508 Tasting Notes


My morning tea today to pack up in a carry mug before I sprint out the door. Vanilla black and delicious. I find this to be such a soothing sip when out in the world, or at home, or wherever.

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So I picked up my sample black tea packet to review for the Toronto Tea Festival 2018. I noted that two of the teas in the packet will be heavy on bergamot as if to purposely torment our Sil. Hopefully, the others will make up for it.

This is the first of the teas that I am trying and this is my first cup of this.

The dry leaf is a bit on the green side. After steeping, the first few sips were a bit on the green side too, with a richer muscatel coming through as the tea begins to cool. Still, the sip is a bit drying in the mouth.

I too am missing the promised malt and cinnamon. Nope, not there.

I’ll be steeping subsequent cups at a lower temperature and will withhold rating till then. I am hoping that the drying aspect disappears altogether with the cooler steep. Let’s see.

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drank Banana Split by DAVIDsTEA
508 tasting notes

Drinking this straight up and unsweetened. It appeared to be just rooibos in the dry leaf that I had captured in my spoon, but after steeping, I am finding banana and chocolate in every sip. Sweet but nicely so. Certainly from era before DTs decided to stevia everything to death. Lovely.

Raising my rating up a notch or two.

Evol Ving Ness

Totally and absolutely agree with you.

Once David left, there seemed to have been an abrupt departure from the many blends from DTs that had caught my attention to an overly sweetened style AND with many that just reeked of artificial flavourings. There are still a few that I think are pretty awesome, but all in all, that and their having gotten rid of the previous frequent steeper awards and dramatic price increases and I no longer choose to shop there. I will buy the occasional thing, but I used to drop serious money there on a monthly basis.

Their target audience now, I think, is the very young who would otherwise be drinking sodas or other highly sweetened beverages. Oh well.

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drank Banana Split by DAVIDsTEA
508 tasting notes

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When I started drinking this with real cream added, I discovered a whole new world of carrot cake and intricate interwoven spice deliciousness with the added cream element.

Sadly, this has been sipped down as once I found this deliciousness, I had to continue going with it until it was gone.

I continued to carry the empty tea packet with me as a reminder to post and testify to the delight that I had discovered. With cream, this was a solid 100. Maybe more.


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Beautiful golden mossy leaf.

I am steeping western style, my own variation of it.

Initially, the steeped tea felt a bit one dimensional, but as it cooled a bit, the maltiness and caramel and cocoa and breadiness came out in full. Lovely, just lovely. A very enjoyable cup. I look forward to the next one.

Third steep of caramel and sweet potato goodness and the tea is still going. It just might make a fourth steep flavourful enough to enjoy.

Thank you, teabento, for the sample of this engaging tea.

Flavors: Baked Bread, Caramel, Cocoa

200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

You’re welcome! I often have the same expierience: after the tea (not only this one) cools down, it taste fuller, richer and more complex.

Evol Ving Ness

Good thing I prefer teas once they have cooled down a bit or even further than just a bit. :)

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This, btw, is the Spring 2016 harvest I am talking about. I hesitate to make yet another heading though maybe I should.

I very much enjoy this. caveat—> If I do not drink it around the same time as the Classic version.

The Imperial Grade adds that astringent catch in the back of the throat that the Classic version does not have.

I steep both at a lower temperature to maximize the chocolatey malt deliciousness.

And 500—whoop!




sounds nommy!

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Just not the cup of joy that I had been looking for. I think it may be the bergamot clashing with the spices for me. I like both, of course, but the notes here are discordant. Both drown out the berry which, I think, should shine. ymmv.

Or maybe it needs vanilla to soften the rough edges. Or marshmallow. Or something. Yeah, either add something or take something away.

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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.

*note—this is way out of date, so if we are doing a swap and you are checking to see what I like and dislike, mostly never mind what you find below. One of these days, I will update this. In the meantime, check what I’ve been drinking and use your own judgement. I like all the teas. Well, I am open to trying all the teas.

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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