2265 Tasting Notes
This was my To Go latte at Tea Desire on Tuesday. I was totally going to try something new, but then I saw this on the shelf, and after the Caramel Black that was to Tea of Day to sample I couldn’t get caramel out of my head and, well, the rest is obvious…
I had the same problem with this one as I did with my last latte from Tea Desire; it was very thin and watery, but this one was prepared by a different associate so I’m wondering if maybe Tea Desire has just switched up their latte formula? I really hope that’s not the case! This water/milk ratio just isn’t right…
Taste wise it was good though: the earthyness of the Pu’Erh was muted and just kind of subtly floated under the sweet, smooth caramel flavour. And the milk foam, of which there was lots, was the BOMB! It was super, super creamy/rich seductive caramel flavour. I could eat buckets of the light, fluffy stuff!
Yesterday at Calendar Club we received so much stock that I spent my entire shift unloading it, and had absolutely no time for internet. Seriously, they just about tripled our stock! So time to catch up on tasting notes…
Tuesday, where I’m picking off from, I had a large gap between shifts so I went down to the mall and deposited my paycheck and, because I was in a “spending mood” bought myself a beautiful, over sized sweater with a giant duck on the front. It’s cuter than it sounds, believe me. I also got some antibiotics for my infected gums (damn you, Wisdom Teeth!) which have healed up nicely now, and I went to Tea Desire.
This was the sample tea of the day, and it’s one I’ve never had before so I gave it a try. I have to say I’m a little saddened – not by the tea, but by the sample tea set up. Tea Desire used to have this really, really ornate clear glass teapot filled with the tea of the day, and you’d get the sales associate to pour you a little plastic shot glass worth of tea. They’d keep it on a stand and directly underneath would be a lit tea light candle keeping it hot. But now they’re using a metal thermos type thing with a “pump” dispenser. It’s probably more effective at keeping the tea hot and I guess it’s more accessible for customers to pour the tea themselves – but it feels less special.
As for the tea, I’m honestly slightly frustrated because there’s no record of it on the Tea Desire website at all. Which pisses me off a little bit, because now I can’t accurately add it to the database. And, I swear 90% of the dozen or two Christmas blends have been added as little ingredient blurbs at the very least, but not this one. Boo!
So, all I can remember from the ingredients list is black tea base and caramel bits. But I know there was other stuff in this too. Otherwise, in regard to the flavour, it was very, very faintly bitter – possibly from sitting in that thermos thing for most of the day. The black base was pretty apparent and brisk, but then softened a little bit by a darker, richer caramel flavour. Kind of like the “dark caramel” they use in Reisens candies. It was also a little malty. I’m not sure how the “bakery” aspect fit in – nothing I tasted indicated that for me.
Not bad overall, but I wish TD would do a better job getting the seasonal teas up on the website – if only as ingredient blurbs. Not only because I want to accurately add this to Steepster, but because the website is how I choose what I want to try as To Go teas (I look them up at work) and helps guide what I want to look at when I’m actually purchasing tea…
Flavors: Bitter, Caramel, Malt
Guys, there’s a scavenger hunt in the mall right now for one of the nearby elementary schools so the place is just flooded with adorable little snot babies. And one of the clues on the hunt is to find the name of the “Painter of Light” from the Calendar Club Kiosk (me!). The answer is Thomas Kinkade, but I’ve had cutie pies coming up to me all day asking for help. It’s so precious!
But the tea…
My first “miss” from Octavia Tea. And, it’s not even so much that it’s bad – it’s just really, really weird? Dry, it smells delicious – kind of like “Tropical” flavoured Fruit Rollups? Just yummy, and kinda sweet and candy like. Steeped up, however, there’s something hard to describe about it. I wanted to initially say that it was like low quality, “healthy” Fruit Roll Up equivalents that my Mom used to buy for school lunches ‘cause she couldn’t afford the name brand but that’s a little harsh, and not super accurate either.
More so, I’m picking up one the pineapple/apple really heavily but the pineapple feels a little artificial and then the apple is more of a tart apple, and then more tartness from the rosehips and that’s a whole lot of tart together. However, something is keeping it mostly in check: not the mango, I don’t think, because I don’t so much actually taste mango. I’m thinking maybe the red currants? I would have described it more like a “dull strawberry” but there’s no strawberry in this and strawberry is closer to red currant than mango.
