1932 Tasting Notes

76
drank Maracaibo by Crio Bru
1932 tasting notes

Sipdown (128)!

Thank you VariaTEA for the sample! So far, this is the Crio Bru blend I’ve enjoyed the most. To me, it came off a thicker and richer, and as for the “extra” flavour notes in this one (cherry, caramel, nuts) I feel like I at least picked up on a couple of them; primarily the caramel sweetness, but also a little bit of the nuttiness. No cherry though.

It’s kinda nice these Crio Bru blends aren’t all coming off as exactly the same, though.

Also, I just finished the first episode of Australian Big Brother, and I have to say that I’m a fan so far! It’s really weird watching a different format though – and I don’t mean that they’re playing in pairs. But, what’s weird for me is that they just handed someone the HOH title – there was no competition for it, and that totally messed with my mind.

And, the girl from last night (Tre’s date) – she’s here again. So, things going well I’d say.

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67

Sipdown (129)!

Hmm, something is wrong here. This tastes exactly like my last cold brew, but the smell. Oh, the smell is so bad. I don’t understand why, either! I did literally nothing different with leaf or water amount, and it got an almost identical brew time as the last batch. But for whatever reason this smells like pee this morning.

And I don’t know if I can do it guys; it tastes good – very lemony, a little bit of papaya underneath that, but this smell is really distracting and it’s making my tummy do somersaults. Uhhh…

Anyway, the last little bit is gonna be given to my friend Robyn; I just don’t love this one so I might as well share it with someone else who’ll learn from it and hopefully enjoy it more!

mj

Did your roommate drink a little too much last night perhaps?

Roswell Strange

No; despite the date he was 100% sober :P

mj

That’s a relief!

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74
drank Genmaicha by Harney & Sons
1932 tasting notes

Sipdown (130)!

Thank you Cameron B. for sending me a pretty generous sample of this one! Another Genmaicha crossed off in the quest to try them all, and I have enough left to send some to VariaTEA – it appears she hasn’t had this one before (or at least hasn’t reviewed it, if she has)!

I thought this was a little more green than toasty – and the first few sips had a faint bitter edge to them, but on the whole this was definitely enjoyable and a nice way to kick start the day (it may be afternoon technically, but I just woke up about an hour ago).

Does anyone here watch Big Brother AUS? I’m guessing not. Their season just started though, and I think I’m going to watch it. I’ve never seen an Australian season of the show, though I’ve watched every American and Canadian season, and a couple UK ones. It looks like it’ll be interesting though.

Also, last night/this morning at about 3AM the perfect URL for my teablog on Tumblr just magically popped into my mind. I haven’t updated in ages, but that doesn’t mean I shouldn’t have a URL I really, really love. So goodbye “Looseleafy”; my new URL is “Kissmyassam” which is just so much better and indicative of my personality.

TeaBrat

I like the new name!

Shadowfall

Love the name. I’ll have to follow you, though it’ll be on my main name and not on my tea/food name….or at least I don’t think I can follow you just with my tea blog….I’ll have to check. XD

Tealizzy

LOL! Great name!

OMGsrsly

That is an AWESOME name!

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59

Thanks Cameron B. for sending me several bags of this to enjoy. I am a Stash girl, admittedly – when I want bagged tea, this is the brand I go far. Unabashedly. That said, this one didn’t really impress me.

Honestly, the coolest thing about it was purely aesthetic; when I first poured the boiling water over the bag for about three seconds the water was like this deeper purple/blue – and then gone as it shifted to a more reddish/brown/purple colour (it reminds me now of the colour of Butiki’s Kamba Berry). But for those few seconds – it was SO PRETTY.

http://www.djavupixel.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/deep_blue_purple_ipad.jpg

That colour. Damn.

But taste wise; this leaves a little to be desired. If I hadn’t just experienced the super, super tartness of a hot cup of Yes We Cran from DT, I’d call this ta rt. In comparison to that one though, it’s much more of a mellow tartness. I very loosely get “orange” from it, but in a really weak/watery sense. Vanilla? That’s definitely a stretch. When it steeped, I felt like I could smell the licorice weakly – but I can’t taste it now.

Come Stash, give me more!

I have to say – I do look forward to the last bag of it (I have two left; but I’m gonna send one to VariaTEA since I’m sure this’ll be new to her – and I haven’t had as much of an opportunity lately to pass along new stuff to my fabulous tea twin who has kept me supplied with samples) though, but only to see if I can recreate that blueish colour again.

VariaTEA

Worry not. You have supplied me with plenty of samples and for that I am grateful.

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drank Yes We Cran by DAVIDsTEA
1932 tasting notes

Sipdown (131)!

Oh man. Wow. Fuck.

Ok, so any connection my stupid brain had previously made between this blend and eggnog is now long gone. To finish off my sample I made a hot cup, and I just have to say that the way my tastebuds are processing this cup is starkly different than the cold brew I first had. I mean, for starters, this is really bloody tart. The hibiscus? So noticeable. And very uncomfortable. I mean, there’s definitely cranberry flavour matching it in intensity – but it is not sweet cranberry; it’s tart cranberry.

