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Steven Smith Teamaker

Recent Tasting Notes

88

How odd, I could have sworn I reviewed this at some point but I guess not… ?

I’ve had this for a while and I find it really refreshing, an interesting twist on the traditional moroccan mint tea due to the addition of lemon myrtle. It’s a minty, lemony green tea! I absolutely recommend adding rock sugar to this, or sugar of some kind. This is excellent hot, but I think it would make an amazing iced tea as well. I really loved the Mao Feng Shui when I tried it plain as well. I wish S.S. would have another free shipping promotion soon :)

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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71

I feel like because I was so happy to rid this tea from my shelf, this tasted much better than I remembered it.
Decent tea. Seems like any regular red rooibos soooo yeah.

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93

Additional notes: Sipdown! If I were blindfolded, I would have guessed this was tomato soup today! Tasted exactly like tomato soup… though I don’t think it did the last time. Another victim of my tastebud change? This would be good mixed with some tulsi/basil! I don’t love tomatoes, so I’m lowering the rating from a 97.

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94

My friend made it out safe and sound, and we had a lovely evening. She’s a fellow tea drinker (I know only the best people), and we had fun among my stash picking out a soothing tea before bedtime.
This was her pick, so I brewed it up.
Its the perfect spring and summer chamomile tea, complex without being overwhelming, delicious and light. A perfect end to our evening.

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Tea that I had while finishing up the last 100 pages of Insurgent!
Literally just finished that book like 5 minutes ago and I’m already starting Allegiant :) It’s a good series. Definitely liked the first book more though.

Yeah. Guns and war and blood and death. Needed a bit of chamomile to calm myself a bit. Good tea to end the night with :)

(lazy lazy laaaazzyyy. Read previous tasting notes to like.. actually read the tasting notes part of it haha)

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80

Thanks so much to Tea Brat for sending this as a swap. It has been on my wishlist of things to try. The aroma is slightly malty and seems brisk. The liquor is reddish. First sip – this was not what I was expecting. It is more to the mellow than the brisk side. There is a slight malt and somewhat toasty note with a winey, almost grapey flavor wafting around. It is not as astringent as I expected, which is a plus for me. Overall, this is a nice tea, but I don’t think it is something I would need to have on hand. I’m really glad I got to try it. Thanks again Tea Brat.

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90

mmm. I love this as a morning tea, it’s super malty and contains just the right amount of heft. It’s making a good accompaniment to the carrot raisin muffin I’m having for breakfast. I see I’m almost out of this which is a good reason to start looking for a new assam. I just wish Steven Smith has more reasonable shipping charges – I think you have to spend $75 before their free shipping kicks in and I don’t think I like enough of their offerings to spend that kind of ca$h right now.

In other news I have a visit to the doctor today and I am interested to see what he has to say about this shoulder pain of mine, especially given that I am supposed to be going back to work soon. Let’s hope it isn’t anything too serious/complicated.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
looseTman

Hopefully, your Dr. will have good news!

TeaBrat

thanks!

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85

Thanks to boychik for the sample! Brewed it western style. First steep was with water just off the boil for 3 minutes. I prefer my teas plain without milk or sweetener. This steep was bitter but not entirely unpleasant, with some sweetness and fruitiness (as best as my palate can make out) as the cup cooled. I tried the next two steeps at 195F (3:30 and 5:00 minutes) and enjoyed them more since the bitterness was gone and the sweet/fruit aspect was more pronounced. Next time I will try 195F for the first steep to see if it reduces or eliminates the bitterness there as well. Overall a very nice Assam, more complex than the one in my cupboard from Upton.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 g 8 OZ / 236 ML
boychik

Welcome back!

TeaExplorer

Thank you! I actually went for a couple of weeks without steeping any of my teas. Just mediocre coffee from drive-thru places while on the run (gah!). It’s good to be back in my office with my tea table next to my laptop. It feels … civilized =:-D

boychik

its amazing how we can appreciate some small things normally we dont pay attention to

TeaExplorer

You got that right! I had been taking the luxury of my tea drinking habit for granted. Now that I’m back, however, I feel a profound sense of joy :)

Terri HarpLady

Yeah, glad to have you back! :)

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94

Tea of the morning here. I love this unique and savory blend from Steven Smith. the Douglas Fir and Rosemary are so just so warming and satisfying, especially on a really rainy day like today. this is good plain or even with soymilk. I kind of wish this was a regularly stocked item by Steven Smith (it was only out for the holidays) but maybe they will have it again next year.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Sil

ooh that sounds really neat…

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85

Very nice bergamot flavour. It is distinct, but unlike some of the bergamots I’ve tasted, this one doesn’t smell like some cheap but concentrated cologne. It smells sweet and fresh and mellow. And it tastes likewise.

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75

This tea did not have as much bergamot as I would like. I know many don’t like bergamot but I have become totally addicted to it. I would choose Double Bergamot and a few others that go heavy on the bergamot. All in all, a nice tea but nothing for a bergamot lover to get excited about even though it is named Lord Bergamot.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 9 OZ / 266 ML

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71

Legit going to have a sipdown party sometime soon because I only have one sachet of this left and I have like another 15 teas in my sipdown pile and I’l right at 100 teas and I’m expecting packages soon! I would absolutely LOVE it if I’m able to get down to like the low 90’s before all my packages come in the mail.

But this tea. My sister bought me a box for my “Congrats on getting into the DCP!” present, and I’ve finished that off. But then, when I came home, she forgot that she bought me this tea and bought me another box as a birthday present!
I’m not the biggest fan of this tea, but I just drink it because it’s tea and there’s no caffeine. Seriously. Every time I drink it I like add lemon or honey or have it plain or any variation but.. dude it just never works out.
Definitely not my favourite tea, but it was a present so I feel like I should drink it all. It’s a good “I don’t know what tea to drink so I’ll just drink this tea so it’s one sachet closer to a sipdown” tea hahah.

