1075 Tasting Notes

75
drank Himalayan Blend by DAVIDsTEA
1075 tasting notes

I would like some black tea this lazy Sunday afternoon and this sample has been in my cupboard for way too long. It looks like a Darjeeling blend in colour and I do love Darjeeling so those holds some promise of being a nice tea. Not sure what it’s mixed with but as a whole it as a sweet, wooden and light musk scent.

A long steeping time for this but it suits me well, I had too much tequila beer last night (yes beer with tequila in it, spells trouble from the start) and went to my parents to watch the Eurovision finale and have a Mexican feast. Why Mexican when it was Eurovision? Well why not? It was delicious. Well done to Conchita Wurst of Austria for winning Eurovision 2014, if anyone hasn’t seen or heard about it she is the drag act that caused much controversy with countries such as Russia and Armenia. A man dressed as a beautiful woman but with a large beard. Vocally one of the best in the competition. Picture Kim Kardashian with a beard and you have Conchita Wurst.

Tea liquid is burnt orange with a sweet wood and light earthen scent. Flavour is light yet earthy with mild sweetness and a musky after taste. It tastes like a second flush Darjeeling but a very mild variety. A little astringency is present but not much, though it leaves a slight sour tang in the after taste.

It’s nice but nothing special, though Darjeeling is one of my favourite black teas so perhaps I’m overly critical because I’m used to higher quality. Not meaning to come off snobbish there.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 0 sec 7 g 7 OZ / 200 ML

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This is a pre-made iced tea which I don’t usually drink but my parents got me one to try (their idea of ‘if it’s tea, Kayleigh will love it’). Yes for those who have not read my name is Kayleigh, just to make sure no one gets confused.

Well I like that this tea is organic and natural, never tried any of Hampstead’s range before so it’s a new venture completely.

Flavour is mild in terms of thickness, very lemony and refreshing. Like a mild, flat lemonade. Very light and sweet but not overly so. Still I’m finding it very pop/soda like. Though honestly it’s not too bad, not sure I would buy it in but if I saw it in a restaurant I may have some. Stronger than Lipton’s Lemon iced tea.

Preparation
Iced

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82
drank Dorset Tea by Spicers
1075 tasting notes

Let me begin by saying I have never been a huge tea bag fan despite being British. They always tasted old and dusty and virtually the same so given the choice I took either fruit tea or just plain water. Now I see the convenience of bagged tea but am still not a fan, if buying some in for the house (which would mostly be for my husband) then I get what I consider a ‘nice’ bagged tea such as Twinings Everyday or Teapigs Darjeeling Earl Grey. I can stomach those and drink with no problems. Then on Twitter I saw Dorset Tea offering free samples for UK citizens so I signed a small info form and a week later the samples arrived through the door (which was today).

Opening the sealed foil pack I notice a strong black tea scent, primarily Assam. Now I am not sure if it is purely Assam or a blend of Assam and Ceylon, the little pack had no information and their website is under construction at the moment so I can’t check their either. Still to me it smelled like Assam ie rich and spicy. A nice full on tea scent.

So steeping my usual teabag way (three minute steep with two sugars and milk) I take a sip for the all judging result. The result was a good one. Not only does this smell like Assam but it also tastes like it too, very full on to match it’s scent but as far as bagged teas go (and my dislike of them) this one has flavour and though a little dry it’s strong and for me easily drinkable. Rather smooth considering it’s so spicy and rich with just a hint of smoke in the after taste.

Compared to Twinings this tea is stronger and more on par with TeaPigs Breakfast Tea but much cheaper. Next time my husband asks for some ‘normal’ tea I will get some more. Not my usual type of tea but for when you have 5 minutes in-between cleaning it’s pretty darn good.

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73
drank Tropicalia by DAVIDsTEA
1075 tasting notes

I’m watching the Eurovision semi finals tonight for a bit of a giggle. Thank you Nattie for this tea.

The raw mix smells like pineapple and coconut which is nice but also a little dry. The blend is very mixed in size. Nice though so far, especially for a DavidsTea fruit blend as they are not usually to my taste.

In the mean time I’m watching the Belarus entry called ‘Cheesecake’ and though the song is awful (sorry Belarus) it’s given me a sweet craving. Now I’m hoping this tea is sweet and fruity.

The long 6 minute steep later and a burnt orange liquid is produced but it has a dusty coconut scent, more unpleasant than it’s raw form. :(
Flavour wise the coconut is heavy and sweet which is actually surprisingly nice compared to it’s scent. The other fruit is more behind the coconut and it’s hard to make it out other than to say generic tropical fruit.

