615 Tasting Notes


This is the first time I think I’m reviewing this one hot, even though I’ve had it a couple times this way. It’s still deliciously malty with a silky and thick mouthfeel, that’s almost like satin waves in my mouth.

Thanks again TeaTee, I’m glad I got to try this.

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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drank Chance Combinations by Custom
615 tasting notes

1 tsp Vanilla Cream Earl Grey (California Tea House)
1 tsp Blood Orange (Adagio)
10 oz water

This is my second time making this concoction and it’s been cold steeped each time. The first time it sat in the fridge for probably 36 hours because it got hidden behind something and I am the master of forgetfulness-fu. I only steeped this one for 8 hours, and it really didn’t seem like the extra time made much difference.

The orange rind/hibiscus combo latches onto the bergamot in the EG and makes this a really bright vibrant cup. The vanilla and cream aspects seem to temper the hibiscus to a degree, so while it is still quite tart, it’s not metallic or overly hibiscusy. I’m actually a bit enamored with this combination and once I have a manageable inventory of tea (so never, really), I would pick up both again to drink this. Especially in the summer.

Rating: 84/100


I want to try this so bad.

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drank Brittle Me This by Fava Tea Co.
615 tasting notes

Bready, yeasty oolong with notes of stonefruit? Check
Walnutty, pecan toastiness? Check
Sweet maple accents? Check

While I’m not blown away by this, I do quite enjoy it and wouldn’t mind having it around from about September – March every year (which is good, because that’s coincidentally when it’s offered). It’s a classic combination of flavors and has a nice comforting quality to it.

I can’t wait to latte this. Do I want to wait until morning, though?
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 15 sec 1 tsp 6 OZ / 177 ML

You could have it tonight and tomorrow morning. :)


Lol. I was just about to say that!


Problem solved! :D

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I’m all about muddling the holidays, so woo!

This one came thanks to jeweledthumb.

I didn’t actually find this weak like other folks (but I leafed pretty strongly at 2 tsp for my 8 oz cup), but it was pretty much devoid of chocolate flavor. I get a nice mint and a pretty well-disguised rooibos, with a smooth, creamy mouthfeel though.

This was okay, and even really good for rooibos, but give me Butiki’s Peppermint Patty for my chocolate mint cravings, please.

Boiling 7 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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drank Seed Harvest by Handmade Tea
615 tasting notes

I steeped this at a lower temperature and time to keep the smoke notes down and found I like it a lot more this way. The fennel is the strongest note, and adds a nice anise flavor and is a bit sweet. This is so much better. Wow.

Also, I just sent Fiance this note because he hates puns. I hope he loves it. But I’m pretty sure I’m just going to get ‘the look’ (you know, the exasperated why the hell would you do that look)

Dear Valentine,

At first, I couldn’t say with certaintea you were the one for me; the realitea was you were a bit arrogant and needed to learn some humilitea. But over time, I’ve gotten claritea to the situation. You’re my favorite person and you suit me to a tea. In actualitea, I think you’re teariffic and Wuyi totealy belong together.

The vitalitea you have put into my life with your generositea and kindness is outstanding. You’re a Jasmine Pearl in the rough, and my love for you is bounteaful. You have dealt with my eccentriciteas and peculiariteas like no other. Your emotional strength has made me realize that you’re my Iron God(dess) of Mercy. (Not just that, but you’re pretea cute).

Like most relationships, ours didn’t come without a degree of difficulitea. But we have overcome that together and you have helped me with my frailtea and insecuriteas and made me realize that I am beauteaful and worthy.

I love you to eternitea, Valentine, and I promise my undying loyaltea to you forever.

Come home soon, I oolong to have you in my arms.

I know this got a little long, but I hope you appreciated my sensitivitea and creativitea



PS: Is that pu-erh tuo in your pocket, or did you just love my pun thread?

195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 6 OZ / 177 ML

Love your Valentine note ♡




That is completely cute!


Thanks guys! So did he, (though he pointed out that ‘worthy’ could have totally been ‘wortea’) so yay! :D

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I love tea.
I love tea tea-y tea tea
Here it goes down
Down into my belly
Mmm mm mmmm.

I added an extra half teaspoon and dropped the steep time today and it’s all candied chestnuts and sweet vanilla.

This is like candy.

195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

LOL! I could totally hear you singing this song. So funny. I sing to myself like this all the time too.

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Spoiler Alert on February’s Amoda Box!

I was so, so, so excited when this showed up in the mail today because yay — Valentine’s Blends!

I’m so incredibly less cynical about the holiday than I was when I was a teenager, but still don’t do anything special for it. I don’t really go out of the way to make myself miserable anymore either though, so there’s that. I pretty much like all holidays now because gifts are so much fun to give!

Amoda said this tea has a ‘surprising similarity with a Valentine’s Day tradition — candy hearts’ and I’m not sure I’m quite getting there with this.

I really like the yabao in this, because Verdant’s yabao has always tastes like wet cedar planks, with a bit of pepper and glimmering bursts of marshmallow sweetness.

The jasmine adds a delicate floral note and another element of sweetness, while the vanilla makes it thicker on the tongue (more noticeable on consequent steepings). I think the Tulsi and burdock also ramp up the savory-esque cedar/wood notes a bit more as well. It all kind of blurs together and it’s a bit hard to pick out individual components, but I think this blend actually works.

Subsequent steepings yielded a slightly altering wood-tasting profile that emphasized pine instead of cedar.

