1426 Tasting Notes

72
drank Highland Toffee by Steeps
1426 tasting notes

On the way back from getting my passport renewed, I was craving something refreshing, particularly an iced tea latte! So I stopped into Steeps for the first time in ever and chose this. Kind of expensive for what it is ($5.25 total) especially since I could have just gone to Remedy and ordered an iced Kashmire chai for around the same price and it’s much more complex. Or for an extra few dollars, I could have just purchased 50g of the loose leaf and brought it back with me.

It was decent but seriously? I could have just made this at home with something similar. The tea itself was a little astringent and the toffee flavour was mild. She also added a little bit of sweetener so I couldn’t even tell if I was tasting the sweet toffee flavour or the sweetener itself.

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85

A local Korean restaurant served us this roasted corn tea and despite being initially skeptical, it ended up rocking my world. I think they just keep adding water and letting it simmer throughout the day because when we were served it, the liquor was a pale straw yellow and it tasted so buttery, like President’s Choice butter-flavoured corn nuts. Apparently, oksusu cha helps with kidney function, blood pressure, and diabetes. Who knows for sure but it sure does feel like it’s cleaning up my innards when I spend all day drinking it!

After my initial visit, I kept thinking about the tea (and the food since it was addictively delicious), and since the waitress mentioned that they sell roasted corn to take home and brew yourself, after a week of craving the buttery deliciousness, I went back and purchased a healthy-sized glass jar of the stuff.

Because of the preparation method, I find it’s something that you need to be home all day for in order to get the most out of it. The first time I had this at home, I poured half a cup of roasted corn into a medium-sized pot, let it get to a gentle boil, then reduced the heat to let it simmer for 20-ish minutes before trying my first cup. The liquor was substantially more pigmented than it was in the restaurant, a tarnished golden brown, and it was much roastier in favour, too. Less butter, more roastiness. As my mom and/or I would pour a cup, we kept adding more water and let it simmer until taking another cup, and even after doing this for 5+ hours, the colour of the liquor and flavour weren’t as soft and buttery as the restaurant’s.

For that reason, yesterday, I used less roasted corn. It’s been colder and rainy over the past few days, which are perfect conditions for staying in all day and enjoying oksusu cha. Instead of filling up my half-cup measuring cup, I filled it up about 2/3 full. So approximately 1/3 cup of roasted corn this time, and I found that it was more balanced this way. I got more buttery nuances from each and every cup. I started simmering the roasted corn just before noon, and by 4 -5pm I was all oksusu cha’d out. Not because I was getting sick of the flavour. No way! I was just getting tea-logged. I must have had 7-8 cups worth and felt if I kept going, I would have gotten a headache from over-hydration.

That’s the downside of oksusu cha. It’s not like you can just steep a cup in a few minutes and done, or prepare this in the morning before work, or at work. I mean, you can if you have twenty minutes, but seeing how amazing it gets the longer it simmers, that would seem like a waste.

It’s also common to find iced tea versions in Korean stores with sugar added. I filled up my iced tea jug with oksusu cha and refrigerated it the first time I made it. It was kind of strange. My mom described it as musty, which is accurate. I don’t think adding sugar would have been the answer, either.

Overall, two thumbs up. I’d have it more often if the process weren’t so time-consuming.

Indigobloom

I wonder if a pinch of baking soda would help? Musty tea, no fun!

Fjellrev

Interesting idea! It’s no loss, anyway, since I really love it hot.

Indigobloom

I’ve had something similar in restaurants before, it is quite tasty! but I had no idea you could brew it like that.

Gooseberry Spoon

I wonder if letting it simmer in a crockpot would work? I’d be worried leaving it unattended on my stove all day.

Fjellrev

That’s precisely why I don’t own a crockpot because I don’t even like the idea of leaving a crockpot unattended either! But I’m sure it would also work.

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77

Congratulations, Canada! IIHF world champions!

Yesterday, I went to Remedy not once, but twice, and this was my second time around. Finally they had this in stock. They carry the sachets. The tin is bursting with chocolate mint, but unfortunately, it’s not as flavourful as I had hoped. I didn’t add any milk or sugar, the chocolate and mint flavours are quite balanced, but I still wanted more. It’s very similar to H&S’s Chocolate Mint. Maybe this one is a little more chocolatey.

I loved my first drink at Remedy yesterday, though. They just introduced a cardamom matcha chai, and boy, was it cardamom. Heaps of cardamom in my mug. Throughout the milky green liquor were speckles of coarsely ground cardamom. Wow! The matcha was the perfect level too. I’m definitely going back for more.

Jillian

Yay, Canada!!!

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76

Sipdown! My mom and I polished this off yesterday morning. Quite a nutty tea but I don’t think I would get 100g of it. It’s good but it doesn’t have that wow factor.

