2756 Tasting Notes

87
drank Buccaneer by SerendipiTea
2756 tasting notes

Welp. Steepster ate my tasting note, but that’s ok, because it was only three lines long. Something about how this was better the first time, but was still tasty. Probably a byproduct of underleafing + hard work water. And something about how I should have made a tea with more caffeine, haha.

Babble

Never heard of this tea, but it sounds like something my BF would like since he’s a fan of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Kittenna

Haha, I got this as a sample from Missy & Dylan months ago. They ordered a lot from SerendipiTea. It’s not bad; I clearly liked it the first time around more though!

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79

Made a thermos of this to take with me yesterday, so I’d have something caffeinated to drink between church/the Thanksgiving meal. Unfortunately, I think there’s something about coconutty blacks that doesn’t sit well for me in the morning. Kind of like a cup of milk, which also doesn’t sit well first thing in the morning. So while the tea tasted alright, I’m left with a desire to not drink it again in the remotely near future (kind of like 52teas’ Coconut Cream Pie). How annoying!

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98
drank Quangzhou Milk Oolong by DAVIDsTEA
2756 tasting notes

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92
drank Dulce & Banana by DAVIDsTEA
2756 tasting notes

Currently cursing my body because I have a long day upcoming and try as I might, I cannot fall asleep. Figures; I’ve been sleeping 12-hour nights for the past week. Hopefully those will tide me through today and I can get a good rest tonight, because I’m running a 5K on Monday morning! Bah.

So anyways, it’s 6:26am, and I’m sipping a big hot cup of this one before trying one more time to even get an hour of rest. I’m heading to church with the boyfriend (eep) followed by meeting his extended family for Thanksgiving lunch/supper (double eep), so it really would have been nice to have slept prior instead of being anxious for the past, oh, six hours…

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more
Ninavampi

Good luck with your race!

Bonnie

CArbs…

Kittenna

Thanks Ninavampi! Didn’t hit my goal time (no surprise, given that I’ve been sick and not training), but was a mere 28 seconds off my personal best, so I can’t really complain :D

Bonnie – carbs for the race? Or for sleeping? Either way, the tea did put me to sleep, so I got about a half hour of shuteye before the long but lovely day :)

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82

Interesting. I see this one has had a name change from Dr. Chocolate to Spiced Carob. Probably more appropriate, as chocolate is not predominant here! This one reminds me a fair bit of Coco Chai Rooibos, which I recently drank. I do like the spicing in it, but since having CCR, I think I’d go with it over this one, because the chocolate is more powerful and the spicing is similar, which makes it quite delicious. Also, caffeine-free! Not great for mornings, but perfect for bed.

Anyhow, this was a sipdown of my sample packet of this one, so now I just need to drink down a few more things before I will let myself go pick up more CCR

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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drank Long Life Oolong by DAVIDsTEA
2756 tasting notes

So…. I thought I liked this one. Brewed some up today, and for some reason, the smell was nauseating, and reminded me far too much of Mango Diablo, which reminds me in turn of cooked green peppers. Which are disgusting, to me. Oh, associations. It definitely tasted peachy, although I couldn’t pick out the oolong base, but I really did not enjoy this cup. So much so that I actually dumped it out. To put this in perspective, I didn’t even dump out the darjeeling I tried today and didn’t particularly care for, as I still found it to be drinkable. I don’t think it’s the fault of this tea at all, but I don’t think I’ll ever drink any of this again. Strangely enough, I found yesterday’s Peaches and Cream Oolong from Teaopia more palatable than this one (although would prefer not to drink it again either). Perhaps peach teas are not my thing? I still have Peach Hoppi-Tea from Azzrian to try, maybe that will suit me better?

I feel like rating this would be unfair, as I don’t really think there’s anything wrong with it. My rating would be in the 40s, and this is probably a 70-80 tea. Oh well, at least I only have a cup’s worth left, and I think my roommate likes this one…

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 5 min, 0 sec
Helena

I thought I liked a lot and then the smell started coming through the bag and stinking up everything and the taste started to get to me so it’s in my locker at work for a rainy/snowy day when I’m out of better stuff.

Kittenna

Yeah, I have no idea what was wrong, but the smell kind of makes me gag now :(

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75
drank Ancient Yellow Buds by Rishi Tea
2756 tasting notes

Another sample from LiberTEAS! Still have tons to get through, but this will be the last for today (or at least until I’m back from work).

