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Recent Tasting Notes
A sample from Miss B! I’ve enjoyed my T2 samples so far, and I’m hoping this one is going to be another hit. They seem to do dessert teas really well, and chocolate is a classic in that respect. I used 1 tsp of leaf for my cup, and gave it 3.5 minutes in boiling water. I added a splash of milk. Brewed, this one certainly smells good – rich, chocolatey, and reminiscent of a cup of hot chocolate!
To taste, it’s almost as good. There’s a reasonably strong chocolatey flavour coming through, although it reminds me more of cocoa than actual chocolate. It’s definitely on the sweeter side, too – milk chocolate rather than dark. It’s a little thin tasting, which is to be expected given that it’s not actually chocolate, but I can’t help but think that a different base tea might have helped with that a little. I can see why Keemun, because it can have chocolate notes of its own, but I’m not really picking those up much here. In addition to the cocoa/milk chocolate flavour, there’s also a nuttiness that’s really rather pleasant. The more I drink, the more I’m reminded of nutella – and that’s no bad thing!
I’m enjoying this one. It’s not the most chocolatey tea I’ve ever tasted, but it’s one of the more flavour accurate in terms of having no weird chemical/artificial weirdness kicking around. This makes for a very pleasant dessert tea, with its creamy chocolate nuttiness and intrinsic sweetness. Great stuff!
A sample from Miss B! Continuing the sweet theme this morning, I decided Creme Brulee was the only way to go after Terrific Toffee. What else could compete? I used 1 tsp of leaf for my cup, and gave it 3.5 minutes in boiling water. I added a splash of milk, mostly for fairness of comparison. It’s not so dark that I couldn’t drink it without.
To taste, this one is (if that’s possible) even sweeter than Terrific Toffee. It has strong vanilla custard vibes, with just a hint of caramel, and a rounded nuttiness that helps to bring the whole thing together. It is rather like a creme brulee in terms of taste, but it’s walking a fine line for me in terms of sweetness and sickly sweetness. It’s a truly excellent dessert tea, though, and a must-try for anyone with a sweet tooth. So many flavoured teas promise things they don’t deliver, but this one is a rare exception. Delicious, sweet, creamy creme brulee in a cup!
A sample from Miss B! This one is my mid-morning cup, and it’s totally delicious. It’s almost worth being awake and at work just so that I can be drinking this one. I used 1 tsp of leaf for my cup, and gave it 3.5 minutes in boiling water. I added a splash of milk, just because it’s that kind of morning. The brewed tea smells deliciously of cake – sweet, rich, vanilla. To taste, it’s definitely toffee with a touch of creamy, nutty nougat. It has that delicious caramelised, burnt sugar sweetness with a glorious fudgey undertone, and tastes like it should be sticky. It’s pretty sweet – almost a little too much – but it’s so spot-on flavour accurate that I don’t care for the moment. This one really is terrific!
I just bought this during the T2 VIP event last night. It smells really good, and I like the peach flavour. I like sencha by itself, but I like fruit tisanes too, so a mix of both is always good in my books.
I actually tasted a mix of Sencha Peach and Fruitalicious as iced tea, and I’ve been thinking of getting the Fruitalicious one. However, I couldn’t taste the Fruitalicious at all. Might have been the ratio of the mix, but I could taste the sweetness of the peach, so I went with it.
(I know someone else tasted the blend and picked the Sencha Peach too, haha).
It’s good hot or cold. I’m lazy so I never make iced tea. For me, tea has to taste good when hot, or I won’t buy it. This one is nice, because it’s not too strong (I don’t like black teas, usually, because they’re too strong), and there’s a natural sweetness to it.
Flavors: Fruity, Peach
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Flavors: Honey, Vanilla
I just… I just can’t go to London without coming home with tea. It’s literally impossible. Especially as they’ve opened a T2 on Regent Street and it was directly en route to Broadcasting House, where I was attending a radio taping.
(November 16th, Radio 2, The Peterford Golf Club is very funny and you might well hear me laughing in the audience. High fives to Mister Farnaby for going out there and making funnies!)
But I digress. Sampled this one in-store, as it’s part of the caramel range they’ve got going (I already brought home a box of Caramel Brownie I have yet to open, but is SO GOOD) and I actually liked it more than I was expecting, as I’ve always had a bit of a meh relationship with genmaicha. That bit of caramel sweetness is a delightful counterpoint to the toasty, dry flavour of the tea. It was nice.
I still didn’t buy it, mind – but I did manage to blow like £24 on stuff. Whoops.
This was recommended to me by the staff in T2 as an alternative to a breakfast tea. For a breakfast tea, my preference is to drink it strong, with a little milk, and I tend to drink crushed/small leaf tea to get the strength. Although I like smokey teas, I tend to avoid having them with milk because they aren’t strong enough in my opinion.
