1087 Tasting Notes


A new guayusa blend? Yes please! IMO, we need more guayusa blends, it’s quickly becoming my favorite type of tea for it being earthy, creamy and amazing! (and loads of caffeine)

I got lots to do today, so I figure I need to get a caffeine hit of awesome! I have to make curry (yum!), work on some jiu jitsu blogging and get my weight lifting done.

DRY: Slightly creamy smell with a kick to it – lavender and mint? Very interesting smell that was hard to piece together.

STEEPED: Steeps up a dark earthy brown. Smells again like lavender.

TASTE: Smooth, calming – creamyness and vanilla, earthy, a gentle kick of lavender with an aftertaste of mint.

Sweetened with rock sugar KV changes to a stronger creamy and vanilla tea with lavender and mint gently relaxing together in the background. Personally, sweetened is the way to go with this tea.

WHO’D LOVE THIS TEA: Those peeps who drink “calming” teas, but in need of a wakeup caffeine hit.

COMMENTS: Slightly addictive tea. I just kept sipping away experiencing the rocking out of lavender and vanilla.

A similar flavored tea would be DavidsTea’s “Jessie’s Tea” – which has rooibos, coconut and much more lavender. KV’s is much more full bodied with the earthy guayusa, smoother and more creamy. The lavender and mint dance perfectly together.

Overall, best use of lavender in a tea I’ve tried so far. Now I’m all feeling mellow yet alert and sloshy full. Man, I love guayusa!

KV, I think, would be a great tea to have before an exam – keep you calm but energy sparked awake!

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I really can’t wait to try this one – should be getting it tomorrow. YES! We do need more guayusa blends! :)

Butiki Teas

I too am a big fan of guayusas. I think GMS is my personal favorite, since there is something about lemon and waking up that I love. You are so right, this one is addictive. Before you know it, the cup is finished.

Awkward Soul / Oolong Owl

I got GMS in my stash to try, can’t wait!

Butiki Teas

^Nice. Since you’ve tried a fair amount of our guayusas, I would definitely be interested in hearing your opinion on which you enjoy the most.

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The last of my sample of Green and Fruity, prepared iced with rock sugar.

Very nice, more of a brighter fruit taste and the papaya comes out really nicely. Iced, the rooibos takes the background (yay!).

IMO, better iced. Pretty nice tea, but I’m not going to order more of it as its not wow’n me – but I will put myself on lookout for other good papaya teas.


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ZOMG watermelon tea! I had to order this tea, WMX, despite breaking my 2 week no buy (among other teas from Butiki I wanted to try).

For me, I love fresh watermelon. I discovered from my brazilian jiu jitsu school that it is very easy to make watermelon juice. They sell a special bag that you pour blendered watermelon into to get the juice out (much easier than a strainer). Watermelon juice is the most refreshing drink ever! Best ever was over this summer, my local bulk grocery store was selling watermelons 8lbs for a $1! After buying so much watermelon, I’m still not tired of it, but worried when the season is over.

So far, the only watermelon teas I’ve had, DavidsTea’s Lucious Watermelon, I wasn’t a big fan of for it being tart and being mostly apple chunks.

DRY: Strong watermelonly fruity. Very interesting fuzzy tea leaves and bits of pretty pink (amaranth?)

STEEPED: Steeps up to a light gold colour. Smells just like watermelon juice, freshly extracted. This tea would look very pretty presented in a glass pot or travel mug. It is noted on the packaging of WMX to add sweetener, so I poured half my tea steeped into a small pot with rock sugar so I could try it both ways.

TASTE: Unsweetened, tastes like crisp watermelon (like even that fresh scent of watermelon and all) with a bit of mystery floral in it. The white tea is delicately soft and works well with the watermelon. No bitterness or tartness.

Sweetened with white rock sugar, WMX tastes just like watermelon juice with an amazing honey like sweetness. Much more watermelony sweetened, it’s crazy!

WHO’D LOVE THIS TEA: watermelon lovers – or someone who loves fruit teas. Iced tea peeps should snag this tea too!

COMMENTS: WHOA, whooooa! WMX kinda blew off my pants, um skirt, when it was sweetened. I extracted every drop I could from my little tea pot, WMX is so delicious!

WMX would be killer sweetened and iced. I think my tea hating husband would like this iced. However, I’m not sure if I’d share it or if it would survive long in the fridge for him to get at it.

Very well done Butiki Teas! I have a tea that I will buy again and will be a complete spaz about!

185 °F / 85 °C 4 min, 30 sec

A two week no buy? I put myself on a three month no buy and broke it within the week, sigh.

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Shout out to LefTea for a sample of this tea!

This afternoon I’m craving fruity. This looks fruity!

DRY: Very sweet smelling fruity citrus. Lots of huge chunks in this tea, almost looks like fruity trail mix. This blend has the german rock sugar in it.

