160 Tasting Notes

83

Back to my travel adventures… So, finally got on the plane to get from Quito to Miami. I felt safe finally in my assigned seat, but… American Airlines had more surprises in store for me! Two young girls kindly asked me to get up because I was sitting in their seats. Hmmm…. But my ticket said it was my seat… Wow… We had been double booked!!! Thankfully there were enough empty seats that we were able to figure things out. But, double booking on an international airline flight??? Really?!? We start taking off, and had to stop due to technical difficulties. Finally we take off at 8:30pm (we were supposed to take off at 11:00am!!!!

When I finally got to Miami I had a stomach ache and was incredibly frustrated. Time to get some tea… Thankfully the first overpriced coffee shop I found in the airport had this tea. I didn’t get to sniff the bag before it got dunked in the water, but the ingredients made me think it would be tasty and my tummy agreed.

The smell of the super burning hot (how do you get water to even be that hot!?) was pleasantly cinnamony relaxing. I felt as a texture more than tasted rooibos and thankfully the anise note was barely there. Minty aftertaste completed what I believe is the best tummy tissane I have had so far. The honey I added made it sweet and satisfying. Believe it or not, it really did help ease my stomach ache! 

I finished my cup and finally was in the USA! Sadly only for a couple of days! Today I am on my way back to Ecuador, hopefully American Airlines treats me better on the way home!!! 

Preparation
Boiling
TeaBrat

good luck!

Bonnie

Love your adventure! My Aunt lived in Quito in the 1940’s and my cousin lives in Guayaquil now. I Have one of those families that lives all over…Linguistics and International banking etc. Me, I visit and drink coffee and tea! Hope you had a good time!

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7
drank Carrot Cake by DAVIDsTEA
160 tasting notes

What a day for disappointments!!! Today, I am traveling for a few days to visit my brother in the US. I woke up early and when I got to the airport I found out that my flight had been delayed until 5:50pm!!! My connection got ruined, my short trip just got shorter, and worst of all, I am going to have to stay in a hotel in Miami and get up at 3am to catch a plane…. I am not a happy camper… And I am very annoyed at American Airlines for doing nothing to let me know about an entire days worth of delay… Oh well…

So, I spent the day at work and made some of this tea. I was very excited to try this one. I was hoping that I would love it. I did not. It was a sad experience. A days worth of disappointments…

The dry tea leaves smelled like paint thinner. I was very very confused. The more I sniffed, the more I was sure that it smelled very chemical. I was weary to brew it, but I went ahead and prepared it.

The brewed tea was a nice orange color. The scent, sadly, still strongly resembled paint thinner. My office smelled like it had just been painted. Was this tea really drinkable!?! Would I live through ingesting something resembling paint thinner? Time to find out.

Unsweetened it tasted very chemically with an aftertaste of freshly painted office. Sweetened with Splenda it tasted initially of dough and nuts, but quickly transitioned into paint… I gulped it down hanging on to the doughy flavor, but in the end my mouth was invaded by a chemical paint thinner ghost of a flavor. The scent of paint thinner that persisted in the empty cup was so strong that I had to get up and rinse it out. I simply could not sit and work to that smell… I can’t believe I actually drank the entire cup of this…

I think that this negative review is highly influenced by my terrible mood, but I am sure I will never try this again. If anyone is interested in this tea, I will gladly send it out to you!!!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec
momo

:( sorry about your bad day! I was driving down a street today and something smelled like chocolate chip cookies at first and then it turned out to be overwhelmingly PAINT. Can’t say now I ever want to try this tea after seeing a couple people say it smells like it, yikes.

K S

Suddenly I feel better about my day. Hope things are looking up soon. Every tea I have tried with apple in it has that smell to me.

TeaBrat

I did not really like this one either…

Dinosara

Sorry to hear about your travel woes… hope things go as smooth as they can from here on out!

smartkitty

I hope you find a better tea to drink in the evening :( Bad tea on a bad day is the worst.

TheTeaFairy

after your misfortune, sounds like you really needed a decent tea to cheer up on…I think this tea is an aberration and should be forever removed from DT’s collection. Yurk, you reminded me how awful it tastes like! I hope you were able to indulge into something that made you feel better :-)

Bonnie

I think you are spot on!

