911 Tasting Notes

57
drank Paradise Green by Lupicia
911 tasting notes

Freebie teabag from Lupicia. This is fruity. Like FruitStripes gum (what I remember of it) fruity. I can’t really pull out any individual fruit tastes – it’s just one big flavor of sweet, almost candy-like fruity. It doesn’t taste synthetic or anything, so points for that. But there’s an astringency from the green tea base that I just don’t love. Maybe that dryness would work better with the sweet fruit flavor if chilled, come across as a crisp & refreshing type taste, but hot it just doesn’t mesh great for me.

Ultimately, this is drinkable and not horrid but it’s not something I’d pick up for myself. If they had this flavor with a black tea base… now that I’d probably give a try.

CHAroma

Lupicia does make a black tea called Paradise. It doesn’t have exactly the same ingredients as this one, but it’s supposed to be pretty tropical. I haven’t tried it personally but wanted to let you know about it.

Auggy

Cool, I might have to give it a shot in a black. Thanks for the info!

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86
drank St Petersburg by Kusmi Tea
911 tasting notes

I forgot I had a teabag of this, a freebie thrown in to my Kusmi order. So sure, why not? Which means that this log is a review of the teabag more than the tea itself (because I already know I like the tea).

This teabag is funky. It’s a rectangle and made of a not-very-tight-mesh muslin-like material. It doesn’t really give the leaves room to expand; theoretically the leaves could expand into the top of the rectangle, but they don’t. Instead they clump down at the bottom of the rectangle and form a pretty hard-packed ball o’ leaf when steeping.

The smell is simply delicious but the taste is a bit harsher than the loose leaf version – not quite so smooth and silky. The caramel also isn’t hitting me as strongly as it did in the loose leaf version so it’s coming across more fruity than caramel-covered fruit. It’s still a tasty tea though and doesn’t require any additives to smooth it out.

Is the loose leaf better? Yes. But not by a ton.
Would I buy the teabag version? No. The loose mesh of the bag material lets little bits of tea scatter about my counter top which means that the bag really isn’t all that neat or convenient, the only real reason I’d go for bags. Also, the lack of expansion room available kind of makes me frown, though I suppose since that doesn’t really seem to impact the taste of the tea, I can’t hold it against it. (Of course, I am assuming that the increased harshness and slight flavor change is due to broken leaves in the teabag, not a lack of room.)

Based on this single bag experience, Kusmi seems to do (weird but ultimately) decent teabags. Don’t think I’d go out of my way to get something in bag form but I wouldn’t turn it down.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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62
drank Rosy Earl Grey by Teas Etc
911 tasting notes

Yeah, I know this is a Steepsterite favorite, but I just don’t love it. Actually, I’m not sure how much I even really like it.

It is a pretty darn frou-frou cup of tea. I’m not against frou-frou or anything (hello, pink monkey) but it really seems like that is all this is. Predominately jasmine with a hint of rose, this isn’t very Earl Grey-y. In some ways it reminds me of Mariage Freres 1854 (another mild and jasmine-y EG) but in other ways… not so much. It doesn’t seem as full flavored as 1854; I think 1854 had a woodsier taste to it that gave it more depth, and depth is something I’m just not finding in this tea.

There is an astringency that has camped out on the tip of my tongue and refuses to leave. It is pretty much requiring that the next time I have this tea, there will be additives (which I have had it with before but was unable to give it my full attention). Though I am a little concerned about that though since this tea really doesn’t seem strong enough to hold up to creamer. I might end up with jasmine flavored hot milk.

As it cools, there are hints of Earl Grey, but it blends into the astringency at the end of the sip making this just taste a bit bitter. The EG does hint at a more solid tasting tea but it doesn’t save it from overall tasting like a weak third steep.

Eventually I suppose I’ll give this one another try to see if milk and possibly sugar saves this but I’m thinking that this one is just not a match for me.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec
sophistre

If you’re looking for unusual Earl Greys, I’ve got a Smoked Earl Grey from Tao of Tea that I could bear to part with a portion of! I just don’t drink it often enough to polish it off expediently, but it’s not a bad tea. Odd, but not bad.

Suzi

Ha ha, I think it sounds delish :) I’m very into frou frou drinks though!

Auggy

sophistre, Sounds interesting! Expect a PM! :)
Suzi, I’m not anti-frou frou but I do like my fluff teas to still be interesting and this one wasn’t for me. I much prefer MF’s 1854 but I think it was a special edition kind of thing so boo.

