253 Tasting Notes

85

I’ve owned a tin of this tea before, but for some reason, never tried it. Fortunately, grocery stores stock it quite regularly, so it was pretty easy to get another tin.

The leaves are quite detailed and twisted, with a distinct steely cool gunpowder scent.

Steeping gives the leaves a warmer and very surprising aroma, very fine quality and greatly enjoyable to just take in.

The brew is a very deep earthy green color, with an equally earthy green tea scent.

The flavor is extremely earthy, with a nice strong toasted green tea taste and little astringency. It isn’t too strong, a nice stable straight flavor.

The strength is enough to make you aware, but overall mellow enough to keep you relaxed. Although the leaves were more interesting, the brew was more than enjoyable.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 45 sec

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70
drank Hazelnut Truffle by Tea Forte
253 tasting notes

This is very much a proper coffee alternative. I am reminded of the hazelnut coffee sweetener, with a nice sweet nutty aroma.

Steeping lessens the sweetness, but gives a more full coffee-like scent with hazelnut highlights.

The flavor is a very rounded nutty chocolate, with subtle hints of the hazelnut and coconut. I like that it works unsweetened, with a very mellow characteristic.

Not bad, it would probably be better as an early afternoon pick-me-up, with a bit of rock sugar.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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65
drank Vienna Cinnamon by Tea Forte
253 tasting notes

This will be the first tea to try in my new Kati tea brewing system from Tea Forte.

The leaves remind me of Tea Forte’s Sweet Orange Spice, which is also very cinnamon-y and festive.

Because the tumbler is smaller than my Starbucks/Bodum double-walled glass, I used only 1 teaspoon of leaves instead of my typical 1.5 – 2 teaspoons.

Steeping gives off a slightly concerning pale cinnamon scent, akin to the pale character of typical teabags, which makes for a more slight disappointment.

The flavor is interesting; there is a very barky spice that tries to follow through, but you also have that underlying pale taste. There is also a dull sweetness, which somewhat improves the pale flavor, but not significantly.

This is not bad, better than your typical teabag, but not on par with how delicious the Sweet Orange Spice surprised me.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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70

I had purchased this tea many times before, and with those many times never had gotten to actually trying it. I had tried Twinnings Gunpowder Green loose leaf, and can recall my impressions of an abnormally strong tea.

Upon opening the sealed tin, you are invited with a very strong citrus aroma. It is stronger and sweeter than what you would expect citrus to be, very bittersweet. Mixed in is a strong floral scent, but the citrus is prominent and potent.

Steeping brings out that strong floral scent, as the citrus becomes more subtle. The liquor is a deep topaz and very dark.

The flavor maintains a strong floral base, with the citrus appropriately subtle. There is a light astringency, and you feel the bottom of the black tea flavor.

What a rather perfectly affordable and accessible tea to wake up to. It has earned it’s place on my tea shelf as a morning tea at the office.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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43
drank China Oolong by Twinings
253 tasting notes

Teabag time!

The aroma is slightly smokey, slightly sweet, but very subtle and light. Annoyingly subtle and light, actually.

The flavor is very weak, with a slight astringency. It is a very subtle smokey green taste.

It is indeed delicate, but also leaves too little to the imagination. I would say it is stronger than most run of the mill teabag teas, but not strong enough for a proper oolong.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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94

I don’t believe I’ve ever had mandarin orange tea before, much less a mandarin orange and spice tea.

The aroma is exactly what it says on the tin: sweet orange and spice. Very festive, and appropriately so, as it is mandarin oranges mixed with cinnamon.

I used one and a half teaspoons of leaves, which should give a significantly spicy brew. The color is a brilliant red, with a very cinnamon scent.

But, the flavor. Oh, the flavor. There is a nice slight biting of spice, followed by the warming sensation of sweet mandarins. It is close to a light Chai, with the cinnamon and cloves.

It surprises how sweet this tea is, with not too much a kick. Just enough spice to work with the very sweet oranges. In fact, I am a little suspicious on how this tea is so extremely sweet.

This is a wonderfully sweet surprise, and probably my favorite tea from this batch of Tea Forte tins I have recently bought.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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85
drank Cherry Marzipan by Tea Forte
253 tasting notes

The scent of the leaves is so alarmingly sweet, it sort of reminds me of biting into a chocolate covered cherry; such a decadently fruity aroma mixed with green tea and subtle nutty almonds.

The liquor is a light copper tone, and a little cloudy. But the aroma is still very cherry, with a stronger hint of almond and less of green tea. Very interesting.

Once it hits your lips, the flavor is a very subtle and smooth almond, with the strong cherry following. The green tea gives a nice slight astringency, but this is all cherry and almonds.

I am not sure why, but I have Grizzly Bear’s new album playing in my head as I am sipping this. I’m not complaining, it’s just a little strange.

This blend is very balanced and satisfying, but it is the aroma that is the star; very festive, lush and beautifully sweet.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 0 min, 30 sec

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86
drank Lapsang Souchong by Tea Forte
253 tasting notes

As I recall my last time having Lapsang Souchong, it was from David’s Tea sampler set. This particular tea stands out significantly, with it’s strong potent and complex smokey aroma that would remind you of a campfire around fresh pine.

Tea Forte’s is no different, with equally strong leaves that just captivate and excite your whole body, transporting you to a great northern wilderness, surrounded by pine, surrounding an open fire-pit. Very tranquil.

The beauty is that it is also reminiscent of my backyard, which is the beautiful northern British Columbia.

The liquor itself is an unmistakable deep amber, that is also surprisingly clean, (I only recall colors reminiscent of mahogany) and does not let up on the smokey aroma.

The flavor is not as strong as it’s aroma would lead you to believe. It does retain it’s smokey traits, but you can also trace some smooth nutty flavors, and a slight astringency.

I can see myself drinking this tea overlooking a lake, after a nice morning or evening run.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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85
drank Cucumber Mint by Tea Forte
253 tasting notes

My mother bought this, as I had convinced her to because she was very interested in how it would be, both in flavor and with all the advertised health benefits of antioxidants.

She doesn’t take to caffeine very well. Fortunately, this tea comes in a tin as whole leaves. So, I told her that you can simply wash the tea leaves before your actual brew, so there is less caffeine when you actually steep your cup of tea.

The thing is, I didn’t want her to waste a cup of tea, so I took the caffeine filled cup and steeped her a less caffeine brew.

The leaves are odd, and fun, with a very subtle fresh scent overpowered by the fruit and cucumber. The blueberries are very prominent.

Steeping gives a nice clean lime color, with a light fresh mint aroma, and subtle cucumbers and blueberries. So far, extremely satisfying.

The flavor is very fresh, very minty green with a hint of fruit. It is quite invigorating, as the mint and cucumber combined give it a very whole and healthy flavor in a light and cool breeze.

The cucumbers make this tea. Extremely fresh and extremely satisfying.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 0 min, 30 sec
Michelle

Sorry, but every time I see this I feel the need to correct it. Washing the leaves, or doing a short 30 second steep does /not/ remove the caffeine. It removes /some,/ but not a significant amount.

Peter Azak

Yeah, that’s why I told her it doesn’t remove the caffeine completely, there will be less but there is still caffeine there.

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