Featured & New Tasting Notes

drank Dublin Cream by TeaMaze
2241 tasting notes

Sipdown, hopefully temporary. TeaMaze is open again and this one’s on the top of the list when we get there. It’s my current favorite no-fail strawberry and cream black tea. Needs no sugar or milk; all the goodness is thoughtfully provided for you.

The last note I wrote for this was six very long months ago—the last time I got to go on an “Impact Day” adventure with my fifth and sixth grade church kids. Appropriate that I have picked it back up to fortify me for my first Sunday back with them after a long dry spell. They’re my weekly joy break, and my tank was well past empty. Counting the minutes till I get some (properly sterilized and sanitized) air hugs.

derk

Woohoo! I bet you feel great on both counts. Stay safe, gmathis

gmathis

We subdivided grades to keep numbers small, so I had six brand new fifth graders; 40% of whom are TALKERS. (Of course, they haven’t seen their friends for months, so I cut them a little slack.) It will be good.

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62

Last teabox black, from the Discovery Teabox, so thank you to Skysamurai for organizing and all who participated and shared teas in the teabox! (All I have left now are some very old teabox pu’erhs from the very last Here’s Hoping Teabox… and since pu’s aren’t my favorite, I’ve continued to sort of… uh… “let them age”? Hahaha.) Another floral tea, so of course I wanted to try it! Scooped a teaspoon (CBA to weigh this morning), 3 minute steep, 350ml of 205F water for my work thermos. Brewed to accompany my two pieces of toast with marmalade and then take to work with me.

This is a strongly lavender black tea. The florality isn’t perfumy but has a bit of a herbaceous bite, and that is with a short 3 minute steep (I bet any longer and it would’ve gone very bitter, as lavender in high quantities tends to do that easily). This is probably stronger in lavender than any Lavender Earl Grey I’ve ever had… but then, maybe the bergamot is cutting through the lavender some in those cases. I like lavender, but omph, it is very heady here, and if I knew it would be this strong, I would’ve prepared this as a latte (I love me some lavender milk). As a bonified, 100% loves-all-things-lavender fan, and even I feel this tastes like a little too much, I think the blend could’ve either done with a) a little less lavender in the ratio or b) a stronger black base to compensate. I’m really not able to pick out any particular notes from the base black tea against the lavender. That said… the base tea is supposed to be apricot-flavored?! I think that was what interested me the most about this blend, as apricot plus lavender sounded like an absolute win of a flavor combo. But I do not taste any apricot at all! That’s a bit disappointing too. Who knows, maybe it is in there, but with the lavender being so strong, there is just no way to taste it…

I added a teaspoon of honey and a dash of lemon juice to the cup to add a bit of a mellowing effect against the strength of the lavender, and that was actually quite pleasant (I somehow always forget additives are there to save an otherwise meh cup!) I will probably continue that going forward with future cups, or go with the latte idea, since the milky/vanilla flavor will help compliment/cut through the lavender flower as well.

Not one of Simpson & Vail’s florals that I would purchase (it’s no Violet Black!) as without the novelty of the apricot with the lavender, I can easily add lavender buds to any black tea myself, and then control the propotions more to my taste. Definitely glad I got the chance to sample this first, since it’s the sort of thing I probably would’ve bought for myself and then been a bit disappointed that it wasn’t what I really wanted. Thanks so much for the sample, tea_sipper!

Flavors: Floral, Herbaceous, Lavender

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 350 OZ / 10350 ML
tea-sipper

Yeah, nevermind the puerh. :D

Mastress Alita

I’m not ignoring the pu’erh, I’m aging it! :-D

Kawaii433

Mastress Alita Me too! That’s why I haven’t been drinking or posting about any pu’erh tea. The last one I tried recently was White2Tea’s If your reading this it’s too late. I think it still needs to rest a bit.

Mastress Alita

It was kinda a joke, Kawaii, hahaha. Every pu I’ve tried thus far tastes like dirt or swamp water to me, and I haven’t liked it, so I’m kinda “putting off” drinking them. I’m just “rebranding” the “putting it off” as “aging them” :-P

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85

One tea left in the pouch.

