73 Tasting Notes
Well, that was unexpected. Of all the lovely Mariage Frères teas sent to me by Ysaurella and cteresa, I seem to like Marco Polo the best. I feel I’ve let you both down. :P I was really wondering, after disliking Harney & Sons Paris so much, whether I just was losing even my very picky liking for flavoured black teas, but apparently not. Something about the hint of toffee taste that stops the strawberry from being that sharp note that strawberry too often is in tea (for me, anyway). I say strawberry, but only because that was the predominant fruit. I might manage a slightly more detailed tasting note in the future, but this is as good as it gets at the moment, unfortunately. Thanks again, Teresa – this is delicious!
Another from *Dexter3657*’s box of happiness – if this is the Fusion roasted maté you sent?
I’d never had roasted maté before, and given what I’m finding out about my extreme pickiness over roasted flavours in teas, wouldn’t have thought I’d like it much. But it’s a favourite of Dexter’s, so she included some to let me try, and I’m really, really glad she did, as I loved it! I like coffee flavour, just don’t like the actual taste of the stuff, unless it’s well drowned with milk (substitute, these days) and sugar, which just isn’t how I want to drink stuff every day. So anyway, I decided to make it as a latte, and put in about half a teaspoon of coconut palm sugar per cup. I tasted a bit before adding the hot almond milk, and I was surprised at how much I liked it even then, as it had none of the coffee bitterness I dislike, but just a nicely roasted, maybe slightly nuttiness. As a latte – yum! Cara thought it smelled like a fresh scone, which made me rethink my original coffee smell, but I modified it to smelling like a coffee walnut cake. :) We both thought it was delicious anyway.
I didn’t have the straight sleepy attack I had after drinking the green maté cteresa sent me, but I definitely felt more on the relaxed, wouldn’t mind curling up on the sofa side than the energized one! As caffeine after 5 or 6 in the evening decidedly causes me problems sleeping, it’d be kind of cool to discover that maté made a nice bedtime drink! I’d never have tried this without the care package, and am very happy to discover a new kind of tea I really like – thanks again!
Kindly sent to me, along with many other goodies, by Dexter3657!
This is one amazing tea. Really extraordinary. Everything I didn’t much like (to my embarrassment) about the Laoshan Black was mellowed and smoothed by the toasted rice and became absolutely wonderful. I’m discovering that I’m even weirder about teas than I’d realised, and one of my weirdnesses is apparently having ‘issues’ about roasty tastes, including dark chocolate ones. I can’t eat dark chocolate any more because of migraines, but I used to love it as much as anyone – er, anyone who loves dark chocolate. But in the Laoshan Black, the malty chocolate just tasted slightly burnt to me, and the bitterness wasn’t the awesome bitterness of proper dark chocolate. But I love toasted rice in tea, and here it was as nice as ever, and it was fascinating how a ‘peasant tea’ became so elegant. I so much appreciate the sample – and such a generous sample! Cara and I had a bunch of cups out of that first batch, and there’s still more to enjoy another day.
Another from the box of wonder cteresa sent me after I broke my elbow! I made the first cup of this right after drinking the Destination Ceylon, which was a mistake, especially as I probably left it steeping too long. (BTW, love Clipper as a company, but it makes me so irritated that they have exactly the same brewing instruction on every tea they sell – white, everyday breakfast blend, green, you name it! Even I’ve known better than that for years, and I’m not a long-established tea company!) I drank it again a day or two ago and gave it just under 3 minutes and liked it much, much better. No bitterness, not overly-astringent, and I loved the delicate level of vanilla. I could have taken more vanilla, but didn’t feel the tea suffered from not having it. Oddly enough, they sell probably over 30 types of Clipper teas in our local produce/health food/gourmet shop, and I’ve never seen this one there. Lots of other places to look for it, but it just seems strange.
First thing I drank out of the fantastic care package cteresa sent me! It was a while ago, but I’ve been having a hard time writing tasting notes, so for the moment, have mostly concentrated on not wrecking any of the lovely teas by my left-handed awkward brewing.
This, yes, I drank it first day, and it was one of those “Ooooh, good tea. Good tea. good tea. Wait, it’s GONE?!?” kind of drinkings. Not so much with the descriptions. However, I have to agree that it’s a lovely Ceylon tea, and also that, amazingly, brewing it a little on the weak side (as I didn’t read the note about the amount of tea per bag in time) didn’t do anything to spoil it. I like my black breakfast type teas very strong, too. It was a little weak, but not at all thin tasting or weak on flavour, which is impressive. I have drunk many loose leaf teas that aren’t half as nice, so was well pleased with this teabag hit! Thanks again, Teresa!
First tea tried from *Dexter3657*’s box of goodies! I was a little flummoxed by “hot water” as a brewing instruction, but hoped it was implying “but not boiling” as I assumed and proceeded with water several minutes off the boil. Whether or not the water was right temperature, the tea came out very tasty! Had never heard of maple tea before Steepster, but as maple syrup is right up there on my list of necessary luxuries, knew I wanted to try one. Odd thing is that this smells almost exactly like Betjeman & Barton’s Luxury tea, but tastes more muted. Which is not a bad thing, as I found the Luxury a bit overpoweringly flavoured. I didn’t send you a sample of that, did I? I’d be very interested to see if you found the similarities I did between the two. Thanks for this & the many other teas yet to be tasted!
Steeped this too long, I think – everything takes SO long with your dominant arm out of real action! But I think this will be better when I just sit watching the tea brew rather than trying to get my breakfast cereal done.
I love the amount of info Jenier gives on each of their teas, so added the origin as well as ingredients here.
I had a sample of the gluten-free version, kindly given to me by Stacy, after I’d bemoaned my inability to try the regular type! Don’t know if I should have added the GF version as a different tea or not. Obviously there’ll be some differences in taste!
Cara and I had had a flavoured green which was really bitter, the H&S Paris, which we both disliked, and I didn’t have much energy left for brewing or noting but knew we needed something good – this was a great choice! Strawberry and rhubarb is a delicious combination, and the small amount of hibiscus really was a good thing, even for the hibiscus-averse. The tea was tart and fruity, with a delicious touch of coconut, which made a happy pie crust flavour. We both drank it plain, and it was great, though if the GF is available when I put in next Butiki order, I will be eager to try it with a bit of sugar, with milk, with both… Well done to sil and Stacy!
Blech. I may have been a bit biased about this from the start, because I read “natural and artificial vanilla, fruit and citrus flavours” as natural and artificial vanilla and was all snooty about the use of artificial vanilla. But the nasty smell I got on opening the tea had everything to do w bad cough syrup, so I don’t think my prejudice had much influence over my smelling of the dry leaves. Or the steeped ones, OR the taste. Artificial black currant overpowered everything else. Most definitely not for me, though I’m not too sad to have tried it this way, as I got it quite cheaply on iHerb along with housewarming natural conditioner and cleaner for Becca. Cara didn’t like the tea either, but might be able to give it to Becca and keep the tin, which is cute. Otherwise will scatter it via Steepster!