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I have been painfully absent from Steepster lately, and really miss everyone/need to catch up on tasting notes! Yet I am so busy. :( On the plus side, had a date on Friday night and it went well (I think)! :P

Anyways, time to launch into my samples from Lynne-tea! I’m so sorry it took so long for me to get to them – things just kept arriving, and since I took the envelopes on vacation, they ended up at the bottom of the tea stash I took with me and have yet to unpack. Good lord I have a lot of tea O.o This is the first one up tonight/this morning! I’m in an oolong mood, and jasmine seemed appropriate as well, so I went for it!

I can’t really tell what the dry tea smells like – the exterior of the baggie has been contaminated with other smells, so it’s kind of flavoured-tea-ish. The tea, however, once brewed smells like a toasty sort of jasmine. I know there are goji berries in there, but I’m not really getting any aroma from them.

I must say, this is definitely an interesting take on a jasmine tea, as the darker oolong lends some really interesting toasty notes that mix with the jasmine flavour, grounding it a bit moreso than with a lighter green/white tea which I’m more accustomed to tasting jasmine in. (Are there jasmine blacks??) Actually, what it reminds me most of is the jasmine tea that is served at my favourite Chinese restaurant, when the tea has been sitting and oversteeping for a while. Although this brew is only verging on being oversteeped. As well, I can taste just a hint of sour-fruity goji berry, but it’s not a prominent flavour.

Though interesting, I don’t think this is a tea I’d purchase for myself. I rarely select jasmine teas to drink, and I found that the pairing of white tea and jasmine is what really works for me, so I’d probably choose that if given the choice! The inclusion of goji berries here, though interesting, didn’t have enough impact for me. Anyhow, thanks for the sample, lynne-tea!

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 30 sec
ashmanra

I have a jasmine black. I try to drink it periodically to see if my tastes have changed. No luck so far! It is a super soapy perfume-y one!

Lynne-tea

Aww strike out! It is apparent that I need to work on my packaging skills for the flavour contamination.

Kittenna

Lynne-tea – no, your packaging skills were fine!! The tea was not contaminated; just the baggie had some additional smells, which precluded me from getting a proper whiff of the dry tea (I could have removed some from the bag, but too lazy). It seems to happen pretty frequently. Also, I have had it sitting next to other teas myself for a couple weeks. Definitely not a problem with how you packaged things!!

Lynne-tea

Awh phew! Thank you for letting me know that =)

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ashmanra

I have a jasmine black. I try to drink it periodically to see if my tastes have changed. No luck so far! It is a super soapy perfume-y one!

Lynne-tea

Aww strike out! It is apparent that I need to work on my packaging skills for the flavour contamination.

Kittenna

Lynne-tea – no, your packaging skills were fine!! The tea was not contaminated; just the baggie had some additional smells, which precluded me from getting a proper whiff of the dry tea (I could have removed some from the bag, but too lazy). It seems to happen pretty frequently. Also, I have had it sitting next to other teas myself for a couple weeks. Definitely not a problem with how you packaged things!!

Lynne-tea

Awh phew! Thank you for letting me know that =)

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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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