Featured & New Tasting Notes

84

I just eyeballed the amount of tea and brewed.

Not boiling, again I think it was around 80°C.
The sencha base is quite nice, although in taste isn’t the most present. But it was grassy and smooth. The expected flavour profile is there present! Yep, I notice it was quite melon-seed like and overall it was round and nice. Of course, recreating the melon flavour without any actual melon is quite hard, but I think they managed it fairly well!

Food pairing: Blueberry and cream koláč (kolach) and our garden apple, Wealthy varietal. Yum!

Flavors: Grass, Melon, Round

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 0 sec 10 OZ / 300 ML

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100
drank Taiwan GABA Oolong Tea by What-Cha
713 tasting notes

Seems to be going toward red sweet potato in age. Still fruity as all get out, lots of baked pear. Less spice. Still sweet with that classic GABA tang which is well bridled. I strongly advocate for leafing this one heavy and doing long gongfu steeps or the method that warranted this a 100 rating — stewing for hours. Either way, it’s versatile with no bitterness and only slight drying. This GABA oolong would be great for loose leaf beginners as it can be prepared a variety of ways and at different temperatures. And for the more advanced, there’s complexity in this brew if you want to go searching.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 6 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
Martin Bednář

Need to try GABA finally once!

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66

This is SMOKY. The combination of the lapsang and blend of spices makes it very much a BBQ experience. I actually like it, I just chose the wrong time to drink it (it’s 100degrees outside). This will be excellent when it’s chilly out.

Dustin

I love the name of this tea!

amandastory516

Me too! There’s an entire Adagio custom collection themed to Nightmare Before Christmas.

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58

Had some time before a doctor appointment today, so decided to get the little 180ml pumpkin pot out again and go through another of the old 2017 Dazzle Deer samplers. This time I’m taking on my least-liked tea-type, pu’erh. Though I admittedly have had much more experience with shou than sheng, so I wonder if I can get a different experience than the “dirt and marsh water” that I usually taste…

Used the full 7g sample and filled the pot to 140ml (so it wasn’t quite to its capacity) with 205F (lowered to 195F, and then 185F) water.

140ml miniature teapot | 7g | 205F (Dropped to 195F, 185F) | Rinse/10s/15s/10s/10s/10s/10s

The wet leaf after the rinse smells like wet autumn leaves, raisin, bitter melon, and sour vegetables. The first infusion has a surprisingly sweet/floral aroma!? As well as honey, and raisin and autumn leaf. I definitely have never had these kind of scents in a pu’erh before… and… it tastes good to me?! What the frack, this has a lightly floral (lilac? lotus?) taste, a touch of that fruity honeyed raisin quality, and then a slightly more bitter vegetal (cabbage?) finish. On the second infusion the tea had suddenly grown uncomfortably bitter (the description for the tea says it has “no bitterness or astringency” so I can’t help but feel like I’m doing something wrong?), so instead of increasing the steep times for each infusion like Dazzle Deer’s site had recommended, I decided to try sticking at the 10s and also lowered the water temp slightly to 195F. That helped some, but it still was a little more bitter/astringent than I prefer… What happened to that lovely first steep?! Lowering the water temperature even further (185F) helped a little, but I still felt an almost medicinal bitterness left afterwards on my tongue. Only by my sixth steep had it mellowed, but by then I was tired of the tea and ready to wrap up the session…

I think this is closer in flavor to something I would like (while I never seem to have much luck with shou, unless it is in flavored blends), if it weren’t for the bitterness that overtook the tea after the first steep. And I don’t know if that bitterness is a sheng problem or a Sara problem. Will need to explore further.

Flavors: Astringent, Autumn Leaf Pile, Bitter, Bitter Melon, Floral, Honey, Raisins, Vegetal

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 7 g 5 OZ / 140 ML
derk

Sounds like a typical young Jinggu sheng to me. The bitterness and astringency isn’t a Sara problem. A lot of young sheng possess both qualities. Supposedly they mellow in age and with the right storage conditions. Oh, if only you weren’t on a tea-buying and acceptance ban.

Mastress Alita

Isn’t three years aged though?!

derk

How’s your dashboard looking in comparison to recent? There’s a glitch on mine where my dashboard is missing notes from between 20 and 3 hours ago.

derk

Aged? Newp, it’s still a baby.

