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Recent Tasting Notes
T&C TTB Rd2
Apparently I’ve reviewed this tea before – and liked it a lot less – so I’m rather glad that I forgot about my opinion and threw it into my thermos for “oh gods I need something to keep me awake during physics”…
This tea brews up thick and almost unbearably sweet to smell, but the rich caramel flavour just lingers inside your mouth after every sip and is all kinds of delicious (and the second steep is much the same).
I’m not sure what went wrong in my first tasting of this tea, but this is one that’ll definitely be going on my wishlist for the future. Yum.
I’ve been getting into Chinese black teas lately. They’re nice when I want something less bitter. Especially when I forget my cup and oversteep it; I can still drink it rather than throwing it away. This tea was fairly pleasant, slightly cocoa-ey and mild. More like something I’d drink in the afternoon than the morning.
I tried it with sugar as well, and found that I had to go very easy on it. The tea’s already sweet, so too much sugar and it becomes nauseating. No more than a half teaspoon.
It doesn’t really hold up well for a second steep. At least in my opinion anyway; the second steep was very light and bland. I could steep the Black Dragon Pearls three times and the Yunnan Jig twice, so the fact that this is only good for one was a bit disappointing. It’s a decent tea, but I’ll stick to other varieties with more staying power, especially if I’m paying $8 a bag for them.
Pass the Stash TTB 2.0
Blegh, I’m feeling slightly nauseous after that Choconut Oolong… And I don’t think it’s because it’s a particularly bad tea. I really think I’m getting less tolerant of flavored teas, and I certainly don’t drink them often anymore. I’ve pretty much settled in to drinking a bunch of straight blacks with a few flavored varieties, so now that I have this box with a lot of flavored things, my stomach is getting unhappy with me. I may have to keep this a day longer than I had planned, just because I don’t really want to drink four or five more flavored teas today, and I don’t think my stomach can handle it. I was planning on sending it out tomorrow, but it may have to be Thursday now.
ANYWAY! I confess, I thought this was a white tea (I mean come on, with a name like White Monkey…). It’s apparently considered a green tea. The shape of the leaves remind me of the “wild” style black leaves – medium size and very twisty and tangly. They smell mostly of hay and alfalfa with a grassy edge. The package recommended 180 degrees, but I did 175 (partially because that’s my standard for greens and partially because my kettle has 175 and 185 buttons and I was lazy).
The aroma is sweetly vegetal and very light, with hay and grass notes. Tasting this, I find it similar to the Drum Mountain I tried earlier today. I could see it being the result of a cross between green and white teas – it has the vegetal taste of a green (albeit a lighter version) along with the distinctive hay note from a white tea. Very lovely! There’s also a touch of grassiness (green) and just a tiny hint of floral (white). And I can taste a little bit of a light grain note, especially if I slurp obnoxiously. ;)
Quite lovely, one of the best (or the best) I’ve tasted from Adagio.
Flavors: Floral, Grain, Grass, Hay, Spinach, Vegetal
Oh man, waiting for a possibly life altering doctor’s appointment is tiring! In two days I go to a GI doctor to find out whether or not yes, that rather ill thought out dismissal of me having Celiac disease after an unplanned biopsy when I was 21 was correct of not. Actually this will be a lot of looking at medical history and bloodwork and scheduling a new biopsy. I have been pretty gluten light for years (out of fear!) but lately I noticed that gluten makes me feel like death, so to prepare I have been gorging on the stuff, I feel like a corpse, but it is for science!
But enough about me, how are you? Fine I hope, enjoying some nice sunny weather while sipping tea? This is a good time of year for lounging on a tropical beach while sipping teas, but if you are like me and live too far away from beaches, you can evoke the feel with Green Rooibos Key West by Adagio Teas! With a blend of Green Rooibos, Marigold Flowers, Natural Passionfruit Flavor, Orange Peel, Mango Pieces, Natural Mango Flavor, and Natural Apricot Flavor, it is certainly a tropical party. The aroma is a great blend of tropical fruit and apricot, citrus, a touch of floral, and a tiny hint of woodiness and bamboo. It certainly lives up to its name as of sniffing the dry leaves, which is always a good sign.
Whoa nelly, steeping the dry leaves has turned the Tea Lair into a tropical paradise, minus the coconuts that I usually associate with the tropical things, but that is ok. Sniffing the now soggy leaves inside their little basket reveals some tantalizing aromas of fruity sweetness, primarily mango and apricot, there is a hint of floral in the middle, and at the end there is a nice zing of citrus. The liquid without its basket of leafy bits has a sweet and mild fruity aroma, very tropical, a fusion of citrus, passionfruit, and mango.
Tasting time! The first sip starts off a little dry and mild then all of a sudden a tropical fruit stand explodes in my mouth like a Jamaican Kool-Aid Man busting through a beach bungalow. It is not overwhelmingly sweet, more like delicate nectar of mango, passionfruit, and orange…this fades to a gentle floral and fairly delicate apricot taste that lingers into the aftertaste. The rooibos is there, but it is more like a guidebook on a tropical tour than part of the actual scenery, useful as a base but not overwhelming.
