1157 Tasting Notes

83

My lips and mouth are still swollen and burning from Bolero earlier today, so I should probably hold off on rating anything else until I’m done. :( Still, I did brew a few cups of this and therefore wanted to log it.

Smells like marzipan a bit as I opened the tin, and something chemical-ish. It’s normally what I associate with some sort of processed nut flavoring, although I’m still puzzled by it. Steeped, this smells more like cloves and cinnamon than anything.

This tastes like a nice black chai with some almonds in the finish. The orange is very subtle, and I only got it after adding some Truvia. It’s well into the sip, and lingers a bit along with the cinnamon/spice. Oddly, I get zero almond or marzipan taste, although this does feel creamy.

Would be delicious as a latte! Will have to try later when the reaction has disappeared completely.

Oh! Also, this is listed as “Esprit de Noel” on my tin.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec
JustJames

i have found with tinned MF that letting it breathe a bit can be advantageous…. someone on here suggested that to me very wisely, although i think it was with vanilla comoro from H&S.

MissB

Good idea. I’ll do just that. Thanks for the suggestion!

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drank Boléro by Mariage Frères
1157 tasting notes

This is a beautiful tea, both in how it smells and what it looks like. My immediate thought was Mediterranean, which is a bit odd considering I think more olives, feta and pasta -like smells when thinking of that part of the world. The apricot/peach is strong, as is something else fruity and deep.

I was a bit concerned with my first sip that there are strawberries in here, which I’m allergic to. I tried finding a list of ingredients however I gave up; the box just says black tea, cornflower, mallow and flavors. Sigh.

I took two sips, even though the first one confirmed for me there are strawberries in here, I just had to taste to make sure. (Call me willful). It’s a tart, earl grey -like black, with apricot and peaches at the forefront, and I think a flowery fig in there somewhere, too. Definitely strawberries as well, and something rosey. I’d love it and drink more if I could, and it would likely hold up well to some cream and sugar.

And so, I will package this up for my teenage daughter to drink, because I know she’ll love it. If anyone would like to try some of this in the impending swaps, let me know.

Which, incidentally, three packages showed up today, however Canada Post just left the note to pick them up tomorrow. I’m really hoping it’s my Red Leaf and 52Teas orders! :)

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 0 sec
Dexter

I bought a tin of this. The earl grey comment scares me – ick. I was expecting black fruity. Will have to try it and see….
(According to the tracking, one of those packages should be my swap package to you.)

MissB

Maybe it is black fruity; the allergic reaction definitely messed with my ability to taste.

And, yay! I’d hoped the third one was yours. If 52Teas is with it, I can send you off your package, finally. :)

OMGsrsly

Oh, that really sucks!

MissB

Yea, I’m a bit sad. Just means more lovely tea to share, though! :)

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74
drank White Chocolate Frost by DAVIDsTEA
1157 tasting notes

I really enjoyed Teavana’s version of this blend, so I had to compare the two. The lady behind the counter at DT warned me to steep this less than the package stated because the mint overpowers everything — and I forgot. So… this is very minty, and it’s taken until it cooled to really get anything other than mint out of it.

Like Birthday Cake, this also has a film-y, buttery, creamy oddness to it. I like it, and yet… I want more chocolate in this blend, and less oil.

I think I’ll stick to Teavana’s version, I definitely liked it more. Okay, I will try one more time with the last of what I have, and steep it much less. To make it fair. Right? Yeah, that’s it.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 7 min, 0 sec
VariaTEA

That’s weird that you mention the oils on this one because I thought the Teavana blend was very oily however I had this as a latte and thought it was amazing so perhaps to get the comparison I would need to have the Teavana blend as a latte too

MissB

They’re both oily, and I’m sure it’s from the chocolate. I much prefer teas that use caocao beans or husks (or hell, even flavoring) to make chocolate teas. I’d say this one is oilier, only because it lingered all night and into the morning in my mouth, and so much so that I was able to moisturize my lips with it. ;) They were equally fun to scrub out of my kettle, although this one was a bit easier.

VariaTEA

Tbh I only ever had this as a latte from DAVIDs but after trying White Chocolate Peppermint, I can say I prefer the taste of this one. And I know the lingering of oily teas – I had Teavana’s Pumpkin Spice Brulee and I still have nightmares about the oil given it coated my mouth and even after brushing I could still not get rid of it.

