1496 Tasting Notes
A sample from Butiki! I love Kenyan teas, so if Butiki is offering it, it must be a good one. The leaves here are small but not CTC small. Sadly, the only flavor I’m getting yet again is tomato soup. Kenyan teas don’t usually taste like tomato soup! Many of the samples from Butiki did… I’m wondering if it’s a tea within the pouch of samples that could be changing the flavors? Nothing in my experience could do that though. Maybe one of my infusers is doing it? But other teas taste fine in that infuser. It’s like tea torture only being able to taste the tomato soup of these teas, and I’m kind of sick of mentioning it. I also had another assam to see if it tastes the same and it had the same delicious flavor as before, so I don’t know. My taste buds are destroying these teas.
Steep #1 // few minutes after boiling // 2 1/2 min
Steep #2 // just boiled // 3 or 4 min
I think this is the last tea I have to try that MissB sent me a while back. Once again, thanks so much! I promise not to order any more teas for the rest of the year … except for Bluebird towards the end of the year. This one looks like it’s mostly lemongrass though it’s supposed to be yerba mate. There is plenty of lemon flavor, I think from the verbena. I love the flavor from lemon verbena! I would have like some more yerba mate… I couldn’t really taste any at all. Not bad, but not my favorite from Bluebird.
Steep #1 // few minutes after boiling // 3 min steep
Steep #2 // just boiled // 4 min
Thank you Kimquat for sending one of these to try! These AREN’T minis! I needed some caffeine for steam-vacuuming the house! This looks the size of maybe two of the typical mini tuochas. The flavor for all steeps were the same: delicious. This is my kind of pu-erh. It’s very dark and coffee like, and not just because of the color of the brew. Very rich with a touch of astringency but it’s also sweet with no pondiness at all. it’s very much like some of my favorite pu-erhs probably just for the reason that there is so much leaf here and I usually use too much. I like too much. Every steep was exactly the same.
Steep #1 // rinse // just boiled // 1 min
Steep #2 // just boiled // 2 min
Steep #3 // just boiled // 3 min
Steep #4 // half a mug // just boiled // quite a few minutes
Additional notes: Finishing off this sample with the last of the Herbal Infusions Earl mixed in with these leaves as well. Not quite two teaspoons but the last cups of both were kind of weak with only one teaspoon. I love the sweetness of the snowflake, but to me they don’t enough bergamot. Delicious though! I needed some Earl today.
Thank you for the sale CHAroma! I immediately stopped following the sale thread as there have been too many awesome sales lately. :D I cut the teabag of this one open and hot steeped a teaspoon for 45 seconds: I’ve tried two other blends of this flavor and the flavor stays pretty consistent. Blueberry but not so much danish or cream cheese. I just realized I like the CTC black tea from the iced tea teabags way more than the black tea from the typical black blends. Though this cup kind of tasted a bit like iron.. maybe it was the cream cheese this time. The second cup was just as tasty, just as much flavor. I think I prefer my old pouch with the twisty leaves though. :D
Steep #1 // 1 tsp // few minutes after boiling // 45 second steep
Steep #2 // just boiled // 2 min
Thank you Marcel Duchamp for a sample of this one in our swap a while back! The blend certainly sounds interesting. The oolong is one of those dark wirey types. I haven’t had one of those in a while. There was about 1 1/2 teaspoons so I went with it. Vintage teaworks suggests 1 tsp, at 195 degrees for 3-4 minutes.
Steep #1 // 9 min after boiling // 3 min steep
The steep color is a light amber. The flavor has cinnamon at the front then is a bit fruity.. it’s supposed to be papaya. I’ve probably never had papaya so to me it is mildly melon, cantaloupe. Then it has a sweetness like some teas are described as ‘maple’. Tasty! THEN I looked at the description in this tea for chardonnay which I have also never had before. The flavor notes for chardonnay are actually spot on for this tea! Copy and pasted: “more common descriptors include pears, butter, toast, melon, butterscotch, and spice.” The pear would be the mild fruity flavor I’m talking about. The tea is also buttery. There is also a mild toastiness from the type of oolong this is. I’ve already noticed the melon. The butterscotch is the maple I’ve noticed and the spice is the cinnamon! WHOA – all of those notes for chardonnay fit this tea! And also I need to drink some chardonnay. Lots of it.
