223 Tasting Notes

72

Tea #2 from Another Traveling Tea Box. Moraiwe tossed this in the box for me to try because I said I was in sort of a tea slump and she said this always picked her up. I can see why. This was an interesting tea to try.
I haven’t really had good experiences with Darjeeling in the past. The first one I ever had tasted like musty old leather and really put me off it. I’ve collected a few from swaps and whatnot but I’ve never gotten the nerve up to try them fearing for another bad experience. After this one, I might just start dipping into them now.
Smelling the brew it’s got a rich sort of fruity smell which I wasn’t expecting. I just about stuck my nose in my tea trying to catch it, but then, my nose has been kinda stuffy/wonky with this new medicine I’ve been on.
Tasting it I’m definitely getting that musky sort of taste, but I also get a kinda green ‘pulling-weeds-scent’ sort of taste from it too. Which is a strange way to describe it, but it’s the first thing that comes to mind. It’s not an unpleasant sort of taste, but it definitely makes me sit and ponder and sip some more on it. Very little, if any astringency which I always like to find.
This is a very nice tea to drink straight, but I always have to add sugar to all my first time trying teas just to see. I have a feeling I might’ve added just a bit too much Truvia but it’s still definitely drinkable. The green/musky taste is toned down and I get more of a vague fruity taste now. Either way, it was a very pleasant cup to drink
This tea definitely makes me see why some people are absolutely crazy about Darjeeling. Personally it’s not a tea that I could see myself craving enough to keep much of around. But I’d consider keeping a few cups worth of around for those rare times I want a black tea that’s not malty (like I usually drink)

Edit – Did a second steep (because why not. Lol.) – 4:30min @195* – A bit more of a watered down taste and I’m getting a peppery sort of malty-ness now from the tea. Vaguely fruity and much more astringent now.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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49

Tea from ‘Another Traveling Tea Box’.

I couldn’t help it. I smelled this one in the bag and was like ‘I must try this first’. It smelled exactly like soft oatmeal cookies. Mmmmm.
Actually looking at the contents there was an awful lot of cinnamon bits in the bag, so I was having some reservations about the taste, but on I brewed.
The taste…..meh. Which was rather disappointing really. All I got was alot of cinnamon and the spicy taste of clove (I can’t imagine what it would’ve been if I’d gotten the big clove I left in the bag)
I added a bit of truvia and that helped quite a bit by bringing the raisin out so I could actually taste it. So I guess the brew does actually taste like an oatmeal raisin cookie if you sit and ponder it a bit (albeit heavy on the cinnamon). I get some astringency at the back of my tongue the longer I sip it, but it’s not unpleasant, just letting me know it’s there.

Overall, I’m glad I tried it from the box, but I’m not sure I’d order it myself.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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I got this one sent to me as a free sample from the company (along with a few others) and since I was wanting something unflavored, I grabbed this off the top of the pile.
I’m not really sure of a dry leaf smell because I’m not sure how much cross contamination scent there is (the packages are just plastic lined paper bags with a little viewing window. Nice to see the tea, not so good at keeping the scents to themselves), so I’ll skip that.
There wasn’t any sort of brewing instructions on the website or package, so I just went with 1 1/2 tsp @205* ish for 3 min. It’s my standard formula for black teas. Though usually I use just 1 tsp, not really sure what possed me to use more. /shrug/
As soon as the water hit it, it started turning reddish and got really dark red by the time the 3 min was up. Nice malty scent in the cup, maybe with a bit of fruity-ness, but that might be my imagination since I couldn’t pin that down again.
My first sip was malty, and slightly astringent (the astringency got stronger the cold the cup got) but unfortunately it was also mildly bitter. Actually so much so that I couldn’t really concentrate on anything else. I’m not sure if it was because I steeped too much/for too long/too hot so I’m holding off on a rating until I try a couple different things. I’ve still got quite enough of my sample left that I can experiment alot, so I’ll give an update with my next try.
Overall it’s definitely a promising tea. And reasonably enough priced that if I do find that magic steep combination that clicks for me, I’d consider keeping this around.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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drank Momoko by Lupicia
223 tasting notes

So this was my second tea of the day. (Had it this morning so I’m a little late with the review) If I remember correctly, I purchased this from….Momo I think? I wish there was a way to search for topics started by a specific user. But ah well.
The tin this came in is so pretty and I think it keeps the tea inside fresh. Or at least, this tea smelled pretty good when I opened it. It’s a green tea, which I usually don’t even consider as something I’d want to buy to try, but I figured what the heck, and I get a tin out of it too. Lol.
The tea smells sweet and kinda fruity and there’s little crystals of sugar and flower bits mixed in. Pretty.
There’s no recommended brewing stats for this tea on the Lupicia site, so I took the one that seemed to be most popular here and tried (almost) boiling water for 3 min. I was afraid that I’d get a nasty boiled/burnt vegetable taste because this is a green and needs to be at a lower temp. But I have enough of it so I can always try something lower next time.

