1100 Tasting Notes
I just received my free samples from EpiTea, and I had to go straight for this one — it seems to be one of their more well-liked teas on Steepster, and I’m a nut for anything floral even though I’m not much of a bergamot person.
In the sachet, this seems like a pretty typical tea. There’s not a huge number of lavender buds, but they’re visible and I can smell the lavender as well. The dominating scent, however, is something I can’t place… it doesn’t smell like tea or bergamot, so the only other thing I can think of is it being the sachet itself. In any case, the liquor itself has exactly the scent I would expect (it smells like, well, the ingredients, although it’s not very strong) so I can’t complain.
Tasting it… this is nice! The initial flavor is lavender, which I appreciate and am mildly impressed by considering the lavender-to-black tea ratio. The second half of the sip tastes more of the base, a black that’s very strong and spicy — the aftertaste actually leaves the same burning feeling in the back of my throat that I usually only get from spicy food. (Disclaimer: I am very sensitive to spicy food) That’s not to say that I dislike it, but I would have preferred a more delicate base.
Oh, right… this is an earl grey! I never would have guessed or noticed if I hadn’t been told; I can’t taste even a bit of bergamot. That’s fine by me, although now I’m curious as to what it would be like if EpiTea had gone for a less flavorful base and a greater amount of bergamot.
Overall, I’m digging the lavender content of this tea even though the black tea that was selected could have been better for me! It’s a solid offering from this new company.
I was thrilled to find pyramid tea bags at Target, and me being me I gravitated toward the fruit and floral combo. I don’t think I’ve ever tasted a jasmine I didn’t like!
The first thing I noticed about these bags is that the amount of leaf contained therein is fairly little. That means that it’s easier to adjust the amount in your cup when using multiple bags (smaller increments) but I’d really rather have enough leaf to make a large cup with a single bag. It’s also not particularly pleasing to the eye or nose, with a lot of small pieces and no strong scent.
The flavor of this tea is about what you’d expect from something that costs $3.50 at a grocery store. Distinctly green — the generic green that you usually get with loose leaf labeled just “green tea”. I detect a little bit of what I assume is the jasmine but probably couldn’t guess if I didn’t already know, and a bit more fruit that reminds me most of peach (the ingredients tell me it’s actually apple). However, it takes some effort to pick that out; casual sipping means that everything is blended together into a mix that isn’t very harmonious. It’s the kind of tea that would turn casual drinkers off of tea: a jumbled mess of flavors that should be good together. As someone who rather likes tea, however, I don’t hate it — I just marvel at how poorly the mix was made.
I often oversteep this in hopes that the flavor will change and become stronger, and the jasmine does — but it also becomes unpleasantly bitter.