1217 Tasting Notes

93
drank Bubblegum Matcha by Red Leaf Tea
1217 tasting notes

Wow. This is by far the most unusual tasting and difficult-to-review tea I’ve ever tried.

Size: 60g (Large)
Quality: Basic
Type: Regular
Flavor: Delicate
Mixed with 8oz coconut milk and 2tsp Truvia, mixed with a chasen.
http://www.redleaftea.com/matcha-tea/bubble-gum-matcha.html

This is very strongly scented; my 5-year-old even recognized it instantly as chewy pink bubblegum. It mixes easily, and tasted just okay without sweetener. With sweetener however, holy moly. It’s like I’m drinking pink chewy bubblegum, including that chewy mouthfeel. Really a challenge to describe, and again my son commented that it was like drinking bubblegum. For me, this is a weird concept my brain couldn’t wrap around… I’m so used to spitting out gum when it’s done. Drinking something that tastes identical to it? Uh… brain confused.

Having said that, it is a perfect replica. It tastes a bit chemically, however so does bubblegum to me. I’ve already finished the cup, and I can still smell it.

Would I recommend this? Definitely, at no more than delicate level, and only if you truly love the chewy pink stuff. I like bubblegum, however I think I’d prefer chewing it to drinking it? I’m still so confused. High marks because it really is an excellent replica.

Preparation
Iced

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75

Bought this about a month back just after it was renamed. I love cinnamon tea, so this was on my must try-list.

Huge slivers of cinnamon in here makes it a really strong smelling tea, and this is promising for me. Kind of reminds me of Bengal Spice (Celestial Seasonings) my current favorite cinnamon tea, even though I’m loathe to admit it. Bagged, grocery store tea? Sacrilege!

All I taste is liquid cinnamon and rooibos at the end of the sip. This is a good thing (for the most part… there is some bitterness in there). I’m happy to gulp it down with or without sweetener – although sweetener does help it pop more.

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more
Kaylee

Embrace your love of a bagged grocery store tea! If you enjoy it, there’s no point in feeling bad about that. Plus, it’s cheaper and more convenient than a lot of the other stuff we drink :)

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90
drank Christmas Tea Vert by Dammann Freres
1217 tasting notes

This was the first tea (other than the advent calendar) that I cracked from my recent Dammann Freres/Vendomme Cadeau order. A huge thanks to yyz for letting me know about this optional way of purchasing DF teas! (Note: shipping was only 8 euros to Canada, and it got here in a week. Beautifully packaged as well).

So why did I pick this tea? Because it’s the only one I’m not sharing with others in some fashion, and because it’s such a small amount (cute 30g tin). Plus I love greens, and haven’t had a lot of late.

For some reason, I’m getting spicy in this blend. Cinnamon perhaps? Which is odd considering there’s zero cinnamon, just variations of orange (orange, orange peel). I definitely get orange though, and a touch of vanilla. It’s quite a lovely tea, although much better with a touch of Truvia. Light, refreshing, pleasant. I might order more if I could find a better price for a larger amount…. $20 for 30g including shipping seems a bit pricey for me, if only compared to the other teas I grabbed that were in the $11/100g range. Or maybe I’m just spoiled.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec
ifjuly

if I may be so nosy as to ask, how was customs? i’ve wanted to order DF for a while now but am always scared away by the risk of brokerage fees or my tea simply not being allowed in at all after paying so much. hmmmm…

MissB

I just paid the eight euros shipping and that’s it. Zero brokerage fees. I didn’t go through DF though, I went through these guys: http://www.cadeau-deco-vendome.com/ I’m also Canadian, if that helps.

ifjuly

thank you! (:

Dinosara

ifjuly- I just got my package ordered through the Dammann site and paid no customs fees. US address.

ifjuly

thanks Dinosara! that gives me hope too.

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89

Ah, peanut butter. I LOVE it. A bit too much in fact. There were days not that long ago where I’d down a whole container of Peanut Butter Chocolate Haagen Daz in less than fifteen minutes. I would do (almost) anything to have that flavor again. And so, I bought this matcha. I have some Bavarian Chocolate as well, and will mix them eventually.. once I’ve had them both solo.

