drank 221B Blend by Custom
300 tasting notes

Necessity is the mother of invention. I went to make Baker Street Afternoon Blend for my husband and I and found we had less than a teaspoon left of it. I should have reached for the Keemun and added jut a pinch of Lapsang. Instead I reached for the Lapsang (half a teaspoon) and rounded it out with Nine Dragon for the husband. Too smokey for him though I thought it was lovely. On the second steep I decided to add some clove and cardamon from my Maharaja Chai Oolong tin, taking inspiration from Cara McGee’s Sherlock Blend on Adagio. Now this is delicious! Buttery smooth beginning with a strong middle and dry finish, smokey with a deep sweetness like tobacco and a hint of spice. Second steep (third for the tea but only second since adding the spice) tastes just like clove gum, but as such lacks in tea body. Rowan had some of the first infusion and said “hmm what’s it taste like mommy? hmm, tastes like tea” which is interesting as almost any straight white, green or oolong he says “tastes like raspberry”, clearly this was nowhere close to raspberry ;)

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

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Bio

Druid, artist, poet, mum, lover of tea, ritual and myth. I grew up on Celestial Seasons herbals but fell in love with straight loose leaf tea working at my local Teavana for a year. I am grateful for the introduction and the experience, but have moved on.

I see tea as an experience for the senses, I like to imagine tasting the land and the weather as well as the effect of sun, air, fire and the human hand. I have a soft spot for shu pu’er, yabao, scented oolongs, wuyi oolongs, taiwanese tea as well as smooth naturally sweet blacks, creamy greens and surprisingly complex whites.

I began ordering lots of samples from Upton to educate myself on different varieties of tea we didn’t have at work and have fallen head over heels for the unique offerings from Verdant Tea. I am learning things I like: buttery mouthfeel, surprising sweet or spice notes, woodiness, mineral notes, depth and complexity and things I don’t: astringency, dry and sour notes.

I collect tea tins and am in danger of collecting pots, though I am trying to restrain the urge due to current lack of space. I brew mostly in a glass infuser mug or a tea maker, only using cast-iron for company now (still need to get a gaiwan) and tend not to sweeten my teas unless they are British or fruity and iced, which is not often.

As far as ratings, I lack a definite system and haven’t been assigning numbers lately, wanting to spend multiple sessions with a tea first. I usually only log a tea once, unless it is a new harvest or I have significantly different observations, but will go back and edit or comment if I find something interesting or new.

Location

Baker Street, Berea, Ohio

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