84
drank Notting Hill by Yumchaa
111 tasting notes

I’ll be another steepsterite to wonder at how lovely this tea looks like. Everytime I open the bag or small tin I’ve filled with this tea, I am amazed by the colors. The black tea leaves are lavishly sprinkled with blue, yellow and dark orange petals; there are also a few dried pieces of fruits: I recognized some strawberries and some light yellow, that may be apricot? It’s indeed one of the most beautiful teas I’ve had the opportunity to brew and that makes the experience all the more pleasant.
The smell of the dried leaves is very fruity, with a strong apricot-peach tone.
Once brewed, the flavors do not disappoint and are in line with the smell. This makes for a very sweet and mellow brew. Really lovely end extremely pleasant, but with unfortunately no wow factor to make it unforgettable.
I’ll have to compare this one to MF Bolero, for which I still have a few teapots left at the bottom of the bag. I believe this one will be slightly more fruity with more distinctive flavors, while the other should be more balanced.
I know it should not be very difficult to finish this bag and that I might rebuy this tea some day.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec
Hallieod

All those lovely things to say about it and it still doesn’t have any wow factor – makes my head spin imagining what does. :)

Ysaurella

does it have the incredible mellowness of Boléro ?

LaFleurBleue

@Hallieod: I know I’m highly demanding and not only for teas; it’s indeed very lovely and pleasant to drink, but it would probably be my first pick in the full cupboard, nor is it a tea I could not do without for a long time, nor would it be an absolute recommendation to anyone, like “you really have to drink that, whatever your tastes are like”. However going deeper into the bag, I might change my mind about that, which turned out to be the case for Boléro, which I found more and more pleasant as I was emptying the bag.
@Ysaurella: I would say so, though the fruit flavors are less blended in this one, but that’s definitely one of the things I’d like to check through a direct comparison of the two. Will keep you posted;)

Hallieod

It does make a huge difference having a tea that’s similar but which does wow you. I’m going to check out the notes for Boléro now, just out of interest. :)

Ysaurella

@ Hallieod : I can provide you with a Boléro sample as well with our next month swap if you like to taste it :)

Hallieod

Oh, thank you, Ysaurella, I’d love that! But I’ll stop whining about the French tea companies that haven’t set up shop in Dublin now, I promise. :)

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Hallieod

All those lovely things to say about it and it still doesn’t have any wow factor – makes my head spin imagining what does. :)

Ysaurella

does it have the incredible mellowness of Boléro ?

LaFleurBleue

@Hallieod: I know I’m highly demanding and not only for teas; it’s indeed very lovely and pleasant to drink, but it would probably be my first pick in the full cupboard, nor is it a tea I could not do without for a long time, nor would it be an absolute recommendation to anyone, like “you really have to drink that, whatever your tastes are like”. However going deeper into the bag, I might change my mind about that, which turned out to be the case for Boléro, which I found more and more pleasant as I was emptying the bag.
@Ysaurella: I would say so, though the fruit flavors are less blended in this one, but that’s definitely one of the things I’d like to check through a direct comparison of the two. Will keep you posted;)

Hallieod

It does make a huge difference having a tea that’s similar but which does wow you. I’m going to check out the notes for Boléro now, just out of interest. :)

Ysaurella

@ Hallieod : I can provide you with a Boléro sample as well with our next month swap if you like to taste it :)

Hallieod

Oh, thank you, Ysaurella, I’d love that! But I’ll stop whining about the French tea companies that haven’t set up shop in Dublin now, I promise. :)

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I’ve started drinking much more tea quite recently, almost completely quitting espresso for it!
I’ve been introduced to high quality tea by one of my best friend, MF Marco Polo addict since more than 20 years. I’ve only rarely bought tea-bags since then, preferring the quality-price ratio of loose leaves.
I drink my tea natural, without any milk, sugar or sweetener. I only add honey when a sore-throat is coming along.
I usually either brew a large pot at home or resteep my leaves at the office. I cannot seem to learn to master the use of a gaiwan in an elegant and not clumsy way…
My tea preferences :
- I really like flavored black teas, with a preference for fruity flavors, from a tangy Earl Grey to a real fruit smoothie-like tea. I’m trying some single origin unflavored blacks from time to time but always end up having trouble to finish them. I usually do not really enjoy the strong breakfast teas.
- I do not like chai or teas with strong spice flavors. Strange considering I really like spicy food, but not what I drink.
- I am quite afraid of pu-erh and lapsang souchong, though I probably have never drunk any real good ones and I’m quite sure it can make a huge difference… A few years ago, I had been introduced to scotch whisky and can definitely attest that you cannot say you don’t like whisky, if you’ve only drunk blended stuff and not tasted yet single malts. I hope to get the same happy discovery for those teas.
- I discovered very good oolong, without going through the step of drinking bad-one first, and really enjoy it, especially with a meal. I’ll definitely try some flavored oolongs in a near future.
- I’ve just started discovering white teas, which feels very delicate. The only problem is that those can be awfully expensive…
- I also really like rooibos which I discovered a few years ago while searching for low-theine/caffeine teas that I could drink at night without suffering from insomnia.
- As with green tea, we’ve had a long-standing difficult relationship. I’ve occasionally had some that were real smooth, refreshing and so very many that turned bitter very quickly. And I cannot stand a bitter tea.
- As for jasmine tea, I used to like it but have indeed drunk too much of some bad quality bitter brew, and now I even have problem finishing the high-quality pearls I bought in Beijing.
- Yerba Mate: I’ve had some in one blend and am quite convinced that I would never like that as bitterness is one of its main characteristics. I’ll try to avoid it like the plague.
- Herbal tea: I used to drink more or those before discovering rooibos; finding good ones is unfortunately really difficult – even in organic shops, the herbs sold are far from great.
I loathe artificial flavoring of any kind in any beverage or food.

I’m quite opiniated and try to leave room for further improvement and better discoveries, which explain why I haven’t rated any tea in the 95 and above range.
Teas above 80 are among my favorites
Between 60-80, I could or could not give them a second chance or recognize that they are made with high-quality ingredients though their taste does not please my buds.
Around 50, it starts to be rather bad and a not so pleasant experience to drink.
25 to 40+ cover low quality products that I manage to drink when nothing else is available.
Below that, it’s really vile and basically almost undrinkable IMHO.

Location

Singapore

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