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Recent Tasting Notes
GCTTB Round 5 V2.0
Opening the sample package releases a burst of caramel scent. I used ~1.5 tbsp with 500ml water steeped for 5 minutes . From what I can tell this is a medium roast oolong with caramel cubes added and white (possibly sugar) butterflies. The smell reminds me of the caramel matcha I tried from red leaf tea but the taste is obviously quite different.
The caramel and oolong notes compliment each other nicely for a mild mannered slightly sweet cup. If one pays attention it’s possible to pick out the base oolong – I would actually recommend brewing this one for 3 minutes instead of 5 as I got some astringency from it. As it cools the oolong comes forward a bit more but I could still taste the subtle caramel addition.
Very decent blend! I’d be curious to see how the fresh version compares
GCTTB5 original version
The scent of the dry leaf led me to believe that the peach and thyme were evenly balanced though after a brief steep, the peach almost disappeared and the thyme moved forward.I selected this tea today because I woke up feeling under the weather: truly weak with a killer sore throat and murderous migraine. Possibly the frigid blast of air conditioning here and there in public transit and public spaces pitted against the demon humidity and heat and rapid weather changes finally got to me.
In Morocco, thyme tea was used as a stomach soother but also general wellness tea, so I reached for this in hopes of general wellness vibes. While the water was boiling, I thought I might add some honey to this for my throat though I forgot all about that when the tea was ready.
I will add honey in the next cup.
Flavors: Peach, Thyme
I got a sample of this in the GCTTB 2.0 with fair warning that it was a little old. In my opinion it’s still a very nice tea with a smooth, light oolong base and sweet caramel flavours. I ate some homemade matcha shortbread with my cuppa tea and that really made the flavour pop. I’ll have to keep an eye out for this tea in stores so I can snag a fresh(er) canister.
Thank you Sil for sharing! This certainly did not disappoint. First of all, the little butterflies in the dry blend were adorable but more than that, this tea is delicious! This is so soft and creamy with just the right amount of buttery caramel deliciousness (think the soft, chewy caramels you get as a kid). Even the oolong base, which normally is not a favourite of mine, gives enough floral roastiness to heighten everything while not taking over the cup. It really is awesome and I am grateful for the chance to finally get to try such a beloved tea, even if it’s not the beloved caramel salted butter oolong. Thank you, Sil!
Since I’m on mobile, I’ll just note I brewed this for 4 min at 190F
This is delicious, it is a creamy buttery oolong with notes of caramel. It is very smooth and slightly sweet.
The package states that it is aging so I can only imagine how delicious it is when it is fresh! If I ever put in an order here, this would definitely be on the list!
The resteep was enjoyable, with less creamy caramel.
Cold Brew Sipdown (134)!
Thank you VariaTea for the sample! This has been on and off my wishlist for such a long time…
I think the flavour of this is absolutely divine! Without getting into too much detail, it reminds me of a perfectly baked sugar cooking with the lightest, most airy/fluffy lemon icing on top. It’s perfect, and simple and the flavours are show cased so damn well! At the same time, as I drank it, I had the most striking sense of flavour deja vu and it’s killing me because I know I definitely have not had this tea before and I cannot for the life of myself place what tea I’m being reminded of.
Really want to get my hands on more of this.
Flavors: Butter, Cookie, Cream, Frosting, Lemon, Vanilla
This is a very old sample (so old I no longer remember who sent it to me), and I can tell it’s the worse for it. There’s a lovely, smooth base, but beyond that I’m getting only whispers of peach. It seems like a delicate, natural peach, rather than the gummy candy sort of peach flavor you find more often in flavored teas. I’m not getting any thyme, which ruins the effect somewhat, but even in its diminished state I’m still finding this makes an enjoyable cup. I can only imagine it’s much better fresh, so I’m rating it partly for potential.
Sample comes from Kittenna.
- Really lovely, interesting tea…
- Sweet, creamy and buttery caramel notes
- Alongside nut, floral, lightly vegetal, mineral, & peachy base
- Sort of DOES have a “salty” finish; but lightly so
- Very smooth overall!
- Really just genuinely lovely
While the dry leaf smells peachy, the thyme definitely comes out more to play in the brewed tea.
However, as it got colder in my cup (I let it sit for too long), the thyme flavour became all wonky. It paired up with the peach flavour in a weird way to taste musty and artificial. I’ve never had Fauchon teas, but I’ve heard very good things about them, so I’m just going to assume that I’m some sort of uncultured boor who can’t grok the delicacy of refined French things.
Hmmm…. not bad. Fairly hazelnutty, but not like the coffee syrup. More like the cookies my mom used to make out of the hazelnuts we gathered from the back yard.
I do like this, but it’s not an absolute favourite.
