New Tasting Notes


This tea is way different than I thought it woudl be, I thought because it is from Yunnan it would taste more like Pu’er, but it didnt.

It tasted like Candy, or cookies. It was DELICIOUS. If you have the chance, maybe email them for a sample or it was pretty affordable anyway. No complaints at all!

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(note. This is my personal subjective review)
If you are new to mate by all means try it, it’s a good starter mate it will give you all the goodies and feel good pick me ups that mate is very famous for, it is definitely hard to brew, most times you will get a enormous kick of bitter flavour at the start and it will gradually blend to a smooth mate experience, it has interesting bold body with fruity notes.
Now let’s gets serious, if you are a hard core experienced mate drinker and somehow you have managed to not try Taragüi for one I envy you, haha jk but really if you are curious to try it I would advise to look elsewhere to an experienced mate drinker this will most likely taste like what a bag of rusted doorknobs must taste like I know it sounds harsh but again it’s my personal subjective opinion, safe to say there’s good news there’s many different brands to explore.
Final verdict spend your money on a different brand .

Flavors: Bitter, Burnt, Fruity

175 °F / 79 °C 8 min or more 100 g 34 OZ / 1000 ML

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This was a very interesting and quite enjoyable aged pu erh. It was quite different than what one might expect, it really didn’t fit the expected profile of an aged pu erh. The broth was amber colored and clear. The taste was very fruity, with upfront flavors of raisins or plums, almost like an aged oolong. But underneath the dried fruit was a light shu type flavor, or maybe even something like a straight black tea; very smooth. It also had a bit of sharp bitterness, but it was an unusual bitterness, not astringent. Almost like burnt. In many ways, it reminded me of Slumbering Dragon from Crimson Lotus, particularly in terms of what the bitterness was like, though that tea doesn’t have much fruit upfront (at least right now). High qi! I was flyin’. The leaves were large (but often in pieces). I found this to be a very unusual tea, and I really like it a lot. Unfortunately, only samples are available, and it is $25 for a 25g sample. I found an old review on the internet from 2011, when this tea first became available, and a 400g cake went for around $30 back then. Man, those must have been good times for pu erh collectors!!

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drank Spiced Apple by DAVIDsTEA
180 tasting notes

I’ve been avoiding this one for two reasons. 1) I already have a bunch of Forever Nuts and I was worried they’d be similar and 2) I hate anise. However I ended up buying 25g anyway and it really is pretty tasty. Predominantly cinnamon and cooked apple with lighter notes of other spices and brown sugar. Very nice fall tea

Flavors: Apple, Brown Sugar, Cinnamon, Spices

Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 17 OZ / 500 ML

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It has been a long time since I have written a tasting note, but that is mostly because I was on vacation in Scotland! What a beautiful place it is, the rugged highlands, epic oceans, sandy beaches, cliffs, hills, munroes..everything was great! And the weather was gorgeous to boot! I can’t wait to go back someday, it was a good 10 days there but I will definitely return to see the eastern parts (Aberdeen, Edinburgh, we saved the whole eastern coast with its castles for another trip) and I would love to go back to the Isle of Skye and the Outer Hebrides again, they were stunning! Great time, wish I was still there!

Anyways, so while on holiday I did drink a fair amount of tea, every morning in fact, although it was mostly basic bagged black teas by Twinings or Tetley, but I took those with milk and sugar so they were quite good with the delicious Scottish breakfasts. A few places had peppermint, and I had that one or two mornings to help with digesting the heavy food near the end of the trip. I also had loose tea once, in Glasgow, at a little cafe near the University I got an EG to go and it looked like it was loose tossed in a tea bag, it was also pretty good. So overall a lot of tea drinking, also, every B&B and hotel we stayed at provided a kettle, tea, sugar and milk in the room! I wish they did that here in Canada!!

Overall, a tasty week of teas and a great holiday. Now I am back to my stash, and will hopefully log some notes as the weather here is turning cooler so I should be drinking more chai, puerh and spicy pumpkin and apple things haha.


YAY!!! So happy that you had an amazing trip to Scotland. Travel is so good for the soul. :))
I currently have the travel bug and am researching an international vacation for next year – destination is still to be determined.


Oh, we loved Scotland so much when we went also! So glad you had such an amazing trip. Looking forward to your notes!


