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456 Tasting Notes

85

A good cup of black tea to start the day! It has much of the flavor characteristics of a breakfast blend, but not quite as bold.

Thanks for the free sample Stacy :)

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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45

Not such a great tea. It tastes like a cheap artificially sweetened black tea with a hint of caramel. It’s somewhat in the league of 52Teas Candy Corn tea imo, so maybe those of you who liked that one would like this too. I rated that one higher, though, because the caramel in this one is what really puts me off.

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

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85

This is a bright and cheery green, definitely reminiscent of spring time. It’s light without being flavorless. This could be a nice addition to my otherwise heavy vegetal broth collection :)

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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75

Well, consider me unbelievably impressed!

This has got to be the both the best flavored puerh and the best chocolate tea that I’ve ever had. Ever. Seriously. And if you know me, you know that I have never rated any chocolate tea high and only once before enjoyed a flavored puerh.

So what’s this mean for most of you reading this? probably that you won’t like it as much as I. All you who enjoy those della terra chocolate teas (so gnarly!) might not find this tea to match your tastes. . .but who knows. To me, this is exactly how a peppermint-patty wanna-be tea should be. The mint is strongest, while the chocolate hangs out in the back ground. The puerh gives the tea a weightier/creamier mouth feel than would another base, but it doesn’t contribute a lot to the flavor, which is good imo. I like unflavored puerh, but I haven’t found its unique flavor well suited to dessert blends.

I am especially impressed that this comes from a little Montana tea shop that is only a few years old.

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75

Den’s tea sample of the month. I saw this tea featured on the website when I placed my order for Sencha Fuka Midori, but I didn’t order any. I don’t like naturally citrusy greens, so I didn’t expect to like one with yuzu chips. But I got a sample, so I tried it anyway.

It really is a nice refreshing tea, the kind I’d drink when I’ve had too many flavored samples in a row. My biggest complaint isn’t so much the yuzu flavor, but the bitterness, which might be due to the yuzu, I don’t know.

Anyway, it’s better than I thought it would be, but I am super picky about my green teas and I already have enough favorites to keep my cupboard full, so this won’t be joining them.

Here’s a picture of the tea in the pretty new tea cup that I got for my birthday yesterday:
http://i1105.photobucket.com/albums/h353/flightysprite/Tea/fallleafteacup_zpsb445f84d.jpg

I’ve wanted this mug since I first saw it in the Republic of Tea Catalogue. It’s just the right size (10oz) for me and a perfect weight. I don’t like heavy/bulky mugs and I usually have to settle for flimsy mugs that feel like toys, which are still better than getting a sore wrist from the heavier ones. But this one has a nice sturdy feel too it without being painful to hold for a long time. So lovely. :)

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 0 sec
Veronica

That is a pretty mug. Love the color!

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85

This is really quite good. I’m sad that it’s limited edition.

I do not like carrot cake. . .“so gee, Shelley, why’d you get this tea?” Well one, because my husband like carrot cake and two, because the only thing I hate about it is that nasty cheese frosting. yuck. I hate red velvet cakes for the same reason. cheese does not belong in my dessert. It’s the weirdest paring ever. Who came up with the idea? (it must have been a pregnant woman lol), but for some reason, everyone else seems to like it. Me, always the minority :( But yay for “vanilla frosted” carrot cake.

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

Hahaha. I think I’ve had most carrot cakes with vanilla frosting which is why I was a bit surprised when a few people mentioned that it should have cream cheese frosting. Vanilla frosting will always beat cream cheese frosting for me.

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85

I opened the rest of the gifts from my family and there was more tea! (it wasn’t all tea ;) )

I am so jealous that they are all back in Bozeman and I am not. I left 8 years ago when I got married, thinking I’d be coming back real soon. . .such is life :/

I received three teas from this company. This one smells sooo divine I could be happy just smelling the dry leaf. But, as is the case for almost every good-smelling dessert tea, it just doesn’t taste as good as it smells. It’s not bad. It does vaguely taste like a creamsicle. Sometimes I can appreciate orange in teas and sometimes not so much. This one of the not-so-much times. I can’t really say what it is that differs between the orange teas that I like and those that I don’t, but I think it’s that I prefer orange and spice. Well, now that I’ve put it in words, it must be the “cream” thing. I have a well documented history of not enjoying cream flavors in teas. Then, of course, the occasional exception confuses me and makes me reevaluate what I didn’t like about the others. So complicated are flavored teas!

I might try this one again, adding some cinnamon and milk. . .maybe it needs more cream. I have a whole two ounces of it, so I might as well experiment.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 2 min, 45 sec

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I have the 2.0 version of this (with the rolling thunder oolong).

I was distracted while preparing this tea and I didn’t use the recommended 170F water. Oh well. It still smelled delicious! I went all out and ate Keebler rainbow cookies with it and got their crumbs all in the tea. . .hey its my birthday!, I’ll do what I want :D (being healthy is not on my list of things to do ;) )

despite the too-hot water and the Keebler additions, this is an enjoyable cup of tea. It’s a little tiny bit bitter, which Im sure is the water’s fault. I’ll do it right next time, I promise. I’ll be finishing this bag off myself, but I think that the Pumpkin Creme Brulee will be my prefered choice next time I order. I like the spiciness of it more than the creaminess of this one, but it’s a close competition.

Preparation
3 min, 0 sec

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75

It’s my birthday!

My parents and siblings moved back to Montana this past summer, so my sister won’t be baking me a cake this year :( so so sad. But….

My family was so nice to send me a ‘birthday-in-a-box.’ All sorts of pretty wrapped presents. yay! I opened a couple this morning and it was tea! Montana tea :p I got this one and the one called “Bridger Blend.”

