57 Tasting Notes

77

I must admit that I’ve shared the opinion of a lot of other steepsterites (steepsterians?) and have been at my wit’s end with teavana of late. Between the pushy, incessant, salespeople, and the mass-produced unauthentic feel of it, I’ve been forsaking the convenience of getting my tea fix there for more hospitable pastures.

Be that as it may, I just couldn’t stay away when my inbox was inundated with lures for their “Heavenly Sale”. I mean who’s tea budget could resist up to 75% off? Certainly not I, I’m not that strong, nor are my ideals that resolute.

Along with said order, I received yet another sample of this blend. I’ve been pretty sick all week, so this seemed the most appealing choice to bring with me to work. It was so pleasant, and really did the trick! It was light and fruity, but not too berry-y. I usually don’t care for anything peach flavored, but even though the Youthberry had a similar flavor palette, it was still pleasing, and well-balanced by the orange. The german rock sugar was a nice addition. I hardly ever add sugar to my tea but this provided just enough of a hint of sweetness without ruining the delicate blend. It tasted fresh and vibrant and led me down the road to recovery! It hit the spot so much that I ended up bringing it two days in a row, which hardly ever happens!

How funny that my favorite tea of this rather bulky order might end up being the free sample? I guess the solution to my teavana dilemma is to stick to online purchases. However, if I’m resigned to ordering online I’ll probably end up placing orders with companies I actually like, and feel good about supporting. After all, there’s plenty of them out there :)

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 4 min, 0 sec
GiggleGoddess

What other companies? I recently put in orders with Art of Tea and Davids Tea…hopefully they are much better then Teavana:)

teaNsympathy

They both are! I also still love Harney, which you can find most places, Andrews and Dunham’s Damn Fine Tea, and 52teas!

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73

I got this in my very first installment of Steepster Select!! I was so excited to try these three amazing teas! I have to say I was very impressed. I’ve been drinking a lot of mint-influenced teas lately, and even though I’ve been a bit overloaded, this was a nice treat. There’s a pleasant mint flavor, but it isn’t overpowering. The gentle green tea flavor is still able to shine through, making for a well-balanced, delightful cup!

Preparation
3 min, 0 sec

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76

I’m feeling a bit under the weather today, so I decided to finally crack this tin open. It was a great decision. It’s a beautiful-looking tea with lots of colorful buds in the sachet. It has a wonderful flavor, surprisingly strong for a white tea. It has hints of vanilla and rosebud. I will have to leave a more precise appraisal when I’ve had another cup in better health, and with my taste buds recovered. For now, it’s just what I needed, and definitely made me feel a little better, if only mentally ha

Preparation
3 min, 0 sec

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80
drank Oh Canada! by DAVIDsTEA
57 tasting notes

what a wonderful treat! Right now it seems like all my rooibos is either very fruity or very chocolatey, so while this one is still sweet, it’s a nice little departure. Its maple syrupy goodness is amazing! It also has some warm vanilla notes, and smells like breakfast. Having a cup of breakfast after dinner, what could be better!?

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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74

I was excited to try this new tea by Harney, probably because the description sounded so elusive and mystical. It did not disappoint. It’s subtlety is evident in aroma and taste. It smells like the first day of summer. It has a young and grassy taste that is very delicate, and true to the description, a little sweet. This is a very nice cup of tea.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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77

I don’t know what originally possessed me to put this tea on my Christmas wishlist, but boy am I glad I did! It’s not typically my cup of tea (pun intended) I don’t usually go for herbals, but have been trying to expand and explore more Rooibos. The no-caffeine factor won out and I decided to brew some up since it’s getting pretty late. It has a luscious tangy cranberry, that isn’t too overpoweringly fruity, and is a welcome departure from all the heavy, flavored black teas I’ve been on a kick with lately.

Reminds me why I went through my original tin of Cranberry Autumn by Harney and Sons so quickly this past fall.

