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342 Tasting Notes

drank The des Anges by Nina's Paris
342 tasting notes

i did something different with this one tonight, though i don’t know what. however- the point could be made that the world is a better place with a heapload of stress hauled off my shoulder? maybe the world simply tastes sweeter….

tonight i get a hint of citrus in the tea base which gives a very nice spin to the strawberry. lovely lovely. not my favourite nina’s, but still great.

back to work.

Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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drank Black Beauty by Mandala Tea
342 tasting notes

very nice, very smooth…. i have to play with steeping to maximize its potential. still quite lovely though.

Flavors: Baked Bread, Chocolate, Cocoa, Dark Bittersweet

Boiling 3 min, 45 sec 4 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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on the fly with this one….

thanks to sil, you and i have very similar tastes. sil, do you think that matcha and too loud music can replace sleep? somewhat? possibly altogether? i’ve been performing an inadvertent experiment…… and shortly an exam. yay! there will be irrefutable proof in the paper!

thank you sil!

cold, with xylitol. very nice.

Iced 0 min, 15 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

glad you liked it :) i wish you sleep soon!


snuck to you in plain sight while in a lecture, lol.

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drank Mate Chai by Chico Chai
342 tasting notes

booyah! this kicks a three letter word that we all have following us around! beautiful spice balance, gorgeous fresh, the mate keeps me on top of my game….. i think this may be the best i’ve had, chico or otherwise.

i will be buying a tin of this. not a price for the faint of heart, but this works well for me and shines as a saucepan roiled latte.

Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Cinnamon, Cloves, Dark Bittersweet, Molasses, Nutmeg

Boiling 8 min or more 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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drank Pumpkin Spice Brulee by Teavana
342 tasting notes

steepsterites, i need your help. i received a package in the mail last week. it was pouring, the tea was fine… but the writing was murky. i had thought it was from one person, but apparently not!?

the envelope was filled with ziplock bags of teavana samples. one sample of david’s. it was addressed simply to ‘james’. i don’t know who to thank! =0( i feel bad!

the tea: i saw some pumpkin seeds, smelled plenty of cinnamon…. a nice enough oolong, but i find the name inaccurate: more a spiced brulee. cinnamon, nutmeg and the brulee essence- no creme element….

i think a vanilla element may have added the cream? not bad. thank you to someone =0\

Flavors: Cedar, Cinnamon, Molasses

190 °F / 87 °C 4 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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ooh! fancy with the new steepster setup!

i love the smell, i love the swirly chocolate nutty heart chips and the slices of strawberry, i love the packaging and the ever generous spirit of MissB for passing it on to me because of her allergy to strawberries…. but i don’t love the tea!

i have oily dots across the top of my tea and an almost salty/savoury nut twang on the back of my tongue. i don’t taste any strawberry. the oil makes it seem very thin. it was a beautiful idea, and had a very pretty visual, but i do not like the tea and i will not recommend it now that steepster is prompting the question specifically. RIGHT up until the drinking everything was great.

FLAVOURS IN ORDER: SALT, nuts, chocolate (dimly), wood

Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
Roswell Strange

Oooh, that’s disappointing (and good to know). I’m always curious about this one when I go to look in store – it’s just so pretty.

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okay, i figured out the trick to this one!

add some agave syrup… spot of cream…. 4 minute steep….. h2o at oolong temp and eat salted moana loa macadamia nuts on the side!

NOW i get almond sugar cookie!!!!

200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 0 sec

Well why didn’t S&V say so on the package?!


i agree HEARTILY!!!


Heh, sounds lovely! I find this perfect with an even shorter steep myself. So glad you found your sweet spot!


You made me crave some almond sugar cookie

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thank you yyz… this sample was awesome!

a light, sweet fruity green… with a hint of musk that is not smoke and is also not pungent.

i swear my reviews are getting briefer by the day! =0(

190 °F / 87 °C 3 min, 0 sec

You and me both! :) It’s just good to see you here.


