Zen Tea

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Recent Tasting Notes

80

I have no idea how much leaf was used nor how long this was steeped for. The boyfriend made it for me and is now laughing at me as my first reaction was, “whoo! that’s tart!” This is a sharp difference from the last time I had this. I really enjoyed it last time. I’m thinking he let it cool too long before serving it.

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80

This isn’t as flavorful as I was expecting. It could be that my nose is getting a tad stuffy though. It also isn’t a bad thing, it’s not “in your face” like several of the herbals that I have (and love). The word light comes to mind while describing this taste. I am terrible at discerning separate tastes when I try a tea. All I can really tell is fruit, probably some apple. I could see keeping this one around. It is perfect for relaxing a bit and digging in for the night to read some pharmacy guidelines.

Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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drank Bossa Nova by Zen Tea
607 tasting notes

HHTB

I have never really gotten into oolongs. I can appreciate some, but they aren’t something I seek out, so my opinion might be biased. This a little floral… I taste some nuttiness… a little vanilla, but I’m not getting any depth to the flavors. It feels too light and bland for me. :(

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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drank Bossa Nova by Zen Tea
287 tasting notes

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70
drank Strawberry Cream by Zen Tea
764 tasting notes

This is a nice start to my morning. This tea has quite a thick, creamy mouth feel, which is always nice in a cream tea. Very mild, pleasant astringency, and lots of creamy flavour. There’s berry sweetness that I don’t know if I would immediately identify as strawberry, but is quite nice. The black base is malty with a touch of bitterness.

Thank you TraceyC for sending me this!

Flavors: Berry, Cream, Malt, Sweet

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 7 OZ / 207 ML

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drank Phoenix Pearl by Zen Tea
178 tasting notes

It’s a teapot and tea cup day! I haven’t had a chance to sit down and enjoy a full teapot for awhile. I’ve mostly been mug and thermos brewing lately, or using my inguinetea.

Malty, sweet, robust. Maybe just a tad astringent, but that’s totally my fault. I’ve been avoiding black teas lately because they tend to go bitter on me because I forget to take the leaves out too often. Oolongs and greens are much more forgiving. I’m surprised that this still turned a bit bitter on me, I guess the first cup out of the pot didn’t completely clear the water level from the brewing basket.

As you would think, the dry leaf is tightly curled into little pearls, soo precious. The leaves unfurled are mostly whole, about 1.5in from tip to stem. The color is a dark chocolate brown.

If I had anymore pumpkins, this would be the tea I would make pumpkin pie for. Unfortunately for me, the market ran out of small pumpkins 3 weeks ago.

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drank Lapsang Souchong by Zen Tea
178 tasting notes

I’m certainly not the best candidate for reviewing such teas. I’ve decided now that I just don’t like the smokiness of certain teas, and lapsang souchong falls under that category. It smells like burning wood! I don’t know, it’s just not appealing to me. It just screams RUN AWAY RUN AWAY!!

Once I can get past the smokiness of this tea though, there is essentially nothing wrong with it… It’s got a nice texturity (if such a word exists). It’s kind of dry on the tongue and yet smooth on the finish. Like an old fashioned bourbon with bitters. Not that this tastes like bourbon at all. Minus the smokiness I’m reminded of when we drove through Avenue of the Giants. Smells like nature and the smallest bit of freeway.

I’ll keep it around for the ‘every once in awhile’, but it’s definitely not top of my list. but I don’t completely dislike it either. I guess it tastes like trees. lol.

On a side note, we won the World Series! Go Giants! Of course it would rain (POUR) on the day of the parade. Maybe the weather is celebrating with us and it’ll signal the end of the drought. A girl can dream?

carol who

It reminds me of my childhood and campfires and bonfires with friends.
For me, the smell is so special that I really enjoy this tea. It’s odd how smells really trigger memories. My husband hates the smell of it because it is so strong and scent and he (like you) just thinks it smells like wood burning. He never went to campfires or bonfires so he doesn’t have the good memories.

Flyawaybirdie

That makes sense. We never those things when I was a kid. So I learnt to associate the smell with burnt houses, woods, and rubber. Cigarette and cigar smoke really disturb me too. I love the smell of rain, fog and ocean though and I know some people really hate it.

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80
drank Raspberry Vanilla by Zen Tea
72 tasting notes

I like this flavored rooibos, but it’s not my favorite. The raspberry and vanilla are there, but very subtle. I first taste rooibos, and then it leaves a pleasant aftertaste of berries and cream. Maybe it would be richer if I steeped it longer. Oh well, I’m still enjoying it. Thanks TeaTiff for providing me with a sample!

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 6 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
TeaTiff

I like Zen Tea, but their Rooibos blends were not my favorite. It is enjoyable but not stellar. Hope you are doing well:)

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100

No notes yet. Add one?

Flavors: Butter, Jasmine, Rose, Wet Moss, Wet Wood

Preparation
1 tsp

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84

Thank you, TeaTiff, for the sample of this and other caffeine-free options! I needed some variety in my cupboard!