Steep#2 // just boiled // 3 min
This one screams citrus for some reason when the last cup didn’t even hint at it. I guess because the citrus sat around all day mushy for the second steep, as gross as that sounds. But then the cinnamon was stronger so this was an interesting cup! The other flavors were pretty tame, just citrus explosion! Seemed more lemon than orange.
Steep #3 // half a mug // just boiled // 3 min
Another super citrus cup. Did I also mention all the vanilla beans? I love how this one changes so much. Delicious and now its gone!
Thank you Nina’s for the samples! This one sounded very intriguing – rhubarb and violet with a keemun base. For some reason this sample was an individually wrapped pyramid tea bag. Nina’s suggests 1-2 minutes for this one, so I went with about 70 seconds. I probably should have steeped for two minutes, as the base wasn’t tough enough for me. The flavor is good but I wouldn’t say it was rhubarb. The something extra reminds me more of lychee. There is something sweet and floral to it as well, but I’m not sure what violet tastes like! I’ve tried the keemun base on its own and it’s a standard delicious keemun but I could swear this is the other base that they have. This doesn’t taste like the keemun to me. I would have liked the rhubarb to be more rhubarb-like but this is an interesting and unique idea for a blend. The same keemun that I tried before would have made this blend better though.
Steep #1 // 7 min after boiling // 70 second steep
Steep #2 // just boiled // 3 min
Thank you Kimquat for a sample of this one with the teas I bought! It sounded amazing. I’m thinking the spring picked oolongs are lighter in flavor? But the flavor notes are intriguing. The leaves smell very sweet – like a milk oolong. All three steeps were very similar! Surprising in an oolong. I either could have used more leaves or a longer steep, as the flavor on this is pretty light. I didn’t fill the mug all the way either. It’s very good though. Maybe a little too light to list some flavor notes: basically very sweet and a little milky/creamy, hints of fruit though I can’t tell which fruit. Never any astringency in any steep. I like this one, but my favorite oolongs have much more flavor!
Steep #1 // 1 tsp // rinse // 7 min after boiling // 30 second steep
Steep #2 // just boiled // 1 min
Steep #3 // just boiled // 1 1/2 min
Thank you Kimquat! I get to try yet another 52Teas banana tea. I LOVE the hojicha blend and the black tea base. I figured the toasty rice genmaicha would be even better with the banana and the coconut. IT IS. So desserty delicious. The rice acts as like the toasty nilla cookie. And the green teas adds oodles of BUTTER flavor! The banana teas from 52 are the best banana teas. More like ripe banana than candy. The coconut that 52Teas uses is the best too. This is the perfect combination of ingredients. I wish I had a whole pouch of this but it’s gone now! I seem to go through phases where I drink tons of 52Teas. I don’t really do that with other teas. Hmm.
Steep #1 // 20 min after boiling (microwave) // 45 seconds
Steep #2 // 30 min after boiling // 3 min
My new Bodum Bistro kettle showed up today between steeps 1 &2! It’s just as amazing as I hoped it would be. It’s like my old kettle but just more advanced technology since my old kettle was 9+ years old. I’m not exactly sure how old! It’s got a dock instead of having to take the cord out every time to fill the kettle with water. Hope this one lasts at least nine years!
This is the last tea I haven’t written a tasting note for that TastyBrew sent me AGES ago. Thanks again, TastyBrew! This is basically exactly what I expected seeing the name of this tea. A lovely honeybush base that seems the best for a smoothie blend. I can definitely taste banana, pineapple and hints of orange. It just brings to mind an actual smoothie somehow. It brings to mind the consistency of a smoothie even.. not sure how! The second steep the honeybush was more present.. it was almost like the honeybush was yet another fruit added to the mix since it’s so sweet. There is one thing though: I have never, will never drink honeybush for breakfast… definitely a nighttime choice for me! So this is a “midnight” smoothie!
Steep #1 // just boiled // 45 second steep
Steep #2 // just boiled // couple minutes