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342 Tasting Notes

92

huh, thanks MissB for revealing the maybe answer to the riddle!

i’ve always been a riddle boy, lol. nina’s for red fruit teas. dammann freres for fruits of all kinds. mariage freres for snapshots of impressionists’s dreams…… fauchon for flavoured greens?

a light sweet raspberry rose tea. unique. beautiful. maybe the answer is this: i like my fauchon green. don’t think i would have guessed that, lol.

thank you MissB. (always lookin’ out for me) xo

this is a beautiful piece. if i could drink it and frame it i would.

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 3 min, 0 sec
MissB

Did I sent you L’Hiver? It is also quite stunning. So happy to hear you enjoyed this one!

JustJames

you ALSO sent me l’hiver. i was cold…. i opted for spring. =0)

CelebriTEA

This is a lovely tea…thank you so very much…it does reminds me of summer.

CelebriTEA

I just read your profile.
Which auto immune do you have?
I have Diabetes, Lupus, Fibro, & Sarcoid…
Among other things, lol, it is essential to have a sense of humor ;~}

JustJames

it’s neuro transmission something! lazy doctors say ms with a creative spin, but the neurologist thinks more likely a channelopathy which run in my family. to be fair ms is 1:1000 whereas a channelopathy is 1:30 000 000. suffice to say the docs are glad i am well versed in my own medical file, lol. it’s a chewy read. the only thing they all agree on is that i should donate my body to science when i die LMAO. yay post mortem company? =0P

MissB

Heh. Or those companies that slice you up and display you as science and art. ;)

JustJames

i would be okay with that! so long as i get to contribute to the framing choice. =0)

yes. i am dead serious. the body farms…. not as much a priority for me.

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drank La Naissance by Fauchon
342 tasting notes

wrote my last exam. blanked for the second half of it. the prof is fascinated by my final project…. column A column B situation? sigh. either 3 weeks of break…. some sedate keener studying and this tea was day 1 of ’it’s done’.

this is a different spin on french tea! fauchon and i called a truce today and i wound up with the tea manifesting as i believe it should. entirely ENTIRELY different from dammann freres, mariage freres and nina’s paris……

a bittersweet marzipan cake. an element of green to it. more nuanced than the others, as opposed to robust. it has a disconcerting thin element to it. now i know that tea isn’t supposed to be thick, and yet somehow i have lots of french teas that somehow carry weight?

just a different evolution in my tea repertoire…. a new volume to add, and a very gracious one at that.

thank you MissB for this celebratory cup. i’m going to keep playing until i’m sort out my steeping parameters =0)

very graceful, very smooth, very new!

MissB

I found this one needed a bit less heat and 4-5 minutes to get it feeling “right”. I so wish this was a better, more celebratory cup for you right off the bat.

JustJames

fauchon and i have had an uneasy romance from the get go, lol, why would today be any different? and it is quite a different entity than any other bland i’ve ever had…. =0)

OMGsrsly

I like steeping them at 195F (90C!) for sure. 4 minutes is good for me, but maybe I’ll try 5!

JustJames

you know…. it could also be me…. i’m so tired i can’t even see. so tonight i get to enjoy tea, but ascribe no numbers. sooooo tired. WOW!

MissB

Yes, yes I understand that completely. Rest well! You deserve it.

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86

Thank you so much to VariaTEA for this awesome sample.

i love this tea….. it reminds me exactly of the strawberry lemonade you can get at red robins =0). and VariaTEA totally spoiled me and sent me a ton of it! thank you so much!

i will be sipping this tonight in order to sleep early for my shifted exam (it was supposed to be tonight) tomorrow morning. very weird though…. she sent it to me because i love it so much, which i do, and yet my review is gone? hmph.

one more exam and i can study tea for 3 weeks…. and work repainting my noise cancelling headphones from hot pink to something (anything) but hot pink. i have nothing against pink…. i’m just not one of the guys that wears it, especially not with screaming red hair.

thank you VariaTEA!!!

