92

For my 450th distinct tea represented in these-here notes (as opposed to the number of these-here notes), I thought I’d write about something I’ve been wanting to try for a long time.

This tea has gotten a lot of love on Steepster and I’ve had a sample of it (hermetically sealed) waiting for a special occasion. After tasting it, I have jumped on the love bandwagon.

When I sniffed the tea in the sample packet I thought I’d fallen into a vat of liquid almond croissants! The aroma is of the sweet, buttery, rich almond paste that’s used in pastries like croissants, bear claws, etc. I have not had a brioche (I don’t think I have anyway) but if they smell like this, I must make it a project to have one.

The steeped tea carries that aroma as well, in an amazingly rich, deep fragrance. I would have expected it to be much more dilute. The liquor is a clear chestnut color.

The taste is quite remarkable. I didn’t expect complexity. I expected it to taste like it smelled, more or less. And it does, but it’s not just almond paste. It’s that plus butter, brown sugar, baked goods. It really is a liquid dessert.

As an aside, I’ve started to categorize tea companies in my mind by what I think they do really well in terms of flavors. As examples, I think of Kusmi as great at berry flavors and caramel, but not at chocolate or vanilla. I think of Harney & Sons as great at chocolate, vanilla, cinnamon, and rose, among other things. Given my recent tastings of ATR teas, I was ready to conclude that ATR is great at fruit flavors. Now I have to include Brioche along with fruit flavors!

Flavors: Butter, Nuts

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 25 OZ / 750 ML
pyarkaaloo

WOWWW, what a review! what a tea! this is something i’d totally love…the notes sound amazing. i really enjoy your reviews…you’re so helpful, not to mention eloquent. Also- tea #450…congratulations!!

__Morgana__

Thanks so much, and I’m glad it’s helpful!

boychik

On my wish list for a long time. I just don’t know what else to try to justify the puchase

__Morgana__

Boychick, the apricot and passion fruit blacks are quite good if you like those flavors.

boychik

I do love apricots. Thanks for suggestion. And congrats on 450 review. I like your writing. My middle daughter had a test on creative writing last weekend in specialized middle school. She won’t know the results until may and it drives her nuts. Very ambitious young lady;)

__Morgana__

Boychick, I have a number of other ATR samples I’ll be trying so maybe something among those will sound good to you, too. I wish your daughter best of luck! Ambition is a good thing. :-)

boychik

I’m looking forward to your ATR or any other reviews. Thank you for your kind wishes. Ambition is good until she drives everybody crazy;)

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Comments

pyarkaaloo

WOWWW, what a review! what a tea! this is something i’d totally love…the notes sound amazing. i really enjoy your reviews…you’re so helpful, not to mention eloquent. Also- tea #450…congratulations!!

__Morgana__

Thanks so much, and I’m glad it’s helpful!

boychik

On my wish list for a long time. I just don’t know what else to try to justify the puchase

__Morgana__

Boychick, the apricot and passion fruit blacks are quite good if you like those flavors.

boychik

I do love apricots. Thanks for suggestion. And congrats on 450 review. I like your writing. My middle daughter had a test on creative writing last weekend in specialized middle school. She won’t know the results until may and it drives her nuts. Very ambitious young lady;)

__Morgana__

Boychick, I have a number of other ATR samples I’ll be trying so maybe something among those will sound good to you, too. I wish your daughter best of luck! Ambition is a good thing. :-)

boychik

I’m looking forward to your ATR or any other reviews. Thank you for your kind wishes. Ambition is good until she drives everybody crazy;)

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Profile

Bio

I got obsessed with tea in 2010 for a while, then other things intruded, then I cycled back to it. I seem to be continuing that in for a while, out for a while cycle. I have a short attention span, but no shortage of tea.

I’m a mom, writer, gamer, lawyer, reader, runner, traveler, and enjoyer of life, literature, art, music, thought and kindness, in no particular order. I write fantasy and science fiction under the name J. J. Roth.

Personal biases: I drink tea without additives. If a tea needs milk or sugar to improve its flavor, its unlikely I’ll rate it high. The exception is chai, which I drink with milk/sugar or substitute. Rooibos and honeybush were my gateway drugs, but as my tea skills and tastes developed they became far less appealing to me. I do not mix well with tulsi or yerba mate, and savory teas are more often a miss than a hit with me. That said, I’m not entirely a purist, and I enjoy a good flavored tea, particularly flavored blacks.

I like all kinds of tea depending on time of day, mood, and the amount of time I have to pay attention to preparation.

Since I find others’ rating legends helpful, I added my own. But I don’t really find myself hating most things I try.

I try to rate teas in relation to others of the same type, for example, Earl Greys against other Earl Greys. But if a tea rates very high with me, it’s a stand out against all other teas I’ve tried.

95-100 A once in a lifetime experience; the best there is

90-94 First rate; top notch; really terrific; will definitely buy more

80-89 Excellent; will likely buy more

70-79 Very good; would enjoy again, might buy again

60-69 Good; wouldn’t pass up if offered, but likely won’t buy again

Below 60 Meh, so-so, iffy, or ick. The lower the number, the closer to ick.

People have sent me tea on occasion, and I was once persuaded to send some Tazo Om to AmazonV. I’ve also done at least one group buy here on Steepster, the famous Doulton-led Dammann Freres experiment years ago. But mostly, I don’t swap. It’s nothing personal, it’s just that I have way more tea than any one person needs and am not lacking for new things to try. Also, I have way too much going on already in daily life and the additional commitment to get packages to people adds to my already high stress level. (Maybe it shouldn’t, but it does.)

That said, I enjoy reading folks’ notes, talking about what I drink, and getting to “know” people virtually here on Steepster so I can get ideas of other things I might want to try if I can ever again justify buying more tea. I also like keeping track of what I drink and what I thought about it, though I don’t put samples in my cupboard and not everything I have at any given time is showing in my cupboard. I do try to remember to remove things from my cupboard once I no longer have them.

I was an early internet adopter and have been online in various environments since around 1990. Steepster is one of the nicest online environments I’ve ever been privileged to participate in and that is saying something. :-)

Location

Bay Area, California

Website

http://www.jjroth.net

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