Octavia Tea

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Recent Tasting Notes

78

First tea of the morning!

Wasn’t totally sure what to expect from this one; it sounds so simple just based on the ingredients and yet the smell of the dry leaf is so… unlike any oolong I’ve ever smelled?

- Very sweet and floral
- Lily/peony/elderflower notes
- Sweetgrass body notes; reminds me of late Spring!!
- Crisp finish; mix of rain/mineral notes
- Balanced overall; medium bodied profile

I enjoyed this one!

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79

Sipdown (336)!

I made this one in my tea press because I knew it would hold the temperature well enough I could slowly sip on it all throughout the day Monday, while the boyfriend was over. My mind was strongly on other things though, and despite drinking this one I didn’t actually pay much attention to it.

I mean, I remember that it was pretty medium bodied and just unimposing in general – a nice, mild flavour. Somewhat fruity undertones, but nothing really distinct or memorable. A little roasty, I don’t think nearly as much as last time even with me not paying full attention.

I don’t know – I think overall this was a decent tea, average quality. Probably would make for a good daily drinker, just going off how unimposing it was this time around and my experience last time. For me though? Just another tea sipped down, and not the worlds most memorable one.

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79

I don’t know why, but I kept putting off trying this one. I brought it to work five days in a row to drink and each day it ended up being the only two from my work haul that I hadn’t made a cup of. Eventually, I asked a coworker to pick a tea for me because I was being indecisive and this is what she chose – purely because of the packaging/art on the label, for the record. Turns out, I shouldn’t have waited to try it! I actually really liked it A LOT

Anyway, here are my notes:

- Quite a strongly roasted oolong flavour overall
- Notes of char/butter/roasted peanut/cinnamon
- With herbacous and almost buttery dill top notes!?
- Finish is a little more well rounded and sweet, with plummy/stonefruit undertones
- Very smooth/pleasant medium bodied tea overall

There’s not much of the sample left at all, which is a shame because I’d really like to see how this would turn out Gong Fu. That just means it’s something to keep in the back of my mind should I ever decided to place another Octavia Tea order, though.

Helena

That sounds quite yummy!

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71

Find yourself a guy who’ll sit aside with you, watch the stars, and write dirty haikus.

Did you know ancient Greece was hella gay? I mean, also hella straight, too. Basically everyone was having sex – it was a very sexually open culture. This is kind of an inside joke between the not-boyfriend and I. Someone will mention Greece and then the other will say something about Socrates getting blowjobs from Greece’s ‘top twinks’. Because even Socrates probably enjoyed a good blowjob.

I mention this, because the other night we were sitting outside drinking tea and he said something corny and poetic like “I imagine the way the moon looks tonight it exactly as beautiful as what it looked like back in ancient Greece”. To which I, equally poetically, responded with this beautiful haiku:

Blowjobs in moonlight
Lips lap up waves of seafoam
Aphrodite born

Which prompted a whole massive string of dirty haikus. It was pretty great.

Anyway – the tea! It was also pretty good. I haven’t really looked it up, but I’m just guessing it’s probably 1st flush because it had the generous malt and floral notes of a 1st flush and none of the muscatel quality that 2nd flush has. I did really enjoy it, though! It was medium bodied and quite smooth. Not the worlds most nuanced, but that’s not always necessary to have appreciation for a tea.

Helena

The tea not the dirty mind :P

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85

Sipdown (242)!

Finished this one off hot at work.

People come in all the time and comment about how the store smells REALLY good, and it’s weird because as staff I can smell exactly what they’re smelling… the first five minutes of my shift. After that it’s sort of like I go nose blind? There’s just so many different smells/aromas that unless I’m opening up a tin of tea to measure something out or make tea for someone I don’t pick up on the aromas anymore.

Except, when this tea was brewing it filled the WHOLE store. One of my coworkers even went and bought us all blueberry muffins because this tea made her crave them that badly. It’s a good blueberry tea! Like, very smooth and well rounded with a jammy sweetness that doesn’t read as cloying at all – more natural, and fresh. I was pretty infatuated with this one, and I’ll be the first to admit I’m super sad this is a sipdown.

Goodbye yummy blueberry tea.

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85

Had a good mug of this while I introduced my twelve year old sister to Friends!