This was really yummy! I could taste the creaminess and light caramel flavor, but it wasn’t overly powerful…simply smooth and delicious. It’s a nice tasty treat for late afternoons/evenings. I enjoyed it very much!

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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68

Thank you Ost for the sale! I’ve recently been craving white teas more and more. If you think you don’t like white teas, the special ones will change your mind. This looks like a mixture of many different leaves: some fuzzies, some that look swept from an autumn forest floor. Tough to measure the amount, but I used a decent amount of leaves. The flavor is okay, maybe I steeped it not-to-perfection. The flavor is very light and has hay notes. There is more to it I can’t describe, so maybe my palate isn’t figuring this one out. A decent white tea to try out though.
Steep #1 // 30 min after boiling // 2 1/2 min steep

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95
drank Peppermint by Zen Tea
1604 tasting notes

I had to stock up on some of this peppermint from Zen as peppermint seems to be the only thing to help my headaches. THIS stuff can certainly help! Wow, this stuff is strong even upon opening the pouch. I tried a teaspoon of this steeped on its own but it will also come in handy for mixing with other teas. The flavor is delicious, cooling, strong, fresh. It’s certainly something different! I’ll stock up on a pouch of this one whenever I order some of my other Zen favorites (there’s a few!) This will be my go-to for headaches, but I’d choose this one over any other herbal blend any time.
Steep #1 // 6 min after boiling // 5 min steep

TeaTiff

I love pepermint. I will have to add this to my order next time. Sounds STRONG!

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95
drank Coconut green by Zen Tea
27 tasting notes

I cold brewed this yummy smelling tea. Omg! Plenty of coconutty (lol) flavor! Thank you Teasipper for including it in my mystery bag.

Flavors: Coconut, Vegetal

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83
drank Bossa Nova by Zen Tea
1604 tasting notes

A unique blend from Zen: a roasted oolong with hazelnut flavor. I’ve never seen these flowers before, so I’m not sure what they taste like. From the blend in general, I’m tasting cream, vanilla and nuttiness. The description says hazelnut and vanilla, so the flavor is very accurate, though not a pronounced amount of flavor. This is a roasted oolong that doesn’t have too much charcoal flavor I don’t like. It reminds me more of a light houjicha. It’s light, sweet and would make the perfect dessert tea (though I can’t tell how much caffeine is in this one.) The color of the brew is a light brown just like these odd flowers. The second cup was even tastier – it seems like the flavors melded together. Another nice one from Zen!
Steep #1 // 1 1/2 tsp // few min after boiling // 3 min
Steep #2 // just boiled // 3 min

Cheri

I have some of this but I haven’t tried it. I never think to try it and then I read reviews and it just sounds sooooo yummy.

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90
drank Coconut Oolong by Zen Tea
1604 tasting notes

Here’s Hoping Traveling Teabox Round #3 – Tea # 31
I had to try this one! I thought there was only one serving left but measuring it out, there was 2 1/2 teaspoons. Baozhong oolong is certainly my favorite oolong. It’s light, buttery, floral, sweet. Here, it has additional coconut flavor. I was supposed to only use one teaspoon. The flavor wasn’t at all oversteeped anyway: no astringency. The oolong pairs so well with the coconut flavor. No actual coconut in the blend so the tea won’t be ruined faster. (Coconut: the ingredient that makes tea taste terrible faster.) But the coconut here is like a light breezy tropical flavor the pairs well with the long and wiry oolong. The coconut is actually stronger in flavor than the oolong. Both steeps were delicious. I don’t see this type of tea often, so I’d certainly stock up on this one at Zentealife.com. I recommend trying an unflavored Baozhong as well.
Steep #1 // 20 min after boiling // 2 1/2 min
Steep #2 // 20 min after boiling // 3-4 min

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93
drank Chocolate Mint Rooibos by Zen Tea
1013 tasting notes

Sad sip down. This tea is pretty much award-winning in two ways: for being pretty much the best flavoured rooibos I’ve ever had, and for being pretty much the best chocolate mint tea I’ve ever had. I say pretty much just to leave a little wiggle room there, of course.

I just got back from grocery shopping and was so preoccupied that I grabbed my 1 litre of light eggnog, opened the sealed tab, and nearly poured it into this tea rather than grabbing the 1 litre of light cream. Thankfully I noticed just as I was about to pour. Don’t think that would have been a good combination!

yyz

So agree with you. Thisone is really good!

Fjellrev

It’s amazing how low their prices are considering how many awesome blends they carry, too.

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93
drank Chocolate Mint Rooibos by Zen Tea
1013 tasting notes

ZOMG. ZO. M. G. Why haven’t I touched this until now? I bought it way back in January and just started it a few days ago. Worried it was going to be stale even though it was sealed, I was pleasantly surprised to bust open the pouch and find myself an ultra pepperminty stream of awesomeness dancing around me.

