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Recent Tasting Notes
From the EU TTB
I’m a bit of a sucker for a chocolate tea, so I was pleased to see this one in the box. I used 1 tsp of leaf for my cup, and gave it 3.5 minutes in boiling water. I added a splash of milk.
To taste, it’s pretty good. There’s chocolate, all right, although it’s a little on the artificial side. The base is a little overpowering, I’d say. I can taste more ceylon, with its classic citrussy notes, than I can flavouring. It’s like a chocolate biscuit dipped in tea. The more I sip, the more I’m reminded of Adagio’s Chocolate Chip, which also has a ceylon base and a slightly artificial chocolate flavour. It’s nice, but not the best chocolate tea I’ve ever tasted.
I’m on the fence with this one. I bought several teas from The English Tea Store and this one by far is the best of them. There is something in this tea I can’t quite put my finger on – then I read the reviews here about it having a floral taste. Ah, that’s it. I am not a fan of floral teas. This one is subtle with the floral and I still find it drinkable. I will finish my supply out but it will not be a re-order for me.
This is a hardy green tea, consistent and forgiving; a good beginning green tea for brewing gong-fu style. The pellets stay fresh for rather a long time, and the flavor is strong. If you’re looking for a light green tea, this is not it. This is a rigid flavor, grassy at first, then becoming nutty and sweet. Perfect for sipping in the rain, with the smell of wet grass. Astringency patiently increases with each steeping. The oak-woody undertone is pleasant, and there is a relaxing hint of cannabis.
Overall, a very affordable, really cheap green tea that doesn’t offer much but a strong, enjoyable brew. Nothing special, but just what to expect. It is very important not to use water that is too hot, despite it’s hardiness, and steep shorter as with other greens.
Flavors: Cannabis, Grass, Nutty, Oak wood
This is a lovely Earl Grey! Very aromatic and the caramel adds just enough sweetness to make this tea a wonderful after dinner tea. One of my personal favorites and a tea that is consistently in my rotation.
Flavors: Bergamot, Caramel, Floral, Honey
This tea looks nice and smells decent but the flavor is a disappointment as the chai chokes the green tea to death in your cup as it steeps. This brews a rather dry and rough cup with a dark green tea taste as if it has sat in your tea for longer than you left it (yes, that bitter taste)
A really nice tea. The black tea base is smooth and malty. It’s rich and flavorful but not overly aggressive. An excellent afternoon tea.
Soft floral notes. Delightful notes of strawberry and soft hints of citrus. The flavoring here is very delicate – this is a tea first and a flavored tea second, if you know what I mean. It focuses first on the tea, and then the tea is accented with soft flavors. The lemon is delicate but uplifting.
Not an overly astringent tea but it is slightly dry at the finish. Smooth and sweet until the finish where it becomes lightly dry.
I wish I would have read the description of this tea before I tried the sampling of the tea that I had, because I thought it was a straight black tea and not a blend of black and green teas. I steeped it in boiling water for 3 minutes and this imparted some bitterness to the cup (I think the green didn’t like that I overlooked it and it acted out in my teacup.)
Even with the bitterness, it isn’t a bad tasting tea but it could certainly be better.
I love the aroma – the combination of bergamot and jasmine are delightful. I like the way these two elements play with one another in the cup. The tangy bergamot is an interesting contrast to the sweet, exotic floral notes.
The Assam is bold and the aforementioned bitterness may be there because of the Assam or it may be that the green tea acted out as I said before. I don’t get a lot of green tea flavor in the presence of the stronger Assam.
Overall, it’s alright, but I think it’d be better if I’d brewed it differently. Therefore I won’t rate it numerically.
Flavors: Bergamot, Jasmine, Malt
To me, this tea is smooth and yummy! I love rooibos, as I get the feeling of tea without the caffeine in the evenings. My new tea plan is to drink a different rooibos each night to calm down before bed.
I brewed it for about 10 minutes. My first impression was that it was a little weak, but that is because I have been mainly drinking black teas. After a few sips, I picked up cocoa and vanilla flavors. Then I added a splash of almond milk and a pinch of sugar. The caramel flavor really popped out at that point. It almost tasted like a milky way candy bar. Very soothing as well. I will be drinking and ordering this tea often.
Flavors: Cacao, Creamy, Rooibos, Vanilla
This seems to be my go-to tea these days, and I’m glad I ordered more so I can have it several times a week. My latest blend with it turned out very nicely. I used a 4 cup pot and 3 tsp of this mixed with 1 tsp of Vanilla Cream Black Tea and 1 tsp of dried lavender. I added about 2 tsp of sugar. I tried it both with and without milk, but with milk dilutes the flavor too much. It is really soothing and perfect as it is. It is tangy and creamy from the Earl Grey, but has a candy quality from the vanilla tea and the lavender.
I did a rebrew with a bit of added tea and that turned out okay, but not as good as the first brew.
