719 Tasting Notes


Picked up a box of this when I was at the store earlier because I don’t have a lot of herbals on hand at the moment and I’m trying to snack less in the evening. So this tisane is doing double duty. It taste a lot like a sugar cookie and is sweet enough to dampen my urge to snack, and it won’t keep me awake until the wee hours.

For the record, Candy Cane Lane is my favorite CS tea. This would be my second choice.



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This one taste more like apple crisp than gingerbread. The taste is sweet with just a hint of spice, and that spice is nutmeg and cloves. Not a lot of ginger goin’ on here. Because it’s Zhena’s I used two tea bags for my 10 oz. mug. If I only use one the tea is too weak. That said, this isn’t a bad tasting tisane. The roobios is there but isn’t overly medicinal. The apple is fruity and sweet with out tasting like candy, and while the spice is mild what’s there is nice.

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drank Masala Chai by Wegmans
719 tasting notes

It’s really cold this morning. I was shivering by the time I walked from my bedroom to the kitchen. This may have had something to do with the fact that I didn’t put my slippers on, but still… cold. I couldn’t get the kettle on soon enough! As soon as the water was heating I reached for this tea. No internal tea debate needed. A nice hot cuppa with plenty of spice was definitely called for.

This is easily the most consumed chai in our house. There is plenty of spice but only a small amount of cinnamon which can sometimes overwhelm a chai, and the base tea is really good. Even when it gets oversteeped there’s little to no bitterness. A little milk and and a touch of honey makes it even better.

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drank Cinnamon Roll by Fusion Teas
719 tasting notes

I’m taking a break and celebrating getting a large Christmas order completed today. The project was way more time consuming than I expected, so I’m glad that it’s finished. Plus, the customer should have it a full week early which will make her happy as well. Yay! This calls for tea!

The tea… I’m not getting cinnamon roll from this. There are no bread or frosting/glaze flavors, but it is a yummy cinnamon tea. The spice taste natural which is nice since so many cinnamon teas have that weird artificial flavor, and even thought there is a lot of cinnamon it isn’t completely overpowering. The Ceylon tea is distinct and delicious. It has a richer taste than I was expecting and is very smooth. Yeah, this is a keeper.


You work in retail, I assume? That’s good to hear that customers are thinking ahead too. Not like two days before Christmas and expect you to get an order together with the snap of a finger.

Cinnamon-flavoured teas can definitely be tricky.


I crochet custom pieces. Most of what I make I sell at a few specialty stores in Philly, but around Christmas I end up with more custom orders. This year all the cool moms and aunts want a cowl like Katniss wore in the movie Catching Fire for their daughters/nieces, so I’ve been busy coming up with a crocheted version (the one in the movie was knitted) that I think both the adults and the teens they are buying for will be pleased with. It’s been a lot of fun but a lot of work. My latest order was for three cowls, but the lady who ordered them wanted each one to be “unique”. Oy. I was really glad she didn’t order last minute. I don’t think I would have been able to do it. However, it all worked out, and I think her girls will be pleased.


Wow, that’s amazing! Crocheting looks so hard. And I can’t imagine how much time it would take to make one of those. Have you been crocheting a long time now?


I’ve been crocheting for 11 years now. I started because I wanted to make a blanket for my daughter, and it just went on from there. It’s really not as hard as it looks. I think it just has a steep learning curve, but once you’ve got it you can make anything. :) That said, I’ve tried over and over again to learn how to knit, and it remains a frustrating mystery to me!


They both look really hard to me haha. Plus I’m not creative with that kind of stuff. So I don’t think I could make anything regardless. It’s cool you’ve turned it into a business though. :)


Thanks! :)


See, and crocheting is a mystery to me, while I feel quite comfy with knitting these days. I got over my knitting weirdness (it did take me a while) by going to stitch ‘n bitches with some really great folks. The men were the ones that really helped me grow the most, interestingly. Now I want to start spinning, as I’ve already shorn sheep and carded wool… the whole process from start to finish would be fun!

