1926 Tasting Notes

98

Usually Blueberry Jam just hits the spot for me, but today it’s just kinda alright. I mean, it’s absolutely not bad and I think I hit a real sweet spot steeping it today (1 1/2 tsp. in my 10 oz. mug – boiling water for 6 minutes) – but I can’t stop thinking of that incredibly creamy and delicious cup of Cranberry Pear I had last night. That cup just put me into an incredible state of relaxation, and I can’t help but want another!

Oh well – I chose to make this for work today, not Cranberry Pear – so I guess I have to live with my choices. I still think this would be awesome sweetened with Maple Syrup or, at the least, some maple agave. Too bad I have neither.

I’ve broken out the banana chips now, and if I sip on this with some banana chips in my mouth too it’s a lot more satisfying.

I don’t know – maybe it’s that I’m drinking it lukewarm? Luke warm is not really my ideal temperature to drink anything: I want just less than piping hot or nice and ice cold. Oh well.

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100
drank Cranberry Pear by DAVIDsTEA
1926 tasting notes

To follow up my Pink Flamingo, I decided I wanted something black and creamy. During my most recent trip to DAVIDsTEA to buy tins for my new Butiki blends, I finally ended up catching them on a day where they had this in stock! I’ve been super stingy with the last 10g or so that I had left from my first purchase of it, but now that I’ve got 75g more I can drink this guiltlessly!

For preparation, I used 1 1/2 tsp. (I always overleaf this one just to get enough actual leaf – with all the giant cranberry and pear chunks I find sometimes you’re not getting a lot of the actual tea) for 8 oz. of boiling water, steeped 4 minutes with my RiverTea musical note steeper. I’m finding with it that, while it’s incredibly cute, it doesn’t have a ton of space for the leaf to expand and the holes are definitely too large for anything fine (like a rooibos blend), so mostly I’ve been using it for herbals with large fruit chunks.

Tonight, I’m drinking my cup with milk in it because A) we finally have milk in the house and I’m taking advantage of it, and B) I wanted this cup to really play on the creamy aspects of this blend since I just finished a cup of more tart/sour tea. With milk, the tartness of the cranberry is tapered while still allowing it to be present, and the natural creaminess of the pear is exaggerated. The first thing I taste is the fruit, but then I get a pretty good taste of the black tea base.

I was watching season nine episodes of Supernatural while scrolling through Tumblr – but then I got distracted by a gif of Misha Collin’s Youtube show Fast and Fresh Cooking With West (West is his son), and ended up on Youtube watching all the episodes. I haven’t laughed that hard in days! Tre and I have both decided we want to try West’s Spaghetti and Jam Sauce. Anyway, I’ve made it back to the episode now – so hopefully I can finish another one or two before bed.

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86
drank Pink Flamingo by DAVIDsTEA
1926 tasting notes

I’m enjoying sipping a cup of this while munching on some of the Holiday bread that Tre made at his Siast course (they’re doing a baking unit right now, which is awesome for me!). Though, I am picking out all the raisins.I absolutely can’t stand raisins and I usually go out of my way to avoid having to eat them. Actually, that was a great point of confliction on Friday when I was placing my Butiki order – I REALLY wanted to try Caramel Vanilla assam because I just adore caramel blends, but supposedly it has somewhat strong raison notes, and that’s a big “nope” to me. I caved on bought it anyway – I’m hoping the raisin notes aren’t too prominent.

Anyway, this was one of my first DAVIDsTEA purchases and I still keep some around for when I want something sour citrus and hibiscus. I don’t really dislike hibiscus but it does frustrate me how many blends it’s in because you don’t always want tart fruity tea. This one works really well for me though, because I feel the eucalyptus really helps this from getting too tart. It’s sour grapefruit without being tart grapefruit. Does that make sense? There is a difference to me…

The carrot in the blend adds some interesting notes too, but they’re subtle and sometimes drowned out by the orange and grapefruit notes if you let this steep too long.

I’m enjoying it right now, though :)

Aaaaannnd, time to watch more Supernatural!

