Butiki TeasEdit Company
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Recent Tasting Notes
An interesting mix of vanilla and mint. I did try to add a little bit of honey, per the suggestion of other reviewers but didn’t find it to add much to the flavor. I definitely felt a bit of calm relaxation despite the claims of high caffeine content so that was nice.
Flavors: Earth, Herbaceous, Mint, Vanilla
This note is really just for personal use – I guess sealing this in a ziploc bag in the freezer after Butiki’s demise didn’t help the flavor any. There’s absolutely no citrus flavor or aroma left, just bitter black tea. That’s not their fault, and I won’t numerically rate this as it wouldn’t be fair.
The dry scent is creamy and sharp with nutmeg spice, while in the cup, the nutmeg fragrance mellows and sweet cream takes over. Infused 1 teaspoon in 8 ounces of water about 15 seconds off the boil for ~3 min 30 sec, which produced a medium reddish liquor. The taste is smooth and accessible, the nutmeg and cream blending seamlessly and subtly into the tea flavors. Medium body, mildly bright without aggressiveness, and extremely drinkable without milk or sweetener. The subtle nutmeg taste lasts for quite a while after a sip.
I’m simultaneously interested in trying it sweetened and milked, and hesitant to alter its serene simplicity. I’ll probably give in and try it enhanced later … but for now, I have half a cup of untouched goodness that remains to enjoy.
Poetic waxings: I think of a cool, sunny spring morning in a mountain temple, with silence and green slopes and the fullness of the living world all around.
Additional infusions: Tried a second infusion at 4 min. The resulting liquor is a touch lighter in color and the fragrance seems minutely more floral. The taste is definitely lighter, too, and not one I think would stand up well to milk or sweetener, but the liquor is significantly sweeter on this infusion to balance things out. Better on second infusion than some teas are on first infusion, so I’ll take that.
Flavors: Cream, Nutmeg, Spices
Could have sworn I’ve reviewed this before?! Odd.
Anyhow, I enjoy this tea… some cups were a lot better than others. This last cuppa was best out of them all. The taste is ok, but the mouthfeel is most pleasing. All sunshiney and happy. I think it was the mint. The first and second steeps were great, but the third started to fall flat on me.
Oh! And it reminds me a lot of AQ2T’s On Wisconsin Jade Oolong in the added flavouring (which I may pass on to another tea drinker, as I have another creamy oolong or two that I enjoy more)
I’m not exactly sad to see this one go, in the end. There are other Butiki teas I’ve mourned the ending of a lot more :P
Sipdown (25)! The last serving was full of so much delicious apple, cinnamon, and potato dusty bits; who says tea dust can’t be delicious?
Although this isn’t an original, and I still have the more favoured Potato Pancakes & Applesauce, it’s still hard to let go of yet another Butiki tea. Like so many of Stacy’s blends, this concept was so unique and artfully blended. Now that I’m in the twilight hours of my Butiki stash I wish I’d ordered so much more (except I did; I just drank them right away).
Also, this totally held up to aging, especially when compared with my batch of With Open Eyes which is definitely getting tired.
You are missed.
Flavors: Apple, Butter, Cinnamon, Potato, Vegetal
This tea reminds me of the David’s Tea version but I like Butiki’s slightly better. You can taste the quality in Butiki teas and the flavourings are always so spot on. You can also taste the love and care that they put into each blend. Such a shame that they closed their doors. This has that eggnog flavour without being too sweet or intense. Smooth, light, with a touch of spice. I have never had a Butiki tea that I have failed to like yet! I’m glad I stocked up before they closed up shop. Their teas were worth every penny I spent on them.
Flavors: Eggnog, Nutmeg, Spices
The observance of Lincoln’s birthday seemed like a better time than most to finally finish reading Coates’s Between the World and Me. This is the tea I drank while doing so. I was not paying full attention to the tea but it seems to have lost some of the chewy mallow flavor that I disliked when the blend first came out. Now it’s more of a creamy lime. While I still find it a little odd, I do like it much better now than I did when it was fresh. This would probably be a good cold brew if the leaf can last until warm weather returns.
Flavors: Creamy, Lime
I’ve gotta say that as much as I love Butiki’s other blends I’m really not liking the base they used in their pu-erh blends. It has a bitter, very ‘dirty’ undertone no matter how well I rinse it. It’s a taste that strong enough to alter the flavourings added to the tea making the whole thing taste rather ‘off’. I think I won’t bother finishing off this blend or the Grasshopper Cheesecake. They can go in the garden come spring.
And finally, with a cup of my favourite Butiki tea (besides Maple Pecan Oolong, which doesn’t count since I already had written up tasting notes on it), my Butiki drink-a-thon comes to a close. It’s been a long, but thoroughly enjoyable month, and I’m glad I did it. Now even if the flavours fade, I will know that I have at least one good tasting note on each of my Butiki teas. It also marks the start of a New Year’s resolution I intend to keep – to make a new, smaller-goal tea resolution each month and stick to it! I’m stubbornly ignoring the fact that it’s almost 2:30am now so technically the last couple of my Butiki teas were reviewed after the end of January, because it doesn’t make too much difference, except to my pride, and I’ve always counted the day as ending whenever I go to bed rather than at midnight, anyway.
