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158 Tasting Notes

71
drank Coconut Oolong by Rishi Tea
158 tasting notes

Thanks to Auggy for this sample! I still haven’t gotten through all of them, but I am getting there! 

I love oolongs, but I have generally had bad luck with flavored oolongs. This one smelled so good and the leaves looked so beautiful that it made me rethink my disdain for most flavor oolongs. I put a smile on my face while I scooped out my leafy green leaves for my cup. The coconut scent was mouthwatering but it completely covered up the oolong scent. 

While it brewed it gave off delicious coconut smell. It was a very creamy scent. The resulting brew was a light yellow color, that held on to the coconut scent. The flavor was the problem. While tasty, it wasn’t quite what the scent promised. The coconut was there, but not quite as creamy as one would expect. It felt incredibly light and somewhat planty. I found the oolong flavor, but rather than collaborating with the coconut, I felt that the flavors were competing for protagonism. I sweetened the tea with a bit of rock sugar and I found a tiny bit of the creamy goodness that the scent promised, but it still was  more watery than creamy. It reminded me of a honey and milk flavored candy that I would get in Ecuador as a kid. Tasty, but not quite what I was expecting. 

I will happily go through the generous sample that Auggy sent me, but I don’t think I will purchase any on my own. I will try it with a dash of milk next time, maybe that is what is missing for me to achieve the creamy sensation to complete the deliciously creamy scent! 

Preparation
3 min, 0 sec
Auggy

I think I had similar issues with this one – it smells SO FREAKIN GOOD! But the taste just doesn’t match up! Oh well!

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91

I have cooked with matcha, I have had matcha lattes prepared for me and I have even had loose leaf tea that was mixed with matcha, but today, for the first time, I made actual wisked matcha!!!
I bought this 50% off a while ago, but only just got it since it was delivered in the US and had to find its way to me. Finally, today, I decided to open my little kit and give it a first try.

I happily measured out my matcha and near boiling water and put them in the glass bowl that was included. I loved how green the matcha becomes in the water. It turns emrald green and after long attempts to properly froth it, I ended up with a tiny bit of pastel green bubbles on the surface of an emerald green liqour. I loved the smell. It reminded me of sencha with a bouncy personality to it. It was increadibly relaxing to prepare and at the same time exciting and fun.

The taste was amazing. Sweet, smooth and creamy with a hint of vegetable and vitamine bitterness that played in just right. My Dad and brother ended up stealing my first cup of it while my boyfriend stared at the liquid as if it were going to jump up out of the bowl and bite him. No luck convincing him to try it… Oh well… That means more for me! I made a second cup (both had about 1 tsp to 8oz of water) for me to enjoy. I loved it. I decided to sweeten the last few sips to see what happened, but I definitely liked it better plain. The natural sweetness of the tea was more than enough to make it delicious. 

Sadly (or maybe thankfully?) I don’t get any effects from caffeine, and I was sorta hoping that I would feel the caffeine in the matcha. I didn’t… Just a happy glow from having great tea and a smile from a quick afternoon nap after a bit of a good book next to my boyfriend and bulldogs. 

Tea makes happy afternoons even shinier! : )  

Tamm

I am glad you like this one! I may have added too much powder to mine the first time I tried it, but I really disliked it. Now I have a full can of it sitting here…

Ninavampi

@Tamm- Have you tried other matchas? If you have, did you like those? This is my first experience with a matcha prepared as it should be, so I really don’t have much to comapre it to. But, I am super happy that I liked it! : )

Tamm

I have actually tried a few, but I think what through me off is that I felt that it was just bitter enough to turn me off…I think that tomorrow (so it’s not late) I will try making this again. Maybe lower temp+less matcha will do the trick?

ScottTeaMan

I do like matcha, but I’ve only had one kind from Upton Tea. I like the way Matcha gets frothy.

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95
drank Muscat by Lupicia
158 tasting notes

Instant favorite that has caused me to start trying to figure out how I can get an order from Lupicia to Ecuador (sadly no international shipping)… Thanks to MadelineAlyce for sending me some of this!

The scent of the tea is all Muscat. I love Muscat. I sniffed and drooled as my mind took me to the few times I have been able to enjoy Muscat grapes or Muscat flavored candies or goodies. The tea leaves looked black and plain, but the smell promised an exciting tea!

While brewing, the Muscato scent was all over. I couldn’t stop smiling as the scent filled every corner of our kitchen and seemed to brighten the night with memories of tasty things and good times. The three minutes could not pass fast enough. I wanted to try it!

Unsweetened it was a bit on the sour side. I got Muscato flavor, but it was only half there hiding behind the black tea. Sweetened it was like magic in my tea cup. The sweet Muscato was there fully in every sip. First up I tasted grape, followed by black tea and the aftertaste was pure sweet delicous Muscato! This is an instant favorite!

