1196 Tasting Notes

My teapot came yesterday! Out of nowhere on Friday it started being tracked on USPS…in inland Massachusetts. I’m just glad it avoided this whole weather mess. It is SO cold here. I think it was windy earlier this week because of Sandy when it was near FL, and now it’s even windier because of this cold front…and it is so so so so cold.

I picked this at random from my bag of flowering teas. I’ve noticed that there are so many people who make their opinion known about how they’re just for show. Pfffttt. I would eat flowers all day long so you better believe I’ll make it and drink it, and also admire it.

This one has some fruity notes to it but obviously the strongest notes are jasmine. It’s very sweet, and the floral notes are actually quite mild. I’m not sure how to explain, it’s like it’s clearly jasmine you’re tasting but it’s not in your face, like you’re drinking perfume. The marigold lends just a bit of a different note, giving the floral taste a bit of complexity.

I love flowering teas. I also love that you can brew them so many times. And then after that’s done, I think I’ll just put room temp water in there and stare at it. And I’ve got 9 more to go!

LiberTEAS

Hurray for the new teapot!

Invader Zim

I’m glad you got your package before the brunt of the storm. I’m slightly worried about some I have coming in myself.

Nik

Tea in transit in this weather… I’m thinking it’s a new thing called “pre-steeped.” Eep!

Invader Zim

Thanks Nik, now I’m doubly worried!

Nik

Oops, sorry. :D

Babble

Glad your package finally arrived!!

I’ve never really brewed a flowering tea. How do you keep them from getting bitter??

momo

The directions even say to use boiling water, and I’ve not had a problem yet with bitterness. I steeped this one for 3 min or so and there was no problem.

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drank Pumpkin Creme Brulee by Butiki Teas
1196 tasting notes

In less than 4 hours, it’s dropped 10 degrees! Yay fall! I’ve got chicken noodle soup in the crockpot, and it’s almost done, so a cup of tea until then sounds great.

First important thing of the day is my zombie makeup. I don’t think anyone understood I was a Bond girl let alone which specific one. So whatever.
And we left after like 90 minutes because I didn’t feel good so there’s also that but I don’t think more people would have made it better.

First here I am failing at being scary: http://www.flickr.com/photos/thethrillstheyyield/8128971885/
not much better here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/thethrillstheyyield/8128997734/in/photostream/
And before I took it off I tried it and I think I did better but I just look grumpy hahaha: http://www.flickr.com/photos/thethrillstheyyield/8128998386/in/photostream/

So there you go, my inability to be all mean zombie is why I’m glad I wasn’t available first time around with Walking Dead extras to get an “lol no” response. Funny, I was sarcastically given the “spirit award” for my failure at smiling all the time during rehearsals for a musical.

This is the second in my pumpkin beverage trifecta for the day. I had pumpkin spice coffee earlier, and later I have this pumpkin beer: http://www.stbcbeer.com/seasonals/seasonal-imperial/pumking-beer-page/ apparently it’s amazing and hard to find so double yay.

I really need to drink this when I have agave around, just to see how much more amazing it gets, though it’s already amazing with no additions. It just tastes so much like pumpkin puree poured right into a black tea, minus the weird texture that might have.

I definitely will drink this when I’m at my own apartment, since there is a carton of coconut milk creamer…I bet a touch in there will put this one right over the top.

This really is my favorite pumpkin tea. Granted I have only had like 4, but I don’t feel the need to go on with any search like that when this one tastes so much like a real pumpkin. I think it tastes a lot like pumpkin pie with no additions, so I assume it’s even more like creme brulee with a touch of cream. I don’t think it’s a problem that it tastes like pumpkin pie, because I think such a rich and creamy textured pie like that is pretty similar to a creme brulee, minus the crunchy shell.

Yay fall again! I would drink this ALL the time though, let’s be real here.

Invader Zim

I don’t recall her name, Vesper I think, but the Bond girl from Casino Royale?

Nik

I love the last photo. I dunno about grumpy, but it’s very much what I imagine when I think “zombie.” =)

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Made this last night before going to a Halloween party, I’ve got a couple pictures of how AWESOME my makeup was but it’s also apparently really terrifying. I did my own eyes and lips and the makeup artist complimented me on that makeup so many times…it was like the highest praise to me. But then of course I felt sick where the party was because there was no ventilation, it was full of smoke, and the a/c was on full blast. Blah.

So this is/was my first Assam. I steeped it for 4 minutes with water that was just starting to boil a little, and I did not like it at all while it was hot. It reminded me of a really dry red wine. So I let it cool, which eventually became room temperature.

And that was okay because it was so good at room temperature. It still has that full bodied maltiness but it loses that flavor that just seems like an overload of tannins. It was just a rich, slightly sweet cup of black tea.

So it is of course necessary next to cold steep it.

canadianadia

oooh…are you planning on sharing the pictures? I’d love to see them. I love creative Halloween makeup

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I am easily excited by the ability to sort of make my own blend without doing the real work. I thought it’d be funny to name it for Bruno, I figure bears must love elderberries, I love cinnamon, and the one panda bear here in Atlanta is a serious mint fan (the other loves Tabasco sauce, like rolling around in it and everything). So, here it is! After it went missing. But I found it.

