Featured & New Tasting Notes

60
drank Lime Bomb by Brutaliteas
1536 tasting notes

The flavor is just plain, minerally oolong. I don’t taste any lime or cucumber…maybe cucumber skin if I’m really trying to picture it? I’m not an oolong fan, so this isn’t really for me, unfortunately. Cold, it’s fine, but there’s a hint of bitterness since I didn’t know how long to steep this for and the website didn’t say – I guessed three minutes, which may not have been right. This has such a vegetal flavor that I wouldn’t have tried it if not for the advent calendar.

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75
drank 18TEA7 Proof by Hella Tea
102 tasting notes

Ordered this a few months ago with some other hella teas and have liked most of them so far. Humptea Hump would be my favorite as it is delightfully banana bready.

Preparation: Western
Tasting note: So there is some smokiness which is to be expected from a lapsang, also some sweetness. I havent had straight bourbon in a while so i am not sure if it is that complex but it definitely gives me some savory sweet honey bourbon bbq sauce notes. Not in the way of drinking bbq sauce but just some of the flavors are reminiscent. It is good!

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92

I don’t have much to add to this one after today’s session, besides the fact that the flavours now seem well integrated and it is as good as the 2018 version when that one was two years old.

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80

Geek Steep S2E26 – Ms. Marvel

Cold Brew!

This was my pairing for my reread of this comic. I actually hard a harder time than expected coming up with the tea I wanted to choose for this comic that I feel I have an almost intimate familiarity of. There was one ingredient/flavour that I kept coming back to over and over though as I brainstormed options, and that was pistachio.

That might seem random, but as I explained in more detail on this episode, pistachios are an ingredient that’s used pretty heavily in a lot of Pakistani/Middle Eastern cuisine. Especially in desserts. It’s also something that a coworker of mine used to bring into the office to share, back when I was working at Value Village. Specifically, what she would bring in was a Jaggery rice dish and pistachio halva. She wasn’t from Pakistan, but she was Muslim and I feel like I got to know a lot more about Muslim culture just from her generosity. So, picking a pistachio tea just felt right.

I own a lot of pistachio teas, though. In the end I felt like this was the right one because it’s got that very sweet candied pistachio and strawberry soda-type flavouring that feels quite playful together. In my head, especially as I sipped this cold brewed, I could picture Kamala coming home from either a late night study session with Bruno or a hard day of fighting bird people in the streets of Jersey City and reaching for some kind of sweet strawberry soda and a homebaked pistachio sweet.

Really, really happy with this pairing!

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79
drank Yuzu Matcha by DAVIDsTEA
1535 tasting notes

I taste mostly earthy matcha, but in some sips, I get a nice bright, tangy citrus flavor. I think the matcha flavor is stronger than usual because I let this sit for an hour or two, and the matcha all clumped back together. The citrus is definitely the aftertaste for this one, but it’s really pleasant. I wish it were a little stronger, but I appreciate how fresh it is and how different from other teas I’ve had before. Yuzu is such a fun flavor.

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76

This tea smells SO lovely- rose, vanilla, and cardamom. The flavor combination is really nice as well, though it came out a bit bitter. I’m interested in trying this with some milk or cream.

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75
drank Myrtle's Tea House by 52teas
6307 tasting notes

Topped this with strawberry white chocolate cold foam. It was good but next time I’ll try a strawberry vanilla cold foam to better reflect the flavours of the tea.

52Teas

OH – this sounds yummy!

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It seems utterly impossible to me that there is no note for this tea. It was a gift from a former student just a couple of weeks ago and we have already finished it. I drank the 1st cup hot right after I got it and it had lovely champagne flavor with a hint of berry. I was so sure I had posted a note.

Ever since Thursday, we have been drinking it as a flash chill tea. It makes an incredible amount of foam and even after you drain your glass the foam stays for a very long time. In fact I don’t think I have seen it break down yet .

Making this way, shaking the hot tea in a cocktail shaker with ice, the champagne flavor is very strong and the berry flavor is practically nonexistent. In fact, the three of us who tried it could only detect the berry flavor in the aftertaste and then we had to look for it. The champagne flavor is so good, however, that it is going to be very hard for me not to immediately re-order this one. It is an awesome summer flash chilled tea that tastes great with no sugar.

Mastress Alita

Well if you’re having deja vu, then I am too… I also swear I read a note for this that you wrote a few days ago.

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drank Ginger Peach by 52teas
1238 tasting notes

Mastress Alita’s sipdown challenge, June 2022: An iced/cold brew tea

I only ever cold steeped this in the fridge for 5-8 hours. First batch was more astringent and collard greens than I generally like it but the second batch I’m currently finishing off balanced the veggies with a good dose of canned peach and dry ginger notes. Not a large amount of heat to the ginger but its zesty earthiness is pleasant enough.

As always, the canned peaches take me down memory lane.

Very refreshing, although there isn’t much need for refreshments here right now. The Northwest Coast is deeply committed to a wet spring and mild temperatures this year. Overcast a few days before Summer Solstice. Hope it doesn’t rain for my upcoming six day camp/hike next week, but it probably will.

Flavors: Asparagus, Astringent, Earthy, Ginger, Kale, Peach, Stewed Fruits

Preparation
Iced

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70
drank White Anastasia by Kusmi Tea
1535 tasting notes

This tastes quite floral, though it’s hard to tell what kind. I think I notice a little peach. I guess the other flavor is bergamot, though it’s hard to pick it out when it’s not paired with black tea. It’s a little too strong on a white base vs a black base.

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Gongfu!

