New Tasting Notes

85

I like the mix of elderberry and cinnamon in this tea. It’s warm, comforting, and incredibly soothing. Everything a good herbal tea should be.

Thank you, kimquat, for adding this to our swap! I’ll be picking up more of this once the cold weather rolls in.

September Sipdowns: 22

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68
drank Almond Cookies by Georgia Tea Company
186 tasting notes

Heard that this one tastes a lot like their other tea Snowflake which I’m MADLY in love with. xD But this one is a lot softer. Not nearly as good as Snowflake though.
This one is creamy and light.
Lots of almond and vanilla flavor. Which is pretty good, but not as good as the other tea I’ve had from them.
I almost actually bought this one, but I’m so glad I didn’t and just got Snowflake instead. But it’s pretty good still. Just not something I’d purchase.
Thank you, Albertocanfly for this sample!! ^^

Flavors: Almond, Vanilla

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80

The rich, fruity flavor of this tea is perfect for a summer day or when you feel the need to chase away the blues.

It’s juicy and ripe with the mango, pineapple and papaya flavors front and center. I can’t say that I would be able to identify each individual fruit flavor but they meld into a holistic blast of fruity goodness.

I’ve it iced and hot with a touch of sweetener and splash of half & half. It’s wonderful either way. This will definitely get re-ordered.

Flavors: Mango, Passion Fruits, Tropical

Preparation
2 tsp 14 OZ / 414 ML

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83
drank Milk Oolong by TWG Tea Company
147 tasting notes

I had this tea upon visiting Urban Tea Merchant. I’d never had a milk oolong before, but I’ve seen enough tasting notes on various other bands to see that there is something special about it.

I only had the first steeping, but it was smooth. So smooth! I got the creamy taste as well. It goes down easily and isn’t overly powerful or fragrant. When you smell the dried version, it smells of kind of a sweet and sour milk, not buttermilk necessarily, but maybe something you might smell while enjoying bubble tea? Maybe condensed milk?

I enjoyed it and it’s going on my wishlist. If anyone has any brands of milk tea they would recommend please let me know.

Flavors: Creamy, Milk

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 20 OZ / 600 ML

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74
drank Colonille by SerendipiTea
186 tasting notes

I believe I got this one from QueenofTarts. I need to remember who sent me which samples better before I put them with the other samples I need to try. >< I’m like 99% Sure this is from QueenofTarts, but correct me if I’m wrong. xD
Anyway, this one smells and tastes strongly of vanilla bean.
One of the better vanilla teas I’ve tried so far actually. Lovely tea for this afternoon. Thank you so much, QueenofTarts Or whoever else might have given that to me. xD

Flavors: Vanilla

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75

No notes yet. Add one?

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 25 OZ / 750 ML

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83

What can I say – this tea is droolingly delicious. When I opened the canister I smelled the wondrous aroma of warm spice and burnt sugar (the cardamom and creme brûlée). It smelled familiar and exotic at the same time.

I added two tea bags into my 14oz mug. Added boiling water, a touch of sweetener and splash of half & half. As I lifted the cup to my mouth I the aroma of the tea wafted forth. It smelled scrumptious. My first sip gave my taste buds quite a treat. The warmth of the cardamom added an interesting, mellow contrast to the burnt sugary sweetness of the creme brûlée (I’m guessing it’s a combination of vanilla and caramel but either way it’s tasty). I didn’t find the flavors overwhelming. They seem to blend together well and offer a subtle flavor to the tea.

I can’t wait to sip more of this wonderfully warm and tasty tea. My only regret is that it’s not available in loose leaf.

Flavors: Caramel, Cardamon, Vanilla

Preparation
Boiling 2 tsp 14 OZ / 414 ML

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97

Brewed with filtered water at the perfect temperature, this is absolute heaven. With plain tap water, it’s damn good. Either way, it smells so amazing, I just have to sniff it constantly while sipping.

Loose in a pot or in a basket are both great. With small bits of coconut flake and almond, the water should be almost-boiling to get the flavor from both and the time should be increased. The downside to this is the balance between brewing the black tea for it’s best flavor and coddling it while trying to get all the coconut and almond flavor out. The 97/100 rating is for having to balance the temperature and steeping time together. Luckily, I had the seller make a pot in the tea room and got the perfect advice for brewing this; Heat filtered/bottled water to boiling, take the kettle off, let the boil subside, pour water over loose tea in pot with plenty of circulation (either in a large basket or free,) and let steep for at least 3 minutes. If the tea’s going to sit and cool, more time is fine. If the tea’s going to be kept warming, less heat to brew is best.

