2276 Tasting Notes

88
drank White Tiger (organic) by DAVIDsTEA
2276 tasting notes

Blueberries! Real blueberries! Yum! I’m very impressed. And after only 1 minute of steeping, too :) Smells like blueberries; tastes like blueberries. Why didn’t I try this and Strawberry White before? They are way better than most fruity teas I’ve been trying lately.

Eeeee :D

ETA: Too lazy to try some fancy-schmancy series of steeps while increasing temperature, and all that, so I went for a 5 minute steep at 82C (that’s just what the water temp was… aiming for 90! Oops.) The tea is a fair bit darker (shocker, eh?), and purplish, reminding me of Bear Trap. You know, I think this tea might actually be what I wanted from Bear Trap – a sweet sort of berry tea, not sour. Anyways, it smells and tastes like warm blueberries. Real blueberries. Like a blueberry I just plucked out of a steaming hot fresh-out-of-the-oven homemade blueberry muffin. I’m not really getting any tea flavour, except maybe at the end, but I’m just super stoked at how delicious this is. My bank account is definitely hoping that the remainder of the teas I try this week are huge misses (and I’m sure some will be, e.g. Carrot Cake), but I suspect I’ll end up liking more…

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 1 min, 0 sec
TheTeaFairy

You are right, this tea is pure blueberry taste, a rare thing as there are no artificial soapy flavors that can often be found in blueberry teas!

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91

I’ve found myself not to be terribly fond of chocolate teas, but figure they’re all worth a shot anyways, as sometimes it works (even if it’s not as chocolately as I thought it would be).

Steeped, I’m getting memories of say, chocolate-covered cherries. Or raisins. Something fruity, where the chocolate isn’t necessarily the main flavour. It smells quite sweet too, which I like :D

Taste-wise, I’m getting a bit of fruity chocolate and delicious sweetness. This is entirely a different sort of chocolate flavour to Check Mate. Less malty, more fruity. I think I like both, but would probably pick malty over fruity if given a choice. I’m not tasting the green tea or rooibos at all, but in this case I don’t mind, as there’s enough flavour complexity to make me happy without tasting the underlying base by itself (unlike with some other teas, where they really may as well have just made a herbal and skipped the tea base altogether).

Not entirely sure what water temperature I used – probably somewhere between 70-80C.

In a clear attempt to set some sort of bathroom-usage record tonight, I gulped that first mug down in less than 5 minutes and am re-steeping already. And still have a couple steeps of Blazing Strawberries to try. Oops…

ETA: Second steep is pretty similar to the first, in my opinion. A fruity sort of chocolate. Steeped for 4-5 minutes this time. I am almost getting a hint of cinnamon spiciness, but it’s very mild.

Preparation
3 min, 15 sec

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88
drank Blazing Strawberries by DAVIDsTEA
2276 tasting notes

I know it has been discontinued for a while, but my local store still has some, so I figured what the heck, may as well pick it up and try it when I’m also getting 10 other to-be-discontinued teas :)

This is such an interesting-looking tea. Sharp green-grey leaf pieces with hints of colour from the strawberries and peppercorns. The smell is truly odd though – sweet, but I’m definitely getting a whiff reminiscent of Christmas tree shopping! Which would make sense if this tea had juniper in it… but it does not.

After 5 minutes of steeping, this tea is a rather light brownish-gold colour, with only a light scent that’s herbally and sweet. The first sip is very delicate and leafy, but not in a green tea-vegetal/leafy sort of way, more like… apple leafy? I suppose it’s the bamboo, but since I have never met a real, living bamboo leaf before, it’s hard to know! I’m not getting the Christmas tree notes I had been getting before, which is completely ok, as I do not care for things such as gin.

I am still really intrigued by this tea! It makes me want to have fun with it, and try it in different ways! Not sure whether I like it enough to go buy out my location (haha), but have to make up my mind quickly… I don’t know exactly what March 6 is bringing about, whether teas will just disappear on that day, or whether they’ll keep them on hand until stock runs out (which I think would be better). The girl at DT recommended trying this iced, with twice the recommended amount of tea, so maybe I’ll try that out this evening/tomorrow. It’s different and pleasant enough – a nice change! Tentatively rating in the happy zone :D

Perhaps more notes as it cools… but I have another tea to get to as I sit here in my office, procrastinating from weighing out samples upstairs in the lab (yeah, I know, it’s Saturday evening… I’m so lame.)