Today it is very clove based. Green tea with cloves. Haven’t noticed any smoky notes; only green tea with ginger/cloves spiciness.

Well, good for this afternoon. Need to finish it as soon as possible. Otherwise it would get very bland and even more boring.

Flavors: Clove, Ginger, Green

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 4 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 10 OZ / 300 ML
Martin Bednář

By the way, only struggle I have is captcha often. Suggested addon wasn’t working for me and loading is bit slower. But posting tasting notes works like it used to, haven’t tried to post in discussions, but messages started to work. But I am not only member! I hope it will be better for everyone!

White Antlers

Sometimes I can log on, but mostly I cannot. I can’t update my profile or seen new and recent tasting notes of people I am not following. sigh

Mastress Alita

Hey Martin, I used my “fake” account to post your issue to the message boards, and they added the Czech Republic into the Captcha whitelist so hopefully you shouldn’t be getting all the captchas now.

Martin Bednář

Thanks Mastress Alita; I noticed it (thank you e-mail notification, although bit too much of them recently… but I like to see them)

It seems I can post to discussions as well, which is great, but I am deeply saddened that your main profile isn’t working as expected, as well many others (including White Antlers). I would give up posting on discussions for working state as before the migration for everyone.

White Antlers

Glad to see that Martin and Mastress Alita have had their ‘tea powers’ restored. I can no longer post in Discussions, still can’t update my blank profile or read new tasting notes other than those of the few folks I follow. I keep getting the black “someone left the kettle on” page when I try to do anything.

Mastress Alita

Your “blank” profile should get restored eventually, White Antlers. Mine wsa “blank” for well over a week, but the text has been restored now. Some of my friends still have “blank” in theirs. Maybe it can’t be altered until after they restore it.

White Antlers

Thanks, Mastress Alita. The profile doesn’t bother me all that much, as I know who I am and I don’t swap. What I do find frustrating is not being able to see recent tasting notes, other than those of the folks I follow. What can I say? I’m a fixed astrological sign…

Mastress Alita

Huh… I only read the tasting notes of the people on my Following list, so I’m not even sure how (or where) to go about doing that. It takes me so long to catch up my reading just reading the Following list I don’t really need more…

White Antlers

I used to be able type in my browser ‘steepster.com/recent/all’ and I would get to a page that had all the newest tasting notes from everyone, whether I followed them or not. Now when I log in, I am taken right to my Dashboard and from there, if I’m lucky, I can then go to Discussions.

Mastress Alita

Okay, I’ve only ever used the Dashboard myself! I am also getting a broken link at that address, so it isn’t just you.

White Antlers

Thanks, Mastress Alita. I’m an old lady (70) and not tech savvy at all. I still have and use an ancient Motorola flip cell phone. At least I’m not crazy or doing something wrong; it’s Steepster, not me.

Mastress Alita

I don’t even own a cell phone! :-)

White Antlers

Mastress Alita* Good for you! I don’t drive nor do I have a land line in my home, so the little old flip phone is for emergencies. It’s essentially what is now considered a ‘burner’ phone-pay as you go-no plan. I don’t own a television, so I am not in the 21st century by any means.

Mastress Alita

I posted about that “New Tasting Notes” page error in the forums, White Antlers. It took a while to load for me, but I am now able to access https://steepster.com/recent/ . Maybe try it again now and see if it is also fixed for you?

White Antlers

Thanks for posting that, Mastress Alita. I still cannot post anything at all in Discussions so your help is greatly appreciated. Yes, now I can see ALL recent/new tasting notes. That’s tremendous!

Mastress Alita

Martin and I couldn’t post in the forums until just very recently… I am no website/server database expert (I know the most rudimentary of HTML…) but it almost seems to me things are slowly repairing in “blocks” and it might just depend on what pieces are data are where… there might be hope yet you can post in the forums too, down the line, once that “section” of data is addressed. Glad it is working for you again!

White Antlers

Posting in the forums, for me, is on and off. I don’t have a lot to say about tea, other than ‘I drink it,’ but it’s nice to know I CAN say something if I want to, like responding to Shanie O’Mainiac’s (sp?) query about kettle recommendations. I’ll try to call on my weakest virture-patience-and just try to see, every day, what’s fixed and what I’m able to once again do. Thanks again for your kind words and your help.

