1289 Tasting Notes

drank Orchid Oolong by Mighty Leaf Tea
1289 tasting notes

It must be the luck of the draw, but here is another case of an oolong with an irresistibly scrumptious scent in the dried form. Seriously, it smells so rich and luxurious—a bit chocolatey, in fact. I just realize what these dried leaves smell like: dark chocolate with unsweetened coconut bits!

The liquor is on the dark side, but I did use a good portion so that may have something to do with the brownish amber tint of the brew. I’m not quite ready to do the gaiwan thing, but I figured that I’d ease into it by starting to use more tea in my infusions and keep to shorter steeps. The scent is rather different from the dried leaves. I’m not sure how to describe it. I still like the aroma, but it no longer conjures images of delicious chocolate-coconut confections in my mind.

The taste is very good. To me it seems more sweet floral than specifically coconut, but whatever the “natural flavors” are, I’m happy with this blend and look forward to the second infusion of the large yet-to-be-fully unfurled leaves!

second infusion: this was not as good, making me think that the charms of this tea were somewhat superficial, inhering primarily in the added flavors, not the underlying tea, which felt a bit scratchy and tasted less enticing once stripped of the flavor trappings.

Flavors: Dark Chocolate

185 °F / 85 °C 2 min, 0 sec 5 g 10 OZ / 295 ML

i found a canadian site from vancover that sells this tea and its like over 70$ for 100g >:( and has like no description


Hi Kirkoneill1988. I got this from Mighty Leaf, and it certainly was not that expensive! lol

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drank White Blueberry by Adagio Teas
1289 tasting notes

The aroma of the dried leaves of Adagio Organic Blueberry White (that’s the name on my packet of sachets obtained from a grocery store) is not very pleasant. Does it even smell like blueberries? Maybe I just don’t know what blueberries smell like. But wait: haven’t I consumed a truckload of them over the course of my life?

The good news is that the tea brews up into a tasty blend of je ne sais quoi—it certainly does not taste like blueberries to me!—with a very silken and lovely texture. Judging by the taste and texture the base tea is clearly of high quality, and I do see that a few furry silver needles have been thrown in for good measure. It’s possible that the flavoring has metamorphosed, as I just noticed that I was sold a package past its “best buy” date! What? Is that even legal? Maybe I should return it to the store. It was on sale, but really now…

I probably should refrain from rating this tea, but it was pleasant enough to drink—even though it’s old!

165 °F / 73 °C 2 min, 45 sec 2 g 9 OZ / 266 ML

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floating golden globes
arrid buds like setting suns
gleaming oasis


Nice one :-)


Thank you, my comrades in tea!

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Not being that fond of the Mighty Leaf sachets, I nonetheless wanted to check out their loose leaf offerings. First up: Jasmine Downy Pearls.

I have enjoyed some pretty tasty jasmine pearls recently, which makes it difficult for the competition. These pearls strike me not quite as fragrant as some, and I also noticed that they are matte on the surface, rather than having shimmery silver striations. There seems to be a fair amount of powder on the inside of the container, suggesting that some serious jostling has gone on.

The flavor is pretty good. I enjoyed the second glass more than the first, which is often the case for some reason. Anyway, I’m not sure yet how to rate this tea, but I’ll certainly know by the time I make it to the bottom of this generous-sized cylindrical can, which boasts a whopping 128 grams! 6 down, 122 to go…

Flavors: Jasmine

165 °F / 73 °C 3 min, 0 sec 6 g 17 OZ / 502 ML

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drank Milk Oolong by The Republic of Tea
1289 tasting notes

I was seriously craving this tea last night, but I was so worn out by the weather that I opted to go to bed early instead—at midnight instead of 3am.

Today’s second TOD (teaof the day) had to be this one. (I nearly always start my tea day with a green.) The dried tea smells so fantastically, incredibly rich and sumptuous that I could probably be content just sitting and sniffing it all day. Okay, that might be a slight exaggeration.

Once again, I was very pleased with this golden brew, its sweet floral aroma, and luxurious texture. A very good grocery store find indeed!

175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec 4 g 12 OZ / 354 ML

I had this tea today, too! It’s a good value for the tea.


Yes, Cheri—a rare find at the grocery store and not exorbitantly priced, though it is real tea!

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Today’s tetsubin of Teavana Jade Dragon Mao Feng was not quite as good as I recalled from the past. It’s possible that it is losing some flavor—I opened the envelope back in January, and the dried tea does not smell very fragrant anymore.

I’m going to try to sip down all of my already opened packages in view of the absurd level of heat and humidity we’ve been experiencing of late.

165 °F / 73 °C 3 min, 0 sec 4 g 17 OZ / 502 ML

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Another superfine tetsubin of this superfine Dragon Well from Teavivre. Despite our sweat shop environment in the kitchen today. I’ll definitely be restocking this yummy stuff.

165 °F / 73 °C 3 min, 0 sec 4 g 17 OZ / 502 ML

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drank Sweet Dreams by Bigelow
1289 tasting notes

I admit to having been spoiled by Harney & Sons’ super fresh and delicious Egyptian Chamomile, but even Pukka Love is a lot better than this Sweet Dreams chamomile blend from Bigelow. It tastes either stale or sour—or perhaps both. Perhaps the mint is old, or perhaps the hibiscus is making the whole mess taste sour. I know that this particular bag is not old, because it came from a new box in my housemate’s cupboard. It’s just not good.