I am a shame to my proud Southern upbringing as in I rarely make traditional iced tea anymore, when I want iced tea I just cold brew it in my fridge for a few hours using my handy travel mug. Actually I am a shame to my upbringing even more because I just do not drink much iced tea, but some days are too hot and I want something cool. This tea seemed like a perfect candidate to cold steep for an evening sip (on my perpetual quest to find more evening teas that I love) plus iced tropical teas are just where it is at, yo. Remember that dryness and bursting in of fruit flavor? Totally gone as a cold brew, instead it is a smooth fruity sweet transition to a cool relaxation, it starts out with mango, then to apricot, then orange, until finally I am left with the afteratste of passionfruit. Why the apricot and passionfruit get reversed in cold steep is beyond me. Usually when I cold steep teas I just mention it as being good and if it had any awesome qualities, this is one of the few times that I think it is better cold. The flavors are more subtle and relaxing, it is like the difference between a busy afternoon and sunset. And with that, I am going to go lounge in bed fanning myself while sipping my cold tea, because it is HOT!
Oh AND ANOTHER THING:
I’ve decided to do a knit project that’s based on the Fourth Doctor’s scarf but takes the idea someplace a little more interesting than just doing another replica of The Scarf itself, which I’ve done a few times anyway. (And man, does it take forever, and doing that many feet of garter stitch DOES get a little monotonous after a few colours!) I’m VERY excited about this project. You’ll totally be bombarded with pictures when it’s done.
Also also, I’m about to venture into (nearly) legit actual published prose fiction based on a television show I admire and have always wanted to write for someplace a little better attended than Teaspoon. EFF YEAH, SOMEBODY HAS CONFIDENCE IN MY STORYTELLING SKILLZ. No pressure, right? Nuuuuuuupe, none at all.
Also, this tea’s still good. I like all the flavours in it, but I quite like them all together than any of them separately. Ah! insert terrifying crazy-eyes Bob Dylan smile here
I had yet to try—or acquire—Harney & Sons Florence before penning my previous two tasting notes for Adagio Aquarius. The similarities are worth mentioning: hazelnut and cocoa nibs. I would say that this blend by Adagio is less strictly Nutella-esque. The flavoring seems to be lighter.
Another obvious difference is that this blend contains oolong, while the H&S is straight black base. However, upon examining the contents of my tin, I discovered that the oolong pieces, while undeniably present, are in very low proportion relative to the black tea. Well, that is, until infusion!
The spent oolong leaves expand to take over, making this tea seem much more oolongy than the dried blend would suggest. I love that about oolong—how it expands like some sort of creature from science fiction (a benevolent one!)—especially now that I have discovered that I do not have an oolong issue.
The oolong in this blend appears to be TQY (or TGY), although this is not specified. The dark green gnarled nuggets look fairly familiar to me, and I’m pretty sure that this is the only nugget-shaped oolong used regularly in blends.
Anyway, the presence of oolong notwithstanding, I went ahead and added cream because the hazelnut and cocoa nibs demanded it! Maybe I should go brew up some Florence right now to make a closer comparison of these two teas…
Well, okay, if you insist!
Flavors: Cocoa, Hazelnut
It’s quite cool outside today—relative to the recent weather—so I decided to live it up and make some adulteratable blends since I happen to have some fresh organic half & half in the fridge. First up: Adagio Sagittarius.
It has been a while since I last brewed this tea, so I felt as though I were coming to something new. I observed the raspberry and vanilla before all of the other flavors, including bergamot and safflower. Upon adulteration, I naturally noticed the creaminess!
This blend is quite a bit less fruity than Harney & Sons Paris, but it seems to be made in the same general spirit: a fruity, less citric variant on Earl Grey. In this case, the bergamot is so light that I’d describe Sagittarius as more of a fruity-vanilla blend. It’s pretty good, but after tasting the dark amber liquor au naturel, I went ahead and doused. I don’t really like the China black used as the base in this Zodiac series, but it’s perfectly fine with cream.
Flavors: Fruity, Vanilla
Ok, I figured out the trick with this one. You really need to overleaf it. You think you’re adding too much? You are totally not. Once I added 4 heaping teaspoons in my 16oz mug (seriously heaping, I likely used 5 tsp really), I now don’t need to add sweetener. I can really taste the peach, it isn’t bitter and I get a very smooth, almost thick, mouth-feel. Basically everything I love about whites. Now if only I could have a variable temperature kettle at work… cause then I’d actually sip this one down at a much faster rate.
Received as part of the chai sampler. It’s funny that it is described as having chicken soup flavor. My first thought when I started drinking this was that it tastes like my favorite soup from our local Thai restaurant. I wouldn’t describe it as savory, though, and I enjoyed it with milk and honey
Frooty frooty frooty, frooty frooty frooty frooty frooty froot!
