2898 Tasting Notes

59
drank White Christmas by 52teas
2898 tasting notes

Sucked it up and tried this one tonight (oh no! It just occurred to me that although I opened the 11th tea, I neglected to drink any. Haha.)

Anyhow, I was rather disappointed in the 12th tea being minty and marshmallow, as that did not work well for me in Graveyard Mist. However, thankfully, this is infinitely more tolerable. First off, it’s peppermint, not spearmint, so no toothpaste association. Second, the black base is perfect here, and definitely lends a chocolatey sort of flavour. And although I usually dislike peppermint, the marshmallow root really rounds things out here, and softens the mint so I find it fairly pleasant.

So, not a bad blend to end off the 12 Days of Tea with!

(Mom tried this and thought the black base too astringent, and the mint a bit in-your-face. She much preferred the second infusion of Butiki’s Mint Oolong she was drinking at the time.)

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 30 sec

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93

Mmmmm, drank some of this tonight. I’m incapable of drinking it in proper dragonwell style, as I can’t take such hot liquids, but my single infusion was pretty tasty (although a bit oversteeped). Mom couldn’t pick out the sweetness because of the slight bit of astringency, but thought it was quite nice, although she certainly preferred her cup of Mandarin Silk!

Unfortunately, I let the second infusion sit far too long, and although it had good flavour, it was far too astringent. Thinking now, I probably should have just diluted it a touch instead of dumping it! :( Oh well.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C

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42

My boyfriend’s mother gave three sachets of this as a gift to me just before Christmas, so I figured I’d bring them home and actually drink the tea on Christmas Eve! Steeped up a cup each for my mom and I and then, finding it to be rather weak, dipped the third teabag intermittently into each of the cups for a bit more flavour.

I was initially worried at the spearmint aroma emanating from the bag (as I dislike mint), but the mint is fairly light here. As are, well, all the flavours. I mostly taste mint, with a hint of sweet cinnamon spice.

I will admit… I’d prefer not to drink this again. I definitely appreciate the chance to try it though, and also the fact that she didn’t heap me with an entire box of teabags!

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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43

This one’s coming off awfully weird too. I had forgotten that people had remarked previously that it tasted a bit like curry…

Anyhow, it tastes like a stale sort of apple to me. Not that I know what stale apples taste like… well, maybe I’ve previously had stale apple candies of some sort. Anyhow, another one that I’ll have to try again while not sick, and I have plenty left to do so!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 30 sec

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57
drank Eight Candles by Della Terra Teas
2898 tasting notes

Hmm. I think trying this while sick wasn’t the best idea. I can smell/taste the marshmallow and a bit of the caramel, but it’s rather weak (that could be an underleafing problem), and there’s a bit of an odd flavour (could easily be a tastebud issue). Ah well, have lots to try again with!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 30 sec
yappychappy

I had the same issue. It smells and tastes funny.

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drank Spicy Mint Oolong by Butiki Teas
2898 tasting notes

Picked this one up during Butiki’s Black Friday sale especially for my mom. It clearly smells quite minty, and my mom tells me that it doesn’t taste like peppermint to her, but just… minty! And quite strong, too! I’m sick so I didn’t sample out of her cup, but I may get her to leave part of one infusion for me just out of curiousity’s sake… not that I’ll be able to taste too much of it anyways!

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 4 min, 0 sec
gmathis

Don’t think I’ve ever seen a mint oolong before. Sounds interesting.

Kittenna

Yes! My mom thought it would be, and seems to like it. I can’t tell you what the oolong contributes as opposed to, say, a green tea, though. It is a green oolong though.

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74
drank Fireside Spice by Della Terra Teas
2898 tasting notes

Sooooo I definitely forgot I was steeping this, and it got 9 minutes! Yikes! However…. no bitterness/astringency! Della Terra teas seem to be remarkably resistant to becoming such.

This smells much like DavidsTea’s Glitter & Gold (cinnamony), and tastes similarly… except I must admit that it’s… sickeningly sweet. I suspect it’s because I left the cup brewing so long, and I think cinnamon imparts a bit of a sickeningly sweet flavour when left infusing too long.

I’ll have to try this once I’m healthy again, but I think it’s reasonably tasty!

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more

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79

Ok, apparently this is the chai I have (the summer version).

Anyways! Made some up for my mom yesterday, and she enjoyed it well enough. Thought it was quite spicy (as in, spiced, not heat). I decided to re-steep it today for myself, and dose it with milk and sugar…. well, milk turned to eggnog, and I added too much sugar…. whoops! So it’s a bit too sweet and not spicy enough (or rather, it’s not spicy enough for my stuffed up self to really taste), but tasty anyhow, seeing as the cup has already been emptied :D

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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80
drank Holiday Cheer by Della Terra Teas
2898 tasting notes

So guess who got their parcel from Della Terra on…. SUNDAY?! Since when does Canada Post deliver parcels on Sunday?! And not only that, but my two Try Me packs were put inside lovely little tins, and I swear that there was more than just 0.5 ounces of tea in some of the packs. Ah, so awesome!

So this tea was my free gift for placing an order on the day I did, and just as I was lamenting that I hadn’t brought any strongly-flavoured herbal teas along with me to drink (since I’m sick and Verdant’s Mrs. Li’s Shi Feng Dragonwell would be totally wasted on me right now), I remembered all these new teas I received, and found this one and another that may just have enough spicing to cut through my lack of smell-ability.

So clearly I have retained at least a bit of my ability to smell, because this tea smells just like Christmas! Like… clovey, cinnamony, orangey apple cider. Delicious. Sadly, this also brewed up a deep shade of hibiscus, and unfortunately, that is all I can taste :‘( I’ll try again later with a shorter infusion (3 instead of 4 minutes), but I’m so disappointed since this smelled like it had such potential, but appears to be another tea ruined by the dreaded hibby. Come, tears.

(I’m going to sweeten this and see if that improves it… even the aftertaste is delicious! So maybe sugar will help? Or maybe I just need to pick the hibiscus out next time before brewing???)

ETA: Success! Sweetened (yeah, maybe a bit oversweetened… I’m sick, ok!) it tastes much better. So that will be my fall-back plan if this one gets a bit too sour again. Yum, haha.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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78
drank Boo-Berry Cotton Candy by 52teas
2898 tasting notes

12 Days of Tea #10! A fourth tea I’d not tried! We’re on a roll here :) I wonder what tomorrow will bring??

The dry leaf definitely smells like blueberry cotton candy. My initial thought was Black Currant Bai Mu Dan which I knew it wasn’t, but once I saw that it was blueberry, it did make sense. A bit of an artificial blueberry, however. Not an issue for me though.

Again, the fact that I’m sick isn’t really doing me any favours here, but I think I like this one. I’m definitely getting a blueberry sweetness which is quite nice, and there’s a nice heavy body to it which I assume is the green tea. I can’t really pick out the green tea itself, but I’m having a fair bit of difficulty picking out flavours to begin with!

I think I may prefer the regular Cotton Candy Black, but this is pretty tasty itself, for those times when you’re looking for a sickly sweet confection-sort of tea.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 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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