116 Tasting Notes
Third tea of the day. Got this one in a generous grab bag Amanda sent to me.
I think I finally found a chocolate tea that I can actually call a chocolate tea. I used about 1 1/4 tsp for one cup. Might try 1 1/2 tsp just ‘cause since this tasted just a bit watery. But overall it was pretty good. The smell out of the bag was very chocolaty, not exactly like milk, but not quite dark chocolate. It brewed similarly. Even the wet leaves smelled chocolaty.
Like I said, it tasted just a bit watery, but I think that’s probly ‘cause I didn’t use enough leaves. It was good without anything added, but I added a bit of brown sugar and it really made the chocolaty taste pop better. But then, I like sweet teas and think sugar improves almost any tea. Just for the heck of it I added a bit of milk to it but I don’t think it really improved anything so when I make this again I won’t bother.
Very glad to have gotten to try this one. I’ll most likely pick this some of this up when I run out and I’m placing a Della Terra order.
Second tea on the roster today. My first milk oolong and I’m on the fence about it.
1st infusion – The brew has a smell of cooked veggies, spinach-y greenness and it tastes the same as it smells. Normally I don’t care too much for such a taste, but this is one that I keep sipping at. Lol. I don’t get the peaches taste that the desc describes, but maybe that’s why I keep sipping it. To try and find that. Maybe on the next infusion I’ll get it a bit better.
But it is pretty smooth and I only get a smidge of astringency out of it. No sugar added to this. I don’t think it would go well with the veggie taste. Sweet cooked spinach. Ugh. Lol.
2nd infusion – Same temp/4 min – Definitely getting better. The veggie smell/taste is toned way down for which I appreciate. It’s gotten sweeter and I might be getting a hint of peaches or something similar. Not too bad. Again, no sugar added to it.
I’m not sure I’d reorder this one, but it was a good one to try and I always enjoy something different.
When I get around to doing gongfu style brewings this might be a good candidate for it. I’d be interested to see what sort of flavors come out of it.
So I decided to do another tea drinking marathon. This was first up. And it’s not to bad. It’s a pretty standard black tea with pineapple flavor. Got a giant chunk of dried pineapple when measuring out a cup’s worth.
Tried it plain and you couldn’t really taste too much of the pineapple. Decided to try a bit of brown sugar in this instead of my usual truvia. Next time I might try the truvia, but I really liked it with the brown sugar. The pineapple came out nicely, though for a pineapple tea I wish it would’ve been a bit stronger. It’s just very subtle and tasty. The black base is also pretty nice by not being too bitter or overly astringent for me. I want to say it’s a Ceylon base, but I’m not entirely certain so correct me if I’m wrong. The dry leaves are a curled like little balls if that helps. Lol.
I’m not sure this would make a good iced tea. I have a feeling it might turn bitter and the pineapple wouldn’t really come through very well.
Overall (yes I like saying that. XD) I’d reorder this unless I find another pineapple black tea that I like better.
Second mini sipdown of the day. Green/Black tea mix which I had high hopes for since I’m always on the lookout for a green tea I’d enjoy. Granted this is a mix, but I figure small steps.
It’s got a very fruity smell dry (yes I know I say this alot, but it’s all I know. Lol). Brewed the leaves keeps their tasty smell with just a hint of what I’m guessing is the green tea. And the tea smells like pineapple papaya goodness. Drinking this unsweetened I wasn’t too impressed so I added a bit of truvia and it made the fruit pop. Definitely get the pineapple with a hint of papaya but no strawberry that I can tell. Also I don’t notice the green tea that much if at all more than support to everything else. The same could be said of the black tea whatever this base is. Astringency isn’t too bad overall, though it’s noticeable enough.
Might try this iced to see how the fruit holds up. Possibly cold brew it just because.
When I get the rest of my stash down, I’d definitely consider reordering this one.
Decided to do a mini sipdown of a handful of teas since I suddenly have an overabundance of tea that I still haven’t tried. Pretty much I wrote down all the untasted teas I have on strips of paper and tossed them in a jar, then pulled a few out. Otherwise I have a hard time deciding what I want to try.
So this was tea #1 for today, thanks to Shmiracles for the swap!
It smells fruity and just a bit flowery-ish in the bag. Brewed…I’m not really sure what to think about this. If I had to identify something, it’s got a smell kinda like overripe bananas, which is a bit odd to me, but it’s the first thing I can think of.
A fruity taste, maybe a bit nutty but there’s a taste in here that I’m not really sure how to explain. It’s all a bit mixed together and I don’t have much of a desire to keep drinking it to see if I can figure it all out. I’ve never had whisky since I don’t drink at all, so maybe the taste that I’m not able to identify is what’s supposed to taste like whisky. /shrug/ It also might be the stevia that’s been added. I’ve never had a tea with it added so I’m not sure what to expect.
Overall, I’m pretty sure I don’t like this. I certainly don’t care to finish off this sample or order this myself. It’s just not for me.
So I mostly use a teapot with a removable filter whenever I make tea since I like to make at least two cups, then drink it over a period of time. Unfortunately this isn’t a good practice if you’re wanting to go through multiple teas in relatively short period of time. Mostly ‘cause my teapot’s filter doesn’t reach all the way down to the bottom so the leaves expand out of the water while brewing. And I wasn’t about to just dump the leaves in the pot and brew it that way since it defeated the purpose of being able to have a pot of tea sitting there since it would continue to brew and get bitter.
Enter this little gadget. I had wanted one since seeing it on Adagio’s website and after seeing it used in one of their stores, but it had always been out of stock and really I never saw the need since my teapot worked so well. To me it was just a gimmick that looked like fun to have. It was by chance that I was finally able to pick up a used one a few months ago. It had to be heavy duty cleaned ‘cause it smelled like Chai and the plastic was all stained. But it was surprisingly easy to clean. Everything comes apart pretty easily, though you have to be careful not to lose anything or it’ll all be pretty useless. Lol.