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85

I prepared it as usual, two teaspoons for my 300 ml cup. As it is green tea, I have used bit colder water, tried close to 80°C, but haven’t measured as usual. Lazy me.

Although based on sight it isn’t the most precious sencha, it is a good base. Very smooth, noticeable in taste as a grassy flavour. I don’t think that freshly cut grass flavour would be necessary, this was maybe better. Ginger and lemon peel combination was great. Ginger wasn’t overpowering the taste for sure, but was noticeable, and lemon was like combined with honey. It was a bit on the sweet side, but not too sweet. It reminded me Halls Relief cough drops (ehm, sounds bad, but it wasn’t). I don’t really know if they are the same in the US, but I hope they are. We have different packages though. And we don’t use them against coughs.

The lemon was somehow juicy, but not sour at all, and as iced tea, it would be another delicious blend. But the weather says no, we had temperature drop to 15-18°C in the mornings, so no more iced/cold brews are needed.

Flavors: Dry Grass, Ginger, Lemon Zest

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 30 sec 2 tsp 10 OZ / 300 ML
White Antlers

Sounds delicious-both the tea and the weather. : )

Leafhopper

I’m also jealous of your cooler weather. It’s going to be another hot weekend here in Ontario, Canada.

Mastress Alita

This is the second week in a row we’ve been pushing the high 90sF… I’m so tired of this heat wave!

Martin Bednář

I wish you all coler weather soon!

Martin Bednář

*colder (typo)

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drank Linden Tea by Tadin
713 tasting notes

The dry bag had the typical sweet linden aroma. A pour of boiling water revealed nothing of substance. If anything, this served as a reminder to keep a high quality linden permanently stocked. I believe it and a strong peppermint to be my herbal panaceae.

Flavors: Dust, Earth, Flowers

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more 8 OZ / 236 ML
Leafhopper

I’ve never had a linden tea. I might have to go in search of one. Also, what is your favourite peppermint tea? I had a good one from ZenTeaLife in Vancouver, but they’ve stopped selling tea to focus on teaware.

Shae

If neither of you have tried it yet, QNTM Leaf Tea has a wonderful peppermint tea called Mindful Mint. It’s also the strongest peppermint I’ve had yet.

Leafhopper

Qntm Leaf is suspiciously silent about international shipping. Have any Canadians tried this company?

derk

Leafhopper, I’ve been searching for linden teas and all my favorites have disappeared. Maybe it’s high demand and/or supply chain issues due to COVID. Luckily my local herb shop has some loose in stock and I ordered a box of sachets from Harney. As far as peppermint, I like the stuff grown in the Pacific Northwest US since it’s usually organic, strong and clean. The brands of bags/sachets I love are (ranked): two leaves and a bud, Traditional Medicinals and Celestial Seasonings

derk

Thanks for the rec, Shae :)

Shae

Leafhopper, I reached out to QNTM Leaf Tea and they do ship to Canada. Here is the response I received -

“Yes we ship to CN and they should be able to purchase directly through the site.”

Hope this helps!

Shae

derk, I look forward to hearing what you think if you decide to try it! I thought it was a really unique blend.

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80

Well, this is tea I haven’t ordered, but they added it to shipment as thank you for an order, so I am saying THANK YOU Casablanca Tea Company!

Effective from 1st of September, face masks in public will be mandatory again in my country. Schools have to be prepared for distance learning. But nobody cares about those students who may not have some kind of computer or they have, but don’t have internet connection. It is really small percentage of pupils (mostly), but they exist. Usually some low-income families. Nobody cares.

Tea review down here:
My typical set-up for Casablanca teas, so two teaspoons for 3 and half minute in my 300 ml glass cup.

Although when dry lavender took most present position, when brewed it is mostly the base with rose. Smooth and nice, floral tea. The base which is same for all three blacks I have (I assume) is again quite malty and strong, but roses and lavender are adding the floral notes as expected. Overall it is bit more on sweet side, nothing extra complex, but those teas are simple flavoured and definitely great for summers when you don’t want anything to care about.

