New Tasting Notes

91
drank Pumpkin Ginger Spice by Traveling Tea
7956 tasting notes

pulled this one out last night. Trying to get back in to the habit of drinking some herbals in the evening. If nothing else it’s a way to relax before bed. I still really enjoy this one, but what i have will probably be enough to get me through until next year’s cold weather :) i love the real chunks of pumpkin and the fact that this has got ginger. it’s not that artifiicial “pumpkin spice” tea we often find at this time of year.

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98

Saturday Dec, 3 2016 1st Pot of the Day. Great VINTAGE STOCK of Wagner’s Spice Tea, This is OLD Vintage from the Mid 70’s Tea, Super Great Memories as I Drink this OLD Favorite from BACK in the DAY, I sampled so many of the WAGNER Brand Teas from Central Pennsylvania. I Recall Getting the WHOLE Line that they Sold at Hickory Farms Stores BACK THEN, Subtle Orange Flavor with the Over taste of Cinnamon, and Clove, warm and soothing, Looking for some Russian Caravan from this seller, it was MY FAVORITE back in the 70’s

Flavors: Cinnamon, Cloves, Orange

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 14 OZ / 414 ML

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85

I really enjoyed this sencha from NaturaliTea. It was well balanced and provided both notes of astringency and sweetness.

I began with 5g of tea steeped at 160 degrees for one minute. The initial infusion was quite sweet, while still not being overpowering. There were also flavors of green beans, veggies, and sweet wheat grass. It was both sweet, astringent, and balanced. Akin to a nice sweet and tart apple. Both flavor categories working well together.

The second infusion was steeped at the same temperature for about a minute again. It was slightly less sweet with an almost smokey astringency in the back of my throat. Overall, however, it maintained the flavor profile of the first infusion. Quite well balanced while tipping towards the sweet side.

Flavors: Green Beans, Sweet, Sweet, warm grass

Preparation
160 °F / 71 °C 1 min, 0 sec 5 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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I started off by steeping this per the instructions at 120 degrees for 1 minute. I was surprised by the very balanced umami flavor. There was a slight astringent finish and a bitter vegetal taste. Grassy. Fresh bitter herbs.

The second infusion was at 190 degrees for 5 seconds. It was much smoother, with less grassy flavor and more mellow.

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80

While I wouldn’t call this one phenomenal, it is a good solid tea and quite tasty. It has a strong note of malt and a weaker note of chocolate in the background. At the price just over $15 it is a good deal. So far I have liked the teas I have gotten from this company. This tea was better than expected.

I brewed this one time in a 16oz Teavana Glass Perfect Tea Maker/Gravity Steeper with 4 cones and 200 degree water for 3 minutes.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 4 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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73
drank Cotton Candy by DAVIDsTEA
3013 tasting notes

So I have just finished my 250g bag of this tea…and I feel like I need more so I guess I’m a fan.

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77

Leaves have dusty hay smell. Soup color is gold just starting to brown. The texture is very smooth and not very thick. The taste is light and soft. Mild sweetness with just a touch of bitterness (esp in middle steeps). Slight woody aged taste. Mild huigan. Noticed mild chi after 4 steeps. Easy on the stomach. Not something I would write home about, but for an aged cake, this might be one to add to my collection since it such a reasonable value ($.18/g).

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Dry leaf (NUT, HERBAL): roasted peanut and peanut shell, dill, bitter green

Smell (SMOKE, MEDICINAL, VEGETAL): antiseptic, burnt toast, baked rolls, bitter greens; notes of buttered green beans; hint of apricot

Taste (MEDICINAL, BAKED, VEGETAL, FRUIT): burnt toast, baked rolls, cinnamon-raisin bread; pleasant bitter greens, buttery, green beans, cilantro. Aftertaste is thick and fruity – stonefruit (apricot) and tropical fruit (pineapple and mango)

Not quite sure where to place this one. The leaves are certainly “deeply baked.” By the end of the session, you have black – BLACK – leaves. The real question, I think, is does this baking improve the standard tieguanyin experience?

I’m going with no. The baked flavor is weird. It is noticeably antiseptic-like and medicinal, with some burnt-toast thrown in. I don’t mind char or smokiness when it works, but this just didn’t. It wasn’t awful or unpalatable, but just weird and sort of flat. The bake/roast/char flavors did not carry other flavors and develop complexity.

That said, there were some nice TGY flavors happening. The aftertaste, in particular, was thick and fruity. A very nice treat. So, overall, certainly not a bad tea. It was an interesting experience, but not one I’m going back to.

As a final note, I’m not ready to write off roasted/baked TGY just yet. Thinking of trying another vendor to see if different processing makes a difference. But, frankly, I’m missing the rich experience of a green TGY. A lot of the complexity, I feel, was killed or overridden by the bake.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 30 sec 6 g 5 OZ / 147 ML

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drank African Sunset by Rosevear Tea
655 tasting notes

I can’t taste any flavouring in this one.

