Featured & New Tasting Notes

88

There’s just something about Peach and Oolong that draws me in every time. It’s like they are perfect for each other! The more of them I try the more of them I like! Since I have had a lot of luck with Boston Tea Company’s Teas lately I am very excited to try this one too!

This is very true to oolong but the peach taste is just right. I will say the aroma is tremendous!

This one gets a thumbs up from me for sure!!!

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89
drank Noël à Vienne by Dammann Freres
4323 tasting notes

YUM! I think I want to move to France and live next door to the family Dammann. (And in this fantasy of mine, they invite me to tea every day)

I seriously have not yet encountered a tea from them that I do not like.

I need to thank Doulton for this experience – thank you! This tea is incroyable!

Noël à Vienne translates into Christmas is coming. I can taste a bit of christmas in this cup – there is a certain “baked” flavor to the tea that reminds me of the apricot cookies my grandma would make at christmas time. And of course, there is the chocolate. It is a bit more delicate than I would like (but then, I’m a chocoholic, so more chocolate is always better). There is also a light touch of citrus and a pleasantly creamy character to it. This is SO GOOD!

Thank you again Doulton!

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 30 sec

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87

This blends pretty nicely together as it has two excellent teas ( which i had the pleasure of tasting alone as well) . Let’s start with the white that also has some interesting coconut flavors in it , which is not too dominant but still present if you try really hard to taste it. It has a chai taste with the cardamom included which gives it a pretty good flavor and of course the cinnemon with not too much inside. Samurai Chai Mate is pretty unique on it’s own as well and amazing for that caffeine kick for you caffeine fiends out there! All in all if your a super chai lover you won’t like this too much because it’s kind of a version of a chai, a lot weaker than the traditional chai flavors as well however, if your not too keen on chai teas you’ll enjoy this one. Even if your not the biggest fan of teas you will like this one i’m sure of it and I stress that the caffeine hype is pretty intense as well. No wonder teavana puts this one up front because it’s very likeable.

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76
drank Caribe by Harney & Sons
951 tasting notes

This sample is from the era I will call B.B.G.B.M., or before black/green blends moratorium.

In the sample packet it has an intense, fruit smell. I thought it was pineapple until I read the ingredients again. Now I’m fairly sure it’s guava. There’s a high sweet note that I’m thinking is the strawberry, and an undercurrent of hibiscus. I’m not smelling coconut, or much tea, for that matter.

The tea’s liquor is that sort of in between color that these sorts of blends tend toward. Not a deep black tea color, not a light green tea color, but somewhere between the two.

The aroma is primarily guava and strawberry, though I can smell black tea through it.

It’s actually surprisingly tasty, and I’d probably drink it again if I was offered it. But in truth, I drink guava flavored juice maybe once every year or three and I don’t think this tea, nice as it is, is enough to turn me into a regular guava consumer. That’s the primary flavor as well, though I can also taste strawberry, hibiscus, and a mixed black/green tea taste that is hard to explain. It’s fresh green but toasty, paradoxical as it sounds. It gets points for being well done and unusual, though.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec
Jillian

Black/green blends moratorium? Now I’m curious. :D

__Morgana__

I just think they’re more trouble than they’re worth since I’m never sure I’m steeping them correctly. Usually I don’t get great results.

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94
drank Mint Fusion Organic by Teas Etc
302 tasting notes

iced. I think I definitely like this better hot, although it does make an ok iced tea. I didn’t have much of my sample left so I made a very small glass of iced tea. I taste mostly mint. I’d love to taste the black in this a little more when made into iced tea. Not lowering my rating on this, because I did find it to be really tasty when hot. I think I like all teas better hot. :)

Preparation
Iced 8 min or more

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88
drank Maple Sugar by Tea Guys
558 tasting notes

Ahh, now this is bliss after my last few teas. I rolled a “2” this morning, but had no more “2” teas. (Yes, I used the entire sample bag of the rose in my tea last night, I wanted SUPER fragrant rose scent and flavor). When I returned from work my luck improved and I rolled an “8”. The single package labeled 8 was Maple Sugar by Tea Guys. Super excited to try this I was. (My try at yoda speak).