Size: Large (60g)
Quality: Classic
Type: Regular
Flavor: Delicate
Preparation: one heaping matcha spoon of matcha mixed 9oz cold coconut milk using a chasen
http://www.redleaftea.com/matcha-tea/peanut-butter-matcha.html

This is definitely one I want to try as a Distinctive or even Robust flavoring, because I can barely taste any flavoring at the Delicate level. Having said that, it definitely smells like peanut butter, and the taste teases me. As I demolish the cup, it tastes more and more like peanut butter, and I want to see if I can get the flavoring to pop a bit more so that I love this, instead of just like it.

EDIT: Once I got to the bottom of the cup, it was most definitely a peanut butter matcha, including mouthfeel. It’s almost like this one needs massive sweetener to bring out the flavors, which surprised me. Upping rating, because at the end? Amazing!

Preparation
Iced
Fjellrev

Why is peanut butter so addictive? There are times when I just want to eat a spoon of it plain. You make me want to get this next order.

MissB

I don’t eat it anymore as I’ve got legume issues… with a LOT of sweetener, this is an excellent fix. Once I’ve gotten through this 60g I’ll definitely order again, however I’ll try it at Distinctive level.

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81
drank Raspberry Beret by Bluebird Tea Co.
1217 tasting notes

Thanks to Dexter3657 for sharing some of this with me!

This smells delicious – like I’ve just squashed a raspberry between my fingers. It steeped up nicely and I taste very little rooibos in this cup. Having said that, I kind of wish there was more raspberry in it, even though I’ve added some Truvia to it already to see if I could ramp it up just a teensy bit.

I do however love the title, and so I’ll sip it easily tonight, thinking about the time a few years back that I splurged to get one Prince ticket right next to the stage while he was in Victoria, BC, and where he sang RIGHT TO ME and pointed… ah… even the women around me squealed and asked why he picked me. Dunno what I did, other than just sing along to every single song he played, except for the radtastic medley where they jumped from song to song so fast, my head spun and my heart vibrated.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 5 min, 0 sec
Dexter

As Julia Roberts said in Pretty Woman “…gotta love Prince”

OMGsrsly

Haha! I saw the title of the post in my notices and just started singing at my friend. :D

MissB

Heh. You guys crack me up!

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76

Day One of the Dammann Freres 2013 tea Advent Calendar.

I’ve left this in my cup for well over an hour now, and I have to say it gets better as it steeps. At first, wasn’t a huge fan. Tasted like not much of anything. Now? It’s sweet without being cloying, and I’m at a loss as to what’s making it sweet (a plus, considering some apply-flavored teas are just yuck to me). There’s definitely vanilla and cinnamon in here too, although it all blends together quite nicely. Not for licorice-haters, as it’s the majority of the top and middle notes.

I’ll order this, however I’ll have to make a note to myself to steep it heavily and for quite some time before drinking it.

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more

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68
drank Rouge Bourbon by Mariage Frères
1217 tasting notes

Backlogged from earlier tonight.

Went to Faubourg with some friends tonight, a French patisserie in downtown Vancouver. They sell Mariage Freres tea there, and this was the first one that caught my eye. (For the record, they also sell them in the tins, however 50g is $38… Holt Renfrew is $24).

I found the smell of this tea to be standard rooibos, however the flavoring was very vanilla-rich, almost like a custardy booze. I re-steeped it twice with zero flavor loss, however I still wanted more out of this. More… bourbon? I dunno. I guess I just expected more from such an expensive tea, and one that’s hard to find here. I’ll order it again if it’s around, however I’ll likely never buy any loose for the house.

OMGsrsly

Is it worth going there, as someone who doesn’t eat gluten? Do they do tea to go or just sit down tea? :)

MissB

They do anything to go (as well as pre-orders), and do tea lattes too. EVERYTHING had gluten in it, except for the macarons… however no one who was working could tell me what the flour was that was used. The first gal tried to tell me, “macaron flour” and I laughed. She blushed and said I should call in the morning when the bakers are still in the store, and ask them. It’s also a surprisingly large store, with a movie playing on the wall and two stunning leaf/tree/crystal sculptures. It is however right next to a Cafe Artigiano, which I find to be much more gluten-friendly. I ate a lemon tart and just scraped it out of the tart. Super yummy, even though probably a bad idea in hindsight. :$

MissB

My guess is that the macarons are made as meringues as the outside shell, with buttercream inside… and thus, gluten-free.

