New Tasting Notes



In my full-length review of this tea – – I pose the question, what’s better than an Alishan Oolong? A freshly harvested Alishan Oolong … which this is!

I loved this tea. Oolong are my favorite tea (second only to Yellow Tea) and Alishan is my favorite Oolong, so I guess to say that I loved this tea is sort of unnecessary, right? It was lovely with it’s velvet-y buttery notes, floral tones and hints of vegetation.

Absolutely lovely!

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I can’t say that this is my favorite tisane because it isn’t. I’m not all that wild about Hibiscus. But I did enjoy the citrus-y aspect of the blend as well as the flavor that the spices add. As long as I don’t steep it too long (I steeped it for 6 minutes) the hibiscus doesn’t get all out of whack and become syrupy.

My daughter, on the other hand, really enjoyed this.

Not bad but not my favorite. I didn’t expect it to be my favorite because Hibiscus is right there in the name of it. But I’m happy I tried it and it gave my daughter and I a moment or two together to drink tea – these are few and far between because she just turned teenager.

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drank Yerba Mate by Cruz de Malta
643 tasting notes

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drank Boost by Kusmi Tea
215 tasting notes

No notes yet. Add one?

Flavors: Cinnamon

190 °F / 87 °C 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 250 ML

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drank Australian Sencha by Tea Leaves
643 tasting notes

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This is a rock tea from the Wuyi Mountains. Expect greatness from a good quality Da Hong Pao.

And this one is nothing short of greatness.

It’s expensive but totally worth it. I was very lucky to have gotten it during Tao Tea Leaf 50% off sale. Bought 150g cause I knew an award winning Big Red Robe could only mean good news. Now I wish I had bought double!

Using 5g in small yixing clay pot.

The leaf is as dark as night.

The brew has this lovely orangey amber colour.

The scent is very fragrant. The taste is like burnt toasts with honey and molasses. Thick mouthfeel, full bodied. Very rich and tasty.

Someone very knowledgable with rock tea pointed out that I should find bitterness in a good Da Hong Pao.

I don’t get bitterness at all, but I realized that what he referred to as “bitter” is probably the burnt and charred taste I get, my own interpretation of it anyways.

You can actually taste the minerals, it’s even a little salty.

It’s a beautiful tea, worth devoting time to.

I like it so much, I will use it to season a very small 70ml yixing pot I just got.

Pic of the session:

Flavors: Burnt, Char, Honey, Mineral, Molasses, Toast

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drank Caribbean Breeze by Tealux
54 tasting notes

Again with the mediocre black tea base. Otherwise, add some milk and this tastes a little like those Bounty Chocolate bars all covered with coconut. As the tea cools down, it kind of reminds me of watery Bailey’s Irish Cream, which isn’t so bad either.
There are a few flavoured blends from Tealux I’ve really enjoyed and will reorder, but probably not this one.

205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 15 sec 2 tsp 15 OZ / 450 ML

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drank Ruby Pie by Butiki Teas
1422 tasting notes

Oh yeah this is a favourite. I gave my BFF her teas tonight, and made us a pot of this to share while she cleaned the frogs and I dealt with whatever it was I was doing.

I’m drinking the second steep right now, actually.

We both really REALLY like this tea. I highly recommend it. I love the slight tartness, the strawberry, the custard. Yum.

(3 min for first steep, 4 min for the second)

195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 18 OZ / 532 ML

… cleaned the frogs?

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drank O'Connor's Cream by TeaGschwendner
1422 tasting notes

This morning I had coffee, but I also managed to make up a mug of this to bring with me.

So tasty. I need to grab some whiskey so I can have this as a toddy when I’m out camping. :D

Oh tea, how I miss drinking mugs and mugs and mugs of you every day. Soon I will get things together again so I can make 2-3 mugs to bring with me for the day. :)

195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 30 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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Thanks for this one Sil!

It’s my last tea of the night! I feel like I got a pretty good amount of stuff in today. I mean, no sipdowns but at least I tried a new tea and had fun doing unfamiliar things with familiar blends.

As for this one, I steeped it in my glass Octo mug so I could watch it bloom. I have to say, it’s definitely not the prettiest bloom. In fact, mine kinda came apart in the cup. Taste wise, it was somehow better than I anticipated; though I don’t know what I was anticipating other than it was not this. The tea was not the most mind blowing straight black, but it does have one thing really going for it: it’s very malty. And I do love malty blacks.

So again; thanks Sil! I think I’ll enjoy the last two blooms!


