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Recent Tasting Notes
So, my sister’s birthday was June 30th and I had purchased a 4.4 ounce tin of this tea for her with my Kusmi order a few weeks earlier. This was the tea she was most interested in when I showed her the website, so I figured it would make a nice little gift, especially since their tins are so cute. I didn’t mail it because I knew I was going to be coming to Kansas City soon (she lives here, too). So when I gave her the gift a couple of nights ago and she opened it, I took out a serving for myself and kept it until today. I’m going shopping with her and my mother later today, so I’ll definitely ask her what she thinks of this tea. Dry, this tea smells like floral candy – it’s very sweet. I did my usual French tea method – 1 tsp in 8 ounces of 200 degree water for 3 minutes.
I don’t think I paid much attention to the brewed aroma – oops. In the tea itself, the flavoring is quite mild, especially when it’s still hot. The black tea base is smooth and mellow, nothing special but unobtrusive and drinkable. I don’t consider myself to be terribly familiar with the smell or taste of violets, but it’s definitely a more delicate floral note than I generally encounter (rose, jasmine, etc.). There’s something about it that makes me think that these are sugared violets, not the fresh variety. I definitely get a candy flavor from this tea, even without sugar. I found it altogether pleasant enough, but not something that I would seek out or order. Then again, I’m not big on floral teas generally. :)
Flavors: Candy, Floral, Malt, Smooth, Sweet
Sipdown! It was meant to be.
This tea was absolutely delicious. I had this HUGE tin, and I had swapped away some samples. But other than that, I had it ALL TO MYSELF! This was such a treat drinking this every morning. This is bittersweet, and I will miss you so much Caramel! I must move on as there are other teas waiting for me to try!
Thank you VariaTEA for the sample! I ended up splitting it so I could send a cup worth off to Cameron B. in the swap we just did, but first I made my cup! I think I’ve had this one for quite some time; I honestly don’t remember when you send it to me/which packaged you sent it in, but I forgot I even had it until Cameron requested it.
I had to fish it out of my sample bag stored in the closet! Honestly I probably put it off because of the spice. Oops! It really wasn’t so bad though.
I added milk to my cup, and the resulting brew ended up tasting like really weak hot chocolate or watery chocolate milk, with this odd spicy/peppery aftertaste that tickled my throat. I wish I knew what spices specifically are in this one; I didn’t taste cloves, ginger or cardamom which are “common offenders”, but I did get some cinnamon-ish notes (another common guy). More interestingly though, I got peppercorn/chili pepper spice, but I didn’t see anything in the dry leaf that would indicate that. There was also a really faint bitterness to the black base, but I think I may have oversteeped it a little bit, and that could be what was contributing that taste.
Overall, I think I just wish it was a tad bit richer in the chocolate department, but on the whole it was better than I was expecting it to be. I hope Cameron enjoys it!
I still have 17 more tasting notes to write, but I’m really tired and it’s three in the morning, and what I’ve done tonight feels like an accomplishment, so I think I’ll pick up where I’m leaving off in the queue tomorrow when I get up. Hooray for having the day off and not having plans/errands to run!
Flavors: Chocolate, Cinnamon, Peppercorn
Soft and very easy-going…perfect to wake up gently ;-)
This being said, although there´s nothing wrong with this tea, I don´t rate it higher than 80 because according to my taste buds, it lacks some punch. I should really try to brew it the Russian style, and see how it works out that way…one day!
The thirst quenched with some iced tea, I put myself down to read a bit in my book, with a nice cuppa next to me…this tea is wonderful for all senses, starting with the lovely rather sweet smell of marzipan. A treat w/o gaining the pounds from eating marzipan ;-)
Flavors: Almond, Green, Marzipan
I ran into the Kusmi New York store the other day maybe ten minutes before they closed. I was desperately trying to smell everything and decide if it was a must buy while the sales girl tried to hide her itching to go home. I picked up this tea and one other, but I was surprised that I wasn’t taken by more teas.
