70 Tasting Notes
Claire sent me this for Christmas and she really must love me because it’s a-m-a-z-i-n-g. It smells like sweet apple cider and tastes juicier than actual juice. Basically, it’s the best apple cider you’ve ever had, minus all the pesky sour sugar flavor, plus a healthy dose of black tea. I imagine it would be pretty meta if you brewed it with boiled apple juice, but I like it exactly the way it is. So does everyone else in my house, which means I may have to hide the tin soon so there will be some left for the cold days of February and March.
This came in my Lupicia $60 Happy Bag. (Is there anything better than unwrapping a mystery assortment? Answer: No!) I’ll admit I was afraid when I opened this tea and the smell hit me. It’s fruity vanilla, and reminds me very strongly of those old-fashioned strawberry-flavored hard candies/ribbon candy. There’s an undertone I can’t quite pin down that reminds me of bubblegum.
When steeped, the smell mellows quite a bit. It’s still like inhaling pink candies, but more subtle. I can’t smell the tea yet. Very pale green in color.
It tastes a little…dainty? It could be my fault, or a cretinous oblivion on the part of my taste buds, but it lacks the strength I’d like. Compared to the enormous candy-sweet scent, it’s watery. I’ll try another brew or two of this before I decide. I suspect it would make a really nice dessert drink with lots of cream and sugar (but what doesn’t, right?)
I got a tin of this in the mail this afternoon and I’ve already had to brew five cups—three for me, and two for my mom, who just had to have some as soon as she smelled it.
Dry, the floral scent is big and sweet, which is complemented very nicely by prominent lemon balm. I was afraid the brew might be TOO lemony, but the results were mellow and wonderful.
I love the balance of black tea to floral/citrus notes. The flavor is bright without being sour, floral without being perfumey, strong without being too bold or astringent. Overall, a perfectly billowy and sweet cup with a velvet mouthfeel.
It’s amazing how long an Upton sample pouch of tea will last. Pretty sure this is my fourth cup or so of this particular tea and there’s still a good 5 servings left in there. I was very absent-minded tonight and accidentally brewed this with full-on boiling water, so I was afraid it’d be bitter but it was fine. Really I just needed a break from thinking about how I’m not working on my homework right now, and it’s providing exactly that.
As much as I enjoy my classes this term, I’m ready for the long holiday. Of course, I said that last term, and I ended up climbing the walls long before the next session began. Soooo.
Yes, I remembered to brew some of this before class, so I had a nice travel mug of strong, leathery tea to drink. But that’s not why I’m writing a tasting note, such as it is.
Mostly this is an excuse to make an observation: my goodness, tea people are so polite and nice and wonderful. Y’all rock my tea-sock.
I think I need to get a good system going for preparing tea in a mug BEFORE I go to school. It’d be much cheaper than buying a teabag + hot water at the caf. At least this time, I found a bigger selection of the Numi brand teas. None of them sounded terribly appealing except for chinese breakfast (which I’ve had already) and this toasted rice flavor. I’ve never had one before. Now I want to try more!
Anyway, I did some homework to wait for the water to cool down (it has a green tea base and I’m learning not to abuse them), then added the bag and set a timer. Instantly, I was slammed with the fragrance of toasted rice. Kind of like this puffed rice cereal I used to buy, or rice krispies. And it was great! I love cereal. A lot. I don’t eat it much, because it’s terrible for me, but I love it. After a fairly short steep (2-2.5 minutes) the tea was pale green and smelled extremely toasty.
The flavor was somewhat mild, but it was hard to tell with all that rice smell in my nose. I didn’t really pick out the flavor of the tea until it cooled considerably, when I found it was slightly weak (I used a BIG cup…oops) but also a little sweet and vegetal under the rice. It never got bitter, even when it was lukewarm.
Overall, I really enjoyed trying this flavor. It makes me want to try a loose tea with toasty rice! It will definitely be my go-to option on days I forget to bring my own.
EDIT: Now that I know what real rice teas are like, I’m lowering the rating. It’s just sorta watery in comparison! If I were going to settle for the selection at school, I’d still choose this over the other teas.
I’ve been looking forward to this one since I last had it, and it didn’t disappoint. Warm tobacco and leather, with a faint but very rich sweet tone that reminds me of dark dried fruits, like raisins or figs. I didn’t notice the chocolate so much this time around, but it could have been hiding in the fruit. All in all, a very smooth and tasty cup that made me want a cigarette.
Daylight savings is pretty much the only day of the year I don’t sleep in on Sunday. Everyone else in the house seems to be feeling the lazy pace of the day, too—meatballs are already cooking for tonight’s spaghetti dinner, and I’ve had lots and lots of time to procrastinate on doing my homework. Combine that with the fact it’s wet and chilly outside and it’s the perfect day for tea!
The leaves of this green smelled great, a little bit like licorice. As soon as I poured the water in, that scent bloomed into a pleasant squash-carrot brothy punch with just a teeny floral hint—it actually reminded me of an oolong I had recently. I’m not sure if that means my oolong was more like a green, or this green was more like an oolong. Who knows? Not I!
I’m always surprised by how pretty and varied the colors of tea can be. This was a light yellow-green and steamy, very appetizing. It was a velvety, very slightly sweet, and smooth drinking cup. Thanks to Claire for the sample!