Liquid Proust Teas

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I wonder if I get this gourd directly from derk or it is from White Antlers? But that’s not important, just thank you anybody I got it from.

It is my first stuffed fruit/vegetable tea. It says that gourd translates to “pumpkin”. While I think it is rather far from it, especilly seeing the shape; I was very curious to try it out.

I don’t want to break gourd completely, so I was prying the stuffed tea with sharp knife, and managed to have 4 grams in my gaiwan saucer that I then emptied to my cup. Yep, grandpa brewing.

At first sips went through, it was pretty much okay. Maybe vegetal, but just a little. I would say it is even quite boring. The aroma was quite roasted and bitter, but…
the taste wasn’t. It was mellow. With more and more steeping, the roasted notes were more pronounced and in the end of cup I get mostly nutty and bit of peanuts notes. It was so yummy! I need to explore it more. Gongfu to come for sure.

Food pairing: Store bought Tiramisu I get for my name day (see: Thank you Grandma!

Flavors: Nutty, Peanut

205 °F / 96 °C 8 min or more 4 g 10 OZ / 300 ML
White Antlers

Happy Name Day, Martin! When I was a kid, we used to celebrate name day in school. I’d forgotten all about it.

I shared the bitter gourd tea with you and derk. I was told that when you brew it, you are supposed to break off part of the gourd and brew it along with the tea leaves. I still have one here that I have yet to try. Medicinally, bitter gourd is considered ‘cooling’ and helps to stabilize blood sugar and lower cholesterol-so very helpful to drink after eating tiramisu. LOL!


Love the custom!


Happy name day! I hadn’t heard of that – I wish I had one! Looks like the closest name to mine is Magdelena on July 22. Very cool!


OH MY GOSH< MARTIN! My name day is my actual birthday!

Happy Name Day to you!

Martin Bednář

White Antlers: Thank you. I think I have to try that as well while brewing next time. The gourd is quite big. And I wasn’t sure it’s edible when dried. But funny I paired it with sweet tiramisu. Hopefully it had expected effect.

gmathis: It is not widely celebrated in my family, but I am grateful anyway!

Martin Bednář

Madeline: I think it would be that! If you want, you can start celebrating that! Haha!
ashmanra: No way…! HAPPY BIRTHDAY! It seems I was born to this community. July 24 is birthday for many, not only for me and now we two share another reason to celebrate? LOL!

Mastress Alita

March seems to be another popular birthday month for Steepsterers. I think that Roswell, Variatea, derk, and myself are all March babies. I’d never heard of a Name Day, but seeing as that’s European rather than American… though one site tells me “Sara/Sarah” would be August 19th, which is only a day after my cat’s adoptionversary, heh.

Martin Bednář

Mastress Alita: In Czech calendar it would be 9 October. But the calendars are different, so not a big deal :)

Mastress Alita

I like autumn more than summer anyway! :-)


I’ve had one of these sitting in my closet for a few years. I’ll have to break into it soon.


The closest equivalent I could find lands my day on February 18. February is a glum month…I’ll take another holiday!

Martin Bednář

Haha Mastress Alita, celebrate anyime you want to :D
derk: I am curious what do you will think about it. It is certainly very interesting tea :)
gmathis: Not everyone can celebrate name-day when it’s good day to celebrate, haha!


Just call me Radoslav. I looked mine up as well. Happy name day Martin!

Martin Bednář

ashmanra: Oh well, I read your comment wrong. Ah well. I really need to focus more on language nuances. (My != your, haha)
mrmopar: So, you are celebrating joys? That is the meaning of that name. Joy-celebrater.


Martin – I was going to explain in my next email! Ha ha! You noticed and figured it out first!

Martin Bednář

ashmanra: :) Sometimes I just read too quickly!

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Tried something really cool a few nights back; Camellia Sinensis Seeds!! I got these from Liquid Proust & couldn’t resist the novelty of them!! I wasn’t sure how many to steep, so I went conservative but I think next time I’ll use more. Despite an appearance that reminds me a little bit of cloves, I found that they had a flavour almost comparable to an aged white tea with a bit of a chrysanthemum note as well. Very unique!!


