drank Happy Kombucha by DAVIDsTEA
3229 tasting notes

Happy Kombucha? Is this tea supposed to make me happy? I could certainly use a good dose of happy right now… major grad student woes XD

Anyhow, the dry tea smells deliciously fruity and juicy, with almost a slight hint of chemical (aka fakey smell). But sometimes I just find that dried fruit gets that way (sulphites??), so am not too worried yet. The peachy fruitiness is too enticing.

The steeped tea? A bit of a different story…. I am hardly smelling anything anymore, just a hint of muted fruitiness and that’s about it. How strange (and disappointing). I am slightly concerned that the water was too hot – I’m at work and have no means of measuring water temperature, so just boiled the water and let it cool for a few minutes.

First taste is… not so good. Definitely tasting an odd chemically flavour and maybe I’m catching a bit of pineapple with a mango-y aftertaste, but it’s not very obvious and tastes a little funky. Also not tasting any oolong (although apparently I’m more familiar with light/green oolongs, not brown? I need to do some more tea reading). Unfortunately, the tea is too hot for me right now, and I’m headed to a meeting in a couple minutes, so won’t get back to it until it’s cold, but my hopes have kind of been dashed. Sad :(

Hmm, a few more too-hot sips, and I definitely think I’m getting pineapple, and really am not a fan. Strange, because I think I’ve had pineapple in numerous DT offerings before and thoroughly enjoyed it, although perhaps it just blended in with other flavours instead of standing out on its own.

Ok, finishing this up later…

ETA: Wow… this is not a tea for me. It’s kind of gross cold, and reminiscent of Forbidden Fruit (although I definitely liked that one more). The mango and fruitiniess are weak, and I’m not sure the oolong base and I are agreeing. Either way, I have the rest of a small bag to change my mind, but with so many other tasty options…

To be fair, I should probably resteep this one, as it is an oolong and they apparently taste better in subsequent steepings… No rating until I’ve properly checked the steeping temperature though.

205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 15 sec

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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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