471 Tasting Notes

Aha! It all makes sense now. I made a 3oz cup of this as I often do when I’m not brave enough to make more of a new tea. I didn’t know/couldn’t remember what the ingredients were except guayusa, and of course that the name implies “vanilla.” As I took the first few sips, it reminded me of one of the various organic bath products that I have used in the past, but I couldn’t put my finger on it. As it cooled, the guayusa came through stronger, but the aftertaste was like a sort of natural mouthwash. I thought to myself: guess that’s what I get for using natural/organic bath products. It confuses my senses and I forget what is supposed to be edible :p Then I came here and saw that it has lavender and mint! That must be the association I’m making. I didn’t not like it. My feelings are mixed. It’s more a matter of sensory confusion than dislike. (^^)

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 6 min, 0 sec
Terri HarpLady

I personally can’t do lavender in a tea or food, although I grow it & love it in dream pillows, bath water, aromatherapy, bee stings, etc. it’s a wonderful smell, but the taste…bath water for sure! Really nice bath water, but not drinkable, for me! :)

Shelley_Lorraine

Can’t say that I’ve had much experience with lavender in foods to have a strong opinion. It’s not my favorite scent really, but hard to avoid in most natural products. I do remember having a lavender flavored yogurt once and it was the best ever. It didn’t really taste like lavender though. Strange how some combinations can change the flavors of the ingredients.

Terri HarpLady

Lavender is in ‘Herbs de Provence’, along with several other herbs. I made the mistake of sprinkling that combo liberally on a roast or something once, & I ate it, but :p

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This is another sample from my swap with Emily M (^^)

The dry leaves of this one are just so intriguing that I really wanted to like it. Unfortunately, I didn’t like it so much. It’s very vegetal, but a kind of vegetal I haven’t had before. Maybe its the pea and marine notes? I like peas, but not in tea, I guess.

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

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75

I’m trying to drink this one more often to finish the bag. I went and got 2oz of it originally, when I thought it would be one of my faves. It really isn’t bad, but i’ve been too spoiled with options since I bought this one and it’s hard not to be picky.

I didn’t think much of it before, but this dragonwell has a lot of twigs in the mix, maybe that is what is taking from its potentially more vegetal flavor? It’s very mildly smoky, I think.

Brew notes:
3.5g/12oz water 1.5min@170deg

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 1 min, 30 sec

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75

Thanks for this sample moraiwe :)

I haven’t had darjeeling tea of any type, but I have had oolongs. This certainly doesn’t taste much like any oolong I’ve had. It tastes mostly like a black tea. A light, sorta fruity black tea. I wouldn’t mind having this in occasional stock among my tea stash, but it’s flavor isn’t unique enough that I would go out of my way to purchase it.

Brew notes:
1.5g/8oz steeped 3 min. with boiled water. Probably could have done with an extra .5g for stronger flavor.

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

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75

Thank you Emily M for this yummy sample!

This is probably the best smelling flavored tea I have come across. Smells like blueberry muffins right from the bag. The flavor is perfectly balanced, as are so many of the Butiki teas. Sweet without being artificial or overwhelming. So yummy (^o^)

Preparation
160 °F / 71 °C 5 min, 0 sec
Emily M

Glad you enjoyed it!

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75

I tried different brewing parameters this time. Trying to get it just right! I used 3 grams for 16oz of water and steeped for 1.5min at 175. It was a pretty decent cup. I haven’t been careful about introducing the water slowly at the edge before pouring directly on the leaves. I wonder how much difference that even makes. I’ll have to try it next time.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 1 min, 30 sec

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95

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

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85

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Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 5 min, 30 sec

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85

I made my first poorly brewed cup of this. The water was probably a bit too hot and I steeped it a bit longer because I forgot how long I usually steep this one for. It’s not bad by any means, but it lost a lot of the rich flavor that I love so much. That’s what I get for being hasty and inattentive (^.^)

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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65

So clearly something is wrong with my sense of taste. I am not getting all these complex flavors as are the rest of you. This tea was part of my Verdant sampler and I have been putting off trying it because I am afraid of another floral oolong. The others in the sampler were certainly floral. I finally braved it. The most complexity I got at any point working with this tea was from the dry leaves. They have a very strong scent, riddled with flower and smells of the forest. The first two infusions were extremely delicate to me. I could pick up a faint floral aroma if I had my nose right to it, but there was very little flavor (I guess my taste buds are broken!). I have stated before that I am not terribly fond of florals, but I am slowly learning to tolerate them, at least. I don’t so much mind a floral aroma (and at times I can even appreciate it) so long as the flavor brings more variety and depth. I came to my computer to read other reviews about this tea and out of rash frustration, I decided to force something more from this one. I let the leaves stew several minutes (un-timed) in my Gaiwan. Well, that was a mistake. It didn’t taste like a flower, or honey, or fruit or anything palatable. I created a super bitter cup that I promptly poured out.

While I could take the time to figure this tea out, I don’t feel much up to it. I have too many other teas that get along with me just fine without much ado.

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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) – Update: I’m going to the University of Colorado in Fall 2014!! yay me!

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 is most often one that I recognize as having significant 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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