451 Tasting Notes

drank Pumpkin Chai by DAVIDsTEA
451 tasting notes

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drank Pumpkin Chai by DAVIDsTEA
451 tasting notes

Ok, round two with this tea wasn’t as good. The scent of it while it was steeping was sinfully deceptive; making me think I would taste all the spices I was smelling.
Again, I may have done my usual over-creaming, so that might have had something to do with the fact that I felt as though I was mostly just drinking lightly flavoured black tea—I dare say that the lat I had to go the other day was actually more impressive. But then again, I usually steep things wrong before I get them right, so there’s that.
David’s tea website suggests that I add in a spoonful of brown sugar. Do you guys think they are referring to ordinary brown sugar that you’d use for baking? Because that’s all the sugar I’ve got on me, although it does seem as though it’d be a wonderful addition to the tea.
Definitely not giving up on this tea!

In other news, we’re all moved into the new place. I don’t know about “settled” though, as the process of unpacking is kind of tedious, but in my opinion, it beats packing anyday. That, and you have pretty much forever to do it. I’ve unpacked my tea and tea accessories, as well as my work clothes and shoes, and so far, that’s good for now. Arden (my guide dog) probably hasn’t figured out that this is home yet, but I imagine that won’t be long in coming. It helps that i’m also familiar with the area myself, so I’m hoping he’ll pick up on my confidence when we’re out walking.

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drank Pumpkin Chai by DAVIDsTEA
451 tasting notes

I’m sure pretty much everyone can relate to the stress of moving: there’s the inevitable packing, but even aside from that are all the decisions that go along with it. You hang on to clothing that you haven’t worn in years “just in case” (but somehow feel as though you “never have anything to wear”, don’t throw out other things because they have sentimental value but wonder if it’s time to let go anyway. Then there’s the logistical stuff of making sure you’ve got people to help you. And if you’re like me, the idea of squishing your life into boxes and suitcases is just so overwhelming, because I’m not naturally an organized and systematic person, even though I’d really like to be (and can force myself to be on occasion). The whole point of this story is that tonight my so and I were just really overwhelmed and irritable, and so I headed off to the sanctuary of David’s tea to sample their fall collection, because to escape into a tea universe is my idea of solving problems.

So to TT I went, and I had this tea is a lat with 2% milk and some agave. I’m always hesitant to come to conclusions based on actually having the tea to go, because I’m really picky and particular about how the flavour is brought out in my tea. I always find, for instance, that there’s too much water for the amount of tea, and that it’s often understeeped, but that’s also because I like my tea to have “in your face” flavour and for it to be quite bold. having said that…!
When I smelled this tea in the canister it was unbelievably delicious, and i’m not even a huge fan of everything pumpkin. i was astonished at the remarkable resemblance it had to a spongy, thick, and full-flavoured cake, complete with that toasty smell that just makes you imagine snuggling on a cold winter’s day.
And even relatively understeeped and over-watered (or milked as it was), this blew me away. It’s warming, spicy, sweet, and just seems to taste…complete. Does that make sense? I’m going to write additional notes on this when I make it myself (because I’ll be making it with sugar and cream) and I’ll let you know what I think. My fiance also loved the way it smelled, so I know I’ll be sharing this one. I got 25 g of this,, and expect I’ll go through it and likely go back for more.
So far, so good!
Oh, and randomly, a bit of an embarrassing note. So after getting my lat, i sat down to enjoy it while listening to a book on my IPhone (The Light between Oceans, in case you’re curious). Anyway, I got up to leave as the store was closing, and headed back to the counter to pay for my lat and the samples I was getting. I dug around in my purse, and for the life of me could not find my debit card. Such is the story of many women with multiple bags—your various payments methods end up all over the place, and so in spite all of the reassurances I was getting from the staff, I was on the phone to my fiance and pretty much begged/demanded that he jump into a cab immediately at once this instant so I could please for god’s sake pay for this tea, and they were like shutting down as we spoke! He made it there in record time and the day was saved, and we even got two free iced teas out of it (pistachio cream) because they just had a lot left over!
So, a pretty decent end to the day, I’d say.

Josie Jade

I think I’m going to have to try this one now. Good luck with the move!

keychange

Oh I think you’ll really like it! There’s a dt near you right? If not, I could probably get some to send to you.
Thanks—hopefully it goes smoothly!

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Sipdown! (it took me a while to figure out what that meant here, but I’ve caught on and joined the craze!). All in all, I’m not sad to see this one go. actually relieved so I can go and get more tea!

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drank Birthday Cake by DAVIDsTEA
451 tasting notes

Ok, so my faith in this tea has been at least temporarily restored. Somehow I did something right tonight and the tea really hit the spot: warm, vanillic comfort when I’m having anxiety about starting work. There’s nothing like sitting down with someone you love over a cup of tea, I think.
Oh, but I do have to say that my most recent experience with my cream of earl grey was rather tarnished by the fact that I had used bad cream! I only noticed it when I licked my finger after pouring the cream to tonight’s birthday cake tea, and quickly made another cup (thank god i hadn’t started brewing, or else I would have lost leaves). But yup, definitely a tea I think I’ll be happy to continue drinking and serving until it’s gone, and then the quest for a perfect strong vanilla tea continues.

