)

Courtney

I so rarely reach for it, I was searching for a perfect replacement for Taiwanese Wild Mountain for my morning cup, and then it steeped up so perfectly. :)

keychange

I didn’t know Stacey was reblending this. Any idea what she hopes to do differently?

Courtney

I’m really not sure keychange – here is the link to her note on some upcoming changes :) http://steepster.com/butikiteas/posts/218750#comments

Butiki Teas

The current batch is already gone. I really like the flavor combination but I think this tea is really too picky and perhaps a little too aggressive for most people so I will be looking for a more agreeable base. I’m still undecided whether I want to choose another black tea or perhaps take it in a different direction. We just got in another Assam (not the Hattialli) but one that is similar to our Dinjoye but even more chocolatey. I will be trying that as a base and a few other teas as well. We are always open to suggestions.

Courtney

Ooh that base sounds like it could be tasty. I look forward to whatever you come up with, I’m sure it’ll be delicious. I personally love black teas, so I’m all for a black base haha.

Butiki Teas

That new Assam could be a winner. I’m definitely picturing it now and also possibly our Keemun which is a pretty gentle black tea though I was also thinking about maybe trying it as a white tea.

Courtney

I’m all for the Assam. :) Although both your Cantaloupe & Cream and Watermelon Xylophone are quite tasty with the white base. I don’t think I’ve ever had a Keemun tea – does that have a smoky element to it?

Butiki Teas

This particular type of Keemun is not smokey. Its actually somewhat sweet.

Courtney

The all sounds promising. I can’t wait to see what you end up choosing, I’m already planning out my next order.

Butiki Teas

Good to hear that they all sound promising. :)

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drank Winter Blend by Tealish
700 tasting notes

This is a sipdown, sadly. I quite enjoyed having this herbal around.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 30 sec

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TeaVivre arrived today, yes! That was pretty quick from China, I must say. I should also add in a thank you to caile for introducing me to TeaVivre.

Hello Bailin. I’ve been waiting for you. Because the name is so close to “Balin”, this tea will forever be a dwarf from The Hobbit in my mind. Which just endears it more to me.

Now I shall sip away and work on an assignment that’s due at midnight.

Preparation
3 min, 0 sec
caile

Yay! : ) That arrived fast!

Courtney

I know! I was so impressed with the shipping time.

caile

Did you get the free shipping? I think often it depends on customs etc, how often a package arrives.

caile

I meant how quick a package arrives

Courtney

Yep! I made sure my order was just over the threshold haha. Oh it definitely depends on customs. It came through Canada in MB actually.

caile

haha, that’s great!

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I was really hoping Fjellrev would maybe be wrong, or more sensitive to smoke than I, but alas, I could taste it. This tea is not for me. Sigh.

On the upside though, I see another order may be delivered today. Yes!

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec
Sil

Glad i’m not insane. this was NOT a smokey tea originally…but the batch i had the other day for SURE had smokiness to it.

I mean, i’m ok with that and love it..but it’s a totally different tasting tea than the first time i remember having it.

Courtney

Pout. I was so looking forward to the “sweet potato” flavour.

Stephanie

Bummer! It sounds theoretically awesome…

Sil

yeah…i’ll need to try this again on the weekend but i remember thinking woah..this is like a tasty keemun!

Stephanie

The only thing I’ve ever gotten sweet potato flavor from was the Golden Fleece…mmmm

Terri HarpLady

I haven’t tried this lately, but I think Verdant may have included a sample in my last order, so we’ll see.

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This is one of my very favourite teas, and David’s discontinued it a while ago. I’ve been hoarding samples from Sil and jessiwrites, because they’re awesome.

I may have just had a minor freakout over this proposal due tomorrow. I finally decided on my topic last night, and I’ve spent the better half of the afternoon and evening doing research and writing. My friend and I were just discussing it, and next thing you know I’m questioning everything I’ve done up to this point. Ahhh. You know the vicious cycle that comes next – check the time, ask yourself if there’s another time to figure out a back up plan, freak out some more, etc. After some frantic thinking, I told J to stop what he was doing and read everything I’d done, while I simultaneously attempted to explain to him the background research, of which he knows nothing. After ten minutes, in which I’m sure I sprouted a few grey hairs, I had reworded a couple sentences and was back on track. PHEW. Talk about an overreaction.

This tea is amazing. And I think the events of this evening have warranted its presence.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 30 sec
VariaTEA

Oh no! That is definitely stressful. I have written and rewritten essays so I know how quickly second guessing yourself can be. At least you were able to work everything out and get back on track.

I ended up giving up on some of the questions on my assignment but got it done and handed it in this morning (then went and bought teas to reward myself :P) so yay for doing our work!