Song Pairing:

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Dropping this here. The handwriting of a special tea friend is difficult to read ;-P I thought the label said ‘2003 Mengku 7542’ but Steepster came up empty. With some knowledge of who this came from and a quick internet search, I’m almost positive it’s ‘2003 Menghai 7542.’ If my assumption is incorrect let me know. Somehow I’ve managed to drink through a whole bag of this pu without logging it. Sipdown it is.

Red-orange-gold-hay tea, not muddy dark. The lightness of the body took several steeps for me to register. Very clean taste with subtleties that lie beyond the smokey fireplace and a dry peaty, woody bitterness that leaves my tongue tingling. The feeling is almost effervescent in its prickliness, like tiny pop-pop-pops. The tangy/acidic fruity tone of this tea reminds me of currant jam and cooked cranberries. Very light baked bread, rocky crag and clean storage flavors. The camphor hints at its cooling presence in the back of the mouth before making its strength known in that lovely warming/cooling sensation I love in my ears. Each inhale cools my whole mouth and I’m left with that dry smoke and bitterness. Lacks pronounced cha qi but makes up for it in its aged profile.

I get it. This tea is nice. I would guess more years of storage will smooth out the acidity and tannic drying quality. Gonna need some water after this, though.

Thank you <3

Song pairing: Sierra Ferrell — In Dreams

Flavors: Baked Bread, Biting, Bitter, Black Currant, Camphor, Cranberry, Drying, Fireplace, Peat, Tangy, Tannic, Wet Rocks, Wood

Boiling 0 min, 30 sec 7 g 6 OZ / 190 ML
Martin Bednář

Hmm. I was 8 years old…
It sounds like a nice tea.


You’re a youngster Martin!

Martin Bednář

Indeed I am :)


Lol, I was 8 or 9 too (:


38 when this was made! ;P


Mrmopar, you and I probably have socks (or other wardrobe essentials) that are older than these young pups ;)


I have two shirts I bought in 1985 that I still wear, and a sweatshirt of my husband’s from about the same time….


You’re the same age as my brother, Martin. 2003 was a wild year for me. That was a little after I first started drinking tea — homemade Lipton iced tea because I had cotton mouth so bad from all the marijuanas. Glad those days are behind me, haha.


Finishing up the pot tonight, I noticed a pronounced wintergreen aroma to the leaves still damp from last night’s session.


mrmopar, do you know where I can find more of this? I imagine it’s out of my price range but I wouldn’t mind window shopping.


Haha! I’m jealous @ashmanra, I am in LOVE with all things 80s (and 70s) and would have loved to have been around to witness them. The music, fashion, films… the hair! Ugh. Amazing. I have a couple of clothing pieces from the 80s I managed to convince my mam to let me have before she sent them off to the charity shop and I wear them all the time (:


@derk what an introduction to tea! XD


I wish we had a thumbs up button for comments


derk, to be honest these things are pretty pricey. I think I could find one somewhere. Did you have a budget range? I think LP and I got the last cakes from where he got his from.

And gmathis probably so on the clothing. They may not fit as well as they did back then.


mrmopar, don’t worry about it, but thanks for the offer.

I’m still thinking about this tea 5 days later. It was very slow to open up, almost cranky, but worth having a long sit-down with.


I was rummaging through a crock today that my hand hasn’t dipped into for a long time and found a different bag of this. Big smile.


I read that 2004 was the year that Menghai cut the quality of 7542. I’ve had a few later pressings and wasn’t impressed. I’ve had a few samples from the late 90s that were great but not worth the price. Teas We Like has a few Menghai cakes from that period that are reasonable but I haven’t tried them. Their 2001 naked Yiwu is a bargain,

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Andrew did a good job with this tea. I don’t usually drink autumn harvest sheng, for they sometimes tend to upset my stomach. This brew was an exception. The cake is beautifully woven with a mid-point of compression. The leaves are subtle scented and when warmed show their fruity colors! You can easily pick up the iconic autumn scents of brown sugar, apricot, and dark wood. The liquor has an awesome thick body and begins with sweet and fruit notes, but it quickly moves to that LaoMan E bitterness. There is a base of astringency that fades to stone-fruit and resin. This is a nice tea, but it demands attention and a certain atmosphere. Cheers to Andrew and crafting new puerh cakes and bonus for the awesome neifei!

