2972 Tasting Notes

91

12 Days of Tea #5!

Ahh, Caramel Pumpkin Cheesecake. Yep, opened this packet and immediately knew what it was! And it definitely did not fail to impress. SO delicious. So very, very delicious. Made me want to pick up a packet of the inevitable re-blend, but no more tea…. no more tea…

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 30 sec

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58
drank Earl Black by 52teas
2972 tasting notes

12 Days of Tea #4! And the first one I had yet to previously sample!

This was one of the teas that I had been wavering on so much about purchasing. However… I’m glad I didn’t. All I got from this was a black currant flavoured white tea. And given that I dislike Black Currant Bai Mu Dan…. I was not impressed. Couldn’t taste bergamot, but the black currant flavour that comes off quite fakey to me would have ruined it anyways. My roommate thought about the same (I noticed it was one she didn’t end up re-steeping).

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

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96
drank Milk Oolong by Bon The Place
2972 tasting notes

My roommate picked some of this up for me for Christmas, since I’m running low on the DavidsTea version and Bon Thé Place in downtown Guelph was having a sale!

I took this to work in a travel mug, so it’s tough to say too much, except that it was pretty tasty. I’m not sure how the milkiness compares to other milk oolongs, but it was quite satisfying. I guess I didn’t wash out my mug very well though, as when I reached the bottom, it tasted much like Banana Oolong… which was in the mug yesterday. Thankfully no lingering stevia, so it was ok with me! I will, however, use the bottle brush on the mug tonight. Haha.

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

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82
drank Genmaicha by Butiki Teas
2972 tasting notes

Brewed up for a travel mug…. and tragically had a good portion spill out into my backpack, all over EVERYTHING. In addition to giving my tea funky flavours, my roommate’s Bodum travel mug really sucks. The Timolinos are infinitely superior.

Anyways, what I managed to drink at work was still good. The rest, sitting cold in the mug for about 13 hours, is… not great. I think genmaicha is best served hot, or at least warm.

The re-steep is ok, aside from being a bit bitter. Sigh.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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93
drank Winter Nog by Della Terra Teas
2972 tasting notes

Sipdown! Tragic :( I realized that one of the main flavours in this tea is honey!! Like DavidsTea’s Honey Bee. Although less cloying here, and mixed with tasty creaminess. I’m sad to see this one go, but really should get to work on my other honey bush/rooibos teas instead!

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more

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100

I reached the end of my first 50g packet of this today… and unfortunately I think the bottom was laced with extra stevia. Consequently, it was disturbingly and sickeningly sweet :( Still the tasty oolong/banana flavours, but tainted by sweetness. Sigh.

Preparation
3 min, 0 sec
LiberTEAS

I really dislike it when tea companies add stevia to their blends.

Lady 0f Spaydes

I’ve always been suspicious about that, especially with the fruitier teas, there’s always some not-so-yummy sweetness at the end that reminds me of diet soda. :S

CrowKettle

The overload of stevia wrecked my cup of this as well. This amazing oolong blend doesn’t need that much stevia hovering around! :/

Awkward Soul / Oolong Owl

I had this too, I loved this tea until I got into the bottom of my bag.

Indigobloom

I can’t stand it either. in this case though, it seems to fit when it’s not the dregs from the bottom of a bag. Kittenna, that’s no fun!

Kittenna

Yeah – honestly, this tea is usually fabulous. It must just be that the stevia leaves accumulate at the bottom of the bag a bit. I think next time I may just throw out the bottom bits instead of brewing them. It was pretty unpleasant, as I was really craving a green oolong with banana flavour, not a sweet tea. Or at least, not stevia-sweet.

Indigobloom

good to know. I’ve been meaning to pick some up so I’ll keep that in mind!

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67
drank Pot O' Gold by 52teas
2972 tasting notes

I really liked the sample of this I got from Amy oh but ever since that (which I think I still have a bit of), the bag I got in one of 52teas’ sales just isn’t as butterscotchy and delicious. Especially since I’ve fallen in love with Cashew Turtle, which is all kinds of amazing. (I’m hoping that frequent mentions of Cashew Turtle will lead to an increased demand for it, yes. Hahahahahaha.)

Anyhow, unlike the last time I brewed it (which may or may not be logged on here), I didn’t mess this one up this time :D So it’s tasty enough, just not nearly as tasty as the abovementioned tea.

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 30 sec
JoonSusanna

Mmmm.. Cashew turtle! That was in the 12 teas of Christmas last year, and it was one of my favorites. Still kicking myself for not just buying a pouch…

Kittenna

I picked a reblended pouch of it sometime in the summer. Felt like a total gamble, but SO worth it!

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91

Yum! Creamy, limey goodness. I’m craving sweet this morning (oh wait…. it’s not morning anymore…?!) though, and kind of wish I’d put some sugar into it before I left this morning.

Anyhow, taking a short Steepster break from working while I let the machine run, as it seems I’ve messed something up already today. Oh noes :(

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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90
drank Mi Xian Black by Butiki Teas
2972 tasting notes

Sipdown of my sample from Sil (thanks!) plus some from the batch I ordered, all put into a travel mug. I’ve gotta say, this one didn’t take to being put in the travel mug quite as well, although it may have also been that I was using my roommate’s Bodum mug instead of a Timolino (they were already full, and I wanted to take 3 teas!) and I think it may be holding flavours worse than my Timolinos (one of which is still tainted by GMS, and now the Killer’s Vanilla).

Anyhow, I tasted some of that Gui Fei sweetness, but it wasn’t as tasty as my memory told me. I think I’ll pass on picking this up again in favour of the Taiwanese Assam, which is fabulous in a travel mug and must only be better when brewed properly!

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 30 sec

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86

Took some of this to work today, sweetened in a Timolino. Strangely, one of the thoughts I had while drinking it was that it smelled/tasted an awful lot like…. pot…. Weird. Either way, drank it and it was tasty. Like GMS, not as good as I remembered, but I gotta factor in the travel mug there. Certainly one of the best flavoured guayusas I’ve had.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 8 min or more

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Profile

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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