626 Tasting Notes
The instructions say steep at 180F, but I’m easily overwhelmed by strong green tea so I steeped mine at 10F less. This worked out to my tastes, with the green tea still being on the nippier, albeit acceptable, side of my preferences. A little nip and a generous temperature are probably preferable for coaxing out the lemon balm and lemongrass anyways.
I had this tea years ago, for Christmas advent, and, as far as memories of taste and smell are reliable, this is a true version to that older batch. I liked it back then and I still like it now.
The old image of a soft, kitten surrounded by citrus sunshine and marshmallow clouds is an apt metaphor for the textures and tastes that the ingredients invoke. That’s not to say it’s like drinking literal kittens, because that sounds horrifying in so many ways. Erm, this is what happens when I forsake my fantasy niche and pick up something like Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn. Only bad things- blame the media.
I hope you all go away with sunbeams, bouncy clouds, and soft, purring kittens today!
Flavors: Floral, Lemon, Lemongrass, Marshmallow
I can get behind this one, since it’s full of many of my favourite things: a creamy “hay” white tea with the smoother qualities of an oolong, flavoured to taste like baked goods and blackberries. Yep, Crowkettle tea.
Flavoured white teas don’t always seem to have the base thickness and consistency necessary for rich flavourings, but I think this one works out pretty well. The aroma of the liquor alone is alluring, full of fresh blackberry dessert goodness.
This tea makes up for the fact that there are no blackberries to be found in this household right now, except for the huge blackberry that magically appeared in my strainer (bonus). One (berry) definitely feels like many here. Now, I’m off to see if I can get a decent second steep!
Edit: This tasted better when I used a smaller cup with more leaves, and berries. It doesn’t have that “thickness” this time around. Eh. Will play around with it. The first session was really good!
Flavors: Baked Bread, Blackberry, Butter, Cream, Hay
This Earl of Anxi is starting to get on in years (+3), but it still has enough spirit when encouraged with a longer steep time.
I love how the smooth, soft oolong comes together with the brighter, more aggressive goji, citrus, and frankincense flavours. Probably one of my favourite spins on an earl grey with a non-black tea base. I don’t drink it enough to justify picking up more anytime soon, but I will miss it when it’s gone.
Flavors: Butter, Citrus, Floral, Goji
I’m having an awesome time with this tea today; it’s putting me in the same head space that Vanilla Citrus Spice used to before I picked up the last harvest/batch. I haven’t had enough quality tea moments like this lately.
Flavors: Bergamot, Chocolate, Citrus, Malt, Rose
I picked this up, with encouragement from Plunkybug, ages ago with the Victoria group meet. I think I came away with more than sixty new teas from that event, and I haven’t even started digging through that stash in a meaningful way…
This one is smooth, maybe even watery, with a good Caramilk vibe. I’ve been in a “decadent” dessert mood lately, so it hits the spot right now. I’m going to need to wean myself back on tea after over a month without!
Flavors: Caramel, Cocoa
I find teas with both floral and spice profiles hard to mentally digest. I simultaneously want to add milk and go chai, while also wanting to do a low temp steep without milk and sugar. The tea is a mixed black and green blend with fruity notes, and the main spice is the cardamom so I ended going with a cold brew.
Notes of cardamom and spiced fruit draw my attention the most, like a watery homage to mango lassi, while the rose is light and more inclined to a dessert-like Turkish Delight juiciness.
The blend is more of an abstract aromatherapy/spa mix than a concrete dessert tea, but that isn’t stopping my mind from filling in gaps..
Flavors: Cardamon, Mango, Pepper, Rose
I’m on my fourth steep of this now (160F/3min), and I swear the hay note has transformed into coconut. The kind of sugary coconut you might get from the Hawaiian McDonald’s Haupia Pies. I liked the hay honey-jam of the first couple steeps but baked/fried coconut cream is a special class of friend.
Thanks, OMGsrsly, for bringing this over for me to try!
Flavors: Coconut, Cream, Hay, Honey, Jam
This one is delicious. The lemon verbena and marshmallow root give it that fluffy citrus meringue texture. I appreciate that I can pick out the sweet green note of the Mao Zhen Hair Needle base; the green tea actually enhances the sweet lemon dessert vibe.
It’s pretty good, and definitely in the same family as my beloved Lime Jello Salad tea, and the cheery-clean Sun & Cloud Mist tea.
Flavors: Garden Peas, Lemon, Marshmallow, Meringue
OMGsrsly (or someone else who passed along this tea) wrote “interesting” on my sample packet, which essentially sums this tea up. It’s not the savory spices that are “interesting”, but the fact that I don’t get pineapple from this pineapple tea at all.
The dry blend smells of tropical fruits, but the fruitiness to taste is more a fuzzy peach, banana runts, or even plantain/banana with the finish and aftertaste- also reminiscent of a clove and banana accented hefeweizen. But, just as there’s a smiley face at the end of that “interesting” on my packet, this tea is a lot of fun- you just have to accept it for it is.
The aroma of the broth is probably the most “pineapple-y” aspect of this tea, so I’ll continue to breathe deep. Although now I want a plantain tea. Or a German Wheat Beer. Whichever is closer.
Flavors: Banana, Candy, Peach
When I got this one right it was simply amazing. Two out of half a dozen steeps tasted of a potent raspberry infused honey. Nectar of the gods.
While this was also good the other four times, the couple of awesome experiences set the bar really high and made me envious every time it didn’t turn out like that. It was often just not enough raspberry, or not enough honey, or a little too much black tea astringency.
Amariel/Plunkybug recommended this one, and now I’m hooked.. although it sometimes feels a little like gambling as the flavours aren’t always consistent. Raspberries and honey make me weak.
Flavors: Honey, Raspberry