So well I guess in a way, this does kind of remind me of deconstructed candy hearts — a little woodsy, with a slightly drying mouthfeel, and a good amount of sweetness. I still really I think it’s more like a canoe ride alone on a lake surrounded by only pines and cedars at the break of dawn. It’s beautiful.

Happy Heart Day, Steepsterites!

205 °F / 96 °C 2 tsp 6 OZ / 177 ML

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drank Cherry Fantasy by Tealux
615 tasting notes

(The picture on here was wrong so I replaced it with the one from they’re site. Not sure why there’s a green tea pictured here?)

Unlike other reviewers I don’t find this one cough-syrupy or medicinal. I think it’s just a really rich cherry flavor. Tealux says it’ll make you think of summer, but I get an autumnal feel from this through and through. I think the fig adds a bit of depth to the cup (it doesn’t seem to add flavor) and it just screams cherry cordial to me.

Also I’m finally at the bottom of my bag and there are some big fat whole cherries chilling in here. Wish I’d known that sooner — they’re kind of neat.

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 30 sec 2 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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To be completely honest, I thought this was going to be like the Denali ice cream flavor Moosetracks (vanilla ice cream with fudge ripple and peanut butter cups) and I was really intrigued how that was going to translate to tea.

This is not that.

This is still very good.

I can’t believe this hasn’t been pointed out yet, because I think this tastes so much like chocolate covered espresso beans it’s magic.

I don’t really get anything from the coconut and the slight bit of nuttiness isn’t quite hazelnut to me as it compounds the delicious effect of espresso beans.

For some reason I just got the image of Pac Man eating espresso beans, so I thought I would share with all of you.

And then this happened: http://imgur.com/hOPXaKF

Thanks NayLynn! That was…an experience.

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

Ha! Now I will imagine Pac Man with expresso beans. Its awesome.


Chocolate covered espresso beans are magic. Therefore, anything tasting of them is also magic…just like how Pac Man eating them is magic. Magic cubed!

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Fiance: This smells like amazing cinnamon buns and then tastes like a carb and sugar free version. It’s always disappointing.

10 minutes later

Me: If you haven’t finished your cup yet I will!

Fiance: pouts I wanna. It grew on me.

Fiance: So. Um. How much more of this do you have have? I want it again.

Ladies and gentlemen, I present the most quickly resolved disappointment in Fiance’s life.

1 tsp 6 OZ / 177 ML

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Name: Lauren
Location: Wisconsin (previously a Chicago girl)
Occupation: Student by day and super hero by night
Super Hero? Yep!
Which One? I can’t tell you that! Secret identities and such. Just know I’m not the hero they want, but the hero they need.
Sidekicks: Fiance and two budgies, Skitter and Gandalf


Reading, writing, cooking, video games, computers, drawing, crafting, papercraft. Oh and tea.

A brief history:

I grew up in a family where the only working coffee maker was in my dad’s office. So the name of the game for my mother and I quickly became (bagged) tea. In 2004/2005, I discovered Adagio Teas. I don’t remember how it happened, or why I decided to pursue a purchase but here we are. I haven’t looked back.

My tea tastes have changed over time and I’ve moved from liking solely flavored teas (mostly black and white) to enjoying Darjeelings primarily, though malty unflavored blacks, fresh tasting greens, and lightly oxidized oolongs come in pretty high on my list, too. Of course, I still enjoy a good cup of flavored tea. I prefer caffeinated teas, as I have a horrible caffeine addiction that I don’t plan on kicking any time soon.

Red rooibos and lapsang souchong (or other strongly smoky teas) are my arch nemeses and I will see them defeated and removed by force from my cupboard. Like all thing, there are exceptions, but I assume they’re guilty until proven innocent.

I really don’t like negatively rating things, because I feel like if you don’t have something nice to say, you probably shouldn’t say it. But in the interest of non-biased tea reviews I’m going to give it a shot. I view every tea as a potential adventure so I’ll try most things at least once.

I love trading and swaps are always welcome! Please note, though, what it in my cupboard includes amounts ranging from a couple cups to 4 ounces or more, so please PM me to find out if what you’re seeking is available in that trade amount.

According to my spreadsheet, I also have about 100 other 1-4 cup samples that are not in my cupboard.. Feel free to message if you’re interested in see the spreadsheet for possible swap options as well.

Tea Ratings:

100-95 Nectar of the teagods that has been bestowed upon my unworthy tongue. I will never let this tin run empty.

86-94 These are the teas I would like to keep regularly stocked, but sometimes life gets in the way. Lovely teas, but not quite god tier. I still get cravings for these.

74-85 Good teas, but not amazing. I enjoy these, but may or may not restock once they run out. I would still recommend these to others.

60-73 Not bad. I’ll gladly keep drinking my cup, and wouldn’t say no if someone offered me this tea. I probably won’t rebuy these as there is likely something else that is comparable and better.

47-59 Certainly drinkable and might even have some characteristics that I enjoy, but I won’t pick it up again

30-46 I’ll probably finish my cup, but this tea isn’t to my taste OR it’s just overwhemingly mediocre. Life’s too short for bad tea.

11-29 This cup is in the sink now and I will never willingly consume this again. If you see a tea rated this way, I probably followed it with mouthwash.

0-10 Please say a prayer for the cup I destroyed in the process of disposing of this tea in the quickest manner possible. I may need tea therapy before I drink a similar tea again.


Wisconsin, US



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