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Harney & Sons

Recent Tasting Notes

92

A life lesson, a presented by Rosehips-
Dont try to write your word count, listen to music, cook rice, and drink tea all at once. You will burn the rice, and be very cross.
However the tea will be delicious.

TeaBrat

ooo, I have an electric rice cooker and I do not regret buying it :)

Stephanie

Agreed, I was always too cool for a rice cooker, but now that we have one I LOVE IT SO MUCH

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drank Queen Catherine by Harney & Sons
1338 tasting notes

Sipdown!! (168)

Thank you keychange for introducing me to your beloved friend, the Queen, She was very nice but ultimately straight blacks are not my thing and so this is probably the end of our relationship. It was nice while it lasted though.

keychange

Glad she graced your cupboard for a bit! :)

VariaTEA

It was nice having her. Thank you for sharing :)

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89

Sipdown and I may need to reorder it again at some point. Lovely lemony bergamot goodness, though admittedly I did add just a touch of Harney’s vanilla black as I was a teeny bit short on the last of this. A little odd for me, but I prefer this with a touch of whole milk to add a creamy note. Goodbye for now Earl Grey Supreme!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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75
drank Jane's Garden by Harney & Sons
288 tasting notes

Step 1: Finish watching the last of the Star Trek: TNG movies.

Step 2: Listen to The Supremes to reckon with your “what am I going to do now that I’ve seen all that these characters who mean so much to me are ever going to do” Fiction Feels.

Step 3: Make tea, sip it, and write about it on Steepster.

Congratulations! You are TeaKlutz.

Uhhh OK, apparently I never added this to my cupboard let alone reviewed it. Well then!

This was one of my rare green tea nights. Tell the truth, I’ve been more of a CoffeeKlutz than a TeaKlutz the past several days. Not entirely sure why, just felt like something with a thicker texture. So I’ve had enough coffee today that I didn’t want anything super-caffeinated (anything less than black tea really isn’t going to wake me up, and sometimes black tea doesn’t even do that), and besides I feel like I’m being “healthy” when I drink green teas and I sure as hell have not been eating healthy the past several days, haha!

This is my second go-round. Miraculously, I managed not to overdo it. To be perfectly honest, there’s not a whole lot to say on this one. It’s the standard crisp green tea flavor with little bit of light rosiness, almost imperceptible. Jane has a lot of shrubbery and a rose bush or two. It’s not bad. It’s too understated for my taste, but it’s still “clean” tasting and enjoyable if you like flowery green teas.

I don’t have many green teas, so it’s nice to have it as an option.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 2 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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90

Serious deliciousness here. Whenever I crave coconut, I should brew up a cup of Harney & Sons Green Tea with Thai Flavors, a rare exception to my rule that green teas are better au naturel.

Flavors: Coconut

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 g 10 OZ / 295 ML

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75

Annoyingly, I just lost a lengthy tasting note relaying this afternoon’s steep-off chez sherapop between Harney & Sons English Breakfast and Mighty Leaf Organic English Breakfast. I’ll try to reconstruct what I wrote.

My first observation was that the tea in the Harney & Sons sachet was ever-so-slightly darker than in the Mighty Leaf sachet. Both smell like classic English Breakfast, with a hefty dose of Assam—or reasonable facsimile. Harney & Sons has used Kenyan Milima in place of Indian Assam. Not sure what Mighty Leaf is using. Perhaps it is just good old-fashioned Assam! The lighter coloring of some of the tips in the Mighty Leaf sachet leads me to suspect that they may be using more Ceylon or some other tea lighter than Assam as the mixer. I believe that Keemun is often used.

The brew of the Harney & Sons was slightly darker than the Mighty Leaf liquor—also dark amber. The scent was characteristically English Breakfast. I cannot smell or drink English Breakfast tea without thinking of Tazo Awake—no doubt because I consumed so much of it in the past.

As far as the taste is concerned, I began thinking that I preferred the Mighty Leaf. Then it seemed that I preferred the Harney & Sons. Basically I seemed to go back and forth from sip to sip! I mistakenly added cream before starting the sip-off, so probably I’ll need to do another steep-off in order to determine the winner in this case!

