283 Tasting Notes

drank Black Currant by Fusion Teas
283 tasting notes

I should not be drinking this tea in the morning, it is not a morning tea. However, being the glutton that I am I’m dying to try all my new teas at once which means I’m not paying attention to the time of day, or my moods. I really should, I’m doing them a disservice this way.

I received this as a sample with my order. It really captures black currant. There have been many teas I’ve tried which ended up lacking in the flavour department, despite the fact that their names sound full of promise. This tea does deliver. Not sure it is my kind of tea, I tend to shy away from tart (cranberry, currants etc) however I can still appreciate the technique and end result and the fact that flavour is indeed captured.

The dry leaf has a really nice smell. Once brewed, the liquor is a clear reddish brown and its aroma is mostly black tea with currant. It is tangy, I can’t tell just how tangy because I added sugar right off the bat, but it is not hibiscus tangy, it is berry tangy, possibly sour cherry. I do not drink milk so I did not add any, however I do not think this would go well with milk. It would make a great refreshing iced drink for a hot summer day.

1.5 tsp for 8 oz, off boiling water, 4 minutes. Very light astringency at 4 minutes.

205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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drank Lychee Licious by Fusion Teas
283 tasting notes

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drank Japanese Cherry by PureAromaTea
283 tasting notes

I keep thinking there is something I am not getting about green tea. I’ve had two today — the other one I have to add to steepster before I can review, I guess nobody is into lychee green tea?!? — and they don’t taste like much. Now I’m trying to remember have I ever liked green tea?

I was so excited about this one, from Sil, that I have been holding on to it until the mood was right. I mean, Japanese Cherry sounds so beautiful. Now I should add that I’m trying to drink this without any sugar. The brewed tea is clear, pale yellow. There is indeed a slight cherry aroma and a slight cherry aftertaste. Aside from this, I am not getting much. It is mostly warm water with cherry aftertaste. I doubt sugar would do much here but let’s see. ..

I was right. Sweet water with cherry aftertaste. The cherry is so barely there that it tastes even more faint than those vitamin waters, if you ever had them. Someone remind me why I’m drinking this?

I steeped for one minute, about a rounded teaspoon (that measure sounds a bit vague to me) like it says here on Steepster. Water 2 minutes off boiling. I even timed that. Not much is happening in the cup. Sorry. Am not a big fan of warm water that I have to pay a lot of money for. Granted I didn’t pay for this, Sil shared it with me, but it is quite possible I would have bought it.

I’m willing to give green tea a good honest try and to be fair i will try a few more but so far it’s failing in the flavour department.


If you’re having issues on tea delivering in the flavor department for you, try more leaf next time! There are definitely some people who just need more leaf to make a satisfactory cup of tea. Or go ahead and steep it for longer. Play around with your parameters… the ones provided by companies are just suggestions, and everyone’s tastes are different.


Agree with dinosara!


Thanks, I will try! I am afraid they’ll go bitter though. Kokomo green ruined me for green tea :) I will try again tomorrow or tonight.


It shouldn’t go bitter with more tea. It will go bitter if you steep it too long. More tea, not more time, to make a stronger cup.


My answer is always add more cherry, but that’s just how I roll. Personally, I like Chinese green better than Japanese green.

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drank Ruby Pie by Butiki Teas
283 tasting notes

Sil thank you so much for this sample!

What a wonderful tea. I am not a pie person so when I saw Ruby Pie in my swap package I decided this would be the last to try. nothing against butikis wonderful teas, I’m just not that into baked goods. If it’s cake this and bread that, I don’t rush to get it.

Today is the day Ruby Pie meets the brew basket. The dry leaf is not overly fragrant. Once steeped, pow, aroma wafts out of the jar. A mason jar is so not the right vessel for this tea, I don’t know what I was thinking. Still, you can smell it in there. The brewed liquor is light caramel, I expected red for some reason. And the flavour is so unbelievably … pie crust! I love this tea. It is absolutely delicious. This is not a bandwagon tasting note. I am not saying this because everyone loves butiki and I must conform. This tea manages to capture pie entirely. Liquid pie crust in your cup. Fantastic job, I have no idea what goes into it. I don’t mean ingredients, I mean the balance of getting everything just so, in order to have tea drinkers everywhere go “omg, that’s pie crust!”