Flavors: Almond, Coconut

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 30 sec 4 tsp 17 OZ / 500 ML

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I got this as a free sample from Sonya’s Flowers. That’s the only reason I have this and the only reason I’m drinking it. I don’t like hibiscus in blends, so I wouldn’t expect it to be different when it’s straight. And it isn’t.

The liquor is an intense red, which is gorgeous. The smell is tart and floral, and the taste is mostly tart, with a light floral hint that I don’t usually detect (or at least, identify as the hibiscus) when it’s in blends.

Best to send the rest of this sample off to someone who can appreciate it, because I definitely can’t.

Flavors: Floral, Hibiscus, Tart

Preparation
1 tsp 6 OZ / 177 ML

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68

Well, this mug of sachet-prepared Sencha Ariake from Palais des Thés is not bad at all and a lot better than the current competition chez moi in the Japanese Sencha category—all none of it. Yes, that’s right: the only sencha available to me at the moment are the remaining cotton muslin sacks (more than sachets!) of Sencha Ariake. I won’t be leaving this tea-challenged environment for more than a week, so until then I have created my own desert-island testing camp.

Once again, as in the case of this company’s Long Jing, my impression is buoyed through deprivation. Perhaps the key to loving any tea is to drink it in a desert-island scenario, so to speak.

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86

I wasn’t quite sure what I wanted this afternoon, so I grabbed the first thing I reached for—this. It’s actually very good. It starts out with a honey-like flavor, which I always love in tea, and the aftertaste is dark and deep but still sweet. The best description I can come up with is grilled fruit. It’s a smooth cup and just what I needed as a pick-me-up today.

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88
drank Black Cloud by Silk Road Teas
497 tasting notes

This tea was in the Steepster Select box for September. I was quite pleased to see a Chinese black tea in the box, since I tend to love them. The leaves of this tea are medium in size and very dark chocolate brown in color. They smell sweet and malty with strong grain notes. I steeped about a teaspoon of leaf for 3 minutes at 200 degrees.

Once steeped, the tea smells very grainy and malty with a lot of sweetness. Yum, this tea is so much crusty homemade whole wheat bread! There’s a fair amount of malt as well, and the loveliest caramelized brown sugar flavor that adds richness and depth. I can taste a touch of that savory dill note that I often find in Fujian teas, and it pairs (unexpectedly) nicely with the hint of cinnamon that’s also present here. Overall, this tea has deep flavor and an interesting and delicious mix of sweet and savory tones. Yum! :)

Flavors: Baked Bread, Brown Sugar, Burnt Sugar, Cinnamon, Dill, Malt

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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88

Decided to order this one since Steven Smith Teamaker is having a small sale, and since i’m working again I have more money! Glad I took a chance and got this one.
It’s delicious! :O
Rich. Strong. Malty. Fruity. Honey.
A lovely tea!
And guess what! NO WOODY TASTE!
Yah! I’m so excited! :D

Flavors: Caramel, Fruity, Honey, Malt

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68
drank Vanilla Orchid by DAVIDsTEA
147 tasting notes

Another tea that I was introduced to as part of the Davids Tea advent calendar. I must not have added it to the cupboard though. Or reviewed it.

I steeped this tea twice, didn’t get to the 3rd one. I’m pretty new to the whole oolong thing. but I did enjoy the tea. Sort of a cross between green and black.

I smell and taste vanilla and that’s about all, I don’t get the creamy flavour people are describing. I had a taste of a milk oolong yesterday and that was more smooth and creamy.

Flavors: Vanilla

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 25 OZ / 750 ML

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drank Black Chai by TWG Tea Company
147 tasting notes

The quest for Black Chai tea continues.

Bought this along with two other TWG teas yesterday when I was downtown. I steeped this too long and it was bitter and astringent. The ginger really comes through though. This is definitely a tea that is better with milk and sugar to enhance the spices that are in the blend. Right now it’s not on their website because it’s a new tea so I can’t even get the info on it. I will give a better review of this tea when I steep it properly.

At first sniff it smells like ginger, with spices in the background. I am not getting that sweet, spicy smell that I usually like in a chai. I’m not going to lie, I didn’t buy this based on smell when I was in the store. They made me a sample of it and I didn’t mind the taste of it (it was served straight, so not my usual preference for black tea.)

It has promise!

Flavors: Ginger

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 6 min, 30 sec 2 tsp 17 OZ / 500 ML

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82

Nice little tea, thanks to all for the recommendation. I find it quite smoky, though not overpoweringly so. Smoke, tobacco, strong. I didn’t get much fruit. And a very nice looking cake.

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90

Eep! Things are a bit busy right now and I haven’t had much time for Steepster. I miss y’all though! Here’s another one of my backlogs from when I went on vacation.

