Upton Tea Imports
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Recent Tasting Notes
Holy floral bergamot, Batman! This is one strongly flavored tea.
I can’t remember why I grabbed this initially – I think perhaps it was to assuage a guy I once knew that loves Earl Grey, and wanted more decaf options, so I grabbed him this sample. Regardless, he’s out of the picture and this tea is what fell on me tonight, and so… I’m drinking it.
It smells VERY strongly of bergamot in the bag, and even more so as it steeps. This is very definitely a strong tea. Plus, an EIGHT minute steep? Okay, if you say so.. and it’s strong. Faintly floral, very bergamot, and a hint of rooibos.
I think if I was gaga for strong Earl Greys and wanted a nighttime fix, I’d drink this. Is it for me? Not really.
this enticing sample came to me by way of MissB.
not a blend i would normally have purchased for myself, but lovely to try nonetheless. this tea is stewed apricots in a cup! i have tried mangosteen, lychee, dragonfruit and any number of other exotic fruits that make steepster’s autocorrect put endless red squiggly lines under my writing.
i had never heard of maracuja before, and i will likely forget the name until i read it again, lol. i will however forever remember this blend as rich, heavy, juicy stewed apricots. delectable.
Tea of the morning…..
I am loving this. Of course, like most black snail teas, the leaves expanded so much during steeping. This one has cocoa notes, is sweet and has maybe just a little spice. I will definitely enjoy this one while I have it because Upton is out of this one since my last purchase. Bummer. I love the funny shaped teas. It is like a little side adventure added to your tea experience.
I am thankful for many things. Family, Friends, Health. The big ones. But also small things like the time to slow down a bit and to catch a breath after Thanksgiving and before the craziness that is most of December for me. And also tea, because I feel it is something that helps bring moments of peace in a hectic world.
Usual teapot method.
It’s pretty much cold all the time now. That’s when I enjoy making a large pot of tea to drink throughout the day. I usually prefer to go with a caffeine free tea or else I’d be bouncing off the walls after my second cup. I’ve had this particular sample for a while now. I should not have waited so long.
The dry leaves smelled like intense sweet honey and plum jam. Wow. There’s practically zero body in the brewed tea, but there is a lot of aroma and flavor. I much prefer this over the fermented variety. So much fresher and fruitier. I’d imagine that this is much better for pairing for fruity favoring than the fermented variety. But the fermented kind has more body so maybe that’s why? Dunno.
Anyway, I’ll be happy to drink this pot down to keep me warm today. :)
BOO for being sick. But YAY for having this tea when I am.
I still mix this with Upton’s spearmint whenever I have it, but the ratio today was 4 tsp. lemongrass to 2 tsp. spearmint with some honey to help quiet this ridiculous dry cough. I worked Thanksgiving night and I still want to make a Thanksgiving dinner but unfortunately this cold is not making that possible. Maybe the tea will help turn things around and get me my energy back.
Backlog from a few days ago. I know it’s redundant that I keep noting this one, given that I always like it and it can do no wrong, but I’m a ‘log every tea I drink’ kind of girl.
This is always a sure bet to reverse any bad tea luck I’ve been having, or to end any kind of tea rut. I love it to pieces.
Beautifully well-balanced cup!
Wasn’t much to this other than a ‘normal’ chai smell both in the bag and as it brewed. It’s got a bit of bite to it at the end (just like it says in the description), however it’s minor and complements the tea well. I can taste everything here in perfect proportions… cardamom, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, pepper, even the black decaf. I think it’s perfect just as a decaf black; adding Truvia upped the ginger a bit and the heat dimmed down ever so slightly.
Tea #6 from Another TTB (5th and last darjeeling sampled this morning)
Of the five darjeelings I tried this morning, I liked this one the least. It tastes musty, like old clothes in an attic with moth balls and cat pee too. icky.
Tea #5 From Another TTB and fourth darjeeling sampled this morning
This first flush darjeeling has much of the flavor characteristics as Giddapahar Musk from Thunderbolt teas, but they are not as pronounced. Namely the sparkling (and astringent) characteristic. The liquor is in between the colors of the other 1st and 2nd flush darjeelings that I brewed thismorning.
Tea #4 From Another TTB
With the help of this tea box and a swap from Moraiwe I was able to compare 5 different darjeelings together.
I’ve had one darjeeling before this (Makaibari Darjeeling from Della Terra) as well as the oolong variant “Oooh Darjeeling” from Butiki. I did not particularly care for either of those, but I wanted to give Darjeelings a fair chance. I think I can safely say now, that I am not a darjeeling person. Makes sense though as Im not much of a wine person, so why should I like the “fine wine” of teas? :p
This particular darjeeling is the most similar of the five to the one I’ve had before. It’s a heavy, overwhelming flavor, muscatel, apparently. I think of it like the same heavy honey flavor in some dark oolongs. Why this flavor becomes “muscatel” in a darjeeling is beyond me. I can’t tell the difference. It hits my stomach like a brick and leaves me feeling momentarily unwell. Fortunately, the feeling doesn’t last long after I stop drinking.
