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1624 Tasting Notes

drank Calendula Flower Leaves by Unknown
1624 tasting notes

Well, for a bank-busting $3.60 at Fox Farm Whole Foods, I have just embarked on an enjoyable experiment. Based on my consistently positive experience with calendula as a blend-in in many varieties of teas, I wanted to try it on its own. I will likely be trying it for years to come: one packed-tight little bulk bag, loosened, filled two quart jars with nearly a pint of dry leaf left over!

First impression is good. Looks like chamomile in the cup, and tastes similar, but sweeter. Sunshiny and a little coppery without being citrusy, if that makes sense.

Furthermore, according to many magnanimous health claims, this will fix tummy troubles, girl problems, skin wounds, and my dog’s fleas (if I had a dog). According to one recap:

Calendula is so gentle, it is often given to children for upset stomach. It’s astringent and anti-inflammatory properties make it particularly useful for treating heartburn. As a skin wash, calendula stimulates the grows of skin cells to fight wrinkles, keeps complexion smooth, moist, and helps fight acne breakouts. (More info at http://www.calendulatea.net/).

This could be the beginning of an interesting relationship.

Geoffrey Norman

I like how you generalized “girl problems”, as if to spare the male readership heh Impressive experiment, otherwise. I approve. Were the leaves dried?

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drank Paris Morning by Savoy Tea Company
1624 tasting notes

This lemony caramel tea makes me smile. So does a morning spent with my nose in a commentary discovering the deeper meanings of the Israelite tabernacle furnishings so I can write about it for grade schoolers. Geekness at its finest :)

Still haven’t tried this with milk, but I need to. That would turn it in to a caramel-cream Earl Grey.

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drank Canadian Ice Wine by Culinary Teas
1624 tasting notes

An hour of chipping away at the ice barely put a dent in it, but we were able to bumble and bounce out for a lunch break. This is dessert before going back outside in the (now slushy) tundra.

Enjoying the last of the packet that came from Azzrian; it’s still more floral-tasting to me than when I had a pouch of my own some years back. Wonder if they changed their formulation or my preferences have shifted some.

Recommendations for a decent grapey tea that tastes really grapey?


Muscat oolong from Lupicia and Den’s Tea Grape Sencha are two of my favorite grape teas.


Also that Culinary Ice Wine – it has to be about a year old almost now. It could have lost a lot of the flavor I imagine.


Could be. It’s still pleasant, though.

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Shovels are unthawed, but the driveway isn’t. Can’t budge the sleet that thawed slightly, then refroze into a jagged, lumpy, sleet sheet. So I’m sitting in a sunbeam, drinking a mid-morning cuppa (two bags to the cup on this one to get the desired sharpness) and letting the sun soften things outside a bit, hopefully.


We call those sun puddles. When the rays come inside the cat, dog and I rush to sit in the perfect sunny spot!


Sun puddles. I like that!


We only got a little ice that turned to sleet. The roads are pretty good shape. So we dodge this one.

I do wish we had some sun puddles to fight the cats over. Nothing but gray here.


Get out the ice pick lol


We are waiting for someone to come plow the driveway. Yay for Craigslist! I don’t have any interest in shoveling a double driveway with 18-24 inch drifts on it. :)

Hubby says the highways are okay-ish and we have been having sun off and on today but I figured it would still take me twice as long to get to work so since I don’t have to, I’m home. With tea and my mother who couldn’t make it home from work on Thursday. :)


Took till noon for the grooves to thaw enough we could get the truck out (unfortunately, no 4WD’s at this house). Main streets safe and dry; intersections to side streets are horrible-slippy-slushy. Not regretting the decision to burn a vacation day…I’m now a bit ahead on a writing project. Serendipity.

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drank Holiday Blend by English Tea Shop
1624 tasting notes

I like this better each time I try it. Apple and vanilla—not exactly pie-like because of the other stuff, but still quite nice, not too picky on water temp or steep time, which is handy at work.

Which I did get to today, wicked sleet notwithstanding, but which is looking a little iffy for tomorrow. Driveway is a mess; we almost weren’t able to pull in to park and the snow shovels are currently frozen in the shed. (We, uh, forgot to get them out before the storm started last night. Go ahead. Laugh.)

But for the moment, chicks are all in the nest and we are warm.


I always have to remind myself to take my ice scraper into the house and into work with me. Does me no good frozen in the car. So, I’m not laughing at you. :)


Ahahaha, one of our shovels was frozen into a snowbank in the last storm, where we got like 1 foot of snow + copious blowing. Luckily we had a second one in the accessible garage.

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drank PG Tips Loose Leaf by PG Tips
1624 tasting notes

Thunder-sleet. Nasty. Cold. Blech. This is the only thing that will do. Stout, strong, warm, reliable, cheap. (Same qualities one needs in a spouse? ;)


Agreed. Excellent spouse qualities. :)

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drank Iron Buddha by Lipton
1624 tasting notes

It’s taken most of the box of these inexpensive little bags to accept the fact that you let the water get cool to tepid, you drag the bag leisurely through the water 6, definitely no more than 8 times, and that’s it. STOP. Otherwise it gets a bitter barb at the end of the sip.

Self-control in steeping tea. There’s a concept I need to practice…


Self-control and tea? What’s that? That sounds like quite the process.


I tend to ruin teas you have to fuss with; I am a heavy-handed steeper.

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After having tried it a couple of times, I’m in agreement with … well, somebody who mentioned that Celestial Seasonings teas are just better when you use 2 bags instead of 1.

The apple twang is much better now. Nice homey little tisane.


…may need another double steep for my nerves. Just finished Downton Abbey.


Oh dear. Yes, indeed. I don’t even know if I want to watch anymore. I was wondering if you saw it.


As long as Maggie Smith has signed on for another series, and I believe she has, the family will survive. Granny would want you to keep watching.

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drank Chance Combinations by Custom
1624 tasting notes

Putting this in the “chance” category since it’s a home-blend from a co-worker. Thoughtfully given to me as a thank you for turning her on to the tea world.(Like that was an inconvenience ;)

In this case, the student has far surpassed the teacher. She added raspberry flavoring to a good Assam black tea base; I think there’s a little vanilla in the background as well. Results remind me strongly of something in the Marco Polo/Tower of London flavor family.

Adds a little lilt to a gray, gloomy, gusty morning!


You go, you teavangelist you!

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Still throat-scratchy and a little achy; still sticking with antioxidant-heavy choices. This one is such an opaque green-beany/guacamole color, even with a scant 1/4 teaspoon of the powder to the cup, it has to be good for me, yes?

This particular powder needs a light touch, it’s very vegetably. But not unpleasant.

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Somebody asked me once when I became a tea junkie; I think it dates back to college when I needed caffeine for a 7 a.m. class but chose not to do coffee. My favorite teapot is a medium-sized Brown Betty given to me by my Mema; the painted flowers are chipping off, but the size and feel is perfect. I rejoice when I get a morning to brew a pot of loose tea starting with a kettle; not a bag and a hot pot.


Southwest Missouri

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