1006 Tasting Notes

75

Drank my first cup of this last night. I’m really beginning to appreciate honeybush/rooibos blends before bed, and this is a particularly nice one. I’m beginning to suspect that, generally speaking, pineapple and coconut teas are not for me. I like both in actuality, pineapple particularly, but when they’re put together in tea they seem to take on a pukey kind of flavour. I have no idea why, but it’s definitely off-putting.

Anyway, I was a little worried about trying this tea for that exact reason. Fortunately, though, it doesn’t seem to happen here. I can taste the coconut first, but I love that the pineapple comes over so clearly as well. Maybe I like this blend where I haven’t liked others because there’s no hibiscus? I’ll pay more attention in future to the precise kinds of pineapple/coconut teas that I don’t like, and try and work that out. I’m not always a fan of honeybush either, but here it’s just perfect. A sweet, unobtrusive companion to the sweet, juicy tropical fruit flavours.

I’m glad I picked this one up. I can see it being a welcome companion on summer evenings!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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70
drank White Peony by Adagio Teas
1006 tasting notes

Sipdown! Finished this one off this afternoon. It was nice while it lasted, but I think I’ve had my fill of it for now. Time to move on to some of the flavoured whites in my stash that I’ve been looking forward to for weeks!

Preparation
160 °F / 71 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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95
drank Chilli Chai by Teapigs
1006 tasting notes

Sipdown! Drank the last four of these as lattes this weekend, and was reminded how much I love it brewed this way. It’ll definitely be making a reappearance in my cupboard come winter!

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 15 sec

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70

This is the second last of my samples from Sil. I’m guessing I saved it until now because it’s the one I’m most nervous about. It’ll be the first pu’erh I’ve tried, and I’ve heard things about fish…I’ve read some of the tasting notes on here, though, and I’m reassured, so I think I’m ready…

I followed the instructions on the DT website, and gave this 4 minutes in water just cooler than boiling. I’m encouraged by the scent of this brewed — I can only detect creamy strawberries, and that’s more than okay with me. First sip, and I’m still happy. This does taste remarkably like strawberry yoghurt, and there’s not the slightest hint of anything fishy. As it cools, I can detect a slight earthiness in the aftertaste, but otherwise nothing out of the ordinary.

I’ve got another couple of cups worth of this left, which I’m now really looking forward to! Pu’erh probably still isn’t a tea variety I’d actively seek out — I’m still not confident enough for that — but I’m glad it wasn’t as scary as I was expecting!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec
Sil

I find this one to bury the puerh taste for the most part….it’s a good introduction. There are some really great ones out there that let you taste more of the tea – which often comes across as a strong black or just an earthier quality. At least that I’ve found so far :)

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80

One of the last teas from my swap with Sil. I’ve just received, and have ordered, a fair few new teas, so I figured I’d better get to work on some of my samples and near sipdowns this weekend. I guess this is one I left until now because of its unfamiliarity. I’m having a successful day with unfamiliar teas, though, so there’s no time like the present!

I don’t know whether I’m doing the right thing with this, but I basically treated it like normal tea, putting it in boiling water for about 4 minutes. I tried a few of the grains while I was waiting, and I’m pretty sure I could actually enjoy them as a snack. Anyway, the result is a medium yellow liquor that smells quite savoury, and slightly salty. Pretzel is probably the best comparison I can come up with for now, but it’s also reminding me of something else that I can’t quite place for now. No doubt it’ll come to me at some point.

To taste, this is much as I expected, given the scent and what it is. It tastes like liquid pretzel, and maybe a bit like freshly baked bread. It’s got a baked taste about it, somehow, and it’s ever so slightly salty, too. I think I could actually get used to drinking this — it’s different from almost all other teas I’ve tried, but it’s actually very pleasant and palatable. Light, too. A nice change from my normal tea habits. I’m impressed!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec
Sil

Glad you liked it! It was one of teh random things I picked up while in Beijing :)

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75
drank Salted Caramel by DAVIDsTEA
1006 tasting notes

A sample from Sil! I haven’t been drinking that many black teas of late, so this is a bit of a departure from my usual routine. It’s been warm here — summer has definitely arrived — but I’m not feeling great this weekend, so black tea it is.

