525 Tasting Notes


Mmm, oh my. This is good. I knew the quality would be good, but I didn’t expect to enjoy it this much. The mouthfeel of this is almost syrupy smooth. And speaking of smooth…the taste of this tea! Super smooth. Just a bare hint of astringency so that you know this is tea. And the flavors! Creamy and malty. Not very malty, but discernibly malty and mouthwatering. Faint aftertaste of milk chocolate. All tied together with a sense of savoriness so common in Chinese teas.

This is nearly good enough to make me forget how dreadful the weather has been of late. Thankfully, my nasturtium sprouts seem to have survived the flash flooding we had a couple nights ago. In fact, a new sprout showed up this morning! Yay! I can’t wait for the beautiful/tasty flowers and mini lily pad leaves.
In other plant news, my indoor succulent garden has a case of mealy bugs. :( My poor little plant babies. Will it get better once I move it outdoors in the warmer weather?


Oh no, my mom always worries about buggy plants in the house. Moving it outside when it warms up sounds like a good idea.


My MIL gave me some insecticidal soap to spray on it. Hopefully that will help.

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drank Ruby Pie by Butiki Teas
525 tasting notes

I got a sample of this tasty treat from Sil. Thanks for sharing!

This tea is juicy and jammy and yummy. The hibiscus provides a refreshing tartness and nothing more. Balanced and tasty. Great iced!


I’ve been very tempted to try this one, but hesitant to purchase because of the hibiscus. Good to know it isn’t terribly hibiscus-y!


It’s a rare example of hibiscus used well.


haha soo much back and forth on the hibiscus. To the point where i told stacy at one point not to include if she thought it would deter people from buying it…but we both eventually agreed that the amount in here seemed to work for the rhubarb aspect without turning it into one of those teas that we wouldn’t like.


also, haven’t tried this cold but i should do that :)


oh and lindsey – we can do a mini swap if you like so that you can try it before purchasing. just send me a pm/note etc..


Lindsey – PM me if you want some of mine. :)


Sil, you’re spamming my inbox! :p And yes, definitely try this chilled! I think I prefer it that way. :)


mercuryhime – you know that the evil side of me wants to post one word posts in response to your comment…but i won’t grin


Remind never to get on your bad side. Haha

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I had these a while back and didn’t log. I’ve been neglectful. :(

In any case, I found these pearls to be disappointing. The jasmine was pretty mild and the base none too exciting. I think my expectations were a bit high. I love the look of the pearls, but the taste was not memorable. It was a tad malty with a honeyed flavor. Nice but I won’t be buying again.

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I received a bit of this from my swap with Josie Jade. Thanks a lot! This one is unexpectedly tasty! I’ve been having a lot of lackluster experiences with earl greys lately and I sort of thought of this tea as a fancied up earl. Not to mention that I’ve not been enjoying black teas so much lately in general. So I wasn’t expecting too much. I was totally surprised to like this one a lot.

First of all the dry tea is interesting. Black CTC leaves with a few long silver needle leaves scattered in. I didn’t know there would be white tea in this. The fresh citrusy scent is also super appealing. None of that fakey furniture polish smelling stuff that I had been drinking. It’s lighter than just bergamot, which I will attribute to the lemon and grapefruit. The tea itself is brisk and medium bodied. Just very enjoyable all around. I had wanted to try using coconut milk as a creamer in this tea, but it tastes so good plain that I didn’t want to add anything. But then I reasoned that I could add coconut milk to my first steep and have the second steep plain. And I have to say, coconut milk, while giving less of a thick texture, is perfectly tasty, if a bit distracting.

In conclusion, this is a blended black tea I would not mind having more of. Which is highly unusual for me as I prefer chinese blacks. British style teas tend to be interchangeable for me. I’m glad I’ve found the exception.


I believe this is their Earl Grey Supreme with grapefruit flavor added. I have both teas and the leaves look identical. EGS is my favorite Earl Grey, so I knew I would like this as well.

Josie Jade

Yay, glad you like it! :)

Donna A

EGS is my favorite Earl Grey too, and I really enjoy Diamond Jubilee.

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I actually really like this! My coworker introduced this to me. I probably would not have purchased this if left to my own devices. There’s definitely a nice lemony brightness and lots of spicy ginger. There’s also a bit of hibiscus in this, but it works here. This an example of hibiscus done right. A perfection of taste and convenience. Not to mention that its good for a variety of ills. :)

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I’ve been doing a lot of drinking without logging lately. There’s too much going on. :( And I fear my obsession is waning. Though I do still crave a tasty cup and tons of variety. Maybe I just don’t have time to sit down and really appreciate a cup anymore.

