92 Tasting Notes
I kept thinking about yesterday’s Keemun (my first) all night. I wasn’t sure I liked it, but I knew I wanted some more! So this morning I got out my sample of Hao Ya B. The dry leaves didn’t really smell like smoke to me – instead I got hay and dried fruits. Brewed for 4 minutes, the tea has a definite smokey aroma. I added milk and sugar and tried it. The verdict? Really good! This tea is smoother than yesterday’s keemun, but it still has that smokey aroma and flavor. The smoke is clean tasting – not as full of tar, perhaps? I love smoked foods, so it’s no surprise that I would like smoke as a note in teas! My husband hated this one (no surprise, as he doesn’t like strong flavors.) I will certainly try this one again.
I finally got around to buying a tin, so I have this tea in possession again! I love cinnamon teas, and usually drink one each evening (alternating between this, CS Bengal Spice, and chai.) I love how naturally sweet this is – no sugar needed, although occasionally I will add a single packet and treat it as dessert. Definitely no milk – it kills the spiciness for me. I like to give this tea to my friends – they can never believe it is unsweetened!
I’m new to teas with smoke, so I don’t think I can give this a proper rating yet. This tea is a bit peppery, and it has an aftertaste of smoke. I added milk and sugar, after determining that in no way am I capable of drinking this sort of tea black. It wasn’t bad though – I can see how you could get to like this kind of thing. I will keep trying!
Nice! The combo of chocolate and bergmot really is reminiscent of a chocolate orange. It’s a bit lighter in flavor than I hoped, so I will try a longer steeping next time. I think it helps to not think of this as an Earl, because the cocoa notes definitely transform it into something else entirely!!
Oh how I love this tea. I ordered a big tin from Upton, and it arrived today (along with samples of various black teas – I’m trying to educate myself as to individual varieties!) This tea has a richness that I haven’t found in a lot of breakfast blends – many are too smooth for me, a former coffee drinker who wants some bite to her tea. There is malt and perhaps a touch of smoke (but just a touch.) Milk and sugar go well with this tea, but they don’t smooth it out too much – I don’t want to feel like I’m drinking milk! One caution with this tea – don’t steep it longer than 3 minutes. It does get bitter. But at 3 minutes it is perfect for me. Bumping my rating to my highest – when I was out I missed this tea every morning, and now I hope to not be parted again!
This is quite nice – brisk yet drinkable! It’s really strong plain, and even with milk/2 sugars it is quite robust! It’s not very nuanced or distinctive, so it’s not going to be my favorite, but I found it enjoyable on this gloomy afternoon.
I was excited for this tea, because I have another chocolate mate that I love (Republic of Tea’s double dark chocolate mate.) I was expecting this to be similar, but with the added malt notes. The leaves didn’t smell very chocolatey to me – they mostly smelled like malt and a bit of mate. I steeped 6 minutes at boiling, having read that it needed a bit longer than some teas.
Sadly, I don’t get any chocolate from this at all. I get a taste that is oddly like musty raisins. I know, that’s weird. I may not like the taste of malt, since I know I like mate. But I’ve been under the weather, so I’ll avoid rating until I can try it again!
Not bad… pretty much tastes like what it says (with milk and sugar, because who ever heard of bitter white chocolate?) I’m not excited by it, but it certainly is drinkable. The tea base is perhaps a touch astringent, but milk smooths it out nicely. I wouldn’t buy a full size, but I will finish my sample.
I thought I would enjoy this tea, as I enjoy jasmine and earl grey, but it was not to be. The initial aroma of the dry leaves is mostly of bergmot. Upon steeping however (4 minutes at boiling) the jasmine rears its head and dominates completely. This is exactly like drinking perfume, and not in a good way (I do like floral and scented perfumes, so I was surprised at my reaction!) I would have liked a tea that was more about the bergmot, as promised by the dry leaves, but the jasmine is too much here. I’m willing to try again iced, as I usually prefer jasmine on ice, but I’m not too hopeful. I also think that a shorter infusion might be a good idea – following the package instructions nets a really strong brew!