1540 Tasting Notes

89

Mmmmmm. If I’m ever craving a chocolate fix, this is the place to go!!
It’s like drinking cocoa tea! So yummy. Trouble is, I so badly wanted to try this with a spot o’ milk… except when I opened the fridge, someone drank the last of it this morning! oh well, something to look forward to next time. I’m sure it will be worth the wait :)
I’m surprised that with this being a black and all, I am really enjoying my cup. When I had intended to sample this with milk, I had divided it into two cups… one of them with some agave in it just to see if it made any difference. I think it did, but not in a good way. In fact, I prefer it without. Nonetheless, when the missing dairy incident occurred, I combined the two samples and so now I have agave in it. Maybe the trick is to just use less.
Somehow, I can actually taste the maltiness and the astringency!! Once in awhile I get blessed with a “good” tea day and well it seems this is one of ‘em! hallelujah!!!!!
Only my friends here on Steepster will understand how happy this makes me :):):)
Maybe it’s the cocoa? or the fact that I had a cat-scan yesterday (I dunno ‘bout anyone else but whenever I go get tested/to the doc for some medical issue or other, the problem seems to miraculously clear up on it’s own! ha. Am I a hypochondriac? it’s possible!!)
In any case, the chocolate is nice and deep. Rich, like I’m eating cake. It’s better when piping hot, but then I find most teas like that. The astringency comes out more as it cools. Heck, I don’t mind. I can taste the astringency!! :P

SimpliciTEA

Yes, I am glad you can taste all of those things in the tea! Woo, hoo!!

Indigobloom

Thanks SimpliciTea!! it’s days like today that give me hope it will return for good one day *sighs

Tina S.

Yay for awesome tea days on amazingly tea-ful days! :D

Ninavampi

Yay for tasting! And yes… Sometimes my problems disappear in the docs waiting room… Odd…

Indigobloom

Tina: YAY indeed! :P I’m so grateful for amazing tea days…

Ninavampi: It really is strange isn’t it?! So many yays for tasting! :P

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87

Hmmm. I’m not sure about this one!
Hot, it’s quite tasty. It reminds me very much of Tea Emporium’s Sunshine Mate. In fact, I’m almost positive it’s the same blend of lemon additions.
Maybe a little more sour because of the green tea astringency. More sour lemony than candy lemony. I’ll rate it next time when I have a better idea of it’s potential.
I think I may have slightly burned the leaves to. I was in a rush!! and I had forgotten to time when I poured the water… in retrospect, probably two min prior. So I have no idea how hot it was. Next time, I’ll try this at home. Maybe then I can get more than two steeps. ha!
Also, this might possibly be the first time I’ve ever been tempting to add sugar. I think it would compliment the lemon really well. not all the time, but for a treat.

Oh and something else!! I like to drink my tea HOT. Not like my friends who let it cool down until it’s practically iced tea. This leaves a teeny window for me to drink my greens. and whites! At least my black teas used to stay hot for more than three minutes. Hmph.

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drank Illam Nepal by The Tea Emporium
1540 tasting notes

So I thought that with my new love of Darjeeling and this being from the region right next to Darjeeling, that maybe this one would fall in under that love umbrella.
It isn’t terrible. but I can tell that there are some things in here I am missing. I mean, it’s certainly a Darjeeling hybrid of sorts. I can taste the influence of both regions… except the Illam part is sort of blank for me.
I made it all the way to four steeps and the first was definitely best. The last one required some honey for me to get through it and even then it was barely saved.
Maybe some milk will help. I’m curious though, what other people think of this one. I’m positive there are notes that I just cannot taste.
Anyone up for a sample?

Tina S.

I’ll give it a try! Be interesting to compare it to the Nepal Black at David’s, too!

Indigobloom

Cool, I’ll bring it on Saturday! :P

Tina S.

Hurray! :D

Kashyap

i’m game

Indigobloom

Kashyap, awesome… you’re on!

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85

So it’s been a long time since I’ve had any juicelike tea in the house. Most herbal fruity tisanes started to taste too much like plain ol’ juice and I wasn’t liking it. but then I remembered this one… which I had way back in the beginning. I loved it!! and now that I have it again, I still do. Despite the hibiscus. but only with honey or agave added. I know I know… it’s already a fruit drink. I have diabetes in the family, I need to watch my sugar! but the hibiscus makes it so sour… I almost feel like it’s a rasperry lemonade! with some honey, the sourness is kicked away just enough that I swoon :P
The lemon tastes so real. I guess the candied lemon aspect mixed with hibiscus really does the trick huh.
Next time, I might add some mint. and if I can remember, I’ll pick out a few of the hibiscus leaves.
The calcium carbonate can’t hurt either. It’ll help settle my tummy and boost my calcium intake. Yay for that!
Now, it’s against my nature to give a “juice” tea a high score. So let me just say that my ceiling here is 90. That makes my 85 pretty darn high, considering!

