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Recent Tasting Notes
So I had this tea last night in the JusTea headquarters made by the JusTea media guy. I put milk and a bit of sugar in them because that’s how I can get around my hatred of the bitterness of black tea and it was quite good. They’re a little low-tech in their office, kettles and thermometers and pouring through a steeping filter into various mugs. Was cool.
This is actually my first time having their earl grey and it’s pretty nice. The flavour of the bergamot is pretty strong and I finally finally tasted the actual citrusiness of the bergamot in the aftertaste. It was quite nice. This is one of their machine processed teas since last year they were still teaching the tea farmers how to process their own and in order to have money to do this they contracted with one of the companies to do this and their other 2 current teas (Kenyan Black and African Chai). This year, later than now obviously, they will start offering their hand-crafted teas by the tea farmers and I had some of those at the tea cupping event last night and there were a couple of oolongs and they were REALLY good. And I don’t even love oolongs all that much normally. Search starfevre on Instagram for some pictures of the whole thing.
I was digging around in my tea stash trying to decide what tea I wanted after having a matcha smoothie and this won out. Thanks again Nicole for the sample. This has such a unique flavor profile I would definitely consider getting more for the permanent collection, as IF I need more tea! See previous notes if interested.
Thanks to Nicole for sending a sample of this my way.
My experience with Kenyan teas generally is they can be kind of astringent and brisk, but this really surprised me. It’s fairly mellow and has a nice maltiness with some brown sugar notes. Very fragrant in the cup as well. I managed to sip on it plain a bit but it was also heavenly with bit of soymilk and coconut sugar. I sense an underlying orange note in the finish. Definitely will consider picking this up for the permanent collection as I’ve been looking for a good tea from Africa and this is the best I’ve found yet, at least to my taste. thanks Nicole!
A really different chai. I really liked it!
This has a different set of spices than the usual chai. I taste the fennel and licorice notes right up front. The clove and coriander lend a nice warmth to the cup, but this isn’t a really hot or spicy chai. The rose adds a nice floral tone.
As I mention in my full-length review of this tea: http://sororiteasisters.com/2013/10/22/african-chai-blend-from-justea/ This tea is more warm and spiced than it is spicy. But it is a deliciously cozy kind of tea, very nice for these cold days.
I really liked it because it is so different.
never had a black like this one! indeed it is very clear and clean…. personally i don’t get malt. i’m getting an undeveloped brown sugar hint that is mixed with a vegetal tone: as though someone cut a swath of a demerara plant and stashed it in my tea as a stir stick.
no astringency, no bitterness…. really a clear green curl. scent wise i do get malt, but not on the palate.
i took advantage of the christmas discounts, i am interested to try the other samples now! (the rest i have saved for my upcoming not for profit course starting in january =0)
Felt like this again. First cup was rushed. Tasted great though, but I had to drink it quickly because a sip in, I got a note asking for help to drive a local friend to the ER. So I gulped the rest down while waiting for her address instructions. My Breville used the keep-warm function so the second cup was still acceptably warm but I fear that I’m going to have to reheat my 3rd cup. Ah well, it was for a good cause.
And it looks like I’m going to be up very late drinking tea because I’m waiting for a phone call to bring her back to her house and who knows how long that will take. Depending, I might just stay up all night, though that will make my therapy appointment tomorrow interesting.
After receiving this in the mail from the crowd funding campaign (I don’t remember which one, kickstarter? indiegogo?), I finally opened this and made myself a cup (at…2am, yay!).
Added milk and sugar as is my wont with black tea. A bit more of each because I’ve heard that good Kenyan tea can be a bit strong on the astringency and needs a bit extra and I’m glad that I did because this is simply a very very good cup of tea. Probably not the best it could be because I reheated it in the microwave once because I forgot I was drinking tea but otherwise it’s very very malty and a bit chocolatey and it tastes a bit fruity to me too, though I couldn’t tell you which fruit, other than not the more acidic citrus fruits. Very subtle to me though. The malt flavour comes through the most. I have another cup of this to go tonight and probably resteep the leaves tomorrow. I’ll add anything if something is different between now and then.
ETA: And apparently this is tasting note #400. Woo!
Additional notes: I needed some Earl on this dreary day, so why not go for the best stuff? Burst of bergamot aftertaste right here. I’m not noticing the tomato soup flavor that I did last time, though that was from MissB’s sample and not this sample. Maybe a different harvest? This is the loveliest of Earls. I’d love to buy some of JusTea’s teas but the shipping is a little rough. I’m envisioning a massive Steepsterer combined order for the Christmas sale….
Additional notes: I’m sipping another cup, this time from MissB! thank you so much! I still have little from my sample from JusTea. I’m not sure if it’s because this is a different batch or I oversteeped, but this cup tastes like tomato soup! Not really any bergamot. Sad because this is one of my favorite EGs. I think I oversteeped. I really needed my bergamot today… so sick of winter! It’s supposed to be really cold for another week. :/ sigh.
