141 Tasting Notes

91

I don’t have a lot of experience with white teas. The preparation is just a little too fussy and the final product a bit too delicate. I followed the brewing recommendations carefully to give this tea a fair shot. I’m glad I did because I think it turned out perfectly. I really like this tea!

I’ve eaten black currants both raw and in all sorts of recipes. They presented rather strangely, but pleasantly, in this tea. Instead of a tart blueberry/cranberry, this tea has notes of grape and (wait for it) sake. Yes, I definitely taste and smell sake!

This is a really light and mild tea that you could drink all day. Its natural sweetness gets more prominent as the cup cools and you do begin to pick up a subtle aftertaste of the currant.

Preparation
160 °F / 71 °C 2 min, 0 sec
52teas

Yay! I’m so super glad you are enjoying at least one of the teas you got from us. I feel really bad about the Maple Bacon. It’s inexplicable to me how you could NOT taste the mapley-bacony flavors there, but I am about ready to make a new batch of that blend and I’m thinking I will send you a replacement pouch. I’ve NEVER had anyone try that one and say it just tasted like tea.

Anyway, this Black Currant Bai Mu Dan is one of my personal all time favorites. If you like it hot, you should really try it iced, it is truly and sincerely the most refreshing iced tea. Making me thirsty for it just thinking about it.

Paul M Tracy

Thank you so much for the offer! I still have the Buttered Cinnamon Raisin Toast that I plan on trying at breakfast tomorrow. I like the chocolate raisin too, I just should have waited until winter to order that one.

52teas

Yeah, I read your remarks on that one too. I don’t know why, but it never even occurred to me that those chocolate chips might melt in transit. LOL.

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88

I had to recover from two fairly poor tasting experiences, so I pulled something out of the cupboard that I was sure would set everything right in tea-world again.

This tea has all of the classic lapsang qualities; of course it’s “smokey,” “piney,” etc. What I love about it is that it LACKS any of the sourness or off-notes that I’ve found in a few other specimens of similar type. It’s actually difficult to explain the flavor of lapsang because you really can’t taste “smoke.” The closest I’ve been able to verbalize is a very faint tartness with a hint of rosemary. The black tea behind it is always bold.

This tea brews to a pleasant rust color and it literally makes my mouth water each time I drink it. The flavor and aroma hold to the very end. This is a really satisfying and consistent tea that I keep on hand for rainy days or wiping out bad tea memories.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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18
drank Maple Bacon by Man Teas
141 tasting notes

Upon waking, I ran out to the kitchen like a little kid on Christmas morning. I just received a bag of this tea in the mail yesterday and I was looking forward to having it with breakfast.

Based on the merchant’s description and other tasting notes here, I had expected the tea to be slightly smokey (not to lapsang level, but something discernible) and slightly sweet from the maple.

What I got is a bag of black tea with what looks like red plastic chips. (these are the fake-on bits) Opening the bag, there was nothing that set this aside from any non-flavored black tea. Upon brewing, again, nothing different; no smokiness, no mapley goodness.

From a flavor standpoint, this was simply a so-so black tea. For a guy, I have pretty well developed taste-buds and I couldn’t pick up even the most subtle enhancement to the tea.

One other note regarding appearance; prior to decanting into my cup, the product was fairly disgusting looking. The bacon bits had softened and returned to their mushy, pink flesh-like appearance and floated at the top.

I was disappointed. (Sort of like the kid with the favorite toy that broke after 20 minutes on Christmas morning.)

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 15 sec
Cofftea

This is sad. I have smoky bacon and it’s very good- more jerky-ish though. I mix it w/ Maple Sugar Black from Tea Guys.

ScottTeaMan

You know, I like this review. I know I will never try this blend. It doesn’t entice me at all (even before this bad-I mean GOOD review)!

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56

In fairness to 52teas, I probably shouldn’t have ordered this tea in the middle of the summer when I live in the desert and it’s 116 degrees outside in the shade.

Opening the bag, you could see the big, chunky bits of raisin. Unfortunately, all of the chocolate bits had melted and pooled on one side of the bag. When I pulled the tea for my first cup, I made sure to include some of the chocolate, but the proportions were probably off. The fragrance of the tea was just like a box of chocolate covered raisins and there wasn’t even a hint of tea. As I left my nose in the bag for a bit, it was more like a fine pipe tobacco.

