1121 Tasting Notes

87
drank Earl Grey by Verdant Tea
1121 tasting notes

On the weekend I did some cleaning of my tea cupboard and assessed the samples I have left that I need to get to and also put some teas in a give away pile and did give some to my mom yesterday too! I will try to give a few to my boyfriend’s brother then decide what to do with the rest. In turn this has helped reduce the number of teas in my cupboard and determine which ones I should sip down or at least open haha. I am also going to try to review a bunch of my new (read: unopened that I’ve had for a while) teas, as I really need to get back to some detailed reviews!

I found this opened sample in the top drawer and I would like to drink it down before it gets stale. So I made a cup in my travel mug for this fine Tuesday after the long weekend. The travel mug always mutes flavor, but this one is still creamy with some bergamot, not as much as in a regular mug, but still there. Also some caramel notes from the LB. Tasty and the caffeine should help me get through the morning! Not a detailed note but one day I will write a detailed one haha. See previous notes on this tea :)

Sil

good plan!

MissLena

Now if my plan makes it to fruition then it will be a great plan ;) lol

keychange

You inspired me and I cleaned my tea cupboard as well!

Sil

..i think half your cupboard is still at my place keychange :P

MissLena

@keychange – hooray for clean cupboards!!

Kristal

My “tea cupboard” is actually a china cabinet lol. I gotta give it a good wipe down and transfer teas in old crappy tins to better tins. Maybe this evening :o

MissLena

@Kristal – Nice! My cupboard is technically 2 drawers :P good luck with tidying!

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First of all, a huge thank you to Crimson Lotus Tea for this sheng sample! Sorry it has taken me so long to write a note on it, I recall drinking the first half of my sample a while ago but trying to log it and the page not working on Steepster :( but luckily today it is working!

I didn’t have much left in my second half of the sample, but there was just enough for a gongfu session. After a short rinse of about 4s, I steeped for maybe 6 seconds in the gaiwan and poured into my pitcher then cup. The leaves smell nicely vegetal and slightly smoky. I used freshly boiled water left a few seconds to cool.

The first steeping is oh so mellow and smooth and sweet. It went down like nothing! A sweet aftertaste lingers, fruity, a mild apricot flavor for now. The second steep also smells lovely mmm, can’t even describe it it just smells good. The flavor is also delicious, even a bit sweeter I think, like a light marshmallow note with dewy leaves and a fruity aftertaste. It becomes a bit smoky as it cools, but nothing overwhelming, just tasty sheng-like tobacco notes. This is so good. It’s so easy to drink! I also haven’t had sheng in ages, so it is a very welcome change. I will continue to steep this throughout the evening, funnily enough, I chose a sheng hoping the caffeine would invigorate me to start cleaning. This tea, however, is providing more of the mellow flavors and feeling that cause me to relax, which is also not a bad thing haha. Maybe the caffeine will hit later :D

Overall, a delicious sheng, easy to drink and no strange notes about it, just clean, sweet tea with fruity notes. Creamy and light mouthfeel too, very light and fluffy. I recall enjoying the first half of my sample as well, so this is a winner in my books! Thanks again to Crimson Lotus Tea for the lovely sample!

Terri HarpLady

Would you believe that I’ve also been drinking this one all afternoon, after having it sit in my cupboard for quite some time!

Sil

Yes Terri I would… Lol

MissLena

@Terri – well better late than never! Good thing about puerh is that it gets better with age :P such a good tea though! Now I want to order some of it…haha

nycoma

why am i getting so much astringency?

MissLena

How hot of water are you using? I’d try it a bit cooler to see if that helps :)

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drank Spiced Pumpkin by DAVIDsTEA
1121 tasting notes

Happy Thanksgiving fellow steepsters! We are celebrating it in Canada this weekend :) so I am having a delicious morning cup of this. Sweet, very pumpkin pie like considering I had the real thing last night. Whipped cream, maple, graham cracker and cinnamon. Yum.

Fjellrev

Happy happy Thanksgiving!

Sil

yay! happy thanksgiving to you too!

keychange

Glad you’re in Canada today! happy thanksgiving!

MissLena

Thanks everyone!! Right back at you! :D

Roswell Strange

Happy Thanksgiving!

MissLena

Thanks @Roswell Strange – same to you!! :D

Kristal

Happy Thanksgiving, fellow Canadian! I love this tea too :)

MissLena

Thanks @Kristal, it is a very tasty pumpkin tea, I’ll have too stock up!

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It has been a long time since I have written a tasting note, but that is mostly because I was on vacation in Scotland! What a beautiful place it is, the rugged highlands, epic oceans, sandy beaches, cliffs, hills, munroes..everything was great! And the weather was gorgeous to boot! I can’t wait to go back someday, it was a good 10 days there but I will definitely return to see the eastern parts (Aberdeen, Edinburgh, we saved the whole eastern coast with its castles for another trip) and I would love to go back to the Isle of Skye and the Outer Hebrides again, they were stunning! Great time, wish I was still there!

