1297 Tasting Notes

drank Mullein by Nothing But Tea
1297 tasting notes

This was a free sample from NBT so thank you. Though I admit I have not the foggiest idea of what Mullein actually is… Research time I think.

Verbasum aka Mullein is a flower that grows around Europe and Asia. It has been used as medicine by different cultures for many years to help with " disorders of the respiratory tract, skin, veins, gastrointestinal tract, and the locomotor system".

Well thank you Wikipedia, now I at least have some idea as to what this is. It also mentioned that the Austrians traditionally drank this in tea form for their medicine.

I steeped 10g of leaf into my 1litre bottle overnight via coldsteep method. The colour is still very subtle but it does have a slight yellow/brown tinge to the liquid now.

The flavour is sweet and sugary with a touch of refreshing herbs in the after taste. And honestly that is about it…the sweetness is a bit strange, it tastes like sugar water with a weak clove essence. There really is not much to it at all. Either way it tastes so inoffensive that It is easily drinkable but I can’t find anything remotely special about it. I suppose that is why this is marketed as a medicine, you wouldn’t drink it purely for the taste (or lack thereof).

Well it made for an interesting drink but it’s not something I would buy, at least it was worth a try.

Flavors: Clove, Herbs, Sugar

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Thank you Angel for this sample.

The mood struck me for some Pu Erh steeped western style which I almost never do, usually because I enjoy the ceremony in making tea traditionally. Today however I am making Christmas decorations as the craft bug has bitten and I have no time for tea traditions at the moment. Still need tea though!

As I open the sample pack I am impressed by the large pieces of tangerine peel, hopefully that will mean it’s got a lot of orange flavour.

Once steeped this has a mild yet sweet orange scent with some dry earth undertones.

Flavour is rich and dark with earth, dry wood, sweet orange and a light, creamy after taste. It is very orange in comparison to the actual strength which is about average thickness. The sweetness is a nice contrast to the dry earth tones and the melody lingers nicely in the after taste.

I shall keep re-steeping this until it’s completely spent, but at least it’s a comforting and delicious aid to my crafting.

Flavors: Drying, Earth, Orange, Wood

Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 7 g 17 OZ / 500 ML

amazing! ive tried this type of tea before. it was spicy like a black tea and had orange taste

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My tisane of the night before bedtime. Not a casual chamomile drinker but I am trying to cut out some caffeine (particularly at night) and this is the start of things.

The chamomile flowers are beautiful, whole for the most part and bright yellow. So light and fluffy to the touch, so very pretty. They have a herbal and slightly sweet scent that is beknownst to chamomile.

Flavour is thick and full with a sweet after taste. I say full but I mean in terms of depth, it is by no means strong or overpowering, it does however coat my tongue and mouth pleasantly. The herbal taste is only minimal considering the smell and it lingers softly in the after taste.

The flavour remains consistent half way down the cup and is as pleasant as it was with my first sip. If anything it actually starts to taste more sweet and less herbal.

Overall I like this one, it’s not too herbal but nor is it too sweet. I rarely like a chamomile drink but this must be one of my favourite’s so far. Glad I managed to trade and get some of this one, my new night time friend.

Flavors: Herbs, Sweet

Boiling 6 min, 0 sec 5 g 20 OZ / 600 ML

i don’t like chamomile :( tastes like freaky flowers

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I cold steeped this tea overnight for a quick review today. Unfortunately I have no idea what the ingredients are as the sample packet I had didn’t say and this is not on the website. Other than Oolong I have no idea, though I did note it had a spicy scent when I was steeping it. Perhaps the spice was why this is Mexican?

In flavour the spice has continued to a point that I’m thinking it resembles black pepper and cinnamon. Perhaps some clove in there too as it has a refreshing after taste. Rather spicy but it does have a sweet and refreshing after taste that lingers. Also getting perhaps a citrus note, like orange rind though subtle compared to the spice. And Oolong wise it’s a dark Oolong.

It’s quite nice but even if I could I don’t think I would purchase this one. It’s not special in terms of flavour or blend and while it might be a nice drink today I can guarantee it will be forgotten about tomorrow.


made in mexico?


