3389 Tasting Notes

86

Apparently I’m the dissenter here – but I actually really like this tea! I love the cranberry flavour, and the gentle vanilla sweetness. It’s really quite unique, and I’m not sure I’d call it cider, but I’m really liking it as a treat. I seem to have a thing for AQ2T’s cranberry flavouring, as I’ve felt similarly about a couple other teas with cranberry in them as well. I think one of the keys here is not to overleaf or oversteep, otherwise it becomes a little overpowering.

I do love all these oolong-based teas!

VariaTEA

I don’t know if I have any left but I know where to send this if need be lol

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80

Might have oversteeped this one – it’s a little on the astringent side! I’m not really familiar with the flavour of brandy, nor of a sidecar, so I can’t speak to that, but I can definitely taste pear. Unfortunately, the bitterness (which could be intentional for all I know – it’s not as mouth-drying as usual) kind of kills my enjoyment of the pear. I’m also finding the tea a little too strong/floral. So perhaps the problem is that I overleafed. I’ll have to try again, but I don’t anticipate this being a favourite.

ETA: Either my morning mouth is less sensitive to bitter, or this tea changed overnight (yes I left it out and am drinking it now). It’s now really delicious, creamy and pear-y. I almost taste a hint of anise as well. Very weird. It’s reminding me a lot of Butiki’s tea that contained pear and anise (I wasn’t a big fan of it thought because it was TOO anise-y for me). Can’t recall the name offhand though.

Roswell Strange

If I remember correctly, this one is a Darjeeling base which does tend to be a little more temp sensitive and bitter/astringent as well as come off as a little more floral. So could also be that you’re just not feeling the base tea?

Kittenna

So I read your comment last night and definitely agreed; I generally don’t seem to like darjeelings, even when I steep them carefully, so it’s probably that aspect that’s causing me sadness. And then this morning (as per my ETA), the tea tasted much better! So strange.

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77

I was recently in Hawaii, and ate a lot of delicious papaya, so my expectations were pretty unrealistically high for this tea (especially after I tried some dried papaya, which was… good but not as good as fresh.) Anyhow, I’m still fairly pleased with it despite tasting less papaya than others seem to have experienced – I predominantly taste watermelon (and like Roswell Strange, definitely agree that it’s comparable to Butiki’s Watermelon Xylophone). However, there are some fruity papaya notes in the aftertaste. which is the main distinguishing factor for me.

Overall, a decent fruity white but not a fave as I’m over my melon phase now, haha.

Indigobloom

Oooh Hawaii! I always wondered what a luau was like

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89
drank George Daddy by A Quarter to Tea
3389 tasting notes

Another Black Friday purchase! I feel like this tea may have been made for me – oolong base with chocolate and banana? YUM! The flavour does not disappoint. The tea tastes rich from the oolong, and decadent from the banana and chocolate. The banana isn’t overly prominent nor overly fake, which is perfect, as I don’t really like banana runts. There’s also pretty much no astringency because oolong and because the leaf is gorgeously unbroken. So good.

Speaking of oolong, I don’t think I’ve mentioned yet (ok, I know I haven’t) but I now have two cats – Oolong and Puar! Both are sweeties but they also both fairly naughty. Perhaps when I have more time I’ll note down a few of their… adventures.

(Also I’m married now. Did you know that, Steepster? Gosh, it’s been a while, hasn’t it.)

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89
drank George Daddy by A Quarter to Tea
3389 tasting notes

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80

Was super interested to try this tea – “brittle” flavour sounds really delicious (I didn’t care so much about pumpkin seed). The aroma is AMAZING – sweet, nutty perfection. Everyone near my desk at work could smell it; they were probably all jealous.

Flavourwise, I’m getting classic nut syrup flavours up front (which nuts? I don’t know. Hazelnut maybe? Or maybe I’m confused and it’s caramel syrup I’m picking up), and a bit of pumpkiny flavour in the background. Not really sure I’m tasting pumpkin seeds, though. It does smell better than it tastes, but smell is pretty important, and it does still taste good.

I’d like to try this again when my throat isn’t sore to see if I like it more – right now it’s tasting a bit weak to me, but this happens sometimes when I’m feeling a bit off. I do love the aroma though, so it’s worth picking up just for that.

VariaTEA

I loled at “they were probably all jealous”

Scheherazade

So did I :)

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75

No reviews?? Interesting….

Picked this up during Black Friday simply because it was a tea I hadn’t tried before. I was also intrigued by the concept of a Bloody Mary in tea form (ok, it was the inclusion of tomato that got me). The dry leaf is amusing – have you ever seen dried cucumber in a tea before? It looks really weird (I actually had it in a different tea the other day, and initially thought it was something rotten until I checked the tea description).

Anyhow – this tea is actually a pleasant surprise. The aroma is very tomato-savoury, but not too strong. The flavour is more complex (tomato is apparent but the combo of other ingredients blends together very smoothly) and vaguely reminds me of the tomato soup tea DavidsTea recently put out – except that the salt level in here is appropriate for a beverage (the soup teas by DT were WAY too salty). I don’t know if there’s added salt, or if the tomatoes or cucumber were salted, but if so, there’s just enough for flavour enhancement.

