283 Tasting Notes


Not gonna lie: I bought this because the box said it contained approximately 50 bags. We counted. There were 50. This was a waste of the word “approx,” really.

That being said, for like 2 quid it’s a decent standard tea. A bit malty and sweet, but a bit astringent for my taste, really. Mostly I bought it because I’m on holiday with Gentleman’s family (hence the lack of communications, what with there being NO SIGNAL IN CORNWALL) and I’m trying to ease them into knowing that I’m a little bit batshit when it comes to how seriously I take tea drinking. One person thought I was having a cup of seaweed. It was milk oolong. I can see this is going to be tough :(


I’m laughing out loud right now. I think we have all been there.


Lol, seaweed!

Cameron B.

I can totally see how someone who didn’t know better would compare oolong to seaweed… The leaves get so huge! :P

Sami Kelsh

I love how huge the leaves get! I’ve also slightly sort of been told by my boss to keep my giant bottle of tea out of public view on my desk at work. Probably because he thinks it looks like compost. Lots of people think it looks delicious! GRUMP

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Things I totally didn’t miss about working in an office when I didn’t work in an office: people who thrive on being in a constant state of stress, and try to project their stress onto everyone around them. One of my visiting contractors asked me today: “everyone looks so miserable, all scowling and stuff. Is this a really terrible place to work?” And I told him it’s really not (because it isn’t) and just about everyone’s really nice (because they are) but that due to the unique way in which one of the best-regarded universities in the world is managed, the department’s in a permanent state of snafu and most people are so absorbed in their own crap that, like, half the people I work with think my name is Amy NO MATTER HOW MANY TIMES I SIGN EMAILS WITH MY NAME OR SAY MY NAME WHEN I ANSWER THE PHONE. But! I mostly don’t stress about any of these things and just knit when there’s nothing to do. Today I finished a new scarf!

But I’m miffy that there’s no sink in my new office and nobody seems to have noticed this but me and I don’t want to kick up a fuss about it BUT MY THERMOS WILL DEVELOP A TEA-FLAVOURED PATINA IF I CAN’T CLEAN IT SHORTLY AFTER USE and the last thing I want is the heady aroma of lapsang souchong permeating every other tea that ever goes in that blasted thing. And yes, I know it’s made of stainless steel and shouldn’t hold flavours but it has a flavour memory, I’m telling you! And tea is too precious to me to let all the flavours merge into one vague metallic blob. No sir. My tea and I deserve better. GRUMP. I want my sink back.

Oh yeah and Eight is still ridiculously tasty and sweet and fills me with such joy and delight. Cherry and apricot and almond are such good friends. Oh FEELINGS. FEEEEEEEELINGS.

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Watch this space for forthcoming news about an exciting Seventh-Doctor-related thing at some point in the near future, woohoo!

But in the meantime, I’m trying to conjure up all the words to describe this cuppa: woodsy, earthy, nutty, toasty, roasty, sweet, creamy, light. Yeah, I think that’ll do well. I’m too sleepy to elaborate further on those words, and they sum it up admirably. What I will say is that I always debate with this one whether to use the metal strainer and risk bits in the bottom of my cup, or use up a paper filter even though I’m at home? Today I went for some bits. Mate’s always a pretty fine tea, and tends to go through a lot of tea strainers, but bits don’t really trouble me, as I also tend to cold brew tea in plastic water bottles in the work fridge and then let the flavour continue to deepen as I drink them throughout the day. You get some bits. I don’t mind. I’m weird like that.

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Cold brewed this in the teensy fridge that probably isn’t coming with me when my office moves down a floor next month. OH MY GOD RAISINS. There was so much raisin in this one in a cold brew. Just, like, a festival of raisins on a bed of dry autumn leaves. It was really good today. I think this is the way to drink it.


Oh, love that description «festival of raisins on a bed of autumn leaves» :-)

Sami Kelsh

I don’t know how else to describe it! I must be on a raisin kick, as I’ve also been taking those little kid-sized boxes of raisins to work for my afternoon snack, and I’m not tired of raisiny things yet ;)

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Ok, I mean, I know why I’m tired: we spent the whole weekend walking to town and back for friends’ anniversary doodah, for which loads of friends were coming to visit from out of town, some of whom were sleeping over. Plus I made pancakes. And spent a lot of time in the fresh air. Tuckers me right out, I tell you.

