Carytown Teas

Recent Tasting Notes

drank Winter White by Carytown Teas
739 tasting notes

enjoyed this at Lamplighter Roasting Company along with a vegan cookie and the sunset.
it’s a subtle and delicate tea. that’s why i chose it.

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i have been drinking tea for days and not commenting or making notes.

old dear roommates visited from out of town and they got so excited when they smelled all of my teas!

i haven’t visited facebook for over a week, but within 2 min of clicking my friend notifications i registered for this http://www.7summitsrace.com
dangit.
DANGIT!
(i’m a race addict)

CrowKettle

Good luck! That looks crazy intense :)

Shmiracles

translation!
Good Luck crazy! That looks like a stupid idea!
HAHAHAHAH i have no idea what i was thinking
(aka if it involves too much swimming i’m bailing)

Shmiracles

translation,
i wasn’t thinking.
i was a little drunk when i clicked ‘register’

CrowKettle

Ha! I did a similar thing on a smaller scale when my young unathletic self impulsively signed up for the Vancouver Sun Run (only 6.2 miles). This is much more insane (and fun looking) though! It looks like you can skip the swimming obstacles at least?

CrowKettle

Are you doing it with a team?

Shmiracles

I actually only pre-registered, cuz the Virginia race doesn’t exist yet. but I did register because a few friends did too. so there might be a team involved.
My thing is marathons and 50ks, and my thing is decidedly NOT upper body strength and swimming. Whomp whomp.

CHAroma

Tried looking but stupid work computer blocked the site. :( Good luck though!!

Shmiracles

i hope to do the vancouver marathon or the dirty duo 50k there one of these years soon.

they haven’t even scheduled the race yet, so hopefully i’ll have enough time to train and not completely die out there.

the tea will save me!! hah

CrowKettle

Ah, I’m speechless! I’d swim lakes and lakes before I’d manage to finish 50k. Lots of respect from this direction :)

I’d never be able to do the 7summit but it looks amazing and I can’t wait to hear about how it goes if you do it!

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i went to WPA bakery (Well-made Pastry Alliance) and had a piece of chocolate banana rum walnut pie and a cup of tea. they also sell pots of tea!
i was there alone and i read my book (Shade it Black) and slowly savored my pie and tea.
i can’t wait to go back.

Em

I love Carytown Teas :)

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drank Flu Fighter by Carytown Teas
739 tasting notes

a local punk dive bar has this on the menu. it’s tonic and kinda bold. great for the long sip on a late evening out with friends. (i also hear it’s nice with some whiskey in it).

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the bottom of this tasting note is an over caffeinated note from last night.

i watched the full “Victoria Wood’s Nice Cup of Tea” part 1 and 2 this morning.
the program is very fun and i’m shocked i hadn’t learned about it earlier. it never occurred to me that there would be shows about tea! how exciting!
while watching there was one moment that was totally weird, but during the first episode they showed a grandiose dance performance in china that was about the story of tea, where at the end of the performance they gave the entire audience each a cup of tea. and for some mysterious reason, i started crying.
i mean really?
i was so moved i actually started crying.
i think i’m in too deep. whew!

i like this tea much more this time around! the rind adds a strong pithy flavor to the tea. earthy and pithy and oddly dark in flavor. i don’t know much about what a white puerh should taste like. it is a complicated balance of both delicate and dark flavors. which makes sense. i’m glad i bought this when i did.


Hell! tonight was shot becuzzzz…..

JacquelineM got me started with this awesome vid! (THANKS!)
Morrissey talks tea with Victoria Wood
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lSqp73xSvbg
and then i went here
Doctor Who’s Matt Smith Talks Tea – Victoria Wood’s Nice Cup of Tea
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xu4E92Joeig
and then naturally here
Mark Ruffalo acts out a fan’s dream conversation – The Graham Norton Show
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5GwRis0CZhQ
and then i naturally progressed to the Martin Freeman episode of Who Do You Think You Are. and on and on.
you know.
internet binge.

Shmiracles

the full “Victoria Wood’s Nice Cup of Tea” episodes are online. fyi

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this tea really is 50% blossoms like the picture shows.
smooth jasmine and all the citrus is on the nose but not even slightly tart. almost creamy?!
nicely done little oolong!