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 30 sec 2 g 10 OZ / 295 ML

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63
drank Cherry Blossom by Harney & Sons
504 tasting notes

This afternoon I have confirmed that the cherry flavoring of Harney & Sons Cherry Blossom is too strong for me. I don’t want to hold it against Harney & Sons, though, since I also prefer the second infusion of the Kusmi flavored green teas. It seems that, with rare exceptions, I really do prefer my green tea without adulterants…

Preparation
165 °F / 73 °C 2 min, 45 sec 2 g 9 OZ / 266 ML

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I woke up in a fairly bad mood this morning: my computer problems still haven’t been solved (although a solution is in the works), and I woke up to learn that I’d been locked out of my Gmail account because of some “suspicious activity”, but finally managed to prove my identity and logged back in. So far, no spam seems to have been generated from my address, but I suppose I’ll know soon enough.

So I felt as though only an unflavoured black would do. Breakfast tea, no deep thoughts. This seemed to fit the bill. I liked some sips more than others. Sometimes I got that hint of cardboard, but mostly it was a rather complex but undemanding cup of tea. I don’t quite know what I’m going to do with 8 oz of it though, so if anyone wants some, do let me know. All in all, a great breakfast tea, although if you don’t like Darjeeling, if might keep away from it since it’s rather prominent in the taste.

Cavocorax

Boo! That sounds so frustrating! Glad to hear you’ve at least got a tea that suits what you’re looking for, and I hope things pick up!

keychange

Thanks! I think we’ve got a fix in the works, so hopefully I’ll be up and running sooner rather than later.

Stephanie

Computer probs suck :/

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93
drank Rose Scented by Harney & Sons
671 tasting notes

Day two of Camp Nanowrimo. Its going to be a long day, and somewhat difficult to get all the things I need to do done, but I can do it.
Starting today off right, with this tea.
This conjures up an image of a soft pink blanket, gently settled around my shoulders. This is a soft rosy cloud, and very good. Light, and dreamy. A good tea. It will be good this spring.

Sil

you can dooo eeeeeet!

Terri HarpLady

Yay for Nanowrimo!! I’ve done the Nov project 3X, but haven’t done the Camp yet. Meanwhile, my sister, Ms Whatsit, is at Camp with you!! Have fun!

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30
drank Rose Scented by Harney & Sons
1 tasting notes

Beware this is a very rosy tea! The aroma is pungent, too pungent for my taste. The black tea base is reminiscent of Yunnan Golden Pu-erh from Teavana with honey undertones, a little overpowering though perhaps I steeped it for too long. I get some taste of soap, which is likely my aversion to the rose. I realize I do not much care for floral teas. Though it does leave a pleasant, flowery taste on the tongue, it is a bit scratchy at the back of the throat and the relaxing nature of the rose is in direct contrast to high levels of caffeine in the black tea; it gave me a bit of a jolt. I would recommend this only to lovers of rose; the scent for me is off-putting. What will I do with 4oz of this? Any blends one would recommend?

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 8 min or more 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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86

This sample was sent to me in a swap by the generous boychik. Thank you!!!

This is very good. It’s a perfect afternoon tea. (I made the mistake of drinking it with/after a big breakfast, which it wasn’t really assertive enough for.) It tasted a bit like berries and vanilla, but after reading boychik’s review I recognized that there was black currant. It is very mellow and smooth. It doesn’t have the over-the-top candy-like black currant flavoring of their tea of that name.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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90
drank Vanilla Comoro by Harney & Sons
460 tasting notes

So this tasting note was from a tea I had on Sunday, but I’ve been sick and way too tired to type up notes. However, I’ve been drinking mugs full of tea as often as possible. Nothing soothes a sore throat like a hot cuppa!

On Sunday I helped to host a baby shower for one of my good friends. It’s her first baby, and she had a lot of family coming in from out of town for the event. The one request to mother-to-be made was for a caramel cake. The week before the shower everything that could go wrong did, and it looked like the cake wasn’t going to happen until one of the other hostesses and her amazing husband said they could make salted caramel cupcakes instead. These sweet people were already making cream puffs and madeleines, so baking cupcakes for 50+ people was a lot to take on. If you can’t tell I’m still incredibly grateful for their baking skills!