Flavors: Astringent, Brown Sugar, Grass, Peach, Stonefruits

Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 7 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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Thank you derk for this tea. Aged oolong? Well, I am interested in!

I made quite fast rinse, but not so fast to call it flash. Then I let the leaves rest, for maybe 5 minutes. And then first steeps. First one was 30 seconds long and… yeah it brought dark chocolate notes. And raspberry jam. Both pronounced in aroma as well in taste. There is as well roasted flavour, some sweet – almost sugary notes (but not white sugar), little bit of mollases. Smooth, no astringency there.

2nd steep was 45 seconds long. It was very similar, maybe the chocolate was bit stronger.
It is nice tea, although, probably, not my most favourite.

3rd, 50 seconds – roasted nuts aroma came. So does roasted taste. It’s nice!

I stopped counting time. But made several more steeps. Not a single one was bad. All of them. Wonderful experience. No rating so far.

Book pairing: Kalsarikärni: The Finnish path to relaxation. Here, a Amazon link:

Flavors: Brown Sugar, Dark Chocolate, Molasses, Raspberry, Roasted, Roasted nuts

2 g 3 OZ / 85 ML

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drank 2008 Red Robe by Liquid Proust Teas
767 tasting notes

Haha! I misrepresented the number of teas in my cupboard the other day. I probably have another 20-30 from a Liquid Proust group buy in late 2018. Is this really the first one I’m sampling from the Aged Oolong category? I was going to post this under Random Steepings, but I figured Liquid Proust needs some more cred on this site, especially considering his devotion to the leaf and the enthusiasm to spread teas aimed for the Eastern market far and wide.

Dry, warm and rinsed leaf aromas are fairly strong with dark chocolate with raspberry filling, modest roast, caramel, brown toast, dark brown sugar, hints of cherry and red currant. Once brewed, the aroma is mellow with berries, spice and cocoa. The taste is mostly woody and somewhat drying but there’s more going on than I can articulate. Not much change throughout the infusions, of which I was able to pull eight or nine. Late in the session I let a cup cool and a pleasant mineral sweetness came forward with salivation. The spice tone was also more noticeable, while a light unripe peach aftertaste did its thing. Roast notes were not at the forefront with this tea, more of a muted background deal.

I like it even though nothing about it stands out in particular. It’s mellow and calming enough to be a daily evening drinker without much attention having to be paid.

Song pairing: David Bowie — Heroes

Boiling 6 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

Tea hoarder….. :P


Who me?? No way.

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Exquisite Poetry is a nice complex blend with that’s predominately bitter, savoury, and fruity with flowery undertones. As is the case with many raw pu’er teas made from the Ye Sheng variety, the bitterness is not very well integrated in the taste. Since I didn’t have quite enough for two proper sessions, I used an unusually high amount – 10g – but extended it over the whole afternoon. Still, the cha qi was pretty strong and fast. I found it heady, rushy and somewhat ‘hair-raising’.

Now for particular notes – the aroma has strong stonefruit character (mainly apricot) with sweet florals, rust, and laundry detergent in the background. It somehow reminded me of walking through evening streets of some Mediterranean town, but I couldn’t recall which one :D

The taste starts strong and bitter with notes of fruits, nuts, orchid, and allspice. The Ye Sheng character comes out strong in the early steeps. The bitterness weakens a bit after 4 infusions or so, but never quite goes away. Further flavours of courgette, peas, celery, and quinoa emerge throughout the session. Late steeps are quite tart and have a sort of coffee acidity (without the coffee flavours).

