858 Tasting Notes

drank Snooze Blend by The Art of Tea
858 tasting notes

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drank Chuan Hong by Monstrositea
858 tasting notes

Am I just in a generous mood today, or what? This is my second cup of this Monstrositea sample and it’s taking me back to those wonderful adventures I had with my first ever Butiki order and the beautiful straight blacks I got from them. It’s just a lovely, lovely cup.

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Here’s one I was surprised to really enjoy! I guess I have to give in and say when employed sensibly and not in great quantity, licorice root isn’t the worst ingredient I’ve ever tasted. But darn if it isn’t a fine line.

This one’s from a Monstrositea box from some time in the last three months and I’m always grateful for the opportunity to try teas that I wouldn’t always necessarily reach for, like this one for example! I don’t think it holds well in a resteep, despite what the blurb for it says, but the first brew is super tasty straight and has made for a lovely afternoon tea on the multiple occasions I got out of the sample. I’d actually consider restocking this, which has shocked me. Better bump up the rating.

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drank Blueberry Blush by T2
858 tasting notes

Welp… I finally did it. I polished off the last of this limited edition I’d been hoarding since last Christmas. And do you know why I finally did it? Because I realised it reminded me enough of DT’s Fantasy Island that I could accept seeing the end of it and knowing there would still be Fantasy Island.


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drank Smoky Earl Grey by Elmstock
858 tasting notes

Yes, ok. Going by my own ratings I have to drag this one down, because it was just a little too confusing a pairing to be completely enjoyable.

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This is plain and simply a nice straightforward black blend. I tried my sample both plain and with a dash of milk and sugar. Didn’t blow me away, didn’t disappoint me. No rush to restock but I enjoyed.

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drank Smoky Earl Grey by Elmstock
858 tasting notes

Um… yeah. Uh? Basically a mash-up of RC and EG, which is weird.

Not awful. Just weird.

Don’t give this to your grandma.

Sami Kelsh

My brain is confused by this combination. I’m not seeing how it would come together coherently at all! It sounds weird indeed.


Yeah it’s super weird. It’s essentially like pouring a cup full of half earl grey, half russian caravan. There’s no real melding of flavour. Good way to wake your tastebuds up? While they’re going UMM WHAT THOUGH

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drank Super Mood by Tea Lovers
858 tasting notes

I’m not sure what’s so supermood inducing about a fruity green blend but then I’m biased against greens so not the best mindset going into trying this one from a recent Monstrositea box. HMM. Recommended as a cold brew so I’ve got the rest of my sample steeping, but it also says cold brew overnight and I find greens still get too astringent if steeped longer than 3-6 hours.

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Right, I pulled my finger out and added the last three months’ of Monstrositea samples to my cupboard, in an effort to light a fire under myself and get through them. I’ve been so focused on sipping down the cupboard that I’ve been largely ignoring the monthly samples as they roll in and that just won’t do!

I went for this one first soon after filling the cupboard up, because the description intrigued me. As did the taste once I got to it! Intriguing and a little confusing… fresh minty but sweet fruity with a nice black base. Definitely one for someone with a more adventurous tea palate but I had a lot of fun with it.

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Translating my ratings, at a glance:

95 — this must always be in my pantry. forever.
90 — excellent! you need to try this tea!
85 — very good! you should try this tea!
80-70 — I enjoyed this and will happily drink it again.
65-50 — Fine. Unremarkable.
45-35 — this wasn’t the worst drink ever but I was disappointed; it didn’t live up to my expectations at all.
30-0 — I didn’t enjoy this tea and that makes me sad.


Grandad got me started young, white (a LOT of white) Irish breakfast with two.

I never strayed far from that until the world of T2 Tea came to Brisbane some years ago, and now I don’t know what I’d do without a pantry full of tea options.

These days I prefer to drink my teas straight without sweetener (though I appreciate some black variations shine better with milk and/or a dash of honey/sugar). I also love a speedy iced tea (hot brewed then poured over ice), and my latest obsession is cold brewing (which doesn’t make a lot of sense, as Australia is headed into winter and I live in the coldest corner of the country, but oh well).

I’d love to make a bunch of tea friends on here, especially those who can talk Aussie teas with me. I’ve recently come back from a jaunt to North America and it was a real hoot to hit up DAVIDsTEA after reading so many reviews! I wish I’d had the chance to get to more stores… but I’m happy with what I got back past customs. See those teas and my local jams in my reviews.

+ black teas
+ white teas
+ oolongs
+ flavoured versions of all three of the above
+ herbal infusions and fruit tisanes

+ most green teas
+ LICORICE ROOT (my sworn enemy) and aniseed flavours


Hobart, Australia



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