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Recent Tasting Notes
I don’t know, I made the mistake of reading the other comments on this herbal—something I usually don’t do until I finish my review post—and I’ve got a completely different thing going on in my cup. What I have here is mango, and papaya possibly, with a hint of yogurt-like tang. There may well be hibiscus here too, but a few shreds perhaps, nothing that screams hibiscus at me. It’s all quite delicious.
Flavors: Hibiscus, Mango, Sweet, Tangy, Tropical, Yogurt
The dry leaf smells berry and juicy and summer. Steeped, the truly rich berry, like a basket of assorted dark berries and possibly a bit of fig, with blueberry predominating, continues. When I take a sip, however, the berry taste falls away. The tartness of the hibiscus, rose hip, and black and red currant steps up and takes over with blueberry and slight citrus in the background. Mango may well be in the distance complementing the citrus. As the tea cools a bit, the berries once again take over and remain in the forefront. Nice.
Flavors: Black Currant, Blackberry, Blueberry, Fig, Hibiscus, Red Fruits, Rosehips, Strawberry
Maple has been a frequent flavour craving this past week or two. The first time I had this tea, some time ago, it was perfect. Exactly like true maple candy held by a frisky black base. Today, it’s not living up to the expectations planted in my memory. My rating reflects both my imagination and the reality of the moment.
Flavors: Maple Syrup
You know that Bing Cherry flavour you get from that big monstrous juicy cherry you pulled out of the solid custard cream nestled in a good Black Forest Cake? That. In both scent and flavour. The body has a nice hefty depth to it, possibly from the added fig. A bit more cream would be nice, but all in all, a really pleasant natural-tasting cup.
I steeped quickly because I suspect this tea base would become astringent if it were neglected.
Flavors: Cherry, Chocolate
This has to be one of the older blends in my cupboard…it’s been there more than a year, maybe closer to two? The fact that I can’t remember isn’t a good sign. I think I bought it off the back of a 52Teas cucumber blend that I really enjoyed a couple of summers ago…and then promptly forgot about it. It’s been sealed, though, and the scent is still good, so today it finally sees the light.
The dry leaf looks a little crusty, but at this point I’m really not surprised. There are pieces of dried lime zest and small cubes of freeze-dried cucumber, a lot of peppermint, plus the green tea base (apparently both straight green – sencha? – and jasmine green). It’s pre-sweetened with stevia, which I’m usually against, but if it helps to create a mojito kind of vibe then I might be on side…
I used 1 tsp of leaf for my cup, and gave it 2.5 minutes in water cooled to around 175 degrees. This blend reminds me a lot of Bluebird’s MojiTEA, which is a good thing because I like that one. On the other hand, they’re not sufficiently different for me to want to keep both around, and I wouldn’t replace the Bluebird with this one because (for me, in the UK) Bluebird is more readily accessible anyway.
This one has strong lime notes, followed by cool, dank peppermint. There’s an edge of sweetness from the stevia, but it’s not overdone and it doesn’t strike me as “artificial” in any way. It’s just a touch of (welcome) background sugariness. The green tea base is smooth, a little vegetal. I can’t taste the jasmine at all, which is a bonus for me because I’m not over keen on floral greens. I’m guessing this one would be better iced or cold brewed, but it’s hardly the season for that at the moment. I might try and hang on to some leaf for next summer…but then this one really will be an antique by then, so maybe not.
I’d like to get to a place with my cupboard where most of my tea is less than a year old, and where the amount I’ve got around seems manageable rather than overwhelming. I’m conscious that I’m neglecting stuff, which makes me feel bad, and I don’t want it to be like that. I’ve been pretty good at not buying anything new lately, but the temptation is growing as it always seems to once my cupboard gets under 200. I’d like it to be under 100…maybe within the next year? I guess we’ll see! And at least I know what my New Year’s Resolution is going to be…
Finally got around to trying this one today. It’s a slightly odd blend, I think. Dry, it looks very…beige. The bag is basically cubes of various things in shades of brown and yellow – date and pineapple primarily, I think, although there’s also some cherry pieces (still brown) and elderberries (brown, surprisingly). Everything’s covered in – guess what colour? – brown dust, which settled at the bottom of my cup. I’m convinced it’s powdered ginger, but it’s not listed in the ingredients…
To taste, this is sweeter than I was expecting. It’s mostly pineapple, but dried pineapple (you know, with a ton of extra sugar that makes it all candy-like…) rather than fresh. There’s an undertone of tartness (thanks, hibi), and a whole lot of ginger. I can’t taste much of the other ingredients really at all, because those three dominate pretty much totally. I was hoping the date and cherry would be more prominent, but sadly that’s not the case.
