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Recent Tasting Notes
I took this tea to work with me tonight, and sipped it while I poured pints for other people, which was weird but infinitely better than working without tea. I had been telling some of my coworkers about my tea habit during the week and they actually asked me to bring something in, so I opted for this since I had plenty to go around and the water from the espresso machine (the only source of hot water – no kettle) is around the right temperature for white teas. One coworker pronounced it ‘alright’ and the other ‘fruity’, so I’m not entirely sure it was a success, but I think it went better than they expected. I’ve been requested to bring in a chocolate tea next.
I think the water was a little on the hot side, but the tea did admirably considering the less than ideal brewing conditions. The base tea is strong for a white and only a little astringent, and the flavouring quite natural tasting. It’s very juicy and I can taste the cantaloupe clearly alongside the white tea, and the aroma is dead on too. It’s a shame I don’t like cantaloupe! I don’t get watermelon at all, in the scent or the flavour. I’ve thought this every time I drink this tea, but in my opinion watermelon just isn’t a strong enough flavour to translate to tea well. Maybe if it was paired with a more delicate base tea, and wasn’t competing with the cantaloupe flavouring, but it’s just overwhelmed and the name of the tea feels misleading. Butiki’s Watermelon Xylophone did it well, but other than that I really struggle to think of a good watermelon tea which has been strongly reminiscent of the flavour of a watermelon. All of this sounds really negative, but despite everything I’ve just said I always enjoy drinking this tea. It’s not overly complex and while it isn’t exactly mind-blowing it just goes down so easy. Not a bad choice for a workplace tea.
Morning + work = mate. At least, at this time of year. This is one of the last older 52Teas I own, I think other than this there are about 5 left in my cupboard, and all sample sizes. So I’m nearly there, with those at least! I was hoping for popcorn when I brewed this one up, but unfortunately it’s not quite there. The mate is pretty strong, with its distinctive coffee-like flavour, and underneath that there’s a sweet-ish honey flavour. It’s reminding me a little bit of sugar puffs…or sugar puffs eaten with a cup of coffee more accurately. It’s not a strong flavour, just background, but it’s pleasant enough. It made for a good start to the day, at any rate.
Sipdown! This is actually yesterday’s Hannukah countdown sipdown. The leaf is a year old and it shows. I remember the blend actually tasting like french toast with a heavy dose of maple and a hint of cardamom. A year later, though, it tastes like hot cocoa with maple flavor. YUMMY hot maple cocoa, but definitely not the taste that was originally intended. Alas, another object lesson in the importance of not hoarding (unless it’s pu-erh, but I don’t drink that).
Another tea from the GCTTB :).
Neither nor cheesecake flavours were prominent. I mostly just tasted honeybush with a faint sweetish flavouring. Not sure if it’s the sample I got or what. Either way, my sample will get used up quickly. Always nice to try new teas.
This is very coconutty and creamy. Really good morning cup of tea. The smokiness is so slight, it really is more of a light counter-balance to the creaminess. The whole tea is just really smooth with no bitterness or astringency and great flavor.
Flavors: Coconut, Creamy, Smoke
I thought I wouldn’t order any more tea until after New Year, but I had to make an exception for this I had only gotten a taster but I loved it, so I went back and got a few more from what was left. It was that and the fact that we’ve put a big dent in our Chocolate Marshmallow Chai already. My husband has been drinking it almost every day.
The flavor of this is pretty much exactly what I hoped it would be. Root beer with smooth, sweet butterscotch. I love butterscotch. Those bright yellow ones Grandma always has in a dish? That’s exactly what this tastes like, except blended with sarsaparilla. I am really savoring that butter flavor.
I should probably mention that I made this over ice. It was great that way, but I’m also really looking forward to trying it hot.
Flavors: Butter, Butterscotch, Candy, Root Beer, Sarsaparilla
The honeybush is really nice with this. as someone who doesn’t do well with caffeine, I really appreciate having so many delicious flavours (and with vegan ingredients, too!) The peach flavour came from the dehydrated peaches and didn’t taste artificial at all. Even more interesting was that fact that the peach did not make this really sweet, so I could taste all the notes in the honeybush.
Flavors: Fruity, Honey, Nectar, Peach, Tropical
So I wasn’t sure what to expect with this, but it exceeded my expectations. It actually tasted like soda! (how does Liberteas manage to be so amazing at everything they blends?) The citrus flavour was great (not sour or overpowering), the green rooibos gave it a nice balance of sweetness, the cranberries/cranberry flavour was very nice (but not sour at all), and the rooibos base was superior to most I have tried before.