VariaTEA

haha I may have been having a Supernatural marathon today. I was not planning on it but it is just so addictive and when Netflix puts on the next episode, who am I to say no. Hope you enjoy!

VariaTEA

Also, I did not pick up on any strong raisin notes in the Caramel Vanilla Assam. Though I don’t mind raisins and I find you tend to be more aware of certain flavors in things when you don’t like them. I hope that is not the case for you though because the tea is quite nice.

keychange

Yup, didn’t pick up on raisin notes in the CVA either, and I, too, tend to avoid them when I can.

Cavocorax

Supernatural……
I’m jealous. I want to watch it and zone out for hours. Season Two has been so good so far and I know there are some great characters in future seasons…Stupid responsible life.

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95
drank Prickly Pear by Tea Desire
1926 tasting notes

Poured the rest of what was cold brewed into my water bottle this morning and took it with me to work. It was just over a cups worth. Definitely couldn’t let Tre get the rest of this delicious tea while I was out at work.

It’s not as cold as it was last night, likely because it’s been sitting next to my till all day – so as I’m drinking it right now it’s more room temperature. This afternoon, I’m picking up more of the rose in the blend – and the watermelon is coming off like those sweet five cent watermelon candies. Yummy!

Also, I’m starting to do my prep. for closing tonight and part of that is updating the daily promo shelf. Each day there’s a “theme” and things featured on that shelf relating to the theme are slightly discounted. Well, tomorrow’s theme is “Wine Calendars”. What the hell do I do for wine calendars!? We don’t even sell any wine calenders… The closest would be Pepsi or Coke calendars – and that’s just because they’re beverages.

Seriously, who comes up with these promo ideas!?

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82

In a moment of weakness I nearly purchased a deep fried Mars bar today to have as dessert for my at work lunch (mmm, yummy Subway sandwich). I was all ready to pay and everything, and then the cashier told me they were all out and, while I feigned disappointment, I think I was secretly relieved.

Anyway, I’ve been pretty crazy busy with trying out new teas – so I thought that today I’d stick with some of my older teas that I have in larger quantity and try and drink some of those down a bit. This is one, and I should really drink it more for breakfast and in the morning because it’s just perfect at those times of day.

I brewed this perfect today! It’s just an amazing timolino full of delicious creamy earl grey goodness. I used 2 tsp. of leaf in my timolino (12 oz. with boiling water) steeped for four minutes. Just, yum!

Problem is, it’s so tasty and comforting that I’m actually finding myself getting too relaxed drinking it, and now I feel sleepier – and that’s not what I was going for at all…

I still have five hours left in my shift and instead I just want to cocoon myself in mounds of blankets and sleep.

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100

It’s interesting how several people can have the exact same tea and find it so different. I’m just looking at the ratings on this one, and it’s really interesting how you have one that’s practically zero, one in the middle, and mine which is super high.

Anyway, I think I’ve officially had this one as a “to go” tea more times than I’ve actually made it for myself. It’s an expensive blend to keep stocked since it’s so freaking heavy, so I often have a difficult time justifying drinking it at home. It’s easier on my mind to pay for a to go cup.

I had this as a latte though, because it’s always easier for me to buy lattes than to make them. I lack the proper equipment, and whenever I try heating the milk on the stove or using the microwave I often scald it.

Super yummy and creamy banana: like sweet yummy banana medicine (I always wanted to get sick when I was little so I could have the banana medicine, and I teased my brother because he couldn’t have it since he’s severely allergic to penicillin). The chocolate is light and milky, and it’s sorta sitting in the back letting the banana do its thing.