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70

This is very close to the Mint Chocolate Rooibos by David’s tea, but the flavor isn’t as intense. It isn’t as minty or as chocolatey (this is shaping up to be a very sophisticated analysis, eh?) But it IS caffeinated, so I guess that will be the determining factor on which one I’ll reach for in the future.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 5 min, 0 sec
ScottTeaMan

I thought this tea would have gotten a higher rating. Bought it for my sister a couple years ago and she raved about it.

teaNsympathy

It’s a solid tea, that’s fairly straight forward. However, I think having recently enjoyed the DT rooibos version, this one was less impressive by comparison. I’m a huge fan of Harney and this is a nice tea, just nothing extraordinary :)

ScottTeaMan

Have you ever tried Harney’s Tokyo Blend?. I really enjoy it. Bancha green tea, toasted sesame seeds, & caramel flavors.

teaNsympathy

I have not! I am headed there later in the week, and might need to add it to my shopping list though, it sounds amazing!

ScottTeaMan

I also have some of their Bangkok Blend, I have yet to sample. I’ll do it in the next day or two & post a review for you.

ScottTeaMan

You have got to read my review of this tea from Harney’s…….It is ssooo delicious!

http://steepster.com/ScottTeaMan/posts/94626#comments

Cup it there or at least buy a sample. I couldn’t believe my tasts buds. :))

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83
drank Milk & Cookies by 52teas
57 tasting notes

Backlogging from Christmas: What a lovely and apropos finale to an amazing 12 teas of Christmas!!! This black tea is interesting to say the least. It’s sweet, and creamy but also has an almost floral-y element to it. I used a shorter steep time (thanks for the tip, Uniquity!) and I think I finally got a hang of it. It was a lovely christmas treat!!!

Moral of the story: 12 teas of christmas made the holiday season festive and bright!

Preparation
3 min, 15 sec

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73

Tragedy Strikes!!

Previous installments of my 12 teas of christmas set have had significant holes in the bottom, where portions of tea have escaped, but previously I’d been able to salvage enough to make a cup.

That all changed today! The ENTIRE (and I mean every last particle) of today’s sample had disappeared through an entirely open bottom, leaving only the sticker left to taunt me about an amazing-sounding tea I won’t get the chance to try :(

KeenTeaThyme

I had this happen with the first tea – Buttered Popcorn. I opened the box and found the entire packet had emptied into the bottom of the box. Email Frank and he’ll make things right. :)

52teas

Please send me a message with your name and address and I will get a replacement out to you right away. Sorry about that. We actually killed one of our bag sealers with this project and although I thought we managed to catch the ones that didn’t seal after we realized it was toast, apparently we failed. We did 265 of these samplers. That’s 3180 sample pouches. I guess the sealer was just not up to the task. Again I apologize. We’ll make it right with you.

aisling of tea

Booo, that sucks :(. Glad I went with the DT calendar, it sounds like there were a lot of issues with the 52teas one.

Frolic

Frank what e-mail should I use? I tried to send you one about what happened to two of my packets a few days ago but never got reply.

teaNsympathy

Despite the issues this was a wonderfully curated edition of teas. It was a great selection of amazing creations. This was my first experience with 52teas and I can’t believe what I’ve been missing out on!! I also can’t wait to see what awaits us in the new year! How was the DT calendar???

aisling of tea

Amazing. Definitely will be a Christmas tradition with us.

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89

I just can’t say enough good things about this tea! Had a rough night, and am exhausted on every level. I needed an emotional pick-me-up that wouldn’t bring on a caffeine-induced pick-me-up. This never fails to do the trick.

ScottTeaMan

I like vanilla teas, but not if they taste artificial, or overpower the base tea. How does this blend do in those areas?

teaNsympathy

I agree, and neither of those aspects are the case with this one, I’m happy to report! The vanilla is well balanced (I think this must have something to do with the almost caramel-y Comoro element) and despite that it originally reminded me of candy corn, I would say it ’s not an artificial taste.

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“The heaven of modern humanity is indeed shattered in the Cyclopean struggle for wealth and power. The world is groping in the shadow of egotism and vulgarity. Knowledge is bought through a bad conscience, benevolence practised for the sake of utility. The East and West, like two dragons tossed in a sea of ferment, in vain strive to regain the jewel of life…Meanwhile, let us have a sip of tea. The afternoon glow is brightening the bamboos, the fountains are bubbling with delight, the soughing of the pines is heard in our kettle. Let us dream of evanescence, and linger in the beautiful foolishness of things.” – Kakuzo Okakura, “The Book of Tea”

I am happiest at a tea room, or snuggled up at home with a freshly brewed cup.

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New York, NY

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