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Recent Tasting Notes
Wasn’t overly impressed with this tea, despite my excitement at seeing actual freeze-dried rhubarb in the blend. Had it in a travel mug during my Toronto tea meet ups, and couldn’t tell which tea it was. Not a good sign. I kept back one more cup’s worth to try (this was a split with Indigobloom), but don’t have high hopes. Of course, age could have been a factor, and the travel mug, but usually there’s at least a bit of flavour, and there was virtually nothing but a very boring green tea.
This one was a sipdown!
I cold brewed this and left it overnight. It made for a really nice tropical iced tea!
Definite obvious pineapple and coconut notes, but the green tea base is also very noticeable. Maybe a little TOO noticeable for me, but perhaps I left it in the fridge too long.
The last of my fruity samples from this company, which turned out to have some offerings that made for tasty and refreshing iced teas!
Cold brewed this and it was very good, cherry cream taste.
I find the name a bit strange though, there’s nothing cake like or chocolatey about this tea, so it’s misleading. Though the ingredients are a dead giveaway.
It DOES, however, kind of taste like the cherry filling stuff inside a Black Forest cake, so maybe that’s what they were getting at.
I love Black Forest cake. I wish I had one right now.
Anyway, this was a. Nice, refreshing, fruity tea! Definite cherry taste.
Definitely involves hibiscus though, which I know some people don’t like. I don’t mind it.
Cold brewed the rest of the sample I had purchased from this company a while ago, when is first got into ordering tea online (a very slippery slope indeed!!)
I just dumped it in my pitcher and let it sit in the fridge for probably more than 24 hours.
Perhaps if I had taken it out to try sooner it would have been more flavorful, but as it was it just came off like a very vaguely fruity green tea. Much green tea.
I actually got more strawberry from Butiki’s ‘With Open Eyes’, so I bet that would have been a better cold brew than this!
I brewed this tea at closer to the recommended temperature of boiling and steeped it for at minutes and at least by the smell it works better for this tea. It smells more like caramel at the base tea smells more floral spicy rather than grassy as I remember it.
Taste wise the base tea is a little marine over a spicy sweet taste that mixes with a dried apricot type flavour. The caramel is present as a sweet buttery foot note but it might be more apparent as the tea cools.
Sipping on this a spinach note is present in the base as well.the flavouring is more apparent as it cools and I am getting that slightly sour tone you get from heated butter mixed with a browned sugar note. I like it best once it has cooled a little bit. Nice enough but I have been spoiled by some of my straight greens and I don’t find myself reaching for flavoured greens very often.
So, I started reviewing this one last night because I made a cup for Fiance and I, because he was doing some after-hours work and wanted something decaffeinated.
Of course that was short lived when a friend of ours let us know his girlfriend was performing at a local bar tonight and we should come. So we did, and had a great time. But while we were gone my computer decided to eat the notepad file I had going on with my notes on this tea.
This is kind of the sum of it, though:
It ended up tarter than I typically find myself leaning toward in tea (maybe like a 5.5/10 in tartness), but the tartness doesn’t overwhelm the cherry cream flavor, and makes it more of a sour cherry kind of feeling. It’s not a medicinal kind of cherry, but not entirely natural either. I think fiance mentioned 3-4 times over the cup how good it was, so there’s that too.
This is a pleasant Lapsang, shared with me by (you guessed it) Sil.
The aroma of the leaf is highly smokey, however the actual brewed tea is not nearly as smoky as the aroma would have implied. This is a really tasty Lapsang, & although I’ve grown to love smoky teas, I appreciate the subtleness of this one. It’s also nicely sweet, & went really well with last night’s leftover baked sweet potato, which I chopped up skin & all, & fried in coconut oil with sprinkles of cinnamon, cardamon, & ginger.
I thought there was just enough of this for one pot, but it turns out there was enough for 2, so I drank the first pot plain, with the above mentioned breakfast, & I spiked the second pot with a little Maple syrup, & OMG!!! It’s funny, cuz I enjoy smokey teas plain, but every now & then a little dessert is in order, & I always forget how awesome smokey teas are with Maple. This maple syrup is made in Missouri, from Missouri Maple trees. I’ve bought 3 quarts of it at the farmer’s market so far, & am basically stocking up for next winter.
It is the evening, & I’m not quite ready to quit drinking tea just yet, but I’ve really been cutting back on my caffeine lately, & admittedly, I’ve been sleeping so much better!
Sil sent me this, once upon a time (a couple of boxes ago…her most recent box will be the death of me). Tonight seems like the perfect night to drink it. We’re suppose to have severe storms all night, & although we had a little wind earlier, & I just heard thunder, we haven’t had much rain yet tonight. I’m staying in, trying to get caught up on a few things at my desk & then hopefully going to bed early.