The leaves smelled amazing, and probably would have paired well with scrambled eggs and bacon, or some chocolate bacon chip cookies (I’ve only heard of these, never consumed/made them myself). This was a tasty sweet afternoon tea to enjoy as a pick me up. It tastes like I drizzled a bunch of syrup in with my afternoon basic black tea. I bet this would handle cream well. I have a bit left over so I will try it that way next time I roll an 8.

Thanks again to Rabs, for allowing me to try such tasty teas:) Now to decide which teas to bring to the in-law’s house for the evening. Showing them how to work their new phones!

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec
MegWesley

I have to admit that chocolate bacon chip cookies sound interesting.

Rabs

Hooray for a higher roll! I never thought of keeping more of the tea set aside for another roll — that’s a great way to extend the game if you’d like. Otherwise I consider a tea that’s been rolled for and open “fair game.” :)

AmazonV

hehe my favorite cookies

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88

Thank you LiberTeas for this tea sample I was very excited to try it against my Sweet Velvet Fog Signature Blend. It is rather close in flavor but I felt SVF is a little smoother, more caramel in flavor, and a bit richer but don’t get me wrong it is still very good. Just goes to show that it isn’t just about what teas are used in the blending but the percentage too.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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78

Today’s at-work sample tea bag experiment.

The Kusmi bag is like nothing I’ve ever seen. It’s fabric (looks like some variation of muslin?) and looks like a gauze square that was folded over some tea leaves and sewed up on three sides, then had a length of braided thread attached to it with a tag at the end.

They weren’t kidding about the flowers. The fragrance of the bag is terrifically floral, overlayed over some citrus. It’s a very deep floral, a musky floral, a perfumy floral. Doesn’t smell a lot like Earl Grey, but perhaps it will after steeping.

I don’t know how hot my water was because I forgot to bring my thermometer to work yet again, but it seemed hotter than yesterday for some reason. The aroma is very similar to the smell of the dry leaves, but more open, with some tea shining through. Still not getting an Earl Grey feel, though.

It brewed up nicely, certainly strong enough compared to my Lupicia bag experiments of yesterday. It has a very solid, sweet, black tea taste, with a sweet floral accent. The more I sip it, the more Earl Grey I get.

I like it, but it is heavy and hearty, like a heavy perfume or a hearty stew, and the sort of thing I’m likely to drink occasionally rather than frequently. Fortunately I’ll have an opportunity to get to know it better as I have a small tin of the loose leaf at home.

Preparation
4 min, 0 sec
Angrboda

I found this one very unpleasant, but I’ve still got a sample tin of it just lying around. Based on this I feel I ought to give it one more chance.

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drank Florence by Harney & Sons
1798 tasting notes

This tea had to grow on me. I used to dislike hazelnut, and it is definitely here in this tea. But the chocolate is so good, strengthened by a splash of milk and a little sugar! I had it once, liked a sip or two, and thought I wouldn’t drink it again. Then…cravings began. I would want it, make it, and be put off by the hazelnut smell, then want it again. Now, I LOVE it! My youngest made our tea time today – honeydew melon with fresh cherries, Petit Ecolier cookies, Waffeletten, and Florence. Aaaaaah. I don’t even mind that I won’t be getting off work until 6…..

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 30 sec

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83

This is my very first experience with Shincha! I ordered two Shinchas from Yuuki-Cha, this one and also an Uji Gokujo Shincha (which I will be reviewing when I try it).

I brewed this Shincha in my 5 oz Kyusu following the instructions that I was given by Yuuki-Cha. They recommended 5 steepings, with increasing steep temperature and time.

The first steeping surprised me because it was very mild. There were some hints of umami and sweetness in the tea, but it wasn’t as strong as I thought it was going to be.

As I steeped this tea a few more times, I tasted a little more astringency, but it continued to be a mild tea with a kick of sweetness as it hit the tongue. Very good!

