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Recent Tasting Notes
So over football, the bandwagon is SO STRONG WITH THIS ONE. I hate football anyway but even if I didn’t I’d be against this on principle because we lost our hockey team and meanwhile the mayor is all on board for the football team to get a billion dollar stadium. N. O. P. E.
So anyway it’s too warm right now still for hot tea. When I opened the bag of these sachets from my slightly-happy bag, they definitely smelled like they’d be perfect for iced tea.
It’s definitely sencha, and good sencha at that. I really wish Lupicia would disclose the flavors in this. I honestly can’t tell a single fruit it might be. Mango maybe? Definitely some kind of stone fruit too. Pineapple, citrus too? Fruit Stripes gum is pretty accurate.
It’s really sweet too, I was kind of surprised by it when I first took a sip.
I’m kind of surprised by Lupicia’s parameters for brewing…does anyone actually only use only 5 oz for a cup? I put two bags in a mug that’s about 9 oz and then poured it over ice and I can say it’s definitely not watered down or anything…it’s perfect iced tea. I’m curious for when I’m making the loose leaf too, they all seem like that, 5-6 oz cups.
Another Hawaiian flavored tea bag from Lupicia. At first when I opened the packet and took out the sachet, there looked like there wasn’t enough in there. Lo and behold… after steeping the bag was full, the leaves really plumped up and unfolded nicely. The tea has a light fruity scent both before and after steeping. The taste is mildly fruity too, it is nice in this tea I get the tea taste and its not over powered by fruit. It doesn’t need sugar to make it taste good but with sugar added, the fruitiness comes out more. When I looked at the dry bag, it looked like there was a couple konpeito candy pieces too so added sugar is not necessary.
I’m starting to see a trend. Flavored green teas appeal to me much more than their black tea counterparts. Maybe it’s because the tea and flavors aren’t competing so dang hard with each other? I dunno. Anyway, this smelled like a nice soft peach candy, and my son really wanted to try it (he loves the Momo character from Avatar). He likes his tea “with three sugars please,” so I give him two and tell him it’s three.
I sipped some of his to see if it was cool enough (not quite), and then I sipped some more, and a little more. It was really tasty. Candylike but not overpowering, just kind of natural, fruity-floral and sweet tasting.
The second steep was also fruity and nice—it didn’t seem to lose much. The only problem was that I’d more or less ruined my tastebuds by drowning them in sugar, so I’ll have to wait till my palate clears up before I can say anything about it straight. Whoops!
EDIT: I should also mention that it’s a pretty blend, but it ain’t quite as fancy-looking as the picture here would have you believe. x) Look at all those flowers…holy cow!
Here’s another from my box from LiberTeas from way back when. This is another I fear has been improperly stored and as a result I am not getting any odour. I could tell that it was a black tea but had no idea as to potential flavourings. Actually, even if this had been fresh i probably still wouldn’t have got it, chestnuts in my world are spiny creatures that really hurt when you get hit by them. Of course I would never do such a thing..
Steeped about three minutes, I have a rich brown liquor which is throwing off notes of.. chocolate? Oy. The smell I am getting is milk chocolate at that! There is also something weird behind that but I think it is the buttered popcorn contamination yet again. Darn you buttered popcorn sharing your yuck!
First sips are a mix of the weird contamination taste and some unexpected sweetness. I get something roasty at the back end of the sip which then morphs back into sweetness – while this is likely a very inaccurate assessment of this tea, it is really interesting. There is some bitterness in there as well, but it doesn’t seem to be the tea base – I’ll chalk that up to smell contamination as well.
Once again, the lesson here is to drink your tea quickly!!
My friend sent this one along and it is seriously tasty. It has a subtle genmaicha vibe going on, plus the strong caramel flavour.
I can see why some would think this similar to Japon, but I have to say the tastes are a wee bit different, but the low maintenance (AKA steep at boiling) of this tea might almost
put this one in the lead. Gasp. I feel horrid even typing that. I’ll have to contemplate that a bit more before fully deciding.
Thanks to ToiToi for sending me this sample!
This has a fascinating scent dry. I can’t quite nail down what I’m smelling. Just steeping now.
Yes it’s definitely a toasted scent I’m getting once it’s brewed. Not too sure I’m loving the scent (though compared to the Pineapple Oolong from earlier anything is welcome).
Hmm I don’t think this one is for me. The toasted taste just isn’t sitting quite right.
Ok so this was my day 3 of new tea for the year! I was afraid of this tea cues of the grapes… I don’t know since grape dimatab as a kid I’m afraid of drinking grape but I bought this anyways lol . So the smell is of green warm grapes in the summer. So that throws me off a bit my first few sips were a little odd . Defiantly sweet wine which I love without the drink affect. My mother in law every year makes Anises cut out cookies and let me tell you dipping that cookie into this tea was wonderful!!
My only thing for next time is to take the tea bag out! I left it in and I got very bitter at the end of the tea and I had to stop but otherwise very nice tea:)
This is what I imagine H&S’ Paris would be if Paris removed the vanilla and lemony bergamot. The tea base is unassuming at best and uninspiring at worst which to me means iced tea. Note that I bought this tea for its pretty Christmas tin, the one with the constellation-themed fish. (In my mind I know I bought a $2 sticker for the premium of a tin but Christmas is when I get stupid splurgy.)
Yesterday we drank this hot at tea party. There was about half a pot left because I had used my biggest pot for this blend. Today I added simple syrup and ice and drank it with lunch. Absolutely delicious. I did try it unsweetened and cold first but I didn’t care for it nearly as much as with some sweetening.
The syrup is rescued! I have made simple syrup and flavored simple syrup, but I used a new recipe for tea soda to make this syrup. I shouldn’t have. I should have done what I always do. They said to simmer until reduced by half, which resulted in syrup that was practically hard candy and didn’t dissolve in the soda but rather sank to the bottom in a stiff clump.
I poured it into a saucepan, which took forever because it was thicker than molasses, added water, and heated it up again. I let it cool a while and poured a bit in the bottom of a couple of glasses. I poured chilled Perrier on top of that and added ice, and it was DELISH! I can’t wait to try a whole bunch of flavors like this!
I wanted to try to make a tea soda, and I wanted a fruity tea that didn’t have any tendency to go bitter. This was perfect!
I followed the instructions – two cups water, two TBSPNS tea, steep usual time, strain and simmer with two cups sugar.
I chose to use Perrier since I found San Pellegrino to be a bit salty. Someone here mentioned that they used Perrier for tea soda recently, and I am very pleased with the results!
The only bad thing is that the instructions said to simmer until it is reduced by half, and I think that was wrong because I swear this stuff has hit the soft crack stage. The first soda I made was great as the syrup was still warm and mixed well before the ice chilled it. By the time I made the second soda, the syrup was so thick it just hardened in the bottom of the glass. That has never happened with simple syrups for me before, but I have never reduced them so much.
I plan to try adding water and heating it briefly to see if I can salvage the rest of the syrup because it is DELISH!
I served this as the final tea party selection today. I wanted it to be separated from the taste of the black currant jam for a bit so the flavors wouldn’t compete with each other.
I loved the aroma of this, and I must confess that after drinking it before bedtime, I dreamt about it most of the night. I woke up with the flavor on my mind and fought with myself about serving it today because I was afraid the sweet black currant jam would take the shine off the tea. No worries, it didn’t hurt a bit. I just served this last, well after we had the jam, and it was really good. My guest seemed to enjoy it a lot. Next up, I want to try it iced and sweetened!