I’m sorta disappointed that my foam just tastes like milk foam today – normally it tastes like banana milk foam which is just awesome. I feel like one of the whiny children who drive me crazy at work, “Momnmmmyyyy, my foam isn’t tasty enoughhhh”. Maybe I’m getting a little tea entitled…

(Also, writing in a note for myself that when my 52Teas order gets in I need to bring a cup or two worth of the Mountain Dew knock off to Shelby at the Tea Desire store, since she seemed really interested in the concept)

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87

So this is a backlog from last night, when I was madly sampling things to get a feel for what I wanted to add to my order. I thought I had posted the note I wrote, but I suppose not. It was stupidly late (well, early in the morning really) after all. Anyway, I thankfully saved it in word because I’d been losing my internet connection again and didn’t want Steepster to eat my notes. So, this is what I wrote on this one (after heavy editing moments ago because I realized I wrote this with “stupid brain”):

I really liked Lemon Chiffon, but I was more interested in trying this one! I don’t have a single lime tea in my permanent collection and I’d really like to. For a while, I really wanted to get my hands on Lime Gelato but that’s been on the back of the “to do list” because it’s a green tea base and that partially discourages me from wanting to try it. This however is rooibos, so my interest is peaked!

Dry, there’s some gentle creaminess, the signature sorta woody smell of rooibos and some citrus that could be lime (but not sure if I’d call it that without knowing better). I’m thinking that the Read My Lips in my stash drawer must be “blanketing” the smells of my smaller sample teas because it’s been hard to smell anything on them when I open the little resealable plastic pouches, but when I open the drawer Read My Lips fills the whole kitchen. I should really finish that…

Anyway, at least it’s not affecting the taste of any of these new teas (to the best of my knowledge anyway).

I steeped 1 tsp. (level) in boiling water for five minutes. The smell is sweet lime and it’s really rich and creamy. This smells better, to me, than Lemon Chiffon does. Very mouthwateringly sweet and yummy.

Taking sips, initially I wasn’t really what the difference in taste was between this and Lemon Chiffon. Momentarily they tasted quite similar – but the key word there is momentarily. I realized I’d been trying to drink it too quickly and it was too hot for me to really get a good idea of the taste since I was a little preoccupied with not burning my tongue with each sip. Damn my impatience.

After letting it cool a while, I went back to it and this time I could taste the difference. Yes, this is definitely lime which is so neat! This is my first lime tea and I’m really impressed that it does truly taste like limes. Also, I think this blend is definitely creamier than Lemon Chiffon and the rooibos base is just a touch less noticeable to me (although neither feature a base that is especially noticeable).

Part of me feels like a splash of milk would make this super extra deliciously creamy and just push this over the top. But I don’t have milk right now to try that out.

Anyway – I’m definitely adding this to my order! I think both Lemon Chiffon and Lime Chiffon will be good rooibos blends for me to keep stocked and will help round out the rooibos blends I currently have. Right now, though, I’m liking this a little better than the lemon one though.

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100

This is a resteep, and it’s just as lovely as the first cup was. I think I could spend a whole week just drinking just this yummy lychee tea, but then it’d be all gone and I’d be sad. So, I’m gonna continue sipping at this while I watch season nine of Supernatural and then I’m gonna pace myself with this one and instead of making another cup maybe I’ll try something new. I’m so close to being caught up, though!

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95
drank Prickly Pear by Tea Desire
1926 tasting notes

Just got home from work – and everything is shaping up to be a really good evening! First thing I did was check the mail, and my latest swap with VariaTea arrived today (have you gotten mine yet?)! I just finished adding everything to my cupboard (98 – a personal high, yet again – which is scary considering how much more is on the way still), and like last time she was too kind and through in some extra stuff.

It was incredibly thoughtful of her to give me a few more Stash bagged teas to try out (my favourite bagged tea brand) after noticing how much I like them!

Then, I got into the appartment and, in an optimistic mood, started trying to work out what to make for supper because, despite only getting 4 hours of sleep and working a shift twice the length I expected to, I’m really energetic and feel like cooking! Much to my surprise, I opened up the fridge to see MILK! I haven’t had milk in well over two weeks! Tre went and picked some up today while I was out (and it’s about time – it was his turn). So, I’m cooking up some creamy garlic/dill scalloped potatoes while I munch on the home baked bread he brought home yesterday (he made it in his Siast course, and there’s a third loaf in our kitchen now that wasn’t there yesterday!). Yum!