To dump or refrigerate? That is the question.

Boiling 6 min, 15 sec 2 g 9 OZ / 266 ML

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drank Love by Pukka
1289 tasting notes

Could I really go an entire 24 hours without any tea-esque beverage sipped hot? It almost happened today, because though my top-floor space is fully equipped with an air conditioner (which I grudgingly acquired, though now I am grateful…), the living space downstairs feels like a sweat shop!

My solution: take a shower, and then sit in front of the air conditioning until I feel cold. Now I am sipping a bedtime glass of Pukka Love. This is a decent chamomile blend. I stand by my earlier rating, though I still do not taste much in the way of rose. The chamomile itself is very and tasty, and there is a thickness and slight sweetness to the brew—though nowhere near Tazo Rest, which is more like sugary roses somehow.

I consider Pukka Love to be a successful filterbag because I am pretty sure that this blend would taste about the same brewed from a sachet or perhaps even loose. The bright yellow hue of the liquor is the first clue that the chamomile is fresh.

Love is a genuine like for me.

Boiling 6 min, 0 sec 2 g 9 OZ / 266 ML

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Like all good middle-class Americans, I’ve consumed my share of Celestial Seasonings Zinger teas, including this one, Raspberry Zinger. For years, I was perfectly satisfied with this company’s many variations on the hibiscus-rosehip theme. Until I encountered Tazo and realized that the Zingers really lacked zing by comparison. I especially found that Tazo Passion occupied a different stratum as far as intensity and quality of flavor were concerned. From then on, I pretty much stopped buying Celestial Seasonings tea, though I do occasionally find some in my house.

Case in point: this four-bag sample pack of Raspberry Zinger, of unknown age and provenance. The dried tea smelled exactly like my memory of this blend, so I brewed it up fully intending to drink it iced. Upon discovering that it was indeed a bit lacking in the flavor department (though I brewed it double strength to pour over ice), I threw a fair amount of True Lime into the mix. Then the iced beverage was more like a strong citrus punch with a bit of raspberry in the background. Pretty thirst quenching, but I won’t be buying it again. If I find any more Celestial Seasoning Zinger bags lying around, I’ll probably deploy the same strategy with them as well. The reason why I brewed this hot rather than cold was because I accidentally boiled too much water while preparing today’s coffee, so I figured Why not?

For those who do not know: True Lime is the miraculously freeze-dried form of lime juice. It is a million times better than the juice in those green plastic limes or in any bottled form. I highly recommend it to those who like to use citrus to flavor iced teas or in cooking. The company also makes True Lemon, True Orange, and True Grapefruit, all of which do truly represent the taste of the respective juice.

Boiling 8 min or more

Hey, I’m not middle-aged but I used to love this tea. Back in the late 90’s I would drink this and watch South Park all the time…


Ah, red zinger brings me back. It was the only tea I drank as a kid and I rembrer having an odd love hate for it even then. Good times


Around Christmas, Celestial Seasonings puts out a tea called Sugar Cookie Sleigh Ride. That one is totally worth buying.


Where do you get this true lime stuff? It sounds great!


I found their website. They don’t carry it at my grocery store I usually shop at, but Kroger has it. I’ll have to grab some when I take my MIL shopping next.


Wow, True Lime sounds amazing!


Cheri & Tamarindel: the citrus powders they sell are truly awesome because they capture the true taste of the juice, unlike Realemon, which seems fake to me. I do recommend! No more forgotten, rotten lemons and limes in the back of my fridge!

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Update: 28 September 2014.

On the above date, I officially went on strike and stopped posting tasting notes at Steepster, having endured more than two months of this site’s complete and utter dysfunctionality.

Today is November 1, 2014. I write now to announce that I’ll be launching my new blog, sherapop’s tea leaves, in the not too distant future…

A long-time tea and perfume lover, I have recently begun to explore the intersections between the two at my blog: http://salondeparfum-sherapop.blogspot.com//

I participate at fragrance community websites, and I care about tea as much as perfume, so why not belong to Steepster as well?

A few words about my ratings. In assessing both teas and perfumes, my evaluation is “all things considered.” Teas do not differ very much in price (relative to perfumes or any luxury items), so I do not usually consider the price when rating a tea.

What I do consider is how the particular tea compares to teas of its own type. So I might give a high rating to a fine herbal infusion even though I would never say that it is my favorite TEA. But if it’s good for what it is, then it deserves a high rating. There is no point in wishing that a chamomile blend was an Assam or a sencha tea!

Any rating below 50 means that I find the liquid less desirable to drink than plain water. I may or may not finish the cup, depending upon how thirsty I am and whether there is another hot beverage or (in summertime) a source of fresh water available.

From 50 to 60 indicates that, while potable, the tea is not one which I would buy or repurchase, if I already made the mistake (I have learned) of purchasing it.

From 60 to 70 means that the tea is drinkable but I have criticisms of some sort, and I probably would not purchase or repurchase the tea as I can think of obvious alternatives which would be better.

From 70 to 80 is a solid brew which I would purchase again.

From 80 to 90 is good stuff, and I probably need to have some ready at hand in my humble abode.

From 90 to 100 is a tea (or infusion) which I have come to depend on and look forward to imbibing again and again—if possible!

If you are interested in perfume, you might like my 2300+ perfume reviews, most of which have been archived at sherapop’s sillage (essentially my perfumelog):



Somerville, Massachusetts, USA



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