1811 Tasting Notes

drank Wild Wuyi Black by Harney & Sons
1811 tasting notes

I just took this out of my online cupboard because we just finished off the tin at tea party time! Today, this was paired with one of the most quintessential tea treats – cucumber sandwiches, with crusts off. Of course, we still had our cookie plate as well. We have to have the cookie plate.

This was a nice, solid black tea that isn’t astringent but is very smooth and has enough presence to pair well with food. I shall miss it! I need the check their website and see if they still sell this one.


What? A cookie plate too? Unfair!

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drank Caramel Matcha by Red Leaf Tea
1811 tasting notes

Yes, I just made this for a second time today! I think I have found a real favorite! I did it the same way, heating a Pyrex cup of milk in the microwave with a little sugar in it, then took it out and added 1/2 teaspoon of matcha powder. I mixed it really well with my immersion blender until there was a lot of froth on top and poured it into a mug.

He LOVED it! He is super picky and usually it is hard to sweeten things enough for him though he is getting better about it. First he sniffed it – something he does to every new food or drink he tries. Sigh. But this time he was happy with his first sniff! He downed that mug so fast, then came in the kitchen and told me that his matcha broke, and wanted me to warranty it and fix him a new one! LOL! I don’t know if he really should have that much matcha so late since he also had a Black Cherry Matcha water bottle at the gym earlier!

Anyway, it makes me happy because I was really looking for drinks that my daughter and hubby would like, that would give them the caffeine they want, and be better for them. And here it is! Daughter texted me this morning asking me to order a pumpkin pie matcha for her since she has nearly finished the mocha matcha I gave her. And I really think my son is going to be asking for his own black cherry matcha to take to the gym once he tastes it.

The Purrfect Cup

I might have to try it this way. I have this one to try and I’m very nervous about making matcha. I always just blend it into smoothies.


Who is “he” ? What am I missing? Did my eyes cross again while reading – I just woke up so its happening … SIGH I should go back to sleep.


You got me, Azzrian! I must have deleted a sentence where I said this was for my picky hubby! Sorry! Or thanks to my cold medicine I forgot to put it in entirely!


try this with marshamallows and milk (or milk equivalent) and it will taste divine :D

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drank Caramel Matcha by Red Leaf Tea
1811 tasting notes

Ugh. I still have a cold. I had to get up at 5:45 am because I puppy-sit on Tuesdays. And then at about 8 am I somehow re-injured the muscle in my back that I had hurt a couple of weeks ago and it is mostly my own darned fault for hunching over an iPad all the time.

After lunch, I wanted something a little bit pampering. I heated eight ounces of milk in the microwave, then added 1/2 tsp. of matcha powder and 1 tsp. sugar. I mixed all this in the Pyrex cup with my Bamix immersion blender and poured it into a pretty mug that a friend gave me from Williamsburg. The froth on this is unbelievable. You would think that a huge handful of marshmallows had been melted on top of this drink.

It was also delicious and enabled me to get through geometry class today! I plan to make another one for hubby when he gets home from work!

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My tasting notes are all over the place on this one, mostly because I started drinking it back in the milk and sugar days. Now that I take my tea plain, this is just meh. I think I may even add milk and sugar this morning just so I will enjoy this tea more, but I definitely won’t be repurchasing it when it is gone. There are too many really great teas to bother with meh tea.

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When I started looking at the Red Leaf Tea website, I drooled over all the dessert flavored matcha. I didn’t give the fruit flavored ones a second glance and really didn’t think I would ever purchase any of them, mostly because I thought I would only be using the matcha for lattes and I just didn’t picture milk and fruity flavor together. I know they go, but I guess my taste buds were being juvenile wanting all the caramel and mocha and pumpkin pie flavors.

Then a couple of people said they swirled the matcha in a water bottle and made a cold drink. What? What! So I tried it with caramel and found that it really does work. On the first sips I thought it was going to taste weak, but the flavor builds and builds. However, caramel is a dessert flavor and I really love it with milk, hot or iced. A lightbulb popped on over my head as I realized that fruit flavored matcha would be most excellent this way!

I was really happy when I saw the Black Cherry flavor go on sale. I got a large tin of it because this is one I think I can entice my son into trying! I ordered the robust flavor level, but I really want to try some of the more delicate flavor levels soon because several people have said they are still plenty strong enough.

You can order it here: http://www.redleaftea.com/matcha-tea/black-cherry-matcha.html

I got the tin because I love the twist off lid. A pop off lid could be a disaster with fine matcha powder, so be careful what you store it in! I have a regular, short tin of green tea from another company with a lid that gets stuck and every time I open it the tea goes EVERYWHERE! You don’t want that to happen with your fine matcha powder!
The Mocha matcha is almost gone, and soon I will have enough tins that I don’t have to order one every time! Then I can afford even more matcha.