Nice. Glad you enjoyed it :) they’re fun to look at too

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drank Rumchata Genmaicha by 52teas
4366 tasting notes


I was very sad to hear that 52Teas got in trouble for the name of this tea. sigh Especially since I suggested the flavor to him. I enjoyed the Rumchata honeybush a lot, so I thought that these flavors would work amazingly well with the genmaicha base, since horchata is a rice drink.

And I absolutely loved it. In my opinion, a brilliant tea. (Even if I do say so myself. Ha!) Sweet, creamy, nutty, warm with gentle spices, and I like the touch of almond along with the creamy rice notes. So yummy. Even better than the alcoholic beverage because I’m not one to actually drink much alcohol. Tea is my drink of choice.

I still think that Frank should offer this blend and instead rename it something like Politically Correct Drunken Latin Rice Drink.

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As I mentioned in my full-length review of this tea – – I don’t think I’ve ever had a tea with cedar leaves in it before, or if I have, I don’t recall it, and it’s such an unusual ingredient that I would like to think that I would have remembered it!

I like this blend. The cedar lends a very rustic sort of flavor to the cup. The chicory and cloves add to that rustic quality. Pleasant, autumnal, this tea makes me want autumn to get here quickly (as does the heat that we’ve been enduring over the past weeks).

Very flavorful, I like the rich, robust black tea base, and the rooibos lightens the cup a little bit and adds just a touch of sweet, nutty flavor.

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Very dark brew today; intensely chocolate and coffee with a creaminess to it from the yogurt. Also a little nutty? I’m not sure if that’s a flavour note I’ve observed in this one before.

Anime watching Steepsterites, a question: Have any of you watched Hellsing? Was it good/easy to get into? Should I give it a shot? It doesn’t seem like my sorta anime, but it was recommended to me so I want to at least watch a few episodes.

I’m trepidatious, though.

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This Oolong reminds me of the very first Oolong I ever tasted. Sweet, peach-like, earthy, nutty with a nice roasted note, and buttery. Later infusions allowed for the peach notes to emerge stronger and the flavor was smoother. Less earthy as I continued to steep. Some citrus notes also began to emerge in the later infusions.

Overall, a really pleasant Oolong.

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And once again this tea proves that it’s fucking awesome.

I made it as a tea syrup (I’ve posted my tea syrup recipe on several different tasting notes at this point so I think I probably don’t need to paste it into this one) and poured it into carbonated water.

It was true to the taste of the tea; like blueberry syrup! It was quite refreshing and really nice to sip on. I’m afraid though that between actual alcohol, matcha, and now tea syrup I’m burning through my club soda reserve awfully fast though. It might be time to cool things down for a while and focus on some other methods to drink stuff. Maybe I’ll go back to experimenting with tea slushies? Or I could pick up a Popsicle mold from work and take a stab at tea Popsicles.

Anyone who has done Tea-Pops before, care to share your experience/process?


TEA POPS. I’ve only done milky ones. Whole milk, tea steeped in, sugar added till it’s tasty, frozen. If you make them with no milk, you need to add 2-3 tbsp sugar/honey/corn syrup to 12 oz tea or they’ll just be ice cubes. I ordered some gelatin to make some tea “jello” pops, but I won’t be able to test them until I get back from my trip.


Oh, alcohol also helps the texture but I’m not sure how much is needed. You could do alcohol and reduce the sugar, etc. Might take some playing to get your perfect ratio.

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drank With Open Eyes by Butiki Teas
597 tasting notes

Having this one tonight as pre-birthday tea, and also I feel bad tea (headache and nausea). Hoping it makes me feel better some, with the ginger, and just for the sheer fact that I love this one so much.

I did not steep this one particularly well, but it is particularly forgiving, so it’s ok…I still love this one and cannot wait til my order arrives…this was one of the few items I reordered…almost everything else was new.

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I got some of this year’s harvest of this tea (it’s now sold out.) What an incredible tea it is. Definitely one of the very best green teas I’ve yet to taste.

The dry leaf resembles slender, long, green needles. Beautiful. These have been hand-rolled. Amazing, the craftsmanship that goes into this tea. This tea requires a very low temperature (just 100°F) and I steeped the leaves for 3 minutes. The tea is very pale but very, very flavorful. Sweet and a thick texture.

This tea is really, really awesome!

Rich, buttery, grassy, creamy. I infused the leaves three times and the third infusion was my favorite. After that, I even ate the leaves after dressing them lightly with sesame seed oil and a squeeze of fresh orange.

Here’s my full-length review:

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A really lovely first flush Darjeeling. Very low astringency, like what you might experience from a dry wine, only perhaps less harsh.

Nice fruity tones: apricot and peach and muscat grape. Nice to find muscatel in a first flush!

With most Darjeeling teas, I tend to discover woodsy or earthy type notes along with the fruit notes, but this one seems to be all about the fruit. Sweet and fruity – very nice.