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53
drank Royal Blend by Fortnum & Mason
51 tasting notes

I had a bag of this on my recent flight from Florida. Much improvement from what the airlines use to give. Overall though, I found this tea a bit basic. Not bad but nothing special. I added some cream to add a bit more dimension. I’m not sure how old the airline bags are so that could be a problem but this isn’t something I’d choose for myself.

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84
drank Coconut Cream Pie by 52teas
243 tasting notes

Walked outside to get the mail, not expecting anything, and I have a box…YAY! This box contained my Memorial Day 52 Teas order that I did not expect until tomorrow. In celebration, I brewed up a cup almost immediately.

This is the tin, and though I never received the pouch, the tin is FILLED to the brim and it is layered with big slices of coconut! The smell of the dried leaves is delicious: coconut, vanilla, black tea.

I did a quick brew in my in-cup basket, heaping scoop of tea, hot water, no additives, three minute infuse. The tea is a dark honey-amber liquor with aromas of fresh coconut and vanilla. The flavor is perfect, a slightly sweet blend of coconut and vanilla, a creaminess that you would expect from coconut cream pie and a blend of mind-blowing black tea with a little bite at the end to make sure you know it is there. Absolutely wonderful!

Preparation
3 min, 0 sec
Cofftea

I’m glad I’m not the only one that has to wait a lil longer for 52teas orders. Our mail isn’t due for 3 mor hours.

Cinoi

Yea, it’s usually a week and a day for me. That’s why I was surprised, haha

Cofftea

Mine was only shipped 3 days ago.:( I hope it gets here by the time I get back from Seattle on Tues.

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78

Malomorgen sent this to me! Thanks!!!

I must say I was VERY AFRAID to try this one. Mostly because of the Echinacea. I’ve had some strange experiences with it before. BUT…I am very surprised and happy with this!

After looking at the rest of the ingredients I was very intrigued by this one! Carrots? Beets? Interesting…

This is a lovely orange with yellow and pinkish highlights in the post-steeped bagged tea. Nice color! It smells of Raspberry and Chamomile. The taste is very gentle and mostly raspberry with little hints of licorice, chamomile, and rooibos.

This was VERY different and a nice surprise.

malomorgen

yup thats quite yummy for a industrial teabag one. just tastes bit too artificial to me…

TeaEqualsBliss

I was just pleased it didn’t taste like a medicinal tea! LOL

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90

This is a delicious tea. The dry aroma is dominated by the orange but the brewed tea liquor nicely balances the orange, apple, and the spices of the blend. The vanilla is not shy either.

As I drink this I think that it’s one of many, many teas I have sampled which are exceptionally strong. How do I distinguish them? American Tea Room has one of my favorite blends in its Brioche and I think that their one flavor orange and vanilla teas are exceptional. This tea is an exceptional orange/apple lightly spiced and there is most certainly a niche for that in my life.

American Tea Room never has disappointed me yet; I don’t know if they add something to the blends but they seem to end up with a better product than so many of the really fine but not brilliant tea companies out there have. I wonder if most of those companies rely on the same blends/different packaging. I am convinced that the American Tea Room is adding a je ne sais quoi that is thoroughly delightful.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 15 sec
Erin Williams

How high is the cinnamon for it? I like cinnamon related teas and this seems intriguing.

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65
drank Peppermint Yerba Mate by Samovar
911 tasting notes

Wow. Yeah, mate and I? Not gonna mesh. This is kind of like drinking a mint-flavored reed mat. This shows though how sweet Samovar’s Sweet Yerba Mate is. Because this? Not sweet. The tasting notes say bittersweet and I’ll agree. It’s not bitter like an oversteeped tea but there is a certain something to it that made me think of bitterness, maybe in a herbal/nature-y way. Nothing bad, just really unexpected.

