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426 Tasting Notes

95

Mmmm… so this may be one of the better English Breakfast blends I’ve had. Of course, it probably helps that I like both of the teas that make up this blend. It’s a deep, golden red, chewy, hefty kick in the pants. Why I’m drinking it with dinner… eh. :)

And it is excellent with cream. :)

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
Sil

gah! i need to place an order with these guys sooooooon!

TeaBrat

me too, they look good :)

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60
drank Caramel by Kusmi Tea
426 tasting notes

Another from the ifjuly box o’ bounty! :)

This one is not impressing me much. It’s moderately sweet but it reminds me more of the bourbon vanilla than of caramel. And I’m not a huge fan of the bourbon vanilla. While this one won’t be going on the list, it’s drinkable and I’m glad to have tried it!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

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75
drank Bungalow by Steven Smith Teamaker
426 tasting notes

Another from the generous ifjuly! :)

This was very nice. A good combination of flushes, it was a nice deep golden color and all the good characteristics of a darjeeling while skipping a few of the not so nice ones. It was well balanced, thicker than a first flush but not extremely dry. In fact, not really dry at all but oversteeping could lead to bitterness – there was a faint hint of it in my steep. This one needs to be watched closely, but in my experience, a lot of darjeelings need to be watched closely. They are sometimes sneaky and finicky.

I don’t know that I would replace this one but if I were on the cusp of free shipping I might throw this one in the cart, knowing it would be enjoyed. Or if I ran across it locally on sale I might grab it.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

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85
drank Neptune by Lupicia
426 tasting notes

Got this in a swap with ifjuly!

Nonspecific fruit and honey. I would consider ordering some loose leaf in the future.

I said earlier that this was a bag. My mistake – I was confusing it with a different tea! This was loose leaf. I would still consider buying it. :)
Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML
gmathis

Sometimes that nonspecific fruit is pretty tasty!

Nicole

And I like that it frees you to not wonder which fruit you are tasting. :)

ifjuly

uh oh, i think something’s amiss in my labeling. i sent off one sachet tea, it was paromi’s coconut almond…i just checked my swap list notes and i didn’t send any lupicia neptune. o_O i am really sorry for the mix up, ack. i’m trying to figure out how that even happened…!

ifjuly

oh wait. i did send neptune too. but it’s loose. the paromi’s the only bagged tea. maybe i switched the labels on the bags somehow? ack.

ifjuly

(this is reminding me, i really need to find better labels that actually stick and lay flat on those baggies. hrm.)

Nicole

This is probably my bad. I probably had both and forgot. :)

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90
drank Big Red Sun by Harney & Sons
426 tasting notes

This is a good blend. Not as hearty as some breakfast blends, but deep red, smooth and hearty enough. I have put this in my cart several times with my Harney orders and always changed my mind. Add to the tastiness the fact that every time I see the name of this tea that great Eddie Vedder song goes through my head for days and given the choice between this and replacing the Anniversary Blend, I’ll grab this one again. :)

Thanks, ifjuly, for sending this my way!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML
ifjuly

haha, Eddie Veddar! i never would’ve thought of that. now i probably always will whenever i drink this. awesome.

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97

Oh. Mah. Gawd. Sulu. This is good tea.

Smells fantastic, looks nifty. Cute package.

Heavily baked bread flavor, sweet, malt, smooth…golden. It was probably a mistake to have an entire pot this late in the evening but I just couldn’t stop. No time for a resteep tonight, but will definitely try tomorrow. Though my pots are kind of like resteeps… I steep 16 ounces then another 12 ounces or so with the same leaves and combine them in the same pot.

It’s not a desert island tea, but it’s Damn Fine.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML
boychik

Yay I’m happy you like it too;)

Terri HarpLady

I love saying damn fine tea :)

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100
drank Loose Aged White Tea by Shang Tea
426 tasting notes

Wow. This is a seriously good white tea. Of course I say that about all of Shang’s whites. I sometimes feel like I’m being a cheerleader for Shang’s teas, but they are seriously so good!

Clover and a bit of honey, sweetness but heftier body than the White Peony King. I don’t notice any peony scent either, but this is a white tea with body and I lurve it. I’m not brave enough yet to try this in the brick form – I’m pretty sure I am not good enough at tea to take that on successfully. :)

And it’s super hard to measure since the leaves are sooooo huge! So 2 teaspoons is a total guesstimate.