MissB

This one is definitely mintier. I also find I can rarely re-create what they make for me in-store, unless I ask for it unsweetened. I was tempted to grab a to-go of this as a latte yesterday, however the store was SO busy, and I’d just taken up a 30 min of a staff member’s time making a ridiculous number of 20g samples for me to try out and take home.

VariaTEA

I never add sweetner to my lattes so I have luckily been able to recreate what they make at home and I have definitely been that person taking up all of a staff members time before.

Fjellrev

I had no idea Teavana made something similar. The oil slick is such a turnoff, and totally ruins the experience, in my opinion.

MissB

I think Teavana called theirs White Chocolate Peppermint, and it really just looks like white and dark chocolate bits. I’ve got a few chocolate teas coming, and I really hope they pass on the oils.

Fjellrev

Ah, I see it’s a rooibos. Just too bad you have to commit to 2 oz. with them.

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drank Alpine Punch by DAVIDsTEA
1157 tasting notes

Went to brew this just now, and whatever the artificial flavor is in this tea literally knocked me off my feet. It smells wrong to me. Really, really wrong.

I’ve put it away for later, perhaps as a gift for someone else (even though it’s only 20g), unless someone can convince me it tastes infinitely better than it smells.

JustJames

i am allergic to something in this blend. i read the ingredients and i KNOW my allergies— david’s is NOT good for diligence towards ingredients lists. thus i am cautious.

Amariel

I love this one. It’s one of a few rooibos teas that I actually like.

MissB

Heather, I would love to send this to you, if you’d like it.

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60
drank Birthday Cake by DAVIDsTEA
1157 tasting notes

Okay birthday cake, you’re up next in the taste testing evening extraordinaire of decaf teas of (hopeful) deliciousness.

So, I get why people think this smells like maple syrup. Having grown up surrounded by the stuff, I’d say this smells more like pancake syrup with some maple flavor added to it, Aunt Jemimma style. Steeped it smells pretty much the same.

I’m surprised by the taste of this tea. It tastes.. a bit buttery, a tiny bit maple-y at the end of the sip, and that’s really it. I decided to add some Truvia because, well, I thought it would add some complexity. Thankfully, it did. I can taste more of the icing-like flavor now, and the maple tastes real and ripe. It’s still lacking for me though. Zero cake, and zero… I dunno. Depth?

Maybe I steeped it wrong (followed the package instructions) and I know I leafed it perfectly. I’ll try again with the few tsp I have left, however I doubt I’ll ever buy this again.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 7 min, 0 sec
VariaTEA

This tea tends to be pretty weak in the flavor department so it is probably not your brewing that caused you to find it lacking. Personally I dont mind this tea in the evening because I think I just really like the smell of it. It’s not a bad latte – that helps bring out the creaminess and some sweetness

OMGsrsly

Definitely pancake syrup, not real maple syrup. :) I might have a cup now, though.

MissB

The more I drink it, the more of the pancake syrup-y smell comes out, and the more I think… overbuttered popcorn? Or maybe even caramel corn. It’s like there’s that same feeling on my lips. I kinda like it considering I’ve gone grain-free in the past few months. I’ll definitely try it as a latte, or maybe a latte smoothie?

MissB

It does smell divine though.. I could easily have my house smell like this all winter.

OMGsrsly

Try a tiny tiny pinch of salt in it, wow. Just a few grains.

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65
drank Coco Chai Rooibos by DAVIDsTEA
1157 tasting notes

I think this is what I’m drinking. With my huge haul of tea today, I decided I should probably hold off on all of the caffeinated Mariage Freres goodness and dive into all of the smaller size decaf blends from DAVID’s that I grabbed today. This was the first one that grabbed me, because I really need some extra spice right now to continue slaying the chest cold in record time.

Dry, the smell surprised me. Coconut spice chai? Intriguing. For some reason I thought the coco in this was cocoa instead of coconut.