STEEPED: Sweet and fruity and steeps up to a peachy pink. I ate the huge chunks of fruit and they were candied tasty!

TASTE: Sugary sweet with a fruity flavor – pineapple, orange and other mystery fruit tastes. Unable to pick out the white tea. No bitterness or tartness.
I threw in some ice cubes when I got my cup to 50% and it was transformed to be more of juice than a tea.

WHO’D LIKE THIS TEA: Tea noobs that don’t like tea (my husband would like this, he dislikes tea) and fruity iced tea drinkers.

COMMENTS: Toooooo sweet! Too much german sugar in this for a hot tea!
The use of hibiscus was good in YBWOB as I didn’t pick up any tart – however it could of been the sugar covering it. I do rock sugar up my tea sometimes and drink some teas that have sweetener in it (ie, DavidsTea use of stevia or sugared pumpkins/lips/whatever) but YBWOB is sweeter than I’d make it myself.

Iced, it tastes close to weak juice but I know I could make it better steeping it the right strength for iced tea – and I think YBWOB is made for pitchers of iced tea. I got a slight pet peeve on huge chunky tea with lots of different bits in it as I worry I’m not getting the same cup each time, it feels asif I should be making full pots of tea.

Overall, not bad. I’m probably going to end up either picking out all the rock sugar or turning this bag into a pitcher of iced tea and not tell the husband it’s tea until it’s too late.

175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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I received this tea from a Della Terra’s Facebook contest! I selected this tea as it sounded interesting to try a cappuccino rooibos, even though I’m not big into rooibos.

Last night I barely slept. I got a gi burn on my elbow and hurt my back in brazilian jiu jitsu so it was hard to sleep. Waking up, my back feels much better, but I’m very tired. I should of reached for a mate or black tea, but the coffee smells of this tea called out to me. I probably need to follow this up with something with caffeine, but whatever, more tea!

DRY: Sweet, coffee and caramel – yum! A good amount of those cute caramel squares in this tea.

STEEPED: Smells creamy and coffee like. Brown colour.
Annoyingly, the sample pack I got cites a 3 minute steep time, which I did. I get onto Steepster and Della Terra’s website and it cites a steep time of 5 minutes. DOH

TASTE: Light slight rooibos taste with a background of cappuccino. Aftertaste of sweetness.

COMMENTS: This is really light tea, I think the 5 minute steep time would be more accurate. I’d steep up more but I should really have something with caffeine before I fall over or end up going back to sleep. Actually, crawling back into bed sounds like a good idea.

However, the rooibos and coffee combo is pretty good. The sweetness of the tea blends in with that weird rooibos flavor. Very yum! This might make an interesting iced latte…

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This sounds good!


The thought of tea with “crunch” in the name makes me smile for some odd reason!

Della Terra Teas

Thanks! OOPS! I just realized my error on the steep time. It’s been fixed! The tea is amazing in iced latte form, very delicious. It also makes a most amazing frozen latte!

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Tamarind Tea? Ohhhh yeah! I got really excited when I saw this tea on Steepster! I needed to have it and try it!

Tamarind, if you never had it, has an interesting sour taste but also sweet. As a kid, I’ve eaten it as tamarind candies – that are sticky balls rolled in sugar (or salt) with the pod seeds in the middle. Also, I’ve had tamarind often as a soup base for Sinigang (a filipino soup or stew). When I starting cooking Sinigang myself, I would go crazy and make the soup base super strong for ultra sour soup!

DRY: Tangy sweet? This tea dry has an unusual smell that was hard to identify.

STEEPED: As I had my steeper pour the tea into my cup, there was huge wafts of tamarind and black tea smells – very awesome! Steeps up to a dark amber brown tea.

TASTE: Is addictive a taste? It’s earthy, sweet, creamy, non-sour tamarind pop (ha!) to it. Great black tea taste in there too. I’m picking up a teeny bit of astringency, however does not take away from the tea.
I didn’t add sugar because I was lazy.

WHO SHOULD TRY THIS TEA: Tamarind pop sounds adventurous (especially if you never had tamarind and just read I make sour soup with it) but has a lot of flavors going on and isn’t weird crazy. Black tea drinkers would like this tea for sure.

COMMENTS: Very addictive tea! I drank Tamarind Pop so fast as if it was a cold soda and now I’m craving more. Maybe iced or cold steeped, oh yeah!

Very expertly blended tea! All these teas I got from Butiki are amazing, I think I might have to break my “no buy” to get some more!

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It’s really good cold too! I’ve brewed a double-strength portion of this mixed with simple syrup and diluted with soda water! Better than the pre made tamarind sodas from the store! :)

Awkward Soul / Oolong Owl

ooh, I’m totally trying that! I just need to secure some soda water! HEHEHEH!!!


A local Thai restaurant makes tamarind chicken that beats conventional sweet and sour, hands down.