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Well, what can I say? This time, I steeped for four minutes, and added a dash of cream and a bit of sugar. I’m afraid I “under-creamed” though, because there was a wateriness to it that I just didn’t like. And I’m getting an astringency that I hadn’t previously gotten—you know, when I nearly emptied my container of cream into the mug.

So the conclusion, I think, is that I’ll likely finish up my sample of this, but won’t be repurchasing. I’m still in the market for a good cream of earl grey for sure, but my biggest issue with this one is its lack of forgiveness—steep it a second too long, a second too short, add just too much or too little cream and the cup is a goner (well, in my picky mouth at any rate).
I’m embracing my love of blacks, though, and so I am pleased to say that my Butiki order is winging its way towards me! I ordered:
Premium Taiwanese Assam
-Wild Taiwanese Mountain Black
-Caramel vanilla Assam
-maple pecan oolong
-cantaloupe cream
I’m hoping that although the cantaloupe cream is white, it won’t be too weak for my liking. The rave reviews on steepster suggest that I’ll fall head over feet for it though, so I’m really excited. I also got samples of their premium chai, the rose violet calendula oolong, and another assam that Stacy recommended (I actually got to place my order with her on the phone, as parts of paypal aren’t accessible for us blind folk-I felt as though i was talking to a celebrity and got all tongue-tied and said all sorts of awkward things haha).
Anyway, so there’s my update for today. I’m looking forward to this weekend; we have a friend coming from out of town to visit for another friend’s birthday party, and then I start my new job on Monday! (I’m terrified about that by the way, but at least I won’t be able to work myself up into a frenzy over it all weekend).
Totally unrelated, but there’s some…thing buzzing around my room, and I’ve yet to find a blind person to this date who doesn’t like, legitimately consider moving houses when they hear buzzing or flapping insects inside! I know they scare a lot of people, but I can’t even see where it is
-I only hear it buzzing around, dangerously close to my head, and I’m pretty sure that in a few moments, I’ll feel justified in calling 911…aaaahhhhh!!
Let’s just hope it’s a fly. A fly. A fly! I’m hoping Arden (my guide dog) will make himself useful and catch it!
Ok, that’s enough from me today.

Rosehips

I hope that it is indeed just a fly! And what an amazing order. That sounds just grand. I’ve had a few of those, and they are just wonderful (caramel vanilla assam, and the rose violet oolong).

keychange

I hope you’re right about it being a fly! It’ll be perfectly silent for a few minutes, and then I’ll hear this frantic buzzing before it stops buzzing again! My fiancé is blind too, so even if I tell him about it, we’ll both just stand in the room, flailing helplessly and shouting every time we hear it buzz—it really is quite the sight, pun intended!
Yes, I’m so so excited about my order. From what I’ve read, butiki teas are flavourful, generally full-bodied, and very very rarely disappoint. And there are so many of them that I imagine there’s one for pretty much every preference. My next goal is to research how rock sugar differs from ordinary sugar in the tasting sense

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51
drank Vanilla Orchid by DAVIDsTEA
451 tasting notes

My taste buds are broken today, so even a tea that I’m fond of tasted really unsatisfying and flat to me. Sad face. Oh well, at least I know the problem is me, not the tea. :)

JustJames

this is one of my favourites as well… i hate it when things mess with my tastebuds. =0(

keychange

One of the best teas I’ve found at dt! and yes, taste bud issues always mess with my mind a bit. I’m pleased to report that the taste bud issue is mostly sorted out though, and I enjoyed a wonderful cup of this this morning!

JustJames

=0) glad to hear it!

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Today was one of those days that seemed to have “drink cream of earl grey” embossed on its cover. I woke up feeling crampy, fat, and generally ugly, so after gracefully bowing out of this evening’s work party (go introverts!), I brewed myself up a cup of this. Careful with the cream this time. It actually tasted pretty decent. Perhaps not restock-worthy quite yet, but I’m beginning to see that I may indeed find myself enjoying an EGC one day, even though it may not be this one.
I’ve also realized that there’s something wrong with my taste buds, because even my beloved vanilla orchid tasted kind of bland to me this morning. I tend to get canker sores in my mouth on the regular (gross? tmi? sorry LOL), and so perhaps some are lurking around under my tongue—but it does feel kind of sensitive in my mouth if that makes any sense. anyway, enough about my anatomy.
tldr: The CCG tasted better when I wasn’t like whoa with the cream, and my tongue is up to some funny business I’m not a fan of.

