3709 Tasting Notes
From my Queue…
Ok, finally writing the tasting notes from the date I had with Face Eater like three weeks ago; these are essentially the last things in the queue (a few things from the last couple of days are left; but nothing this old).
To start the date off we went to DT; he got this one hot To Go and I got an iced Secret Weapon – review for that to come right after this one. Honestly, this isn’t the tea I would have recommended since it was essentially his first cup of tea ever – but he saw the name and decided this was going to be what he was having, before even really looking at the others or learning what was in it other than the, rather obvious, mint.
He did like it though; enough that after his cup he decided to buy 50g. Part of me really, really wanted to talk him out of it because I don’t think he’ll actually drink it regularly – and so the coconut in it is probably going to turn before he can finish it. But he was so proud of himself buying tea, so I just didn’t say anything…
We also decided that it’d be fun to make a DAVIDsTEA’s “Worst Hits” sampler for him; things that he just absolutely wouldn’t like at all. Don’t ask me why he wanted this because I don’t know – but the sort of cruel part of me was more than happy to oblige.
His sampler included:
- Lapsang Souchong Star
- Hibiscus Punch
- Queen of Tarts
- Garcinia Goodness
- Coffee Pu’Erh**
*The sales associate recommended this one because we suspect all of the teas FE makes are going to be terribly prepared and fucked up, so he thought this would get really bitter and gnarly.
- And this one was picked less so because we thought it’d be bad but more because he was curious what “earthy” tea tasted like and we thought it’d be a good way to introduce him to Pu’Erh without it being super unfamiliar since he’s a coffee drinker.
So far I know he’s made the Lapsang – and hated it. He did it side by side with Mint To Be as a ‘control’ and about halfway through each cup he mixed them together. Yeck.
The rest of the date was kind of nice too; we went to a comic book shop and I helped him pick out a Spiderman comic and a Deathpool comic to start off with (Spiderman’s my favourite hero, and Deathpool is the hero he was more curious about). I can’t remember what arc we decided on for Deathpool, but for Spiderman I thought it’d be fun to start him off with the Clone Saga. I know it’s controversial, but I really liked it…
The rest of the date was ok; we went out for pizza and had a good conversation. At the end he dropped me off, and there was another kiss – with less face eating! But if I’m being honest, I don’t know if there’ll be a third date. I mean, I feel terrible considering I just put together a super nasty package of tea for him and convinced him to drink it all – but as interesting as I find him, and as great a time as I have there’s just one really important problem…
I’m just not attracted to him. Ugh.
One more note brief note before bed…
Made a pot of this one yesterday to just sort of casually sip on and drink; I think grandpa brewing oolongs is gonna be my new favourite thing.
Like I said though, I was casually drinking this one which means I really wasn’t paying it any attention. I tasted ginseng and maybe like moss notes sort of, and a little licorice as the cups progressed but most of it was mindlessly consumed without any second thought.
Wasn’t great, wasn’t awful either.
Finally tried this one yesterday!
There’s sort of a story behind this tea; over the summer in like July my Mom, her boyfriend, and my sister went to Disney. They asked what I’d want as a souvenir and I told them to see if they could find something “tea themed”, maybe from Alice In Wonderland ‘cause of the Tea Party Scene that’s so heavily associated with the movie.
And my Mom delivered; she got me a tin of this and a tin of the Topsy Turvy tea blend! Sadly, there were some complications getting them to me; I don’t go to visit often (since moving I’ve been back like four times?) and she doesn’t really come visit me often here either. In December when I was in Regina to see my Dad I tried to plan a pick up but it failed, so it wasn’t until January when I went down to spend Christmas with her that all went well and I finally got my tea. Such a long wait.
Taste wise this was ok; not the highest quality tea, but not the worst either. It’s quite gingery and normally that’d bug me, but it’s also quite peachy too and the two flavours do work quite well together. It kinda breaks even, overall. Not a whole lot of the supposed “apricot” flavour in this one was noticeable though, and that was a little disappointing. Still, I have lots of this now so I can definitely play around some!
Black base was ok; it got a touch bitter by the end of the mug, but I think it’s pretty smooth overall. Nothing very spectacular about it other than, based on my experience with this one cup, it not being too touchy. Regardless; even if I don’t find the tea mind blowing – the tin itself is so pretty. And it’ll be an awesome ‘collectible’ anyway.
