Bellocq Tea Atelier

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Recent Tasting Notes

80

Home – 7:30 PM

Another (highly overpriced) blend from Bellocq.

This is quite good though. The base tea is thick, malty, and bready. I was surprised to learn that it’s a Darjeeling. The spicing is nice, and it complements the base tea as opposed to lying on top of it. I would guess a combination of clove, cardamom, and fennel or anise. There’s a very subtle floral note, I’m not sure I would know that it’s rose. I don’t really get any vanilla, but it could be the age of the tea.

Tasty, but definitely not worth the price!

Flavors: Anise, Baked Bread, Cardamon, Clove, Fennel, Floral, Malt, Smooth, Thick

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML
ashmanra

Good to know. I have been looking at their site trying to pick something new to try. I am intrigued by National Parks, and I looked at this one but I am a bit tired of Christmas bkends that are orange, clove, and cinnamon. I have enjoyed the cherry and almond or vanilla Christmas teas I have tried. Orange without cinnamon and clove appeals to me, also. I love their Ashmanra Afternoon for when I want something caffeine free, and while it is expensive, at least it is all supposed to be organic and ethically sourced,

Cameron B.

Rofl “Ashmanra Afternoon”, I love that. :P

The blends I’ve most enjoyed from Bellocq are National Parks Dept. and The White Wolf.

ashmanra

I guess autocorrect changed it! It is actually Ashram Afternoon! Ha ha! But Ashmanra Afternoon works, too,

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85

Home – 5:00 PM

This is a beautiful tea – big pieces of cedar, twigs, juniper berries, and pretty blue cornflowers mixed in with black tea leaves. It really does look like the forest floor.

It tastes like the forest floor too, in the best possible way. The black tea here is strong and malty, and a bit brisk. There’s also a nice roasted flavor, I’m not sure whether that’s coming from the cedar or the stems. I’m not sure that I can taste juniper, but the cedar is a nice accompaniment.

I will say I’m surprised at how astringent this came out, especially since it’s not bitter. I wonder if the astringency is coming from something other than the tea itself?

Flavors: Astringent, Autumn Leaf Pile, Cedar, Forest Floor, Malt, Roasted, Sweet, Wood

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 4 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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72

Work – 2:00 PM

Bellocq is one of those websites that pulls you in with its lovely photography and carefully curated collection of blends. I’m not sure that any of their teas are really that great (and a lot of them have rose and/or lavender, which are both no-nos for me). Although to be fair, I do really enjoy their National Parks Dept. and White Wolf teas, and they are somewhat unique blends. But their teas are also quite expensive.

This one is a fairly standard Moroccan Mint blend – gunpowder green tea with mint. Supposedly there is citrus essence here as well, though I’m not sure I pick up on that. The gunpowder green tea is earthy and a bit smoky, with a touch of bitterness in the aftertaste. The mint tastes to me like a combination of peppermint and spearmint? I get the herbaceous, almost musky taste of dried peppermint through most of the sip. Then at the end, I get a hit of chewing-gum-like spearmint. Or maybe I’m just imagining it!

It’s tasty enough but certainly not worth the premium price. And next time I may ignore their directions and steep this at 175° to reduce the bitterness.

Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Bitter, Earth, Peppermint, Smoke, Spearmint

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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78

Home – 4:00 PM

Ahhhh, relaxing on the couch with a nice afternoon tea… What a lovely end to the weekend. ❤

I think I may have underleafed this a bit (I was afraid of overleafing), but it’s still perfectly nice. The base tea is smooth and creamy with classic soft hay notes. The mint and anise are a lovely pairing, adding sweetness and light mint notes with a bit of spice around the edges. As for the mint – there are the both fresher, crisper notes suggesting spearmint, and the more herbaceous tones characteristic of peppermint. There is a bright, refreshing mint aftertaste that lingers for a moment on the tongue.

This is a light and subtle tea, suitable for quiet contemplation in the afternoon.