I put the ingredients from the company website in the tea info box, but my jar of tea says that it has passionfruit rather than pineapple and papaya, so I don’t know what is correct.

I didn’t have high expectations for this. A generous-sized jar of tea from a company I am not familiar with. . . o.O That, and fruit flavored teas, especially tropical flavors, have not been kind to me.

But this tea, not bad, not bad at all. I can’t tell yet if it will grow on me or grow away from me, but for now, Im not in any hurry to be rid of it.

The flavor doesn’t taste artificial and the base isn’t bitter. I wasn’t sure how to brew a green/black tea blend and I was worried about bitterness. Cheap black bases alone are often bitter in flavored teas, but maybe the blend of green and black works to balance everything out. I let the hot water sit a minute after boiling though, so it was probably around 195 or so (depending how hot the elevation and air pressure combo here deemed appropriate for boiling temp. today :p )

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

Happy birthday!

K S

Happy Birthday! How cool you family actually bought you tea. Even better it surprised you by being not too shabby.

QueenOfTarts

Happy birthday!

Shelley_Lorraine

thanks everyone! I just wish my birthday didn’t have to land in the most stressful time of the school year, when all the papers and projects pile up!

Tea Sipper

Happy birthday!

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75

I’ve been wanting to try this one for a long time, and thanks to stephanie I finally can. :)

I really had this one hyped up in my mind. Its special and its dark, come on, how can that name not evoke only the yummiest stuff??

Now, the problem could be my high expectations, or it could be that in my haste to get a taste of this one, I didn’t rinse the leaves first. I steeped it 3 min, skipping over the whole gongfu hoopla and anxiously awaited it to cool off.

Well, hmm, its kinda stinky and flat tasting. I want to think this is my fault and see how a second steeps turns out. Or try the remaining unused leaf with different parameters (and a rinse!).

Then again, I wouldn’t want to break my tradition of disliking nearly every super-famous tea on here :p we’ll see ^^


UPDATE*** A second steeping for 4 minutes yields much less stink (rinsing is an important step!), but it’s not as sweet as I like my shu puerhs. It’s very earthy for sure, like fresh dirt (I don’t mean that in a bad way). I can definitely appreciate this one, but I’m disappointed that it wasn’t as grand as I had hoped.

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

It’s been awhile since I drank this, but as I recall, I went pretty heavy on the leaf :)

Shelley_Lorraine

Thanks Terri, I might try that with what I have left. I have about two teaspoons and I’ll use them in a small mug, see how that turns out.

QueenOfTarts

Did you find this at all fishy like some puerhs? Curious about this one but am not fond of the fishy/stinky aspect.

Shelley_Lorraine

This one, for the second steep, was less stinky than other puerhs that I’ve had, but not by a lot. I hear people referring to bad quality puerhs as fishy, but imo, all shu puerhs have a pinch of the stink. Rinsing them first almost always takes the edge off. For me a good puerh is one that delivers an exquisite flavor to compensate for the smell.

QueenOfTarts

Thanks, Shelley_Lorraine! I will definitely remember to rinse before to help get rid of the smell.

Terri HarpLady

Shelley, you have such a great way with words! :D
Just sayin’…

Shelley_Lorraine

for kicks and giggles, my very first review of a puerh, logged on fb, days before I joined steepster:
I got a free sample of loose leaf black puehr tea with my green tea shipment and was hesitant to try it the first few days. But I finally did today. At first, I noted that it smelled like a wicked cow pie, but braved tasting it anyway (don’t know what motivated me). Then, as I told Eric at the time, I decided that it tasted like drinking fossilized caterpillar poop dug up from under a mossy tree. However, it left a strange malty sweet aftertaste, so I kept going back for more because each time I had to see if it was my imagination that it tasted so bad at first. And each time it tasted so bad. But now I can’t remember for sure, so I’m going to go brew another cup .

Terri HarpLady

Hahahahaha!!
It’s that aftertaste that hooks us! LOL

Shelley_Lorraine

i dunno though, in the comments of that post, I suggested that it might be drugged. ;)

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Profile

Bio

Name: Shelley Lorraine Limegrover
Location: Wyoming
Occupation: Student and Evil Genius
Ward: 3 Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, 1 Cocker spaniel, 1 super cranky but lovable siamese cat, one bipolar black turkish angora, and my husband’s black and white cat.

Hobbies: Learning, reading books, math, physics (have a degree in it), literature (have a degree in it too), anthropology, traveling, piano, and making TEA, of course (^o^)

Future plans: World domination >-)
Graduate school for Comparative literature (in German, Latin, and Greek) (this will be my 4th degree, but first/only graduate one :) )

Favorite teas: Kukicha, Green teas in general, aged oolongs, charcoal roasted oolong, taiwanese oolongs, Assam . . .

Don’t like: Genmaicha, Earl Grey, Darjeelings, ginger, coconut, smokey teas (even mild ones), nut flavors, overwhelmingly strong floral flavor (esp. Jasmine), most della derra and adagio teas. . .

My Rating System

100 My happiness absolutely depends on it

95 Will definitely repurchase

85: Might repurchase (teas that depend on my mood)

75 Won’t repurchase (but I would drink it again if offered).

65: meh

45: I reluctantly finished a cup.

15: Couldn’t finish a cup.

I simplified my ratings to single numbers rather than ranges because I can’t precisely compare so many teas with a system more detailed than this.

An unrated tea most often one that I recognize as having significantly notable quality, but that does not suit me personally. Sometimes, I leave teas unrated for other reasons, such as I am undecided or I brewed it wrong, etc.

Note: Boiling temp. barely reaches 200 where I am (and a few times it sticks at 195, I assume due to unexplainable shifts in altitude or the position of the moon. . .aliens?. . .).

Location

Wyoming

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