1378 Tasting Notes

drank Catuaba by Infussion
1378 tasting notes

Thanks Infussion.eu for the samples! I had this one this morning. I wanted to try this one because at small amounts, it will wake you up and make you more alert. My brain needs all the help it can get. So I steeped 3/4 of a teaspoon. Infussion says 1-3 grams is supposed to wake you up, 3-9 grams is for sensitivity increases and “aphrodisiac uses” and 10+ grams make you sleepy. I’m not exactly sure how one tea can both put me to sleep in higher doses but wake me up at lower doses. (And yes, I had to look up how many grams are in a teaspoon… one gram = 1/4 teaspoon… I think I need to drink this tea before figuring out any math at all.) But I really hope I did this right… I really don’t feel like being sleepy all day! Infussion said to steep for ten minutes at boiling. The “leaves” look like very shredded light-colored wood chips. The steep color is a very interesting orange! It looks like it should be orange flavored. But the flavor is really like wood chips and slightly bitter. It isn’t terrible at all (to me anyway) and if it wakes me up, it will be worth it. But I can’t see people who don’t like rooibos liking this tea. I think rooibos is delicious. There is also a bit of a flavor profile here that tastes like a cappuccino to me. I don’t have those often though and that’s probably just my tastebuds…just something there that reminds me of cappuccino. I wonder if this tea will wake me up more than a black tea though. I had this plain today because I wanted to review it fairly, but I’d much rather mix it with something else in the future. The Schisandra Chinensis berries that Infussion sent will probably come in handy for that, especially since I kind of requested those two together for that reason. They are both supposed to keep you awake! (And it was funny logging into steepster to see the infusion times for these and seeing that Momo had the same idea: to brew them together!) The only problem with this tea is that I’d rather grab something more fun and tastier to wake me up in the morning. But it’s an interesting change! This is getting a good rating because I can’t see a tea made out of wood chips getting any better than this.

Two and a half hours after drinking: I was yawning more than usual, so I don’t think this tea woke me up very well. So if it doesn’t wake me up, I can’t see drinking it. I guess things affect me differently.

205 °F / 96 °C 8 min or more

As a tea drinker you’re accustomed to caffeine kick and Catuaba has none. It lasts for 1h with another hour lingering.

Because its action is mediated through dopaminergic system stimulation (“reward center”) at high enough dose it can put you in a state of satisfaction and well-being that is no stimulating at all.

Try higher dose with some caffeine product. Catuaba is prized as aphrodisiac and it is best in such uses.

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thank you Nicole for sending me some of this in the stash reduction! I brewed this for 3 or 4 minutes. It says one minute! What? I need to be awake! It may be slightly oversteeped tasting, but that’s the way I like my black teas. The steep color is a deep red-hinted brown. The flavor is delicious. It is a full black flavor, with a hint of something fragrant. I think assams are a bit sweeter than other black teas, based on the few assams I’ve tried. I think I like they better than other black teas, just as long as they still have a kick to them. This one does! Upon the first sip, I definitely felt more awake!

ETA: I tried this with some oatmeal today. That was before I saw Momo had Celestial Seasonings tea with oatmeal today.. but it was an idea I had from her a few months back. I haven’t had maple &brown sugar oatmeal since I was a kid and I forgot how good it is. I’m not sure if I got much of a tea flavor with those flavors. I’ll have to try it with the steelcut oatmeal that I usually have. I almost also chose 52Teas Maple & Brown Sugar oatmeal today, when I was choosing a tea this morning. So I can’t wait to try that one!

