1053 Tasting Notes

95

So a little while ago, Angel of Teavivre invited me to taste some tea samples. This is the first I picked out to try from the selection she sent me. I was hooked from first sip. I’ve had one dragon pearl tea previously, but it wasn’t a patch on this one!

I used 4 pearls (which turned out to be exactly half the sample). The pearls themselves are really pretty — chocolate brown and cream — and the scent dry is of cocoa and hay. I added boiling water, and left them for around 4 minutes. The pearls completely unravelled in about two minutes, and I was left with a dark-ish liquor and the strong scent of chocolate.

To taste, this is really amazing. I was expecting something quite sweet, which I got, but it also has a real richness and depth of flavour. I get cocoa first, followed by a mellow nuttiness, and then an almost grapey, wine-like flavour to finish. I loved it so much I brewed the second cup straight away!

This tea has really made me reevaluate Chinese blacks, which for some reason I’ve always neglected. I’ve tried Chinese greens before, but I’ve nearly always chosen Indian teas when it comes to black. This one has made me think, though, and I’ll definitely be looking to expand my experience of Chinese black teas in the future!

Many thanks again to Angel and Teavivre for giving me the chance to try this outstanding tea!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp
Terri HarpLady

Although I love a bold Assam, there is always something about Chinese blacks that is alluring to me :)

Tealizzy

I love these!

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65

I was in the mood for plain tea last night, so I had a cup from this sample pouch. I enjoyed it a little more than I did my last cup, maybe because I was just in the right place for it. I reduced the brew time a little, and was rewarded with a lightly grassy, pleasingly milky cup. Very enjoyable!

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 15 sec 1 tsp

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30

I think a much, much shorter brew time is the best way with this one. I went with my instinct last night, and removed the bag after about a minute and a quarter. The metallic taste was hugely reduced (although still there a bit), and I found myself enjoying my cup a lot more than I would have. There was more grape and stone fruit flavour to be found, which are two of the things I enjoy most about darjeeling. It’s still not my favourite, or the best I’ve tried, but it was okay. Still not a restock.

Preparation
Boiling 1 min, 15 sec

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55

The more cups I have of this, the more I realise that it’s probably not for me. It’s nice enough, but it’s not one I’d come back to.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 45 sec 1 tsp

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70
drank Angels Falls Mist by Tealux
1053 tasting notes

Grabbed a second cup of this before it’s all gone. Apparently my mum has taken a liking to it! I’m still amazed by how little this tastes of rosehip and hibiscus, and how clearly the lemon/strawberry flavouring comes through. It might well be sadly missed!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp

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90

This was one of the first Della Terra teas I tried, and I was lucky enough to get another sample pouch free with a recent order. Drinking it today reminded me how much I love it. It smells so much like freshly baked crumble, it makes my mouth water. It tastes rich, buttery, and deeply cakey, with the fresh flavour of sweet, slightly tart blueberries running underneath. It’s also got beautiful glittery sugar crystals which add a touch of swirling sparkle to the cup.

The mixture of green and black tea in the base is one that always confuses me, so I did let the water cool a little before adding the leaves to try and avoid any bitterness. I do think the green tea helps to bring out the flavour of the blueberries by adding a grassy undertone, though, so I can appreciate its presence even though is causes brewing headaches!

I’m pleased to find that I still really like this one. It’s a sample I’m going to enjoy drinking, and a tea I’ll no doubt come back to again in the future. Wonderful!

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 30 sec 1 tsp

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75

Another of my Bluebird samples. This one is more of an unknown to me. It looks to contain lime and lemongrass predominantly, with a green tea base. Unsurprisingly, that’s what it tastes like. It’s very mildly citrussy, mostly in the middle of the sip. The first flavour that comes out is a vegetal, slightly grassy green tea. It’s not at all bitter or astringent, which is a good point in its favour. The final taste is chilli. It develops quite slowly, leaving a lingering warmth and a good kick of spice at the back of the throat. It’s an interesting combination, and not like anything I’ve tried before. Another good spring tea, if not one I’d want to keep around all of the time.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 30 sec 1 tsp

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75

I love elderflower. I used to drink the cordial in the summer, although not so much since I found tea. Even so, it’s still a flavour I really enjoy. This is an oolong, which would have filled me with dread at one time, but not so much anymore. Looking at the dry mix, there actually isn’t a lot of oolong to be found here; it’s mostly elderflower, raspberry leaves, apple pieces, and hibiscus.