Not only did they make them, but they were the most amazing cupcakes ever. They were even more amazing paired with this tea. It was seriously the best tea/food pairing I’ve ever had. The sweet and salty cake next to the rich vanilla tea was so delicious! I had several ladies ask me what the tea was, and when I told them, and that it was decaf, they thought I had read the tin wrong. I actually went into the kitchen and got the tin to show two of the ladies because they wanted to order some. Success! I can’t say it was the highlight of the shower (baby clothes are sooo cute!!!), but it was one of the little moments that made the shower special which is exactly what we wanted for the guest of honor.

After the shower was over I came home and made myself one more cup of this vanilla goodness as a pat on the back for a job well done. The added benefit was that I also got to fall into bed and sleep.

Rosehips

That sounds like a delicious combo. You have some awesome baking friends.

Veronica

I wish I had the words to properly convey how good it was. I’ll just go with “yummy”. :) And my baking friends really are awesome. They stepped in and took over way more than they should have because half of the hostesses (there were six of us) were either sick or had major family emergencies. Or both. It was quite a week!

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92

Nanowrimo friends, does anyone do Camp Nanowrimo? I am doing it this year, as I did it last year, and today is the first day.
The rules are the same, a wordcount every day, but instead of a set 50k, you can move it around. (I am still doing 50k), and you could write something other than a novel, but I want to write novels, so thats why I am doing.
Its always an occation to drink tea, so I decided to start off with a cup of a failsafe good tea. Extra honey flavor today, which is the best of luck. May it signal a sweet time writing!

Sami Kelsh

Ooh, I didn’t know there was a thing happening this month, but I could use a motivator to finish some short stories, so I shall happily join you!

Rosehips

I highly recommend it! Nanowrimo is an excelent motivator to get things done.

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97

This is my flat-out “Dudley Do-Right” never fail me tea. It is familiar to my tongue, as I was raised on “80 bags a box” tea….but this tea is what THAT tea SHOULD have been. It is earthy, malty, whole-mouth goodness. When it’s a chilly, rainy morning, and I’ve got scones baking in the oven, I know which tea I will reach for to make a simple great cup of tea to have with breakfast. I’m still sampling all sorts of assams and other black teas that take milk and sugar well, but for now, this is my standard cup. Well played, Harney. You’re in the lead so far!

Flavors: Earth, Malt

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML
Sami Kelsh

Mmm, this sounds lush. I’ll drink the “80 bags a box” stuff in a pinch, when I have to, but man, I couldn’t go back to it now as an everyday brew. There’s just so much better stuff out there!

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86
drank Russian Country by Harney & Sons
78 tasting notes

Really nice lapsang. My stomach says it’s strong, but there’s a nice mellower aftertaste, but yeah still smoky. I think I encouraged Shmiracles to get this one because of the name, and because it’s Harney, and because I know she likes lapsang too. I like all novel Russian things, and I have a few Kusmi tea collections in my Amazon wish list that are kind of a dream buy. Someday!

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Aww! Dexter3657 surprised me with a package today. Thank you! Some puerh to hoard away err, share with my brother, and a couple other samples. This was one!

I used the whole thing in a giant mug. :) Go big or go home tonight, I guess. And I like it! So true, it’s like puffed wheat. Only hot and not chewed. I think it would go well with milk! Mmm… I think I will need to hunt down something like this locally. Maybe one of the Asian supermarkets will have it!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 30 sec 3 tsp 20 OZ / 591 ML
Dexter3657

LOL – a little sweet, and a little milk and this is almost a sugary kiddy cereal. If you get a chance, I would for sure try it with a little milk. Glad you liked it. :))

OMGsrsly

I have buckwheat in my cupboard as well, so I could just make some. :) That would be sooo good! I wonder if I can resteep…

Suziqzer

Oh… Try the resteep.. I always do if I find something I really like. Why now see how many cups you will get. ?? But that’s just me. :)

Suziqzer

Why “not”… Oopsie… autocorrect got me again!

gmathis

Good thought—I’ll have to remember to look for it at our local indie grocery source.

OMGsrsly

You can get instant cereal tea with milk and sugar already added, I do know that. I haven’t been able to try them because they all have gluten.

I’ll be trying the resteep tonight. Fingers crossed!

VariaTEA

My roommate said this is very similar to Korean barley tea so you might be able to find something along those lines at an asian supermarket

OMGsrsly

Sadly barley = gluten. I have checked! I haven’t found one that’s unsweetened yet either. There’s a lot of instant stuff available here.

