Featured & New Tasting Notes

84

I love a good Assam. This is malty with just a little bit of fruit in the background. I can see this getting astringent very easily though, so I went easy on the steeping. I’m sure it would take milk and sugar well, if I drank my tea that way (but I don’t usually).

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Evol Ving Ness

Assam! How I adore a good Assam!

tigress_al

After I wrote this, I was curious about how it would take milk, and so I brewed up another Cuppa and added some milk. It was delicious!

Evol Ving Ness- definitely, I have a few of them!

S.G. Sanders

Assam is the ONE tea I add milk to. I’ve been told that Assams make me “very British” due to the fact that I add cream to it. Ha-ha.

tigress_al

Lol “British” or not, drink your tea how you like!

S.G. Sanders

Very true! Ha-ha.

S.G. Sanders

Plus, I took it as a compliment.

Teatotaler

I adore a good Assam! Assam is my usual weekday morning cuppa – British style. ;)
I am currently on a quest for a good vanilla Assam.

tigress_al

Let me know when you find a good one!

S.G. Sanders

@Teatotaler- that’s the way to drink it! Ha-ha.

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60
drank Fruits of Paradise by DAVIDsTEA
1552 tasting notes

Oy, I feel like I’ve had this same tea from DAVIDs all over and over and over again. All overly sweet pineapple, all the time. It’s like dumping Grilled Pineapple into some Green Passionfruit and maybe a bit of Hot Tropic? I don’t know, but it’s basically just sugar-coated dried pineapple in liquid form. I can smell the coconut a bit but cannot taste it, unfortunately.

Funny, opened a new tab to google this tea to look at its notes again and I typed in “Fruits of Paranoia” subconsciously. Well then.

The rest is cold brewing in the fridge so we’ll see how that turns out tonight.

MissB

Ha ! Great name for a tea.

Sil

spring teas = a miss for me largely.

TheKesser

This tea tastes like tropicalia to me

Fjellrev

Yes, Tropicalia! I knew I was forgetting one, and Hot Tropic seemed off. Definitely Tropicalia in green tea form.

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72
drank Coconut Cream Pie by DAVIDsTEA
1154 tasting notes

I love coconut so of course I was suckered in to buying this one. It is a little too sweet for me. Why does DAVIDsTEA need to add so much sweetener to their teas lately? If I want it sweeter, I will add my own, thank you very much :/

It is a bit creamy due to the white chocolate perhaps and I see where they are going with the pie…the buttery oolong…but it’s just not quite there.

I much prefer the Chocolate Macaroon or whatever it’s called over this one.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 45 sec
Fjellrev

You are me are both on the same page. Love coconut but can’t stand the added sweetener. And prefer Chocolate Macaroon. :)

tigress_al

We must have excellent taste ;)

Eveleaf

The added sweetener is the main reason I’ve avoided DAVIDsTEA. I am on a very restricted diet for health reasons, and can only tolerate certain sweeteners (mainly truvia). I know DAVIDsTEA has some fabulous flavored teas and I’d love to try them, if only I could get my hands on the UNsweetened version!

tigress_al

They also have some straight teas but there are much better offerings from other companies

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88

Started the morning out with this one. Having a bit of a rough day and wanted some delicious cups of tea today. I still need a couple sipdowns before the end of the weekend, but for the next couple of days i may just focus on drinking up teas with larger quantities and see if i can get the weight down :)

MissLena

This tea sounds so good! I put it on my wishlist :D

Sil

omgsrsly and i love it, dexter is less of a fan haha. It’s not as piney/woodsy as i want it to be but i love it :)

Sil

oh and given the crappy cad $ we can always do a mini swap sometimes if you like.

MissLena

@Sil I will keep that in mind! I love woodsy teas, I’m on a woodsy kick overall right now regarding tea and perfumes haha

Dexter

I don’t mind the woodiness of this tea – nor the juniper berries – it’s the pine that I’m not a huge fan of – HOWEVER if you like that style of tea – you should like this one – it’s nice and balanced. :))

tigress_al

Hope the rest of your day is better than this morning !