Anyway, there’s a sort of flat sweetness (if that even makes sense) coming from the red currants that mostly counterbalances all the tartness, but just falls short. Wah wah wah. Things “missing” other than the mango: the rose petals (hooray) and the white base in general. Honestly, this felt more like a tisane than anything else. \
So conclusion: a little disappointed, but this was still drinkable overall. Just wouldn’t really drink it again unless, maybe, it was cold brewed…
And that’s it for today guys: I’m practically done my shift and this was the last tasting note I had to catch up on for now. So have a good day Steepster!
See you tomorrow :)
Pretty well nothing is worse than taking a drink of something and expecting on flavour and getting something totally different. I did this last night on the bus ride home. For whatever reason I had convinced myself that I had steeped up Butiki’s Rootbeer Float so when I had a sip of this…
Spit take. That’s what.
Actually though; I think I thought it was Rootbeer Float because that’s what was in the fridge cold brewing.
Once I realized what this was it was all good though. Tasted, essentially, just fine. Only weird thing was this almost tangy fruit note that kept cropping up; that may have been because I was super, super tired though. Or it may have been a lingering flavour from whatever I last brewed in this timolino. Who knows.
Sipdown, but not really because I never entered this in my cupboard.
My brother still has a lot of the Bamboozled that he bought from DAVIDsTEA over Easter before they discontinued it, so I took advantage of that and stole about a tablespoon of it from him to cold brew when I got home: I wanted to revisit this one and see how I felt about it now.
Turns out: I’m not a fan. This tasted really, really artificial to me. Like super low quality artificial powdered peach drink mix, and tart pineapple? I didn’t go back and reread my old tasting notes, but this isn’t anything like I remembered it being. I’m going to nudge my rating down, though not as much as I want to just because I know I’ve had good cups before and maybe this was stored poorly by my novice tea drinking brother.
Probably should have left this one alone…
Yesterday I went to the bank to deposit my Christmas checks from my Grandma/Dad. I could have gone to the bank that’s in the same mall as DT, but I chose the one with Tea Desire because I feel like my will power is slightly better there, despite all the gorgeous Gaiwans, Cast Iron teapots, infuser mugs, and other teaware.
Picked my latte blindly from the wall of blacks; this jumped out because cranberry is a bit of a “Christmas” fruit (in my eyes, anyway) and it seemed like an interesting latte. Taste wise it was very weird, but less from the tea itself I think. This was probably the thinnest/most watery latte I’ve ever had – and my hunch is that the newbie sales associate brewed it up incorrectly. But despite the “off” consistency it tasted fine.
Definitely tasted the cranberry in this: it was fruity, and had a little tartness/“zip” in the end of the sip. I thought that there was something “off” about the black base too, but could’t for the life of me figure out what until I had to look up the tea on the Tea Desire site just now to add it to Steepster’s database. This is a black/green mixed blend – which definitely explains the weirdness of the black base. And, apparently, there’s also mint in the blend, though I totally missed that aspect as well. I’m blaming my being distracted with the mouthfeel for the complete lack of observations about the tea itself.
Really though, I just thought that this was a straight up black/cranberry blend…
Again in a timolino, but this time at an appropriate tea temperature. Huzzah!
Don’t know if it was the temperature difference or maybe the fact I was expecting a wave of thyme but this was actually much, much more peachy than thyme heavy and I think, therefore, just slightly more enjoyable. Still a savory blend for sure, but with more sweetness/juiciness from the peach. And I think, maybe, I tasted the papaya a little bit too which was nice and also unexpected.
So thanks again Cameron B. – it’s interesting how my two experiences with this had very common things, but were also pretty drastically different. I love and hate when teas have that sort of inconsistency. Still holding on my thoughts from last time: wouldn’t stock this personally, but recommend everyone with the ability to try it do so.
This was gross, but it’s my fault. I cold brewed it on Friday, but wanted to wait until Saturday on the trip to Regina to have it so I strained the leaves and then poured it in a water bottle on Satuday. Except I never drank it on the trip to Regina. And then I was going to have it later in the day, but we were too busy and then when I had time it was too late at night for mate.
