1453 Tasting Notes
thank you so much again for the tea package, Dinosara! As I was steeping this one, I remembered I really didn’t like Harney’s teabag of Earl Grey that I had a while ago. There was something off about it. I’m glad it didn’t sway me from trying this one though, because it is GOOD. The bergamot here is perfect. It’s sweet but doesn’t have any of that funky flavor that some bergamot wannabes have. The base is great, especially for a Darjeeling. They usually aren’t my thing. But it’s a nice base for this flavor. I’m not sure if there is a caramel flavor here unless it is just evening out the lemon. The flavor really lingers. The second steep seems to have less lemon but more of a sweet flavor. I’m guessing the tea leaves themselves would have something like a caramel flavor? I think it’s my favorite non-cream bergamot tea! I’d buy more of this if I ever ordered from Harney (when the few teaspoons that Dinosara are finished of course!)
Thank you so much for these teas, Dinosara! Always appreciated. This is stored in what looks like a little tin vial with a lid that screws on. I loved the idea of this blend but the flavor doesn’t seem like it follows though. There is something a bit unnatural about it — not sure what. It kind of seems like a potpourri to me, but it isn’t terrible tasting. The cinnamon has a bit of heat to it. It tastes a bit like raisins to me! I like it but I don’t love it. It’s a puzzle trying to figure out the flavors with this one though.
Additional notes: ICED This is the first iced tea I tried! I took a mason jar with a lid, put three teaspoons of this in, and filled it with water, stuck it in the fridge a few days. When it’s time to drink, I pour it through my mug (with a bit of sugar added) with the infuser, so it filters out the leaves. The mason jar makes about two mugs this way. As I was pouring the water into the leaves, the color was instantaneously a deep purple.. so I was worried about the hibiscus but the flavor is pretty good! The hibiscus is cut down rather than when it is hot, so that’s a plus. I can actually taste the apple and the papaya. This is a good way to used my hibiscus blends then. Here goes some crazy amounts of iced tea then… it’s hot out though!
Additional notes: “You’re gonna miss me when I’m gone” I thought of a Band of Heathens song when I realized this one was a sipdown! I really like it and yes, I will miss it. It’s funny I mentioned needing sun in my last tasting note, as right now I’m a little sunburnt. I thought this tea would pair perfectly with some pecan pie I made for the pops for Father’s Day. I had three mugs of it and it still had that nice sweet coconut flavor (though probably not so authentic coconut, but I love it anyway) in all three mugs. I went for a fourth steep and it had less coconut until it cooled down.
This is one of the many teas I scored in Rachel’s sale (whenever I say Rachel, you can assume I mean iHeartTeas since I’m pretty sure I haven’t actually swapped teas with the other Rachel with the actual username Rachel!) That was an awesome sale and I appreciate it — thanks, Rachel! This one sounded amazing. And it is! The leaves are very wirey and equal parts gold and black. I’m glad they don’t actually look like monkey paws, since that doesn’t sound very appetizing anyway. After a four minute steep it’s a sweet, slightly malty, slightly chocolatey flavor. Exactly how I love my teas. The second steep is also nice. Pretty darn good. Not as good as the best tea ever I had the other day, Butiki’s lion assam. But that is to be expected. I promise I won’t try to compare every tea with Butiki’s from here on out! But that one will linger in my mind a while!
Shelly_Lorraine sent me some of this one to try! thank you! The package said to steep it for five minutes, so I did. There certainly was a strong black tea here but not much in the way of pom or raspberry flavor. It was a pretty bold blend with an odd flavor to it.. it’s tough to describe! But it has a bit of a chalky astringency. Not bad if you want a caffeine kick.
Thanks so much CrowKettle, for sending some of this one with that lovely package you mailed a while ago. I’ve tried one other Utopia tea in the past that I adored. But this one is a crush tear curl, so it was bound to be different. They are tiny little grains of black tea. The fragrance of the dry leaves is grassy but the flavor is very rye bready. Even after a 1 1/2 minute steep, this cup was super astringent. It’s a bit harsh after all these very sweet yunnans & assams I’ve been drinking lately. I like it anyway: I keep these types of teas around when I want a super caffeine brain kick: like when I’m reading a much awaited advance reader of Marisha Pessl’s new book!
