506 Tasting Notes


I’m just putting this note here as a place holder to remind myself that I’ve had this tea. I love Tie Guan Yins and I remember that I loved this one too, but I had it too long ago to be able to write anything specific. Sorry guys!

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Another really late log (I forgot to log it when I had it last). I’ve actually had this one a few times. The first time, I thought it tasted very much like the roasted Iron Goddess also from Whispering Pines. If I didn’t see that the leaves were different, I almost would have thought it was the same one. Except, not quite. I didn’t pick up any of the coconut notes that I got from the Iron Goddess.

This is a decent super roasty tea, but not my favorite Big Red Robe.

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I was going through my personal tea rating spreadsheet and I noticed that I didn’t have this one rated. . which means I haven’t logged it here yet. This has been my go-to tea for the past month or so. I only have a few sachets left and I can’t get anymore until mid july because everything is out of stock until the bamboo harvest is over. (OK, so there’s a bit of a money issue on my side, but I want tea dammit! surely this counts as a necessity - and with the new blends showing up from some of my favorite places, I feel an irresponsible splurge coming on ;) )

I’ve already made it known that I love mint, so I am biased to rating most mint blends pretty high. As far as being a blend goes, the peppermint drowns out most of the bamboo flavor. This could be a good thing for anyone who wants bamboo for the health benefits, but who doesn’t like the flavor. I like plain bamboo and I like mint, so its all good to me no matter what. I started getting bamboo tea when I heard how good it is for skin and hair. Grow hair grow! (so close to waist atm :) )

200 °F / 93 °C 8 min or more

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I love this white tea so much! I’ve been trying not to drink it too often because I can’t afford to buy too much tea these days :(

I got some Whispering pines tea for my father for Father’s day. My parents don’t live near by anymore, so I don’t get to be there when he tries them. so sad!

Other sad news is that it looks like I might have to move to Boulder, CO without my pets and husband temporarily. We are trying to sell our current house and can’t make an offer on a new one until this one is under contract at least. I need to be in Boulder or somewhere not too far from there by Aug. 18th. I really don’t want to have to go by myself. I need some super good luck with the house sale and purchase!


Good luck!


Aw, good luck!


thanks guys!!


Good luck Shelley…it’s so hard having to separate from loved ones, even if it’s temporarily. Keep us informed :-)


Good luck with everything! I hope you’re able to sell your house very soon.

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It would be a good idea if I stopped using cups that are too big without adjusting the serving size of the leaf. It really makes a difference to follow directions. Often, I pull out any random sized cup and put in the same amount of leaf regardless. This tea is still pretty good when under leafed, though. It gets a fruity note to it that I don’t detect otherwise. However, the chocolate and malty notes are only there when I use more leaf.

I am raising the rating on this tea because Ive had it several times now and can safely say that it is a favorite.

Whispering Pines Tea Company

This is one of the few teas that I get legitimate cravings for. Speaking of which, I think the kettle is still warm :)

Terri HarpLady

Hey Shelley!
I was just commenting to Ms Theresa the other day, “I haven’t seen Shelley around for awhile.” So glad to see your face! ;)


Ive been around! I just haven’t parked my stuff and unpacked recently ;)

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I was able to just barely get three cups of tea out of this sample that I got. the first two times, I used about 10 ounces of water with 1.5 tsp of leaves. This time, I didn’t have quite enough leaf for 1.5 tsp, so I used an 8oz cup (which is technically what I should have been using to follow the instructions perfectly, but anyway. . .)

This time around, I detected very strong chocolate notes that I hadn’t before. The proportion of tea to water shouldn’t have been so different (since I used less of both) but maybe it was.

Ill have to get some more of this tea to experiment with it. I think I could end up liking it quite a bit. I don’t know why I have such a hard time making my mind up about black teas (and it really is just black teas that provide such a dilemma). shrug

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Me and this tea, we’re going to have a complicated relationship. The firs time I had it, I thought, oh no, it smells like one of those black teas, those ones that smell heavy and manly and not for me. But then, it tasted OK. not fantastic, but I finished the cup while watching an episode of Boy Meets World last night (did I tell you how much I LOVE that show? Im watching the whole series getting ready for the new Girl meets World.).

I wanted to try it again before writing a note so here I am again with the tea. This time I really like it. Remember what I said in my last note about being fickle about my black teas and not knowing if I like them for a while? I am listening to the Beatles and maybe ’cause this music always puts me in a good mood, the tea just tastes better? strange how environment can have such an effect like that.