Preparation
Boiling 7 min, 0 sec
VariaTEA

Yay! I am glad you are enjoying it :)

JustJames

i’ve been hoarding it knowing i would need it now, lol.

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dear MissB, thank you very much for sharing.

i wish i could taste it.

my tongue ignored it because it had the word ‘toffee’…. but i really did try. =0(

i thought i caught a whiff of banana maybe though?

stupid tongue.

MissB

Dammit. Share all toffee teas with someone else. You have more tea on the way as of this afternoon (two business days!), and there is zero toffee anything in that package. I think.

MissB

I just want you happy, and with tea that you love! :)

JustJames

ARGH!!!!! you’ve given and or led me to loads of teas that i love!!!!! i have a genetic aversion to toffee is all…. i’m a walking glitch, lol.
let’s check the roster: bolero, all sorts of matcha, all sorts of fauchon, all things TGteas, lol!!!!

and tht’s just the tea, and not the friend…. xoxo

Sil

Lol walking glitch hahaha

JustJames

oh yes, she who laughs last stands to inherit…. i am done wasting it sil. it’s all coming your way. yup!

Sil

That just made me think of reboot…

JustJames

i’d be quite happy rebooting, no telling what would work itself out, toffee and caramel included!!!

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85

WOW! a BIG thank you to Sil for this sample!!!

i have had two contributors to my matcha experiences….. MissB and Sil. MissB’s were also red leaf, but i tried them hot. not sure why, but i decided to go the opposite way with Sil’s…. and a good call it was!

i’m not sure if it’s an acclimation to matcha, or a normal matcha newbie stage, but i really prefer it cold. this was awesomely smooth, a beautiful vanilla flavour…. not false, not cloying. i will absolutely buy this flavour from red leaf. THANK YOU SIL! as well thank you MissB….. for me matcha seems to be a process of elimination as to how i like it, lol.

maybe i’ll wind up heating it gradually? =0)

Sil

french vanilla> this one for me…also i adore them as lattes but not so much straight with water lol

JustJames

this was like a caffeine injected crazy decadent milkshake. it was great! btw….. i have toffee caramel gathering for you =0)

Sil

I love matcha in milkshakes…it’s why I went insane earlier. In ether year…soooo many flavours still to open…

JustJames

my wife came home for lunch and just eyed my glass suspiciously, lol.

now that i know how i like it i can totally imagine myself going bananas with it, lol. however….. i am also plotting. the o dor. a little. maybe.

Sil

…is it sad that if we buy 6+ bags directly from. The o dor, it’s about the same price per bag as 3 from Jin…. Lol

BrewTEAlly Sweet

(Adds to shopping list) aka my dream list ha ha

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68
drank Ice Wine by Darlene's Teaport
342 tasting notes

thank you to MissB for this sample. this one was really interesting….

the dry leaf gives me a very straightforward ice wine grape scent. it changes once water is added it changes. a floral component chimes in…. one i can’t name…..not honey suckle, not hyacinth…. i’m prompted by H though, lol.

has a heavy presence, a syrup that gives a distinctly exotic weight. not sure it’s quite my thing, but a lovely thing to try.

on a side note: i DO believe that misfortune comes in threes, or i do now. so… the left eye a month ago, the left kidney 2 days ago, and a broken back left molar as of 30 minutes ago. huh. happy holidays? sigh.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec
MissB

Oh boo (for the tea). I have yet to try this. Floral is so not my thing. Huge hugs to you.

JustJames

it’s not strictly floral, and it’s just one guy’s appraisal. cold steep it…. try it that way to start?

Veronica

Good grief… I bet you’re going to be happy to see the backside of 2013! I hope things get better (much, much better) soon.

TheTeaFairy

Don’t give up James, if trinity is the rule here, then it should also apply to the GOOD stuff…I wish many rounds of good things will also come to you in threes :-)

MissB

I will. Having said that… I have an awful lot of things like Nina’s Paris, Dammann Freres, and Fauchon in the house right now. ;)

JustJames

i like the concept of a three way reversal of this nonsense….. i can’t believe all this. BEYOND stupid. isn’t it true that we’re supposed to thrive in the face of adversity? i guess my final psych mark will be the barometer of that…..