I also decided that it was time I try out the cold brewed tea in the fridge that I made up a few days (two?) ago. I set this up to cold brew as per Tre’s request for iced tea. I used 5 tsp. of the blend and let it cold steep for 18 hours, after that I strained it and it’s been sitting in the fridge since. I’ve noticed the jug gradually become more empty, so Tre must be drinking it while I’m not home (I find that he wont drink tea, without my asking if he wants any, while I’m home).

Dry – this smell heavenly. There’s an overwhelming smell of tangy kiwi, sweet pear, and mellow melon which creates this overall very fresh and spring/summer like smell which is accented by incredibly subtle notes of rose. It’s also a really pretty blend to look at. Once again, Tea Desire has really opted to use large chunks of things (which makes this a bit expensive because it’s quite heavy), such as big pieces of kiwi and whole rose buds.

As for the taste? I’m just blown away. The pear, melon, and kiwi are very sweet and juicy while still tasting realistic. There’s a freshness to this that I have yet to get from another cold brewed tea. Yes, I’ve gotten similar – but in those blends the freshness was achieved by there being mint in the mix. Honestly, this is the first kiwi tea I’ve that I’d buy again – and the yummy melon notes, while certainly being different, are pretty close to on pare with the tasty melon notes in Butiki’s Watermelon Xylophone. If I didn’t know better, I might guess at there being a small amount of strawberry in the blend too, but I know there isn’t. The presence of rose in the tea adds depth and, as a cold brew at least, does not come off as perfumey (I would hope so though, since this utilizes TONS of actual rose).

I’m interested to eventually getting around to trying this hot to see how everything would differ – but as a cold tea this is probably the best cold brewed tea I’ve ever had. Yes, better as a cold brew than my beloved Tropicalia. I’m happy I have at least another cup worth of this in the fridge. I’ll have to make sure I drink it before Tre gets to.

Anyway – HIGHLY recommending this to anyone who likes pear, kiwi or melon (and especially if you like two or more of those).

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87

This one is a resteep.

I’m finding the resteep to be really good (and I’m so happy I can get a second cup out of the leaf). There are some different flavour notes at play, though. With the second steep I’m getting much more pronounced creamy notes and a mellower (less zest/lemon rind) lemon taste, which is actually kinda strengthening the creamy lemon pie filling flavour.

A downside, the tea liquor seems to feel thinner and less creamy (even though the taste is creamier). However, I still think I MIGHT prefer the second steep more.

Urggg. I’m having a seriously hard time fighting the urge to place another Butiki order (that’d be the second today, and third within the last seven days). I’d also love to place orders with TeaCupany, Harney & Sons, and a few more places. Problem is that I had a $150 tea budget from last paycheck and have now spent just about $300 on tea over the last few weeks. I’m crying inside. At least it IS money that I have – I’m not yet spending outside of my means.

It’s easing my pain a little knowing I have a $100 grocery card on the way from my parents as an early Christmas gift – and that I get paid again on Dec. 3rd (right after Cyber Monday sales, though!). But in order to compensate for the over spending, I think all my paycheck will likely be going straight into savings for rent.

With the exception of swaps, and tea tins for my new teas, I think I’m probably on tea buying hiatus until after Christmas when I go back to Regina to visit family (and you know I’m gonna have to shop at the local places I missed out on when I was living there).

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Bio

After discovering loose leaf, I decided I had to learn as much about in as quick an amount of time as humanely possible; that led me here!

Growing up, the only tea I ever drank was bagged mint tea (especially peppermint), and mint still remains a staple flavour for me. Spearmint is my favourite. At this point in my ‘tea career’ I heavily lean towards flavoured blends; doesn’t matter if they’re fruity, chocolate, sweet, savory, etc. Blacks are my favourite as far as flavoured blends go, with whites a close second. I really enjoy everything but straight Greens though, but I’ll try anything once even if I am wary.