It’s an odd combination of things, but it doesn’t taste bad. It’s not my favourite tropical blend, or even my favourite fruit blend, but it’s drinkable. It wouldn’t be a repurchase for me, though, even if I could get hold of more. Which I can’t. Can you tell I’m feeling a bit meh about this one?
Butterscotch Potion. By Tealux
Western style, 10g/250ml mug
Dry leaf: Strong Butterscotch/caramel
Wet leaf: Strong Butterscotch/caramel, spices
I taste/smell: butterscotch, caramel, hibiscus(?), floral, spices, peach.
all in all, what a lovely tea! i rate a 100 :D
allthough, i’m not much for blends, however this one was yummy! i might order more. who knows ;) Update: its sold out :/
Flavors: Butterscotch, Caramel, Floral, Peach, Spices
So I’m really late to this party. I bought this one on the strength of some Twinings first flush darjeeling that I really liked, but apparently I let 2 years pass and didn’t get around to trying it. Shame on me. Today, though, is finally the day!
I used 1 tsp of leaf for my cup, and gave it 3 minutes in boiling water. The liquor is a medium orange-brown, the scent lightly malty with hints of stone fruit. To taste, it’s pretty much as I expected. I hadn’t tried a Rohini before, which is one of the reasons I picked this one out, and I was intrigued by the fact that it has a flavour profile more akin to a second flush. Muscatel notes, yay! Fortunately, they’re here in spades, so I’m not disappointed. It’s a really lovely grapey flavour, deep and rich, slightly on the dry side. Underneath is the sweet, juiciness of apricots, followed by light maltiness. It’s slightly brisk, but not what I’d call astringent. All in all, everything I want from a first flush darjeeling!
Finally getting around to these. They’ve been in my cupboard for a while, shall we say? I used 1 tsp of pearls for my cup (6, it turned out), and gave them 4 minutes in boiling water. They’d pretty much unraveled entirely by that point.
To taste, this is a pretty decent Yunnan. It’s not the best I’ve ever tried, and nowhere near as good as Teavivre’s dragon pearls. Having said that, it’s not bad either. It’s a touch on the thin side in terms of body (especially considering the number of pearls that went into this cup…), but it’s flavourful enough . There are some delicious dark chocolate and cocoa notes, a light maltiness, and a background hint of earthiness. I think I just wanted it to be more robust, and maybe somehow thicker. Too high on expectation, maybe. It’s tea, after all (but I’ve had some good tea…)
I’m finding this one enjoyable enough, but it probably wouldn’t be a repurchase for me.
I really like this one as an evening sip before bed. A bit creamy, a bit tart, a bit orangey. The vanilla ties it all together. Nice combination.
It seems to me that it is exactly the same tea that Sil and Indigobloom and I bought at the tea festival last year under a different name and in different packaging.
Flavors: Cream, Hibiscus, Orange Zest, Tangy, Vanilla
No notes yet. Add one?
Finally getting around to trying this one. It’s been in my cupboard long enough, that’s for sure. I followed the recommended parameters, and used 1.5 tsp of pearls (which amounted to 12, some smaller than others). I gave them 3.5 minutes in boiling water, no additions.
I’d heard a lot of good things about this one, and fortunately it’s as delicious as I hoped. It has a strong, fruity, juicy lychee flavour right up front, followed by the smooth, malty chocolatey flavour of the black tea base. It’s an amazing combination! Although the lychee is strong, it’s not overpowering or cloying, which is always a bonus when it comes to flavoured teas. I wish more things were lychee flavoured, actually. I think it could only improve my life, in all honesty.
I have some of Tealux’s unflavoured Black Dragon Pearls to try next, and it’ll be interesting to see how they compare with both this blend and with the Teavivre pearls I tried a while back. I love that there are still new tea discoveries to be made, even though I’ve rated 900-odd individual teas in my two years on here. Hooray for new tea adventures (and more lychee!)
Today’s “new start”. From the scent of the dry leaf, I was expecting a cup of mostly rooibos, and probably a very woodsy one at that. Fortunately not so. The main flavour here is a slightly sour marscapone-ish creaminess, very reminiscent of tiramisu. Underneath that are notes of almond, coffee, chocolate, and just a hint of caramel. There is some rooibos poking out here and there, but it’s pretty effectively masked by the flavouring for the most part.
I used 1 tsp of leaf for my cup, and gave it 3.5 minutes in boiling water. The dry leaf contains coffee beans, chocolate chips, and cubes of caramel, so there’s a slightly oily scrim to the brewed cup, but nothing too distracting. I enjoyed this one, on the whole. I’m not sure whether I’d have chosen a rooibos base…but it works. I’m a happy camper!
