970 Tasting Notes

80

I’ve been drinking quite a lot of this recently, but only seem to have managed to log it once. I do really enjoy it — the apple comes out really well, and the cardamom is obvious and very much a central flavour. I have noticed that sometimes my mouth feels a bit numb after drinking this one — maybe there’s just a bit too much cardamom on occasion? I’m not sure whether that’s the cause, and it’s a bit odd, but there you go. I like the flavour, so I’m going to keep drinking it anyway. I’ll maybe just be a bit more careful how many cardamom pods go in my infuser each time — there are plenty in the pouch, that’s for sure!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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75

I think I’ve only actually had one cup of this, which is a shame as it’s a really nice Earl Grey. The bergamot smells quite strong initially, but it’s not overpowering once brewed. The black base is strong enough to withstand milk, but smooth enough to drink without, too. I like a versatile EG.

I’m going to try and pay more attention to the MF teas in my stash, I think. They’re not crazily flavoured, or brightly eye-catching like some of the other teas I’ve collected, but they are really nice. Yay for that.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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80
drank Smaug Tea by 52teas
970 tasting notes

Long time, no drink. This one has been languishing in my desk draw for a while now, maybe because I’m drinking more tea with milk now the weather is colder. Anyway, I fished it out yesterday and gave it another try.

I still like it. I’m beginning to appreciate Dragonwell teas a bit more these days, I’m finding. Now I’ve realised they’re not the dark, strongly flavoured, murky bitter teas I’d somehow sized them up to be. I also find myself wishing that the cayenne pepper in Mayan Chocolate Chai could be more like it is here. Noticable, definitely there, but not OTT. I guess you can’t have it all, but I’ve always got Smaug to console me on days when I really want a spicy tea!

Preparation
2 min, 30 sec

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75
drank Jewelled Apple by Tea Palace
970 tasting notes

Another cup of this old favourite. I still like the toffee apple flavour this one has, although I’m becoming less keen on the base as time goes on. It’s not quite strong enough for me to happily add milk to, and yet it’s too astringent to really drink black. Still, the strawberry tinged toffee apple wonderfulness goes a long way towards making up for that. Still worthy of a place in the cupboard!

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 45 sec

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80

This is the last tea from my S & V order that I haven’t tried yet. I finally gave in and opened it last night, and was surprised but pleased to find red rooibos. The other couple of rooibos teas I got with the same order were both green, so I think I was half expecting this one to be as well.

I like this one — it tastes of chocolate cake! I’m not getting anything I feel is particularly specific to red velvet cake, but that’s okay. It tastes really good anyway. I drank this with a splash of milk only, so possibly I’ll try a little bit of sugar next time just to see whether that brings out any hidden aspects of the flavour.

It smells good, it tastes good, and it’s caffiene free so I can drink it before bed. What’s not to love? I’ll write a better note when I’ve tried a cup and I’m not half asleep, but first impressions are good!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec
Fjellrev

What do you think of Simpson & Vail overall? I still haven’t ordered from them.

Scheherazade

I ordered the three cupcake teas, plus Candy Cane and Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake. Of those, Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake and Red Velvet Cupcake are probably my favourites. The others are nice enough, but they either lack flavour or have too much of it (i.e. the mint in Candy Cane). I find the green rooibos a bit weird, too, and it appears in quite a lot of their rooibos blends. I’m happy enough to have tried them, but I probably wouldn’t order again. They’re okay, but there are other teas and brands that I prefer, on balance.

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90

Tried a second cup of this one a couple of nights ago. Brewing for a little longer melts the chocolate chips, and helps to bring out that aspect of the flavour a little more. I honestly think I prefer it without the chocolate, though. It’s just a flavour too far for me. The blueberry is sweet and juicy — it doesn’t really need the milky, slightly cloying flavour of chocolate. Still good, though. I do like a blueberry tea!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 30 sec

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95

I’d been wanting to try this one for a good long time, so huge thanks to Angrboda for sharing this with me!

This is a big, bold, beautiful cup. It’s beautifully malty, with a really distinctive assam flavour — there’s no mistaking this one! I was half expecting it to be a bit astringent and rough around the edges, but it’s not like that at all. It’s not perfectly smooth in the honeyed way that some teas have, but it’s pretty typical for an assam. There’s certainly plenty of flavour, and it’s wonderfully suited to my big tea mug, brewed long and strong, and with a splash of milk added. I can’t say I’ve enjoyed another assam quite as much as this one for a good long time!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 30 sec
Angrboda

I’m glad you’re enjoying it! I had pretty much the same surprise when I first tasted it. :)

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80

Sipdown! Very, very sad to see this one go. Once I discovered how to best prepare it to suit my tastes, I loved every cup. Sour lemon, with a sweetness reminiscent of meringue, and a gorgeous blend of chai spices. Still, all good things come to an end!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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100

Excited note to say I spotted the bat sprinkles in this yesterday. I didn’t actually realise there were any until I looked on here. I saw the pumpkins, because they’re orange, but the bats blended in with the tea leaves a bit too well. Anyway, so cute! They melt on the bottom of my infuser and dry hard, though. Not so fun when it comes to scraping them off.

Anyway, I can live with that because this tea is so awesome. Smooth, liquid pumpkin pie wonderfulness. Autumn in a cup! Delicious.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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1

On the strength of my experiment with Bluebird’s Dark Choc Chilli Chai, I decided to risk another cup of this. My first cup was ALL cayenne pepper, and it was not pleasant. This time, I’ve brewed it at half strength, and added plenty of warmed milk.

Tentative first sip.

It’s STILL cayenne pepper, and there can hardly be any tea in this cup. Given that it’s almost white from the milk, I would have thought hardly any flavour could come through, but it has. It’s more bearable than the first cup, but it’s still creating an unpleasant burn at the back of my throat, and I’m not really getting any chocolate or spice. Just cayenne pepper.

sigh

I really did want to like this one, but perhaps we’re just not meant to be friends.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 30 sec

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Profile

Bio

Hi :) I’m Sarah, 25, and I live in Norwich 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

Norwich, UK

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