My favourite fruit flavours in blends are cranberry, banana, pear, lychee, melon, passion fruit and especially pineapple. I am also always excited to try anything with Saskatoon Berries, which are delicious and also my city’s namesake. I have a huge weakness towards toffee/caramel and coconut teas and a bit of a soft spot in regard to black licorice. I also adore anything creamy. I am always up for trying soda inspired blends as well because the concept fascinates me. I want to try all the Rootbeer teas! I am also currently trying to try as many Sweet Potato blends as possible.

Tastes I strongly dislike are ginger and raisins. Really, those are the only two things I intentionally avoid. I also have mixed feelings about peaches, mangoes, lemongrass, and chamomile.

In regard to straight teas, I haven’t been nearly as adventurous. I’ve yet to really explore any straight oolongs, except Milk Oolongs which weren’t really for me. In general, I really like straight black teas, especially when they have strong baked bread or malt notes. I like most straight whites, but I have a preference for silver needle teas over other types. Green teas, with the exception of Genmaicha and some Hojicha, make me feel a bit sick and I often can’t finish the cup. I can handle flavoured matcha like Red Leaf Tea sells – but straight matcha is a definite “no go”. I recently survived my first Pu’erh, and it was an alright, maybe borderline enjoyable, experience.

The ratio of cold brewed and hot tea I drink is about 50/50. As far as my cup sizes go, all my daily cold brews are done in a 25 oz. mason jar and my other mugs are 12 oz. with the exception of my Adeline infuser mug which is 16 oz. Unless otherwise specified, these are the cup sizes for all teas I review.

I prefer to drink my tea without adding anything to it, and 9/10 times that will be how I first try a blend. My belief is that milk, sugar or whatever else you add to your tea should be used to enhance an already good flavour: if the tea needs something added to it to taste good then it’s probably not good tea to begin with. The exception is Matcha; I always have my matcha whisked either into cold milk or club soda as “Matcha soda” depending on which way the flavour will be best suited. My roommate, Tre, has a very different philosophy in regard to tea, and that’s to always drown out his cup in sugar – even before tasting to see if it needs any. That’s why I don’t let him drink the good stuff ;)

I’m always up for a swap, but because I have a very low income I can’t really afford to send things outside of North America on a regular basis :(

If you’re from North America and want to organize a swap, just give me a shout and I’m sure we can work something out! Many of my teas are in large quantity so I usually have enough to spare at least a small sample or so.

I’m a vegetarian and have been for more than half my lifetime. I also have a severe allergy to mushrooms, though that isn’t something that has been an issue I’ve had to deal with in regard to tea (at this point, at least).

My roommate Tre is a huge part of my life since he’s one of the only people in town that I know. Currently, he’s taking courses at Siast to become a professional chef which means sometimes I get really nice home cooked meals. He’s a huge Whovian, which means I know way more about Doctor Who than someone who’s only watched a season or so should. Recently he’s got me into Supernatural, and now Doctor Who as well. He knows next to nothing about tea, and he doesn’t really care to learn.

The other important person in my life is my friend Robyn.

I’ve known Robyn since we were in the eighth grade – and she was in all my classes all through high school. For years she was my transportation, since I’m just plain awful at driving and haven’t acquired my license yet. She just so happened to start classes at the University of Saskatchewan the same time as Tre and I were moving here, which worked out excellently. Like Tre she’s a huge Whovian and also a fan of Supernatural (is there even a fandom term for people who like Supernatural?). She was a minor inspiration in regard to this tea obsession of mine (but now I’ve far surpassed her in tea knowledge, consumption, and quantity possessed). Often times I have her over for tea or share my teas with her (and if it’s a tea I dislike she gets first dibs before I start trying to swap it all away here on Steepster).

Some brief “IRL” interests: Clay/Sculpture (or visual arts in general), Improv, Mythology, Big Brother (USA and CA), and an absurdly large amount of TV shows – geeky or otherwise.

Location

Saskatoon, SK, Canada

Website

http://guyfierithirdandfinala...

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