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457 Tasting Notes

88
drank Constant Comment Green by Bigelow
457 tasting notes

I believe this came from QueenOfTarts a good while ago. This has basically been a day of brewing all my single bagged oddities.

The packet says to only brew for a minute or two, so I went with two. After two minutes, it’s a little darker than a typical green tea would be. I wonder if that has something to do with the herbal/spice content. It smells like good old Constant Comment, which makes me smile.

The first thing I notice when I taste it is how much lighter it seems than the regular black version. Without the black tea’s strength to overpower the spices, they really come to the forefront. It almost has a little bit of a pleasant heat to it. Same with the orange peel. This tastes much more like oranges than the classic version. I can’t say much for the green tea aspect of it, though. It’s pretty mild and muted. I’m enjoying this much more than I expected!

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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86

First of all, I want to mention how pretty the sachet is! It’s round, super-fine mesh with white thread stitching all the way around, hemmed by a sewing machine the way you’d sew the bottom of a shirt. Also, there is a very generous amount of dried herbs in it. Maybe around three teaspoons.

The aroma is lovely and clean as it steeps. Minty with a bit of lemon. It’s oddly soothing just from the smell, which is dominated by spearmint. Originally, I planned to steep it for four minutes, but the tea grew dark quicker than I expected, so I stopped it at three. This turned out to be a good decision.

The flavor leaves my mouth tingling and cool. Again, spearmint is the main thing I taste, but the peppermint gives it depth and an almost savory aftertaste. The lemon balm is in the finish, adding a note of freshness that reminds me of my mom’s garden when I was a child. It makes me want to grow all three of these in my balcony garden this spring… maybe I will!

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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40

I got this in a trade from someone, but it’s been so long, I’ve forgotten who it was. But this seemed like just the thing for a wet, windy day here in Atlanta. Not that it’s cold, but you know.

It smells of cinnamon and mint the most. I admit, I’m a little apprehensive. The scent reminds me of a Yogi tea, which I’m not a fan of at all. Also, it’s a tisane, which sometimes disappoint me. (I like the tea base to be bold!) The flavor is very heavy on the cinnamon. It reminds me of those cinnamon peppermints they sell around Christmas. The ones with the red centers. Mint is the second-strongest taste, followed by a hint of clove. I can’t really taste the vanilla at all, which is something I was looking forward to. And the orange peel is non-existent. All around, this isn’t something I’d drink again.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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84

This had been sitting in my cupboard for a long while, half-forgotten. I decided I needed to try something new today instead of hopping back and forth between Earl Grey, Bailin Gongfu, and Pumpkin Ginger.

I’ve never had a rose oolong before, so this is certainly an intriguing first for me. It smells more of the actual tea leaves than rose as it steeps and cools. Instructions on the back say that it needs five minutes to steep, but I feel like that may be bad advice. Also, it says that this tea is known to enhance beauty… does that mean this tea is supposed to make me pretty? Hmm.

Upon the first sip, I’m glad I only went with two minutes. The rose flavor is subtle, more in the aftertaste and on the exhale. It has a hint of that peppery taste that rose teas tend to have, but it isn’t harsh. This tea seems to showcase the oolong more than the rose, which is something I respect. It has nothing to hide. It’s a quality tea, especially for something bagged.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 2 min, 0 sec
Ysaurella

I’m pretty sure rose flavour goes very well with Oolong.

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90

Made myself one last mug of this tea today. I’m officially out and sad to see it go. This is the tea that made me realize that I actually really do love lapsang souchong. I just needed to associate it with the scent of burning leaves in fall, which is something I hold dear. It’s like drinking that smell, for lack of better words! I’ll miss it!

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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44
drank Honey & Lemon by Lipton
457 tasting notes

Wow, so I’m only the third person to review this here on Steepster? I find that sort of hard to believe!

Anyway, I picked this up from the kitchen area of my apartment complex’s office. As it steeps, it doesn’t smell like lemon. It smells exactly like strawberries. As I taste it, yeah, it tastes kinda like strawberries, too. Sort of. The lemon flavor they used sort of shows up at the end and reminds me of lemon candy. It’s not particularly strong and makes me wish I had an actual lemon slice to put in it. And the honey? I’m not sure what they put in it, but it doesn’t taste like honey, either. It’s strange. I don’t like this much.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 15 sec
fleurdelily

I’m gonna guess….you’re only the 3rd person to review it, because if that’s the kind of tea a person liked to drink, they wouldn’t BE on Steepster…..

Tabby

I think you are absolutely right. This was a bad decision.

gmathis

Seems like my experience with this one reminded me of those awful Luden’s cough drops…

Tabby

There is definitely a medicine-like taste to it.

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86

Another lapsang for the new autumn season. I received this tea in a trade with Spencer a few months ago and have been holding onto it for chilly weather. There’s just something about smoky black tea and being out in the chilly fall wind.