@Dexter – ahh it was great for the soul and for my body, just feels good to have a break from working :) and I also have the travel bug as I still have a week left of vacation to use this year :D let me know where you end up going! I can highly recommend Scotland if you want to do some great hiking and see fantastic scenery, especially the wild Outer Hebrides!

@keychange – It is a wonderful place! I can’t wait to go back :D it’s so scenic and beautiful! I will try to keep up with my tasting notes lol I have been falling behind since last winter but I will try to pick it back up and do some sipdowns too!


@MissLena – I’m sure Scotland is amazing – it’s on my list too, but a little further down. I’m starting to feel like if I don’t cross off some of my top choices I’ll never get to go. Right now I’m looking at East Africa (Kenya/Tanzania) as my first choice but WOW expensive (or you have to really lower your comfort standards). Second choice is Egypt with Nile cruise – there are challenges with this trip to. If I can’t afford or get either of those to work then I’m going to do Rome. I’m still researching – finding my comfort levels – setting max budgets – soul searching. I’m going to do one of those, but which one?


Welcome home! :)
Glad you had a great time. I’m surprised you didn’t come across any tea shops though

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drank Toffee Bar Chai by 52teas
47 tasting notes

Ok, I had to just let this steep while I did things (like reboot my laptop to get it running smoothly again), so this has been sitting for awhile. I can smell the slightest hint of sweet toffee in the air, though. Mmmmmm…… toffee. I was really excited when I received this one in my subscription. One of my favorite types of candy combined with my favorite kind of tea? This has some serious possibilities.

I may have let this one get a little too cold, but ……….mmmmmm……. toffee. I am getting it, but it’s pretty subtle behind the chai, like a background flavor. Maybe a little sugar would bring out that flavor more. At the moment, those gorgeous chai spices take center stage, and almost all the attention.

In subsequent sips, the toffee flavor comes out a little better (kind of how like in certain spicy foods, you don’t notice the spiciness at first, but it builds up to a slow, warm burn I love that kind of kick). Also, the aftertaste of the tea as it goes down is heavier on the toffee flavor.

This is very ice, but I think I’m going to want to experiment with this one a little. Namely – a little bit of sugar to bring out the sweetness a little more. (I’m almost tempted to add a little bit of butter to my next glass to see how that would come out. Nah. Better yet, I could melt little toffee bits with it (Mmmm… need to munch on some of my Brandini toffee).

Flavors: Butter, Cardamon, Clove, Ginger, Spices, Spicy, Sweet, Toffee

190 °F / 87 °C 8 min or more 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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Totally agreed with Kittenna on this, no cherry but lots of cakiness! Noms. and yeah the sparkles dazzle. I did add a touch of sugar to see if any fruit notes would emerge but instead was rewarded with cake! I was really looking forward to cherry, as I loooooove cherries. But cake works too.
Thank you Keychange for sharing!


I wanted this to be like a cherry cake! so much disappointment. Oh well, glad you guys found something to like about it haha.


I know me too!! was a little disappointed to see no cherry-ness. Well, onwards with the search for a cherry tea :)

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drank Blackberry Mojito by Teavana
26 tasting notes

I swear this tea is never going to leave my cupboard – and not for lack of trying. I think it’s time to retire this one until the warmer months when iced tea season is back.

1 tsp

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The strawberry flavor of this tea is very strong compared to other teas I’ve had (possibly just due to age?) But I really enjoyed it. It might be good with some milk next time.

Flavors: Strawberry

1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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So there has been talk circulating around the idea of a smoky vanilla tea. So I tried my hand at making my own this morning using Tippy’s Lumberjack and Townsend Tea’s Mt. Hood Vanilla I think my ratio was 3 parts vanilla tea to 1 part smoky tea. I would have liked to have seen more vanilla flavor and less LS smokiness, but I think the blend was really quite good. It will have to do for now, I am keeping my eyes peeled for the real thing soon.

Don’t let me down, Steepster!

Flavors: Smoke, Vanilla

Liquid Proust

Sounds intriguing, who is doing smoked vanilla?


i was thinking about adding vanilla bean to the smokey black from verdant in light of those conversations as well. interesting to see your experiment!


@LP: Whispering Pines has been hounded by his fans to make one. I hope he does!

@Sil: I think the Verdant smoky tea would be a much better fit. I think the LS that Tippy uses is a bit heavy, kinda bacon-like. Huh. Bacon Vanilla tea…..

