765 Tasting Notes

75
drank Seed Harvest by Handmade Tea
765 tasting notes

I hadn’t been avoiding this one. But I was in no hurry to try it. It seemed like it would be a chai to me, I don’t mind chai but it is definitely not my go to tea.

After opening the tin up, it smelled strongly of fennel. The brewed tea is very strongly anise (which smells like black licorice). It taste like a moderately bold black tea with sweet black licorice notes. The licorice is not overpowering, which is quite nice. There is definitely no need to add any sweetener to this one as it is fairly sweet on its own. I get a very quick, light salty fennel taste at the beginning of the sip but it is soon covered up by the licorice flavour. I am not getting much other spice out of this tea. There is a light “heat” to the aftertaste. It is definitely not a chai.

Due to the black licorice flavour, I definitely think this one would be better as an iced/cold brew.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Dexter

Hmmmm – I have been avoiding this one (sending it out in swap packages as often as possible). I think your review confirms that I won’t like this – I don’t have much left so should at least TRY it.
Glad you had a pleasant experience. :))

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72
drank Citrus Punch Matcha by Red Leaf Tea
765 tasting notes

This one is distinctive flavour.

The smell of the dry tea is citrus. Very similar to a vitamin c chewable tablet. I was a little worried due to the disaster of when I tried the orange matcha and it was so chemical flavoured. But I ordered this one at distinctive flavour for the purpose to tone down any chemical flavour there might be.

I made this cold shaken. 1tsp for 8oz water and about a 1/4 tsp white sugar.

It turned out ok. A little lacking on the citrus flavour but it is there. I can tell it is citrus but that is about it. It is not really distinctively orange, or lemon, or lime, etc. I am getting quite a dryness in the aftertaste. I would say it is similar to what you get after you suck on a lemon slice. I think this one would have been better at a robust level but I am still so scared if that chemical taste. Sigh. Ha ha.

I will play around with parameters a little and see if I can coax out some more flavour.

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75
drank Demain by Nina's Paris
765 tasting notes

I think I figured this one out. Finally, when there is just one serving left. Ha ha, that is how it always works out.

1.5 tsp for a 8 oz mug, 3-4 pieces of brown rock sugar, 190F (definitely hotter than what would be recommended for a green), 1-1.5 minutes.

That is all.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 1 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Christina

Ooh, I just ordered some of this on Amazon a few days ago. Getting it shipped to a relative in Florida so she can bring it back up when she returns. This is helpful!

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94

It is so cold. I know I shouldn’t complain. I have lived in this darn country and province my entire life. I have made a conscious decision to continue living here. I actually quite like how we get four distinct seasons. I normally would not mind if it was this cold. But come on polar vortex, it is March 1. It is supposed to be like -5C, starting to melt a little every day.

It is currently -40C, feels like -52C. If you would like to know what that is in Fahrenheit, -40 is where the Celsius and Fahrenheit scales meet. That’s right! It is -40F feels like -61.6F. WHAT?!?! I am not even going to bother going outside, not because any exposed skin will freeze in 3 seconds, or because my nostril hairs will freeze on contact to the air, but I am scared my door will break off its hinges if I open it because it is so cold.

So I am drinking this to warm up. I brewed it a little extra time today so it is nice and thick. 7 pearls for 2 minutes (I usually do just 1 minute). It is thick and bold and malty. Some hints of cocoa, but a lot of sweet dark plum flavours. It is STRONG. And I need that today.

I declare today a tea day!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
KittyLovesTea

Hurray for tea days! Just the thing to keep you warm from the snow. :)

Anna

Those temperatures are insane. I want to come live there for a bit just to see if I could take it.

(I would put up with a lot to get my four distinct seasons, though. I really would.)

Lala

Anna you are welcome to come and visit anytime. If you stay here for long enough you will get used to it :)

Anna

Thank you! I think Canada is awesome – I’ve wanted to come live there for a while since I first visited. =)

__Morgana__

I miss having seasons. We have two—green (rain) and brown (no rain).

Sil

I wouldn’t trade my 4 seasons for warmer weather

Nicole

I might trade my 4 seasons for warmer weather. I could visit the seasons in other places and not have to live in the ones I don’t like… :)

Ysaurella

your note makes me think to a girl I worked with and who was absolutely in love with Russia. She explained me she particularly adored the cold days in Russia when it was “so cold that my nose was blooding”. I think I stared at her as if she was a cold heroin…

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90

Thanks to CHAroma for sending this to me in a swap!! I have wanted to try this one forever, but figured I wouldn’t be able to because it was limited edition over a year ago.

The tea smells quite mild and sweet. I was anticipating a bold, kick you in the butt, kind of holiday blend.