Overall, this is a great savoury (mostly) herbal tea, especially if you like tomatoes. For me it’s more of a novelty tea; not one that I’ll crave or anything but will have on certain occasions when in the mood. I also think it could make a really interesting soup base!

Evol Ving Ness

Some time ago, 52Teas did a tomato tea that was just awesome. Did you have a chance to try that one?

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80
drank Cotton Candy Genmaicha by 52teas
3389 tasting notes

Another new one – and one I had high hopes for! I’m still searching for genmaichas that are as delicious as that first batch of Marshmallow Treat I had way back when Frank still owned 52teas. This tea isn’t quite the same thing, but it’s still pretty good – toasty rice, a bit of mariney green tea, and cotton candy sweetness (that description makes it sound like a gross combination, but it’s not). I almost wish there was a little more cotton candy in here, but that probably would take away from the tea aspect.

Overall, pretty tasty and one of the better flavoured genmaichas I’ve tried recently.

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75
drank Cucumber Mint Limeade by 52teas
3389 tasting notes

Alright, trying to get back into some tea logging again! We’ll see how long it lasts.

Picked this tea up… at some point in the last year. Not entirely sure when; it might have lived with Sil for quite a while before I got it (getting to Toronto is hard!) I’m not usually a big fan of cucumber water although it inexplicably always sounds appealing to me – but lime/limeade? My fave! So I had to try this tea. It’s actually pretty tasty, and not too minty, which I really appreciate (I am not a mint fan). The cucumber is present in that… refreshing unsweet melony sort of way, and then the lime pokes in, particularly in the aftertaste. The white tea is present for body (so it doesn’t seem like flavoured water) and comes out in the aftertaste primarily as well.

I appreciate that none of the flavours dominate here – it could have easily been a mint or a lime tea, but it’s very clearly not. I’d love to try it cold in the summer, but probably won’t remember this thought later – I bet it would be delicious. I feel like this could also be a good summer tea cocktail candidate for those who are so inclined.

Overall, I think this tea is very true to its name and fairly tasty. Not a fave for me as I just prefer other things, but I’d happily drink it again.

Sil

lol welcome back

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I have always been a tea fan (primarily herbals and Japanese greens/oolongs) but in the last year or so, tea has become increasingly more appealing as not only a delicious, calming drink, but as a relatively cheap, healthy reward or treat to give myself when I deserve something. I should clarify that, however; the reward is expanding my tea cupboard, not drinking tea – I place no restrictions on myself in terms of drinking anything from my cupboard as that would defeat my many goals!

My DavidsTea addiction was born in late 2011, despite having spent nearly a year intentionally avoiding their local mall location (but apparently it was just avoiding the inevitable!). I seem to have some desire to try every tea they’ve ever had, so much of my stash is from there, although I’ve recently branched out and ordered from numerous other companies.

I like to try and drink all my teas unaltered, as one of the main reasons I’m drinking tea other than for the flavour is to be healthy and increase my water intake without adding too many calories! I’ve found that the trick in this regard is to be very careful about steeping time, as most teas are quite pleasant to drink straight as long as they haven’t been oversteeped. However, I tend to be forgetful (particularly at work) when I don’t set a timer, resulting in a few horrors (The Earl’s Garden is not so pleasant after, say, 7+ minutes of steeping).

I’m currently trying to figure out which types of teas are my favourites. Herbals are no longer at the top; oolongs have thoroughly taken over that spot, with greens a reasonably close second. My preference is for straight versions of both, but I do love a good flavoured oolong (flavoured greens are really hit or miss for me). Herbals I do love iced/cold-brewed, but I drink few routinely (Mulberry Magic from DavidsTea being a notable exception). I’m learning to like straight black teas thanks to the chocolatey, malty, delicious Laoshan Black from Verdant Tea, and malty, caramelly flavoured blacks work for me, but I’m pretty picky about anything with astringency. Lately I’ve found red rooibos to be rather medicinal, which I dislike, but green rooibos and honeybush blends are tolerable. I haven’t explored pu’erh, mate, or guayasa a great deal (although I have a few options in my cupboard).

I’ve decided to institute a rating system so my ratings will be more consistent. Following the smiley/frowny faces Steepster gives us:

100: This tea is amazing and I will go out of my way to keep it in stock.

85-99: My core collection (or a tea that would be, if I was allowing myself to restock everything!) Teas I get cravings for, and drink often.

75-84: Good but not amazing; I might keep these in stock sparingly depending on current preferences.

67-74: Not bad, I’ll happily finish what I have but probably won’t ever buy it again as there’s likely something rated more highly that I prefer.

51-66: Drinkable and maybe has some aspect that I like, but not really worth picking up again.

34-50: Not for me, but I can see why others might like it. I’ll make it through the cup and maybe experiment with the rest to get rid of it.

0-33: It’s a struggle to get through the cup, if I do at all. I will not willingly consume this one again, and will attempt to get rid of the rest of the tea if I have any left.

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