Flavors: Floral, Malt

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 30 sec 2 tsp 10 OZ / 300 ML
White Antlers

This sounds like the perfect summer tea-the time of year when you want your eating and drinking to be easy. : )

ashmanra

Our county is doing distance learning for the first six weeks but they are sending out 80 school buses which will serve as wifi hotspots. I do not know what provisions are being made for people who do not have a computer or laptop. I think after six weeks they will assess whether classrooms should open.

Youngest is at uni and has in person classes, though.

mrmopar

Stay masked up and be safe Martin!

Martin Bednář

White Antlers: Yeah, that sounds like a good combination!
ashmanra: Well, that’s at least something. Here they told the schools — be ready for distance learning. Everybody have to get access to school materials. But nobody cares how!
mrmopar: Thanks. Well, I think that travelling by train every day isn’t most clever thing to do, but if I have in person classes, there is nothing I can do with it.

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65
drank curcuma by Hornimans
182 tasting notes

This is a vegetable infusion which was launched some time last year, I think. Cúrcuma=turmeric which seems to be the new power food, so it was a question of time before an infusion would be made with it, I guess. I got a sample tea bag somewhere recently, so I decided to give it a go. Honestly, I thought it might be worse than it actually is (it´s OK as a drink, I think), but when drinking it, I wasn´t really linking it to tea, as simple as that. It even seems to have more body than a normal infusion likely is to have.
People drinking the vegetable juices might think this infusion to be lovely, though.

Flavors: Carrot

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 8 OZ / 250 ML

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From a few weekends ago – I went out for afternoon tea with three friends and the little cafe/tea house we went at served and sold Fortnum and Mason teas! This is the one that I ordered for myself, just a little pot of it with an apple and cheddar scone!

I feel like the pot was under leafed, but I didn’t want to complain/be “that person” at the cafe. However, this was very thin tasting and not all that smokey/robust at all. I’ve had this tea before, and it just wasn’t what I remember Fortnum’s Russian Caravan tasting like at all. This was soft smoke, and gentle oolong and a Russian Caraven should slap you in the face with its briskness.

The scone was really good though – I liked the smoky apple combo!

tea-sipper

NO, be that person! You’re in a tea house having thin tea!

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86

This is the final tea review from my big Camellia Sinensis purchase in 2018. (I repurchased the Gyokuro Okkabe and Feng Huang Hong Cha, but I’ve already reviewed these teas.) Camellia Sinensis regularly stocks three Dong Dings: Mr. Chang, Mr. Nen Yu, and Ms. Lin. The last of these is more often out of stock than available, so I decided there must be something to it. I steeped 6 g of leaf in a 120 ml teapot at 195F for 25, 20, 25, 30, 30, 30, 45, 60, 90, 120, and 240 seconds.

The dry aroma is of char, roast, honey, flowers, and plums. The wet leaves in the teapot smell like charcoal and roast, which makes me wonder why I have such a penchant for buying roasted teas that I can’t appreciate. The first steep has notes of roasted grain, honey, plum, caramel, wood, and roast. The plum becomes more pronounced in the second steep, and I also get orchid, other flowers, roasted walnuts, charcoal, and cream. The next couple steeps are more roasty, with roasted nuts, walnuts, honey, baked bread, roast, wood, and charcoal predominating and some florals and plum in the background. The tea is starting to get drying in the mouth. As expected, the session becomes increasingly focused on the roast and ends with charcoal, roast, wood, roasted nuts, earth, and minerals.

I understand why this Dong Ding gets snapped up so quickly. While it’s a little too roasted for me, I love its sweet, toasty, slightly fruity profile and think it would be a great tea for fall or winter.

Flavors: Baked Bread, Caramel, Char, Cream, Earth, Floral, Grain, Honey, Mineral, Orchid, Plums, Roasted, Roasted nuts, Walnut, Wood

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 6 g 4 OZ / 120 ML

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68

Sipdown!

Like an off-brand version of a Strawberry Patch Doll, the aroma of this tea is sooo close to original but goes for the generic “berry” aroma and flavour.