Mastress Alita

I still have those notes open on another tab, but on this one (new tab) I’m seeing the same thing. If you look at the Steepster Migration page, Ilya said a database table had been moved and things should’ve only been affected for a few seconds. I’ll go report it…

Mastress Alita

Bah, and here I’ve been dutifully trying to drink all my oldest teas (2017) for space/storage reasons! Three years certainly seems like a long time to me, hahaha! :-P

White Antlers

Sorry to butt in re: Dashboard. Mine is quite dysfunctional.

derk

Hide yo sheng, hide yo strife. Really, just toss all your sheng and shou in the back of a closet. Don’t let their presence feel like a burden. And one day when you find them, maybe they’ll have transformed a bit.

Mastress Alita

So how long is long enough, then?

derk

38 years.

derk

Next year, it will be 39 years.

derk

I kid. There are lots of factors involved, so I’ve read from my position in this here armchair. Over a few years, I have noticed changes in my sheng collection, both the sample bags that have remained closed with no humidity or temperature additions, and the cakes and open sample bags that are stored in crocks with added humidity to keep it around 65-70%. The ambient temp in my room is usually between 60 and 70 degrees.

Then there is the sample of tasteless sheng stored in a compartment in my truck. I’m really curious about how a year of that storage will turn out.

Martin Bednář

Just give it a try new and then… I don’t think there is some clear “long enough” time line. I liked very fresh ones and I liked as well aged ones.

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64

Sipdown (291)

Today’s #septembersipdown prompt is about making a pot to share. Personally, I don’t live with tea drinkers and I don’t usually drink from a pot, however, I pulled out my mini pot for this prompt. I couldn’t convince someone to share though so I am drinking the pot by myself. Oh well.

When deciding what to make, the bottom of the pot said to use your favorite English tea and enjoy it in the English teaware. I don’t have any English Breakfast blends but I do have this tea which is an Earl Grey (which I associate with England – though that might be incorrect) from an English tea company. Good enough!

This tea was a free sample in my last Bird and Blend order. It was not something I have been enthused about so I figured why not just have it and it be done. So, I tossed the tea bag into my teapot and got to brewing. Of course while pouring the water, I managed to not catch the tag on the end of the string before it fell into the pot and then I had to fish it out. I also might have spilled both while pouring into and out of the teapot. Like I said, I don’t use a pot often.

I added milk to the glass since I thought a earl grey would need it. It does. The bergamot is strong but calmed slightly by the milk. It’s not bad this way. And I kept topping up the glass with the tea from the pot as a drank so it got less milky as I drank. It was still tolerable even as the milk:tea ratio got closer. Overall, I think maybe it is decent. I just don’t think its for me.

AJRimmer

I know the feeling! I used to live in a house full of tea drinkers, which made it super easy to use up teas I didn’t prefer. Now it’s just me, and sometimes it builds up.

Leafhopper

Same here. I don’t have anyone to share tea with either, though I do occasionally foist teas I don’t like on my parents.

AJRimmer

Yeah, whenever I fly home for the holidays, my luggage is always filled with tea in dozens of little foil packets, which I’m sure the TSA doesn’t find suspicious at all.

Martin Bednář

We used to drink a lots of tea, usually a pot for the evening, but recently it is that everyone makes a juice or something fast and simple. And cold! I hope every fall it will change again, but not that much, unfortunately!

Mastress Alita

I live alone and don’t have any local tea-drinking friends to share with, either. This is why it takes me EONS to sipdown my mountains of tea… just too much in here for one person!

VariaTEA

I think this is why I am always happy for the chance to share tea. My sister has gotten into the habit of occasionally grabbing my mug and trying it so maybe with time she will get into it too.

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90

My grandma is celebrating 79 on the 29th, so we had a small celebration today (only day we agreed on, whole close family)… counting people, it was 13 people. One of my brothers is working unfortunately today.

The tea, was delicious once again — apple and its skins, vanilla, pastry notes, quite high in cinnamon. It is respectable opponent to its opponent, granny’s real Apple Strudel. I think that granny’s won a tiny bit — because raisins, but it is really tiny bit!

It’s interesting that other family members weren’t that impressed about this tea though (when I prepared it in big pot for everyone) but they like the real strudel. Give me more!