I think Bruno hid it.

It’s a very autumn/winter blend, I’m leaning more towards winter. It actually does taste kind of Christmasy, it reminds me of a spiced cranberry candle but with elderberries instead and well, edible…errr drinkable.

Everything is in a great ratio of ingredients, there is not a single thing that stands out more than the rest, which could be a problem with mint…as I learned with a custom Adagio blend. Brenden wrote the ratio on the order sheet but I of course already have no idea what I did with it. I just remember the mate is 60%.

I just really love the combination of elderberry and cinnamon. It’s just the right amount of spice to go with the cool mint.

Also, you can pick this one out on the blend your own mate page, yeah!

Alphakitty

Ooh, this one sounds so tasty!

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Actual Keemun!

I made 3 steeps in my gaiwan for the same times as the not really Keemun: 15, 20, 25 seconds. All into a mug! This is like so complex.

It’s sweet, it’s smoky, it’s sweet, it’s chocolate. That is an accurate summary of each sip.

I’ve just sat here with this open, despite drinking all of this first cup…more? I think so.

And 3 more tastes just the same. I bet this could be steeped like 12 more times and still taste amazing! But it’s getting too late for that. Next time I order from Teavivre, I’m getting more of this. Except I think my last order is lost at sea.

Babble

Ugh, did you lose a teavivre order? That bites!

momo

I’m hoping it’s just held up, but it’s been 15 days and it hasn’t made it even to NYC or wherever. Last time it was there in less than 2 weeks. I’ll give it another 2 weeks of not being tracked anywhere but leaving China before completely freaking out.

TheTeaFairy

this one is such a morning favourite of mine…
Hope your order gets rescued! But if it doesn’t, I have no worries that Teavivre will replace it. But how frustrating having to wait again!

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Thanks TeaEqualsBliss!

I’ve had a pretty full day, going to the allergist, mailing stuff, picking up a prescription, eating a $10 lunch (!!! never again), buying a couple dresses for my Halloween costume to only find I might have an even better dress at home already, and then learning that if you walk around Goodwill with a hockey stick, people get the hell out of your way! That’s for my boyfriend’s costume, not me, don’t think it works with a dress. I’m gonna be a Bond girl gone zombie.

And then best of all someone bought SIX lip balms from me, someone I don’t even know!!! YAY the ads work! So that was thrilling.

Now it is tea time. I should have probably got out a regular keemun since I’ve been wanting one for days, and the other day I had one that was more like lapsang because it wasn’t made properly (not by me!). This looks a lot like a Taiwanese oolong instead.

I steeped it in my gaiwan, 3 steeps of 15 seconds, 20 seconds, and 25 seconds and put all those steeps in one mug.

This is…weird.

It doesn’t taste like Keemun at all, it tastes like a roasted oolong. And when it comes to Taiwanese oolongs, I’m just not a fan of those types. Baked wood chips. That’s all I get. I think I’m going to add honey to it.

It’s such a pretty color though. I wish I could paint with it.

Well, honey makes it better but it’s still not my type of flavor underneath it all. I wish I could get into it but I just can’t.

Whispering Pines Tea Company

I was also really confused and disappointed in this one. Definitely doesn’t smell, look, or taste anything like keemun. :(

momo

Yeah, that’s why I added honey. Didn’t really help, but now to the actual keemun!

Whispering Pines Tea Company

I’m really confused why the name keemun is on it in the first place, being as it has no keemun qualities and doesn’t come from the Qimen County. I’m gonna have to experiment with it and not think of it as a keemun and maybe I can like it. Haha…but please, go brew yourself some real keemun! :D

canadianadia

Bond Girl gone zombie – what a fun costume!

DaisyChubb

I’m SO freaking jealous of that costume! pics after Halloween, pretty please? You will be amazing!

momo

Oh yes! My friends are DJs haha so they are throwing their party this year as their Friday night party, and are having professional makeup artists there so I am hoping they can do it for me and make it even more awesome!

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This really truly tastes like rain, or “less salty ocean” for those of you like me who have forgotten what rain looks like and have no rivers nearby. After being corrected, yes, rain, I remember this feel.

You know how it smells when it’s just rained in a grassy area? That’s how this tastes. It’s really not grassy overall, there’s just hints of it. And the jasmine notes give it this freshness that I can’t even put into words. This is how I imagine, without any weird chemicals and the like in the air, collected rainwater that you immediately drank would taste.

It’s a very light cup, but even with just a minute it is bursting with flavor despite its physical appearance.

Second steep, +15 seconds: it’s still a very strong flavor, just like the first cup! I’d say though the one major difference is the jasmine is a lot less floral. But seriously it’s like it was never even steeped in the first place, that’s how bright the same notes are.