Flavors: Citrusy, Fruity, Herbs, Lemon, Lime, Rooibos
For some reason I did not find this to have a s’more-like flavour. I tasted black tea/tannins, wood, carob/burnt chocolate, and something rich like stale dark chocolate. It could be that the sample I received has aged a bit, but I didn’t find the genmaicha or the marshmallow flavours to come through very well.
Flavors: Burnt, Dark Wood, Rice, Tannin, Tea
Just when I thought genmaicha couldn’t get any better, this came along. lol I absolutly love the genmaicha + mallow combination. It has a strong sweet toasty scent and a lovely flavour that pretty much made my day. I had it for my first cup this morning and very much enjoyed my drink.
Flavors: Grain, Malt, Marshmallow, Pastries, Rice, Rice Pudding, Sweet, Tea, Toasted, Toasted Rice, Toasty
I have been so obsessed with 52Teas lately. The concept of a new blend every week is so tempting! Also, they sent me another freebie in my order?? A full sized Gingerbread Chai! I don’t know what I did, but I’m grateful!
I should start this review with a disclaimer that I’m sick with a cold and my tasting ability is somewhat off.
First of all, I’m really impressed by the big, whole raspberries in this. Yum! I felt bad tossing them out with the leaves. Maybe next time I’ll give one a nibble. The aroma is also lovely, like a fruity, raspberry dessert. Or raspberry candy.
I know there are more aspects to this tea besides lush berry, but it’s kind of all I can taste. There is a mild note of cocoa, yes. It’s mostly in the exhale and aftertaste. I’m not getting the custard notes others have mentioned. But they might be there?
Will add steeping details later as I’m on mobile and the sliders are not wanting to cooperate.
Flavors: Berries, Berry, Cocoa, Fruity, Raspberry
The faint peach here blends perfectly with the honeybush flavour. Seamless transition from one flavour to the other. All the other flavours are absent for me though. To be fair, 52teas has suggested that this one is best enjoyed as a cold steep.
Pleasant enough bedtime brew.
I don’t know what it is, but today is turning out to be a really great tea day! By that I mean that I’m getting through quite a few teas and tasting notes rather than drinking the best teas I’ve ever had. I was supposed to be heading to the hospital right about now to visit my grandad (knee operation, nothing serious), but got a phonecall not long ago letting me know that he was coming out this afternoon! I shall drink more tea in celebration.
I chose this one in part because I remember it having strong, fairly simple flavours and I’ve just eaten chicken with sriracha for my lunch so didn’t want to go for something delicately flavoured, and partly because I wanted to give another 52teas shou mei a chance, having just drank the Apple Jack’s Apple Harvest tea and brewing it at too high a temperature and with too short a steep for my liking. I can safely say that this method of brewing brought out the flavours much better! The shou mei still comes through but quite delicately, and the cranberry and grape are big flavours. I was quite amazed to see several whole dried cranberries and grapes in my scoop, which is always fun. I like my flavoured tea with additives, especially if I’m using my IngenuiTEA (which I wasn’t today, but that’s besides the point…). This was another tea that gave me ‘hot juice’ feels, but also tasted artificial and reminded me of sweets/candy. I really should stress that grape flavoured things give me this impression all the time, and it’s nothing to do with how well the tea itself is flavoured. Even straight up grape juice tastes like artificial flavouring to me, but it’s a flavour that I really do like. Maybe it’s to do with grape juice not really being readily available over here, but when I was younger most of the grape flavour I had was in sweets, excluding actual grapes, which I had a mildly unhealthy obsession with as a child. Anyway, it’s a flavour I like a lot, and while I’m not the biggest fan of cranberry juice it’s a nice flavour here and goes well with the grape. I also think the cranberry flavouring is pretty authentic. Weirdly, I’m getting canteloupe-y notes every now and again which is throwing me a bit, and the scent of the brewed liquor also reminds me of melon. I have no idea where this is coming from, and my only guess is cross-contamination (even though it’s stored in an air-tight container?) because I don’t see it mentioned in anyone else’s notes. The tea ends on a surprisingly floral note, which could be down to the shou mei though I’m not entirely sure. Either way, it goes nicely with the other flavours. This is a tea I definitely want to cold-brew in the summer.