I can’t wait to get a chance to order this!

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec
Bonnie

I bought this in San Jose California and liked how delicious it is! Very bright muscat with a slight honeyed finish thick and luscious!

Scharp

Interesting; I’ll have to taste this for myself. I’ve never heard of a muscat-flavored tea before. I’ll order online, and I hope I receive it soon.

Bonnie

This comes in decaf, muscat oolong, and several others.

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61
drank Creme Brulee by DAVIDsTEA
158 tasting notes

One of my favorite desserts in the whole world is creme brûlée. It is so creamy and scrumptious… I felt I needed something delicious to make up for a long, busy, pretty productive yet very hectic and stressful Monday. This tea (received in a swap from Indigobloom!) seemed like just the thing I needed to relax.

The smell of the dry leaves was vanilla with a strong caramel component. The rooibos was a prominent note in the scent as well. This worried me. Not a huge fan of rooibos flavor. The rooibos was decorated with tiny yellow flowers, but overall did not strike me as a particularly picturesque blend.

While I brewed this tea (I brewed it for a long while) a caramel sweet smell was comming from the cup. I was busy enjoying the scent when my dogs decided it was a good time to brawl. I thankfully broke them up before anyone got hurt, but I was psychologically exhausted and not willing to deal with jealousy fits at the moment. So, once everything calmed down, I was ready to sip this.

First sip, increadibly unremarkable rooibos vanilla. Second sip, liked it even less. Time for sweetener. Sweetened it tasted sweet, ROOIBOS (note the HUGE caps) and chemical caramel. The aftertaste was the sadest part for me. Instead of having a smooth creamy after taste that I was looking forward to, I just gor a mouthful of chemical wierdness that somehow reminded me of Davids Tea Carrot Cake which I detested. I drank the cup down quickly hiding my disapointment from my dogs who were now staring at me curiously as a stared aimlessly at the empty tea cup.

This could have been delicous, sadly, it barely made the “meh” points in my opinion. I might drink this if shared with me, but I would never go out of my way to buy it. There are much better caramel vanilla teas out there…

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more
Amariel

Yeah, I felt much the same way. I love the smell, but it gets drowned in the rooibos.

Indigobloom

Oh noooo sorry to hear :(
I usually take this one with milk. But I know what you mean about the chemical-ish taste

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90

Wow… I was in the mood for something creamy tonight and couldn’t decide what exactly I wanted. So I began to look through samples and I found this that seemed to meet my current criteria of “something creamy”. Special thanks to Indigobloom for sending me this to try!

It smelled deliciously sweet. In fact when I sniffed it I got a noseful of sweet followed by a hint of chocolatey goodness! By all means this was a good thing! My mouth was watering while I scooped out my teaspoons to steep it.

While it steeped, the steam smelled like a miny chocolate factory in my tea cup. The smell got stronger and stronger until it was finally time to sip it. Wow…. Creamy, chocolatey sweet, malty, slightly astringent, happiness in a teacup. With sugar added the chocolate flavor became more prominent and the maltiness was covered up a tad. Delicious. The only tiny flaw that it had was a strange chemical taste that lingered in the aftertaste. Other than that, it was great!

I believe that this is the best straight chocolate tea that I have tasted so far. They captured the essence of hot chocolate and made it blend in so well with the tea that I am sure that if milk where added it would be shockingly similar to the real thing!

I only wish I had more of it….. Oh well… You can’t always get what you want, but if try sometimes, you get what you need! ; )

Preparation
3 min, 15 sec
TeaBrat

I can’t believe I’m in San Francisco and I’ve never been to this place. I must rectify that immediately!

Indigobloom

lol sorry I couldn’t send more! So glad you enjoyed it Ninavampi :)
Amy Oh: I agree, you must you must!! It is so worth the trip..

Bonnie

Pier 39 and they have the Chocolate Strawberry Puerh…I looked them up!

CHAroma

You can buy this tea online, and it looks like they do ship internationally.

MegWesley

That sounds really interesting.

Stoo

Thanks for this review! I’ve been searching the world over to find a good chocolate tea to satisfy my sweet tooth. I’d love to give this one a try!

Indigobloom

Stoo, try their Strawberry Chocolate Puerh as well, it’s delish! :P

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68
drank Bourbon Vanilla by Kusmi Tea
158 tasting notes

Finally, after reading how much everyone seems to love Kusmi, I am getting a chance to try this thanks to Angrboda! I found this is the sample package from our swap! I was super excited to try it! First, I love vanilla, and second, my first Kusmi tea! Yay!

