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Recent Tasting Notes
I was looking for a replacement for the Samurai Mate Chai from Teavana since I won’t be able to get it anymore. It’s very close, but what I liked about the Adagio tea was that it had more chai flavor and it wasn’t pre-sweetened. It’s not a really strong chai but I prefer mine more on the mellow side anyway. I was happy with my find.
Flavors: Cardamon, Cinnamon, Citrusy, Clove
Sipdown no. 67 of 2017 (no. 348 total). Sample tin.
Made a big pot Western style to finish this off. Gonna take a huge mug of this and snuggle under the super soft fuzzy sherpa blankie I managed to score at the department White Elephant exchange.
I have a lot of oolong. I have way more oolong than I have patience and time, so I expect in the near term I’ll be saving the multi-steep experience for the really off the charts ones.
Pretty sure I tried this once before and accidentally logged it under Formosa Ali Shan. But maybe not. It’s possible I had two different Ali Shans from Adagio. I went through a period where I tried a bunch of their samplers, including two or three oolong ones.
In any case, I can’t find any evidence that this one ever existed on the internet — except that I’m holding the tiny tin in my hand.
The only samples I have left now are oolongs, with the exception of one black tea. I thought I’d give this one a try today in the gaiwan.
It’s a green looking and smelling, a sort of buttery, floral smell in the tin. The tea is rolled into irregularly shaped balls with stems visible. It looks a lot like the picture of the Formosa Ali Shan, here: https://steepster.com/teas/adagio-teas/11434-formosa-ali-shan
I rinsed and took it through a number of steeps starting at 15 seconds.
The first steep smelled lovely — milky/buttery, lilac — captured subtly in the flavor. The flavor wasn’t a deep one, but was refreshing. The tea was pale yellow.
Second steep, 20 seconds. Darker color (medium yellow) more floral, less butter in the aroma. Flavor was similar to first steep but slightly more robust.
Third steep, 25 seconds. Even darker (golden yellow). Still heavily floral in the aroma. By now the leaves had fully unfurled and doubled the volume of leaf in the gaiwan. I started to suspect that I had in fact written a note about this one before but put it in the wrong place because my experience of all three steeps so far was quite similar to what I wrote under the Formosa Ali Shan. The flavor didn’t change in any discernible way from steep to steep.
Fourth steep, 30 seconds. The color held steady at a golden yellow, as did the aroma. Before this steep, I noticed that the cup had a sugary, pastry-like smell to it, which was very appealing.
It’s a pleasant green oolong but doesn’t evolve a lot from steep to steep, which is another quality that makes me think I tasted this once before and wrote a note under a different name. Then, I called the tea I was drinking a Johnny One Note — this is pretty much that.
I considered taking it through more steeps just to see when it reached exhaustion, but by the fourth it was getting a bit of a bitter note in the finish and didn’t have that swell of flavor in the sip. I will probably drink the rest of this Western style since it doesn’t seem to pay to go through multiple steeps.
Flavors: Butter, Floral, Milk
Wow. I agree with other tasters that the initial scent of bergamot is a punch in the face. However, the tea’s taste doesn’t concur with that punch. This is an incredibly smooth, soft brew. It’s the first tea I’ve ever had that reminds me of actual velvet. Adding cream actually diminished the coconut notes for me. Adding a dash of coconut milk, on the other hand, makes this downright heavenly. It’s a really good thing for my wallet that this is only available once a month!
The scent of the dry leaf punches you in the face. It smells VERY heavy of bergamot, almost off-putting, actually. I could also smell the lavender and the coconut. I brewed this tea for 4 minutes at 212F. After brewing, the bergamot smell was much more subdued, which made me happy. It tastes like an earl grey tea with a faint hint of bergamot. I think the lavender and cream really shines through here and I get just a hint of coconut at the end. I was hoping the addition of some sugar will bring out the coconut flavor some more but it didn’t. This tea is also astringent – it leaves my mouth feeling dry, but it isn’t unpleasant. Overall, this reminds me a lot of Zhi Tea’s Violet Femme, minus the coconut, and the Violet Femme is not as drying to the palate in my opinion. Overall, this is a lovely tea, especially with the addition of some sugar and a splash of cream.
Flavors: Astringent, Bergamot, Coconut, Cream, Lavender, Lemon
The flavor smells rich and delicious, and it’s very berry right off the bat on the tongue. However, the primary response me and mine both wind up with is “very tangy”, and a little tongue-curling. Not too sweet; we had to add a lot of sugar in. That doesn’t mean it’s “bad” by any stretch. It’s not as full-bodied as the raspberry patch, but that’s a really good thing. That makes this tea light, super drinkable, still notably berry flavored without tasting fake, you know where it came from and its quality.. overall a great, mild-flavored tangy fruity tea. :D
Flavors: Blackberry, Blueberry, Cream, Fruity, Strawberry, Sweet, Tangy
The first thing to note about this fruit blend is… don’t get excited about the name. The name is deceptive. It leads to disappointment. In those first few sips you’ll be completely and utterly heart broken.
