157 Tasting Notes

72
drank Random Steepings by Various Artists
157 tasting notes

This was blended by a neighbor here in Boulder Creek and presented to my daughter-in-law Emily in a re-used glass pudding jar, with no list of ingredients. Emily runs a home bakery and occasionally gets thank-you tips/gifts. She quickly offered it to me as someone more willing to try such things.

I can see and smell chamomile in the dry leaf. I brewed it grandpa-style in a mug, then poured it into a travel mug. As I poured it back, I did so through the lid, filtering out most of the leaf in the process. Back and forth again, and it was a drinkable temperature. I prefer to drink plain tea at 51 C / 124 F, or about 53 C / 127 F with milk.

This blend is very licorice-forward. I wonder if it has anise and/or fennel, but I definitely taste some sweet licorice root in there. The chamomile flavor comes in at the end of the sip. I can still taste licorice well after a sip. It’s overall pretty nice, and probably good for an evening herbal brew. I’ll have to ask which neighbor made this.

Flavors: Chamomile, Licorice, Licorice Root

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more 7 g 16 OZ / 473 ML

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90

I usually brew this hot, and it tastes really good, especially with a little oat milk. Just a really good black tea. But this time, I cold brewed it overnight, three tagless bags in a pitcher. And it’s really different brewed that way! It’s got a strong vegetal note that reminds me of green tea. I can also pick out a malty note, not as strong as when I hot brew it, and some light bread and citrus notes. So, delicious either way! I’m told cold-brewing black tea leads to a lot less caffeine, but I don’t care either way on that either.

Flavors: Bread, Citrus, Malty, Vegetal

Preparation
Iced 8 min or more

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72
drank Random Steepings by Various Artists
157 tasting notes

So, I suddenly craved Earl Grey hot cocoa tonight.

I pulled out my unopened one-of-a-kind box of Douglas Adams Earl Grey by Rosie Lea Tea, a custom box I ordered through Etsy in 2019, with the quote: “A cup of tea would restore my normality.”

I decided not to review this tea quite yet, as I don’t know yet what it tastes like on its own. Also it’s a bit past the best-by date in 2020.

I microwaved some oat milk, steeped 3 grams of tea in the oat milk with my gravity steeper, then poured it into a blender with some 81% chocolate pieces. I waited a little for the chocolate to soften, then blended it up. (I usually make hot cocoa this way but w/o any tea)

This is everything I had opened for. The bergamot taste pairs nicely with the chocolate without overpowering it. Mmm!

Flavors: Bergamot, Dark Chocolate

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 g 8 OZ / 236 ML

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83

I was craving mugicha, and all I had was Lupicia’s with lychee flavor, which isn’t the same.

I ordered a 52-bag pack of big 10g bags for fridge steeping, then went ahead and just hot steeped one in my big mug. Served hot, it tastes like mugicha, and not much like coffee to me. Served iced, there’s a strong similarity to coffee, such that I also made an iced mocha with oat milk and chocolate syrup, mmm.

I wonder how much variation there is between brands of plain mugicha. I’ve yet to be disappointed by any.

Flavors: Coffee, Roasted Barley

Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 0 sec 10 g 16 OZ / 473 ML

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72
drank Chá Misto Maracujá by Madrugada
157 tasting notes

My son’s friend gave him a box of this herbal tea from Brazil, but he didn’t like it, so now it’s mine.

The passionfruit flavor is strong. I think the apple pulp is mostly for sweetness. I can pick up a little apple towards the end of the sip, and there’s a floral aftertaste that also reminds me of artificial sweetener.

I steeped it around 5 minutes with just enough boiling water, then added ice to cool it down and to get the strength right.

Flavors: Apple, Artificial, Floral, Passion Fruit

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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82
drank Cream Egg by Bird & Blend Tea Co.
157 tasting notes

Another present from Martin!

The brewed tea certainly smells chocolatey and creamy.

It tastes floral and creamy, with a hint of chocolate near the end of the sip. There are also notes of vanilla and butter. It tastes like the holidays, sitting by the fireplace! I’ll bet it would be good as a latte, or even a latte with cocoa powder to make it more chocolatey. Thanks again, Martin!

Flavors: Butter, Chocolate, Creamy, Floral, Vanilla

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 5 g 16 OZ / 473 ML
Todd

Okay, as a latte, I’m getting a cooking flavor! Delicious.

Martin Bednář

Glad that you like this one that much. I wasn’t a fan.

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73
drank Thai Lemon by Oxalis
157 tasting notes

Another fine present from Martin!

This is very lemon-forward, but what sort of lemon flavor is it? I have to go look. Oh it’s lemongrass I’m tasting, nice! There’s a little bitterness that lingers on my tongue, a bit like lemon rind, but it’s not bad. I have some Thai curry that’s ready to heat up, bet this will go great with it! The sencha flavor is very subtle with all the lemon flavor, but it’s nice. Thanks, Martin!

Flavors: Bitter, Lemon, Lemongrass

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec 5 g 16 OZ / 473 ML
Martin Bednář

You are welcome!

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73
drank Thai Lemon by Oxalis
157 tasting notes

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67

I find with the rarer teas I review here, it’s fastest to just do a search for them, and Steepster is usually one of the top results!

This is a loose-leaf tea from Martin!

It’s kind of bright, with a good deal of astringency, and a mild citrus note. There’s a floral note too, and something vegetal at the end of the sip. The astringency is a bit much for me. I might enjoy it more as a latte. Thanks, Martin!

Flavors: Astringent, Citrus, Floral, Vegetal

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 4 g 12 OZ / 354 ML
Todd

Oh yeah, I like it better with some oat milk!

Martin Bednář

You are welcome. Apparently, not are teas suits you. But that happens.

Todd

Indeed! It was still a good experience.

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83
drank Darjeeling by El Puente
157 tasting notes

This is also a gift from Martin!

For bagged black tea, this is pretty amazing. It’s smooth, not very astringent, and has citrus and honey notes, and a hint of malt. I’ll bet it would be got as a latte too, but definitely not needed! Thanks, Martin!

Flavors: Citrus, Honey, Malt

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
Martin Bednář

Another hit! I am glad :)

Todd

Mmm, it’s very good as a latte too!

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Bio

I have enjoyed various teas most of my life, but have recently started exploring higher-end teas. Still, plain houjicha (loose-leaf or bagged) makes me feel like I’m in Japan.

Location

Boulder Creek CA

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