1243 Tasting Notes

82

Also known as “Grapefruit Earl Grey”, this Award Winning blend certainly packs a citrus scented punch. Whilst raw it has a wonderful grapefruit, rose and floral scent that is very refreshing but super citrusy at the same time.

In flavour this is lightly sweet with moderate grapefruit and rose petal tones which offers a refreshing taste compared to it’s dark black tea base. Somewhat perfumed but in a wonderful way! Every time I drink rose petals in tea it makes me feel beautiful, and this tea holds no exception. Behind the floral and citrus notes is a dark, malt base which holds the lighter flavours together.

Throughout the flavours remain consistent, even as it cools, and I would say that the balance of flavours was delightful! An inventive twist on the classic Earl Grey but a blend that keeps itself ‘close to home’.

Overall I would say this makes a pleasant change from your classic Earl Grey but keeping the elegance and debonair vibe it has accustomed over the years. While it may not take the place of some of my beloved Earl Grey blends on my shelf, I admit the grapefruit is a wonderful extra in the early afternoon!

So, grapefruit in an Earl Grey? Yes please!

For more information please read my SororiTea Sisters post.
http://sororiteasisters.com/2015/04/04/blue-sky-blend-black-tea-j-atkinson-co/

Flavors: Grapefruit, Perfume

Nichole

Sounds amazing!

Red Fennekin

Yay – I’m really glad to hear that you liked it! :D It’s definitely one of my favourites to come back, especially as an afternoon tea!

Tealizzy

I love citrus-y earl greys….yum!

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72

Well, it seems Leicester is having some super strong winds at the moment. I was sorting out my wardrobe after losing weight and going down a few clothes sizes (half way towards my goal) when tea time beckoned. Downstairs I trot to put the kettle on and as I looked out of the window I found one of my garden fence panels on the floor. I’ve spent the last half hour trying to fix it but the wind is raging and the rain is falling, my husband has yet to give up though I think another 5 minutes and he will come in. I don’t think it’s going to survive, but never mind, now we need to save up for a new fence.

Before all of this happened I made this tea and left it to cool somewhat. The bags are pyramid and see through, the ingredients appear fresh and full size which is pleasing. Scent is very herbal with some citrus in the background, like lemongrass.

Steeped it smells slightly toasted, herbal and refreshingly citrus. Taste is rather thick and herbal with chamomile being distinctive, not too strong either. The chamomile develops into a sweet lemongrass flavour that lightens to bring a slight bitterness from the green tea base. Though the mouth is left with a refreshing after taste, though a little dry at the same time.

This is alright actually, not brilliant but a nice enough herbal blend with the added bonus of green tea. Plus I love the fact that this was sent as a gift all the way from Taiwan! This is what they drink there apparently, herbal teas are very popular, just as much as Oolong is.

Flavors: Citrus, Herbs, Lemongrass

Red Fennekin

Leicester isn’t alone there – it’s been awful and windy up here recently too!

Red Fennekin

The tea sounds really tasty, though :D

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75

Yesterday my parents picked me up for lunch as it had been a while. Our first stop was at Lidl because apparently they had some vouchers so I had a look around and spotted their tea selection, my eyes immediately spotted this pear and apple tea. It’s only a tea bag but it sounded refreshing and I thought it was good for iced tea in the coming summer.

This morning it is my breakfast tea, it sounded particularly nice this morning and I needed to try it out anyway. The bags smell lightly fruity and sweet but not very strong.

Once steeped the aroma is fairly strong and smells of pear and apple, it’s very clean and pure smelling. Much nicer than I anticipated given the lack of scent in raw bag form.

Flavour is medium strength with some sweetness, apple and pear tones (which I can distinguish from each other) and a level of cream in the after taste. Tastes like fruit flavoured water that’s gone warm from being left in the sun. It’s nice but I would say standard in terms of fruit tea flavour. The bag is a little dry and it’s not as juicy or fresh as loose leaf would have been, but I think it will meet it’s purpose and do well as an iced tea.