Brew is also fruity smelling with a slightly grassy/green smell to it but not the overcooked smell I was anticipating. Unfortunately my first sip reminded me of seaweed. Floral seaweed, but seaweed nonetheless. Ugh. I added a smidge of sugar in the hopes that maybe it would bring the other flavors out, but all I got out of it now was sweet, floral seaweed. Mostly on the front of the tongue. If I drank the tea so it hit further back on my tongue, I didn’t get the seaweed taste as much, but it was still there.
No hints of peach or vanilla from this unfortunately.

I’m not going to rate this because maybe it was the temp I used that made it turn out rather badly for me? Next time I’ll definitely try something lower and give it a rating then.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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75
drank Buddha's Blend by DAVIDsTEA
223 tasting notes

So I’ve been pretty much off tea for almost two weeks. I just didn’t feel like having anything to do with tea, which was pretty depressing now that I think about it. So I had the day off today and decided to have a stay in and drink tea day. Started a little later than I wanted, but not too bad. This was the first one I tried this morning. Got it in a swap from….errr, I actually don’t remember since it was months ago now. If I remember, I’ll be sure to edit this.
The dry has a fruity/floral smell that made my mouth water just a bit. Really I didn’t know what to expect since it had been so long since I got this I’d forgotten what sort of tea it was. I was surprised when I checked that it was a white/green blend with no fruit actually in it. Huh.

The brew has the same fruity/floral smell with a pretty dark golden brew. First sip was very nice. Fruity/floral with just a very mild hint of greenness. Reminded me of the only Tie Guan Yin I’ve ever had but with the greenness toned way down into drinkability (for me at least). I added a bit of Truvia which made the fruityness come out more. Even my Mom liked it when she stopped by to drop something off and I had her try it.

Resteeped – 4 min @ 180* – A bit fainter in taste, but not as much as I was expecting. Still nice but maybe a bit longer on the next steep. Unfortunately I completely ruined this because I decided to try the new cane sugar I’d gotten to maybe replace my Truvia (which is alot more expensive) and vastly overestimated the amount I should’ve added. Made the whole thing horribly sweet so I couldn’t drink it. /sigh/ I know better for next time at least.

I guess I can say that I have a green tea that I like, though I’m not sure how much green tea is actually in this blend. Lol.
This one is definitely one I’d consider ordering, though it’s not one I think I’d be drinking all the time. Probly when I want something different from my usual fare. But I’d consider keeping it around.

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

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84
drank Red Velvet Cake by DAVIDsTEA
223 tasting notes

So after that jasmine tea, I wanted something strong enough to be able to power over any lingering jasmine tea scent I might not’ve been able to clean from my steeper, and something I’ve had before so that if the jasmine did creep through, it wouldn’t skew my taste.
I love this. It’s chocolaty, with a smidge of spice and a wonderful cakey smell. When I order from Davids I’m definitely getting the 100g bag with the tin, because this is one I want to be keeping around. I love the little sprinkles and chocolate chips in this, though really I don’t think they do much more than make the tea a bit murky and muck up my steeper. Lol! But I can definitely deal with that since I have this awesome tea to drink.
It’s chocolaty without having that awful watered down taste like most chocolate teas I’ve drank (Della Terra’s Dubble Chocolade is the only other exception I’ve ever found), with that smidge of spice to make the brew interesting.
I could almost drink this without any sort of added sweetener, but adding just a smidge of Truvia makes the cake-y flavor really pop and makes it that much better.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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47

This one I actually had gotten with one of my first orders with Butiki when I was still pretty new to tea and was buying all sorts of different teas to try because I didn’t really know what I liked…..And there it has sat since because I’d tried another jasmine tea since then and I wasn’t the biggest fan. So I kinda had to give myself a shove in trying this tonight or else it might’ve just sat there forever.
Very floral scent in the bag. Not overpowering, but definitely not light. Looking at the pearls they’re streaked with silver that’s fuzzy. Which, to me at least, is pretty neat. Alot of the pearl teas I’ve had have that soft/fuzzy looking texture. Though they’ve all been dragon pearls and streaked with gold instead. XD
The jasmine smell carries over into the brew itself and turns it into a heavily perfumed tea, which I was surprised was a darkish gold color. I was expecting something more bright yellow-ish.
It’s sweet, with a very slight touch of greeness. But the jasmine is definitely front and center and it’s hard to really taste anything else. But then, this is supposed to be a jasmine tea, so I wasn’t really expecting anything else.
Unfortunately for me it’s like drinking perfume water. Not my thing, but a good thing to try. I’d definitely recommend this one if someone is looking for a strong jasmine tea to drink. Like, woah strong. Lol!