I’m having this one without sweetener and it has a bitter edge to it, a tang that gets the sides of my tongue and mingles with the green taste of the tea. There is also a very distinct strawberry scent that carries over into the taste. I may have over leafed this (a recent trend for me) and will have to adjust things in the future to find the perfect cup.
Opening the tin it might as well smell as the green variant of Kusmi´s St Petersburg, but that´s where it stops for me. This is gunpowder tea, which end up as an acceptable green tea, but most of the aroma´s (citrus fruits, especially vanilla and caramel) are gone! Need to drink it again, maybe changing the steeping parameters, because I cannot understand the good ratings by some people.
Flavors: Caramel, Citrus Fruits, Green
Another tea I wouldn´t have picked (but it was one of the tins of the “afternoon” series by Kusmi), but I must admit it scores way better than other teas – a priori – of my preference. It smells really nice, fruity, and not in an artificial way as is the case with many aromatised black teas. In the taste this is mainly a black tea, with subtle hints of red fruit blending in nicely, therefore making this tea a good afternoon tea.
Flavors: Cherry, Raspberry, Strawberry
Actually, I was quite afraid of how this tea would turn out, so the first sip was a “delicate” moment, but it tasted alright. Spicy (in the sense of the Xmas teas) whereas the chocolate blends everything well together, without giving it too much sweetness or bitterness. Very forgiving as well when leaving the cup to cool down a bit…
Flavors: Chocolate, Spices
This tea I really don’t quite understand. I find it to be very weak and too floral. The taste to me does not line up with the ingredients. I often have to add to it with lemon and honey or add green or black tea to give it a strong enough flavor.
Yum, this is perfect right now. I wanted something a little refreshing and light after drinking a lot of black teas, and this is really hitting the spot. I did shorter (2 minute) steep for a lighter flavor and added some sugar. Delicious, light and just minty enough! Rating is getting a bit bumped. ;)
I’m suddenly very sad that I’m almost out of this one. Gave out too many samples! :P Luckily, I have quite a bit of Kusmi’s ginger lemon, and that fills a similar niche for me.
Good day Steepster!
This tea came in a swap from Cameron B. and I’m just getting around to trying it now.
Unfortunately I think I underleafed this one a bit, or rather I was overly optimistic with my water. I’m not getting a whole lot of strawberry flavor but it does seem somewhat citrusy and tart. Overall not impressed but it could be partially a user error – ha ha.
Anyway I won’t rate this one for now. Thanks again Cameron! It’s always fun trying new things.
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Flavors: Caramel, Red Fruits
Queued post, written May 21st 2014
The second green tea today and the second ancient bag. This one was also from Fleurdelily and therefore a couple of… years… old. By a funny coincidence when I posted from the queue this morning that was also a post about a green darjeeling, a much newer one than this one, and having just read that post again, I can totally recognise it in this cup as well.
I’ll take that as a sign that this one carries its age quite well, then. It’s got that lemon pith-y bite to it on top of something that is sort of generically green tea. I shared some of the other green darj (the one I posted about this morning) with MissB who found it apricot-y. I can see what she means with that now. I think it’s mostly lemon pith-y, but I think it’s the same note that we experience slightly differently. I can totally see how it could be apricot-y.
This has a bit of a floral touch as well, which I thought the other one didn’t so much, but that could be differences in the harvests.
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Flavors: Mint, Seaweed
Sad sad sipdown… :( Drinking the last cup of this make me want to regret sending out samples of it to several people. But then I remember how much tea I have… And then I get excited because I now have an empty tin to use! Hooray!
I still really like this one, even though I’ve tasted a lot of different things since I last had it. I do find myself needing to add sugar because of the bergamot, but that’s more of a personal preference and I don’t blame the tea. I wonder if the Kusmi store does refills on mini-tins… :D