Andrews & Dunham Damn Fine Tea

Recent Tasting Notes

80

Sipdown! 981. Thank you to Sil for this sample (and TerriHarpLady, because it’s her writing on the baggie :D)

Pulled out my unflavoured “drink now” basket to get a few things down before I fill up my 6 Timolinos for some babysitting tonight (and those Timolinos will not be containing single cup samples). This one was at the top of the basket, so here we are! Aroma is lovely, sweet and malty, and the flavour is… unexpected. I was anticipating more of a standard yunnan/hay-y flavour based on the aroma (even though that’s not a profile I’d use for a tea called “red-tailed hawk”!), but although it has those notes, it also has… cherry? Yeah, it took me a bit to identify it, but I’m definitely tasting a cherry fruitiness. There is also some astringency here, but it might be due to slightly overleafing (under-pouring of water, more accurately), and it’s actually not unpleasant, because it’s fairly mild. Overall, pretty tasty and unique. Not a tea I’d have too often because it’s a little on the potent side for me, but it’s still delicious.

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec
Sil

darjeeling…lower temp tastes better :)

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95

Okay, so honestly, I’ve got SUPER distracted showing my mum pig videos like this:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pdktPVgks6g
And didn’t really focus tons on what I was drinking. xD I just really really want a pig tonight.
Started paying attention to this cup of tea near the end, and It definitely made me regret not paying more attention! XD
This tea is amazing! Seriously, everything I’d want in an assam.
Strong. Malty. Sweet. Smooth. A kick in the pants to make me more awake.
It’s just the perfect assam!
Think I’m gonna have to pick this one up soon!
Thank you soo much for the generous sample, Boychik!! Definitely enjoying so much of what you sent me!! :D :D

Flavors: Malt, Sweet

The Cookie Lady

OHMYGOSH…HE.WAGS.HIS.LITTLE.PIG.TAIL……..I’M DYING!!!!

The Cookie Lady

Also, it took me much too long to understand why they called him Chris P. I was like…Chris is such a weird name for a pig….

boychik

he is adorable! you are welcome, glad you liked it. Hope they have some deal for BF! free ship would be nice ;)

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85

This is one that I picked up last weekend at the Philly Coffee & Tea Expo. Per ounce, it was probably the most expensive item I got and I’m so glad I did. The dry leaves are lovely tight spirals with a delicious cocoa odor. As advertised, the flavor has all of the nutty, chocolatey notes of a good keemun, but softer. This one doesn’t hit me over the head and say, “Yo – keemun here – deal with it!” Rather, it offers warmth and comfort and relaxation. The website says they only have five left of this limited edition so I’m pleased to have this on in stock. BTW, second steep: same but less so. It’s a bit thin on the second steep. I think I’ll stick to one.

Flavors: Chocolate, Cocoa, Nutty

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
boychik

my second steep was around 20-30 min because i just forgot abt it ;) it was very good. i have nothing to loose

Hillel

At that point, just drop some ice cubes in it and claim you were making iced tea all along (“that’s my story and I’m sticking to it”).

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88

I picked this up at the Philly Coffee and Tea Festival, and it’s been just about the only tea in my cup for the past few days. It is wonderfully thick and malty with a light smokiness. I love, love, love the grainy note. Very reminiscent of the wheat flavor in some beers. I also like the hints of leather and sweet stone fruit that slip in and out as I sip.

I’m really glad I bought a canister of this because it’s a great fall/winter tea.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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91

Backlog:

I experimented a little bit with this tea. The first pot that I brewed (In my Breville One-Touch), I steeped it for 2 1/2 minutes which produces a brisk and slightly astringent cup. When I cut the time to 2 minutes, it produced a much smoother cup that is much more to my liking.

A well-rounded blend. Full-bodied with lots of flavor. Nice malty tone, lots of caramel-y notes. Rich, earthy and fruity. At 2 minutes, this maintains a really nice flavor with very little tannic quality. A longer steep will become more tannic and hints at becoming bitter at 2 1/2 minutes so some care while brewing is recommended.