Two types of coconut ingredients and maple give this a “trademark” Dessert by Deb profile, which I find satisfying and generally convincing as in-built “creamers” and sweeteners”. The hibiscus, elderberry, and currants create the generic “mystery red berry” flavour here. The vegetal green base sometimes works ok and sometimes distracts, depending on the cup and my head space.

I know vanilla is expensive right now but I kind of wonder how this blend would’ve turned out if that were used in lieu of some or all of the coconut. Turns out I have a coconut cap when it’s used as a flavouring tool.

I didn’t really care for it iced or with milk (don’t use real milk. It’s bad).

Rating: 68 A fun concept, but at times the coconut/hibby gives it an almost metallic quality. Elderberries and other ingredients can also come across as a little “soapy.”

Flavors: Berry, Cake, Coconut, Cream, Hibiscus, Maple Syrup, Vegetal

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 30 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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70
drank Lemon Kandy by teakruthi
5220 tasting notes

Sipdown (256)

Thank you teakruthi for the sample!

Malt and lemon and a metallic twang at the end. This was alright but not a favourite. The lemon never quite worked for me and was always a little more pledge than citrus fruit.

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drank Lavender Honey Matcha by DAVIDsTEA
2262 tasting notes

I decided I needed to try this after I saw a YouTube video featuring it, and DavidsTea had a free shipping offer…

I mixed 1/2 tsp of this and 1/2 tsp of the matcha Matsu I have in the cupboard. That means it’s not too sweet. Normally I really dislike the flavoured matchas as they have so much sugar, but 1/2 tsp in a latte is super good.

It’s definitely honey flavour, not real honey. And I wouldn’t necessarily say it’s lavender, but it’s floral.

I really like it diluted like this. I bet it would also be great in a lemonade.

I also got the silicon straws as I have the mini and large favourite mugs and they don’t have replacement plastic straws… They’re so long! Way too long for the mini mug and my regular glasses. I need to see if I can just cut them, or if I need to idk, melt them or something to seal the ends.

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65
drank Mermaid by 52teas
5220 tasting notes

Sipdown (257)

Thank you for sharing this one, Sil!

There is something a touch bitter here. I think it’s the base tea. Beyond that I get blueberry and coconut but both flavours are a bit muted. Overall, I don’t particularly care for this one but that’s probably for the best since there are so many other 52 Teas blends that I enjoy. Can’t love them all.

Sil

hilarious…i don’t even remember having this one. Maybe it was a free sample or something? (i’d check my rating/cupboard/whatever but steepster sucks)

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78

A new company from Canada (bought on Etsy, they had free shipping offer for some teas), so I took three 20 grams samples. Got one tea as thank you. I know it’s not great time to adding new teas as database is quite slow nowdays, but I couldn’t help myself :). This tea was actually what I was searching for and why I placed the order.

I have used two teaspoons for my 300 ml cup, steeped for around 3-4 minutes.

I was like hit with the sweetness of the tea, both aroma and taste. It was really on the sweet note, the base tea was very nice and bready, bit malty as well. I have hoped that lemon peel will make it bit on lighter side and more refreshing, but probably too little of it in this cup.

Wasn’t that bad, just too sweet for me (but I am tired and maybe my taste buds are bit out right now :D )

I slept three hours, maybe bit more, had long night shift and then was hot morning so I couldn’t sleep at all. But now, it is after thunderstorms and weather is nice.

But Steepster is so slow! And I hit like on many tasting notes, but it seems it haven’t saved. Anyone can post it to discussion?

Flavors: Baked Bread, Floral, Honey, Malt, Sweet

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 30 sec 2 tsp 10 OZ / 300 ML
White Antlers

I can’t post to discussion or fill in my profile.

Your tea sounds quite nice. Maybe the lemon peel would be more apparent if the tea was iced?

Mastress Alita

I can’t post to the discussion boards anymore either. I used to be able to, and now this account no longer can. I had to make a brand-new account called “mastressalitaclone” just to use the message boards, which is ridiculous. My Profile Information was also deleted (though I had a backup at least, just like I always write all my tea notes externally and have them backed up, too…)

Courtney

I’m always on the hunt for Canadian tea companies to try, so I’ll have to check this one out!

