1811 Tasting Notes
Rinsing this tea did wonders for removing the fishyness from the pu-erh, so I highly recomend that anyone else who has an issue with it do the same. That along with an increased steeping time seemed to bring out a more pleasent, softly earth flavour that had been lacking the last time I tried this tea.
You know, maybe I should revise the score I gave this tea way back. I tend to compare all dragonwell teas to that wonderful one I regularly get from Specifically Tea and I’ve had the opportunity to try them side by side and I found that this tea was a bit lacking. Not a lot lacking mind you – it’s a good-quality tea in its own right. But I noticed that it didn’t have the same fullness of flavour and doesn’t resteep all that well. It’s also lacking that hint of smokiness I get from the Specifically Tea Dragonwell, but that’s more of personal preference, I think.
First of all, a thank you to Daisy Chubb for letting me try some of this tea, which I’ve been eyeballing for quite awhile. The tea smells sweet and fruity but at the same time a bit spicy – when I taste the tea it’s clear the spice is cinnamon, not a lot, but it’s a nice touch. It’s mildly sweet but I do wish the strawberry was easier to pick out – perhaps I just need to steep it longer.
Another tea from the 12 Days of X-mas sampler that I haven’t got around to reviewing until now. I’ve got to say that Frank got the right idea – this tea is truely delicious iced. It’s wonderfully fruity and thirst-quencing and you can really taste both the strawberries and ‘lemon-aid’ in the tea. The white tea is a good choice of base for this because its light, delicate notes balance the fruit flavours nicely without drowning them out like a black tea might.
I’ve also tried this tea hot (and apparently forgot to log it) and it was pretty good like that too although I couldn’t taste the strawberry very well. It reminded me a bit of watered-down hot lemon-aid or may Neo Citron – so while it wasn’t bad at all, I still prefer it cold.
While I wasn’t particularly enthused about drinking this tea again, it came in one of those assorted boxes and I wanted something that tasted vaguely like a black tea without the caffeine hit. It’s still as whimpy as I remember it, even though it was steeped longer and I added milk. I can maybe pick up the vanilla flavour this time around but it’s rather weak and it still has that odd chemical scent. So yeah, it’s just as mediocre now as it was a year ago.
The last time I was in the Granville Island Tea Co in Vancouver they’d just got several new oolong teas in stock and I grabbed a small sample of this one to try as it was fairly expensive I seem to recall.
It’s clearly a fairly green oolong which the floral aroma seems to bear out. There’s also some sort of small, purple flower that’s mixed in with the loosely-rolled tea leaves, though I think that’s more for visual appeal than anything else.
There’s a surprising bakey note at the start of each sip but that fades into a smooth, slightly floral flavour at the end. There’s also hints of sweetness and maybe something vegetal mixed in with everything. This oolong kept its flavour well for several steeps and stayed pretty consistant throughout.
It doesn’t quite beat the awesome Iron Goddess of Mercy that this tea company also carries, but it’s a good, easy-drinking tea.
Even though this tea isn’t strictly a chai blend, I decided to turn the last bit of this into a latte using the recipe guidelines on Chai Wallah’s website: http://www.chai-wallah.com/makingchai.html
My boyfriend and I both enjoyed it even though I missed the cardamom notes that you’d normally taste in a chai.
I was very disapointed when T closed their retail store in Vancouver as I particularly enjoyed their own version of a gingerbread latte. They still operate online (at http://www.tealeaves.com/) so at least I can still purchase their teas.
Following other people’s suggestions, I tried adding agave nectar to my cup this morning and while I found that it did give the tea an interesting kettle-corn flavour it didn’t do much for the astringency of the tea base. It’s a nice idea but I’m afraid I still don’t care much for this blend.
I’ve been drinking this tea for awhile but for one reason or another just never had the time to write a tasting note for it. It isn’t bad for a red rooibos tea, the banana for one isn’t a flavour you often find in teas and it’s subtle but nice here. The chocolate could stand to be a bit stronger – I’ve noticed that the chocolate chips in this blend don’t dissolve easily, which is usually a indicator of cheap, low-quality chocolate (I used to work at Purdy’s Chocolates). Tsk, tsk, Frank. ;)