- Very interesting blue/purple liquor
- Tastes pleasantly sweet; realistic but jammy blueberry flavour
- Hints of sweet floral notes
- Just a little bit grassy, but sweet grass notes as opposed to lawn clippings
- Lingers pleasantly on the tongue
- Reminds me of Spring time!

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65

Sipdown (245)!

Iced, with a spot of milk.

I’m definitely enjoying this one more the second time around. Also, I find that the flavours are weirdly more fitting for an iced tea style of prep rather than hot even though I would have personally assumed the reverse would be true. The apple is this lovely mellow sweetness though, and then the combo of the clove and cinnamon along with the sweet, woody quality of the base and extra creaminess of the milk come together in a way that is both warming and spicey but also that vaguely resembles pie crust which really drives home that element of the tea for me.

I also really like DAVIDsTEA’s Spiced Apple but personally this one is better to me because you CAN add milk to it, and DT’s take will 100% curdle. The milk is just the perfect addition to convey the pastry element, and if you’re not feeling the pastry as much and just want the apple and spices you can leave this one straight up and then those elements are more prominent, and delicious in a very different way.

For the record, I still don’t understand what the lemongrass adds.

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65

- Smells INTENSELY of cardamom/cinnamon
- Way more spice notes than apple; the apple is a fainter undertone
- Has a “plumpness”/sweetness to it though!
- All the cardamom and ginger leave an intense tingle along my tongue
- I do get an apple pie vibe, so that was totally acheived
- Don’t really understand the place that lemongrass has in this blend, honestly

Overall my consensus is…

I need to try this one again to form more of an opinion.

teepland

Sounds intriguing but fun! I’m not usually one to enjoy spiced teas but I might have to try this one!

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71

Iced Sipdown (229)

After the let down that was DT’s Peachy Lychee I found myself wanting more lychee teas; and this is a sample I’ve been sitting on for a while so that’s what I went with. The sample turned out to be the perfect amount for an iced cup, so this was a “one and done”.

The lychee flavour is prominant, and pretty realistic, I’d say. I wish the black base wasn’t quite so brisk/malty and full bodied because I think it kills some of the sweet, juiciness of the lychee but overall I think this was a pretty good classis lychee black tea. No frills, just sort of straight to the point. Maybe a touch astringent?

Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OBwS66EBUcY

A continuation of our workplace “Disco Fever” that resulted from someone switching the radio to the Disco Hits station. It was just a fun night though.

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50
drank African Rose by Octavia Tea
5444 tasting notes

Sipdown (309)!

Finishing this one off tonight…

It’s kind of boring, honestly? Very, very strong rooibos base flavour – not a good option for those who dislike the taste of rooibos. Lots of wood, notes of honey, even a little bit peppery. The one thing that does set it apart is that it’s also fairly floral, with some stronger rose notes. That’s not enough to keep me personally interested in it, though. Only time will tell, but I imagine the memory of this one will fade away quickly, and it’ll just be another forgettable tea adding to the tally of things I’ve tried.

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50
drank African Rose by Octavia Tea
5444 tasting notes

Grabbed a sample of this one because I thought it had potential to be something interesting, even though the ingredients seem somewhat simple and safe. As well, even if it did turn out to be that sort of simple flavour I thought it was one I’d likely enjoy regardless.

- Iced and straight
- Smooth with strong honeyed/woody rooibos and rose notes
- Just hints of lemon; honestly expected a lot more lemon flavour overall
- In a way, the lemon tasted a bit of generic lemon water
- Not bad but I imagine it’d be better hot, and the flavour combo isn’t new to me
- It was just a sort of average cuppa verging a little on the bland side of things

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70

I made this one with an extra minute of steep time, a little less tea leaf and then the addition of both milk and cane sugar which resulted in a very thick feeling, creamy cup with a lot of malty sweetness from the black base, some honey notes and then a very soft and soothing lavender flavour. Lavender isn’t my favourite taste at all but with the right amount of doctoring this was actually a very peaceful and relaxing drink that certainly made it easy enough to wind down with for the evening.

