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New Tasting Notes

Saturday Sample Sipdown #3!

The first time I tried this tea, I steeped it for 3 minutes and it tasted strongly of rose with a hint of apple. The second time, I reduced the steeping time by one minute and didn’t get much flavour of anything beyond the base. This time, in a final attempt to get the apple flavour to the forefront, I steeped it for 4 minutes.

Alas, I still didn’t get the apple flavour that I was hoping for. Which is a shame, because I really wanted to make this tea work for me, and while the first steep was lovely, the rose was a bit too strong for me.

Ah well. There are some teas that you can never quite see eye-to-eye with, no matter how high-quality they are. So long, amazing-smelling tea.

Boiling 4 min, 15 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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This tea didn’t do it for me like the other teas in the heritage gourmand line. I got a little bit of cake flavour, but it was nothing special. I enjoyed the cup but would not purchase this if I ever made an MF order.

Thanks CharlotteZero for sending me some of this!

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drank Amaretto by DAVIDsTEA
984 tasting notes

Looking for something sweet after dinner and this tea has been calling to me over the last few days, I love the smell of amaretto and almond. I’m watching Man Of Steel for the first time, my husband is a huge Superman fan whereas I am predominantly a Batman fan. I love original comic references but most modern film adaptations forget the comics, so far this film has yet to impress me.

This tea has a strong scent, very much amaretto and almond, it’s heavenly. The blend itself may not look too tempting but it’s scent makes up for that, it looks dry and desert like. I just gave it to my husband to sniff and he said it’s like sherbet. It’s perhaps a little on the sour side and not as sweet as amaretto but sherbet…I wouldn’t go that far. Still it’s nice to have another’s perspective.

Once steeped the scent is still very amaretto but definitely more dry too and heavily nutty. The nutty part I don’t mind as I love nuts…..and I just realised that can sound a little rude.

Flavour wise again it’s heavily nutty, the almond being more dry than sweet and rather savoury at that. In fact the sweetness has been lost in preparation it would seem, raw it was sweet and sticky almost but now it tastes like I’ve eaten a handful of whole almonds. It’s nice but not amaretto so slightly disappointing there. Kind of toasty taste too it as well.

I wouldn’t trade for more of this, just not what I was expecting despite it’s wonderful raw scent. Oh well, still made a nice tea post dinner.

205 °F / 96 °C 7 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 20 OZ / 600 ML

If you were stateside, I could send you an excellent almond black tea- very amaretto! But I’m guessing it would be very expensive to ship to the UK :-(

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It’s been a while now since I’ve had any Long Jing, and today’s big tetsubin of Tealux’s top grade is tasting mighty fine. I did not measure the temperature (still have not figured out where my tea paraphernalia is after the move—no doubt in the bottom of a box in the back corner of a storage space), but using the largest tetsubin automatically diminished the heat apparently the appropriate amount, because this tastes very good. Now I’m wondering: perhaps I should dispense with the thermometer and brew loose green tea only in this large tetsubin?

I feel compelled after today’s positive experience to increase my rating of this tea.

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I agree with CharlotteZero that this tea is very interesting, thanks for sharing it with me!

I had enough of this tea for about 1.5 cups so I just brewed the whole sample in my steeper. As I brought the first cup to my face, I got a strong smell of blueberry! I got some in the taste as well, but quite faintly. It also had a very mellow cakey taste. I didn’t get any bergamot though, but thought that might have been because I added cream and I have found that cream kills bergamot! It was a tasty cup though.

Second cup – steeped for about 45 mins while I drank the first cup. I immediately added some extra water before even tasting it because I thought it would be too strong. Added milk instead of cream. Now there’s the bergamot! I am not getting the berry or crepe flavours though. I bet I could get all the flavours in one cup with the right brewing time and with no cream. Though I am not sure I would be willing to spend the type of money that this tea costs just to try. I would purchase this for sure if It was more affordable, because it is good, but not mind blowing.

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Additional notes: Sipdown! I was hesitant to drink the last of this, because I loved how ghostly it was last time: tobacco, roses, maltiness, cherries. This is still very nice, but I think some of the flavors are gone. To be fair, I probably steeped it at boiling last time, rather than waiting ten minutes and steeping for three minutes. I wanted to sipdown at least one tea before organizing my tea collection today. Should be fun!

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Sipdown. Nice white tea, sweet, floral, hay notes…retains a nice taste even when lukewarm. Doesn’t go astringent on me. Between this and the Glenburn Silver Needle I’m not sure which I’d rather as they’re both nice, but I’ll probably stock this again in the future.

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Yes, I had to place a small Zen order… they are one of my favorites and they had a sale. Just sample pouches of some of my favorites and samples of new ones to try. I love this type of tea – I call it the creamed/breaded corn tea. To me it tastes just like creamed corn or that breaded corn side dish. The dry leaves are shiny like a gunpowder but usually I’ve seen maofeng that have fuzzy leaves like a white tea. I wonder how they taste the same either way? I’m forgetting that all tea is from the same leaf though. To be fair, Zen sent me this tea for free with my order because it was a bit older, so my review might not be as fair as if it were fresh, but to me, it tastes exactly as it should. The breaded/creamed corn flavor. It also has a nuttiness to it that I love. There is a bit of a bite to it, it could just be because it was a green tea and it was steeped for three minutes, or it could be the only hint of an old tea. But I’m not complaining! I love this type of tea.
Steep #1 // 30 minutes after boiling // 3 min steep

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drank Laos Black #05 by Steepster
16 tasting notes

A very warm and cozy tea, like a fuzzy blanket or a hug in a cup. The subtle sweetness in the finish complements the roasted and malty quality of the tea. A touch of nuttiness rounds out the well-bodied flavor. Even though I have never had a tea from Laos, I find this tea in a way very familiar, as if I have already enjoyed it before. 9/10, a wonderfully enjoyable tea for colder days.