And me also! I miss you!


I’m glad you liked it! Hope things are going well, despite all the busyness.


come back to us!


okay. massive stress + stupidity + a question: can you explain to me why I feel bad when a person in a position of power was sexually inappropriate (not physically) with ME? i know it was the individual’s fault/glitch/action/failing/legal bypass… and yet i know my prof is having a sit down with the person today and i am terrified. what is my problem?

well, what a thing to post in among the comments, yes?


what part of me being your employee/volunteer gives you the impression that you have any rights to inquire about (nevermind debate!!!) my sexual orientation!?? loudly. in a courtyard. and that was just the beginning.


ew. what an awful experience justjames. :( I’m sorry you had to go through that.


That sounds horrible. Sorry you are dealing with that :(


‘hearts’, James. Obviously you’re allowed to feel whatever you feel. :) I wish you luck!

Brief reviews are fine, too. You’ll come back to writing your poetic prose at some point!


There are only two answers to the question that arsehat asked you:

1- Oh, I was unaware that eunuchs thought of such things?
2- Hm. Good question. Maybe we should debate it further with the HR department’s sexual harassment advisor.

I only mean #2 seriously. C’mon! :)

Many hugs to you. I hope it goes better than expected.


i always come up with the best responses AFTER the fact. i was SO caught of guard. i mean a MILLION times never expected. bah! why can’t people be normal human beings?


It’s healthy that you acknowledged the issue originated with the other person’s action. And it’s natural for a thinking, caring human being to feel stress after negative interactions with others. That doesn’t make it suck any less. One small consolation is that the community here on Steepster seems to be caring and supportive, and is a great place to open up and share. I hope in time this issue gets resolved and you find peace.


James, I hope everything went well yesterday. What an awkward and uncomfortable situation.

I feel for you.

Luckily I’ve mainly had to deal with such things when abroad in places where there is a stereotype about Western Women being quite loose. Fixed that by wearing a veil in some places and by learning a look that turned propositions into ‘Good Night Aunty’. There was a little bit of that when I worked in Aviation, but mostly from the pax, and to be sure there is a little bit of theatre in that job. I was only warned away from one man who had a reputation, was on wife number 4 and had a new baby.

Sorry you were put in such an awkward situation.


i appreciate everyone’s words of support. i meet with the guy today… he spoke with my prof yesterday. if he has not snapped back into line 100% then a) i will assist him into the position b) it will be the last meeting i attend with him. i have better things to do than to be inappropriately hassled by a creep.

how is it that a creep (there are so many alternative monikers i’d love to fill in here) runs such a BRILLIANT project? how did that happen??

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thanks VariaTEA!

this was very cool! like a coconut spice cake…. i erred too much on the side of caution and understeeped. sigh. i tried to resteep…. i think i really like this, but i can’t tell because of operator error- argh!

based half way on what i tasted and half way with what i think would of happened i will number-ify-y-y.

really! not bad for a bagged tea! most of them i taste paper, not in this case! =0)

=0( don’t do a three minute steep.

Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

Sounds delicious!


Oh no – that’s too bad about the understeeping, but how could you have known? I hope you have another one to “get it right” with.

And it seems like this one is in the ‘quite good for a bagged tea’ category! I’ve had a few people get that impression, so next time I hit the pharmacy I will take a look.

Oh. No, I’d better not. (Just took a look at my overflowing tea shelf!)


Oh no. I am sorry I was only able to send one for you to try. Well, even with operator error, it seems as though you liked it so yay ?

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Thank you VariaTEA for sending this my way!

i got no chocolate? but i got a lovely creamy, vanilla-esque cinnamon bomb though! very nice. might have to look into this shop- next semester!

on a completely separate note, had to drop a line to my prof asking for more pages for an assignment….. i will cut and paste his reply:
‘… you should strike some balance between your school work and life.’ buwahahahahaha! yeah! if you promise me A+’s no matter what.

did he just obliquely accuse me of having no life? or would you call that direct? hmmm.

Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

I am glad you liked it. And yes, your prof may have accidentally (or perhaps not accidentally) accused you of not having a life.


thank you so much for sending it! gotta love a prof that puts up with grading extra work and then calls it like he sees it…. politely! lol!!!
yours should be there soon i hope!


Maybe he’s a little envious. I remember some of my undergraduate profs (mostly department heads) complaining that 70% of their time was dedicated to finding funding/politics, 20% to their own research and grad students, and 10% to the classroom.


well, he might be indulging me a bit because i appear to be the only tech savvy student willing to work with networking software for the NGOs, not just mine. also the fact that i have over 100 hours in and it should be more 36 and i’m trying to make it self-sustaining for after i leave as well. my classmates are just starting now, i’ve been at it full time for a month. (no sleep, lotsa tea…. that’s why no reviews!)


Goodness, with that amount of work in, it would be nice if you could at least get a tax receipt for your volunteer time. Sounds exciting, but don’t push yourself towards burnout!


you say what i think…. and yet there’s no one else with my particular spray of skill sets: art, language, people, programs, photo editing with a strong real world network as well. it’ll be fine…. probably. lol.


Anyways I feel for you…


thank you! xoxo…. are you enjoying your bits and pieces?


I am.. So far I have revisited Hepburn, and Toffee Dream, I was kind of too busy to give a tea proper attention today. I wm planning to explore something new tomorrow, looking forward to it!


i’m crazy busy, if you don’t have time to review i’d be the last one to gripe. just thought i’d ask!! =0)


No harm in it, James they all look fabulous! I think I’m going to have to close my eyes and reach in, to decide where to begin. I’ve also been wasting time contemplating a Betjeman order.


i did NOT just read that. i have enough tea… i have enough tea… i will not look them up online!! lol!


It’s a little bit more effort. To get decent shipping you have to do a phone order from Fouvrac in Montreal. They carry the full line, but don’t have a webstore. So you have to check out the teas at the Betjeman and Barton site. Shipping they said was cheap, someone had an order sent to California for $10.


Fouvrac seems to carry a lot of companies. They have Betjeman, and a lot of Kusmi, but I have also seen Fauchon, Compagnie Coloniale, and Marriage Frères tins in the pictures on their Facebook page.


I saw Montreal and perked up. I suppose I have another store to check out now.


Also this is a list (granted an incomplete one) of the tea companies they have: http://www.lefouvrac.com/grocery-product/en_tea.html


https://m.facebook.com/lefouvrac?id=220918191303544&rdr. They have 2 locations. I’m not sure which is better but the Betjeman site lists the Fleury location. blank">http://www.betjemanandbarton.com/en/content/9-world

They have really cute teaware as well!


The other location is closer but realistically the difference is insignificant unless you are driving there.


I AM COVERING MY EYES!!!!!! i am not reading! i have been SO well behaved. CURSES! lol.


Looks like you’re fine going to the Laurier location anyways. They apparently have an annex to the store dedicated to the Betjeman teas. http://voir.ca/voir-la-vie/art-de-vivre/2012/12/06/home-sweet-home/


Yeah. Damn. I really shouldn’t be buying more. It is just so tempting though.


Beware, according to the fleury St description they carry 48 companies teas.


And it’s smaller than the Laurier one


Hahaha. This could hurt my wallet. Perhaps I should avoid the store.


True, it does look dangerous. If you go set a limit, but it looks at least you can buy 50g.


James, we kind of hijacked this discussion, but you know when I finally get around to placing an order, some samples will be coming to you.


ha ha ha ha…. hijack away! i am a man of mettle! i’ll misbehave- i just have to save it up for next semester is all =0)


Oh wow, yyz, that is a serious thing to consider! I could get a lot of things I’ve been wanting to try all with just one order. :D

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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.


Victoria, BC

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