Anyways, lets try and get backs the boat! I had a cup of this a few days ago. Sweet vanilla nuttiness! It was like a liquid cookie! Tasted best with a splash of cream. A great dessert tea! Thanks for sharing Josie Jade!

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I’ve been spending a lot more time outdoors with my pups, exercising and gardening lately. I’ve started a miniature container garden! We had a few days of fantastic rare sunny warm/cool days here. Now it looks like we’re going back to the usual disappointing weather in the NYC area. I hate humidity. And work days have been busy. This weekend, unfortunately, is busy as well. I’ve signed myself up for a party today, and then it’s Mother’s Day tomorrow. I’m going to enjoy some tea while I can.

I’ve tried a variety of puers in my life. I’ve decided that I’m not really a fan. While I can drink the cups down quite easily, I never find myself craving them as I do for oolongs, greens and blacks. I’d drink more white but they often make me shaky. But Mandala has a great puer rep so I thought I’d give this a try. I received this sample when I ordered a bunch of puers for my dad’s birthday. I decided to keep this to educate myself. Two months later, I’m finally diving in.

My first thought is that I’m shocked at the smokiness. I didn’t read any descriptions before trying so I was not expecting this aspect. It’s also lighter than expected. Oddly fresh, which is not something I’d expect from a puer. But maybe that’s just because I don’t have much experience with shengs. This is tasty. I don’t think I’ll be craving it ever, but I am enjoying this current cup.

Mandala Tea

HI!! Technically, this is a “mao cha” (unfinished tea) rather than a pu’er. The wild monk cake is an actual pu’er. And there is a huge difference between a raw style tea such as this and a ripened (black) style pu’er, which is famous for its earthy and dark characteristics.

I think this mao cha is incredible as a tea glass style brew, as well, and we have many many customers brewing it that way. It is quite something how it sweetens up in longer brews like that.

You may be interested in trying some other raw teas and brewing them up much like a green/oolong tea using lower water temps. It’s fun to experiment and see what works for you. Some use full boil, others 175. Totally up to you, but it really does change the flavors and aromas, sometimes quite significantly.

Enjoy! And thanks for writing about it! Grateful, Garret


Very informative. Thanks a lot! I’ll give it another shot as a tea glass style brew.

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This tea smells amazing. I got some from AlphaKitty from our meet up swap a while back. I decided to go with a paper filter for this tea since I didn’t feel like cleaning sprinkle gunk off my filter basket today.
The resulting brew is okay, which is a bit of a let down after the amazing scent. I don’t really get chocolate but the marshmallow and caramel are totally there! It has a weird bit of latex aftertaste. And the black base isn’t my favorite, but it’s good enough. Needs a spot of cream to smooth the slight harshness over.


Don’t you hate when the aroma is so much better than the taste? I always try to will the tea to taste better, brewing it over and over in hopes that one day, maybe it will work. LOL!


I sure do! I’ve pretty much come to the conclusion that I simply don’t prefer flavored blacks. I’ll stick to straight Chinese black teas from now on. :)

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Very tasty Dragon Well! Fresh, crisp and sweet. Savory and vegetal. This is the ideal Chinese green. Well, to me anyway. :) And I’m getting in some greens again. I’ve missed my green teas. Blacks were starting to take over my life! Next, I must rekindle my love for white teas.

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drank Chestnut Green Tea by Lupicia
525 tasting notes

Holy cow is this tasty! Sweet roasted chestnuts! Exactly like chestnuts! Amazing! I keep expecting a mouthful of actual chestnut when I sip this, but all I get is tea. Working with this luscious chestnut taste is the lightly grassy green tea that balances out the richness of the flavor. Absolutely wonderful! I love chestnuts, but they are so very seasonal. Now I can have chestnuts whenever I want! weeeee!

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I came from a tea drinking family, but I never appreciated the different qualities and varieties of tea until older. All that time wasted! But I guess I needed to be mature enough to appreciate the tea experience. :)

My favorite teas are green oolongs and white tea. I also love greens, especially gyokuro. I have a huge appreciation for rooibos and honeybush as they are often that only thing I can drink in the evening. I am a relatively new convert to black teas. This is unfortunate for my wallet but extremely wonderful for my palate. :)

In any case, I have a love for both flavored and unflavored teas. They are different experiences for sure, but both enjoyable. I find that it often depends on my mood.

I am on a quest to find a tea that will win my husband over. I think I’m making some headway…

My profile pic features my two lovable puppies, Mr. Snuggles and Sr. Caliente.


NYC / Westchester

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