838 Tasting Notes

85

As usual, Bravo A&D, Bravo!

Tea is amazing, tin is amazing. Enough said (or written).

Upon opening the tin, the tea smells quite strong. There is a bold malty yunnan scent. It is very slightly sweet. There is a scent of roasted tea as well. There are a number of different sizes and colours of tea leaves which makes the tea look quite unique.

The tea liquor is quite dark.

The brewed tea offers hints of stone fruits, I am thinking plums and apricots. The tea is not as bold as I was waiting for, but it is still quite strong. I am getting the slightest hints of sweetness, I would have expected more based on the smell. There is a strong after taste that lingers for a LOOOOONNNGGG time. It is not a bad aftertaste though. It is quite dry but not bitter or astringent. There is a roasted flavour to the tea. It translates into a bit of charred taste in the after taste but it doesn’t last for long.

Overall, excellent tea. It is not my fav A&D blend but it is still damn fine :)

Edit: steep 2. Much more creamy flavour and texture to the tea. No roasted or charred flavour. Very easy end of sip. No aftertaste at all. It has lost quite a bit of its boldness for this steep which is a bit disappointing.

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 15 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Sil

oooooh….

boychik

I wonder if this aftertaste ( huigan) usually associated in puerh

Terri HarpLady

mine is on its way :)

Marzipan

I didn’t get the smoky/charred at all, which is good since I don’t like that.

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75
drank Electric Earl Grey by Tealish
838 tasting notes

I just spent like 15 minutes typing this tasting note, then my damn iPad decides to refresh itself. Like WTF. Lost note in steepster space.

So from memory:
In my previous tasting note I was complaining on having no good teas at work. So on my break, I went over to the pharmacy next door to find some pharmacy tea. I was expecting to see only Lipton type tea, but I came across this and a bunch of Tea Forte flavours. I don’t really like TeaForte’s black base, and I have never tried Tealish before that I can remember, and I love bergamot, so I went for this one. It was a bit of a gamble as the in store sample smelled like nothing.

Upon opening the package there is a strong smell of bergamot. MMmmmm, bergamot!! There are a lot of yellow petals that make it look so pretty.

The black base is very mild, slightly sweet. The bergamot is disappointed not as strong as it smells. It is definitely an Earl Grey though. The flower petals meld everything together and make it nice and smooth. I was kind of waiting for a big punch, the electric part. But nothing happened. No electrocution here, not yet anyway.

Overall it is good, definitely better than the drawer tea.

On a side note, bergamot is not listed in the ingredients but flavouring is. I know it is not bergamot oil, but it is kind of weird they didn’t list bergmot flavouring.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 15 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Fjellrev

Ugh, blasted technology.

What a misleading name. I would have expected a vat of bergamot in it.

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75
drank Electric Earl Grey by Tealish
838 tasting notes

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57
drank Raspberry by Ashby's of London
838 tasting notes

Oh, the agony!

For two days in a row now I have forgotten to bring tea into work. I used up all of my loose leaf and keep forgetting to bring more in. So I am relegated to the tea stash of unwanted teas that are sitting in my drawer for this specific occasion. But being two days now, I have used up all the kind of unwanted teas and am now using the really unwanted teas.

This tea is VERY old. Like two jobs ago, 9ish years maybe. I specifically remember buying this tea but I can’t remember why I bought it. I also specifically remember not liking it at all. And I have a memory of spiking it with Splenda but that being a disaster.

So this is all I have and it is better than no tea at all.

This is not as bad as my memory indicated. There is a moderate black base, it is getting bitter now that the cup is almost done. There is a light raspberry taste at the beginning of the sip. It is a cross between artificial raspberry flavour and raspberry leaf. I think the flavour it is quite muted being as old as it is.

It will suffice for now but I am going to the drugstore to see if I can find some somewhat more suitable tea for the unwanted tea drawer.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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63
drank Gingerade by G.T. Kombucha
838 tasting notes

I’ve been humming and hawing over trying this for a long time. Then I picked up a case (of 6) at Costco on a whim. That is how I purchase most of the stuff I get at Costco. Go in for a few things and come out with a giant cart full. Sigh.