As for your crocheting, I have to ask: how do you do it, well, faster? I find I can only go so fast, even after years of knitting now. Is there some sort of trick? Zoning out?


I would love to spin, too! And dye. That sounds like a lot of fun, and it’d be nice to say, “I want this yarn in this weight and this color,” and make it happen.

I think for me to knit I’d have to learn from someone who’s comfortable with continental knitting. I’ve been holding the yarn in my left hand to so long that switching just does not work for me. I’ve taken two knitting classes, but both were complete fails (on my part).

I guess my crocheting has naturally picked up speed over the years, but honestly I just focus on the work. I’ll put on music or an old baseball game (I love baseball), sit at my desk, and keep my eyes on my work. If I put on a movie or sit on my couch my time slows waaaay down. Also, I set a goal for myself each day and try to get it done before my first kid comes home from school. It keeps me motivated.

How long have you been knitting? And is shearing a sheep as difficult as it looks? I’d be so afraid of cutting the poor things skin! Not to mention holding them in place looks tough.


I’ve been knitting for about seven years now, although I’ve yet to conquer intarsia (colorwork). Another Steepsterite just generously sent me a 70s era Fisherman’s afghan book, and I’l super excited to try out something really challenging from it.

Shearing is both fun and challenging. I WWOOFed on a farm one summer, and they had sheep, chickens, goats, geese, cows, etc. I asked the lady if I could shear the sheep and keep the wool, and she looked at me like I was bonkers. “Sure, if you want to?” Was her reply. Needless to say, I found it much easier than expected… other than sheep are really dirty animals. This was much worse than cleaning a diaper. So I sent away the raw wool to get cleaned, and then carded it once it came back. I could have washed it? I was okay with missing that step. I would have spun it had I had more time to learn, and kinda still wish I had.

Like with catching chickens, there’s a trick to shearing sheep, and you just have to know how to hold them to do it. Much easier as a two-person job, but possible with just one depending on how big the sheep are. It’s just really, really gross.


That’s so interesting! I’m sure the smell is awful, but it’s pretty cool that you were able to shear and card wool. Maybe I’ll add those to my bucket list. …Maybe. :)


I just tried this tea and when I scrolled down the page I saw yours was the first review. When I read it, I could not help but laugh because I had the complete opposite reaction that you did as in I got bread and icing but little cinnamon. Gotta love steepster for bringing such diverse opinions :P


Lol. That is funny. I think next time I’m going to lower my temp just a little and play with my steeping times. I’d love to get some bread and icing flavors out of this tea.

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I enjoy Della Terra’s vanilla mint blends, and this one is no exception. It’s a nice and soft combination. Neither the mint nor the vanilla are in your face, but they are present in every sip and well supported by the black tea base. I will admit that the popcorn in the tea throws me off just because it does nothing for the tea. Every time I see it I think of Genmaicha, so this tea messes with my head.


Yeah, vanilla mint genmaicha was what I thought when I first saw this. But glad to hear it’s better than it sounds.


This is almost identical to their Candy Cane from last year (which I loved!). I do think I’m going to start picking the popcorn out before I steep my tea. It’s just… strange.


Yeah, I don’t get it? Like ok, I know some people string popcorn around the tea but still.

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This is the last of my box, but I’m sure I’ll pruchase more in the near future. This is a really nice Darjeeling, and while I’m usually a fan of the fruity and flower-y notes I have to say that the toasty flavors have become some of my favorites. I went from thinking the resteep was the best cup because of the lovely muscatel flavor to not-so-patiently waiting for the first cup to finish steeping and then happily going back to my pot for the second cup.

So basically I enjoy this tea. A lot. The end.

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I don’t know if I would have necessarily thought of a s’more if someone had handed me a cup of this tea and not told me the name. What I would have thought is Oh. Holy. Yum. This is delightful!

This isn’t a tea that screams s’mores! (despite its name). Rather it gives you all the notes of a s’more – nice dark chocolate, sweet honey, a touch of bread, smooth marshmallow, and light pine smoke – into something infinitely more sophisticated than your run of the mill campfire treat. I particularly like the honey and pine taste together and then the lingering chocolate at the end of the sip. So good.

