299 Tasting Notes


Got a sample of this in my recent order and was pleasantly surprised. While all the flavors I’ve tried from the New Mexico Tea Company have been good, some of them were on the weak side. Not so this one. The peach and apricot smell amazing, and both the base and the fruit notes pack a punch once steeped up. I don’t detect any spices here (I think blenders often slip some into this flavor combo) which is a relief to me. It’s nice to be able to just taste the fruit :)

Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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drank Coconut green by Zen Tea
299 tasting notes

I really wanted to like this tea, but the sencha is so strong here that I’m finding it hard to handle. The coconut isn’t quite what I was expecting either — it’s very nutty and more savory than sweet, with something slightly odd in the aftertaste. I thought this would be the green version of Zen’s coconut oolong, but really, the two couldn’t be more different. I’ll probably experiment with shorter, cooler steeps on this and see if that helps, but right now I’m finding this tea a bit much for my tastes.

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drank Forever Nuts by DAVIDsTEA
299 tasting notes

I was skeptical about this one, but I see now why it’s so popular. It’s an incredibly smooth blend of apple and walnut, with just a hint of butter and a kiss of cinnamon. It smells delicious, it’s a gorgeous shade of pink, and it’s so soothing. Good job, David’s.

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drank Nutty by Nature by DAVIDsTEA
299 tasting notes

My order from David’s just arrived! It looks like the company has gone through a few little changes — the box shipped from New York, for one thing, so it got here much faster and that was nice. They’ve topped off all the packets to a full 2 oz. now (which is some consolation for the slight price hike). Also, now you can choose your own samples when you order online! Admittedly, the options are limited, but it still beats crossing my fingers and chanting, “please no rooibos, please no rooibos.”

So I picked out this sample for myself. It smells amazing. The name is a little misleading because I find the apricot to be the strongest flavor in this, but I do definitely taste the almond. The two of them are a great combination, and the only downside is the mate. Just not a mate fan, though at least here the taste of it is pretty light. I’d love to see this tea with a black base, that would be delicious.

185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 15 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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drank Bossa Nova by Zen Tea
299 tasting notes

Zen Tea kindly included this sample with my order. The oolong is definitely on the darker side — it tastes slightly reminiscent of a formosa oolong, even though I’m pretty sure that’s not what this is. Though the hazelnut and vanilla flavors come through, they don’t stand out — this tea is much more about the blend of flavors, and no ingredient in particular gets a starring role. My general impression is of something dark and rich.
I’m glad I got to try this tea, because it does have a really interesting flavor profile, but I don’t think it’s something I would have chosen for myself, mainly just because I prefer my oolongs on the greener side.

200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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drank Coconut Oolong by Zen Tea
299 tasting notes

Mmm, smells so good when you open the bag, like the boozy version of coconut! Once steeped it’s quite sweet — the label says something about cake, and I agree there is something a little cake-y about the flavor. The coconut is quite strong, which is great, although there are no actual coconut slivers in the mix. I think compared to David’s version of this, the Zen is a little sweeter and David’s is a little nuttier. I wish I had some of the latter on hand so I could do a taste-off, but unfortunately I’m out. I think I might like David’s slightly better? But maybe my memory is playing tricks on me since it’s been awhile? At any rate, they’re both delicious, so you can’t really go wrong.

Flavors: Coconut

195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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My H&S order arrived! So glad to have fresh tins of my two favorites, Bangkok and Paris. H&S threw this sample bag in with my order, and it’s really quite good. When I opened it it smelled like fresh oranges. The orange is more muted once steeped, because the sencha is quite strong in this one, but it’s still a nice blend.

180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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I’m several cups into this bag now and still not getting the faintest whiff of peach. I don’t know if I just got a bad batch or if they changed the recipe? Too bad though, because the bag I had previously was soooooo amazing. So peachy! So refreshing! Not sure what happened with this one . . .

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drank Milk Oolong by Mandala Tea
299 tasting notes

Let’s see, so far I’ve tried David’s, Tealet’s, and both of Teavivre’s milk oolongs. So this is my fifth milk oolong, and wow, it’s nothing like the others. It’s SOOO buttery. When I opened the bag it smelled like movie theater popcorn. I didn’t really know what to think, but it steeped up beautifully. It’s very smooth and creamy, there does seem to be just a breath of salt in the flavor, but happily it doesn’t actually taste like popcorn. Also, you can get many many steeps out of it. A+

190 °F / 87 °C 0 min, 15 sec 1 tsp

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I’m not really a fan of Tie Guan Yin — the earthy chocolate notes paired with the floral just doesn’t do it for me. That said, I do think this tea is about the best a Tie Guan Yin can be — it’s very smooth and the lilac aspect is a nice surprise — so if you are into it, definitely check this one out. It has great longevity, I think I’ve done 6 steeps and it’s still going strong.

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Happiness Is:
green tea
black tea
white tea if it’s heavily dosed with peaches
oolong? I’m starting to think oolong is the best of both worlds — I haven’t had many yet, but those I’ve tried have been divine.
vanilla things
lots of mint!

Not Really My Style:
spices (except for ginger. ginger rocks)
chai (because, you know, the spices)
rooibos (I don’t get it. Everyone seems psyched for it. Not me).
those smoky teas, like lapsang souchong, though once in a while I’ll need something really strong and then I like them.

Bergamot lives in a weird little category of its own. Sometimes it’s very good. Sometimes it’s very bad. I don’t know why my feelings toward it are always in flux, though the brand is a factor to some extent. Tea companies seem to have vastly different opinions about how to make earl grey.


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