2361 Tasting Notes

73

Sooooo… my baggie reads “Other Random Black Golden Tip” – is it this one, or the other one?! Ahhhhhhh :P I’ll have to find the first one and see if there’s any visual difference or anything, otherwise I may never know…. (Sil, Raritea – any clarification on this? I know you guys packed it up :D).

Anyhow, my house is shockingly cool enough for me to want warm tea! This coming on a day where we hit 32C, and 42C with the humidex. Good work, A/C! (Gonna be expensive though, eeps!) So I grabbed a couple random-ish teas from one of the various billion boxes upstairs to make a bit more headway on smaller samples.

This tea, although not bad, isn’t really my thing. I think I brewed it a bit weak (maybe 2 min wasn’t enough), though that’s not really an issue – it’s just more hay-y than chocolatey, and I much prefer a good dose of chocolate. That said, there’s no astringency, and it’s warm and malty… certainly a good tea for those with a greater acceptance of black teas than me!

Thanks for sharing some of it with me, Sil!

ETA: Re-steep was unremarkable.

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec

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79
drank Mint Cacao Tea by Herbal Infusions
2361 tasting notes

Whoops, missed logging this sipdown! 817.

Definitely tastes like mint hot chocolate, but my previous opinion stands that too much of the cacao deliciousness is overwhelmed by the mint, which makes it not much better than a mint rooibos/honeybush or mint chocolate black, except that it’s technically a herbal with no funky flavour (though in my experience, mint chocolate HB is usually free from weird flavours).

ETA: I retract my earlier statement. This is now my preferred way of consuming a mint chocolate beverage. Yum.

Preparation
Boiling

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drank Poppy Fields by Indie Tea
2361 tasting notes

Also not super impressed… I can taste too much of the gag-worthy chamomile flavour that I quite dislike in this one. I’ve found that I can actually tolerate it in most loose leaf blends, but for some reason, it’s really not working here. However, this was probably the best of the three teas that I did try, as there were other flavours going on as well. I’ll have to write a better tasting note next time though, as I no longer remember all my thoughts on it.

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec

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drank The Road To Hana by Indie Tea
2361 tasting notes

Hmm, perhaps I understeeped this one. In spite of the big pieces of mango and coconut, I didn’t get much beyond a general hay-flavour of the white tea, which wasn’t as tasty as I was hoping either. I’ll give it another shot, but currently not too impressed… and I had high hopes for this one!

ETA: :( Second infusion primarily tastes like hibiscus, though it’s quite a tame level of it. I remain disappointed.

Preparation
2 min, 0 sec

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36
drank Lover's Lane by Indie Tea
2361 tasting notes

Unfortunately, not impressed with this tea :( The lavender is very overwhelming, and becomes more potent when iced. I do think that this might be improved by adding sweetener, however, or perhaps some lemon juice to make a lavender lemonade, but I really can’t taste any of the other flavours. Big miss for me, sadly.

ETA: Second infusion = still lavender. Blech.

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

On the other hand, lavender lemonade sounds fantastic!

Kittenna

Yes, it does! Possibly mostly because lemonade sounds fantastic :D But if it can help me make a low-sugar lemonade, I’m in!

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83

Drank this quite a while ago and forgot to log. I opted to go with my now-standard brewing parameters, i.e. 1.5 tsp for a couple minutes, and it was delicious. Can’t remember what exactly constituted “delicious”, though! :(

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec

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78
drank Pecan Pie by Culinary Teas
2361 tasting notes

Sipdown! 818. Teas from Amoda came, so numbers went back up again. Le sigh.

Anyhow, I ened up drinking this one chilled and though I think it’s better hot, it was still pretty good! All malty, nutty goodness, which yeah, was a bit strange to have in a cold beverage. I’m such a fan of nutty/sweet desserty blacks, haha :D

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec

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88

This milk oolong tastes a tad more “flavoured” than some I’ve had… but it’s still pretty tasty, and I’m not unhappy to have a bag of it! First infusion is heavy on the sweet milkiness, but I’m hoping that there’s more oolong in infusions 2 and 3.

ETA: Two good additional infusions from this one, and the flavour morphed as expected – more creaminess lingered than I was expecting too, which was awesome!

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

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86

Thanks to Sil for letting me sample some of her reblend. Unfortunately, this tea didn’t get proper treatment – I brewed a bunch of things up yesterday, then no longer felt like drinking tea, so I stuck things in the fridge. Ended up drinking this one cold, and although it did taste like blueberries, it really didn’t taste like the BCCD I previously had. However, I also didn’t drink that one iced, so I’ll have to give this one a proper go next time.

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec

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72
drank Sunshine by Della Terra Teas
2361 tasting notes

This was surprisingly tasty! Quite fruity and refreshing; couldn’t really taste the green tea, but I’m sure it was lurking in there. The fruitiness was just a touch floral, like mango, and I ended up chilling most of this tea after brewing it, and it was delicious iced, so I suspect I’ll be making up more of this as iced tea.

ETA: Two re-steeps were also pretty tasty. The fruit flavour in here is lovely.

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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