504 Tasting Notes

Amazing as always. Like eating a really high quality dark chocolate. I think I hooked my tea buddy at work on this one too. ;) So glad there is lots of it in my cupboard!

Cameron B.

I feel like such a dunce because I hardly ever taste chocolate in teas that are supposed to have it. XD

Tealizzy

Maybe it just takes time? I didn’t really taste specific notes for a long time. People seem to get different notes anyway…all are accepted! :)

yyz

I wouldn’t worry about it Cameron. Like Tealizzy it may be something you taste in time or maybe you identify that tone as something else. I’ve noticed on aliexpress they rarely list cocoa or chocolate in flavour descriptions in styles of tea where Western shops always list it.

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After all the recent sales causing my tea cupboard to balloon, I decided I needed to rearrange things. The last time I did this, I put all my favorite teas together, all my samples together, and all those that would be good iced together. This didn’t really work. I think when I reach for a tea, it’s really based on whether it’s base is black, oolong, green, white, or herbal/rooibos. So, that’s how they are arranged now. Going through it, I found a few I never want to drink again…those, I will offer my tea buddy at work. ;) I also rediscovered a few.

This tea is one I rediscovered. It was at the bottom of a container filled with rooibos teas. It is essentially rooibos, with a hint of caramel. Not surprising since very few actual caramel pieces are included. In contrast, I always get more than one piece in caramel corn. Still, with a splash of milk and a little sugar, it’s comforting. Not as good as my beloved Lupicia caramel & rum though.

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Mmmm, smells like cocoa and smoke. Tastes like dark chocolate, hint of smoke, maybe some rose? Very smooth. Yum. Makes me think it got mixed up with bailin gongfu! All Chinese blacks are tasting like chocolate to me now, except the yunnans. Why would I ever need a chocolate flavored tea again? They usually taste artificial anyway. Makes me wonder if I had tried these teas early on in my tea journey whether I would have noticed these notes, and if so, what would I be drinking now?

Cameron B.

The only chocolate tea I’ve tried that I actually like is Three Friends from Butiki. Most chocolate flavor just doesn’t seem to satisfy me, it’s always thin and watery. Ick! :P

Tealizzy

I agree! I always feel like the chocolate flavoring doesn’t really taste like chocolate to me.

KiwiDelight

Chocolate-flavored teas are a hit-or-miss sort of thing. Some are good, like Three Friends and Peppermint Bark.

Chinese blacks are on a whole different level. It was so surprising to find out that they’re so chocolatey when I just started drinking them. Like, they’re magical.

Cameron B.

I feel like a derp, because I don’t generally get cocoa from most of them… >>

Lariel

I used to have chocolate flavoured teas (still do from some companies), but I really like the Chinese blacks.

Stephanie

Have you ever eaten straight cacao nibs Cameron B?

Cameron B.

Stephanie, not that I recall. I have eaten completely unsweetened chocolate though.

Lariel

Cacao nibs are good in cookies.

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I’ve been enjoying a nice quiet Saturday morning in my pj’s, drinking tea, reading steepster, and a book which I’m close to finishing (California by Edan Lepucki) and enjoying quite a bit. My husband always wants to get out of the house on the weekends because he works from home full-time, but I love sleeping in on the weekend and having a restful day after a stressful work week. Fortunately, today he’s into a new video game, so I get to do as I like!

This is another sample I received from Angel at TeaVivre and I have to say, she sure knows how to hook you! This tea is fabulous, and the price for a cake sure represents it’s fabulousness. I’ve never bought a whole cake of anything before, mostly because cakes usually mean puerh, and I haven’t had much luck with puerh yet. The sample she sent me was quite generous though, so I’ll definitely get to enjoy more than one steeping of this tea.

I put about half of one of the sample bags in my 12 oz. mug to steep. It was mostly one large chunk of the cake with a few loose bits. I thought, do I have to rinse this? Nothing on the package said to, so I didn’t. It also, surprisingly, recommended a 6-10 minute steep at boiling. Wow! I steeped it for 6 minutes, and my first impression of the aroma was sweet mint. Mmmm, but odd for a white tea, right?

If I didn’t know this was a white tea, I would have thought it was an aged oolong. It’s sneaky like that! It brews up very dark. The taste is very similar…toasty with that touch of mint, but somehow lighter and definitely smooth. I detected a bit of hay too. Mostly, I decided this tastes like honey on toast. Yum! Definitely fabulous! Thank you, Angel!!

Cameron B.

I’m confused about this one, is it a white tea or a sheng? :P

Tealizzy

It’s under white teas on the website. Maybe Angel can tell us?

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drank Shiva's Breakfast by Butiki Teas
504 tasting notes

I tried this one a few days ago, but thought that my less than optimal steeping equipment at work ruined it’s potential, so I made it again this morning. It’s quite bold, like when you’re alarm screams at you in the morning. Talk about a good wake-up tea! The problem I found, was in distinguishing the notes. At first, the only note I could think of was “strong,” but strong what? As it cooled, I think I got some of the citrus note, and maybe a hint of chocolate, but definitely not as easily discerning as some of the Chinese black teas I love. Overall, I think this is one of those teas for groggy mornings when you need a kick in the pants, and I definitely have more than a few of those mornings per week, so I’m glad to have this in my cupboard!