My husband saw me lurking on Whispering Pines web site and surprised my by ordering this for me (he’s a good guy). I’m so glad he did. This is easily one of my new favorite fall/winter teas.


Yay for your husband! This is the one tea from my two orders from them I’ve yet to try. Will do so later today, and thanks for the reminder.


Yeah, it was a nice surprise. Looking forward to reading your tasting note. This is a fun tea.

Whispering Pines Tea Company

Aww what a nice guy! Glad you enjoyed it, Veronica! =)

Tea Sipper

This sounds GOOD.

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drank Lychee Coconut by Tea Forte
719 tasting notes

This is not a tea for me. I have to admit that I have never tasted lychee in any way that I’m aware of, but I’m believing it is the super sweet note in the tea. There is a touch of coconut, but unfortunately it does taste a bit fake. Also, there is a bitter taste at the end of the sip that really threw me off.

Thanks, VariaTEA, for the chance to try this tea!


This was actually sent to me by JennyFur but when I realized it was not for me either I thought I would pass it on in hopes of sending it to someone who would enjoy it more. I guess I have yet to find that person. Perhaps you can pass it along again but with more success.


I definitely will. I am not a big white tea drinker, so maybe someone who really likes white tea will enjoy this more. I did appreciate you sending it though. It’s always fun to try a new tea.


may i suggest (before entirely writing the cool fruit that looks like an eye ball, lol) trying butiki’s first? wars have been fought for less. just my opinion. =o)

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drank Cotton Candy Black Tea by 52teas
719 tasting notes

This one is ok. I think I’ll like it more cold brewed or as an iced tea. That said, my kids love it. They were just about giddy to have it in their cups. Both of them said it tasted just like cotton candy. To me it just tasted like sweet tea. It does have a nice strong base tea that I appreciate. The Assam lends body and strength that helps balance out the sweetness. Thanks to VariaTEA’s generous swap I have plenty left, so I’ll keep playing around with this one.


I just got sweet tea too but I am glad your kids found the cotton candy flavor.


I’m glad I’m not the only one! My kids told me my taste buds are broken. I ordered some of the SBT Cotton Candy, so I think I’m going to compare the two. Should be fun!

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Thank you VariaTEA for sending this sample my way. I love mint teas, and this is a nice one. I really like the cardamon and the pepper in this blend. It gives it a kick that’s quite enjoyable. I do prefer gunpowder green over the Hojicha because I think the smokey note goes so well with the mint. Still, this is a good blend, and I’m happy I finally got to try it.

Also, this is my first DAVIDs tea!


YAY! I am glad you enjoyed it!!


This is a nice one to start with! My friend doesn’t like DavidsTea at all because of all the weird flavours, but this one was a complete winner. It’s a serious tea for them, compared to all the fun and sweet dessert teas. (Which I enjoy too. :P) Anyway I’m happy you tried it in case you’re like my friend and didn’t like the other teas. She was prepared to write off the entire company until she found this one.


The main reason I don’t order from Davids is that I keep reading about the oily film on top of the tea. I guess it’s not uncommon in flavored teas, but the fact that it’s mentioned so much with this company kept me away. So I’m glad this was my first Davids tea, too ‘cause it’s good!

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Tea obsessed since 2010.

Some of my favorite tea companies are:

- Whispering Pines Tea Company
- Zen Tea Life
- Harney and Sons
- 52 Teas
- Teavivre

My Rating System:

100-95 = Teas I actively seek out and keep in my pantry. If you are a guest in my home chances are I will offer you one or all of these teas. Also, if/when these teas are discontinued I openly mourn their loss.

94-85 = Teas I truly like, often have in my pantry, and sometimes restock. These are my variety-is-the-spice-of-life teas.

84-75 = They’re good teas and I enjoy drinking them on occasion.

74-65 = These teas are ok, but not really my thing.

64-55 = meh.

54-45 = I will if I have no other option.

44 and below = Coffee, please.


New Jersey, USA



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