Tina S.

Memo to self, don’t share juice teas. Got it! ;)

Indigobloom

well if it’s a light juice augmented with other flavours it’s different, ya know what I mean? I usually drink my juice cut 50% with water so most of the juice teas are a little heavy for me.

Tina S.

Ah. Yeah, avoid pretty much everything at Teavana then!

Indigobloom

ha! yes that sounds just like Teavana!! :P

Indigobloom

it should also be noted that I am totally getting an “awesome tea vibe” now that my massive mug is drained. I want more!!

Tina S.

Hurray wanting more! :D

SimpliciTEA

I hear you both on the Teavana thing. I personally do like the taste and aroma the fruit tisanes from them that I have had so far.

Indigobloom I like how you qualified your rating, telling us 90 is the ceiling for a “juice” tea. I may want to do just such a thing in one of my reviews someday.

I didn’t know hibiscus can make a tea taste sour, or that you could pick out some of the things you don’t like in the dried ‘tea’. You are just teaching me things left and right!

Indigobloom

lol thanks SimpliciTea – I consider them more personal quirks but if you find it helpful then maybe they aren’t such bad habits! :)
and Teavana… I am so not impressed with them these days!!

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79

Meh. I second pretty much every tasting note here.
This is a nice standard green oolong. Very basic, nothing special. There are no odd hidden flavours or even ones that pop out and say “hi”!
Pretty much, it is what I expected and to be honest I can see myself needing this every once in awhile. This business of having fabulous teas all the time is a little dramatic and sometimes I just want a cup of simplicity. Well folks, this is about as tame as it gets!
but it is relatively smooth and vegetal. On the fourth steep, when it was hot, I got a surprising buttery note. and then the standard sweetness…
Overall, I’d buy it again but not before trying most of the other ones out there.

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86

Steeper beware!! this one brews up STRONG!!!!
I had the bag in for two, maybe three minutes and it ended up more bitter than a scorned woman. That had never happened to me before. A new experience to be sure. No matter. Heaps of agave fixed it right up (and I mean several. At least four times more than what I normally use, if I use any at all)
Next time, I’ll try it with a one/two min steep and see what that reveals.
Anyhow, once that was dealt with… the bitterness was peeking out for awhile, and I couldn’t taste much beyond the agave/bitter aspect. Almost like black coffee. I was not impressed.
However once it cooled a bit, I started to see the wine influence. Not quite ice wine per se, but definitely wine. There was that mouth drying sensation, along with a definite grape-like puckering. Like sweet green grapes. or maybe a hybrid green/red grape. Certainly not a plain red grape of course. No, it was not quite that sweet.
I went in for a second steep and that one was quite lovely as well. I added only two swirls of agave this time and steeped for three full minutes (plus an accidental twenty extra seconds). and guess what? it was still strong! not quite bitter. More what I expected the first infusion to be. any longer and I’d have bridged bitter territory. I’m still a little shocked at just how intense it was. Is it possible they added tea dust? I’ve heard it can make a tea bitter…
but that can’t be, I enjoyed it!! I could never like the taste of tea dust. right?
If it hadn’t been for the work event I was obliged to attend, you can bet I’d have stuck around for a third or even fourth cup.
Oh and I figured out what it reminds me of!! Cloud nine from David’s tea! I don’t know why, it just does. Maybe I need to do a side by side comparison one day. It has been some time since my stash ran out.
And for those who may (or may not be! I’m not assuming anyone reads me haha) wondering, yes I did break my tea buying ban. Again.
Ice wine tea had been on my list for ages, and this is the first opp I’ve had to get a decent version. When the shopkeeper said that people come specifically to her store for that tea, well who was I to shun it?! it was no longer in my power… the decision had already been made… sighs

Tina S.

Heee! Tea ban? What tea ban? These do not exist in our universes. :D

Cheryl

Oh oh, we are paying attention … (gives you the momma-bear look) … haha, one at a time isn’t a huge sin, eh?

Indigobloom

LOL no I suppose they don’t!! if only the tea purchases came with extra cupboard space…

Indigobloom

I also justified it by the fact that I now have an extra tin :-D

Tina S.

Tins are totally something that call to me too. Tormenting things, they be!

