Featured & New Tasting Notes
Not that I expected any differently, but this is a really nice chocolate orange tea.
The orange flavor is more on the orange rind side of things, but not in a bad way. It’s a bittersweet candied type flavor, and makes the whole cup remind me of our local chocolatier’s version of chocolate covered oranges (candied orange rind, and dark chocolate. Mmmmmmm!)
The chocolate flavor is more of a milk chocolate, and the nuttiness from the Zhen Qu adds a depth to it I wasn’t initally expecting. I didn’t pick up much from the marshmallow on this cup, other than a bit of fluffy sweetness kind of just chilling there and keeping me from even coming close to wanting to sweeten my cup.
Note that this tea is for: "For feeling stately, wearing top-hats, and building empires.”
Well, it’s Friday and I plan to be productive. Yep. Any minute now I’ll log off Steepster and be productive. Yep…
(This is better than that time I click on tumblr instead of twitter and lost an hour though)
This is a great tea. So smooth. Bold but not sour/astringent. I’m looking forward to this tin! Also, I should compare it with my Kenyan EG and Mount Grey from Andrews & Dunham. Yes… Eventually EG sipdown – this should happen.
See, I can be productive?
I have no idea what happened this morning, but this is in the running for the most perfect cup of tea ever made. It was oozing, overflowing, positively dripping with caramel vanilla goodness, and had a thick, buttery quality underlying the whole composition that made me want to snap my tongue greedily against the roof of my mouth. I also steeped for only three minutes and not four, and perhaps that’s where the magic happened? I should have known better than to doubt Stacy’s steeping instructions.
A computer guru is coming to try and remedy my computer problems this morning, and you know what else I’m going to get him to do? tell me who this recent tea box is from and help me identify each tea! someone sent me a box! I’ll find out who it is soon enough, but just in case it was you, and you used frilly-edged paper for labels, identify yourself at once! :)
Thank you Charlotte Zero!
I love Jin Jun Mei teas, & this one was a staple in my cupboard for awhile, but then Verdant no longer carried it, & eventually I ran out. I have several other Jin Jun Mei’s as well, mostly from Yunnan Sourcing, & it might be nice to compare them at some point, but just for today, I’m enjoying this rare treat, sent to me generously from Charlotte Zero.
The prewarmed leaf aroma is toast with honey, & it lingers in the sinuses nicely. The tea itself is a honey wheat toast, with butter & honey. I love that kind of taste profile in a tea. The later steepings are less sweet, & take on a more savory peppery quality, as well as a linen texture.
Sipdown no. 141 of the year 2014. I’m still one sipdown behind to keep up with the daily count, but I have another one lined up. If only I can get to it today.
It continues to be a good, strong breakfast blend with a lot of brightness to it from the darjeeling. It’s going on the shopping list.
Things are continuing to be rather crazed on this end. Several emergencies at work, plus little league season, plus no. 2’s after-birthday party coming up on Sunday.
Continued apologies for not reading/commenting as much as I’d like.
Terri sent me this one, and the regular irish breakfast, which is fantastic because they are both two teas i haven’t had a chance to order from Stacy. I feel like i’m slowly slidding down the side of having not tried a lot of the teas on her website, where before i had tried over 70% of them! haha I am having a seriously busy work week so i barely have time to drink tea, let alone log them but i am trying!
I had this one side by side with the Irish breakfast so i could see which i prefer. I think, my initial reaction is that i like the regular one a little better. There’s a bit of an astringent note to this one along with the maltiness that makes for less of a smooth cup of tea. It’s still a good solid cup that i will enjoy drinking, but in a straight up comparison, the other tea wins out by just a little :)
Because I was a bit disappointed with the almond buscotti tea I’d had earlier, I decided to whip myself up some matcha milk before heading off to work. I’m getting close to a sip down on this one! It tasted delicious and buttery, although again, in the wake of the banana and cream matcha, I don’t quite know if it really stands a chance in featuring in my next order. This cup was also slightly tarnished by the fact that my magic bullet blends such that I get all this foam that settles at the bottom of the glass, and I don’t like it because it kind of has this dry mouth feel. If I blend for longer, this doesn’t make it go away, so I think I’ll just resign myself to the fact that there’ll be a bit of flavoured foam at the bottom of each glass that I shouldn’t try and sip because I won’t like it. Ah well, you can’t have it all can you?