When looking at the glass bottle there is quite a bit of “sediment” on the bottom of the bottle. It appears to be a cloud of floating (presumably) bacteria. It says directly on the bottle “Do Not Shake” . Which I find counter-intuitive because seeing that sediment on the bottom makes me want to mix it all up. But I do find it odd because if you are not supposed to shake the bottle then presumably you are not supposed to ingest the floating cloud. So it is a little tricky drinking this. I find you don’t get to actually finish the whole drink because you cant get at the liquid without getting the cloud sediment.

On opening the bottle there is a sound of releasing carbonation with a bit of fizz that releases. The drink is not carbonated but that is the best way to describe it.

It tastes like ginger but not as strong as I thought it would be. There is some sweetness but it is not overpowering. It really reminds me more of a ginger-lemonade if that is something that exists. There is a definite fermented taste to the drink. The ingredients list tea. But does not describe what kind of tea other than to say it is organic. I presume it to be black tea. I am not tasting much tea in the flavour. It has a taste very similar to the malt in beer. But it doesn’t taste like beer, just the malt part. There is a strong yeast smell to the drink which is throwing me off a bit.

Overall this is good. I had never tried a bottled kombucha before. I am not sure I will re-purchase this one. I would most likely try other flavours.

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drank Special Dark by Mandala Tea
838 tasting notes

Big thanks and also big apologies to Sil. She put this one in the GCTTB 3 for me at my request and I am just getting to it now. I have been wanting to try this one for a long time and I wanted to make sure I had enough dedicated time to really give it a good try.

So most of you here on steepster know that I just don’t like pu’erh. I have tried many a tea and know what I do and do not like. The problem is, that I really, really want to like pu’erh. I just don’t :( So I wanted to give this one a try as it is so highly rated here on steepster as well as elsewhere in the tea universe.

I brewed this one as per the recommended instructions on the packaging. 1TBSP per 8 oz boiling water, first steep of 30 seconds. The brewed tea is quite dark. It has a gentle sweet smell. I am getting hints of wet moss as well as dried wheat noodles. I know that must sounds super appetizing. It tastes quite thick and creamy. There are very slight notes of dark chocolate, like 85% cocoa, but the strongest flavour I am getting is wet black soil. As it cools more, the “earthy” types notes become stronger.

For the second steep, I added 15 seconds as per the recommendations. It brewed up very dark, just like the first steep. The smell of the brewed tea is the same as the first steep. The flavour profile is also the same as the first steep but the liquor is not as thick.

For the third steep, I again added 15 seconds as per the recommendations. It brewed up noticeable less dark than the first two steeps. I found the scent to be much more earthy. There is a slight mushroom scent to it I think. The taste is again much more earthy. Decomposing leaves, I am getting that slight mushroom flavour, just like in the scent. There is no sweetness to this steep, as well as no cocoa flavour.

I did not attempt a fourth steep, even though the description on the tea packaging states this tea can get as many as 4 steeps.

Overall, the answer is still that I just don’t like pu’erh. I am confident enough in all of the teas that I have tried to be able to say that. I just don’t like the taste/flavour profile in pu’erh tea. I am happy to have had the opportunity to try this tea as it is so highly rated, so I know it is just not the teas I have tried.

Sil

glad to help out! It’s nice to be able to cross things off lists :)

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76

I bought this from the website where I buy a ridiculous amount of [super awesome] lunch-ware (www.en.bentoandco.com). They sell a lot of neat Japanese things, kitchen ware and occasionally food and treats. The Japanese Kit Kats are amazing. So amazing I refuse to share.

I picked this up to try with one of my last orders. It is more of a cooking grade matcha but I used it for my daily cold matcha. It came is the most ridiculously awesome container. The container does not contain any English labelling so I am not sure what company actually produces this matcha. It has a tin, peel off lid, like the kind you get on some brands of tuna. And to top it off there is a sticker on top which gives pictoral instructions on how to open it. Once you peel off the lid, there is a mesh screen which you can sift the matcha through. You can remove this screen if you want to scoop out the matcha. (For those of you who follow me, you know I am the hugest sucker for ridiculous marketing techniques and fun tea presentation).

