2811 Tasting Notes

drank Fukamushi-Sencha Yame by Den's Tea
2811 tasting notes

Sample sipdown…
I could have sworn I reviewed this tea before but according to Steepster I haven’t. Anyway this is a sample I got from Den’s Tea which is a few months old at least, but it was very well sealed so I’d think it’s fresh.

I’m still sick and am going to the Dr. today because I suspect I have a sinus infection. I don’t know how much this is affecting my tastebuds, but I still feel like they are okay.

I definitely have enjoyed these type of fukamuhi senchas in the past. After steeping for 90 seconds, the tea liquor is light green and is very fresh and mostly sweet. I get a lot of spinach notes here and not a lot of noticeable astringency. Hopefully this will perk me up a bit…

175 °F / 79 °C 1 min, 30 sec

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I had a 2 hour break yesterday from classes in the afternoon so I went to Chinatown to poke around. I really wanted to go to RedBlossom Tea even though I am broke and of course I couldn’t leave without buying something. Honestly I only go to their store probably twice a year and I just refuse to buy the top shelf teas because they are too expensive for me.

Quite a few other vendors carry this type of tea so I wouldn’t say it’s rare, it’s one of their every day kind of teas. The Golden Monkey by RB is one of my favorite morning teas so I thought I’d get this to compare.

I steeped the tea for two minutes and this may have been overkill because the resulting brew is quite strong. The tea liquor is very smooth and sweet, however. I am definitely getting sweet potato notes, raisin, malt and cocoa but at the longer steep it almost seems roasted.

I tried a second steep for one minute and it’s a lot nicer, very smooth and lighter. I can’t say I am getting maple syrup but I do see how you get orange out of this, especially at the shorter steep. I love Chinese black teas because they’re so easy to drink straight, although sometimes an assam with milk and sugar hits the spot too…

Happy with this brew, I don’t have a lot of other teas like this in my stash at the moment. If you don’t live near Red Blossom I don’t see any reason to purchase this tea especially from them, but it is a nice yunnan, in my opinion.

205 °F / 96 °C 1 min, 0 sec

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I’ve been slowly working my way through a box of this one. I swear this tea smells exactly like soap when you put your nose in the cup. The flavor is odd because there’s lots of things going on in here that seem to be competing, chamomile, mint, lemongrass, valerian, hops, anise, ginger, kind of overkill but the overall effect is relaxing for sure. I just don’t think this tastes particularly good. I’ve been having problems sleeping lately & I’m hoping this sends me off into slumberland, I might even have 2 cups.

Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

Normally I try to avoid teas (tisanes) with more than 3 ingredients. Its kind of hard to avoid in this type drink, unless you want pretty much straight chamomile. I don’t mind this one as it doesn’t have spearmint. To me it is kind of Kool-Aid like, especially with a little Splenda.


Bleh, it left a bad aftertaste in my mouth and didn’t really help me sleep!


Sounds like you might want to find someone who wants this one and send it along….


I think I have finished off the box or nearly so…

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drank Pineapple Sencha by Den's Tea
2811 tasting notes

Cold brewed pineapple sencha… this stuff is amazing and has me feeling very perky and upbeat!

Something tells me this will always be in my stash. But I’d like to try some of the other flavored senchas from Den’s Tea as well…


I really love this one but the other flavors aren’t so hot…the grape and apple are kinda meh. The Sakura sencha is really good though!

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I haven’t had this tea in a while, it’s been so long that I totally forgot what it was all about! I just went back to my old tasting note to find that my impressions are pretty much the same. This is a soft tea made from ya bao, it has notes of lemon and cream and is very gentle. I see Norbu doesn’t have this in stock anymore but they do have a 2004 ye sheng tea log that sounds kind of similar. I’m glad I revisited this again today. It’s really nice!

Boiling 0 min, 30 sec

Oh that sounds beautiful! I would love to try it. I’m always down for Ya Bao and have never had it pressed before.

