521 Tasting Notes


I actually really like this! My coworker introduced this to me. I probably would not have purchased this if left to my own devices. There’s definitely a nice lemony brightness and lots of spicy ginger. There’s also a bit of hibiscus in this, but it works here. This an example of hibiscus done right. A perfection of taste and convenience. Not to mention that its good for a variety of ills. :)

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I’ve been doing a lot of drinking without logging lately. There’s too much going on. :( And I fear my obsession is waning. Though I do still crave a tasty cup and tons of variety. Maybe I just don’t have time to sit down and really appreciate a cup anymore.

Anyways, lets try and get backs the boat! I had a cup of this a few days ago. Sweet vanilla nuttiness! It was like a liquid cookie! Tasted best with a splash of cream. A great dessert tea! Thanks for sharing Josie Jade!

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I’ve been spending a lot more time outdoors with my pups, exercising and gardening lately. I’ve started a miniature container garden! We had a few days of fantastic rare sunny warm/cool days here. Now it looks like we’re going back to the usual disappointing weather in the NYC area. I hate humidity. And work days have been busy. This weekend, unfortunately, is busy as well. I’ve signed myself up for a party today, and then it’s Mother’s Day tomorrow. I’m going to enjoy some tea while I can.

I’ve tried a variety of puers in my life. I’ve decided that I’m not really a fan. While I can drink the cups down quite easily, I never find myself craving them as I do for oolongs, greens and blacks. I’d drink more white but they often make me shaky. But Mandala has a great puer rep so I thought I’d give this a try. I received this sample when I ordered a bunch of puers for my dad’s birthday. I decided to keep this to educate myself. Two months later, I’m finally diving in.

My first thought is that I’m shocked at the smokiness. I didn’t read any descriptions before trying so I was not expecting this aspect. It’s also lighter than expected. Oddly fresh, which is not something I’d expect from a puer. But maybe that’s just because I don’t have much experience with shengs. This is tasty. I don’t think I’ll be craving it ever, but I am enjoying this current cup.

Mandala Tea

HI!! Technically, this is a “mao cha” (unfinished tea) rather than a pu’er. The wild monk cake is an actual pu’er. And there is a huge difference between a raw style tea such as this and a ripened (black) style pu’er, which is famous for its earthy and dark characteristics.

I think this mao cha is incredible as a tea glass style brew, as well, and we have many many customers brewing it that way. It is quite something how it sweetens up in longer brews like that.

You may be interested in trying some other raw teas and brewing them up much like a green/oolong tea using lower water temps. It’s fun to experiment and see what works for you. Some use full boil, others 175. Totally up to you, but it really does change the flavors and aromas, sometimes quite significantly.

Enjoy! And thanks for writing about it! Grateful, Garret


Very informative. Thanks a lot! I’ll give it another shot as a tea glass style brew.

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This tea smells amazing. I got some from AlphaKitty from our meet up swap a while back. I decided to go with a paper filter for this tea since I didn’t feel like cleaning sprinkle gunk off my filter basket today.
The resulting brew is okay, which is a bit of a let down after the amazing scent. I don’t really get chocolate but the marshmallow and caramel are totally there! It has a weird bit of latex aftertaste. And the black base isn’t my favorite, but it’s good enough. Needs a spot of cream to smooth the slight harshness over.


Don’t you hate when the aroma is so much better than the taste? I always try to will the tea to taste better, brewing it over and over in hopes that one day, maybe it will work. LOL!


I sure do! I’ve pretty much come to the conclusion that I simply don’t prefer flavored blacks. I’ll stick to straight Chinese black teas from now on. :)

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Very tasty Dragon Well! Fresh, crisp and sweet. Savory and vegetal. This is the ideal Chinese green. Well, to me anyway. :) And I’m getting in some greens again. I’ve missed my green teas. Blacks were starting to take over my life! Next, I must rekindle my love for white teas.