Once brewed, the tea was a decent black but none of the chocolate or raisin flavors came through at first. As the cup cooled, it developed more character. The milk chocolate presented itself in fragrance and the flavor became sweet/tart from the raisin.

I think I expected a dessert tea and this was more of a black with some personality. I’ve heard a lot about 52teas and this is my first try of their offerings. I have three other bags I’m looking forward to brewing over the next few days.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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34
drank Jasmine #12 by Adagio Teas
141 tasting notes

I love jasmine tea and I’m on a quest to find the best moderately priced oolong available. From my experience, I would think that there may be better than Adagio’s. From their description, the leaves “majestically unfurl.” I’ve tried every sensible brewing time and temperature combination possible and I can only get the pearls to open about half the time. The fragrance only carries an inch or so from the cup and the tea always seems “watered down.” My experience with Adagio in general has been that their teas seem “tired” when they arrive. They’re simply not very robust and just don’t brew up as expected.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 5 min, 0 sec
Harfatum

I’d recommend checking out Life in Teacup’s oolongs. Great quality, reasonable prices, and very generous with free samples.

Cofftea

This makes me sad! I love this. I prefer it steeped at 3 min. Perhaps your water/leaf ratio is off?

Paul M Tracy

H- Thanks, I’ll check that out!

Cofftea, yeah, this is a weird one for me. When it brews correctly it’s not bad. For some reason, I have a difficult time getting this one to be consistent. I started drinking Adagio well before I found this site and I’m seeing ratings are consistently higher for their teas than what I would give. I haven’t placed an order with them in some time. I think I might have gotten an off batch. I’ll probably pick up some more from them this Fall to try the great suggestions I’m getting on Steepster. I’ll give this jasmine another shot too.

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69

It’s funny that the merchant’s description includes the line “the perfect tea to help kick your coffee habit” because this IS the tea that sent me on my way to starting a tea habit.

This brews up dark and bold and can easily satisfy a coffee drinker. You know you’re drinking tea, but there’s enough body and kick that you don’t care. It will stand up to any amount of doctoring that a new tea drinker may need to apply and won’t suffer for it. There is a subtle chocolate note, but this is simply a great uncomplicated “starter” black.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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88
drank Ryokucha by Samovar
141 tasting notes

This is one of my favorite morning teas. Words I would use to describe it are earthy, nourishing and grounding. Upon brewing, the tea has a mild toasted-cereal-in-a-meadow fragrance which carries through to the flavor. This makes for a rich (almost hearty) drink. The color, which is slightly turbid, is a pleasant green that approaches neon. The cup is cheerful and is a great way to welcome the day.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 15 sec

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83

I received a box of this tea as a gift. I don’t usually buy bagged teas, but I never look a gift leaf in the mouth. (Or whatever the tea equivalent of that saying would be.) Upon opening the inner lining, the first thing I noticed was that the bags were very slightly moist. I was surprised because the seal was airtight. The room immediately filled with an aroma similar to a cross between blackberries and blueberries.

The richness of the fruit flavoring carried through to the brewed tea. It was naturally sweet, but the black tea balanced this well so it wasn’t cloying. If you like “fruity” teas and don’t mind using a tea bag, this is a winner.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 30 sec

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1

Most either love or hate Lapsang Souchong tea. I love Lapsang, but absolutely hated Adagio’s rendition. Instead of a pleasant smokey fragrance, the tea had an acrid almost chemical aroma. When brewed, it was sour and tasted (as I would imagine it to taste) like turpentine. It’s possible that the tea was dried too close to the pine or some of the resin made its way into the tea. Maybe I received a bad batch, but I’ve had a lot of really good Lapsang from other merchants so I’ll stick with them.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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100
drank Rogue Wave by White August
141 tasting notes

This is one of my all-time favorite green teas. It’s excellent both hot and iced. This blend has a pleasant yin/yang quality to it in the mixing of the hot, spicy ginger with the cooling and somewhat creamy coconut. The fragrance is enticing and reminds me of some of my favorite Thai dishes.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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avid reader and fitness freak – my tasting notes are brutally honest and range from raving fanaticism to snarky *please don’t take them personally*

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Scottsdale, Arizona

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http://flavors.me/paulmtracy

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