336 Tasting Notes


Delicious Yunnan black concoction with perhaps a bit of the Darjeeling peeking through. The Ceylon in this cup totally hid behind the Yunnan, or perhaps that’s all the dry leaf my teaspoon picked up. Or maybe my travel mug tampered with things as I was on the go all day. Ok, ok, it was only four hours but it felt like all day. Damn delicious.

Thank you for the share, Sil, and for giving me enough in the sample to have more of this at home in a proper cup or at least not covered up in a thermos-like container: like the context nature intended tea to be drunk in. Preferably wearing flannel pyjamas.

And hurray that the notice feature appears to be fixed! Yay! Thank you, Jason! We appreciate you.

Flavors: Baked Bread, Chocolate

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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Well, this was very lovely in a very Yunnan black kind of way: bread and chocolate.

The day started off with strong rain and angry clouds and easily shifted things on my calendar, so I relished the thought of being able to hang out and do things at home and drink tea and tea and tea. Sadly, the day cleared up.

Fortunately, the neighbours kept the infant away from the adjoining wall for most of the day. Being awoken several times in the night is plenty exposure, thank you very much. Intolerant? Well, yes, but I’ve been putting up with this for months without going over there and pressing their doorbell in the middle of the night, so I think I am doing rather well.

I quite enjoyed this steep and resteep despite my thwarted plans.

Thank you for the sample, Sil. I look forward to another moment with delicious this and the rest of it.

Flavors: Baked Bread, Chocolate

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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Trying this one for the first time today and haven’t made my mind up yet, so today—just today— I am going to be a woman of few words.

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Another one that I really like when I am in the mood for it. Today I was in the mood.

Unfortunately, I was on the go and took this in a travel mug. This tea did not survive that particular travel mug. The very gentle banana was altogether killed off. The coconut was missing in action too. Thankfully, I had brought my thermos stocked with this tea as well and the tea managed to do nicely through that experience. Happily, I drank the not great one first, so I was pleasantly surprised by the other one.

Am I the only crazy person who lugs around a huge heavy bag full of steeped tea through my day?

Daylon R Thomas

I put my bags of loose leaf with my thermo, two tins, and disposable tea bags in my backpack…

Evol Ving Ness

hahaha, psychopath. :)


3 travel mugs every day….

Evol Ving Ness

Raving lunatic.

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Not really much more to say. Cold steep seemed to work best for me to coax out the gentle flavours in this one. Sadly, in my last cup, the white tea dominated with a bit of astringency even with little hint of much else. That said, there had been many many enjoyable cups before the rather disappointing last one.

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Snow is falling here. Predictions are that there will be a lot of snow falling overnight. I wonder whether I’ll be getting out the front door in the morning.

I really like this one: a nice feisty Assam with a pillow of marshmallow softness and sweetness. Some days, it is just perfection just as is. Other days, I’d like more of this plus something else added to it, chocolate maybe, more vanilla maybe, perhaps torrone, perhaps roasted almonds, or maybe the slightest bit of lemon.

Either way, I would be delighted if 52teas kept this one as is around AND perhaps played with possible additions from time to time to riff on perfection.

Flavors: Marshmallow, Vanilla

Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

I just got more of this in the mail. It is awesome! And in light of the storm it would be so lovely if I could stay home and sip tea but I think I will have to trek out in the storm to go to work :(


I hVe an all day meeting, should be fun. I haven’t had time to drink any of the samples you sent and part of me is glad because I can’t get most of them for myself if I love them lol

Evol Ving Ness

Oh I had to get out the front door too. I was just wondering whether there would be so much snow that the door would be blockaded with it. As it turned out, the snow, so far, hasn’t been a big deal, but it sure is cold.

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What a strange lovely tea this is! It is an oolong that tastes like a honey black. I could have sworn that I was drinking honey black.

The small and medium leaves in my clear glass steeper are perfection. Just loveliness.

The tea doesn’t appear to have all that much staying power though. The first two steeps were dark and honey-ed, but the third has already faded to an mineral oolong. I might not go for a fourth steep, but as an experiment, perhaps I should.

Thank you, Ubacat, for adding this to the box.

Flavors: Honey, Mineral

195 °F / 90 °C 4 min, 15 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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Note to self—-you do not actually need any more tea.

My real tea obsession began in February 2015.

Not, sadly, when I had been living and working in China, though I very much enjoyed sampling a variety of teas during my travels there as well. No, no, that would have been far too sensible.

I am a reformed coffee drinker. I still enjoy a long double espresso with a good quantity or milk or cream from time to time, but for now, tea is my thing. All day.

I tend to drink black, green, or oolong tea in the morning to early afternoon. Rooibos or
Honeybush or herbal in the evening. And perhaps some sort of sleepy-type tea in the wee hours.

This year, I’ve been discovering flavoured teas, so it may look like that is all I drink although that would provide a false impression.

Not a big fan of chocolate or mint in teas, but I will try them and, from time to time, have been pleasantly surprised. Also, usually I dislike a prominent cinnamon flavour, if untempered with other things, in teas. Again, I say usually, because there are exceptions.

Also, please note that haven’t quite gotten into the habit of updating my tea cupboard on Steepster, and it is unlikely that I will do this on any kind of regular basis.

I drink my tea black and unsweetened. If there comes a rare moment that I add something to it, I will mention it.

Finally, while I thank large and successful tea companies for tantalizing and beckoning me to the world of tea, I prefer to support independent ventures with real people, real enthusiasm and commitment, and real dreams.

Currently, I am researching monthly tea subscriptions. Perhaps it will keep me out of tea shops.

And here is Shae’s rating scale— which I am using with permission, of course— which more or less describes the way I have been rating teas. I am going to make more of an effort to stay very close to these parameters now.

Rating Scale

1-20: By far, one of the worst teas I’ve tasted. I most certainly will not finish my cup and will likely “gift” the rest to my sweet husband who almost always enjoys the teas I dislike (and vice versa).

21-40: This tea is not good but if I mix it with another tea or find another steeping method I might be able to finish it.

41-60: This one is just okay. I might drink it again if someone were to give it to me, but I probably won’t be buying more for myself.

61-75: This is a consistently good tea. It’s reliable but not necessarily special.

76-90: This one is a notch above the rest and I would gladly enjoy a cup of it any day of the week. I’ll likely be keeping this in my cupboard, but it isn’t one of my all-time favorites.

91-95: One small change and this tea would be perfect. I’ll definitely have a stash of this in my kitchen if you come over for tea.

96-100: No words can describe this tea. It’s an experience, an aha moment. Closed eyes, wide smile, encompassing warmth. Absolutely incredible. Perfect.


Mostly, but not always, Toronto, Canada.

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