386 Tasting Notes

16
drank Sleigh Ride by DAVIDsTEA
386 tasting notes

This smells so fantastic. All cinnamon and fruit with a touch of nuttiness. Alysha sent this to me a few months ago (thanks!) and it smells so good that I’ve been using it as potpourri in my sweater drawer. With the weather getting chillier, I decided that it was finally time to use it for its intended purpose.

… it’s better as potpourri. Seriously, upon taking the first sip, my instinctive response was to exclaim aloud – to an empty room – that this tea is terrible. It even loses the yummy spicy smell once you brew it. This is just vaguely cinnamon-y hibiscus juice. Blegh. Back in the sweater drawer it goes, and I’m calling this a sipdown because I never want to drink it again.

Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 0 sec
Teavangelical

it probably would have been better before you left it open in your sweater drawer for two months!!

Kaylee

I didn’t leave it open. The smell is very strong and it came through the bag.

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95
drank Pistachio Ice Cream by Butiki Teas
386 tasting notes

Nom nom nom. I had this in my travel mug this morning. It was wonderfully creamy and nutty and just right for breakfast. I had it with an egg sandwich and it totally held its own. The only down side, and it’s a significant one, is that I can’t smell the tea when it’s in the travel mug. The smell of this tea is so much a part of what makes it wonderful that not being able to smell it did diminish my enjoyment. Oh, well. Lesson learned!

I had the second steep when I got home from work. Nutty pistachio goodness as always.

Kaylee

Seriously? 6 likes in 2 hours? Pretty sure that’s a record for me :) Thanks, folks!

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93

Mmm. Lovely hot watermelon. A sipdown, and I’m sad to see it go. Thanks Stephanie!

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62
drank Troika by Kusmi Tea
386 tasting notes

I got a whole tin of this courtesy of Fuzzy_Peachkin. Alas, a third of it ended up on the floor… and my desk… and my pants… The tin got stuck and it took me literally almost an hour to get it open. I ultimately had to dent the side just to get in, and then of course a bunch of it spilled while I was prying the lid off.

Unfortunately, the payoff wasn’t worth the effort. I found this tea pleasantly citrusy (mainly orange) but very one-note. Kind of bland, I guess. Even my dad found it bland and he usually can’t tell one tea from another. I used about 1.5 teaspoons for 8 oz of water. Did I underleaf? Have other people used more/less?

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec
Angrboda

Try it with slightly cooler water. Kusmi is the brand that taught me to brew flavoured at just under boiling. I generally brew it around 90°C same as I would an oolong.

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Finally get to try this, courtesy of Fuzzy_Peachkin (I think) from our Taste of France swap. I was really excited because everyone raves about this tea.

…so it seems like I’m the only one who doesn’t find this tea sweet. In fact, I could swear it smells and tastes like mushrooms with sort of a caramel background. Which I’m actually quite enjoying but very confused about. I’ll have to play around with it a bit to figure out what the issue is.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec
Bonnie

It takes time to detect natural sweetness in tea especially when you have been used to drinking flavored tea’s. If you drink more natural tea and unflavored tea, this tea would have been sweet by comparison. I used to drink all the flavors until I ran into a few great natural tea’s that blew my mind. After that…I changed. Now almost none of my tea is flavored and what tea’s are flavored don’t have artificial flavoring.

Kaylee

Thanks for the advice :) I’m pretty burned on Teavana and David’s Tea, but definitely still addicted to flavored teas from smaller companies (mostly Butiki and Della Terra’s cream anything). Which teas converted you to the natural/unflavored side?

Bonnie

Laoshan Black from Verdant about 2years ago blew me away. I had no idea tea could be so cocoa malty good. The blends from Verdant are great. Then I found Butiki which is naturally flavored. My local shop which is online is naturally flavored happyluckys.com (Harvest Moon, Chocolate Mints, 500 mile Chai) and other companies Steapshoppe (cinnamon swirl bread) and Whispering Pines (Fujian Black) are natural.