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67
drank Chocolate Chai by Rishi Tea
342 tasting notes

huge chunks instead of pulverized ingredients…. smells great. lots of chocolate. vanilla seed floating in my tea once steeped. what’s the name of this again? chocolate chai. okay…. where’s my chocolate? how can it be there when it’s dry and NOT be there when it’s steeped?? grrrr.

we are not amused. i need a ‘we are not amused’ button to hit. i will assume operator error and i will try again before i assign numbers, but if i had a big red button in front of me right now it would be hard not to hit it.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec
Fjellrev

False advertising!

JustJames

i know!! and there are other things i really do like about the blend… piles of vanilla seeds, a good balance of spice, i am picky about chai. this is a good one! but don’t tell me it’s a chocolate chai and then have imaginary chocolate, it will just make me cross… especially if i’m having a kidney deficient weekend! }=0[

Fjellrev

Those insensitive jerks. What’s also annoying is when a tea smells awesome but then tastes not even close to hot it smells. If it smells like chocolate, then damnit, it should taste like it too.

JustJames

it is not okay to make something as wonderful as a tea into a liar. anthropomorphize aaaaaaaaaaaaaaall you want, but keep your personal neuroses out of my teacup!

TheTeaFairy

you guys are insanely funny…

JustJames

we try. =0\ but it’s also true….. want me to send you some so you can gripe too?

TheTeaFairy

Lol, it’s ok, I gripe just by reading your emotional reaction…I now have bloody palms, my nails have deeply penetrated the skin, that’s how infuriated I am at the whole situation…I don’t think I could bare tasting the subject, would be just too much to handle…

JustJames

=0D
rishi will undoubtedly revamp their recipe if they read this, lol.

TheTeaFairy

OMG, they would freak out!!! but no worries, they don’t hang out around here much.
Joke aside, I never ordered from them, but I’ve read great notes about their teas, they seem to be above average quality…

JustJames

definitely on quality! it’s a beautiful to look at. if it weren’t a ‘chocolate’ chai i’d give it rave reviews….. but don’t say ‘chocolate’ or whatever and then ‘oops i forgot’. it annoys.

i’ll try it again. as a chai a REGULAR chai it’s the best i’ve had. but that won’t go in THIS review because this is supposed to be a CHOCOLATE chai. i am tempted to call BS which is as far as i go in a respectful forum…. but i think you know what i mean!

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83

thank you to sil for this gem…..

i didn’t get caramel and toffee out of it (i never do) but i got SOMETHING! it wasn’t just tea….

i got brown sugar, coffee? or something akin to. vanilla. an unnameable fruit tone…. very smooth.

thank you, sil! i’m a day behind, but it was a lovely celebration!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec
Sil

Heh. Glad it was something to look forward too

cteresa

I am crazy maybe, but I always get a coconut-y vibe from Wedding Imperial. I like it nonetheless, though it is a tea which keeps me on my toes, must pay attention when brewing it!

JustJames

now that you say it, yes, perhaps a roasted coconut? a very decadent treat to celebrate the ending of my scariest course!!!! tomorrow i will celebrate again =0)

cteresa

oh, congratulations, here is to a great celebration! This sounds like a good tea to celebrate with!

JustJames

THANK YOU THANK YOU! i think fauchon’s naissance is the route to go…. =0)

Sil

i really need to try my fauchon teas…maybe this weekend…

Terri HarpLady

I really need to try Fauchon teas, period! LOL
congrats, James!

JustJames

i only have 2, but i can send samples terri =o)

Sil

justjames… i can take care of terri…we have an ongoing box that travels and maaaybe she’s getting some in the next round as my christmas treat to her and tastybrew heh

Sil

also..did you know that 13 teas from MF only comes to about 16$ per 100g CAD which is like the same price as bad tea from david’s tea as well lol

OMGsrsly

Sil! 13 teas! That’s 1300g.

