12 Tasting Notes

35

THE RUNDOWN
1) Starting out, this has a really fresh bouquet. As i like to steep my greens long, I am going to steep for 5 minutes and see how that changes. My water temp is 220 F. Right now I smell the nettle, the mint, and the green tea itself the most.
2) The mint is definitely the strongest after steeping.
3) First taste: needs a bit of sweetener. I am using white sugar, about 1/4 tsp.
4) Now it’s good to go. Nice and mild, but the mint is definitely present in an almost overpowering way. I think this is a “try and recommend for mint lovers” kind of tea, but not for me.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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66
drank Assam by two leaves and a bud
12 tasting notes

This tea is a fine Assam and stronger than other bagged Assams I have tried. I like the aromatics and the flavour finish. Try bagging it for a little shorter than the recommended time. Bonus points to 2L+AB for a compostable plastic bag and sachet.

Preparation
2 min, 30 sec

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85

This is easily one of the best fruit infusions I have ever had, and not just because it’s incredibly expensive, rare, and virtually non-existent in my country (the US). Unfortunately, the quantity you are served at Blue Bottle Coffee siphon bar in Chelsea/Meatpacking District of NYC is far too little: I would say about 3 to 4 ounces alongside a bourbon-infused marshmallow (which is also fantastic).

The first thing you notice is the aroma is intoxicating: like cherry raisins and papaya and tobacco husks. Then the taste, bitter and sweet at the same time, but also fruity and playful. Some say apple chips, others say licorice, but I stick with dried fruits like cherries and cranberries.

Served unsweetened, it is perfect as is and it should be steeped for a minimum of 6 minutes, though 8-10 is preferred. WHile it does not serve the same caffeinating quality of coffee, it certainly packs a robust fruit flavor with earth undertones and even some orange rootiness the longer it steeps. The color is gorgeous and is not to be denied.

Good luck finding it though as there are only three companies on record who even sell it and I’ve only found one coffee bar in the NY metro area that serves in miniature glasses.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 8 min or more

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26
drank Green Dragon by MEM Tea Imports
12 tasting notes

Tried this at Blue Bottle’s siphon bar and was quite shocked. It brewed more like a white than a green and the fact that he only steeped it for four minutes (as the label recommends all baristas do) was sort of odd. I guess when ordering tea at a highly coveted coffee siphon, you get what you pay for.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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77

Sweet, hot and traditional: this was tea in the tradition of Morocco. You get what you order and we ordered two pots of this delicious green herbal blend. I wish I had the recipe to make this at home, but rest assured I will be going back again and again.

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 5 min, 15 sec

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81

While it’s good enough weak and with no tweaking in small cups, I prefer it lightly honey sweetened and served piping. Yes, at $7 for a 2oz tin it can be a bit on the expensive side, but fear not. It is worth the investment. Pick some up in SoHo if you’re in New York and try the hot chocolate while you’re at the store.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 5 min, 0 sec

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62

Another day, another sad Venti single-bag of this non-descript bag blend. I really hope I can avoid these in the future. If I know I’m gong to be at Buckie’s, I should bring a bag from home. At least then I won’t steep to disappointment.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 3 min, 30 sec

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75
drank Pu-Erh Tea by Ten Ren
12 tasting notes

Definitely the perfect Chinese tea that needs minmal tweaking. Good for the afternoon when you want to drink something mild. Did you know that studies have shown that Pu erh has been linked to the suppression of fatty acid and cholesterol in the body? Pretty cool.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 5 min, 0 sec

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79

It’s not the holiday season without this spiced blend. I prefer this to other spiced teas because of it’s fragrant tanginess. Like others have said, it’s almost chai-like quality will keep you warm all winter long.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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67
drank Chocolate Mint by McNulty's
12 tasting notes

When I’m craving a hot cocoa, but desire a brewed cup instead, I reach for this tea on chilly days. I love serving it after cooking a meal for close friends. A great tea for dessert as well.

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 3 min, 30 sec

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Profile

Bio

Travelling the world, one sip at a time.

A guide to my ratings:
0-19 – Did not like anything about the tea and would not recommend it. Might go so far as to tell others to avoid.
20-40 – Didn’t like the tea, but would not avoid it.
41-60 – On the fence about the tea. It probably needs more tried and tested tweaking, like more/less sugar, milk, alt sweetener, steepage, temp, or blending.
61-70 – An okay tea. Would drink again, but not a fave and wouldn’t stock it.
71-80 – A good tea. Will probably try again, whereupon a decision will be made whether to stock it or not. Might recommend.
81-90 – A really good tea but not a favorite. Would still recommend and would most likely have it often when it is served.
91-100 – A favorite or perfect tea. Would probably stock it at home and recommend very highly.

Hope this helps.

Location

Brooklyn, NY

Website

http://about.me/jennlevine

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