The tea smells fruity, woody, complex, these are all good traits normally, but often not good for me. The flavor, this particular time around, invokes warm and cozy feelings. Its like teatime Gemütlichkeit (if I might reference some Biedermeier literature :p)

By the way, Im done with undergrad school forever now. finally! finished my very last undergrad paper last night. I am three credits short of 3 separate degrees and Im finally going to graduate school. finally! woohoo!

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec


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This tea was included as a sample with my order. I like it better than the black tea that I did order (go figure :p).

This is maybe not may favorite black tea, but its pretty good. I was afraid it would have too much of a smokey or woody flavor (I can’t always differentiate between these flavors). I don’t like either of these and I am so sensitive to them that I can even detect them when no one else can. yay me (note sarcasm). This tea does hint at it, but the blend as a whole comes together nicely. Its bold and malty which is what I like best in a black tea. Usually, with black teas that I seem to like alright at first, I need to try them several times to decide that i either really like them or really don’t (you’d think I’d at least figure out the latter the first time around, lol). So ill probably be writing an updated note for this one in the near future.

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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I haven’t had any ‘real’ tea in my cupboard for a while. I have some Bamboo leaf tea blends that I really like, but I was starting to miss real tea. Especially a really good white tea.

When my package from Whispering Pines arrived yesterday, I put on my happy face and opened it right away. Yay for new tea! But when I saw the little handwritten note with my name spelled wrong, I made a sad face. (′︿‵。) Everyone is always trying to run off with my second ‘e’ lol

Fortunately, the big fluffy leaves of this white tea improved my mood again. I love big fluffy white tea leaves! And even more so when they brew into a tasty tea as these do. This is now my favorite white tea. It is similar to an old favorite I used to get from elsewhere, but recent batches of that one have been disappointing. I’ll have to hope that this one will be available for a while so that I can stock up (but hard to do while Im on a budget!).

The flavor is pleasantly complex. I pick up the honeydew and Eucalyptus honey notes for sure. The rest I can’t describe so precisely, but it’s all yummy.


Shell-E-y (see what I just did?? I gave you a big fat second “E”!)
I just ordered this tea a few minutes ago, so happy you liked it, now I can’t wait to try it for myself!!


oh but no, my second ‘e’ must always exist in harmony with the rest of my name. ;) I hope you like this tea too! It’s so hard to fine really good white teas.

Whispering Pines Tea Company

I realized that I had spelled your name wrong like 5 seconds after I taped up the package…and I was out of tape! So it was either I run to get more tape, miss the post office cut-off time, and you spend one more day waiting for tea or I publicly apologize for mis-spelling your name on Steepster but you get your package a day earlier ;)

Dearest Shelley,

I deeply apologize for mis-spelling your name. I assure you that it will not happen again. I, too, know what it’s like to have my name mis-spelled often. Most people mess up the second e in my name as well!

Peace, love, and an extra E,
Brenden :)


pfft, out of tape! I dunno if I believe that. haha. But anyway, I was only adding the details about my name to this note for dramatic effect. So, in a way, it is somewhat fortuitous that you misspelled it. :p

Whispering Pines Tea Company

:) Hehe, totally out of tape! I’m finally moving back to Michigan, so lots of tape is being used for packing too!

In fact, I want to thank you. Right now is crucial time for orders for me. Over the past two years (the life of my company), all I have wanted to do is move back home. Whispering Pines was created as a way to fund the move back but has become so much more than that. This move is monumental in my life, both for personal reasons and for Whispering Pines. Moving back to the land of the inspiration is bigger for me than I can even explain. I left my heart and soul at home and you and everyone ordering here on Steepster are helping me get back :)

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This tea is really good. I got this as well as a peppermint and bamboo blend and I was worried that this one would be too peppermint heavy (I love peppermint, but I want variety in flavors esp. when my tea stash is so low these days).

The flavor is herbal and sweet, the lemon balm stands out slightly, but the mint and bamboo are barely detectable. Its a very relaxing cup of tea and hopefully the ingredients will get me through writing a paper and finishing a translation project this weekend :)

Next week is the last week of classes and Im moving to (or near) Boulder over the summer for graduate school. Im going to University of CO and I have a TA position to teach a recitation for a course on Nazi Germany. Im nervous and excited. So much to be done before then (moving, selling the house, etc)

205 °F / 96 °C

Wow, congratulations!

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Name: Shelley Lorraine Limegrover
Location: Thornton, Colorado
Occupation: Graduate Student and Evil Genius
Ward: 2 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 >-)

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?. . .).



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