New Tasting Notes

92

Another short tasting note for this sipdown, which people may or may not see with Steepster being so wacky!

As I have said many times before, this is one of my favorite green teas. I’m not a big connoisseur of green teas, but I’ve had a good number of varieties, and to my taste it doesn’t get much better than this. Lots of natural, nutty chestnut flavor, a bit of butter, but not too much, a bit of sugar snap pea. I think it’s the nuttiness that I love. Yum.

Flavors: Butter, Chestnut

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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100

sad. people…I so sad… I sipped this down !!!! o.O

I love this tea so much!!!… sniffles

Ok…is not the end of the world, especially since I have another sealed ounce (which I am sooo hoarding). Hopefully this will be back in the fall lineup. If it is…I am so gonna order an obscene amount (obscene for me, anyway)…perhaps in the style of TTF :) and then i’m gonna hoard that obscene amount…so there!

I LOVE YOU, YU LU!!! Please don’t ever leave my cupboard!!!

Nightshifter

Lol, obscene amount. Love it :)

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93

I totally thought I had reviewed this one before, but I guess not! This is another sample from my huge box of TeaUrchin sheng samples my husband got me for my birthday back in June. Best gift EVER!

After my recent blissful experience with the 2012 Spring version of this tea (insanely good flavor and strong cha qi!) otherwise known as “One thousand butterflies” I decided to revisit this one for comparison.

This harvest is also quite wonderful. It is a bit more mellow, not as floral or as insanely sweet but still well balanced. I get a warm richness from this fall harvest. Early steeps are quite bold. Tastes like colorful autumn leaves instead of spring flowers. Very light pleasant bitterness and no astringency. It is not exactly buttery but I keep thinking of browned butter as I drink. Third steep in I start to get that lingering herbal/spiced aftertaste in the back of my throat. Ahh, sheng. You’re my pal :)

Preparation
8 g 3 OZ / 103 ML

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4 oz. Sipdown: I thoroughly enjoyed this caramel-flavored assam. Please see my previous review & its comments for brewing recommendations as appropriate parameters are essential to enjoy it. I won’t promptly restock as I’m currently well stocked, there are a few Chinese teas i enjoy more, & there are so many other black & pu’er I want to experence!

Preparation
Boiling 8 OZ / 236 ML

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60
drank Monk's Blend by Tealish
4 tasting notes

Finally finished off the last of my bag (which was … overstuffed, for better or for worse). The only other incarnation of Monk’s Blend that I’d tried was waaaaaay back in the good old days of Teaopia. I remember getting a whiff and falling hard and fast, so I bought this one blindly, while running off of nostalgia. And to be fair, my tastes might have changed since the Stone Age, and Monk’s Blend might just not be for 2014-me. I found the scent to be on the verge of sickly-sweet, and beyond that, I thought the base tea was terribly bitter and cloying. I also found, on one occasion, two scraps of paper in the dry leaf?! (They were small and zig zagged, like the top part of a “Tear Here!” bag.) That . . . kind of made my face not know what to do with itself. So. To reiterate. I’m glad this blend is gone from my tea collection, and I don’t think I’ll be getting anymore in the future.

(Note: Actually, I’m starting to realize I don’t enjoy fruity black teas as much I used to/imagined. More and more, I’m turning to maltier, breadier blacks, which is nice to know for future buys.)

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65
drank Raspberry Macaron by Fauchon
385 tasting notes

Another Fauchon sample from the lovely Dinosara. It’s so exciting to get to try all of these teas! I’ll be at least somewhat prepared for the next time Fauchon shows up somewhere :D This tea looks somewhat similar to La Naissance – it’s black tea leaves with rose petals and what looks like pieces of pink peppercorns? It smells similar too, candylike and very floral. :(

Yep, this tea is more rose than anything else, which leaves me extremely disappointed… There’s some raspberry flavor in there, but I don’t taste anything resembling macaron or pastry in general. This tea is making me very sad. Fauchon seems to be far too heavy-handed with their florals, rose isn’t even mentioned in the name of this blend and yet it’s the most powerful flavor…

Flavors: Floral, Perfume, Raspberry, Rose

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Stephanie

Yeah, this one comes out real bitter, and I worried it would be too floral for you :(

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Backlog…from last night.

Well, I am more than pleasantly surprised. I lean more towards tea’s without added flavours, but I had been curious about the 52 blends since discovering Steepster, and lovely Lala generously shared a bunch of samples. This is surprising good – I couldn’t imagine how that pancake mouthfeel would present itself in tea form but it’s wonderfully represented. Got lots of butter too. The maple made a special guest appearance a couple of times, but very elusive.

This would definitely satisfy my pancake craving. I only have pancakes once or twice a year…when we have brunch breakfast at work for sponsored charities…and I pack ‘em away like nobody’s business. I think I will have to keep an eye out on frank’s site to see how often this is available…this will definitely do for those in between times.

Thank you Lala! yum yum!!

