I’ve updated this bio as it’s been a couple of years since I “started getting into” tea. It’s now more accurate to say that I was obsessed with tea for a while, then other things intruded, then I cycled back to it, and 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’ve recently started writing fantasy and science fiction under the name J. J. Roth.
Personal biases: I much prefer to drink tea without additives such as milk and sugar. If a tea needs additives to improve its flavor, its unlikely I’m going to rate it high. The exception is chai, which I make on the stove top using a recipe I found here on Steepster. Rooibos and honeybush were my gateway drugs into the harder stuff, but once I learned how to make a decent cup of tea they became far less appealing to 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. I’m revising them slightly to make them less granular as I don’t really find myself hating most things I try.
I try to rate teas against other similar versions. So I rate Earl Greys, for example, against other Earl Greys, rather than against all teas. If something rates very high with me, though, it probably means it’s a stand out against all other teas I’ve tried.
95-100 A once in a lifetime experience; the best there is; will keep this stocked until the cows come home
90-94 First rate; top notch; really terrific; will definitely buy more
80-89 Excellent; likely to become a favorite, will likely buy more
70-79 Very good; would enjoy again, might buy again if in the mood for this particular one or a better, similar version not available
60-69 Good; wouldn’t pass up if offered, but probably wouldn’t buy again unless craving this particular flavor
50-59 Okay or run of the mill
Below 50 So-so, iffy, would definitely pass
or ick. The lower the number, the closer to ick.
Bay Area, California