560 Tasting Notes

79

Pleased to see this blend as I contemplated buying it when it was released. Root beer flavored things can be very tasty, but can go wrong if they’re not done right. I love root beer floats & I have a feeling that this one will be tasty! The scent of the dry leaf is of a creamy root beer. I’m always so amazed when a tea can be so accurate in terms of scent!

Sipping… I’m tasting a bit more of the ice cream than the root beer, which is actually just fine with me! It’s smooth, a little bit sweet and has that signature root beer bite. I am finding that shorter steep times with 52Teas seems to bring out a better cup. The tea base isn’t as present or astringent & I can focus on the unique flavors a bit more. Three minutes was my standard, but I’m enjoying these teas around 2 1/2 minutes or so.

This is a very tasty cup of tea. I’m not 100% sold on buying more in the future, but it is indeed very yummy. Twelve Teas of Christmas: Day Two

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9
drank Smaug Tea by 52teas
560 tasting notes

I am excited and nervous to be trying this tea. I love the idea behind the tea (SMAUG!), but know that I don’t like some of the flavors/ingredients in it. Peppers/cinnamon/spicy/smoky flavors in tea and I don’t get along well. I know it’s so appropriate for the theme of the blend, but there’s a reason why I didn’t buy this it when it popped up. I do like Dragonwell, though, so maybe it won’t seem so bad?

Giving this tea a sniff, I like it much more after it’s steeped than when it’s dry. It is very heavy on the cinnamon, but it seems appropriate for the holidays. The tea base sort of sits in the background and doesn’t contribute much.

Sipping… yep, the cinnamon is the main flavor. It smothers the tea base, so I can’t get a bit of Dragonwell. When I think that I can handle the cinnamon, I’m hit with a very spicy and irritating finish. It actually burns the back of my throat! I don’t taste any smoke, but that could be because I’m concentrating on the cinnamon and spice. My brother also had a cup and reports that it’s “fine”. I’m glad that I tried it and that I could participate in the first of my holiday pouches, but am not sad to see it go. Twelve Teas of Christmas: Day One

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80

This has been on my shopping list for so long and so I was very happy to see this sad little sample in my first traveling tea box. It was just enough for a cup, stored in a squished up Ziplock bag. I think it was meant to be! This tea brews up a lovely golden cup. It smells like a sweet fruit, something between a pear and an apple. There is also a little bit of a metallic note in the background. I think it’ll likely disappear when it comes time to drinking it, but it’s not terribly pleasant.

Sipping… I taste a sweet, juicy pear. It’s nice because I’m not just getting the flavor, but the texture of the fruit. The sip finishes with the green rooibos base. It’s a very flavorful, but light tea at the same time. There is a little something odd about the general taste of the tea. I’m not sure how to describe it… perhaps the artificial flavor? It’s not bad enough to keep me from drinking, but it’s not really something I want in my tea.

I’m happy to have gotten the chance to try this tea after wanting to for so long, even though it’s not a future purchase for me.

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79

The scent of this tea is spot-on eggnog. It smells creamy & spicy. I usually don’t like nutmeg in anything, but I can usually handle it in eggnog. After water has been added, the spices come to the front rather quickly and the creaminess of the eggnog is lost. The cup turns into a bit of a cloudy, orange cup with a decent bit of oil on the top. It smells quite spicy now – nutmeg and cinnamon being most prominent.

Sipping… this one’s a little weird. The first thing I taste is something almost fruity? It reminds me a little bit of apple combined with the tartness of apple skin. The sip carries on and I pick up some marshmallow. The end of the sip finishes with some sweet rooibos. Not bad… This is certainly drinkable as I’m now about halfway through my cup. I think that this tea would probably work well with milk because it might tone down the tart, almost sour, note that I’m getting. The spices are there, but they stay in the background and lend a sweetness to the cup. They actually make me think of a spice cookie in the way they are present, but not dominating. I can detect a little bit of maple as an aftertaste, but it otherwise doesn’t show up.

This is a nice blend for the holidays. I’m going to try this with milk, perhaps as a latte and will write an updated note. For now, I’m not crazy about the tart flavor & want more of that marshmallow/creamy flavor to come out.

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83

I’m finishing up a paper and something soothing is needed! Rooibos is usually a good choice and as this one is new to me (Thank you kittylovestea!) it seems perfect. I have such a soft spot for french vanilla. It’s perhaps my favorite ice cream flavor and I always love the combination of a french vanilla/cream + rooibos tea. The scent is very much like other rooibos blends — there isn’t anything that would distinguish this from another.

Sipping… this is nice and smooth. There is a prominent woody note, but the actual mouthfeel of the tea is nice and milky – no dry, splintery sensation. Sadly, I don’t taste any french vanilla. I know that there is something that makes this tea different from just a plain old rooibos, but it’s very, very light. I’d probably describe it as a regular vanilla, if anything, and not a french vanilla at all. It is a nice cup of tea to have right now, but there’s not enough of that creamy vanilla beany flavor I love.

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76

It’s been so long since I had this in my cupboard. When I saw that it was included in one of the reblends, I knew that I had to give a pouch another try. Before I realized that I needed a lot of leaf and a long steep time to make a tasty cup. It certainly smells like honeybush and strawberry.. maybe a little bit like strawberry bubble gum? After water has been added, the cinnamon really pops and it actually takes on a rather spicy character.