This is pretty much what my experience with cranberries has been like my whole life eating them in things like jams or sauce at Thanksgiving; tart, unpleasant, and unforgiving. That’s why when I started realizing how much I like cranberry in tea I was completely mind blown; cranberry is just not a fruit I’d ever had good experiences with otherwise.

But all that tartness aside; I still get the pumpkin spices underneath it all and as weird as it is to say that I’m enjoying the spices, that’s honestly what kept this drinkable for me and stopped me from writing it off as Hibiscus overload and dumping it.

This just feels like a totally different tea then when I cold brewed it though. I still have no clue how I’m going to go about rating it! I’m so confused and I don’t know how to approach this one. So, I think I’m just not going to rate it – and I’ll just call this “it”. I don’t feel like I’ll be restocking this one at all; I’m baffled and still have very opposing thoughts on this one, but I’ve had enough. I don’t want to fight to try and understand it.

Honestly, I’ve not been so in love with all these fall teas. None of them are blends I plan on restocking. Not a single one, and that makes me a bit sad. I expected to fall in love with at least one of them…

Cavocorax

Man, that’s so disappointing, especially because Fall has such great spices/flavours associated with it!

Did you at least grab the Pumpkin Chai? Or are you done with that? I was disappointed with it last year, but so far happy with it this year. (Maybe I’m just desperate for Pumpkin spices?)

VariaTEA

I agree. I have been really disappointed this season as well. None of the teas are all that great.

Roswell Strange

Maybe I’m not as into the fall ones because I’m not so much into Spice :P I’m still working through last year’s Pumpkin Chai though so I didn’t replenish; but once I finish what I have of it I’ll be done with that one too.

VariaTEA

I enjoy some spice now and then but the fall teas were just strangely executed.

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78

Sipdown (132)!

Thank you to Cameron B. for being awesome and sending me one of each of Numi’s savory teas so I could try them! Some seem super interesting to me, and others just downright terrify me, like Carrot Curry. Unless I grow some balls overnight, I feel like that’s the one I’m going to be having last. I honestly dread that one.

This one wasn’t on the top of my list either; something Steepster people don’t especially know about me is that I really dislike tomatoes. It took me a long time in my life to be able to get anything other than pizza sauce past my mouth – no actual tomatoes, no tomato soup, no ketchup; I do not like tomatoes. Funnily enough; I love the taste of fake tomatoes. We’re talking ketchup chips or ketchup popcorn seasoning. To me, those are almost two entirely different things. Fake Ketchup stuff is much sweeter!

So yeah; this one kind of intimidated me. But for whatever reason, it definitely tastes way more heavily like fake ketchup flavour stuff. Something in this is totally sweetening it up; maybe the mint or maybe the lemon? It’s good though, I think. My tastebuds are confused – but I think I like it mostly. Someone (I can’t remember who) in the Steepster chat told me to think of these ones more like broth and that’s definitely helping me wrap my brain, and my mouth, around this.

In addition to lots of fake ketchup type taste, there’s also a good deal of mint (mostly in the aftertaste) and what my tastebuds seem to think is black pepper, although going by the ingredients list I think it’s more than likely the cinnamon. When I got to the bottom of the cup, this particular flavour was overwhelming. Definitely the worst part; and kinda cringe worthy. But otherwise I liked this, and would probably drink it again (and maybe order it, just to have something crazy on hand).

In other news, it is one AM and Tre’s date just left. He’s pretty much as red as a tomato – he can’t stop blushing or smiling. Although, I sorta felt less happy for him when the first thing he said to me (despite being ecstatic) was “it was great but there was no sex”. Why was that necessary to tack on? Why can’t it just be great?

I mean, it was your first date – and your roommate was home. I feel like this was not the best set up if you were just after some action? But hopefully things go nicely; she seems really nice, and she’s crazy enough to like him so that’s something!

Cameron B.

I thought there was black pepper in here too. And apparently there was a small hole in my teabag, waaaaah!

Cheri

Tomatoes are a very sweet fruit. People tend to forget that. Ketchup has a ton of salt added to it.

Starfevre

I hate tomatoes too. I can stand ketchup, it just tastes like salt to me. Pizza sauce, usually not.

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70

Sipdown (133)!

Thank you VariaTEA for the sample! Just based on the name I would have assumed this one would’ve been a flavoured blend but I guess it’s not. That’s cool though.

The description said this was built for milk/sugar – I don’t add sugar to my tea, but I can definitely do milk! So, that’s how I prepared this one. It definitely takes the milk well; that’s for sure. I think it’s a little monotone though; I’m almost entirely just getting malt and while it’s tasty, it’s not satisfying. I’m at the point where, with straight blacks in particular since I’ve had more of those recently, I need to pick up multiple flavour notes to stay interested. Otherwise, things kinda start to feel repetitive even if the teas are different. I think that’s why, as a generalization, I’m still more captivated with favoured teas right now and why I drink way more of them.

