127 Tasting Notes
I bought some TeaFrog samples in December, and they came in ziplock bags, so I need to hurry up and drink them. Tea doesn’t stay fresh in ziplock bags for long!
So the instructions say 1.5 tsp per some unknown amount of water. Awesome. I’m going to assume 8 oz. But then I realized that I just bought a scale. Measuring out (by volume) from the little sample packet was annoying, so I just dumped it on the scale. 9.80 g. I’m not sure how that translates into tsp? I’m new to this scale thing.
But, by eye, it looked like about a 16 oz amount of tea (I guess, I normally do tisanes which are less dense), so I dumped it in the Zarafina (herbal, loose, medium settings).
I may have used too much tea. It’s . . . weird. The rooibos is the dominant flavor, and it hits you first. Then in the middle there’s a touch of fruit, but it’s hard to tell what (the package says pineapple, coconut, and rose blossoms, but I just get generic fruit). The last bit is the woody rooibos flavor, and that hangs out in your mouth (hey, what’s going on? ROOIBOS IN THE HOUSE!). It’s not very pleasant.
The middle flavor is changing as it cools, but it’s still bookended by ROOIBOS! so… meh.
I finally found a chawan that I liked, so I pulled out the chawan, chasen (whisk) and chashaku (scoop) and fixed a bowl. It’s supposed to froth, isn’t it? I didn’t get any frothing.
Erm. Wow. Drinking green tea as matcha really emphasizes a lot of the things I don’t like about green tea. This one felt like drinking a bowl of grass.
I’m going to leave off the rating for a bit until I’ve tried a couple different varieties and see how they compare. I’m not sure if I don’t like it because I don’t like matcha or because of the tea itself.
(Don’t worry about the tools and such going to waste – the husband loves matcha, so now he can prepare it properly).
I’m not sure what’s up with me recently, I’ve been craving a lot of chai. Since it’s a bit of a PitA to make, when I don’t feel up to making it I have my standby instant tea (so I haven’t been logging much).
So I’ve been looking for a chawan to properly drink matcha and finally found one that I liked at Upton Tea Importers. Since I was placing an order, I HAD to buy some tea… right?
Opening the bag and smelling this one, I knew I was in for a treat. I usually don’t write about dry leaves (oh, yeah, tea leaves; they smell) but this blend made me want to jump in the bag with them. SO GOOD – mostly like chocolate. Yum.
This simmered on the stovetop (with milk and sugar) longer than I normally make chai for – I was puttering about in the kitchen making a pitcher of iced tea for the husband and doing other random things.
The taste…. it’s a tossup if I prefer this or Adagio’s Masala Chai. Adagio’s has a strong spice “bite” to it, while this is smooth and rich. I’ll probably end up keeping both in my cabinet for the foreseeable future and pulling out whichever my mood calls for.
The chocolate is still there, though it’s no longer dominant. It’s allowing the other flavors to play (though I’m not tasting cinnamon). So good!
So, I put myself on tea restriction, but this isn’t tea, it’s chai… right? I needed it.
I love how strong the spices are. This is fabulous.
The chocolate note is… interesting. I’m glad I made it with milk and sugar on the stovetop because otherwise I think the tannins would have been overpowering. I think I like it, but I’ll have to have more to be sure.
Good as always. :-)
Finally managed to get to the post office this morning with the packages of tea that I owe to people. Would have done it Saturday, but we were snowed in.
I brewed this one a little stronger than normal and it’s good. Sweetened with a bit of splenda, though I think it would do better with honey (honey is too messy for the office).
It’s a good blend of cranberry, orange, and rooibos. I know someone said they tasted hibiscus in here, but I’m not getting it… I’ve also noticed that I’m not as sensitive to hibiscus as others seem to be, though, so that may be why. I like it a lot as a fruity tea with just a hint of tartness.
(this is the bagged version)
Not as spicy as Adagio’s Masala Chai, this one is smoother, silkier, calmer. It has more “tea” taste instead of “spice” taste. It’s good, but when I want chai I want something with stronger spices.
(this is the bagged version)
I’m craving more Adagio sour apple, but I don’t have any at work. pouts
Lupicia doesn’t let me down though, I love their teas. This is a lightly flavored cherry black with a hint of sweetness.
Just not quite what I’m in the mood for.
(backlogging from last night)
I finally bought a scale, so I measured the amount of tea I’ve been putting in the Zarafina – 11.85 g for 16 oz of water (for the sour apple).
A bit more tart than normal. It may be because it’s hard to get the same mixture of apple pieces to the rest of the tea (which is hibiscus and cranberry, so very tart). It may be because I don’t have very many mugs that can comfortably hold 16 oz of tea, so I was using a clay mug, which was just wrong. I need to not do that any more with my fruity teas.
Anyway… I generally find this sour apple tea pretty soothing for right before bed. I love it, hot or cold.