Flavors: Apple, Apple Skins, Cinnamon, Pastries, Vanilla

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 10 OZ / 300 ML
White Antlers

Happy birthday to your grandma! Mine lived to be over 100 years old. I still miss her, but she left many wonderful memories behind and introduced me to the joys of tea back when I was a little girl.

mrmopar

Learn from her Martin as our grandparents are wise due to the fact they have lived through a lot. Cherish them while you still have them as they are priceless. Glad you celebrated with her.

amandastory516

Happy birthday to your grandma!

Leafhopper

Happy birthday to your grandma! It’s nice that you live near her and can spend time with her enjoying tea.

gmathis

Both the day and the sound lovely.

ashmanra

Happy birthday to your grandmother! May her year be blessed and may she enjoy many more birthdays with you!

Veronica

That sounds like a wonderful day. I love that you served the tea with your grandma’s strudel. How fun! I hope she enjoyed her day.

Martin Bednář

Thank you all! I am very glad to have her still around. She lives only downstairs Leafhopper, so indeed close by. She got some Pukka teas from me (and other family members), she don’t need much already. I hope we will celebrate lots of upcoming birthdays! Veronica: Indeed it was nice coincidence, and nice idea to compare liquid strudel and real one :D

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57
drank Pumpkin Latte by 52teas
746 tasting notes

I was really looking forward to trying this tea I got from amandastory516, but unfortunately there’s a weird flavor in here that I can’t get over. The spices are too mild. I don’t really notice a clear pumpkin flavor. The main thing I taste is the weird flavor I can’t place.

amandastory516

I’m sorry this one didn’t work out for you! I strongly disliked it as well. All I could taste was the chicory, which I generally don’t enjoy.

AJRimmer

That’s okay! I noticed another review mentioning the chicory too. I’ve had so many teas with that as an ingredient, but I actually don’t know what it tastes like! But that’s probably what I’m tasting also.

Mastress Alita

To me, chicory has a slight coffee-like taste.

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71

Additional notes: I like that this says for caffeine it’s “low” on the Steepster page because now I’m questioning WHY DID I BUY THIS WHEN I KNEW HOW WEAK THE BLACK TEA WAS?!?! I guess I just like the idea of it more than I was recalling my memories of it. The black tea couldn’t get any weaker, which is a real shame. Maybe I thought it was the age of my sample making the black tea weak before? Or hoping that the base had changed by now? It was on sale anyway. Like I said the other day, there is nothing worse than a light base on a chocolate tea. bleck. Lowering the rating from 79 (which I don’t usually do, but new harvests confirm things.)

Roswell Strange

Only slightly related, but this is the caffeine rating metric that DT uses:

Low = 1-19mg/8oz
Medium = 20-39mg/8oz
High = 40+mg/8oz

Just in case you were curious.

tea-sipper

Thanks, Ros! I don’t think caffeine affects me at this point anyway. haha

Roswell Strange

I feel that – I think I murdered any reaction my body might have had to caffeine years ago, back when VariaTEA and I were competing for tasting notes and I was steeping six teas at a time.

tea-sipper

SIX teas at a time?!? Yeah, I think when I brew two at a time, even if I try to only have one black tea and another type (rather than two black teas at the same time), that alone did it for my caffeine levels.

VariaTEA

hahahahaha @Roswell Strange, I forgot about that! We both ended up drinking like 20 cups or something insane that day. Also, I know for sure some of those were the 24 oz mason jar. I would say we should do that again but I genuinely think I might die.

Roswell Strange

I don’t think I’ve ever caffeine overdosed, but that’s probably the closest I’ve been.

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75

Latte Sipdown (gone before it was even added so no number change)

My new Dessert by Deb order arrived with all the tasty sounding fall teas. This is one of the ones I’m splitting with Sil and it smelled so good while I was dividing it that I decided to use my half to make a latte.

This was a little underleafed compared to usual and at first it came off a bit thin. However, the more I drink the better it gets. It’s good but I don’t know if it’s s’mores. I think this is more fireside coconut than anything. Smokey, creamy, coconut, and a touch of sweet maple/chocolate.

Since it’s not quite s’mores, I don’t think I need more. Based on the name and smell, I was actually worried I’d be immediately placing another order for copious amounts of this so I’m glad it didn’t completely deliver.

