358 Tasting Notes

60

I very much need a strong tea to wake me up this morning! We went on an impromptu trip to the mountains for the past two days, and all of that hiking and sightseeing left me a little sleepy this morning. We did have a wonderful time, though, and I very much needed a little getaway trip. I grew up in the mountains, and a trip ‘home’ always leaves me feeling refreshed.

This tea is all around very light – the aroma is very light and so are the flavors. The orange that I get is like a sweet orange – not a tart, citrusy orange or a real juicy orange flavor, just a faint, sweet, almost candy-like orange. The flavor is a little malty with a cinnamon finish. The cinnamon isn’t ovewhelming at all – it’s very mellow and warming. This one is best with sweetener, which seems to bring out more of the cinnamon flavor. Milk makes it a little creamy, which is nice but not necessary. I would’ve thought that I would prefer this tea in the winter, but it actually makes a nice summer tea also!

-Dry blend has medium black tea leaves and twigs with pieces of cinnamon bark and pieces of orange peel.
-Dry leaves smell very faintly of sweet orange and cinnamon. Tea liquor aroma is lightly of oranges.
-Tea liquor is a clear dark brown color.
-Slightly malty flavor with a wispy cinnamon finish. Light sweet orange aftertaste.
-Best with sweetener. Milk optional.
-Good tea. Light sweet orange and warming cinnamon flavor.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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90

I have been wanting to try this tea for so long! I decided to treat myself to a cup this morning since I have a long day of homework ahead of me. The best thing about this tea is the aroma – it just smells like a cup of comfort! The dry leaves smell heavily of almonds and baked bread with just a hint of cinnamon. The tea liquor aroma is of warm cinnamon bread. The flavor has a lot going on, but it’s very well balanced. Initially, there is an almond and cinnamon flavor with a baked bread finish. The aftertaste is malty and nutty. Adding sweetener brings out a little more of the cinnamon flavors, but adding milk kind of dulls the flavors a little too much. The milk does make it more creamy, though. Our local co op has the big, flaky almond croissants and this tea reminds me of the way those taste. Thank you, Shelley_Lorraine, for a sample of this tea!

-Dry blend has medium black tea leaves with sliced almonds, pieces of cinnamon bark and small orange petals.
-Dry leaves smell heavily of almond and baked bread with a hint of cinnamon. Tea liquor aroma is of warm cinnamon bread.
-Tea liquor is a cloudy medium golden brown color.
-Almond and cinnamon flavor with a bready finish. Malty and nutty aftertaste.
-Best with sweetener. Milk optional.
-Very good tea. Lightly flavored. Reminiscent of baked croissants with a hint of nuts and spicy cinnamon. Flavors are well balanced.

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

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60
drank Ceylon Sonata by Adagio Teas
358 tasting notes

I’ve not been sleeping well lately, so I moved my bedroom furniture around and slept so perfectly last night. It’s funny how such a small change can make such a big difference.

I am so close to getting through all of my loose leaf teas! I’ve been putting them into tins and labeling them as I go, or tossing them into a swap bag if I’m not in love with them. I still have a huge box of teabags to get through, but I’m feeling more organized and like I can probably allow myself to start ordering new teas now at least.

This is one of the last few Adagio teas that I have in my cupboard to try. It’s kind of a plain little tea, and I guess that’s why I’ve not rated it up until this point. The tea smells fresh and lightly malty and sweet. The recommended steep time was between 3 and 5 minutes, and I’m glad I went with 3 minutes because it is a little bitter in the aftertaste. Adding milk and sweetener too away the bitterness, though. Overall, it’s just a very mellow-flavored tea. It’s not a bad tea by any means, but there’s nothing really jumping out to me about it. It is nice for the summer since it’s so light!

-Dry blend has medium black tea leaves and twigs.
-Dry leaves smell fresh and lightly malty. Tea liquor aroma is lightly sweet.
-Tea liquor is a clear medium reddish brown color.
-Mellow and malty flavor and finish. Slightly bitter aftertaste.
-Best with milk and sweetener.
-Good tea. A delicate cup. Very mellow and sweet flavor.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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80

This is my last ‘new’ tea to try from The London Tea Room, right before we go back to St. Louis for a visit in July! This one smells so crispy and refreshing – very pepperminty with a floral note. The brewed tea has more of a perfumey rose aroma with a hint of cool peppermint. The green and white teas stand out more than I had anticipated in the flavor. There is a grassy flavor with a subdued, earthy floral finish. The aftertaste is of cooling peppermint and it lingers in the mouth for a while. While I am enjoying this cup, I don’t think that this one that I will reach for regularly, but maybe for a nice cup every once in awhile. I think it would be a soothing cup before bed, as long as it doesn’t have too much caffeine in it. The flavors intensify nicely as the cup cools. I think I’ll put this one in my tea mug during the summer to have hot tea that is not too heavy. I do like the floralness of it, it’s slightly like drinking a flower garden. :)

