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318 Tasting Notes

72
drank Wild Flowers by Primula Tea
318 tasting notes

I bought a sampler pack of Primula’s blooming teas awhile back – they all taste the same, but they bloom in different configurations. And they’re not bad teas. Just loose-leaf, I wouldn’t buy them, but they’re nice to show off for guests, and I enjoy sitting in class with my double-walled glass travel mug blooming one of these. Okay, maybe I’m a tea snob… I prefer the term “enthusiast.”
It’s a very light jasmine taste, and it’s great that I’ve never had any trouble with oversteeping, since I leave the ball in the bottom of the cup while I drink and sometimes it steeps for upwards of 30 minutes. I probably will buy them again, just because they’re not especially expensive and they’re cool to show to company. The jasmine flavoring is wonderfully light too. So many companies scent it so strongly that you lose the flavor of the tea itself.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 8 min or more

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72

I’m a pu-erh novice – I’ve tried a little, but not very much. This is the first one I’ve ever liked, though. I wouldn’t have ordered if it didn’t come in a sampler pack I ordered, but I’m glad it did.

I do get a lot of the fishy smell that other people are getting, but I don’t get it in the taste, which I’m glad for. (Although maybe I am and just don’t know it – I’m a vegetarian who doesn’t eat fish!) And it’s not fishy like a fish market would be… more like taking a walk in the woods near an ocean? There’s definitely an earthiness that comes out, especially on subsequent steeps.
But the liquor, true to its name, is definitely a beautiful golden-red color. It tastes very earthy, especially as it steeps more and more times (I’m brewing this gong-fu before class in the morning – I knew I wouldn’t have time to finish a mug, but I could do a few smaller cups!)
It’s very earthy. I don’t know if I’ll order it again, but it’s not a sample I’m running to get rid of.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec

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50

This is okay. I don’t love the orange flavor – I think it’s a bit overpowering. And the cloves are very strong here – a bit too much for me, as I much prefer floral teas to spicy ones.
That being said, I got a box of this from a friend and it’s definitely drinkable. It’s warm and aromatic, and I think it’ll be great iced with a little bit of honey or sugar – just needs a bit of experimentation to get it right. And I’m glad that, even though it’s a teabag, it’s a Bai MuDan base so I don’t have to worry too much about oversteeping, which always worries me with bags.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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70

I got this in a care package today from a fantastic friend – she sent an adorable little teacup, and chocolate cookies, and tea! So happy.

This is… okay. It doesn’t have the delicacy that I like in whites, and I’m not huge on the whole lemongrass thing. But it’s soothing, and it isn’t bad – it’s not like it’s full of ginger or something. It’s good with a bit of honey, and it’ll probably be good on sore-throat days.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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71

I got this in a lovely care package from a friend of mine today. And Lord knows I needed it. I haven’t actually had bagged tea in a long time, but I’m not about to not drink it just because it’s not loose. I’m not that much of a tea snob. I just wouldn’t buy it for myself (though I think I’ll keep the bags in my… bag… for work and stuff like that, when I can’t get up to my dorm).

It’s not a bad tea. It doesn’t quite have the depth of flavor that something like the Jasmine Dragon Pearls from Teavana has, but it’s decent. It’s definitely floral with hints of sweetness. I can’t say I’m going to give up my loose leaf for this, but I’ll certainly enjoy it while I can.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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84
drank Irish Breakfast by Adagio Teas
318 tasting notes

This is a great Irish Breakfast. I first started drinking tea when I was in Ireland, and it became a habit that carried over when I came back. I much prefer Irish Breakfast to English Breakfast now. It’s heartier, more flavorful, fuller.

This is one of the better ones I’ve tried. It’s dark and malty without being bitter, and sometimes I get little notes of cinnamon. I really like it hot and plain, but it’s fantastic when iced with a splash of milk. (Interesting, because when I was in Ireland, I NEVER added milk or sugar to my tea, or drank anything iced.)

I just got a small sample size from Adagio – I’m definitely ordering more now.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 30 sec

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80
drank Mandarin Silk by Art of Tea
318 tasting notes

I ended up with this by accident. I placed an order with Amazon for Art of Tea’s Silver Needles and their Coconut Cream, and was sent this Mandarin Silk instead of the Silver Needles. Just a human error, I think – the packing label said Silver Needles. So I contacted Amazon and they said “We’re very sorry. We’ll refund your account; place another order for the Silver Needles and dispose of the Mandarin Silk in whatever way you feel fit.”
So I drank it.
And it’s good.

The leaves in the tin are very fragrant – sort of like oranges and cream. They’re rolled into very long, thin leaves. It brews a beautiful bronze color, and the light shining through it is lovely! It’s definitely a dessert tea, and it’s complimented well with a little bit of sugar – I use about a teaspoon of German rock sugar. Delicious.

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

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79

Not my favorite oolong, but not bad. The leaves are dark and small and tightly rolled, and dry they have a scent almost of orange and dark chocolate. It brews almost black, losing a bit of the chocolate notes but keeping the orange – it smells a lot lighter once it’s brewed.
It’s a bit astringent, but not in a bad way, just a little more than I’m used to. I think I just have more of a preference for greener oolongs. And the taste is sort of dark and earthy and lingers on the tongue.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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41

Gah, class registration. Making a huge cup of this so hopefully I’m caffeinated enough to press “Enroll” at the proper time?

This is a smooth tea. It’s creamy and rich, and, like any Earl Grey, it’s complimented well by milk and sugar. I don’t really like adding things much, so I’m glad that the flavor is smooth enough not to require much. Teavana’s Earl Grey, for example, has SO much bergamot that whenever I make it, I have to leave half the mug empty milk / sugar. This just needs a splash of milk and a few rocks of sugar. I’ll definitely keep it on my cupboard for those days when I need a morning tea.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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60
drank David's Darjeeling by DAVIDsTEA
318 tasting notes

It’s a really pretty golden color. The first steep is light and flowery and woodsy, and there’s a bit of astringency that really isn’t distasteful. I’ve had better Darjeelings, but this one is certainly decent.

On a second steep, I mixed about 1.5tsp of DAVIDs Dragonwell tea in there, and that made it much better. I’ve always been a fan of the Darjeeling / Dragonwell blend, although I’ve only ever had the Teavana version. I wasn’t thrilled with the DAVIDs Dragonwell, but when mixed with the Darjeeling it added a bit of sweetness and spice to the tip of the flavor which wasn’t there before.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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Bio

Michelle, 19. College student: upstate NY.

I really enjoy tea, British television and theatre. I read a lot, write a lot, dream a lot.

Location

Geneva, NY, United States

Website

http://michellefedaphotograph...

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