Dustin

How are you feeling about this company overall? I’ve been eyeing the teas, but reviews seem to be lukewarm.

VariaTEA

I’ve been enjoying the teas. We all know I like dessert blends so they speak to me. Some have been good or have made awesome lattes. Others have been meh/or flat. She uses a lot of coconut and maple so if those are not flavors you like, best to steer clear. I don’t know if that’s particularly helpful. I can always share some samples if you like so you can try before you buy!

Dustin

Thank you for the offer! I might take you up on that! Do you want to do a swap? I have a ton of French teas at the moment. My cupboard is horribly out of date.

Sil

i want smores not coconut fire.

VariaTEA

@Dustin check your DMs :)

@Sil, well…you are getting coconut fire!

Sil

as Caleigh would say – “poop”

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66
drank Blueberry Muffin by DAVIDsTEA
2872 tasting notes

STTB Tea

I would never buy this (since it contains dairy) but since it was in the TTB and the yoghurt pieces were fairly easy to pick out (with double washed hands and a spoon! I’m not a gross person I promise!) I decided to have an evening cup of herbal brew. I guess I expected this to be less acidic because I planned to add soy milk. Based on the colour and initial sip, I decided against it. I think milk would curdle.

There is a mice baked bread/buttery flavour, vanilla, and dried fruit flavour. It does taste quite a bit like blueberry and raisins. There is a nice sweetness to it. I don’t care for the acidity or the Earthy beetroot (carrot?) flavour, but neither are too bad. It would have been fine with less hibiscus though.

Flavors: Baked Bread, Blueberry, Dried Fruit, Hibiscus, Raisins, Sour, Vanilla

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 7 min, 15 sec

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84

Thanks very much, AJRimmer!  I will eventually get to all these samples. haha.  I wasn’t expecting much from this tea, seeing as how chocolate teas are normally somehow gasoline tasting  and lacking and English Tea Store’s teas have been generally disappointing… but the flavor of this tea resulted in how I would hope it would be.  First off, it’s dark.  I can’t do chocolate teas that aren’t deep and dark.  Second, no gasoline here.  Plenty of chocolate flavor.  Dark dusky chocolate.  I like that they actually include cocoa shells!  I thought I was seeing coconut in the blend, but it’s actually chamomile petals for some reason?  I don’t think they bring anything to the flavor anyway.  It’s a good pairing between this type of black tea and chocolate flavor in general.  It is what it says it is. Of course, it can’t actually be hot chocolate, but this is the closest thing to hot chocolate that a tea can be.  I wouldn’t mind having a bit of this around when I want a chocolate tea — there aren’t too many good chocolate teas.  Next time this will be a sipdown.
Steep #1  // 1 1/2 teaspoons for full mug // 20 minutes after boiling  // 2 minute steep
Steep #2  // 3 minutes after boiling //  3 1/2 minute steep

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95

Am I freaking out here, or does this taste like mint chocolate? checks ingredients Yep, I’m just going crazy. Maybe I’m tasting the licorice. Regardless, this one is quite good. It tasted good without milk, but it tastes even richer and fuller with some milk. I don’t usually love B&B’s chocolate blends, but I’m pretty impressed with this one. It tastes like thin mints to me – it just does! But I love the way this tea is balanced and flavored. Nice black tea, chocolate, and flavors. Thanks for the share, tea-sipper!

tea-sipper

Mint?! I don’t think there was any flavor contaminating from here… Also, we both just wrote tasting notes for chocolate teas we sent each other. haha

AJRimmer

I’m sure it was just my brain fooling itself, but I enjoyed the results! Oh yeah!

Martin Bednář

A mint? Indeed weird. But I am happy you liked it, as I do as well :)

derk

Cardamom might be the culprit.

AJRimmer

Aha! That could definitely be it.

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I finally tackled the Basket of Neglected Herbal Tea Gimmes and Scraps, and boy, do I need to drink up some rooibos! I’ve got dibs and dabs in a dozen different flavors that haven’t had proper attention over the past summer(s).

So this was on deck last night. It is several years old, but the orange peel was still OK. The first time I reviewed it, I compared to good old Constant Comment orange/cinnamon/spice. Can’t improve on that comparison. It was still tasty, and fitting for early fall.

ashmanra

I would not expect MarieBelle to be compared to Constant Comment! I love Dark Obsession Chocolate Rose…

gmathis

I think it was just the prominence of the orange and spice.