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Oh I needed tea. I needed it beyond all reason. I had to do the early shift without even a single cup of the stuff. Wah!
I’m off to a lecture on modern art, and so I’m charging up with this spicy cup.

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I was in the mood for plain tea last night, so I had a cup from this sample pouch. I enjoyed it a little more than I did my last cup, maybe because I was just in the right place for it. I reduced the brew time a little, and was rewarded with a lightly grassy, pleasingly milky cup. Very enjoyable!

180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 15 sec 1 tsp

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I think a much, much shorter brew time is the best way with this one. I went with my instinct last night, and removed the bag after about a minute and a quarter. The metallic taste was hugely reduced (although still there a bit), and I found myself enjoying my cup a lot more than I would have. There was more grape and stone fruit flavour to be found, which are two of the things I enjoy most about darjeeling. It’s still not my favourite, or the best I’ve tried, but it was okay. Still not a restock.

Boiling 1 min, 15 sec

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Having this delightful tea as the first cup of the day. I’m nearly done this paper, then it’ll be on to studying for my two hardest exams, but also my two favourite classes.

It seems I’ve finally perfected steeping this to my liking. I can drink it a bit more often now that I’ve managed to decrease a touch of the syrup-ness.

200 °F / 93 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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So I used to work with a friend that loved tea almost as much as I do, and we would share teas and talk about them all the time. Unfortunately, she was just a term and a lady that used to work in my office 6 years ago came back and kicked her out of her position (stupid government jobs). It ended up being a great thing because I work better with this new lady and she is one of the nicest people I’ve ever met. And somehow I have gotten her obsessed with tea as well! We made a Butiki order together the other week and she was even online shopping for teas on her own, and unfortunately for her, she found Teavana online and made an order before I was able to tell her any of my horror stories about Teavana. She ended up hating most of her teas and she has 100g+ of some of them!

So this was one of the ones she purchased and it was REALLY good! It was just such a great strait black tea, malty and delicious! I think I might pick some up from the store when I go down to Vancouver next month. I guess it’s just Teavana blends that I don’t like!

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drank SoHo Blend by Harney & Sons
15 tasting notes

This tea deserves a second review because it is just that good! It is just dreamy- mostly coconut with great chocolate notes as well. The tea blend itself is just gorgeous and the aroma is fantastic. I’m obsessed. I bought a pound of this tea. If anyone wants to try it, and I think everyone should unless you don’t like coconut, hit me up for a swap!

Saturday morning + SoHo blend + catching up on Scandal = perfection

Flavors: Chocolate, Coconut

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This is by far the best silver needle I have tasted, it’s flavor is so complex and evolves over the course of the tasting. Be very careful on the steep times because 5 seconds either way makes a big difference, when they say the first steep after rinsing is only 10 seconds they mean it! I do find that after 3 or 4 steeps the flavor kind of mellows but on a good way, as though the tea was speaking loudly at first to be heard in a full tea cabinet but then settles down once it knows you’re paying attention.

185 °F / 85 °C 0 min, 15 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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drank Samovar by Kusmi Tea
37 tasting notes

No notes yet. Add one?

Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 14 OZ / 400 ML

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drank Marco Polo by Mariage Frères
167 tasting notes

Saturday Sample Sipdown #2!

Today’s a day to get things done – the sun is shining, the laundry’s in the wash, there’s a fresh breeze blowing, and my mother is baking bread for Easter. What better tea to drink and take a pause to reflect on things amidst all the hubbub?

This tea smells like strawberry jam. There’s no better way to put it. Unfortunately, the strawberry taste recedes a bit when the tea cools. However, I can taste it slightly on the back of my tongue after I sip. Ahh. I’ve learned that shorter steep times work much better for French blends – hopefully I can apply the lesson to my Nina’s teas.

Many thanks to Indigobloom for giving me a sample of this to try!

Boiling 2 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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two days of this tea – im in a Puerh heaven. it is very very good puerh, complex, first 5 steeps maybe so unlike each other.
5g 100ml gaiwan 212F
rinse pause 5/5/10/10/15/15/20/30/ sec etc
Wet leaves have strong smell of dried apricots
1st steep produced brownish reddish clear tea. its sweet but had some sourdough notes at the very end of the sip
2nd steep clean and sweet. as cooled introduced some cream
3rd steep it smelled and tasted of strong cream of wheat.
here i stopped taking notes, it was a midnight. some steeps were mellow, then introduced more flavors. i wasnt paying attention. i just enjoyed.
i have to mention i haven’t noticed any earthiness, leather, cedar or barn smell. this tea is very clean.
I think I should stop rating Puerh. its so hard to put a number for me

0 min, 15 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

It’s not tea related, but made me remember how when my older daughter was a toddler she called it “cweamy weep”.


Haha, kids when they little just start talking are so adorable. I used to write down some funny stuff.


Another favorite was “flumbingo” for flamingo.


This is a “Special cake” for us at home. We pull it out every year on Valentines and Christmas eve to drink. It has been aging well and we have a backup cake also. I also purchased one from 2012 to age and sit till we drink the other two.


It’s so good. It’s not giving up!

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