The scent of the dark brown leaves was more of a creamy scent than vanilla. I was smooth and thick smelling. It reminded me of a vanilla milk shake scent with the vanilla played down a bit.

While steeping I felt that the vanilla scent became more prominent. I also began to get smokey notes that scared me a little (I’m not a huge fan of smokey teas…). There was an over all pleasant maltiness to the brew. I approved. The liquor was a burgundy brown color that was a little redder than I am generally used to my black tea being. Very pretty in my glass Bodum Mug!

My first sip (unsweetened) was very smooth and malty. There was sweet creaminess peaking through but over all not what I would imagine as straight forward vanilla. There was also a slight smokiness to the aftertaste that surprisingly didn’t really bother me. Once sweetened the vanilla showed up a bit more. It was a decent vanilla flavor, but I found it to be more creamy than sweet. My perfect vanilla tea must have the right amount of sweet flavor to it. Once it cooled down a bit, the vanilla got stronger and I liked it better. yumm….

Over all a delightful tea to end my day with. Sadly it is very hard to get my hands on and not my favorite vanilla so far. If I ever am able to purchase it without a hassle, I might go for it. If I don’t get that opportunity, my tea cupboard will not suffer without it. : )

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 30 sec
Angrboda

Yes, the perfect vanilla black is an elusive beast. This one wasn’t mine either. Currently I would say mine was probably the french vanilla assam from 52teas, but that one also loses perfection points on the availability or lack thereof. Besides, I’ve given up shopping there. Out of the last four times I’ve done so, I’ve had to pay extra tax and customs fee on arrival on three of the orders. It sort of stopped being funny.

Ninavampi

Completely agreed… I think my favorite so far is Adagios…

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51
drank Checkmate by DAVIDsTEA
158 tasting notes

I got this as a nice extra surprise in a swap with Indigobloom! I was really happy with this extra tidbit since I have been wanting to try it! Somehow, I believe Indigobloom read my mid because I hadn’t included it in my shopping list… Yay! Thanks soo much!

My first impression when I sniffed it was white chocolate tea. Interesting considering I believe that this has no white chocolate in it… But, luckily I love white. Hoc plate, so I hoped that they the smell would hold up in the flavor.

Once steeped, I smelled Bai Mu Dan, some chocolate sweetness and an afterthought of black tea. I was surprised that the black tea didn’t take over. Unsweetened the tea was light but had something artificial going on… There was something chemical that didn’t let me enjoy this tea fully. Sweetened, it was smoother and it tasted something like what I imagine white chocolate Bai Mu Dan would taste like. There was an astringent note that I assume was contribution mainly of the black tea. I couldn’t quite find the chamomile, but this was ok with me considering I don’t love it.

Over all, it was unimpressive but not bad. It was just not one of those teas that blows you away and immediately has you wondering how you can get your hands on more. I am very very happy I got to try it. Now I know that I don’t like it enough to but it. Oh well….

Preparation
4 min, 30 sec
Bonnie

I hope you can give this another chance…maybe try a longer steep and sweet with milk. Helps to bring out the coconut I think and the chocolate (or mocha). Oh well, if not…everyone has their own taste. It’s ok after all.

Indigobloom

Not my fave either, but I figured there are so many great reviews, it can’t be so bad. Atleast we have the same tastes Ninavampi :)
Bonnie: I’m jealous of you now, for liking this one lol

Bonnie

Yep be jealous…I’m old and crazy…I kicked my coffee table by accident today and broke my toe #2 and it hurts so here I am writing dumb stuff on steepster! Maybe I should be blogging on an Alcohol Website Drinking Booze to dull the pain!!! Ha!

Indigobloom

Ouches! Do you have any Arnica Montana in the house? it helped me with my broken pinkie toe a few years back! there are indigestible tablets, and topical treatments.

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95
drank Birthday Tea by Adagio Teas
158 tasting notes

I made it home! No last minute airline surprises or cancellations! The downside of that was that I had to go to work today, but hey, I like my job… But argh… Responsible me is forced back!

To celebrate my being home once again with my doggies and boyfriend I made myself a nice cup of this! While I was in the US (only 3 days) I placed an Adagio order and crossed my fingers. They have always been amazing with shipping, and I was hopping that things hadn’t changed since I came back to Ecuador. Thankfully, shipping was great and my order made it. Now I have a full pouch of this and I am planning on enjoying it all!!!

I tasted the cake much more today. I steeped it 30 seconds less than last time and it worked wonders. 2.5 minutes is the ideal for this tea for me! I both tasted and felt the creamy vanilla butter icing. Delicious.

Oh Birthday Cake Tea… You are so tasty… Please be this tasty and nommy to me always!

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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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
158 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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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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