JustJames

i did! it’s the shipping that (i’m going to go the polite route here…) ‘attaches one to another object by an inclined plane wrapped helically around an axis.’ =0)

Sil

i will keep you guys posted…it’s only a matter of time before i crumble one way or another… after all there’s still my stupid “real” bonus to come this year.. in addition to the “fake” bonus they already gave me lol

Cavocorax

Hmmmm…. I wish I had money…

Terri HarpLady

(Just sitting here smiling & enjoying the conversation, especially the part about people (mainly Sil) sending me tea, lol)

JustJames

see this is where there difference between money and credit blurs for me. mmph, financial responsibility. credit rating. tea. risk. pro/con. dammit.

JustJames

terri…. not nice to make fun of trying to be responsible mostly grown ups, lol.

Sil

is it bad that when i’m in the modd to splurge on something like this..the 1300g of tea that i’d be getting doesn’t phase me only because it means that i can share? lol I’ve had bags of tea i bought, love but then only have like 2 cups out of because i get to excited to share the tea lol

keychange

Oh yeah, I spend like a blind fool when I’m buying tea. Sil, are you ordering directly from mf? isn’t shipping going to…impale you unpleasantly?

Sil

keychange – both MF and the o dor have shipping that sits at about 25 euros. If i get 10+ bags, because the teas aren’t terribly expensive in the grand scheme of things, it offsets the cost of the shipping without making the price per bag exorbitant. 13 teas brings the cost per 100g to about 16 CAD, which, as i mentioned is about the same price as a number of david’s teas – a company that i am not overly a fan of. heh

keychange

Well I’ll be damned!

cteresa

Sil, that is my plan for my next order. Buy sufficiently of the loose leaf teas so it offsets the shipping, so one just big order. Though next order will be no sooner than November (ok, october, but totally definetely!) 2014! For this winter I am shamefully well stocked

JustJames

okay, now i read your 16$, but i didn’t realize your number included/justified/explained/finessed shipping sil, lol.

Sil

james..oh yes..i always look at total cost to get to my greedy little hands. my first order of DF teas arrived today and i AM SO DARN HAPPY OMG YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY! however i also received my verdant BF order AND teas from omgsrsly…so um i have some drinking to do before i can order lol

JustJames

it sounds like a day totally appropriate for the season….. enjoy =0)

Sil

sooo supposed to be doing work..but totally organising tea now lol

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drank Chinese Flower by Harney & Sons
342 tasting notes

my it’s been a couple of days! brilliant because of classes winding down and very satisfying grades being locked in place…. but sad with the death of nelson mandela. i wonder if it would have hit me as profoundly before one of my majors had me studying people and the influence that we outwardly have on one another on one another in my human geography class….. there is no way for me to answer.

perhaps it is a lack of faith on my part, that as the old guard ages and passes (mandela, the dalai lama, mother theresa) that while there will always be good people, i don’t see any obvious stand ins for these outstanding individuals. brangelina? bono who got a TED award? i don’t think so……

SO i wrote that bit about 9 hours ago. stopped after the dot dot dots. dropped. wound up in an ambulance and at the hospital. KIDNEY STONES.

ARE YOU KIDDING ME? so, surgery on one eye coming up…. and a stone IN ONE KIDNEY???? they’re asking me about pain levels in the ambulance ‘out of 10 sir’. 10? make it 20 and it would still be 21!!!!! OMG.

the tea. okay…. this was more of a frustrated rant and less a review. i don’t remember the tea. but i have another sample from stephanie.

=0(

Veronica

Whoa! I am so sorry. I hope you can find some comfort soon. Kidney Stones suck.

As for outstanding individuals the first person I thought of was

Veronica

Ok… I can’t type. Anyway, I was going to say Malala. I know ahe’s young, but she’s also using her voice in a powerful way.