So, sleepytime comforting buttery spice is in order, especially since I sort of had pancakes for breakfast, a sandwich for lunch, and a burrito for dinner. Bloat city. The spices ought to go some way to sorting that out, and it’s SUCH a blanket of comforting warmth at the same time. I’m still always pleasantly surprised at how much this tea manages to taste like fragrant, buttery basmati rice to me. So good.

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I need a comfort tea again.

The stupid rent saga continues: so I submitted the request to have my deposit returned from my old flat a few days ago, and the building’s new landlords still haven’t approved it. Like, they just haven’t done anything. And it takes up to 5 days to process returns and I kind of needed parts of that to pay the rent on my new place at the end of the month? Yeah, AERGH DAMMIT STOP BEING BUTTHOLES AND LET ME HAVE MY MONEY BACK.

I miss when I wasn’t always so stressed and upset over money! But having 6 quid in my bank account apparently until the end of the month is, well, stressful. Grumpy times.

In other news, my super secret story project thing is progressing well, and I taught myself a new knitting technique while at the office. And this tea always makes me happy. It’s warm and creamy and almondy and strong and sweet. My favourite flavour is beige. Though as I was saying to Gentleman last night, Petey Davison is totally better looking now than he was in the 80s. What is it with me and, I dunno, cuddly middle-aged gents?

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drank Rhubarb Green by Adagio Teas
283 tasting notes

Every time I drink some of this, I get really sad because I DO NOT WANT IT TO END EVER :( I cold-brewed this one for work (and to my line manager who says it looks like compost, I say DON’T BE A POOP, IT’S DELICIOUS) and it’s got such a creamy texture when you brew it this way. I never want it to be gone ever. I’m tempted to hoard it, but my stash is already bursting. SIGH.

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I’ve decided to do a knit project that’s based on the Fourth Doctor’s scarf but takes the idea someplace a little more interesting than just doing another replica of The Scarf itself, which I’ve done a few times anyway. (And man, does it take forever, and doing that many feet of garter stitch DOES get a little monotonous after a few colours!) I’m VERY excited about this project. You’ll totally be bombarded with pictures when it’s done.

Also also, I’m about to venture into (nearly) legit actual published prose fiction based on a television show I admire and have always wanted to write for someplace a little better attended than Teaspoon. EFF YEAH, SOMEBODY HAS CONFIDENCE IN MY STORYTELLING SKILLZ. No pressure, right? Nuuuuuuupe, none at all.

Also, this tea’s still good. I like all the flavours in it, but I quite like them all together than any of them separately. Ah! insert terrifying crazy-eyes Bob Dylan smile here


LOl @ this note

carol who

Can’t wait to see your project. And congrats on the writing!


I did the extra long 4th doctor scarf for my youngest daughter. I just saw a knitted tube dress made just like it, and worn with a tiny matching scarf wrapped very casually around the neck. I thought it was super cute!

Sami Kelsh

Oh, I’ve seen that one! So cute!

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drank Cookie by Lupicia
283 tasting notes

This is my last sachet of Cookie, and I will miss it dearly.

Especially since I burned my hand spilling a good third of this over it by accident, and then overcompensated by adding too much milk. Sad Kelsh is sad.

I’ll miss you, Cookie. You were truly gorgeous.


Oh, great minds think alike, I just had this too :)

Sami Kelsh

Great minds indeed!

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Frooty frooty frooty, frooty frooty frooty frooty frooty froot!

I keep sleeping through thunderstorms at night, apparently. Strangely enough, working in a tiny office sat on my bum all day all week absolutely tuckers me out! At least the 30 minute walk to and from the department keeps me from never getting any exercise ever. I’ve also been breaking in my work thermos, and already the blasted plastic lid bit has absorbed the smell of the first thing I made in it and I CAN’T GET IT OUT curls up and weeps

But today, I make tea in a nice ceramic mug in my own kitchen, and all’s well. There’s something very different about combining fruity herbal teas with a black tea, as opposed to fruit-flavoured black tea. It’s got a juicy fruitiness from the sweet cherry and tart orange that sits over the black tea, and it’s proving really nice for quiet summer weekend drinking.

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My Time Lord name is the Brewmaster. Currently working on People Of Who, an exhibition of portraits of the people who made Doctor Who happen. Professional dilettante. Literary enthusiast, frustrated sometime writer. Knitter of things.


Probably a small grey sofa in Oxford



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