2157 Tasting Notes

drank Typhoo Decaf by Typhoo
2157 tasting notes

Another Steepsterite reviewed this as follows: The king of bagged decaf black tea. Accept no substitutes! I believe I agree. Nothing fancy or subtle, but enough strength to make this a viable substitute for bop-you-on-the-head builders tea.

Shae

I’m always on the lookout for great decaf black teas. Thanks for sharing!

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OK, experts, are TenRen and TenFu cousins? Stepbrothers? Identical twins? A friend whose husband travels shared a little two-teaspoon sample packet with print so small it was nearly indecipherable. Anyway, my bifocals are pretty sure the label said TenFu, but the logo was almost indistinguishable from TenRen and the lovely, long blonde leaves look just like the ones in this picture. Everything else was in Chinese.

Tea itself: Superb. Sweet wheat bread. Will resteep this last spoonful as many times as possible before it becomes dishwater.

ashmanra

Neat! Sounds nice, but I have no idea on the ren vs fu thing,

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No doubt I’ve said this before, but I am always intrigued by the subjectivity of flavors in tea reviews—what tastes like homemade Christmas divinity to me may taste like sweaty sneakers to you. Case in point: this Keemun Congu, that according to its proprietor, has a wine undertone and a smoky finish.

My take on it is completely different: light-bodied and very fruity, maybe cherry-grape (I guess that’s where they’re getting the wine) and if there is any smoke at all, it’s just a teensy wisp from a snuffed-out candle. However, this is not to say it’s bad tea. It drinks like a very well-behaved English Breakfast blend. I wonder what you’d think. :)

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drank House Apple by TeaMaze
2157 tasting notes

I have dearly missed Celestial Seasonings’ Sweet Apple Chamomile, so I just homebrewed my own. This is (truthfully, a little pricey) packet of dried apple cubes that steeps up somewhere between Granny Smith and Fuji. I threw in an equal amount of bulk chamomile and let the whole mess go for about 15 minutes. Bingo!

Once I’ve used up this apple blend, I think I’ll try to hunt down some plain old dried apple bits at our bulk Natural Grocers for a slightly less expensive combination.

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drank PG Tips Loose Leaf by PG Tips
2157 tasting notes

Snow day! Up to (according to the hopeful drift-lovers in the area) eight inches expected by nightfall. (Don’t laugh at me, Maddy Barone, I know this is just skiffles compared to yours.) Although I am a confirmed winter-hater, it is a pretty one—fat flakes coming straight down, calm and quiet.

But since school got called and I had planned a couple days off toward the end of the week for work-at-home purposes, I just got the boss’ blessing to rearrange their order.
(And yes, I have been working away all morning. It’s break time.)

And since it’s break time, snow day tradition calls for a full pot of strong and fortifying PG Tips with milk. Nothing new to say about it, other than it’s dark and sharp and what one needs when you’re droopy. Evidently not everybody values it like I do, according to an article shared by another builders’ tea fan:

https://www.theguardian.com/food/2020/jan/30/you-cant-instagram-tea-is-trouble-brewing-for-the-classic-cuppa

Say it ain’t so.

Martin Bednář

I would like some snow here as well please. I hate that it is so dark and white snow it brights at least life a little.

gmathis

You can have mine! Lack of light and color certainly affects my mood and outlook in the winter! I am doing a little better than usual this winter; I think in part because my office light fixtures were replaced with good LED bulbs. I don’t have to sit in a dim room eight hours a day.

Martin Bednář

My lights are decent here too, but the life outside?

derk

Sam Dunwoodie obviously hasn’t seen the tea community on instagram :P

gmathis

I know what good tea looks like; I’d rather read your reviews! :)

ashmanra

I haven’t been on in a few days (or more) so I had no idea you had snow! Just the thought of it makes me want my mom’s chicken and pastry…

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drank Earl Grey Supreme by Harney & Sons
2157 tasting notes

If all Earl Grey tasted like this, I’d drink it far more often! H&S has got the tea-to-bergamot ratio just right; not too floral, doesn’t taste like perfume, floor cleaner, or deodorant. T’was a sample bag handed off by a coworker..but this is in their mainline retail store line-up, isn’t it?

