911 Tasting Notes
I really cut down the steep time and increased the leaf a little (just under 5g for 10oz) to see if I could get more flavor and less I’m-having-a-quick-plant-snack feeling from this tea. It seems to have worked somewhat. Now I’m getting more sweet, light almost-but-not-quite Assam taste with only a faint hint of raw texture/taste to it. There’s still a bit of bitterness that brings to mind oversteeped Darjeeling but it’s decreased and seems to blend with the rawness in a way that, while not exactly pleasant, isn’t jarring. Still not exactly my cuppa.
ETA: Uhm, what happened? It started to cool and I got more rawness from it which wasn’t happy making but meh, I kept sipping. And it got cooler and now tastes like I’ve dosed it with at least one, maybe even two, heaping teaspoons of sugar. Which would normally be neat but for this tea? Just seems weird.
The first steep is bold, smooth and stout – a great wake-up type tea (yes, it is 2pm but I do need to wake up). Honestly though, I’m looking forward to the 2nd and hopefully 3rd steep on this one. Last time, I was able to get some serious milkiness from those steeps so I’m hoping I’ll get them this time, too.
OMG at the caffeine. No wonder this is called “Morning Tea”. It’s been a very nice wake up call for me this morning. I added sugar and milk because honestly, it is strong enough to take it. It’s still not the most special tea ever or anything but it was very drinkable and the wake up factor is a big plus. Plus the slight hint of vanilla, while not distinctively vanilla, gives the CTC Assam a slightly more interesting taste.
This is basically a fairly mild, inoffensive dessert tea with no rooibos evilness to be found. The dry leaves smell awesome – chocolaty, coconut and creamy – but once brewed it tastes more like a soft blend than the smell led me to expect. The blend of flavors is nice, but just a little too mild. Not weak, just not as strong as I was expecting/hoping based on the smell. Though it does make for a more soothing evening tea so I don’t count this one as a total loss. In fact, I liked it more and more as I got closer to the bottom of the cup.
Apparently I had this about a month ago. I didn’t rate it since I wasn’t really sure about it, mate being well outside my normal range of teas. But instead of thinking it over, having some more and rating it, I managed to forget all about this tea. So okay, forgetting I’ve had the tea certainly doesn’t speak favorably for it, but at least it wasn’t so horrible that it scarred me – because that’s the wrong type of memorable. Anyway, I’m prepared to give this one another go and actually rate it this time.
Huh. I think mate and I just aren’t going to develop a close relationship. It’s a little too woodsy and autumnal for me, but not in a crisp-autumn-day-spent-hiking-through-the-woods type of way that I could get behind. Instead, it’s more of an I-live-on-a-commune-with-goats-and-never-shave kind of way. Which isn’t to say that commune living with goats is a bad thing. It’s just that I like my razor and my husband says I can’t have goats (or alpacas) because I’d let them in the house. (He’s right.) So even though this is (very) sweet from the licorice and has a simultaneously clean and cuddly taste, I think it is a little too natural tasting for my personal tastes.
ETA: Dropping the rating a lot (a lot). Licorice apparently gives me bad heartburn. This tea killed me for hours after the cup was done.
The only other Forever Spring I’ve had was SerendipiTEA’s and I didn’t have hordes of luck with it. It seemed rather dark tasting and a bit flat, missing the sweet high top notes that I tend to gravitate towards in oolongs. This one, on the other hand, seems to be all sweet high top note, even though I was impatient and brewed it at a higher temp which normally would decrease the higher floral notes. That makes this tea a fairly surprising one for me. I like it though.
I think if I had paid more attention to it, I could have picked out some of the notes in it but I was just so busy looking for the expected darker notes that I missed the nuances in the top notes – but it wasn’t a single note flavor. There was a note of fruit-juice-like sweetness along with the slight floral notes that was really enjoyable. My taste buds (and brain) are a little wonky today as I’m having some migraine symptoms going on but I really think I’m going to enjoy the chance to pay more attention to this tea in the future. Right now this is a soft rating and therefore subject to change.
This is so tasty. Bold, smooth, thick, sort of malty but not, sort of hay-y but not. It makes me think of a having a nice cup of coffee to wake up with but without the acidity or bitterness. I really didn’t take many notes at all on this tea because I was too busy drinking it. My 12 oz went fast!
I really didn’t plan on being impressed by Teas Etc but I have several ‘must haves’ that I’ll be ordering soon – and this is one of them.
ETA: The second steep (5 minutes) taste like I’ve put milk in it! That deserves a little ratings bump.
I didn’t realize I hadn’t had this one before. I thought I had tried each of my Kusmi Russian blend teas but apparently not. Anyway, taken with no additives. Like all Kusmi teas, this is not overpoweringly flavored. There are soft citrus accents, the most noticeable one being a fresh-lemon taste that gives it a hint of tartness. There is a soft sweetness to the tea that makes it not need sugar but it isn’t as sweet as something like Troika or St. Petersburg. I think the lemony tartness is the cause of this, countering the thick smoothness of the tea and creating just a hint of discord. This is still a pretty tea but I prefer the rich silkiness of Troika (even though it can edge towards too decadent) over this silky tea and fresh lemon mix. Though I will say, the lemon tartness is very well done – it tastes remarkably like real fresh lemon. I would say this tea is more of a match for people that find other Kusmi teas too heavy/silky/rich or those that enjoy lemony teas. Personally, I prefer citrus with more sweetness and less tartness.
I’ve been saving this sweet little monster for when I really need a pick me up. And I need one today so I’m busting this out. I fully anticipate going at least 4 steeps, possibly 6. The sweet, sugary, candy-flower, maripan insanity will actually last that long (or at least it has in the past). I’m half convinced it keeps on going because it is so determined to make me happy. It’s just that kind of tea.