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90 Tasting Notes

86

If you’re a fan of roasty Chinese blacks, then get ready for a treat. A far cry from its florid South Asian counterparts from Ceylon and Assam, Kenyan black tea takes every deep golden note of your favorite Keemuns and Yunnans–and boom. The roll of a heated drum, as it penetrates and reverberates from sip to sole to soul. The finish is so smooth that you can’t even feel it leave your tongue.

But is this a Lion King of tea? Actually, it’s more like a Lion Queen. Lionesses are the real power within a pride, hunting and taking care of the young, while our Simbas and Mufasas… Full review here: http://snooteablog.com/2013/10/01/snooty-tea-review-justea/

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56

Dry ChamoMint is Hangover Helper on Beginner Mode. Actually, there’s a nice subdued effect about it. The fragrance is simpler; cleaner than the hodgepodge of flavors and smells snarled up in the previous tea. Here, in the cup, the herbs merge without making a fuss about it.

Another frank, no-nonsense blend, Chamomint taps into that beautiful honey quali-tea that we’ve seen in other herbals from Simpson’s and Smith Teamaker. This tea just puts you right at home. With its dusky gold liquor, the chamomile dominates, and the mint chimes in only on the aftertaste. These three notes come together quite plainly, but… Full review here: http://snooteablog.com/2013/09/23/snooty-tea-review-inthebag-tea-round-2/

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45

Hello, a tea for Sunday–or, as rugby folks call it, Holy Hangover Day. None of the dry blends from In The Bag Teas have a saccharine-sweet tea-sposition; Hangover Helper is no exception. In the cup, not much can be said for the aroma. You get the chamomile fuzzy-blanketing everything, though the pucker of rosehips pokes through, along with a soft greeting from the orange peel. Richly golden liquor–blessedly alcohol-free…

As a result, In The Bag does well to include gently stimulating herbs like mint and ginseng to counteract the sleepiness that’s going to happen with the chamomile. If you’ve already slept too much, the last thing you want is a tea that’s going to put you back to bed. However, despite the strong lineup of ingredients here… Full review here: http://snooteablog.com/2013/09/23/snooty-tea-review-inthebag-tea-round-2/

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56

Digestiblend is made for sweet little farm girls. Why? Because right out of the bag, it smells like fresh hay. It’s only when you steep it do you get the lovely lemon vibes in the aroma. You’re still chilling in the hayloft, but it’s been scrubbed with the power of PineSol, baby.

What’s nice about In The Bag’s tea is that you can gulp or sip it without regret. Hoity-toity blends (here’s looking at you, Chateau Rouge) make you feel guilty for drinking a cup with anything but the utmost reverence, swishing the delicate flavors around in your mouth to savor every one.

Here, however, none of that. Tiny sips are just as rewarding as the chugs. Whatever the reason… Full review here: http://snooteablog.com/2013/09/23/snooty-tea-review-inthebag-tea-round-2/

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45
As a dry blend, it doesn’t smell like much, one of those where you have to really stick your nose in there to get a whiff. In the cup, that red fruit does its thing. The aroma becomes bright and sassy, like a grapefruit or blood orange. Natural sweetness? Nil.

As usual with fruit and berry teas, you get a wine-colored liquor here, but the taste is reminiscent of anything but wine. All those tangy, tart notes from Crackin’ Rosie are just off the wall here. Bam. Bam. Bam. Bam. Whether you oversteep it or not, just be prepared… Full review here: http://snooteablog.com/2013/09/23/snooty-tea-review-inthebag-tea-round-2/

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62

Let’s get crackin’ on Cracklin’ Rosie. The dry blend has a very good ratio of rooibus to fruitiness, neither bullying the other when you take a sniff. In the cup, hooboy does this mellow out to something nice. There’s no Snap, Crackle, or Pop in the aroma of this tea, but that’s not a bad thing! The notes meld together in a warm, happy mess. So far it seems that In The Bag Teas don’t go for refinement in their blends, so you just get honest flavors; undiluted sincere-tea.