Courtney

Second guessing is the worst. Yay for getting that done and out of the way! I love the reward. :P I feel back in control of my tea spending after my six orders haha.

VariaTEA

haha. I actually did pretty good. I got 10 teas, a to-go cup and filters for less than $25 and then went to Caesars and got a free cup of tea and 5 new teas for about $15.

Courtney

That’s awesome! Good job tea shopping. :) Where were the first 10 from?

VariaTEA

Oh. I thought I mentioned that but apparently instead I just assumed you should know. I went to DAVIDs and picked up a few teas.

Courtney

That is what I was thinking, but I wanted to be sure. Although I did just see your note on Mint To Be. That one may be intriguing enough to warrant a trip in. Shudder, I do not enjoy the mall hah.

VariaTEA

I don’t understand why it tastes almost fudgy to me. I don’t think there is chocolate in it. I am confused but enjoying the cup so all is well.

Courtney

I noticed David’s update on it says something about chocolate notes. And MWUAHAHA the proposal is complete! I am so happy with it, and it has truly reinforced just how much I can’t wait to be a full-blown scientist haha.

VariaTEA

Yay for finishing it!! Must feel pretty awesome.

OMGsrsly

Go, Courtney, go! :)

caile

Yay! That’s great on getting your proposal finished!

Courtney

Thanks guys :)

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drank Campfire Blend by Verdant Tea
700 tasting notes

Another in my order from Verdant!

The dry scent of this tea made me quite wary, but steeped the scent is much more inviting. The cinnamon is coming through most clearly now.

The taste is pretty light, which is both good and not so good. There isn’t any of the almost offensive dry scent taste going on, but the yummy smelling cinnamon isn’t that clear in the taste either. I’m getting the subtlest hint of orange in the background. Hmm. Hopefully more flavour will come through as it cools.

I’m thinking this one needs a bit more leaf.

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

i think i usually do this one at 1.5 per “cup” though with my size mugs it’s 3 since they’re twice the size of normal cups

Courtney

I have a 14 oz. mug and I generally do the recommended for 8 oz. This didn’t work out in my favour here haha. Lesson learned!

Stephanie

oof I did NOT like this one.

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drank Silver Buds Yabao by Verdant Tea
700 tasting notes

So I got some of this in a swap from Cavovorax a while ago (I’m pretty positive it was Cavo), and it kind of scared me, so I just sent it along to my friend. Once she tried it, she couldn’t stop raving about it. She immediately bought more from Verdant claiming she couldn’t live without it. And, of course, I was kicking myself for not even trying it. Silly, silly.

My Verdant order arrived today, so this was the first tea I wanted to try. It kind of smells like the forest. But I’m enjoying the scent. I must say the taste matches up well with the scent. Like pine trees. Subtle pine trees. Pine tree tea. I have always wondered what pine trees taste like.

I think I need to fiddle around with the steeping times and temperatures, because this one is tasty, but I don’t think it’s keep-around-in-my-cupboard tasty. Any suggestions on steeping parameters?

In other good news, I finally decided on a topic for my proposal. I also added some photos of tea. Now to find space in my cupboard for all these new teas. And the five other orders on the way.

http://s770.photobucket.com/user/courtneyns/media/Steepster/4D8078E6-10EA-4B54-B472-DDB40BBD6D22_zpswyhyh0kv.jpg.html?sort=3&o=0

http://s770.photobucket.com/user/courtneyns/media/Steepster/5DD658B8-C5EF-4E84-A5EA-BF94F25F1CC1_zpszmnq7li0.jpg.html?sort=3&o=1

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec
OMGsrsly

I got the yabao snickerdoodle, and yes! Pine trees! So interesting. I think I steeped at 185 for 3-4min.

caile

Nice! And…wow at five other orders! ;-)

Courtney

I didn’t see that one OMGsrsly! I did pick up the Eight Treasures Yabao though. Perhaps that will be my next cup.

I’ve been so out of hand this month with order caile. :|

sundaysipping

I’m so glad that I’m not the only one that has trouble fitting their tea orders into the cupboard. :-)

Courtney

Haha! I had to rearrange drastically sundaysipping. I’m only “allowed” one tea cupboard, so I’m going to need to get creative.

Sil

gross. silver yabao and i do NOT get along… blech. in so far as cuboards go… i need a day to rearrange..my unopened teas are taking up too much room in me “open once you’ve finished some other stuff” cube

Courtney

Sil! I got the Zheng Shan Xiao Zhong Smoked Wuyi as a sample in my order – are you interested? I kind of despise smoke in my tea haha.

