553 Tasting Notes


Well, I’m sick again, which means little or no caffeine for a few days. This turned out to be a good choice tonight! The coconut is wonderful and gives the tea some creaminess even without milk (I really don’t like putting it in rooibos). I’m usually not a huge banana fan but it works well with the other flavors. There’s definitely some cinnamon here, but this isn’t a spicy chai—it’s mellow and easy to drink.

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This is the end of this one. It didn’t look like there was much chili or chocolate in the spoon, but somehow it still tastes perfectly balanced! Maybe slightly less spicy than usual but still a dark, rich chocolate. This is one I may replace once I have my cabinet under control. Recently a David’s moved into a mall somewhat close to where I live, so it’ll be easy when I do.

Flavors: Dark Chocolate, Spicy

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Briefly visiting home this weekend and I’m ridiculously happy that I have my stovetop kettle for a few days. The electric one in my dorm is pretty good, but I can’t make much of anything that shouldn’t be boiled (at least not without a lot of guesswork). Being home also means access to this tea!

This is perfect for a windy day like today. I seem to like nutty flavors more and more as it gets colder. The green is a lot fresher than I was remembering, and it goes great with all the comfort (i.e. creamy) foods I reach for when I’m cold. I may make myself a cup or two more of this throughout the day, especially since the weather doesn’t seem to be letting up anytime soon.

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drank Gingerly Jasmine by Tazo
553 tasting notes

This actually isn’t bad, but it doesn’t taste a lot like the ingredients list. The ginger overwhelms everything even though it’s mild compared to other ginger teas I’ve had. The green base is also mild and doesn’t burn easily, which is nice, but there’s not a lot of flavor from it. There’s a hint of something floral in the aftertase, but it’s more like rose than jasmine; I can’t find the jasmine in this at all. Maybe if I could I’d like this one better.

Flavors: Ginger

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A sad sipdown today. This remains one of my favorite oolongs. For all the caramelized sugar flavor it’s never too sweet, surprisingly earthy, and even a little nutty, and I reach for it a lot (clearly!). I’ll probably get more once my tea collection is a little more under control, because I can’t picture my cabinet being without it for too long.

Flavors: Burnt Sugar, Roasted nuts

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This is an interesting one; I never seem to get exactly the same flavor twice. Tonight it’s coconut milk with a fruity rooibos/honeybush zing. Much creamier and more substantial than I’d expect from a rooibos. Nice!

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Nearly a year later and this is still my go-to tea for when I feel a little off. The caffeine is a good strong zip when I’m not as awake as I’d like, and the mint and ginger are the perfect balance. Too much of one or the other usually puts me off a tea, but I taste both without either being overpowering. I also think the two mints are in great balance—peppermint usually has me running in the other direction, but this one is never too much. Still an excellent one for nausea, too, and sometimes it’s the only thing that works.

I do have to say that I don’t taste much of any green tea in here. There’s maybe a tea-ish aftertaste, but it mostly seems like they dumped a bunch of caffeine into an herbal blend. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, especially since I’ve never been overly impressed with Republic of Tea’s greens, but if you’re looking for a green with some extra ginger or mint flavor this is not it.

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drank Organic Peach Cobbler by Tazo
553 tasting notes

I’ve found that a lot of Tazo teas are difficult to brew, and if you don’t get them just perfect they end up tasting off. I think this is one of those, although I haven’t found the perfect way to brew it yet. There is some peach/apple flavor (I taste both) and something reminiscent of well-browned pastry—there’s more of the pastry flavor than the fruit but the balance works overall. The flavors are actually nice and not artificial. The problem with this one is it’s bitter no matter what I do. It’s not overwhelming, and I never have trouble getting through a cup, but I probably wouldn’t buy another box.

Flavors: Apple, Pastries, Peach

Boiling 8 OZ / 236 ML

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Had a cup of this earlier. I’ve never been a huge fan of dark oolongs, but either my tastes have changed or this is different from what I’ve had before. It’s very earthy and woody, with a roasty quality that reminds me of good black coffee. This cup was a little watery, so I may adjust next time, but I will be reaching for this a lot as the weather gets colder.

1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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drank Tiger Chai by Kally Tea
553 tasting notes

Hi all! I’ve been neglecting this site unintentionally for a long time, but I’m back now. Hopefully. I’ll do a short life update once I’ve reviewed the tea.

So, tea first. It felt like a chai night, so I reached for the first one I found that wasn’t rooibos in case I wanted milk. This one is creamy enough without that it almost tastes as though it’s in there already. I mostly taste cardamom and a touch of pepper, which is just fine with me. It does have a bit of the dry, woody edge I notice in a lot of chais, but it’s mild and doesn’t bother me much. I’ll have to try it sweetened and with milk (and maybe both) to really evaluate it, but this is just what I wanted tonight.

Now for the update. I’ve been struggling with chronic illness for years now, and recently it’s been worse; I got a new diagnosis of fibromyalgia, which answers a whole lot of questions. That mixed with school stress has had me withdrawing on social media, including here. However, I’ve had nothing but positive experiences on this site, so I’m going to try and get back to reviewing regularly! It’ll also help me get out of the tea rut I’m currently in (2-3 teas all the time, how boring).

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Elizabeth, college student, anthropology major, bio and history minor. I love to travel and try new foods (and teas!). I also enjoy music, books, video games as often as I can get my hands on them.

I loved tea as a kid, didn’t drink it for about ten years, and then rediscovered it a couple of years ago. Tea sometimes helps me feel better when chronic illness is making things hard. It’s also fun to experiment with!

I’m still pretty new to the types and brands of tea out there, but I’m interested in trying some of everything. My favorites are earl greys, yunnans, medium-bodied oolongs, Japanese greens, fruit, vanilla, and floral flavors (especially jasmine and rose). My least favorites are teas that are overly smoked, bitter, or contain strong hibiscus or orange peel.


Indiana, U.S.

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