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62
drank Birthday Cake by Butiki Teas
386 tasting notes

I’ve been working with this as a bedtime tea for a few days now, but I just can’t get it to work for me. I don’t get the cake flavor at all. Adding sugar, I pick up a light vanilla-frosting-from-a-can flavor. The aftertaste really lingers coarsely on the roof of my mouth. I don’t know what the problem is, but this tea is not for me. Thanks for the sample though Sil!

Sil

it’s not my favourite either. I prefer stacy’s others.

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70
drank Pumpkin Chai by DAVIDsTEA
386 tasting notes

I’m quite ambivalent about this one. I had the first cup straight (no milk, sugar, etc.) and found it thoroughly unremarkable at best. I tried adding rice milk to the second cup, which didn’t improve the taste. Nor did adding a dash of cinnamon to that cup. Finally, for the third cup, I tried it with a few crystals of brown rock sugar. That definitely brought out the flavor. So in the interest of giving this tea its best chance, I am only reviewing that third cup.

This is quite pumpkin-y and a bit creamy. The pumpkin creaminess hits you first, then the cinnamon comes in followed by the other spices. The aftertaste is definitely spicy pumpkin. The pumpkin flavor tastes pretty natural, not at all artificial. This isn’t terrible, but there’s something about the spice blend that just isn’t doing it for me. I’m in no hurry to have this again.

And the reason I just downed three cups of chai when it’s nearly midnight is that this is now a sipdown! Whoo! I got this from our Taste of France swap. I think it’s from teamore. Thanks for the taste!

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96
drank Pumpkin Milkshake by Butiki Teas
386 tasting notes

The dry leaves smell absolutely amazing. Vanilla, pumpkin, and a whole lot of spice that I can’t place but smells absolutely delectable. Cinnamon, but something more too (and yes I realize that cinnamon isn’t a listed ingredient).

Mmm this tastes creamy and spicy in equal measure, with a pleasantly sweet aftertaste. With a touch of brown crystal sugar, it’s all creamy spicy vanilla with just a hint of pumpkiness. As it cools, the pumpkin flavor really comes out and it is dead on for a pumpkin milkshake. That same creamy pumpkin flavor really lingers on the tongue.

Second steep: boiling water, 3 minutes. It’s still pumpkin vanilla-y goodness, though a touch too watery. I probably should have brewed longer or at a lower temp. Even with some sugar, the flavors are fainter than in the first cup. Still tasty, but I’ll have to play around with second-steep parameters.

Third steep: 180 F, just over 8 minutes. Still pumpkin vanilla numminess, but that wateriness is still here; not terrible at all, but not quite as robust as I’d like. Then again, it is a third steeping of a flavored tea, so this is kind of to be expected.

This is just a perfect autumn tea. I’m looking forward to testing whether it will be a good breakfast travel mug tea!

Sil

i need to pick this up…. bah! is it november yet?! must. resist. ordering.

Kaylee

You can do it! The tea will still be there!

Also, experiment update:
Second steep: 180 F, 8 minutes. A few crystals of brown sugar. Basically the same taste as my previous attempt. Creamy, but it’s like there’s not much holding the cream up. Lovely vanilla aftertaste though!

Terri HarpLady

want….is there an emoticon for drooling?

Sil

terri..don’t do it! stay strong!

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52
drank Divine Cream by Sloane Tea Company
386 tasting notes

Astringent black tea base. Bergamot/orange notes. Somewhat creamy. Dry aftertaste. Caramel notes are faint, if present at all. Overall, I’ve had worse but I’m not a huge fan.

Thanks for the taste, Sil!

Sil

at least it’s a tea to cross off the list haha

Kaylee

heck yeah

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drank Peppermint Patty by Butiki Teas
386 tasting notes

Ok, this is dead on for a peppermint patty. And also, blegh, I do not like my tea to taste like a peppermint patty. Mint teas? Sure. Chocolate teas? Sometimes. But the combination is so not working for me. Just… no.

Thanks for the sample, Stacy!

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