Yet Another Tea Rating Discussion
Once again, I realized my personal tea rating system doesn’t work so well. I think I set my ratings depending on my mood. Some days I give moderate okay teas 70s, some days I give them 60s. I was thinking maybe I should just create a set of questions with a scale system for myself or a guideline type of thing. I figure this way my tea ratings can finally be consistent.
Any suggestions for questions?
1) Did you finish the tea?
2) Did it give you an initial, wow factor?
3) Would you want to purchase more of this?
4) Would you say the tea was complex?
Before the flame wars start, no this isn’t a proposal to change Steepster’s tea rating system. It’s fine the way it is. It’s more about having a consistent personal rating system.
I think that this is a very interesting topic of discussion Ricky, especially with the current trends of a “user empowered” internet experience (i.e. Yelp, Google Reviews and even Steepster). Whereas before if you disliked a tea for whatever reason, you would inevitably not reorder it, maybe tell a few close tea drinking friends and that is more than likely where the issue would have stayed. Now though we can go onto a half dozen different sites and tell people all over the country how terrible this one tea was, yes at the end of the day you are just offering an opinion but I feel personally and even in my own life I am taking these personal opinion more and more as fact each day.
This being said I think it is important to explain the reasons behind your rating, and having a list of questions to answer is a great place to start. I’m not sitting here saying that all teas are created equal, but if you a self-proclaimed purest I highly doubt you would be able to give an honest rating to a Chocolate-Chai or Key Lime Green Tea, they are not your passion and their public rating should not suffer since you had a prejudice going into the review. Personally for me I very much dislike all things with Jasmine in them, therefore I don’t feel it is my place to negatively effect a companies/stores jasmine tea rating because to me they all taste like flowery old lady perfume.
To add to your list of questions I think these question or thoughts should be considered:
1. What mood am I in? Am I drinking black tea because I want to right now, or am I doing it just to rate this tea. If it’s for the latter reason, wait until you have the desire to give the tea a shot.
2. What can you taste? Honestly close your eyes and smell the tea. Example: Rishi Teas Passionfruit Rooibos to me smells like Gummy Bears. TGs Marzipan smells to me like Cherry Coke. Does that come out in the steeped version?
3. Most importantly – WHY did you like the tea or WHY did you not? If you are going to take the time to post publicly either a positive or negative post that will result in a swaying of public opinion the least we can do as consumers is explain the best we can in words what we were thinking and feeling when we rated the tea. And maybe end your post with “Remember this is just MY opinion.” Or rate it but still encourage people to give it a shot.