-Dry blend has a mixture of medium and large green tea and peppermint leaves with pink rose petals and blue lavender petals.
-Dry leaves smell floral with a note of clean peppermint. Tea liquor aroma is of perfumey rose with a hint of cool peppermint.
-Tea liquor is a clear medium yellow color.
-Grassy flavor with an earthy floral finish. Cooling peppermint aftertaste that lingers.
-Best with sweetener.
-Very good tea. Floral flavor with a refreshing hint of peppermint.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 0 sec
Serenity

Thank you for the sample of this, I LOVE this!

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70

This is one of the first teas that I tried from Tin Roof Teas. It has a nice fresh flavor of ripe strawberries that is wonderful. The flavor is tangy and fruity, like a ripe strawberry, with a light strawberry and cream aftertaste. There is a little of the green tea noticeable in the flavor, but not too much. Overall, this is just a very light and refreshing tea that I think would be excellent iced! I would have rated this a little higher, but there is a little bitterness even when steeped at the recommended time. It’s not terrible, though, and this is still a great every-once-in-awhile tea!

-Dry blend has a mixture of medium and large green tea leaves with pieces of dried strawberries.
-Dry leaves smell lightly of green tea and fresh strawberries. Tea liquor aroma is of strawberries and sweet vanilla.
-Tea liquor is a clear dark yellow color.
-Tangy and fruity strawberry flavor and finish. Light strawberry and cream aftertaste.
-Best with sweetener.
-Good tea. Fresh strawberry flavor with a hint of cream. A light and refreshing cup.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 1 min, 30 sec
ashmanra

I have this one and almost made some today! I like this one a lot.

Josie Jade

It is pretty good. I would love it more if it were black tea instead of green! :)

ashmanra

I wonder if they would blend that for you? I bet they would!

Josie Jade

Hmm, I may have to ask about that the next time I visit. I’ve never had any teas custom blended before – sounds exciting!

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70
drank Earl Grey by Lupicia
358 tasting notes

I’m finally getting around to this lovely little sample from one of the book club swaps. I don’t know what black tea base Earl Greys are usually made from, but I can tell that this one is going to be unique from the aroma from the dry leaves alone. They smell of sweet bergamot, with an almost sugariness to the scent. The brewed tea has a perfumey black tea scent from the Keemun, with just a hint of citrus. The flavor is very smooth in the mouth, and has a lightly malty flavor with a sweet orange finish. There is a light and sweet floral aftertaste. This tea is definitely not overwhelming in the bergamot department, I’m actually not getting much of the traditional bergamot flavor at all. It is more of a floral perfumey black tea with a little sweet orange thrown in. I added milk and sweetener, which brought out more of the citrusy flavor, but it is just as good without it. Thank you, CK, for this sample!

-Dry blend has small black tea leaves and twigs.
-Dry leaves smell of sweet bergamot. Tea liquor aroma is of perfumey black tea with a hint of citrus.
-Tea liquor is a clear dark brown color.
-Smooth lightly malty flavor with a sweet orange finish. Light sweet floral aftertaste. Velvety mouthfeel.
-Milk and sweetener optional.
-Good tea. A unique and perfumey Earl Grey. More sweet orange flavor than bergamot.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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70

I’m hoping this tea will makeup for that last cup of terribleness! This is a pretty basic tea, so I figured it would be an easy one to prepare. This one surprised me, in that the tea aroma is very earthy. I suppose I’m used to a sweet maltiness from breakfast blends, but this one has more of an earthy quality about it. The flavor is very full, and has earthy and oaky notes. There is a light maltiness that comes in with the aftertaste. This is a complex flavored tea that keeps me sipping to try to taste all of the flavors. In one sip it seems very sweet, and in the next sip I get a heavy woodsy taste. I think I still prefer my strong, malty-sweet black teas, but this one is a nice change! Thank you, Serenity, for this sample!