ETA: Mmm, yes, liking it better as it cools. Definitely taste the strawberry now. Not really getting any spiciness from peppercorns though. This is really refreshing! Definitely icing it next.

ETAA: Second steep mostly tastes like leaves. Not bad, but much of the appeal is gone without the strawberries. Probably wouldn’t re-steep unless desperate (because it’s still better than hot water!)

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 15 sec

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drank Long Life Oolong by DAVIDsTEA
2276 tasting notes

Roommate picked some of this up during Reading Week (I had yet to restock it myself, for confirmation as to whether or not I liked it).

We accidently used water that was too hot, though (brain was thinking it was a black tea), and I don’t think we used enough tea, as it’s rather weak. So unfortunately, I remain indecisive. I wish it was more like Banana Oolong though; I can’t taste the oolong at all, and it would be nice to taste something other than peach.

Preparation
Boiling 7 min, 0 sec

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94

Mmmmmmmm, another very delicious, very oversteeped cup. I am just loving the strong flavour. And unlike other teas when they are oversteeped, I’m only feeling the astringency in the front of my mouth, not down my throat, which makes it quite bearable (I hate when I get a sore-throat feeling from teas).

Also got a bunch more strawberry pieces in the mix today, and am tasting more fruitiness. So glad I tried this tea :) Can’t wait to get more! Even though it’s expensive…

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 8 min or more
Bonnie

I want to try this. Sounds like it would bring on an early Spring.

Kittenna

Well if you’re up for a cross-border swap (I’m in Canada), I could probably indulge you if you want :) I’m really loving it. Probably picking up at least 50g in the next day or two, before it disappears off the tea wall!

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94

I was lazy and using the other two tea balls in the house (for Movie Night and Caramel Spice) so just plopped the tea directly into the cup… Here’s hoping I haven’t oversteeped it!

Yum, my cup smells light and fruity and sweet. The tea tastes similar – and this is the first white tea where I’ve actually tasted the tea! It’s definitely oversteeped, but not that bad because of it…. except that I just somehow got some into my nasal passages and it’s BURNING (you know, like any foreign liquid does). Kind of ruining my tasting experience…

Anyways, this is kinda tasty, mostly because I’m getting the fruitiness AND tea flavour, and I quite like it. Further notes and rating to come once my nose recovers.

ETA: Ok, all better. And… yum :) Given that I’m enjoying this even with a horrendously long steeping time, I’m going to say it’s a winner for me. I can’t identify the fruitiness distinctly as strawberry, but that might be because either my tastebuds suck or I didn’t have enough strawberry chunks, but I am definitely pleasantly surprised. After not caring a great deal for either Mango Madness or Pom Power, I thought I didn’t like flavoured white teas… Happy to be proven wrong!

ETA: Upping rating farther. This is SO YUMMY even so very oversteeped. It’s hitting the tea-craving spot right now. Enough that I might have to make another cup.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 8 min or more
Indigobloom

poor nose!

Kittenna

Haha, I have no idea what I did… got some tea in the back of my throat then breathed out through my nose? Either way ouch/ew!!

Indigobloom

yech. find out what it was so you can avoid doing that again!

DaisyChubb

Hey Facebook buddy! :D
Loove this tea, to drink rather than inhale of course :3

Kittenna

Ahaha, I figured most people on here were also on Facebook, and naturally, the Canadians are part of the DT community! :D Definitely stoked about this tea. I really wish I could get this lovely white tea taste in all DT’s white teas.

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85
drank Gold Rush (organic) by DAVIDsTEA
2276 tasting notes

Strangely, the sample I tried today tasted oddly pepperminty. Wondering what the other TOTD was, or if the cup was dirty… I bought a small sample though, so will try this on my own later! No rating until then.

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90
drank Caramel Spice by DAVIDsTEA
2276 tasting notes

So thanks to the notice of discontinuation (online only) regarding a ton of DavidsTeas, I went and picked up small samples of another 12(?) teas. As if I needed more to try!