The colour was a nice green, it wasn’t too bright but it wasn’t dull either. It was definitely green and not brown.

I did my usual heaping 1 tsp in 8 oz water with a dash of white sugar. I did sift it through my usual matcha sifter. I always prepare it the night before cuz who has time to get stuff ready in the morning before work. By the morning, when I added the water and shook it up, it was pretty lumpy. It took some actual physical activity to get it shaken up enough to be dissolved.

Taste wise it was pretty good. A smooth taste, but a bit gritty in the sensation. Slightly sweet, no bitterness. There was quite a bit of sediment in the bottom of the glass by the time I was finished.

I will probably return to my other higher grade matcha once this is done but I am glad I tried it.

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83
drank Jamais Vu by Nina's Paris
838 tasting notes

This one quit a strong smell in both dry and brewed form. I feel like it smells like tart apples.

I am finding this one a bit more bold an the usual Nina’s Paris black base but that could be my steeping parameters. I think it is better at a lower temp.

I am tasting lots of orange and orange peel. There’s a very strong tart Apple taste but I am wondering if that is supposed to be the pineapple. There is a strong undertone of safflowers.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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91

Have you been to Starbucks lately…because I have.

So this one is Tim Hortons Peach Drink meets latte. The penultimate Canadian beverage, after anything maple that is.

http://starbucksmelody.com/2015/02/22/blossoming-peach/

So this is a new Starbucks drink, only in Canada apparently. It is delicious. I did not realize at the time but it is basically an earl grey latte with peach syrup added. I didn’t even realize it was an earl grey. Mine didn’t come with whip and a candied peach topping but whatevs, it was so super delicious. My new fav.

Jillian

OMG that sounds delish, I’ll have to stop by Starbucks after work and try one.

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61
drank Sweet Orange Spice by Tea Forte
838 tasting notes

GCTTB3

I pulled this one out of the box for one very specific reason. A few years ago, in a sample pack of Tea Forte, I had tried Moroccan Orange Blossom tea. I absolutely loved it. Even if I am the only one on the internet to give it a good review, I still maintain it was delicious. I have not been able to find a suitable alternative with any other tea companies.

I pulled this one out of the box because it was Tea Forte and had orange in the name. But I failed to look at the description. It describes orange with cinnamon. I just don’t see how orange would ever go with cinnamon. Maybe orange peel, but not orange.

The tea bag, once unwrapped, smelled strongly of sweet cinnamon. The brewed tea smells like cinnamon hot lips.

The tea tastes like a very strong, somewhat bitter black tea. The cinnamon is very flat, not much bite to it. I am not picking up too much citrus but there is a sweetness to the tea which could be reminiscent of citrus.

I have never really thought much of Tea Forte, except for the moroccan orange blossom of course. This tea falls into the not think too much of it category.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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Profile

Bio

I am a lifetime tea lover.

I did foray into the world of coffee for a period of time, but I returned to my true love. I still, however, enjoy a good cup of java.

My all time favorite tea is Earl Grey, which I drink every morning, the stronger the bergamot the better. I definitely prefer natural oil of bergamot to artificial flavouring.

I mostly like black and dark oolong teas. My current favs are Fujian blacks, Keemun and Assams, and Wuyi oolongs. I gravitate towards anything with lychee in it. I also drink a lot of herbal blends but am wary of hibiscus. I do not favour mate, or pu’erh tea, although I have found a few blends that I like. (I so badly want to like straight pu’erh tea but it all tastes gross to me. I keep trying though). Rooibos, green and white teas fall somewhere in the middle. I find myself gravitating towards heavily roasted oolongs and teas from Paris/France based companies.

I love iced teas and cold brews.

My current tea goal is to make the perfect cup of chai from scratch – almost there…I think.

I am in love with the whole experience of tea.

Location

Saskatchewan, CANADA

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