I eat dandelions for breakfast. You might laugh, & think that as a gardener, I’m just saying that as a threat to any dandelions that might be thinking of springing up in my garden, but actually, I really do eat them for breakfast this time of year. In fact, I selectively allow them to grow, & then when they look just right, & twist them out with as much of the root included as possible. They make a great frittata, especially if you include some of the flowers too. They are amazingly good for your liver, & although they can be a little bitter, we need a little bitterness in our lives to help us enjoy the sweetness that life also has to offer. I have a friend that goes to the park every morning & digs them up, taking the roots home & roasting them for tea. I’ve never roasted my own roots, but I do enjoy roasted dandelion tea (& roasted chicory as well), so naturally I thought this would be the roasted root. It’s not. It’s the leaf & stems. Oh well. It’s not as satisfying as the root tea would be, but it’s not bad. More of a delicate herbal, & would probably be nice mixed in with some lemon balm, mint, or other delicate herbals of that nature.
I’m always on the look out for a good hibiscus and rooibos free herbal, and I liked the Sweet Life from here I tried so much that when I reordered, I figured I’d try some of this too.
It’s heavy, so my 50g pouch won’t go far, which is too bad because I am really enjoying this so far.
This is a tropical feeling blend, heavy on the coconut and tropical fruits (definitely mango, and I am getting a but of papaya). There’s also the tartness of apple, the depth of cinnamon, and the slight roasiness of almond and popcorn. (I think the popcorn + coconut combination tastes a bit like caramel, but that might just be me). This all comes together to create a surprisingly harmonious blend.
It also gets a ’I’d drink that again.’ from Fiance.
I’d bet this would be outstanding iced, too.
Not citrus but it is fruit and ‘Japanese’ themed so this should do nicely for my next pot. The packaging says to steep this tea with boiling water, that I did not, I imagine it would have been much too astringent.
It did smell like cherry and flowers but the green tea was much stronger which gave it a medicinal scent. Like cherry throat sweets. Not bad but acquired.
Once steeped this tastes very similar to it’s scent. The green tea is the most dominant with a dry grass appeal while the cherry is light and sweet which increases in the after taste. It’s not as medicinal tasting as it smells but it tastes more floral than fruity and rather perfumed. Or like some sort of cherry syrup. It’s a nice combination but not perfect, or at least not for my taste.
I tried this earlier and found it a little too sharp/sour so I decided to make the rest of the pot into iced tea. Just spent half hour preparing tonight’s dinner (mushroom potato bake) and the weather is very muggy which is making me sweat, though this has only been fridged for a few hours I decided to have it anyway. Anything moderately cold right now will be a saviour. Plus I’m a little P"ssed at my husband, he showed no appreciation towards me preparing dinner at all, conversation was “What’s for dinner?” “I made mushroom potato bake, took half an hour of prep time but uses up some potatoes at least”. He looks at the bake before I put it into the oven with a very blank expression and says “ok”, then he turns around and goes to his laptop. :/ Plus I did several lots of clothes washing and drying today which was another “ok” reply, no thanks or anything. sigh.
Anyway the tartness is softer now it’s cold making it preferable. Also the fruit seems stronger.
More citrus and fruit tea. I enjoyed a few of Pure Aroma Teas fruit blends so this one has hope of being delicious. I forgot to sniff this one as I was in a rush at the time, had to swap the clothes over from washer to dryer. The tea did contain large pieces of mixed fruit which were soft and gummy like for the most part. Well when I say tea I suppose I mean tissane.
Once steeped the tissane is hibiscus red and smells of dusky orange. Not as fresh as I was hoping. Getting past the smell this tastes pleasant, the orange and passionfruit are both present in flavour but so is the hibiscus. It’s sweet yet tart but overall very subtle. I want to love it but I’m going to stick with liking it. I think I still have some of their Strawberry and Kiwi somewhere which was delicious, will have some of that in a bit cold steeped to make up for this tea.
When I think of a Russian Caravan tea, I always expect something kind of smokey & thick textured, but that is not the case with this one. Really it’s more like an english breakfast, at least in my opinion. Still a tasty cup of tea, but not what I was expecting at all!
Thanks to Sil for this generous sample. The rest of it will go into my sipdown box for some future extravaganza (unless somebody I owe a box to would like to try it? just let me know)
Funny that this should be next in the queue, when I’ve been drinking another Irish Breakfast blend today. It feels a bit full cicle-y
This is another take from the EU travelling teabox, one I didn’t really have to think too hard about before pinching. I rather like breakfast blends, but I never seem to actually buy them for some reason. I think it’s because, in the actual ordering situation, I either get too focused on interesting flavours or on unblended teas, and if they have a breakfast blend at all, then I don’t even look for it.
But I do like a good breakfast blend, so perhaps it’s something I should start paying more attention to. They are so varied, because many companies make their own unique blend that for them is breakfast-y, so it’s not a tried-on-tried-them-all sort of thing at all.
My perfect breakfast blend is actually quite easy to find. In fact I can go out tomorrow and pick up a box from the supermarket. You see, I grew up on Pickwick tea bags when having tea, and their English breakfast blend have a distinct note of honey to it. At least it did 15 years ago, who knows what sort of shenanigans their product development people have been up to in that time? I rather enjoyed that honey note, so that’s what I want in a breakfast blend.
Irish breakfast or English breakfast, though… I can take either. I’ve never really been able to put my finger on exactly what’s supposed to be the difference here, so one is as good as the other for me.
