144 Tasting Notes
First an experiment:
When I first heard about this tea, I thought it was a cute novelty thing but was skeptical about the jellybeans actually adding anything to the tea at all. So I bought some jellybeans, same brand they put in the tea, and steeped a cup of about 30 jellybeans alongside my cup of this tea.
You guys, it was a lot grosser looking than I thought it would be. I had bought random flavours just like they put in the tea, and it ended up a very muddy looking opaque liquid with little white bits floating(??). I was expecting basically just a cup of hot, slightly sweet water. But it actually had a much stronger flavour, slightly fruity MAYBE, just very very sweet. After a few sips it became kind of disgustingly sweet actually.
So anyway, I guess they might add something to the tea after all.
Okay so this tea:
I was sad at first that it smelled so much like Swampwater, which I couldn’t stand. But to me this is actually like a much better version of Swampwater. Maybe it’s the vanilla, it’s very creamy and nice. There’s still a tiny bit of what I didn’t like about Swampwater in there, so I probably wouldn’t go out of my way to buy a bunch of this again. But I like the rooibos base, I think there might be more of the red rooibos in this one. Pretty nice and it does seem like a spring-y tea. Also, I must be lucky, cause there were loads of jellybeans in my 25g bag! (Or am I unlucky for paying more for the jellybeans than the tea?)
I don’t mind this. It came out pretty weak so I’ll steep for longer next time, but the strawberry and ginger are actually well balanced. It’s fruity and herbal at the same time, but mostly herbal. It has a slightly medicine-y taste to it. And I know there’s hibiscus in it, but it’s not overpowering at all. I wouldn’t guess it was there if I didn’t know.
I would reach for this again if I was in the mood for a ginger tea. I have a feeling it would be good with honey, or iced as people have been suggesting.
WOW this tea REALLY smells like a campfire. I love it! There’s something else in there too that I can’t quite pinpoint. I was surprised when I steeped it that the tea smells as strongly as the dry leaves do. The taste is just the same, it’s like drinking that campfire smell. Which is kind of weird, you know? But I think if I had it a few more times I could really start to enjoy it. I see other people have compared it to a bacon or jerky taste and I think there is something vaguely meaty about it. This is just soooo smoky and leaning towards too bitter for me. Now I’m curious to try other lapsang souchongs.
Also, weird fact: lapsang souchong is mentioned in the song Beautiful World by Colin Hay, a song my friends and I would listen to when we used to go camping!
This smells and tastes just like baked goods to me. Like… a baked pretzel or some kind of dark bread. I’ve never really had a tea like this before! There’s no bitterness and little astringency, and it has a really clean finish. I guess since it tastes like bread I would describe it as malty? I was so surprised by the taste but I like it.
First of all, how do they get the leaves shaped into those little balls?? Is this what CTC tea looks like? I’ve never seen it before but I kind of like it.
Anywayyy, I did NOT like the way this tea smelled when I first steeped it. It seemed to have some kind of wet vegetable smell like weird cabbage or something. When I first tasted it, I thought it tasted that way too. But after a few sips I started getting this honey-maltiness? And a little bitterness that really came out in the aftertaste. This is really unlike any other tea I’ve had, it seems like there’s a lot of subtleties to it. I can see how it would be described as “earthy” too. Also I find it pretty astringent but not offensively so. As it cools I get more of the honey taste.
In the end, I really like this tea. I’ll break it out when I have time to sit down and appreciate it. I tried it straight up this time just because it was my first time tasting it, but next time I’m gonna try it with some sugar as Tina S. suggested.
I was going to pass on this one when I went to get the spring teas, but it just smelled SO good that I had to get 10g to try, even though it has the dreaded beetroot.
I was optimistic but once it was brewed it smelled just a bit off to me and when I tasted it, it was just as I feared. Why always with the beetroot?!? Well okay, basically just this one, forever nuts, and sleigh ride, but it always gives me this aftertaste— not even a taste really, more like a feeling— that I’ve been drinking… blood? Like, blood and acid.
So yeah not a big fan, I’ll try icing the remainder of my small bag but I’m not too hopeful about it. :/
I recently went in to Davids and bought 25g of all their straight black teas (except for the Darjeeling, they were out of that one). I’m trying to develop a taste for straight, unblended black teas, and I’m starting with this one! I’ve been reading quite a bit about it but remember that I don’t really know what I’m doing.
But I liked this one a lot! It seemed to be naturally sweet, with just a bit of smokiness. It’s full-bodied but at the same time light. At first I thought there was no astringency whatsoever but it comes out in a pleasant way in the finish.
Hmmm, which tea should I try next?
I finally got the spring collection teas! I’ve been seeing bad reviews popping up all over steepster, but to be honest this just made me all the more excited, since I tend to love the blends that others hate, and vice versa.
I noticed lots of people complaining about the hibiscus in this one, but hibiscus has never bothered me. Scanning the ingredients for the spring teas, the most worrying one for me was the beetroot in Pink Flamingo (I’ve never tried PF before).
All the spring teas smelled so amazing and fruity and spring-y! Even walking into the store I could smell the spring in the air. After the heavier black teas of fall and winter this is so refreshing.
So, on to this tea. The hibiscus is definitely in the foreground and it reminds me of Kanpe. It’s actually very very close… but fruitier than Kanpe and more sweet, I think. The more I drink it the more I like it. But I can see how if you don’t like hibiscus you could really not like this tea. Of course besides the taste, the big problem with hibiscus is that it’s so overwhelming. I wish it blended a bit more smoothly.
I’m trying to find the black and green teas in here, but I can’t really identify them anywhere. I have a rookie palate though.
But I like this tea. And yes… it makes me excited for spring :)
I woke up early enough to drink this in the morning today! I brewed it strong with no milk or sugar, which is the opposite of how I like my coffee. It’s smoky, full, and bold, with an on-purpose kind of bitterness. I feel somehow more mature drinking this.
Hmm, yet another tea I’m reviewing that I already have a note on… clearly I need to buy more tea.