Sil

thanks tigress! it’s going… heh

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80
drank Velours Nacré by Dammann Freres
1552 tasting notes

Sipdown! This was so good when it was fresher. The almonds were so toasty, although I found a hard time coaxing out the chocolate note regardless of age. For that reason, I don’t know if I’d want a full bag of this whenever I get around to placing an order. These nutty, pastry, desserty ones of theirs are tricky for me. They’re not as symphonious as their descriptions make them out to be.

Evol Ving Ness

Symphonious!—-is that a word? :)

Fjellrev

Prescriptively? Yes. Descriptively? Most definitely. :D

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drank English Toffee by DAVIDsTEA
709 tasting notes

Tried a small hot sample of this in store the other day and actually really enjoyed it. Enough to pick up 50g, which I rarely do with flavoured teas anymore. I was skeptical because (unsurprisingly) Davids’ puerh base isn’t the best, but it really tasted lovely and caramel/toffee like with some real tea beneath it. The real test will be in trying to reproduce it at home, but if I can get a cup like that, I’m happy. I suspect they used more tea than I will, especially at $9.90/50g but I’ll give it a try.

I also got my 50g free of Jasmine Black Pearls which made me very happy – that tea is now $16.98/50 grams. Seriously?! I obviously haven’t shopped at Davids much in the last year or two. Those prices are not reasonable to me.

Flavors: Caramel, Toffee

Sil

yep for what you get, there’s almost a case for just biting the bullet and buying from us companies.

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83

Enjoying this one this morning. I’ve had this tea before from Spring 2015. I even have some of the Spring 2015 still in my cupboard. I really liked it then but the dry leaf smells different from the two. Autumn has more of a fruity scent and the Spring has more of a straw scent to it. I will have to brew both up together and see if there’s a big difference. It might also have to do with the Spring one starting to age.

I brewed this at 80C in my tea mug. It’s strange a few reviews say this tea is astringent. I found very little astringency in it. Maybe it had to do with the brewing. It’s a sweet nutty tea with a bit of fruitiness. There’s a bit of green pea in there too. It reminds me a bit of some bi luo chun teas. Think I will try this one at 70 to see if I get more fruity flavour from it.

Flavors: Fruity, Green Beans, Nutty, Sweet

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Ubacat

Want to correct my note about how the dry leaf for the Spring one smelled. When I opened the bag I got straw. but when I let it sit for awhile , it was more fruity.

Rasseru

I think there might be a confusion, or broad interpretation on the term astringency and how it relates to dryness

Ubacat

Interesting! Thanks for the link.

Rasseru

interesting read as well, nice responses from others too

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93

gulp.

Second steep in my legs have gone very warm and my head feels wavy. Its going to be one of those teas isnt it.

Proper review later if I dont lose the damn thing

Daylon R Thomas

Let the qi flow through you.

Rasseru

I actually fell asleep on the fourth steep, middle of the day.

If the older one is even stronger I dont know what to expect.

Rui A.

How much tea leaves and water did you use?

Rasseru

7g for around 100ml gaiwan. 5/5/5/7/10 secs

Rui A.

Cheers. I better reduce the amount of tea leaves then when I sip that tea.

S.G. Sanders

I NEED this tea. I can’t sleep and this sounds like it’ll help. I’m looking it up now! Ha. Ha.

Rasseru

beware though, i stopped drinking it earlier, its now midnight and i’m still awake. might be a wolf in sheeps clothing

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85
drank Cranberry Pear by DAVIDsTEA
1552 tasting notes

While I’m glad I scored a bunch of this before it went away forever, this isn’t how I remembered it to be. This batch smells amazing, and is loaded with dried fruit. There is way more dried fruit than actual tea. As a result, this smells gloriously tart, and there’s no mistake that this has cranberry and pear just by the scent alone.

You’d think this would all be a great thing. Surely this batch will be packed full of flavour. It is, but unfortunately, despite the loads of dried fruit, it tastes on the artificial side. It’s cloying and tastes like what I’d imagine a B&BW fruity lotion would. Maybe that’s a little harsh, but regardless, it tastes off.