Shae

I bought some loose leaf in my last order and they also sent a tea bag freebie of it. Looking forward to trying it now!

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drank Formosa Dragon by TeaMaze
2157 tasting notes

Enjoying an absolutely delicious Sunday break, bathing in a sunbeam aimed directly on my rocking chair (although Tazo is glaring at me because he claims to be the rightful owner of any and all winter sunshine spots).

Close to hand is this nice, silky, buttery oolong from our new favorite shop in the Ozarks. Its fruit flavor and scent is not far from peach cobbler, and while I don’t generally choose oolongs first, I’m glad hubby talked me into bringing this home. Little pricey, so I hope it holds up well in subsequent steeps.

You would have laughed at my Sunday church kids—10 and 11 year olds. They asked me for another tea and cocoa day, and it was fun watching them paw through my chest of random bags and man the electric kettle like grown-ups. Shiloh loves Good Earth Sweet and Spicy with enough sugar to fill a hummingbird feeder; David insists he only likes “sweet tea,” and Jonathan, on a dare, tried a cup of Lapsang Souchong: “Hey, that’s not so bad!”

ashmanra

Ooooo, I love it! Get them broken in! A new tea generation rises!

derk

<3 I’m trying to figure out how to spread my love of tea to my many coworkers now that I’m on the Fun Committee (cheesy, but we have a former youth pastor running the circus). I was thinking about introducing several themed teabags each month and doing a once-monthly tea tasting with loose leaf. Aside — we’re having a chili cook-off next month; I’ve been busy this evening shelling bags full of heirloom beans I harvested from the garden today.

To anybody reading this, I’m open to suggestion for decent bagged teas that can be brewed with boiling water!

Martin Bednář

derk – some are on the way. Even that orange ones what I sent you last time. I think that one would be perfect for it :) but not chili like.

Ashmanra and gmathis: I am happy to see there are children who like teas, they will know it is not always bad. Like Lipton Ice teas. :D

gmathis

I sold the Lapsang Souchong kid with “it tastes like bacon.” For office purposes—I’m finally getting some buddies on the bandwagon — good old Bigelow supermarket varieties are pretty reliable and predictable, no matter how you abuse them. (And inexpensive, so you don’t flinch seeing good tea thrown away.) Some of my non-teaist coworkers have recently fallen in love with Harney & Sons Hot Cinnamon Spice, also pretty cheaply and readily available.

Best wishes with that “fun committee” thing. Once in a while, that rears its ugly head here, but we manage to tamp it back down pretty quickly ;)

derk

Thank you for the recommendations, gmathis. The Fun Committee seems well received here; there are no forced group activities. We basically just get fed :)

gmathis

That part we do well at our work, too! And just for the record, lest you think I am completely petrified, when it comes to playing with children, I am a sparkly bundle of mirth and frivolity. ;)

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This is a sweeter, gentler alternative to PG Tips :) and is a particular favorite of my husband, who ordered a ridiculous bulk quantity on Amazon. The Bigelow folks don’t disclose what kind of black tea they use, but it has a Ceylon-ish feel to it, but with enough caffeine to make you know you drank it.

(What’s a Ceylon-ish feel? Um…second tenor in the choir, not bass. James Taylor, not Joe Cocker. A well-used copper pot. Don’t I analyze my teas scientifically?)

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Bio

Somebody asked me once when I became a tea junkie; I think it dates back to college when I needed caffeine for a 7 a.m. class but chose not to do coffee. My favorite teapot is a medium-sized Brown Betty given to me by my Mema; the painted flowers are chipping off, but the size and feel is perfect. I rejoice when I get a morning to brew a pot of loose tea starting with a kettle; not a bag and a hot pot.

Location

Southwest Missouri

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