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Recent Tasting Notes
From the Lewis and Clark TTB.
A fine breakfast tea. SMACK in the face kind of thing because of the shu pu’erh. The chocolate flavoring is excellent – strong, yet I can taste the earthiness of the base teas below. Seems like it’d be best for when you’re up before sunrise during winter.
I may have under watered/over leafed this because I’m getting a slight bitter taste mingling with all the other flavors. This tea is heavy, all base notes and earthiness with the pu erh and chocolate. I added some sweetened coconut creamer and it really changed the cup. It gives it an almost root beer base. It is interesting and I think there is a lot of potential for chocolate pu erh, but this one isn’t quite hitting the spot for me.
From the Lewis and Clark TTB.
It’s been a while since I’ve found a flavor tea that I’ve liked so much. Vanilla and almond work so well with rooibos, it’s like it’s meant to be. Both flavorings are strong enough to barely overtake the rooibos, but not overwhelmingly so. Yum. Great for autumn, but also seems good for a year round.
Marco Polo TTB
Yum, Mocha! Smells like hot chocolate. I don’t like most teas that taste like chocolate but this one does not offend me. I’m really enjoying this giant mug of this, even as it cools it does not get bitter, stays smooth. I have this itch to add milk to it but it’s yummy just the way it is. I kind of shy away from teas with puerh but I’m trying to be more open minded and I’m so glad I got a chance to try this and see myself getting more in the future.
Here’s Hoping Traveling Teabox Round #3 – Tea #8
The leaves have a reddish hint to them and they look chopped apart while not quite being CTC tea leaf size. I’m accustomed to any nilgiri tea having a much lighter flavor. This one isn’t so light! It has some substance, a breadiness, while still having a juicy flavor that hints to cherry. It’s nice! Maybe the smaller tea leaf gives this more flavor, rather than the typical longer leaf of nilgiri.
Steep #1 // 1 tsp // few min after boiling // 3-4 min
Steep #2 // half mug // just boiled // 4 min
Lewis & Clarke TTB
Another Tea Sparrow tea from Cheri! I’ve been curious about this tea for a little while, as I always am about anything almond or vanilla-related. There are a few pieces of almond mixed in with the rooibos itself. Dry scent is quite sweet and I can definitely smell vanilla. The instructions recommended a tablespoon of tea (?!) but that sounded ridiculous to me, so I halved it for my 8 ounce cup.
Once brewed, it smells like rooibos (woody, etc.) with vanilla and the tiniest hint of marzipan. Unfortunately, this basically tastes like rooibos to me… Maybe with a little bit of vanilla, but not enough. And I definitely don’t get any almond. Oh almond teas, why must you always disappoint? :(
Flavors: Rooibos, Vanilla
Lewis & Clarke TTB
Yum, chocolate black tea & puerh blend? Sounds tasty. This one is in sachets. The leaf is fairly small with some larger sticks in it, and a few yellow flower petals. It smells lovely and chocolatey! The instructions say 1 sachet for 16 ounces, but I didn’t listen because I’m a rebel… Lol. I did 8 ounces for mine.
Brewed aroma is chocolatey and brisk with just a little hint of puerh “pond” smell. Well, it didn’t come out super bitter so I guess the 8 ounces of water was okay. :P I actually quite like this one. The chocolate and the puerh go together very well and the flavoring seems like part of the tea. The puerh gives that lovely almost woody quality that I’ve experienced with Mandala’s shou, while the black tea is just generally malty and somewhat brisk. There’s a little bit of mineral quality to this, but it’s not strong enough to bother me. Overall, pretty tasty! :)
Flavors: Cocoa, Dark Chocolate, Malt, Mineral, Wood
From Marco Polo TTB, thanks The Tea Spot!
This tea has been on my radar for a long time, but for some reason I was intimidated to try it. I am determined to make my way through all of the Marco Polo samples since that’s the top thing on my “Tea Do” list right now.
I really liked this! It smelled really delicious when I opened the sample (which was a sachet in a package). Very strong cocoa notes, with a bit of something else. The flavor was bold, as promised – a bit of chocolate and a bit of tea. Very very nice, and different!
From the Round Three Here’s Hoping TTB
Tea of the morning. This is a nice, bright tea. Kinda fruity with a citrus finish, and very clean with no aftertaste or lingering notes. This isn’t a tea I see myself keeping on hand, but it was a nice change of pace from my normal heavier, more malty teas.
Second cup of this, this time take with milk because when I skimmed the tea description I saw something about this one taking milk well and since I’ve had it straight I thought that’d be a good switch up.
So this time around, I thought I was tasting the Pu’Erh side of the blend more than the black side – it was especially earthy and just sorta had that characteristic Pu’Erh taste. Like, uhh, well I want to say like “Sweet, dank old attic” but I feel like that puts it in a bad light, and that’s not what I’m trying to do. I’m meaning more like rich, full of character, and homey? But again, not quite that either.