Our redhead in the mug, Cracklin’ Rosie is exactly that. From sip to swallow, the three ingredients–rooibus, hibiscus, and rosehips–each boldly proclaim their in-tea-pendence. Chill out, guys! Next thing you know… Full review here: http://snooteablog.com/2013/09/21/snooty-tea-review-inthebag-tea-round-1/

Nicole

Oh, now I’ll have that song in my head for days. :)

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66

Rooibus Chai immediately gives you fluffy, warm baking smells when you take a whiff of the dry blend. It even manages to trick you into believing that there’s vanilla in there! Nevermind drinking this one, stuff it into muffins and you’ll have a real party. In the cup, you’d think that the spices would kick into high gear, but the rooibus soon takes back the reins. People underestimate how overpowering rooibus can be, so you have to be careful when using it as base tea if you’re looking to showcase other flavors.

It tastes like an apple crumble.

Right down to the uber-dry finish at the end of the sip, Rooibus Chai is liquid pastry for your mouth-pleasure. Even its liquor is the color of a flaky crust. If you’re looking for a hearty, caffeine-free breakfast tea… Full review here: http://snooteablog.com/2013/09/21/snooty-tea-review-inthebag-tea-round-1/

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38

Dry Jazzberry has a cool, lake-ish smell, as we have the blueberry meeting the earthy green tea and hey, they just might elope. So far, the jasmine flowers add nothing but decoration. Hey, it’s aesthetically pleasing! And as it turns out, the aesthetics aren’t just for show–once in the cup, you get that florality taking over as far as it can get. The blueberry and green dissipate like swan maidens at dawn. However, if you hide your crossbow and wait, the berry comes back low and sweet.

With a chartreuse-y liquor, this tea tastes like there’s zero green in here. The flavors are completely on the blue spectrum, as the berries have their natural coolness swishing around your mouth, which is only heightened by the intensity of the jasmine. It’s a flower tea–no buds about it. It’s a shame that adding the blueberry, which is a great accent in and of itself, makes it a bit gaudy. There’s no finesse about the way the jasmine hits you. You’re pummeled with it with every sip, so by the time you get to the dregs… Full review here: http://snooteablog.com/2013/09/21/snooty-tea-review-inthebag-tea-round-1/

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89

Our Iron Goddess Medium Grade Oolong starts off in the bag as floral, no doubt about it. Some of the jasmine is covered up by a vegetal scent, but this is erased as soon as you brew up that first infusion. Now, for “medium grade,” this tea still knows how to make a very good first impression. Jasmine is a fact of life when it comes to Iron Goddess Oolongs, or Tie Guan Yin, so skip ahead if you don’t like flowers between your teeth. For the petal pushers, don’t miss out on this oolong–just the aroma brings with it a feeling of being clean.

Normally, floral teas can get oily on the aftertaste, but this one leaves your mouth actually refreshed! What joy! With an understated, Pinot Grigio liquor, our humble jasmine allows other flavors to sit in for a chat. You’ll find yourself in the tea-lightful company of… Full review here: http://snooteablog.com/2013/09/14/snooty-tea-review-tea-setter-round-2/

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92

The Iron Goddess High Grade Oolong holds an entirely different type of divinity. This goddess rocks your world, plain and simple. She may even induce a sense of spirituali-tea.

The dry leaves exemplify “herbaceous”. All the notes are culinary veggies straight from the East: bok choy and mustard greens, thrown in with some kale and broccoli. (Be careful where you drink this, lest you get mauled by slavering Buddhist vegans.) Once steeped, the aroma takes on more delicacy, but never, not once, are you hit with the flowery notes that characterize most Tieguanyin.

The first infusion represents what’s possible when an oolong tastes honestly good of its own accord. No complicated flavor-patterns that force you to shut your eyes against in the the onslaught of their loquacious haze. This is sheer accessibili-tea. Nothing Iron about this Goddess; she is all about giving–giving you the experience of… Full review here: http://snooteablog.com/2013/09/14/snooty-tea-review-tea-setter-round-2/

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Bio

Tea blogger and pun-dit at the Snooty Tea Blog.

At the moment, I don’t have enough time to keep Steepster cup-dated with reviews, so if you’re looking for the latest leaves in my Snooty cup, hit up snooteablog.com. Most of the teas I review end up on there.

Some people drink tea because they think it has nine thousand-plus health benefits and saves the rainforest while eliminating world hunger and solving the energy crisis.

I just drink it because it’s good.

Location

New York

Website

http://snooteablog.com

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