Culinary Teas

Recent Tasting Notes

25
drank Cardamom Tea by Culinary Teas
1717 tasting notes

This smelled so strong in the pouch, I was afraid I was going to have to push the slider clear down to Mr. Yuk. Don’t have to go that far, but I’m not gettin’ much o’nothin’ … Maybe a little piney or cedary hint in the background, which would be more appropriate if I were in the porch swing of an Ozarks cabin on this soggy day, instead of stuck at a desk. Bottom line—diluted Mr. Clean.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 15 sec

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59
drank Coronation Tea by Culinary Teas
357 tasting notes

Doulton’s Shakespeare: A Tasting Note in 5 Acts
Act II scene 2

O, no! the apprehension of the good
Gives but the greater feeling to the worse:
Fell sorrow’s tooth doth never rankle more,
Than when it bites, but lanceth not the sore.
Richard II, Act I scene 3

Aha! Finally, a tea from the Shakespeare box that’s got me a bit rankled. There’s no information about the tea itself on he packet (which the Culinary Teas website more than makes up for), so it’s a mystery tea. I opened it and looked inside. Ah crap: chamomile. Does this mean that it’s a decaf? There’s a ton of smaller dark leaves and some chamomile sprinkled throughout. I sniffed and couldn’t tell what black tea(s) were in it beyond Assam. I followed the packet’s preparation instructions.

The steeped tea confused me as well. I could definitely taste the chamomile and Assam, but there’s a whole lotta other tea goin’ on as well as quite an astringent bite. Three sips in and I had to find out what comprised this tea. No wonder I was confused: Ceylon, Assam, Darjeeling, Tinderet (which is new to me), and then chamomile. I kept sipping and thinking that I disliked this tea, but then I kept getting little hints of sweet that got me to go “um”: a thoughtful and unsure “yum”. I did the second steep the exact same way as the first and this time around the Ceylon reached through with its sweetness. I wished that the first steep had been a bit more like the second. I’m rather enjoying the second steep except for the dryness that’s happening at the back of my throat. It’s quite noticable. Okay, the back of my throat hates this tea.

Therefore, I dub this tea Richard II. Not one of Shakespeare’s greatest, but not one of his worst. It’s a very “talky” play, so you get some great speeches but the action is lacking. This tea has got a lot to say and sometimes it succeeds in being eloquent. Unfortunately it also sometimes tastes like an argument. M

ETA: Third steep is water with a hint of tea.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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48
drank Blend 1776 by Culinary Teas
40 tasting notes

No notes yet. Add one?

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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86

It’s weird…I keep coming across more and more of this…just when I think I have a SIPDOWN or swapped the rest I find more! LOL

This is a goody – a little bit on the lighter side than my first few cups of the day but yummy regardless.

Using this as more swap ammo :)

Anny Oxidant & the Tea Bullie

I have seen this term before.
“sipdown”
Can you explain it to me please?

TeaEqualsBliss

SIPDOWN…when you SIP DOWN the rest of that specific tea from your stash :)

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86

backlogging two cups from earlier today :)

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86

Backlogging a mighty-fine cuppa…see previous notes :)

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86

Backlogging from yesterday…

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86

I received a pouch of this from LiberTEAs today and jumped right in even tho I did have a little bit about a year ago but now I can add this back to my stash! I will say that I enjoyed this cuppa! This is a very good Margaret’s Hope and a fine Darjeeling! See previous notes…

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86

Okay…I fully expect comments on this one…but…seriously…post-infusion – this is FIRST what I thought of based on SMELL

Baked or Deep Fried Mushrooms! (but in a good way!)

Seriously…that’s what it smells like! And it smells yummy. You might think that sounds weird…but it smells bready or breading-like…

It’s a nice medium brown color and a very satisfying taste. I would say it’s a medium strength type.

I always wondered about the story behind Margaret’s Hope and I am glad I found it (it’s posted in the description)…I will be fully reading it here shortly…I wanted to post my findings before hand.

I can totally see why they would suggest pairing this with a croissant or danish or scone! I think it would also be wonderful with roasted veggies, baked or fried bready stuff, or veggie or hummus wraps!

Can you tell I am HUNGRY????

Regardless…I like this. It’s yummy.

TeaEqualsBliss

11 likes but no comments!? LOL – I thought FOR SURE someone would say SOMETHING about the Deep Fried Mushroom mention! :P

Rabs

Lol! I guess that we’re all being polite today ;) I can’t really comment on having odd scent associations since I get a lot of them. And as far as making a snarky comment about mushrooms and being fried…well, there you have it! :D

TeaEqualsBliss

I knew I could count on you Rabs!!! :P Thanks! teahee!

Ewa

Hahaha, nice Rabs! I completely missed that. I’m afraid my Veiled Subtext Detector may be malfunctioning :P

Rabs

LOL! Glad to be of service :) I did, however, drop the ball on “baked.” D’oh!

