55 Tasting Notes

74
drank Tippy Yunnan by Harney & Sons
55 tasting notes

I found this tea to be malty and slightly sweet, with an almost caramel sort of flavor. It’s bold, but not bitter or overpowering. I did not detect any smoky flavors like many other reviewers seemed to.

I used this tea to cold steep some iced tea and I was quite pleased with the results. The boldness is still there but the sweetness increases. A honey flavor develops after cold steeping overnight. It’s quite pleasant.

Usually when reviewing Harney & Sons teas I add the qualifier like “it’s good for the price,” or “it’s a nice value,” but I don’t need to do that here. I think it stands on its own just fine.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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83

The rooibos and the pumpkin spices complement each other very well. The creamy taste of the vanilla balances the spice of the rooibos and the spices. There is a subtle sweetness buried in the delicate flavors of this tea. It is warm and comforting and perfect for a chilly fall morning after a pre-dawn bike ride. (Gotta fit the exercise in somewhere.)

Just for fun, I cold brewed some iced tea and it was actually good. Interesting, but enjoyable enough that I did it more than once. The cream flavor and the natural sweetness of the tea are more pronounced.

I will probably buy this tea again next fall and I would certainly recommend it to someone who was looking for a pumpkin tea that had more balance than the normally heavy handed pumpkin spice sort of brews.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 6 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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55

Like everything else I get from Pleasures Of Tea, this seems to be a high quality product. While I’m sure there are people that will love this tea, it’s not quite for me. The rooibos and the cinnamon combine to be very spicy. While the apple is certainly present, there is just too much cinnamon for my taste, but if spicy cinnamon apple tea is your thing, I’d bet you’d be happy drinking this offering.

And fair warning – a little goes a long way. I use probably about half as much of this tea as I would a normal rooibos, so maybe you can pump up the score a few points for value.

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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80
drank Earl Grey Black by Teavana
55 tasting notes

Like many of us on this site I am sure, I love Earl Grey teas. I must admit I was surprised by how good this one is. There is quite a bit of bergamot flavor, which is my favorite part of any Earl Grey. The base tea is smooth, mild and generally unnoticeable. It neither adds anything or takes anything away from the tea.

You can certainly find better Earl Grey teas, but I’m not sure you can at this price. It must be the cheapest tea at Teavana.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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57

As I do with almost every tea I get, I tried this tea both hot and cold steeped as iced tea. It’s good, but not great either way.

When enjoyed hot, the malty sweetness of the Assam shines through even as the brightness of the Ceylon is ever present. When iced, the sweetness is mostly gone. A little of the malty flavor is present “towards the back.”

It kind of reminds me of Lipton tea for grownups.

It’s like a lot of other Harney and Sons teas. There’s nothing really wrong with it, it just doesn’t pop.

I still a good cup of tea.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 15 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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76

I love anything blood orange, and this tea is no exception. Thing is though, I don’t get blood orange from this tea. Tangerine? Maybe. Orange? Could be. Blood orange? Not even close. The bitterness that one would expect from a blood orange is nowhere to be found.

In the past I have found I always love the scent of blood orange teas, but the taste of the brewed tea never lives up to the smell. This is also the case with this tea.

Even with all my complaints, I would still drink this tea. It’s not my favorite orange tea, but it’s still pretty good. However, if you’re looking for more of a blood orange experience, look elsewhere.

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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55
drank Citrus Blend by Harney & Sons
55 tasting notes

I like both black tea and citrus and I was very excited to try this tea. The dry leaves smell amazingly citrusy, and I couldn’t wait to try the tea.

I was let down quite a bit by the results. Cold brewed as iced tea the flavor is flat. There is almost no citrus present and the base tea is just plain boring.

I tried it hot several times and it was fine. Nothing particularly interesting or out of the ordinary, but just fine. A dull black tea with just the slightest hint of artificial citrus flavor.

Is it a good value for the money? Well, that’s a different question. I’m not sure I could find a better tea at the price I paid, but I’d rather spend more and get something I enjoy more.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 45 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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73
drank Honey Nut Fig by Capital Teas
55 tasting notes

There is something vaguely exotic about this tea. I would imagine this is the kind of tea Indiana Jones is drinking when he’s in a marketplace in Egypt or maybe Turkey. I mean when he’s not shooting bad guys or chasing after treasure, of course.

The figs and the nuts combine to give this tea a naturally sweet taste that does not need any sort of sweetener. The pistachios give the tea a depth of flavor and a little more complexity than I would expect and I love it.

The base green tea is just that. There’s nothing particularly special about it, but there’s nothing bad about it either. The one nice thing I will say about it is that I have steeped this tea using water too hot, too cold and for too long and the green tea never gets burnt in a way that is offensive to the tea. It is very durable that way.

The other thing I like about this tea is it works almost all the time. I like to drink a cup of flavored tea on the way to work in the morning, and my tastes change with the season. I wouldn’t want a pumpkin spice tea in the middle of the summer, for example. I have found this tea to be perfect for any kind of weather.

I have not tried this tea iced, but maybe it’s not such a bad idea.

Flavors: Almond, Fig

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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First of all, let me say I do enjoy this tea, both hot and iced. The interplay of the sweet fruit and tart and sour lemon flavors is very entertaining, just as it is with real fruit spiked lemonade. When enjoying it as an iced tea, the primary flavors are lemonade and apples. (More like an apple lemonade than a strawberry one.) When hot, the strawberry flavor is the dominate sweet flavor and the lemon flavor is still just as present.

That being said, I do have two negative comments about this tea. First, I needed about twice as much tea to make a very weak looking and somewhat weak tasting cup of tea. Secondly, this tea seems way too expensive for how weak it brews. I get the feeling I could find a similar tea with a much lower price tag, but haven’t tried just yet.

Either way, if you’re looking for the feeling of a summer barbeque on my back deck or a spring picnic at the park in a cup, this is your tea.

Flavors: Apple, Lemon, Strawberry

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 8 min or more 2 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

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