My Dad is currently “live texting” me the Grammys…
Dad, if I wanted to hear about the Grammys, I’d just watch them.
And Juicy Orange tasting note #3…
Drinking this one currently; probably my last tea of the night? Unless I decide to sneak a herbal in. But I figured that after feeling so strongly that there’s a sparkly quality to this one, and comparing it to like orange pop I’d sip it down in style as a tea soda!
There were a lot of blackberry leaves in the bottom of my sample bag. Like, a lot a lot. Enough to bare repeating! And, because some of them were quite fine even after lots of straining during the tea syrup making process I still wound up with a tonne of floaty blackberry leaves which is really, really distracting. But otherwise, this is perfect!
I think describing it as a more natural/realistic tasting and less sugary Orange Crush drink is probably the best way to go about it. It’s super juicy and vibrant in flavour, with only a very, very tiny hint of the Pu’Erh coming through in flavour. Though to be totally fair, there was hardly any tea leaf left in the last bit of the bag though so that’s probably contributing at least a little.
Still; this works really, really well as a tea soda! I’m actually going to miss having it around, I think. Next time I make it into a store, I may pick up another 16g of this one again – and then if I still feel good about it after that I could see keeping a tiny tin of it around? Possibly. It’d be lovely to have around in the summer – and I never did get around to cold brewing it…
Juicy Orange Tasting Note #2 of the day…
Made a pot of this one yesterday; and thankfully it was a lot more like my first mug of this than the timolino worth I made (and just wrote about) that was very dull/flat tasting. I think a couple things made the difference here; firstly my measured leaf actually had noticable pieces of orange in it, and a lot of blackberry leaves. Secondly, I’m thinking this is just a tea that does not do well in a travel mug; it needs the room for leaf expansion and has to ‘breathe’ so to speak.
Personal opinion here; sweet blackberry leaves just make everything better. Every blend I’ve ever had them in have been amazingly vibrant and sweet – with a “sparkly” quality to them. This was just dripping with amazing, fresh squeezed orange juice flavour – like the orange juice they make at work at the coffee bar. It takes them 6 oranges to make one cups; and it’s pure, frothy concentrated orange juice. Mmm! We don’t even make a profit on it; they literally just charge the price of the oranges. It’s so good though!
Not much Pu flavour in the pot though; only the last two cups had noticeable, strong earth tones to them; likely ‘cause they’d been steeping much, much longer. Didn’t get bitter or harsh at all though!
Get ready for so much juicy orange! So much guys! We’re talking back to back to back tasting notes on Juicy Orange…
So Juicy Orange Tasting #1 – From The Queue
Ok; this portion was had in a timolino. Very little visable orange in the leaf measured out and, of the four times I had this, this was easily the worst one. It tasted quite flat and had a very unsweetened, low quality “instant powdered orange drink” taste to it. Seriously, no sweetness. The Pu’Erh was nice; earthy with a very rusty flavour. That was the redeeming part of this cup.
Seriously made me scared for future cups though; was that super fruity, sparkling effervescent quality just gonna disappear!? Was my super awesome first cup just a fluke? Nah; seems like this one was the fluke…
Flavors: Citrus, Orange
Normally I have a lot of problems with this tea; it just tastes so off, with weird conflicting flavours. Licorice, mint, fruit, bleck!?
So understandably, it’s been taking me a fair amount of time to actually finish this one off. But, I made a mug yesterday anyway; if I ignore then I’m never going to finish it, right? And well, I ignored the mug I made (yeah; I see the irony) until it was cold. But you know what? Maybe that was a good thing – because while this is still far from my favourite tea, it was actually better cold than hot!
EDIT: I just realized I’ve never written about this one hot before. To sum up my experiences of this one hot… Don’t.
But still, I predict another long break before I make it again. This one just isn’t for me. At all. Yeck. Separately, I enjoy pretty much everything in the blend but this combination just really doesn’t work for me.And ugh, I’ve got the teaware blues…
And this one too: http://camellia-sinensis.com/en/teapot/theiere-de-m-chen-ch-49
Tre just doesn’t get it; how do I explain to him why all the teaware? HOW!? The need for both of those is just so strong though. I can already see a trend this year; much less money spent on tea, and so much more on the teaware…
Sad Sipdown (117)!