August 30, 2014
I’m so happy to have this on hand again! I bought two boxes to bring home, but I couldn’t wait. I just had to open it up and have a cup. This is my happy tea. So creamy and soothing. Gently lemony. Perfect as a dessert tea or just a desert oasis when things get hectic. I’d love to have this in my regular rotation.

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74

Sipdown! (131)

My cupboard keeps getting smaller – I think it’s partly bc Steepster hasn’t been working well lately and so I haven’t been getting excited about other teas, and can’t-miss sales etc. Partly because I’ve been working part-time a bit too as we wait for Hannibal to start shooting – we’re getting close! I think I get to read Episode 6 on Monday, and filming should start in a month or so?

The Hannibal Season 2 dvd just came out and there’s two special featurettes on it that feature our shop and the work involved in creating all the dead bodies. It was really awesome to watch – it made us look good! Also I sorta laughed when I recognized a few of the photos I took in the dvd. That’s about the limit to my creative input – I’m just admin, not talent. :P It’s all my boss and his employees.

Anyway, this tea was good, but I’m not sure about re-ordering it? I’m just not THAT big on oolongs, although the mint flavouring is quite nice. I just wanted to finish this today since it’s the Last Day of Summer! Woohoo. I love Fall, so I am not upset by that!

Preparation
Iced

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90
drank Foxtrot by Adagio Teas
1 tasting notes

No notes yet. Add one?

Flavors: Flowers, Peppermint, Rooibos, Vanilla

Preparation
Boiling 7 min, 0 sec 15 g 68 OZ / 2000 ML

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80

I love this tea. I bought sample baggies of Adagio’s black Hazelnut tea and this one at the same time, and this one was definitely my favourite. The black tea was quite nice and hazelnutty when brewed quite strong and then with milk and sugar, whereas this one is just wonderfully hazelnutty on its own without much fuss. No bitterness, a lot of hazelnut, and a bit of something else that gives it depth. I’d take it that’s the honeybush, but as this is the only honeybush I’ve tried, I can’t really judge. I’m sure to try more, though! I think I definitely prefer honeybush to rooibos.

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79
drank Lapacho Rhubarb by Hebden Tea
22 tasting notes

I came across a cute tea shop in York and picked up one of these because I never tried lapacho before, plus I like rhubarb and apparently Yorkshire is famous for its rhubarb.

Well, the tea is yummy. It’s currently my go-to herbal tea. I like having something like this around – it’s like a tea, but not actually the tea plant. Rooibos and I tend to not really get along most of the time, but I’ve had more luck with honeybush and I think of lapacho as a similar kind of ‘almost tea.’ The base is very pleasant but it stays mostly in the background which makes the flavour shine. The rhubarb is just very… rhubarby. Sweet and a little bit tart. Definitely very recognizably rhubarb. I am very happy with this one. I may have to go back to York to stock up in a while….

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 20 OZ / 600 ML

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So I was supposed to get extra samples with my last order from Green Terrace Teas because they didn’t have the gongfu teapot available that I ordered. And then there weren’t any samples included with my order. Oops. So they sent a few samples later. This was one of them, in fact the only sample of their teas that was included that I hadn’t already had.

But I’m really glad they included it.

I’m having a lazy, blah kind of day. I have a bit of a sinus headache and I have this horrible knot in my neck/shoulder. So I’m not accomplishing much of anything. I’m even lazy in my brewing and did this in my ForLife mug western style.

It’s actually quite good this way.

This tea is pretty sweet without being over the top. I was expecting at least a touch roasty, but I didn’t get that at all. Not really floral, either. Sweet, maybe fruity.

A second infusion. I forget to set my timer. Oops. I’m really not sure how long this steeped for. At all. AT least five minutes, probably a lot longer, more like 10 to even 15.

It’s not ruined at all. Now it tastes kind of apple-y. Still sweet. Not bitter like I expected. I’m actually getting a little bit of the roasty now, too. I like this.

sherapop

That happened to me, too: no extra (promised) samples. Then when I wrote to them I got a strange response to the effect that it was “possible” that they forgot to put them in. That kind of offended me. I mean, I wrote because they DID forget to put them in, so that was like accusing me of lying to get free samples. They did end up sending me a couple more, but I don’t know whether I’ll shop there again, between having had to place the order four times and then that last little jab…

Cheri

Yeah, I got a weird email back from them, too. I have liked the teas that I got from them, but I, too, might not shop with them again. Especially since they’ve changed the smallest size I can order now to 150g for most teas. That just seems like a lot of tea, when I would rather have smaller amounts of tea for more variety in my cupboard. It’s too bad.

KiwiDelight

Shoot. I was planning to order more of this. WHY would anyone do that?

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