117 Tasting Notes
MLT’s Silver Jasmine is very sneaky. trishadenise is exactly right in saying that it’s light and crisp. I say it’s sneaky because at first, I could barely taste anything at all, which made no sense to me given the tea’s heavenly fragrance. But the flavour sneaked up on me, suddenly revealing itself after a few sips.
“Subtle” is probably a better adjective, but sneaky’s so much more fun. Really a rather lovely tea.
The description is very accurate! My infuser does not like these leaves; I had to smush them up a little to fit properly. I forgot and steeped for too long again, so I did end up getting just a hint of bitterness, but that’s my own fault. I sweetened the tea a bit and it is nice and smooth. I was thinking how to describe the almost grainy sense I got from my first sip, and the description’s “nutty” covers it pretty well.
I admit that I seem to prefer more flavour in my tea, so I gravitate toward blends. Maybe I’ll blend this with something down the road and see how it goes.
This is what jasmine mummies and daddies warn their little jasmine buds about at night before they sleep. My kitchen smells like a garden and I feel like a cross between a vampire and a hummingbird.
You must, by now, have concluded that this tea is powerfully fragrant and has a very strong flavour. You’d be right on both counts: it’s like drinking a bouquet. If this is jasmine with rooibos (rooibos? what rooibos? there’s rooibos in here?), I reckon I’m in for an interesting experience when I steep the jasmine without rooibos.
Anyway, so ya, if drinking a bouquet doesn’t appeal, stay far away. I loved it; but then, I munched on rose petals when i was a kid. =)
Hello, cinnamon. :shiftyeyes: We meet again.
I’m always leery when I see cinnamon in the ingredients because it’s such an overpowering fragrance and flavour. I also get a bit irritated when I see it in chai (which I always do) because I don’t remember people generally putting cinnamon in chai while I was growing up; our primary “masala chai” ingredient was always ginger.
My suspicion proved groundless and I was happily surprised. While the cinnamon’s fragrance is evident, its flavour does not overwhelm every other. Even better, I could clearly taste both rooibos and chai, concluding that they are two great tastes that taste great together. Yummy.
Oh, and this rooibos chai is really soothing if you’ve got a bit of a sore throat or something.
Teavana’s Rooibos Rose Garden is…uneventful. It sounds far more exotic than it tastes. I suppose it’s vaguely floral, but not at all rosiferous like I thought it’d be. Roses are used a lot in South Asia: in cooking, in beverages, in incense, etc. This likely created in me the expectation of a certain fragrance and flavour, which just aren’t there. I’ve tried a variety of steep times and water temps, now, as well as varying levels of sweetener; this one just falls squarely in the “meh” region.
Yay! I’ve graduated from bags and sachets and steeped my very first cup (er, two cups) of loose tea! Of course my first cup of loose tea would have to be something that flummoxes me, because that’s my luck. The directions for white tea are different from the directions for green tea, and this has both in it! Gah. I was a bit wary, anyway, since this tea’s got red and black pepper in it (um… whut?) and I can’t have spicy-hot stuff.
You know how some people will add salt ‘n’ pepper ‘n’ other seasoning to their food without even tasting it first? Ya, that bugs me. Generally I will have a cup of tea without any fixin’s, just to see what it’s like.
So, cup 1: 2tsps of tea steeped in 185° water for five minutes. It was mostly okay. It didn’t taste as strong as I expected it to taste, and I figured I’d got the directions wrong since I was steeping in one of those travel mugs that hold way more than 8oz. My heart sank when I saw that there’s cinnamon in this tea. Cinnamon irritates me because it overpowers everything else. I was hoping for nuances, layers of complexity, and what I got was loads of cinnamon and the bite of pepper. Not the greatest of first impressions.
Cup 2: 2 tsps of tea steeped in sweetened, 185° water for, um, probably about 20 minutes. Oh, don’t look at me like that, it was an accident. I left it for 5-7 minutes (remember, I didn’t think 5 minutes was long enough for cup 1) and promptly forgot about it. Good things come to those who wait, even those who only waited accidentally. =) This cup is yummy. My mug is awesome, so the tea, instead of being cold and undrinkable (the mug was uncovered the whole time), is actually still a little too hot to drink comfortably. The tea itself is greatly improved this time around. It’s still too cinnamon-y, but I like it much better sweetened.
Wow, tough crowd, eh? =) So, ya. This is cinnamon tea with some apple sweetness. If you’re looking for the cinnamon to modify the apple with grace and subtlety, you’ll need to steep elsewhere.
But y’know? I like it. I like that I don’t need to put any sugar in it. I like that it’s fragrant and tastes strongly of, well, itself. I just leave the bag in ‘til I’m done drinking, so I’m not afraid to steep. I didn’t taste any bitterness, but maybe that’s just me.
I kinda feel like I should take my taste buds to the Met, Broadway, or a Zagat-rated restaurant to, I dunno, get them some of that culture stuff, or something. =]
[Edit, six months later1] I originally rated this a 70.
The bag has a strong orange and licorice fragrance. Steeped, the tea has a strong licorice fragrance, but the orange is now more subtle. Olfactory heaven, really. I figure I’d better take a sip before my nose decides to go on without me and dunk itself in. The taste is surprisingly mild. All the wonderful things that gave my nose a happy, I can’t really taste them. I pause, I swallow. There is a strong aftertaste, during which some of the shy ones make a brief appearance: orange, cinnamon. The sweet licorice coats my tongue and makes me do that thing where you scrape your tongue against your bottom or top teeth, like a scraper. My interest is piqued, but I am so far unimpressed. My nose, gullible buffoon that it is, cajoles me into taking another sip. Hmm… A little more orange this time. I remain unimpressed, but am being slowly won over.
I have never met a rooibos I didn’t like. Of course, I haven’t met many, so there’s still time. Anyway. Indian that I am, I saw “chai” and “rooibos” on a box and of course had to buy it. I’ve just steeped my first cup and know that I’ll be returning to buy more when the box is finished. This tea is yummy! Because it’s got that chai flavour, I’m tempted to add milk to it and see how it tastes; I might try that next time. The only thing I don’t love about it is that the clove is overpowering. Maybe it’s just my dislike of clove, but it’s like the loudmouth of the spices: it keeps stepping on everyone else’s (nutmeg, allspice, ginger) heads and shouting, “Me! Me! Me!”
I am generally of the opinion that two great tastes can taste great together. I’ve put many individual things I like together, much to my friends’ chagrin, their disapproval apparent in their “Eewwww” response. Most of the time, the result is pretty fantastic. On rare occasions, not so much. Friends, I’m sad to report that the moon was distinctly blue on the evening I tried this beverage.
I love green tea. I love root beer. I love coming back from the supermarket with at least one beverage I’ve never tried before. After weeks of passing this one by, I took a chance and gambled on Steaz green tea root beer. I lost. Made with Ceylon green tea, sparkling filtered water and organic evaporated cane juice, Steaz green tea root beer tastes like both green tea and root beer; if you pause and savour a sip, you can taste each separately. Unfortunately, I did not want to savour a sip. While fizzy and cold go a long way toward making a drink refreshing, good flavour is needed to take it the rest of the way. Sadly, these two great tastes do not taste great together.