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70
drank Provence by Carytown Teas
358 tasting notes

Last cup of the day. This is the third tea that I purchased at Carytown Teas. I was a little hesitant about this tea since it has rose hips in it, and for some reason I always associate those with hibiscus. But I like the rose petals, lavender, raisins and dried berries that are in this tea. And I’ve been liking rooibos more, so I figured I would try it. The dry leaves smell like rooibos and sweet berries; and the tea’s aroma is fruity. This tea is a lot more mellow than I was expecting – there is a subdued fruity flavor with a lavender finish. I’m getting a light floral and berry aftertaste with a hint of rooibos, but not too bad. I added sweetener and a little milk and the tea is very good with both, especially for a cup right before bed. I’ve literally drank my whole cup in just a few minutes while trying to figure out the flavors in this tea – there’s a lot going on! It’s not my favorite, but it’s different in a good way from what I was expecting from this tea.

-Dry blend has red rooibos with pieces of dried fruits and lavender and rose petals.
-Dry blend smells like rooibos and sweet berries. Tea liquor aroma is fruity.
-Tea liquor is a clear medium reddish orange color.
-Mellow fruity flavor with a lavender finish. Light floral and berry aftertaste with a hint of rooibos.
-Best with sweetener. Milk optional.
-Good tea. Sweet and fruity with a hint of lavender. A good bedtime tea.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 5 min, 0 sec

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90

So this one seems almost the same as Mistie’s Blend, except this one doesn’t have hazelnut in it. I think the fiancee voted for this one, and that’s why I purchased two blends that are so similar. This one does include rose petals in it, as listed, so I am pretty happy about that. The smell, like Mistie’s Blend, is of strong, rich cocoa. The tea itself smells like warm milk chocolate with a florally hint of rose. The flavor is malty and chocolatey with a light rose finish. The chocolate flavor is strong, but the black tea is still nice and malty. The rose just gives it enough of a floral note without being overwhelming. I really like this tea. As with Mistie’s Blend, the tea is a little thin, but it’s not too bad. And Chocolate Lovers seems pretty true to it’s description and ingredients, yay!

-Dry blend has medium black tea leaves and twigs with pink, white and yellow rose petals.
-Dry leaves smell strongly of rich cocoa. Tea liquor aroma is of milk chocolate with a hint of rose.
-Tea liquor is a clear golden brown color.
-Malty chocolate flavor with a very light rose finish.
-Best with the smallest amount of milk and sweetener.
-Very good tea. Silky chocolate flavor with a floral note.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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90

We were our of town this past weekend at a soccer tournament. Saturday was nice and sunny, but Sunday was absolutely freezing and rainy. It was pretty miserable sitting on the sidelines watching the games. But I’m sure the girls who were playing were really cold and wet, so I didn’t complain too much. I was glad that we took our little 16 oz. Bodum electric kettle and some sample teas so that we could make some teas in the room to take to the games and then also to have a cup at night.

We went up early on Friday to spend the day in Richmond and went to the Carytown area to have lunch and visit Carytown Teas. Overall, I wasn’t super impressed with the store. I took a list of teas that I had found on their website to try, and when I got there and realized that a lot of their teas are Harney’s that they just resell. That cut my list down a lot, since I already have a lot of Harney’s and would just rather buy from them. The shop was really cluttered, there was literally stuff all over and it was all jumbled and didn’t really make me want to browse around a lot. My fiancee asked to use the restroom and he told me later that there were actually teas being stored in the bathroom! They were in clear plastic bags on the floor, but still . . .

I ended up purchasing 3 teas. Mistie’s Blend was the only one that I really wanted to try from there. It smells heavenly, like very rich cocoa. There is a nice hot chocolate aroma while the tea is steeping. The ingredients list rose buds and hazelnuts, but there are only ordinary black tea leaves in the blend. I’m not going to lie – I was a little sad, since I love rose flavor and if it’s listed on the ingredients I kind of am expecting it to be in there when I open up the bag. Maybe I am just being too picky? The flavor is malty and chocolatey with a little hazelnut finish. There is a nice cocoa aftertaste that lingers. Sadly, I can’t taste any rose in the blend whatsoever. The tea is a little thin also, but not terribly so. This is a nice tea and it really does taste like a tea version of hot chocolate, but if I could find another tea with rose added in I would probably purchase that one.