I used straight baking soda made into a thick paste and a paper towel to scrub all the discoloration on the plastic away. The little filter was a bit harder to clean, but after a soak in baking soda water and more scrubbing, that finally came clean too. Washed everything in soapy water and let it dry completely before putting it all back together. Then it got stuck in with my tea stuff to sit in lonely disuse for awhile.
When I finally had a Saturday to myself, I wanted to give this Saturday/Sunday Sipdown thing I keep seeing people doing a shot. This little gadget was perfect for it. I used a rubber band around the outside to mark off one cup since I’m horrible at eyeing a measurement. Then I just put one cup’s worth of tea into it, poured the water in and let it brew. Then I just drain into my chosen mug and voila! I have one cup of tea. Afterward it’s very easy to scoop out the old leaves, rinse briefly (I let the water run through the valve at the bottom as well) and then reload with a new tea. I was able to quickly go through 3 or 4 teas before I got tea-ed out and went to bed. Lol. I made sure to pop the filter out and give the whole thing a quick scrub and rinse before letting it dry since I’m afraid of the plastic absorbing the smell if I let the tea sit in it for too long.
I haven’t used the full 2 cup capacity since I barely have a mug big enough for that much tea or else I’d have to let it drain into a teapot, which I then should’ve just made the tea in in the first place. Lol.
One warning when using it. The bottom release is very sensitive to being touched (at least mine is). I managed to scald my hand awfully and spill tea all over the place the first time I used it. I made the mistake of touching the bottom slightly on one edge before I had it over my cup (I think I wanted to watch the tea drain into the cup or something stupid. Lol!) instead of just picking it up and setting it on the cup. Definitely learned from that experience.
Overall I’d definitely recommend this as something to have around. I only wish I could find where to buy replacement filters if I ever need them.
Wasn’t sure if I was going to like this or not. I had passed up getting this in the DavidsTea store I visited awhile ago, but was able to get some through a swap with Shmiracles.
I brewed it in my new Ingenuitea (I got it cheap ‘cause it was used) which made it awesome to watch the leaves unfurling and brewing. It also was alot easier to brew a single cup since my usual teapots don’t manage one cup well at all. If you have a chance to pick one up, I highly recommend it.
But I’m getting off subject.
This tea smelled wonderfully vanilla-y with a smidge of floral/green-ness when it’s dry. Brewing it came through a bit more green so I was a bit hesitant since I find I dislike most ‘green’ tasting teas at the moment. Taking that first sip I did get that green-ness, but it wasn’t too bad. I also got the vanilla nicely mixed with the floral sense that didn’t really overpower. I did add some of my usual truvia that made it much better. The vanilla and floral came through more than the green-ness and I enjoyed the cup much better.
I went for a second steep since it’s an oolong and I figured why not. I steeped it for a minute longer at the same temp, and I almost didn’t drink it when I smelled the wet leaves after draining. They smelled awful, though I can’t recall exactly how since I shut the lid back. Wet rotten spinach comes to mind. Lol. Now that it’s cooled a bit, the vanilla has come back making me consider a third steep.
Anyway, I took a sip of the second steep and found it wasn’t all that bad either. A bit more muted, but still tasty, especially after adding sugar. I found that the vanilla came through more as it cooled, though not necessarily in a good way. Much better hot.
Tried for a third steep at 5 min total steep. It’s alright. Certainty drinkable, but nothing overly noteworthy or impressive. Maybe a bit more green and not as vanilla-y. /shrug/
Overall I might keep this around for when I want something lighter, or until I find a better replacement (read cheaper). Lol!
Not too bad. Smells strongly of raspberry when dried, and the same comes through when brewed. I had to resist picking the choco chips out to munch on though. Has a nice raspberry flavor though I wasn’t getting much chocolate. Which doesn’t surprise me since I haven’t yet found a tea with chocolate that I can really detect the chocolate in it. I guess I’m too finicky. If I want chocolate, I’ll just have to make some cocoa or something. Lol.
Tried it straight and it was alright. But adding a bit of brown sugar to it made it much nicer. I was considering trying it with some milk, but unfortunately this tea set off my allergies so I wasn’t able to finish a full cup before having to pour it out. Bummer. Still, it was a tasty tea while I could drink it.
At least now I know to add raspberry to my list of tea additions that I can’t have along with mango, pomegranate & coconut. x.x; /sigh/
Got this in a swap with Rebecca R and decided to give it a try tonight.
Honestly, I’m glad I tried this in a swap instead of just buying it. While it has a lovely peachy smell dry, I didn’t get anything close to that smell when I brewed it.
I brewed it according to Teavana’s directions on their website, though I’ll probly end up tweaking that next time I make this. Overall I wasn’t impressed with the brew I got from their instructions. Maybe I’ll try more leaf, or a lower temp or something. Just to see.
I didn’t get much peach while drinking it. It was slightly floral and just very faintly peachy tasting. Even though this is supposed to be a peach tea, it has apple pieces in it, which gave it a faintly sour taste to it that I didn’t care for. At least, I’m pretty sure it’s the apple in this. It’s the same sort of taste I got when I made their Peach Tranquility Herbal tea, which has a similar set of ingredients. Adding truvia to it make it much better, though it didn’t really enhance any of the flavors, just overcame the sourness mostly.
Tried a second steep on this for the same temp but a minute longer and it was definitely weaker, though there was some sort of background taste/flavor that I couldn’t identify. Maybe a bit greener tasting or something. I’m not sure. It definitely got more astringent the second brewing.
Good to try for a swap, but it’s unlikely I’ll ever buy it.