This tea brews up dark and hearty, smelling heavily of pine smoke, as it should. To give an idea of how potent this tea is, it was in a ziplock on my kitchen counter. My boyfriend tossed his work shirt onto it without noticing and left it overnight. The entire next day, he smelled like a campfire. (Be careful where you store your lapsang, kiddies.)

The flavor matches the powerful aroma, with a twist of leather. But it also has a sort of tang to it that’s more like pine than any lapsang I’ve ever had. It reminds me of the scent of pine sap, right after a live branch is broken. I haven’t been impressed with Peet’s until now, honestly. This is a unique and interesting lapsang souchong.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 45 sec

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38
drank White Chocolate Kisses by Bigelow
457 tasting notes

One of my friends gave me this to try AGES ago, and I’m on a chocolate kick, so I decided to give it a try. I should note that on my bag’s packet, it’s called White Chocolate Obsession, but it has the exact same art and it’s still by Bigelow. I dunno what’s up with that. Maybe it’s an earlier/later version.

Good lord, this smells chocolatey! Though what kind of chocolate, I’m not sure. Too strong and sweet to be a Tootsie Roll, but it kinda reminds me of that. You know, like chocolate candy that doesn’t actually involve any real cocoa. Or chocolate lip balm. Or the brown chocolate-scented magic marker from my childhood. This does not bode well, but I’m brave.

I lightly sweetened it and let it cool, thinking about adding a splash of milk even before having a taste. The flavor is less strong than I expected, and slightly metallic under the odd chocolate taste that lingers upon exhaling. It does actually taste a bit like white chocolate, but I’m a dark chocolate kind of girl. The black tea base is very mild and smooth, but it adds a pleasant maltiness. It tastes like it’s mostly there to support and add depth to the chocolate.

After a few sips, I went for the 1% milk. It holds up against my generous amount of milk well, still very flavorful, but still not good. Creamier, but just sort of sad, like it wishes it was a white mocha or hot cocoa.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 30 sec
gmathis

Sounds nice! Haven’t seen it locally, but now that I know which local grocery stocks Bigelow seasonal Christmas teas, I’ll have to check for this one in the Valentine aisle. Should be stocked about Wednesday ;)

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90

This is what I took to work today. We’re getting the outer edges of Hurricane Sandy, so the world outside is gray, cold, and very windy. The perfect day for something that smells and tastes of woodsmoke.

I’ve reviewed this tea before, so I won’t go to lengthy detail, but this was pretty perfect for today. Like I’ve said before, it smells more smoky than it tastes. Underneath the smoke, there is the delicious taste of Fujian black tea. Mmmm.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec
Geoffrey Norman

Mmmmmmmmmmm….Lapsang….drooool

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96
drank Earl Grey Imperial by Harney & Sons
457 tasting notes

So, for a week, I couldn’t find my metal infuser and I was incredibly frustrated. I finally caved and bought myself a new one on Amazon, plus some Harney & Sons consolation that I had been wanting for a long time. The day after I ordered it, yes, I found my damn infuser. Of course.

Anyway, I’m still very happy to have this pretty blue tin in my cupboard. I popped it open and it smelled amazing. Strong! Peppery! Lemony! The bergamot isn’t as strong as their Earl Grey Supreme, but it’s still definitely the dominant flavor. This is a perfect standard for Earl Grey. Not too bitter, not too astringent, on a satisfying black and oolong blend. And also not so heavy on bergamot that your mouth goes numb.

Again, about the bergamot, Harney and Sons have set a bar for me. They use this Italian bergamot that just makes other blends taste cheap to me.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 30 sec

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Bio

Quiet, strange, and in love with the world of tea. 20-something and living just outside of Atlanta. Cat lover, EBM/synthpop/industrial geek, balcony gardener, and collector of fossils. On the hunt for the perfect tea in each of my favorite categories.

I prefer black teas, but I’m trying to broaden my horizons. My favorites tend to be yunnan tips, earl grey, golden monkey, chai, and keemun. My favorite add-ons are plum, cinnamon, coconut, apple, raspberry, bergamot, cucumber, sage, vanilla, and caramel.

I’m shy about green tea, curious about white, and learning to love oolong. I hate rooibos and anything with orchid, fennel, or jasmine.

I’m currently growing my own tea. I have a 3-year-old potted Camellia sinensis, and I plan on picking a tiny bit of new growth this spring for my first try at drying my own leaves.

Since joining, I’ve traded with: Kaliska, QueenOfTarts, LiberTEAS, JustJames, Spencer, Ninavampi, Jillian, Teafreak, KeenTeaThyme, and RachanaC (Rachel)-iHeartTeas.

Location

Decatur, GA

Website

http://www.facebook.com/profi...

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