Maddy Barone

I just had the Melbourne Breakfast tea by T2 this morning. It was smoky and vanilla and honey. Really yummy, although the smoke was quite light. Maybe you’d like that one?

Liquid Proust

Was just curious. LPT is doing a vanilla smoked Dian Hong if the funding on GoFund me works. It’s a fun idea :)


@Maddy: AAAAAaaah! that does sound good!

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a decent tea:

when i smell the leaves dry, they smell like herbs and spices. :)

when i smell the leaves wet, the smell is intensified.

when i smell the brewed tea, i smell lemon, strawberry, herbs and spices.

when i taste the tea i taste lemons, strawberries, herbs and spices.

the color of the brewed tea is a bright yellow.

the smells of the tea remind me of the lemon scented playdough by tuti fruity i used to play with as a kid.

i rate this a 75 because its a decent tea but i have never really been into herbal tea blends

many thanks to liquidproust for this decent tea sample.

Flavors: Fruity, Herbs, Lemon, Spices, Strawberry

190 °F / 87 °C 0 min, 45 sec 5 g 8 OZ / 250 ML

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drank Ginger Beer by DAVIDsTEA
245 tasting notes

I finally got to redeem some frequent steeper points at DAVIDs! I spent so much money on tea during the summer through iced teas and gifts I had enough for 150 grams free. I redeemed it all on Butterfly Jasmine (which is nearly $60 of tea for free!). I also decided to pick 12 grams of this tea up to give it a try. I know I already have a spicy tea and have been avoiding buying similar teas, but I wanted to try this since it sounds so unique.

I brewed it up in a tea pot- about half the leaf with 1.5 L of boiled water,. Steeped for at least 5min before pouring a cup for myself and husband. The taste is first ginger, followed by a slight sweetness from the apple and flavouring that almost taste like carbonation (does that make sense?). Really reminds me of ginger ale without carbonation or excessive sweetness. I really enjoy it, and plan on picking up more. My husband also really enjoys it as well and he says it does taste a bit like beer too.

Flavors: Ginger

Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 6 g 51 OZ / 1500 ML

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Husband brought this home one day and now we always have Uncle Lee around!

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This chai was nice and spicy, with a refreshing hint of mint at the end to keep you drinking more. I had originally gotten this for my boyfriend, only to remember that he doesn’t enjoy anything with mint in it. So I finally got around to it and I’m pretty sure if I didn’t tell him that there was any mint in it he wouldn’t have noticed. The mint is just this magical element that nullifies the spiciness.

Flavors: Mint, Spicy

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drank Strawberries and Cream by T2
266 tasting notes

We initially bought this one for my husband, who only likes standard Tea and fruity things you can serve on ice, but as it’s edging further and further away from iced-drink season, I feel justified in serving this hot and liberally sweetened.

Is it weird that I rather like hot fruit teas? I have a friend who drinks hot Vimto, so at least I’m drinking something that, under most circumstances, is meant to be consumed warm. This one’s really nice: I think the bit of creaminess – and there is a bit of it – around the very pretty taste of strawberry takes the edge off of any hibiscus-tart that would otherwise threaten to dominate. This is good.

I noticed last time I visited the Westgate in London that T2 now has an outpost there, which has robbed me of my only excuse to go to Shoreditch and pretend I’m cool.

(Which is probably for the best, because I am not cool enough to be in Shoreditch.)

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drank Melbourne Breakfast by T2
229 tasting notes

Breakfast tea!!! Rich, smooth, slightly smoky, and delicious. I gave up on coffee this morning. Since I’ve started taking the aspirin everyday my tummy doesn’t seem to care for coffee in the morning. That’s okay. I have tea. Delicious tea. This tea brews up nice and dark in the cup. I was afraid it might be bitter or astringent, but it wasn’t. There is even a slight sweetness to it at the end of the sip. I see other people detect vanilla. I don’t, but then, with my wonky nose… This is one of the best breakfast teas I’ve had.