Mélissa

You should’ve checked the reviews on this one before buying… A real bummer.

ScottTeaMan

How long are you in the States?!

Ninavampi

@ScottTeaMan- Only until today today! It was too quick and spontaneous of a trip to plan anything or order any tea… But at least I had a good brief vacation!

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95
drank Birthday Tea by Adagio Teas
160 tasting notes

Honestly, i don’t know if I have a soft spot for Adagio or if my taste-buds are just off tune, but there are quite a few Adagio teas that I really enjoy. I believe that a lot may have to do with Adagio’s flavored teas being my first loose leaf flavored… But either way, I happily really enjoyed this blend. Thanks to Auggy for the opportunity to try it (and quite a few more)!

The smell of the leaves was nothing spectacular. Just vaguely creamy vanillaish. Of course the harsh Assam base scent was there. If this could be fixed, I would love Adagio a whole bunch more. But, all in all, a rather uneventful pre-sipping sniffing session with this blend. The few sprinkles saved the leaves from being boring, and colors always make me smile, so extra credit points there!

The brewed tea smelled buttery and had a strong vanilla note to it. It actually reminded me of the icing that my mom would make for my birthday cakes as a kid (and as a grown up as well… You can’t outgrow birthday cake made by mom can you???). Unsweetened it tasted rather dull, and the astringency was a bit too much to deal with. Sweetened, it was scrumptious. It was smooth and creamy with enough vanilla in it to top it off as a flavor and not only a sensation or texture. I was impressed. As it cooled down the vanilla became even more present and the vanilla birthday cake illusion was complete.

Needless to say, my cup of tea did not last me very long… Sipping slowly was futile… Too tasty for patience.

I am really happy I got to try this, and will have to order it! : ) Yum… Great way to end a busy productive day!

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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62
drank Fruta Bomba by Teavana
160 tasting notes

I feel that my opinion of this particular tea is highly influenced by my experience purchasing it. I was on a trip to Boston, dropping my brother off at his university. Since I was in the US, I HAD to stock up on tea, and that included my visit to Teavana. When I got there, I was surprised to find that they were just about to start discontinuing tea. The vendor told me that she couldn’t tell me which ones were going to be discontinued yet, but she could hint at it if I was buying one of the teas that would be discontinued so I could stock up (confusing… I know…).

I picked out my tea and when I decided to try this one, the vendor told me this one would be discontinued for sure, so I bought 4 oz just in case I really liked it and would never be able to get it again. I was so proud of myself for being smart and buying it and liking it and having it in my stash once it was “going to be discontinued”.

Once Teavana announced which teas were being discontinued, this one was not on the list. I liked it, not loved it, and was stuck with 4oz of it… Needless to say, I put it away and didn’t drink it for a while. I somehow had a thought of this tea while walking my dogs, and when we got back, I brewed some up.

The dry tea is a bright mix of fruits and tea leaves. The lemon grass is far more abundant than the green tea leaves. There are candied fruits and petals that make it a pretty blend to look at. The scent is very fruity and fresh. I smell apple and peach. Maybe a bit of papaya. Mostly just fruity.

Brewed it is a yellow-green golden color. The scent is just as fruity. Unsweetened it is tasty, but a bit bitter for my liking. Sweetened with brown sugar it is much tastier. The fruitiness covers up the green tea almost entirely, but it is still an enjoyable brew. I get apple and generic tropical flavor. It does remind me of a peachy papaya flavor. It is fruity and refreshing.

The first few times I had it, I really didn’t like it. But, in retrospect, I feel it was my experience purchasing it that was influencing my taste-buds. Now that more time has passed, I am able to enjoy it much more. Funny how emotions play a huge part in taste perception…

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 1 min, 0 sec
smartkitty

Well, fruta bomba is what the Cubans call papaya, since papaya to a Cuban is fairly rude. Have you tried it iced? I’m curious if it would be juice-like, which may influence my decision to get some.

KeenTeaThyme

Another Teavana victim! Sorry that happened to you. :( I actually enjoy blending this one with Jingaa Citrus Twist, so there’s a bit of extra flavor.