Flavors: Anise, Creamy, Hay, Peppermint, Round , Spearmint, Sweet

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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80

My new breakfast tea. Easy drinking. Not astringent or grassy. Unlike most teas – which I only like piping hot – this is delicious as it cools. Refreshing.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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I am seriously eating my words about this tea. Well, changing my mind. I had ordered it because ONE PERSON described it as floral somewhere. The company doesn’t describe it that way, and the ingredients wouldn’t lead you to believe it is. But I love me some floral tea and wanted something I could drink late at night.

The first time I reviewed this I remarked that it is good tea but not what I had hoped. Now I really like it. It is sweet, it is good hot, and it is really super poured over ice even with no sugar added. I like tulsi and anise and cardamom and the rose really adds sweetness. Not rose flavor, just sweetness. Dang it, this stuff is expensive but I think I may have to keep it around.

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I bought this because I needed a caffeine free tea that would also help with stress. I hoped it would taste floral to me like it did to another reviewer, because I used to add lavender to plain Tulsi and enjoyed it that way.

I am disappointed to say that this tea tastes exactly like the description from the company says. I get very little floral taste and lots of spice. It could be my mix came out a little different and I got more spices than flowers. Cardamom and anise rule the day here with the savory Tulsi. It isn’t bad, it is just what Bellocq intended to make but it isn’t what I was hoping. I may try adding some of my lavender or purchase Teavivre’s rosebuds and see if that brings this into line with what I was looking for.

If you are looking for Tulsi with exotic Indian spice, you’ll dig it.

ETA: youngest tried it and loved it.

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This was a nice morning cup. I did overleaf a bit, but it was a little heavy on the Ceylon for my taste. At last, I feel like I’ve made progress in my palate development when I can identify a note that I do or do not care for by region :) I am hit or miss when it comes to Ceylons, admittedly heavier on the miss side. I haven’t found many that are anything that really stands out to me with the exception of silver tips and Amba estate Ceylon. This was nice to try, thanks, Sil! Bellocq has such a lovely website… makes me want to buy a lot of tea… :)

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
Sil

Same here as far as Ceylons go!

ashmanra

I only like low grown. High grown are too astringent and citrusy for me!

Nicole

I believe Amba is high grown. What I notice most out of it is eucalyptus – which could translate to citrusy. It is Uva climate which is odd, because I don’t much care for Uva ceylons.

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This is FANTASTIC!!! Deep dark chocolate, malt, some starch. This is exactly what I love in a black tea. Perfect….
Thank you Sil for sharing.

Sil

Woot! Yay for finding a happy tea

Evol Ving Ness

Ok, you can come back now, Dexter. :)

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This is really interesting. Sort of like an aged white. It’s not floral, it’s not hay, it’s not grassy – it’s sweet, it’s a bit corn, it’s a bit apricot, maybe just a touch of honey.
The leaves (sticks) are beautiful, such a strange looking tea.
This is why we keep trying all the tea. I would never have run into this one if Sil hadn’t sent me a sample – thank you. You never know what fun and interesting things are out there, so we keep trying – and this was definitely worth trying.

Sil

stick tea! haha

Sil

i pretty much just bought it for the look of it…because why not?

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95

This is one of my all time favorite black teas! Ingredients include ceylon black tea, org. chamomile, org. poppy flowers, org. lavender, org. cornflowers, natural flavorings. I steep with 1 & 1/2 tsp per cup, 195 degrees, and for the minimum of 4 minutes. And I too will re-steep 2×. I like my tea light, you may prefer 2 tsp per cup and/or up to 6 minute steeping time. It is a bright, delicately aromatic tea which satisfies on so many different levels. I always feel like I’m getting away with something, it’s that special for me.

Flavors: Floral

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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I’m quite liking this one tonight. It’s pretty light and fruity, but has some malt and depth to it. I know I know – I write all the time that I don’t like the lighter fruitier blacks. This one is deeper though, has more going on than just fruit and top notes. More interesting. Dunno I like it.
Thanks Sil for sharing.

