4290 Tasting Notes
From my most recent What-Cha order, although this is actually one that was added into my order by Alistair and not one I picked for myself. He picked well though; I do really, really love assam teas. In fact, they’re probably my overall favourite black teas that originate from a country other than China…
When I look at the name for this one it’s a little weird; I have a coworker named Prithvi who’s family actually grew up in Assam. We talk tea often, as it’s something that was really ingrained in his childhood before he immigrated to Canada with his family. I tried googling it, but it’s still unclear to me whether Prithvi is a common name or a place for which my coworker was named for. Apparently it’s also a missile. So that’s a thing.
This was really great though; I drank it Western style as that’s my preference for a lot of black teas and it was so silky, and smooth with a thick mouthfeel. The dominant flavour note was malt which is completely unsurprising for an Assam tea. It was supported by notes of honey and freshly baked bread. Actually, this had a lot more of that sweet, baking bread flavour than a lot of assams I’ve had as of late and I was surprised just how comforting that flavour was. I didn’t realize I’d been missing it so much from other assams. The finish was a touch cocoa-y. Not rich, in your face cocoa notes like you’d get from Dian Hong, for example – but a light dusting of it. In such a small level where you’re just getting a hint of the taste it’s really refreshing and enticing. A tease, really.
Should’ve known I was taking a big gamble cold brewing this one again…
The stevia got potent again and made this really gross and cloying tasting. Which is sad ‘cause I got glimpses of the lovely pom notes underneath the stevia but it just couldn’t be salvaged. I’m just trying to burn through that leaf as quickly as possible and so cold brewing is the fastest way to do that.
Not sure it’s worth it if each cold brew keeps coming out gross though.
Commute tea from yesterday.
So this is one of the new blends from this year’s Winter Collection. It’s essentially like a reworked Bubbie’s Baklava, for anyone who remembers that tea. I have to be honest I couldn’t remember what I’d thought of that one overall so I had to look up what I’d written about it here on Steepster. I guess my biggest take away from drinking that one was how cinnamon heavy the blend came off to me.
So, fair warning about this one – the fruits chunks in this blend are really big and dense so if you wind up with a lot of them in the leaf you get it can wind up being a pretty heavy blend. When I’m taking tea home to sample generally I get around 10g of tea which is what I got for this one. All of that leaf went into this one travel thermos of tea.
I’d say that overall I enjoyed this blend but I was kind of in a constant state of flux while drinking it because I never really did settle on what food it was reminding me of. At first it tasted very much like a Bran Muffin to me, but then as it cooled and I picked up more of the sweetness from the fruit in the blend it was also a little like Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal. Then, on top of that, there were moments where I felt somewhat over taken by the spice notes and it seemed a little more like a Spice Cake. I guess the take away from all of that was that the spices/cinnamon in the blend were pretty strong throughout and no matter what I felt like it tasted like in the moment, every time there was that sort of “grains”/bread/cakey/however you want to say it component as well.
Other flavours I did get in the blend were the cranberry, cardamom and ginger – though all were lighter than the apple and cinnamon came off overall. Despite being the thing that the blend is named for, I also found a sizable lack of nutty notes. To be fair, most of that 10g sample was fruit chunks though. I don’t remember seeing any nut piece other than maybe an almond sliver? That could have affected the ration of flavours in my cup a bit as well.
I think it’s safe to say though that if you were a fan of Bubbie’s Baklava this is similar enough that you’ll like this one too though.
Thank you VariaTEA for the sample! I THINK this may be the last one from Tea Taxi that you sent? But I’m going on memory so I could be wrong about that too. Regardless, thanks again for introducing me to the company! I feel like I got to try a really nice range of the teas they offer thanks to you.
I drank this one from a teacup while indulging myself with a bubble bath before bed. The caffeine may or may not be a bad idea; I guess I’ll find out soon. Regardless, I needed a little indulgence and “me time”. Even though I did pretty well nothing today but run down the clock until tomorrow could begin that’s really only because I’ve been trying really hard to keep myself constantly preoccupied and distracted this week. I’m not gonna lie; it’s been a really hard and painful week not having Kyle to talk to. I feel like I lost my best friends in a lot of ways. The parts that have been the most emotional, awkward and difficult in general like having to work with him and the fact he wont look me in the eyes right now are the things I would normally turn to him to talk about if they were going on with someone else. And that’s not an option…
Mentally, I know that my relationship with him did NOT define me as a person and I don’t regret ending the relationship in anyway but at the same time it feels like a big piece of me is missing right now and I’ve just been filling it with other things, like Netflix, icecream, and tea. And distractions. So many distractions. I haven’t told anyone this in person, but apart from the day I broke up with him I’ve only cried once and it was after waking up from a dream where he had started dating a friend of mine the day after I broke up with him. He was so happy, and all our other friends were so supportive and kept saying things like “This is so much more right for you” and it’s irrational, I know, because it was just a dream/nightmare but that hurt SO MUCH. I’m not ready to deal with that yet…
This tea! It really hit the spot when I just tried to stretch out with all the bubbles in the tub and just release all of the pent up stress, and frustration, and hurt I’m feeling. The soft sweetness and silky flavours really matched up with the mood I was trying to achieve. I hadn’t looked at the ingredients of this tea prior to brewing it up so the flavour was a “blind one” to me. That said I felt like the maple element of the tea was really, really well executed. It was subtle but definitely very distinct. I WAS surprised to see there aren’t nuts in the blend: I was sure I was getting the rich, sweet flavour of pecans or maybe walnuts? I guess I was getting the sweetness of the chocolate; but still it really did taste nutty to me. As for the other elements of the tea, I can see how the honey was coming through in overall sweetness and the delivery of those sweet notes. However the jasmine/rose are totally lost on me: I didn’t get anything floral out of this.