It was also my accompaniment on the trip home from work, where I was reading a very, very interesting video game(ish) related article shared to me by someone else. I don’t know AT ALL what I expected the article to be when they said it was really unique and interesting but this was certainly NOT it:

http://letsplayvideogames.com/2017/06/the-transgender-rabbid-who-got-into-kinky-sex-a-laurakbuzz-expose/

Thoughts? I’m just… confused, I guess? I don’t know – intrigued as well, I suppose.

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70

Heyyooo – tasting note 4800!

So, I ordered this one for myself knowing that I likely wouldn’t like it. I’ve never been a fan of lavender, and the idea of basically a straight lavender tea makes me cringe so badly. The challenge for myself was to push past my comfort zone and find a way to enjoy a tea that was completely contrary to my tastes.

So I brewed this one up hot and straight initially – I had to try it first before deciding what to do with it. It was definitely too intense/floral for my liking, and it reminded me of bath soap. However, it also gave me an idea!

With a bit of added coconut agave, this was the result:

- Very strong, natural lavender notes
- Had a nice freshness to it and a tropical flavour quality
- Resulted in what tasted like a superior/better quality version of DT’s Jessie’s Tea
- Really fresh and with the perfect amount of sweetness!
- It suddenly went from tasting like bath soap to a very serene, peaceful cuppa!

What a perfect fix to a tea I otherwise would NOT have enjoyed!

mrmopar

Knock them out Ros!

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83

Cold Brew Sipdown (229)!

Welp, I definitely think this one is just a bit better hot but it’s not unpleasant as a cold brew either. It’s very lemony, and in that way it tastes a lot like a traditional Southern iced tea. It’s also just a bit pithy, but in a way that seems pretty balanced with the rest of the bright citrus.

Honestly, I’d totally consider ordering this one again.

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83

Happy Mother’s Day Steepster Moms!

My little sister made our mom breakfast in bed today, and I contributed the tea! I chose this one because I thought the bright, citrus flavours would compliment the platter of chocolate chip waffles and fruit salad that Sister Strange had concocted. I was pretty spot on; it was sort of like having a glass of orange juice on the side. Hot orange juice.

Actually, really what this reminded me of was DAVIDsTEA’s La La Lemon blend. It’s got the same strong, sturdy black tea base with notes of lemon and orange. However, my biggest complaint with that tea has always been that it’s rather pithy and lacks the brightness and sweetness that I would want from a citrus black tea. This tea, though? Not the case! Everything I’ve wanted from La La Lemon – the juiciness/brightness and strong lemon/orange notes – was there! So delicious, and really perfect for a first cuppa in the morning.

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68

Cold Brew Sipdown (232)!

- Very roasty/nutty top notes
- Strong, full bodied flavour
- Only hints of apricot in the undertones and tail sip
- Finish is very clean/doesn’t linger

Bottom line… I wish there was more apricot.

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68

Hot cuppa.

It’s a little roasty, a little floral, a little nutty, and a little bit of apricot.

What I’m getting at, is that it feels like there’s a few different things going on but none of them are really major focus points for the flavour OR background notes. At the same time, the flavour doesn’t really feel muddled; it’s actually a pretty good balance of the complexities of the oolong base and the added apricot. Smooth mouthfeel, and pretty decent overall. I know I have a cold brew of it steeping right now, so I’m excited to see how a cold prep style with more time to allow the apricot to infuse will compare to this hot cup.

Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7_ajIr90b28&list=LL1M1wDjmJD4SJr_CwzXAGuQ&index=5

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40
drank Mint Julep by Octavia Tea
5444 tasting notes

Cold Brew Sipdown (293)!

So, I started this one as a cold brew AGES ago, and then I kept putting off straining and drinking it because I really didn’t like the tea when I originally had it. So, I think it got like a six day steep? That must have been what it needed though, because last night this was cool, crisp sweet spearmint and hardly ANYTHING else. Like, maybe a bit of licorice root? But not a whole lot, and not much green tea either.

And that spearmint taste was GOOD.

Helena

Is Spearmint ever not good? If so I don’t want to know about it.

VariaTEA

Hahaha just set it and forget it.

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40
drank Mint Julep by Octavia Tea
5444 tasting notes

Iced tea.

Man, I wanted so much from this tea but it was just disappointing…

Basically, Moroccan Mint but spoiled by the gross, cloying taste of licorice root coating each and every taste bud and lingering for way too long than is comfortable. I’m going to have to get creative finishing off the last of this one, I think…

VariaTEA

Well this sounds terrible. Maybe the leaf would make for a good tea bath?

