301 Tasting Notes

drank Glacier by Simpson & Vail
301 tasting notes

I am such an oddball. I ordered the box sampler of this – and it’s a great box – but some of the teas were so odd I have hesitancy in continuing to try these. No idea why but I’ll get over it.

Glacier is my preferred of the three I’ve tried so far. I enjoy reading about the history of the parks and the teas on the website. It’s a neat idea and I love “themed tea” ideas.

I love smoky teas generally also. Some of these samplers smell pretty intense. This one is said to have the black tea base and Organic Juniper Berries, Birch Bark, Huckleberry Flavor, Uva Ursi Leaf (Bearberry), and White Cornflowers..

I liked the idea of the non-traditional herbs in there – and by non-traditional I mean not always seen at these tea shops in their blends. Of course if you do the herbalism study you see some of these quite a bit on herbal based websites.

It is huckleberry but I keep picking up blueberrish smokiness. I am not that familiar with huckleberry so I probably just can’t tell a big difference, but as long as it is berry as described, this doesn’t bother me.

The black tea base is heavy, as it has been with all the Park samplers so far. S&V seems to have hefty teas with ample flavoring and strength, and for good prices – just wished they offered more affordable samplers for some you don’t want big boxes for.

I do enjoy this one and have more of the bag to drink and see more on what I think.

I would have thought that their tea, Glacier, would be more of a minty offering due to the name.

Cameron B.

I wanted more of the juniper from this one, adding that piney note that would make sense for Glacier. I think next time I’ll try crushing the berries when I put them in the infuser…

Lupiressmoon

Yes, that makes sense. The name doesn’t fully match the blend. With the 2 oz I still have several cups of this to try again

Martin Bednář

Crushing the berries can help with enhancing the flavours but … not all berries should be crushed.

derk

I love how S&V approached the National Park teas by trying to recreate the taste of the environment.

Lupiressmoon

Yes, it’s a clever idea on their part

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65

Company says, "Our award-winning magnolia green tea won the Gold Medal at the 2017 World Tea Championship. This delicate tea is naturally scented with beautiful white magnolia flowers, giving it a diverse array of aromas that range from deep plum fruit to light citrus. "

Not my cup of tea. I brewed at 3 1/2 minutes at 185 due to the green tea, and it still is bitterish. I didn’t get the butter or the smoothness as described. The smell of Jasmine is balanced and pleasant, but in the cup it’s a little overwhelming when touched with the bitter green, so this one is sadly a nope for me. A shame as I like the name.

I used a satchet sample bag already portioned.

Flavors: Bitter, Jasmine

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 15 sec 1 tsp 4 OZ / 118 ML

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86
drank Morning Mojo by The Tea Spot
301 tasting notes

Company says, “Wake up, Buttercup! Morning Mojo’s boost will help you take charge of the day. This breakfast blend pairs Pu-erh with the ideal black teas to create a perfectly rounded morning cuppa.”

I had a tea satchet sample of this for free from an order.

I know it shouldn’t matter as much, but I love the creativity and care The Tea Spot puts into their packaging designs, including customized bags sealed for these satchets.

I have to say that if you look through the reviews on the website, this is a re-vamped blend. Pre-Organic label, they used a different vanilla, and some fans loved the old version but not the new version. I double-checked I have the newer blend which says organic, so I have no idea if the older blend was actually better or not — the organic trend usually annoys me — but to comply with organic rules they had to change the vanilla which is more artificial apparently.

That said, I really liked this. I was surprised how much. I’m a newb with Pu-erh, but have not had stellar experience with it previously. This one is warming, delightful all around good morning tea. Very good with breakfast and brunch and high in caffeine. Will order more of this one for my keeper shelf.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 4 OZ / 118 ML

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81
drank Casablanca by The Tea Table
301 tasting notes

Company describes as: “Casablanca Tea is a caffeine-free fruit blend that has a very exotic flavor profile. Think of a Saturday market where the fresh smells of various fruits tantalizingly blend in the air.”

This is my last of this one. It is supposed to also be good iced, but I don’t have enough of a sample left to try that, but I have a feeling it likely would be.

There is a wee bit of sourness pre-sugar add, but it is light and fruity. I brewed this one 8 minutes. Purple cup, which I love.

I like it quite a bit – a fun tea for special moods and moments.

It reminds me a lot of Harney and Son’s Indigo iced tea packets with the coloring and flavor.

I do wish their website was less confusing on ordering, do plan to keep this one as a keeper and order more.

