4943 Tasting Notes


I is for… Irish Cream Cheesecake!

My favourite of the three “Irish” teas I’ve had today, this is a light, mildly sweet and creamy tea, with the noticeable flavour of irish cream. It tastes a bit more muted than I remember, but is still good, and I particularly like the oolong base.

Mastress Alita

Funnily enough, I didn’t have a single “Irish” tea for I in my collection (my options were “It’s Snowing!” from 52Teas which is the one I ultimately went with, and “Issaku”, a Japanese sencha. …As a St. Patty’s day baby, I should probably get some “Irish” teas at some point…


You should! I am fond of some Irish Cream teas I’ve had, although they’re quite hit or miss.

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I is for… Irish Coffee Keemun!

This tea smells good, nice and creamy, but there’s an odd, vegetal(?) note here that reminds me of some white teas – and that I don’t really care for. It’s… almost minty?But not quite. It’s possible that it’s the “whiskey” flavouring, or alternately, an element of the “irish coffee” flavouring is responsible, I’m not sure. I don’t think it’s coming from the keemun base. (It actually has occurred to me that this has sat so long, it’s possible that it was adjacent to a minty tea and absorbed some flavour, but hopefully not). The flavour has this same vegetal note, along with coffee/cream flavours, but that note is definitely affecting the experience of drinking it.

Either way, an ok cup, not a favourite, but obviously for the best since it’s unavailable!

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I is for… Irish Rock Shandy!

First tasting note on a years-old tea? Ok!

Really had to dig through my stash for “I” teas for today – the only DavidsTea one I had I finished off last month (Irish Breakfast). Definitely a theme with the names here, though!

This was not ever a favourite tea of mine; I didn’t really care for the citrus – it’s just edging toward a cleaner sort of flavour, and there’s also a flavour in this tea that I can’t place but don’t really care for. It’s not a terrible tea, but just not matched to my preferences, which generally don’t include orange-flavoured teas.

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drank Hot Chocolate by DAVIDsTEA
4943 tasting notes

(DavidsTea 119)

H is for… Hot Chocolate!

Very sweet (maybe too sweet?), rich, not particularly fishy or anything. A bit artificial? If I really want a less-sugar hot chocolate, I’m going to pick straight-up cacao shells every time, because it’s 100% chocolate, but this tea isn’t too bad for a puerh version.

Sidenote, I did not really drink tea today (Saturday) for whatever reason; it was supposed to be “I” but I’ll just defer to tomorrow.

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drank Hibiscus Punch by DAVIDsTEA
4943 tasting notes

(DavidsTea 118)

H is for… Hibiscus Punch!

Well, if this isn’t an accurate tea name… It was definitely a big, sour hibiscus punch to the tastebuds! With backup rooibos notes, and cinnamon. However, strange as it sounds, I actually did not hate it, and drank it unaltered. It was ridiculously puckering but for whatever reason I appreciated it; I believe that some sweetener could have made this into a decent iced tea. Not a tea I’d keep around, but certainly appreciate that it was true to its name!

Evol Ving Ness

I wonder if vodka would help.

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(DavidsTea 117)

H is for… Happy Valley Darjeeling!

All I can say is that I enjoyed it; I don’t really remember much else. I’m not always a darjeeling fan, so it was a nice surprise (although I see my previous note indicates I felt the same last time, so this particular version must just fit better for me).

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(DavidsTea 116)

G is for… Grapefruit Rose Starburst!

Of the multitude of grapefruit options, I picked this one. Good choice, it was quite delicious. Bright grapefruit but without the bitterness, and a great base that paired well with it. I’m sure the supporting players (candied pineapple, apple) also helped. It really did invoke thoughts of a grapefruit starburst, if one exists (do they?) but no sign of rose that I noticed, which is fine with me. Grapefruit’s not one of my top flavours, but this hit the spot today.