Anyways, so while on holiday I did drink a fair amount of tea, every morning in fact, although it was mostly basic bagged black teas by Twinings or Tetley, but I took those with milk and sugar so they were quite good with the delicious Scottish breakfasts. A few places had peppermint, and I had that one or two mornings to help with digesting the heavy food near the end of the trip. I also had loose tea once, in Glasgow, at a little cafe near the University I got an EG to go and it looked like it was loose tossed in a tea bag, it was also pretty good. So overall a lot of tea drinking, also, every B&B and hotel we stayed at provided a kettle, tea, sugar and milk in the room! I wish they did that here in Canada!!

Overall, a tasty week of teas and a great holiday. Now I am back to my stash, and will hopefully log some notes as the weather here is turning cooler so I should be drinking more chai, puerh and spicy pumpkin and apple things haha.

Dexter

YAY!!! So happy that you had an amazing trip to Scotland. Travel is so good for the soul. :))
I currently have the travel bug and am researching an international vacation for next year – destination is still to be determined.

keychange

Oh, we loved Scotland so much when we went also! So glad you had such an amazing trip. Looking forward to your notes!

MissLena

@Dexter – ahh it was great for the soul and for my body, just feels good to have a break from working :) and I also have the travel bug as I still have a week left of vacation to use this year :D let me know where you end up going! I can highly recommend Scotland if you want to do some great hiking and see fantastic scenery, especially the wild Outer Hebrides!

@keychange – It is a wonderful place! I can’t wait to go back :D it’s so scenic and beautiful! I will try to keep up with my tasting notes lol I have been falling behind since last winter but I will try to pick it back up and do some sipdowns too!

Dexter

@MissLena – I’m sure Scotland is amazing – it’s on my list too, but a little further down. I’m starting to feel like if I don’t cross off some of my top choices I’ll never get to go. Right now I’m looking at East Africa (Kenya/Tanzania) as my first choice but WOW expensive (or you have to really lower your comfort standards). Second choice is Egypt with Nile cruise – there are challenges with this trip to. If I can’t afford or get either of those to work then I’m going to do Rome. I’m still researching – finding my comfort levels – setting max budgets – soul searching. I’m going to do one of those, but which one?

Indigobloom

Welcome home! :)
Glad you had a great time. I’m surprised you didn’t come across any tea shops though

Evol Ving Ness

Lovely to hear about your tea drinking while away and the away part too.

MissLena

@Dexter – those sound like amazing choices!! It’s always tough to decide where to go, but on the bright side all will be epic so you can’t really make a wrong decision :D

@Indigobloom – Thanks!! I probably would have come across a tea shop if I had been looking harder for one :P there were so many other things to do that tea was pretty low on the list, especially since I can order great ones online at home haha.

Indigobloom

That makes sense, I get like that on vacation too. It’s easy to get wrapped up in other things!

MissLena

@Evol Ving Ness – Thanks! Always happy to share my experiences and tea drinking while on vacation! :D

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drank Pumpkin Maté by DAVIDsTEA
1121 tasting notes

I don’t have time for a detailed review on this one, but the first few cups I’ve had of it are pretty good! Nicely spiced, with a strong mate presence, pumpkin notes nicely present as well, and a nice sweet aftertaste. Hoping for a mild boost from this on this dreary morning. Oh, and I’m pleased that butternut squash made it’s way into a tea :P happy I picked up a bit of this!

TheKesser

I’ve heard more bad things than good about this one! Glad to hear someone liked it.

Nichole/CuppaGeek

M&K has a great butternut squash pumpkin tea that is out right now. I have a ton of it on its way to me. It is my favorite pumpkin tea. http://www.mkstea.com/pumpkin-patch-spice/

MissLena

@TheKesser – Yikes! I had only read some good reviews on it haha and bought it the day it came out, each to their own I guess :D

@Nichole – Thanks for the suggestion! I will have to check that one out when I’m not at work, it sounds tasty!

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Another new tea today to warm me up and settle my stomach on this cold rainy night. The dry smell of this one was pleasantly musty and rich, reminding me of old books. Speaking of which, I would have been 8 when this tea was picked! So cool!

So I did a 30s rinse with boiling water and then a 25-30s steeping in a brew basket for a mug. The steeped tea is pretty light smelling so far, but pleasant again, no strong fermentation.

As for the flavor, this is a pretty darn good puerh. Quite smooth, some cocoa, dark fruit notes (maybe a plum of some sort), a nice mustiness, not fermented just rich and mellow. Deep. I feel calm and cozy. There is a mild tang surfacing as it cools, like a slight mushroomy savory note with ever so light astringency, unexpected but it works here.

