2379 Tasting Notes
Well, this is the last of the Hobbit sampler and I’m sad to say I didn’t really find a single blend that I’d want to buy more of. Oh well; I still have all the tins though and they truly are beautiful.
For some weird reason, I had less of this one than all the others so while I was able to do one cold brew, one hot cup, and then one “other” for each of the blends this one i could only do a cold brew and, instead of a hot cup, a latte. It wasn’t really as bad latte per say, but it didn’t stand out either. Hot, thick creamy milk and maybe the tiniest extra touch of ginger or vanilla.
Wont go down in history as one to remember.
Ok, when I made the last of this one in my timolino is did make to sure to pay attention this time, a little. And then, my detailed notes are at home since i’m writing this at job #1 so this is gonna be even less descriptive than it would have been.
So by memoery, this was definitely a more smooth, naturally sweet black tea with some honey/cocoa notes and then a fair bit of malt to it – but really, that’s all I can remember. Which is frustrating. I do remember liking it; surely that counts for something?
Thank you Marzipan for sending me a couple of these beautiful pearls! I, unfortunately, may have wasted some of the splendor because both times I made this I did it in a timolino for work, so I did really get to watch the pearls unfurl.
The first time, I wasn’t paying any attention to the taste when I had it. Oops. I was on break at Dollarama, and had just launched into a mad Christmas shopping/prep spree while sipping on it. Post spree, it was gone.
Since I can’t even come close to wrapping a present nicely, I bought a bajillion Christmas bags in all sorta of shapes, sizes, and prints and then a metric fuck ton of bows, ribbons, gift tags, pattered tissue paper, and little candies to sprinkle inside the bag and add as little “decals” on the outside! My Christmas bags this year are going to be beautiful!
All in all (with a couple of presents thrown in too) I spent around $200 – but I have supplies to last years! I’m adulting! You should all be proud.
PS. VariaTEA I have a very special Christmas present ready for you! No arguing about it, it’s already purchased, compiled in a shipping box and ready to be sent out. The question is, when do you want it sent? Earlier in December or more around Christmas. Everything inside is basically wrapped already (kinda – you’ll see what I mean when you get it) so you could get it earlier, and still be able to wait to open it on Christmas, if you want to do it that way…
Base was more present than usual, but that was ok because combined with the graham aspects this tea has it just made for a more “whole” crust component on top of the pudding like coconut (4261) flavour. Mmm! This is one I strongly considered stocking up on from Butiki what with them closing, but because of coconut’s tendancy to turn really nasty as it ages I opted to bulk up on a different tea instead.
I don’t know if I’ve talked about it yet (it’s been a WHILE since I did tasting notes, and my memory is fuzzy), but I’ve been reading Horns by Joe Hill as of late: it’s such a beautifully written, dark comedic/drama type book. I mean, the dialogue in it goes to such far, sorta “taboo” places and it’s witty and sarcastic and I love it. I’ve watched the first little bit of the movie (internet crapped out, so never finished it) and just compared to what I’ve read and that first bit it seems to been a brilliant adaptation that really honors the spirit of the book.
So what I’m saying is; read the book or watch the movies. Ideally, do both.
It’s not gonna be long before my ears are bleeding now. Maybe even literally? Market Mall has started playing their Christmas music again and so far, from the sounds of it, it’s the same “Oldies” Christmas Carols as last year. Arghhh!
But anyway; a little ways back Sil surprised me with a bit of tea in the mail and, considering all the shitty things going on with Dollarama at the time, it was such a bright sparkly moment in all the dreary piss raining down. One of the little “extras” she included was this green tea latte candy from the same company I bought those Traditional Iced Tea candies from back in August(ish). I was excited to try it right away since the place I bought the iced tea ones from hadn’t had this flavour. So what did I do? I tried it right away.
Oh, pause that thought – UPS just arrived my the “Tit Covers” for the model magazines, so gonna go sign for them and put them up…
… And back. Censorship at it’s finest.
Anyway, I really, REALLY enjoyed this one. Far more than the Iced Tea version, actually. I’m pretty sure I know why though – I expected this to really heavily focus on the “Green Tea” aspect and less on the latte, but the reverse was sorta true so this was really rich and milky/creamy with a very full caramel flavour followed by a sweetened vegetal tone kinda a little on the lines of spinach (4090).
It took me forever to get thought the Iced Tea candies, but I think I’d actually plow through a bag of these ones. Now if only the gourmet candy store where I bought the Iced Tea ones carried this flavour too…
No, that’s not the number of teas in my cupboard – it’s actually the produce code for Apricots according to Sobeys. I started training there last week, and part of my new job is memorizing the produce codes for about 200 different things. So, to help, I’m going to look up the produce codes for relevant things in my tasting notes: I think associating them with something like that might help remember them. So far, I’ve only got about 30 down…
Also, FYI, I’m writing this note (and every other note today) from Calendar Club, my other new(ish) P/T job. Just like last year, there’s a block on the internet but you can back channel around that block in the same way so hello stable internet connection, my good friend. It’s been about two weeks since I’ve had one at home hence PART of the reason why this queue is gonna be so damn long. We even called our service provider last night (again) to try and work through it, but after being on hold for 36 minutes we gave up. Ergh!