Don’t get me wrong, this is nice and the flavour is there, I just find something missing.

Flavors: Apple, Cream, Pear, Sweet

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80
drank Masala by Tetley
1243 tasting notes

This tea was a purchase from a local Indian food supermarket. They had many different brands but this was cheap and I hadn’t actually tried it before so thought it was worth a go.

The bags smell like clove and cinnamon which is nice but as expected. Once steeped this creates a fairly strong chai with dominant cardamom and clove aromas. Stronger and fresher than it’s raw tea bag form led me to believe.

Flavour is spicy but balanced, rich, fairly strong and actually….rather nice! The cardamom and cinnamon shine over a warm, black base tea with elements of clove, pepper, and ginger.

Must admit I don’t expect much from tea bags these days but this was lovely. Not fantastic, certainly not since I’m used to handmade chai that our local restaurants do, but in a pinch or relaxing at home this would certainly do. May be inclined to get more of this when I run out!

meakbot

Your review has piqued my interest in this tea – I would really love a sample, are you interested in a swap by chance?

KittyLovesTea

I am always up for a tea swap :) Is there anything else in my cupboard that you want to try as well?

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80

I understood the Darjeeling reference as soon as I saw and sniffed this tea. It’s fairly light, wooden and floral with a wonderful blend of green, silver and brown colours which span across large leaves and tips.

Steeping 2 tsp for 5 minutes (as I like strong black tea) with boiling water as recommended on the information card. Though it does also have it on the packet too.

Once steeped this tea is dark amber/brown and has a slightly dry scent with wood and floral tones. Somewhat matching it’s raw scent.

Flavour is slightly astringent though as it lightens it becomes softly sweet. Prominent wood tones with some dryness and overall a medium strength. There are floral notes similar to those of Darjeeling but I would say this has a ‘darker’ charm to it.

It’s not strong despite the long steep (though it is enough for my liking) though I may try a shorter steep and see how that comes out. This was very nice but I just haven’t found my perfect level yet. However, I do think this was a splendid Nepalese tea, usually I drink their lemongrass or Ceylon blends but not often do I buy them. It was very nice to have the opportunity to try this.

For pictures and more information please view my blog.
http://www.kittylovestea.co.uk/2015/03/25/curious-tea-monthly-club-review/

Flavors: Floral, Wood

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 2 tsp

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82
drank Sencha Fukujya by Curious Tea
1243 tasting notes

In raw form this consists of green and dark green leaves that are mostly, long, thin and quite large. Also has some yellow stems present though not many. It has a toasted sweet grass scent with some dry floral/perfume notes.

Steeping 2 tsp for 2 minutes with 70C water as recommended on the information card. Though it does also have it on the packet too.

Once steeped this tea is dark green and has a sweet, very grassy scent that is strong but very pleasing. Also some savoury umami in scent.

Flavour is fairly light and buttery with sweet grass tones. Some astringency though mild and more down to the umami, which is rather vegetal and resembles seaweed mixed with kale.

On my comparison scale this is not the best Sencha Fukujyu I have tried though I am aware I have expensive tastes when it comes to Japanese tea. Also on that scale it is far from the worst I have tried, so this is a more than acceptable quality. The flavour is beautiful with subtle umami which is perfect for beginners.

For pictures and more information please view my blog.
http://www.kittylovestea.co.uk/2015/03/25/curious-tea-monthly-club-review/

Flavors: Kale, Seaweed, Sweet, warm grass, Umami

Preparation
160 °F / 71 °C 2 min, 0 sec 2 tsp

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This looked like a green tea in pictures and was listed as such but I’m inclined to think it’s actually a herb. There are two types of Kuding tea traditionally, llex kaushue and Ligustrum robustum. This is the Ligustrum robustum trype, which is basically a shrub or small tree that grows all around Asia and is included in the top 100 invasive plant species across the world. Frankly that is misleading from the green tea description I saw when purchasing this so called tea.