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more 1 tsp 4 OZ / 118 ML

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72
drank Blue Lady by Maya Tea
301 tasting notes

Another sample of this one.
It’s now sat in the cupboard longer. I don’t get a soapy taste at all this time.
However, it is bitter still.
Brewed 4 minutes and 45 seconds.
Description is fruity with a touch of citrus. The smell is light and bright, but the flavor is strangely heavy, bitter, and tastes as dark as the soul of the blue lady from the teas’ description

“This mystical tea pays homage to a famed lady who has been known to materialize in front of unsuspecting witnesses in a haze of brilliant blue. The tropical and citrus flavors of this tea loom over a malty black tea, but don’t forget to look closely – specks of blue materialize against the dark tea, honoring the haunting namesake. This mysterious and delicious tea lends a hint of femininity that will curl the corner of your lips into a sultry smile. "

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 45 sec 1 tsp 4 OZ / 118 ML

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75

I brewed this strawberry fields at 6 minutes due to the type of tea.

It turned a dark purple read, the berry is strong. I finished half the cup. Unfortunately like many herbal blends this one is sour to me. The tartness even diluted with sugar is a little intense and makes this one semi-enjoyable. It’s not horrible but it’s not something I’d drink again or do a full order of. A shame since the scene is a nice strawberry jam that got my excited. The first ingredient is listed as cranberries, so you get that particular tartness, and hibiscus is the second, which gives the strong sour fruit flavor. Perhaps this would be better if they changed the order of ingredients. I would have liked more of a strong strawberry without the citrus lip pucker.

Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 15 sec 1 tsp 4 OZ / 118 ML

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80

The company describes this tea as “A tasty twist on earl grey for any aspiring captain”

This is one of their better blends. I do taste the undertone of nuttiness, although I don’t really get an earl grey at all for some reason. Not sensing bergamot. I had this as a sampler and their samples are slightly small and for two cups. It may have been a freebie sent instead of a sampler ordered, but their samplers are generally a tsp or slightly under. Did this one in 4 oz boiling water for 5 minutes.

As it cools slightly, an almost maple nuttiness comes out stronger. Not bitter but almost inching towards bitters cousin

I would not call this an earl grey tea personally, but more of a warming, nutty, black tea.

Flavors: Maple, Nutty

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 15 sec 1 tsp 4 OZ / 118 ML
Cameron B.

I did their advent calendar a couple of years ago, and it was like the world’s tiniest sample sizes ha ha…

Lupiressmoon

YES! They give a slightly too small sample

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86

Second sample cup and I really enjoy this one.

Sadly looks like the tin and larger size is sold out currently at August Uncommon during their Black Friday Sale :(

Preparation
1 tsp 4 OZ / 118 ML

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76

Company States:
Tastes Like: sticky rice, steamed banana leaf, orchid
Feels Like: a beach bonfire at sunset

Um. I brewed this one for a full five minutes and am not getting the flavors above at all.

What it does taste like is a pleasant and smooth Oolong tea.

I am going through my samples for a Black Friday order. To me it doesn’t stand out enough for a full order but it is not a bad cup.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 4 OZ / 118 ML

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70

Company states:
Tastes Like: peach, crème fraîche, iris, lime blossom
Feels Like: georgia o’keeffe flowers

I feel like if you are a fan of peach teas, you may enjoy this one more than I did. There is an almost tobacco undertaste for some reason. A very small almost bitterness that may be the pistachio?

Not horrible but not to my tastes.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 4 OZ / 118 ML

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Profile

Bio

I have a drink obsession in general – daily lattes and coffees, and of course teas of many varieties. I mainly drink hot tea in Florida, but still enjoy the occasional southern sweet iced.

My preference is black tea, although I’m open to trial and error with others. I like the old fashioned English style tea cups, tea parties, food pair-ups, mini desserts and pies, cubes of sugar, small collection of Rose Red tea pets, you get the idea. I will always have an old fashioned tea kettle on the stove, but have recently purchased an electric tea kettle that I absolutely adore. I’m lazy by nature, so I have switched to stuffing tea bags for the loose teas to save on clean-up and disposal with other strainers.

I love smokey teas, non-bitter, not overly astringent, strong tea background mixed with flavored teas, no artificial sweetener tastes, balanced florals IF there must be a floral. I used to love spice, but it has to be done right. A former chai fan – now it reminds me of colored pencils. Cinnamon sounds good but so many teas have it artificial or odd tasting. Same goes for chocolate, some things have to be done just right to work.

Primary Tea Companies currently in 2022 – Harney and Sons, August Uncommon, Simpson & Vail, Fusion, Tea Spot, English Tea Store for odds and ends, The Tea Table

Most missed tea place and tea: Plum Brandy Cheesecake by Butiki

Very picky with anything Roobios, and Darjeeling/Oolong are hit or miss depending on the blend and my taste buds. Mint works in a mood but I’m not a big fan. Gravitate toward good name blends and fall themes when doing yet more sampler orders.

I like adding a cube of sugar to almost all teas, not usually milks. I don’t like stevia or any artificial sweetener taste. I adore honey, but to me it doesn’t suit tea unless I have a sore throat as both the tea and the honey change their flavor profile quite a bit if I mix them.

Location

Lakeland, Florida, United States

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