2498 Tasting Notes

94
drank Orange & Cream by Della Terra Teas
2498 tasting notes

Sipdown! 871. (But I just bought another 2 oz. packet, haha.)

Tasty as usual as a cold brew – nothing new to report!

Preparation
Iced 8 min or more

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77
drank With Open Eyes by Butiki Teas
2498 tasting notes

Yum. This is pretty tasty, albeit lightly flavoured. I’m picking up creamy, caramelly notes from the dragon well, with overtones of sweet candy strawberry and a hint of ginger. No toffee in particular, but it may be difficult to separate from the base tea. Overall, fairly tasty, but the aroma of the dry tea was stronger, and I wish the tea tasted like that too.

ETA: Second infusion wasn’t great (though there was definitely vegetal dragonwell flavour), but I had to wait a couple days for it, so I’ll have to give re-steeping a better shot next time.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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53

Hmm, this is an interesting one. The dry tea smells like malty, sweet apples – which is pretty good, but again, the flavour doesn’t quite coincide. It’s not bad, and certainly tastes autumnal (without cinnamon, which is a plus for those who are sick of pretty much all fall teas being heavy on spice), but wouldn’t be one I’d hang onto.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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43

Bleh, I see what Sil meant about the soapiness. This tea smells deliciously limey, but the flavour definitely doesn’t live it. There’s some nice citrus flavour, but there are overtones of soap, which kind of wreck it. It’s possible that it’s tequila flavour or something – it’s not nearly as unbearable as soapiness in some other teas I’ve tried – or it could be rancid coconut. Tough to tell. Oh well.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec
Lariel of Lórien

It’s very good if you have it iced.

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59
drank Carrot Cake by Della Terra Teas
2498 tasting notes

Wow, the dry tea actually smells like carrot cake with cream cheese icing! Yum! Sadly, the flavour doesn’t live up to the aroma. Again, not a bad tea, but there’s not a great deal of flavour. Perhaps it could be likened to plain, un-iced carrot cake, but the aroma promised so much more.

ETA: Re-steep also pretty bland. I’ll try a longer first infusion next time.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec
Lariel of Lórien

I gave mine a longer steep.

Cavocorax

Hmmm. That’s disappointing! I just got 1oz in the mail today!

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71

Digging into Della Terra’s autumn tea collection! So far, everything smells delicious!

There’s definitely a cola-like smell to this tea, both dry and brewed, and it carries into the flavour, which is a mixture of what tastes like cola and chocolate cake. It’s really quite interesting, albeit rather weird. There’s no cherry to speak of, although I’m not sure I got any cherry pieces in my infuser either.

I’ll see what I think about this one after another cup, but I think it will be classified as “glad to have tried, would drink again, but not re-stock”. If you’re into cola-flavoured teas, I’d recommend this one. It’s definitely better than DavidsTea’s Cherry Cola!

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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61

This one mostly smells like Autumn Leaves – very mapley, and not much else. Unfortunately, that’s also how it tastes, which in itself isn’t bad, but considering that this is supposed to taste like something other than pure maple, it’s not what I was hoping for. Bacon teas have always failed to live up to my expectations :(

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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86

I thought this was a sipdown, but there was too much tea left. Booo. So, one small cup’s worth left.

This tea is a pretty good oolong, creamy and “oolongy” (haha), but I’d rather drink straight teas from other companies, and there are other oolongs I’ve found that I prefer, that may even be somewhat cheaper, from other companies (e.g. Verdant, Teavivre).

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

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81
drank Caramel Creme by Della Terra Teas
2498 tasting notes

Sipdown! 872.

Ok, this is actually a pretty darn caramelly (and tasty) cup of tea. Apparently I also enjoyed it last time, although I now think the rating should be a bit higher…. at least 80. The flavouring is really working for me today, and the black base is perfect. I could almost be fooled into thinking that this is Butiki’s Caramel Vanilla Assam, although that may be because my experiences with that tea have been less awesome than expected. Either way, yummy tea, recommended if you like smooth caramel blacks.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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61
drank Daydreamer by DAVIDsTEA
2498 tasting notes

Sipdown! 873.

Still pretty meh about this one. Fruity greens and I typically don’t get along, so it’s not too surprising. There’s a bit of fruitiness coming through past the vegetal green tea base, and there’s no astringency with a 2-min infusion, so it’s not terrible or anything, just not suited to my preferences.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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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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