Now when it comes to the strawberry or rhubarb, it’s getting foggy for me, I can’t really tell where one stops and the other begins. And there’s a wonderful aftertaste of pie crust with something slightly tart. Could be hibiscus. I think it is hibiscus. Booyah!

Boiling 2 min, 45 sec

YAY! glad you liked it :)

JustJames is it the middle of july yet?

justjames…i wish!


this is going to sound hysterical, but one of my aims once i finish my degree is to have a stress free card carrying tea habit. to buy what i want when i want without fussing over such a tight budget! there are lots of other goals as well, but that’s the really selfish one, lol!

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My very first Darjeeling. It just sounded so intimidating before, it still does. Mostly because I have not yet progressed where I should be having straight black tea. I thought this would be really dark (black) and really bitter. I confess I haven’t actually seen a tea so dark that it’s black but I thought if any tea were to be that, it would be Darjeeling.

To me this tastes like straight black tea. The info says there’s cherry and strawberry, am not getting that at all. It is unfair to this tea that I’m drinking it and botching up a tasting note but we all start somewhere.

The dry leaf is so pretty, there are tiny orangey pink flowers in there. No clue what they are. They look prickly instead of soft though, like it would hurt if you ate it. Liquor is brown, almost reddish brown. Like clay. So much for the imagined black. It is slightly astringent after 3 minutes and there is a slight bitterness that most would likely tolerate. I don’t. Hope this doesn’t mean I won’t be able to drink straight black teas. I think beer is bitter too and someone said the more I drank the more I got used to it. Nope. Still don’t like the darker ales, I go with light lagers usually.

I feel bad for this darling of a tea. Although I am thankful to Sil for sending some my way, maybe my introduction to Darjeeling should have been done with a more of a peasant tea. But who would want that honour? Yes, I’m a sh**ty Darjeeling, drink me!

Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

Hahahaha I have actually found that darjeeslings aren’t quite up my alley. I should send you a sample of the butiki ones I have….they’re nice though still won’t ever be my fav

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drank Acai Berry Blend by Fusion Teas
283 tasting notes

I think my total count for oolongs consumed is now a whopping 3. Are they usually quite delicate in their flavouring and aroma? The dry leaf has a really strong berry smell. But once brewed, you practically have to put your nose so far in the cup you’re almost touching the liquor in order to get a good aromatic inhale. Ditto for the flavour. It’s there but oh so faint. And I’m getting jasmine in here. The one other person who reviewed this said it’s floral. I can go farther and say it’s jasmine but I don’t see it listed.

It is a very pale yellow liquor and oh so delicate flavour. I probably could have had it without sugar but decided to add a pinch (not even a teaspoon, am so proud of myself!) and see what it does.

Steeped twice so far, could probably go for three but I can’t get a whole lot of difference in flavours between steeps and I’m falling asleep so it’s time for a good kick in the pants black.

175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 45 sec

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drank Tropical Breeze by Tealux
283 tasting notes

Sample sipdown. Yesterday evening I couldn’t decide what tea to have so I handed the sample jar (it’s actually a big crystal wine chiller turned into sample holder) to my partner with instruction to reach in and just pick something. This came out and since I was not enthused I made it into iced tea. I almost put it back and asked her to pick again but then it wouldn’t be a random choice anymore so I stuck with it.

Polished off the entire sample. It was a generous sample so i almost shouldn’t call it a sample. I had one cup two weeks ago and it had enough for about three left. With resteep, it made for a good enough pitcher of iced tea. Still not a whole lot of refreshing because I’m not really into apple juice and I’m getting mostly apple.

Thankful to have tried this, courtesy of Dexter3657


And at least it’s gone now!

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drank Roasted Yerba Mate by Fusion Teas
283 tasting notes

I am really conflicted about adding flavoured creamers to teas. I do it with some teas but ultimately I think won’t my teas all taste the same if I keep putting hazelnut creamer in there? What’s the point of purchasing expensive tea then? It’s like buying a bottle of expensive wine so you can make mulled wine.

I have a sample of this from Dexter3657 but after my experience with DAVIDs Jumpy Monkey, I kept choosing other teas over this one until there was no more “new” tea left to try. And last night I read someone else drank this and said it tasted like coffee. I was sold! I could barely wait till today to drink this.