Stephanie

Yeah, this one is strong!! And more complex as it cools for sure :D

Tealizzy

I’m glad it’s not just me! I feel like I’ve gotten better at tasting different notes, but this one was hard. A good test for my palate, I suppose!

boychik

I liked it with little milk and maple syrup. It’s so chocolaty and rich

Tealizzy

Mmm, I should try that!

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TeaVivre has done it again! They’ve made me like a tea that I didn’t think I liked before. Last time it happened with dragon well. Here we are, and they’ve changed my mind about silver needle. Previously, when I tried silver needle from another company, I thought it tasted too much like hay, and was sort of rough on the tongue…maybe astringent?

TeaVivre’s version is so good! It’s incredibly fresh and crisp! To me, it’s a straight up cucumber tea! It’s like you just crunched into some freshly sliced cucumber. The hay note is there, but much more laid back, and it’s slightly floral. I also found it to be sort of creamy…can crisp and creamy even happen in the same tea?

I enjoyed this after dinner and it was nice and light…like a palate cleanser. I could drink it any time of the day. Thanks so much to Angel for sending me this sample!!

Nxtdoor

The difference quality makes, eh?

Tealizzy

I guess so! Everything I’ve had from them is stellar!

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drank Zhen Qu by Butiki Teas
504 tasting notes

Okay, seriously, I think this is my new favorite tea. This morning’s cup tasted like rocky road ice cream/ brownies with nuts. I’m not a fan of either of those, because the nuts distract me from the chocolate-y goodness, but as a tea, it’s amazing! Yum yum yum!! Smooth and delicious! I did add a splash of half and half today, which might be the touch needed to make this pure dessert. Dessert for breakfast! That’s right!!

Cameron B.

I agree, this tea is yum! :D

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This was the tea I chose for my free tea from the sale, and it is SO GOOD! I really didn’t know what to expect. I usually think of assams as dark and malty, but the leaves make me think of a golden tip yunnan. When I brewed it, the aroma was AMAZING. I could just inhale those notes all day! Sweet, bread-y, with a hint of spice. The taste is very much the same. I think the spice note is a bit like nutmeg. I also detected a yam or sweet potato flavor. There is just the slightest hint of malt. This tea is smooth (like all of Stacy’s teas!) and I found it warming , cozy, and comforting. :)

Stephanie

Nice, I’ve not tried this one :)

Tealizzy

I can send you a sample if you like. Are you still at the same address?

Stephanie

I am! But we could totally swap sometime…

Tealizzy

Okay! I’ll put it on the list for a swap. PM me when you’d like to do it!

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drank Zhen Qu by Butiki Teas
504 tasting notes

Hello, Zhen Qu! Nice to meet you! I wonder why I never tried you before, but I’m really glad I went for 2 whole ounces of you recently, because I sure enjoy your company! Ha!

This tea is SO FLUFFY! Makes me think of that silly line in Despicable Me 2. I don’t think I’ve seen a black tea that looks quite like it. So light and airy!

Steeped, it smells sweet, nutty, and malty and that translates into the taste. After a few sips, BAM! This chocolate brownie taste snuck into the aftertaste. Where’d that come from? After awhile, I decided it tasted like chocolate covered pecans, but more pecan than chocolate. It’s really smooth, and goes down fast! Good thing I bought a lot! :)

Butiki Teas

I totally read “so fluffy” in a despicable me voice. :D

Tealizzy

Awesome!! :D

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drank Cotton Candy by DAVIDsTEA
504 tasting notes

You wouldn’t think that sweetening an already sweet tea would be a good idea, but man, that agave works wonders for this tea! I had a glass iced, and it went really well with my polvoron cookies (Filipino cookies, kind of like buttery shortbread). Yum!!

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Bio

I thought my profile needed a facelift, so here we go:

My obsession with tea really started around October 2012 when I discovered DavidsTea. Before that, I had the occasional cup and enjoyed going out to afternoon tea with my mom. I was really into An Afternoon to Remember’s creme brulee tea, since they had an afternoon tea place at that time, which has since closed…so sad and I haven’t found a good replacement.

So, I kinda went nuts when I discovered both DavidsTea and Lupicia in the SF mall, and I still frequent them, though my tastes have substantially changed over time from wanting to try all the teas to being a bit more particular.

Once I discovered steepster, literally by looking up reviews of a DavidsTea tea, I was hooked! So many tea companies I never heard of and everything sounding so delicious!

I found I still love dessert teas, like flavored black teas, but I also really enjoy oolong (both green and roasted). I occasionally enjoy flavored rooibos and white teas. I’ve had a rough time with puerh, and still think it tastes like leather. Recently, after having some really amazing teas from Teavivre, I can now say I love unflavored Chinese black teas and green teas.

Favorite tea companies right now include: Teavivre, Golden Moon, Butiki, Lupicia, and DavidsTea.

Just a note: I don’t rate my teas numerically because my iPad doesn’t like the scroll bar. Maybe someday that will change…hint hint, steepster! ;)

P.S. My profile picture is of one of my 2 cats, Holly, who is a little princess but very photogenic, and she loves boxes, including those that bring me tea! :)

Location

San Francisco Bay Area

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