As much as I don’t like being duped, I also don’t mind the chance to try something new. And just look at these Chinese medicinal claims: “disperse wind-heat, clear the head and the eyes, and resolve toxin, thus being used for common cold, rhinitis, itching eyes, red eyes, and headache. It is also said to calm fidgets and alleviate thirst, especially when one is suffering from a disease that causes fever or severe diarrhoea. It transforms phlegm and alleviates coughing, thus used in treating bronchitis. Finally, it is said to invigorate digestion and improve mental focus and memory.” – As taken from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kuding
Also another read.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ligustrum_robustum

So this is a Chinese herb used in traditional medicine to aid with a number of ailments. As I am not ill I suppose the best it could do for me (should it be true information) is to help with my digestion and concentration.

The leaves are small and curly, bright green too which made me think it was a green tea (well that and the fact it was named a green tea). Once steeped the leaves open and they are very small but mostly fill leaf, and very cute! Also super duper bright green.

The steeped water smells slightly sweet but pretty unscented, though the colour is darkish cloudy yellow.

Flavour is sweet yet bitter and rather strong at times, though it reduces quickly. They don’t call Kuding Cha “bitter nail tea” for nothing! It’s not as bitter as you might think though, it’s manageable. It tastes like a very mild green tea that you’ve steeped a little too long and it’s bitter, but still with some sweetness and remaining fairly mild. Strange and unusual but not horrible or without it’s charm. Not something I can drink often but if it truly does have health benefits then I may drink it purely for that. Similar to how I started with matcha.

So this was not a tea, but a herb, and I’m still getting used to that. Though for all the mistakes in the labelling of this on AliExpress I am still happy I picked some up. I say some…it’s roughly 250g!

Ubacat

That’s a long list of health claims! It sounds interesting though. And Aliexpress always seems to have HUGE bags of tea, don’t they?

KittyLovesTea

Yeah I know what you mean, the health list is too good to be true! Then again it’s the same for most things. It’s natural and well…frankly it made my stomach say “gruff” after I drank half a mug. Without being disgusting or graphic lets just say it cleaned my insides, gently though, which is good as I have IBS. So it does seem to do something! And yes AliExpress do huge bags of tea, though I can’t help but be dubious about them most of the time. Some of those prices and teas are also too good to be true at times.

Ubacat

Sometimes! But I’ve gotten some really good tea off Aliexpress from the Han Xiang Ecological Tea. I’ll have to check out this tea sometime when I’m doing my next order but in a smaller quantity.

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72
drank Dozy Girl by Bluebird Tea Co.
1243 tasting notes

A sample from the EU TTB box round 3 return.
Not a huge fan of lavender in tea but I will give it a go, on the upside I love lemon verbena so it may work out well.

Ooopph, perhaps not! The raw scent is lavender, with a side of lavender and more lavender. Strong yet sweet and pure but lavender all in all. Some herbs behind but not strong enough to work them out.

Steeped scent is sweet but still uber lavender. Also the tea is a pinkish tone. At times I think I can smell rose but it’s too difficult to tell.

Flavour is light-ish (at least) and while being lavender dominate is also highly floral and herbal too, giving it more elements. Quality wise it’s fresh with only minimal dryness in the after taste. Also some sweetness in this, though not as strong with the lemon verbena as I was hoping. Drinkable though for a non lavender fan, to the point where I may consider getting more as a bed time tea. It’s rare that I can stand lavender in tea but it truly does make me tired.

So not a great tea but it does the job, and in reality it’s quite nice.

Flavors: Herbs, Lavender, Rose

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76
drank OYGFIB?* by 52teas
1243 tasting notes

Another tea from the EU TTB round 3 return.

Orange and banana in a rooibos…interesting! I often love Franks banana blends so I’m looking forward to trying this one.

The raw blend smells oh so orangey but then sweets into oh so banana! Strange but oddly nice, though the rooibos is a little thick. The orange is waxy and bitter while the banana is ripe and sweet, top that with a wooden yet floral Rooibos scent and you have the scent foundations for this blend.