I can’t wait to try this one out in my gaiwan. And also have a third steep preferably much later on today, too full of tea already haha.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 1 min, 0 sec
Babble

Ooh.. I got this one and this note has made me excited to try it out :)

LiberTEAS

I LOVE the name of this tea. I would end up putting it in my shopping cart based on name alone.

momo

@LiberTEAS – that’s pretty much why I picked it!

Azzrian

Oh I want to try this!

momo

I’ll send you a bit with the macarons :) (next Monday!)

Whispering Pines Tea Company

Ohhhh macarons! YUM! :D

Azzrian

Oh THANK YOU!!!! WOO HOOOO! :) Happy Dance!
Whispering Pines – my daughter is making them and Momo has a shop close to her so she is sending us some so we can compare how well my daughter is doing. So far my girl is learning so much through this experience and her macarons are amazing yet we are so curious to try some from a true shop! :)
Thank you again momo! xo

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drank Tangier Apricot by American Tea Room
1196 tasting notes

Thank you, Queen of Tarts!

So earlier I thought I’d check out a beer growler store actually in my city because they allow sampling. It wasn’t anything exciting except that I bought a fill of a beer called Golden Monkey. So of course as I’m telling the guy it’s a funny name, he interjects here, and I’m like well because it’s a type of black tea!

I was sad to find out that it has nothing to do with the tea. More that it is golden in color and that apparently after 2 bottles you understand the rest, that is what the company says on their website. It is SO strong so I haven’t had much of it.

So for some reason I found myself wanting something a little spicy but not up to the level of a chai. This was the first thing I found close by that fit the bill. It’s mostly fruity, thanks to the apricot, with spicy notes from the saffron. Given that saffron’s a pretty pricey spice (hahaha) it’s not too strong.

I’m also surprised that this black tea, being a Ceylon (or I would assume a ceylon, given it says Sri Lankan), held up so well to being steeped for four minutes.

I let it cool off and the apricot is more pronounced now. It’s one of the best fruity flavored black teas I’ve probably ever had. It’s also really pretty, speckled with red petals.

ATR’s flavored teas are so good, if I wasn’t trying to now save money because I need to do a summer semester again (so I can graduate next fall FINALLY) I would be so into this one, but it’ll have to wait until 2014. Cries.

TheTeaFairy

Hahaha! the beer thing was funny :-) but if it turns anybody into a monkey after only two, then I’ll stick to the tea version, thank you ma’am!

momo

I could have tried two more but I had to get that one. So now when I tell people I’ve had golden monkey, I could mean two separate things!

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drank Caramel Popcorn Matcha by Red Leaf Tea
1196 tasting notes

A new froyo shop opened up in the shopping center near my apartment complex, and I’ve already been twice. It opened Friday, lol.

This time I decided to try more of the flavors, starting with Caramel Pretzel, which I ended up getting. So then I decided that wasn’t enough, and I needed more caramel…despite having chocolate turtles filled with caramel, and caramel sauce itself on this caramel flavored yogurt. Hahaha.

Okay really I’m just obsessed with the chawan.

And no. No I do not like this one. I can’t even drink it because of the way it smells. This is just not for me. I had so much hope for it but ughhhh I can’t.

Which makes it more like the kettle corn flavor at the froyo shop. There are some things that just don’t work for me.

Azzrian

Aweee thats too bad girl because this is one of my all time favorites!! :(
Bummer.

momo

Azzrian, do you want it? There’s no way I am ever going to drink it. I put it in my swap post.

Babble

Eh, that’s the beauty of Steepster. Some stuff is just not someone’s cup of tea (see what I did there?). I personally loved this, but I wasn’t crazy about the other matcha flavors.

Kittenna

Oooh, ooh, pick me! I’d love to try this one :D

momo

you can have it!

Kittenna

:D It was on my shortlist of matches to buy on my likely last/second-last order, but mocha won out.

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drank Champagne Matcha by Red Leaf Tea
1196 tasting notes

DUDE.

My chawan came today and I’m using this to try it out. Seriously BEST thing I have bought lately (ok minus my nail polish). It makes it sooooo easy to whisk. Now I want to try every matcha I have hot! I can actually get it all smooth so easily!

I’m actually on my second cup of this because I was enjoying the whisking too much. Obviously being champagne, it’s more suited to being chilled. It is pretty sweet, probably right around that of a brut, which is the best obviously.

It’s enjoyable hot though! It’s a bit fruity, and it almost tastes kind of like bubblegum, but not as strongly as the bubblegum flavored matcha.

I will have to try it cold with some sparkling water next.

Oh this is my 700th note. Wow.

Indigobloom

Congrats on 700 reviews!

Alphakitty

When I was trying mine I noticed a fruity/sweet taste that I couldn’t quite identify. Now I know, definitely a bit bubblegum-y!

Bonnie

HAPPY 700 Champagne it is!

Ninavampi

Congrats on 700! :)

MegWesley

Happy 700! Champagne is a good matcha flavor for this note then!

Kittenna

700! Only 300 to go to a BIG milestone! I have missed most of my “00” notes, but am rapidly moving towards 1000 as well :D

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