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76

I really like the fancy name of this tea even though I can’t pronounce it. I was expecting something amazing but it’s only okay.

I didn’t get much orchid notes. It was roasted (charcoal ) with a bit of honey sweetness. I was hoping those orchid notes would finally come through on the 3rd steep but by then it had petered right out. Sweetness was less, less roasted/charcoal flavour, less everything. The package says the floral notes come through on the 2nd infusion. I never got any but I threw out the rest of #3 and tried 4 to see if it would happened. #4 was as weak as dishwater. No floral notes or aroma. How disappointing. I wonder if this needs a different steep temperature???
Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 4 OZ / 118 ML

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drank Cream of Earl Grey by Good Life Tea
330 tasting notes

I got this sample from Good Life Tea (thanks!) It’s good but not something I’d buy later. The smell was very fruity, the taste is smooth and mellow. Tasty enough but a little muted for me. Seems like a good tea for like an afternoon snack time.

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drank Jungle Ju Ju by DAVIDsTEA
1586 tasting notes

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95

Thank you Angel for this sample! When I first open the package for this tea I was reminded of the sparkling apple cider my family drinks every New Years. The rose and chamomile buds are very beautiful and the tea itself has downy, full buds. I was expecting this to taste more of the white base, but it is more given to the other flavors. I was able to pull about seven equally good steepings from my first try with this tea. I really love the flavors and they all balanced together very well. Since school started this has become my go-to relaxing tea and I am excited to try mixing it with a few of the others in my cupboard. I think this might be one of my very favorites from Teavivre!

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80
drank Green Gold by Mandala Tea
211 tasting notes

Had this tea early this morning. I only got two infusions on this but I think it would have been good for quite a few more. Garret writes 3-4 on the pkg. It was light , vegetal, buttery, sweet. I tried to think what type of tea does it remind me of? Mao Jian? Dragonwell? Bi Luo Chun? Mountain Indonesian green? I think the last one: Mountain Indonesian green. It was an enjoyable cup.

Flavors: Butter, Sweet, Vegetal

Preparation
1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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92

Thank you so much for the samples, Good Life Tea! I was about to brew up an EG, but I just received these in the mail, so I thought I’d go with this EG. There was a little over a teaspoon for my 12-13 ounce mug. The leaves are twisty and pretty with the cornflowers mixed in. The flavor is very nice – different from other earl greys I have tried somehow! There isn’t too much bergamot, but I’m one that loves a ton of bergamot. I wouldn’t call the rest of the flavor a typical cream, but there is a sweetness to it like a dessert. There is more sweet than there is bergamot. The black tea itself is the perfect strength for an EG, that showcases the nice flavors while also having a bit of a bite. If it wasn’t for the caffeine, I’d call this a dessert Earl Grey. Very nice!
Steep #1 // just boiled // 3 min
Steep #2 // just boiled // 4 min
Goodlifetea.com

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drank Azteca Fire by Teavana
4 tasting notes

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93

Additional notes: This is a different sample from the one I tried before. Before, it was straight from Bluebird so it was fairly fresh. I also gave it one of the higher ratings, looking through Steepster. This sample is from Janelle, thank you! I’m not sure how old the tea is, but even more taking a sip, I can smell that the coconut is on the older side. That is too bad, as I love this blend, I would advise anyone to drink this one up quick. Some coconuts just don’t age as well as others. I’m going to try Mowgli’s Chai later today as I know there is some of that coconut in it. Now, this tea is much different: not as much sweet raspberry. Still enjoying it, but I think I’m remembering what it once tasted like. Yes, I remember.. fresh, this tea is lovely.

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98
drank Aussie Wattle Breakfast by T2
167 tasting notes

I got this tea when lovely Gentleman actually suggested we go all the way out to Shoreditch just to visit the T2 shop when we were in London last weekend. Bless his beautiful heart.

I also got it because I knew basically nothing about wattleseed except that I’d never tried it before, and it was an Australian thing. T2 being an Australian company, I thought it’d be appropriate to give this one a go. And I’m so glad I did. Straight out of the bag I get a scent of malty, sweet tea, redolent with cinnamon, chocolate, and almond. Then I went and forgot I was making it and sort of let it steep for 9 minutes.

And you know something? Still delicious! A little tannic, but that’s to be expected with such an overbrew. It’s, like, my ultimate comfort flavour combination. The cinnamon is sweet and warming, lightened by the roasty, toasty presence of almond with hints of cocoa, bolstered by robust black tea that I’m quite sure would be nice and smooth if you brew it for 3-4 minutes instead of like ten. It’s a keeper, that’s for sure. Highly recommended!

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88

I just realized with horror that my stock of JE Milk Oolong Theodor is dramatically running low … so I decided to rather go for a cup of this tea.

J.E = Jardin d’Exception (exceptional Garden) in the Théodorian terminology. Well it’s true, again! it’s a beautiful and Yunnan and you should believe me because Yunnan are not among my favorite teas.