SimpliciTEA

More game-playing from Teavana. It’s amazing how many of these stories I hear …

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95
drank Guanabana by Adagio Teas
160 tasting notes

First, thanks to MadelineAlyce for this swap! Second, thanks to Guanabana tea for reviving my faith in Adagio. Adagio was the instigator of my tea love/obsession. Somehow this of love affair has been forgotten and replaced by a variety of tea companies, but I welcome Adagio back with open arms!!!

Guanabana is a very common flavor here in Ecuador. We have it daily in juice, ice cream, and even as plain fruit. The taste of the fruit is similar to leechy, which I also really enjoy. That being said, this tea had me really curios. It could be delicious or disaster, I had my fingers crossed for delicious.

The smell of the tea was surprisingly delicate for a black tea. There was a light fruitiness to it accompanied by a timid black tea base, which is odd considering how harsh Adagio’s flavored blacks can be. The best part is that the smell actually did remind me of Guanabana!

I brewed the tea, and the brown liquor smelled joyously like Guanabana. It was exactly what I was hoping for. Wow… This tea is really accomplishing all of my expectations! Now for the final and most important challenge… taste!

First sip, unsweetened, and… Yum! Wait, this is a black fruity flavored tea from Adagio… and I like it unsweetened!?!? The second sip proved it. This tea is, so far, as perfect as a fruity flavored black tea has been for me. Delicious, smooth with a sweet aftertaste. The flavor stands out and doesn’t get in the way of the tea experience as a whole. It doesn’t need any sweetener to make itself be noticed or fully appreciated. I imagine it is just as tasty sweetened, perhaps even more. Either way, this was delicious. The aftertaste was so smooth and sweet that I could have easily compared it to an oolong. Which, mind you, are a favorite of mine.

I should have imagined this was a good idea, considering guanabana tastes so much like leechy, and leechy is a natural great flavor for tea. Way to go Guanabana! More people should consider mixing you with tea! Can’t wait until I am able to place an order from Adagio again! (Arg… living in Ecuador makes it REALLY hard to order stuff!)

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 3 min, 0 sec
Tamm

This sounds super tasty! I’ve only had guanabana flavored things along with other flavors so I’m not sure what it should taste like. I saw very small ones at the store the other day, but they were $6 a piece! :( I don’t have that kind of fruit budget! lolol

smartkitty

I haven’t had an honest-to-goodness guanabana in a long while. Closest I’ve come in the recent past was freshly-made guanabana ice cream last year, but it’s not quite the same as digging into the fruit. STILL, now I really want some of this tea!

Ninavampi

Thankfully fruit is suuuper cheap in Ecuador, and most fruits are in season all year long! : )

Tamm

Lucky lucky! LOL this makes me want to somehow smuggle fruit through the mail. :p I live in a pretty landlocked desert area so if there’s two things I wish were cheaper it’d be fruit like kiwis/mangoes and fish…

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78
drank Wedding Cake by Adagio Teas
160 tasting notes

Thanks to Auggy for this tea! : )

I am not sure what wedding cake in the US tastes like. My Mom tried to explain it to me, but I honestly didn’t quite get it. Either way, I really enjoyed this tea! I have had a few cups so far (Auggy was really generous with her samples!) and every single cup was delightful.

The dry leaves smelled sweet with hints of strawberry and something nutty, which I am guessing must have been the almond peaking through. I also got the strong scent of the black tea base. All in all it smelled tasty!

I brewed two heaping teaspoons and got dark burgundy brew that smelled sweet and inviting. It was both strong and relaxing. I got mostly black tea with a sweet flavor followed by strawberry and almond. It is a sweet and relaxing combination of flavors! I would love to have my wedding cake taste like this! It is good not sweetened and unsweetened. As with most flavored teas, the sweetness really makes the flavors stand out. So, in conclusion, best enjoyed sweetened.

Yum… I am going to miss this once my sample is out! I may have to buy some at some point!

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec
Auggy

I think I actually like this one more than the Birthday Tea – I’m not always in the mood for flavored but I do think this one is tasty!

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50

I received this in a swap from Auggy. Thanks so much!!! I am so excited to try everything! : ) Now, the review!

I took this with me to work today because I have been having busy weeks and didn’t want to miss out on trying it! I am on a coconut roll lately, so this, in theory, fit right in to what I was craving.