The brewed tea is a little but more than slightly sweet. It is very smooth, a little bit of malt. I have to admit, I am actually getting a little bit of chocolate taste. There is a little bit of vegetalness to the tea. More like a really dark oolong, without the roastyness. There is a slight metallic twinge to the tea which is actually pleasant.

I am finding this tea to be a little light. I thought it would be a lot more bold than it is. I will try using more tea next time. This tea is more than a year old, so even though it is in good condition, I have to take that into account.

I saying all the above, it is still a very delicious tea. Just not what I expected. Andrews and Dunham have never done me wrong :)

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Anna

Vintage tea! How awesome that you got to try it. =)

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67
drank Warmth – Cinnamon Spice by Tetley
765 tasting notes

I am not a huge rooibos fan, but my mom gave me a little cardboard tin of this a long time ago and I actually didn’t mind it. I keep it on hand for when I want a quick bag of tea. It is definitely “warming”.

Well somehow I ended up with several cans of this tea. So I am trying to get rid of some of it. I even gave a few cans to a relative and still have a few left.

I would normally brew this tea quite weak, one bag for a 16 oz mug for 1 minute. But with the latest can I opened (I don’t know if it is a newer or an older can), the bags seem to not have as much tea. I also need to brew two bags vs the one I used to do.

I feel like Tetley is ripping me off…hmmm… Maybe it will be easier to sip it down. Anyway, it is a basic rooibos, sweet, with some cinnamon flavour. Sweet cinnamon, not spicey. It works.

Courtney

I love when I find rooibos teas I can enjoy, because I’m not a fan of the medicinal taste.

Lala

I agree, I hate medicinal rooibos. I find this one is not too bad if you keep the steep time low.

Courtney

I’ve discovered certain flavours seem to drown out/work with rooibos better. Orange is definitely one. Perhaps cinnamon too.

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62
drank Earl Grey by Hampstead Tea
765 tasting notes

I picked this up a while ago at Winners when they were selling some Fauchon teas. The box was pretty. This is a tea I could easily drink at work. I read the box (I thought anyway) and decided to pick it up.

So I am at work, I open the first individually sealed packet and there. Is. A. Smell. Hmmmm. What is going on. I put the bag into my cup and flip over the packet to read it. Oh no! My beloved Earl Grey has been…(dramatic pause)…Darjeeled!!!!

I am no fan of Darjeeling. I don’t know why. I have never ever like it. In taste and smell it reminds me of cheap cigarette ash. No matter what kind of Darjeeling I have tried, I just don’t like it. I find it worse when it is in a blend because that is usually the first and only ting I can taste.

Well…proceed with tainted tasting note, I guess. Even though I don’t prefer Darjeeling, I think I will be able to finish off this box of 20 tea bags. There is some bergamot in there. It is super light, all trampled and beaten up from the Darjeeling. Not as much as the package makes it out to be (“the zing of the bergamot oil…”), but it is just a work tea. I often don’t even taste the teas I drink when I am at work, I just quickly gulp and move on.

Upon closer inspection of the box, it does say this is a Darjeeling Earl grey, but it is kind of buried under all of the cute graphics and fancy writing. No wonder I missed it. Damn marketing…

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec
Anna

Darjeelage! Seriously, cute graphics and fancy writing can be so distracting. Lethal.

I’m trying to figure out how I feel about darjeeling, but I’m still on the fence.

Stephanie

Butiki has several really good Darjeelings…I never thought I would be big into them but those converted me :)

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95
drank Fete de Versailles by Nina's Paris
765 tasting notes

This is one of the teas I got in my latest Nina’s Tea order. (To tell the story again, I was in Florida, and Laurent and Sophie from Nina’s Paris USA shipped my order to my hotel. This saved me a whole lot on shipping. Laurent stayed in contact with me the whole time until I received and was satisfied with my order). I had been wanting to try this one for a long time. It was only available in a tin but the tin is beautiful.

The dry tea is beautiful. The black tea leaves look nice, dried orange peel and bright blue and red flower petals are mixed in with the tea leaves. It smells super delicious. Like sweet candied orange peel. Almost has a bubble gum quality to the smell.

The smell of the brewed tea smells a little bit flat. Still candied orange but not as strong or as sweet and with a bit more pepper.

The brewed tea, like I find most Nina’s Paris Teas, is delicious. The tea base is just bordering on bold. There is a sweet, candied orange peel flavour, it is delicate and not overpowering. There is a slight pepper from the orange rind but it is very light. It almost tastes like there is a bit of orange juice in this tea. There is a slight sweetness, I would maybe add a bit of sweetener next time I have this tea. The flower petals give a thickness to the tea with a bit of a bread-y flavour.

The sweet orange flavours become much more prominent and bright as the tea starts to cool.

