325 Tasting Notes
Philadelphia Coffee & Tea Festival #9
The Sahpat folks had this has an infusion to taste, as opposed to brewed. It was WOW. The flavor hit me in the face. It was lime lime lime. Honestly it was actually a bit much for me, though I don’t know if that was because it was a cold day and I wanted something warm and not fruity, or because the flavor was too strong for my tastes.
I’ve only had one other lime tea before and did enjoy it, but in hindsight do remember thinking the lime was a bit strong. So it may be a bit of both – cold day and my own personal preferences.
I think others would be blown away by this. Especially if you love lime.
Philadelphia Coffee & Tea Festival #8
So those who follow me know my love affair with almond everything. So I knew I had to try this as soon as I walked past. I think I would have loved this save for one thing: the sample was way oversweetened to the point of cloyingness. I know that sugar is sometimes needed to bring out the full flavor of flavored teas, but there is no reason to turn tea into sugar water.
That said, underneath the sugar, the almond came right through with some hints of cinnamon. I really wish I could have tried this sans sugar. I bet I would have loved it.
No rating because the sample was doctored in a way I never would have.
Philadelphia Coffee & Tea Festival #7
I had wandered the main hall and was ready to shell out some money when I realized there was a whole other back room with vendors! Joseph Wesley was the first who caught my eye. He had a series of tins of just straight black tea of varying varieties, and he offered me a sample of the Lapsang Souchong.
Which was very very different than any other Lapsang I’ve had. It wasn’t smoked.
Which honestly threw me because I love the smokey flavor of Lapsang. But this was quite nice.
Honestly, most plain black teas are wasted on me. I don’t appreciate the subtlety in a way I do with white or oolongs. But I feel I need to up my tea game, so to speak, and learn some more, and did end up buying a tin of this.
Overall, I did enjoy it. It was dark, still had a slight smokey taste, with sour notes toward the end. I appreciated that this vendor was different than most of the others in that he did not offer blends, and that he was the only vendor who had plain black teas.
Philadelphia Coffee & Tea Festival #6
I knew I had to visit the Bingley’s booth as soon as I saw their name in the vendors list. I have heard such amazing things about their Jane Austen line, and I loved the one StevenBe tea I’ve had the pleasure of drinking – with the wonderful name of ‘Pop Your Cherry Blossom.’
And I am so glad I did! As drawn as I was to some of their blends, I knew I had to try this aged oolong. I love love LOVE oolongs, and I love roasted oolongs. But I have never tried aged. This was so different from other oolongs. It isn’t as smooth as what I’ve come to expect from oolongs, instead having a bit of a bite toward the end of the sip. It’s dark and slightly bitter and just lovely. I really wish I had made it back to the booth before I spent as much as I did.
Philadelphia Coffee & Tea Festival #5
My first thought when I tasted this tea is that it reminded me a lot of Enchanted Forest – mainly because of the almond. I love almond; adore it, and if a tea has a nice almond flavor I am inclined to love it.
This tea is no exception. Unlike the fruity sweetness of Enchanted Forest, this tea is more savory and heavy. A perfect tea to curl up under a blanket with while the temperature’s dropping outside. I didn’t pick up some of this at the show but I’m second-guessing myself now.
Good thing there are several stores near me.
Philadelphia Coffee & Tea Festival #4
This was lovely. It is exactly as advertised: peppermint black tea. I think I would have liked it slightly sweetened, but even without any sweetener, the peppermint came through strong without being overwhelming. I may have to swing by my local Capital Teas and pick up some of this once it gets colder.
Philadelphia Coffee & Tea Festival #3
After playing at MajaTei, I crossed the expo floor and visited Capital Teas. They had a very nice and large set up with multiple tasting stations. I personally have very fond feelings about Capital Teas since they are my home tea company, having started in Maryland and with many locations in the DC area. Turns out they just expanded to Philadelphia!
As much as I like their teas, this tea, unfortunately, is not for me. I expected this tea to be spicy and it was, pleasantly (or unpleasantly depending on your nature, I suppose) burning the back of my throat. However, I didn’t taste much depth to this, and definitely no mango. I wonder if I would have liked it better sweetened?
Philadelphia Coffee & Tea Festival #2
This was the first tea I tried by MajaTei but I’ll refrain from rating it because the sample I sipped was obviously oversteeped and bitter. (Or possibly just cooked on the warmer for too long.) The staff were brewing a new pot when I wandered off so I didn’t get a chance to try it as it was meant to be.
The dried stuff smelled lovely. Oddly enough, there is also corn in this blend, for added sweetness.
Philadelphia Coffee & Tea Festival #1
Today, I took the Amtrak train up to Philadelphia to meet up with some friends for the day. We initially started out with one item on the agenda: stuff our faces with vegetarian dim sum. After some research, Christina found there was also a tea and coffee festival in town so we bought tickets (50% off coupons FTW!) and braved the horrible Philly suburb traffic to get there.
There were approximately 40 vendors in the exhibit hall and I walked around sampling as I went. I kept a mental log of what I tried, and because it actually wasn’t that many, am entering them into Steepster. Many don’t have a Steepster presence, which just needs to be remedied.
MajaTei was one of the first vendors by the door. They had a number of fruit blends that were intriguing and in hindsight I wish I had tried more of them. This was the second I tried. It was very nice. It tasted as advertised: apple and green tea. It was lovely, light, and the apple came through without sugar. I imagine some sugar would have brought the apple flavor eve more to life.
I think this is the only tea I’ve ever tried that contained apple that actually tasted like apple. I love that apple was the actual end product-flavor rather than just filler. Kudos.