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drank Orange Blossom by DAVIDsTEA
451 tasting notes

Wow, I definitely suck at picking out teas for myself based on the notes and the way they smell in the store. Just to set the record straight though, this tea doesn’t smell at all of actual orange blossoms, but I imagine that isn’t exactly news.
Definitely getting the bubble gum thing others have mentioned, and there really isn’t any vanilla to speak of. I’m still on the hunt for my perfect creamcicle tea though!
I’ve tried this tea with milk and sugar, plain, and also with a touch of vanilla agave. It’s a lose lose situation for me. So disheartening to see the entire remainder of yet another package that I’m going to have to force myself to finish. Or maybe I can donate it LOL.
At least I know that tomorrow morning’s tea (vanilla orchid or maybe jasmine pearls) won’t let me down!

Cavocorax

I enjoyed it enough. If you’re not too crazy about it in a month or so, let me know and maybe we can do a swap. I’ll be in Toronto soon enough.

keychange

Absolutely! You’re welcome to all of it. I’m in waterloo, but my family is in Toronto, so I’m there often enough. Plus I can mail tea just as easily. It’d be my first swap!

Cavocorax

Great. I’ll try to come back to you once I get to Toronto, and get settled!

keychange

Sounds like a plan!

JustJames

butiki does a tangerine creamsicle guayasa.

keychange

So I’ve heard! I’m going to have to try it, although I’m afraid I’m not really sure what a guayassa even is at this point.

JustJames

it’s an alternative caffeine source.. quite cool actually. it’s bark from a south american holly tree as far as i know. personally i don’t like the taste, but the creamsicle was the best of them!

Cavocorax

Haha. So it’s kind of the opposite of the Orange Blossom? One to put you to sleep, the other to wake you up. Don’t mix them up. :D

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I think I’ve given this tea a fair shake, and yet I’m willing to try it one last time before I make up my mind for sure.
I’ve tried it plain, and despite it’s very strong blueberry aroma, it tasted like subtly flavoured hot water. For a black tea, that’s already a bit of a disappointment.
Then, I tried it with a bit of milk and sugar, and steeped it for more than eight minutes. It was barely stronger, and, i don’t know. It sort of tasted as though I was trying to taste it while suffering from a cold. Like I tried really hard to find more flavour than was there. I’m still willing to play around with it a bit though—perhaps I’ll double up on the recommended amount of tea or something.
I’m kind of sad because in an attempt to get through my samples, I’ve discovered a few teas I’m not that fond of lately, but I’ve also found a few gems (most notably my vanilla orchid), so I should focus on that the most. ah well, such is the journey of experimenting, right?

JustJames

so far this is the best blueberry tea i’ve found. although i will be trying butiki’s blueberry purple tea in the next few weeks. OR you could always create your own blend with stacy lim, the owner/alchemist of butiki… she’s building a coconut cream pie for me! (can you tell, i kinda think she’s the best, lol)

keychange

Oh wow!! I didn’t know she would actually make a blend for you, although I can’t say I’m at all surprised—I’m a huge fan! Do you need to know a lot about tea, though? I’m really hoping for a good cotton candy flavoured tea, but suspect I’ll never get one, sadly! (52 teas had one once, though I don’t think it’s available anymore).

JustJames

stacy guides you through the whole process… she is truly amazing. i think it’s a 5$ fee for the custom blend and then you buy 8 oz of it for a less expensive blend or 4 oz for a more expensive one. of course to be sure i’d check with stacy!

Cavocorax

Oooooh, that’s pretty awesome. I’d have to come up with a really great idea though… 4/8oz of tea is pretty expensive, but it makes sense considering she’s not selling it to everyone else!

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Bio

Well, it’s been slightly over six months since I’ve joined steepster, and I can’t say enough wonderful things about this community. Like many of you, I began my foray into the world of loose-leaf tea by discovering David’s Tea, and although I’ve ventured out and have discovered many other companies that I’m extremely fond of, there are still many of David’s teas that I hold close to my heart and I will always appreciate it as a starting point for my journey.

As for my preferences, I tend to prefer bold black tea, flavoured and unflavoured alike, and I almost always take my blacks with cream and sugar. This isn’t to say that I don’t enjoy a good, flavoured white though, and I’m slowly making my way through the incredibly confusing world of oolongs and greens. I am also not a fan of rooibos, although I am starting to suspect green rooibos may be ok, but you know how it is: when you’ve decided you detest a certain ingredient, you’ll notice it everywhere—perhaps even where it doesn’t exist!

Things other than tea: I’m engaged to be married to my best friend, and feel like the richest woman on the planet because of it. I am also a veracious reader, and I also happen to have an obsession with fragrances, and have amassed quite a collection, although it pales in comparison to some collections out there! As a result of this obsession, I also follow several fragrance blogs, and am always up for a chat about scent. I’m also almost completely blind, and this does indeed mean that I come complete with a guide dog, who unlike me, hales from the sunny California campus of Guide dogs for the Blind. I think I’ve rambled on long enough, but if there’s anything you’d like to know or if you just feel like chatting to someone, please don’t hesitate to send me a message.

Location

Ontario, Canada

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