This has a slightly larger leaf, but it strikes a good balance and is quite good with milk. It’s a little smokey because of the keemun in it, and I guess the assam gives it the strength to be a breakfast tea.
I wouldn’t have it all the time, but it makes a nice change and I’d say I’m a fan overall.
Last week I celebrated my third anniversary of moving to Tasmania. I celebrated by going to a whisky and sherry tasting event and getting heinously drunk. Oops.
The next morning my friends dragged me out to brunch despite my desperately hungover state, and for the first time ever when hungover, I craved sugary, milky black tea. I’ve never wanted tea when hungover before but that morning it was all I wanted (… and lots of bacon). I got it and it did not disappoint. It was so delicious and just what I wanted and needed.
Since then I’ve been on a bit of a sugary, milky black tea bender (not as badly as the night that caused the following day’s craving, a little more drawn out) and this is the beast that’s been in my cupboard and seeing me through this phase. Good job. Hits the spot. What a treat.
This is one that my delightful spouse tried in the T2 shop on Regent Street and actually liked! So we, like, couldn’t not get a box of it. That’s just so unusual.
I’m giving it a test run as a warm brew this morning, having sampled it iced in-store, and it’s still lovely. It’s got a good punchy fruit flavour without being obnoxiously tart, which I’m not always in the mood for. It’s absolutely not the season to be brewing up a big pitcher of this cold, but I probably will anyway.
One of my favourite flavoured teas is a Black Tea with Peach and Ginger, so I was pleased to try this out. The leaves smell strongly of peach, and this taste carries into the flavour of the tea well. Peaches are incredibly smooth and take out a lot of the bite that you would usually get in a sencha. You can still taste the grassiness, but not as strongly, and it is not at all bitter (as long as it’s not brewed too long). It’s a nice twist on sencha, certainly worth a try if you like new flavours. It doesn’t quite match up to that Black tea with peach and ginger, but it’s perhaps a summery alternative.
We initially bought this one for my husband, who only likes standard Tea and fruity things you can serve on ice, but as it’s edging further and further away from iced-drink season, I feel justified in serving this hot and liberally sweetened.
Is it weird that I rather like hot fruit teas? I have a friend who drinks hot Vimto, so at least I’m drinking something that, under most circumstances, is meant to be consumed warm. This one’s really nice: I think the bit of creaminess – and there is a bit of it – around the very pretty taste of strawberry takes the edge off of any hibiscus-tart that would otherwise threaten to dominate. This is good.
I noticed last time I visited the Westgate in London that T2 now has an outpost there, which has robbed me of my only excuse to go to Shoreditch and pretend I’m cool.
(Which is probably for the best, because I am not cool enough to be in Shoreditch.)
Breakfast tea!!! Rich, smooth, slightly smoky, and delicious. I gave up on coffee this morning. Since I’ve started taking the aspirin everyday my tummy doesn’t seem to care for coffee in the morning. That’s okay. I have tea. Delicious tea. This tea brews up nice and dark in the cup. I was afraid it might be bitter or astringent, but it wasn’t. There is even a slight sweetness to it at the end of the sip. I see other people detect vanilla. I don’t, but then, with my wonky nose… This is one of the best breakfast teas I’ve had.
Flavors: Smoke, Sweet
I always enjoy sencha and this is no exception. There is a fair bit of dust in it, so I always have a bit of leaf in my cup, which isn’t ideal, but I don’t mind too much.
I’ve been experimenting with brewing time and poured out a sample every thirty seconds. The packet advises 1-3 minutes. I find 1 minute too short, with not enough taste and with the water at my house, I can taste the water through it quite strongly. Three minutes is OK, but a bitter taste is starting to compete with the normal grassy sencha flavour. My preference is 2.5 minutes (2 minutes is OK too).
An exquisite Darjeeling that was an absolute pleasure to drink, beginning with strong grassy notes laced with cucumber and ending with a pleasant hint of asparagus with multiple steeps – for anyone who loves the more delicate side of tea :)
Flavors: Asparagus, Cucumber, Grass, Muscatel
…sigh…I don’t know. I tried this first unsweetened and iced. And it was just so tart. So very citrusy. Overpoweringly so, really. I like citrus and was hoping to find it refreshing, but it was just too much. So, the next time I tried it I added sugar, in an effort to curb that grapefuit flavor that made my whole face pucker. I rarely sweeten my teas (or tisanes), either hot or cold, but this helped. I added three generous teaspoons for the entire liter. Not enough to make it taste really sweet, just to tone down the tartness. I’d like to try to reduce the amount of sugar, but will have to experiment a bit. I now can taste more of a fresh orange flavor with strong grapefruit notes that don’t overwhelm. Not sure if I’d ever try it hot, maybe if I was sick and wanted to add honey to it, but honestly, I’ll just finish this off and probably not get it again. It is bracing, refreshing, and great if you love grapefruit (which I don’t).
Flavors: Biting, Citrus, Grapefruit, Orange, Tart