-Dry blend has medium black tea leaves and twigs.
-Dry leaves smell strongly of rich cocoa. Tea liquor aroma is of black tea and nuts with just a hint of cocoa.
-Tea liquor is a cloudy dark brown color.
-Malty chocolate flavor with a small hazelnut finish. Lingering cocoa aftertaste.
-Best with milk and sweetener.
-Very good tea. Thin hazelnut and hot cocoa taste. No rose flavor noticeable.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec
Emilie

Even if the tea was sealed, it seems so odd to store it in the bathroom!

Bonnie

Gross! Not the tea but the storage!

Serenity

Oh, too bad there was no rose flavor!
Customer: Do you have any oolong?
Employee: Jack! Check the bathroom? We got any oolong?
Customer: Uhhhh….

Josie Jade

So glad that I’m not the only one that found this odd! Maybe they had just received a shipment or something and ran out of room to store it???

Shmiracles

oh noes!! haha this is hilarious. and sad. and hilarious.
well, i go to Carytown Teas often. the owners are grumpy. and also friendly. they are very human. (basically i used to think the owners hated me, but now they are very nice to me always and i still kinda feel like they hate me. … with all the moods it’s like i’m back in Philadelphia! home sweet home)
it’s a weird place. if i were being more diplomatic i would say it’s a unique place. but seriously some of their teas are the best i’ve had. and i love it for all these wacky reasons.

i can’t wait to see what the third tea you bought was! (on saturday i got the blood orange puerh and the coconut oolong)

Shmiracles

basically i find the place odd ball quirky cute. the clutter and double door entrance and collage of peoples tea mail sent to the store.
maybe when i visit i feel like i’m a character in an indie movie?

Josie Jade

I agree that their teas are good. I rated both of them high. Mistie’s Blend was good, even though it didn’t match the description at all in my opinion. The other tea was the Provence Rooibos blend. It smelled different than I expected, so I hope that I like it. I was so close to getting the Coconut Oolong too!

It is a quirky little place, just very much not what I expected.

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95
drank Mandarin White Puerh by Carytown Teas
205 tasting notes

What an interesting and beautiful tea. Cute little mandarin orange peels stuffed with beautiful white puerh tea.

I gave my leaves a rinse before brewing. I steeped it for a minute which I see was a bit long according to the directions here (no internet at home to check). Each sip brought different notes to light. My first sip tasted mostly like a white tea with a hint of orange at the end. By my last sip, I was tasting notes of honey and citrus. I can’t wait to try the brewing instructions suggested above and see what comes from that :)

Thanks, sissy, for sending me this!!

Shmiracles

oh wow! wow wow! you got this rare little bird too! you’re sister is thoughtful :)
i haven’t sampled this since i bought it. and it really deserves some more of my time.

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67
drank Genmachia by Carytown Teas
47 tasting notes

I’ve made a few pots of this in the past week, and every time I’m surprised by how much I enjoy the grassy rice cake flavor. Big thanks to my sis for discovering the name of this style of tea.

Shmiracles

yay another richmonder! my sister also got me into teas about a year ago. now i’m an unstoppable tea machine!

Shmiracles

oh wait i just realized you are probably Em’s sister. …i wish my sis would use steepster :) that would be so fun.

Em

She is my sis :)

Shmiracles

well this is My sis http://steepster.com/oddree but as you can tell she doesn’t use steepster enough… even though she originally told me about it and got me into tea in the first place. i owe it all to her. and we still share all the teas we can cuz she lives down the street :)

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50
drank Sweet Oblivion by Carytown Teas
47 tasting notes

Just finished the 2 oz. I bought to try this out. I started having just a cup in the evening, but this week I began brewing a pot before bedtime as they suggested. I’m not sure if it has helped me sleep, though.

I like the flavor of chamomile, which was my bedtime tisane before I tried this. This blend has a certain tang that took some getting used to. I think it might be fennel. Anyway, it’s not bad, but I think I’ll go back to plain old chamomile.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 8 min or more

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67
drank Russian Earl Grey by Carytown Teas
47 tasting notes

I was hoping for something more, but this is pretty much just a pleasant Earl Grey.

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100
drank Hot Cinnamon Spice by Carytown Teas
47 tasting notes

My favorite tea, particularly in the winter. I love cinnamon flavored things, and this is a perfect blend of the sweet and hot cinnamon flavors. I add a little honey to punch it up, but it doesn’t need it.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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66

My sample is lableled only “Assam” and the tea leaves are much smaller than the photo, but the smaller pieces allow for a lot of flavor to come through. Good Assam, even on the second infusion (for which I used a 5 minute infusion).