Delicious treat. Thanks so much, Courtney!
I warmed up my 4oz teapot & dropped 5G of this tea into it, just to let the leaf warm up, & I was rewarded with the aroma of milk chocolate & honey!
Then I steeped it for 15/30/45/60 seconds, etc & every cup was delicious, starting with cream & honey, then malto-meal & honey. Thanks to Tea Explorer for sharing this one with me!
Gotta sip down the minty stuff since I’m moving in with my BFF, who is horribly allergic.
This is from Cavocorax. :)
Kind of disappointing today really. Not much tea, lots of mint (which is surprisingly ok for me this morning) and the DavidsTea chocolate flavour of meh.
Generally I do like this one as an occasional treat, but I’m not too disappointed I won’t be able to have it again.
Thanks for sharing, Cavo!
Quick recount of the last two weeks…
1) New puppy
2) Toddler gets sick
3) Preschooler gets sick
4) I get walking pneumonia over spring break (luckily at home, but no school for kids and a mom with pneumonia is a bad combo for all participants…)
Things are finally calming down a bit. I’m over the bulk of the crud, but the cough is driving me nuts. Throughout the the last two weeks I’ve lived off mostly Laoshan Black, Wild Mountain Black, and Tawainese assams.
It was time to change it up a bit today, but not by much. This is still my favorite English Breakfast tea, and Verdants Imperial Breakfast Blend is my other favorite breakfast blend. Probably because they each have a base of my two favorite teas. Laoshan Black and the Taiwanese Assam.
I have a million teas, I’m too afraid to count the actual number, but over the past few months since life has gotten so busy, I really only drink about 10 of them. Not sure what to do about that, but it is what it is. I don’t want to get rid of any that I like, but I don’t drink them very often. What to do?
I believe this is what they call a first world problem…. :-)
Pshaw. What about help me? Stupid website stuff not doing what it’s supposed to and I’ll just cut and paste more php here and see what happens? No???
I’m a fly by the seat of my pants website coder. Sometimes that works well. Other times….
OH HAI WILL! This tea is superb actually. CHOCOLATE. Yes.
(I think everything will be ok)
This matcha sample came to me via the ever lovely and generous sil, who blessed me with a small suitcase of tea just because she’s lovely.
I have to say, however, that out of all the three flavoured matchas I’ve tried, I like this one the least. And I don’t even dislike it at all, actually. I found it to be a thick, creamy cup of deliciousness that I inhaled in under two minutes. But it was just rather nondescript. Creamy and full, for sure, but not distinctly cheesecake or really distinctly anything else for that matter. Absolutely worth a try, and I can see why a lot of people would like this one, but for me, it takes a back seat to banana and cream, and French butter cookie. Especially banana and cream, my gosh!
Thanks again, sil!
Dexter3657 is nutso generous; she joked ages ago to me that she’d ordered this multiple times for herself only to then give it away in swaps, then in her “no real reason, just ‘a little something’ your way” package—the one loaded with wishlist goodies I never thought I’d actually get to try and currently-out-of-stock-or-unavailable-without-astronomical-French-shipping treasures, cough—she included some! And teased me appropriately. (:
And I regret nothing. This is in fact surprisingly good. I haven’t had anything from David’s in a year [EDIT: wait, that’s not true, duh! Lariel was my Secret Pumpkin and sent me the fall blends and I enjoyed them, whee pistachios! My bad!]—I’m glad it was there for me when I got reintroduced to tea last January and started there for loose leaf but I tend to feel like I’ve moved on (I likely wouldn’t feel this way if I had a walk-in one near me, but it’s online only and if I’m going to bother to mail order there’s just so many shops out there that, well, you know)—but this is a crowd favorite and until discovering Butiki’s Blueberry Purple Tea this winter (thanks to JustJames!) I hadn’t found a blueberry tea that was all that memorable (I like Della Terra’s Blueberry Crumble but more for the strudel/coffee cake quality of it than blueberry…it’s not what I ‘d think to dig out when I’m all “I want blueberries!”).