It was very smooth like last time, but this time the milk was clearly aiding that trait. The very rich chocolate notes were a little lighter but still felt full of flavour. It was like this mug had gone from Dark Chocolate to Milk Chocolate; both are good, full flavours but there’s definitely a noticeable difference between the two and Milk Chocolate is less weighty. Perhaps this turned more so to milk chocolate because of, I don’t know, the milk!? I’m thinking that’s likely.
Additional notes I picked up were honey, malt and French Bread. Yes, French Bread specifically. And, now I really want French Bread, so thanks for that? Smh.
Thanks a bundle whatshesaid for this sample! Like I said in my last note, I would not have picked it out for myself but I was pleasantly taken in both times I had this one and it was a real treat!
So, if you don’t want to hear about Tre’s sorta sex life, skip to the bolded line!
I think I’ll end my night’s tasting notes with this one, and pick up the back log of notes maybe tomorrow night? I want to watch more Gossip Girl this evening, and I still need to stream tonight’s episode of Big Brother so that I can compare thoughts with Tre. Although, he’s actually in Regina right now – he left yesterday afternoon. He’s spending the next three days with a girl named Brooke (a former classmate of mine; and a sort of perpetual “crush” of his for the last year or so). He basically got booty called or whatever you call it when it’s a three day stretch of… Well, you know.
He was very elated and took some time off work to go. So, I guess I’m happy for him and, err, “little him”? Even if I don’t exactly like Brooke that much (for a variety of reasons), and if I think that he’s maybe being used to scratch some, uhh, itches? I mean, at least he’s pretty aware he’s being used?
People are weird. Sometimes sex is weird. And, I feel like I know more about his sex life than is normal for friends/roommates. I mean, I know the rather intimate details of his, uhh, first time. Is that a normal thing roommates share, ‘cause if it is I missed that memo and I definitely don’t plant to reciprocate on the sharing of details.
In other, non Tre related, news: I had to close the store with my manager a few nights ago and that was awkward as hell. It was very weird because it sorta felt like I had to hold her hand through the process: she does not normally close (in fact; she NEVER works in the evenings unless it’s a cleaning shift) so she was very out of practice with how everything was done.
It was honestly like I was closing by myself but under some weird sort of supervision, because I had to do my half of closing and then reteach her how to do her half. It’s a good thing I’m awesome (and not at all modest) though, because I was able to carry us both through closing and still get us out of the store on time and on schedule. I think I earned some major brownie points!
But enough of that!
We’re ending the night on this tasting note (and off colour rant) because it’s tasting note 1771 and that feels like a fun enough number to end up. I don’t think I can count it as a monumental number; but yeah, it’s fun.
Thanks to whatshesaid for the sample of this! I likely would not have picked it out for myself, but turns out I would have been very wrong in doing that! Why? Because this was pretty fucking spectacular. Honestly, I don’t think it’d be much of a stretch to call this the best (or at least close to) chocolate tea I’ve had – and I am not really a chocolate tea person. Rather, I’m pretty impartial to chocolate in my tea.
But this was deeply satisfying and indulgent in the most surprising of ways, with very thick, rich dark chocolate notes that reminded me of fancy truffles! And then combine that with almost equally rich notes of caramel and honey with an insanely smooth black base and an undertone of earth notes from the Pu’Erh and you have a really well formulated breakfast (or really anytime) blend that’ll have me enchanted for days.
Seriously; this should be called something more interesting than “Bolder Breakfast”. How about Seduction Tea? ‘Cause, you know, that’s much more on point. I have (well, “had” – the sipdown note for this is in my queue) one more cup of this and I definitely cannot put off having it. I need this one again! Mmm!
And so yeah, we’re gonna end the night on that semi uncomfortable and weird tasting note. Sometimes I feel like I share too much on Steepster; but at least I gave you all a heads up. Besides, this is sorta like a mostly tea focused diary for me; so I want to write about what’s relevant to my life in addition to tea. I don’t want to feel guilty about that…
Flavors: Caramel, Dark Chocolate, Earth, Honey
The smell of this tea is extremely bold. The smell of the raw leaves almost sticks to your nose – you can smell it even 20 minutes after the tea is put away. The ingredients are white tea, jasmine flowers and roasted chestnut flavoring. It tastes very nutty, creamy, and caramel y.
It would be interesting to try this tea iced.
1tbsp in 8oz of “not-quite boiling” water for 3.5 minutes.
Flavors: Caramel, Chestnut
I bought this solely based on other reviews. I was looking for teas from companies who charge a lot to ship to Canada (or don’t ship to us at all) to purchase and have sent to my relatives in the States to bring to me when they visited this summer.
They delivered the massive order about a week ago, including this tea.