It’s been a long week. A very long week and I’m in the middle of several weeks with no rest. So, my teas are what I am looking forward to right now. I bought some dried lavender today and decided to try it in this tea. It took a good tea to great! I’m a little new at tea blending, but I definitely enjoyed this one. I mixed 1.5 tsp Earl Grey Cream with 1/2 tsp Vanilla Cream (also from ETS) and 1/2 tsp dried lavender flowers. It is creamy, sweet, and floral in about equal parts. What a great, relaxing tea to be drinking in the middle of a busy Saturday!
I also love this tea on its own. It has a nice, sweet, citrusy taste. I do wish it had slightly more vanilla and bergamot, but is is still good. I find that I actually like this best very lightly sweetened (about 1/3 tsp per cup) and without milk.
I’ve brewed this several times, and I think I’m ready to review it. It is sweet, floral, and citrusy. It’s pretty much what I expected, but maybe even a little smoother.
Today’s brew is slightly weak. I think this tea might be better brewed at the 4 min mark. I’ll give that a try next time.
So yum! I love the berry taste that comes out with just a little bit of sugar. I can also taste the nice blossoms that round out the flavor of this one. I haven’t tried it at a lower temperature, but I have tried it brewed longer. I prefer this one brewed for closer to 3 minutes, otherwise it is too strong. When I brewed it strong, I mixed the rebrew in and that helped tremendously.
Flavors: Blackberry, Flowers
Queued post, written April 23rd 2014
I’ve learned, relatively recently, that a ‘monks blend’ is often something that involves vanilla and grenadine. Well. Isn’t that really all the justification I need to nab this one out of the EU TTB round 2?
Vanilla and a relatively tart sort of fruit seems to generally be a winner for me. There is the fabled Late Summer blend from AC Perchs which has vanilla and cranberry, for example, and the very idea of vanilla and grenadine in tea (who am I kidding? In anything! ) holds a great appeal to me.
This one smells both tart and sweet. I can easily tell that there is vanilla in it and the grenadine is equally clear and easy to detect. I can’t pick up anything of the base, though, which is a shame.
Gosh, this stuff! This is very similar to the aforementioned late summer blend, actually! It’s just grenadine instead of cranberry, and to be entirely honest with you I don’t think there is that big a difference between those two things to begin with.
I’m tasting primarily pomegranate-y grenadine. The vanilla smooths everything out and adds sweetness before the pomegranate comes again in spades on the swallow. I should have liked to have a little more vanilla in this, but it’s very good already as it is. It’s weird with flavours, really. In almost anything flavoured I want to be able to taste the base as well as the flavour. Except vanilla. There is always room for more vanilla.
I was skimming other people’s posts about this one, and came across one written by Anna. She didn’t like this blend very much but she wrote that she thought it would probably be something for me. I laughed when I saw. How right you are, Anna. How right you are.
I think I’m going to keep trying this tea. I’ve had it two days in a row and I can’t seem to get the steeping parameters correct. I tried this morning to steep it for 3 minutes, and it was a nice smooth black tea but not much fruity goodness. I added a bit of sugar and milk, and that definitely improved the taste! I was hoping to find in this tea a nice strong black tea that didn’t need sugar or milk, but I guess I should be happy to drink it like I drink all my other black teas. It certainly is a great tea for it’s price point!
I think I was spoiled by Short and Stout’s Monk’s Blend – it is much more syrupy sweet, which is a plus for me.
This is a very nice, drinkable, medium bodied tea. I oversteeped it accidentally this morning, and was able to cure that with a little sugar and some milk. I think I prefer this tea milked and sugared anyway – British style! But, with the milk, and the oversteeping, I mostly taste black tea, and not much if any bergamont and almost zero jasmine. That’s fine with me today, as I am drinking this one for its strength. I will write another review later, where I steep it correctly. I’m also anxious to try this one iced.
A very finely chopped CTC. But that’s OK because as long as the tea is fresh, I find that the finely chopped Assam teas tend to be very robust, and that’s just what you want from an Assam. Just don’t oversteep it!
And this is a very hearty Assam. Lots of gusto, a strong, malty, rich flavorful Assam. Would be perfect as that first cup of the day. Nice caramel-y undertones. Good with milk and honey, or my recommendation would be to put a cinnamon stick in your teacup when you pour this tea into it. It won’t add a huge cinnamon taste, but just a hint of it … and it would be a really enjoyable, zesty contrast to the richness of this tea.
Went through so many little pouches of this that I bought a giant amount and now I’m afraid I’ll never get through it. Oh well. Every once in a while I get the urge for Lasang and this fits the bill nicely. A strong smoky scent and a very light tasting tea.
White tea antioxidants with black tea flavor? Sign me up. This tea is genius. It is so close to classic British black tea, and is strong enough to stand up to milk and sugar. I drink this when I don’t want too much caffeine but want the comforting taste of a nice cuppa.
I received a very generous sample of this from Marcel Duchamp. I had been wanting to try another companies version of Lady Londonderry so I was really excited when I saw this one.
This was a sweet strawberry/lemon tea. It was very light and fruity with a hint of floral. I had this hot this morning but I think this would also be very good iced. The last version I had of this tasted to me like plastic, this version was wonderful. I am glad I did not give up on Lady Londonderry!
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