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325 Tasting Notes

66
drank Jewelled Apple by Tea Palace
325 tasting notes

I had a surprise swap with Scheherazade and this was one of the teas she selected for me, and the one I picked first to try (i want to try Om very much but kind of not in the mood for something I know will be strange and different right now). This smelled heavenly, and it´s a blender I do not know.

The tea itself, is a bit baffling – smells like caramelley apple which is a win indeed. The tea base reminds of Dammann´s and specifically their Pomme d Amour tea. But while I am not crazily in love with Dammann teas in general or that one specifically this one cames out worse out of that comparison – the tea base is (even) weaker and there is a kind of tannin like acridity which I can not quite name but which is not working for me.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 15 sec

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73
drank Orange Pekoe by Ronnefeldt Tea
325 tasting notes

This is from another sample Courtney sent me, thank you!

Weather is dreadful, dreadful, seems to have turned to the worst ever since the equinox and it being officially spring. I wanted a tea-ey tea. Something with presence. Body. No elusive, light, stuff. And this was an excellent selection for that mood.

It´s unmistakably a Ceylon tea, it has what I call the copper-y-ness of it. It´s slightly more astringent than I expected, though this seems to be an altitude grown tea, which might explain it. It´s not going to be a favorite orange pekoe ( the azores one is to me, just superior in everything) but it makes a nice cup of tea and is a good example of why this type of tea was so popular for so long.

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90

This is one of those teas which has some sort of magic when it hits the water – I could just be smelling the water all while it steeps. It changes, it is a absolutely delicious caramelly gooey fantastic scent always changing a little. Fabulous.

But the tea itself when I drink it, it does not quite live up to all of that promise. Maybe I am not using enough leaf, thanks to both Ysaurella and Sil very kindly having sent me samples, I still got a bit more to experiment. Indeed a fantastic tea, but one which is being just a little bit mysterious to me.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 30 sec
Ysaurella

it’s complicated to take the correct amount of leaves because they are so long and swollen we tend to underleaf.

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63
drank Cranberry by Adagio Teas
325 tasting notes

Another tea from the european travelling box, a teabag this time (and whoa, only one more tea to sample from it I think!).

Not much to say about this – ceylon with cranberry, and not particularly strong tea base. Quite drinkable.

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I confess, I got this (and Safari Breakfast, and maybe I will get choco-nut as well) for the tin. Tins, ohh I had drooled about these tins ever since I first saw them and when i spotted these on sale at iherb, thought it a good excuse to test their cheap shipping ( not bad at all, around 3 weeks to Europe for 4 dollars up to a certain large weight).

And the tins, oh they are as nice as I hoped, and they look so wonderful in my kitchen. The teas, being teabags kind of fill a need, I have a lot of tea, kilos of tea, but I do not have a lot of teabags and sometimes it´s just more practical for when making tea away from home. Individually wrapped teabags would have been even nicer, but then I guess there would be no justification for packaging it in tins.

This is a earl grey with some jasmine. I am not a earl grey person, and I am very much not a earl grey made with my local tap water person (weird alchemy, my tap water and bergamot, I just do not like the mix). I got to try this with mineral water next.

No rating till then, but first impressions, not bad at all.

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85
drank Irish Breakfast by Butiki Teas
325 tasting notes

This was a surprise sample from a swap with Courtney – she very kindly sent me no less than two irish breakfast mixes and a couple other surprises. The tealux cream irish breakfast was a hit, and this one, while a much more classic breakfast mix it´s also a winner.

This is a much more classic breakfast mix and a really lovely one. I do not love it quite at the level of my current breakfast infatuation (Mariage Freres´s American Breakfast) which seems to be just a bit more everything including more chocolatey (without actually having any cocoa on it) but this would definetely be very welcome on my tea shelf.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 45 sec
Ysaurella

this one was a miss for me, too bitter but may need to retry with a lower temperature and quicker steep

cteresa

I added sweetener and milk, which is probably so inappropriate but something I need if I am doing a breakfast blend for breakfast. I did not notice the bitterness then, it was lovely indeed (though american breakfast is still top rated for me!)

