2224 Tasting Notes
Alright, so in an effort to detect the subtle distinctions of different straight black teas, I decided to do a side by side by side comparison of this tea, Zhen Qu, and Jin Pin.
This tea is courtesy of the very generous Cavorcorax (thank you!!). Of the three, it is my second favorite. It is very smooth and has a nice malt. It is also quite rich and I am definitely picking up on the clove element of the tea. Oh and unfortunately this cup means it is a sipdown and there is no more PTA in my cupboard :(.
I pulled the sample of Yezi’s Jin Pin out of the SSTTB. It is my favourite of the three I am trying and the one I think I want to have stocked (which makes sense given it is the tea that inspired this exploration). I get a lot of malt and caramel in this and for my tastes, it is the most preferable. This is not to say the others are not amazingly delicious, however this is the closest to dessert teas of the straight blacks I tried and so it is a good transition while my tastes are still changing.
Zhen Qu is my least favorite of the three teas but it is still a really amazing tea. It has an astringency to it which in this case is not a bad thing but is still one of the reasons I prefer the other teas. Flavorwise, this is quite nutty which is enjoyable. Also, the malt on this is a bit less than the other two cups. Very tasty but just not preferred when compared to the other two options. Nonetheless, thank you Cavocorax for helping me with my straight black journey! Oh, and this is a sipdown as well so no more Zhen Qu for me.
Thank you Cavocorax for the sample of this tea. I am realizing that my tastes have changed enough that I enjoy straight blacks. However, my palette is yet to have developed enough to distinguish all the subtle nuances of the teas. Consequently, they all taste the same to me: malty, sweet, and delicious but still the same. Perhaps I should try them side by side and that will point out the differences but as it stands now, as embarrassed I am to say it, I can’ really tell them apart from one another.
So this box is a great opportunity to explore some straight blacks and this morning I decided to make the acquaintance of Lord Petersham. He is quite nice. Strong and a touch astringent but in a good way. Unfortunately this tea cooled quite a bit before I tried it given I was searching for classes my sister and I can take this summer (a little while back, we did cake decorating so we are looking for something fun to take now). Perhaps I will have to try another cup before I pass along the box because even cooled, this was very pleasant.
Thank you Cavocorax for being so kind and giving me some unflavored Butiki blacks in support of my new journey into straight teas. This one is quite good, malty and sweet with delicious notes of caramel. It reminds me slightly of Yezi’s Jin Pin, which is great since that is the tea that inspired this exploration. However, of the two, I think I prefer Jin Pin, but this is delicious in its own right as well.
In other news, got my haircut today, after quite some time and it feels like I lost 10 pounds :P. Alas, my happiness is being spoiled by the fact that my friends birthday is tonight (that is not what is ruining my mood since birthdays are happy times) which means I have to get dressed up and mission downtown to spend a few hrs with drunk people I don’t know only to have to subway back at midnight. All I really want to do is stay home in pajamas and drink tea but oh well. Also, the dressing up part is annoying given we are going to a pub which, at least in Montreal, meant jeans and tshirts were acceptable
So I usually pass when it comes to citrus teas but this smelled so amazing I just had to give it a taste. Seriously, this smells just like a tasty orange creamsicle. Yum!
Tastewise, the creamsicle flavor is present but muted and the sip ends on a weird flavor that I just can’t put my finger on. It is almost a dry, earthiness that really takes away from the taste. With that said, I am enjoying this more than I thought I would, though I don’t think it is something I need to have around all the time.
I am not a lover of chai teas but this one smelled really great. Plus, it was a convenient tea bag so I decided to give it a taste.
I am getting a very thin caramel flavor mixed with hints of cinnamon and clove. Overall, it just seems very weak to me so I am guessing this was underleafed. Perhaps I will try this with two teabags next time to see if that is better because the cup has potential to be pretty decent.
ETA: Tried brewing this up with two teabags and it is still pretty weak when it comes to the caramel flavor. The spices come out a bit more though which actually overwhelms what little caramel there is.
Compared this tea with TeaG’s Rooibush Eggnog. Review can be found here: http://steepster.com/rachel12610/posts/241510
Brewed up a cup of this and a cup of 52 Tea’s Eggnog Honeybush. They are both teas I wanted to try so I jumped at the chance when I found both in the box.
This one is not really what I would refer to as eggnog, though it is a touch creamy. It mostly just tastes of rooibos with a hint of nutmeg. Not a bad rooibos either but at the end of the day, it fails to deliver on what is promised so I am left a little disappointed.
Unfortunately, 52 Tea’s Eggnog Honeybush is not much better. It has a very sweet smell, almost like icing but tastewise there is not much else other than sweetened honeybush. Once again, not horrible but not something I need stocked either.
Of the two, neither is really all that great but I think I slightly prefer 52 Tea’s just because I think I prefer the flavor of honeybush to rooibos.