I used to love drinking this plain but maybe next time I’ll try it with milk. Maybe it’ll tone down and round out the sweetness.

Sil

awe :(

VariaTEA

Oh no. I used to like this as a latte so that may be a nice route to go if you have a lot that you are looking to use up

Maddy Barone

That’s too bad. Maybe add a bit of straight black to it to even it out? But that wouldn’t get rid of the artificial flavor I suppose. :(

sundaysipping

This one is actually pretty good as a latte. I found that if you make a bunch of tea concentrate sweetened with agave (vanilla agave, actually) and let it sit in the fridge overnight, the flavors mesh better. It might help mute the artificial flavors a bit.

Fjellrev

Maddy, I was totally thinking about adding a straight black to even things out but I need to get some since all my straight blacks at packed away.

Doing a lazy latte (just adding milk) is definitely in the plans. Glad to hear that it this makes a good latte.

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drank Poire by Mariage Frères
998 tasting notes

Always looking for a really good pear tea. Pear is a tricky flavor that is either not done well or gets lost in the base.
This smells like pear, it tastes like pear. It also tastes French – French teas to me have a distinctive essence to them. It’s a little floral, and maybe a little apple. Pretty good but there is something in the base that doesn’t quite work – maybe just a touch astringent.
Yep I like this one, but I do think that it could be better.
Thanks so much Sil for sharing….

Sil

someday we’ll find the perfect pear tea…

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95

This is yet another tea that has expertly stood the test of time. Granted this was stored in an air tight bag, in a tin, in a drawer, in an air conditioned room with basically no light but you still got to give it credit for no flavor loss despite being approximately 2+ years old. This still tastes just like a rice krispy square. Marshmallow sweetness with a nice dose of rice krispy deliciousness. It is awesome hot or cold and I will miss it when it is gone. Luckily, I still have leaf left so that won’t be for a little while.

In other news, I went to Chatime (a bubble tea place) yesterday and got their brown rice green milk tea bubble tea for the first time. I have been there a bunch of times and usually go for the fruitier flavors like honeydew, strawberry, or banana…or for the more desserty flavors like coconut, caramel, or taro. I don’t know why it took my this long to try the brown rice given I enjoy genmaichas quite a bit but now that I have, there is no going back. It was like a delicious, sweet cereal drink. It was so good. Definitely one I will be revisiting!

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 15 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML
Fjellrev

That sounds like an awesome bubble tea! I’ve yet to see any places here offer a genmaicha version.

Sil

i miss this tea… it was so good.

VariaTEA

Want some? I have to come by eventually because I have teas for you. Any teas you want samples of, let me know :)

Sil

you have teas for me? uh oh hahahaha would love a little, but not a lot. just to revisit an old friend :)

Roswell Strange

That sounds PHENOMENAL for a bubble tea flavour.

VariaTEA

Don’t worry. It’s just stuff like the Banane Chocolat and some horsey tea and other random samples which are small. No cupboard explosion or anything.

And RS, it was phenomenal. Definitely my new go-to I think.

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88

Steepster, stop eating my notes…I know I reviewed this one within the last month but the note is gone. Oh well.
I think age has had a bit of an effect on this tea because it it a lot lighter than I remember it being. Or maybe it’s my memory that is fading! ;) The pumpkin is still there and I get a bit of the creme brûlée. I won’t have any problems finishing this one off anyway because it’s still tasty.

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77
drank Fruits of Paradise by DAVIDsTEA
8069 tasting notes

ugh. No one has added the new davids teas to the database…and their website doesn’t really have them either so you get what i’ve done for now haha. I picked these up yesterday as motivation to get to my step count. Sadly i pretty much drank this one without really focusing on it last night. It’s more fruit tea than green tea IMO. I quite enjoyed the pinappley, coconut, apple taste that this one had. it might actually be a decent cold brew as well, however i didn’t love it enough to think about going back to pick up more. It was refreshing and tasty but i’m good with my giant mug from last night.