I will withold my rating for now as I have a cold and may not be able to taste properly at the moment.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 13 OZ / 375 ML

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80
drank Tung Ting Wulung by Teehaus Artee
940 tasting notes

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65
drank Christmas Afternoon by Twinings
940 tasting notes

Ok, I’m making a concerted effort to not forget about these teas this Christmas, particularly as I don’t have much else to do. Christmas Afternoon for dessert with milk and sugar (and some shortbread, because Christmas!). Definitely getting vanilla, a bit of cinnamon? Seems like a nice mellow black with a kiss of flavour.

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#ProjectTeaWall

This is a queued tasting note.

Had this one iced, almost a week ago, with a lot of added milk – and I mean A LOT. Obviously I’ve had Orange Pekoe before; just not the one that’s sold at DAVIDsTEA. So, had to cross it off the list but I made sure to have some fun with it/try it a new way too.

I mean, for Orange Pekoe this is pretty nice. It’s quite malty, and it has a sort of underlying nutty sweetness to it as well. I personally feel like it tastes a wee bit like walnut? The added milk really exaggerated the creaminess/malt notes of the tea, and it made for a surprisingly refreshing cup of tea. It also had hints of a sort of maple-y flavour, though perhaps that’s sort of me expanding on the sweetness of the walnut notes since maple/walnut is a bit of a given pair.

Honestly, if I’m going to drink a straight black I’d usually pick something better that plain Orange Pekoe, but this was enjoyable! It’s not something I’ll be clearing out tin space for or anything, but I wouldn’t feel bad recommending this to a customer for a basic black either.

Friendly reminder that I’m not currently numerically rating DAVIDsTEA blends as I’m currently seasonally employed there and it would be an obvious conflict of interest. Any blends you see with numerical ratings were rated prior to my employment there. These reviews are a reflection of my personal thoughts regarding the teas, and not the company’s.

VariaTEA

Soon you won’t be the sales associate saying “I’ve never had it personally but hear it’s…”. You will be the most well informed tea guide there is haha

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68

Sipdown (146)!

This is a queued tasting note.

Drank this one as a commute tea earlier in the week; I’ve been working so much at both jobs this week that I’ve gotten so behind on my tasting notes so I’m trying to sneak in a handful tonight. Gotta keep things short and to the point though…

On that note; I liked this one well enough but it’s definitely not something I’d order again. In fact, it’s not even something I picked out for myself in the first place: it was my free sample from my order that was selected for me. But it wasn’t bad; it was just really chocolate without a lot of other flavour to give it any sort of depth or nuance. Yeah, smooth, rich and creamy chocolate – but just chocolate. I’m not too big into chocolate teas, so it didn’t thrill me. I appreciate it for what it was though.

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77
drank Carrot Cake by TeaTaxi
4113 tasting notes

This is a queued tasting note.

- Made a pot of this for myself!
- Definitely a spiced carrot cake/spice cake feel
- Heavier on the clove/cinnamon/ginger than other spices
- Coconut is a nice touch; brings out some sweetness
- The carrot notes definitely come through pleasantly
- Would like to see some “Cream Cheese” component
- But it DOES taste good/get the flavour across

VariaTEA

I have a tiny sample of this I should probably get to trying. My samples are actually piling up seeing as I just got the December teas and I still have a sample from September haha

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82

Advent Calendar Day Two

So, I was pretty rushed this morning getting ready for work which meant no morning commute tea, which is definitely how I plan to drink most of the teas from the advent calendar this year…

However, I do work at a tea shop in the evenings so I just brought the little sachet/bag with me to work and I drank it there – it meant crossing off one less thing from the Project Tea Wall list, but I didn’t get behind on my advent and so early into the month too! so I’ll take it…

This was pretty lovely, I’ve gotta say. It basically tasted like gingerbread cookies without a super strong molasses-y note. For someone who doesn’t like ginger, I sure do like gingerbread. It’s gotta be the added sweetness, I think. And then of course that warming, sweet gingerbread flavour was supported by light, fresh orange/citrus undertones. I’m at the point in my “tea drinking career” where I’ve tried my fair share of gingerbread teas, but I’ve gotta say this is definitely one of the better ones! Plus, totally in line with the season/appropriately Christmas-y!

I can’t wait to see what tomorrow’s tea is!

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100

Sometime ago I tasted this tea from a friend and I enjoyed it but I was unaware of parameters used so I’ll base my review on the revised parameters I used as using water under boil makes the bitterness more pronounced.

Upfront bitterness comes through immediately followed by a great sweetness which makes one salivate and wanting more tea. Just before the bitterness hits you there is a pronounced earthy/musty taste comparable to a well matured shou.

Colourwise it is deep copper colour at the beginning but it reduces to lighter levels as one goes through the session. The aroma after the initial 2 rinses is slightly earthy but sweetness comes to mind all the time This sweet aroma remains throughout the session in the tea liquor, teapot and sharing vessel signs of a very well matured tea.

