532 Tasting Notes

drank Boston Blend by Harney & Sons
532 tasting notes

Wow, this tea is so creamy and delicious. Not at all sour or bitter like I imagined it might be, based on the cranberry aspect.

I’ve had Boston Blend on my wishlist for awhile, I’ve seen raving reviews for it pop up every now and again in my feed.

I am not disappointed! The very second I cracked open the tin to sniff the leaves I knew I would enjoy it. I was right.

It’s creamy and fruity and the almond adds a nice sweetness to balance off the cranberries.

It’s a flavoured blend done very well.

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I bought this because everyone on Steepster seemed to rave about it. And I’m a follower.
Well I’m not, but I don’t have enough money kicking around to buy too many teas blindly. I would rather let others try them out so I can read first hand accounts and decide based on those whether or not it would be worth it to me, something I’d care for.

I only really buy tea these days if I think I will love it.
And aside from Lupicia, I’m not into heavily flavoured teas much anymore. I’m really digging the straight black ones or the flavoured ones that are done in a very natural way. (Butiki, Whispering Pines).

So, I was wanting a bold tea to have with milk or cream for breakfast. This was a popular one, and I’d wanted to order from H&S, so I got a tin of Queen Catherine.

Honestly, I do enjoy it for breakfast. And it IS growing on me with every cup….but I think there is a bit too much of that “hay” note present for my liking.

It’s a bit smokey, also.

I don’t find it entirely unpleasant, but I didn’t love it at first sip like I’d hoped to.

However, it is slowly worming its way into my cold black heart.

I wish it was slightly less hay-like and maltier instead.
I don’t think the smokiness bothers me.

Adding milk or light cream really turns it into something nice, though.
I bet a smidge of sugar would transform it into another tea altogether. Maybe I will try that next time :)


This tea wasn’t love at first sight(taste) for me either . I love it now. I also love to mix it with Rose Scented H&S and I’m not floral tea person

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I bought this solely based on other reviews. I was looking for teas from companies who charge a lot to ship to Canada (or don’t ship to us at all) to purchase and have sent to my relatives in the States to bring to me when they visited this summer.

They delivered the massive order about a week ago, including this tea.

I wasn’t sure what to expect…I guess I thought the chocolate would taste like a more natural note rather than an obvious added flavouring. (I’ve been spoiled by Laoshan Black, evidently). It kind of reminds me of the chocolate flavouring used by Harney and Sons, which I don’t love. Maybe I’m more of a creamy milk chocolate kind of girl. Well, no “maybe” about it, I definitely am.

Anyway, I’ve had this a few times now and the chocolate makes it not a breakfast tea for me. I don’t want to drink something flavoured first thing in the morning. Unless it’s coffee, oddly enough. But not tea.

The pu’erh definitely adds an earthy note. And this is a very bold tea. Mid morning or afternoon, for me.

I will try to enjoy what I have left but not a re-buy for me. I don’t love fake chocolate tasting teas.

Cameron B.

I definitely agree about no flavored teas first thing. I really enjoy having my Yunnan first. :)


Sorry it didn’t work out for yoU!

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I’m so behind.

Tried this the other night, then promptly realized I wasn’t in the mood for it. I’d had 3-4 sips.

Those other reviewers weren’t exaggerating when they discussed how coffee-like this is! To the point of being black and sludgey, insane. I decided to add cream to my cup.

The taste is roasty and thick and slightly bitter (as is coffee), with the sweetness of caramel and honey.

I decided to put the rest in the fridge overnight, and in the morning I swear it was almost like drinking iced coffee.

I’d really like to try the other flavours! (Just not the chai. They actually sent me that by mistake and I gave it to my friend…I wasn’t interested based on the reviews. He likes herby/spicy teas and I do not)

Neat tea to have stocked! Like decaf coffee! (If you don’t like coffee, you likely wouldn’t enjoy this tea)

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Oops, I didn’t realize there was coffee in this, the pu’erh was risky enough at 9pm!

This tea is really tasty, slightly cookie-ish and lots of sweet cinnamon. Not a tea for coffee haters because that’s a very strong component! I almost think the name should be more like “cinnamon coffee pu’erh” vs cinnamon cookie. Coffee stands out for sure.

I added cream and it was a nice post supper treat. I will try it for breakfast sometime wheni not worried about caffeine.

Definitely another Lupicia win!


Ooh, sounds yummy. I’m adding this to my shopping list!

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This tea is delicious. Still devouring (I had typed “savoring” but my iPad autocorrected it to “devouring”, also true) the sample from Sil :)

It is really fruity and flavorful and malty and one day, when I’m not drowning in tea, one day I will put in a TTC order!

Breakfast tea of the day!

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I had two steeps of this earlier this afternoon.

I really really enjoyed both of them.

This tea is smooth and chocolatey with a nice thick mouthfeel.
And cocoa.
Did I mention cocoa?

It would be impossible to not have a good afternoon when you are drinking this tea.

It’s one of those “Serenity now” in a cup types of teas.