This one smells vaguely grassy and quite malty-sweet. There’s a fair bit of grain in here as well. I find this bode well for the possibility of that honey note.
Unfortunately it doesn’t taste like honey at all. At first, when I sipped, I thought ‘oh no, grass! Darjeeling!’ but then the malty notes came in and sort of took over. Those Darj-y notes aren’t actually so bad after all, so now I don’t think it’s in there at all. It lacks the prickly spicyness of Darj, fortunately. Maybe some other high-grown tea. It really is a quite sweet tea, this one. Under that, forming the body, there is a bit of grain and a whole lot of general Assam-ness with malt and a whiff of raisin. This is robust, strong and lightly astringent in the aftertaste.
This is quite nice. It’s not the sort of tea that I would want to drink all day, but it works well for the first cup of the day. Which this actually is, actually. Evidence to this can be found in how the leaves were initially given a short rinse in cold water because I forgot to boil it first and then had to pour it back in the kettle. Yay for strainers… I hope it’s not going to be one of the those days.
Husband found it pleasant too. He said it was a good breakfast tea and better than most English breakfast blends he’s tried (which likely came out of a bag, mind you) which were often much too (and here he made a funny face). And this one wasn’t.
PS. Lightly astringent turns into quite astringent if you drink this while eating yoghurt, apparently. So don’t do that.
One more tea from Sil, sent to me awhile back in one of our many trades.
For once I followed the steeping instructions on the package, which are:
1tsp + 8oz X 2min
On a normal day with a shu, I’d either go stronger & longer, or pull out my yixing & keep it short. Oh well…
The results was a gentle & smooth, kind of creamy cup. A little earthy, woody, & sweet. Nothing fancy, but a pleasant cup for the early evening.
This tea produces a nice rich and brisk brew. It brews up to the colour of coffee and smells of biscuit, spice, and red fruit. This tea is smooth, with good bitter malt notes, and a nice briskness. It tastes of cocoa and biscuit which sweetens to honey, spice,a hint of sandalwood and cherry and blackberries. As it cools the bitter cocoa notes mix blend nicely with the sweeter top notes and the red fruit becomes more apparent.
This tea makes a nice morning cup with the malt, cocoa and biscuit notes nicely apparent and well blended with a fruity Ceylon. Very enjoyable.
This blend looks beautiful. I want it sewn into ribbons and thread into my hair so I can dance about in a field till my hearts content.
It smells strongly lavender but so very fresh and pure. If I sniff long enough I can detect the rose petals in the background, they are very sweet but again natural and pure. I love lavender flowers, they send me to sleep so very easily but always with a guaranteed smile upon my face. Most nights I use a lavender lip balm made from bees wax and lavender essential oil, it’s made by monks from a fairly local Abbey and makes me feel blessed as I wear it.
The most dominant flavour is the lavender and while it’s quite thick it’s not too much, or at least not for me. My husband is not as much a fan of lavender as I am and he said it’s just not to his taste. Potate (po tate oh) and potato (po tart oh) I suppose.
Getting passed the thickness of the lavender I can also taste a floral sweetness which is hard to define and also a herbal after taste. But both are delicate and also a little dry.
I like this tea, may add this to my shopping list as I only bought a sample. Is this tea fantastic tasting? Honestly no, it’s nice but not great. Will this tea send me to sleep? It’s already starting to. So my overall rating reflects both taste and mood.
I’m a very sleep Kitty. Goodnight everyone yawn.
Another tea from Sil. I thought this would be a sipdown, but there is still enough left for one more cup, so I put that last bit in my ‘sipdown’ box, which I started awhile back. Any tea that only has enough left for a cup, or maybe a 16 oz pot, is getting dropped in there. There are only about 5 of them right now, waiting to be picked off one by one, or maybe for my next Sipdown Extravaganza (I haven’t had one of those in awhile).
I met with a bride & groom a little while ago, booking & planning their wedding for next September. They paid their deposit using my Paypal swiper! So now I have a little money in my PlayPal account! I’ll let it sit there for now, & hopefully it will build up by the end of the month for some awesome tea orders! Meanwhile, I’ll keep sipping!
Yixing teapot – 370ml – (Enough for two)
Tea weight – 10g
Water temp – 95°C
Steeping times – 15 second increments
This tea has a dry, wooden, leather, smoky and tobacco. I took a picture – https://twitter.com/kittylovestea/status/392335220914925568/photo/1
I can taste clay, soil, damp wood, smoke and dry musk. Medium strength overall and consistent throughout but it does weaken quickly. A slight astringency and sourness comes through on the third steep but it’s still rather smooth.
A nice Pu Erh suited for everyday drinking and good for the price but this one is not on my re-purchase list.
sipdown! The rest of this is going over to terri to try. I am really enjoying this tea a bunch. It’s not an overly intense smokey tea – there are sweet notes in it and it’s got a depth to it that i really like. It’s also a very smooth tea to drink. As always, I added a bit of maple syrup to this and i am in my happy place. Gulped this one down before i even realised it was all gone.