Beautiful tin artwork too. I love A & D.

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20

Although I prefer assertive black tea blends this one is just too much smoke for me. However, the color is amazing.

Flavors: Leather, Malt, Smoke

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 8 g 16 OZ / 473 ML

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87

Thank you Boychik for this sample. This is a tasty tea. The best so far of my Andrews and Dunham samples from Boychik. The maltiness to this tea is actually good. Maybe its because I added honey, but I am liking the malty character of this tea. I usually don’t like malt in tea. There is a subtle sweetness behind the malt too. It is good if not damn fine.

I brewed this once in an 18oz teapot with 6g leaf and boiling water for 3 min.

Flavors: Malt

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 6 g 18 OZ / 532 ML

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77

This came in my select box. I’m not a fan. Most of the flavors I got in this was smokey- like tobacco, earthy. It’s a mix of China and India black teas – it was to much like coffee for me. Not a coffee fan at all. I’m out of milk so I did something different- I added a splash of organic chocolate milk! Never done that before but oh my! Brought a whole new level to it. I really enjoyed the cup after adding it. I’m going to say I would recommend this tea- if you are a black tea fan and like that “heaviness” with an earthy, woodsy, smoke taste then you may like it! Without the chocolate milk added I wouldn’t have been able to drink it. That’s the good thing about the steepster select boxes- it’s not a big investment and you get to discover different flavors.

Flavors: Coffee, Earth, Heavy, Smoke, Wood

boychik

what was your parameters? i find it quite good at 200F 3min 3g or 1tsp. 8oz
Not bitter or coffee like to me.

Hillel

Damn Fine Teas will be at the Philadelphia Coffee & Tea Festival that I’m going to this weekend. I was looking forward to tasting their Oktoberfest and other blends. I’ll see what they have to say about add chocolate milk.

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85

My enjoyment of this tea is frankly baffling to me. I don’t like smoky teas at all on the whole, but there’s something about this one that’s just good. There’s not too much smoke (and what smoke there is isn’t too in-your-face), and the base is smooth and lightly sweet. It’s a well-rounded and interesting sip, and I’m finding myself getting through a pot of it in one sitting easily. Nice!

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73

I didn’t add any milk or sugar to this tea. I wonder how that would have impacted the taste. I’m wasn’t immediately smitten, but the aroma and first taste were very autumnal. It’s like all the smells of fall distilled into a cup. I noticed a slight bitterness, that may have been from over-steeping and could be mitigated by the addition of milk and sweetener, if so desired. As I drank it, it grew on me. I began to notice some fruity notes. A complex tea that I grew to appreciate!

Flavors: Caramel, Fruity, Leather, Smoke

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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100

I’ve been drinking this one at home on a weekend, usually Saturday morning or Sunday afternoon. I’ve been aware that my cold has been affecting my taste buds, though, so I’ve waited to review it until I feel I really know what I’m tasting. The first thing I have to say is that it makes for a delicious cup, and never fails to bring a smile to my face. I think that’s why it’s a weekend only tea for me at the moment…it just makes everything feel somehow right, like all is well with the world.

I’ve settled on 1 tsp of leaf in boiling water for approximately 4 minutes. This yields a reddy-orange brew, to which I’ve been adding a splash of milk. The scent is divine — very malty, with notes of fresh baked rye bread. I’ve not really been a yunnan drinker until recently, but once I tried a couple of good ones, I was a convert. There’s no going back now!

To taste, I initially get a strong, almost slightly starchy, sweet potato flavour. It’s underpinned by the malt, which is similarly sweet, and a touch of honey. Then come the yeasty, bread-like notes, which add another layer to the flavour. Finally, I get a darker, earthy, almost molasses-like flavour, and a hint of very dark, very bitter chocolate. There’s a tiny bite of astringency at the very end of the sip, but it actually complements the flavour experience so I don’t really mind.