This is a nice easy-going treat, with a juicy lush jamminess in the berry flavor I appreciate (lots of berry teas have a harsh tart raw/fresh berry profile, which I love in a real berry because it’s countered by a watery clean bursting aspect, but in tea, not so much), almost evokes plump stickiness. The tea base is soft without contributing an irritatingly watered down feeling, you know, the one some David’s and Adagio teas possess. The biggest surprise was the resteep though—I must’ve resteeped this 4 times as we finished Slings and Arrows tonight (so bittersweet; I’m really going to miss that show) and every single steep was good! (I started with 5 minutes, then 7 ever after.)
I would drink this again for sure on a night I don’t want to get super wired (though it’s a black base it doesn’t seem to make me super jittery, and it doesn’t feel harshly bright on the stomach either) and just want something that’s easy and pleasurable, a sweet treat that delivers but doesn’t demand a lot of focus to enjoy (sometimes after dinner I feel like I can’t drink any super complex teas or I’ll feel guilty I’m “wasting” them as I’ll be distracted/preoccupied doing something else, but at the same time I still want a tasty tea!). And I know R would really enjoy this for afternoon tea sometime. Bet it’d be delicious with scones.
Aww! Dexter3657 surprised me with a package today. Thank you! Some puerh to
hoard away err, share with my brother, and a couple other samples. This was one!
I used the whole thing in a giant mug. :) Go big or go home tonight, I guess. And I like it! So true, it’s like puffed wheat. Only hot and not chewed. I think it would go well with milk! Mmm… I think I will need to hunt down something like this locally. Maybe one of the Asian supermarkets will have it!
My stomach quit hurting late Saturday. Woke up Sunday feeling fine. Grabbed the guitar and played at church. Sat down afterward and my head started throbbing. Couldn’t concentrate on the sermon – could barely stay wake. Got home headed for the couch. Got up around 3 and fixed this oolong.
I am feeling like me today and I was still craving this. Imagine me craving an oolong. It figures that the two extreme edges of oolong – Pouchong and Oriental Beauty are the two I love most. I used yesterday’s leaf. This one is just so tasty without being overly floral or roasted. Fresh and lightly malty with awesome fruity notes. My taste buds declare this to be excellent.
I don’t even want to drink this tea – I just want to smell it. It smells so deliciously fruity… OMG.
Ok, thankfully it tastes as good as it smells. Ripe strawberries, mashed raspberries, some other fruits… It’s sweet and delicious. I’m really happy Nina’s Paris threw this samples in with our last order, and that *Sil *let me have this one. DELICIOUS!
And.. that’s 199!
And.. that’s 199!ETA Many thanks to VariaTEA for pointing out that I’d posted this under the wrong note. Guys, it’s Monday. These things are forgiven. Much like the cleaning alcohol I spilled all over my hoody, and my accidentally breaking the voicemail service for our phones at work. It’s all forgiven… :P (I fixed the voicemail thingy though)
From the queue
I recently received a large envelope from Courtney and among her offerings were lots of things that were breakfast compatible, so I decided to start with this one because I’ve heard many great things about it and am quite curious.
I’ll go straight to the point. I have to admit that I forgot to sniff the dry leaf (again), but I’m sniffing the brewed tea and… What is that it smells like? It’s familiar to me, but what is it? There’s a honey-note in there, but that’s not the note that is perplexing me. It’s honey with something but the more I try to pin it down, the more it seems to elude me. Something sweet, I think. Honey and something else that is sweet. But what? Some kind of dessert, I think, but that’s as far as I go. I know I’ve had some tea before that smelled like this, but I just can’t think what. I give up.
The flavour is quite mild and also quite sweet. It’s not malty or grainy sweet, it’s more honey and that infuriating something else note again. What IS it??? Whatever it is, it’s building up a magnificent aftertaste, like my mouth has been coated with honey and… whatever it is. It’s a much milder tea than I was expecting, but gosh is this good!