Indigobloom

Cheryl: hides
yes, one at a time! yes, yes that is how it is :P

Indigobloom

tormenting, no kidding!! How many teas have I purchased because it comes with a tin… they might as well be sirens!

Thomas Edward(Toad)

i got some of this on order it sounds realy good o me :)

Indigobloom

Tommy: I look forward to reading your review!! just don’t steep it too long :)

SimplyJenW

Ah, we all give in to the allure of a good cuppa. What I did…I rewrote my no-buy rules, kind of like Kirk and the Kobayashi Maru..My tea ban just includes black tea……(So I have bought a few oolongs, some green, and a gaiwan!)

Tina S.

Wait, did you just make a Trek reference related to tea? I think I love you!

SimplyJenW

Well, it was an unwinnable scenario…… Yes, I am a big fan of many things that are only cool in geekdom.

Tina S.

Hey, who am I to say anything when I have the Delta as my picture on a tea site? ;)

Indigobloom

Hmmm maybe I should rewrite the my rules!
and I

Dinosara

I just realized the other day that my rule will be broken too… the NY Coffee and Tea festival is in late February, and I can’t expect myself not to buy any tea there! So yeah, already writing exceptions…

Indigobloom

ahh well you deserve it, after all that denial Dinosara! :P

Dinosara

Haha, thanks for being my enabler. :D

Indigobloom

anytime Dinosara, it’s what tea buddies are for ;)

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My tea of the morning, accompanied by an awkward tea moment:
So I feel a bit guilty taking up so much time with my extensive tea prep… even though it’s only a few minutes here and there, it does add up. Thus, I try to mitigate it as much as possible. This is why I filled up the kettle to boil and returned to my desk for a minute or two. My cubicle is close enough that I can hear the click of the kettle turning off most of the time.
Except this morning my lovely tea friend who I share much of my tea with had already poured it when I walked in! ack! a white tea…
She is a sweetheart so I really did not mind. Especially since the tea didn’t turn out bitter at all. In fact, the berry overshadowed most of the tea! it brewed up a gorgeous purple colour. Much deeper than I expected. and it smelled heavenly!!
The taste? well that was nice to. Very rich in the berryness.
Odd though, I enjoyed the first steep more than the second. Mostly because the second one was so… weak! I could definitely taste the berry, a little more tart and a whole lot lighter this time. and the white part was a little more present.

I think my love affair with white teas is over :(
There was a day when white tea was my amore. The delicate notes, the crisp dryness. I had so much love… but now?? now I don’t get it at all.
In fact, this one reminds me very much of Strawberry White from David’s tea. At one time that was my fave tea of ALL TIME! Now I haven’t had it in ages, but I strongly suspect that it would not get me a tea high at all. :moment of sadness:
Bah, I’ve fallen in love with a whole range of other teas. Can’t have it all, right?
I shan’t rate this one now. I need to try it again when the leaves are cooked up right. I know it has the potential for me to adore it… I know it does!

Daniel Scott

Oh, helpful people. My sister keeps throwing out my jiaogulan on me before I’ve gotten a chance to re-steep it – she’s used to Tetley bags, and even though I carefully set the infuser aside for the next cup, she’s convinced that steeped leaves are automatically “garbage.”

We had to keep having “talks” about it (and the price of it!) before she understood how…not optimal this is. The last time we talked, I think she got it, because she said, “Okay, the stuff that looks like mutant weed? Don’t throw it out, right?” God, finally.

Indigobloom

ahh helpful people indeed! well I’m glad to hear your tea leaves are no longer in jeopardy. Maybe you can make a tea convert outta her yet ;)

Tina S.

A boiling water steep might be why the second steep was so weak. I’m mostly a one-steep kind of girl though.

Indigobloom

yah it is possible. I am hoping that’s why! otherwise drinking all of it will be a chore… or it will be sampled out

TeaBrat

I like white tea, certain ones but others not so much.

Indigobloom

I hear you on that. I’m willing to try them all! :P

Bonnie

Did’nt Berry (BARRY) White sing Can’t Get Enough of Your Love Babe….

Indigobloom

heh heh yes I believe he did. I’ll forever associate it with this tea!!!

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93

So after Cold 911 denied me any relief, I just had to have some of my precious Ginger Pu’erh tea. it really did work wonders! Tea gold this one is.
Oh and I know I’m super congested because I could barely taste the ginger! and there was no hint of fishiness either. Hey, I’m not complaining! :)

Plunkybug

I’m drinking Organic Nettle right now to help kick out the crud that wants to take residence. I think I need a super duper ginger tea too.