Preparation
160 °F / 71 °C 4 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML
boychik

White teas are usually tasteless to me. You are giving me a hope;)

Nicole

Shang’s whites were the first and still some of the few whites that had taste for me.

Sil

hmmm i’ll have to check them out sometime

Kat_Maria

Wow, I was THIS close today to ordering the sample pack. But I resisted! Perhaps after I can manage several sipdowns of what I actually have, I will order it.

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90
drank Kashmir Tchai by Kusmi Tea
426 tasting notes

I have had a little tin of this for awhile now and am just now getting around to trying it. I get cardamom, cinnamon, cloves and an okay but not awesome strength of tea. I actually really like this. I tried it without sugar at first, but didn’t get much spice. After adding sugar the spices came out. They still aren’t super strong spices, just a nice level. I would replace this when I run out if I ran across a Kusmi sale. I might try using a teaspoon more tea next time as well or maybe steep a bit longer. I was in a bit of a hurry tonight. :)

I used my standard half water/half-and-half. Chai without milk just seems odd to me. :)

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
Sil

i miss seeing the bunny next to your name… also.. i will be faster playing! haha

Nicole

Did my bunny vanish? Or are you not seeing it? No worries on play speed. :P

Sil

ppl’s pics don’t show up in the dashboard view anymore.. that’s all. i have to visit your note to see the bunny!

Nicole

Hm. I guess I didn’t notice what it was like before. I can see pics in comment threads on the dashboard but yeah, not with their tasting note.

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67
drank Florence by Harney & Sons
426 tasting notes

I noticed this was on my shopping list and when I made my multiple Harney orders back in November, I added a tin of this. Now I can’t remember quite why. It’s good enough but I’m just not a chocolate tea type of person normally.

This is vaguely chocolatey in the way teas that are intended to be chocolate are. Does that make any sense? The teas I like that are described as being chocolatey are the ones that aren’t intentionally flavored for chocolate – the straight deep blacks that have cocoa notes to them – those I love. The flavored chocolate teas? Usually pretty meh to me.

I’ll share this one around. There is definitely chocolate flavor as well as hazelnut and a bit of vanilla. I did slightly oversteep it and it didn’t turn bitter at all so that’s something to be said for it. A dollop of cream helps it along, makes the chocolate not seem as watery.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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74
drank Yu Lu Yan Cha Black by Verdant Tea
426 tasting notes

Well, I finally tried this one again. It appears to be official. As long as I make it with my tap water at home, I like it well enough to drink it. I still wouldn’t reach for it over some others, but it won’t go to waste. The smoke is very subdued when I use my home water. The notes I liked about the sample I previously had were all there, though also a bit more subdued. While better, I’m still reducing the rating since it wasn’t what I had that I previously rated so highly and I will not be likely to restock this one.

Goes to show how different harvests can have different flavor profiles I guess. The sample I had was steeped at work with the filtered water and CoWorker & I loved it. So I eventually got a full package of it. We steeped up a pot again at work of the new stuff and we both thought it was way too ashy and harsh. It was a bummer at the time.

I’m glad to know that my unpure water at home can salvage this for my tastebuds. :) I’ve had this happen with a few other teas, too. Love them at home, despise them at work. Could also be that I don’t get actual boiling water at work ever. Whatever the factors, this goes into the home only pile o’ tea. :)

This is also one of the teas that I still don’t get anything out of with the tiny steep time increments. I do it all in one go so that probably impacts what I get out of this. YMMV as always. :)

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
Bonnie

I steep this tea for 3 minutes and never under leaf, like laoshan black. I also have finicky taste buds because of my fibromyalgia so I HAVE to filter all my tea water even though the water here is great. I can taste minerals when they change the tea flavor. Got my filter pitcher at Best Buy because it filters fast and isn’t huge. Might be ok at work.

Nicole

That was what I thought was odd. The filtered water was what made it taste like smoke. My unfiltered tap water at home makes it better for me. /shrug

Bonnie

Maybe if the water is commercially filtered, it’s through an old salt/rock system? Those do taste weird.

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Profile

Bio

Tea afficianado. I wish I could make a living creating and serving tea parties, but alas, bills prevent that possibility. :) So I make do by catering tea parties for friends and co-workers and drinking tons of tea with my cats on my lap. :)

Location

Kansas City, MO

Website

http://www.travelswithstinky.com

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