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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91

Thank you to Em for including this in your Christmas exchange gift to me. It’s lovely! I kind of think I should have started my day with this, because this has the heft that I was looking for … that kept me drinking black teas today (including this, I’ve had four mugs of black tea, and I don’t usually have that many in one day) … then again, I might have stopped with this one and I really enjoyed those other teas. So maybe now is the time for business from a black tea!

It is rich and flavorful from the Assam and the Nilgiri, but it has a touch of lightness from the Darjeeling. This is still definitely a full-flavored tea, but, the Darjeeling does add enough lightness to keep it from feeling too overwhelmingly heavy. This is just right – a good kick in the cup when you need one.

The description suggests warm nutty tones and I get that … as well as touches of fruit throughout the sip. Astringent at the tail … but not overly so. It has rich malty tones, this would be awesome as a latte, but I like it quite well served straight too.

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100

This is my very first Rooibos tea. I was surprised how much I liked it. I followed the directions for brewing on rooibostea.com. Also followed the suggestion of putting milk and honey in it. YUMMO! Of course I had to go buy several other flavors of this delicious caffeine-free tea. I’ve been very impressed with the teas I’ve had from Carytown Teas.

Tomorrow, I’m heading to the Dragonfly Artisan Tea Cottage in Sylvania, Ohio for lunch tomorrow. Going to check out their selection. It’s my 2011 Christmas gift from a friend. We’re finally making time to do it. Can’t wait!

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more
gmathis

Have fun!

Em

Thanks! We may have to move the date to Thursday, but I’m hoping it works out :)

LiberTEAS

I like Carytown Teas. They are so warm and friendly.

Shmiracles

it’s funny, cuz I read this and was immediately like Wow an RVA person! … i live in Richmond VA and go to Carytown Teas once in a while, and it never occurred to me that people who don’t live here would order their tea online. duh! (i’ll probably appreciate them even more now.)

Em

My sis lives in Richmond and I give her my orders when she’s coming to visit :) I went to Carytown Teas once and enjoyed the experience as well as my purchase. Do you have any suggestions for me to ask her to pick up next time she visits?

Shmiracles

i don’t have recommendations, but i will try to get my sister to make a recommendation for sure! i know she has favorites from Carytown that she buys over and over. she’s also been drinking tea a bit longer than me, so she’s got all the experience. :)

Em

Awesome! BTW, I love that your cat’s name is House Party 3 :)

Shmiracles

to quote my sister, last night she said that the Carytown “Russian Earl Grey is the best tea she’s ever had. Period.” so there that :)
but also they are often out of it because it’s so popular.

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drank Kenya Milima by Carytown Teas
205 tasting notes

I’ve tried different temps and times but this tea still doesn’t do it for me. I think I’ll pass it on to a friend. She might have better luck.

Anna

I have to say, after the first few cups of the sample I had, I wasn’t as impressed by it.

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drank Kenya Milima by Carytown Teas
205 tasting notes

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drank Kenya Milima by Carytown Teas
205 tasting notes

Rethinking my rating on this after my experience today. This was so bitter that it was undrinkable. I’m going to try steeping at a shorter time the next time I make it with a lower temp. Going to take away my rating for now until I make a final decision about it.

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drank Kenya Milima by Carytown Teas
205 tasting notes

My sis picked this up for me. At first smell, I was disappointed. Thought it smelled much like Lipton. The taste surprised me. It is a nice smooth black that has a bit of sweetness to it. The more I try it the more I love it.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 0 sec
Anna

I brewed the same tea from Harney & Sons this morning, and most of the notes I saw about that suggested a shorter brewing time (from 90 seconds to 3 minutes) to reduce the bitterness and bring out more of the delicate flavors.

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77

After falling in love with the rose tea from Carytown Teas, I sent an order with my sister for a few other flavors. This is one of the blends she brought me. I like the light nutty flavor. Enjoying it this afternoon as a catch up on some of my reading for work.

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91

Discovered this tea while visiting my sister in Richmond. Carytown is a fun place to visit and this tea store has a great selection. This was my introduction into floral teas. I’ve always enjoyed the flavor of rose in deserts and candies. It is a wonderful match to black tea.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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54
drank Flu Fighter by Carytown Teas
6770 tasting notes

meh.

It’s not bad but it doesn’t really taste like much…but…if it does the trick!?

Anyhow…it lingers with the lemon but not much else. During the sip I can taste the chamomile…not really sure how I feel about this one to be honest…

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