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drank Wild Apple Sarsaparilla by Tazo®
2241 tasting notes

(Will I ever learn? How many times have I grabbed a tea box without checking the ingredients because the name intrigued me?) When I finally read the fine print and noticed licorice, I almost immediately regretted picking this up. Same when I sniffed the dry bag

However, (don’t you just love good howevers?) it works in this blend! The apple flavor is crisp and strong and balances out the licorice stickiness. I had to really think about it to find any real sarsaparilla…but if you want yourself a good cup of caramel apple tea, you’ve got it here. Go figure.

Planning to try the next cup with milk in hopes of replicating Wrapples. (Remember, I am ancient … they were thin round sheets of caramel you plopped over an apple and stuck in the oven for just a bit. I ate the sheets straight from the package and drove my mom crazy.)

OMGsrsly

Ooooh, you’re lucky it worked for you! I really really dislike licorice root in tea. As much as I love the flavour, I can’t stand the sweet stickiness (good description!).

CrowKettle

I would’ve blindly grabbed a box with that tea name too. Glad it worked out despite the licorice (also not a fan of licorice root)!

gmathis

Licorice is why I have almost completely written off Yogi teas—-I don’t think I’ve ever had one of their blends that didn’t overdo it completely.

Side note … a pint of Marketside (Walmart upscale deli brand) Apple Crisp ice cream mysteriously appeared in my freezer this week. I have never had a tea float, but I am seriously considering it.

Mastress Alita

I actually love licorice root… and this tea sounds like something I’d love, because I’m a Sarsaparilla fiend (except I’m sad to hear the sarsaparilla is lacking). Tazo flavors are very limited in my local grocery, but if I see it, I’ll grab it…

gmathis

Found my box at Target, if that helps.

Martin Bednář

Hmm, that sounds interesting. Never heard about Sarsaparilla (sounds bit Finnish to me!) and I don’t mind licorice if it is not too much of it in (considering Yogi for example).

gmathis

Martin, if you’ve ever tried American-style root beer soft drinks, you’ve tasted the sarsaparilla flavoring. Not absolutely identical to sassafras, but similar.

Martin Bednář

Nope, don’t have that experience yet.

OMGsrsly

A tea float sounds like it could be incredibly good. :)

Mastress Alita

Oh, thanks gmathis, I do have a Target locally so I’ll check there!

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90

Yuuum! Finally I could enjoy this tea without awful headache.

I was craving for something smooth and floral; and this delivered both.

Grandpa — 1 tsp per 300 ml.
It was just perfect. Very nice in aroma, jasmine, orchids, lightly creamy. In taste it was so smooth, even when I used boiling water, again jasmine and creamy, coated all my mouth with its velvety texture. Aftertaste was long, hints of vegetal, bit of genmaicha taste. Somehow I believe it can offer more and more! I really enjoy that qualitiy, that it is strong in aroma as well in taste, but not overpowering all other notes!

Flavors: Creamy, Jasmine, Smooth, Toasted Rice, Vegetal

Preparation
Boiling 1 tsp 10 OZ / 300 ML

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88

Okay, I guess I’m coming back to Steepster now. The funny thing is I honestly had no intention of coming back to the site save to read and like the tasting notes of others or maybe post the occasional comment or question. At the time I decided to step away, I was not only dealing with an avalanche of mental and physical health issues, but I had also reached a point where I did not feel that I had anything else to say. Each time I sat down to post a tea review, I was either filled with so much anxiety and frustration that I had to force myself through the process, or I just could not find any motivation to write anything and would stare at my computer screen for varying lengths of time before giving up and walking away to do anything else. Furthermore, I was extremely angered and disappointed by the owners’ decision to sell to Adagio and was certain at the time that it would be a death sentence for this site and community. Fortunately, I seem to have been wrong about that last bit (to this point), and since I have been doing a little better over the last couple of weeks, I figured that I may as well try to get back into the groove of writing tea reviews and see how things go. Naturally, my already huge backlog has grown even further. I have a pile of unposted reviews stretching from July 2019 to the present, and I am still certain that I have one review from the fall of 2018 that I simply forgot to post. This one comes from either February or March of this year. I recall enjoying this tea, but I also recall thinking that it struck me as being a bit light and green compared to many of other Da Wu Ye I have sampled in recent years.