Tastes just like tropical fruit juice that has been warmed up, like you’ve left it in the sun and forgot about it and when you go back to take a sip it’s warm and tangy and you end up throwing it away.

Flavors: Coconut

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 6 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 7 OZ / 200 ML

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70
drank The Tea of Kings by RiverTea
1075 tasting notes

Thank you to River Tea for this sample.

The raw tea smells a little fruity but it’s subtle but definitely berry like. Using my personalitea teapot for this to share with my husband whose home after a stressful day at work.

Flavour wise this is a mild black base with gentle lychee flavour and a smoky finish. It also has rich malt tones which come through after a few sips. It has some natural sweetness but it’s light compared to the base and next time I will have to try it with a little sugar, see if that makes the lychee pop.

It’s a nice tea but average, tasted lots of teas like this one and I don’t think this will be on my purchase list.

Flavors: Lychee, Malt

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 7 OZ / 200 ML

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80
drank GenmaiCHAI by 52teas
1075 tasting notes

This was left over my 12 days of Christmas teas, I got sick towards the end and didn’t want to waste the teas when I couldn’t taste very well. After that this has been behind some other teas and I completely forgot about it.

The blend was very spice heavy, not sure if it was cinnamon or clove but that was the first thing I could smell as I opened the packet. Under that was the toast from the Genmaicha which went surprisingly well with the spice notes.

In flavour (with a drop of milk added to look like the picture as I imagine that is how it’s meant to be drank) It’s thick and more Chai than Genmaicha. Cardamom, cinnamon and clove scream at me “I’m a chai, I’m a chai” while the after taste bares a subtle toasted quality from the Genmaicha as if to say “Don’t forget about me”.

It sounds odd and perhaps it is a rather unique combination but I admit they do work well together. I do wish the chai spices didn’t dominate as much so the Genmaicha could shine through a bit more, not sure I would know it contained it without reading it. Sure the after taste is a little toasty but it’s not to a usual Genmaicha strength. perhaps some Bancha would knock it up a notch. If I get more of this tea I will try.

Flavors: Cinnamon, Cloves

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 2 min, 30 sec 3 tsp 7 OZ / 200 ML

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90
drank Nina's Japon by Nina's Paris
1075 tasting notes

I’ve just raided my stash to pack a tea parcel for my hapatite swapping buddy. A great excuse to send a ton of teas that are just not to my taste. Not sure if my buddy is on Steepster but if you’re reading this then know you will have a large package shortly :)

Reading the ingredients I am lead to believe this is a Genmaicha with a difference, with the toffee and vanilla I’m expecting it to be sweet and toasty which sounds like a nice combination. The blend certainly smells sweet and toasty, vanilla is strong but so is the toffee/caramel and without any green tea likeness. It is a nice scent though and strong at that.

Steeped it takes on a different scent, still sweet but also toasty, like vanilla and toffee popcorn (which sounds amazing and is now my new craving).

Flavour is toasty at first though light before creamy vanilla and sweet caramel ooze into the after taste and cover the slight grassy green tea. It tastes like a mild Genmaicha at first but it develops into a sort of Genmaicha ice cream with toffee sprinkles. I’m making myself drool as I write this. I never thought vanilla in Genmaicha would taste this good, it’s revolutionary.

I need more of this in my life. Don’t think it’s possible unless I visit France as they don’t sell online. :(

Flavors: Caramel, Vanilla

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 2 min, 30 sec 3 tsp 7 OZ / 200 ML
85

I usually have fruit for breakfast but this morning I have gone all out and made a good veggie style English breakfast. Two veggie sausages, baked beans, fried chestnut mushrooms, two fried eggs and some toast to mop up the food explosion that is on my plate. Not healthy but it will keep me going until dinner time and with something substantial in my stomach I am free to taste teas for the rest of the day without getting tea belly.

This sample of Golden Bi Luo Chun has been sat with me for just over a year and I don’t know why I was worried about sampling it before, or perhaps I forgot about it. Anyone’s guess is as good as my own. Either way an English breakfast is never complete without a cup of black tea.

The tea balls were nice and reflective and golden but they were also very small, I’ve had larger versions of this before elsewhere. I brewed this while I was cooking so I had a mixture of smells (my bad) but I could pick up silky malt tones.

I love my personaliTEA teapot from Adagio, it’s perfect size for 2 mugs of tea and comes in handy when I have days off.

Once steeped a dark brown liquid is produced that bares a sweet malt and chocolate scent that is light and silky. Very nice.