As soon as the Black Cherry matcha arrived, I opened the package. The kids sniffed and their eyes grew wide. Cherry candy! The Black Cherry candle from Yankee Candle that my kids refuses to light because they don’t ever want it to go away. What a powerful, sweet, amazing aroma! Not rooibos-y cough syrup, but cherry candy, as sweet as it was when you were seven years old!

I grabbed a teaspoon, scooped it about half full and put it in my bottle. I added less than an ounce of water and swirled and shook it. Then I added cold water to the top and shook it a little again. So 1/2 teaspoon gave me about 15 ounces of drink at least.

Perfection! AMAZING! Fruit flavored matcha, look out! I want all of you! I know my son is going to go wild for this. This is going to be a perfect work-out drink for him, and so easy it is crazy. WOW!


I saw it on sale and had to buy it to go with the cola matcha. I haven’t tried it just cold yet though… I must try this and see if I like it better that way thanks for the idea :D


yes! I can’t wait! Your review just made me crazy excited. Yum!

And Helena, thank you for the idea! I know what I’ll be mixing with my cola matcha haha


Helena, you are a genius!
DaisyChubb, I have already finished the whole thing! It was DELISH!


ah! for a second I interpreted that as finishing the whole tin lol! I don’t even want to imagine what that would do to a person ;)


I LOVE the cola one, that’s a great idea to mix this one with that. I hope mine is waiting for me at home.


DaisyChubb: Holy cow! LOL! No, just the 1/2 teaspoon in my water bottle gave me a buzz! I think the whole tin would put me in hospital! But you are right, it definitely could easily read that way.
Amanda: your lip balm feels like SILK! One was for me, the other two for daughter! Puppy Sam thinks my lips smell delicious so he gave me a kiss. LOL!

KittyKat88 Delete less than a minute ago

I really need to invest in some matcha from Red Leaf; the problem is they all look so good I cant decide which to get. Here at school its so easy to get bottled water; I may just try this, thanks sooo much! What about mixing the cherry with coconut; it might work better with the mango but might be good with this. Loved your post!


I just tried the Cola one with cold water and ice and it’s the best way I’ve had this one so far. Definitely the way I’m drinking this one from now on. I’ll try it with the others later :D


Hooray! I am so glad to be having success with making matcha all sorts of ways! I thought it was going to be challenging but it is really easy! Glad you liked your cola, Helena! That does seem to best way to make it.
KittyKat – that is my big problem. What to order next? And now my hubby is trying to get my Black Cherry matcha (IT SMELLS LIKE KOOLAID! he says!) and my daughter has finished the mocha matcha and I still want about five more flavors!


I am so glad to hear about the lip balms! The other two people who bought some so far also raved about the texture which makes me SO happy because coming up with the mix of ingredients was my favorite part!

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drank Queen Catherine by Harney & Sons
1811 tasting notes

Overslept because I didn’t sleep well last night. Muscles already sore from coughing. Nose and ears still stuffed with cotton. Nauseated from coughing fit. Sneezing fit. Main household toilet broken and needs parts and I have guests coming Thursday so I have to drag myself out to buy the parts. Out of home made bread AND English muffins for breakfast.


And now I feel much better. I found some bagels and smeared them liberally with Nutella – now there’s a good start. Accompanied by a good, stout cup of the Queen, this was very fortifying. Even with all that Nutella I could taste the tea, yet it was smooth and sweet.

A long time ago, I had resigned myself to the notion that I would probably always put milk and sugar in breakfast blends. Now I can’t imagine why I thought that, as this was perfect just the way it was.
Onward to face the day! (It helps that I am pretty sure that two tea orders are coming today. You may hear whining later on if they don’t get here.)

I must always have the Queen in my cupboard for emergencies such as these! :)


You are the Queen!


You are sweet, Bonnie! :)


Long live the Queen! I really need a tin of her. The Queen and Florence. Yep.

Ed Fladung

This sounds wonderful. Gotta put it on my list…


Why, hello there, mad nutella on white bread craving!

Thanks for that, ashmanra. Really…


You are very welcome, Ang! :)

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I got a wonderful surprise from Nuvola Tea on Saturday. The postman had already put our mail in the box on the porch, and when I was retrieving it, he came walking back to the house with a single brown envelope in his hand. He looked sort of….intense or excited….hard to describe, as he bustled across the lawn and held it out and said, “It’s tea! From Taiwan! But it came from Hong Kong!”

I have told him what all my packages are that I have to sign for so he knows I am a tea addict…um, aficionado. I think he was excited for me that I was getting tea, and I was excited and surprised because I was only expecting one sample and I had already received it, but Nuvola sent two more!

Hubby and I wanted to keep our peaceful vibe going tonight that we had started with the Smooth As Jade Menghai Puerh, so I chose this Oriental Beauty as one I thought hubby might like. Since he isn’t as obsessed with tea as I am, his “reviews” are short and sweet. His opinion was, “This has a lot of flavor.”

Mine: I think I have only had one or two Oriental Beauty teas. If I remember them correctly they were more floral than fruity.