Martin Bednář

White Antlers: I will very probably give it a try
Mastress Alita: I have noticed that in discussion, I can access, but I can’t write. Hopefully it will be soon resolved including everything for you!
Courtney: Give them a try :) I think they are really small business, maybe the blends are prepared just before shipping. And their packaging is nice too!

Leafhopper

Yes, Steepster is slow for me as well, and I keep getting 504 errors. Ugh!

White Antlers

Me too with the 504 errors.

mrmopar

Slow here too Martin. Be sure and catch up on your rest!

Leafhopper

Steepster is still slow. I’m also not sure if my dashboard is being updated, as my review for Seaberry Spa is the last one I see and it’s almost a day old. Maybe everyone’s waiting for the site to stabilize before posting their reviews?

Mastress Alita

I know that is the case for me, Leafhopper. I have around 6 reviews still on my Steepster.txt and I’m not about to try posting them to the site right now due to how unstable and unusable it has been for me since the switchover. The site is slow to the point where I am having trouble even trying to catch up on my giant backlog of review reading, and I’m constantly interrupted with the 503/504s taking it back down again.

Martin Bednář

I think many of us actually do that Leafhopper. It is so unstable so often it’s down and you can’t post at all, while others wait till situation is better.

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50

Another one of the 12 teas of Xmas I hadn´t opened yet…and will never again open, I think. I love Earl Grey, but I couldn´t find it here; also the “ice cream” part is a mystery to me : is it that slight touch of vanilla creeping in at some time? This was mucky water, nothing more, so not at all enjoyable.

Flavors: Vanilla, Wet Earth

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 30 sec 2 tsp 8 OZ / 250 ML

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73
drank Dark Chocolate by Tea Please
10154 tasting notes

Sipdown (1028)!

First tea of the morning while I grind on some data entry (Nutrition Facts Tables will be the death of me) this morning from home – chocolate seemed like a much needed piece of comfort and sweetness for the morning I expected to have…

I enjoyed this one – it’s not something I’d want to purchase a bigger amount of though. That’s primarily because I rarely feel drawn towards chocolate teas – especially more “plain” chocolate teas where I don’t have another flavour to offset the chocolate note. That said, I thought it had a nice cake-y quality and the dark chocolate felt natural without being too sweet or being oily/gross in the cup. It did have a bit of a chocolate liqueur taste too. What I actually liked most about it though was the hint of coriander mixed in – the subtle spice to offset the chocolate was such a nice, simple change of pace and elevated the cup a lot and went a long way to keep this from feeling flat to me.

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Sipdown (1029)!

Just finished off my last two giant leaves of this “tisane” while doing some very late night data entry. I don’t mind grinding so late at night though – I feel most productive in the evening, and if it means I get to sleep in a little longer in the morning than I’m especially find with that trade off.

This is such a beautiful flavour – light, refreshing anise and a hint of citrus. I’ve definitely fallen in love with avocado leaves (especially Grandpa style) through finishing off this bag, and while I don’t need any more herbal teas right now (my sample drawer is too full to close) I will definitely keep a restock of this in mind, and look for other places I might be able to find avocado leaf tea. It’s truly unique!

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92

I just received a bunch of 2020 first and second flush Darjeelings from Lochan Tea, and, impatient as I am, I’ve already cut open one of the bags, even though I have some 2019 first flush on the go. Let me say that their foil vacuum-sealed bags are great for keeping tea fresh, but also sadly prevent me from trying all the teas at once, which I would totally do if I had enough empty tins. I steeped around 4 g in a 355 ml mug at 195F for 5 and 8 minutes.

I forgot how nice fresh Darjeeling is. The dry aroma of these fluffy, still slightly springy leaves is of flowers, autumn leaves, muscatel, chili, and stonefruit. The first steep has notes of herbs, chili, grass, honey, flowers, autumn leaves, muscatel, cream, and wood, with some stonefruit (apricot?) coming in on the aftertaste. This first flush is more savoury than sweet and has some pleasant astringency in the mouth. I wish Eastkyteaguy had access to this tea because there are flavours I can’t pin down that he’d probably get. The second steep has more wood and tannins, but still has the muscatel, spicy, grassy, and floral profile of the first steep.