I prepared this tea gongfu style. After rinsing, I steeped 6 grams of loose tea leaves in 4 ounces of 203 F water for 7 seconds. This infusion was chased by 15 additional infusions. Steep times for these infusions were as follows: 9 seconds, 12 seconds, 16 seconds, 20 seconds, 25 seconds, 30 seconds, 40 seconds, 50 seconds, 1 minute, 1 minute 15 seconds, 1 minute 30 seconds, 2 minutes, 3 minutes, 5 minutes, and 7 minutes.

Prior to the rinse, the dry tea leaves produced aromas of orchid, pomegranate, orange blossom, cream, butter, and sugarcane. After the rinse, I detected new aromas of custard, vanilla, roasted almond, pear, and baked bread. The first infusion then brought out aromas of grass and coriander. In the mouth, the tea liquor presented notes of orange blossom, sugarcane, grass, cream, baked bread, butter, and roasted almond that were balanced by lighter, subtler impressions of pear, orchid, pomegranate, lychee, custard, plum, and spinach. The subsequent infusions coaxed out aromas of violet, plum, spinach, lychee, sour cherry, and orange zest. Stronger and more immediately evident notes of custard, pear, spinach, plum, and lychee came out in the mouth alongside notes of minerals, white grape, orange zest, violet, sour cherry, and green apple. Hints of butterscotch, apricot, and coriander lurked around the fringes. As the tea faded, the liquor emphasized impressions of minerals, roasted almond, butter, baked bread, grass, pear, spinach, and coriander that were balanced by hints of orange zest, pomegranate, cream, vanilla, sugarcane, orchid, and white grape.

This was an extremely interesting and satisfying Dancong oolong. The mix of aromas and flavors was great, and the liquor it produced consistently felt wonderful in the mouth. Many Dancong oolongs can become very woody, vegetal, or astringent in the mouth, but this one never did. It was also much lighter in body and less savory than many of the other Da Wu Ye I have tried. I suspect that the roast on this tea was lighter than that of previous years. Anyway, this was a very good tea that was very approachable. I tend to be a big fan of traditional Da Wu Ye, so this tea did not quite tick all the boxes for me, but it was still very good. I am willing to bet that people who are into lighter roasted oolongs would love it.

Flavors: Almond, Apricot, Baked Bread, Butter, Butterscotch, Cherry, Coriander, Cream, Custard, Fruity, Grass, Green Apple, Lychee, Mineral, Orange Blossom, Orange Zest, Orchid, Pear, Plums, Spinach, Sugarcane, Vanilla, Violet, White Grapes

Preparation
6 g 4 OZ / 118 ML
Leafhopper

Glad to have you back! I also thought that Steepster’s change of ownership could have a negative effect and am glad that things have evened out after some initial issues with the website. That Da Wu Ye sounds like my kind of Dancong.

derk

Welcome back to steepsterspace. May your return be the beginning of a healthier guy. It’s been a tough year. I look forward to your in-depth tasting backlogs being posted as the urges present.

Martin Bednář

Welcome back! I know exactly what are you talking about; I had same moments, though my reveiews aren’t that complex as yours. Maybe “care less” about the reviews, write them when you feel to, maybe forget the “long waiters” — we will survive not seeing them :)

Just be happy with this community that luckily haven’t disappeared yet. This year was stressful for everyone, including myself, sometimes I don’t post anything here as well, I am sometimes just reading others notes and I really enjoy that! There are so many teas which sound interesting or nice to try, there are companies who I never heard of and they deliver sometimes awful teas — but that’s the path of tea explorers! Be safe, don’t feel that you have to share everything with us. You don’t (this applies to me as well!) !

tea-sipper

Welcome back and wishing you well

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84
drank Crème Brulee by Bayswater Tea Co.
11181 tasting notes

Sipdown from days ago. Thanks for the revisit omgsrsly I still think divine temptation is my weakness but i do love this one as well :)

VariaTEA

I feel like there were three Bayswater teas that were really good – this, Divine Temptation and another but I can’t remember what it was :(

Roswell Strange

Is the grapefruit EG from Bayswater? I don’t think that would be a Sil favourite but I remember people loving that one.