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This is my first Chance Combination! I wanted to have a sip down of something… and I knew I had a tiny bit of the 52 Teas Sheri’s blend left… not even a teaspoon. Then I had been wanting another cup of that delicious 52 Teas Date Nut Muffin Rooibos I had only a couple weeks ago. Then I thought they would taste great together! They are both 52 Teas and they both have fruit after all! They are pretty darn good together. The date nut’s awesome flavor lends some to the Sheri’s that I thought didn’t have much flavor the last time I tried it. The blended teas feature: dates, apricots, walnuts, cinnamon, a bit of butter flavor and rooibos. It sounds as amazing as it tastes! I’m so glad that Momo sent me some of the Date Nut because I just read her tasting note and I definitely love it more than she does. It’s one of the teas that will be regularly haunting me, begging for me to steep some up. I have enough for a few more cups! This one will be treasured a bit more than some of my other teas…

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thanks again, Dinosara, for a great trade! I think I drink Earl Grey Cremes on a twice a month schedule or something, so this is a welcome addition to my Earl Grey Creme collection! But I saw the way the packaging was: it looks like a paper bag! And it doesn’t have a zip! I just feel like teas are going to age faster in this sort of package. But the taste is pretty good. I steeped for three or four minutues. I don’t think the flavor is as strong as it should be. But there is that lovely flavor I’ve gotten to love in the earl grey creme. (Oh who am I kidding with the “gotten to”? I loved it the first sip I tried.) It was interesting when I saw a big vanilla chunk fall into the infuser! The black tea seems to have a stronger flavor that might be overshadowing the bergamot and creme. I agree with Dinosara: no coconut here!I like this, but it isn’t my favorite Earl Grey Creme. But Earl Grey Creme is one of my favorite discoveries this year!

3 min, 30 sec

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drank Ti Kwan Yin by Tea Licious
1378 tasting notes

Additional notes: Sipdown! Yes, it’s a sample. Yes, I’m counting it anyway. This is a couple years old now, but it’s still VERY good. I like that this tea proved that teas are NOT too old after a couple years… at least this one. Some reassurance! I think I appreciate it more that I did before. Tealiciousllc.com says to steep it 3-4 minutes at 205 degrees, but that seems like a bit much for my new knowledge of oolongs. So I did a little experiment and tried it at 30 seconds, took the infuser out and tried a few sips. The flavor was already there. Then I put the infuser back in for another 30 seconds, and the flavor was even deeper. I infused for another 30 seconds and decided to leave the infuser out with this steep, since it almost tasted like a milk oolong.I’m not sure how that is possible… unless maybe this is the sort of oolong that many milk oolongs are based from. The flavor is light, a bit floral and sweet. (So it technically totaled around a minute half.)

Second steep: There were a bunch of oolong crumbs (it was the bottom of thepouch) in the bottom of the cup that were making the first cup bitter, so I poured those out for this cup. Steeped for two and a half minutes. Delicious! More of a peachy and floral flavor!

Third steep: Hotter and 3-4 minutes. This was even stronger and still delicious. I think this has many more good steeps in it. This cup did have a slight drying affect on my mouth though.

It is impossible to ruin this tea, and each second it steeps will give it a completely different flavor. On my new oolong flavor rating scale, this one is a three (1=lightest flavor 5=strongest flavor). It’s interesting how the more tea you drink, the more you know about them.

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thanks so much Dinosara for the trade! This sure smells chocolatey, both in the leaves and steeped. The steep color is a lighter brown, which seems too light for a black tea! It seems to me that Tabott doesn’t have that much flavor. I tried another of their teas before. I actually didn’t want to write a steeping note before giving that one another chance. This one basically tastes just like that one, even if it’s a different flavor. It’s hard to tell if I’m steeping it wrong, since there are no instructions on their site. But this smells more like chocolate than it tastes. The strawberry flavor is just hinted at. It seems there should be more flavor for the price. On the second steep, I used just boiled water and steeped for a LONG time. The result was the same… but at least it never had any astringency to it. I think when I use fresh leaves the next time I’ll just go for the long steep with just boiled water the first time. Disappointing, but I appreciate being able to try it!

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Additional notes: My original notes for this were in June? Wow.. it seems like it was forever ago. I must have wrote a billion tasting notes since then. Anyway, I’m sipping this again while reading my second favorite internet thingy about books: The Millions Year of Reading: http://www.themillions.com/2012/12/a-year-in-reading-2012.html (My first favorite internet book thingy is the Tournament of Books, but that isn’t until March ( http://www.themorningnews.org/tob ).

