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Recent Tasting Notes
Today is a total write-off. Couldn’t sleep so I got out of bed at 5am, browsed online for a couple hours, tried to go back to bed but keep drifting in and out of light sleep until 1pm, and now my brain is numb and I’m being a lazy bum. Also really dehydrated, possibly from the 2-hour workout yesterday evening so I’m chugging cold brew like a boss.
Turkish Apple, eh? When I opened the jar in the store, I was hit with a cloud of sunny lemon. Totally not expected. I grabbed some specifically to cold brew and I’m glad I did. This makes a happy lemonade-like cold brew without any weird sweet undertones. I don’t taste any apple in this whatsoever despite the fact that the so-called dry leaf looks like nothing but dried apple pieces. That’s how strong the lemon is in here.
It’s nice to have something different to cold brew since I’ve been running out of options as of late. As much as I like cold brewing DAVIDs Ginger Beer and Strawberry Rhubarb Parfait, it’s nice to switch it up.
Warm weather means more outdoor walking for me again, which means I skipped down to Acquired Taste and immediately went for this one since it’s been out of stock forever. The dry leaf kind of reminds me of Bi Luo Chun with beautiful gold tips.
First steep was so incredibly full-bodied and malty with a hint of honey in the background. I think I used a little too much leaf so it was really bold so I’m looking forward to try it again with slightly different ratios.
Second steep was substantially less malty, but still roasted and slightly honeyish. The first was definitely better, at least this time around.
A sample from Miss B. This one came out a lot stronger than I was expecting, in that the initial sip contains quite an intense hit of blackberry. It reminds me a little of cordial – syrupy, sweet, but very fruity and with an edge of sourness totally reminiscent of actual blackberries. As this one cools, the sage begins to emerge. It starts out as an indefinable “herbal” kind of flavour, but with successive sips I really could start to identify it as specifically sage. Stuffing, anyone?
Although it reminds me at least a little of roast chicken with all the trimmings, I actually like this flavour combination. It’s slightly unusual, which is always intriguing, but it works pretty well. The sage cuts through some of the tart sourness the blackberries present, and pushes the overall flavour away from one-note fruity. I could be a fan!
Another one from the wonderful MissB. Now that I’m back in Edmonton, where I left these, I’m polishing them off. Crazy fun last few days of being a mall rat and seeing Mockingjay Pt. II, so I really haven’t gotten much tea drinking in over the last few days.
This one made one full circle being back in its hometown. The rooibos base was a little too heavy for my liking but this had a ton of spice and packs a punch. The cinnamon popped out the most, followed by clove and ginger. I wouldn’t buy any of this but it was nice to try it. Thanks again, MissB!
It’s been so saddening to be away from my tea stash for nearly six weeks, and by the looks of that, that may be extended another two weeks. Had I known we’d be gone for this long, I would have brought more with me.
However, at least I can skip down to Acquired Taste now, especially with the sunny weather. It’s encouraged me to basically walk everywhere around the city. This smelled like creamy pear candy in the tin so of course, I had to grab some.
As a cold brew, it’s seriously tasty. Very true to that pear candy flavour, it doesn’t go wonky or super artificial, and no gross added sweeteners. The only thing you have to watch for is to make sure it doesn’t cold brew for too long (I did this the first time, leaving it in the fridge for over two days), because the Sencha base goes a little bitter. But do it right and watch out, your jug will be gone in a flash!
Sipdown! First cold brew I’ve had in months, it seems. Went well with my popcorn supper haha. It felt odd drinking it since it snowed today and I’ve been cold almost all day, walking around the house in a hoodie, and I don’t want to turn the temperature up too much because that would cost a fortune.
I seemed to have chosen all their newer ones because so many of them aren’t even on their website. This is a fruit tisane with hibiscus and mango and whatnot. Cold brewed, it’s sweet and tart at the same time because of these two main notes. But! Not nearly as sweet as DAVIDs mango-flavoured blends, so that’s a bonus. I’m already on my third round, so clearly that’s an indication that it’s nice to drink when it’s 30°C outside (and you’ve walked 27km in said heat!) but once it’s gone, it’s gone. I won’t get more since it’s not unique or amazeballs in any way.
I was initially attracted to their Toffee black in the store, based on the tea that was in the sniffing jar, but once I smelled it in the tin, I had to pass because it smelled stale and weird. The sales associate pointed me to this tea instead, which is newer, and hence, lacking in any pertinent information on their site. It smells so roasty and nutty, kind of along the lines of Forever Nuts from DAVIDsTEA (which also smells a little bit like ATR’s Brioche) so I thought I couldn’t go wrong.