Yes, this blend contains coconut and, yes, it also contains pineapple, but it also contains a whole host of other ingredients that completely suppress the classic Pina Colada flavour you may have been hoping for. Once you’re over this fact, and trust me it took some getting over, it is possible to enjoy the fruity punch. Coconut, surprisingly, is not the overbearing flavour in this. In fact the hibiscus provides a fruity musk overtone that batters away the under notes of the remaining ingredients. It’s fair to say that the after taste is somewhat worthy of the name of this blend, but it’s very mild and takes so concentration to notice it.
To be honest, Pina Colada is a fairly good fruit tea that’s even better iced and could actually be a good base for a fruity cocktail. However, it’s not the best, with downfalls that include it’s inappropriately deceptive name and a tad too heavy on the hibiscus.
For more visit www.TastetheTea.co.uk
Flavors: Coconut, Fruity, Hibiscus, Musty
The smell for me was very offputting. Like lemon pound cake which was not enticing for me. So I put off trying it for a little while. But once steeped it doesn’t taste how it smells which is good. I’m only getting a small hint of coconut it gets lost in the bergamot. But this tea is kind of good. I wouldn’t drink it daily but once in a while it’s yummy. I wish I just got a sample though instead of 3oz. I wish there was more coconut flavor and that it went a little easier on the bergamot. This tea reminds me of London fog lattes without the lavender.
I brewed this strong, using extra tea and extra time, as I know honeybush teas tend to be on the light side. This tea smells spicy in the bag, cinnamon and ginger, and brews up with similar pie-like flavors. The honeybush is nuttier and a bit more caramel-like compared to the rooibos. If you can’t bring yourself to drink rooibos vanilla chai, this will probably be a nice decaf chai alternative. That said, it has additional pumpkin flavoring, which is sort of starchy and gently vegetal with lots of cinnamon and spice. The flavoring is the same as the pumpkin chai tea, so you should know that going in. If you like all things pumpkin spice, this will also be a winner.
Flavors: Butternut Squash, Caramel, Cinnamon, Ginger, Nutty, Pumpkin, Spices
I really tried to follow the brewing instructions on this one, keeping the water a little cooler and steeping for a full 2 minutes. The dry leaves are very fine and soft, I could see how this would be crushed to make your own matcha. The dry leaf is not overly fragrant, smelling gently vegetal and nutty. The tea brewed up a very pale green, and was delicate in flavor, tasting similar to how it smelled: gentle, grassy, vegetal flavor, sweet in a natural way, with a pop of more barky, nutty flavor at the end. This is a tea with a lot of potential. I will have to try cold-brewing it, and maybe even crushing it for matcha.
Flavors: Grass, Green, Nutty, Vegetal
I like my chai teas the spicier the better. This one is okay. it takes a lot of leaves to get it strong and spicy, and the mate isn’t as bold as the usual black tea base. The flavor is nice, very forward in ginger, cardamon, and anise. It makes for a super smooth and sweet chai without any sweetener. If you prefer mate tea, this would be a lovely change of pace, and perfect for fall. Personally, I need a little more boldness and spice.
Flavors: Anise, Cardamon, Cinnamon, Ginger, Hay
Peach and green. I made this tea with water, no sugar or milk, and drank it iced, frothed up in my thermos. It was a lovely summertime boost on a hot afternoon. The matcha is decent, grassy and smooth, and the peach is sweet without being too artificial. A fun experiment. I was glad I could get a small sample and try it out.
Flavors: Candy, Grass, Peach
Tried this tea today after I had a tea emergency at work. My stash ran out and the only thing left in my work tea drawer was a sample tea bag of this. This tea is just…meh. It had that fake citrus kitchen cleaner aroma – not very inviting. The brewed tea had a strong, slightly tart citrus flavor which competes with the smokey green tea base. The citrus is overpowering at first but tames down a bit as the tea cools.
Once more I’m reminded of why I’m drawn to straight and mildly flavored teas. The aggressive flavoring combined with low grade tea kills it for me. If you want citrus you’re better off just brewing your favorite green tea and adding a squeeze of lemon or lime to it.
Flavors: Bitter, Lemon, Lime, Smoke
Only available on full moons. The leaves smelled sweet that reminded me of an orange cream popsicle. I brewed it at 212F for five minutes. The black tea and bergamot taste is very strong with a subtle fruity, sweet after taste. Next time I would like to steep it for maybe three minutes to get more of the coconut creme flavors.
Flavors: Bergamot, Coconut, Cream, Vanilla