I think this may be my second favourite of the Tea Taxi blends that VariaTEA sent my way though; tied with the Cranberry one with the green base and closely following Choco Blues which is my favourite overall.
Oh, and a song pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ideQmMCE7ws&list=LL1M1wDjmJD4SJr_CwzXAGuQ&index=7
Every good bubble bath needs mood music.
Finally got a chance to sit down with this tea that I plucked out of the fifth round of the Great Canadian Travelling Tea Box a few months back…
I actually brewed this one Gong Fu today in my Hojicha dedicated yixing pot. God, I just love the feel of that pot in my hands. It’s the perfect size and weight, and it pours so smoothly. I don’t use this pot enough; and it shows a bit because brewing this today there flavour of the tea was light enough that I imagine there’s still some flavour being sucked out of the liquor into the pot. It’s hard to say definitively though ‘cause I actually haven’t tried this Hojicha yet outside of the yixing pot as a “control” infusion. I likely should have done that first…
But despite some possible flavour sucking, I actually thought that this was a REALLY enjoyable session. The first half I enjoyed while listening to some good music. In this case, I was rocking a couple different songs by The Inkspots. This was my favourite from the session though:
The Ink Spots are just so smooth and melodic, and I think the tone of their voice matches the smooth qualities of the tea quite well. Sometimes there’s a hint of that “char” sort of note with Hojicha, but this was just so beautifully smooth and evenly roasted/toasty in flavour. Apart from the familiar, comforting toasty notes I felt there was also some sweetness in this tea; maybe a bit of honey and cocoa hidden underneath that soft roast? I liked that I couldn’t taste any “greenness” from the tea either.
After four or so infusions I took a break for supper, and then when I returned to the session I switched things up a little bit and instead of listening to music I watched the Season One finale of Scream Queens. I have to say; I wasn’t surprised by the final reveal but only because I had it spoiled for me ages ago. It was a good finale though! I’m not really sure what direction season two will take from here, but I think I’m on board with continuing with the series to find out…
Final infusions were much lighter; the flavour of this one definitely deteriorated quickly into the session. I’m not overly surprised; I’ve never managed to pull off super long session with Hojicha. Even the last infusion I did (I think number seven?) did have a mild roast to it though, even if it was mostly watery. So I feel like I definitely got as much out of the tea as I could have. So it was very enjoyable overall.
Today’s cold brew.
I’m getting some really weird notes from this one tonight; in particular I’m finding that the finish of the tea is giving off some serious apple-like notes which is generally NOT a common flavour to Monk’s Blend. They aren’t tart like greener apples; more like the muted sweetness of red apple skin. That’s on top of the normal flavours of grenadine though. Apple and grenadine actually works together surprisingly well.
Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h3pJZSTQqIg
I’m so broke right now, and that’s such a horrible thing because I can’t stop building doom carts. One of the sites I keep finding myself gravitating towards is DF; it’s been SO LONG since I ordered anything from them. There are so many things on my wishlist from them…
I really should be focusing what little extra money I do have (root canals are expensive) on Christmas presents though – not ordering tea I don’t need.
Anyway; I pulled this one down tonight to hopefully scratch that Dammann Freres itch a little bit. It certainly helped, that’s for sure. I was able to narrow down the list of goodies I’ve been looking at. BUT the things left on the list I’m more tempted to order than I was before.
Must maintain self control.
Flavors: Butter, Caramel, Citrus Zest, Cream, Honey, Lemon, Malt, Pastries, Stonefruits, Sweet
The mango notes in this one taste just like the mango notes in all of DAVIDsTEA’s other strongly mango flavoured blends. Maracuja Mango, Mango Fruit Punch…
This one is easily my favourite though: I just like the way the sweet, tropical notes of the mango float on top of the delicate white base. I think it’s the best, freshest tasting base pairing of all the major mango blends. And I suppose it doesn’t hurt that this one has strong pineapple notes, too. Pineapple is my weakness.
Upbeat feel good music ^^
First tea of the day!
I had this one in a teacup with some added eggnog. Not only that, but for extreme decadence I used to last of my pumpkin spice oreos from my Halloween/break-up junk food binge to dip into the tea. It was so truly divine. The spice in the cookies matched the nutmeg in the ’nog and the citrus notes of the Earl Grey still came through and provided a sweetness of the same level as the pumpkin but of a different, contrasting flavour type.
Not the world’s most healthy breakfast but definitely a hella tasty one.
Another cold brew.
Pretty typical of the flavours that I’ve come to expect from this tea. Creamy lemon, butter, a bit of straw, marzipan… All good flavours.
And as I was drinking it I remembered that I’d bought some Whipped Cream Vodka to learn to make Lemon Meringue Cocktails. I think the already sweet, creamy nature of this tea would translate well to that cocktail so I’m officially adding making a “Whipped Lemon French Macaron Tea Cocktail” to my To Do list.