302 Tasting Notes

93

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93

I already made another cup of this. I couldn’t help myself. One thing I noticed while drinking it this time is that it got better and better as it cooled. Perhaps that’s why I am supposed to brew it at a lower temp. I take the first sip and I think “eh, ok” and then by the end of the cup I saying out loud, “I love this tea”.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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93

I just got this in the mail and immediately brewed a cup. I love it. I don’t know what to say about it other than yum. I am not a white tea aficionado and I am not sure what black currents taste like by themselves so it is difficult for me to be a good judge of which flavors are dominant, etc. But I can say that I really really like it.

When I open the bag and smell it, it smells so sweet, like candy. Then when it is brewed up the white tea and the black currents are both delicate and seem well balanced. I added a little agave nectar to it because, well, that’s what I do. That really made it for me. I was sad to hit the bottom of the cup.

Brewed 2 1/2 tsp to about 10 oz for 2 1/2 minutes at 187 F. That is a higher temp than recommended but I don’t have a tea kettle at the moment (getting water from the Keurig) and my kitchen thermometer batteries are out. It didn’t seem to hurt it.

Lisbet

Wow, that sounds absolutely delicious. I am tempted to order some right away :)

Kristin

If you do, make sure you put in the special notes that I referred you. I’m trying to win free tea for a year! :)

Jim Marks

Bai Mu Dan (sometimes Pai Mu Tan, as at TeaGsch) is a very delicate white tea. I’m surprised anyone is flavoring it.

If you can find an unflavored version, I would give it a try, you’ll probably enjoy it quite a bit. Whites of this kind lend themselves to a sort of sweetness and wouldn’t be harmed by a drop of agave.

Kristin

The flavoring is pretty delicate. They did a nice job with it. I’ve had an unflavored white tea before and found it to be a little bland. I don’t remember what kind of white it was (probably was something from Teavana).

Cofftea

I’ve never had black currants, but red currants are very tart. My grandparents had current bushes when I was growing up and they told me to eat them by squishing them under my tongue 1st.

Jim Marks

I would say that white teas a) are pretty varied, as most tea is, and b) really aren’t worth buying unless you buy really, really good ones, because instead of being light they end up just being flat.

Cofftea

Jim… well yeah. Why would you buy bad tea no matter what kind? Everyone has their own idea of good/bad, but buying bad tea is dumb.

Jim Marks

Dumb it may be, but an awful lot of bad tea gets sold in this country nevertheless. ;-)

However, my point was that with white tea, it isn’t a question of good versus bad, but rather a question of mediocre versus good versus very good versus exceptional. I have found that Teavana tries to pass off mediocre/good tea as very good/exceptional simply by charging twice what the tea is worth. I wouldn’t be at all surprised that a white tea that Kristin tried from that shop was bland – I’ve never been impressed with anything I’ve had from them.

What I’m saying is, if you want to drink unflavored white tea and have it impress you, you probably need to drop some serious coin on some serious tea. White tea is too fragile to survive the trip to your cup with all the nuances intact except under the best of care; which most tea doesn’t get.

Kristin

Re. bad tea. That is why I have stopped buying almost any tea that I cannot buy a sample of first (this one was an exception because 52 teas are so unique). I got tired of throwing away large tins of tea.

Cofftea

Shrugs… I even like adagio’s whites so price doesn’t always matter.

Kristin

I didn’t like any of the teas that I ordered from Adagio.

Jim Marks

Liking a tea is a matter of personal taste and preference, it has nothing to do with objective quality. Objective quality is expensive. Unfortunately, sometimes stuff that isn’t very good is also expensive. So yes, we should not mistake a high price tag for quality, but the reality is, something that is of objective quality is going to be expensive. Based on what Kristin has said, my suspicion is that she isn’t going to enjoy lesser whites.

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80
drank Blueberry Cocktail by SpecialTeas
302 tasting notes

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80
drank Blueberry Cocktail by SpecialTeas
302 tasting notes

This tea has grown on me a little bit. It reminds me of a blueberry pop-tart. I still wish it was missing the grape flavor.

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69
drank Almond Cookie by SpecialTeas
302 tasting notes

This tea is pretty good, but I’m don’t think it is meeting up to the expectations based on all the hype in the reviews. Maybe I’ll change my mind after I brew it a little stronger next time.

The tea itself is gorgeous. Big fat slices of almonds mixed with beautiful safflower blossoms. It smells pretty good (pre-brewing). A mixture of almond, cinnamon, and something fruity (orange?).

Once brewed, I taste a nice black tea with a hint of cinnamon and a light almond flavor in the aftertaste. I tasted it both with and without some silk soy creamer and a little sugar.

Brewed as directed. 1 1/2 tsp for 8 oz steeped 2.5 min.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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87
drank Golden Spice Blend by SpecialTeas
302 tasting notes

No notes yet. Add one?

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 8 min or more

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80
drank Blueberry Cocktail by SpecialTeas
302 tasting notes

This is the first SpecialTeas tea that I haven’t been thrilled with. I really wanted this to be like a blueberry cobbler flavor. But it isn’t.

Smell of unbrewed tea is very herby and flowery. I don’t smell much blueberry.

Brewed tea smells strongly of grapes and hibiscus. When I first tasted it, I immediately yelled “EWWW”. Then about a second later, said “mmm, blueberry”. The blueberry flavor definitely hits you about a second or two later. It tastes pretty strongly of grapes too. It’s just ok.

This was a sample.

Update – I noticed that this is really tasty when cooled completely. I think it would make an excellent iced tea. This tea did grow on me after a couple of cups so I am upping my original rating.

Update – And now I have to up it again. I am out of this tea and find myself really wanting a cup of it. I guess I am going to order some after all.

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

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84

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87
drank Golden Spice Blend by SpecialTeas
302 tasting notes

I ordered a really large bag of this because SpecialTeas didn’t have a sample size and when I opened the bag and smelled it I was worried that I wasn’t going to like it. It smells very lemony to me before brewing. I can also smell some anise in the pre-brewed mixed but it didn’t smell spicy or gingery like I expected. The look of the tea is very entertaining as it has large pieces of cinnamon stick and dried ginger. It looks like someone ground up a stick.

Once brewed, I love it. The smell is complex and I can start to really smell the coriander and ginger. I was still worried at this point because the smell is very different from what I expected. I added a little agave nectar to it and then tasted it. It tastes like candied ginger with asian flavors and has a nice roundness. The spices hit you gently in the back of the throat. It definitely lives up to its description as exotic. The more I drank, the more I wanted. When the cup was empty I was very sad. When I was done with this tea, it left me with a nice warm feeling in my chest for a long time. I think this tea would also be great if you have a cold.

The licorice flavors in this are very background (in case you are a licorice hater like me; although i do like star anise, fyi).

Brewed 2 tsp to 11 oz for 10 minutes.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 8 min or more
Jim Marks

Sounds like a great tea for upset stomach, head cold or flu symptoms.

Kristin

Yep! But, I think I am just going to drink it all the time. :) ❤

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Profile

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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