VariaTEA

It wasn’t that, though I remember that being popular too. It was something similar to Divine Temptation and Creme Brulee

OMGsrsly

We blended Divine Temptation and Creme Brulee. And yeah, the grapefruit EG was super great.

VariaTEA

bahahaha that might be what I am thinking of, thanks OMGsrsly!

VariaTEA

I looked at my rated teas – it was Chocolate Macchiato.

OMGsrsly

Oohhh I don’t think I ever had that one. I just don’t love coffee flavour in my tea.

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drank Irish Whiskey by TeaMaze
2241 tasting notes

Not to rub it in, but it was a delicious 54 degrees this morning. Don’t you just love that first turn in the weather when you trot out the teas you’ve been craving after a sweltering summer? This one is a cocoa-y, bourbon-y treat. I wish I could say it curbs my chocolate cravings; unfortunately, it prompts them.

OMGsrsly

I am extremely jealous. It’s nice outside (except for the smoke) but my apartment is a sweltering humid mess.

gmathis

Sorry about the air quality. I’d ship you a bottle of clean Missouri fog if I could!

OMGsrsly

Haha no worries. It’s raining today which is great. The air is so much clear-er. And also it’s cooler out.

Mastress Alita

The air here is awful too. It’s been triggering my migraines like crazy and both me and my kitty are wheezy. I’ve been trying to get an air filter to run inside but they have been a hot ticket item (unsurprisingly). Glad you are seeing some clearer skies!

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54

This tea is the beverage representation of that friend who you like in theory and share a lot of interests with, but they’ve got a lot going on that they need to work through and you try to enjoy them but you just end up having to work through it with them, too, so it’s better if you just kind of leave them to do their thing.

I opened the bag and my first impression was to be incredibly impressed. Big chunks of freeze-dried strawberry, visible chocolate chips – I smelled the leaves and could practically feel that moist, chilled chocolate that invariably melts on your fingers the second you bite into that strawberry. You could smell the depth of the chocolate, the way it kind of overpowers the smell of the fruit, you could sense the strawberry inside – every texture by association. They absolutely nailed the smell of a chocolate covered strawberry.

Strangely enough, the aroma emanating from the brewed cup – which was strikingly pale for a black tea – was not that of chocolate or strawberry, but rose. This prompted a review of the ingredients list. Not only rose petals, but organic cheesecake flavoring was also afoot. This gave the cup an unwarranted tartness that I did not anticipate from the leaves at all. It was the type of tartness that clings to the back of your tongue and the roof of your mouth – I had to really study the flavor in my mouth to regain those chocolate notes, which seemed to dissipate into nowhere. The feeling is something akin to that if you opened the fridge to find out your picky kid had breached your secret strawberry stash and sucked the chocolate off them, leaving only the bitter strawberries of your resentment and the memory of a sugar fix that could have been.

Probably anybody with a more sophisticated palate will be able to appreciate the tartness as reflective of strawberry, and also sort out those evasive chocolate flavors, but as for me – I will ruminate on the fruits of my discontentment.

Flavors: Chocolate, Rose, Tart

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
gmathis

Thank you for making me laugh! I love reading your reviews. Spot-on strawberry teas are rare and precious and confounded hard to find.

ashmanra

I did not taste chocolate really and the strawberry was mainly tartness of fruit, so I guess the cheesecake flavoring was the main source of that. We enjoyed it very much with our chocolate cake and your dad commented that it was a good pairing, but he, too, had trouble tasting any chocolate.

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57

I’m pretty disappointed in this one. They only had the 150g bag, so I have a ton of it too. I don’t taste anything pancakey. It’s only weird lemon. I guess that’s from the fermented lemon. So this just turned into a not very pleasant lemon tea. It’s not refreshing since it’s too heavy. The lemon sort of just attacks your throat. Shorter steep for this one.

Leafhopper

My sympathies on the large amount of unpalatable tea. I have almost 300 g of GABA oolong that I thought was a great deal until I discovered I didn’t like it. I think it’s three or four years old now.

AJRimmer

Oh no, that’s so much! Yeah, I opened this one as soon as I received it because I was so sure it was going to be great ):

Martin Bednář

I wasn’t fan as well unfortunately. But apparently I found a way in my last session. Grandpa and 7 grams. But… maybe it needs to “breathe” a bit?