I admit it, I made a face when I took the first sip (unexpected, you know). But each sip after that got easier and by the end of my cup, I was okay with this tea. Well, okay-ish. It still tastes like a mint-flavored reed mat but I will say that the mint is quite nice in this – and I’m saying that as a not so big fan of mint. So for those that mesh well with mate, I’m gonna go out on a limb and say this is a pretty tasty one, at least with how the mint blends with it. There’s no raw or rough herbal edge to it. So it’s a very smooth reed mat. I just notice it has eucalyptus in it so that might be contributing to the smooth blend. (And maybe it’ll help me with my stuffy sinuses.)

Anyway, certainly different but likable for a mate. Overall I prefer it more than the Sweet Yerba Mate because this doesn’t make me think of a commune with goats.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 0 sec
__Morgana__

I totally get it. I have only tried two mates and probably not the best examples, but they didn’t even make me want to know what a really awesome one would be like.

Auggy

Including this one, I think I’ve tried 3, but one was bagged (and HORRIBLE). I don’t think I’d know what an awesome mate tasted like even if I ran across it. This one is by far the best I’ve had and since it’s Samovar, I assume it’s a pretty good one. Which pretty much means I even if I did find an awesome one, I probably wouldn’t like it all that much.
So yeah, pretty much what you said. :)

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89
drank Coconut Pouchong by Adagio Teas
392 tasting notes

I really enjoyed this tea. I must admit I haven’t really tried oolong before ( besides maybe pre-bottle iced kind) so I can’t rate this tea on it’s oolongness, but as a tea in general it was quite good.

The dry leaves smelled delicious kind of like an almond joy. The wet leaves didn’t have as strong of a coconut smell – it smells kind off spicy like fresh cut herbs or grass.

The tea tasted kind of like green tea, vegetal. Then it tasted kind of smooth/oily but in a good way. I have heard people describe oolong as buttery so maybe that’s it. Finally it had just a hint of coconut. The coconut wasn’t strong but I liked that because it added to the flavor without taking away from the tea flavor.

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95

Many thanks to SoccerMom for this tea!!!!

Big Red Robe! Hello Robert Fortune!!! :)

I was very excited to try this one because this type of tea was talked about in For All the Tea in China, plus one of my little pet projects within my little pet tea obsession is trying and learning about more and more classic Chinese teas.

I’m discovering that I’m a huge fan of the roasty. This one reminds me of a less roasty version of Samovar’s Wuyi oolong. The first steep (2 min) of this tea had a raw, earthy, roasty edge to it, but the second one (3 min) that I’m enjoying right now has more of that nut butter roasty quality. The Wuyi oolong was a health food store peanut butter – but this is an almond butter or cashew butter. Really exquisite and smooth.

I am now working on the third infusion (4 min) – lighter than the second, but it retains the same nut butter qualities.

I love this tea!!! Maybe it’s because I’m a coffee drinker or maybe because I’m the type of person who loves chicory, bitter greens, olives, etc. but boy, the roasty is my big, big love :)

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 0 sec
JacquelineM

Replying to myself – oh dear! But I know I really love a tea when after my third steep, I am shaking the pot into my tea cup hoping for a few more drops – lol!

Rabs

Awesome! A great tasting note plus I get a Pixies’ song stuck in my head (which is a good thing). :D

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86
drank Lime Bang by DAVIDsTEA
51 tasting notes

This tea was SPECTACULAR! I really liked it, it had a lime (reminded me of 7-up soda) twist to a quality green tea to begin with. The tea is just straight up a solid green, with exactly what it advertises a lime BANG! Which kinda caught me off guard because I wasn’t expecting that much of a bang. It wasn’t tart like I would have expected it to be, it was just right. The green tea part of it wasn’t too grassy but at times had a herby taste too it, but it was fine for me! Well I will be having this one again :) I’m off to Florida for the next week, I will be drinking plenty of tea on the go tomorrow : Anyone have any reccomendations for starbucks teas while on the go? Please let me know. I will still try to tealog every chance I get. If only steepster had an app so I could tealog from my ipod….

AmazonV

i love starbucks teas! i usually get a “no-water soy chai latte” every day, I also enjoy the rooibos tea latte (bags), they tend to make the matcha (green tea) latte poorly don’t get it, for iced the passionfruit iced tea is delicious

JonTea

Passionfruit Iced Tea…….. NOM NOM!