Daylon R Thomas

Do you have any of Octavia’s oolong on your repertoire? I’ve been looking for one to buy in bulk for a daily green drinker with flavor…

Roswell Strange

I’ve tried Apricot Oolong; and I have untried samples of Champagne Oolong and Amber Dragon. I don’t think that I’ve tried any of their other oolongs, though.

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55
drank Lime Blossom by Octavia Tea
5444 tasting notes

Iced Tea Sipdown (237)!

Made this one as an iced tea at work, but to be honest there was something about it that I REALLY didn’t like, and so I actually ended up giving away the last cup or so of the sample to a coworker. The lime taste itself was actually really nice; very bright and both sweet and tangy. It reminded me a lot of that “Green Skittle” sort of flavour that DT’s Sweet Lime has, but without the apple-y undertones. The part that didn’t work for me was the aftertaste – something about it was just… wrong.

Maybe it was too much linden? I don’t know – it just didn’t sit right for me, and I couldn’t even finish the iced tea that I’d made.

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94

Sipdown (247)!

Finished this one off the other night; it’s so amazingly smooth and silky with such brilliant, beautiful vanilla notes on top of a smooth, malty black base.Plus, for the first time I also felt like I got some of the caramel flavour in my cup too. I really, REALLY love this one! Right now, I’m trying not to order more tea and if I do order more I want to focus on new companies so I likely wont be getting more of this any time soon, but it is something I’ll keep in mind if I order from Octavia Tea again!

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94

Hmmm…

Not nearly as mind blowing as the last time I had this. I mean, it was still really delicious and it totally had lots of vanilla flavour, but also lots of average quality black tea base coming through which kind of negated some of that delicious vanilla flavour. The nuanced rose and other floral notes in the backdrop of the sip are pleasant though; I didn’t really observe them the first time around – but they’re present here.

I wonder what the difference in flavour is? I think I used the same amount of leaf as last time but maybe not the same steep time or temperature? Hard to say.

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94

First tea from yesterday.

I actually didn’t pick this one out myself when I placed this recent Octavia Tea order, though if I had seen it on the site I probably would have. Instead, this was one of a couple free samples that the company added into my order. It’s very much something that appeals to me though: a “Breakfast Tea” with vanilla and caramel.

Steeped up, man does this smell heavenly! It’s almost all vanilla rather than caramel but I have to say it’s a really silky, sweet and rich tasting vanilla that does not mess around! It is there and it wants you to know that! I’m absolutely enjoying the creaminess and richness of it. Even with zero additives this has the flavour and mouthfeel of something with milk in it. I can’t even imagine how creamy it would taste WITH milk. As for the other things, the caramel and the rose, I think more than anything else the caramel is acting as a ‘booster’ to the vanilla and making it sweeter and more richer. The rose is light, but present in the finish as this gentle floral detail that adds the perfect touch of layered flavour/depth.

This is the first tea so far from this order that I’ve actually been like “You know what, I should actually order more of that!” and honestly, I think it gives 52Tea’s awesome Amethyst’s Gold blend a real run for its money…

EDIT: Well what do you know, this was tasting note 4700!

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78
drank White Chai by Octavia Tea
5444 tasting notes

Sipdown (279)!

Hot, and straight this time.

Consider me still in a bit a shock, because this is the first time in a long time that I’ve actually really enjoyed a Chai blend. They’re just generally NOT my forte. This one is so light and smooth though, and I greatly enjoy that it’s not really ginger heavy either. In particular, I found this last cup was more cinnamon/clove heavy and as far as the spectrum of Chai spice goes those are probably two of the ones that work the best for me. With that bit of underlying, somewhat pineapple-y, sweetness it all came together in a way that reminded me of some sort of light, airy cinnamon sugar dusted pastry.

I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t order this one again. Though we you consider I had essentially picked it up as one of those teas I wanted to challenge myself with by getting out of my comfort zone with something I wouldn’t normally drink I think that this was a HUGE success.

Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Skwkfl6iI5w&list=LL1M1wDjmJD4SJr_CwzXAGuQ&index=19

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