381 Tasting Notes

83

Hmm. This is both calming and refreshing. The chamomile and mint are well balanced, with a touch of lemon in the background. Just the right amount of mint lingers after the sip – energizing but not brisk. This would make a good breath-freshening afternoon tea if you don’t want any caffeine.

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72

This has a pleasantly roasted, woodsy scent (pine maybe?). The taste is like warm toast on a cold day. Yet it leaves something to be desired. I’m just used to Den’s Tea being more complex. This is rather one-note, though the second steep is better than the first. The roasted flavor remains dominant in the second steep, but there’s also a seaweed note that comes out. This is actually really nice cold – I could see having it as a savory iced tea in the summer. Overall, this tea is tasty enough but nothing special. Another sipdown though!

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96

Mmm. This goes beautifully with mildly spicy and garlicky sauteed bean sprouts with tofu. Just the right balance of green tea and jasmine with that ineffable flavor of Taiwanese greens that lingers drily in the mouth (see my previous tasting note for more detail – one day I’ll find the right words to describe this taste!). I’ve discovered that this is good for at least one resteep. Possibly two, but I don’t want to have that much green tea at this time of night.

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56
drank Winter Spice by Twinings
381 tasting notes

All I’m getting is apple and what seems like a touch of hibiscus. I was really hoping for something with more kick. The apple flavor is quite good, though a touch on the artificial side. Alas, none of the “spice” in the name is actually showing in my cup.

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90
drank Gingerbread Coffeecake by 52teas
381 tasting notes

I find this better without sugar. Sugar knocks the flavor off balance for me. Anyway, still an enjoyable cup and a sipdown. Thanks Sil!

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45
drank The Black Cat by Della Terra Teas
381 tasting notes

I haven’t got anything new to say since my last tasting note, but I do want to memorialize that this is a sipdown. Thanks Short Sorceress!

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60

As some of you may have noticed by now, I am a huge fan of Della Terra’s cream flavoring. In fact, Della Terra has a regular vanilla cream rooibos that I rated quite highly. So how is it that this tea blend, which is basically the same thing with spooky sprinkles added, tastes completely blah to me? Before I knew what was in it, it just tasted like a competent but plain rooibos. Even knowing that this is a vanilla blend, I’m barely tasting it. A most peculiar situation…

Courtesy of my Secret Pumpkin, Short Sorceress. Thank you!

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Glad it wasn’t just me with this one.

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90
drank Gingerbread Coffeecake by 52teas
381 tasting notes

I added some sugar this time to see how it would affect the taste. I’m still picking up ginger and the flavor of those coffee crumbs on top of the coffeecake, but no actual cake flavor. This is still good, but not quite hitting the spot like it did last time. I think I may have underleafed this one. I used 1 teaspoon because I’m trying to stretch out my sample from Sil. I might add the rest of the leaf to the resteep and see if that helps.

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

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90
drank Adam by Nina's Paris
381 tasting notes

Another subject in my ongoing experimental series, “guess what’s in this tea without looking at the description” (suggestions for a better title are welcome and encouraged). I believe that I got this from our Taste of France swap, but I don’t know who gave it to me. Thanks to whoever it was!

I picked this out for its lovely minty scent. The auto complete on my phone just suggested that I follow “minty” with “frosting”, which sounds delicious and now I want a chocolate cupcake with minty frosting. That would actually go pretty well with this tea, though vanilla would probably be even better.

Aaanyway, this has a clean spearmint smell. The first few sips are a great balance of spearmint and good quality green tea, with a hint of lemon. As I kept drinking, the (very natural) lemon flavor really came to the fore and stayed there. The spearmint kept playing around the edges and kept this from being a boring lemon tea. This tastes exactly like what it purports to be.

I generally dislike lemon teas because they either taste fake or like plain tea with some lemon juice squeezed in. If I want my tea with lemon, I’ll just make tea and add lemon in exactly the proportion I like. But this tea has a lemon taste that is simultaneously natural and less acidic than lemon juice. The added element of the mint really makes this stand out for me as an enjoyable cuppa.

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82
drank Autumn Leaves by Della Terra Teas
381 tasting notes

I’m not generally one to squee over candies in my tea. I like flavored teas, but there’s something about having actual candy in there that just feels like a step too far. This tea is the exception though. The little multi-colored maple leaves are just charming. I love it.

The smell of this tea is very maple. The color is dead on for maple syrup. Early in the cup, I wasn’t impressed by the flavor. It tasted overwhelmingly of rooibos with only a faint hint of maple. As I kept drinking, a bit of syrupy film built up on the roof of my mouth (in a pleasant way) and the maple flavor drowned out the rooibos. This definitely hits the spot for something sweet! Quite enjoyable.

This is from my Secret Pumpkin swap. Thank you Short Sorceress!

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