So I saved it for Sunday; but I had a different caffeinated tea in the morning since I wanted something hot. Was, again, going to have this one on the drive home but then I fell asleep for most of the drive home, so that didn’t happen. Finally at home I decided I could drink it but, like I should have guessed, it was SO GROSS. Just slimy, icky chocolate tea. Bleck bleck bleck.
So I tossed it, and now I’ll no better for next time. Sorry tea.
I think I’m ready to be done with this tea. It’s good, but it’s not the right season anymore and I’ve gone through a lot of leaf now, and am just kind of… Over it? Maybe after I sip this down I’ll revisit it in the summer…
Anyway; my whole family made fun of me because the first thing I did Saturday after we had driven into town was dig the tea out of my backpack and set up a cold brew. But come on; like I wasn’t going to have a cold brew ready for me for Sunday morning and the drive back into the city. That’s not even an option.
Taste wise this was a little thin: I wasn’t usually my regular pitcher or my mason jar so I had to use a different measurement of leaf, and I got the measurement wrong. Consequently, mostly this tasted like rosey kiwi water. But not horrible over all.
After Cuppa’T shopping I was supposed to go to my Mom’s for an hour or so and exchange Christmas gifts and pick up the tea she bought for me from Disney – but when we got there she wasn’t home even though I’d told her when I was coming. We called her, and turns out she was at Costco and wouldn’t been home for hours! My Dad got all pissed off about it and said we couldn’t wait for her so we just left. I tried not to seem to bummed out, but I was bummed out…
Just upset with her for not planning better so she was home, and upset with my Dad for being impatient, and upset in general because I haven’t seen her in close to half a year. But anyway; that concludes the trip to Regina! That’s it; all my tasting notes from when I was down there.
At some point I’m going to have to brew up some of this and add a shot of my Apple Pie Schnapps since it’s actually pretty cider like, and I can’t think of another tea that it’ll mix “naturally” with. As is, I didn’t exactly have my apple pie schnapps with me in Regina, so I just stuck with a regular hot cup on Sunday morning to wake me up with before my shopping spree at Cuppa’T.
Nothing new for me to comment in regard to how this one tastes: it was its usual, delicious self. My Step Mom, however, watched me make it and the whole time she was going on and on about how much she’s read about matcha and how good matcha is for you. I thought she was just sharing tea stuff because, well, I’m into tea stuff. Turns out that, actually, she thought that this was matcha based on the dry leaf? I don’t know – it was early in the morning so I’ll give her the benefit of the doubt.
Cuppa’T – once we found it, was awesome! I’ve only, personally, been once and that was in January, so it’s been a while. We must have driven past it three times, easily. I just have to comment, like I’m sure I did last year, that the service there is really good! Only gripe, overall, is that the tea is displayed (like most smaller loose leaf stores tend to do) in clear jars. Albeit they’re small jars, and I saw her refilling them from thick, large solid coloured bags that were kept in the back, in a really dark room. So at least not all the tea is exposed to light.
So here’s my haul. The first block are teas I’ve had before and was just restocking and the second is new teas that I’ve yet to try before:
50g Apple Pistachio Strudel x2 (One bag for VariaTEA)
50g Dutch Licorice Rooibos
100g Dragonfruit Cranberry
50g Pink Beauty Oolong
50g Creme Brulee Rooibos
The only thing I wanted but couldn’t get was more Ice Princess since it’s out of stock. But, I still have some left so it wasn’t a huge deal. plus, I got to grab some Dragonfruit Cranberry which was one I definitely did not expect to be in stock since it’s one of their summer blends. But the associate said they ordered it in special even though it’s not the right season because it’s one of the owners favourites and she personally wanted more. So yay!
The Creme Brulee Rooibos wasn’t one I was even considering because I already have a Creme Brulee Rooibos tea that I love, but the ingredients in this one are really different than what you’d expect, and it smelled good on top of that so I’m giving it a try. It’s got puffed rice, sweet blackberry leaves, and Tonka beans in it. I had to look up what Tonka Beans were when I got back home – I’d never seen a blend with them before. I guess they taste kind of like vanilla?
Anyone tried a Tonka Bean tea before?