I have some of this to try from CrowKettle



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drank Hot Tropic by DAVIDsTEA
532 tasting notes

Chocolate?! So weird.
I guess someone tasted that somehow??

I cold brewed this and when I drank it I got nothing but piña colada. I’m being truthful. Maybe some spices to give it a bit of richness and a little kick.

My all time favorite tea to cold brew is Davidstea’s Tropicalia, and I’m guessing they came out with this one for 2014 instead of bringing back Tropicalia, like they should have.

But since they didn’t, this one will have to do.

As far as a piña colada iced tea, this one is yummy.
I will buy some more to have for the rest of the summer!

Roswell Strange

According to DT’s ingredients list on their website, there’s no chocolate in this? I agree with you about Tropicalia, though.


Oh thank god, I thought for sure I had lost it. It says chocolate at the top of the page, I guess someone else added that?? Weird!

Roswell Strange

Ah yeah, I just looked at the tea page. It’s one of the listed flavours which just means someone else tasted that when they prepared it. In theory the flavours could list Sunscreen if someone tasted that (it’s an option in the flavors list). But yeah, that would be a weird ingredient – and I’d feel silly too given I didn’t notice chocolate either when I had this one ;)

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drank Sweet Helen by RiverTea
532 tasting notes

Rivertea had sent me a sample of this, it sounds good based on the description. But it tastes weeeeeirrrrd.

Really sour. Leaves a horrid taste in my mouth. I don’t get chocolate at all when it’s hot.

I did just sip it as it had cooled and the chocolate comes out more, and the flavours aren’t quite as in your face sour and clashy…but it’s still not something I’d ever buy.

I will be passing the rest on to my friend to try.

It’s really bitter and icky to me.

And there’s something in it that reminds me of the flavour note in Boatsman that I dislike. I thought it might be chamomile but there’s none in this according to the ingredients. Who knows. They smell kind of similar.

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drank Caramel by TeaGschwendner
532 tasting notes

I decided to brew up all four of my black caramel tea samples at once to do a comparison.

Caramel by TeaG
Caramel by Kusmi
Caramel Toffee by Dammann Freres
And Creme Caramel by Upton.

I did a terrible job comparing them, though.

I have a really hard time pinpointing specific notes in tea beyond a very basic level of distinction.

So, beyond noting that they all tasted like caramel in their own specific way, here’s all I got:

Kusmi’s brewed up the blackest and it seemed to have a slight cardboardy note to me.

Tea G’s was a medium amber color, had a thick mouthfeel and was either my favorite or second favorite.

Upton’s was very light when brewed. It was somewhat similar to the DF tea but not as flavorful.

DF’s was pretty light also, and had sort of a fruity note in the background.

I think I may have liked that one best, with that floral note!

But Tea G’s was a close second, if not a tie.
So, this achieved….something. I guess.

For the sake of simplicity and safety, I used 96 degrees and 4 min for all.

Cameron B.

Yum, caramel! I am really anxious to try more Dammann Freres after loving their Nosy Bey. :D


I love comparisons. I am similar with the tastes, I can some, but not as many as other people. Whenever I know I don’t really need two of a similar tea I find it helpful to compare.


Yesssssssssssssss comparisons, so great.

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So here’s where I am now. I had jumped head first into the world of teas after Davidstea opened in my city a number of years ago. I gave up coffee and became a huge tea freak. From there I joined Steepster and started ordering teas online like a madwoman (not that anyone here would know what that’s like…)

I was swappin’ up a storm and drinking like 6-7 cups a day and I had this tremendous stash to get through…..then. I got pregnant in Spring 2013 and my baby played a funny little joke on me by turning me into someone who had zero interest in drinking or even smelling most teas. I wanted only coffee all the time which was hilarious because of course you can’t really do more than a cup a day when you’re pregnant.

Anyway. In December 2013 I had my baby girl, and now I’m on maternity leave and though I still LIVE (I cannot emphasize that enough) for my morning cup of coffee (or two…), I am trying to get myself excited about tea again, because I have TONS.

So my mission, which I choose to accept, is to first sip down all the samples I have, sent to me last year by lovely Steepsterites, pre-baby.

Here’s what I love (or I did before, and am trying to again):

Butiki teas in general because the flavours are subtle and not fake tasting and don’t overwhelm the tea base

Harney and Sons Paris is my all time favorite tea.

Mariage Freres and Kusmi are also on my awesome list.

I love creamy earl greys.

Also have an appreciation of oolong.

I have a mega stash of super flavored teas to work through, or I may try to sell them if I decide they are no longer for me. The sip downs will determine!

I love swapping!
Please note my Cupboard contains everything I have including minuscule samples of teas so it is not intended to be reflective of what I have available for swap…

When I rate, it goes like this:

85 -100 = WIN! awesome, I love this and keep it on hand
70 – 85 = pretty darn good but I don’t NEED to own it
55 – 70 = not necessarily terrible but not a tea for me!
30 – 55 = missed the mark as far as I am concerned. Wouldn’t drink it willingly.
0 – 30 = I likely won’t rate this low very often, so if you see it, consider the tea a great big FAIL and probably disgusting.


New Brunswick, Canada



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