drank Caramel by Kusmi Tea
953 tasting notes

I’ve been wanting to try this one for a while now and today seemed like the day. This is also my first Kusmi, so I’m excited.

The dry leaves smell wonderful, but surprisingly it’s not just any old caramel I’m smelling. It’s buttery and nutty and… just yum. It must be that French thing. They can make anything elegant. That’s what this smell is: elegant. This isn’t your Halloween candy caramel. It’s a caramel from a very high end box of candies, indeed.

The tea’s aroma is mostly that same, very buttery and nutty caramel with a vanilla note. It steeps to a lighter color than I’d thought it would, but a pretty one. A sort of rosy amber.

I’m tasting a sweet, smooth, caramel-laced tea, with an extra caramel boost at the tail of the sip and it is terrifically comforting.

Now. How does this compare to Caramel-Toffee by Dammann Freres? Gosh, I might have to try them next to each other to say for sure. They’re both really delicious. I suspect the Dammann Freres may be creamier and that it may ultimately win out, but it may be one of those things where they’re similar but just different enough so that you can’t really choose one over the other and it’s really about what mood you’re in (like Florence and The Du Loup).

205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec



num num num! :-D


have you tried my caramel?

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num num num! :-D


have you tried my caramel?

Login or sign up to leave a comment.



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



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