Steeped, it smells the same, if a bit of an odd coconut smell. The flavor seems a bit off too, a bit chemical-y perhaps, or the cardamom is reacting somehow with the coconut. It’s nice, buttery, spicy and pleasant, I’m just.. loving other stuff more. Have @ 1.5tsp left, so this may go into the swap or gift box.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 7 min, 0 sec

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77
drank Juicy Blueberry by Zen Tea
1157 tasting notes

This definitely smells like ripe blueberries out of the bag, and a bit less so after steeping. I was surprised at the first sip how much this does taste like blueberries, if a bit tartly (kind of like a dry wine). Truvia made it juicier, yet drier at the same time. The raisins are definitely prominent.

I like this, and I can imagine it amazeballs as an iced tea. Yummy, although I’d prefer it a bit more complex. Maybe it’s the cold, so I’ll definitely try this again in a few days.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 0 sec
JustJames

ah….. great minds drink alike! aside from my heather mishap i’ve been having a blueberry day as well.

MissB

I wish I could like that comment. :)

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73

This is a bit of a deceiving tealog, only because I’ve blended this with Throat Coat (same company) and DAVID’s Super Ginger to make a potent potion. So 1L of water, two Cold Formula’s opened and dumped into my Breville, two Throat Coat’s opened and dumped into my Breville, then two rounded tsp of Super Ginger. Steep, and voila!

This is a surprisingly tasty combination, and naturally sweet to boot. It smells like herbally-hay, but tastes like a licorice mint chai with the burn of ginger and peppercorns. I’d drink this while healthy. Tasty!

Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 0 sec
Ozli

That sounds disturbingly good – feel better!

MissB

Aw, thank you. I think this tea was exactly what I needed.

Fjellrev

Must have been potent indeed! Hope it soothed your throat.

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94
drank L'Anniversaire by Fauchon
1157 tasting notes

I drank the whole mug before I got to writing this, which is a bit of a shame because I tend to forget quite quickly what’s happening with my first impressions of a tea… while there’s a zoo going on around me. You know the drill, a teenager who wants to DO something, a 5-year-old that spilled the liquid chocolate popsicle mix all over the kitchen, a client emergency, and a phlegmy cold. Yep, that’s my Sunday.

The tin for this tea was ingenious, and offered a little cardboard hello as I opened it, basically saying it’s packaged this way to retain the flavors. Neat! I had to slide the top off sideways, then lift a sealed jewelbox -like door to get to the tea, which was filled to the brim. The scent of raspberries wafted up to me, and a touch of… cake?

Steeped, this still smells mostly of raspberries with something else a bit floral in the background. My first taste threw me off, as there was little raspberry. More of a… cakey, minty floral something or other. Intrigued, I drank more, and it evolved. Raspberries did come into the mix, and much more so once sweetened with Truvia. I can taste the rose in there, and the aftertaste is definitely dry raspberries, with maybe, mint? Cooling, dry.

I like this a lot, even though I’m struggling to describe it well. Surprised me, as I was expecting more of a birthday cake kind of tea, like DAVID`s maybe, and this is so much more complex and intriguing.

Felt like this was a long time to steep a black, so I may try for 3-4 minutes next time.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec
Cavocorax

Ooooh, that sounds so good!

MissB

Would you believe I found this at Winners? I’ll gladly send you some if you like to try it; I’m definitely going back for more ASAP.

MissB

… if you would… Jeepers. :$

Cavocorax

Thanks for the offer, but I think I’ll try to run out to Winners and see what I can find! I’ve got one fairly close. :)

MissB

Oh, awesome! Let me know what you find.

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100
drank L'Automne by Fauchon
1157 tasting notes

Holy moly. Just as I thought this tea was perfect as-is, I added Truvia to it.

The first few sips of the second mug (that sat a while), are more orange, less chocolate. About halfway through the cup it got back to the dry 100% cocoa-y vibe, and so I decided, “Why not? I’ll add some sweetener and see how it tastes.”

Well now, it’s like candy. I’m a greedy gal who wants to gulp it down in one sip. That’s right, like rich, decadent, very dark, orange chocolate, minus any cream, although it is quite buttery. The orange is most prominent now, with the dry cocoa following. Oh, wait. Do I dare add cream?

Maybe next time. This is just plain awesomesauce, and I want to cup to last forever.

Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 0 sec

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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 Ireland) 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 either running, swinging kettlebells, or 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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