Evol Ving Ness

Hahahaa, I love it when our tastes are proven wrong and we discover that yes, yes, we actually do like what we’ve claimed repeatedly is not for us.

Sil

Glad to Share a few of those, even just so you can cross them off your lists

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82

Starting my morning off with this blend. Still not a huge fan of black breakfast blends but this still has some enjoyable notes. Oddly enough the leather notes didn’t fully emerge until I started eating my waffle. Perhaps its the malt notes I’m just not a fan of. Even so it has some nice woodsy quality. The dry leaf has almost a smoky smell like a Lapsang with slight sour cherry notes.

Preparation
4 min, 0 sec

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45

sample from crowkettle this one was just…not tasty. Not for the reasons i expected (ie the rose) but because of the weird spice combination. this is just not for me..kinda tastes like licking christmas potpourri…without the flowers? i dunno. very much not for me

CrowKettle

Yeah, this one is not good. I don’t know what to do with it- pretty sure no one is going to like it. Maybe it needs to be my office/school/commute tea.

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“Floral Death” as dubbed by crowkettle who put some nice warnings on a few fun teas she sent my way. I’m going to have to agree with her on this one. I think there are a few people i know who would love this tea but it is not for me. That being said, evaluating this tea, ignoring that i am NOT a floral fan, it’s not bad. It’s actually got a nice medley here of florals and the base tea is quite nice. Thanks for the share crowkettle! tomorrow we sip on blergamot!

CrowKettle

Glad you could picked up base. This one has suffered from neglect in my cupboard, and I’m pretty sure the flowers have tripled in power out of spite.

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90

This tea is just lovely. It tastes like a bready chocolate Yunnan with the slightest catch in the back of the throat at the tail end of the sip.

But also, it reminds me that I did not take the opportunity to go to Guilin in Guangxi province when I was working in China. Of course, I wasn’t into tea at that time, so I likely wouldn’t have sought this tea out or possibly even found it memorable if I had come across it. Still, it would have been nice to visit with the misty peaks in Guilin. Apparently, it is quite a magical place to be in person. I did enjoy them through the train window as I made my way across the south of the country to Yunnan though: exactly like a Chinese ink scene come to life. In the sense of—wow, this place really exists. I feel quite fortunate to have seen them despite having been in motion.

http://www.guilinholiday.com/images/Photo/6-day-guilin-zhangjiajie-tour/p574_d20130502153010.jpg

Thank you for the sample, Sil. Very enjoyable cups and memories.

Flavors: Baked Bread, Chocolate

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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90

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80

Sil was kind enough to include a sample of this in our tea festival swap. Yum, it’s got that bready-chocolatey Laoshan black-like thing going on, but I may have steeped it too briefly to experience the full flavour components.

Thanks for this, Sil. Enjoyable on this lovely slow morning.

Flavors: Baked Bread, Chocolate

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 2 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
Indigobloom

Can it be resteeped? sounds yummy

Evol Ving Ness

Yes, the second steep was really good, but I was in motion, so my attention wasn’t all there. Tried a third steep, but nope not happening. Thankfully, I have enough for another cup or so. More later.

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76

pulled this one out as well. I should try it as a cold brew because this isn’t a lemongrass overpowering things blend. Instead you can actually get the basil notes to come through. Makes for a unique blend versus other stupid lemong grass blends where that’s virtually all you’re tasting.

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76

I wish there was more basil to this one. What sounded like an interesting blend is largely lemongrass. It’s not BAD, just not what i was hoping for. Admittedly though, as it cools there’s a little more to it, so i’ll have to experiment some more :)

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76

Pulled this one out today as i’m a little under the weather. It’s got an interesting flavour that i think would be good to try as a cold brew. and work esloded. bah.

mrmopar

Hope you feel better soon!

Sil

thanks! here’s hoping

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100

This tea ferments to make a distinctively floral kombucha. Tempered nicely by the subtle tang of the ferment, the brew is supremely drinkable.

Flavors: Floral, Flowers

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 8 min or more 15 g 128 OZ / 3785 ML

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