119 Tasting Notes
Hmmm… weird that I’m the first to review this one…..
Anyways, this is a backlog from two days ago. I had this one iced as that makes sense to me. It was….. weird. It wasn’t bad, but it definitely tasted different than I thought it would. The name suggests that it’s like a strawberry fruit tea, but the ingredients and the taste beg to differ. It definitely has a fruity flavor, but it’s more like a berry fruit-punch flavor. I could definitely pick up some strawberry on this one, but it tasted more like other berries than strawberries. It was all enveloped with this…. weird flavor. I can’t really place it. This was okay, but not excellent and definitely a little off putting.
Thanks to Fusion Tea Room for sending me this generous sample!
I didn’t have as much left of this as I thought :‘( In fact, I only had about 1 teaspoon left, and I brew with 12 oz, so I made sure to use EXACTLY boiling water and I steeped for 5 minutes instead of the recommended 2-4 so I could be sure to get as much flavor as possible out of this. On the plus side, I’m all caught up with the backlogs I wanted to do! So that’s good. I don’t know what you guys do, but I have my separate tea cupboard and then whatever tea I want to drink and review, I put it out on top of my counter (separated by variety) and then when I drink something, I either review it or if I don’t have time to review it at the time, I set it aside and that’s my backlog pile (for those who were interested).
Alright, SO. Now that I’ve successfully rambled on, onto this tea. There was a brief period where a lot of people were raving about the Hawaii-Grown Oolong tea from Samovar, and I sadly don’t have that one. But, I’m in a straight-black mood today and I went looking for a Ceylon to drink (which sadly, I don’t have :( I’m going to order from Upton soon and they have a bunch I’ve been wanting to dry!), when I saw this one and wanted to try it! I think the concept is really interesting plus it sounds yummy, so I brewed it up.
This one smells really good. Like sweet with an almost caramel-y note in it. Maybe a bit of rye? I’m not so good at describing scents…. Something to work on! Oh. My. Goodness. This one is so good! I can’t even! This is so deliciously sweet and mild. Someone described this as sugared and grilled fruits and that’s so true! It’s a nice, dark fruit taste. I also get a kind of creamy note on the finish. There’s a little astringency, but it’s not unbearable.
Oh yes, this one is super tasty! This one is going on the shopping list (which is waaaaaay too long)!
Backlog from yesterday!
Yesterday was a very nice, laid back Wednesday. I didn’t have any homework after I finished my online stuff that was due for this week, so I sat back, watched some Netflix and Food Network (my favorite channel for anyone who was wondering!), read, and enjoyed some nice, simple tea. I wasn’t in the mood for anything too complex or difficult, so it was a simple flavored black tea kinda day-one where I could just put the water on, wait until it boiled, steep, and enjoy!
This one was sent to me by Amanda along with a host of other teas that I have yet to review because I’m lazy! Don’t worry, those who have swapped with me! I have got your stuff and it will be reviewed! :P Anyways, last time I drank this I wrote that there was something funky tasting about the chocolate and I think that I’ve discovered what it is-it tastes like hazelnut coffee! Which I mean, that’s okay because I happen to like hazelnut coffee, but I won’t raise the rating on this one because it’s not supposed to taste like hazelnut coffee, it’s supposed to taste like chocolate covered strawberry. I do get a little bit of juice from the strawberry but it’s not really as strong of a flavor as I’d like. I have yet to find a chocolate covered strawberry tea that I like (I believe I said that last time I reviewed this one, too). When I think of chocolate covered strawberries, I think of a really sweet and juicy strawberry that you bite into and you get the sweetness and then the chocolate is kind of a background creamy, sweet kinda note. Anyone get what I’m sayin’? I just think that strawberry is supposed to be the main flavor and so far (I’ve tried three!), all of the teas I’ve had of this flavor have had chocolate be the main note! Oh well, I’ll have to keep trying!
Yet another backlog! It’s the last one, I promise!
I got this one again from LiberTEAS and I’ve logged it once before. I’ve had it quite a few times since and I still have enough to make one more cup that I will be saving! I really like this one! It’s nice and bold, and for those looking for a coffee substitute, I would go for this! It doesn’t really taste like coffee, but it has a nice and robust, nutty-esque (it doesn’t taste like almond or anything that extreme!) flavor! This one reminds me of traveling. I think that’s purely coincidental because I brewed this one up after a long time of it sitting when I went on a long car ride and I fell into re-love with it.
