563 Tasting Notes
VariaTEA sent me a sample of this minus the rock sugar: thanks! Hopefully this review will be more accurate because of that. I made this up to vaguely go with my dinner tonight (biryani). Sadly it’s still really sugary. To the point that it nearly tastes like the one with rock sugar. Um.
It just tastes like cinnamon sugar, really. The thing is, I see the fruit, I see the mate, I see the rooibos, but I don’t taste any of them. I don’t see a single oolong leaf, though, so I seriously object to calling it such. Truly not for me.
This one is from VariaTEA; thank you so much! This is the Butiki blend I’ve been wanting to try the most. Weird as it sounds, my favorite pizza is pineapple with cilantro. They’re a great mix.
I followed the instructions exactly on this cup because I wanted to make sure I got the best possible tea out of it, and I’m not disappointed. This is the most pineapple-y tea I’ve ever had the pleasure of drinking. It has the perfect balance of tart and sweet. There’s also a green earthiness identifiable as cilantro, although I do wish that was just a little stronger (what can I say, it’s my favorite herb!). The whole thing is smooth and well-blended and it has a long-lasting sweet aftertaste. Delicious! Sadly this is a sipdown but I will most definitely grab more when I can.
ETA: This only gets better as it cools. I’ll have to see how it does iced someday.
Cold-brewed this last night, three teaspoons to 16 oz for about 16 hours in the fridge. It still has that hay quality and it’s a bit sharp and almost smoky up front, but then the aftertaste mellows into a floral honey flavor. It is so much better this way, and I think that’s how I’ll be using it up. Hot it’s just not for me. It’s obvious to me that this is a good one, though, so I’m bumping the rating up a little.
As a side note, does anyone know if leaves that have been cold-steeped can be re-cold-steeped? They haven’t uncurled entirely and they still smell pretty strong (in fact, the resulting tea is much stronger than I expected). I may try it anyway just to see what happens.
Another delicious-smelling pineapple tea from MissB! This has the potential to be really pineapple-y but it’s actually hidden somewhat by the sencha. It’s a little nutty and green, and anything else that’s supposed to be in here is lost in a generic creaminess. It’s a pleasant cup but I’m not sure it’s harmonious, and I’m not in love with it.
Yikes. This got bitter fast. Oddly it also has a sugary-sweet aftertaste. There are some rich cooked-vegetable notes, like artichokes or asparagus, and then a straight sugar flavor. It’s not a horrible cup but I just don’t know what to make of it. I’m guessing this is a Chinese green, and those tend to be very hit-or-miss for me. This one’s a miss, but it’s also a sipdown.
ETA: Oddly this is growing on me as it cools—possibly because it’s less bitter and more sugary. Still wouldn’t buy it but it’s not totally horrible.
Picked this up at the Asian grocery store today. I wasn’t expecting much out of it, but the description was promising and I wanted to at least try. So far I’ve never tried an oolong I really hated. This was also a convenient thing to reach for while I waited for the water to heat up for a different cup.
This exceeded all my expectations. It’s smooth, with some floral and honey notes and a strong peachy flavor throughout. A really solid oolong! Sadly this particular store doesn’t sell any oolong loose-leaf, but I did find some decent-looking Japanese greens and some interesting herbals.
Flavors: Fruit Tree Flowers, Honey, Peach
Tried this one again, this time with about 1 3/4 teaspoons of leaf and a full five minutes of steep time. Oddly I’m still not getting much lime. There’s some vague citrus-y flavor, but it’s not bright and strong like I’d expect lime to be. The rooibos is really strong, and while it’s still very creamy I just don’t get lime from this at all. I guess I just don’t “get” this tea.
Late ETA: I let this cool down completely and then drank it—there’s something that seems to be attempting to impersonate lime, but it’s way too sweet and has no bite. Hmm.
I really love this one. It’s nutty and roasty but there’s an underlying sweetness that mellows out the whole cup. I wanted to warm up after being outside (2*F air temperature) and this was the first thing I reached for. Something about the roastiness warms me right up. Mom also loves this one, so I may have to restock when it’s gone!
This is one I specifically requested when I ordered a box from LiberTEAS, and she sent me two sachets. Thank you!
When I first smelled this I was a little scared, because it smelled a lot like the Lapsang Souchong I hated. Once it brewed, though, I got a lot more bergamot out of it. The taste is interesting. Definite bergamot and there are some honey and wood notes, but there’s a moderately strong smokiness throughout that puts me off. I’m starting to think that true smoked teas aren’t for me and I only like smoke flavors when they’re naturally-occurring. Still, I’m glad I got to try this one!
ETA: This is much better as it cools, and the fruit takes over the blend more. The smoke is still there and I’m sure that that’s what’s throwing this off for me, but it’s more manageable this way.