After achieving a couple of sipdowns today, I figured it was time to pull some more “new” black teas out of my sample box. In all honesty, they’re not actually all that new anymore. I guess what I really mean is “unopened”. This one sounded appealing, although I had to check twice because I didn’t believe it would be a black tea at first. “Caribbean Breeze” had me thinking of a while or green blend, probably tropical fruit flavoured. This one is chocolate coconut.
Once brewed, I can kinda see it. I used 1.5 tsp of leaf for my cup, and gave it 3 minutes in boiling water. It brewed up pretty dark, so I added a splash of milk. An oily scrim gathers on the surface, and I can only assume the chocolate is responsible for that. Fortunately, it doesn’t seem to have any effect on the texture or mouthfeel, and it doesn’t taste oily. All good so far.
The main flavour is definitely coconut, swiftly followed by milk chocolate. It’s very reminiscent of a Bounty at this point. The while chocolate comes out a little in the mid-sip, and with it a creaminess that I think the milk also helps to promote. There’s a slightly odd pepperiness at the end of the sip that’s a little jarring, but mostly ignorable. It’s putting me in mind of a David’s Tea I tried a while back…maybe last winter? I can’t remember the name now, but I know it’s going to annoy me until I do…
On the whole, I enjoyed this one. Liquid bounty, with added pepper. IGNORE THE PEPPER!
ETA: White Chocolate Frost? I didn’t much like that, though, apparently…
Tea of the afternoon. And why, when it’s still 28 degrees out? I think it’s a comfort thing, and I need comforting when I look at the amount of work that’s just come my way thanks to two skiving colleagues. One is notorious for being “sick” on nice days, the other is just workshy and had to go home because “her leg hurts”. Obviously it’ll hurt a whole lot less in front of the TV, but since when did a sore leg stop anyone from typing? Never in the history of the world, that’s when. That, in a nutshell, it how I ended up doing to work of three people, feasibly for the rest of the week. I decided I needed caffeine.
I love Earl Grey Cream blends. I think I’ve adored every single one I’ve ever tried, as far as I can remember. This one’s no exception. I used 1 tsp of leaf for my cup, and gave it 3.5 minutes in boiling water. I added a splash of milk. To taste, it’s pretty wonderful. The main flavour is a thick creaminess, very sweet and vanilla-y. The bergamot is very subtle, really just an underlying flavour, which works for me because I’m not a huge bergamot fan. If you like really creamy Earl Grey blends, you should definitely take a look at this one. I could happily drink it all day, and I probably will if the current conditions prevail.
Oh. This one smells good! Maple syrup, and sugar, and malt. I always fear, with flavoured teas, that the scent will be far, far more impressive than the taste, and sometimes that’s the case. Sometimes, though, it’s not. And I’m overjoyed that it’s not this time! It’s still summer, and burning hot, here, and I shouldn’t really be drinking hot tea because it doesn’t help. I had to try this one, though, and now I have I’m going to try and save at least a decent amount for the autumn, because I know it’ll make a fabulous warm-up treat on a cold work morning. It might be hard to keep hold of it for that long, but I’ll try.
I used 1 tsp of leaf for my cup, and gave it 3.5 minutes in boiling water. I added a splash of milk because it brewed up pretty dark. There’s a definitely oily scrim on the surface, but it doesn’t affect the texture too much. I’d probably ignore it if it did, though, because I’m all about the flavour with this one. It tastes, to all intents and purposes, like maple syrup. It’s not quite as rich and cloying as that would suggest, but it’s definitely a full-on maple flavour. One point in its favour is that it’s not too sweet. It’s got an edge of almost “burnt” tasting caramelisation which helps to bring it back a little, although the initial sip is pretty sugary. I love it. And now I want more!
Finally getting around to trying this one. It’s been in my cupboard a while, and yet I still think of it as one of my “new” Tealux teas. I finished off the “old” ones ages ago, so really it’s just “one of my Tealux teas”. And it deserves drinking. I used 1 tsp of leaf for my cup, and gave it 3.5 minutes in boiling water. It’s a mixture of CTC and longer, whole leaves, both of Indian origin according to the packet.
It tastes as you might expect; strong, robust, malty, with quite thick caramel notes. There’s a light creaminess, not as strong as I was expecting, but it adds a smoothness to the overall flavour that’s really pleasant, and that successfully manages to tone down what could have been brassier, harsher edges.
I think the creaminess could stand to be stronger, particularly as the base tea itself is so strong. I’m really enjoying my cup, though. It’s one of the smoothest CTC blends I’ve tried in a long time, and I’d happily repurchase.