Anyway, the second steep seems better than the first this time. But I think I remember liking it better back in June (maybe because my sample package was just opened.. or because I have been spoiled with even more teas since June.. is that even possible? This tea is pretty high up there.) I steeped for four minutes after letting it cool a while. Second steep was just boiled and for five minutes. There doesn’t seem to be any smoke this time, just a solid black tea with malty lingering medium flavor.

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drank Eggnogg'n Tea by Bigelow
1378 tasting notes

I was seeing many reviews for this one from you Steepsterers lately, so I thought I’d dig out one of a couple bags I have around! I haven’t reviewed it somehow! Or had it in a while… It seemed like a good pairing with some pumpkin pie…. my midnight snack. It’s just as good as I remember it and one of my favorite bagged teas. It seems like a combination of Celestial Seasonings Nutcracker Sweet and Sugar Cookie Sleigh Ride — another two favorite bagged teas and my favorites from CS. The steep color is dark. It is creamy! The scent is sweet but it smells sweeter than it tastes. I don’t think splenda is in here to ruin it. GOOD. There is only a slight eggnog flavor (but maybe this teabag is older?) but the rest of the tea doesn’t disappoint, so I don’t think its a big deal. The blend of black and green teas is perfect for not overpowering the flavor. I think that was why they combined the two. I love having only a few cups at the most of so many different teas, that way if I only drink a tea once in a while the rest of it doesn’t go to waste. I’d much rather have more teas in smaller quantities! One bag of this left…

3 min, 30 sec

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Thank you so much Dinosara for the trade! For some reason I can’t find the steep temps for any of the Georgia Tea Company teas. Not even on their site! Pouring this in the infuser, there are two big ole vanilla chunks! That is rare in a tea… usually it is just “flavoring”. The black tea base is a perfect pair with the vanilla. The silky smooth vanilla with a stronger brisker black tea… the black tea has a full flavor that reminds me why black teas are my favorite, and a bit of astringency to it. The vanilla really lingers. It’s kind of like the ESP Emporium Vanilla Black but I don’t think it has vanilla chunks THIS big.. however I just looked at the pictures and it does have bigger vanilla pieces. I’ll have to try that one again soon to compare. I think I’ve only sipped that one twice in the year that I’ve bought the tea! Yikes. That is why I don’t like having more than two ounces of one tea (except for maybe Earl Grey Creme!) I love this one though!

3 min, 30 sec

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thank you momo! Another sample! Fruit is one of my favorite things, so of course I love fruity teas. The few cups sample here didn’t look like it had many flowers OR fruit chunks, so I would imagine that would affect the flavor. I steeped for three minutes after letting the water cool way down. It’s good! A nice fresh flavor. I think I can smell peach more than I can taste it. And the kiwi and watermelon seem a bit hidden to me. But the green tea base makes up for it. I had another cup a few weeks ago where either the water was too hot or I steeped too long and the flavor was bitter. The fruit flavor wasn’t any different this time around. I’m glad I waited until I brewed it the correct way to write a review though!

165 °F / 73 °C 3 min, 15 sec

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Hi! I love tea and trying new ones – it adds a bit of variety to my day! Books, music, TV & movies are my thing… and tea, of course.

Some of my favorite teas:
52 Teas – zoomdweebies.com

Most of the teas listed in my cupboard are actually sample sizes. I don’t really have 2,000 ounces of tea around here! I was bored one day and found out that most of them have only one teaspoon left… maybe two. But I like keeping them in my cupboard list for reference to what I could be sipping. Usually, I write tasting notes once for each tea. I’m still drinking them, just not writing tasting notes each time!

My dislikes: hibiscus, ginger (unless in chai), charcoal type flavors

My ratings:
95-100 – Super awesome deliciousness favorites
80-95 – Also pretty delicious
65-80 – Pretty good
40-65 – Okay
1-40 – Probably won’t want to sip it again

I’m planning on being a Steepsterer as long as there IS a Steepster, so if you’re not hearing from me, that means something happened to my health… if you know what I mean. :D

Happy sipping!



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