I wish I hadn’t shared it with Husband now…
This sample came to me from Stephanie, who was very generous to include it in our swap!
Given that it actually purports to feel somewhat like spring out today, I’m glad I started off the day with such a fresh tea. I added a bit of rock sugar, and this helped subdue the ginger notes, which I must admit I was a little afraid of (tasting the ginger, I mean). I could definitely taste the strawberry, which instantly reminded me of Ruby Pie. Unfortunately, because ruby pie is my gold standard for strawberry in tea, I just kept comparing these two teas in my head, even though I know they’re not even all that similar. I could taste a bit of the toffee, and actually liked the fresh green base on which the sip ended. I have enough left to have another cup, and will gladly drink that down, but this likely won’t be stocked (again, thank heavens, as I’m in the process of building my Butiki order, and it’s already nuts haha).
Thanks again, Stephanie! I’d been wanting to try this tea for a while now!
Just take a look at the list of ingredients for this one. I dare you. It’s quite the herbal tea! A little bit of everything, luckily all things I like (except for maybe the roses). I’m not sure if I’m getting all of it (grapes? cardamom? jasmine? balm-mint?) however there are parts that definitely stand out in the creamy mix… and it reminds me of Kapha from TeaGschwendner, minus any sort of heat.
Thought I would give a short review of this since it came up today and we will be selling it online shortly-ish. Right now I’m doing anything to avoid working on taxes which really need to be done. Must do taxes today and not get distracted by everything else. The things I’ve done in order to avoid taxes. Definitely the worst part of this job.
On to the best part, tasting tea. This tea is somewhat similar to our Organic Sourenee Second Flush with one huge difference it is way more forgiving and less astringent. The regular version of Sourenee needs to be brewed with precision or it can taste very bitter. I think this is why we had very mixed reviews and feedback of that tea. It was difficult to get it to the precise spot where it was perfect but when you did, it was amazing. This tea is much more forgiving and based on memory it is sweeter, less astringent, and has a much fuller body. Mmmmm, this is super buttery, chocolatey, woody, with a hint of floral at the end of the sip. It is also a little bit malty. In some ways this reminds me more of an Assam than a Darjeeling until the end of the sip, which it becomes unmistakably Darjeeling. This cup is certainly hitting the spot right now. Delicious! I’m so glad we picked up this tea, even though we were really late to the game.
In addition to this tea, we have some other teas that are slated to be added to the website soon. We are bringing back the Birthday Cake herbal for a limited time but also adding a Baked Ali Shan and a Fu Shou Shan (which is our answer to missing out on the Da Yu Ling this year, really could kick myself for missing that). We still need to add the Lattakoojan Assam but there is very minimal prep work needed to be done before that goes online.
Terri sent this my way and i was surprised that i hadn’t yet tried this one from Stacy. I’m not sure that this would be on my top ten tea list from stacy, but it is a unique tea for sure, and one that i wouldn’ turn down if offered. that’s mostly because darjeelings tend to be hit or miss for me. I really like the strength of this tea and the maltiness….and the aroma. for whatever reason, the aroma of this one is just a happy time for m this morning. I’ve been sitting here inhaling the cup and smiling every time haha thanks terri!!
I brought the whole pouch of this one to work with me so that, in addition to working on sipping down some less enjoyable teas, I could also enjoy the odd delicious cup of heavenly, liquid waffle goodness because that’s what this is; the orgasms of Angels whisked into batter which was then turned into hot, freshly baked waffles. Except tea – not waffles. But yeah… Don’t even judge my metaphor.
I mean, c’mon – who doesn’t want to drink angel orgasms? Crazy people, that’s who!
But in addition to having a STUNNING cup of this blend, I also passed the pouch around to my coworkers on till so they could see the loose leaf (none of them knew what loose leaf tea was) and smell the leaf. I plan to convert all the cashiers to tea drinkers! And with a Butiki tea as their (pending) first cup of loose leaf, this is going to be
as cliche as it sounds like taking candy from a baby. SO easy.
I think tomorrow I’m going to bring in my Irish Cream Cheesecake and work on sipping that down at work too…