I’m bumping the rating up (did I already say that? Seriously, though, I don’t remember but I’m too lazy to scroll up and check…. I’m tired, what can I say? :P) because I love it so much. All of the teas I’ve tried from Fusion have been pretty tasty and I definitely think that my next order will be from them!
Another major backlog!
I got this one from LiberTEAS! This is a really nice, traditional breakfast blend. I’ve only had one cup from the generous amount sent to me by LiberTEAS and I had it black, but I can say almost positively that this one would be equally as nice with milk and sugar. It has a nice, smooth, bold taste. There’s definitely some Assam in there, which gives it a nice bold and somewhat malty taste, but it is smooth too. Overall a very nice breakfast blend!
Major major major backlog but I’ve been putting this one off forever and I want to review it so it feels loved :P
I got this one a while back in a swap from The DJBooth and I liked it so much that I got 2 oz of it during my Tevana haul from about a month ago. I really do like this one a lot. It’s nice and spiced but not in a chai, spicy way. It’s more…. robust, I guess you could say, and there’s a really nice creaminess to it that I find to be really yummy!
I read in the Steepster Select giveaway thread for this month that The DJBooth likes this one iced and I really want to try that…. I think this would be exactly like a Thai iced tea! Yum, I’m excited!
Fair Warning! I knew this one would be long but now looking back on it after I’ve written it, it’s absurdly long. In fact, it’s most likely my longest post ever. I rant a lot in it, but I also talk a lot about my super fun trip to Philly! And I talk forever. Just as an idea, even the WARNING for how long this post is is long. So yeah…. Read at your own risk :)
Hello everyone! I’ve had a brief absence as I went to Philadelphia with my father this weekend (so of course this one will be long! :D). Of course I’ve still been drinking tea, not even a hotel room can slow me down! (although, our hotel room was actually really nice…
We stayed in King of Prussia, which is a suburb of Philly and it’s right next to Valley Forge which is were my grandfather’s ashes are. We went to visit him and then we decided that since we were there we might as well go into the city! We also went to a HUUUUGE mall, which I talked about briefly before, and it was so much fun, though very overwhelming. I stopped by Teavana (more on that later!) and picked up this and Blackberry Mojito (as par Bonnie ‘s recommendation. I didn’t end up getting the Yixing I wanted but I think I’ve found a place here in VT to get one and it will no doubt be cheaper and nicer! Then, on Sunday, we went into the city. It was rainy and crappy out but it was still a lot of fun! Philadelphia is truly an amazing city and I can’t wait to go back when it’s nice outside (no doubt there will be another trip this summer!) but I still had loads of fun. We went to do the standard stuff like the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall, and while I usually try to stay away from super tourist-y stuff in cities (I’ve never really liked all that tour crap and stuff, I like to actually explore the city!), I felt an obligation to go as Philadelphia has always been an interesting city to me and I’m in AP US History, and I felt like touring the place where this nation was basically born was absolutely necessary! After that we stopped by a coffee shop to plan our next move and, with a lot of persuasion on my part and the survey of a third party of local Philadelphians, we decided on the art museum! It was so much fun as I’ve never been to a huge art museum like that and I’m also in AP Art History, so it was so cool to see the stuff we’re learning about! My favorites were the Impressionistic and Post-Impressionistic pieces, along with the modern art wing which I absolutely LOVED! They had quite a few installments that were really cool and then they also had two rooms devoted to two of my favorite artists-Duchamp and Picasso! For those unfamiliar with Duchamp, I would definitely recommend looking him up! His Nude Descending a Staircase is one of my absolute all time favorite pieces! They had a whole section devoted to him and they had not only a collection of his later works but also his early works, before he got into Dadaism and other avant-garde styles. I’m sure you all know who Picasso is, and he had a huge room as well, which was really interesting.