This is an excellent way to begin my exploration of Lochan’s 2020 offerings. It reminds me a bit of the Guranse Spring Hand-Rolled Floral Black Tea from What-Cha I reviewed a few months ago. I gave the 2019 version of the Giddapahar Spring Wonder an 84. To my mind, the 2020 harvest is substantially better. There could be a number of reasons for this, including the AV2 cultivar, the possibility that I used more leaves, and the tea’s freshness. Regardless, I’m delighted I have 50 grams and look forward to trying the other teas I purchased.

Flavors: Apricot, Autumn Leaf Pile, Cream, Floral, Grass, Herbaceous, Honey, Muscatel, Spices, Stonefruits, Tannin, Wood

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 5 min, 0 sec 4 g 12 OZ / 355 ML
White Antlers

This sounds lovely!

Leafhopper

It is! I was originally offered 100 g of this tea, but had to trim my order slightly since it was getting expensive. I kind of regret that now, though I’m sure they sent other good teas.

White Antlers

I will look forward to reading your tasting notes on the rest of your 2020 Lochans. : )

Leafhopper

There are a bunch of them! I hope the site continues to let me post reviews.

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Oh, look! Site layout! Wow, I can actually decipher information on the page.

Anyway, look, let me preface this by stating that I’m extremely attracted to anything that says caramel on it. Extremely. I am also extremely attracted to anything that says vanilla on it. Extremely. If you add the word ‘cream’ onto either of those two, well… Take a guess.

The name of this one is super weird. On the website, I’m pretty sure I bought what is listed as ‘Vanilla Cream’. (Not in translation, btw. ØT has gone with the English words for this one) On the pouch it says ‘Caramel Cream’ and then ‘Vanilla Cream’ underneath as a sort of subtitle. There’s nothing on the website called ‘Caramel Cream. So what is it actually called? I went with Caramel Cream because that’s what it says on the pouch, and also, I admit, because of the nice alliteration.

So is it vanilla or caramel? Don’t know. Do I really even care? Heck no, gimme!

(Actually in the blurb on the website it says it’s flavoured with both. I’ll get that translated and added on here… eventually. )

To be honest, it doesn’t actually come across as one or the other. It’s just something kind of generically dessert-y. I mean it’s lovely, don’t get me wrong, but it doesn’t really shine. Once I’d got through all the name confusion I was sort of hoping that it would be like this toffee flavoured one I had once upon a time. I can’t recall where it was from. Les Palais des Thes, possibly? I don’t remember. Anyway, I remember that one as managing to be strongly vanilla and strongly caramel at the same time. Sort of side by side flavours, rather than this more melded together one. So my initial impression wasn’t sending my socks into orbit, but I’ve made my peace with it now. I’m enjoying it for what it is, and it really isn’t fair to try and compare it to something I had years ago and can’t even remember where came from. My memory could be skewed.

So yes, I like it. I would buy it again.

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79
drank White Anastasia by Kusmi Tea
10154 tasting notes

First time being able to log into the site in days – I’m frustrated with the lack of communication about the ongoing issues surrounding Adagio’s takeover of the site. I think it’s fair to expect some hiccups transitioning, but this is going on far too long with far too little communication…

Anyway I’m gonna try to keep tasting notes brief because I have a nasty backup of them; so jot notes it is – at least for tonight. I’ll reassess tomorrow.

- Hot mug of this during my work day today (a work from home day)
- Not normally an “Earl Grey”/bergamot drinker…
- …but there’s admittedly a nice quality to beginning your day with a mug of it
- Like the white tea base and the lime; it’s adds brightness and softness

OMGsrsly

This is the last post in my feed, so it must be one of the first after the site came back. I totally agree with your comments about the site. :/

Martin Bednář

Yep, almost no communication makes me sad :/ And more and more mishaps. At least now website works as it should but on not secured prefix. Hopefully it will be resolved soon.

MandyJS

Yea, communication is key. I kept checking the Twitter account to see if there was any news and nothing for days. Since the site was broken completely for me going or four or five days I was left wondering if it would even come back online or if they’d given up on the site altogether. A simple update on their social media accounts would have likely eased many people’s worries, but of course….