Anyways, this is the first product of today’s expedition. I really only picked it up because of the name; the smell of the dry tea is kind of odd. It’s almost like lemongrass with a hint of orange peel? I probably wouldn’t have picked this one up based on the smell, but any tea with ‘caramel’ in the name warrants a taste test in my opinion :)

Steeped it also has an odd smell which I tend to associate with off-flavours/weakness, along with some orange peel. It just occurred to me that the crappy (hard) Guelph water might be contributing to strange flavours in weak teas such as whites. Hmmm. Mental note to try and remember to use filtered water next time.

Perhaps I steeped it too long; I’m tasting a somewhat (but not unpleasantly so) astringent black tea base, with general fruitiness overtop and a touch of orange. Every now and then I get a whiff of more sweetness. I’m really not getting much cinnamon or spice flavour though.

Overall, not bad, but this would fit into the category of a warming morning tea for me, and it isn’t likely to beat the deliciousness of Glitter & Gold, so glad I tried it, but that’s another one out of the way :)

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

D: Do you know which ones are being discontinued?

Uniquity

If you follow DT on facebook they posted a list of teas which will be "discontinued on March 6 (I believe). They will all be available online permanently, but no longer in stores. It’s a pretty big list, but a lot of them seemed to be seasonal ones that hung around.

Kittenna

Beat me to it by a long shot, Uniquity :) I also now see that my wording was quite unclear! But yes, that’s the first official word about discontinuation I’ve ever heard. Still three teas I’d like to try that my location didn’t have in stock.

Uniquity

I like that they’ve finally said something, but it kinda sucks that they’ll only be available online. Since I live so close to actual DT locations, I never have any cause to order online (and pay shipping!) :D

Angrboda

Do you think it would be possible for you to order online and then pick it up at the shop instead of having it sent to your house? Perhaps you can save the shipping that way. The local tea shop where I lived before had a webshop as well, and they had that as an option to save shipping fee.

Kittenna

Did you realize that you can semi-cheat on the ordering online and get free shipping? I ordered some teas last time (to get online-only Swampwater, Mom’s Apple Pie) and they didn’t quite make my order up to $50… so I tacked on a $10 gift card. I’m not sure how much they would let you get away with this, but it’s worth a try?

Also, I kind of asked re: sending an order to the DT store so it isn’t left on my front porch (which is at a busy intersection) for 9 hours… The response was that it might get lost in the shuffle. Perhaps your best bet would be to make a joint order with someone else to reach the free shipping amount?

Angrboda

That’s a strange excuse, really. Isn’t it just a question of designating an area for that sort of thing where all the people working there know where that area is? Sounds more like they just didn’t want to bother with it and didn’t like saying so.

As for the gift card trick, it’s not really cheating though, because they can’t smell that you’re not planning on giving it to somebody. So how are they to know. (Is it worth it to avoid shipping though? How much does that run up in for you)

Kittenna

I wasn’t directly told no re:shipping to the store; perhaps if the issue was pursued one could get somewhere. Maybe something to bring up to DT on the Facebook page? Quoting, I was told ‘For future orders, we can look into delivering it to our Guelph store instead, although as they receive many shipments weekly, it is very possible that it may get lost in the shuffle.’ And there was no mention of eliminating shipping charges (although I hadn’t asked about that).

For me, shipping would only be $5, but given how much I spend there, supplementing a purchase with a gift card to get the free shipping would be worth it, since I’d quickly use up the card in the store.

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88
drank Movie Night by DAVIDsTEA
2276 tasting notes

Hmm, this didn’t taste as sweet today. Smelled sweet, but the taste was off. Maybe my taste buds are being weird. Forgot half the cup at home though, and can’t remember what exactly was off since it was four hours ago.

Drinking the cold leftovers, there’s a odd metallic-ish taste under the tasty caramel corn smell. I think I noticed it the first time I tried this tea as well, but it wasn’t as obvious. Maybe I oversteeped it.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 6 min, 0 sec

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85
drank Glitter & Gold by DAVIDsTEA
2276 tasting notes

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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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