The leaves of this one were lovely mixed shades of brownish leaves and little green and white curls of buds, a very interesting and pretty dry mix. The smell of the wet leaves have a distinct lemony aroma to me! The pot is full to bursting with rich brown leaves that make me think of dark fall leaves.

I did a quick rinse, and kept the steeps fairly short since I was using my gong fu pot. The first steep or two had that predominant lemon scent. On the second or third steep, another aroma peeked out. It was a hint, a whisper, of black Tellicherry peppercorns, sweet and sharp and not at all like common peppercorns. Mind you, it was just a hint that teased my nose and there was no sharp or unpleasant taste to it at all, but as my husband said it was “full of flavor.”

I notice that the company recommends trying this with a bit of brandy added. We don’t drink alcohol at all so I don’t have any brandy but I bet that would be tasty. It does seem like a natural pairing for this tea.

I have lost track of steeps but I believe we had about four or five of this one.

Thank you, Nuvola Tea for the wonderful surprise!

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I had a little leaf left! I made about eight steeps and shared a peaceful evening of gong fu tea service with hubby by candlelight.

I love how this puerh starts to coat your mouth with a cedar-like oil starting around the fourth steep. It just keeps going and going as you steep. I think it was noticeably paler around the eighth steep. This is a lovely puerh, sweet and smooth.

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drank Pu-erh Classic by Rishi Tea
1811 tasting notes

I gave this tea one last chance today. A few months ago I cut up a vanilla bean and stirred it into the tin, hoping it would help this tea overcome the meh’s. it didn’t work. I can’t even taste the vanilla and the puerh still has no sparkle. No élan. No….appeal.

I am passing this on to my friend who likes puerh but isn’t as finicky about the taste since she is usually drinking it on the go.

I will say that I love the Rishi double lidded tins, and sometimes buy the empty tins for storing other teas. (They sell the same tin at A Southern Season.) The tins from Republic of Tea are terrible! They are not very airtight, as demonstrated when I tried to soak one for re-use, left it on the counter full of soapy water, and came back to find water on the counter and the floor and none in the tin. No wonder my Wuyi Oolong went stale! At twenty bucks a tin, I want better storage.


I can’t get that vanilla bean trick to work either! I’ve had thoughts about adding vanilla essence to the leaf as well, but I haven’t got a base tea at the moment which is mediocre enough that I don’t mind if it ruins them.


Put this one in the RoT tin so it can breath and use the Rishi tin for something that needs an air tight tin. My understanding is that for puerh to age properly it needs air – the nemesis of most other teas.


Excellent idea, K S. I have longed for the little puerh baskets on purepuer.com, and have considered taking a regular tin and punching some decorative holes in it for puerh storage. Your idea sounds great! You are right – I have heard that puerh can benefit from a little air.

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Bonnie was so generous to share this wonderful puerh that she received from mrmopar, so many thanks to both of you!

I was feeling out of sorts tonight, both physically and mentally. I have a cold or allergies or something and a lot of mental stress right now, as we are in the midst of making some big decisions, except that we AREN’T making them, if you get my drift! I know it is past bedtime, but I wouldn’t be able to sleep if I went. Tea and soft music sounded especially inviting! (I already did the “driving fast down the expressway with the Pulse blasting” thing, it was time for something different.)

I have saved several samples from various people until I feel it is the right time to appreciate them, and it is the right time for this one!

Because both Bonnie and mrmopar said to throw away the rinse, I did, though I often drink the rinse. This rinse looked pale, so I followed instructions. The first steep at 30 seconds was mild and very civilized. This has no fishiness, a nice well-oiled horse tack aroma, and a whisper of polished cedar beams. Each steep was about the same length of time, but the third and fourth were noticeably darker. There is a lingering sweet aftertaste, and I don’t know if this makes sense but the tea feels extraordinarily WET. I am drinking from a tiny double-walled glass cup, but if this was in a great big glass I think I could just throw it back and chug it. This is so smooth and thirst quenching. My angry throat is a lot less angry, and my stuffed head seems to be clearing a bit.

As I sit here waiting for steep number….what is it now? Seven? I feel as if my mouth is coated with a delicious infused oil. Is this what truffle oil would be like? I have never had it, but it is what I imagine it must be.

Body and soul are much more fit for having drunk this tonight. This is so mild, so smooth, I think this would be a fabulous introduction to puerh for anyone who is afraid to try it. Thank you, thank you, again, to Bonnie and mrmopar.


You are welcome, you did the Pu-erh proud and I’m glad you’re feeling all the sweet, mellow well-being from the drinking of it.


i second the pu-erh done proud!you prepared it just as i would.


High Fives all around!

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I am a music teacher and homeschooling mom who started drinking loose leaf tea about four years ago! My daughters and I have tea every day, and we are frequently joined by my students or friends for “tea time.” Now my hubby joins us, too. His tastes have evolved from Tetley with milk and sugar to mostly unadorned greens.

We have learned so much history, geography, and culture in this journey.

My avatar is a mole in a teacup! Long story…


North Carolina

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