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I decided to try out my husband’s fuzzy logic expensive rice cooker to make congee, which turned out amazing! I remember eating congee with my Grandma for early lunches (with hours at the stove making it) and sometimes during our weekly trip to china town in Vancouver. I got that comfort food drooly fuzzy high feeling that I thought I should follow up with a good oolong or green.

DRY: soft floral and fruity – a pear kinda fruity.

STEEPED: strong floral smell! Steeps up a yellow tea.

TASTE: floral and sweet – a delicate fruity sweet zing overtop earthy light oolong. The more I drink this cup of tea and as it cools, the earthyness comes out more and becomes slightly astringent.

WHO’D LIKE THIS TEA: floral tea lovers!

COMMENTS: First sip I was like “WHOA” drinkable perfume, light, delicious! I was in total tea love until the last cooler sips of tea. The astringent dryness at the end of my cup was kinda odd since I didn’t get that with the tea very hot. This tea was perfect until I hit that.

Overall, pretty amazing. I might tweak the steep time shorter or cooler water to avoid that astringent zone, but I could see this tea being a part of my permanent stash, but I have a few more oolongs to try from Persimmon Tree first.

190 °F / 87 °C 4 min, 0 sec

I loooove congee! with preserved egg! so good

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I just spent 40 freaking minutes stirring a dark roux for gumbo and managed to burn my finger in the process – note to self and others, roux gets VERY hot, do not try to taste test it with finger out of pan!

With that said, I needed a cup of tea (when do I not need a cup of tea?) right now, but not hot and I didn’t have any cold steeping action going on in the fridge.

I steeped 2t of Southern Belle with half the hot water I normally use, 4 lumps of rock sugar. Poured over a glass of ice.

MAGICAL! Creamy, peachy black tea…. though she’s not as pretty of a cup of tea with all the white speckles that were once yogurt drops.

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Oh man I want some gumbo now… Only had it once it my life but it was soo good, nice and spicy.


I loooooove gumbo, unfortunately it does not love me. lol. What does Southern Belle taste like?

Awkward Soul / Oolong Owl

it’s a black tea with peaches, yogurt drops and stevia. It’s slightly sweet, peachy and very creamy. It’s an online exclusive unfortunately.

I love gumbo too! Pain in the butt to make but worth it!

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Thanks sent out to Epi Tea for this sample! I love free samples, I sign up for free stuff all the time, including cat food samples even though I don’t have a cat. Stuff I can’t use I give away. But free tea? ohhhh yeah!

I assumed that this should be a boiling water temperature, wasn’t stated on the packaging.

STEEPED: Lavender with soft breezes of black tea. Clear dark brown tea.

TASTE: Black tea with a twang of lavender. No bitterness. I can’t really taste the bergamont… is it supposed to be in this tea? It isn’t listed specifically in the ingredients.

WHO’D LIKE THIS TEA: Black tea drinkers, someone wanting to try lavender tea.

COMMENTS: Good use of lavender – I’ve had a few lavender teas (but not a lavender earl grey) and they remind me of soap. Epi tea’s LEG has a good amount of lavender in it to be noticeable but not overpowering.

I don’t notice the bergamont whereas others who tea logged LEG noticed it. Maybe the lavender took over? Or it could be that I’m one of those freaks that drink double bergamont EG so I need a lot of beragmont to notice it? I dunno.

Overall, not bad and a nice relaxing tea.

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I’m a crafty knitter and crocheter that loves to work on a project and drink tea. I worked as a counsellor and I chain-drink tea to keep me calm and grounded.

I’m a tea blogger – The Oolong Owl
www.OolongOwl.com – I do tea reviews, obsessively photograph teas with mischievous crocheted Owls and get tea drunk.

I was raised on floral oolongs and green teas, mostly “beauty” teas. Early on as a kid, I can guzzle an entire pot of tea (or two) at a Chinese or Japanese restaurant.
These days I like adventurous and interesting tea blends. I’m fearless in trying new teas! I’m into oolong, pu’erh, white, green, black, guayusa, mate and herbals. I’m not into red rooibos but I keep buying it anyway.

The tea brand that got me started into loose leaf teas was DAVIDsTea. I used to live in Vancouver Canada and had access to their shop, however that is now limited since I moved to southern California.

However, the perks of living in the US is ultra cheap, fast shipping! Since then, my tea stash insanely expanded.
My recommended tea shops:
Mandala Tea
Steep City Teas
Butiki Teas
Della Terra Teas
Verdant Tea
Yunnan Sourcing
52 Teas / Zoomdweebies
Red Leaf Tea
New Mexico Tea Co
Bluebird Tea Co
The Persimmon Tree

Other stuff I’m into that sneaks into my tea notes: Brazilian jiu-jitsu, metal music, drawing, painting, cooking, photography and nail polish.

I have a husband and a bunny who both hate tea. More for me!!!! MUUAHAHAHAHAAA


Long Beach, CA



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