Sipping… the honeybush and strawberry pop on the tongue first. It starts off rather pleasant, but then the strawberry starts to taste a little fake and a bit freeze-dried.. you know that flavor? It’s not so much chemicals as something that’s a little off. The cinnamon shows up next and takes you into a nice, rather sweet finish. I think I like this tea a little bit more than when I first had it, but it’s still not giving me the butter, brown sugar, pastry, pie flavors that I think it should have.

Very drinkable in this f-f-freezing weather we’re having at the moment. Quite a soothing cup, but maybe not a repurchase for me unless I can pull out more of that pie flavor.

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62

I think I’m getting more into pepperminty teas this year. Winter normally makes me think of peppermint mochas, but as peppermint is always included in holiday/Christmas blends, I am usually forced to try a minty one despite it not being my favorite flavor. Instead of wishing for more creamy, egg-noggy Christmas flavored teas, I’ve decided to just embrace the peppermint and force myself to drink it down! It happens sometimes that I’m pleasantly surprised.

Giving this tea a sniff, I smell mostly rooibos and peppermint, no chocolate. I’m a little worried because it seems like it’s not going to be creamy chocolate. Sipping… the rooibos is definitely detectable and is rather strong. I don’t mind this because I like rooibos, but for those who do not like it, I would avoid this blend. The peppermint is also a bit strong. It’s not like it clears out your nose and mouth, but it does taste toothpasty. I don’t get any chocolate which is a bit disappointing because I think it would make a nice addition to the cup. The aftertaste is also a little sour and strange. For the most part, I enjoy the RoT’s “Cuppa Chocolate” teas, but this one is not for me.

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82
drank Qu Hao Silk by The Tea Spot
560 tasting notes

The scent of this tea reminds me a bit of a puerh. It smells like dirt and hay. I do detect some sweetness behind it all, but the earthy scent is the strongest. It certainly brews up a rather dark cup as well!

Sipping… I mostly taste sweet hay with some mild chocolate and floral notes. The cup is actually not as silky as I thought it would be. That’s not to say that it isn’t smooth, it does get quite astringent at the end. This is a solid, drinkable cup of tea, but isn’t my favorite.

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81

This tea smells very tasty, I only wish that it didn’t have the licorice because it makes it smell a little funky. Beyond the licorice, I smell sweet peppermint. Mmmm..

Sipping… the first thing I taste is that sweet, tongue-coating licorice. It’s almost enough to make me stop drinking, but it quickly morphs into the sweet peppermint and chocolate flavors. The finish is creamy and sweet. I find that if I sort of gulp down this tea, the licorice goes away a little and out comes the wintery white chocolate and peppermint. Tasty!

Thank you to VariaTEA for sharing some of this tea with me before I went out and bought a bunch. I’m not sure if I like this blend enough to buy some of it, but it’s definitely a nice holiday treat.

Lariel of Lórien

This is their one holiday tea I want to try.

VariaTEA

I am glad you (sorta) like it!

QueenOfTarts

VariaTEA, I do like it and am so happy to have tried it. THANK YOU! It’s a fun peppermint white chocolate tea version. :)

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83

I grabbed this tea from the traveling tea box that was sent my way recently. It looked very interesting — little rosebuds tucked away in a little plastic bag. I have certainly enjoyed the teas from Bluebird Tea Co. and I don’t mind the ingredients in this blend. It doesn’t smell the best after it’s steeped: herbal, a little soapy and a bit of rose.

Sipping… hm.. this is pretty interesting. It’s very smooth despite it having some ingredients that could potentially make it a little sharp or strong. I definitely taste the rosebuds, but they’re not over the top. The lemongrass is present, but lingers in the background and lends more of an earthy/herbal note to the cup. I can’t taste the cocoa shells which is a little sad, but there really weren’t too many so I can see why.

I’d say that this is a solid cup of tea. It’s nice, creative and calming. I don’t think it’s my favorite from Bluebird Tea Co. and I’m not sure if it’s going to be in a future order, but I’m indeed happy with this blend tonight. Lovely!

MissB

I just received some of this myself today, and was also surprised at the little tiny rosebuds. I’m a bit scared to try it now, however after this review maybe I’ll give it a go.

QueenOfTarts

You should definitely give this one a try. It smells interesting, but is very smooth and not overwhelming.

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Bio

~
Tea (& Coffee) lover. Bookworm.

Favorite teas: Milk Oolong, Flavored blends, Dessert teas, Creamy Teas, Rooibos, Oolong, Black, Green
Dislikes: Spices, Peppery flavors, Cloves, Cardamom, Licorice, Peppermint, Cinnamon, Mate, Puerh, Chai, Ginger

My Rather Picky Ratings
90+ – Reserved for the very best! Always in the cupboard!
80-89 – Quite good! A very pleasing cup.
70-79 – Room for improvement, but not bad.
60-69 – Mediocre.
50-59 – Bad. Will not purchase.
49 & below – Depending on the more specific rating: Undrinkable. Yuck. Will not purchase.

Note: Teas in my cupboard are all of the teas that I’ve logged, regardless of their current presence in my actual cupboard. For an updated list on what teas I have available for swap, check out the swap thread and not my cupboard! Thanks!

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