Kristal

I prefer my greens fairly straight, so I’m passing on this one as well! Once my local DAVIDs gets the loose leaf available at my store, I will pick up like 10g of monk’s blend but that’s it for the spring collection for me I think.

Sil

was more fo a herbal fruit tea to me…the tea was negligible imo.

Kristal

Yeah, when there is more fruit than anything I think they should just cut out the tea and make it a herbal, especially for white teas. By even a little white tea the cost of the blend goes up a lot and you’re not even able to appreciate the delicate flavours of white tea.

Kristal

*even adding a little

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Finally got to try this yestrday and it went for 6 hours at work which was great. The first thing that anyone should notice while steeping this is how highly balled up this tea is. For at least 8 steeps this stayed in its shell before opening.
This is the coffee ewuivlitant of tea for sure. Wonderful roasted notes with as deep flavor as you like. Steep it 20, 45, 90, 300…. how ever many seconds you want and you will taste the difference. While this is a premium roasted tgy, I will say the one downfall is that it caused me to pee more often than normal. Considering I drink a lot and daily, it is something I notice.

Daylon R Thomas

I’ve been trying to see if I could find any dark roast tgy like it because it was so naturally sweet and coffee like. Otherwise, it’s one of may favorite darker teas from Whispering Pines. Also, coconut milk does not take any of the flavor away when you splash some in it.

Cwyn

Peeing more than normal is a plus on a tea for me :)

t-ching

I had the same experience, went 14 steeps before it thought about opening up. Delicious tea though!

Whispering Pines Tea Company

This should be back next month :-)

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89
drank Silver Himalaya by Mariage Frères
8069 tasting notes

special tea this morning. My other half splurged on this tea when we went to paris for me. I ADORE the white tea (yes white tea…) in this line and so he wanted to pick that one up along with the black tea for me to try. I don’t pull this one out of the cupboard often – i probably should more often, but when i do, it’s delicious. malty, spicy, fruity…just delicious.

Fjellrev

Shocker that you like the white tea! And the description of this sounds amazing so I can see why he went for this.

Sil

the white himalaya tea is RIDONKULOUSLY expensive… but i will steep it like 8 times and it’s super delicious.

Evol Ving Ness

Oh my word, Sil is resteeping….

Sil

i do it sometimes…just not always since typically i find the latter steeps are just weak facsimiles of what i find delicious about the first cups. :P

Sil

i also don’t typically mention resteeping in my notes, so i do it more than people give me credit for haha

tigress_al

You keep making me add teas to my wish list ;)
I agree about resteeping, I generally only resteep straight teas

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drank Pine Needle by Life In Teacup
1005 tasting notes

Dark Matter 2016, taste test

I bought over $40 of samples from Life in Teacup and they were nice enough to just take my money and pick out what they thought would be best :)

I was constantly reminded of the ‘Pine Needle’ tea from Yunnan because it highly suggested from them. Currently it is not being sold online so I feel a little special to try it. At first I drank it at work on break and played with the leaf: https://www.instagram.com/p/BBqREXaRYOj/

I’m now drinking it at home and decided that there is no way I could leave this out of the 2nd group buy I have going on this year: Dark Matter. This tea absolutely wonderful. It’s not often you’ll hear me say such a thing about a Yunnan black tea because they are all malty and lovely. What sets this apart? The mouth feel lingers for over 30 seconds and the taste just hits your brain like ‘woah’. No complains from me. No doubt in my mind that this is going to cause people to go over to Life in Teacup after trying this when they get it :)

Haveteawilltravel

so is Dark Matter going to be the next GB? Is this a thing?

Liquid Proust

http://steepster.com/discuss/12151-2016-sheng-olympics-group-buy?page=11&post_id=189832
“4) Everyone keeps asking ‘what is the next group buy?’… it’s theme is dark. Vendors thus far are What Cha, W2T, Life in Teacup, World Tea Podcast, and others I am taste testing. I’m actually going to be picky with this one because I want it to be hands down amazing.”
It’s happening. :)

Liquid Proust

& I missed ’it’s’ for ‘its’, really?