Flavour is mild but matches the scent very much ie soft, sweet, silky, malt, chocolate tones. Also a little smoky though it’s very subtle and hints of wood. After a few sips I can also taste a mature raisin or plum fruit.

This tea is wonderful and I’m sorry for keeping it on my shelf for so long. It makes the perfect start to my day.

Flavors: Chocolate, Malt, Plums, Raisins, Wood

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 30 sec 3 tsp 7 OZ / 200 ML
whatshesaid

English breakfast, yum!

TeaBrat

sounds good to me!

Terri HarpLady

That sounds like an awesome breakfast! I can’t even imagine that there is anything unhealthy about it!

Tealizzy

Yes! Awesome breakfast!

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80
drank Gunpowder by thepuriTea
1075 tasting notes

This has been on my ‘need to review’ list for a while and it would make a good comparison steep against my previous review which was also a Gunpowder Green.

In appearance this looks similar to a Lan Gui Ren rather than Gunpowder Green. The grainy rock style effect is not a type I have seen before with Gunpowder Green. Scent is sweet, floral and grassy. Has an earthy tone however but it’s hard to define.

For the sake of comparison I will use the same steeping parameters as my previous Gunpowder Green which was taken from Teavivre.

Water : 3oz / 85ml 203℉ / 95℃
Use 7 Grams Tea
6 steeps : rinse,10s,25s,40s,50s,70s,90s
Gaiwan
Rinsing time is around 3 seconds

First Steep – 10 seconds
Light green liquid with a a subtle sweet, floral scent. Flavour is gentle and floral with a sweet after taste.

Second Steep – 25 seconds
I can taste something sweet and refreshing…is that ginseng? Is this Gunpowder Green with ginseng? If not it is a very good imitation. Very sweet and lingering in the after taste.

Third Steep – 40 seconds
Strongly ginseng/mint like still. No astringency at all. Very sweet with hints of smoke.

Fourth Steep – 50 seconds
Toasty, honeyed, highly ginseng and sweet. My mouth is wonderfully perfumed with this sweet lingering smoky flavour.

Fifth Steep – 70 seconds
Milder but still ginseng heavy.Not mint so much now as maybe clove, same refreshing feel. Also grassy.

Sixth Steep – 90 seconds
Very light in strength of the green tea but the ginseng remains thick and heavy. Toasty and super sweet.

This was unlike any other Gunpowder Green I have ever tried, it tasted and looked exactly like Ginseng Oolong which I like but need to be in the right mood for. Now I’m just highly confused, is this a mixed blend? Or was the ginseng flavour just a coincidence? Either way it was enjoyable and my husband agrees.

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75

This is from the 2013 season and I believe they are currently getting in this years crops so unfortunately my review will not help with future purchases. At the very least if it’s from the same crop area as last year I can give you an insight to it’s quality and flavour.

The leaves are small and tightly rolled with a few pieces of stem present. They are dark green in colour with a high shine and a floral, somewhat peppery/spicy scent.

Water : 3oz / 85ml 203℉ / 95℃
Use 7 Grams Tea
6 steeps : rinse,10s,25s,40s,50s,70s,90s
Gaiwan
Rinsing time is around 3 seconds

First Steep – 10 seconds
Colour is dark yellow green and has a dry pepper scent which matches it’s dry form. Flavour is mild but has floral and mineral tones that I liken to grass.

Second Steep – 25 seconds
Stronger and with a touch of astringency. Like buttered broccoli with a touch of pepper. A little dryness in the after taste.

Third Steep – 40 seconds
Pretty full on in flavour, reminds me of a mild raw Pu Erh. Again a little astringency and also some earthy tones and spice. Also getting a raw pea flavour.

(By the way my husband has tasted many teas with me but this one he thought was an Oolong by taste alone, he was surprised it was a green).

Fourth Steep – 50 seconds
Mild and similar to the first steep. Grass, raw pea and low earthy tones. No astringency but it is dry.

Fifth Steep – 70 seconds
Pepper, light wood, grass. All mild and again no astringency but some dryness.

Sixth Steep – 90 seconds
Very grassy and with some sweetness though rather dry at this point. Remains peppy and non astringent.

Overall – A very peppery and grassy tea that changed over steeps and became very raw Pu Erh like. Very strong flavour for a green and dark flavour at that but enjoyable at the same time. Gunpowder green has never been a favourite of mine but this was a nice and unusual green for me. I wonder if this years crops will be stronger?

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Profile

Bio

I’m 26 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.

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

Leicester, England, United Kingdom

Website

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

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