1133 Tasting Notes

70
drank Golden Monkey by Adagio Teas
1133 tasting notes

Sipdown! Finished off the last of my sample. I liked this more than I was expecting to, and it’s still one of my favourite Adagio teas to date. Exceptionally pretty dry, and with a lovely chocolatey honey-malt taste brewed. I might actually miss this one!

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 45 sec

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15

Sipdown! Used up the rest of my packet of this in cold brews over the last couple of weeks. I wasn’t over keen on it hot or cold, but my parents seemed to like it. It’s definitely more palatable cold, but there’s still something about the taste that just doesn’t agree with me. Still, I guess you can’t win them all!

Preparation
Iced 8 min or more

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30

Not over keen on this one. Fortunately, I only have a sample sized bag from my last Della Terra order. I like apricot and peach ordinarily, but this is almost too sweet for me, and certainly a lot sweeter than I wanted right before I went to bed. I was so tired last night, I just kind of stuck my hand in and grabbed the first honeybush I came to. My main concern with this one is that the flavours seem pretty artificial, which is never a good thing with peach in my experience. It seemed kind of cloying and plastic-tasting, but possibly I just wasn’t in the mood for it. I was also hoping to taste more of the green honeybush, since I’ve not tried one before. I’ve tried a couple of green rooibos teas, and I really liked them, so I’m a bit sad the green honeybush is so overpowered here. Still, never mind. I probably just need to try this one again under better circumstances.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 30 sec

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60

I like cherry coke, so it’s probably not a big stretch to say that I like this tea. It makes a refreshing iced tea, and it’s certainly better for me than drinking the real thing would be. As with Cuba Libre, I think I underleafed, or didn’t leave it for long enough, as it’s a tad weak. That’s something I can maybe remedy with a bit of experimentation, though. It might just be that I’m expecting too much – I mean, it’s tea and not cola, and I guess I can’t expect it to be flavoured as strongly as I might want. It certainly smells spot on dry, though, so I’m hopeful that I’ll be able to squeeze a bit more out of it. I think I’m getting a cold, though, so that might have something to do with it.

Ultimately, I’m pretty happy with the way this tastes. I’m definitely getting cola and cherry, not so much vanilla. I can’t choose a favourite between this one and Cuba Libre – I like cola flavoured things, and they’re both pretty amazing. I need to experiment a bit more with both, so maybe that’ll make things clearer. For now, just yum, really.

Preparation
Iced 8 min or more

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30
drank Red Velvet Cake Mate by 52teas
1133 tasting notes

Disappointed. I brought this with me when I returned to work yesterday, as I got kind of used to my morning mate, but wanted to try another flavour before opening my second packet of Malted ChocoMate. Sadly, I can’t taste anything even vaguely reminiscent of cake, never mind specifically red velvet, here. I wanted this to be a cakey, cream cheesy, chocolatey wonder, but it’s just…not. I can taste chocolate, but it’s very mild and a bit lacking. Really speaking, this just tastes like slightly sweetened, roasted mate to me. It’s pleasant enough, but it’s not a patch on Malted ChocoMate either in terms of flavour, or in living up to its name. I’ll happily drink the rest of the packet, because it’s not bad, just a bit lacking. Meh.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec
Fjellrev

Bleh, I had a feeling the mate would interfere with any potential Red Velvet flavours in this. Sorry it didn’t work out.

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15

Tried this one again last night, because it smells so lovely dry that I was having a hard time believing I’d disliked it so much. I used a little more leaf than last time, and made sure there were a few bits of freeze dried strawberry in there. It still smells and tastes a little bit ladybird-ish (I can’t describe it any other way!), but it was an improvement on last time. I actually managed to finish the cup, which is considerably better going. I did get hints of strawberry and a vague sweetness from this, but it’s still not what I was expecting. I’ve bumped the rating up a little to reflect my small improvement, but this one still needs work before I’ll be happy with it. Sugar, maybe? I’ll try that next, anyway.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 30 sec

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70
drank Raspberry Green by Adagio Teas
1133 tasting notes

Lunch-time tea. Sweet, candy-like raspberry flavour, as lovely and perfect as the first cup I tried the other day. I think this could actually be my favourite of the Adagio teas I’ve tried so far, which is really something. I haven’t liked any of them that much at all, but this one is niiiice. Yum!

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

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85

This one intrigued me when I first saw it on the 52teas site. It seemed such a unique combination that I knew I’d have to try it. As it turned out, this was my after lunch tea at work today. I treated it much as I would a plain white tea – about 2 minutes in water left to cool a little, which is as close to “180” as I can get without a thermometer. It’s certainly interesting – I wasn’t sure whether I liked it at first, but after a couple of sips I’m pretty sure I do.

Dry, it just smells odd. I can’t even describe what I’m smelling, I don’t think. Brewed, it’s sort of generically sweet, with a hint of fruitiness about it. To taste, the mango comes out most clearly. It’s juicy and slightly peppery, almost a perfect recreation of the real thing. I can just about taste the cucumber, but it comes out as a sweet and cleansing “fresh” flavour in the aftertaste more than anything. The combination is really striking, and the white base seems perfectly matched to the flavours. The thing I like most about this at the moment is that it smells beautiful as it starts to cool. Definitely one to try cold-brewed before the summer is over.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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80
drank Cuba Libre Black Tea by 52teas
1133 tasting notes

Cold-brewed tea of choice for my first day back at work. I think I may have underleafed a touch on this, as it’s a little weak tasting. Not bad for a first attempt, though. I can taste cola, a hint of lime, and maybe the slightest touch of rum. It certainly smells the part dry. When I first opened the packet it was overwhelmingly strong, so I’m pleased it’s not quite so pungent brewed. There’s just enough flavour to keep me happy, but I’ll attempt a bit more leaf and maybe slightly longer in the fridge next time. A perverse part of me would actually like to try this hot, but I think it’s really meant to be cold. Maybe in the winter (or maybe not, if I see sense before then!). It’s a perfect iced tea for the summer, though. I’d never cold-brewed a black tea before today, so I’m pleased with how this worked out. I did wonder if it would become astringent after 8 hours or so in the fridge, but it hasn’t at all. It’s smooth, and actually a pretty perfect base for the flavours. Definitely one I’ll be drinking again very soon!

Preparation
Iced 8 min or more

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100

Sticking with the melon theme, I decided to give this one a try also. I haven’t logged it yet, as I messed the first cup up. The watermelon was there, but it was very weak and tasted mostly of water. I used a smaller cup this time, and extended the brew time to match that suggested. I was a little leery of leaving white tea all that long, but it’s just proof that I don’t always know best when it comes down to this sort of thing.

Anyway, my second cup was much better. In the bag, this smells quite strongly of watermelon, and the slightest amount floral. I waited for the water to cool, added the leaves, and gave it about 3 and a half, four minutes. I was rewarded with a cup of sweet, juicy, watermelon magic. The first sip seemed very sweet and almost candy-like, but it seemed to mellow out a little as it cooled further. The liquor is surprisingly pale, but the flavour is as strong as I could want it to be, with a lovely buttery undertone from the silver needle. I enjoyed the SBT Watermelon iced tea I drank at work a couple of weeks back, and the more recent David’s Tea Luscious Watermelon, but this beats both of them easily. Another one I’ll be taking to work with me tomorrow for when I’m in need of a treat. Super-lovely, amazing stuff. I do love Butiki.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 45 sec

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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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