Sil

woah hope you get back to better soon mister…sorry for the crappy times :(

JustJames

malala? i will look her up. thanks veronica.

keychange

Seconding Malala. Very bright young girl, although I worry about the pressure that is currently resting on her tiny shoulders. and my dear James, rest up! I’m worried about you, and am sorry you were in so much pain!

yyz

Ow James! I’ve heard that’s horrible. Malala the first that came to my mind as well. Another person that comes to mind for me is the Bangledashi man who started the micro financing movement. I forget his name, but micro financing has changed many peoples lives in huge ways.

JustJames

i just keep thinking ‘um…. final project? final exam? HELLO?? B.E.T.T.E.R. things to do!’ but i can’t even think because they gave me a really good drug. NOT an opiate (wouldn’t let em’….. by IV? nuh uh) but a really good anti inflammatory….. but it’s still making me fuzzy.

GEEZ!

caile

Oh my gosh, that is awful! I hope you feel better soon!!

JustJames

yes, grameen…. that’s true, yyz.

i know there are brilliant minds on TED… and i know there are good people every place i look. genuinely. but i find it disconcerting when the people that i have spent my life admiring start popping off.

JustJames

thanks caile. it has just been a STUPID month health wise. absolutely ridiculous!!

caile

It does sound like a terrible month! A big hug for you!

yyz

I think I have had to deal with the knowledge of death since I was very young so it bothers me a little less. It’s still sad and the passing of great persons seem to in away acting as book marks or closures to great era’s, but my family tends to have children late and the men at least live long lives so this cycle seems a little expected and natural to me. My grandfather knew Dali, Hemingway, and Castro. Having said that Mandela was truly a great man.

JustJames

yyz…. someday i think we should meet. for tea. someplace. i have a feeling you are a story keeper….

ifjuly

ackackack, i am sorry to hear the bad news. i’ve had friends tell me kidney stones were the worst pain they’ve ever felt, like worse than childbirth or any other medical malady they’ve encountered. you are tough!

Cavocorax

:( I’m sorry. I hope you recover quickly!

JustJames

well, miss july, i am nursing my kidneys (i’ve been told to drink and drink and drink….. i’m thrilled about the tea part, less so about if things get blocked again part) back to health with your awesome fruits d’alsace sample. it makes me feel better.

i don’t feel tough. i feel distinctly whiney, lol. makes me wonder if it’s been brewing for a few days though because i’ve been in a rotten mood for a few days without explanation.

}=0[

OMGsrsly

Oh, sweet goodness! I REALLY hope that this gets resolved soon and you recover quickly. Kidney stones are the opposite of fun. :/

JustJames

i just wish i knew if there was anything i could do to make sure this one goes AWAY and that it’a a one time occurrence!

OMGsrsly

There are dietary things that you can avoid to reduce the chances, but I’m not sure about guaranteeing that you never get them again. :/ You kinda need your kidneys, so it’s not like you can take them out like you can a gall bladder! :) I haven’t had them, but an ex did. I don’t remember what was recommended, sadly.

JustJames

all they said was ‘drink’…. which is great…. but wow it hurts! i asked every question my addled brain could think up…. boils down to: many studies, no definitive answers. drink.

not sure how i’m going to pull off my exam of tuesday: can’t see, and now pain meds. greeeeeeeeeeeeat. hmph.

OMGsrsly

Haha, and you’ll be asking to go to the washroom every 5 minutes if you’re drinking enough, too. :D

JustJames

well, i have a note from the ERP. this month is ridiculous!!

Stephanie

Awwwwww, I bet that was so painful! Feel better JustJames! :(

Terri HarpLady

Oh James, so sorry you have to suffer this :(
Here comes the woo-woo esoteric view: kidney stones are the physical manifestation of the sorrows/griefs we hold/repress, because the are painful to express. Sound like you are in the process of letting go of something, hence the stone is on the move!
The only pain in change is our resistance, I like to say, although sometimes it hurts like hell! Sending some Reiki your way!

boychik

I’m so sorry and I hope you get better soon

JustJames

terri….. that is a remarkable thought! i have never heard that before. fascinating! not woo-woo, lol…..