JacquelineM

Have you tried it at 195? Might help with that astringency you’re getting. That might make the depth issue worse, tho… But I agree – it is HIGH in frou (which is what I love about it). You’ve sure got me curious about MF 1854 tho! :) :) :)

Auggy

MF 1854 was really tasty! Frou frou but with depth! I think it was a special edition thing though? Because I can’t find it anywhere. :( I’ll give this one a shot at a lower temp and see what happens!

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86
drank Jasmine Peach Bai Mudan by Samovar
911 tasting notes

Yay! Grown up peach gummy tea! This makes me happy! A great celebration tea for what has been a great celebration weekend – today is my birthday (and it’s been fantastic) but even cooler – yesterday the husband and I paid off our house! So yeah, I’m pretty happy with life at this moment and this super-sweet, tasty, floral and fruity gummy-like tea keeps the happy going! YAY!!!!

Preparation
3 min, 0 sec
Cofftea

While I don’t have this, you’ve inspired me to make a smoothie using Jasmine Pearls and frozen peaches:)

Ricky

Happyyyyyyy Birthday!! Peach gummy like the lupicia teas! Sounds delicious!

__Morgana__

Happy birthday and congrats on the house!

Angrboda

Happy birthday and congratulations on the house. :D

Stephanie

Congrats on the house—what a great feeling!—and happy birthday!! :)

Auggy

Thanks all! It was a pretty awesome weekend all the way around! :)

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81

I’m giving this a bump because apparently this is the tea I crave when I want a toasty, darker oolong. It’s sweet and roasty but doesn’t make me think of cigar smoke. There’s a lot going on in this tea. I’ve already mentioned the sweet and roasty but there’s some stone fruit, some honey and even some raw-sugar-like notes. It’s woodsy and somewhat autumn-y with slight notes of rawness that remind me of Nilgiri but in a smooth way I can totally get behind. As the tea cools, the flavor continues to develop, getting more and more complex. I don’t normally go for darker oolongs but this one is worth being the exception.

ETA: Gave some of the second steep to the husband and he said that it reminded him a bit of genmaicha. And now that he says that, I can see it. It’s got a similar roasty, toasty, smooth taste.
5g/10oz

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec
thewaterbird

wow, you make this sound sooo goood!

Auggy

It is very tasty. I’m typically a green oolong girl but this one is good enough that I had to buy it!

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84
drank White Monkey Paw by Utopian Tea
911 tasting notes

It’s been a while since I’ve had a Chinese green so this was a bit shocking to my palate, especially because this seems like a pretty bold Chinese green – I just wasn’t prepared for it! It’s very fresh and vibrant tasting – very grass/hay tasting with a spike of something sharp that I sometimes read as mineral-y and sometimes read as nutty. Even reading that note as mineral-y, this still isn’t briny/salty which is a note I get from a lot of Chinese greens. Instead, it’s more sweet with almost a fruity taste to it. It has lots of flavors going on and has a great fresh and bold taste (for a Chinese green). Quite lovely! Thanks so much to TeaEqualsBliss for sharing this one with me!

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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79

The dry leaf smells tangy, creamy, fruity and rich. The flavor is darker and deeper with really only a hint of milk oolong. In fact, I probably wouldn’t have guessed that this was a milk oolong based on the taste. The smell, sure, but not the taste.

The taste is dark and heavy on my tongue and reminds me a bit of Samovar’s Four Season oolong (which I never really had all that much luck with). The way this differs from FS is that this one does have a lighter top note to give it better depth. The top note isn’t floral or even really sweet but somehow manages to make me think of fruit. Actually, I take that back, it makes me think of the tangy fruit notes in Valrhona’s Manjari chocolate ( http://www.valrhona-chocolate.com/Grand-Cru-Manjari-Bar-246oz_p_48.html ).

And I would say more but my cup is gone. * Poof * So yeah. I suppose it’s pretty tasty.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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83

I’ve got some serious Steepstering to catch up on. Saturday night, I (through my own stupidity) broke my Zojirushi. Not awesome. At all. But with the combination of an understanding husband, an Amazon Prime free trial, five additional dollars for a next day shipping upgrade and, of course, the joy that is the internet, I am now the proud owner of a new Zojirushi (the CD-WBC40). Thank goodness. The kettle and I just weren’t getting along.

