2661 Tasting Notes

87
drank Neapolitan Honeybush by 52teas
2661 tasting notes

Finished off my sample of this from Mercuryhime and topped it off with some from Jillian! Thanks, guys!

I love the smell of this one dry. It’s just bang-on chocolate ice cream, with intermittent whiffs of vanilla and strawberry. And the flavour is pretty awesome. I’m not getting the strawberry-vanilla-chocolate flavours quite as separated as last time, but it’s a very tasty honeybush blend that really satisfies a sweet tooth in the evening. I’d buy this if my stash ever decreases to something manageable…

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 8 min or more

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65
drank Flaming Chocolate Mate by 52teas
2661 tasting notes

So, not only did I order this from 52teas, I also received it in my grab bag, so I’m really hoping to like it since I have 4 whole ounces to finish off.

Dry, it smells much like Malted ChocoMate to me, but with the kick of cayenne which, like it did to Alphakitty, burnt my nostrils when I stupidly sniffed the tea. Which I did despite reading her tasting note. Sigh.

Steeped, it still smells very much like MCM. Clearly the roasted mate, the flavour of which I do enjoy. Unfortunately, it tasted much like plain roasted mate plus some spiciness to me, which resulted in the addition of a bunch of maple syrup (that’s just what I had right there) in order to make it drinkable. The second infusion is pretty similar; although I think I could get through it without sweetener, I’m not sure I will or want to.

I’m not sure whether I’m missing the chocolate here for some reason, or if it’s just blending in too much, but I’m kind of disappointed with this blend. I liked Malted ChocoMate much better, and since I have something like 8 oz. of it, I really can’t see myself picking this one to drink over it. I wouldn’t even be likely to drink this one just for the spicy kick, because Mayan Chocolate Chai is my tea of choice for that situation, because it is utterly amazing. Bleh. I guess sometimes there are just tea misses.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 8 min or more
tigress_al

As that is too bad. I got this one in my grab bag as well. Now I think that I might not like it either. I am not that big of fan of spicy things :(

Kittenna

Uh oh :(

Fjellrev

Glad I listened to my gut here. Sorry you don’t like it, though.

Dylan Oxford

Hrmmm. I’d be willing to trade some teas to get at least two ounces of that off your hands.

Kittenna

… are you serious?! I would be more than happy to send it to you.

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77
drank Carrot Cake by DAVIDsTEA
2661 tasting notes

Another sipdown! Finishing off the last of this today. I’m really starting to question the consistency of DavidsTea’s blends, especially after hearing about the fiasco with Sandy/Missy/Dylan and Oh Canada! This seems to be another along the same lines, because as I’m pretty sure I said before, I cannot fathom how someone would find what I’m drinking to be so objectionable. Not a favourite? Sure. But absolutely terrible? What can be so bad about a tea that tastes kind of like a bready version of carrot cake, with a low level of spicing? If anything, it’s simply a bit bland. I actually like it though, and am bumping my rating because I’d definitely drink this one again, although if it’s so hit or miss, I don’t want to risk purchasing it again. I’m still getting used to the flavour of dark oolongs, and I think that flavour does feature here, but it fits in so well I’m having a difficult time distinguishing it.

The second infusion (5 min) is predictably less flavourful, but still pretty satisfying.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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91

A tasty oolong, for sure. It’s not really coming off as a milky-style oolong to me, but it’s pretty good. The first infusion was floral and fruity, reminiscent of Fong Mong’s Fruity Sijichun oolong, but I’m finding the second infusion to be comparatively better. It’s coming off smoother and less “green”, with a delicious round, fruity flavour. For the money, I’d go for this over the Fruity Sijichun simply because it re-steeps better. Wish I had compared the two side-by-side, but I haven’t been in the mood for that sort of thing lately!

Thanks again for the sample, Fong Mong Tea!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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73
drank Pom Power by DAVIDsTEA
2661 tasting notes

Hot-brewed and chilled this one to use up the last of it. Still not working for me though. It’s not bad, just really meh. It does taste pomegranate-y, but there’s really no white tea at all, and the hibiscus scares me. Another tea I’m not sad to be finished with!