Overall, a very nice complex puerh that has a lot of depth and is warming and delicious. I look forward to more cups of this tonight!

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I haven’t been keeping up with writing tea notes with work and life and planning our upcoming Scotland trip, but I figured today I should get back into it and also review a new tea that I got a sample of quite a while ago from the lovely people at Teavivre. Many thanks for this sample!I

I brewed up this keemun for about 3 mins with 195 degree water. I usually prefer keemuns in the afternoon, but this one sounded right this morning to me! The steeped smell is bright and fresh, to me some red fruits, a hint of astringency (the good kind of astringency) and some malty cocoa notes.

As for the flavor, this is a rich, delicious tea. It’s rich, but the body is still pretty medium, so it goes down very smooth. The main notes are a lovely red wine flavor with a bready flavor and some more red fruits. There is also a mild cocoa note, slightly creamy with almost a mild buttery flavor.

Overall, I am very much enjoying this. With all the flavored teas I’ve been having lately, and gasp coffee (PSL season, ugh), this is a wonderful change and reminds me that pure teas still reign supreme and never fail to impress me. Thanks again to Angel and the Teavivre team for this lovely sample! Happy I have a few more packets of this :)

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97

This tea is a freaking life saver. I have had an upset stomach all morning and have felt terrible, took some medications and they did nothing, remembered I had some of this tea at work and made it, wow, I feel so much better!!! I honestly do not know what I will do when I run out of this…maybe try blending it myself I guess lol. See previous notes on this delicious, stomach-saving tea!!

Helena

Ginger is always good for stomach issues. It is an old herbal remedy for that. Plus it will make sure you don’t throw up as it is a natural anitemetic.

MissLena

Yes indeed it is great! And I love the taste too, so win-win :)

Helena

Well yes taste is also very important ;)

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85
drank Pumpkin Chai by DAVIDsTEA
1121 tasting notes

I finally bought some of the 2015 version of this tea last weekend, my last years was getting kind of gross and was hard on my stomach. Also strange, the online ingredients for this tea do not seem to match the ones on my bag, I could have sworn the bag said ‘pumpkin flakes’ and that is not in the online ones at all. Weird. I also made this to take to work, so I don’t have the bag in front of me, I should check that.

Anyways, I am really liking this year’s version better than last. This year’s is smoother and creamier, with more pumpkin flavor I think? I recall last years as very spiced with not much pumpkin.

I have already had about 3 cups of this since I bought it, I guess my brain is thinking fall. It also was very chilly here this morning, +6 and it rained yesterday so it definitely feels like fall! See previous notes on this tea, although note that this tasting is for the 2015 version. Rating still stands too :)

Fjellrev

Nice, I’ll have to try this year’s version then! I was so bored by last year’s.

MissLena

Yes last year’s was not the greatest, hope you like this years!! :)

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I picked this up on the weekend along with this years Pumpkin Chai and Honeycrisp Apple (notes on those later if I remember), and decided to make it this morning as it is a slightly chilly more autumn feeling morning, and a cranberry muffin tea sounded about right lol. This will be a quick note as I’m at work, but the dandelion root and cinnamon are good in here, making it toasty and muffin like. Cranberry and hib are staying at bay, probably because I only steeped for 2 mins (finally, not an overwhelmingly hibiscus cup!!). This actually is reminding me of Verdant’s Campfire Blend a fair amount, probably the cinnamon and dandelion. Tasty and sweet this morning!

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Bio

Hello all, I am an electrical engineer (read:NERD :D), who is a bit obsessed with tea! I discovered loose tea in 2011, DAVIDsTEA in 2012 and it took off from there. I really started drinking/enjoying tea because it was excellent to take to class in the morning and because I can’t handle coffee! (unless it’s a really good cappuccino or latte, or decent decaf haha)

I enjoy a variety of teas – current favorites being ripe and raw pu’erhs, chinese black teas and herbal/green rooibos blends. I also enjoy white, green, and oolong teas, although I tend to drink them more in the warmer months. I have also tried matcha and guayusa, but I don’t drink them too often as I am a bit sensitive to caffeine. As a result I don’t drink black teas as often as I used to, but in moderation I can still enjoy a wide variety of teas.

Oh, and I have a severe peanut allergy and try to avoid most other nuts, just to be safe. Limits my tea choices a bit, but that’s ok. However I have tried almonds and found out I can eat them, so I have been trying a few teas with them in them.

MissLena’s rating system
(as of 04/19/13)

95+: Absolute favorite, will try to always have it in stock, and when I don’t I pine over it!
90-94: Awesome teas, will probably purchase again a few times
80-89: Very good tea, may restock at some point
70-79: happy to have tried and will gladly finish, but not restock
60-69: not horrible, but not the best, will finish if I have some though
50-59: not a favorite, probably will have a tough time finishing the bag
-50: yuck. I don’t want to have it ever again.

Location

Canada

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