502 Tasting Notes


I found this at Shaw’s last night!! I couldn’t believe they had it— I thought sure I was going to have to order it online.

It’s a chai latte concentrate, and it is every bit as amazing as it sounds.

I will admit to having fallen off the wagon lately with my coffee addiction. I started grad school at the end of September, and it’s very different than what I’m used to— online vs traditional classroom setting, APA style vs MLA, and so on. I don’t handle making mistakes and learning curves very well when it comes to school, because for my whole life, that is what I’ve been good at. So I have been procrastinating on assignments and wasting a whole lot of time telling myself that it’s no use and I’m stupid for even doing this, and so I wind up needing coffee to get my butt in gear in the mornings.

My guilt from forsaking tea has been pretty strong, so what a relief that products like this exist! The sweetness from the cane sugar, cinnamon , and cocoa make this a treat, not a staple, but what a treat it is! The espresso and black tea play surprisingly well together, neither overpowering the other, and the cocoa augments the chocolatey notes from the tea and the coffee. Plus, you still get all of the cinnamon-y, gingery, clove-aliciousness that we know and love from chai!

My boyfriend and I made it cold, with skim milk, and we both sucked it down . I’m going to play with it some more and try making it hot next.

I’ll be purchasing this again whenever I feel my spirit getting low!!

Flavors: Chocolate, Cinnamon, Coffee, Spices, Sweet, Tea

Chai (not Kai) Mera

One of the most useful things I learned in grad school was how to go into a new field/job/setting and learn the rules “on the fly,” as it were. (Slightly less useful was how to find the free leftovers from department events.) What you’re going through now isn’t “stupidity” or “useless” it’s really good training that will give you an advantage over other students who didn’t have to make that adjustment. Still frustrating, of course, but that’s what the tea is for. Good luck!

Also, I had to read your review and the tea description twice — this is tea with COFFEE in it? Seriously? That sounds amazing and dangerous.


Thank you for the encouraging words :D I’m working full-time while chipping away at this degree one class at a time, so I do need to learn how to not be so hard on myself. You’re so right about learning the rules on the fly!

And yes, tea and coffee mixed! It’s absolutely divine! But yeah, I wouldn’t exceed one serving per day. Haha.

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drank Irish Breakfast Tea by Twinings
502 tasting notes

Mmmm, I like this a lot! English breakfast teas tend to be almost floral, which is not a quality I enjoy in black tea (although I adore floral greens) and Scottish breakfast tea is so astringent and malty and tough to take. This strikes a nice balance between the two. Nicely blended, no floral quality, strong and malty without feeling like an assault on the senses. Also takes milk rather nicely — maintained a lovely ambery color and strong flavor even after a splash was added.

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I finally figured out what it is about this tea that bugs me: It tastes like carrot juice.


Yeah. It’s disappointing :(

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The lemon flavoring is a little fake-tasting, but the honey flavoring makes it bearable. The green/ white combo base is smooth and light. The ginseng and eleuthero are very calming to me, and the little tiny punch of caffeine balances everything out nicely.

Celestial Seasonings recently redesigned their packaging, making the box art more minimalist and dull, not unlike Google’s recent logo “update.” That’s a bit of a bummer, but won’t deter me from purchasing CS products in the future. Or from using Google, for that matter.

Flavors: Green, Honey, Lemon, Sweet

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drank Hazelnut by Adagio Teas
502 tasting notes

Sipdown… drank hot, with milk.

I overleafed in my excitement to be rid of this blend, and it turned out bitter. Alas.

It’s not a terrible blend, and the price is very good for the quality. I’d just rather try something a little more daring from Adagio.

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“This is my fight [tea]
Take back my life [tea]
Prove I’m all right [tea]”

The busy-ness of my work these past few weeks has been out of control. Thank goodness for good ol’ earthy, chocolatey, slightly-burnt and energizing Morning Thunder to get me motivated to work through today and tomorrow before my glorious weekend.

Flavors: Burnt, Chocolate, Earth


Ha! Love that song.


Hahaha! Too funny!

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Phew… after that nightmarish work week, I got a nice three-day weekend. Back in the saddle tomorrow, although I get to work my regular hours instead of being strong-armed into working overtime and giving up my weekend.

Picked this up because the flavor combo is fairly unique and I haven’t had oolong in a while.

It’s fairly unimpressive. The mango totally overpowers everything else. I may be wrong (both blends say that it’s wuyi oolong) but I still think this oolong leans more toward the green side than the black, so the flavor is much lighter and more subtle than Stash’s Chocolate Mint Oolong blend.

Not bad, not wonderful.

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drank Organic Peach Cobbler by Tazo
502 tasting notes

Steeped it with a bag of Higher Living’s Ginger Kick. It transforms this tea from being just meh to being absolutely delish.

This tea is icky plain and hot. I’ve had the best luck either cold-steeping it plain or steeping it with something else hot.

I won’t be restocking when I’m out of it. It was too expensive and too underwhelming. If a bagged tea forces the drinker to get creative in order to make it drinkable, it’s officially not worth its asking price.

Flavors: Bitter, Pastries, Peach

Liquid Proust

I cold steeped this and my family drank it

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Made this English style with milk, and very strong on the leafing. It’s very smoky but also slightly floral in the aftertaste. Has a nice brisk bite of bitterness too. It’s the consummate breakfast tea, really— the kind of tea that you’d drink whilst preparing yourself for a busy or potentially stressful day. It’s reassuring and bracing and no-nonsense.

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drank Black Mango by The Tao of Tea
502 tasting notes

Making this one at work because I have 8 oz of it and it will never get drunk otherwise.

I recently had a lateral move at work, so I’m in a new location, and of course not even a week into it, I get sick with a nasty cold. I’m in the “recovery” stage now, but I’m still congested and I can’t really taste this as well as I usually can.

I took it black, as usual, and steeped it Western style.

I can still taste the nuttiness of the base tea and the perfume from the calendula, and I can still appreciate the beauty of the CTC leaf pellets opening in the water, though, so that’s something! This is such a lovely blend.

Christina / BooksandTea

8 oz is a lot! Good luck.

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Hello! I’m a recent college graduate, trying to find my way in the world. I love literature, politics, and tea. I work in the Information Technology field.

Favorites: Black, oolong, and rooibos. Blends that are vanilla, chocolate, nutty, or dessert-like are especially appealing to me.

I like green teas as long as they are blended with fruit and/ or spices, and I LOVE them when they’re floral.

I have a love-hate relationship with kombucha, and I’m very picky about my chai- It has to have a high-quality black tea base and be heavy on the cinnamon and light on the nutmeg. Also iffy about mate and herbal teas in general, although chamomile and I are usually on speaking terms.

Dislikes: White tea, unflavored green teas, honeybush, fruity herbals, hibiscus in high quantities, plain peppermint. (Although I am not opposed to trying blends that cross into these neighborhoods if they come from reputable companies.)

I’m not a swapper, but I hope we can still be friends :)

90-100: Perfection and heaven and magic, all in one cup.

70-89: Good.

50-69: Meh.

49 and below: Blerg.


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