98
drank yerba mate by El Almacen
1311 tasting notes

First off, my rating here is not just about the tea but also my overall experience. It was my daily dose of culture! and it was fantastic!!!!! I love this place. If it wasn’t so far outta the way, I’d be there regularly.
Anyhow, I drank this out of the gourd, with the special metal straw. The first infusion was had bare— very strong, intense and a little bitter, topped with that “yerba” taste but much better than what I am accustomed to. Maybe that was due to the gourd? or the higher quality leaf?
The second infusion was less bitter, especially after the server added some sugar for me (you aren’t supposed to mix the leaves, I wasn’t sure how to do it proper!)
As I got nearer the third infusion, the brew became much smoother. It challenged my concept of yerba somewhat, as I didn’t realize it could be SO smooth, or that it would taste so different in the gourd. The yerba I’ve tried before is more raw, and can be really earthy. I didn’t get any of that here… just the “tea” part. Despite it being super strong, and even bitter, I did not find it wearing on the throat at all. Yes, I need to go back there so that I can have more, and pick up a bag!! they have yerba lattes! mmmmm
Next time, I hope to have a tea-pal with me as this is traditionally a social drink, meant to be shared among a group but as I was on my way elsewhere, this was sadly enjoyed by only me. It was somewhat wasted actually… there were atleast another 3-4 infusions left in the cup but I was late! as always.
Anyhow, this is a lovely cafe. I’m so grateful to have come across it! and the service was terrific as well.

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Let’s see… I’m a tea and workout fanatic, I work in HR, and most of my friends consider me to be an egg. White on the outside, Asian on the inside :)
-from philosophy to food, I love it all
Otherwise, what you see is what you get! I can be very straightforward and yet shy.

Also, I’ve started taking tea sommelier classes and it is an absolute blast! Well, so far I’ve only finished the first out of eight courses, but I am really looking forward to the next one.

Anyhow, if your curious as to how I rate things, this is how I work…

0-25
Like eating dirt, or some other unsanitary indelicacy that mentioning in my profile here would likely get me banned.
I don’t think I’ve found cause to banish a tea to the wasteland yet though so who knows what it’d inspire ;P

25-50
You know that expression “Don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater”? I imagine drinking that water would be terrible enough to warrant this rating!
I’d never make my enemy drink this, but perhaps I’d throw it at them. Good thing I don’t have any enemies!

50-70
This is “tea”?? I tried finishing the cup… but my body rejected it. There may be others who enjoy this tea, but it’s beyond me!

70-80
I tried liking it, and I can almost get there! I certainly don’t hate it, but something is holding me back. Allergies? Men in white suits? who knows… certainly not me!

80-90
Lovely tea! Not my all time fave but close. I likely wouldn’t repurchase, but may decide to based on many factors: price, accessibility, whether it fills a “tea gap”, medicinal applications, and how often I crave it.
Every once in awhile I find the sweet spot that bumps these up to 90+. Those are the days I need to buy a lotto ticket!

90-95
Sweet Camellia! this is realllly good tea! Don’t talk to me until I’ve finished my cup…

95-100
Tea of the gods. I would do anything to get my hands on more of this liquid gold!

Location

Toronto (Mississauga, but I work in TO)

Website

http://hrslinger.wordpress.com/

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