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Rougex said

Tea Newby

Hi There –
I am completely new to the tea world, giving it a swirl based on the health benefits I understand it to have. Giving up my morning coffee may take a bit more time, but tea in the afternoon I am game for.

I would love some advice on drinking / steeping etc. I am inclined to be a loose leaf girl who likes very strong flavors. I’ve always loved iced tea – but not so much the hot stuff. I am presently sipping on Creme Brulee from Tealuxe and feel its not quite flavorful enough…. please help! Thanks

21 Replies
Sil select said

welcome to the boards! You’ve come to the right place for tea help. Everyone here is pretty darn awesome, as someone who’s only been lurking for the past month or so :)

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Hmmm, well for a strong and highly caffeinated beverage I would recommend roasted Yerba Mate (though technically not tea). Its probably the beverage that is closest to coffee in flavor and has about 70 milligrams of caffeine per cup. You will want to make sure its roasted though.

Otherwise, for strong black unflavored teas I enjoy a good Assam, Keemun, and Nilgiri.

Are you looking for flavored or unflavored suggestions?

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If you want something closer to coffee, totally try roasted mate as suggested above, that stuff is THA BOMB!

I’m more of a flavored tea person, so my suggestions lean on that side. You could try some black tea blends, like chais, earl greys, or something with creamy, nutty or chocolate elements.

Steeping time should say on the tea package/online, but if all fails, look up the tea here on Steepster and see what everyone else did or suggest to do. I actually double check on Steepster anyways because I’m perfectionist crazy.

I think the huge thing for me in making tea amazing is when I got a kettle that can do various water temperatures – which totally makes a difference for greens/oolongs/whites. If you are starting with black tea, most of them is boiling hot water, so you don’t need a fancy kettle.

Rougex said

Question on the mate – I see some people use ‘special’ mate drinking vessels. I dont think I am prepared to get that financially invested yet. Can it be steeped just like regular teas?

Suggestion on where to pick up this roasted mate you are raving about?

I haven’t invested in those special mate drinking tools either.
It’s what is traditionally used, but mates steep up good just doing the regular loose leaf tea routine. I find they still hold up decently if oversteeped as well.

Here’s a few good places for mate off the top of my head:
Fusion Teas http://www.fusionteas.com/Yerba-Mate-Tea.html has lots of good mates to choose from.
DavidsTea http://www.davidstea.com/our-teas/mate chocolate rocket is pretty good
52 Teas http://www.52teas.com/in-stock/ chocolate malted mate is pretty good too.

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hannabling said

Hi TeaNewby:
I am new here too – here is my tea journey so far:

1. Visited local grocery store and buy bagged teas on sale – DONE
2. Visited heathfood stores, ethnic supermarkets (Korean Supermarkets, Latin Supermarkets) to see what they have – DONE
3. Checked out a fancy Tea House – DONE
4. Checked out a Teavana and DavidsTea store – DONE
5. Went to a Steepster meetup – DONE
6. Ordered teas on the Web – DONE
7. Swap teas with Co-Workers – DONE
8. Checked out a few tea websites and Online Tea Store – DONE
9. Swap tea with a fellow Steepster – DONE
10. Write, review, update and log teas and discuss teas on Steepster – DONE
11. Experiment and make your own tea creations (Mix black tea with mate, Mix Guayusa with Maca powder, Panela sugar, and Mate) – DONE
12. Go to Argentina, China, Ecuador, etc to visit tea farm – NOT DONE
13. Buy crazy teapots and tea swag – NOT DONE

I would recommend Irish Breakfast tea to try.

gmathis said

Thank you for writing my “tea bucket list” for me ;)

Rougex said

I am seem to be in line with your tea journey too; however I havent done the ethinc food stores yet.

Where did you web order from and how was that experience??

there was a steepster meetup?

Denny said


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Lynxiebrat said

LOL. I’m new to loose leaf tea (since April.) and newer to this forum. (I think I started here towards the end of July.) I’ve been having a great time, trying different teas, even teas that I haven’t had the greatest luck with in the past. (Usualy green teas, but I think that might have something to do with how I’m preparing it.) While I am technically open to trying out any tea, I already know I’m not a fan of the straight black teas. I got to have at least 1 other note of flavor. So far, been preferring the herbals and rooibos.
Hannaspring, on your list I’ve done: 1,3,4, about to do 6 next week,8,10,11 and 13. lol.

david said

The nice thing about tea is the ability to get fully invested in a hobby that is relatively inexpensive as well as an every day luxury (when you are drinking good tea). Welcome to the tea world!!

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Lynxiebrat said

My personal recommendation is Earl Grey. It’s what I started with, and though it’s a blend, the taste is not at all complicated.

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If you want a tea similar to coffee but with very low caffeine, try houjicha. It’s basically roasted green tea.
If caffeine is not an issue for you, one of the healthiest teas around is matcha. Matcha has a high EGCG content.

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Amanda said

You’re entering a dangerous world :) Beware, it is very addicting. I have only been doing the tea thing for a couple months, but it feels like forever.
As far as recommendations, i like JavaVana Mate from teavana, it is delicious and has a good amount of caffeine.

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Missy said

Welcome to steepster!

I would think most chai will fix you for a strong flavor. Chais are some one of my favorites. Market Spice is really strong in the flavoring department. What sort of strong flavors do you favor?

Rougex said

Thanks for the advice! I am certainly going out for some Chai – but when it comes to flavors I am open. I love chocolate and fruit combinations but I am also love spices too.

Missy said

I happen to have some Market Spice and wouldn’t mind sending you a sample if you want to try it. It’s very cinnamon and a bit of orange.

Rougex said

That is terribly nice of you! I dont know how to reciprocate since my tea stash is pretty low. I did however place a DavidsTea order last night …. I was inspired

Missy said

Don’t mention it. There are many, many nice people here. Pay it forward some time and we are square. :D

I just followed you. If you follow me, you can send a PM with your address and I’ll get that sent off.

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Welcome aboard!

We have a general section on our site re: tea, benefits, steeping, etc.


If you have any questions, feel free to ask and we’ll help you in any way possible!

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