495 Tasting Notes
Meeka Sent me such a wonderful selection of pure unflavored tea samples in a mystery swap. Flavored teas and dessert teas are a lot of fun sometimes, but I began my tea journey with a love for the pure, rich flavors of unadulterated teas and I am so happy to find the rare swap partner who has such a variety of these to share.
I’ve never had or heard of Mecha before. It looks like coarsely ground sencha, but I don’t know how it is produced other than it comes from the youngest tea buds. I followed Den’s instructions and steeped for 45 seconds, but with slightly less than the recommended 180F water. It brews up a very heavy green color and there is much leaf debris at the bottom of my cup that fell through the infuser. It’s claimed to be bitter and astringent, but I find my cup to be much less so than Sencha, at least in bitterness. It is more astringent than bitter.
It’s a good tea and I will definitely be finishing off the rest of the generous-sized sample, but it’s not my favorite japanese green. It has a muddied over-cooked vegetable flavor rather than the bright and slightly bitter fresh vegetal flavor that I prefer.
Enjoying this free sample from Stacy.
At first, I wasn’t sure what to make of it. I haven’t had tamarind soda and I’m not entirely sure what a tamarind even is. I requested a sample in the first place because I was curious and it has good reviews.
It first smelled and tasted like a robust black tea with very little flavor. There was something different hiding in there, but I couldn’t describe it. As it cools, the flavor becomes sweeter and I can detect some caramel and another flavor that i don’t recognize. It is unique to say the least.
Another 52Teas Sample that I received from CK :)
This tea smells like a spicy caramel and pumpkin pie. It tastes like pumpkin pie spices, but the pumpkin itself remains mostly in the smell as does the caramel. I don’t get any cheesecake from it, but that’s quite alright as I don’t like cheesecake.
It’s not the best pumpkin spice tea that I’ve had, but there’s nothing bad about it either.
I got several 52Teas samples to try from my mystery swap with CK. This was one of them. I wasn’t keen on trying this one any time soon, but my husband asked me to brew it because he was hoping for some bacon. Yuck, bacon. I don’t care much for bacon (or for pineapple). I especially don’t like pizza, but the funniest thing is, if I do have to eat a pizza, I’d take a canadian bacon and pineapple (I don’t understand me either).
I brewed a small sample cup of this for both Eric and I to try. Eric likes pineapple, but he was really looking forward to a bacon flavor, which neither of us could detect, so he gave it a low rating.
The pineapple in this is strong and the rooibos doesn’t come through very heavy IMO. I don’t like pineapple after taste, but I could drink it if I had to.
This tea was doomed from the start for me, combining two foods that I don’t particularly like, but I had to try it anyway. I see no reason why someone who loves pineapple wouldn’t like it, but if your looking for bacon tea, don’t look here.
Yay, first note for this tea! I received a sample of this new Della Terra tea with my last order.
It has that characteristic generic chocolate-flavored-tea smell that has never before led me to a good flavor. Believe it or not, this tea did not taste as repulsive as I had expected. It’s no where near a “wow” in a cup, but it’s reasonably enjoyable. I’ve dumped all other chocolate based DT blends only a few sips in, but this one I can finish and without making faces.
The tea base comes through more than I expected, which is nice. The peanut butter notes are very faint and I might not have recognized them if I didn’t know they were supposed to be there. All of the sprinkle and candied bits dissolve and fall to the bottom, so it might be a good idea to stir this tea occasionally unless you want a surprisingly sweet finish.
Not a tea I’d buy again, but I’d be willing to drink it again.
This was a sample with my recent Butiki order. I was really looking forward to this tea. Grape is not a flavor I’ve ever had in tea before, natural or not.
I saw that several reviews commented on the grape flavor, some said it was too much, some not enough. The description says that it has a light floral flavor. I’ve been coming to appreciate some light floral notes in my oolongs, but this one was not light, at least not to me. It is much more floral than it is grape, though I can detect the grape too. The dry leaf smelled vaguely of grape, but the brewed liquor smells like a heavy perfume. It doesn’t taste so bad really, but not something I’d ever consider purchasing.
Could be that it’s the type of floral rather than the concentration of it that I don’t like. Is this supposed to be orchid, lilac. . .?
I had this tea last night and I am drinking the Laoshan Bilochun now. As I said in my note for the Bilochun, the two Laoshan greens and the oolong taste very similar. The only difference that I can pick out without a side-by-side comparison is that the original Laoshan green is much more in-you-face with the flavor (vegetal, bitter, sensitive to an oversteep, but still sooo yummy!)
I was expecting to pick out some floral notes in this oolong, but I couldn’t detect any.
I’m going to have to drink the Laoshan greens and oolongs together to really pick out the differences, but I love them all! The Laoshan green, as I remember, had a bitter bite to it and was very vegetal. I got a strong cup steeping it for only one minute, but this one I steeped for 2 minutes and the flavor seems more laid back than the other.