The smell of the tea bag reminded me sun block. I guess that mango and coconut are the scents that are generally used to make you want to slop on the greasy, thick white cream and protect your skin from the sun. I didn’t think this was a bad thing, just a strong correlation that came to mind every time I sniffed it. No hint of oolong though…

I steeped it for the shorter time recommended on the envelope. The smell was as tropical as a day lying in the sand sipping a cold drink in the sun with a good book could be. Now is when I catch a whiff of something oolongy in the scent. Ah, so it is tea and not just flavoring after all! The licqour was a light greenish orange that hinted towards brown.

Unsweetened, it tasted like sunblock with a bit of Oolong, with none of the sweet aftertaste which is what I love about Oolong… Sweetened it tasted tropical and enjoyable, a hint of Oolong, and an aftertaste of sour instead of the smooth, sweet finish that I have grown to expect from Oolongs. It is the sour in the aftertaste that made this tea not a winner for me.

The second steep (1 min longer) tasted exactly like a watered down version of the first steep. Drinkable, but not a tea I would re-steep if I have it again.

All in all, I am happy that I got to try it! I really am! I did enjoy drinking it, but there are sooo many other good coconut teas that I could be drinking instead… I do not think I will be purchasing this, though I will have another cup of it tomorrow (maybe iced…)

Preparation
4 min, 0 sec
ScottTeaMan

I got this tea for my sister a couple yrs ago. She and my viece Brie loved it. It’s obviously a personal taste kind of thing. I do not buy flavored Oolongs (and not much flavored anything), because I like to experience the tea itself. To some this may seem boring, but I’m perfectly fine with my unflavored teas. :))

Ninavampi

I do think it is a tasty tea, I just didn’t find the Oolonginess that I was expecting : ) I can see how it would be super tasty to some people.

Tastes in general are personal, that is what makes reviewing and reading reviews about tea so fun! : )

Auggy

I would say I’m sorry you didn’t like it, but honestly, I didn’t like it either! I figured there was a chance you might get more enjoyment out of it than I did but oh well. At least you are like me and seem to like the chance to try anything! :)

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75

Thanks to American Tea Room for this sample! I am getting to it a little late, but I am happy I got to it now! This is my first tea from American Tea Room.

I loved the little sample packet! Only flaw was that it wasn’t resealable. This is one of the reasons that it has taken me so long to get around to opening it, I didn’t have anywhere to store the leftovers! I was weary of how Christmasy this tea could be, since I relate Christmas directly to sugar and spice!

Once I opened the pack, the scent that greeted me was entirely Christmasy! In fact, it reminded me of the red scented candles that are generic Christmas scent. I asked everyone around me at that moment and everyone agreed that it smelled like Christmas. Wow! I would have never guessed Christmas tea could be managed without thick spiciness! It looked very pretty with large pieces of cranberry and pomegranate. The red and green in the dry tea made me wish it was Christmas time again.

I brewed it according to the suggested parameters. The resulting brew was baby pink, as far as I can remember, the pinkest tea I have seen so far! The smell continued to be very christmasy, with a hint of cranberry.

The taste unsweetened, was nothing spectacular. Sweetened, the cranberry stood out followed by a faint cinnamon aftertaste. I really enjoyed this cup of tea! I stand corrected! Christmas tea does not depend only on the mix of spices!

After this, I am going to have to get around to placing an order from American Tea Room!

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec
TheTeaFairy

Like the idea of a pink X-Mas tea :o) Sounds lovely, I agree that x-mas should not always be associated with spice, one of the reason I love Santas Secret from Davids Tea so much!

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95

I have had a hectic week. Hectic means very little time to read and/or write about tea. On the positive side I’m back! On the less positive side, I am really tired… Either way, a hot cup of pancake tea in my hand and a computer being used for things other than work is now a happy little quite moment as my dogs sit quietly by my side!

This is a happy tea. A warm, sweet, delightful, waking, tasty enjoyable tea. As many have said, the longer it sits, the better the flavors seem to behave. I agree. The pancake, syrup and butter are in harmony and stronger than I remember them.

Of course, I added brown sugar (who has ever heard of maple syrup that isn’t sweet… Seriously!) to give it the final touch to make it as similar to real pancakes as possible. I feel like the only thing that could make it better at this particular moment would be real pancakes to accompany it! Yummmm….

