132 Tasting Notes

84
drank Organic Jasmine Green Tea by Wegmans
132 tasting notes

The downside of drinking a tea without reviewing it and then you forget you really enjoyed it … is met on the other side by, after having forgotten, you get that surprised “oh, nice!” moment. Got that with this. Very enjoyable jasmine, fresh like spring, silky body. The jasmine is forward and juicy but not overplayed. I was hoping this would be sweet enough to satisfy a sweet tooth kind of afternoon, but… well, not quite. Baked pear/apple medley to the rescue, though.

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82

Very smooth, medium-bodied cuppa with straightforward, easy-drinking appeal. Clean tasting though it has a subtle malty fragrance and flavor coupled with a bit of sweetness, not quite raisin.

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84

Gotta love flavorful black teas on snowy mornings… Enjoying this in the beautifully sunny aftermath of the blizzard that, mercifully, barely brushed the DC area. Just a few inches yesterday, I’ve enjoyed the luxury of pulling in and out of the driveway that I didn’t have to shovel :) Wish my folks in RI were so lucky.

Solid cup of flavor, medium bodied and round, with a lingering cocoa and slight malt. There is a distinct perfumey note that I read through everyone’s notes to pin down but somehow didn’t settle on … it nears the intensity level of a bergamot… maybe that’s what fellow Steeps are describing as floral? or cedar? The woodiness, oddly, seemed more of a flavor-texture than a flavor. There’s a fruit in there, too, will have to chase that down in future steeps.

The smokiness is phantom-like, in and out, wonderfully described by Fjellrev as “a (very distant) campfire”…just a hint of extra character.

This isn’t the most cocoa-y or chocolatey black around but they’re there to enjoy.
This provided a full 3rd finium basket steep which was a little smoother and flavor-focused on the rear sides of my tongue. Looked up the tongue-map only to learn that it has been scientifically discredited. I missed that news. But the 3rd steep definitely had tongue-localized flavor, so there you go.

1st in another round of generous samples just received from Teavire, thank you for the tea tours!

Flavors: Cocoa, Dark Chocolate, Dark Wood, Smoke

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83

This is pretty enjoyable, and I usually find chai to be unpleasantly sharp. But then I don’t sweeten my tea and this one has stevia in it, so that may be part of why this one works for me. Mostly it works because it’s got a smooth balance of flavors. I dislike clove but it is ok here because it’s counter-balanced by the cinnamon, cardamom, ginger and vanilla. There’s a hint of a burn from the pepper, as well, which adds lingering interest without being offputting.

The predominant flavors are cinnamon and cardamom, sharpened by the ginger, clove and pepper and softened by the vanilla and stevia, which together nudge it toward a suggestion of caramel. Adding almond milk, this is easily as good as the chais my friends order at coffee/tea chains.

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65
drank Green Tea by Bigelow
132 tasting notes

Not bad. Not “good” either. Wouldn’t mind having this served to me in a restaurant if I were lost in conversation. But the conversation certainly would not be about the tea :)

Curiously, it generated a thin layer of foam in the cup, not sure what that is about. Got the packet somewhere a few years ago… does old tea foam? lol

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84

This is both refreshing, with its bright orchid scent and flavor, and creamy. I love orchidy oolongs and this one holds a very pleasant, though single, flavor note with the faintest hint of something more complex and warming, almost but not quite spice. This would be a good tea to have as a standard. Thanks to Tea at Sea for the sample!

Flavors: Creamy, Gardenias, Orchids

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75

Full-flavored and roasty mate. Satisfying and nicely warming for this cold January day. Would be a good base for adding ‘dark’ complementary flavors like cocoa nibs/vanilla, if you’re about that as I sometimes am. I don’t think it’d work so well with citrus or other bright flavors. This would also be a great one to add to your coffeemaker if you’re looking for a coffee-mate blend. Decent also on its own.

Good for 1 or 2 solid re-brews.

I do like supporting Guayaki but I actually like Lupicia’s plain mate a bit better though I don’t know anything about their socio-economic sourcing.

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84

Although I was expecting a typically juicy green floral oolong here I was nonetheless happy with the brew. This tea is very well-rounded and smooth though a bit roasty. Really pleasing soft buttery complexity with a mild gardenia-like floral, especially in the aftertaste.

Flavors: Floral, Gardenias, Honey, Hot hay

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74

This tea is a good relaxant so it gets some points for that to counterbalance the relatively uninspired flavor profile. The spearmint is on the muted side and the stevia gives it a slightly ‘sweetened’, as opposed to naturally sweet, flavor. It’s pleasant enough, just wouldn’t buy it for the flavor alone.

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75
drank Golden Yunnan Black by Tao Tea Leaf
132 tasting notes

Enjoyed this as a wake-up tea this morning. Solid choice for a straightforward, non-complicated, medium-bodied cup to ease the eyes open. A little malty and a very nice apricot note, which is a bonus I love to find in a black.

Thanks to Tao Tea Leaf for the generous sample.

Flavors: Apricot

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Profile

Bio

Strong preference for exploring teas au naturel, and unflavored (except for unprocessed ingredients, e.g., cocoa shells/nibs, vanilla beans, flowers, fruits…). Favorites lean in the direction of rich caramelly, malty blacks, any puerh, fresh floral oolongs and whites that have some dimension.

I am always up for swaps.

Beyond the experience of tea, I’m interested in exploring its medicinal aspects. Other interests … yoga, creative veggie cooking, environmental issues, animal welfare, music/guitar, lefty politics, preventive health/nutrition, biking, swimming, foosball, photography.

Here’s how I rate ’em:

95+: euphoria-inducing, le petite mort
91-94: extraordinary, exhilarating
85-90: delicious
81-84: definitely enjoyable
75-80: good, solid stuff
65-74: I’ll drink it, but without enthusiasm
45-64: something redeeming about it, but not much
31-44: just barely drinkable

Location

Metro DC

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