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drank Chestnut Green Tea by Lupicia
521 tasting notes

Holy cow is this tasty! Sweet roasted chestnuts! Exactly like chestnuts! Amazing! I keep expecting a mouthful of actual chestnut when I sip this, but all I get is tea. Working with this luscious chestnut taste is the lightly grassy green tea that balances out the richness of the flavor. Absolutely wonderful! I love chestnuts, but they are so very seasonal. Now I can have chestnuts whenever I want! weeeee!

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Fake chocolate scent and flavor :( otherwise a nice EG. I’m going to have trouble getting past the fake flavor though. Maybe my friend might like it …

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Tastyyyy! It’s smells like cereal. And tastes like the toasty rice at the bottom of the pot. The longer this soaked, the better it tasted. I also ate a few grains before adding water. Tasty crunchy snack! I could totally see this as being delicious served as a hot cereal with cream and sugar. It’s also deliciously pure and satisfying as a tea. I want more of this. Moooooore! Where do we find this in the US? :(

Thank you for sharing this with me Sil!!


lol At this rate i’ll have to see if one of the girls can swing by the grocery store and send some to me through internal mail.


That would be amazing!!


apparently you can find some version of this on ebay…and it might be possible to pick it up in health food stores.


the website for this company is http://www.kuqiao123.com/ i found it on the package while investigating tonight…


Thanks for doing the research, Sil. :)


haha yeah. If i make it back to china this year I’ll pick up a few more bags of it. And i’ll see if any of the girls over there mind trying to send me more

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Am I allowed to write about Matcha Pocky on here? Cause I found some in China Town yesterday and I’m eating some now and they are delicious. Even the biscuit part has matcha in it! Anything made with matcha is just so pretty. That green. :)

Anyways, I’m having this Sweet Harvest Pumpkin thanks to Josie Jade. I’m just tearing through that box of samples from her today. :) Plus I really have a craving for buttermilk pumpkin soup, but I don’t have any pumpkin. :( I do have buttermilk though. I think I’ll make a pudding with it later today.

I saw a lot of negative reviews about this due to the stevia. I actually don’t much mind stevia. It’s not as tasty as sugar or honey, but it’s better than Equal or Splenda. So I added a splash or almond milk to this since spiced teas really do taste better milked up. This particular tea tastes like the inside of a pumpkin pie. A bit of that delicious orange squash flavor. Lightly spiced with cinnamon and ginger. brown sugar? Not too bad. It’s a bit thin though. Next time, I might have to use two bags per cup.

EDIT: Husband just came by and made off with my cup of this. haha I think I’ll leave the rest of these tea bags to him. :)


Oooh I should have bought some when I saw them at the drug store. Guess I’ll have to go back.


If there were real truth in labeling, the name should be “Extremely Cloying Harvest Pumpkin.” Doubt it’d sell quite as well, though ;)
(I’m OK with it as long as I dilute or 1/2 and 1/2 with plain black.)


I think I ended up throwing mine away!

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I’m agreeing with Josie Jade on this one. Needs more coconut flavor. The sencha in this is thick and grassy. Is it really Japanese sencha? Maybe I’m just spoiled from Den’s because this is not what good Japanese sencha tastes like to me. This reminds me more of the cheap Chinese sencha that I really don’t like. It doesn’t seem to get astringent, which is good, but neither is it fresh and springy like a quality sencha should taste like. This is overall, a pretty meh tea.

Unless you’re not picky about green tea quality and don’t mind a weaker coconut flavor.

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I came from a tea drinking family, but I never appreciated the different qualities and varieties of tea until older. All that time wasted! But I guess I needed to be mature enough to appreciate the tea experience. :)

My favorite teas are green oolongs and white tea. I also love greens, especially gyokuro. I have a huge appreciation for rooibos and honeybush as they are often that only thing I can drink in the evening. I am a relatively new convert to black teas. This is unfortunate for my wallet but extremely wonderful for my palate. :)

In any case, I have a love for both flavored and unflavored teas. They are different experiences for sure, but both enjoyable. I find that it often depends on my mood.

I am on a quest to find a tea that will win my husband over. I think I’m making some headway…

My profile pic features my two lovable puppies, Mr. Snuggles and Sr. Caliente.


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