Uped the rating a bit, due to the sheer joy the flavor is causing me right now!

Frank, I believe this is the 50th or so plea for you to add this on to the permanent collection! : )

MegWesley

This tea always sounds so good! Everybody keeps raving about it. Maybe Frank will listen one day and make it so.

Daniel Scott

I keep hearing about this one! Sounds so good, it’s a shame it’s sold out, or I would have bought a bag when I finish getting my new Paypal account verified. I definitely think it sounds like one that should be permanent. Something about “pancake tea” screams, “breakfast tea!” not “one-of-a-kind novelty,” even if it IS unique.

Ninavampi

It is!!!!! Frank, please? I am afraid mine will be gone soon, and my tea cabinet will never be the same without it!

Daniel Scott

Maybe you could start a petition on the forums? :P

52teas

No need to petition. I just announced our 2012 inductees to our Permanent collection: Pancake Breakfast and Cinnamon Roll Honeybush. I’m just hoping this doesn’t mean everyone is going to suddenly stop ordering them. (that has happened in the past)

Ninavampi

Yay! Thanks Frank! You are amazing! As soon as you announce the tea of this week, I am placing a rather large order! : )

MegWesley

This is awesome. I have a shopping list that I hope to get. Maybe I can talk my mom into an easter gift.

Daniel Scott

Awesome! I will definitely be ordering some.

I imagine people stop ordering them because they now figure there’s no rush to get them.

Ninavampi

I am so happy this is permanent now… :)

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68

Yum blueberries. No blueberries in Ecuador. : ( Thankfully I can get blueberry tea to make up for it!

This tea is very pretty to look at. Gunpowder tea has always seemed visually appealing to me. It is both interesting and beautiful. The cornflowers are also beautiful. but very scarce. The smell is very much blueberry. Sadly not fresh blueberry, but more a blueberry jam type smell. While not as great as fresh blueberries, blueberry jam is still great.

It is freezing today, so I couldn’t wait to have my hot cup of tea. The brewed tea smelled a bit more like fresh blueberries, I believe that the green tea base helped with this illusion. The plantiness that it adds to the scent really helps it. Unfortunately, I also caught a scent of anise. I have no idea where it came from, but it was undoubtedly there.

Unsweetened it was pretty good. Green tea up front with a fresh blueberry aftertaste. Unfortunately there was still something that lingered in the background reminding me of Anise. When I sweetened it the blueberry became stronger and more enjoyable. The green tea was overtaken, but it wasn’t gone. I enjoyed the subtle vegetable green that it added to the flavor.

It held up decently to a second steep (2min) which was still tasty, just watered down.

Sadly, it doesn’t get a higher score because I got random anise flavor in the brew. I have no idea how or what was making me think this had anise in it, but it didn’t make me happy. It was tame enough that I could enjoy the cup of tea with no major distractions from the phantom flavor.

On a completely unrelated note, my puppy won 2nd place in the bulldog puppy category over the weekend! : ) I was so proud of her!

Preparation
1 min, 0 sec
Tina S.

Note to self, do not move to Ecuador, as you will never survive without your blueberry fixes!

I’m sad your blueberry tea wasn’t as awesome as you’d hoped!

Ninavampi

I wish I had come to that conclusion… There are still plenty of yummy fruits to eat!

rmark25

I really enjoy Blueberry Black tea from enjoyingtea.com

rmark25

..and No blueberries in Ecuador? All of our blueberries in the Winter come from Peru or Chile..I’m amazed you can’t get them…but you have Guayusa!

ScottTeaMan

Congrats to you and Sencha. :))

Ninavampi

Thanks! : )

SimpliciTEA

Yes, congratulations! He (or she) looks like a cutie! I am a huge dog lover, myself.

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Profile

Bio

I love tea and have since I was a little girl. Once I could buy my own tea, I began to explore and learn about the extensive and delicious world of tea!

Also, love my French Bulldog (named Sencha…) and my tea oblivious boyfriend. I enjoy ice skating (I am a part time coach), reading, writing, baking, running, and lots of sweets!

My favorite teas tend to be on the sweeter side. Both flavored and plain teas are great to me. Currently going through a flavored tea phase. Enjoying it greatly! : )

Location

Quito, Ecuador

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