I keep sleeping through thunderstorms at night, apparently. Strangely enough, working in a tiny office sat on my bum all day all week absolutely tuckers me out! At least the 30 minute walk to and from the department keeps me from never getting any exercise ever. I’ve also been breaking in my work thermos, and already the blasted plastic lid bit has absorbed the smell of the first thing I made in it and I CAN’T GET IT OUT curls up and weeps
But today, I make tea in a nice ceramic mug in my own kitchen, and all’s well. There’s something very different about combining fruity herbal teas with a black tea, as opposed to fruit-flavoured black tea. It’s got a juicy fruitiness from the sweet cherry and tart orange that sits over the black tea, and it’s proving really nice for quiet summer weekend drinking.
I love ginger, and a tea with just that is hard to come by. Usually it’s ginger with some kind of fruit, like ginger peach or ginger pear, or a holiday tea like gingerbread. Not that I don’t like those, but sometimes I just want ginger and nothing else.
This tea suits my needs quite nicely. It’s got a strong ginger taste that works well with the black tea base. I can take it either with sugar or without, but I really wouldn’t recommend any milk.
It’s actually chilly in Louisiana, and it’s mid-July! That calls for a breakfast of yummy hazelnutty pumpkin spice tea!
This stuff is delicious. I just bought it this week, enticed by the thought of hazelnut and pumpkin spice together. It certainly delivers.
I’m drinking it with steamed milk and a tiny tad of honey. At this point there won’t be any left when fall actually arrives.
Flavors: Hazelnut, Natural Pumpkin Spice Flavor
By it’s self I am not a huge fan of the tea. It’s a bit bland and in others it comes off as too sweet. For me I prefer it when it’s mixed with other teas. It really shines then but by itself not so much. By far though it is not the worse I have tried and don’t mind it on occasion.
This is a very crisp and mellow white tea. A first it tasted a bit dry compared, to some of the other white tea I have tried. After a while though I realized it was just very subtle in it’s taste. Nonetheless it’s very good and quite refreshing. It’s scent has a nice appealing aroma once it is brewed. It’s a nice relaxing tea I might add, it helped me unwind after a long week at work.
GCTTB Rd 3:
Mixed this with Adagio’s Wild Strawberry for a tea version of strawberry lemonade. You can see my review here: http://steepster.com/rachel12610/posts/255000
GCTTB Rd 3:
Jeweled Thumb was kind enough to add some of her healthy lemonade teas into the TTB for us all to try: a combination of Adagio’s Green Citron, Wild Strawberry, and Lemongrass. Being lazy and not wanting to wait for the water to cool to brew the green, I altered the recipe and did two parts wild strawberry and one part lemongrass and then poured it over ice. The result? A fruity start to the sip which slowly gives way to a touch of hibby tartness only to end on a crisp lemon note. It’s actually quite interesting though I feel I may have been better off going with a 1:1 ratio of each tea. Ultimately I probably won’t drink this again but it was certainly fun to try. Thanks Jeweled Thumb!
I received a sample of this in my Adagio box yesterday. I’m enjoying it for breakfast with a little steamed milk. I think it needs more than one teaspoon in 8 oz for the best flavor, especially when adding milk. I’m loving the woody puerh flavor next to the nutmeg/cinnamon. My second cup is steeping now….
Second cup: wow!…. It has chai taste, but the subsequent steeping is more puerh and flavorful… I think because the spice has worn off… Yum! This is fun
Sleeping dragon is a good name for this tea. There is just a hint of smoke, but it is subtle and rests behind layers of sweetness on a bed of subtle vegetal flavor. The subtlety of the smokey flavor does indeed make me think of a sleeping dragon softly exhaling smoke in his sleep.
It gets little astringent if you let it cool too much, so definitely drink it warm.
Flavors: Smoke, Sweet, Vegetal
Ok, so I originally intended to cold brew this one to mix it up a little, but then I realized that it might be difficult to do because the tea is tightly rolled up into pearls. So I kind of used two techniques to steep this one. First, I used warm (not boiling hot) water to pour over the pearls to encourage them to open up a little. Then I stuck the whole thing into the fridge for quite a few hours (6-8 ish? I’m very back at keeping track of time). It was a very inexact method, and I clearly can’t even remember much about it, but it turned out pretty nicely!
At first, there is that typical malty sort of taste that you would expect from a black tea. However, it was less strong than I thought it would be. Instead, there was this nice honey flavor that brought some sweetness to the tea. I think there were also some cocoa notes there, but I don’t fully trust my taste buds to figure out flavors, haha. Anyway, I think I enjoyed this tea as iced over hot, surprisingly! Good to know :)
I drank this before bed because I had just received the box from adagio and couldn’t wait to try something. This is the only non-caf tea that I bought.
…. I still couldn’t sleep… Maybe it was just due to excitement over all my new teas?
This is very delicious. Lemony orange chai, I suppose.
Flavors: Cinnamon, Citrus Zest, Clove, Nuts
I got this back when it had first came out on Adagio. Thus far I have really enjoyed all the blueberry blends that I have tried. This one was another one that did not disappoint. It has a very distinct flavor with a blueberry aftertaste that really appeals to me.What I also love is that it is not overly fruity or tart, which would have been a no go with me. I can see this being a frequent attendant in my tea stash.