-Dry blend has medium black tea leaves and twigs.
-Dry leaves smell softly malty. Tea liquor aroma is earthy.
-Tea liquor is a clear medium orange brown color.
-Full earthy and oaky flavor and finish. Light malty aftertaste.
-Best with milk and sweetener.
-Good tea. Heavy earthy and oaky flavor with a hint of sweet maltiness.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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20
drank Christmas by Adagio Teas
358 tasting notes

Christmas in June! I don’t really want this particular tea on this bright, summery day, but it’s in my cupboard and I just want to get it rated and either in a tin if I like it, or in the swap pile if I don’t. When I compared the ingredients on my sample pack to what’s listed online it varied slightly, so I think they must’ve changed the recipe since I had ordered it. The dry leaves smell very strongly of spicy cinnamon with a hint of cloves. There is also a sickly sweet smell about the dry leaves that I just can’t place – like an artificial sweet aroma. The tea itself has a more ‘Christmasy’ aroma of sweet oranges and spices. The flavor is very strong and spicy. The aftertaste is horrid – very bitter with an artificial flavor to it. I was hoping to get more of a clove flavor out of this cup, but the only hint of cloves that I notice is a light mouth-numbing quality. I added quite a bit of milk and sweetener just to make this drinkable, and it sort of dulled all of the other flavors so that it’s pretty bland. I can still detect something just off about this tea – there is just too much artificialness to it, and it stands out too strongly in this tea. I’m pouring this cup out and making something else!

-Dry blend has medium black tea leaves with pieces of spices.
-Dry leaves smell strongly of spicy cinnamon with a hint of cloves. Tea liquor aroma is of sweet oranges and spices.
-Tea liquor is a cloudy very dark brown color.
-Strong spicy flavor and finish. Very bitter and artificial aftertaste. Lightly mouth numbing.
-Best with milk and sweetener.
-Poor tea. Bitter flavor with a heavy artificial taste.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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70

I’ve seen this one before in TJ Maxx and have been so tempted to buy it, but told myself to wait until I got my tea cupboard under control. I was so excited when Serenity sent me a sample to try! These little teabags are so convenient, especially for the first cup of the day. This teabag smells of sweet and malty black tea. The tea itself has a strong black tea aroma with a hint of sweet honey. I steeped this tea for 3 minutes, and it was still a very dark brown color with a slight bitterness in the flavor. This tea absolutely needs milk and sugar added, and it becomes a rich and smooth cup. This is a nice, strong black tea and does very well for that first cup of the day. I think I do prefer PG Tips to this one, however, but that may just be out of sheer habit.

-Round white teabag without a string.
-Teabag smells of sweet and malty black tea. Tea liquor aroma is of strong black tea with a hint of honey.
-Tea liquor is a cloudy very dark brown color.
-Robust flavor with a slightly bitter finish. Malty aftertaste.
-Best with milk and sweetener.
-Good tea. Becomes a rich and smooth cup with milk and sweetener.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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30

Sipdown! I got this one a while ago for my fiancee, since he likes chai and apples. I don’t particularly care for either, but the pack was almost empty so I figured I’d make us each a cup this afternoon to finish it off. The dry leaves smell very spicy, mostly of ginger and cinnamon. I can smell a little of sweet apple, but not a lot. The tea has a lovely aroma of warm cinnamon apples, and reminds me of a baked apple dessert. The flavor is spicy and warming with a very faint apple finish. The apple is very hard to taste, and disappears quickly. There is a strong cardamom spicy aftertaste that lingers that I just don’t love. Even milk and sweetener can’t really help this one. I definitely won’t be ordering this one again!

I just pulled out our Takeya pitcher and made some iced blackberry tea to have with our dinner tonight. We’re a little late this year with starting the iced tea, but we mostly have hot tea even during the summer with the occasional iced tea after being outside or with dinner. Yay for summer officially starting in our house! :)

-Dry blend has small black tea leaves and twigs with pieces of spices and pieces of dried apples.
-Dry leaves smell like strong ginger and cinnamon with a hint of sweet apples. Tea liquor aroma is of warm cinnamon apples.
-Tea liquor is a cloudy medium golden brown color.
-Spicy and warming flavor with a very faint apple finish. Strong cardamom spicy aftertaste that lingers.
-Best with milk and sweetener.
-Poor tea. Strong spicy taste with little apple flavor.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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Profile

Bio

Just a Southern girl who loves sunshine, little dogs and all things tea!

I love animals and animal rescue. We have a rescued Chihuahua, Greyhound, Siamese and 2 Tabbies. We also foster kittens for the local humane society.

My favorite teas are sweet and malty black teas but I try to branch out and taste them all. :)

“Come, let us have some tea and continue to talk about happy things.”

Rating Guide:
10 – Awful tea, wouldn’t purchase again
20 – Poor tea, wouldn’t purchase again
40 – Fair tea, might purchase again
60 – Good tea, likely to purchase again
80 – Very good tea, very likely to purchase again
100 – Excellent tea, will definitely purchase again

Location

North Carolina

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