I wasn’t sure what to expect…I guess I thought the chocolate would taste like a more natural note rather than an obvious added flavouring. (I’ve been spoiled by Laoshan Black, evidently). It kind of reminds me of the chocolate flavouring used by Harney and Sons, which I don’t love. Maybe I’m more of a creamy milk chocolate kind of girl. Well, no “maybe” about it, I definitely am.
Anyway, I’ve had this a few times now and the chocolate makes it not a breakfast tea for me. I don’t want to drink something flavoured first thing in the morning. Unless it’s coffee, oddly enough. But not tea.
The pu’erh definitely adds an earthy note. And this is a very bold tea. Mid morning or afternoon, for me.
I will try to enjoy what I have left but not a re-buy for me. I don’t love fake chocolate tasting teas.
From the reddit traveling tea box.
Oh wow, this is good! This is an assam black with butterscotch candy (that has coconut in it). The assam base is really good, with the sweet, smooth candy flavor finish. The assam has briskness end of sip. This is a great blend for assam lovers. Too bad there was only 1 serving for this tea.
Oh hey, this is a teaspot tea – they were super nice (and busy) at the World Tea Expo. I got a spiffy tote bag from them!
I’m trying new teas left and right today! I brewed two teas at a time this morning in separate cups, of which this is one.
The smell and taste of this are really interesting. When it’s brewed up, I’m smelling that sort of dark raisiny note I notice from a lot of black teas, but there’s a different note that also creeps in. It’s very earthy, and reminds me of wet soil, like rain. It’s just a deep, wet, humid smell.
This carries over into the taste – the tea is there, but there’s also that sensation of gardens and wet soil (not in an ugly grainy sort of way, but more…fertile, I think). I’ve never had a Nilgiri black tea before, so I’m wondering if this is typical of teas grown in this region. Thoughts?
Oh, my, chocolate! My husband and I acquired this from Whole Foods recently, and the following morning we steeped it up with our (nearly) full breakfast.
The smell of the loose leaf is very earthy, with a hefty dose of dark chocolate and a hint of cream. I steeped it for two-ish minutes (I didn’t get my timer started right away), and it surprised me how light-colored the brew was, considering it has pu-erh in it! But the leaves had mostly sunk, so I knew it was done with the first steep.
The flavor is DEFINITELY chocolate-y. The pu-erh adds a nice malty, almost fermented note without being completely overpoweringly musty. In fact, if I didn’t know it, I might not have ever guessed that this was blended with pu-erh. It’s actually pretty naturally sweet, but we added a little light cream and sugar anyway, because, well, it’s a breakfast tea. We did end up resteeping it later, for four minutes, and it was almost identical to the first steep. Quite lovely! Glad we sprung for it (although next time I may try to get it cheaper… looking at you, Whole Foods, Land of the Fancy Grocery Store Upcharge).
it has been a pretty busy week. When the weather is nice during the summer the thought of staying inside kills me. We have been doing lots of biking and playing, and for me that means minimal tea drinking. Plus I think it was 90+ degrees this weekend with a humidity that felt like you were swimming.
I had this cup for my afternoon tea on Friday. It was very similar to how I remember ceylon, with a bit more flavor. It was light and had a nice fruity finish. I really enjoyed this one and was someone sad that I only took 1 cups worth.
Seriously, Steepster? THREE copies of this tea? Isn’t that a little excessive?
This sample is from Sil, and I kinda hate her for it. This is sooooo good! Rich, a little earthy, chocolatey. YUM. I could probably stand to steep it a bit longer, but since it’s a puerh blend I can try that in a second steep.
How do I get more?
Flavors: Chocolate, Dark Chocolate, Earth
I have a splitting headache. We were going to go watch one of my favorite local bands in the beer garden, but I hurt so bad I was feeling nauseated. Sweet spouse drove me home, and headed back to the bar. Hah.
So I took a shower to try to relax my neck, which is where this wonderful stress headache is coming from, and it helped a little but not much. So this tea is keeping me company. I’m going to go curl up with my Kindle and maybe read, if my head will let me. The computer screen is not playing nice with my head, though, so I’m giving that up.
I bought this sample from The Tea Spot a while back and I’ve somehow never gotten around to trying it. I thought tonight would be a perfect time to try it.
I went back to read the description on their site after sipping it.
Gosh, is this incredibly sweet and creamy. I love the roasted chestnuttiness. I don’t really get the jasmine, but it’s just a few flowers, so I’m not too surprised. It’s a light flavor when it’s just the flowers and it’s overwhelmed by the chestnut. I can taste the base white, and it’s adding a really nice base to this tea, fuzzy and soft.
I really like this one. I’m not sure that I would stock it all the time, but it is a decadent dessert treat. (Or an I’ve had a cruddy week but at least now I have something I can drive week, I guess.)