I think it came from MissB…. thank you! :)
Smell is a mix of mint and berry, which is actually less strange than it sounds. Predominant flavour is mint, but it’s not an in-your-face mint. It’s quite mild (which I really like, mint is something I prefer in small doses) and shows up as a bit of a cooling sensation more than anything.
This is a creamy tea, and I mean that in the usual sense, but on top of that, the cooling from the mint gives an impression almost like actual cold cream despite being a hot drink. There is a floral hint to it, and some of the berry flavour comes in after the tea has cooled down a bit, but to me this is really a cream/creamy mint tea.
I don’t really get any kind of cakiness or association with birthday cake (who’s ever heard of a mint birthday cake?), but this blend does feel a bit like an upscale Santa’s Secret, and my birthday is close-ish to the holidays, so whatever, I’ll take it.
Much thanks to MissB for a whole tin of this! I’m really happy to have this as a part of my cupboard!
What a lovely, dainty black tea! I also was lucky to sample L’Anniversaire courtesy of MissB. If I didn’t know which ingredients were in the tea, I wouldn’t have been able to single out the mint, let alone anything else including the rose petals (and I love rose petals). Keep in mind, I sweetened it with stevia which obviously affects the flavor. Delicate, creamy, fruity and well-blended, this would make for an elegant choice for a social get together.
First off, I’m an arse – I just got this in a swap, and yet I oversteeped it. Of course. Because that’s my way! So, uh, 12 minutes.
Shockingly, it’s really really yummy. It smells a bit like plum pudding or fruit cake. I don’t get much out of the flavor other than an interesting, plummy-type of dryness.. again… I messed this up. Thank goodness there’s another good mug-full of tea to play with.
Thank you shezza, for so surreptitiously sharing some of this with me in LOOK Tea yesterday.
EDIT: What? caramel, pineapple, sweet orange, and maraschino… um… okay I get the orange (fruitcake, that’s what I identified it as) and marasschino (same thing), and possibly pineapple… but caramel? No. Well, maybe. Well… darn it, I so wish I hadn’t oversteeped this.
Flavors: Drying, Plums, Tart
Thanks for this one, Stephanie! In a lovely pink tin and all. :D I’m always looking for a nice peachy flavored tea. I didn’t see too many peach pieces actually in the blend, but it tastes like peach anyway. I do wish it would taste like peach slightly more, but I’m glad that it doesn’t taste like that fakey peach. I’ve had some pretty gross peach teas though, so that bar might be impossibly low. There is also a savory element with the thyme and it’s making it taste a little like pine to me, but in an interesting way. The black tea itself is tasty enough and pairs with the flavors. I like it with two teaspoons! I bet this would be awesome iced.
Steep #1 // 2 teaspoons for a full mug// 7 minutes after boiling // 3 minute steep
Steep #2 // couple minutes after boiling // 3-4 minute steep
Thanks again for the lovely package of teas, Stephanie! I’m finished with teas to review, so I should be trying more of the teas you sent more often. :D This oolong looks much darker than a jade green, more roasted than the usual green oolong. I also see occasional tangerine piece or almond in this pretty tin. The tangerine flavor is definitely there through the steeps — a tasty sweet tangerine. I was hoping there was more almond. The oolong itself seems buttery, not as roasty as I was expecting, possibly fruity to blend in with the tangerine. The second steep is even better — very thirst quenching. The third steeps loses a bit of the tastiness of the second steep. I don’t think I overleafed at all! I really like this one – just more almond would have been amazing.
Steep #1 // 2 teaspoons for a full mug// 15 minutes after boiling // 2 minute steep
Steep #2 // few minutes after boiling // 3 minute steep
Steep #3 // just boiled // 2-3 min
Oh Fauchon, why can’t I find you at Winners. I missed you when you were first reported to be there, thanks to my hectic schedule which prevented me from making a trip and snagging some teas. They were gone by the time I got over there. Winners/TJMaxx carried them coming two years now? They need to bring them back!
MissB was super duper kind to pass some of this down to me in the grab bag. The mango notes are incredibly subtle here, but I don’t know if it has always been like that or if it has to do with age. It’s also halfway between mango and peach. Not a clear mango.
In regards to the base, I am picking up on a slight smokiness that I get in some of Nina’s teas. Remember, I have an incredibly sensitive palate when it comes to any smokiness whatsoever. I’m by no means talking about Lapsang-level smoke, but rather the slightest undertone. Even so, I’m personally not a fan of that. The base also tastes on the dry side.
Ultimately, this would have been more my thing had they used a different base. But I can see some people being a fan of this.
Looks like I acquired this tea courtesy of MissB – thanks!
It smells absolutely divine, like a creamy milk chocolate; the flavour is perhaps not quite as good, but at least it doesn’t taste fake! That’s always a plus in my books. It just seems to be missing some of the deliciousness of the aroma in the flavour. I might try brewing a few different ways to test it out (I wasn’t overly careful with it tonight). Either way, I appreciate the uniqueness of this tea.