14 Tasting Notes
This was one of five in my November box- a very ordinary selection that included the scourge of boring winter tagalongs, apple goddamned spice. I’d prefer a million iterations of pumpkin (also included) over another apple spice, but that’s neither here nor there.
Regardless, this seemed like a more exciting flavor- it wasn’t marshmallow krispy matcha, peanut butter toast, or boo-berry cotton candy, but it looked decent and has large whole pieces of dried, reconstituted blackberry. Very fresh! The flavor leaves lots to the imagination, though, as it succeeds as a blackberry and lime tea- more on the citrus-heavy, aggressively clean, acidic scent versus murky, dark berry flavors, but fails to deliver as a twee turnover or dessert tea. I say this having experienced and enjoyed teas that have been solid dessert homages rather than mere implications and feel that 52teas can do better both in selection, curation, and iteration.
Flavors: Citrus Zest, Cream, Lemon, Lime
Smells better than it tastes- initially fruit-forward and more meaty and black on the back palate, then slowly turns over to a more imbalanced flavor reminiscent of dirt. Too heavy on the mulling spices, renders the mouth dry.
Flavors: Caramel, Cinnamon, Dirt, Toasty
Arguably one of the most sophisticated teas I have had the pleasure to try. I received this as a gift and decided to try it in three steepings, per the previous review. It did not disappoint, although I had drastically different, pleasant notes!
On the first steeping, I noticed tingly, mentholated noted alongside the pine and grassy flavors of the oolong, less creaminess and more of a citrus-forward scent and flavor, with notes of tangerine, yuzu, kefir lime, and green grass on the nose. The flavor was abuzz and left my tongue on fire with a panoply of flavors that lasted on the palate for a while. Per the instructions, I steeped this for one minute with 6g at 205 degrees.
I steeped my second round for two minutes and noticed more gentle flavors that aligned more with the tasting notes on the package- spun sugar, light pickled ginger at the forefront with a slight herbaceous flavor on the back palate and a hint of Asian spices. Still strong on the second steeping although I was conservative with my measurements as this is a tea I wish to savor.
The third steeping was more aggressively saline than the last two. It loses most of the sweetness from the first two steepings but retains the light vegetal flavors characteristic of the leaves- spinach, broccoli, and a light brown sugar note. Each sip is round and full. I don’t know if using a slightly more modified concentration of water to tea would accommodate for more steepings, but for this amount it was a highly pleasurable experience. This is a tea I will enjoy for a long time to come- a definite bucket list steep.
Flavors: Broccoli, Brown Sugar, Cinnamon, Ginger, Grass, Lime, Menthol, Orange Zest, Spices, Spinach
I don’t know what compels me about this tea, but I can’t put it down- as much as it smells like a peanut butter cup, it fails to deliver in flavor, and yet, I just adore it. It’s a diluted version of its candy counterpart but still works in an alchemistic way. Almonds and fruit work together here better than any vegan candy ever could, I suppose.
Flavors: Almond, Cocoa, Hazelnut, Honey, Peanut
Sort of a musty off-gassing smell as it cools, very aromatic leaves. Nervous as the base appears to have honeybush/rooibos, though none is listed in the ingredients. Smells true to flavor. Cloudy in color. A very strange tea. Soapy, sarsaparilla-forward, and a little spicy, but mild and somewhat meek despite a laundry list of ingredients.
Flavors: Chocolate, Cream, Soap, Spices
Really tasty, wheat/grass-forward green tea- very organic in flavor, almost with barnyard, farm-like notes of hay, apples, spices, grass, and similar profiles. Comforting and unique, with a slight nuttiness. I might try steeping it more.
Flavors: Apple, Cinnamon, Grass, Hay, Honey
More aromatic than flavorful, unfortunately- scents of marzipan, cherry, and fig abound, but a mild, woodsy, somewhat cherrywood-forward flavor is all I got. I’m impressed with the innovation of CT’s blends but this particular flavor just did not impress.
Flavors: Almond, Cherry Blossom, Cherry Wood, Marzipan
This is one of my favorite new teas- received in an exchange box, it is bright, vibrant, tropical, and pleasantly sweet. No sugar needed, and each teaspoon makes two to three brews. It’s a very intense, citrus-heavy tea with a juicy flavor.
Flavors: Fruit Punch, Fruity, Lemon, Mango