Nicole/Tea-Historic

Where is Life in Teacup located?

Sil

sounds like a great tea….excited for the group buy – hoping i can participate this round heh

Dr Jim

The best thing about Dark Matter is that Many of us can enjoy the Sheng Olympics while we wait for dark matter. I for one went crazy reading about the Sheng Olympics for 3 months while you put it together. Also, as a physicist I have to suggest a dark energy buy at some point in the future. Sorry for the science joke.

Xxxxx

Life In Teacup is in Massachusetts. LP’s review of this tea inspired me to visit the site and I’m waiting for my first order from Robert.

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87
drank Coconut Cumin Chai by 52teas
8069 tasting notes

So apparently i love 52’s chais :) This one is even better than the toffee bar chai imo. I don’t typically love a lot of coconut in my blends, but this is downright the perfect blend of spices to go with the coconut. Anoher sample from Evol Ving Ness the cumin and cardamom are lovely here. In a way i’m greatful that there isn’t any left on the website – yay for saving money but boo for not seeing this one again for a while unless it comes back as a reblend. At least i’ll know that i like it :)

Evol Ving Ness

Hurray for tea love!

Sil

so nommy.

Fjellrev

52’s newer chais do sound awfully delicious.

Sil

i haven’t loved many of the new blends from 52 teas…well at least in terms of dollar for value given our shitty exchange, but the chais are yummy…and nearly worth it (though sold out heh)

Fjellrev

Really wish there were a Canadian company that made intriguing chai blends.

Sil

there was one at the tea festival but they only did one kind…course that’s ALL they did.

Fjellrev

Hmm, the Victoria tea festival had Vastu Chai but it wasn’t terribly impressive. Guess the hunt for delicious, reasonably-priced chai continues.

Evol Ving Ness

The tea festival had two serving up chai. Their tables were right beside each other. I know because I sampled both to death. There is also Tea and Its Splendour with some enthusiastic and inspired chai blends there. I bought two.

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Oh. My. God.

I opened up the package that Sil sent me (which came with the GCTTB5) this morning, and it smelled LIKE BOOZE. CHOCOLATE AND BOOZE AT A QUARTER TO 7 IN THE MORNING.

Since I don’t drink a lot of alcohol I couldn’t name exactly what kind of booze I was smelling. Rum? Brandy? Nevertheless, it smelled amazing. Like chocolate covered cherries.

The flavour was more subtle, but very enjoyable. I super wish I had this tea on Valentine’s Day, it would have been so perfect.

Sil

hahahahaha glad you enjoyed it

OMGsrsly

So glad I’m not the only one who gets booze out of their teas!!!

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This is an interesting tea. Not sure I’m tasting all the ingredients like the Viking Moss etc. I am certainly getting the cinnamon and the cloves from this. I added sugar to this so it’s hard to say just how sweet it is. It does have a nice taste. The main question will it give me energy throughout the day as it claims? I won’t have an answer to that until later on at the earliest. I think I will refrain from giving this a number until I see if it gives me energy throughout my day as it claims. It is tasty.

Flavors: Cinnamon, Cloves

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 4 min, 0 sec 4 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML
Rasseru

haha. How goes it – is it still working?

AllanK

There does seem to be something to the claim of sustained energy. I had a lot of energy today. Going to drink this again tomorrow morning and see what I think during my day at work. Today I was off so it was not as good a test.

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This is a factory production which I have had carefully stored for over two years and now it has had 10+ years to develop into something worthwhile. I quite enjoyed my time with it yesterday! The material is comprised of mostly “chop” – very few, if any, whole leaves. Pleasant enough scent though – sweet and pure. The liquor is dark gold in color albeit a bit on the cloudy side. The sip is quite mellow and smooth – looks like ten years of age really has helped this mid-level quality material develop into something interesting. A bit fruity and a low sweetness; no real bitterness and a cooling and decent sensation throughout. Mouth action adds a little tingle to the tip of the tongue. This cake is part of the Six Famous Tea Mountain Tea Factory (Liu Da Chashan) series of six cakes composed of old tree material from well-known tea mountains in southern Yunnan (Jinggu, Youle, Mengsong, Bangwei, Bulang, Nannuo). Each cake is 100% material from that particular mountain.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 15 sec 4 g 2 OZ / 60 ML