I am really glad I picked this up. I would like to know if there is a story behind the flavour of this tea and the name.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Courtney

I think my next order of Japon I will go for the tin. They really are beautiful.

Lala

I think the tins would not be so great for stacking, but they look beautiful. The one I have has the name of the tea on the front (It is a white tin with a design on it, not the red one). And the lid appears to fit tightly but not so tight that I can’t get it off :) And they are so cute.

Courtney

I agree. I think eventually I will collect some of the basic H&S tins for stacking, but sometimes pretty tins are nice for a few teas. :)

VariaTEA

I believe this was a special tea they brought in for Christmas and so it has a specialty tin. I saw it when I went to their office and I think it is so pretty but I don’t like citrusy teas.

I think I might pick up the Marie Antoinette in a tin because I like the pretty pink tin. Plus I have one of their baby tins and it is so cute but actually fits a fair amount of tea.

Courtney

By the way Lala, I LOVE your profile picture/avatar change.

Lala

Thanks Courtney. I figured I could use a yearly avatar change. And who doesn’t love the chesire cat. Even when he is creepily portrayed.

Courtney

That’s the best part about it haha. The Cheshire cat is awesome.

Fjellrev

That’s such wonderful customer service.

Lala

This was my 3rd order from Nina’s Paris USA and I have to say I have had excellent customer service with all 3 orders.

VariaTEA

They truly set the bar for customer service in my opinion. I went to their office in Florida and had such an amazing experience with them. It helps that their teas are delicious as well.

Indigobloom

Great customer service tales from tea companies warm my heart, and make me wanna order all the tea LOL

Sil

I splurged on 50g of japon in a tin…because, if nothing else it goes with my black MF tin :)

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80

Received this one from Teavivre’s free tasting activity.

This one is an interesting oolong. I was expecting a normal Taiwanese oolong, but there is a bit of a surprise to this one.

It is a light green oolong, with some floral scents. It is smooth and creamy, almost like there is a bit of milk oolong in there. There is also a pleasant metallic taste, as well as a spice to it. On my first sip, I almost thought this was a ginseng oolong, but there is not real ginseng taste to it. The more I drink it, the less like an oolong it tastes to me. It is taking on a more bold, very slightly roasted flavour. I am hardly getting any sweetness. It is reminding me of a green and black tea blend. It is quite good. I am a little sad I have waiting so long to try it.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 1 min, 0 sec 7 g 20 OZ / 591 ML

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76
drank Pistachio Ice Cream by Butiki Teas
765 tasting notes

No real tea review here.

I overleafed this one just a little bit because I was at the end of my sample and there wasn’t enough for two cups but a bit too much for one cup. There was also quite a bit of leaf dust, being the end of the package. I shoulder have steeped for less time due to this but forgot so it is a bit bitter. Still drinkable but not as enjoyable as it could be.

So I had plans today, tea plans. And nothing gets in between me and my tea plans. Except a water main break which will have my water shut off for 5-6 hours. cries.

I can’t even be too upset about it. I was at home and saw all the city trucks driving down my street, then a man came to my door and told me I have 15-20 minutes before my water gets shut off for minimum of 5-6 hours. So I got all flustered. I filled up the bathtub and sinks, and all my pots and pitchers and cups with water (just in case). I was in the middle of laundry but the washer was on the last rinse so that had time to finish.

In my flusteredness I filled my kettle up to the top with sink water, instead of the filtered water I normally use. So I went to make a cup of tea and had to boil the entire 1.7L kettle of tap water. My tap water is not even bad, but I usually use filtered water for the kettle, so it tastes different.

And how do you clean your tea implements? Well you can’t really. I wasn’t planning on doing the teas with multiple steeps today, but I guess that is what my plans are now :(

And don’t even get me started on the toilet situation.

I shouldn’t complain though. At least I was home and had a chance to prepare. My neighbours with kids aged 4 and 1 are not even home, so they are going to get a surprise when they get home for supper.

#teaproblems.

tigress_al

shoot, darn water ruining your tea plans!

Roswell Strange

I feel your pain. My landlord shut off out water completely for over two days, and we only had about an hour of notice. It was a rough two days with limited tea drinking. I went through a lot of lattes…

Anna

Ugh, nooo.

caile

Hopefully they’ll have the water back on soon!

Fjellrev

That’s horrible!

Terri HarpLady

What a bummer! Hang in there, & hopefully the water will be back on soon, with NO complications.

Lala

Thanks everyone! The water came back on about 5 and a half hours later. I greatly overestimated the amount of water I would used during that time. So now I have a whole lot of water sitting everywhere that I don’t want to waste. It was a good lesson. (Although I think in the back of my mind I was worried I would be without water for days).

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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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