I tried. I really did. More/less tea, hotter/cooler water, longer/shorter steep times. Okay, so I didn’t try all 24 combinations of those variables — I had a sample pack after all — but I think by now I’m competent at making a good cup. Nevertheless, this tea turned out weak or bitter for me. On the weaker side, I thought it was a very nice weak tea, with hay notes. I hope others have better success with this one.
I’ve had this in my cupboard for over 2 years and never written a note about it. Shame on me! Well, it’s time to turn this poor overlooked tea into a sipdown! I originally received this from Camiah who was my first swap partner on Steepster. Thank you, Camiah!!!
The brewed tea aroma is very strong! The base is Chinese, but that’s all I could find about it. It reminds me of a cross between Assam and Keemun. That is to say, this has an odd, pungent, almost smokey aroma that calms as the cup cools.
Upon sipping it, the initial flavor is the base. Again, it’s a bit strange. I can’t figure out what it is. I guess that’s because I just haven’t had it before! The aftertaste is a lovely, sweet lychee flavor. It’s a tad astringent but tolerably so. No bitterness. The lychee here is delicious! It’s not the best I’ve had but that could easily be attributable to age.
Overall, this is a lovely tea. I’m sorry I neglected it for so long. But I am happy to move on to new tea adventures! I never tire of trying new things. After all, isn’t that what life’s about? And now that my husband enjoys tea too, we can share in the exploration and discovery together. :D
Tea of the morning here, I am finishing off this small tin from the Upton Assam sampler. The weather has been cold and rainy here and this assam was just calling my name. I definitely made this too strong! I had enough leaf for about 1 mug of tea + a bit extra so I put it all in here. Strong and malty, winey and slightly bitter, I think due to the overleafing. Still good with milk and sugar and hopefully it will wake me up! See previous notes for more details.
A really pleasant Ceylon. Medium bodied with sweet fruit notes, reminiscent of a sweet, crisp apple. Low astringency level. Very smooth, even-tempered, and enjoyable. Pretty much what one might expect from a Ceylon. A really pleasant tea.
Very good iced.
Just what I needed last night. It wasn’t cold, but the wind was strong, the rain was hard, and I was working on my novel. The smokiness is less pronounced than I remember, but I like it that way. It adds dimension to the tea without overpowering anything. I should probably buy more of this, since I have one teaspoon left! I brewed the leaves a second time, for longer, and it was still delicious! Mmm…
A very nice medium roasted organic oolong from Japan. I steeped this Western style. Leaves have a very nice, grassy and spicy smell. Taste of this tea is very clean and refreshing.
I have been cycling through a bunch of Upton samples. This is a medium roasted organic oolong from Japan. Very nice! I steeped this one western method (which is the only way Upton recommends), leaves smell very nice. I’m getting hints of grass and some spice. Taste is very clean and refreshing.
Backlog from yesterday morning.
Pretty sure that this was the EGC I had – it was in a Teavana tin but didn’t have the signature blue cornflowers. This is a good lesson why I should never have more than one of the same type of blend in my cupboard.
I also think it was the Upton EGC because there is a bit more balance in the tea itself. The Teavana EGC can sometimes come on too strong and be headache inducing with its vanilla. And considering I like vanilla (it’s one of my favorite flavors) that’s saying something.
Had this with milk and sugar and some homemade biscuits (I love weekends where I’m home to make food!) and then we settled in on the couch. Rainy cold Saturdays are great for catching up on some TV!
Evidently it’s unearthing old Upton samplers day for me…
Usually I’ve liked everything from the Temi estate and this is no exception. Very similar to a darjeeling in aroma but in terms of flavor it has a definite woody flavor and seems more astringent than I would normally prefer. I should have brewed it at a lower temp, but a touch of stevia perked it right up!
p.s. I brought a new tea strainer to work and hope it doesn’t disappear!
When it comes to green tea, I’m pretty much a meat and potatoes guy. Other than first-flush senchas, I don’t really search out anything too refined. I’m satisfied with a good basic tea on those occasions when I want something with less caffeine; still I favor robust greens, and I remember drinking this gunpowder and liking it.
Well, it’s even better than I remember it and quite a bargain (a little leaf goes a long way). I love the wood-fire smokiness and the thick broth. It really is the lapsang suchong of green teas. A perfect winter green.
I found this sample in my tea cupboard so I’m revisiting it today. Compared to my tasting notes of before this seems kind of peppery, almost spicy… which makes me wonder if I need to clean my teacups better! Still very mellow and smooth with a bit of malt. This is a very enjoyable cuppa for the morning time.
Not bad, I usually have a cup of Assam to start the morning, this has a slight malt taste, not as heavy as some. I detect no coco at all. Probably would not purchase again.