OMGsrsly

French macaron are almond flour, sugar and egg whites. :) I couldn’t actually scrape out the tart. I’d end up either so sick, or with terrible brain fog. I can’t even do a little bit of regular soy sauce with my sushi anymore. I’ll have to check them out for tea to go. :)

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88
drank English Toffee Matcha by Red Leaf Tea
1217 tasting notes

Backlogged from earlier today.

Was out with a former colleague and friend at Cafe Deux Soleils (gosh I love that place!) and decided I had to have some matcha to perk me up. So, I brought my chasen, scoop and matcha with me in my bag, and then mixed it up at the table in some almond milk. Because I’m weird like that, and because really… it was one of the most normal things going on in hipsterville.

Size: 60g (Large)
Quality: Classic
Type: Regular
Flavor: Delicate
http://www.redleaftea.com/matcha-tea/english-toffee-matcha.html

It smells delicious – like toffee – however I felt that this tasted similarly to many of the other matchas I’ve had of late. Still super yummy, and I’m glad I have a lot left so that I can try out other combinations to see if I just missed something. I also added zero sweetener (forgot it at home), so that may be a part of the story there. May even try more tomorrow, just to see what’s what.

Having said all of that, it’s still buttery and delicious!

Preparation
Iced

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65
drank A Rabbit's Garden by Della Terra Teas
1217 tasting notes

I think I received this in a swap from Dexter3657, and so, thank you for sharing! This is a tea I really wanted to try. Just the title is intriguing, and then the ingredient list? Fascinating.

I’m unsure what I was expecting here though – perhaps a decaf (it’s not, and it’s almost 1am here, so… I’m tempting my sleep yet again). Perhaps a tasty, veggie tea treat? Dunno. All I know is, this both smells and tastes very vegetal, and really I find it just to be a green tea for the most part. It’s also gotten quite astrigent even though I steeped it for only three minutes at a low temperature… perhaps I did something wrong.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec
Fuzzy_Peachkin

I couldn’t get this tea to work for me either. I was so looking forward to something carrot-y too!

Dexter

I think (IIRC) you requested this. Not something I would normally just add to a swap. I haven’t tried it yet, and that doesn’t sound encouraging. I was hoping for “green tea soup”.

MissB

Yea, I’m pretty sure I did request it. It’s just such a great concept. “Green tea soup”? Hm. I can see how it might taste like that, maybe… possibly… I really just got green tea.

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88
drank Cheesecake Matcha by Red Leaf Tea
1217 tasting notes

Busted out the matcha again this ‘morning’ (it’s 1pm here), because I’m devoted to trying all of my various incarnations of these delicious drinks before I manage to share them all in swaps.

So cheesecake it is today, although there may have been some pineapple on the spoon as well from having just packaged up some for JennyFur.

Size: Small (30g)
Flavor: Delicate
Quality: Classic
Type: Regular
Quantity used: one matcha scoop in 8oz of cold coconut milk
Mixed with a chasen
http://www.redleaftea.com/matcha-tea/cheesecake-matcha.html

All I smell when I open the package is butter. Creamy butter. Lovely, however not what I normally associate with cheesecake. Drinking it also gives me butter at the start – which is delicious! Still, I want more cheesecake-y tang. After about half of the cup is finished however, I start to get the tang – so maybe I just needed to use more chasen-whipping skills to get this right. Yum….

Hey, did anyone see the newest offering on Red Leaf yet? Starbucks-comparable green tea frappuchino. Oh.. this makes me excited. I used to down those things like nobody’s business…

Preparation
Iced
VariaTEA

Flavored matcha, it’s really a thing of beauty :) glad the cheesecake-y tang finally came through

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Profile

Bio

Teaholic! Currently loving flavored blacks, greens, whites, green rooibos blends, straight blacks and greens, and have a long-standing adoration for herbals/medicinals. Dessert teas top my list along with anything cocoa-y.

I own an obscene amount of tea, and am always happy to share. Having said that, I’m traveling indefinitely (currently in France, was in Ireland and England prior, next up Belgium) so my stash will sit and wait for me, as I send back tea to explore more when I get home again.

In addition to loving tea, I’m a dating columnist, single mom, nerd, and avid knitter. I read way too much, type even more, and spend my ‘free’ time exploring, playing board games, reading, hiking, hanging with friends.

Allergies: Strawberries and all grains. I’m having a mild allergic reaction to both lavender and some roses in tea, and thus I’m avoiding these for now as well. I also avoid sugar and Splenda where possible.

Location

Burnaby, BC, Canada

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