40
drank White Ginger Pear by Tea Forte
300 tasting notes

When my friend and I went to Venice for the final, flickering moments of the Biennale, I picked up some sample tea bags from Tea Forte that were on sale while she was shopping for gifts. That’s how it always goes – I accompany someone as they shop. They buy gifts for others. I buy gifts for ME.

Anyway, I’d been curious to try out TF, and I’d only seen them in hideously overprized huge tins before, so I snagged what looked interesting. One of the bags was this one. I’ve been a little too excited to catch up with my untried teas lately, and the amounts of black tea I’ve had late at night has resulted in the following type of sleeping pattern:

O_O

0_0

zzz

0_0

O_O

So I figured white was the way to go today. This bag, helpfully, even has ‘Very little caffeine!’ printed on it. As for the tea itself, well.

Sniffing the bag didn’t get my hopes up – it smelled very strongly of artificial ginger. The description clearly says PEAR, with a note of ginger – ginger as the dominant feature in a tea isn’t really for me, unless it’s very well-balanced, like Kusmi’s lemon/ginger which I quite enjoy.

In the cup, the ginger definitely mellows, and the flavour is predominantly pear. However, it’s a really artificial pear experience, much reminiscent of my fave Swedish ice pop, Piggelin.

Just… warm. And with ginger. Urrrhh.

Then there’s this other note, both in the scent and taste of the steeped tea, that I absolutely cannot place. It’s just weird, like drinking something that came out of a 3D printer. It’s so very clearly the scent/taste of an object not made for drinking and it’s really confusing.

I will finish the cup, but I never need to drink this again.

(ETA: I’m liking this a little better as it cools, so I’ll kick the rating up a little, but just a very little.)

[Sample bag picked up in Venice, winter 2013.]

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec
Lala

I thought this one was not too bad as an iced tea. I never had it hot.

Anna

If I hadn’t already had far much better pear tea, I know I would have been more impressed. I guess I can’t help comparing the pear flavouring to that of Le Palais des Thés’ green pear tea, which I love.

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Comments

Lala

I thought this one was not too bad as an iced tea. I never had it hot.

Anna

If I hadn’t already had far much better pear tea, I know I would have been more impressed. I guess I can’t help comparing the pear flavouring to that of Le Palais des Thés’ green pear tea, which I love.

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Profile

Bio

I’m going to try all the teas.

Then I will choose a lucky few perfect specimens, and we will live happily together in my tea cupboard.

Forever.

  • * *

2014

This year, all bets are off. I am going to drink both peppermint and chamomile and possibly suffer a little. But it’s okay – it’s for science.

I’m doing Project Jasmine, Project Peach and Project Unflavoured Green.

In terms of flavoured teas, Lupicia and Mariage Frères have become my massive favourites, and I have learned that Dammann Frères/Fauchon/Hédiard and Butiki aren’t really for me.

The O Dor, Adagio and Comptoir des thés et des épices are all on this year’s I’d like to get to know you better list.

2013

Getting back into tea drinking last fall, I was all about rooibos. This past spring has been all green tea, all the time, with some white additions over the summer. Currently attempting a slow, autumnal graduation to black teas. Oolongs are always appropriate.

The constant for me, flavour wise, is the strong presence of fruity and floral notes. Vanilla is lush, as long as it’s not artificial. Peach, berries, mango. Cornflower, rose, lavender.

No peppermint.

No chamomile.

No cinnamon.

Ever.

  • * *

My ratings don’t reflect the ‘What does this tea do for me?’ standard, but rather my own ‘What would I do for this tea?’ scale.

100-90
My absolute favourites. Teas I would travel for – or, in any case, pay exuberant postage for, because they simply have to be in my cupboard. Generally multi-faceted teas with complex scents and flavours. Teas with personality. Tricky teas.

89-80
Teas I wouldn’t hesitate to buy again if and when I came across them. Tea purchases I would surreptitiously weave into a travel itinerary (Oh! A Lupicia store! Here?! My word!).

79-70
Teas I enjoyed, but don’t necessarily need to make any kind of effort to buy again.

69-0
Varying degrees of disinterest and contempt.

Location

Rome, Italy

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