This is by no means a simple-tasting tea. I love how the layers of flavour emerge and build into the final, complex whole. I’m more than glad that I have a whole tin of this — it’ll certainly be savored! A beautiful Yunnan, and my new favourite black tea. Gorgeous.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp

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Sooo I need to try this again because I’m pretty sure I didn’t wash my mug out enough to really write an honest review of this tea. xD
This tea tasted like bread and sweet potatoes. Which was great. But…
There was still some woodiness in the cup…that really didn’t belong. So I’ll have to try this again. xD Thanks to Boychik for giving me enough for more than one cup! Thanks again for this sample! Will try it again before rating!

On a side note: I’m super excited-They finally put the original The Producers movie on Netflix again! I love Gene Wilder in this one-he’s hilarious! If you like comedies you should definitely give it a try! It’s fantastic! :P

Flavors: Baked Bread, Sweet Potatoes, Wood

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87

Thanks for this sample, Cameron B.! This is another Assam I’d been curious about but hadn’t wanted to commit to, since it’s only sold in one—very large—size. It’s strong and malty—though not quite as strong and malty as I’d expected it might be. There’s a strong raisiny note, with a fair bit of astringency thrown in to keep the sweetness in check. This is a nice Assam, but since there are other good options that can be purchased in smaller quantities it’s not necessarily something I’d purchase—4.4 oz. is a lot!

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88

Oh steepster. I really have been missing this place; reading peoples review, tea chatting, ect.

Anyways I got this in the steepster box, and WAS I EXCITED! When I saw the flavor announced I got really excited until my wallet said no, but YAY steepster box.

Leaf: It looks like a pile of finely crafted autumn leaves that have been roasted.
Smell: A little woodsy, hints of smoke
Liquor: autumn orange; or Sam Adams oktober fest beer color

This tasted so good! I kind of reminds me of that one tea Verdant had that was a smoked black tea from wuyi. (the one with the really long name) It has a nice rich, but not heavy black tea taste with woody notes and hints of malt; the grassy notes keep it from getting to thick. There are also wisps of spice, but more of a wood spice than spice spice.

Honestly this tea reminds me a lot of Sam Adams Oktober fest when I drink it; which is good cause that was a good beer. I have just one more brew left out of the sample which I am saving for that ultra craving for it.

All in all, it was an awesome tea the seems like the the tea version of Sam Adams Oktober beer.

Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Cedar, Dark Wood, Malt, Smoke, Spices, Wheat

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Sil

yep…lala sent it to me and i ordered a tin the same day i tried it lol

35mmfilm

That sounds right up my alley. Gonna have to give it a try!

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88

this was a tea from last night/this morning… added a little maple syrup and brought it with me to work for the overnight. not much to say beyond – delicious!

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88

sipdown! but it will be back…soon :) i had this in the morning as my wake up tea with my everything bagel with herb and garlic cream cheese. Perfect start to the morning! I love this tea. Today i drank one cup normally – this is smokey with a bit of brightness to it, some hints of cedar… soo good. Added a splash of maple syrup to a second cup and it was even more delicious. I do love my smokey teas with a splash of maple! thanks again for sharing this one lala! happy to return the favour anytime!

boychik

perfect breakfast tea

Fjellrev

Whew, glad I didn’t grab this then. ;)

Sil

Hahaha. I can always send you a taste if you want my Swedish chef! When I get mine

Fjellrev

Thanks, but don’t worry about it! I don’t like smoky teas. I’m going to wait until they (hopefully?) have free/better shipping for Black Friday so I can get others. Is the Red Tailed Hawk at all smoky, in your opinion?

Sil

Nope. Not that I recall. It’s like a Darjeeling more than anything, but one I’ll drink. I can send you a sample if you want

Fjellrev

Ah ok, thanks for the offer! But seriously, I owe you tea more than anything else. I’m probably going to grab a three pack of their EG, Assam, and Red Tailed. Cavo was kind enough to send a sample of the Assam last year. :)

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88

lala sent this one my way so i could get in a taste before comitting to ANOTHER tin of damn fine tea – i think this will bring me to 6? in the house because yes, that’s right…i bought this after having it today. So good. I am immensely happy that lala was kinda enough to send this my way because i would have passed on this for sure, simply because 4.4oz is a LOT of tea…especially when you’ve got 4? other damn fine tea tins that are mostly full. lol this was just the right balance of smokey and not bitter and yes. yum. that is all.

