2599 Tasting Notes
Sigh. I am going to fail in my quest tonight. But 4/8 isn’t too bad. (I realized after that there are two teas I haven’t tried from Amanda, so that one didn’t count. Sigh.) I guess I’ll get to the other four tomorrow.
Anyhow, this one’s from Mercuryhime, and I did a bad thing and brewed it up prior to my run, so didn’t drink it until probably 2 hours post-brewing, all total. The re-steeps of a couple other teas I drank didn’t handle that two hours of sitting so well, but this one actually did! It was sweet, nutty, and roasty, reminding me of genmaicha. Also, there was a lovely green tea-ish aftertaste. I actually really enjoyed it! I am going to enjoy a re-steep of it shortly, as I push through my exercise-fuelled exhaustion to package up at least some of the swap samples I have yet to do. I am such a swap delinquent!
ETA: I forgot to note that the second infusion of this one was pretty delicious too, and I drank it cold (room temp). Third infusion suffers only from the leaves having sat too long; I think they could go a lot farther than this if fresh! This tea is delicious.
Being brave tonight and trying my first mini tuocha, courtesy of Amy oh and helpful advice from both her and Garret!
To begin with… I am in love with this rice-scented bit! Dry, there was a bit of an indication of what was to come, but once the boiling water hit the tuocha, my mouth started watering. It smells so good! So I’m very excited :D I can also smell a nice earthiness. I wish it would cool down faster so I could drink it….
I started with a ~15s rinse with boiling-ish water, and then a first infusion of about 30 seconds. The tea is pretty dark from just that short amount of time, so I’m glad I didn’t go with 45! The aroma is still earthy and rice-scented, yum.
…I’m too impatient to wait to try it. Hmm. I have no idea how to describe this flavour. A bit earthy, a bit rice-like, with a nice aftertaste/aroma of the scented rice. It’s really too hot for me to enjoy quite yet (although I’m sure people drink it this hot, I like my teas cooler.) It is actually a touch light on the flavour, so I might try 45 seconds with the other tuocha (but we’ll see).
Ok! It’s cool enough to try now, and it’s really lovely! Earthy but with a strong rice scent. I’m still getting used to the flavour of pu’erh, but this is quite nice and easy to drink, especially with the tasty flavouring.
I’ll try another couple infusions a bit later; time to head out for that run! Hopefully I don’t get a tummyache :D
ETA: Definitely got a tummyache while running. Unlikely caused by tea though, probably by the bag of cheese puffs (organic and gluten-free!) I ate alongside the tea :D Anyhow, second infusion for about 53 seconds once I finally drained all the water, is quite dark and has the same aroma as the previous infusion. I’m going to wait until it cools to try it out, but am anticipating the same yumminess as before :D Also, I noticed that the leaf is very interesting-looking! There’s green leaf pieces in there! Is that the flavouring herb?? (Also, glass teapot not the best idea for this pu’erh… my cup contains many floaties. I should have strained it through a secondary strainer, my bad.)
Ok, tea cool enough to drink. More earthy, less fragrant rice-y, but I still enjoy it. I think pu’erh is a taste I haven’t quite acquired yet, but I’d have to say that this one is pretty good for “beginners” because of the additional flavouring which helps to counteract that straight earthiness. (Also… I think pu’erh will be a much easier taste to acquire than either beer or coffee, neither of which I will EVER enjoy straight. Blech.)
Finishing off the last of my sample from Amanda today! I still have a bit of this left from LiberTEAS though, so it’s not a complete sipdown (but it does get an extra X on my spreadsheet, woo!)
The aroma is a bit fruity and sweet, and I feel like I can smell the toasty genmaicha. Flavourwise, I’m initially tasting a strong seaweed flavour, which gives way to a bit of tangyish sweetness at the end. I wish this genmaicha had more toasty rice in it, actually – the genmaichas I’m used to having are much toastier and less seaweedy. I’m finding that that’s not the case with all of them though, perhaps just the cheaper ones, but I apparently prefer that! The first time I tried this sample, it was rather metallic-tasting, but I now am convinced that I oversteeped it.