I don’t think so, that is to say that other blends on NBT are not made at source. I think it’s just a name to try and sound attractive to potential buyers. Shame it’s not on their website, was a sample from them a little while ago and they never seemed to list it for sale.

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Yesterday when I was perusing the £1 shop I found a diamond, faceted glass (like mason jar size) with a groovy patterned lid and straw. It screamed ‘Ice Tea’ to me and I had to get one then and there. Several hours later I remembered my purchase and I really wanted to use it but had no ice tea prepared, on top of that the sticker on the bottom of the cup said it is not suitable for hot liquid. I came up with a solution, half cold water and half 70c water. Last night this was tested with another tea and it worked very well, so much so that I cold steeped a strong concentrate of it overnight (roughly 1/4 of the mug full) and left it in the fridge. This morning I was able to add 70C water to it without additional cold and it filled up again with flavour to create another good steep. Plus it must be said that the straw also keeps most of the leaf parts out of my mouth, something I sometimes have issue with when doing the traditional method of high tumbler.

So with that introduction you have some understanding of how I have steeped this tea today. Different from my usual methods but sometimes the ease of making tea beats the ceremony of it (not always but sometimes). For right now it’s the perfect method to use whilst I finish cross stitching a Christmas card for family this year. As such a simple method there are simple tasting notes. While I have had this tea several times before I can happily say it tastes similar to a gongfu or gaiwan steep. Primarily this tea is very subtle in strength but does have some dryness in the after taste, not to mention a mild sweet, grassy tone that is rather refreshing. Also just a touch of astringency and sweet pea notes. It’s a nice Mao Feng but would not say this was particularly special or memorable. Still I can’t complain, it’s nice enough and I’m thankful to be able to steep it easily now.

Plus in my cup the leaves float, which I was really not expecting.

And a picture of my cup.

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I want to apologise for being inactive. A lot has been going on recently. I had my driving test and study before hand, of which I failed and have had to re-book. That was very upsetting, the nerves got the better of me and I made stupid mistakes. So this left me feeling down, as did the fact that if I want a car I need to find a job and save up for one. My husbands money is covering everything else but we can’t get a car as well, so for the last month or so I’ve been job hunting. After starting at one place and fainting on my first day, there has been no other progress. I was messed around a few times with training and supposing to start work but at the last minute they let me down. So needless to say everything has left me feeling about an inch small and my depression got the better of me. Hence no blog writing, no SS posts, no Steepster posts and so on. It’s been difficult and I’m just back on the road to recovery. This really is a long story put simply into a small paragraph, please know it was not my idea to leave the wonderful tea community for the time being but was rather something I needed to do. I was away from most online communities but continued to cross stitch as a sort of therapy, stitching away my problems.

Anyway that is enough of that, I’m not back to bloody depress people! So today I’m drinking this English Toffee Matcha which was with my last RLT order. I tried it originally in normal flavour but thought I would order distinct, to really see what the difference was. It actually does make a substantial difference, this one is creamier and more toffee flavoured though it does still have some of it’s Matcha flavour characteristics. In the background especially; for example it starts off creamy, sweet and toffee but turns stronger and slightly bitter with mild grass tones. Despite that it leaves a very creamy after taste in my mouth, making it seem that the Matcha qualities were just a figment of my imagination…until I take another sip and taste them again.

This truly is delightful and I’m glad I went for distinctive. It was worth the extra money for it :D And this still tastes like English Toffee so I’m happy on all levels.

I will be working on articles hopefully this weekend, if not the start of next week. I have 2300 Magic The Gathering cards coming tomorrow so I will be busy sorting them out before I go down on Sunday to play with people. So please forgive me for that additional delay, but believe that I am back and plan on staying. It’s time to stop letting my depression get the best of me.


Cyber hugs! So happy you are back and finding the things that build you up, like the simplicity of a good cup of tea, and sharing with friends!


woot woot! glad you’re back! we’re always here for ya.


