2661 Tasting Notes
I tried this previously as a sample from Stacy, and enjoyed it, although at the time wasn’t looking to pick up any more flavoured blacks. However… then it went on sale. So here I am, with an ounce of it!
The aroma is divinely chocolatey, as is the flavour. I’m not getting as much raspberry as I did previously, but I also don’t think there were as many raspberry chunks in my infuser as when I tried my sample. The tea is absolutely smooth though, and devoid of bitterness/astringency, which is important to me! This is another tea I really need to try sweetened, to see what it does to the flavour. I’m reasonably happy drinking this unsweetened, but would really like some more fruitiness, and perhaps some sweetener would kick that up a notch. Still tasty though! Tiny ratings bump.
ETA: Added rock sugar on a whim to the second infusion… yum!! Perhaps a touch too sweet (whoops!) but I have high hopes for a sweetened first infusion!
My bad, I really should have sweetened this. As is, unsweetened, it’s a pretty tasty generically flavoured black, with an aftertaste that I can make out to be tamarind. Mostly, though, it tastes like a fairly smooth black tea with vanilla and other flavours mingling in every now and again. There’s a low level of astringency (but I did oversteep this one a little, oops), but it’s very tolerable.
I’d definitely drink this one again without sweetener, just as a black, but I’m kicking myself for forgetting to add sugar when I was brewing it earlier! So curious about the tamarind soda flavour everyone’s raving about!
ETA: WOW Stacy, are you ever right that rock sugar makes all the difference here! Put maybe 1.5 tsp into my second infusion, and I definitely taste tamarind now. However, of course, since this is a second infusion of a black, no less, it’s not bad, but not great either. That said, I’m super excited to try this again properly! It’s crazy what a difference some sugar makes. Not that I intend to make this a habit, but if nothing else, it’s interesting! Will have to try with the Watermelon Dragonwell & Watermelon Xylophone for sure.
There’s something to be said for actually setting a timer that makes a noise when steeping a tea…. ah well. So this one got 13 minutes (yes, over quadruple what I intended). Luckily, it’s not ruined, but the milky notes are being overshadowed by vegetal oolong flavours.
I almost feel like the quality of this oolong dropped before I picked up my most recent batch (and before the dramatic price drop); it’s just not nearly as good as I remember…
ETA: In spite of yesterday’s epically long infusion, I did a 4-minute second infusion today and ended up with a pretty fabulous cup! Smooth and milky, and with that lingering oolong flavour (which I don’t recall as much from yesterday, perhaps oversteeping killed it a little). I may yet take back my grumbling about this being lower quality than I remember.
Ok, after reading Awkward Soul ‘s note on this oolong, I was worried that my ’ice wine’ tasting experience last time was a totally one-off experience. Therefore…. time to try and repeat the deliciousness! I went with probably about 1.5 level teaspoons of tea for about 8-10oz. of water, and infused for 8 minutes at 180 degrees. And, I am happy to say that the tea definitely still has the same notes that remind me of the ice wine I sampled most recently. It’s not as jarring as last time (because the ice wine memory is a touch farther back), but at least to me, it is unmistakeable, and delicious. The aroma doesn’t betray this deliciousness, mostly being of a warm, slightly sweet, woody oolong, but the flavour is just fabulous, with a sweetness that builds until the end of the sip, hitting that intoxicatingly sweet ice wine flavour which lingers in the mouth after swallowing. Amazing!
This will definitely be in my next Butiki order, which is growing quickly! Apparently I can curb my restraint in tea ordering to some degree, but when it comes to Verdant, Butiki, and DavidsTea, I’m totally helpless…
ETA: Second infusion of this today, also for 8 minutes… still getting that sweetness that makes me think ice wine, however, there is bitterness this time as well. Not intolerable, but enough to make me consider a bit of a shorter second infusion. Or perhaps, 183F was too high (3 degrees Fahrenheit making a difference? I hope not, but who knows.)
A sample of this one from Azzrian this time! A bit of a burnt/toasted aroma upon brewing, and in the flavour as well… but I like it! Definitely caramelly too, so just what I was looking for tonight. Perfect! I think I like the DavidsTea version better, but this works just great right now. Thanks Azz!
I made the horrifying discovery tonight that I have only about 2 cups worth left of this one! Definitely need to refill, and drink more often. So good. I didn’t even use an infuser, just dropped the tea straight into the cup, as I find it best when steeped for forever. Yum. Just as refreshing/delicious as always.
Took the cue from Sil yesterday, and brewed some of this delight up tonight! Didn’t catch quite all the cinnamon bun nuances as I did last time, but I wasn’t looking for them, I was just drinking and enjoying! Definitely in the ranks of favourite night time honeybush, although with some of those sickly sweet ones (DT’s Birthday Cake, or any company’s caramel chunk-infused rooibos). Yum.
Ok, so this is technically the second time I’m drinking this tea – the first I apparently forgot to log; I drank it on the way out to the cottage last weekend!
Anyhow! I think this is a sample from Awkward Soul, thanks!
So, I’m one of those people who has a tendency to smell/taste banana in roasted mates. From both DT and 52teas, so it shouldn’t be a vendor issue. So, naturally, I was expecting that same flavour here… and it is, slightly, but far, far less. Instead, the overwhelming flavour I’m tasting here is molasses! Not as sweet as molasses, but that almost bitter, dark flavour of cooking molasses. Very interesting. It was a little offputting to me earlier, as all I could taste was the molasses when it was hot, but down that it’s also suffered the same 6-hour cooldown as Prince Vladimir, I can taste the cocoa (and banana) notes beneath the molasses, and it’s far more enjoyable. The tea still smells strongly of molasses though. This might be best for me as a cold drink… perhaps I should brew some up and leave it in the fridge for the morning? Although it just occurred to me that I only have less than a cup’s worth left :( Oh well.
Thanks for the sample, Awkward Soul! I do seem to like these roasted mates!