117 Tasting Notes

I started off the day with a random, reaaaally old bag of White Peony that no one was quite sure they wanted to drink… it turned out far more pleasant than I expected, although I did find it to have a very strong raisin-y note that no one else seemed to notice…

My dad’s coming back into town today, and I must admit I’m feeling a little anxious. Historically, we haven’t exactly had the most pleasant interactions… I’m drinking a green tea with hibiscus that my grandmother brought over from Russia, and it’s doing nothing to calm me down, but it did go fantastically well with the lemongrass and black pepper chocolate we got from the jazz festival, so I guess that’s the little spot of joy that I’ll hang on to for now.

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90
drank Paris by Harney & Sons
117 tasting notes

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75
drank Boston Blend by Harney & Sons
117 tasting notes

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85
drank Vanilla Orchid by DAVIDsTEA
117 tasting notes

Okay, this is becoming my go to tea for when I want something lighter than a black.

This morning I didn’t want to get out of bed. After I did, I wanted to get right back in it again. Then I had a cup of tea, and it made everything better. =]

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85
drank Vanilla Orchid by DAVIDsTEA
117 tasting notes

I’m getting a lot more of the floral taste in the second steeping, as well as less of the vanilla creaminess and the “yogurty” taste I was picking up in the first. It also tastes a lot greener, which I’m usually not a huge fan of but actually accentuates the floral taste here, I think. It’s like eating a flower. =] I kind of wish all of the tastes were more evenly distributed across both steepings (if that makes sense?), but this is interesting too. I might try steeping it twice as long later and maybe diluting it to see what happens…

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drank Wild Black Yunnan by DAVIDsTEA
117 tasting notes

Oh dear. I expected more from this one, I really did. I did get a bit of what everyone’s raving about — a bit of something woodsy, a slight cocoa note… but there was an /odd/ smell and taste that I couldn’t quite place… and then my brain came up with: Potato. I am getting a very strong savory, potatoey note from this, and it is not what I like in a tea at all.

Brewed Russian style, so it may be overstrong or oversteeped. I’ll try it western style to see if that makes it any better. =/

OMGsrsly

What do you mean by “brewed Russian style”?

Iridium

Apparently this is strange by most people’s standards, but the way Russian people (or at least, those I’ve encountered) brew black tea is by first using extra tea leaves to make a tea concentrate, and then diluting it with boiling water. (Both my parents swear the tea tastes different this way, and for a long time they refused to drink black tea that was brewed “western style”.) Unfortunately, this doesn’t work too well with teas that are sensitive to oversteeping, so I figure this might be one of them…

OMGsrsly

Oh, that’s cool. I do that with coffee, but didn’t think of trying it with tea.

Iridium

Huh. And I hadn’t thought of doing that with coffee. You learn something new every day…

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85
drank Vanilla Orchid by DAVIDsTEA
117 tasting notes

Shared a few cups of this with my mother this morning. She’s still confused about what exactly makes an oolong, because both the one’s we’ve tried this week just taste like green tea… and I’m afraid I’m not doing a terribly good job of explaining. =/

The leaves smell like vanilla yogurt to me. (My little sister, who doesn’t really drink tea, concurs. She made a face and everything.) The tea is pleasantly vanilla flavored, and not in a way that feels artificial, but I still get a little bit of that yogurty note. Weird. I also don’t get as much of the floral as I’d maybe like, but perhaps next time it’ll come out more.

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80
drank Glitter & Gold by DAVIDsTEA
117 tasting notes

Drinking this as I type. I suddenly found myself dead tired from traipsing through San Francisco all day… I’d been looking forward to stopping by DavidsTea, since we were in the neighborhood, but by the time we got there it had already closed. =/ I was feeling pretty down, and then I remembered:

Wait, I can /literally/ brew myself a cup full of sparkles, right now! The sparkles started whirling around the second I poured hot water over the tea leaves, and it was incredibly soothing to just stand there and watch them as the tea brewed. It smells pleasantly of vanilla and cloves, which might just be two of my favorite things. (The orange doesn’t come out much in the scent, although you can taste a hint of it in the tea.) This was a great tea to lighten a not-so-great evening.

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Today I got dragged out to the Fillmore Jazz Festival, which was actually pretty cool, despite my general aversion to large groups of people. Unfortunately, it meant that the morning was rather hectic, and I didn’t get to enjoy my nice cup of tea.

I did try a blend attractively titled “Flailing Princess” from, I think, T-We Tea? at a booth at the festival. It was a darjeeling with rose petals and coconut, and it was actually rather tasty, although nothing spectacular. But the concept and the packaging were both cute, and I might have purchased it, if it wasn’t so expensive… So, I guess that counts as my new tea for today?

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75
drank Checkmate by DAVIDsTEA
117 tasting notes

I have to admit: I’m not really getting the chocolate here. It smells and tastes quite strongly of coconut, and that mixed with the chamomile gives it a lovely sweetness that was very fitting for my after dinner tea. But it does go quite well with a bit of chocolate, even if it doesn’t taste like it.

I’ll have to try this with a dash of cream, or maybe even coconut milk.

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Profile

Bio

Hi! I’m a linguistics major at a certain infamous east coast tech school, I write, I rock climb, and I have a mild obsession with Diana Wynne Jones.

I’m also Russian, which means I’ve been drinking tea all my life — always loose leaf, and always black. Black teas are still my favorite, but of course I dabble in a bit of everything. I really like ceylon, I recently discovered puer, and I’m having a lot of fun exploring flavored black teas (and making silly fandom blends on adagio…).

My tea cabinet may or may not be accurate at the moment, as I am transitioning between locations…

Rating system (work in progress):
95 – Wow!
85 – My favorites. Cupboard staple material.
75 – Really good. Debating whether to keep it around…
65 – Quite pleasant, but not for me. I probably won’t (re)purchase.
55 – Just okay.

Location

MA

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