Sil

of course! looooove it! that would be awesome

sundaysipping

Part of the deal with my fiance and I moving in together was that he got a fish tank and I got a tea cupboard. It’s the smallest cupboard in our kitchen, meanwhile my fiance has a 55 gallon fish tank. I’m considering taking over the (much larger) spice-and-sundries cabinet for my tea. After all, tea is so much more important than things like canned tomatoes. And I’d still only be using one cabinet.

Courtney

OMG sundaysipping I also have the smallest cupboard in the kitchen for my teas and my fiance has a 160 gallon fish tank. That is bizarre. We are already pressed for room in our kitchen so I’ve taken over a drawer in our kitchen cart for all my swaps that come in. I’ve managed to hide three tea tins in there too. Mwuahaha.

OMGsrsly

Do it, sundaysipping! :D Courtney, the tea was part of the Verdant Blends christmas box.

sundaysipping

OMGsrsly, I am so tempted. Only think keeping me from doing it is that he cooks most of our meals and I’m afraid he’d dump some of my Lime Gelato into pasta sauce, thinking it was oregano or something. What a horrible thought.

Courtney, that is so weird about the fishtank and cabinet! Maybe I can trade my fiance if I offer to let him get a bigger fishtank … (he thinks I don’t see him eyeing them when we’re in the fish store but I totally notice). I think that you should convert your kitchen cart into a tea cart! Also: I love the idea of a kitchen cart — we have no storage space and barely any counters so this might be a good solution for us. Hmmm.

Courtney

That’s exactly why we got the cart. It is so handy. I may be able to convert one more drawer in it at least. Mwuahaha.

OMGsrsly

That would be a waste of good tea, wouldn’t it, sundaysipping. :)

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This is another lovely sample from caile – thanks!

Yet another great black tea. This one doesn’t have that natural sweetness, but it’s still quite tasty. I decided on this for my morning cup this morning and it did not disappoint. It comes off as fresh and clean tasting.

I would say I prefer the Bailin, because I do have that weakness for the honey-like sweetness, but I certainly wouldn’t say no to this being in my cupboard from time to time.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 1 min, 30 sec
Stephanie

I’m getting the Bailin soon as a sample for review. SUPER excited!

caile

Yay! I also had chosen the bailin over this one, although both were good. Glad you enjoyed them!

Courtney

Thanks caile! This swap has been so informative haha. I now know TeaVivre teas will most likely be a staple in my cupboard.

Courtney

Stephanie the Bailin was wonderful! I ordered some a little over a week ago and now I’m even more impatient for it to arrive.

caile I like a lot of teavivre’s teas, and the only problem is picking favorites.

You’re so good at trying all the samples, Courtney! lol I’m so slow. :-P

Courtney

Haha I get overly excited with swaps and I always want to try all the new teas. :P

caile

Haha! Me too… (except I’m a slowpoke)! ;-)

Courtney

Haha. :P I’m excited to see some of your tasting notes – especially the Taiwanese Wild Mountain, I might even say that is my all-time favourite.

caile

Yes, I’m really forward to trying this one!!

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Another awesome sample from caile! I may have been excited about receiving this swap today in the mail haha.

This tea is fascinating! The smell is that typical comforting black tea scent, but the taste is different altogether. Is that a berry taste? Berries? Fascinating. It’s also a bit woodsy. Not like the forest, like wood hah. I’m quite enjoying it, and the different taste for each sip is keeping me on my toes.

I’ve been researching all night, attempting to narrow down a topic for a proposal due Friday, and rather than narrow anything down, I’ve managed to expand my topic choices. Why must everything sound so interesting? Sigh.

Thanks caile :)

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

Glad you tried this!

Terri HarpLady

This is one of. My favorites :)

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Profile

Bio

Lover of tea, animals, the ocean (http://eastcoastbest.tumblr.com/), science, travel, and all things summer.

That’s my mug! I may have a slight love of Star Trek.

I love black teas. I pretty well always drink my tea straight. I’m also fond of herbals, but they rarely make my permanent collection. I prefer my tea hot, but occasionally I’ll cold brew.

Oolongs I enjoy, but I’m not generally in the mood for them. I only truly enjoy subtly fruity flavoured greens. Whites have to be pretty amazing (see Butiki’s White Rhino).

Pu’erhs I’m working on at a snail’s pace, but so far I’m not loving them. Rooibos/honeybush have to be well hidden for me to enjoy them. Mates and are not for me at all.

Likes:
Coconut, creaminess, yogurt, toffee, cacao (true dark chocolate flavour), rhubarb.

Dislikes:
Any smokiness, bergamot, flowers (rose, jasmine, chamomile), hibiscus is hit and miss.

Location

Canada

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