Leafhopper

Yep. Never purchase 300 grams of something you don’t know anything about! Maybe someone else on here will want to buy or swap it from you?

amandastory516

I disliked this one too. Sorry you ended up with so much!

Maddy Barone

I was disappointed by this one too. Shame, since it sounded so good.

AJRimmer

I know! I’m always all over teas that include “pancake” in the name. Hopefully there’s someone out there who I can pass this along to!

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85

This one is from Ost a while ago now.  Thanks, Ost!  Sadly has a ‘drink by 2016’ on the bag, but we’ll see how it goes.  I’ve had this a few times and think it’s best at this point with two teaspoons.  The leaves are large with only hints of the namesake gold.   The flavor most reminds me of a Fujian black and then forgot that this IS a Fujian tea (face smack)— cocoa powder with a hint of smoke but also something that can remind me of lychee (so not really that much of a Fujian black in flavor, I don’t normally get lychee with those). The second cup is more sour plum and rye bread, so the change is interesting.  A malty, rustic tea, seems aged somehow (and I don’t mean from 2016) that seems perfect for this time of year.  I liked how I steeped this, note to self.  This seems to be holding up with age, but these poor What-cha teas certainly deserve better.  I just checked and luckily other than this tea, it’s just some small What-cha oolong samples that comprise the What-cha part of my collection.  I like samples.  Samples are good.
Steep #1  // 2 teaspoons for full mug // 18 minutes after boiling  // 2 minute steep
Steep #2  // just boiled //  3 minute steep
2020 Sipdowns: 72 AprTea -Fenghuang Dancong Oolong Tea Honey Rhyme Mellow Grade One

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77

I have to agree with my previous tasting note. It is mostly lemongrass and oranges, hints of actual lemon; refreshing and thist quencher :)

Flavors: Lemon, Lemongrass, Orange

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 8 min or more 2 tsp 10 OZ / 300 ML

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89
drank Butterscotch Blondie by Tazo
10154 tasting notes

Crazy morning today! I’m working from home and fielding a bunch of different cross department type things, but also it’s officially a week from when the podcast I’ve been working on for the last few months officially launches!!

More details, and also a sneak peak for Steepster friends, here:
https://steepster.com/discuss/42133-geek-steep-a-new-tea-and-fandom-podcast

I’m drinking mostly bagged teas this morning – in part because of the September Sipdown prompt but also because they’re fast and easy in a very chaotic morning of managing all these different things! Plus, this is honestly the best butterscotch flavour that I’ve ever had in any tea and while I’m sometimes annoyed that this delicious flavour is on a bagged tea instead of something loose leaf, today I’m very appreciative of having such a delicious bagged option!

Inkling

Love the concept of your podcast, Ros! Looking forward to tuning in. :)

Roswell Strange

Aww, thank you! :)

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drank Spiced Fall Evenings by Cuppa Geek
2456 tasting notes

At last we have another truly cool evening with low humidity! After broiling through days with a heat index of 104F as recently as a week ago, we are going to dip into the 50’s tonight! I have been waiting for this all day.

As soon as we dipped below 65F, I suggested to my husband a bit of rocking chair time on the back porch with a cuppa.

I made this latte style, heating the milk first and continuing to heat it for about one minute with the leaves added, then off the heat and steeping for another three to four minutes. I usually sweeten my lattes and I did add sugar to this one.

I get a lot of chamomile in the aroma but mostly taste the spice – pumpkin spice and cardamom. Oh, I love cardamom in blends like this!

Drinking it, I noticed a tingling warm sensation in my mouth from the ginger. I can imagine how delightful that will be when the temperatures are truly cold!

I am so glad this has honeybush as the base instead of the ubiquitous red rooibos which is not a favorite of mine. I greatly prefer honeybush or green rooibos in its place. This carries the spices so much better and lets them shine more, in my opinion.

It passed the husband test and was deemed as a worthy bedtime treat. And now the warm milk and chamomile combo have made me sleepy, so off to bed!

mrmopar

We had a 52 degree wake-up here this morning.

ashmanra

Ah yes! I know I will complaining about the cold soon, and already I wish the days were not growing so short, but I am happy the worst of the heat and humidity is gone!

Martin Bednář

Finally some bearable temperatures!

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