No signs of astringency have been found.

Revised parameters: 2.5gms tea leaves 40ml water 90 degrees C first steepings time was around 5 seconds which increased slowly with later steepings.

Flavors: Earth, Stonefruits, Sweet Potatoes

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 2 g 1 OZ / 40 ML
Rui A.

In my rush to post the review (and slightly tea headed) I forgot to say that this tea’s liquor is visually transparent.

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80

The honeybush is really nice with this. as someone who doesn’t do well with caffeine, I really appreciate having so many delicious flavours (and with vegan ingredients, too!) The peach flavour came from the dehydrated peaches and didn’t taste artificial at all. Even more interesting was that fact that the peach did not make this really sweet, so I could taste all the notes in the honeybush.

Flavors: Fruity, Honey, Nectar, Peach, Tropical

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 8 min or more 1 tsp 17 OZ / 500 ML

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92

So I wasn’t sure what to expect with this, but it exceeded my expectations. It actually tasted like soda! (how does Liberteas manage to be so amazing at everything they blends?) The citrus flavour was great (not sour or overpowering), the green rooibos gave it a nice balance of sweetness, the cranberries/cranberry flavour was very nice (but not sour at all), and the rooibos base was superior to most I have tried before.

Flavors: Citrusy, Fruity, Herbs, Lemon, Lime, Rooibos

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 8 min or more 1 tsp 17 OZ / 500 ML
LiberTEAS

(You weren’t supposed to open this one yet.)

greenteafairy

This sounds amazing! I’m always wishing for more green rooibos blends.

Arby Robilliard

I know…but I wanted to try all the herbals/caffeine free ones. lol

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I couldn’t miss the chance to grab a full bing of this guy. It’s a high performer with its intense energy, clarity, mouthfeel, and complexity of flavors (Am I missing anything?). I was so impatient I could only let it settle in the pumidor for two weeks before I broke into it. The cake arrived slightly broken on the edges, providing just enough broken tea leaves for the session—about 6 grams. They had a suspiciously mid-aged scent of dried fruit and leather.

The tea soup has high clarity and a deep golden hue. Brewed leaves had a scent of tropical fruits and sandal wood. I entered the sheng pu realm from the north (Lincang) and so am just beginning to get my bearings on Menghai and Yiwu terrior. I do have one genuine 100 g Lao Man E cake that shares some of the notes of this cake. Here I found a medley of tropical fruits (sweet grapefruit in particular) along side lovely bitters that literally rings in the mouth. The tea has serious staying power and a nice sandalwood base. This tea doesn’t begin to taper off until steep 10 or so.

For me, the mouthfeel and qi are the wow factor. I was in the middle of a conversation while sipping on the 2nd steep and the word’s “oh wow” came out. The qi followed the mouthfeel. It can take you for a ride if you let it.

mrmopar

This is a good one.

Matu

Very nearly picked up a cake of this in my Black Friday order.

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62

I brewed 10 minutes with hottish water (just below boiling). It smelled a bit plain and like artificial pecan flavour, but it tasted much better. That caramelly buttery taste of pecan, as well as the butteriness, were present.

Flavors: Butter, Caramel, Creamy, Grass, Mineral, Nuts, Nutty, Pecan, Rooibos, Sweet, warm grass, Walnut

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 8 min or more 1 tsp 25 OZ / 750 ML

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50

Although the spices like pepper, cardamom, ginger?, and cinnamon are lovely, the sickly sweet from the licorice root (or fennel?) is very off putting. I wish they had toned it back significantly.

Anyway, this brewed up smelling amazing (750 mL + hotish water, 10 minutes) and brews a pale amber yellow. The loose leaf is gorgeous with all those whole spices, seeds, and petals in there. Visually, this tea is fantastic.

Flavors: Cardamon, Cinnamon, Earth, Fennel Seed, Herbs, Licorice, Medicinal, Peppercorn, Sweet

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 8 min or more 1 tsp 25 OZ / 750 ML
greenteafairy

That’s so disappointing about the excess licorice root—I don’t know why so many blends include it in such large quantities, given how divisive an ingredient it is.

Arby Robilliard

I think it even could have been the vstar ingredient if they had dialled it back a bit. I’m going to try steeping it for less time and see how it goes.

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75

Today I cleaned out my tea drawer! I decided I just had to get it better organized. In the first half of November I attended a bridal shower/tea party. I used up quite a bit of tea for that, plus gave some away to those who really liked a tea. So I didn’t know what I still had. I found several little sample sized pouches with only a Tablespoon left. My goal for the year is to sip those down. One of those was this tea. When the tea from David’s advent calendar for today was Jumpy Money, I decided to finish this one off instead. Nothing wrong with Jumpy Monkey, but I’m drinking tea right before bed, so I decided to skip that one for now.

This tea is about a year old, but it still tastes good. Mild and faintly minty. A very nice evening cup!

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