Today’s word of the day is trepidation. Trepidation is hesitation due to fear or nervousness. Pretty sure I’m not going to be leaving the house today; so gonna have to try and slip this into conversation with Tre today…
This tisane really, really grew on me while I had it. I’m actually going to miss having it around, a lot. But since it’s SO easy for me to pick it up since we sell it at work, so come summer when I’m going to be cold brewing constantly I’m sure I’ll pick it up again.
It’s just so perfect; soft, sweet, fruity, floral…
And the fig is really, really well done. Bumping up my rating to reflect how fond I got of this treasure! Fig, caramel, pineapple, and rose? Can’t go wrong there.
So, normally a rose/chocolate blend wouldn’t interest me anymore; I find the pairing relatively overdone – but the addition of bergamot kind of piqued my interest a little bit, so when I was in store I took the chance to smell it before ruling out grabbing a sample of it, and since I couldn’t smell the rose – just chocolate and bergamot, I figured grabbing a tiny sample wouldn’t kill me.
Now I’ve made it at home, and I have to admit I had a somewhat weird experience with it. I opened up my sample bag to measure my leaf and I was hit with a really overwhelmingly sweet smell and, I kid you not, my first reaction without even thinking was “Huh, eggnog”. What!? There’s like nothing in this blend that makes any sense as ‘eggnog’. Brain, what’s wrong with you? Anyway – it did smell good though, if not strangely holiday-like.
After my cup was steeped it definitely didn’t smell like eggnog any more though – rest assured. I did make a few observations very quickly though after taking my first baby sips: 1. This is really, really oily. Seriously, the oil slick and little scummy beads at the top of my mug from the little chocolate shavings were easily as bad as the infamously goopy White Chocolate Frost from last Christmas. Secondly, it brewed up a strangely light colour. Visually, it kind of bordered on a darker green tea for me. Super strange.
I decided that I was going to add a little bit of milk to this one; I’ve found in the past with WCF that it makes the oil/chocolate goop less noticeable. With milk, I thought this was really pleasant and soothing. It definitely had a rich bergamot flavour that tasted fresh but not too heavy handed, and the rose blended with it fairly seamlessly, I thought. You could taste it; but it wasn’t like a stand alone bouquet of flowers shoved into your mouth-hole. More so, it was like with EG blends use lavender; kind of there to add depth but totally not the star. I don’t know how I felt about the chocolate; it was sort of artificial. I used to really enjoy DT’s chocolate blends but just…
Well, not so much anymore.
Overall this was nice; very appropriate as a Valentine’s blend and I appreciate that DT did something a little bit different for their V-Day blend. I think I’ll enjoy finishing off my sample but since I don’t reach for EG that often anyway and it didn’t blow my mind I know I wont be picking any more up.
Also; I really should not be writing tasting notes AND cooking. My food has boiled over on me twice now because I haven’t been paying attention to the stove…
I just noticed that “raspberry” is the only part of this tea’s name that isn’t in French. What’s the deal with that!? You can’t like halfheartedly have a French name for your tea. Shouldn’t it be “Frambroise Mousse Au Chocolat”? That’s gonna bug me now…
And speaking of French! I was at the dollar store yesterday before I went to work, and I saw a “Learn a French Word a Day” calendar for $1 so of course I bought it! Tre called me a hoarder; but I thought it was fun! ‘Cause learning things is fun. I don’t think I’ll include the “French word of the day” into my tasting notes unless someone really, really wants to learn a french word at a time with me…
Today’s English word is Metacarpus though. Metacarpus are the five bones between the wrist (carpus) and the finger and thumb (phalanges). I actually knew this one already – not to boast or anything, but only because I watch Bones. I’m pretty sure if I didn’t I’d have no clue what metacarpus are.
But anyway, the tea was really good; my thoughts from my tasting note a few days ago pretty much echo my experience sipping this one down though. Consistent, strong raspberry flavour with natural tang to it, chocolate backdrop. A little roasty…
Like I mentioned in tasting note #1 for this; I didn’t realize it had tea types in it other than black when I had it, so I wasn’t looking out for them. Though, I do think I experienced some of the mate since it was quite roasty, and differently from last cup I thought this had a much stronger coffee/mocha flavour. Kinda characteristic of a roasted mate.
Also different from last cup; this was a touch bitter (probably ’cause it has oolong and I steeped it like a black; boiling water). Though, for me that bitterness translated into more of a Dark Chocolate kind of bitter flavour, and I found it a pleasant addition.