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drank Kyobancha by Obubu Tea/ Tealet
2811 tasting notes

Reading the tasting notes lately from Lion has made me remember the remaining teas I need to try from my Obubu sampler. The package this tea came in says: Kyou Bancha but I’m assuming this is the same tea as Kyobancha, even though the spelling is different.

Leaves in the package are very brown and roasty-smelling. Bancha are older, late harvest tea leaves and this is the roasted form of them, I guess? Good to know this tea has almost no caffeine because I probably don’t need any more today.

I’m not sure how long this was steaming for exactly (it was at least 4 minutes), but I don’t think you can really oversteep this kind of tea too easily. My cup is a dark orange and the flavor is very mild, with slight roasted, woodsy notes. I’m not getting a lot of flavor out of this one. It’s similar to a hojicha but a lot more boring, lol. I will finish the pot of tea i made but I can’t see any reason to buy this. I think I’d just rather have hojicha.

Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 14 OZ / 414 ML

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drank Russian Country by Harney & Sons
2811 tasting notes

mmm, I haven’t had this in a while, it’s like “lapsang lite”, very strong with definite smoky & malty notes. This is a great cold weather tea so I’ll probably drink it more in the winter time.

I am running quite low on most of my Harney teas, it’s good to be sipping down some things but something tells me I’ll be placing a MASSIVE H&S order if and when I ever start working again… I discovered recently that the Berkeley Bowl carries quite a few of their loose leaf tins, I don’t think this is one of them however.

Boiling 3 min, 30 sec

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Looks like my cold is finally abating somewhat, thank goodness. Still sick but not overwhelmingly so. I actually slept until 10 am which is good, because I really need the sleep.

Decided to brew this one up this morning, it’s definitely one of my favorite teas. Very comforting, malty, sweet potato-y. Good for breakfast, afternoon or anytime really. :)

Boiling 2 min, 30 sec

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drank Vanilla Rooibos by Tazo
2811 tasting notes

Tea picked up from Starbucks this afternoon — I guess Starbucks is still carrying Tazo tea despite their recent acquisition of Teavana. There was supposed to be a guest speaker beofre our class today but I just found out that the speaker called in sick, which is annoying because I’M STILL SICK and made it to class an hour early for nothing.

So about this rooibos, it’s not bad. I mean, you either like rooibos or you don’t. But as far as rooibos blends are concerned, it’s a bit un-inspired. I definitely get the vanilla but not so much the other ingredients. I’m accustomed to drinking my rooibos teas with soymilk and I thought this was a lot better with two coffeemate creamers and a sugar packet added. I definitely think this would be nice as a latte.

Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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drank Masala Chai by Peet's Coffee & Tea
2811 tasting notes

Not my favorite chai but I still have several ounces of the tin left. I really miss the chai blends I got from Cardamom and Curry in Livermore last year at the Green Fair.

In comparison this seems kind of weak in flavor, even though I made it really strong especially so I could add a lot of soymilk to it for a creamy afternoon drink. I should try making this using the traditional stovetop method, it’s really much better that way.

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My profile pic is of a pink dahlia at Golden Gate Park.

Hobbies include: tea, making art, animals, vegan things, buddhism, nature, creativity, books, writing, cooking, meditation, yoga.

I am a fan of many different teas but my favorites are blacks and oolongs, chai, also like darjeeling and pu-erh. I’n always learning and expanding my horizons!

Dislikes include: bergamot, jasmine, highly tannic or bitter teas, overly judgmental and bitter people. :)

Live in San Francisco, I’m a SINK (single income, no kids) and love the urban life, but traveling out to the middle of nowhere is always fun too.

I tend to not drink things I know I will hate so a lot of my tea ratings are on the higher side. Here’s my rating system, sorta

95-100 I love this tea and would like to keep it around

94-90 An excellent tea which I may or may not repurchase

89-80 Pretty good, above average

79-70 Acceptable

69-60 Mundane – Will probably drink it if I have it

59-50 Ick

49 and below Nasty


San Frandisco



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