The dry leaf has small pieces of toffee in it, and the scent is pretty accurate. It has the charcteristic sweet, caramelised scent, plus a bit of saltiness. Brewed, this is much the same in terms of scent. I’ve added milk, so it’s also taken on a slight creaminess, and there’s a thin film on the surface that I’m assuming is from the melted toffee pieces.

To taste, this reminds me of some homemade fudge I had with coffee in a hotel recently. It’s very sweet, definitely caramel, and wonderfully creamy. The saltiness is barely detectable unless I really focus. Overall, I’m really impressed with this one. I like caramel flavoured blacks, so I don’t expect that’s saying much, but this one has a particularly strong and clear flavour. Great stuff!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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95
drank Chilli Chai by Teapigs
1006 tasting notes

I wasn’t feeling great last night, so I went for my ultimate comfort tea for a pre-bedtime drink. I’ve just recovered from a cold, but I think it might be coming back again, somehow. Anyway, I always find this tea warming and reassuring. I was too tired to make a latte, so I just brewed this as I normally would a black tea with a hefty dose of milk added. The slight heat from the chili helped to soothe my throat, and the combination of the spices and warm milk helped me to feel all warm and cosy again. For me, this really is comfort in a cup.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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60
drank Wanderlust by Yumchaa
1006 tasting notes

Back to this tea. I’ve neglected it a bit of late, but it seemed like just the thing this morning. As ever, it’s a lovely tea. It’s quite delicate in terms of flavour, but I definetly get apple and cinamon, and the green tea base is smooth and only very lightly grassy. Next to chai, I actually find this a very comforting tea. I suppose apple pie reminds me of home cooking and winter, and that’s what this tea smells and tastes like. Warm apple pie. Yum!

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

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95

I’m always a little bit suspicious of genmaicha. I’m not sure why, maybe because in the past green tea really hasn’t been my thing, and the first genmaicha I tried was a bitter nightmare. I needn’t have worried, though! This one is seriously yummy!

The banana scent is very strong in the packet. It’s not exactly fresh banana, though, more like those foamy banana sweets you can get in pick and mix. They probably have a name, but I can’t recall it. The brewed tea tastes much the same as it smells, which is what I was hoping. I’m rather fond of banana flavoured teas, so long as I can actually taste the banana element, and there’s problem with that here. The intial taste is banana, and it’s quite sweet and candy-like. This is followed by a deep nuttiness from the rice — I guess I can get biscuit or cheesecake base from that if I concentrate, although it’s a little bit strong for that. More toasted than baked, really. Still, though, it IS tea and not an actual cheescake. Let’s be realistic here. The green tea base supports the flavours well, and doesn’t get in the way. It’s not bitter or astringent, and earns its place by contributing a slightly savoury nuttiness to what otherwise might be a pretty overpoweringly sweet tea. As it is, though, it’s perfect!

I think this is actually one of the teas from my very first 52Teas order, so I’m glad I took the opportunity to pick up a pack while I had the chance. It makes a really nice late-afternoon dessert tea, and is pretty good cold, too, if the dregs I just drank are anything to go by. Definitely a hit with me!

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

I like this too! I also wish they would bring back the Bananas foster.

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35
drank Yerba Mate by Teapigs
1006 tasting notes

I’ve been drinking one of these every morning at work, and I do feel it helps to boost my energy levels a little over the course of the morning. I’m really not a morning person, so I need all the help I can get not to be a grouchy monster. This goes some way towards achieving that, so it’s a welcome addition to my daily tea rotation. I’m not over keen on the flavour, but I can’t fault its effect!

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 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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