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70
drank Prince of Wales by Culinary Teas
357 tasting notes

Doulton’s Shakespeare: A Tasting Note in 5 Acts
Act I scene 4

“Be not afraid of greatness: some are born great, some achieve greatness, and
some have greatness thrust upon ’em.”
Twelfth Night, Act II, scene 5

Meet Malvolio in tea form. If you don’t know him from the play Twelfth Night, then you should know that he’s a pretentious prig. Back in the day my college did a version of Twelfth Night where it was set on an alien planet and Malvolio was portrayed as a Vulcan. It was a brilliant concept and should help you picture how I view this tea.

The tea packet gave no hint as to what it contained beyond black tea. I sniffed the packet and was confused. I had absolutely no idea what I was smelling. Something kind of fruity? But not really fruity. The blend was quite striking to look at: different sorts of leaves, little seeds(?), and pretty violet and orange petals. I steeped it.

I got the scent of Assam (Woohoo! My Keemun/Assam/Ceylon trilogy did seem to help me figure out black teas better), and the fruity smell was still there, only it seemed deeper. I realized that this tea contains some green tea as well when I looked at the steeped leaves. I sipped. What on earth was this tea?!?!? It’s somewhat fruity (I couldn’t identify the fruit, but it seemed familiar), on the verge of being bitter, and I was at a loss. This tea was utterly alien to me. So I hopped on the webs and looked this puppy up. Wow. Culinary Teas really breaks down its tea with loads of info!

Assam! I was right! ::does happy dance:: Oh, but there’s Ceylon too. D’oh! Gunpowder and Lucky Dragon Hyson. Hmm…I haven’t enjoyed Gunpowders so far and I haven’t the foggiest on Lucky Dragon Hyson. But that might explain the bitterishness. Oh – the fruit! ::facepalm:: Black currants! I can only think of one time I’ve had black currants in my life: it was this bizarre candy my dad brought me after he returned from a business trip. I forgave myself for not knowing that one.

So why Malvolio? This tea is so full of it. It seems pretentious. But you know what? I absolutely adore the character of Malvolio. He gets some of the best laughs. I actually enjoyed the complexity of this tea and knowing that there’s green tea in there I lowered the temp to 190 on my second steep. The flavors were much much better/smoother. I’m actually thinking that this would be an amazing cold brewed iced tea. I can’t say that I love this tea, but I think it has the potential for greatness. It just needs to be put in its place first. NE

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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89
drank Chocolate Mint by Culinary Teas
255 tasting notes

The dry tea smells just like a Peppermint Patty. This tea is a tasty confection that leaves my mouth feeling fresh and satisfied. It’s more subtle on the mouth, but as Culinary Teas notes in their description: "It should be noted that natural flavors tend to be somewhat ‘soft ‘ and the flavors slightly muted, but for many this is a refreshing change and one of the desired attributes of our naturally flavored teas. "

Keeping that in mind, I appreciate the tea more. There is no hint of anything synthetic or unnaturally brassy. It’s a very nice marriage which, like the delightful York’s Peppermint Patty, tends to draw out the peppermint with the chocolate as a supporting player. So far the best peppermint/chocolate I have had.

Preparation
5 min, 15 sec

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70
drank Cardamom Tea by Culinary Teas
255 tasting notes

Hey, who took the tea out of my tea? I think that my tastes have become more pronounced. I don’t like weak teas. I like teas to slap me around with smoke; to bang me in the face with a ton of spinach; to throttle me with riches; to have a body like one of those WWW guys and the education of a Rhodes scholar. I like a tea with an upbringing like Prince Charles including all of the eccentricities and the bite of his Rottweiler.

A few months of consideration and serious drinking has led me to reject the timid. I think that Cardamon tea on its own is a timid little lassie, unschooled in the ways of the world. I could envision serving this to children at a little tea party (note to self: I’m glad my children are now officially elderly and don’t need service, whatever they might want).

I think I’ll say that if you like Cardamon, the taste is there. I think I’ll save this tea and add it to a really rich full-bodied tea and see if I can make my own blend of Chai. Must pursue JacquelineM’s recipes for home blends.

Ewa

…spinach?
But yeah, that definitely sounds like a candidate for chai.

LiberTEAS

Yeah… it would be good for a custom blend of chai… it might also be good with a chocolate-y tea.

AmazonV

i know that mixing the Cardamon Cinnamon tea from republic of tea with another tea or even just wine or apple juice results in delicious things, alone it is rather sad.

Ewa

Wine, really? Do you heat it up or what?

AmazonV

@Ewa yes in the winter hot mulled wine is delicious, just put a bit in with the spices in a pot and warm it up and keep taking sips after a few minutes until the spice is strong enough. my favorite is red wine with chai spices, although apple wine with cinnamon is good as well.

SoccerMom

hmmm I’ve heard of mulled wine but never tried it. I guess I’ll have to try this recipe in the winter.

Ewa

I’ve made mulled wine before (best use of two-buck Chuck, evar!) but it never occurred to me to use tea for it.

AmazonV

call it lazy? the tea was kinda lacking…something but was nice and spicy, so we found another better use for it!

Ewa

woah woah woah, that’s not lazy, it’s INNOVATIVE.

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67

Still good and raisin-y, but today’s batch went a little bitter after it cooled for a while. (What? Let a cup sit that long? Am I nuts?)