2300 Magic cards scares me. I am lazy and like the pre-built decks, whenever hubby and I make a deck I can’t get the balance right. Have fun though! Go with Forest, it’s the best. :)


So glad you’re back as well, and I too am back from some time away from steepster. Depression has a way of tricking you into thinking so much less of yourself, and I’m so glad you’re making an effort to connect with communities that have uplifted you. :)


Happy that you are back and feeling much better! I hope tea and Steepster helps with your recovery!


Great to see you back and I hope things will get better for you from here!


Welcome back!! don’t worry you are not the only one to have been inactive and/or depressed for a bit. But now that your back we can cheer you up!!


sorry you have been going through a difficult time!


Welcome back! I’ve been massively inactive due to depression and anxiety too, and have discovered that the tea community is so understanding, so don’t worry about it! If you need time off take it. But I’m glad you’re back and overcoming it. Good luck with your driving retest, too!

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This was with my last Yunomi order and I added them purely because they were on sale. Plus I have been trying a few tea bags from Nakazen recently and this is another to add to the collection.

These teabags are each individually sealed in a silver foil pack for added freshness. The outer packaging can also be re-sealed.

Opening the foil pack I am met with a large polystyrene teabag with a white appearance and a tag attached to string. I cannot see any dust/fannings in the silver foil pack or my hand as I handle the bag. Though white I can see dark leaves filling roughly 1/4 of the space. They are small pieces of leaf. As I sniff the bag it is subtle with some wooden tones and a hint of dryness.

Steep one tea bag for 1 minutes with 100C water. (As seen on the pack)

While it steeps I don’t believe I’ve heard of Tsubaki tea before. A Google search says that it’s also known as: “camellia japonica (a relative of camellia sinensis or tea)”.
The Yunomi website also offers some information on this.

Well once steeped the colour is golden brown (like a dark honey) and it bares a bitter, earthy, wooden and smoky tea. It smells like Pu Erh! I was seriously not expecting that. Just like a Ripe Pu Erh.

Flavour is milder than the scent though still somewhat similar to Pu Erh. It’s medium strength with damp earth, dry wood and a soft smoke after taste. There is also some sweetness to it though mild compared to the earthiness. The dryness increases and coats my tongue over time.

Half way down the mug at this point and I keep having to tell myself it’s not a Pu Erh. Still despite the fact of something it isn’t I like what it actually is. It’s not as ‘offensive’ as Pu Erh can be at times but you have the characteristics of it, plus it has a calming effect. I’m losing train of thought as I carry on typing.

In terms of this being bagged I would not have guessed had I not seen it with my own eyes. It made for ‘unusual’ drinking but I’m still happy I picked this one up.

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In raw form the Oolong consist of average size pieces with a beautiful dark and light green colour contrast to them. Also some brown is present and the stems on some appear long.

They have a subtle but sweet and floral scent with a milk after scent.

Steeping Method:
Leaf – 5g
Gongfu Teapot – 125ml
Water – 85C
Time: 3 minutes and increase accordingly.

First Steep – 3 minutes

Once steeped the colour is light yellow with a soft, floral scent.

Flavour is very soft but bares soft, sweet floral tones. I liken it to gardenia and lily, with a touch of cream in the after taste.

Second Steep – 3 minutes 30 seconds

Still a soft steep but the gardenia is becoming crisp with grass notes. The milk covers my tongue like silk as it slips down. With some sweetness that lingers in the after taste, also with a touch of dryness.

Third Steep – 4 minutes

Still sweet and floral though the milk is toning down to a more buttery affair. Also dryness remains minimal in the after taste though it lingers softly on my tongue.

Fourth Steep – 5 minutes

Buttery flowers with a hint of grass and fresh sweet hay. So soft and delicate in strength and tone, but pure tasting.

Sixth Steep – 6 minutes

Very subtle at this point with very little left. A touch of sweet flowers is all that really remains.

Overall: This was a soft and delicate Oolong with floral and milk notes that developed into butter and grass. Pure and natural tasting with no bitterness and only very minimal dryness. An Oolong that uses very little leaf but gives beautiful flavours despite the soft strength. Note – The after steep picture of the leaf was all one part that was connected at the stem. It is one of the largest full ‘one’ pieces I have found in an Oolong after steep.