Anywho, art talk aside, TEA! I’m going to have several backlogs so prepare yourself! Alright, really only 3 or 4, but still! I brought a nice selection of tea with me and I had quite a few of those. And, like I mentioned above, I also went to Teavana and picked some stuff up. Oh. My. God. RANT TIME! I got bombarded by my first Teavana employee and it absolutely sucked. The one I went to last time was small and you could tell not very many people ever went there, so it was very mellow and actually really enjoyable. Here, because it was such a large mall and it obviously had a higher customer count, it was absolutely atrocious. I managed to sneak by the snipers at the front and make my way into the back, where a lady asked if I needed help and I politely said no, and she said that was fine and walked away (a.k.a. the way salespeople are supposed to act). My dad, however wasn’t so lucky. I’m going to skip the pushiness part because I’m sure you all know what I’m talking about (pushing to try and trying to sell unnecessary things, etc.). However, there were two main flags that absolutely made me enraged.
1.) HE GAVE MY DAD SOMETHING HE WAS ALLERGIC TO! My dad is allergic to cinnamon oil and the guy offered him some of this very blend (which I enjoy, on a mellow side note). When my dad asked what it was the guy explained that it was a cinnamon-y blend with some fruit and other spices. When my dad said he was allergic, the guy said he should try it anyways because it didn’t have oil in it. My dad did because he believed him, and then it DID HAVE CINNAMON OIL IN IT! Luckily it only makes my dads tongue puff up a little and it makes his mouth scratchy, so it was nothing serious, but still. That was blatantly lying to him and I was so not okay with that. This segues into the next point.
2.) This guy blatantly lied to us. First with the cinnamon, and then with the products. First off, I asked for this one in a tin and not the other (I don’t really think that tins are necessary as I keep the bags in a dark and cool location away from other flavors, and I don’t have enough money to buy tins for ALL of my teas). However, this one was a 4 oz. minimum, so I asked for at in as I know this one will last for a long time. And, when he pulled it up and explained it to me, I noticed it was the 1 lb. tin. When I asked if I could have the smaller, 4 oz. one, he said they didn’t have those. I. Was. Looking. Right. At. One. That made me so frustrated and he refused to get a smaller one, and forced me to pay almost double what I had to for a tin. I know I can reuse them, but still. That was totally not okay with me. And then the second thing he lied to me about (well I guess third, but this is all “at the counter” lies) is about the tea. When my dad complained about the price (which he typically does, though this time it was more rightfully so), the guy automatically went into “Defend Tevana at All Costs” mode. And, this one absolutely set me off and made me run away before I went at it with him, he said that with only 6 oz of tea, I could make well over 100 cups of tea. A.) That doesn’t even make sense. I actually don’t understand how he got to that so it leads me to believe that he was actually lying to my face. I did the math right there in my head and since I brew 12 oz. cups western style, I can make about 20 cups of tea with 2 oz. That’s only 60 cups of tea with 6 oz…. THAT’S ALMOST HALF OF 100! This guy lied and said I could make almost double with this tea, and I know for a fact that it won’t resteep well at all because I’ve tried already. B.) What’s the point of lying about that?!?!?!??!?!?!?!?!? I mean, I understand that it makes it seem like you’re getting more bang for your buck that way but I mean, why would you lie to that extent? He could’ve just said 75 cups… That would have been forgivable! But he didn’t…. Which makes me so angry. If I’m ever in the area again and he just happens to be working there I will make sure to confront him, only I’m not joking. He just made me so angry and lose almost all hope in Teavana.
Okay, rant aside. I’m sorry about that, I’m not good at this whole “don’t ramble on” thing. This tea is super good! I tried it as a sample a little while back and I knew that I wanted it. Plus, I’ve been on an uncharacteristic chai kick lately, and this one is super good. I like that I can drink it in the afternoon because the white tea kind of balances out the mate, and it makes the caffeine a lot less than it would be (or maybe I just made that up in my head as an excuse for drinking it at night….:P). Dry this one smells nice and spicy but it also has a nice sweet undertone to it that really makes it so tempting. I also think it’s really pretty. There’s a nice yellow-y green base of actual tea and then you get the little pops of red from the pepper and blue from the flowers. I would go on a rant about Teavana and then say I really like their tea… I guess what it all really comes down to though, is that I actually really do like some of their teas and that’s what makes me keep going back. It would be so much easier to just not like their teas at all :P I really like this one because it isn’t too too spicy when you’re drinking it (in fact it’s quite mellow), but then once you’ve swallowed a lovely, super-spicy aftertaste comes out that’s followed by a nice sweetness. As this one cools down a little, the sweetness comes out more in the flavor and the spiciness starts to play around a little more, too.