The dry leaves are typical of this variety of teas, a mixt of dark brown and golden sand twisted leaves

The liquor is an INCREDIBLE dark brown, almost earthy- surprising as the steep lasted 3 minutes and 85 ° C only.

The taste is mostly made of malt and cocoa with a hint of honey. No bitterness at all.

The texture is a deep mellow.

It is a very nice tea and I think I’ll add it to my permanent collection as the Yunnan reference.

I used for the first time my new teacup Roy Kirkham bought 3 hours ago in La Vaissellerie rue Mogador in Paris.

It really makes a huge difference when drinking in a fine bone china cup … my other percelain or English earthenware cups seem really pale vs this one.

You can see some pics of the tea here on my blog :
http://thevangeliste.wordpress.com/2014/08/30/j-e-yunnan-yu-yunnan-fgfo1-theodor/

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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79
drank Capri by Harney & Sons
882 tasting notes

Argh! Only a time for the shortest of tasting notes. I’m off to an anime convention, so hello, world! Tea is really good! My cupboard is still disordered!

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As I look at the dates on other reviews I am forced to wonder when I got this sample. Note to self: start labeling samples and place them in a better spot to encourage quicker sampling.

I have tried this before and liked it, but didn’t get to give it the attention it deserved. Today I am all alone for about an hour, something that almost never happens, and I am having a little gong fu session.

My water was 194F and I started with a two minute steep, no rinse. I think I should have rinsed for gong fu with this one, because it was very light. The first aroma to hit was sweet potato but with an edge this time. There was little to no astringency and the flavor was quite light.

I gave the second steep three minutes and the color deepened. Now there is astringency but not an unpleasant one. This is accompanied by a creamy texture.

This is a very good tea for when you want TEA. I don’t think I would serve it with food unless I made it western style with extra leaf. It is not really a breakfast tea for me, but rather an afternoon or,even a contemplative evening tea.

Thank you for the lovely sample, Teavivre!

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90

My wee tin of this blend is getting so incredibly low! And that’s after getting 100g of each of the teas. WOW. Definitely something on my To Buy list, once my cupboard starts shrinking a bit more.

Still love this tea. Even when I do things like add powdered milk to it, because I still haven’t purchased fresh groceries.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 45 sec 3 tsp 18 OZ / 532 ML
Lilysmom

Divine temptation is a very yummy tea! Had forgotten about it – must try to remember to get some more soon!

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72
drank Jasmine Green by Tea Forte
53 tasting notes

Yet another, the third this morning, sampling from the Tea Forte collection box. Here we go.

The aroma is wonderful. Classic Jasmine Green. I’m picky about teas like this, because so many companies add too much crap to classic, simple ideas. The aroma on this suggests otherwise. Strong, big and bold, earthy, nutty, grassy aroma.

First taste is the same. Subtle, very well balanced, very drinkable. The Jasmine pops out with that grassy, nutty taste, while not overwhelming and hiding the wonderful earthy undertones. The taste keeps getting bigger from there, but never goes unbalanced.

This isn’t the best Jasmine Green I’ve tasted, but I am impressed by the amount of in your face taste while still keeping the super drinkable well balanced overall appeal. It’s on the verge of being over the top, but not quite. Great Jasmine Green.

Flavors: Earth, Grass, Nuts

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 2 min, 30 sec 3 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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70
drank Black Currant by Tea Forte
53 tasting notes

The 2nd sampling from the Tea Forte collection box.

The first reaction is Damn, it’s a good thing I like blackberries, the aroma is almost overwhelming with them. It is a reallly good aroma. Aside from the strong blackberry smell, there is also a hint of nuts and a bit of spice feel. You have to really search to find them.

The taste is all fruit. The blackberries take over, hiding everything else, even the underlying black tea base. I would love to have more balance in this case. After all, if I wanted hot blackberry juice, I would have that. I like black tea, and there just isn’t even a hint of it here.

Other than the balance, this is a damn good tea. The blackberry taste is smooth, soothing and super yummy. Probably a great afternoon tea, maybe during a rainstorm with a book open. Good stuff.

Flavors: Blackberry

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

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drank Violet Femme by Zhi Tea
446 tasting notes

A while back I soaked a bunch of this in some vodka and made an extract of this tea which I used when I made some marshmallows and they turned out SOOOO GOOD!!! Now when I drink this tea it brings me back to the memory of stuffing my face full of marshmallows! Today I’m having it with cream and sugar and it is super delicious. I steeped it for two minutes just below boiling and it think that is the magic settings for this tea because it is perfect. It has a nice lavender punch to it with an amazing aftertaste. I can’t pick out any citrus on it’s own, but I suspect it is working with the lavender to perk up and amplify the floral flavor. This tea is pretty amazing and ALMOST makes up for them discontinuing their Kashmiri Chai, which was my all time favorite. If you like lavender, this one is a must try!

Zhi, if you are reading this, job well done on the VF and bring back the KC by any means necessary!!!!

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 2 min, 0 sec
Stephanie

Wow, cool idea on the marshmallows!!

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