To celebrate the return of temperature-controlled water-dispensing to the household, I thought I’d give this one another go, this time with Shinobicha’s suggestion of just a tiny amount of water. I did 4.2g of tea to 4oz of water and gave it about 30s in my preheated Tokoname.

First off, I was surprised at how mild this was with so much leaf. And sweet! Not quite creamy like my first delightful taste of this, but still very enjoyable. Oddly, it made me think that if the Japanese made green tea gum (what am I talking about? I’m sure they do somewhere), this would probably be what it would taste like. Like a sweet mint gum but without the mint – just the sweetness and freshness.

I’m still not raising the rating any on this one though because 1) for a higher rating, I need easily-found buttercream and 2) as tasty as this is, there’s not a whole lot of depth to the flavor aside from sweetness and fresh green-ness. But still, this ratio is definitely worth repeating.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 0 min, 30 sec
sophistre

Hooray for Zojirushis!

Auggy

So very yay!
BTW, did I mention that the new Zo sings_? It’s sorta nuts. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W1rxA1QXIKQ

__Morgana__

Hehe, I have that one, too. It has its own language. I can tell what it’s doing now when I’m not even in the room. Very cute.

Auggy

Isn’t it great? It’s fairly absurd but I have no desire to change it to just the beeps!

__Morgana__

I’ve had mine for about 5 months now and even so, every time it starts singing my BF looks up and goes “what’s that” which totally cracks me up.

Auggy

Ha! That’s awesome! Every time I hear it, I automatically think of this Carebears Christmas ornament I had growing up. When you pushed on the bottom, it played a little carol. So now the Zo makes everyday feel Christmasy!

sophistre

Mine does the boiled water song…I thought they all did! What was the other one? O.o

Auggy

The second song plays when the timer is set (the directions make it sound like the second song happens when the timer turns on (like an alarm) so I’m happy it isn’t – as much as I like it singing to me, I did not want that happening at 6am when the timer makes the water start to boil for my morning tea!). My previous Zo made no sounds, not even beeps! (I had a CD-LCC40.)

Shinobi_cha

Yay, you tried my suggestion. Too bad it wasn’t creamy. :-(
I guess that makes it less worth trying out, being that it is on the more expensive end.

Shinobi_cha

One other idea that you could try – use 1 oz water, 1 rounded tsp (2g+) leaf, but use water that you’ve put in the freezer for 20 minutes, so that its between 32F – 38F. Pour that over the leaves and wait 7-8 minutes. :) If you don’t like it, then you didn’t waste much tea, but I’m sure it will be awesome!
You can do the 2nd steeping as normal.

Auggy

I think this is just a picky tea. Apparently the first time I did it, it was exactly how it should be done and now I just have to repeat it! I will give the cold brewing a try though because I’ve had zero idea how to it previously. So yay and thanks for the directions! :)

Shinobi_cha

Yeah, it sounds like it IS picky. That cold brew method will work with any good quality green tea.

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4
drank Green Tea Ginseng by Ito En
911 tasting notes

I didn’t notice that this was sweetened when I bought this but drinking it? OMG, do I notice. In fact, that’s all I notice. Cane sugar and ascorbic acid. HORRIBLE. This tastes like any typical bottled “tea” that you’d find at a gas station. Truly horrible. Two sips and I threw the rest away.

Preparation
Iced

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65
drank English Teatime by Bigelow
911 tasting notes

Wow, this is surprisingly tasty. No additives yet it is smooth and a little sweet. Very malty. I’m actually pretty impressed!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 1 min, 0 sec

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Profile

Bio

I’m trying to be a better tea logger and actually post semi-regularly again! I’ve let my tea tasting senses become too complacent – it’s time for some focused and attentive tea drinking!

Sometimes my notices for PMs and such have been questionable. Email me at your own risk at aug3zimm at gmail dot com.


1 – 10 – Bleck. Didn’t finish the cup.
11 – 25 – Drinkable. But don’t punish me by making me have it again.
26 – 40 – Meh. Most likely will see if the husband likes it iced.
41 – 60 – Okayish. Maybe one day I’ll kill off what I have in my pantry.
61 – 75 – Decent. I might pick some up if I needed tea.
76 – 85 – Nice. I’d probably buy but wouldn’t hunt it down.
86 – 100 – Yum! I will hunt down the vendor to get this tea!

Not that anyone but me particularly cares, but there it is.

Location

Texas

Website

http://pinkness.danzimmermann...

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