VariaTEA

Oh that is right. My bad.

OMGsrsly

:) No worries.

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79
drank Wedding Tea by Harney & Sons
2163 tasting notes

I’ve never had this one before and couldn’t resist picking some up when I came across a local coffee shop that sold some Harney teas in the tagalong tins…

The color of this is darker than some white teas I’ve tried and I was wondering if perhaps this was due to the rose element. When I compare mine to the picture that Harney provides, it definitely looks a lot darker. The aroma of this is very flowery and flavor wise, I get more vanilla and rose than anything else. A nice sweetness is present here but I wouldn’t say the lemon note is too prominent (I can’t really find it). I’m not the biggest fan of white teas in general, but I could see how this would be nice for a wedding or an afternoon tea served with cake.

More vanilla seems to be coming to the front as the cup cools, and if you ask me, this is smelling more and more like a cupcake as time goes by. I may try steeping this at a slightly lower temp. next time.

Probably not something I need to keep around for the permanent collection but I will certainly finish off the mini tin.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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81
drank Chocolate Mint by Harney & Sons
1392 tasting notes

Thanks Sil! (197)

Mmmmm…. This is chocolate mint done right! Not sure what makes it better than others, but it’s really outstanding. Guess I won’t need an afternoon snack after all!

Sami Kelsh

Mmm, I love chocolate mint!

ifjuly

i love all this harney chocolate tea love in my feed today! whee.

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Breakfast tea of the day, courtesy boychik! Touched because apparently it may not get restocked at all this year, but she still sent me some anyway (she even weighed the bag for me!). People are wonderful.

This is rather unlike any other Assam I’ve had. The steeping aroma smells like rum or perhaps brandy to me, or like hot raisins that have been plumped with said spirits and burst with steam and sticky sugar-liquor. There is the deep, earthy, rasping wood that borders on too bitter that I associate with Indian teas (others describe it as that “powdery” mouth-drying astringency) and love (that kind of bitterness I enjoy!). It kind of evokes bittersweet chocolate. I can see how this would be a champ at taking milk and/or sugar, but I’m loving it plain right now. I like how deep and complex and serious it is. I’m tempted to say it’s one of my favorite Assams now…it has the murky depth I love in my favorite Capital Tea Ltd. Assams, less sweetness (which to me is not a bad thing, especially in the morning). I like it more than many of the Steepster faves I tried throughout last year like Tiger Assam and SST 49. The flavors are so deep but it manages to stay drinkable (for me, I couldn’t detect/appreciate the ones in Tiger Assam, too faint and smoothed out to me, and SST 49 doesn’t achieve enough complexity before it edges into undrinkably strong and unpleasant territory). And Nicole’s right; this is one of the few teas I’ve had where the aspect of bitter tang from ferment-y fizzy liquor is so strong I feel vaguely like I’m drinking beer for breakfast. Might sound gross or off-putting to some but I find it delicious.

Now I am pining for more much like boychik. This is going on my “stock this if you ever get a chance” list. I wouldn’t recommend it to someone who prefers the relative softness and sweetness of Chinese black teas over the briskness and woody astringency of Indian or Ceylon legacy teas, but if you like the latter but find many lack complexity or feel a little wan, disappointingly thin, this is one to try!

boychik

I’m so happy you like it. At some point I was thinking maybe its my crazy taste buds dont appreciate SST49 or Tiger Assam enough. I’m glad we are on the same page. with Assam I need it to be strong, complex, not flat and ability to drink it without milk or sugar. This one is magic with milk and sugar too. if they ever restock…I made another call. the lady said they may get it close to June, but it will be another crop. who knows if it will be same good.

ifjuly

yeah, i smiled when i realized i felt exactly how you do about the assams in general drinking this! i know what you mean. i chalk it up for me to drinking them when i was a lot younger, just ho-hum supermarket brands, and that meaning i didn’t go into it wanting the usual smoothness/flatness and sweetness; for that tea type i want something that evokes nostalgia but is also a step up in complexity. and this definitely delivers! thanks so much for sharing it with me. going to cross my fingers they make it available somehow…

Sil

i’ll have to keep my eye out for this one

ifjuly

i’m not sure you’d like it, Sil…i could be remembering wrong but you don’t care much for darjeeling, right? and it’s because of the woody astringency? if so, this might be risky for you—it’s definitely got that woody astringency as a very upfront component. just a heads up.