This one was calling me to try last night! Something lemony and creamy. Unless I steeped it too hot (right after boiling — for three minutes)… I’d say it is equal to Lime Chiffon. I think I like them both equally. But maybe I didn’t steep it perfectly enough. The tartness of the lemon pairs so well with the cream. With the second steep, I waited a bit for the water to cool. There was less rooibos and lemon flavor but a ton more cream. I’m not sure how that happened! I should have more to say about this one. I think my favorite cream blend from DT is the blueberry cream though. Certainly a favorite rooibos blend.. but then again, it’s from Della Terra!
oh man. I really appreciated being able to try this one! Thank you so much, Stacy! The mostly gold twisty leaves look amazing. I figured this was like a Yunnan tea. But I think I just figured out that Yunnan teas come from Yunnan, China. This one is from India, so it isn’t a yunnan. I’m not sure if that is the only thing that makes a Yunnan a Yunnan! But this one is scrumptious. Possibly one of the best teas I’ve ever had. I went with Butiki’s instructions (3 1/2 min – two tsps.) for this one EXCEPT the water wasn’t at 212. I waited a few minutes for the water to cool. But it HAD to be at the perfect temp. Best flavor ever. It is like a burnt dark chocolate over sweet apricots. And I think that is why this is my favorite type of tea. Just the contrast: the dark flavor with the sweet. The second cup was at boiling. I really should have waited a few minutes again! And I went for a third steep also, because I didn’t want to waste the leaves, but it had that woodchip flavor again. But the first steep was the best: there is a darkness to the flavor that I haven’t tasted in any other tea, while not actually being dark or astringent. Yeah, there are many assams or yunnans like that, but this one had an extra depth of flavor. I’m surprised this one isn’t the highest rated tea on Steepster, since I much prefer this one to the Taiwanese Assam (the current highest rated.)
CharlotteZero sent me a couple of these little things to try. I really appreciate it — thank you! I’m just now trying them, since this was my first little pu-erh cake and I was a bit intimidated. But it’s a rainy day here, so I thought this one would be nice to try. Originally I thought I should cut it in half or something, since I would be brewing western style… but the cake looks like a teaspoon sized bird nest anyway. So I rinsed the mini cake for a few seconds (until the cake was saturated) and poured out that water.
Steep #1: I waited a few minutes for the water to cool to pour the mug about 3/4 of the way full for maybe 10 seconds and took out the infuser. That may have been a couple seconds too long (according to the tiny bit of astringency.) But the flavor is exactly what I expected a “sweet rice” to be. It’s kind of like kettle corn! Just a bit less sugary sweet.(“Kettle corn’s a fun time snack!” says Troy from ‘Community’.) The pu-erh itself is hardly noticeable. There isn’t much of a typical pu-erh flavor, letting the sweet rice really shine through.
Steep #2: Eight seconds with the mug half full of water. This one is just as tasty. It’s so buttery. I could swear I was tasting some green tea here though.. which might be where the astringency is coming from. I’m not finding the “dark, earthy” taste from the description though. The leaves are entirely out of the little nest now.
A BUNCH more steeps around ten seconds with the mug half filled all tasted the same. Just as delicious and buttery! Then I steeped once at 20 seconds which seemed even more buttery… which led to:
The last steep: I decided to go with Teance’s instructions and brew this for two minutes with a full mug of water. It still has that buttery flavor, but it tastes a bit more like a pu-erh now. The one that I had from Verdant anyway: a bit like some sort of woodchip, in a nice way! It is still very mild flavored!
I have one more of this little cakes that I will save to savor! ( I think I just like saying “little cakes”.) I thought about buying some more of these but yowzas, these aren’t cheap… though they might be the cheapest thing on Teance’s site. I enjoyed this immensely though!