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67

Trixie Belden and the Missing Tea
A Steepster Mystery

The first morning sip was fine, light, and winey. But within twenty short minutes of pouring it into a travel mug, the flavor was flat and tasteless as dishwater. Did a nefarious and sinister villain switch the mugs in transit? Who wishes the poor tea taster to suffer a poor morning cuppa? Can the missing flavor be recovered? Only Trixie and her new tea-sniffing Labrador named Tippy can crack this case!

AmazonV

sad but funnily put story

gmathis

I believe a porta-mug that doesn’t suck all the life out of your tea is my equivalent of the Grail.

__Morgana__

LOL. I remember Trixie! Gosh, and Cherry Ames…

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67

I was all primed, since the title contains “pan fired,” to be assaulted with smoke from the first sip. Not the case, though. It’s nice and gentle and a little grapey in the background. Baked golden raisins, maybe.

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84

Tropical fruits and black tea for an afternoon with the promise of snow. This tea was a gift from my friend, Lillian, a recently retired math teacher and all-around classy woman.

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

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75
drank Formosa Oolong by Culinary Teas
1717 tasting notes

Opened this to compare to my ace-in-the-hole health food store cheapie oolong. It’s a little sweeter, a little more golden, and I’d almost swear to some raisiny stuff happening in the background. Makes me feel a little upscale on a decidedly NOT upscale morning.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 5 min, 0 sec

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94

Finished this bit off today! It is one of the better Assam’s I’ve had! Very smooth. Not astringent to me. I didn’t need to add any sugar or milk to it, but adding it doesn’t hurt the flavor.

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

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71

Another sipdown but a different day! lovely Pear hot or cold with heavy rooibos. Wish there was more pear but this is ok

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71

I decided to revisit this one and do it iced. I seem to like most Rooibos Iced and this is just about average…I’ll stick with the previous rating…but it was really hard to pick out the pear…wish it had more!

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71

Nothing is over the top with this in smell or taste but it is pleasant and sweet and an enjoyable cup

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50

It’s been a long, somewhat difficult day. So I pulled out this decaf to try tonight in hopes of a calming effect without the caffeine. It has a strong artificial flavor and taste. I guess I don’t really remember what grenadine tastes like. Somehow, in my mind, I thought grenadine tasted like maraschino cherries. I’m probably wrong about that. On the good side, there is very little bitterness to this tea. Every other possible taste is covered up by the strong strange taste that I am assuming is grenadine. Meh.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec
takgoti

That’s what it tastes like to me – maraschino cherry juice. Jillian revealed that it’s actually made with pomegranate [part of my brain still refuses to accept that], but I still associate it with cherries.

Jillian

I think it does have sort of a cherry taste but I also get pomegrante flavour out of it too. But it’s very sweet, and very syrupy-tasting.

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32
drank Blend 1776 by Culinary Teas
224 tasting notes

Is one especially patriotic if one drinks 1776 tea in the morning? Or would it have to be drunk on July 4 to get the patriotic points? It is a silly name for a tea.

The ingredients don’t seem to match what I think of when I think of revolutionary history either: strawberry, maple, Assam, Ceylon, and Kenyan teas.

None of them are even the teas tossed into Boston Harbor, which consisted of 240 chests of Bohea, 15 of Congou, 10 of Souchong (all black teas), 60 of Singlo, and 15 of Hyson (both green teas). Green tea accounted for about 22% of the shipments’ total volume, and 30% of the value. Now if someone wanted to create a Boston Tea Party blend in honor of the event in 1773, those are the teas to blend.

But I’m delaying telling you about this tea. Either I brewed it too long or it is naturally this bitter. There is a strong strawberry taste similar to Marco Polo. I don’t taste the maple. In truth, I’m not anxious to taste anything more from this tea.

Off to brew something else.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec
S

Wow, I’ve impressed by your history skills! I’ve never heard of any of those teas, except Souchong. And, now I’m craving a black-green blend.

Carolyn

I’m married to a history professor so any history skills I have are just the product of rubbing against his skills. (Which sounds like it should be more fun than it actually is.)

In this case, I knew that the colonists couldn’t have been using Kenyan tea (because it hadn’t been planted there yet) and knew that the tea of choice in the colonies was Bohea since it makes an appearance in several poems and works of literature from that period. Since I was miffed at the tea for being ahistorical in ways I knew were wrong and for being bitter to me, I just looked up the exact composition of the cargo using the great Google. So I’m less impressive than I might first appear.

Peggie Bennett

Maybe because the colonists were bitter, so the tea blend was bitter? :-)

I’m no historian by any stretch of the imagination. I can’t even remember last week.

teaplz

Carolyn, your explanation of the Boston Tea Party’s shenanigans was awesome. I’ve been wondering what the teas were that were dumped into the harbor for a long time, but I never took the time to research! Thanks for the info!

Auggy

Now I really wish there was a blend reflecting what was actually dumped overboard!

sophistre

Living in Boston myself, I can tell you that the harbor has probably never smelled better than it did that evening in 1773.

S

LOL sophistre! I second that!

Cofftea

Patriotic any day, double points on any US holiday other than July 4th, triple points on July 4th.

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