Although this cup in particular isn’t cherry/cheesecakey enough for me personally, I think that’s partially because it really needs a freeze-dried cherry in there to bring out the flavour, and there wasn’t one. I kind of wish that instead of big pieces of dried fruit, it was chopped up a bit so each cup had more of a uniform amount of fruit, instead of having cups with and without (this is a problem I’ve noticed with many, many fruit-containing blends, and it really irritates me, because sometimes that flavour boost from the real fruit is better than the flavouring). Oh well. I’d still buy this if it became available again…. hint hint.
Alright, this would be sample 2/8 in my plan to drink one tea per swap. (The Neapolitan Honeybush doesn’t count; I drank it and wrote the note last night, but forgot to hit ‘post’. Whoopsie.)
Thank you Missy & Dylan for the small sample of this one that I asked for! Although I’m almost regretting asking for one-cup samples of things sometimes, it is nice on occasion to eliminate a tea from the stash after one cup!!
Based on my surprising enjoyment of 52teas minty blends, I’m expecting to like this one, especially since it contains roasted mate. However, the steeped aroma is not terribly appealing. I smell mintiness, which is iffy, and perhaps some vanilla, but not the mate, and not the yummy “52teas flavouring”, as I will call it. (Uh, it just occurred to me that this “flavouring” of which I speak may actually be part of the flavourings used to produce a chocolate flavour… because the blends I can recall it being in, like Chocolate Mint, Mint Chocolate Chip Honeybush, Malted ChocoMate, Cherry Garcia, all have chocolate in them…. this is making me very sad that I didn’t get any Double Chocolate Decadence :( )
A sip of this blend confirms my recently developed suspicion – that flavour is not here, and consequently I do not care for this tea! The icky peppermint nastiness is a bit too apparent for me here, and because of that, I can’t enjoy the vanilla. I also can’t really taste the roasted mate (oh, maybe it’s there, but well-hidden. A little coffee-esque.)
This isn’t too terrible though; anyone who enjoys disgusting things like straight peppermint tea would probably adore this, but I loathe straight peppermint tea.
Well, this was worth a shot! Not regretting the one cup’s worth at ALL now!! Thanks for passing this sample along, Missy/Dylan :D
Uhhhh, call me a teenager, but I have a huuuuuuuge band crush on Hedley right now. Huge! So ridiculous.
So this tea. Another sample from the wonderful Alphakitty! Have I mentioned yet that my goal for today is to try drink one tea from each person that has swapped with me so far? Preferably a new one, but the cute little tuochas Amy Oh sent are a bit intimidating yet, so I might just go with a different tea from her :D
I keep getting off track… this tea, dry and steeped, and even the bag it came in(!) smell like delicious chocolatey raspberry goodness. (And apparently that is making me sneeze?? Oh boy.) And WOW does this ever come through in the flavour! This may be the most strongly-flavoured black I’ve had – the raspberry pops immediately, followed by a full-bodied dark chocolatey flavour, and then the two combine deliciously like I just ate an expensive dark chocolate raspberry truffle. I say expensive, because this raspberry flavour is no cheap pink cream crap, it’s more jam-like. Amazing.
I’m very impressed with this cup. And glad I was sent enough of this one for at least 3, maybe more additional cups! It’s not a tea I would buy (I said the same about Butiki’s Raspberry Truffle tea, which is a similar flavour combo) because although I enjoy it, there are too many other flavoured blacks I’d be likely to go for first, given the choice. Namely caramel/vanilla/creamy blacks.
Oh, and CHAroma, I have hiccups again. And this time it could very well be caused by drinking tea too quickly… looks at empty mug
ETA: Second infusion for 4 minutes still has a fair bit of flavour, but a bit of astringency. I’m drinking it cold but I imagine it would be quite a bit better warm.