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91
drank Bourbon by Dammann Freres
1426 tasting notes

Sipdown! This is definitely a repurchase and has thus far been my favourite vanilla black tea. It’s creamy and vanilla caramel-like, sort of like H&S’s Vanilla Comoro but not as cloying. Teavivre, Bayswater, and DF have been on my order list for quite some time now and yet it seems like it’s taking me forever to sip down enough to place these orders!

Have a job interview this afternoon so I wanted to choose something comforting to sip on as I just hang out before leaving. It’s only for an assistant manager position at a retail store, but hey, with the terrible job market right now, one cannot complain. I have friends my age who have been laid off from their engineering and nursing jobs and can’t find anything. One even applied to freaking Tim Horton’s and still can’t. So guess I shouldn’t be so hard on myself for spending all those years in grad school rather than gaining direct work experience right after my undergrad. These friends of mine did that and look where they are too. :/

Dexter

Good Luck with the job interview. :))

Gooseberry Spoon

Yep, too overqualified for most jobs and no positions open for qualified people out there. If I have one more shocked interviewer ask why I could possibly want to work there I amm going to shake them. Good luck!

Evol Ving Ness

Break a leg!

tigress_al

Good luck!

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84
drank Live Wire Lemon by DAVIDsTEA
1426 tasting notes

This is so good in a protein smoothie. I added:

200ml Silk unsweetened coconut milk
125ml Live Wire Lemon (cold brewed)
50g Syntha-6 banana protein powder
120g frozen banana
45g frozen blueberries
35g frozen raspberries

I tasted it before adding the frozen berries and it was especially delicious! That banana and lemongrass combination was so tropical, like candy. I would have left it as is if I weren’t in need of more fibre today from the berries. Once I added the berries, the Live Wire Lemon was unfortunately drowned out. That Froot Loop-like lemongrass flavour was virtually gone.

Indigobloom

Ooooh that reminds me of the herbal from T by Daniel that tastes like fruit lops. SO good

Fjellrev

Ginger Fruit Loops from what I recall? Haven’t tried it but saw a lot of great reviews.

Indigobloom

Something like that, yeah! I had a sample at the festival but they ran out before I came back to buy some. Maybe one day I’ll road trip to Brampton

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90
drank Grand Cru Matcha by DAVIDsTEA
1426 tasting notes

Sipped this down in a protein smoothie yesterday! It goes so well with banana protein powder, frozen banana, and blueberries.

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82
drank Noël à Venise by Dammann Freres
1426 tasting notes

Cold brew sip down! I quite enjoyed this one both hot and cold but not sure if it would be 100g-worthy. I would have liked more toffee flavour, or at least, a balance of flavours, and enough flavour, all at once, as I found it difficult to bring them all out in unison. One steep yields more lemon and almost no meringue or toffee while another steep would bring out that toffee but the lemon note is nearly gone.

Also poured 100ml of this into my banana blueberry protein smoothie (with Syntha-6 banana protein powder) and it really went well with all the flavours.

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95
drank Nina's Japon by Nina's Paris
1426 tasting notes

It only took me two years to order this after the wonderful VariaTEA sent me a sample. Seems like the Nina’s (or La Courtisane French Gourmet these days) consumption has really died down since then.

Either it’s a batch difference or the scent of the dry leaf simply smells different when you have a substantial amount rather than a sample, but this definitely smells different than before. Before it was more straight-up vanilla caramel whereas now, I’m detecting a pop of coconut with the mix. On top of that, the vanilla reminds me of a vanilla/buttercream scented candle. You know, a vanilla birthday cake-like artificial aroma.

When it comes to the flavour, it’s also heavier on the vanilla and lighter on the caramel than before, I swear. I really love the black tea mixed in with the green genmaicha. It adds more depth and amps up the roastiness of the toasted rice. Although the flavouring is nice and sweet, somehow, it’s just not what I remembered this to be.

So glad that I finally have this, and some others, in my (well, technically my mom’s) cupboard. She has been eyeing that pink Marie Antoinette tin for ages so I thought it would be a nice Mother’s Day surprise, and she absolutely loves it. We’re planning on having a little tea party at home tomorrow with these.

VariaTEA

I raved about this for so long and then grew pretty meh about the tea. Though my notes must have been convincing as a lot of people tried and the tea spoke for itself since most enjoyed it. I’m glad you enjoyed it too though I wonder where the coconut is coming from…hmmm…

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85
drank Cranberry Pear by DAVIDsTEA
1426 tasting notes

What a sad little sipdown. I made a couple batches of cold brew with this near the end and found that it was the best way to enjoy this particular batch of Cranberry Pear. The first batch I got was wonderful hot, very fruity but not too sweet. This batch, on the other hand, seemed three times sweeter to the point where it kind of tasted a little artificial. Cold brewing it seemed to curb the sweetness a bit. Maybe it was for the best that this last round wasn’t as amazing because it doesn’t make me as sad that it was discontinued.

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