Also; I’m having a hard time focusing on writing my tasting notes tonight – Tre had a date tonight which I’m assuming must have gone well because I came home from work at 10:30PM (their date started at 6PM for reference) and I can very clearly hear girly laughter coming from Tre’s room. It is now fifteen to midnight and they have yet to emerge.

Good for him – hopefully the success of tonight will cheer him up a little and make him stop feeling miserable about his love life (especially since we saw his ex today – she came in to my store to buy stuff with her current BF). However, they could try to be a bit quieter…

EDIT: I just ordered a pizza, but before I placed the order I knocked on his door and asked if he wanted me to add anything for them. They opened the door and were just hanging out on his bed (in the dark). But hey, at least they have the courtesy to not fuck while I’m in the house?

But hey; how come I don’t get an introduction! He got an introduction to Tyrell…

Cameron B.

Ugh, girly laughter… cringe

Cheri

That was very kind of you to offer pizza. AS for the tea, maybe a little sugar would have brought out those other flavors? It’s hard to say, but I find that if a tea suggests adding sugar, I will try it without, and the add just a little teeny bit. Surprisingly, it can make a huge difference. (Butiki teas are this way. I find if Stacy says to add sugar, I will add sugar and it will round out the flavors. But that’s also usually only for her flavored teas.)

boychik

I love this tea without additions. 205F 3 min

Robert Godden

Thanks for trying it. I’d suggest teaming it with porridge (‘oatmeal’) or toast with jam. Something about breakfast foods really brings this tea into it’s own. It is probably our least complex tea, it’s designed to kick start your day. Also AFTER the pizza, you might find it helps smooth out the feeling of ‘one more piece than I should have had’ which is pretty common with pizza.

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79

I woke up this morning to a phone call from Bobbi asking if I could take her shift today; reluctantly I agreed since she said she’d take mine tomorrow – so I wasn’t giving up my day off. Still, I’m horribly exhausted now and even though I get tomorrow off I feel kinda gypped. Plus side; my swap from Cameron B. arrived today; so now I can spend tomorrow sampling things and doing sipdowns, so there’s at least that.

Today this one was a cold brew; it was pretty good but it’s definitely better hot, that’s for sure. I think there’s more depth and layers to a hot cup, and unexpectedly I feel like the “spice” (really the cinnamon) is milder and the orange juicier. This was tasty, but it was very strong orange and cinnamon without much else present/showing through.

Probably gonna finish off what I have left (I’m giving most of what’s left to my friend Robyn; I just saved about a tablespoon for myself to sipdown) as a hot cup. I like the nuttiness/orange flavour better hot. But again, it’s not that this was bad cold.

Flavors: Cinnamon, Orange

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48

Sipdown (123)!

Heyoooo! Finishing this one off feels great! I’ve been sorta dreading this last cup, but honestly I think it was the best on yet. Mind you, it was still really unremarkable and I’d call it average at best, but the black base wasn’t bitter or astringent and there were other flavours here! Decent flavours!

Mostly chocolate flavour, actually – but a little bit of coconut. Still no graham but I gave up on that after my second cup of this so I wasn’t looking for that anyway. So yeah; I’m sipping this down in a more positive way then I expected but I’m still not changing my mind in that I probably don’t want to ever have this one again…

And now I’m going to go raid my tea cupboard and see what I’m content with getting rid of, ‘cause I told Robyn that I’d clear out some of my older stuff for her – and frankly there’s probably a few things I’m keeping around that I don’t need to be…

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67

Wow, it feels nice not having a queue! Just gotta log stuff I had today, which wasn’t a lot…

I cold brewed this; the hot brew was really disappointing (but not really bad – just not what I had anticipated) and when I tried it I immediately knew this would be better suited for an iced or cold brewed tea, so that’s the next step I’m taking having this one.

Immediately I’m noticing an improvement, though I’m not sure whether that’s because I’m prepared for the very strong lemon flavour or if it’s because this one is actually better cold brewed. Maybe both. Actually, most definitely probably both.

But yeah; this is still very lemony with other citrus notes to it. It treads a very thin line between tart and sweet, and it’s very natural tasting. Seriously, there’s nothing artificial about this. I almost wonder if it would be enhanced by some sugar or agave; I think that would maybe make it more lemonade like. In addition to the strong lemon/citrus flavour there’s a rawness to it, and only the word “leafy” is coming to mind but I know that’s not the word I want to use. More so, it’s like…

I don’t know. It’s like a dried green leaf, but chalkier and not a leaf. Or chalky. God dammit; I can’t think of the words I want here. Ugh. Fucking lexical gap.

Positive things: I actually noticed the papaya this time. It was really subtle and if I hadn’t been looking I probably would have missed it, but buried under the taste of natural/raw lemons and leaves and stuff was some very mellow papaya adding a touch of sweetness and actually making this seem a little more tropical, like the name suggests it should be.

And VariaTEA I know I sent you some of this so get on it so I can finally compare notes with someone! I need to see whether I’m craving with the raw lemon/leaf thing! Maybe you can capture the idea I have but am so desperately struggling to convey.

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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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