The aftertaste is cooling and presents flavours such as those of roasted grains, rice, and green grapes. I quite enjoyed the mouthfeel of this tea, which is viscous, slightly gritty, and numbing. Thanks for the sample tperez :)

Flavors: Apricot, Bitter, Celery, Flowers, Fruity, Grain, Nutty, Orchid, Peas, Rice, Sour, Spices, Stonefruits, Tart, White Grapes, Zucchini

205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 10 g 3 OZ / 90 ML

Ah that sounds lovely. Too bad ye sheng and I aren’t friends.

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drank Nostalgia by Liquid Proust Teas
695 tasting notes

Tea Advent Calendar – Day 12

Honestly wasn’t the biggest fan of this one. It was a light, smooth blend with just a ghost of vanilla flavor…would have liked either a more robust base tea or more vanilla.

Flavors: Smooth, Vanilla

Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

I didn’t get much flavor from this one either, but I thought it was just me!

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This one’s heavy on the chocolate. Heavy, heavy deep dark chocolate. I had to go out and abandoned a 50ml cup on the table for hours. Took a tiny sip out of curiosity before discarding. It tasted so much like chocolate milk I ended up drinking it all mostly out of shock. It’s delicious if this is what you’re in the mood for. I don’t crave this flavor from tea often enough to stockpile relatively young LCT of this sort. But I could see myself virtuously choosing this over a slice of chocolate cake. It feels far too indulgent to have on a daily basis at any hour. If it was a beer it’d be a thick chocolate stout.

Flavors: Dark Chocolate

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This will be more about naka generally than this specific tea. This tea seems like what is probably a perfectly drinkable naka from 2013. But I’m a strange one who has sadly not really enjoyed like 95% of the nakas that I’ve tried. There are many other teas I’ve enjoyed, and many other raw pus I’ve adored, but naka.. for some reason.. just doesn’t do it for me. The exception is when it’s so damn old that I can’t taste it and the energy’s super mellowed out. And 6 years is evidently not old enough for that to be true.

I really thought I’d enjoy the naka region more when it is younger because the 2005 w2t naka was not a bad experience (though price-y). I am also aware that many people do not drink pu for the taste or smell but the body feels. But I kinda do sometimes – care about taste and smell – and what I’ve learned is that naka, though it doesn’t smell terrible to me – doesn’t taste or feel nice to me when I can taste it.

For example, the mystery naka tasting set that LP sold earlier this year ( just was not my style. Basically, I dislike the young naka taste and energy so much that I only ever want old stuff from there where the vast majority of the taste has dissipated and the energy (that is always uncomfortably rumbly for me) has had the time to truly mellow out. Maybe I don’t mind it so much if and when it’s blended with other things also. But with the young single region naka, I’m like… thank you, but not really, no, thank you, you have it. I am grateful to have had the opportunity in 2019 to have tasted a handful of nakas of various vintages from various vendors and collectors, but naka that is old enough for my taste is probably way out of my everyday price range. So you know, uh, more for you all who are probably big fans of naka anything.

Luckily, there are plenty of other regions where the young leaves are pleasing to me in multisensory ways (and also less popular and thus more affordable). I have some very young sheng cakes that are already mellowing out too much for my liking and I wish I had drunk them the previous year.

Let me see if I can describe what I personally find off-putting about younger naka. It always tastes like… ever-so-slightly sour or unpleasantly stale old book pages to me, even though it doesn’t smell that way. Isn’t that weird? And in the tummy I always get this vague sense that I’ve poisoned myself, seriously which is such an odd but specific feeling to get every time I have naka but not other pu’s. It would be interesting to organize a blind tasting lol to see if this sensation can be reproduced.

I mean, I’ve never tasted old book pages. But I’ve been around enough old ass books that are nearly disintegrating and know what they smell like. Sometimes they smell great, but sometimes they smell sort of awful, and younger naka apparently for me just veers too closely to always tasting like bad-smelling old books, somehow without smelling the same. I know that will make no f-ing sense to most people, but every time I taste naka I’m like… oh… this again. Unhappy library. Unhappy tummy. Rummmmbles. Bye.

It’s okay, though. I’ve just mailed almost every last bit of naka I have to my mother to try. Maybe she will love it.

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Lightly smoky. Not my favorite.