For pictures and more information please view my blog. http://www.kittylovestea.co.uk/2015/08/19/an-introduction-to-beautiful-taiwan-tea-company-with-paul-adamson-interview/

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The raw leaves are long, thinly rolled and with some curl. From what I can tell they look full leaf for the most part, I can tell easier after steep once they open. Colour is deep, dark green. Scent is sweet with hints of butter and grass and honeysuckle floral finish.

Steeping Method:
Leaf – 7g
Gaiwan – 100ml
Water – 85C
Time: 3 minutes 30 seconds and increase of 1 minute each steep after that.
(Note) Why the long steep for a gaiwan? Don’t forget these leaves are big and full so they will take longer to steep in general.

First Steep – 3 minutes 30 seconds

The colour is yellow with a grass, butter and fresh spinach scent.

Despite the long steep the flavour is subtle, even compared to it’s mineral scent. It’s soft and delicate with a hint of butter, grass and flowers (sweetpea). Refreshing due to it’s subtleness though a hint of dryness in the after taste. Further sips reveal some mineral flavours albeit soft, spinach and kale springing to mind.

Second Steep – 4 minutes 30 seconds

Still delicate but an increase of butter and spinach notes. Very clean tasting. No astringency. After taste is of sweetcorn with some dryness though not increased from the first steep ie minimal drynes still.

Third Steep – 5 minutes 30 seconds

At this point it’s starting to become even softer which alleviates the grass flavour. An increase of the dryness is noticeable in the after taste. Still beautifully buttery and the fresh spinach is still poignant.

Fourth Steep – 6 minutes

So much butter and spinach is left in this steep, though it’s short lived and does not linger for long in the after taste.

Fifth Steep – 7 minutes

My last steep. All that really remains is butter and spinach but there has still been no harshness/astringency throughout to speak of. The dryness slowly increased but it still at a reasonable level.

Overall: This was delicate in strength but it’s pure, clean flavours had a beautiful eloquence that made it delicious and special. It’s freshness and quality was wonderful and I will be honest to say it exceeded my expectations. Perhaps the nicest BaoZhong I have had the pleasure of tasting. Note the after steep pictures, they show whole leaf (mostly) and with no imperfections.

For pictures and more information please view my blog. http://www.kittylovestea.co.uk/2015/08/19/an-introduction-to-beautiful-taiwan-tea-company-with-paul-adamson-interview/

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Recently I received an order from Yunomi of which they were kind to include this tisane as a free gift. While admittedly hibiscus is not something I would usually order it is nice to try something different. Plus I feel tisanes are something I should drink more of, going caffeine free every now and then sounds like a good idea.

They do offer this as two versions on their website: loose leaf and teabag. This is the teabag version.

The bags are a good quality thin polystyrene (very typical Japanese tea bag design). They are white and a little bit see through with 1/5 filled with small, chopped petals. As I sniff the bag I am met with a dry, sweet, tangy and herbal scent. Very hibiscus strong and herbal but also not overly thick.

Steeping: Popping one bag into boiling water for three minutes.

Colour is deep, deep red. Scent is floral, sweet yet sour and overall rather soft.

Flavour is stronger than the smell though it’s not as thick as I expected (or feared). The hibiscus is sweet with sour after tones and a touch of dryness, this leads to a herbal after taste. The sourness is actually rather minimal considering, likening this to sherbet. ie. More sweet than sour.

Half way down my mug I’m finding this to remain consistent with the first sip. The dryness is not increasing and nor is the herbal tang that tisanes tend to have.

Overall I thought this was nice, more pleasant tasting than I had imagined being generally a non hibiscus fan. This was of fair quality and strength which complimented the hibiscus. A simple tisane but a nice companion on this warm night.

As reviewed here: http://sororiteasisters.com/2015/08/15/nakazen-hibiscus-tea-herbal-tisane-yunomi/

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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.


Also a proud SororiTea Sister


Leicester, England, United Kingdom



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