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drank Ginger Pear (Organic) by DAVIDsTEA
4943 tasting notes

(DavidsTea 115)

G is for… Ginger Pear!

This tea is enjoyable because the ginger isn’t overpowering and blends nicely with the fruitiness and cinnamon. Sometimes, you don’t want the in-your-face punch of ginger that it can bring. I think this tea may have become a bit muted with age (though it’s only 2 years old – a baby, really!) but it’s still good.

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drank Gingerbread by DAVIDsTEA
4943 tasting notes

(DavidsTea 114)

G is for… Gingerbread!

Wow, I have a lot of G options. Ginger, grape, grapefruit… Started with this one today. Rating suggests I thought it wasn’t great previously; today I found it boring but pleasant. Warming spices, but muted. Nudging the rating up slightly, mostly because it’s a rooibos without the awful rooibos flavours.

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drank Fantasy Island by DAVIDsTEA
4943 tasting notes

(DavidsTea already recorded)

F is for… Fantasy Island!

Down to 1 cup of this bag, but I fear I saw another in my box of DT samples… It was good, though. Incredibly nostalgic.

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I have always been a tea fan (primarily herbals and Japanese greens/oolongs) but in the last year or so, tea has become increasingly more appealing as not only a delicious, calming drink, but as a relatively cheap, healthy reward or treat to give myself when I deserve something. I should clarify that, however; the reward is expanding my tea cupboard, not drinking tea – I place no restrictions on myself in terms of drinking anything from my cupboard as that would defeat my many goals!

My DavidsTea addiction was born in late 2011, despite having spent nearly a year intentionally avoiding their local mall location (but apparently it was just avoiding the inevitable!). I seem to have some desire to try every tea they’ve ever had, so much of my stash is from there, although I’ve recently branched out and ordered from numerous other companies.

I like to try and drink all my teas unaltered, as one of the main reasons I’m drinking tea other than for the flavour is to be healthy and increase my water intake without adding too many calories! I’ve found that the trick in this regard is to be very careful about steeping time, as most teas are quite pleasant to drink straight as long as they haven’t been oversteeped. However, I tend to be forgetful (particularly at work) when I don’t set a timer, resulting in a few horrors (The Earl’s Garden is not so pleasant after, say, 7+ minutes of steeping).

I’m currently trying to figure out which types of teas are my favourites. Herbals are no longer at the top; oolongs have thoroughly taken over that spot, with greens a reasonably close second. My preference is for straight versions of both, but I do love a good flavoured oolong (flavoured greens are really hit or miss for me). Herbals I do love iced/cold-brewed, but I drink few routinely (Mulberry Magic from DavidsTea being a notable exception). I’m learning to like straight black teas thanks to the chocolatey, malty, delicious Laoshan Black from Verdant Tea, and malty, caramelly flavoured blacks work for me, but I’m pretty picky about anything with astringency. Lately I’ve found red rooibos to be rather medicinal, which I dislike, but green rooibos and honeybush blends are tolerable. I haven’t explored pu’erh, mate, or guayasa a great deal (although I have a few options in my cupboard).

I’ve decided to institute a rating system so my ratings will be more consistent. Following the smiley/frowny faces Steepster gives us:

100: This tea is amazing and I will go out of my way to keep it in stock.

85-99: My core collection (or a tea that would be, if I was allowing myself to restock everything!) Teas I get cravings for, and drink often.

75-84: Good but not amazing; I might keep these in stock sparingly depending on current preferences.

67-74: Not bad, I’ll happily finish what I have but probably won’t ever buy it again as there’s likely something rated more highly that I prefer.

51-66: Drinkable and maybe has some aspect that I like, but not really worth picking up again.

34-50: Not for me, but I can see why others might like it. I’ll make it through the cup and maybe experiment with the rest to get rid of it.

0-33: It’s a struggle to get through the cup, if I do at all. I will not willingly consume this one again, and will attempt to get rid of the rest of the tea if I have any left.

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