Funnily enough, this will likely be my least detailed of my recent tasting notes – I’m totally exhausted and tasting-note’d out for now. If it weren’t the last day of my challenge I would have left this ‘til tomorrow. Still, I can pretty much guarantee there’ll be plenty more tasting notes on this in the future, because I really do adore it. I love how fragrant this tea is, and how flavourful yet delicate at the same time. It makes total sense that it was inspired by a perfume. It’s floral, but creamy and sensual, and truly aromatic. The main flavours that always stand out to me are coconut and lemongrass, and as a result it has a Thai sort of connotation to me. It’s also one of the absolute prettiest teas I’ve ever seen. When brewing this cup I realised I’ve always drank this plain, and never had even the slightest inclination to add any sweetener, even though I’ve drank it often enough. I tried it, just in the name of fairness, and it brings out the creamy side of the coconut much more. It’s more dessert-like this way, but I don’t know if I’d say I prefer one way or another. Mostly it’s just different.
Can tea be art? I think so. I’d go so far as to call this beautiful, both visually and in flavour. It’s one I really savour, each time I drink it taking tiny sips and waiting for the lingering aftertaste to fade before I take the next. I’ve been known to make a single cup stretch out over a whole three-hour-long modernist film, and I almost never reach the bottom of my cup before it goes cold. But that’s okay, because it’s just as delicious freezing as it is just-brewed. This is a wonderful tea to end on. I think it perfectly illustrates Stacy’s artistry as a tea blender/alchemist, and why we all miss her presence so much within the tea-drinking community. There will never be another quite like Butiki.
Resteep. I think I should have used cooler water because this cup is a little more on the astringent side than I’d expected. The caramel and apple notes are still there, but it’s lost the delicious nuttiness that I experienced from this last time. Bummer. Note to self: pay more attention to brewing this one.
Oh, I am so mad about how much I love this tea. It’s magic in a cup. I’m also surprised and a little sad to see that I seem to be in the minority here, not too many rave reviews of this on Steepster.
This doesn’t smell like much to begin with, in the dry leaf nor in the brewed liquor, but I’d much rather have a tea taste amazing than smell amazing, anyway. Plain, it is incredibly nutty on first sip. Is there any nut flavouring? Is that just from the Gui Fei?? Surely it can’t be… but I think it is! It’s incredible. It tastes just like those roasted candied nut pieces you get from the cinema as an ice cream topper, and I love those. The caramel is present along with the nuttiness too, creating a praline-like impression, and the apple is noticeable as a back note which builds the more you sip. Soooo much happy whirly deliciousness. I added half a teaspoon of sugar, and the nuttiness becomes not so dominant any more, the apple and caramel notes seem to take over more this way. This is the way it tastes most like a caramel apple, and though the nuttiness is still there in the background and mainly the aftertaste, I find myself wishing they were more present still. As it cools down I get my wish – the nuttiness grows increasingly present once again! Only now the caramel and apple notes stay prominent, no more taking a back seat for them. Caramel-dipped apple rolled in toasted nuts. That’s exactly what this is and I am crazy for it. I could drink this forever but I only have a few more cups’ worth left. Still, the Gui Fei barely opened up at all with this steep, so I’m hopeful that I’ll be able to get at least a couple more delicious steeps out of this particular leaf before I throw it out. Oh, how I love good oolongs!
Side note: In case anyone was wondering, this probably makes my top 5 Butiki teas. That’s how much I love it.
I wanted to try Butiki’s White Rhino for a long while, but never managed to pick any of it up, and couldn’t find any other companies that sold it (at the time – What-Cha carries one now that I’m probably going to pick up after I end my no-buy), so I was thrilled and relieved that I managed to pick up some of the last of this on the original White Rhino base just before Stacy ran out. In fact, if I remember rightly I think it might have been this tea that finally convinced me to place a Butiki order (which was quickly followed by two more). I was convinced I was going to love it, and while for the most part I was right, it doesn’t quite blow me away like I expected it to.
The boiling steeping suggestion on this terrifies me, but I took a deep breath and went for it, and surprisingly-but-not-really-all-that-surprisingly, it paid off! Man that White Rhino can take a beating! The flavour is predominantly butterscotch, and whilst I do love butterscotch I find it quite sickly as strong as it is here after a large mugful. I may stick to smaller amounts in the future, but at least I know it’s good for taking care of a sweet craving! I didn’t add any sugar because of how sweet it was on its own. It smells absolutely divine, really truly like liquid butterscotch toffee in a mug. I don’t pick up on much of anything else in the scent apart from the incredibly rich buttery toffee, and this is reflected in the flavour though the other notes do come through a little more. A bitter chocolate note comes through at the end of the sip and helps to counter the sweet butterscotch, as does the coffee note. There is a mild, lingering nuttiness which I wouldn’t specifically attribute to hazelnut, but it contributes a nice roundness to the blend all in all, adding a little complexity and just that something extra to give it dimension.
While not my absolute favourite of the final Butiki bunch, it’s certainly up there, and I’m very happy to have managed to pick some up. This is a special occasion tea for sure.