It pretty much tastes as good as it smells too. An undeniable York peppermint patty. The best news? (Almost) no rooibos base can be detected! The peppermint is easily the strongest note, followed by the chocolate (though I wish it were a touch stronger).

With light cream, this is a dream. Note to self: must order more next time I find myself reordering from Zen.

Most excellent work, Zen!

Starfevre

I have some of this! At my desk even! I shall have to put it on the list for tomorrow since you’ve reminded me.

Fjellrev

DOOOOO EET. :D

tea-sipper

I have so many favorites from Zen…

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100
drank GenmaiMatcha by Zen Tea
848 tasting notes

Just drank the last of this. I love the flavor of this tea. It’s vegetal, nutty, and has a touch of sweetness.

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Sigh, updating my cupboard and realized that I don’t have this anymore but never wrote a note about it. But I do remember that I used it all for cold brews. This note = not a good help.

MAKING ALL MY NOWHERE PLANS FOR NOBODY.

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drank Earl Grey Cream by Zen Tea
287 tasting notes

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58

Off-topic, but regarding my cotton candy pink hair, I feel like I kind of got swindled. It’s not nearly as pink as what it should have been (about five inches of my roots didn’t absorb any of the pink dye at all), they did a horrible bleach job (lots of peachy chunks everywhere) and they double charged me for it. That said, I got some Joico Colour Intensity pink dye, just blended some in with conditioner, and now I’ll be hanging out like this in the apartment for a few hours. Right now my head looks Barbie pink but we’ll see how it’ll turn out!

Onto this tea. I wasn’t expecting much since CTC teas and I don’t really get along well, but seeing that this is an Assam, and Zen had a killer sale earlier this year, I thought it wouldn’t hurt. Eh. Quite astringent. You can definitely taste that underlying classic maltiness that Assams have but the liquor just seems to thick and sludgy compared to other Assams. I had to brown sugar it up and top it off with half and half to make this drinkable. Their other Assam is lightyears ahead of this one.

Veronica

Hope your hair treatment worked! It sucks that they did a bad job and overcharged you. My daughter’s hair currently has blue streaks. She loves it, and she’s already planning on dying her hair purple in the next few months.

Fjellrev

Her hair sounds awesome either way! Is she doing it at home or at the salon?

OMGsrsly

Oh, that’s too bad! I hope your treatment worked. :)

Fjellrev

Thanks! Yeah, it looked a lot better in that picture I took than IRL. I managed to get out the random peach but now the top of my head is this much darker pink than everywhere else so I’m on my fourth treatment now trying to balance everything out haha. Oh well, it’s fun. :)

OMGsrsly

:) You could pretend you meant to do it and call it ombre!

Fjellrev

Haha I thought of that. You don’t see reverse ombre too often anywhere, where the roots are darker though. It’s all about starting trends!

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88
drank Earl Grey Lavender by Zen Tea
1013 tasting notes

But Zen, your EGC is so good, why should I even bother trying the others? Ok, you’re right I should. I picked up an ounce of this last time I ordered and glad I did. This is like their Earl Grey with a fresh bouquet of lavender bursting from the envelope. I enjoyed every single cup with half and half, if I remember correctly, and the floral and citrus notes were very well-balanced. The base, like the EGC, isn’t astringent either.

It is re-order worthy in theory, however, I have a feeling that I’d always be reaching for their EGC because, well, it’s their EGC. Enough said!

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70

I’ve been kind of on a Winners and Marshalls binge lately, desperately keeping my eye out for Fauchon hoping it’ll come back this fall. Instead, I’ve been finding some awesome deals on OPI, random conditioners, lotions, and socks. Plus I snagged a gorgeous cape the other day. They only have mediocre teas there at the moment. Lesigh.

I don’t particularly like rooibos but this was tolerable. The almond was strong in this one, very almond extra-like. It helped cover up the prominent base. Making it as a latte also helped. With half and half that is.

No repurchase for me but it was a fun one to try.

OMGsrsly

Ooo. OPI? I need to go to Winners this week.. I need all the nail polishes, apparently. :)

Fjellrev

Yeah, as usual, it’s quite random though! I found a mini-polish set that I’ve had my eye on forever. Got the last one a few weeks ago!

OMGsrsly

Too bad you didn’t find any Fauchon, but the nail polish has totally eclipsed that for me. Haha!

Anlina

Winners always has a great nail polish selection, but I’ve never found any interesting tea there. It’s always brands I’m not familiar with in flavours that are pretty run of the mill and always, always in bags. I think I’ve seen a tin of loose tea there once ever.

Which is probably okay actually, because I don’t really need to be buying tea by the giant tin anyway.

Fjellrev

I’ve been running into the same problem with the tea section too. I missed out on the Fauchon haul last fall and it seems like since then, they’ve had nothing great. Too bad they couldn’t have a little more consistency.

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drank Chocolate Chai by Zen Tea
287 tasting notes

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