Oh WOW. I don’t know if it’s because it is winter with the lack of sunshine or because I haven’t had an Earl in a while but WOW. This stuff is amazingly delicious. Upon opening my sample, the bergamot fragrance is divine! Bright, fresh, lemony… almost like there is some lemon myrtle here. There is some yellow powder, but I think that’s just the tea itself. I definitely thought “sunshine”. I brewed a heaping teaspoon for exactly three minutes after waiting for the water to cool for about ten minutes. I don’t think it could get more perfect than this. I’m not sure if JustTea uses the Kenyan black base for this one, since I didn’t seem to find any of the notes there that I did here. This one doesn’t seem malty, chocolate or Yunnan. Maybe the bergamot is so strong it is overpowering those flavors but if I’m drinking Earl Grey, I want my bergamot to be tough stuff. Maybe I was just wishing for the last cup to taste that way. But this is amazing. This would be in strong competition with Teajo’s Earl Grey in the Battle of the Earl Greys. (I don’t recall if it was in the Battle, but if not, I demand a rematch! :D) I really hope JusTea will create more blends because the three they have are EXCELLENT. I’m very tempted to buy these for their Christmas sale!!
Love it! A really good bergamot flavor here. It starts out bitter and then evens out and becomes tangy with hints of sweet.
The black tea is smooth and well-rounded. This is one of the nicest Earl Grey varieties that I’ve tried. If you love Earl Grey, you’ve gotta try this one!
Here’s my full-length review: http://sororiteasisters.com/2013/09/23/kathryne-kenyan-earl-grey-black-tea-justea/
Really, really good. The more I try Kenyan teas, the more I like them, and this one from Justea is very robust … a solid black tea. Full-flavored and rich.
It has a distinct ‘bake-y’ sort of note to it that is sweet, chewy and caramel-y, but I like that it’s sweet but not overly so. A really enjoyable cup of tea.
Here’s my full-length review: http://sororiteasisters.com/2013/09/17/kenyan-black-tea-justea/
Another great surprise pick from Dexter3657! Thank you.
Man, this is why swapping is the best. I didn’t know anything about this tea or the company so this was quite a sit-up-and-take-notice surprise in every sense. It doesn’t taste like any other tea I’ve had. It has a smell sort of similar to Grandpa’s Anytime Tea, vaguely like Grape Nuts (that might sound weird but in the morning it’s good!), and then the taste is eyes-wide-open refreshing. There’s a malty smell, and a texture and lightnesss similar to darjeeling, brisk and astringent but so floaty it’s not overpowering, plus a fruitiness. Then there’s this…brightness, that refreshing quality I’m having a hard time mapping because I haven’t experienced it with the other qualities of a black tea before. I really like this, and it’s unlike anything I’ve had before! A solid hit. Thanks so much Dexter3657!
Tea #1 From “Another Traveling Tea Box”
This tea smells sweet like honey, but it doesn’t taste like it. There is something almost smoky at the top of the sip that disappears before I can really identify it. Over all, it’s a good cup of black tea, but not my favorite.
Sipdown! since this is not the tea for me. While i do like the chai taste of this one, i can’t get past the floral notes that ruin the good thing i have going on with the spices. That being said, i would recommend this as an enjoyable chai for anyone who isn’t quite as florally sensitive as i am haha. It’s not overpowering at all, it’s just that for me, the subtle floral notes in the bottom just dont work for me :) still though, a lovely tea to try!
Thanks again, Nicole_Martin!
This is my kind of chai! It has a golden-tasting, malty base and balance of both light and dark spices. How can I turn down cloves or liquorice root, right? And rose leaves in a chai? I was suprised at how much I could actually makes them out. I though at first they would be drowned out by the spices, but it really works well here. Yum!
I need to drink this more often because:
A> I have a lot of it.
B> I really like it.
C> It’s a good cause and I would like to support them by buying more.
A little brisk, but tons of depth. Bold enough to be a breakfast tea, but not offensively bitter or strong. It’s a little finicky, best if not over leafed or over steeped. I found today I liked it at about 1 TBSP/ 10oz mug for about 2 minutes (HOT water at work – maybe 90C ish). Different than the Chinese blacks that I’m used to, but a really nice change.
If anyone doesn’t know about JusTea – you should check them out, they are a non-profit organization that is teaching Kenyan tea farmers to process their own tea rather than selling it to a big company and not being paid appropriately.
I received a sample of this from Sil – thank you!! – and a couple of sample packages from Justea – thank you!! – for donating to their campaign.
If you had asked me yesterday about Kenyan tea, I would have said that I’ve only tried a couple of them, but they aren’t my favorite.
This has changed my mind about Kenyan tea. It’s is a really nice black tea. Deep, dark, bold everything I like in a black tea. I did get a bit of astringency but it didn’t bother me and seemed to be well balanced against the rest of the tea. This isn’t my favorite black, but the Justea campaign is a really good cause, and something I am happy to support. Hopefully they will continue their work in Kenya and there will be more good teas coming from them.
Thanks, Nicole_Martin, for sample of this tea!
Once you try a Kenyan black tea, you dont go back to greens.
Malty, fresh, juicy
Woke me up in the afternoon
“dark rye or pumpernickel” color
Good breakfast tea
I would rate as a “Buy” for your tea portfolio
No Sugar, Milk, Honey, needed – WIN
12/19/13 – This tea is tasting great after a big lunch.