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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81
drank Peach HoppiTea by Butiki Teas
223 tasting notes

I actually drank this over a week or so ago. But stupid that I am, I didn’t make a note here and only realized it now when I went to make another Butiki tasting note. But I did write my impressions down in a notebook that I recently acquired to write down all my tea tasting notes and things. So at least I can copy from that to write this note. XD
This was one of the free samples I got with one of my orders. I almost didn’t ask for it because the hops kinda spooked me off a bit. Mainly because I don’t drink at all, be it beer or anything alcoholic, so a tea that reminisced of a beer was kinda ‘ugh, maybe?’ to me. Lol. But I figured getting a sample wouldn’t hurt and hey, I might even really like it.
After trying a line of ‘meh’ teas (namely open sample packs from Adagio that I got from somewhere and I think had gotten a smidge stale from being open.) I wanted something different but potentially familiar with it being a peach tea. So this.
Wow. I was super surprised by this. It’s a very very nice peach tea. The brew has a wonderfully clean peach smell to it overlaying the black base. The taste is very clean/crisp which was surprising to me. Maybe it’s the hops accenting the taste. I do get a bitterness from the hops, but I was expecting that possibility from what I’d read about this tea. Adding a bit of Truvia completely banished that bitterness and brought the peach out even more. There’s a smidge of astringency, but it’s hardly noticeable. I just think I’m overly sensitive to it. As the cup got cold, it was still drinkable and peachy, but I think I prefer this as a hot tea. Then again, I wasn’t able to do a cold brew/iced tea thing with it, so I couldn’t be entirely certain of this.
This is definitely a tea I’ll likely order a bag of with my next Butiki order (which happen alarmingly frequently it seems. /shakes fist at Stacy/ Lol!) It’s a wonderful peach tea to have.

- Sheesh. For a small tasting note in my notebook, this sure turned out long all typed and whatnot here. Lol!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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64

I could’ve sworn that I put a note up when I first tried this, but apparently not. Huh. Anyway, not the first time I’ve drank this, but unfortunately the first time I’ve recorded it here I guess.
Fruity, smooth and nicely malty. Pretty average to me. But it’s one I seem to keep coming back to. I think this is mostly because I forget what it tastes like so I brew it up again to see. Lol. But it’s a nice, comforting tea to brew up when I just want something to drink and not to have to think too much on it.

I also blended this with a vanilla black tea (georgia tea co.) I had around because I thought I had a note written on this package about adding vanilla to it. (It turns out it wasn’t this one but the Formosa Oolong. Oops) But it does add a nice mellow vanilla-ness to it that supports the whole comfort tea for me. Pretty much this tea gives the vanilla a much needed boost to the base, and the vanilla makes this one overall a bit tastier. ^^
(Rating is based on just the straight Mountain Nectar tea, not on the blended version I made later)

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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59

Not much has changed from my first tasting note’s opinion on this. It’s still a nice solid black tea to drink. Kinda reminds me of the black dragon pearls I get from Adagio, but without the resteepability. (I think I just made a new word there. Lol!)
I get a cedar-y, malty smell from the brew. And a nicely malty taste from the sip. I’ll finish this off, maybe consider reordering if there’s a good deal on it. /shrug/

2nd steep as per website’s instructions – 5 min/208* – Pretty much tasted like a watered down cup of the first brew. I’m not sure it’s really worth the effort. Maybe if I was making a batch of tea to chill I might, but otherwise I think I’d rather just dump the leaves and brew a fresh batch.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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Profile

Bio

I wanted to cut soda out of my life, so I started drinking more tea. Now I’m quickly becoming addicted. But that doesn’t seem like so bad of a thing considering all there is out there to try.

I started with blacks, but oolongs are quickly becoming my new favorite. Unfortunately, I haven’t really been able to find a green or white tea that I really enjoy. Eventually maybe.

Always open for swaps. If you see something in my cupboard that you’re interested in, feel free to send me a message about it. I do have alot of sample sizes in my cupboard, so there might be a few that I won’t be able to swap. But it never hurts to ask. ^^

Likes – Fruity teas (Peach, Apricot & Pineapple to be specific, but I’d likely be open to others). I’m always on the lookout for a good caramel tea too…and a vanilla one. Or any sweet, dessert teas.
Oolongs and Blacks over any others.

Indifferent/Undecided – White teas are a bit delicate for me but I’m not opposed to trying something new. I haven’t yet found a green tea I like since I dislike vegetal flavors, but there has to be something out there. Coconut can be too strong, or alright depending on the tea.

Dislikes – Spicy/chai stuff not so much since I can’t seem to get past the spice taste to anything underneath. Anything overly astringent, though I can’t imagine anyone /liking/ astringency (but I’m probly wrong. Lol). Earl Greys, heavy florals, tart/sour teas, rooibos heavy, mint of any sort, vegetal, musky/leathery, citrus, hibiscus, coffee-esque flavors, lemon.

Allergies – Mangos, some nuts especially walnuts, cherries. Rose petals/heavy rose teas make me ill though it’s not an allergy so to speak. Heavy artificial flavors also make me ill.

Brief ‘How I rate things’ scale:
(Subject to change at any time. Lol)
100-80: I’d definitely reorder this/Keeping this in my cupboard.
79-50: Possibly reorder these. Either if there’s a sale or I’d consider swapping for it’s on a list and I don’t see anything else.
49-40: It’s alright. Glad I tried it but I won’t be ordering/reordering this.
39-20: Glad I tried before buying ‘cause I’d be ticked if I bought this. Ick.
20-lower: UGH! Get it away!

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