Unfortunately, this seriously lacks flavour once steeped. I can just pick up on a hint of nuttiness with each initial sip but the rest is just tea and nothing more. The dry leaf is interesting, like a mix between twisted leaves and CTC pellets, with some nuts and flower petals thrown in to the mix.
But I found something today that kind of saves teas like this. So, there is a localesque business that makes flavoured honeys, and I found their ginger honey at Save-on-Foods the other week. So tasty, like fresh ginger, and/or those Chimes ginger chews. Really great on toast, and I’m sure it would be great to glaze salmon with and whatnot. Anyway, I went to Farmers Market today for the sole purpose of seeking out their booth since they have a ton of other flavours, and came across their Pumpkin Spice honey. Grabbed that off the bat, but it was tough since I was also eyeing their Espresso Vanilla Bean and Chai ones.
Long story short, I added a spoon of it to this tea and it’s glorious. It woke this tea up and breathed some life into it. I’m normally not a fan of honey in tea but I’ll definitely be drinking this tea with these flavoured honeys (I need to grab more flavours too!) from this day forward.
I’ve yet to try the Grapefruit Grey from Bayswater but the dry leaf smells very similar to this, anyway. Ultra grapefruity and tangy, and that grapefruit translates nicely in flavour too. I added some light cream and while it placed a damper on the citrus (seems like bergamot stays stronger than grapefruit when you add cream/milk, at least here), it’s a smooth tea to drink in the morning. I’m curious to see how this would turn out as a cold brew.
I proudly walked to Acquired Taste the other day when it was sunny out and picked up a variety of their teas that are new to me, plus more of their Winter Dream Sencha because it’s amazing anytime.
This one is apparently newer, and I’ve basically been cold brewing teas and not enjoying anything hot due to the weather. Therefore, this was a must. It’s not as good as I had hoped though? I’m actually writing by memory since I had it a couple days ago. But it was just vaguely berry-ish and sweet. Tastes like a lot of others I’ve had in the past. Nothing unique.
Bah I haven’t written a note on this one yet but have drank it quite a few times..and today is not the day to write a detailed review since I’m at work lol..but let’s just say this is a great EGC with a bit more bergamot in it than Acquired Taste’s other cream offering I have tried. I think the first time I had this was steeped in a pot at my great aunts, with not much attention paid to the time it steeped for as we were visiting, etc, and it was still excellent! A great one for a large pot or just a cup, however today in my travel mug it is a bit perfumey from the bergamot. Nevertheless, this is one of my favorite earl greys and it can stand up to being brewed a lot of ways it seems! Tasty and warming on this cloudy, cooler morning. Finally got some rain last night :) I am still waiting for the t-storms this summer! Not really any good ones yet. Anyways, back to work now, I will write a more detailed note later!
As soon as I saw and smelled this tea, I knew it would be much like a DAVIDsTEA Forever Nuts type tea. I really enjoyed that when I first had it and then all of a sudden grew adverse to it. However, as I went through my eggnog latte phase, Forever Nuts kept popping up as a tea to have that way. Since I caved on Chocolate Macaron and ended up enjoying it, I thought this might go the same way. Plus it’s been so long since I had this kind of tea I was interested to see if my tastes changed. So, I took the last of this and made a latte with it.
First off, the color looked exactly like pepto bismol, as in it was bubblegum pink. The smell mimicked the nuttiness of the dry leaf except it was about ten times stronger. The taste was also quite nutty but rather than being salty as nuts should be it was over the top sweet and with a hint of something off. Ultimately it seems my tastes haven’t changed with regards to these nutty herbal teas but I am grateful for the chance to try it yet again and learn for sure that this isn’t for me.
There is something dark about this chocolate tea. Dark as in brooding and almost erring on the side of emo. If this tea were a music genre, it would be emo. I didn’t smell it in the store, but now that my pouch is isolated at home, I can smell a bit of smokiness in the base, and it’s there in the flavour too, blending in with the subtle chocolate. Not as much creaminess as I would have liked.
Methinks this would blend fabulously with cacao husks. It would give this a chocolate boost whilst the smokiness would ground them husks.
Awe, this smelled so ultra licoricey in the shop’s sniffing jar. I figured licorice would be an excellent flavour to pair with rooibos, and to even cover up the base for the most part.
But the licorice hides away once steeped. It’s ridiculously subtle. At least the base isn’t overly woody. Better with some light cream. Maybe I’ll try to add a little more leaf or steep longer. Or something?
There’s always Sambuca…