358 Tasting Notes
From the EU Travelling box. Yep, am being so slow at trying the samples I removed.
This does not remind at all of Christmas, but that might be cultural (christmas without cinnamon? noooo! And oranges, sometimes pumpkin and maybe lemon as well. Vanilla a bit. Maybe cloves). It smells of cream flavouring (artificial of course, but I do not really mind), vanilla and peppermint on the background. It is full of little silver beads which made me scratch my head and go “seriously?” (weirder than David´s tea even), but they are on the tea description here on steepster and well I will take it on faith. The sample I had might not be very typical, it is the leftover on the envelope (which was the reason I picked it, needed space in the box), and looked pretty broken down. I readied myself for some bitterness, and cut the brewing time short but the tea behaved admirably and it made a nice cup.
It is, for my taste, a sort of weird Christmas tea – peppermint and Christmas? why!?!? Mint is summer stuff, it is known…. Crazy, I say. But a nice cream-peppermint tea in all.
I opened this package over a month ago. Had it precisely twice being underwhelmed by it, and actually Anna, to whom I sent a sample, reviewed it before me. So I feel like, yeah, I should get to it, and just say something about it.
First thing, I am screwing up brewing this. I have not nailed it it, yet, though I think this tea for some reason does not like my tap water (some teas do not mind even some very grand teas, some do mind. Unpredictable) and I had to up the dosage from my first attempts. And today got distracted while brewing it, brewed it slightly too long and it showed in a bit of bitterness towards the end of my cup.
The dry leaf smells fabulous (which was why i got it), boozy! Rhum, and good rhum, none of that Bacardi or worse stuff, a sugary sweet scent so different from the other more usual sugarcane derivatives. With vanilla and a hint of chocolate. Awesome! Beyond awesome , count me in. 100 grams please.
But I am still trying to crack how to brew this. This third time, it was better, a discernible taste closer to the scent. But I still think I can get more out of this tea, must experiment and not forget it.
This was a sample from a friend, and it has languished for a while in my sample tin, inside a plain plastic bag. So maybe not ideal conditions for the tea condition. Or something.
I find myself very underwhelmed by this tea. It looks like the most beautiful tea ever, particularly when being brewed, floating on water. Many many different flower leaves (i.e. leaves, which might explain why I find the result weak), bits of citrus peel. Just amazing. Though the tea itself is rather broken and small.
The dry leaf smells amazing as well – a strong fruity-floral, like good perfume.
It brews nice, just a hint of astringency. But I do not get much taste (besides a kind of floral taste) on the tongue, and the body is quite thin. Maybe I used the wrong dose, it is so full of fillers I should have upped the dose even more than I did.
A sample from a friend and wow this is fruity and flowery – though I admittedly used a very generous dosage.
The green tea base is innocuous, nice enough, with some bitterness which I blame on not having been careful enough with temperature and time. The leaf I used was full of jasmine blossoms including the cutest whole blossom just starting to unfurl. So for me there is definetely a strong jasmine note, just behind the lychee, and the rose coming third to the jasmine.
I do not know quite what to think of this – it´s really intense, maybe too intense for my tastes though a nice enough blend to have now and then.
From Kitty´s european travelling tea box, this smelled just heavenly. It smelled fruity, vaguely like cola, and oh so delicious. Checking the blend, I braced myself for hibiscus, and well yes it is is hibiscus. but it did smell to heavenly that even not being an hibiscus lover, well, let´s try this and maybe expand my horizons.
In reality this is not a hibiscus fruit tea for me. It is very hibiscus (even if most of the tea in the strainer seems to be dried apple, lovely lovely dried apple which I am actually eating) and a bit too acid for my taste and there is kinda dusty flavour I can not really identify but might be associated to one of the other dried fruits.
Wow, was not expecting this. I had read it was somewhat spicy, ok fine. My second guyasa, second as well from Butiki. Not sure I noticed the energizing properties on the first one I sampled, but it´s cold and winter and this seemed like a good idea.
Sniffing the dry sample, I got overtones from a green smell which reminded me of the other guyasa I tried. I am not really a fan of that note, but I should not have worried. The brew was instead very very spicy and in a way I just found glorious. This is probably borderline to how much spicy a tea might be and me still find it enjoyable and drinkable but arguably I brew it strong. Fire, and cinnamon and some energizing tisane body underneath. Really glorious, for my own taste.
I would recommend this only very cautiously to spicy food lovers, and would not recommend it at all to people who do not love spicy foods (and I mean really love). Me, I have loved it. Though would not want to have it ALL the time, but wow what a kick.
Might be totally psychosomatic, but been having joint pains all day (due to approaching bad and cold weather probably), and they seem more tame after this tea. Chillies are supposedly good for joint pains, though I thought it was through skin application.
From kittylovestea european travelb
From KittyLovesTea´s european travelling box, and this is a really intriguing tea. Whole, but small, copper leaves, full of unfurled tiny leaves. (you bet it will be high on polyphenol and a bunch of other goodies).
I did not make it too strong, made it european style and I am glad I didso, this was just right for my taste – I have no idea how many grams I used because the leaves are whole and large and difficult to estimate and my scales just are not precise enough for this).
It is quite a strange tea to describe, though undoubtedly a lovely one. It is quite astringent (am glad I did not make it any stronger though will resteep a few times more). It has natural fruity notes, like raisins and, like another reviewer mentioned, ripe peaches. The wet leaves smell like berries with peaches. A really interesting tea.
PS – just to add, going by my reaction to it, I think it packs quite a caffeine punch.
Another sample from KittyLovesTea wonderful travelling box. This seemed oh so tempting and I was just in the mood for a matcha kickk.
But this turned out to be a total dud. I am all for raspberries in tea, but this smells totally artificial to me and actually the one thing it reminds me of is medication. Underlying tea is bitter, though I admit I might have screwed it up.
I really hate the new steepster look. I had not written a taste note using it yet but “unavailable”? Offputting and anyway, considering where my part of the world is, most of everything would be unavailable to me on a internet setting anyway.
Recommend this tea? WTF. I have no idea, I might recommend it to some people, depending on what they were looking for.
This is a tea from the euro box prepared by KittyLovestea, thank you so much! I am always on the look out for night tisanes with some punch and this was my first pick of that travelling box. In all a pleasant drink but got some issues with it. The most basic might be that I like, love rooibos (good rooibos. There is a difference between good rooibos base and bad rooibos, trust me), and honeybush seems kinda of wimpy next to my usual rooibos. This might make honeybush a much better choice for people who actively dislike rooibos, though.
The other problem was while this smelled intensely and tasted nicely of caramel and chocolate it was also a sort of artificial candy bar caramel and chocolate scent and taste. Just stroke me as artificial and a bit cloying. Though perhaps that sounds too harsh, a pleasant drink, not just infatuation or staple material.
This is a sample which a friend gave me as a souvenir, and for some reason was way at the bottom of my sample tin (yes, I got a sample tin, a LARGE one). But this morning, it seemed to be precisely what I was in the mood to try.
And it´s a winner! Assam? Really? I did not realize that until making this taste note, and did not fuss like I usually do with Assams – this time used straight boiling water and was a bit careless with time. Result is lovely nonetheless, maybe a little bit Darjeeling-y with some astringency. And then some maltyness. In all a really balanced tea and one that could find a place in my permanent collection easily!