257 Tasting Notes


Indigo Tea Company sent me a free sample of this when I placed an order with them recently. I think it’s a good choice for a lighter black tea with a tropical vibe. As they say, it would be good iced (I’m drinking it hot).

It’s one of many teas that are “nice” but don’t have anything of extravagance in them. If you like a passion fruit overtone, you might want to try this. It just did not “pop” for me, but it’s certainly pleasant.

200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 15 sec

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drank Bogart by Leland Tea Co
257 tasting notes

I have a cat named Mrs. Palmer, who has an enormous crush on my oldest son. Mrs. Palmer looks at me with disdain and superiority (which I love—every cat lady loves a superior cat) and she tolerates my husband. When my son comes around she gets this goofy dazed crazy happy expression on her face that I call “Spring Awakening”.

Leland Tea’s Bogart has given me “spring awakening”. I am a somewhat cautious tea drinker—I prefer to start out with a small sample at 1 or 2 bucks. Then I might buy more. Untasted, sight unseen, nothing known about Leland Teas, I purchased not one but two full orders of Bogart (and quite a few of their other blends). I ordered on April 12 and today, April 19th my tea has arrived. Very good record, considering that I also got teas today that were ordered on April 3rd.

Upon first sniff I fell in love; first taste confirmed the love, and I think that the explanation is that Leland Teas uses some Lapsang Souchoung in the blend. If you don’t like smoke, you would barely notice it, however. The predominant taste is the hazel nut, followed by the vanilla and the cinnamon. The nuttiness is divine and the vanilla is excellent. The cinnamon wisely remains a back-up player and does not try to take over the show.

I’m ready for more and I still have that “spring awakening” expression on my face. The question is will I be able to stop and try other teas? I have, from Leland, “Tiffany,” and “Garbo’s Peachy Blend” and “Kisses!” and more!

200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 15 sec

every cat lady loves a superior cat

That is SO true. The loveliest cat I’ve had was also the one with the worst temper.


My “avatar” is another cat of great distinction, discernment, and superiority. I have three boy cats who love me; they are cuddly, soft, fuzzy, uncomplicated. The two girls, however, know that I am on the bottom of the food chain,


I love cats for the same reasons that people who don’t like them don’t: their independence, their disdain for humans, and their tendency to chase invisible objects (ok, this is not actually something that gets listed all THAT often). I’m not sure what I would do with an affection cat.

Also, this tea sounds YUMMY.


Oh yes, I know exactly what you mean. My favorite cats are tortoiseshells/calicos, because they are known for having what people call “tortietude”—they know they’re better than us, and when they deign to acknowledge us, it’s just that much better.

On the other hand, my current cat (not my avatar) is an affectionate tortie fluffball, but when she’s around other cats, she turns into the Queen, tortietude and all. So, I plan on keeping this a single cat household, for now. :)


I have some of this as well and I’m really looking forward to it. Geez. I really really have to finish drinking up some of my lesser teas so I can get to the good stuff.


I have 2 miniature poodles and I am convinced that they are the felines of the canine world. My female poodle prances around the home and yard as if she is superior to all…


Yay! I’m so happy you like Bogart! It’s like a validation—if you like it, then it must be good! :)

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drank Orchid Temple by Golden Moon Tea
257 tasting notes

Golden Moon Tea Sample #8, selected at random.

The buttery note of this type of tea is always pleasing and so is the floral note. It’s good and pleasant but I don’t think that there’s anything here that will sear this tea into my memory and impel me to spend money on a full size. I like, but am not in love with, oolongs, green teas and white teas, so if you are reading this, please be a bit jaundiced about my opinion. I’m the person who thinks that the smokiest Lapsang Souchongs should be smokier. I am the person who drowns herself in perfume instead of applying a tiny whiff. I’m the person who used to wear Bob Mackie knock-offs. So I can respect this tea but not, perhaps, love it.

185 °F / 85 °C 2 min, 45 sec

Yes! Down with subtlety! I fail at it so hard.

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drank Masala Chai by Indigo Tea Company
257 tasting notes

This is a serviceable Masala Chai. It’s not at all bad, but there’s nothing particularly memorable or outstanding about this one. Chai lovers might want to sample this.

For what it’s worth, I’m not a big devotée of chai, so my ability to judge fairly or to detect differences may be limited.

200 °F / 93 °C 5 min, 45 sec

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drank Earl Grey White Tip by TeaSource
257 tasting notes

Thank you to Meghann for this sample. The dry tea has got a wonderful typical Earl Grey scent and there were quite a few white tips visible in my sample. The brewed tea is a very good Earl Grey. The bergamot flavour stands out clearly. The quality of the black tea seems to be decent at the very least and perhaps better.