To me, the only way this tastes like coffee is if you maybe ran out of coffee and you ran out of filters too so you decided to just make coffee with yesterday’s grind. :)

I don’t like the smell of the dry leaves and even less so the wet ones. I will keep trying in the spirit of learning but… Yah… That’s when the hazelnut creamer came out of my fridge.

What does this tea taste like? I couldn’t tell you. Maybe straw. Wet straw. Alrighty, then. I am looking forward to my next mate. I mean, if I got to where I could drink Rooibos, I’m sure ill get there with this too!


Yep, I see a ton of swaps in our future. If you hate it – I’ll love it. If I hate it – you’ll love it. I’m just going to start a box of all the tea I don’t like and send it to you once I’ve collected a few…..


Haha, I’ll do the same. So far we both dislike Kokomo green though so I wonder who’s getting that one!


I’m still pondering that one, I haven’t given up on it…. just got distracted by other teas.

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Another tea from the magical cupboard at work. It was after noon and I just wanted a break. I didn’t really want a pick me up, I was barely trying to get through the day, didn’t need to get even more excited about having to be there another four hours. :)

The label was a bright friendly yellow and I thought “ok, why not”, not expecting much. My best bet was to throw in some ice cubes after steeping and at least have something to quench the thirst.

The flavour was not at all the lemon I feared. You taste more honeybush with some ginger than lemon. Also didn’t need a whole lot of sugar. I’m finally at the point where I’m able to dial back on the sugar and still be able to enjoy the tea. yay! I can’t really articulate much more than that, it’s not like it was a complex tea or anything. And I was somewhat distracted because I was at work, you know, working.

The tea was nothing to write home about but since I had very low expectations, I was pleasantly surprised!

Oh and… I nearly fell off the chair when some woman who came in the kitchen to make some tea grabbed the bag of this, carefully examined the label, opened, sniffed it, and dumped a teaspoon worth in her cup. No filter, no nothing. She poured some water, oblivious to steeping parameters, waited maybe a minute if that, and proceeded to fish the leaves out with a teaspoon. That was her idea of making tea, obviously. Waste of good tea if you ask me.


Haha. Sounds like she’d tried it that way before to! Oh man – everyone should have a steeping basket – it just makes life so much simpler.


How much flavour could she have gotten with barely hot water and a minute of steeping? Is a freakin DT honeybush! It’s not some premium tea where you’re to steep 30 seconds


I wish my workplace had a magical tea cupboard! ;)

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drank Green and Fruity by DAVIDsTEA
283 tasting notes

I would have never EVER bought a tea called “green and fruity”. But since someone generously put a bag of this in the cupboard at work, well, why not?

I drank it hot and then lukewarm. Basically I was busy and couldn’t finish a cup while it was still hot. It was surprisingly good! I got papaya at the beginning and then as it cooled off I got more peach than other stuff. Maybe mango. It should only matter to you if you dislike one of the two (peach or mango)" otherwise you won’t care. It’s a nice, ripe fruit taste. Really, really good. As in, I’m going to buy this for an iced drink instead of Coco Lemon Thai good. I couldn’t believe this is Rooibos.

Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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I started drinking loose leaf tea in the spring of 2013 (why do we feel compelled to mark the date of tea drinking somewhat like addicts counting their sobriety days?)

Never been much into tea before. Growing up in Romania, tea was something mom made for you when you were sick. As an adult, my hot beverage of choice has been coffee, both flavoured and regular. I’ve recently stumbled upon Teavana and DAVIDs TEA and quickly got addicted to the latter. Then came steepster and all else followed.

Formerly a mathematician and insurance adjuster, I gave up the corporate world and am now a professional chef. I drink wine and sometimes cheat on it with tea.

I lean heavily towards flavoured black teas. I’ve started to crave the occasional straight oolong and green but so far unflavoured black teas leave me unimpressed.

I’m learning so I drink them all. Am even introducing myself to pu’erh. So far I can do fine with the sheng cause frankly, they don’t taste like pu’erh to me. The shou is another story.

Note*: The virtual cupboard does NOT contain any of the samples I hold since most of them are one-cup quantity.

Note**: My partner, our home improvements, gadgets, mortgage, travel, wine and food have budget priority over tea.


Toronto-ish, Canada

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