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It’s 5 am here and I’m up super early because I have a big long to do list to get finished before I have to be in at work at 7 am… To get through the next couple of 18 hour days I’m going to need bucket loads of caffeine!! Which is perfect because I’m still on my mission to sip down all of my one offs and samples in preparation for our move in a week… Wow, a week… How did that happen so quickly???

I’m a greedy overleafer and since this is a sample bag that came with a recent order my cup is a little under leafed than I would usually brew And so I was a little concerned as to whether my taste buds would pick up the intended flavors. Not to worry! Hot, the tea has a faint banana taste however, like most of 52 tea’s creations, the flavors definitely become more pronounced as the tea cools… Luke warm, the buttery, bready, banana flavors really pop! A Little more subtle on the flavor side than most of 52 tea’s blends but it’s still a great way to fulfill a craving without any of the calories!!

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Bought in 2011. 6 oz of pu for $5.99. It smelled and tasted really bad back then. Still has a not great but tolerable smell. With time the taste has become mild, sweet, cedar, loam, and light leather. Has a hefty dusty note as well. Certainly not great puerh but a pleasant everyday sip. Worth every penny :)

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78

This tea is better than it has a right to be. I bought this two years ago and forgot about it in my giant Yixing container. I only paid something around $10 or so. There is a fair amount of fermentation flavor to this tea. It has definitely not cleared. But the fermentation taste is not of the unpleasant sort. There were some notes of chocolate it there and it was think and rich in the early infusions. It is very sweet as ripe puerh tea goes. I don’t know if this improved in the two years I stored it or if it would have tasted like this originally. Oddly enough I think I’m getting some qi off of this. It is quite relaxing. Odd to find qi on a $10 ripe tea. I have only put in two orders with pu-erhtea.com, one two years ago and one last night. But I think they are a good retailer. I bought mostly ripe in each order. I am waiting to see how fast they ship the order I put in last night.

I steeped this tea ten times in a 120ml gaiwan with 9.7g leaf and boiling water. I gave it a 10 second rinse and a 10 minute rest. I steeped it for 5 sec, 5 sec, 7 sec, 10 sec, 15 sec, 20 sec, 25 sec, 30 sec, 45 sec, and 1 min. If I could allow myself more caffeine this cheap shou wasn’t done. I’m sure I could have gotten another few steeps out of it. It was still dark in color at ten steeps.

Flavors: Earth, Sweet

Preparation
Boiling 9 g 4 OZ / 120 ML

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71

Sipdown (132)

I may have skipped class but at least I was productive enough to get my studying done and over with. Yay!

So, now I am sipping on this lovely tea and writing tasting notes, with less guilt than before as I knew I was procrastinating earlier. Anyways, as for the tea, it is incredibly nutty and has an essence of baked bread, though with that said, I don’t think I am having the same experience everyone else seemed to have had. It’s pleasant enough but nothing particularly special to me. Meanwhile, everyone seemed to be in love with this. I am wondering if I maybe grabbed more banana pieces when I attempted to make this back on vacation with the shitty Florida water that made everything weird because I got zero banana in this cup. Also, pancakes is a stretch though I could sorta see it from the baked goods element of the base. All in all, it has been fun to try but I doubt it would be a restock for my cupboard.

Speaking of which, I think I need to do a whole reorganization of my teas and my steepster cupboard. I am noticing I don’t have some teas listed while others, I thought I got rid of, are still present. Sometime soon I will need to go through and do an inventory of my stash and hopefully prioritize some teas to drink.

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

haha better get organised :)

Evol Ving Ness

Yeah, this one also made me wonder whether I was drinking the same tea everyone else was.

VariaTEA

Sil, perhaps tonight!

And Evol Ving Ness, I am so glad its not just me!!

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