Oh well. Can’t win ’em all.

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I really liked the maocha from earlier. Need to find out what it was.

So now we’re brewing these mystery stems. I’m a little scared. Not as scared as I was with the fu zhuan cha, but still. I also know better now than to brew 7 grams of mystery stuff. We are going with 4 grams.

Rinsed once. It came out red. Oh, didn’t pay attention and had thought these were older raw stems. But looks like shou. Smells like an old shou. Tastes like shou. Vanilla-y. Smooth. Mouth feels buzzy on first sip. Reminds me quite a bit of the clt shrooms.

This is nice, though I was obviously not prepared for a shou atm.

Getting kinda giddy on stem juice. STEM JUICE! lol they should serve this at STEM schools. omgomgomg. See? Whoa maybe I had too much tea today.

Okay this stem stuff is delightful. Heeheeheeheeheehee. Woody, too.

I would like a small cardboard box stuffed full of this stuff, please. It is yumzors.

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dry leaf: faint sweet smell
wet leaf: steamed peas or beans

soup tastes hella crimson lotus-y. reminds me of some teas from their massive sample pack. pleasantly bitter. nutty. bean-y or lentil-y. vegetal. earthy. low key mouth tingles. i like it! it creates a bright happy energy.

music: trace – roary; forza – kollen; ross – model man

perfumes that could be affecting this session but prolly not cuz they’re faint:
juliette has a gun – not a perfume; ellis brooklyn – myth

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drank Yiwu by Liquid Proust Teas
121 tasting notes

To me this didn’t taste or smell like Yiwu. It could just be so muted that I can’t tell. Either way, I did not like it. No energy felt. No good taste. No good smell.

Oh, to be fair, I got lazy and used water that had been sitting in my Zoji for several hours. It was still hot but not quite at my usual steeping temperature. Will try again at some point with water just off boil.

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No dry leaf smell. No noticeable flavors. Does have the emanating from the pit of your stomach sort of soft but forceful energy you’d expect from an 11yo tea. I didn’t like the afterfeelings of the first few steeps -was a little queasy – but now I’m into it. I was not having a very good day and now I feel zen. #teamagic

Couldn’t find any info on this at all but I’d buy more of whatever this is.


tried a face mask made w/ the spent leaves
bentonite clay
bragg unfiltered apple cider vinegar
raw honey
jojoba oil
tea tree oil

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drank sheng by Liquid Proust Teas
121 tasting notes

Dry leaf smells good through fresh smoke. Tastes basically the same as it smells – complex rugged fragrance wafting out past a thick haze of campfire smoke/smog. I just dragged 2012 impression because it tastes like ashtray water to me. But this mystery sheng delivers a heady sort of smokiness that is temporarily forgivable because the rough flavors of the base material are interesting enough. I think it would have been better to process the material to be smoke-free. But in colder weather with certain kinds of cheap greasy meals, this could be the sort of thing people (boys who want really badly to prove that they’re men) develop a taste for. I don’t care for it. I do feel transported to some foreign hut where there might be yaks tied up outside, though. I would never buy this, but it’s an interesting tea to try, for sure. It is like the sheng version of mezcal.

Flavors: Smoke

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drank Mordor by Liquid Proust Teas
5338 tasting notes

Made this as my Halloween tea in my Halloween mug because (1) Mordor is scary and (2) pu’erh is scary to me. So, it’s all sorts of festive.

After a couple sips, I will say this is alright. It doesn’t really taste like to pu’erh to me which is a big plus. However, it also doesn’t have much more than malt, which is bad. Maybe a bit leathery, which could be the combination of the two.

It’s fine but nothing special. Nevertheless, I am always happy to try something new so thank you Arby for sharing!

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Sipdown 2020! 23/365

I’ll kind of miss this one. It was a bit of a mashup of oolongs not usually put together, and the end result was actually quite complex and tasty, as opposed to just being a jumble. You could taste the creaminess of dong ding, the roastiness of the charcoal roasted oolong, some florals… it was good. Maybe I’ll try a similar concoction myself someday.


