2229 Tasting Notes

82
drank Fantasy by Lupicia
2229 tasting notes

Another travel mug of this earlier this week, mostly because it tastes great that way, and because it was easily accessible (i.e. in the tea basket downstairs). Nearly done this one – can’t believe I’ve almost sipped one of the Happy Bag teas down without even trying some of the others! Haha. I’m terrible…

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec
TeaBrat

I have done the same thing, a few I haven’t even opened yet.

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87

Another tasting note backlog… somehow I have less time for Steepster post-Masters than I did before I was done. Heh. I also haven’t been drinking quite as much tea, although the flurry of notes I’m about to post will make you believe differently (they’re from the past week or more, though, so not many per day).

So this tea. I swear, everytime I brew it up, I’ve forgotten how delicious it is. It’s so burny and toasty and chocolatey… mostly burny (but not in an ashy sense), and I quite like it. Stands up well in a travel mug, and for multiple western-style infusions. I think I have maybe 3 packets of it left (I use a whole 5? 7?g packet when I brew it up).

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec
Sil

i am so jealous of your 3 packets..

Cavocorax

I have one and am hoarding it for the right day!

OMGsrsly

Sil, I found some in my cupboard… I’ve set it aside. :)

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82

I had previously only tried one yabao tea, that being Verdant’s Silver Buds Yabao, which I find to be tasty enough, although it’s not a tea I’d want all the time. It tasted very much of juniper, in my opinion. This tea, however, is quite different. I can taste the similarity to the other yabao, but there’s a smokiness and the flavour is much less juniper-like and green – a richer, almost more complex, aged flavour. It’s actually really quite good, and makes me want to try more yabaos! One difference is that this one is darker in colour than the silver buds yabao; I’m not sure why, but I’m guessing it’s affecting the flavour (I don’t know if it’s aged or roasted specifically, or anything). Anyhow, mission: try more yabao tea will be happening. Eventually.

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec
NofarS

I recommend Norbu’s Yabao (which is actually on sale now). It has a sweeter, more mellow taste than Verdant’s, and I like it much more.

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96

Again, too lazy to figure out which season this is from. 2012, though. Probably spring 2012.

Anyhow! Tasty, but weaker than I would have liked. Likely didn’t use enough tea, or didn’t infuse long enough (because it’s old… I know I know!) It was still pretty good though, I just need to remember to adjust parameters a bit for older teas. I’ll be re-stocking this tea for sure once I’m out, as I find it superior to “real” dragonwell tea, for the most part.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 1 min, 0 sec

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84
drank Yu Lu Yan Cha Black by Verdant Tea
2229 tasting notes

Bleh, I think I messed up the infusion on this one. It was ok, but not very flavourful. Maybe 2 minutes wasn’t enough, or perhaps I didn’t use enough tea. I seem to recall enjoying it a fair bit, and my rating seems to indicate such, so I assume it was user error this time!

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec
Fjellrev

Ooh, I picked some up with my last order but I have a feeling I’ll love it.

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81

Oh, how I adore roasted tieguanyins. So delicious. This one tastes a bit like leafhopper-bitten teas, with some sweetness, along with vegetal, roast, and creamy oolong notes. I really crave this type of tea. So delicious.

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec

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77
drank Valentine's Blend by Harney & Sons
2229 tasting notes

Sipdown! 865.

Still chocolatey and fruity, but I think I may have messed up the tea:water ratio, as it was a touch weak. Oh well, still enjoyable, as was the re-steep. (The remnants of the first cup are still sitting on my nighttable… I sniffed them and it smells tasty, but I’m not going to drink tea that’s been sitting for 3-4 days! Overnight, sure.

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec

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74
drank Banana Pudding Black Tea by 52teas
2229 tasting notes

Sipdown! 866. Thanks again to Courtney for letting me try this one.

This does taste like banana pudding (although not my mom’s banana pudding, which was sliced bananas in vanilla pudding…. omg so good.) Anyways, yes. There’s definite creaminess from the coconut, and a nice hit of banana flavour, and the black base is solid here. Pretty decent tea; I don’t think I actually care for banana in tea as much as I thought I did (Banana Oolong by DavidsTea is an exception), but it’s still enjoyable enough to drink. And I’m glad I don’t have an entire pouch to drink!

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec
Fjellrev

Oh god, your mom’s puddings sounds amazing. I’m glad I didn’t bother picking this up. I kept going back and forth.

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66
drank Snow Peony (organic) by DAVIDsTEA
2229 tasting notes

It’s super odd that I’m the first to review this….

Anyhow! Thanks to Janelle for sending me some of this in our swap! Unfortunately, I think it’s one of those white teas that falls into the “nearly flavourless” category for me. I can tell that I’m drinking tea; there’s a bit of a vegetal flavour to it, but despite the liquor being darker than I expected (darker than most properly-brewed greens!), flavour is minimal. That said, what I can taste is pleasant enough, a bit sweet, vegetal, perhaps hay-like (although no dry mouthfeel), just weak. I used 1.5 tsp for 8 oz. and brewed for 2.5 minutes – the DT recommendations were for 4-5 min, so maybe I’ll try that next time. I just went by the surprisingly dark liquor colour, and didn’t want an oversteeped tea!

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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87
drank Milk Oolong | Jin Xuan by Tealux
2229 tasting notes

Ok… I’m super behind on writing notes. I blame my recent addiction to Final Fantasy for that, haha. Anyhow! Notes will commence.

I randomly picked this tea to try last night, and was pleasantly surprised. I’m pretty sure it would fall into the category of flavoured milk oolongs, although it claims not to be, because the milkiness was quite strong. And pretty enjoyable. It was quite a delicious mixture of savoury oolong and creaminess. I’d happily drink this again, although would compare prices with others first (since I seem to be not terribly picky with regards to milk oolongs – they’re all pretty delicious!)

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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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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