My weekend was excellent, even though my sleep schedule is totally off now! I enjoyed fighting games and worked on painting, who can ask for more? Sadly though, my happiness is at an end, sort of. The basement has a hellish flooding problem, so there is going to be a lot of noise and a lot of mess this week, with the warning ‘anyone with lung problems shouldn’t be here.’ Bah. So I am going to spend a lot of time outside, meaning no painting, though I am going to hopefully spend a lot of time at the zoo.
Today I am looking at Tealyra’s Da Hong Pao Superfine, specifically it is a Ban Yan Da Hong Pao (because if it was Zheng Yan it would cost a small fortune) see the term Ban Yan comes from Ban Yan Cha, or semi-rock tea (as contrasted with Yan Cha) meaning it is grown outside of the Wuyi National Scenic Area. It is still a Wuyi ‘Yancha’ in style and spirit, but being grown outside of this rather fancy region means us mere mortals can afford it. Good for people who want to drink Da Hong Pao everyday and not as a special treat. So how do these long twisty leaves smell? Like a Da Hong Pao, strong notes of char and tobacco with undertones of cocoa and lots of loam. It smells like the remnants of a campfire on an autumn’s day, a campfire where someone was smoking a pipe and eating s’mores and the air still holds both of those memories.
Time to use ye’ol Yancha pot, and the aroma of the tea leaves is still fairly char heavy, giving the tea a sharpness. There are also notes of loam and black walnuts with a finish of wet limestone. Not terribly nuanced but certainly very strong. The liquid for the first steep has mellowed out a bit on the char, smelling like wet coals and molasses with an accompaniment of walnut shells and a very faint creamy candy note, not unlike molasses candies…something which I am craving suddenly.
The first steep is surprisingly mellow, it starts with a loamy mineral note, like wet limestone and damp autumn leaves after a rain and then bursts into molasses and scotch. The finish is loamy and gently sweet but does not linger long. It was a good first steep but very mild for a yancha, which is usually balls to the walls from the first sip.
For the aroma of the second steep, there are notes of sweet molasses and chocolate with wet limestone and a nice burst of wet coals at the finish. It is stronger than the first steep, but sadly has lost the walnut shell notes. The taste reminds me of strong dark chocolate, just a touch sweet and nicely bitter with a coal and mineral finish. Often when these rock teas have a strong coal and dark chocolate flavor it reminds me of the burnt edge of a s’more you let catch on fire. Tasty but burnt chocolate!
The third steep’s aroma is faint by comparison, just notes of wet leaves and wet coal with a ghost of molasses. The aroma made promises of faintness that the taste fulfilled, this tea has given up the ghost. All that is left is the ghost of burnt chocolate and mineral, like rainwater more than wet limestone. If you want a tea that lingers for a while I say look elsewhere, but if you want a nice char heavy DHP for a fairly cheap price then this one works and fulfills that craving if you are running low on the higher end stuff.
This morning has been lazy but I needed it after my few pints of Guinness last night (I can’t drink like I used to, I’m too old for it now). I hoovered my carb (husband is very messy) and now I’m watching Jurassic World. My treat for doing anything so far is a large pot of tea and I chose this one.
Steeping Western style with roughly 10g combined with 800ml boiling water. Something I intend to keep re steeping throughout the day.
Colour is dark brown.
Scent is toasted hay with flowers and tree bark.
Taste wise it’s rather chocolate like with elements of toasted nuts and a sweet yet light and milky floral aftertaste. Much nicer than I expected and the chocolate similarity is very pleasant. It’s not too strong or sour either considering it’s age.
I had been feeling a bit better and stronger, but things are dipping again. Yesterday, I attended a qi gong class, which should fill me with vibrancy and something positive, but no. Instead, I woke up feeling exhausted and weak. Chronic illness sucks.
I did have a fantastic breakfast though. Leftover Horiatiki salad from Greek Town and some grilled squid I picked up in Korean town. Bizarre but good. I love living in a city where it’s all available in a day’s outing.
Followed breakfast up with this lovely lovely tea.
Perhaps this is a new batch of limited edition Milk Oolong compared to that of previous reviews. The label doesn’t indicate limited edition, but there don’t seem to be other options.
My first steeping was milky cream with the barest hint of vegetal. The second steep, which I left a wee bit too long, is coming through with a very pleasant oolong green, but not too green, flavour with a bit of creamy backup. No sense of mineral or imitation flavours. I look forward what the next steeps bring.
Flavors: Butter, Corn Husk, Cream, Vegetal