Sipdown! (92/395)

So I finally get around to giving this tea a more detailed note. It’s not going to be as detailed as some others I’ve written because I just don’t have as much to say about this tea, but it will at least be better than my last couple on this tea because I was paying attention this time! This was part of a hapatite tea swap I did a while back with a lovely girl named Mina, who as far as I know isn’t present here on Steepster. If you’re other there, Mina, thank you!

I find it weird that this tea is called ‘sunrise’ because I always associate honeybush with night time, and never really drink it in the morning. Each time I’ve drank this has been before bed, and maybe some of my issue with this comes from the fact that it was zingier than I expect for that time of day. I’ve written in a previous note that this gave me an ‘orange fondant’ sort of association, and after lookng at the ingredients and finding that this contains orange peel and vanilla it doesn’t seem so surprising! The malva flowers add a weird sort of botanticals note which I don’t think goes overly well with the other flavours, and I’m starting to think that I’m not a marshmallow fan at all. Other than that, though, it’s not a bad tea. The honeybush has a nice honey note which sweetens the orange, and added to the vanilla this creates an orange flavour which tastes something like an all-natural orange sweet. It’s not quite fresh fruit orange flavour, but it’s not artificial-tasting either.

I drank my last cup of this accidentally iced – there wasn’t as much water in the kettle as I expected, so I ended up brewing the tea bag in only around 4 or 5 oz of water, and then I got distracted scrolling through instagram and left it brewing for probably close to 20 minutes! By the time I remembered about it it was on its way to cold anyway, and with it being much more concentrated than expected I thought it would be best if I just topped it up with another 4 or 5 oz of iced water and called it a day. This turned out to be a happy accident, because even though I was more in the mood for a hot tea at the time, this is much less cloying iced and I think that I actually preferred it this way! The flavour combination just works better iced somehow, and the orange is more present than the malva, vanilla and honey which blend together to create a sweet backnote. We parted on good terms.

Iced 8 min or more 10 OZ / 295 ML

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I first got into loose leaf teas when a friend of mine showed me Cara’s Sherlock fandom blends on Adagio a good few years back, but they weren’t on sale in the UK so I started trying other kinds instead and have been hooked for almost three years.

Black teas make up the majority of my collection, but I am expanding my horizons and trying to include a variety of other teas, too. Flavoured blacks are my favourites, but I’m growing increasingly fond of unflavoured teas too. I will update my likes and dislikes as I discover more about my palate, but for now:

Tea-likes: I’m generally easily pleased and will enjoy most flavours, but my absolute favourites are maple, caramel, chestnut, pecan, raspberry, coconut, blueberry, lemon, pumpkin, rose, hazelnut and peach

Tea-dislikes: vanilla (on its own), ginger, coriander, cardamom, liquorice, pineapple and chocolate

I am a 22 year old English Literature sort-of-graduate and temporary bartender. Other than drinking, hoarding and reviewing tea, my hobbies include reading, doing quizzes and puzzles, TV watching (self-diagnosed geek and Netflix addict), football/soccer (I am a lifelong supporter of Sunderland AFC) and listening to classic rock.

I should probably also mention my tea-rating system, which seems to be much harsher than others I’ve seen on here. It’s not always concrete, but I’ll try to define it:

• 50 is the base-line which all teas start at. A normal, nothing-special industrial-type black teabag of regular old fannings would be a 50.

• 0 – 49 is bad, and varying degrees of bad. This is probably the least concrete as I hardly ever find something I don’t like.

• I have never given below a 20, and will not unless that tea is SO bad that I have to wash my mouth out after one sip. Any teas rated as such are unquestionably awful.

• This means most teas I don’t enjoy will be in the 30 – 50 range. This might just mean the tea is not to my own personal taste.

• 51+ are teas I enjoy. A good cup of tea will be in the 50 – 70 range.

• If I rate a tea at 70+, it means I really, really like it. Here’s where the system gets a little more concrete, and I can probably define this part, as it’s rarer for a tea to get there.

• 71- 80: I really enjoyed this tea, enough to tell somebody about, and will probably hang onto it for a little longer than I perhaps should because I don’t want to lose it.

• 81 – 90: I will power through this tea before I even know it’s gone, and will re-order the next time the mood takes me.

• 91 – 100: This is one of the best teas I’ve ever tasted, and I will re-order while I still have a good few cups left, so that I never have to run out. This is the crème de la crème, the Ivy League of teas.

I never rate a tea down, and my ratings are always based on my best experience of a tea if I drink it multiple times. I feel that this is fairest as many factors could affect the experience of one particular cup.

I am always happy to trade and share my teas with others, so feel free to look through my cupboard and message me if you’re interested in doing a swap. I keep it up-to-date, although this doesn’t mean I will definitely have enough to swap, as I also include my small samples.

I also tend to ramble on a bit.


South Shields, UK

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