615 Tasting Notes

drank Hashiri Shincha by Den's Tea
615 tasting notes

I chomped on the leaves afterwards this time, figuring they were definitely sweet and tender enough. They were. A little soy sauce and some sesame oil (with a sprinkle of sesame seeds for appearance) made them really tasty! Even Fiance ate some!

(I also bumped up the score from 99 to 100, because what can’t this tea do really?)

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drank White Shizandra by Zhi Tea
615 tasting notes

Cold steeped, this tea tastes like fresh arugula. This is so weird…but a good weird. I feel like I’m drinking what should be a salad, though. A really refreshing liquid salad. Did I mention this is weird?

Iced 8 min or more

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Does anyone else have one of those teas that you keep around for when you need to unwind? This is mine. It’s is pretty much a perfect 2nd Flush Darjeeling and hasn’t let me down yet.

190 °F / 87 °C 2 min, 45 sec

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drank Mom's Apple Pie by DAVIDsTEA
615 tasting notes

I might have actually rated this higher if I hadn’t had the AppleTEA’ni this morning. It’s kind of a let down in flavor after that. It’s flat tasting to me where the Art of Tea one had definite punch and better apple flavor. There is a nice buttery crust type flavor that’s imparted from the green tea here, but overall it’s just a big meh.

I’m still looking for some DavidsTea that inspires me to place an order because they genuinely have things that sound like they could be tasty, but everything I’ve tried so far (that has also sounded tasty) has been mediocre at best.

Still, thank you very much QueenOfTarts for letting me try this :)

175 °F / 79 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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Well, I was saving this for Fiance but he took too long and I have poor impulse control when it comes to tea.

I chose to do this gongfu style, which I only realised was a mistake when I had a baby allergy sneeze mid-pouring and ended up with a soppy mess and 3/4 of a cup on my third one in.

No regrets though! This is a fantastic Dragonwell. It’s crisp and vegetal with a little bit of roastiness (almost nutty). The mouthfeel is buttery and has a bit of sweetness on the swallow. It’s go so vibrant and clean! I wish I had more!

If spring had a flavor, this is absolutely what it would be.


«If spring had a flavor», spot on!!

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drank AppleTEA'ni by Art of Tea
615 tasting notes

The dry leaf smells like fall and apple pie, so I probably oopsed on having this one on a warm spring day. I guess with a name like AppleTEA’ni my brain just assumed it would be more like the alcoholic beverage (bright and apple-y) and less like Thanksgiving dessert (apple-y with spice).

That being said, while it isn’t a bright apple cuppa like I thought (and it is mostly my fault for failing to read the ingredients carefully enough this morning) it’s tasty. It’s like drinking a spiced tea with natural apple flavor. The cinnamon and ginger really carry this cup in a way that I enjoy. And the green rooibos just binds everything together without making itself actually known. The whole thing together is actually strongly reminiscent of a mulled apple cider without being quite as sweet, and I could very much see myself using it that way.

Verdict? It’s a good tea, just not as a replacement for Pucker and Vodka.

Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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drank Toffee Dream by Zen Tea
615 tasting notes

My allergies are in full swing right now, so it will definitely be a stay in and enjoy the sunshine from the air conditioning kind of day. Sigh.

That being said, I hope to make the day better by sampling a bunch of tea!

So, thank you for letting me sample this one Shelley_Lorraine!

This is the first toffee flavored tea I’ve tried that actually captures toffee flavor to me. I get nutty toasted caramel on a slightly vegetal white base. I think the white base gives it a smoothness and sweetness that the black tea blends I’ve been trying seem to be lacking.

I enjoy the less full-bodiedness of this more than I thought I would for a dessert flavor. On the flip side, I think this is kind of an as-is blend, because I feel like milk and sugar might ruin the layers of flavor and make a giant cup of blech.

180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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drank Vanilla Cream by Culinary Teas
615 tasting notes

This one weirdly enough tastes better to be when I (by my typical brewing ways) underleafed it. (1.5 tsp to 15 oz water). It was more vanilla-y and the creamy was slightly diminished but still present. Huh.

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drank Hashiri Shincha by Den's Tea
615 tasting notes

Fiance loves this tea! It must be magical.

And even if not, it’s so sooo good.

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I’m in the wrong season for this tea, but that’s okay. It’s gloomy and rainy and I wish I were still in bed. So it’s essentially an autumn day.

The smell here invokes images of colorful trees and gusty winds, with rain puddles for jumping in, corn mazes and hay rides. It just screams autumn.

The flavor is exactly what I was hoping for, though! I wish the Culinary Teas Vanilla Cream I had earlier was more like this with the loud, bold flavors and a slight milkiness from the cream aspect. There’s a touch of pumpkin pie spice, but no overwhelming clove or cinnamon flavors, which I appreciate. The pumpkin is pumpkin-y, but more of a pumpkin pancake kind of pumpkin than pumpkin pie though.

A little bit of sweetener brings out a more roasty pumpkin flavor, that I enjoy a bit more than unsweetened. I would imagine a splash of milk would bring out the creaminess more, too. (Latte anyone?)

Overall, this is another really lovely gloomy day kind of cup that encourages blankets, something to cuddle, and books.

Boiling 3 min, 45 sec

oh good idea. today is definitely a good day to finish up my autumn teas.

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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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