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89
drank Boston Blend by Harney & Sons
255 tasting notes

I am a big fan of Harney & Sons and I like their Paris and Florence teas. I ordered Boston! I forgot that the tea has cranberry flavors. When I opened the tin I was overwhelmed by an aroma that was not entirely pleasant: i put my finger on it: Paregoric soaked in cherry and stored in a humidor! I was a bit surprised by the intensity of this aroma and after sitting with it for a few minutes, I had to conclude: this is a concoction of paregoric, cherries, and some cigar tobacco.

Steeped, I smell the cranberry quite clearly. And the enticement of the paregoric has gone, taking with it my opium dreams (I was of the generation where mothers used paregoric as a catch-all medicine for their children—indeed I can remember trotting off to the drug store to buy her a bottle of paregoric and a package of Parliament cigarettes all for less than 50 cents).

So aside from being a blast to the past, Boston Tea proves to be a reasonably strong, robust black tea with cranberry aroma and flavor. I cannot pick on on the almond flavor specifically, but I do recommend this tea. After the moments of strangeness, the tea itself offers a generous tea/cranberry experience which is much more authentic than some of the other cranberry flavored teas I’ve sampled before. I think this would be a great tea to serve with a holiday dinner and a good tea to keep in stock. The aftertaste is delightfully cranberry too.

Au fond, my only disappointment is that the paregoric seems to have been a temporary illusion! I could also see mixing this tea 50/50 with Florence to sample the result.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 45 sec
Dan

I can remember my mom giving me paregoric as a child.

Rabs

I love that in some of your notes I need to use a dictionary ;)

ashmanra

My mom had a recipe for cough syrup, given to her by a doctor, that called for lemon juice, paragoric, and whiskey. When I was sick as a kid I would ask if it was time for my “booze.”

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87

I’m going to have a long day today and thought I would give this a whirl before I have to continue on with my day!

I can smell floral ingredients along with hibiscus and fruit!

It’s an interesting gray-ish/brown color with pink hues.

This is pretty darn good. I was a little afraid because of all the fruity tarty contents and that dreaded hibiscus!!! BUT…I’m diggin’ this! This is nice! This is different!

I’m going to try this iced at some point but for now I am going to say proudly that I am pleasantly surprised by this one!

Woot! Woot!

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 30 sec

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85

I thought I’d keep up my Earl Grey trend of late and start my morning with something completely new to me — an Earl Grey Cream. Since I drink all my teas straight I really couldn’t fathom what a “cream” flavor would be like paired with an Earl Grey. The answer is yummy.

This tea isn’t listed on GTC’s website yet, so I sent Daniel Mann a PM to see if there’s any info available yet — I’ll update this tea’s listing and my note once I hear back. ETA: Daniel got back to me and yes, this is a brand new blend and he’s using us lucky Steepsterites as guinea pigs. I’m a happy guinea pig :D

The smell of both the dry leaves and the steeped ones were a sweet vanilla-ey fragrance with undercurrents of a black Earl Grey tea. I can’t say that I’ve ever used the term “hairy eyeball” in my life until I started trying GTC’s teas. I can’t say that I’m in love with the general combo of EG and a sweet vanilla-ey creaminess, but with this tea it’s really really good. I could imagine this type of tea going horribly wrong, but I think it works here. There were quite a few sips that were “NOM! NOM! NOM!” in a desert tea type-of-way. I could imagine this tea eventually becoming something that must be in stock in my cupboard, but it’s too soon for me to say. The EG itself was nice and smooth.

I must admit that I was once again distracted while trying to enjoy this tea: my final shipment for my Geek Pride Day Giveaway came this morning (only took the order 20 days to arrive :P) so I was busy putting the final touches on everything before I posted them. Therefore, the last 1/3 of my cup had completely cooled. I did not like the cooled cup — the citrusy aspects of the EG came through too much. The second steep (added a minute) was still yummy, but perhaps not as sweet. I look forward to trying this one again with complete focus. Another huge THANK YOU to Daniel Mann for sending this sample to me. NE

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec
TeaEqualsBliss

Oh! Another goodie-sounding one! I’ll tell ya…Georgia Tea Company is kickin’ butt and takin’ names!!!!