This one is super good, and despite all my Tevana troubles, I am really glad I picked this one up!
ANOTHER WEIRD CRAVING! AGAIN when I got home today, I had a huge craving for some Earl Grey! So, this is what I’m brewing up! I’ve had one other tea from Compass Teas and it was pretty tasty so I’m hoping this one is too!
I LOVE the combination of bergamot and vanilla, it’s one of my favorites! This one smells like the two and there’s not one scent fighting another, which makes it basically smell like heaven (I use that simile a lot….). I added milk and sugar because 9/10 when I drink Earl Grey, milk and sugar are added (the remaining 1/10 is when the tea doesn’t have a black base). This one is super yummy! Creamy (the milk helps :P), sweet, and very satisfying while still being able to be relaxing. I really like this one! I see an order from Compass coming somewhere in the near future (although, I say that about every company!).
This one is definitely doing its job at relaxing me. I’m in the midst of studying for all of my AP exams and I’m SUUUUPER stressed. For those who don’t know, AP stands for Advanced Placement and they are certain classes (for instance, this year I’m in AP Art History and AP United States History, and next year I’m taking AP Government and Politics, Psychology, and English Language and Composition). The classes are the highest level possible at MOST schools (including mine) and they’re very challenging. In early May, you have the opportunity to take an AP exam, in which you take everything you’ve learned in the year and then apply it to a test. If you get a good score (the exams are graded on a scale from 1-5), then you can earn potential college credit. Plus, the classes look good on college applications. I’m currently studying for my two exams that are in less than 3 weeks and I’m SO stressed. I got two books that I plan on reading on the 8 hour drive to Philly this weekend. Anyways, my rant aside, this tea was really yummy!
The strangest thing happened to me this afternoon-I had a huge craving for a chai tea! I’m not normally the hugest fan of chais, but for some reason I had a craving for one and so I decided to brew this one up. I steeped this one for the recommended two minutes and it literally tasted like water, so I threw it back in for 5 more minutes. That’s how I usually steep whites, and this one isn’t really a particularly high quality white OR a straight white OR a straight white blend-along with the host of other ingredients there’s some green tea in this!
Regardless from my “Teavana overblends their teas” rant, this one is actually really good! I’m bumping up my rating a little, mostly due to my craving. This one is slightly sweet and has a good spicy bite lurking behind it. This is really yummy!
I’m going to a VERY large mall this weekend (the King of Prussia mall right outside of Philadelphia-it’s the largest mall in America in terms of retail size), and they have not one but two Teavana’s there, so I’m definitely planning on picking up some stuff. I’m hoping that they’ll have some stuff on sale in the store because that would be very nice on the wallet! I’m definitely planning on picking up a tiny Yixing because they’re relatively inexpensive and I would like one just to try. I’m also planning on getting some more of the Cha Yen Thai tea (it’s soooo good, so thanks to The DJBooth for turning me on to that one!), some tins, and a scoop. I’m also THINKING about picking up some of the Body + Mind tea and some of the Samurai Chai blend with this one in it. What are your opinions? Likes or dislikes? Thanks! :)
I’ve had this quite a few times and I can’t believe that I haven’t logged it yet…. In fact this is one of TWO of the teas I got at my Teavana haul from almost a month ago that I haven’t logged yet….. Oops!
Anyways, I’ve had this one both hot and iced and I can say that I prefer it hot a lot more, and this rating is for the hot version. Hot, I find that the tea is more citrus-y, and cold it’s more pineappley. Like, mostly pineappley. Like, I thought this was pineapple juice for a second.
My main complaint, though, is that in both blends, I can’t really taste the lavender OR the sage. It’s still good, I just thought that this one would taste more like the name suggests. I’m definitely going to try adding in some extra lavender and sage, but for now this one will get a medium rating from me.