The aroma is kind of offputting, a bit medicinaly and strange. The flavour is pretty much a mildly citrusy flavoured water, with icky medicinal flavours fitting right in. Raspberry? No. Finishing my cup? No.
Razzmatazz is a huge step in the right direction for a lemony raspberry rooibos. It actually tastes like raspberry, and is happily lacking in medicinal flavours. I would not be sad to see this tea disappear completely.
Comparing this one to Raspberry Nectar tonight, just for kicks, because I didn’t like that one and am not expecting to like this one. But had to try. Had to!
So initially upon steeping this one, I sniffed it and thought “raspberry lemonade”! There’s a sweet, fruity, lemony tartness that actually smells rather good, and made my mouth water. Until I made this fateful association… Sourpuss. Blue (or possibly red) Sourpuss. A drink I consumed far too much of back when I was… yeah. So now that I have that lovely association in my mind, the mouth-watering-ness has turned into a bit of nausea.
Luckily, the flavour isn’t quite the same, but it’s too close for comfort. I can taste a nice lemony tartness that is tamed by sweetness (stevia?), and the raspberry is not inyourface, but present moreso than it is in Raspberry Nectar, and becomes even more apparent in the aftertaste. Actually, compared to Raspberry Nectar, this tea is pretty fantastic.
I agree with aisling of tea that a splash of lime could go well with this. It might also work well in a mojito. Overall, I feel like this tea will probably be a hit with people who enjoy raspberry/lemongrass/rooibos, but I can’t help but wish for something that reminds me a touch less of an alcoholic drink I’d rather forget!
ETA: Re-steeped this one for curiousity (and noted just how large/fresh-looking the lemongrass pieces are… wow! Look like diced scallions, almost!) and the resulting brew actually smells pretty good. Gone is that strong alcohol association, and in its place is a light raspberry juice. Very reminiscent of the (melted water from) raspberry ice cubes a friend of a friend made for our mutual friend’s birthday last Saturday. Wow. Gone is anything gross or offputting, it tastes like real raspberries with just a touch of lemon in the background. I’m really glad I gave this one a shot and have a bit left to play with… this might make a very good iced tea! Upping the rating a touch :)
Also, I added some lime. Too much lime. It tasted like lime juice. I still think there’s serious mojito potential here though.
Another foray into honeybush courtesy of Mercuryhime!
Steeped, this smells a bit like that characteristic 52teas smell. With maybe a hint of cream and/or strawberry. Oh wow though, the flavour!!! I initially got chocolate, followed by a combination of the three flavours, and it’s finishing off with strawberry. Delicious! Yes, this is so neat – initially intense chocolate, then obvious creamy vanilla (maybe with a bit of chocolate), then strawberry at the end. This is great! And the honeybush isn’t making a big fuss about being around; I can barely taste it. I can see why this blend is popular. Now I want to buy the iced teas more than ever :( Need to calculate how much of my cheese panel money is left over (although I really want to make a Butiki order soon too…)
ETA: Second infusion isn’t great, maybe because it’s cold.
It’s weird, sometimes when I smell this one I’m hit in the face with “ROOT BEER”, and other times it just smells strange and fakey. Steeped, it smells like fakey root beer, so I suppose the above kind of makes sense!
The flavour is certainly similar to root beer, and I think the main thing that’s missing is sweetener, which would probably make it into a perfect summer treat, especially iced. But I don’t want to have to add sugar. As a result, it tastes kind of odd and a bit astringent, with a heavy root beer aroma and flavour. So I’m not sure I’d recommend this one for those who dislike adding sweetener to their teas.
Since this is called ‘Root Beer Float’, I was also expecting more creaminess, which I didn’t really pick up on. Perhaps it needs milk as well?
Anyhow, this was great entertainment, but not quite right for what I wanted (which probably more like Salted Caramel with some root beer flavouring quietly mixed in… maybe I’ll try that…)
ETA: Ok, mixed a bit of agave into the room temp remnants in my cup, and we have flat root beer. I definitely think DT achieved their goal of a root beer tea, it just isn’t exactly what I had wanted!! :D