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87

Thanks to boychik for the sample! I tried this tea both Western and Gong Fu style.

Western: 3.8 grams to 8 oz. of 195F water at 2/3/4/8 minutes. Wonderful aromas of malt and fresh baked bread (pumpernickel in the first steep!). The malty aspect comes through in the cup and the honey-like sweetness increases as the cup cools. A lively citrus note emerged in the second steep. The last two steeps were pretty mild but still tasty.

Gong Fu: 4 grams to 130 ml of water just off the boil and 8 to 10 second steeps. I don’t get the malty aspect with this method, but the sweet and citrus notes build very nicely. Unfortunately a strong spice note emerges in the middle steeps and builds throughout the remainder of the session, becoming quite strong around steeps 8 and 9 (my notes referred to it as a spice bomb!). The tea might have reacted differently at a cooler water temperature, but the sample is gone so I was not able to try that.

I liked this tea much better Western style. To me it’s similar to the Teavivre Golden Monkey, but the H&S had richer aromatics and slightly stronger honey notes in the cup.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 0 sec 3 g 8 OZ / 236 ML
JustJames

rich honey notes……. lovely =0)

TeaExplorer

It is a very nice tea, although they’re “pretty proud of it” at $22 for 3 oz. :)

JustJames

ouch! then again you pay for the good stuff….

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70
drank Peppermint by Harney & Sons
163 tasting notes

TTBC2 #1

Okay, so we had this crazy weekend. Especially crazy Saturday night. I love beer – so it is not hard for me to go a little overboard with it, especially if there’s reasons to celebrate and be merry in general. Yeah, Saturday night was fantastic. Sunday morning was NOT.

Luckily, I had this traveling box with me. I took some other teas with me, but none of them were herbals. And let me tell you, black tea didn’t do me much good. Since we were all hanging out at a fairly secluded cabin, my teaware was pretty limited there. I was using french press there for steeping most of the time but the guys at some point decided to make coffee in it and I couldn’t clean it out properly afterwards. Which made me decide on something in a bag: I opened the traveling tea box and I saw this lonely bag of Harney & Sons’ Peppermint sitting on top. I knew that it was exactly what I needed.

I generally don’t like tea blends that have any kind of mint in them but I will never underestimate the nice effects that straight mint can have on you. Occasionally I do have it. Like earlier today when I really needed it. It was agreeable, refreshing and pretty strong. It helped my tummy and my general well-being a notch or a notch and a half. Nothing miraculous, yet it was what I needed at the time.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 30 sec
Jennkay

Man, now I wish I had something minty on hand to drink after a brewery tour today.

Kat_Maria

Lol! I really gotta consider making one of these mint teas a staple.

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93
drank Chocolate Mint by Harney & Sons
932 tasting notes

I am (almost) positive this is what Helen in Australia sent me, and I’m overjoyed that she did! This is an amazing tea, and exactly as it should be: rich, thick chocolate with minty goodness only accentuating, not overpowering. Just like a thin mint. Must get more of this…

Flavors: Chocolate

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 2 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
ifjuly

i love this one too. i rather like harney’s chocolate teas.

sherapop

Yum, sounds good. I need to try this one, as I really like their Valentine blend, which is chocolate.

Suziqzer

I’ve had my eye on trying this one… When I eventually place an order with them, this will likely be something I try. I did find a bookstore about an hour away that carries a few of their sachets, but not any of the flavors I was hoping for and &no loose leaf :(

MissB

Valentine Blend? Off to look… The Chapters by my house also carries some H&S, also no loose leaf however. If/when I do order again, I’ll wait for a sale, or go via Amazon, where shipping is much more reasonable to Canada.

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84

This is a very relaxing brew to make. I recently visited the Harney & Sons tea shop, located in Millterton, New York, next to their distribution centre. I bought this blend in a four-ounce tin for quite a reasonable price.

The tea itself has a wonderful color of deep reddish-brown. It goes great with biscuits, and it’s a fine morning/evening tea. It’s currently 8.50 pm and I’m having a cup of it now. I would recommend this to anyone looking for a nice, light but brisk flavor.

Flavors: Earth

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 30 sec

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