47 Tasting Notes


nom nom nom. :)

Boiling 8 min or more

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Guess today is a Yogi Tea day. I received this from kittylovestea. Basically a few weeks ago she wanted to clean out her bagged tea selection and I volunteered for one of her mystery parcels. There was also a very pretty hippy necklace that I love and have now attacked my boyfriend with. He doesn’t seem to mind.

This smells spicy! It would appear that the bag ripped in transit, but it has done nothing for or against the strong scent and color.

The taste is not as strong concerning the accent notes I am accustomed to in rooibos, but it is notably strong and equally smooth. I think I can tastee a bit of the paper the company wrapped it in, but overall there is this amazing quality of age and grace, akin to one of those big ancient tome-sized dictionaries that sit on a pedastal. I think a lot of the nuances I am enjoying about this tea have to do with it being god-knows-how-old. I taste rooibost, dust, paper, cinnamon, sweet and old leather almost. More akin to a fine cigar than an herbal tea!

Shame there was only one teabag of this.

205 °F / 96 °C 7 min, 15 sec

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I want to be a nurse, so I guess it’s about time that I start saying this:

ASK YOUR DOCTOR BEFORE STARTING ANY HERBAL SUPPLEMENT. TAKE CARE TO READ THE SIDE EFFECTS AND DRUG INTERACTIONS (there’s alot of them) including decreasing the effectiveness of estrogen-based birth control, most pharmaceutical anti-depressant, painkillers and anything else that increases your production of serotonin.

That said, I’ll get into the review!

This is day 1 cup 1 of this tea for me. I do believe the Vicodin is out of my system, but to my dismay my last medication I have to use requires chemical birthcontrol if I plan on being intimate, which is a major drug interaction with SJW. After talking at lengths with my boyfriend, we’ve decided that it is more important to give this medication a try for my mental health than play bump bump…and so another 3 months of abstinence has been added to the 7 months of abstinence we’ve already had. This is going to be the best 1 year of dating mark ever.

Upon investigation, I am not entirely sure of the numbers in this blend. There is only 27mg of SJW extract actually in this tea and then 843 mg of the leaf and flower of which I am unsure what the ratio of whole plant to extract would be, but the normal prescription dose in other countries(the US does not take holistic care seriously)is 300mg/day, waaaay more than this tea asks you to drink.

I prepared this in a 32oz teapot with only 2 teabags and it came out BLACK. The directions stated to use 1 teabag for 8oz of hot water. I suspect that this blend is either going to be ass kicking strong or nowhere near as potent as I need it.

The flavor is of licorice and mint, I am reminded of straight licorice root and those licorice gumdrops, Crows. When I would want an awesome candy that no one else wants to eat, I always went for Crows. Not feeling drowsy yet, but I am still not gonna drive for the rest of the day, maybe the week, until I figure out what exactly this stuff does to me. I’ll log again at the end of the week and I’ll rate again in 30 days.

Boiling 8 min or more

I believe that the majority of herbal teas are suitable for the majority of people despite their medications. Sure it’s best to double check that there are no warning labels on the packet but the only ones I have seen that have had those were from a Chinese remedy shop. The main thing to watch out for with herbal teas are allergic reactions.

Look at chocolate teas for instance, Cocoa and chocolate contain the tetrahydroisoquinoline alkaloid salsolinol up to a concentration of 25 microg/g. Salsolinol is a dopaminergic active compound which binds to the D(2) receptor family, especially to the D(3) receptor with a K(i) of 0.48+/-0.021 micromol/l. It inhibits the formation of cyclic AMP and the release of beta-endorphin and ACTH in a pituitary cell system. It’s proven to increase women’s testosterone levels which is why a lot of women crave chocolate when they are menstruating.

I wouldn’t worry too much about your herbal tea causing you any problems as long as you don’t drink them in excess. :)

Lady 0f Spaydes

For it’s effects as an herbal supplement you’re supposed to drink this 3 to 4 times per day.

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drinking this complex tasting liquor with my boyfriend tonight. I love how everything is blended into this inseparable experience of taste and scent that can only be described as Jardin Sauvage. It really plays true to its name; I feel transported into a truely wild/overrun garden. :)

Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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Sipping as I unwind for the evening. This is one of my favorite herbals and I hate to see it gone from the shelves (was a holiday tea).

The boyfriend and I went into Long Beach for a nice quiet dinner at this Pakistani restaurant in which we instead got big bold flavors, complimentary chai tea and Pakistani pop music videos- but we discovered that our moods readily welcomed the hub-bub.

After a night of tikka masala, saffron rice and mango lassi, the muted cinnamon and gentle vanilla of this tea both compliment and calm down what otherwise could be a sensory overload.

It’s been a good night. Not saying “good night,” just saying.

190 °F / 87 °C 5 min, 0 sec

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Tasting this new addition to my tea collection thanks to HistoryLaced! The girl has a genuine aversion to oolongs. I suspect this aversion stems from the very quality that I and many others adore about them- the nutty creamy taste that comes with a good oolong! She hates nuts, tell her there’s nuts in something and she make that little red face on the end of the tea rating scale.

My boyfriend made a whole teapot for me to sip and think over.

