drank Mayan Chocolate Chai by 52teas
149 tasting notes

The dry leaves smell slightly spiced and chocolatey, with a hint of sweet almond. The leaves look quite pretty with large slices of almond in it.

I made the decision to brew a cup of this at 11 in the evening. I clearly had no idea what I was getting into. Don’t ever drink this at that late an hour if you plan on going to bed any time soon.

It’s the beginning of allergy season for me, so something should have tipped me off when I could detect a strong, spicy aroma coming from my mug. I haven’t really been able to smell anything for the past week or so.

I took my first sip and my tastebuds were promptly knocked out from the shock of the spices. I honestly wasn’t anticipating for this tea to be that spicy. I did some homework to recover from the surprise.

When I came back to the tea several minutes later, I steeled myself, and took another sip. Wow! It was delicious. I first detected a strong gingery flavour, mixed with cinnamon. I thought I could taste a bit of chocolate in there as well, but it was quickly followed by an almond-y scent. The final kick came from the cayenne pepper, which I still found to be very strong.

Well, I’ve almost finished my cup. I had to add a splash of coffee creamer (Toffee Almond creamer— I’m out of milk at the moment) along the way, since the spices were keeping me wide awake and I really want to go to bed at some point. Overall, I enjoyed this tea, though I couldn’t detect a lot of chocolate. Be warned, though, that this tea can make your mouth (and the back of your throat) feel like it’s burning. It’s great for keeping you up for late-night homework or writing sessions, though.

Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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I have far too many interests. Tea is one of them.

Background in bioethics, medical anthropology, and evolutionary biology with aspirations of eventually going into a medical field. I also have strong interests in theater, computer science, and food (which shouldn’t be particularly surprising).

Brewing method is usually Western style for black teas (2-3 minutes at near-boiling), “grandpa style” for shu pu’ers and longjing, and gongfu (with a gaiwan) short steeps for sheng and shu pu’ers (two 5-second rinses, then 5, 10, 15-second steeps with a gradual increase in steep times to taste). The gaiwan is also used for oolongs though I sometimes use a brew basket if the gaiwan is occupied and I’m taking a break from pu’er.

I enjoy black teas, pu’er, and oolongs (leaning towards aged, cliff/Wuyi, or roasted/dark), depending on my mood. I don’t usually drink green tea but do enjoy a cup every so often.

My rating methods have changed over time and as a result, they’re very inconsistent. For the most part, as of 11 November 2014, unless a tea is exceptional in some way (either good or bad), I will refrain from leaving a numerical rating.

The final iteration of my rating system before I stopped (note: I never did get around to re-calibrating most of my older notes):
99 & 100: I will go to almost any lengths to keep this stocked in my cupboard.
90-98: I’m willing to or already do frequently repurchase this when my stock runs low.
80-89: I enjoy this tea, and I may be inclined to get more of it once I run out.
70-79: While this is a good tea, I don’t plan on having it in constant supply in my tea stash.
50-69: This might still be a good tea, but I wouldn’t get it myself.
40-49: Just tolerable enough for me to finish the cup, but I don’t think I’ll be trying it again any time soon.
Below 40: Noping the heck out of this cup/pot.

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