422 Tasting Notes
Well, this definitely smells like almond biscotti! So much that it borders on marzipan (which is great, I love marzipan). I figured I could sneak in one more cup today before I headed out. Unfortunately I wasn’t quite right and had to take it with me, but that also means I got to try it both hot and cold!
Hot, this is nice. Nutty, a little sweet, and really more subtle than I expected. It’s like an almond cookie. Cold this is even better, and the nut taste is so present it’s almost fruity. I would love to try this iced.
T&C Box 8/18
The smell of this fascinates me. Dry it’s more like a custard than caramel (so creamy!), but brewed it’s a true caramel smell with a bit of a floral edge to it. I used about 1 1/2 tsp to 8 oz., so in theory this is underleafed, but it’s pretty dark and fragrant so I’m not sure it needs any more than that.
I think this tea makes me absolutely sure that I don’t like Assam. I hoped that because the other ingredients sounded so good and it was rated so highly this would cure me of my fear of them, but it’s actually just confusing me further. The tea base is too malty for me, and while the vanilla and caramel notes are definitely there, they’re being overshadowed by the Assam. There’s also a strange note that’s throwing the blend off for me. Maybe the lotus? It’s too earthy to be a sweet tea but too sweet to be an earthy tea.
In other news, I caved. I did another tea order. At least it’s mostly samples! But I was aiming for no more until after my birthday. Oops.
T&C Box 7/18
This one smells so good! I definitely smell both cherries and figs; mom says it smells like fruit wine and I have to agree. I hope the taste of this lives up to the name, because I love both cherries and figs and good fruit teas are one of my favorite kinds.
On to the taste: this is so, so good. I’m going to have to get it. The cherry note is sweet and strong, and then the fig comes in later. The fig is subtle but definitely still there, and both fruits taste natural. This is a full-bodied cup, probably more so than any of my other favorites, but I love it. It’s great for a cold day like today, but I think it would stand up to ice too! Thank you, Nicole!
Alright, trying this again. Now that I’m sure I’m getting my water to the right temperature it might be better, and if it’s not it’s probably my own tastes rather than the tea’s problem. I figure if I can’t get a good cup of tea out of it I’ll send it on down the T&C box list, because I’m sure someone else will be able to appreciate it more!
This smells so intensely cakey and a little caramel-y. There’s some fruit to it but I honestly couldn’t identify what fruit. Again, full disclosure in that I’ve never had a pineapple upside-down cake.
When I drink this straight there’s an edge to it I don’t like, so this cup is with milk. It’s slightly better this way, more subtle and creamy, but there’s still a sharpness to it that disappoints me. I think it’s not for me.
T&C Box 6/18
Usually a mint tea is the last thing I’d go for, but NM Tea Company has been on my list to try and my stomach is a little off this morning.
This smells great in the bag and while it brews. The mint is there but so are the scents of the tea and bergamot, so it’s not just mint everywhere. I admit I wasn’t quite sure what to expect with this one, because I’ve never had a green/black blend before. It’s very nice! It has some substance thanks to the black tea, a sweetness thanks to the green tea and mint, and a little citrusy spice thanks to the bergamot. I don’t think I’d keep it in my cabinet forever, but if I do a NM Tea Co. order sometime I may pick a bag of it up!
Okay, finally one that isn’t from the Tea & Cards box. I’ve been eying the garden sampler of these for a while and finally sprung for it: I like vegetable teas as a rule and these look so interesting. I’m having a little before-bed snack and thought this would go well with it. (It does, for the record: spiced goat cheese and pretzels.) This smells so good! It’s like soup, in the best possible way. I want to eat the bag but I think I’ll hold off for now.
I expected this to steep up green, but it’s actually orange! It smells a little spicy brewed up, too. Maybe that’s the turmeric coming through? It tastes like soup, too! Good soup, of course, and without all the salt. It would be fun to try and cook with this as a soup base or seasoning, but I also like drinking it.
ETA: The blend of spices in this leaves the effect of salt on my tongue even though there’s none in this cup. How interesting!
T&C Box 5/18
This one smells wonderful dry—such a kick of ginger and clove with some green herbal notes underneath. As it brews I notice more of the cinnamon, too. Is this technically a chai? I don’t really know how the classification there works but it seems like one.
The taste of this is great. It’s spicy without being too hot and sweet without being overpowering. I expected this to be much spicier and more overwhelming, but it’s actually very soothing.
In other news I’m kind of in love with my kettle. No more guessing! I’ve brewed only perfect cups of tea with it so far. Obviously this means it’s foolproof. ;)
T&C Box 4/18
I like the packaging on this one—the wrapper is attractive and easy to read, and the instructions are adorable: “steep 5 minutes while pretending you’re Van Gogh painting in Arles.” Don’t mind if I do!
I don’t know how I feel about this one. There’s a lot of chamomile, but as it cools the other flavors become more obvious. There’s definitely a floral note and a citrus note, as well as a very slight rooibos taste. Chamomile can be too much in blends, but this one isn’t bad.
ETA: As this cooled down it got much better. The chamomile is less overpowering when it’s cool, and the citrusy and floral flavors are more present. I think this would be good iced!
T&C Box 3/18
This is a sweet, creamy oolong. It tastes a little more like dried pineapple than fresh, and has a definite creamy mouthfeel and taste to it. It’s also light, and the quality of it reminds me of Golden Moon’s Coconut Pouchong—it’s true to the fruit without being too heavy, and I can see myself wanting multiple cups. A very nice fruit oolong!
T&C Box 2/18
Thank you so much for putting this in the box, Nicole! This is one of the teas from Butiki that I’ve been wanting to try the most. Fitting that it’d be the first one from them I try! When I open the bag (heck, I can smell it through the bag), it smells like someone took their flower garden and candied it. It really smells incredible. As it steeps and opens up it smells more natural and less sugary, but still intensely floral.
The taste of this is amazing. I can smell rose, violet, and jasmine all distinctly but they also blend together beautifully. Apparently calendula is marigold, and I don’t know what that tastes like by itself—I have only had it in blends—but the blend of flavors in this is perfectly balanced and absolutely spot on as a floral tea. The oolong base is definitely there but it mostly takes a backseat to the floral notes. This is a sweet, sweet tea, but not artificial in the slightest. As it cools it becomes slightly less sweet and more mellow and oolong-y. Both ways are delicious and I would love to try it iced and cold-brewed sometime. I am so in love with this!