Dang. This tea is just so weird okay.

Shmiracles

hahaha can’t wait to try it! … ?
weird — good or bad, … is still totally cool.

jump62359

Dude I don’t even know. Like the smell of it as it steeps is so weird. When I drink it hot, it’s still a bit of a bad weird. But WHEN IT COOLS THOUGH. It’s a good weird.
I think I’m going to try a cold brew for my last sachet since I do tend to like it more cooler :)

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74

Tisane of the mid-morning here; I am attempting to take it easy on the caffeine today, or at least trying to pace myself. This reminds me a lot of Bonbon by Steven Smith. which is in a tin I can’t open right now (with my bum arm). I like cinnamon and ginger but there could be a little less licorice in this and I’d probably be happy.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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Another tea from the BBBBox Grab bag, provided by Tasty Brew.
This darjeeling blend started out with a pleasant toasty & fruity taste, & at first I was like, “maybe I do like Darjeelings more than I thought…”, but as it cooled it took on an astringency & tartness that reminded me of why they aren’t really my favorites. Still, not bad, & very drinkable, provided it isn’t allowed to cool down.

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90

Tea of the afternoon here. My sweetie and I went to the Deyoung Museum and then came home to take a nap. This is a nice waking up after nap tea. I got the news today I need to wear the sling on my arm for another 2 weeks and I thought I was done with it. The damn thing is so uncomfortable I can’t remember the last time I slept through the night. Revive me, Lord Bergamot!

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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This tea smells like butt from the chamomile (I kinda don’t like chamomile all that much oops) but it smells sooo much beter steeping!
The lemon comes out more, but I definitely don’t taste the rose petals.
Definitely a nice, well-rounded herbal tea.

I actually missed my midterm tonight oops. But my professor was all yeah, take it tomorrow, it’s totally fine! So that is what I’m doing :) I’ve got me some nice herbals to last me the night of studying :)

Flavors: Lemon Zest

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more

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Was prepared not to love this, thought it might end up a little too brightly Ceylon-forward a la Red-Tailed Hawk for me to consider drinking regularly. But the balance of smooth deep Assam and bright coppery Ceylon is really good here, makes a splendid first-thing-with-food tea, flavorful and bold but smooth, just bright enough to wake you up and cut the greasy starch in your pancakes, and interesting thanks mostly to the depth in the sweet Keemun and malty Assam but not so complex or busy that you’d feel bad drinking it while still waking up. A+++ would drink again! Reminds me vaguely of The Black Lotus (less complex though), with Ceylon instead of Darjeeling playing the part of the bright sparkly note.

As always with SST blacks, I cut the steep time way down, only 3 minutes compared to their without-fail recommended (hair-raising!) 5. Funny, they’re one of the only tea companies whose directions I always automatically disregard with no reservations or regrets.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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71

I never learn from my mistakes.
I have had this tea SO MANY TIMES and it just.. doesn’t taste good. I really want to like it, I do I do! But it’s just… ehh. This is the tea I drink when I am not picky with the rooibos that I drink. I go for this tea because I know every time I drink it, it’s one sachet closer to a sipdown.

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70

Ohmygoodness I forgot to review this!! Had it awhile back but I was on a conference call… and then had to dash out the door. Sorry TeaBrat, and after you were nice enough to send me a sample!
Anyhow, I am very particular about my chai and this one did not quite fit into my ideal. I remember trying to figure out why, and I think it was just a mix of spices that don’t appeal to me as much as others. There was a sweet note in there as well, that I found odd. Ginger perhaps?
Milk and a dash of sugar certainly helped of course. Overall, a pleasant cup!

TeaBrat

I just read my review of it and didn’t find it terribly impressive either. Stephen Smith seems to be very “hit or miss” for me.

Indigobloom

Same here (from the ones you sent me anyhow) but then I’ve found that with most tea companies I’ve dealt with. C’est la vie :)

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Sipdown (118).

Worst day ever on my gosh.
You know it’s a bad day when you don’t even feel like drinking tea at night because THERE’S NO TEA TO DRINK. Like seriously. I don’t feel like drinking any of the teas I have right now because I just feel nasty and gross and ugh no. I was dying in Philosophy today okay. After two presentations, I just wanted to run home and take a hot shower because my entire body was ACHING. I sat through the final two presentations and I was close to tears in the last one because my stomach was hurting so much, and my muscles felt tingly and weak and no.
But this one kinda just stood out because I wanted something minty so Fez it is. I’ve been saving it because it’s one of my favourites and now I am all out of it :(
Yeah. Today was just a bad day.

Hello.Kiki

I’m sorry you had a bad day :(

keychange

Glad yesterday ended. I hope today feels better!

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79

TTB #21

Another tea sample swiped from the Traveling Box! It came in a nice, individually wrapped pyramid bag.

It’s a holy HOLY asparagus in my mouth… No, no, no. Stop that.

It’s a pretty decent vegetal-tasting green. Now, that’s better.

I do like it. It’s definite, categorical flavor. It’s taking names without necessarily kicking ass. Not sure if I would go out of my way to buy it but I would be extremely happy if anyone served it to me.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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78

Thanks for the sample TeaBrat!
I don’t think I’ve ever had a tea quite like this before. Hot, it was so dynamic and complex, and yummy! I coulda sworn there was yerba mate in there but nope it’s myrtle masquerading as mate. Ha!
Anyhow, now that it’s cooled I can really taste the lemon. Interesting. I still prefer it hot though.

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