Rabs

No joke — they’re now at the top of my “purchase from next” queue. I’m keeping an eye on the Select hoping something will come up from GTC :D

Miss Sweet

Yum, this sounds delicious! Totally keeping an eye out for creamy earl greys now…

Rabs

It really is delicious — I took it with me to work in my travel mug and it’s really really sweet and yummy. I might have to bump up the rating later cuz i think that this has crossed over into teagasm territory. :)

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100

My sample from Chicago Tea Garden just arrived – now I get to try the tea that so many have raved about here.

The smell of the dry leaves is really vegetal and fresh, which is a good start.
1st steep: 180 degrees, 60 seconds. A prominent vegetable/seaweed aroma. Now for the first taste: Wow, this is possibly the best oolong tea I’ve ever had. It’s got some amazing flavors in there, so it’s going to be hard for me to describe it adequately. And what a sweet aftertaste. Okay, I’m going to take a stab in the dark and say rice pudding. It’s creamy, silky, rich, and sweet. I want more!
2nd steep: 180 degrees, 90 seconds. Oh, the anticipation while it’s steeping – will it deliver on the promise of the first cup? More of a floral note in the aroma this time, reminiscent of jasmine. The flavor is still sweet and now juicy too – I’m really reminded of apple juice. Amazing.
3rd steep: 180 degrees, 90 seconds. I’ve never made a habit of more than two steeps but what the heck, I’m throwing caution to the wind today. Now the aroma is new-mown grass. The flavor is mellower now, but still rich. The rice is back, but more savory this time. I’m reminded of the cartoon where Wile E. Coyote pulls down a chart of the roadrunner and explains how each part of the bird has a different, delicious flavor – this tea has so many flavors it’s unbelievable.
Must. Have. More.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 1 min, 0 sec
Rabs

Wonderful note! Love the Wile E. Coyote reference :)

Nicole Martin

This was one of the best oolongs i’ve ever had

Adham

That was the tea talking! Just looked at the price on the CTG website…not cheap, but worth it.

Alicia

Love the Wile E. Coyote reference.

maozed

“I’m reminded of the cartoon where Wile E. Coyote pulls down a chart of the roadrunner and explains how each part of the bird has a different, delicious flavor – this tea has so many flavors it’s unbelievable.”

Best description of a tea.

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85

This tea is in small little pellets like grapenuts. It is a bold, robust, and chewy tea with a caramel note at first sip. I was really surprised at this tea. There was no bitterness and a touch of astringency. I got more caramel notes as the tea cooled. Yes, this is a CTC tea but it just amazed me with the taste.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec
I ♥ NewYorkCiTEA

This is a Featured tealog today. =)

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89
drank Exotica by DAVIDsTEA
51 tasting notes

This was great ICED! It was a combo of the most unusual combinations ever, but it just made a statement and an excellent iced tea. At times it tasted a little Chai-ish ( Maybe the cardamom). but then at others it tasted tropical and so damn liberating. I found the red pepper very strange at first, but a couple gulps later, I got used to it and the combination relationship between the fruity tenderness, the cardamom and the red pepper just started to work for me. It was strange at first I have to admit that one but it was just such a statement iced tea. On the down side, I don’t think I could imagine it hot, its just such an iced summer tea. But who knows, I’ll probably try it someday…
Something that stood out about this iced tea is that it had such a great zip,bang,zoom to it, with all it had going on. A little hard to keep track of at times, but all in all a great iced tea. I’m a fan. David’s tea you never let me down =) Ps: I saw sex and the city 2, it wasnt great….

Cofftea

I normally don’t drink tisanes solo so I’d probably mix it w/ black tea, but this sounds SO good!

I ♥ NewYorkCiTEA

This is a Featured tealog today. =)

JonTea

Awesome, I absolutly love when my tealog’s get featured! Thanks :P

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