As soon as my husband poured the tea (I asked him nicely while I searched for some empty zip lock foil bags for tea) he asked “What’s that smell of?”. I forgot to mention we would be having a fruity tea. I declared orange and banana flavour Rooibos, he said he would never have guessed that.

I can taste the banana :D Sweet, very ripe, almost creamy, then the orange with it’s touch of waxy bitterness, then the Rooibos kicks in with it’s ahem..unusual..natural flavour. The banana wins the show for the most part, and the Rooibos I can put up with. No where near the awesomeness of my beloved Breakfast Smoothie blend but this has it’s charms.

Flavors: banana, Orange Zest, Rooibos

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73
drank Lychee Black Tea by Ten Ren
1243 tasting notes

Time to finish the EU TTB teas so I can start a new. The sign up is open by the way for round 4!

The raw leaf is wonderfully sweet and pure lychee like with a slight malt and smoke finish. Very pleasant!

Sampled with a drop of milk.
Flavour is malty yet sweet with lingering lychee notes and a touch of smoke. Seems to remain consistent throughout the sips as well, even as it cools. Though there is some dryness now in the after taste.

I admit that I’m not a lover of lychee, it tastes like artificial sweetener in my opinion. Overly sweet yet something almost chemical like about it. Love the smell but just not a fan of it’s taste. This is in general and not aimed at this specific blend. Still it’s pleasant enough!

Nothing I would miss or desire more of but a nice tea all the same.

Flavors: Drying, Lychee, Malt, Smoke

Tabby

Ooh, a smoky lychee tea? I’ve never had something like that before. This is going on the wishlist!

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Profile

Bio

I’m 27 years old from Leicester, England named Kayleigh. I have a wonderful husband called Richard whom I am very lucky to have in my life.

I started off many years ago drinking herbal and fruit teas which over time peaked my interest in trying new types. Eventually I began to import and sample many different teas and cultures which I still do today. My life goal is to try as many teas and ways of having tea as possible.

Tea wise my cravings change constantly from pu erh one month to jasmine green to the next and so on.

I adore cats and have four of my own called Honey, Cassie, Mr Soots and Ivory.

I also have two fish tanks which thankfully my cats have no interest in. They house an array of tropical fish and shrimp.

I am a proud vegetarian and have been for the majority of my life. When I say vegetarian I mean just that as well, no fish or seafood, no chicken now and again, no animal products such as gelatine and cochineal.

I also enjoy watching Japanese Anime and horror films.

I am always up for tea swaps so if you see anything in my virtual cupboard then please contact me.

A short list to help swapping with me easier though honestly I am not fussy and am willing to try anything. Plus the notes below are usually, sometimes I love a tea that has an ingredient I tend to dislike and other times I hate a tea that I thought I would love.

Likes: Any fruit but especially melon and orange, vanilla, all tea types (black, green, white etc), nuts (any), flowers, ginger, chai.

Dislikes: Licorice, aniseed, clove, eucalyptus, lavender.

My rating system
I have my own way of rating teas that makes each one personal. I have different categories, I rate each tea depending on what it is made of. For example: I rate green teas in a different way to black teas or herbal teas. So black, white, green, Pu Erh, Rooibos, Oolong, blends and tisanes all have their own rating system. That way I can compare them with other teas of the same or similar type before for an adequate rating. And when I do give top marks which is very rare I am actually saying that I would love to drink that tea all day, every day if possible. It’s a tea that I would never turn down or not be in the mood for. So while I agree that no tea is 100% perfect (as nothing is) I am saying that it’s as close as it comes to it. After all, in my book the perfect teas (or close to perfect anyway) are ones that I could drink all the time. That is why you will find a high quality black or Oolong will not have as high a score as a cheap flavoured blend, they are simply not being compared in the same category.

http://www.kittylovestea.co.uk/
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Location

Leicester, England, United Kingdom

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