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Was very happy to sip on a mug of this in the early evening; it was exactly what the doctor ordered! A little caramel, a little mulberry and apple, a whole lot of papaya. This one never disappoints! It’s the perfect mix of gentle and robust taste and sweet and fruity.

(I may be browsing the RiverTea sight right now to see if an order is justifiable)

On a sadder note; Tre is watching Big Brother without me! And this episode has Zingbot in it! But, I was busy finishing an episode of Gossip Girl and he got impatient. This is kinda our thing though? Don’t tell him, but sometimes I do like spending time with him…

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Lovely. Lots of fruitness, a bit of floral and warm, woodiness of rooibos. There’s lots of blueberry in this, almost jammy, maybe some currant, lavender and rose? A very relaxing blend.

Flavors: Black Currant, Blueberry, Floral, Fruity, Lavender, Rose, Wood

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For different reasons, I waited a long time to get this blend home. I already knew I was going to at least like it, cause it’s made of three ingredients I love: TGY, cedar leaves and some mighty vanilla bean.

In my mind, if you’re going to name a tea Rivendell, you better deliver…cause you know, we’re talking about the epic world here, full of magic, mystery and unusualness.

I’m using a small gaiwan.

As soon as the water hits the leaves, I feel transported. Sweet Jesus. I can’t really come up with words to describe the scent, hard to do it justice. I’d say it smells like a delicate vanilla flower that has grown in a luxuriant forest. The best I can come up with.

The first sip and I’m thinking nooooo!!!! Tea Whiz of the Woods, what have you done? Giving me another addiction, really? I can’t take this anymore. My monthly order keeps growing and growing!

I completely got lost in the session and forgot to take notes. Suspended in time, I just enjoyed the moment. But it’s easy to remember what it tastes like. Not so easy to attempt a description. It confuses me. TGY, check, I like it on its own. But how could the addition of only two other ingredients morphs it into something so different?

First thing that hit me was how creamy it was. I mean there’s creamy and creamy. This is intense creamy. Vanilla pudding mouth.

Then, nice subtle florals are flirting with that fresh menthol mouthfeel that I get from good TGY, amplified by the cedar leaves.

Some fruit notes also join the party. To me, they taste like pineapple and dehydrated apples. I picked that up cause I eat lots of dried apples, I love them. That gongfu session produced many steeps, all better than one another

This tea delivers. It breathes magic, it’s mysterious and unusual. So yeah, it totally deserves to be called Rivendell.

(I can even picture Hobbits, serving this tea to their guests in their Hobbit houses!)

I have no choice but to give the highest rate.

Tea Hobbit, giving it 100 is like giving you a “Tolkien” of my appreciation, hehe. Love it!



That is all


Lol, mj, we see eye to eye on this one. YOU WERE TOTALLY RIGHT: IT’S PERFECT!!

I know you gave it 100 too, right?

Whispering Pines Tea Company

That was a freaking brilliant pun ;-)


Thanks! No false modesty, I’m pretty proud of myself for this one, haha!


I did give it a 100, but only because I couldn’t give it a 110 :). And yes, that pun totally made me chuckle too!
I’m so happy you like it so much too!!


That’s because we are oolong sisters, remember?


We totally are :)

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drank Pumpkin Chai by DAVIDsTEA
1811 tasting notes

So I made more tea syrup today; again I made one for on fruit and the other for soda. This was the fruit one. Really, I wasn’t sure whether it’d go with the pears I used or not but I thought it’d be fun and worth trying.

First off, again, here’s my tea syrup recipe thinger:

- 1 tbsp. of leaf steeped in about an oz. of boiling water for roughly 4 min.
- This highly concentrated brew was then strained
- I then added approx. 2 1/2 tbsp. of white sugar into the tea
- This is heated up to dissolve the sugar
- The overall “yeild” was about a shot worth of tea syrup

The syrup on its own was actually pretty good. It was like very sweet/caramelized pumpkins with a sugared up spiciness to it. The cinnamon was still present as well as the cloves, but it was highly sweetened. It’s weird too, because even though I can’t explain how exactly they were playing in to everything I know I was tasting the carrot too.

And then once I’d poured this over the pears and added a scoop of vanilla ice cream the whole thing changed a bit. It was like spiced, caramelized pears and a lot of the pumpkin was lost except for when I got a bite of ice cream and syrup without pear; and then it tasted like Autumn. On the whole, while this was tasty and definitely weird it was not as good as the Peach/Rootbeer combo and I wouldn’t make it again.

It was maybe a little too weird…

Flavors: Apple, Caramel, Carrot, Cinnamon, Clove, Honey, Pumpkin

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