66
drank Five O'Clock Tea by SpecialTeas
302 tasting notes

I’m not great at reviewing plain black teas. To me they are either good or not good. I taste them and think, “yep, tastes like black tea”. So, take this for what it’s worth. This tea falls into the good category. It is smooth and not bitter at all. Tastes malty with some floral notes in the background. I am detecting a slight sourness in the aftertaste.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 3 min, 0 sec
Jim Marks

When it comes to Darjeelings, Assams and other black teas, I tend to talk in terms of “sparkle”. Is there anything in the cup that makes me think beyond “yup, it is black tea”? If not, it may be a perfectly good cup, but nothing special. What I love to find are those Assam teas that are so astringent, so dry, that you’re almost thirstier when you’re done than when you started, but they aren’t at all bitter at the same time. Those are great on a cold, blustery day.

Kristin

Good advice. I’d say this one wasn’t particularly special other than is was smooth and mellow. Nothing that makes me really want another cup. There is this black tea that is served at my local vegan diner that I love love love. They sell it at their store and I keep meaning to get some. We’ll see if I love it as much at home.

Jim Marks

I always have this sneaking suspicion that the habit of flavoring tea (either sugar, or lemon, or dairy, or spices, or floral scenting or oil essence flavoring) is all a response to someone having had a really good cup of tea from really good leaves, that had all kinds of depth and character, and when they couldn’t recapture that in any other cup with inferior leaves, they started trying to fake it.

There is just nothing like a great cup of tea made from great leaves.

Kristin

Oh, I add some sort of sweetener to everything. I just like them sweet. So my comparisons are always sweet to sweet. I don’t like tea without at least a little sweetener. :)

Jim Marks

Remind me never to send you any good tea ;-)

Payton

I understand the difficulty telling black teas apart. I have the same issue most of the time. My solution is to infuse the teas (full leaf, anyway) for less time to allow the leaf flavor to overcome the robustness of the infusion. Say, 1 to 1.5 minutes. (If it’s not strong enough, you can always put the leaves back in.)

Stephanie

Such great comments! I have a new appreciation about black teas now—I need to discover the “sparkle” too. The teas from The Simple Leaf seem like good candidates.

Kristin

Good idea Payton, thanks! Stephanie, I’m lucky to have friends with much better tea knowledge than me. :) I’m learning a lot here on Steepster.

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Comments

Jim Marks

When it comes to Darjeelings, Assams and other black teas, I tend to talk in terms of “sparkle”. Is there anything in the cup that makes me think beyond “yup, it is black tea”? If not, it may be a perfectly good cup, but nothing special. What I love to find are those Assam teas that are so astringent, so dry, that you’re almost thirstier when you’re done than when you started, but they aren’t at all bitter at the same time. Those are great on a cold, blustery day.

Kristin

Good advice. I’d say this one wasn’t particularly special other than is was smooth and mellow. Nothing that makes me really want another cup. There is this black tea that is served at my local vegan diner that I love love love. They sell it at their store and I keep meaning to get some. We’ll see if I love it as much at home.

Jim Marks

I always have this sneaking suspicion that the habit of flavoring tea (either sugar, or lemon, or dairy, or spices, or floral scenting or oil essence flavoring) is all a response to someone having had a really good cup of tea from really good leaves, that had all kinds of depth and character, and when they couldn’t recapture that in any other cup with inferior leaves, they started trying to fake it.

There is just nothing like a great cup of tea made from great leaves.

Kristin

Oh, I add some sort of sweetener to everything. I just like them sweet. So my comparisons are always sweet to sweet. I don’t like tea without at least a little sweetener. :)

Jim Marks

Remind me never to send you any good tea ;-)

Payton

I understand the difficulty telling black teas apart. I have the same issue most of the time. My solution is to infuse the teas (full leaf, anyway) for less time to allow the leaf flavor to overcome the robustness of the infusion. Say, 1 to 1.5 minutes. (If it’s not strong enough, you can always put the leaves back in.)

Stephanie

Such great comments! I have a new appreciation about black teas now—I need to discover the “sparkle” too. The teas from The Simple Leaf seem like good candidates.

Kristin

Good idea Payton, thanks! Stephanie, I’m lucky to have friends with much better tea knowledge than me. :) I’m learning a lot here on Steepster.

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Bio

Rating Scale:
90-100 – Love it. Must order this one again.
75-90 – Pretty good. Maybe I’ll order it again.
60-75 – It’s ok. Drinkable. It’s not my thing, but someone else might love it. Won’t order again.
50-60 – Meh. I wish I hadn’t ordered it, but i’ll finish this cup.
30-60 – Barely drinkable. – Throwing away/giving away the rest of this one.
0-30 – Went down the drain. Too sad to even pass along to friends.

Location

Salt Lake City, UT

Website

http://vegetablenirvana.wordp...

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