Flavors: Smoke, Sweet

Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

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drank Mulberry White Tea by RiverTea
477 tasting notes

Yeah, so this tea is alright. It’s been languishing in my cupboard (though sealed) for about two years now, no maybe even longer than that, so I’m certain it’s lost some of its flavour, but I think it still at least hints of the taste it intended to have. 3 tsp in 12 oz of water in my curve mug today. I am hunting for teas that don’t require any additions, and although this one tastes…fine, I’m not lusting after it and am grateful, as rivertea is no longer around. I don’t really deserve to write a tasting note for this tea, because i don’t even know how to describe it. I can definitely taste the white tea base which has an unusual amount of heft here, and I suppose the rest of what I’m tasting is…hang on, let me sip again and see. yes! yes to the person who said this reminds them a bit of cantaloupe and cream from Butiki. Very much so, actually. I’m just dying to add a touch of sugar to this, and might actually do that next time i brew it up. I also don’t know what mulberries are supposed to taste like, so there’s that. The more it cools, the more delicious I’m finding it. But man oh man how a touch of sugar would transform this.

3 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

So jealous you still have some of this!! :)


I’m surprised I waited this long to try it!

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This review is based on me quickly brewing this western style. I’m sure it would be better gongfu but no time this morning. The tea is tasty. It is slightly bitter and slightly sweet. It has a lot of fermentation flavor but not in a fishy sense. When I have time I will gongfu this.

I brewed this once in a Teavana Glass Perfect Tea Maker/Gravity Steeper with 8.6g leaf and boiling water for 30 seconds. I did give it a 10 second rinse first.

Flavors: Bitter, Earth, Sweet

Boiling 0 min, 30 sec 8 g 16 OZ / 473 ML

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drank Zen by Tazo
843 tasting notes

So for the last three days I keep forgetting to bring tea to work. So now I am stuck with work tea today. That is the tea in the drawer of the staff room at work, that people just bring in because they don’t want it. Most of it was herbal blends, this was one of the few that had actual tea in it so that is what I grabbed. We also have some keurig tea at work. But the keurig has never been cleaned, and is mostly used for coffee, I don’t think I can stomach tea laced with coffee, this morning anyway.

This was is ok. It is quite light, bland would be a good word. There are light hints of spearmint, a bit of lemon verbena type flavour. The green tea is very light but also slightly atringent in the aftertaste.

I wasn’t expecting much from this one due to the fact it is an old bagged tea from the work cupboard, but also. Being a blend called Zen, I don’t think it is supposed to pack any type of punch.

It will do for now.

I have all this delicious tea at home just waiting for me….. :(

185 °F / 85 °C 2 min, 0 sec
Maddy Barone

My brother just loves his Tazo teas. I don’t get it. None of them has ever really been good for me. Other people’s mileage may vary.

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drank Yin Si by Yunnan Sourcing US
124 tasting notes

This was a free gift sample from YSUSA. It was about 50 grams and other than the name, no other descriptors. Dry leaf aroma of hay, wet leaf of asparagus, grass and butter. The flavor profile is typically green with the requisite nutty vegetal butteriness with a slight bitter and astringency. I would definitely purchase this tea, but will have to see if it is offered on YSUSA next year.

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Tea friend Nicole sent me some of this earlier in the year; I enjoyed a little, then set it back for heavy drinking season (AKA those miserable weeks before Daylight Savings Time when you have to wake up and drive in the dark). Although I oversteeped a little this morning, there’s a good balance between the heavy assam bass line and the Ceylon/Darjeeling counterpoint. A good wakey-uppey that, steeped lightly or with a little milk, would also be a good afternooner.

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Yesterday was intense. My brain was running 100pmh all day long and when I got home, kids in bed, husband out of the house for man night it was still running at top speeds. It was running so fast I was making myself overwhelmed. So to shut the damn thing off I decided to take 30 mins. I just sat and enjoyed this lovely tea. It did the trick! Calming, cozy and so very tasty.

This tea was a very nice medium roast oolong. The first few steeps were roasty with hints of mineral. As the leaves opened up a bit I got quite a juicy flavor from this tea. I will be honest I had a hard time detecting the cinnamon note that many others have found, but it was still a very enjoyable tea. Yum.

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So I think this is the tea I am currently drinking. It maybe a similar version as I remember the note from JW saying something about being out of the Keemun, but here is a sample of something. It is good stuff! Yum yum yum yum. This is just what I needed this morning to get me going. Baked bread, with a deep hint of cacao. The teas I have tried from JW have been missing what I will call the “base” for me. They are light and airy. This one has that extra umph that is rocking my world this morning. I hope that this is the same tea that is in tin #5, because a tin worth is on its way from Beorhthraefn.


I know what you mean about too many teas being too light and airy. Love some good oomph myself!

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