JustJames

boychik, i’m feeling a bit better today…. stressed to the max. i have until 11:59 pm to finish a massive project and then an exam tuesday. no idea how this is going to work. none.

JustJames

stephanie, i’m so sorry i couldn’t comment on your lovely tea! i don’t remember it at all =0(, but i have another bag =0)

MissB

Drink, yes. You should be drinking enough to urinate about 2L a day – when you’ve got kidney stones, output decreases dramatically, and it’s how I know I’ve got to start drinking more liquids. Increase your fiber intake slowly and keep it there – it helps get rid of the calcium and oxalate (sp?) that turns into kidney stones. Reduce salt where possible. Also, find teas with (or add yourself) some nettle leaf, which will promote urination and help flush things out to reduce the pain. I actually have a tea for this somewhere with a horrible name and okay taste, and it usually reduces/removes the pain for me in a day or two. I’ll see it has any of your known allergens in it, and if not, I’ll send some your way ASAP.

Stephanie

You’re going to have a bad association with this tea now, I bet! And don’t apologize! :)

Kaylee

Oh my. Feel better!

JustJames

thanks Kaylee….. it’s been a stupid month, lol. random beyond random.

CelebriTEA

Geez…so sorry for all your pain :-(

I have had kidney stones before
(In the hospital with projectile vomiting from the pain)
I have also had many serious eye issues, torn cornea,
ulcers on cornea, cellulitis in my eye (hospitalized AGAIN)
I just said a prayer for you, and now I am going to drink
a cup of tea in your honor ;-) Creamy Earl Grey (DT)
the most relaxing version of my favorite tea.
Seriously, I pray tou are 100% feeling good way before Christmas

CelebriTEA

You not tou…lol…sometimes I type dislexic

JustJames

thank you for such kindness CelebriTEA. i am really not a happy drug person normally, and i refused opiates….. but they gave me torridol? which is an awesome anti inflammatory…. that helped alot. i was still foggy, but it could very well have been from pain.

going to make tea now. and study. one last exam. tomorrow.
=0)

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Profile

Bio

Time For A ReWrite!

A good friend of mine on here kindly asked me to do the Steepster world a favour and list my allergies front and center (fair enough, lol):

-COFFEE … rare, nasty, not even a bit funny if i’m exposed. (call me original)

-ROOIBOOS … is a new appearance. under certain circumstances i’m okay with it (ie if it’s GREEN and paired with mate) but because i have an auto immune disease i try not to poke at things.

*NOT an allergy, but an abnormality that drives my tea buddies bananas, i AM INCAPABLE OF TASTING CARAMEL AND TOFFEE. so i thought i’d list it at the top too. it’s very annoying. they smell great!!?

Hi! I’m James!

I’m a student: double major of human geography and psychology with the intention of chasing a double doctorate. (reading that over it occurs to me again that i must be crazy).

i’m a live and let live sort. i look and see alot of silver linings. my discovery of tea has only served to further that viewpoint. for me tea is art and nuance, watercolours and bold brushstrokes….

swaps are grand things! the element of surprise in a tea swap completely trumps forrest gump’s chocolate box life metaphor, lol.

favourites: french teas dammann freres, mariage freres and nina’s paris especially.

i have recently discovered a german tea company that has romanced me: tea gschwendner (sp?)

mandala teas is brilliant and a company i count on.

justea and tealet are companies i study because of both their exceptional products and and business models, as well as their work with farmers who are TOO POOR for fair trade certification. this is highly relevant to my studies.

90-100 i need more
80-90 i might need more, or it might be a respect vote
below 75? it was likely an oops buy. my evolution into french teas has vastly focused what i like!!

however, i’m always open to trying things.

dislikes so far: guayasa, darjeeling, most peach teas.

Location

Victoria, BC

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