This one brewed up to be the lightest colour I think I have ever seen with any tea! Just barely a hint of a beigey colour in the cup. As the tea has sat a bit, the colour has deepened somewhat, however.

The flavour is very, very mild here. I can definitely taste sweetness and the tea has an absolutely wonderful, smooth, full-bodied mouthfeel. If I try a bit harder, I can taste a light “tea” flavour amongst the sweetness. This one’s definitely quite pleasant, but seems to unfortunately fall into the category of teas that are a bit too delicate for my liking! (And then, I read the reviews…)

Ok! I think part of my problem here may have been underleafing my cup; I used maybe 1.5tsp of the rather fluffy leaf for my 8 oz. cup, but I think that may not have been enough. Luckily, I can try this one again :D Another potential problem is not drinking this tea on a fresh palate, so next time I should do that instead of drinking a strong matcha and black tea immediately prior (my bad!)

Thanks LiberTEAS!

(Oh man… I think that large cheesecake matcha is catching up to me… stomach not feeling so well anymore…)

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 0 sec
ashmanra

Oh noes! I was wondering how that was going for you…

Kittenna

Yeeeah, whoops! Ah well, I seem to be fine now :D Got a bit jittery and had an upset stomach for a while though.

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45

Nabbed a couple somewhat random samples from my box of teas from LiberTEAS to try out this evening. I really need to make some progress on samples I have! The goal was to get through as much as I can prior to Christmas… we’ll see how that goes… (it’s helpful that my roommate likes tea though, and is willing to share a cup or two with me each evening!)

So, this is my first darjeeling ever. Well, as far as I’m aware. The aroma makes me think boring black tea… it smells like a bagged Lipton, or other generic tea brand. Not that smell necessarily dictates anything, but it can be a bit of a warning sign sometimes!

The flavour… is definitely unexpected. I was expecting boring black tea flavour, instead I’m getting a kind of winey-ish, possibly muscatel flavour, with a black base. A bit floral, almost? Or, that’s how it’s coming off to darjeeling newbie me. Weirdly, I’m also getting a “rotten” note in here which is… rather unpleasant. Like, a decaying vegetal matter sort of note. Although it doesn’t seem to be appearing with every sip.

Hrm. I’m not going to write off darjeelings just because of this one, but as I’m not a fan of black teas in general (minus Laoshan Black and other similar ones), I’m not surprised that this one isn’t doing it for me. Oh well! Thanks for the tea education, LiberTEAS!

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

:( Sorry to hear about the icky note there.

Kittenna

No worries! I think it’s a flavour that I find in many black teas, and it was a bit more pronounced here (there’s clearly some reason that black teas and I generally don’t jive well). I’m finishing my cup – it’s not terrible by any stretch!

Babble

I’m pretty picky about my blacks, but I do enjoy darjeelings. Do give them another try if you have the chance. :)

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67
drank Cheesecake Matcha by Red Leaf Tea
2756 tasting notes

So I received my redirected matchas yesterday, woo! As I’m heading into the lab, a shot of energy seems appropriate, so time to try the much-loved cheesecake matcha. I ordered the robust strength with the regular base, as that seems to be the preferred combination here. http://www.redleaftea.com/matcha-tea/cheesecake-matcha.html

When I first tore into the packet, I have to say that I was surprised/shocked to smell not cheesecake, but strawberry. A similar thing happened to me with the Madagascar Vanilla, where I smelled not vanilla, but strawberry. A bit disappointing, as I was expecting a strong tangy cheesecakey aroma. Upon further sniffs, I detected a bit of a milkyish, possibly cheesecakey flavour, but given that this is “robust”, I really expected more.

As usual, I decided to make this into an almond milk latte. I used 2 heaping teaspoons of matcha whisked into hot milk, then mixed with cold almond milk. To my surprise, the latte tasted like nothing but a generic matcha latte. Not even a hint of cheesecake. So I added another generous tsp or two to a new small bowl of hot milk, whisked, and added it. Same deal. And keep in mind… I think I’ve used about half of my 30g packet by now. This is one EXPENSIVE latte… I added some maple syrup as sweetener (no other options), and now I have quite a tasty drink… but definitely not what I was expecting. I can almost smell cheesecake if I sniff quite hard, and a sip of the latte leaves a bit of a cheesecake aftertaste, but this is unfortunately not what I had hoped it would be. Perhaps the cheesecake blends in too well with the almond milk? I wouldn’t have expected that, given how well my delicately flavoured Caramel matcha worked with it (and also, I tried a taste of the plain milk + matcha and couldn’t taste cheesecake either). I would love to blame this on my tastebuds or something, but I have a series of other teas with me that I can definitely smell and taste quite fine, so that’s not the problem.

