95 Tasting Notes

96

Many thanks to Fong Mong for the samples! I have a feeling that I will thoroughly enjoy them all! I received the box last week but have not had a chance to truly appreciate an oolong until work yesterday. Armed with my Teaopia Teamaster (probably not ideal but great for watching the leaves unfurl) and an eight hour workday I set out to sample this tea.

The result- ahh-mazing! Oolong’s like this almost make me want to never drink anything else. So smooth, so sweet, so deliciously yummy…

Before steeping observations: Not really any smell to the leaves, leaves are curled tightly but white tips are evident.

1st steep: Tea came out to a deep brown colour, which I wasn’t really expecting. The smell is mostly sweet, like honey or baked goods. I am getting gentle earthy tones and a lot of natural sweetness. After the first steep the leaves had fully unfurled and were almost shiny.
2nd steep: Unbelievably smooth with a sweet kick at the end, almost tastes fruity, but I can’t put my finger on which fruit… Definitely some lovely honey notes in there!
3rd Steep: This is where I turned into a tea criminal… I left it steeping for way too long as I got busy at work, and then proceeded to let it get cold in my mug, and you know what? It was still amazing! This tells me that this tea doesn’t need to be babied to taste amazing, which is something that I absolutely look for in a tea!
4th Steep: took it home so that my dad could have a try- he loved it, said he couldn’t believe how sweet and smooth the taste was. I couldn’t agree more! I probably could have easily gone for 7 steeps, but I ended it here.

Overall, the best oolong that I have tried and it will definitely become a staple on my tea shelf!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec
Scott B

Good to hear. I have this sample too. Hope to try it this weekend.

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83

I wasn’t going to bother with the hot tea tonight because it is about 40 degrees (Celsius) outside and the last thing I wanted was a hot beverage… BUT then I saw what came in the mail, my free custom samples from Design a Tea! So I changed my mind and brewed up my first one. Their samples are so cute, they come already in some sort of tea sac (so you only get one bag of each) and they enclose a note with a $2 off your next order coupon.

I haven’t been a fan of many vanilla teas I have tried but the vanilla in this one comes out to play! It is the overwhelming flavour of the tea, and I find it a very nice full vanilla flavour. The chai is really rather muted, which is slightly disappointing, I was expecting more of a kick. Overall, the two flavours work well together and well with rooibos, and I will definitely be trying vanilla in future design a tea blends!

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec
Kittenna

The ~40C humidex really puts a damper on the brewing up of hot tea, doesn’t it! I made a couple today in the earlier morning, but only now am I back to wanting something warm, since my house has A/C and it’s a little chilly in the dining room! I think it’s still ridiculously hot outside here too, probably still a humidex in the 30s.

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93
drank Caramellissimo by Teaopia
95 tasting notes

Yum. I am a sucker for sweet black teas (Love Tea #7 being my favourite). This one didn’t disappoint! I was looking for a sweet and mild black blend to add to my morning repertoire and I found it! The caramel comes through nicely but doesn’t overwhelm, its like a seductive tease at the end of the sip. I will definitely have to stock up on this once all of the Teaopia teas start going on clearance sale!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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76
drank Creamed Earl Grey by Teaopia
95 tasting notes

I am not usually an earl grey fan, and this tea did nothing to change my opinion. Whatever they used to make the creamy flavour tasted very artificial. I finished the cup and will probably drink the rest from my tea tower, but definitely not a go-to and was just alright overall.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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89
drank Market Spice by Teaopia
95 tasting notes

So BEST part about this whole Teavana buying Teaopia thing is that everything in store is cheap!!! Got a black tea tower for half price, who’s excited- me!!!
Anyway, this was good. Not fabulous, but a very solid black tea that I quite enjoyed. The black tea itself was mild and I found the spice bend to be subtle and pleasing. The cinnamon was the strongest flavour, so I only recommend this if you like cinnamon! Overall, considering what I paid for it, I was very very pleased!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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97
drank Cranberry Pear by DAVIDsTEA
95 tasting notes

I have to give this tea a huge ratings boost, since it is my go to tea every morning and every time I have it I smile. This is my favourite black blend, and I can’t believe that I haven’t gotten around to changing its rating yet or reviewing it again. Anyway, the smell is amazing- exactly like cream soda, and the taste is almost as good. You really taste the cranberry when brewed, and the base black is very mild and pleasant. This tea gives me the kick I need to start my day and has captured my heart. My tin is running dangerously empty, looks like a trip to DAVIDs is in order!!!!

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52

I got this as part of my soup combo as a Country Style, figuring it sounded decent. And that remains my assessment after having it, its decent for a bagged tea. It isn’t even in the same league as any of the loose leaf/ fruit blend berry teas that I have tried. It was weak despite brewing for a long time, but I guess that is to be expected when its bagged and mass produced. I didn’t care enough to finish the cup…

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This is the last of my teavivre samples, and unfortunately my least favourite. I am a tisane fan most of the time, and I love me some good fruit blends, but there was something in this tea that I did not like at all. I’m guessing it was the roselle. I found this tea to be almost unbearably bitter. I brewed it as per the package instructions for about 10 mins, and am thinking that was probably too long. I found the bitterness really overwhelmed the other fruit flavours, so I can’t comment on the rest of the blend. I will have to try again and brew for less time, but my first impression is not great, as I couldn’t finish it (a first for me…). I will try again before giving it a numbered rating, and I hope that it was just a brewing error. If not, then I guess I shall stick to what teavivre does so well, its greens, whites and oolongs!

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more

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86

My summer just got a whole lot better, I discovered a new tea shop in the mall across the street from my work! Having no steepster reviews for this place to go off of, I ventured in. The sales girl completely ignored me, even though I was the only one in the store, but they had these handy dandy mini jars of all of their teas for me to smell away. I picked this one because I was looking for something outside my normal tastes, and I don’t own any chai teas.
The girl made it for me to go in some sort of tea bag, and so it steeped for quite a while as I wandered around trying to find where to buy bus tickets and then ran back to work to avoid being over my lunch break.
The flavours to this one were well blended, with no one flavour overwhelming the tea. First I got the spice, mainly the peppers and some cinnamon, and then it finished with delicious notes of vanilla. The other ingredients I didn’t especially notice, but I’m sure they made it the well-blended and flavoured tea that it was. Overall, it was a yummy tea outside my usual flavour tastes from a store that i am eager to explore further. It wasn’t amazing, but it was good enough to make me look forward to the rest of the summer.

Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 0 sec

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71
drank Sangria by Teaopia
95 tasting notes

This was the last of my iced tea pack, and I was consciously saving it for last as I had assumed that it would be my favourite (I seriously love sangria). I am however rather disappointed.
I cold steeped for about 18 hours, probably longer than necessary but that tends to be what I average for cold brewing so nothing out of the ordinary. The colour and smell are gorgeous, a deep ruby red and a wonderfully fruity smell. The hibiscus took over however, and the predominant taste is like sour cherries and makes me pucker a little bit…
I will still drink it and it is still fruity and refreshing, but it has been the worst of my cold brewing experiments, and an overall let down…

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4th year Commerce student at Queen’s University, interning on Bay St for the summer.
Just returned from a 6 month European exchange/adventure, combatting the tea withdrawal the only way I know how- a DAVIDs shopping spree!

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