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98
drank Masala Chai by Samovar
937 tasting notes

After today’s lovely pu erh experience, I decided I needed something sweet and chewy, and I thought for a minute about having some Tazo decaf chai. Then I thought since it was a relatively slow Friday, why not have something that was likely to be better when I had some time to make it.

So I broke out my sample of this.

OMG. OMG. OMG. This flavor. I can’t believe I even considered the Tazo decaf. I must have been temporarily insane.

First, let me say that I didn’t even follow the instructions very well and I used ingredients that would likely make purists wince. I used splenda instead of sugar (hey, I’m a middle aged mom and I have to watch those calories!), I used 1% milk instead of whole milk (same) and I used the only loose leaf “black” tea within easy reach and not flavored, and that was the Mariage Freres Princeton Darjeeling.

Second, there was a scary moment when all the water boiled away and I feared I would end up stir frying the leaves. I remember thinking when I dumped the leaves into the pot that 1 cup of water boiling for 10 minutes was likely to completely boil away and what then? The “what then” turned out to be that almost exactly at the moment the water disappeared, it was time to put the milk in. Whoa.

Third, I am the first to admit that I have only recently been deflowered when it comes to chai, and the chai I’ve had has been Tazo/Starbucks. So whether this is good on the scale of chais is something I can’t say.

But whether it is good in an absolute sense, I can. It’s like drinking freshly baked gingerbread. Even with 1% milk, it’s rich, thick, creamy. It is so yum, there ought to be a law.

And of course, I went to add it to my order and they’re out of it. Sigh.

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more
Stephanie

Can Samovar do no wrong?? Chewy gingerbread? I must try this.

__Morgana__

It was soooo yum — and I am excited because it appears that I forgot I’d ordered this sample in my first sample order from them, so I ordered it again in the second. Which means I get to do this again, even though they’re out of the tins. Woot!

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Comments

Stephanie

Can Samovar do no wrong?? Chewy gingerbread? I must try this.

__Morgana__

It was soooo yum — and I am excited because it appears that I forgot I’d ordered this sample in my first sample order from them, so I ordered it again in the second. Which means I get to do this again, even though they’re out of the tins. Woot!

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Profile

Bio

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.

Location

Bay Area, California

Website

http://www.jjroth.net

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