Oh well. I do love the caramel matcha, so perhaps will simply stock up on that one instead!

ETA: It just occurred to me that I may have made a fatal error by drinking almost my entire latte on an empty stomach… uh oh…

Preparation
Iced 8 min or more
Helena

That’s odd mine definitely smelled like cheesecake (it overwhelmed my kitchen) so I’m not sure why yours smelled like strawberry, did you have strawberries on the brain?

Kittenna

Nope, wasn’t thinking about strawberries at all. And it’s funny, as I’ve been sitting here, I keep randomly smelling strawberry again. There are these asian strawberry/cream candies in little red wrappers that I love, and that’s exactly how it smells. It doesn’t particularly taste like strawberry, though.

Red Leaf Tea

I’m very sorry that you did not like it. Please contact me regarding this product.

Indigobloom

I just had a similar experience today!!!! with the cheesecake matcha. I wanted to try it a few different ways before writing my review.
I got milky candy, but not cheesecake. not strawberry either though. Definitely not what I expected, and nothing like the other ones I tried. Well, my base was lower grade this time than my previous purchase

Kittenna

Yeah, based on the previous reviews and given that I ordered “robust”, it just wasn’t anything like what I expected. Yes, milky candy would more accurately describe the flavour I got (plus yummy matcha base!), but even that was pretty weak.

@Red Leaf – I do want to clarify that there’s nothing inherently wrong with the matcha, nothing tasted “off”, and I certainly enjoyed the latte I made! Cheesecake, though, it was not :(

Kittenna

Also, I’ve only ever ordered the basic grade, and delicate flavouring (in the whopping three previous matchas I purchased); this was my first foray into a stronger flavouring. Based on the strength of both the caramel and green apple, I was expecting to be knocked out by the cheesecake! (The vanilla was definitely not so potent.)

softrevolution

I didnt get much Cheesecake flavour from a hot latte either. Cold, though, it really shines. It is now my favourite and most used matcha ever since I tried it in a smoothie. It tastes incredibly tangy and true somehow. But hot, I find it’s just meh.

Indigobloom

thanks for the tip, I will try it via shaken bottle method next :)

Sil

Kittena and indigo….you two are weirdos :p

Indigobloom

agreed!! haha
I suspect it would have been alot better with royal grade. and my fave cheesecake is the ricotta/“light” kind so that might have something to do with it? shrugs

Kittenna

softrevolution – this was a cold latte, so I don’t know what went wrong. I think I’ll be getting more to try and see if it was an off batch; my palate isn’t usually super far off from everyone else’s! I was really looking forward to the tang, and with the upcoming end to the free matcha program, was thinking to place orders for a large amount of both the caramel and cheesecake matcha, so was disappointed when it wasn’t as good as I expected. (I still have to pick up a bunch of the caramel though…. deeeeelish!)

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87

After my recent sipdown of DavidsTea’s Cream Earl Grey, I was craving it rather badly (figures), and decided to look through my giant box of teas from LiberTEAS to see if there was another variant in there, since she is fond of earl greys. Sure enough, I found one!!! So this came with me to work tonight in the no-longer-quite-so-chai-scented Timolino.

Unlike the DavidsTea version, I found this one to be much more like a straight earl grey upon the initial sip, with the cream coming more in the aftertaste. This could have been an artifact of brewing the tea a bit stronger than intended, but I don’t think so, I think the cream aspect was just done a bit differently here. I have to be honest and say that while the tea was still hot, I really wasn’t getting much of the creaminess, and was therefore kind of disappointed, however as the tea cooled, the delicious creaminess emerged more and more. I definitely like earl grey creams better a bit cooler!

Anyways, I think I’d be likely to choose either DT’s or Upton’s Cream Earl Grey over this variant (which is probably ok since I think SpecialTeas is no longer?), but all three are quite delicious. So much nostalgia for me!

Thanks for including some of this for me, LiberTEAS , and saving me from having to run to DavidsTea to get my fix! I still have enough for at least another cup; hopefully I can stave off the craving for a while longer (or perhaps there’s another cream earl grey lurking somewhere in a swap box that I have yet to track down…!)

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec
tea-sipper

I could drink Earl Grey Creme every day!

Kittenna

When I don’t drink it for a while I forget how awesome it is! I think I could too (but I have so many other teas, I need to give other things some love too!)

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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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