drank Monkey Chops by Bluebird Tea Co.
2229 tasting notes

Sipdown! Due to a) throwing out the last of my funky-smelling Lime Gelato and b) apparently not deleting a tea that I sipped down a few days ago, I’m now at 786! Woo! Nevermind that order that we jointly placed on Monday… and the Butiki order. And Della Terra….

Anyways. Almost done with my Bluebird Tea Co. samples (thanks for this one as well!), and have high hopes for this one. Unfortunately, however, this one’s a bit of a miss for me. It very well may be user error (too long of an infusion at 2.5 min?), but there’s too much astringency here for me to enjoy this tea. The base is likely nice (when not astringent) and I can almost taste some yummy flavours, but… nope. That said, I would likely request this one as a sample if I made an order in the future, as I think it’s promising. It also just occurred to me that it’s possible that there was just extra leaf in the package, and so I ended up overleafing my cup… the astringency tastes more to me like “too strong” than “crappy finicky tea base”. Hmm. Oh well, it’s mostly gone now, so as I said, I’ll save a second attempt (and a rating) for sometime in the future!

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 30 sec
Cavocorax

Haha. I better hurry up and move to Ontario so I can split some orders with you guys. But… 786 – sounds like you’re making some progress!

Kittenna

Yes yes!! Move to Ontario! We love splitting orders :D The only reason my cupboard is so high is because I always used to get tempted into free shipping thresholds… and ended up with lots of 50g pouches of tea. (That and my sample-hoarding habit that I’m trying to kick.)

Kittenna

And yes, I think 786 is good progress! Especially since I’m not really focusing on sipdowns. I have lots of 1-cup things to drink, but I’m choosing to drink what I want to instead. So slower progress, but more enjoyment :)

Cavocorax

That’s much better, for sure. I was in sipdown mode and I basically spent half my day choking down teas to finish them off, and then rewarding myself with a few choice ones. But that’s not sustainable!

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Comments

Cavocorax

Haha. I better hurry up and move to Ontario so I can split some orders with you guys. But… 786 – sounds like you’re making some progress!

Kittenna

Yes yes!! Move to Ontario! We love splitting orders :D The only reason my cupboard is so high is because I always used to get tempted into free shipping thresholds… and ended up with lots of 50g pouches of tea. (That and my sample-hoarding habit that I’m trying to kick.)

Kittenna

And yes, I think 786 is good progress! Especially since I’m not really focusing on sipdowns. I have lots of 1-cup things to drink, but I’m choosing to drink what I want to instead. So slower progress, but more enjoyment :)

Cavocorax

That’s much better, for sure. I was in sipdown mode and I basically spent half my day choking down teas to finish them off, and then rewarding myself with a few choice ones. But that’s not sustainable!

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Bio

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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