Unfortunately, my more detailed notes for what I’ve had the last couple of weeks is at home so I’m going almost solely by memory. What do I remember for this one? Well, to start I had it as a latte. Something about the creaminess and apricot (4218) aspects appealed to me. I remember just faintly tasting the coconut in the blend (4261) and then a light fruitiness not totally distinct of apricot but reminiscent of stone fruits. Mostly, the fruit was covered by milk though.
I think it’s something to try again but maybe more generously leafed.
The lovely VariaTEA sent me a WHOLE BUNCH of this one since it’s not a blend she was big into, and I really enjoyed the sample she originally had sent to me. And, since I’ve got well over 50g of it now, I thought I’d play around and try something new but seemingly appropriate for the blend; a cold/iced version!
I was pretty generous with the leaf and so that could play into the flavour a bit, but this was pretty strong/boldly flavoured – and not just the robust grape flavour. The black base came off as very brisk and weighty next to the “Icewine”. Overall, that detracted a bit from the natural sweetness of the grapes (no grape candy this time), but it did contribute a fuller flavour palate at the same time. It was a little conflicting.
I absolutely enjoyed this but I think that if I go the cold brew route again I’ll either leaf less or will have to consider a sweetener of some kind; I’d like the juicyness of the fruit to “pop” a little more. In fact, the next route I take with this might be literal pop? I think this would make a KILLER grape tea soda!
So it’s been a week since I last wrote a tasting note, and man what an INSANE high stress week it’s been. Eventually I’ll get into that as I try to post some tasting notes from my queue over the next few days, but the gist of things is that…A) my internet is crap and I’ve had an INCREDIBLY shaky internet connection all week. Seriously, it lasts like 10 min. tops and then just drops. Everyone else in the house isn’t having problems in the slightest, though – and that’s just frustrating. I’ve tried basically every form of trouble shooting I can but no luck. I don’t know, this has happened before and I’ve just had to wait it out – eventually it stopped being an issue.
B) Not only do I now NOT work at Dollarama, I have two jobs: a part time job at Calendar Club – they asked me back for the season, and a part time job at a new Sobeys branch opening up in my city. That’ll be expanded upon sometime later, but lets just say I’m really happy to be moving on to another job. Many of you know I’ve had issues with my racist manager before and there’s been a lot of frustration about the lack of respect the company has with its employees, and the high turnover rate. I think this is just better for me overall.
But anyway, the tea…
When Stacy announced she was closing up shop I tried to think of some of the most unique teas she sells out of my favourites and I tried to focus on stocking up on those blends. Obviously Potato Pancakes is one of those teas you just wont find anywhere else, you I made sure to grab a lot of it. Unfortunately, it sold out but to my delight, Stacy put together this batch instead so, trusting her completely, I ordered about 4 oz. of it! That should definitely last me a while, right!? Right.
I’m gonna have to do a side by side comparison sometime since I still have some of the original Potato Pancakes, but just going on smell this one seemed more “apple-y” to me, and maybe fresher but obviously this is a much newer batch compared to the Potato Pancakes I’ve had the last couple of months.
Steeped up, I was actually surprised because I did expect (based on the smell) for this to be a little fruitier than the original, but it was actually much more starchy/savory than apple like, and definitely pretty soft/gentle. That said, I know I got at least four potato cubes in the leaf I measured out so I’m not discounting the fact that could totally have skewed the balance between flavours. Even though there are definitely differences between the two blends and even though some slight fiddling may have to be done, this was very enjoyable and I am, of course, a happy customer!
Ok, this really is the final tea of the night.
I over leafed this one, but not by much. I really wanted to bring out the vanilla/marshmallow notes in it because I thought that combined with the roastiness of it, that’d create such a soothing, calming night time blend. As it turns out, I also ended up badly over steeping it and am now drinking it stone cold because I wound up focusing on Creme Brulee instead.
Surprisingly, this isn’t bitter like I thought the over steep would make it. In fact, it’s the most marshmallowy/vanilla heavy cup I’m been able to make yet! I just wish I knew whether that’s from the extra leaf, extra steep time or a combination of both. I still want to push it farther next time though, and I think I know how to go about that:
The next time I brew this one up I’m going to mix in about 1/2 tsp. of Butiki’s Birthday Cake which is the fluffiest vanilla tea I know (and which I am now SUPER stocked up on). I think that’ll add more airy vanilla flavour without burning through the limited amount of leaf I have left for this blend or detracting too heavily from the toastyness of the Genmaicha.
Anyway, night Steepster!