Final Count: 81 (thank you lala!!!!)

Lala

Glad you like it. It sure is an excellent blend! P.S. I was waiting for your review all day.

Sil

Pretty crappy review…I’ll do better next time, I still have lots to try from you heh. I didn’t get time at work today to not work lol

Indigobloom

Ok this is one I might wanna steal a cups worth of!

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88

Bold and robust, drinking this tea makes me feel like I’m sitting around a bonfire. This is as German and manly as it gets. Tobacco and cedar are prevalent on the tongue, while the smoky note on the dry leaves does not overpower the steeped leaves. This is quite delicious and interesting blend that compliments the season perfectly

Flavors: Cedar, Malt, Smoke, Tobacco, Wet Wood

Preparation
Boiling 4 g

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88

This is another sample from boychik. Thank you!

Keemun might just be my favorite type of breakfast tea. It is usually deep and chocolate or slightly woody. This is another awesome offering from A & D. I think all of these samples have turned me into an A & D fan girl. I might just have to try EVERYTHING from them:) Some keemuns have fruity flavor at the end of the sip, some have a smoke. This is just right in the middle. It doesn’t have much fruity, but more of a deep bread flavor. I am rocking the 2nd steep already and this is definitely making my morning. Thanks again boychik for allowing me to try this one.

boychik

i can live without Keemun but this one i really like. glad you like it ;)

donkeytiara

I’m a 2 tin girl on this one!

TeaTiff

Do you guys find this light? Do you use extra leaf?

boychik

I went back to my note. No more leaves but time 5min 45 sec. Second resteep was 15 min. Tell me if you get some saltiness

TeaTiff

I will have to give these parameters a try with the next cup. I will watch out for that salty note. Thanks Boychik.

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88

1 Year on Steepster! Woot! Who would have thunk. 418 tasting notes…. 170ish teas in cupboard, many fun swaps and tea friends. It has been quite the year. I have enjoyed getting to try so many wonderful cups and tea vendors. Hopefully Steepster fully recovers from its illness and it is exploding with liveliness again soon. My tastes have definitely changed. I like many on here started out with the mostly food teas from Teaavana. Quickly found Butiki and fell in love with so many teas there, found oolongs, roasted and milk oolongs, discovered flavored blacks, then straight black. Now, I am starting to explore whites, greens and pur-eh. I think my favorites are the darker side of oolongs, the Fijian blacks, and french flavored teas. There are so many teas I still want to try and orders I want to place. It is fun that after spending a year trying “everything” there is still so much more to try.

I am trying to make a decision on whether to purchase this tea or not. I believe it is only available until the end of October. This morning at work this cup is offering all the same, smoke, tart fruity, leather if you will, but there is almost a spice to to the tea. It is lovely, but will it be a cup I like 4.4oz of? Thank you again boychik for this sample

Nattie

Happy 1st birthday!

boychik

happy 1st bday! wishing you discovering more great teas. Do i see Wuyi oolongs on a horizon?

donkeytiara

Happy 1 year! I still have a few months to go for that landmark! congrats!

TeaTiff

Thanks you guys! Boychik, wuyi is growing on me. I need to experiment with gongfu for the ones I own. I own 2 or 3 right now and will be brewing them gongfu to see if they start to grow on me:)

boychik

i find some very good ones fr Jing Tea Shop and Tao Tea Leaf. the best way for me is gongfu. 5-6g leaves 100ml and short steeps. im off to have some now ;)

TeaTiff

I have never heard of JIng Tea Shop. I will have to check them out. Thanks Boychik!

Sil

woot! happy 1 yr anniversary!

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