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81

This is the last sample from Tea Side I was given to review. Thanks for allowing me to try this Bai Hao, as it’s one of my favourite types of oolong. I’ve tasted Bai Hao from Taiwan, China, India, and Vietnam, and am glad to add Thailand to that list. I steeped 6 g of leaf in a 120 ml teapot at 195F for 30, 20, 30, 30, 45, 60, 75, 90, 120, 180, and 240 seconds.

The dry aroma is of autumn leaves, peach, and muscatel. The first steep has notes of apricot, peach, muscatel, stewed pear, autumn leaves, wood, and malt. The fruit intensifies in the second steep, and it indeed begins to taste like a honey black oolong, as Arby noted. The next couple steeps reveal sap and more honey, though also more malt and black tea-type flavours. There’s a tiny bit of citrus in the sixth steep, along with the pear, peach, and muscatel notes, but at this point, its transformation into a black tea is accelerating. By steep seven, it’s a malty, slightly fruity tea with some tannins, although it never loses its muscatel and stewed fruit notes completely.

While I found much to like about this Dongfang Meiren, it has more black tea notes than I’m used to in this type of oolong. Still, this is a minor complaint and it’s overall a pleasant tea. I imagine it would take well to Western or cold brewing.

Flavors: Apricot, Autumn Leaf Pile, Citrus, Honey, Malt, Muscatel, Peach, Pear, Sap, Stewed Fruits, Tannin, Wood

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 30 sec 6 g 4 OZ / 120 ML

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88

Chugging this one away while in Limbo. I still think it tastes like the “cheese cream” in bubble teas, and I’m perfectly ok with that.

Flavors: Cheesecake, Cream, Irish Cream, Malt

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 30 sec

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77

I bought this tea in 2018 because it was recommended as being fruity. I was a bit skeptical since this is a Wuyi oolong, but I decided to go for it. (I believe a 15% off sale was involved.) I steeped 6 g of leaf in a 120 ml teapot at 195F for 7, 10, 12, 15, 18, 20, 25, 30, 40, 50, 60, 90, 120, and 240 seconds.

The dry aroma is of strawberries, grain, honey, and roast. The first steep has notes of honey, walnuts, grain, wood, roast, and flowers. There’s an indistinct fruity aftertaste. In the second steep, I get peach, raisin, and strawberry, along with more roasted nuts, honey, grain, and wood. The floral notes become more prominent in the next couple steeps, but honestly, this is still mainly about the wood, nuts, and roast. I don’t get any spice, as Roswell Strange did. The tea doesn’t change much over the session, fading to wood, minerals, nuts, honey, and roast near the end.

While this tea doesn’t really change my mind about Wuyi oolongs, it indeed has some fruity elements. I enjoyed how smooth and sweet it is and won’t have trouble finishing the bag.

Flavors: Floral, Grain, Honey, Mineral, Peach, Raisins, Roasted, Roasted nuts, Strawberry, Walnut, Wood

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 6 g 4 OZ / 120 ML
CrowKettle

Oh, Leafhopper. Yours is the only note on my dashboard. It’s like the internet gods have picked you!

Also, I am intrigued by strawberry note tea.

Mastress Alita

Ya, earlier today the Dashboard was just completely missing… now it just seems to not be loading anything in the history that was prior to this note.

Leafhopper

Yes, I was surprised when this review showed up on my dashboard and assumed it wouldn’t appear on anyone else’s. Glad that notes are starting to be posted again. The strawberry flavour in the tea is kind of faint and mostly consists of sweetness.

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93

This is very sad SIPDOWN. I am not really sure when I will place another order on Farmerleaf, as the shipping even not during corona crisis was very slow and moreover I had to pick it in Prague in customs post office, pay customs fees and so on.

It has “aged” pretty well. Noticed mostly malt and leather notes, brisk and little tangy flavours. It was coating my mouth with velvet feel, it was wonderfully smooth, haven’t noticed much tannic today.

Gonna miss you Yingpan Shan. You were worth the money. Maybe underpriced.

Flavors: Leather, Malt, Smooth

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 5 g 10 OZ / 300 ML
White Antlers

Martin, to add to the sadness, I did not even see this on the Farmerleaf site. Glad you had a chance to enjoy it when it was available. : )

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