The lack of oolong is clear in the flavour. It’s there in the background, but the elderflower really takes centre stage here. There’s a hint of apple, too, and an overall “herbal” flavour, but none of the ingerdients overpower the elderflower or try and rob it of its crown. They just act as a sort of framing device.

As for champagne — the lightness and colour of the liquor (pale gold/yellow) go some way towards putting that in mind. I suppose the natural floral, slightly grapey flavour of the elderflower is reminiscent of champagne in some respects.

Overall, I really enjoyed this one. Thankfullt, my sample will allow me to enjoy a few more cups of this delightful, mellow, spring-like tea. Love!

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp
Stephanie

I had an elderflower martini once and it was amazing!

Christina

Is it easy to find elderberry tea or elderflower tea in the UK? My sister-in-law will be going there to visit her husband’s relatives next month, and I’m interested in trying some UK teas.

greenteafairy

Christina, if your sister-in-law’s planning on going to (or near) Fortnum & Mason they do a really nice elderflower green.

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70
drank Angels Falls Mist by Tealux
1053 tasting notes

For a fruit tea heavy in hibiscus and rosehip, this is surprisingly good. They’re usually two things I’m not fond of, but they don’t come across ridiculously tart and sour. This actually takes a while to colour while brewing, instead of turning an instant dark red. I guess that’s a good sign!

To taste, it’s the lemon that comes out first. It’s not too sour, just a touch, and has a beautiful, fresh, bright, citrus flavour. The strawberry is sweet and juicy, and develops largely in the aftertaste once the lemon has faded. It leaves me with the lingering impression of pink lemonade.

This is pretty good as is, but I might try it with a little sugar or honey just to see what that does. I’m pleasantly surprised, though — I wasn’t expecting a lot, and it turns out this is one of the rare fruit teas I can get behind. A good spring/early summer choice!

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp

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55

I wasn’t sure what I’d make of this one, so I have to admit to being pleasantly surprised. The black base is a tiny bit thin for my liking, but it tastes okay and that’s what matters. It’s smooth with a slight edge of bitterness. The sweet toastiness of the nut flavouring counteracts that a little, and the overall effect is pleasant. I’m pretty sure I can taste brazil nuts here, and maybe hazelnut or almond. The “nut” flavour is a bit generic, but that’s my only real complaint. It’s tasty and different! An interesting cup.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp

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Profile

Bio

Hi :) I’m Sarah, 26, and I live in Norfolk in the UK. My tea obsession began when a friend introduced me to Teapigs a good few years ago now. Since then, I’ve been insatiable. Steepster introduced me to a world of tea I never knew existed, and my goal is now to TRY ALL THE TEAS. Or most of them, anyway.

I still have a deep rooted (and probably life-long) preference for black tea. My all-time favourite is Assam, but Ceylon and Darjeeling also occupy a place in my heart. Flavoured black tea can be a beautiful thing, and I like a good chai latte in the winter.

I also drink a lot of rooibos/honeybush tea, particularly on an evening. Sometimes they’re the best dessert replacements, too. White teas are a staple in summer — their lightness and delicate nature is something I can always appreciate on a hot day.

I’m still warming up to green teas and oolongs. I don’t think they’ll ever be my favourites, with a few rare exceptions, but I don’t hate them anymore. My experience of these teas is still very much a work-in-progress. I’ve also never really tried pu’erh, and that’s something I’m just starting to explore.

I’m still searching for the perfect fruit tea. One without hibiscus. That actually tastes of fruit.

You’ve probably had enough of me now, so I’m going to shut up. Needless to say, though, I really love tea. Long may the journey continue!

My rating system:

91-100: The Holy Grail. Flawless teas I will never forget.

81-90: Outstanding. Pretty much perfection, and happiness in a cup.

71-80: Amazing. A tea to savour, and one I’ll keep coming back to.

61-70: Very good. The majority of things are as they should be. A pleasing cup.

51-60: Good. Not outstanding, but has merit.

41-50: Average. It’s not horrible, but I’ve definitely had better. There’s probably still something about it I’m not keen on.

31-40: Almost enjoyable, but something about it is not for me.

11-30: Pretty bad. It probably makes me screw my face up when I take a sip, but it’s not completely undrinkable.

0-10: Ugh. No. Never again. To me, undrinkable.

Location

Norfolk, UK

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