Indigobloom

I definitely recommend this one as a super duper ginger tea! if you can get ahold of some :)

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76
drank Cold 911 (organic) by DAVIDsTEA
1540 tasting notes

Ugh, I’m sick!! blegh.
And this tea… well I thought it would help! but boo hoo, it’s not really doing much for my cold. and it tastes like regular mint tea?! Sure, if I did a side by side tasting it might highlight a few of the differences… but who has the energy for that when sick?
Now, my ‘buds are super dampened today so that is definitely not helping the cause. However, if the reason I bought this is to destroy my headcold and it isn’t working… well then I say it’s failed at it’s mission… yes??
maybe I’ll try it when not sick just to see if I can actually taste the juniper.
I doubt I’ll buy it again. Yep. I have nothing against it, but nothing for it over and above regular mint tea. So the rating here is kinda low because while I did find it very tasty, it wasn’t effective nor unique.

OMG brainwave… this tea mixed with Exotica when sick!!!!! how “sic” would that be :)
Guess what I am trying tomorrow!

Tina S.

Yay tea blending!

Try Honeybush Ginger Lemon . . that one cleared me up fast.

Indigobloom

I have some at work actually!! it’s pretty good. Anything with ginger helps a cold! :)

Dinosara

Feel better soon!

Indigobloom

I plan on it haha. thx Dinosara!!

gmathis

Get better soon. (Now’s the time to pull out all the minty and spicy stuff to unclog with. I like Tazo Refresh because of the tarragon when I feel yucky.)

Infusin_Susan

Sorry to hear you’re sick. When I’m ill, I drink a lot of Gypsy Cold Care and Echinacea teas from Traditional Medicinals. The trick is to steep it for the full 15 minutes to get the benefits of the herbs. I hope you’re feeling better soon.

Indigobloom

Gmathis and InfusinSusan- awesome tips… I’ll try them next time I get sick for sure! but now I am off to a ski chalet with friends so won’t have a chance to pick any up. Thanks so much tea friends XO

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91
drank Chai Guarana by DAVIDsTEA
1540 tasting notes

this was unexpectedly delicious!!!
I’m rather skeptical about Chai in general… having had so many that did nothing for me but the ingredient list seemed pretty benign and so I gave it a shot.
With some agave and heaps of milk, this was just the kind of chai I enjoy. It reminds me of the cuppas I’ve had in Indian restaurants to close the meal. The spices were perfectly balanced, with none of them poking out or lacking.
I did however, see a note in someone else’s review about it seeming a bit thin, and I think I know what they mean.
Initially, I had hoped to get a second steeping out of this, but as I moseyed on to work, taking random sips here and there… I kept thinking “just another minute steeping and it will be poifect!” (yes I’ve taken on an accent, in my head)
but oddly, that minute never seemed to end!
Which is super strange because I typically enjoy my teas on the weaker side…
I suppose it was my conditioning learned in Indian food houses that’s taught me to relish a strong cup in my chai???
Nonetheless, I love this one anyhow. Even moreso because it tasted just like “chai” without the hassle of making it into a bonafide latte! I mean, I’m sure it would be incredible as one, but I couldn’t seem to tell the difference so… shrugs
If it wasn’t for my tea buying ban (which I broke today. Bad IndigoBloom, bad!) I could seriously see myself buying some up for the cupboard!!
Disclaimer: I do have a bit of head cold going on. It’s no doubt affecting my senses!

Tina S.

This is one of my two favourite chais at Davids, I’m so glad you liked it!! :D

Indigobloom

hehe me to! :P

Anthony Bazic

really need the boost!

TeaBrat

Your tea buying ban lasted longer than mine did. :)

cteresa

Does it have guaraná in it? It might be interesting – not sure if in good or bad way. But guaraná in tea, hmmm.

Indigobloom

Anthony: it gives a really big boost!!
Amy: well atleast I made some progress in my sample pile :)
Cteresa: it does, and it seems to work for me! not sure if my tastes are similar to yours?

cteresa

Guaraná for me is mostly associated with the fizzy drink (it´s dunno sort of what Irn Bru is in Scotland, Guaraná is for brazillians. I am not brazillian but when i think of guaraná I think of the bottles in the supermarket aisles). Caffeine yeah and that taste but the health-food claims are well not something I associate personally. Putting in tea is a pretty interesting idea though!

Indigobloom

I’ve had the soda version, it’s pretty good!! I’ve seen it in a few teas. I guess it’s a new trend. One I likey!!!

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Profile

Bio

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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