Seven oolongs in one! What a concept. :D

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An interesting tea that I guess I haven’t logged before. I didn’t buy this one specifically, but received it in lieu of a different tea I’d ordered, that was out of stock.

Due to the size of rolled oolong balls, this tea is a bit of a different experience each time (especially when brewing by the cup), which is kind of neat. Today, it’s obviously leaning towards the creamy and floral green side of things, which is a refreshing change from what I’ve mostly been drinking lately. I believe I’ve had a few less-than-stellar cups, but it’s a bit of a fun idea. Perhaps something one could do with the remnants of sample baggies? Although these 7 oolongs may very well have been carefully selected to complement each other, in which case all one would end up with would be a muddled mess. Hard to say!

In other news, I have been absolutely wiped the past few days. I slept much of Saturday, and a decent portion Sunday, and I’m currently counting the seconds until I can put the baby down for his second nap, at which time I’m going to try and have a nap myself. (He probably won’t cooperate, though – whenever I am in need of a nap, he decides he doesn’t need one.) Not fun. I’m trying to work on eating somewhat better, but am not really restricting calories, just taking them to an appropriate level and trying to make more nutritious food choices, so you’d think if anything, I should be feeling better….


Hope you can find some sleep.


Thanks – I felt much better today, but now the baby is feverish and sick :(


Oh no! Hopefully the baby gets better quickly. :/

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Browsing a new tea shop in my city and this little fella caught my eye. The first brew after rinse, has me topless and considering taking my pants off. I am literally sweating out of almost every pore in my upper body. I made it in my Puer Yixing (roughly 180ml size) 5.5g of tea and set the temperature (as usual for these Raw Puer’s at 90 degrees C). It’s refreshing, has a subtle molasses flavour and you can tell a decent quality raw puer (which this is) from their cheaper counter part by how smooth and balance that molasses flavour is. Really enjoying it, I have definitely been more “drunk” on other raw puer’s but I would definitely consider going back and buying a bigger cake of this when my Imperial raw Puer tea runs out.

Flavors: Anise, Metallic, Molasses

5 g 6 OZ / 180 ML

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Picked this one up from Liquid Proust maybe a month or so ago!?

Brewed it up Gongfu last weekend, and had a very lovely experience with it. I think I was around steep twelve or thirteen when I realized I needed to be wrapping things up since I had prior plans, but it was a really nice and extended tea session.

Delicious from start to finish; deep roasted notes which exaggerated the nuttier elements of the tea, mineral notes, a subtle herbaceous quality in early on infusions, and a sweet raisin/prune note throughout!! Settled into something a little greener with higher/sharper fruit (raisin/apple skin) notes, but with the warmth and coziness of the roast…



Song Pairing:

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The last few steeps of this went better than my initial review. It’s still not one that I would want to buy again. It was a weird tea overall. I didn’t care for the edible silver – it didn’t add anything to the experience and the silver leaf got everywhere! The pine flavor mellow out some (or I got better adding less).
I didn’t get any of the white tea flavor from this. It was drowned out by the jasmine.
Apple, pine, jasmine, glitterfest = silver everywhere in the tea, stuck to my strainer, in the cup, etc…
I bumped my rating a little as it was a little better flavor blended in the following cups.

Flavors: Apple, Jasmine, Metallic, Pine

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This tea is messy. Jasmine scented. Why do these apple pieces have silver stuff on them? and in the brew?!

3min, 205F
jasmine, apple, pine, metallic
I really don’t like the pine taste. I don’t like the silver stuff. I don’t like this tea at this temp. Should I try this at a lower temp? Is it worth it? A miss for me.

Flavors: Apple, Jasmine, Metallic, Pine

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Backlog 5/28. Sipdown
2min, 205F, western X3
pean, cocoa, vanilla, sweetness

2 min, 212F, western X3, overleafed
pecan, cocoa, rich, vanilla, malt

This tea goes on and on. Well balanced, but a lot of different flavors. I’m glad I picked some up while I could. Caramel pecans were a great snack too!

Flavors: Cocoa, Malt, Pecan, Sweet, Vanilla

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