This has been my go-to morning tea the past few days. It’s good enough that I can drink it down easily while I’m getting ready without much thought, but not so good it makes me wanna stop and concentrate on the tea while I drink it. Eventually I want to get my cupboard down to a point where every tea is one I want to focus on and thoroughly enjoy, so this isn’t a tea I’d probably restock.
The scent of the dry leaf is really citrusy and promising, with maybe a slight tangy hint that reminds me of orange sherbet or marmalade. There is quite a lot of orange rind mixed in with the darjeeling leaf so that could explain the marmalade evocation. I’m not a fan of this plain, I’ve found, as the darjeeling is a lot stronger and more bold than expected (even after sitting in my cupboard for a year or so and brewing it below boiling) and has quite a bit of astringency which personally I’m not a fan of – I usually prefer a smooth black tea. I do think darjeeling was a good choice for the base though, and the fruity backnotes of the tea pair well with the orange flavouring. Plain this tasted more like an orange or marmalade tea, but when I added a tiny splash of milk the astringency really pulls back, and the cream flavouring comes through more and it really does remind me of orange ice cream. I’m not sure I’ve ever had a dreamsicle before (do we have them in England??) but this tea does a decent job at approximating what I imagine they might taste like. I originally thought this would be a good dessert tea with milk and sugar, but I definitely prefer it as a bold breakfast tea with just a splash of milk.
The last cup I had of this tasted a bit weird as it cooled – I kinda got a slightly sour milk note coming through in random sips (yeuch) but not in all of them. This put me off a bit but since it’s only happened once and I did add milk to it I’m going to give it the benefit of the doubt and not reflect this in my rating.
I think I have finally found the steeping parameters that really work for me. I used nearly boiling water and steeped the tea for about 40 seconds. While I know that pumpkin isn’t a very strong flavor, I was a little surprised when I first tried this tea and it tasted really fruity. The pineapple was definitely the dominant taste. But, with this steeping, I think it’s more balanced. I taste pumpkin and light cinnamon in addition to the pineapple. I think it gives the tea a unique combination of fruity and savory. And, the green tea base is really smooth with no astringency. A yummy morning cup of tea :)
Flavors: Cinnamon, Pineapple, Pumpkin
This week’s tea of the week – and this is really a lot yummier than I thought it would be. I like cranberries OK (I eat them every weekend in my oatmeal) but cranberry tea isn’t always my favorite. But this is really good – the apple softens some of the tart of the cranberry and the orange really brightens the cup.
And there’s a really nice, buttery, brown sugary ‘crumble’ taste to it too that I think might be my favorite part of the tea. And if I were to make a Cranberry Apple Crumble – the buttery, brown sugary crumble topping would probably be my favorite part of the crumble. I blame my sweet tooth.
Sweet, a little tart, juicy and really yummy.
I am sipping on a cup of this – an effort to relax after a very hectic week of getting the 12 Teas of Christmas boxes on their way.
I made a couple of changes to the recipe this year – I still used the Laoshan teas from Verdant – but I also added just a little bit of Assam to the blend to fill out the base flavors a little bit. The malt and the strength of flavor from the Assam helped give the Laoshan teas just a little more – something.
I also added some vegan white chocolate chips to the blend because I wanted a little more creaminess to the cup. I don’t know how much difference the little bit of white chocolate chips added to the cup, really, it gave a pretty almost marshmallow like appearance to the dry leaf which is nice – maybe a touch more of a creamy vanilla taste?
Nice cool, crisp flavor from the peppermint – lovely chocolate notes. Still one of my favorites that I’ve created thus far.
I’m really late writing a tasting note for this one, as it is one of Frank’s blends and over two years old… but I really enjoyed this one when it was fresh (and now — though the flavor isn’t quite the same!) This seems less like a genmaicha and more like a green sencha tea with plenty of nutty flavor. I love that cashews and macadamias are represented here. I’ll enjoy what remains of this blend… hopefully not too far away in the future.
Here’s Hoping TTB
I’m going to preface this by saying I hate French Toast – I’ve had multiple french toast teas and they’re really hit or miss, it depends on which flavors come out from the tea.
This one has a mild chai taste, I’m not getting much baked bread flavor but the black tea base is heavily apparent, not that I mind. It reminds me exactly of what I interpret the end of fall to taste like, a little Christmassy with the cinnamon and nutmeg flavors. It almost tastes like eggnog without the creaminess. Overall I actually like it.
Not rating as to not screw with those who actually like French Toast flavored teas.
Flavors: Cinnamon, Eggnog, Nutmeg, Vanilla