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78

Another taste note, just to add, that brewing this hot, it´s OK, interesting. Brewing this cold, with long steep times, it goes very very bitter. Cold steeping this for short (one hour) and then sweetening it, this is very very nice. Citrusy, herby and energizing (in a different way than regular caffeine).

Preparation
Iced 8 min or more
Anna

Oh, I remember writing in my review I might get a small craving for this in the future, and yes, there it is.

cteresa

I still want their black mate with red fruits. I think when I do that long promised order there I am going to get a mate for sure!

Anna

Ooooh, cool. I look forward to the review. =)

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86
drank Jardin Sauvage by Lupicia
325 tasting notes

Now this is a multiple personality tea! The rest of Anna´s sample and she had warned me she had been baffled by it. I tried this first cold, and cold brewed and sweetened and it was FABULOUS. But Anna had tried it hot and not liked it, but seriously if so good cold how bad could it get when made hot? I decided to try it hot.

And I really really do not like it when made with boiling water. A total Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde tea. It is sour somehow (how?!?), there is a very strong peach (it should be mango, mango is what they say but it tastes like peach to me!) flavour bordering on artificial and a orange rind taste (maybe this is the culprit). I truly did not like it

I am going to leave the rating as it was, because a tea should be judged by its optimal brewing method – but if I had to compare I would rate it about 85 when cold brewed and maybe 40 or 50 when brewed hot. Isn´t it weird?

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec
Anna

Hahaha, right? It’s so weird. But I guess it’s not too much of a sacrifice to just cold-steep this. I’m glad I’m not the only one.

cteresa

It is insane, I do not understand at all where the sourness (and it is sour) is coming from or could possibly be.

But it is so lovely cold..

Anna

Tell me if you want some more for the summer, by the way – I have a whole bag!

cteresa

Thanks, but seriously I am want instead to try cold a lot of likely little bits and ends of teas I got here. I want to do a major clear of all those little bits I am hoarding “use what you have” ( getting a lot counter space and tins to air for new teas, though this is dangerous, I am going oh, my teas, my hoard……)

Anna

Ugh, I know – I have so much tea to clear out… before I can buy more tea!

cteresa

My mantra right now is “use what you have” and it´s good, but it´s better for things which do not run out! I am feeling a bit dubious about my sucess when i finish something I love, kinda of rethinking it.

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74

A tea from the euro travelling box, and I think I am getting close to having tried all the samples – though for a couple I need a second tasting.

I am not a Darjeeling person. Though maybe that is because of lack of knowledge of those, due to only having tried not so good ones (Mariage Freres, can not quite forgive you for Arya Rose). Altitude tea, or at least tea from the himalayas seems to be quite a different beast to the black tea I am used to, even with all the variation encompassed by “black tea”. There is the astringency, for example, which is always there.

But recently just learnt to love a Nepal tea, and testing more Darjeelings is always interesting to me. This was a small sample I took out from the travelling box, and I might have ruined it with too long a steep, since I got distracted. Yep, astringent. But ignoring that (and rightfully so, because it is my fault) this is delightful and I can get the so-different character underneath. It´s floral and musky at the same time, like winegrapes. Nice even when tortured…

The astringency, ah, at normal levels maybe I can learn to like it. Maybe. Will test more Darjeelings.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 5 min, 0 sec
Ysaurella

I was like you Teresa regarding Darjeelings and now I managed to love several of them. Much 2nd flushs but I am now considering first flushs as well.Like you I am convinced the difference resides in the Gardens and in harvests.

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Profile

Bio

Inconstant tea drinker – I mostly drink tea when not too hot. I hang around steepster much more frequently in (northern hemisphere) cold season.

- Teas -

I like all sorts of tea, flavoured and unflavoured, though I am picky. I am always willing to try anything new. I am now particularly interested in single origins.

I am one of those people who actually loves Lapsang Souchong. I am not crazy about Earl Grey, in general. I don´t quite get Darjeeling teas, but I am trying to make sure …

I like rooibos, though not all bases. I loathe hibiscus. I do not like fennel/liquorice/anise in blends or teas with chicory. I am picky about what I consider true cinnamon.

As you can probably tell from my cupboard, the brands I find more interesting right now are Mariage Fréres,Thé-o-Dor and Yumchaa.

Location

Portugal

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