I would most certainly recommend giving this a taste for those who are in search of their perfect Earl Grey BFF.

205 °F / 96 °C

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Golden Moon Sampler Tea #7 selected at random

I was glad to select a robust tea. It’s too early in the day to go in for an airy-fairy white muskmelon with breath of lilac type of tea. This English Breakfast did not disappoint me. It’s full and rich and the blend is a lovely combination. I would consider making a full purchase of this. I’d like to have a breakfast tea in stock aside from my beloved Lapchang Souchongs to offer visitors or in case my taste shifts—-and taste, as we know, can be fickle.

I’ll see if this tea calls to me in the next several weeks. Overall, a hearty recommendation.

Boiling 3 min, 45 sec

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This tea is just another tea that Randy Jackson would call “aight”. It’s most certainly blueberry but neither the black tea nor the blueberry are strong enough for my taste.

I would recommend this tea to a blueberry afficianado looking for a lighter afternoon fruity tea

3 min, 15 sec

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drank White Licorice by Golden Moon Tea
257 tasting notes

Golden Moon Sampler Tea #6, selected at random

I was glad that I picked this out rather early in the evening. I would have tossed back a very robust tea into the “ocean” of the basket.

I don’t hate licorice, but I’m not a huge fan. I found this tea more pleasant than anticipated, but I don’t think I would feel a need to keep it in stock. If I knew a big licorice lover, it might make a superb gift.

Pleasant and light, the anise flavour shone through but was not overwhelming. It was a great one-note white tea.

185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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drank Russian Blend by Samovar
257 tasting notes

Thank you so much to LORI for sending me a generous sample of this tea. I knew that I would like it. As a Lapsang Souchong addict, I’m partial to any smoked teas. This Russian Blend is not exception. While it does not have the deep scorched-earth taste of some smoky teas, it is an exceptional blend that adds an element of fruit and natural sweetness to the smoke. Their notes suggest an apricot taste and I fully concur with that.

This may be another tea that I will have to purchase a full tin of because of the exquisite blend. I’m not certain how Samovar’s blenders managed to strike such an expert balance between smoke and fruit without allowing the smoke to take over. It’s a nifty hat trick.

5 min, 0 sec

This is one tea I cannot live without!


Ooooh – I want! I’m adding this puppy to my ever-expanding shopping list which (as of yesterday) exceeds the # of teas in my cabinet. ’Twas inevitable! :)

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drank Black Forest by TeaSource
257 tasting notes

Thank you so much to MEGHANN for sending me a generous sample of this tea. I certainly tasted the cherry in the tea and, although you can see the coconut, I did not pick up on the coconut taste. It was a very pleasant afternoon tea, but I’m not likely to invest in a full bag unless the flavor really “pops” out distinctively.

I enjoyed it, however, because the light taste of cherry was very nice, but it made me crave a more distinctive flavour.

4 min, 45 sec

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I really love big, bold, brash teas. Smokiness enthralls me. I don’t seem to do subtle.
I don’t do rooibos.

My rating system:
Never again in a hundred million years

31-55: This tea probably has some redeeming qualities but I won’t would not seek it out again.

Shows some promise but also has a fundamental flaw. I probably owe these a second taste but am unmotivated.

Good with at least one strong quality; I probably would not buy it but would drink it cheerfully.

81-90: Worthy contenders; they might be ranked 100 on somebody’s else’s scale. I like them a lot but have not fallen in love. Will probably buy and use.

91-95: These are the true loves, the chosen ones, the ones I dream about and crave. Unless they are in a limited edition—la! how you tease me!—I will always keep in my cupboard.

96-100: I cannot be separated from these teas and would develop a panic attack if I were to run out.

“She is too fond of books and it has turned her brain.”

Elderly dowager. Quintessential cat lady.

Tea which must be in stock always:

Black Dragon LS by Upton Teas: My choice every morning.

Florence & Lapsang Souchong by Harney & Sons

a good Gen Maicha

Samovar: Russian Blend, Maiden’s Ecstasy, Ryokucha

Mariage Frères: Confucious, Vivaldi, Eros, Aida, Marco Polo

American Tea Room: Brioche

Leland Teas: Bogart

Life in Teacup:
An Xi Tie Guan Yin Grade II modern green style & also Charcoal Style


In the midst of the middle of the heart of nowhere in particular.

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