So far, I am on my second cup. I’m not sure if I really like it the way it is yet, I will have to sit down and play with it a bit to figure out how best to drink it. The nutty flavors of the oolong seem to be more prominent when had without sugar. I definitely taste the vanilla, but overall the flavor seems a tad bit weak, and we steeped this for the maximum time recommended. This tea will definitely take some serious re-tastes and contemplation.

On other notes, I am completely done with antibiotics and painkillers! I only have one medication left and that one is a 3x a week medication that I haven’t even picked up yet. Everything is nearly healed, I dont have to sleep sitting up to be comfortable and best of all, as proven by this log, I am back to being able to consume caffeine! Almost back to normal, almost. :)

200 °F / 93 °C 5 min, 0 sec

I have some on the way – I really hope I like it.

Lady 0f Spaydes

I hope you do too! First steep was definitely an experience. The bf is annoyed at the rather specific steeping temperature, 189 to be exact, but I think he’ll get the hang of using the thermometer. I’m about to re-steep this baby right now, I might log about it again today.

Lady 0f Spaydes

Correction, 198F


The steeping temp with this one is flexible, IIRC. Just steep as you would a green oolong, but perhaps for a bit longer. This one is good, but I wish it was more orchid-y.

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drank Caramel & Rum by Lupicia
47 tasting notes

I found my formal tasting notes!!!

I first tried this sometime right before Christmas with HistoryLaced. This was the day I believe that my boyfriend became the designated “Tea Boy” and HistoryLaced’s boyfriend became the “Ball Boy” (we make him fetch the ball when we knock it out of bounds during ping pong:) ).

Observation 1: This tea was steeped by my lovely boyfriend at boiling for 5 minutes as instructed. The dry leaves have a very fragrant aroma of rum. According to my notes, they smell like “the best rum ever!”

Observation 2: Naked: There is a beautiful orange color to this rooibos! The flavors remind me of butter rum candies, which are some of my favorite candies in the world, by the way.

Observation 3: With sugar, the taste is reminiscent of caramel.

Observation 4: Milk alone drastically detracts from the flavor of this rooibos.

Observation 5: Yummy with milk and sugar! Tastes the way I imagine Hot Buttered Rum or butterbeer to taste!

Overall: A pleasant rooibos, considering it was the 2nd rooibos I had ever had. I am impressed that my impression of this rooibos has not wavered much as my exposure to different types of teas and tisanes has continued to progress. I have noticed consistenly with Lupicia that my opinion of their blends only tend to increase over time as my palate is refined and I taste higher quality samples. Kudos to Lupicia for being friendly to the most novice and the more experienced!

Boiling 5 min, 0 sec
Terri HarpLady

This will be a good one to add to my list of teas to drink on International Talk Like a Pirate Day next year!

Lady 0f Spaydes

Hah! I always forget about that wonderful holiday. :P maybe ill try a tea grog variation with it. :0

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Update: After reading people’s reviews and consulting fellow steepsters, I am pretty sure that this tea had somehow gone rancid. Absolutely horrid. As I complained about it at our last tasting, HistoryLaced dumped it in the trash. I cleaned the jar several times and the top still smells like this tea. Absolutely horrible!

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A casual tea drinker since my childhood; I recently began to truly explore international tea culture in my search for the perfect tea ritual in my extremely hectic lifestyle. I am a young pantheist college student pursuing the science of medicine with a minor in bioethics (philosophy) and I firmly believe that having a ritual for relaxation and meditation is crucial to physical and emotional wellbeing. I recently hosted my first afternoon tea party and hope to assemble a routine arsenal of tea and literature enthusiasts to share my teatime. My tastes are international and I embrace styles and ideas of different cultures across the centuries. I look forward to tea and literary recommendations from you all!

So I know there is no proper way to truly gauge teas as the best or the worst, but like with education, a standardized rubric system is very important to communicate certain aspects of a quality before one has a chance to read in-depth reviews.

It is with this in mind that I strive to follow the proceeding guidelines and rubric:

1. I shall not provide a grade based upon an improperly brewed tea. This includes: experimental blending, scalded leaves, oversteeping/understeeping and insufficient amounts of leaves provided.

2. All rated teas must initially be steeped in accordance to the guidelines provided by the tea company. Addendum/reevaluation may occur if properly documented.

3. I shall try my very best to leave personal preference out of the scope of grading. However, I shall endeavor to be very clear of my opinion of the teas that I rate.

Grading Rubric
100 point scale:

- Clearly and concisely conveys the flavors of the artist’s intent with no supplemental explanation if the flavors are within the taster’s experience (20 points)
- Requires menial ingredient adjustment (i.e.: milk, sugar, stevia, etc.) to achieve the flavors intended by the artist. (15 points)
- Is completely consistent in flavor and quality from batch to batch. (15 points)
- Requires little to no adjustment to preparation (sans accounting for regional differences in altitude, airpressure, etc…) for a full flavored steeping (10 points)
- has a very high quality tea base that compliments the blend (note: does NOT require whole leaves)(10 points)
- Re-steeps at least two to three times strongly if able. (if bagged, re-steeps twice well) (10 points)
- Stores very well (No flavor diminishment when stored in a dark, cool and airtight space for short periods of time). If bagged, is packaged promoting optimal infusion, ease of use and freshness. (10 points)
- has a clear explanation of ingredients, allergens and preparation instructions. (5 points?)
- Is very well priced in relation to the quality of ingredients and quantity provided. (5 points)


Los Angeles, CA, USA

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