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

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72

This was sent to me unexpectedly by Jillian. Thanks!

The dry tea smells deliciously chocolatey; I’m not getting much banana. A chocolate rooibos sounds just fantastic though, so that’s hardly a problem!

The tea is quite strong, because I used 2 tsp since I figured this was an old blend. Initially, I do taste a wave of chocolatey-banana flavour. Kind of a banana chip sort of taste, to me. This fades into a light sort of cocoa-y flavour, and then the rooibos takes over, which I don’t like. I think this would be much better with a honeybush base, but oh well. I don’t think it will be all that difficult for me to finish, although I have acquired a huge number of rooibos/honeybush blends lately, which is somewhat unexpected (but not really). Oh well!

Thanks for the sample, Jillian :)

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more

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46
drank Pink Flamingo by DAVIDsTEA
2661 tasting notes

Eh, yuck. Last time I tried this, it was a cold-brew that was absolutely awful due to the hibiscus and oversteeping. So I tried a regular hot brew to taste both hot and chill this time. Sadly, although the tea smells deliciously of grapefruit, I really don’t like it. I suppose it’s not terrible, but I’m getting a citrus peel sort of taste (I dislike citrus peel of any variety), and although the hibiscus isn’t overwhelming, I’m finding time and time again that it ruins my enjoyment of a tea even in small quantities. I’ll drink the rest of this cold tomorrow (or try to, anyhow), but I doubt that’s going to change my opinion of it. This tea is probably just fine for citrus lovers, but for whatever reason, such flavours just don’t work for me in tea.

ETA: Chilled version is no better. Bleh. I guess part of the reason I disliked it the first time was because I think it’s gross period.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 0 sec
Indigobloom

not my thing either. The hibby ruined it for me. bleh!

Kiaharii

When will they learn to just leave the hibiscus out!?

Kittenna

Soon, I hope…..

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84

Second and final cup of this one, part of a sample from Fong Mong Tea. I’m trying to drink down a few things to feel like I have things under control, which is totally not true…

I still think the first infusion of this oolong is really amazing, just lightly floral and fruity and oolongy. I’m not even sure I want to have a second infusion tonight because it was so unimpressive last time, and I have a host of other teas down here that I could have instead. Ah well. This one is serving my desire for a tasty oolong tonight, and that’s all that matters :)

ETA: Second cup is just generic, like I remember. Sad.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 30 sec

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73
drank Amaretto by DAVIDsTEA
2661 tasting notes

Having a small cup of this before letting my roommate take it. I have too much tea. It’s horrible, so horrible.

Smells strongly of marzipan, as before, and the flavour is like almond extract, only less sweet. Not a bad tea, but not something I really want to drink.

Farewell, little pouch of tea!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 8 min or more

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83
drank Melange Rooibos by 52teas
2661 tasting notes

This is another tea I nabbed during the grab bag sale. Not one I would have picked myself, but I don’t have any rooibos chais to my knowledge, so it can hopefully fill that void?!

For whatever reason, this one smells an awful lot like Cinnamon Roll Honeybush initially. So much so that by aroma, I mixed the cups up. The only thing that got me to put them in the right order was remembering that I steeped this one last, and used a smaller cup (that I had to wash) for it. So yes, the aroma is cinnamony and chai-like, but not a great deal different from CRH.

The flavour is definitely not of a cinnamon bun, and it does taste chai-y, but it’s not overly strong. No medicinal rooibos flavour though, which is a big plus, so as a caffeine-free chai, it works for me. I’ll try brewing it a bit stronger next time though.

Probably not a tea I’d pick up again, but it will be a nice addition to the evening tea rotation (since I need to get to sleep earlier, and cutting out late night caffeine is probably a good idea whether or not I feel like it makes a huge difference).

ETA: Second infusion good; more cinnamony, and a bit light. This is a good spiced tea, I must say. I wish I’d had it when I was with my aunt, because I think she’d like it, so I could just pawn it off on her…

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more

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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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