Midway through a tea session of Bamboo Peak Milk Oolong, and really enjoying the silky mouthfeel and rich buttery and creamy notes of this tea! I’m still making my way through this oolong tea sampler but I think this is my favourite so far. The first few steeps had such a soft but thick moutheel, and the taste was this perfect marriage of fresh churned butter and delicately toasted coconut. Over time that buttery quality has mellowed some, but it’s allowed room for more floral notes to gradually build from the undertones into this really fresh and aromatic crescendo of Spring and Summer flavours!

Tea Photos: https://www.instagram.com/p/Ce6zMinuK34/

Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EfB2fSV5gmk

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92

Not in alphabetical order of company to try unopened tea but my second cup of the day always seems to be a green tea. Plus, I have accrued a small stash of 52 tea bags over the last few months from the subscription box and need to catch up on.

Preparation: Western
Tasting Note: Yummm! This is a delight. The maple hits just right with this tea and it reminds me of french toast and maple syrup but I could see a Maple Rice coconut pudding too. No additional sweeteners or milks needed, I like this one exactly as it comes. :) I will be sad to see this one go, I think.

Flavors: Creamy, Maple Syrup, Toasty

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 14 OZ / 414 ML
gmathis

This sounds lovely!

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drank Benefit Tea by Wuyi Origin
1501 tasting notes

Thank you leafhopper!

Quickie note. I was more into this one than I expected. It’s very woody and heavy on the sweet potato / yam side, but super pleasant in smell and taste. It’s on the cedar, incense, sandalwood spectrum with a little bit of cooling effect in the aftertaste bordering on rosy. The smell is deeply floral like Geranium and Roses. Super comforting. It didn’t change much steep to steep gong fu, but I have some left over to play with. I very much enjoyed it, and actually liked it more than some other Wuyi teas that are more overpowering.

Flavors: Cedar, Floral, Geranium, Incense, Malt, Resin, Rose, Sandalwood, Sweet Potatoes, Tannin

Leafhopper

I also liked this tea, though I didn’t get many florals. What were your gongfu parameters?

Daylon R Thomas

1/2 the sample, 195, 20, 35, 25, 45, 1 min and improvised after

Leafhopper

I always did shorter steeps with this tea. I’ll have to try steeping my black teas longer.

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drank Vanilla Chai Matcha by DAVIDsTEA
6307 tasting notes

Added this to an almond butter and banana smoothie today for a little kick. The vanilla was strong with this one, perhaps because of the matcha or because of the vanilla extract.

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72
drank Silencio by August Uncommon Tea
1535 tasting notes

I absolutely love the pineapple flavor that August Uncommon uses in their Big Easy tea, and I taste a similar flavor here. Unfortunately, it’s overshadowed by tons of black pepper flavor. This blend is supposed to be spicy, but the spice element here comes really just from the black pepper. So I wish there could be more pineapple, less black pepper, or maybe just more complexity here. Pineapple plus pepper isn’t great for me. It’s like eating a stir fry with pineapple in it or something. I actually enjoyed the resteep more because the super fruity sweetness had faded and it was just the savory pepper with a more savory cooked pineapple remnant. The second time I had this, I tasted mostly pepper with only a hint of pineapple, which was just too savory for me. This tea is definitely interesting, but it’s not really for me.

Skysamurai

What about cold? Or would that be weird?

AJRimmer

Ha I ended up having part of each cup cold because it would take me so long to finish it, and I felt the same about it. Plenty of teas do improve in the fridge though, I agree!

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93
drank Shanlinxi by Ethan Kurland
1501 tasting notes

Tried this one, and wish I didn’t do it on a hotter day yesterday because the sweeter notes were a bit muddled. Really good shanlinxi that I brewed in my clay easy gaiwan, though leaned heavily into cream,florals, orchids, spinach, osmanthus, nectarine, stone fruits, pine. I made a few mistakes and the tea was too spinachy and grassy in some parts. I will write a full review later, and I’m going to try it again this week.

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Last month I had fun going through the prompts multiple times, but I did overdo it when I attempted a fourth passthrough. (And made it!) That was my fauly!I love the Sipdown Challenge, though!

Since I have finished early, I will proceed at a leisurely pace to use it as inspiration, and this African tea was a brilliant option for today.

Heat index yesterday was 107F, or 41.6C. (Thank you, Alexa, for converting that for me.) Today is supposed to be several degrees hotter and we are under an extreme heat advisory.

This tea is brilliant, and I think if at all possible it is going to be a cupboard staple for me. I have steeped it three times now. The first two steeps had auch rich caramel flavor. As I went out to the garden to make periodic short, planned strikes at the work that needs doing there, I could still taste that thick brown sugar. The color of the steeped tea is a very rich amber/brown.

Good golly, I love this tea. Thank you, Superanna.

Martin Bednář

I would melt in those temperatures.

gmathis

Beat you! 109 in Missouri!

ashmanra

Oh, gmathis! That is awful! Make everyone stay hydrated!

Leafhopper

Oof! That’ll probably be us in a week or so. Summer is my least favourite season.

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Today’s installment (or last night’s installment, chilled until morning): Irish Cream. My first couple of sips just tasted like a creamy vanilla or bourbon vanilla tea, but after multiple swigs, the background mint/menthol built up and started cooling my mouth. I really hate to say it, but it reminds me a little of the candy cigarettes that we could buy at Horton’s 5 & 10 or the Rexall. They were right next to the wax bottles of pop and the Pixy Stix.

ashmanra

Oh, I remember those! Loved Pixy Stix, and had plenty of those wax bottles in my time. Candy cigarettes, too. We once fooled the mailman with fake cigarettes. He was rather cross and told us children shouldn’t smoke. If you care to recreate it, just roll up a piece of white paper the size of a cigarette and tape the side. Use a marker to color the tip red and the other end tan. Fill with baby powder. Put a small piece of cotton in the red end and blow on the tan end so the powder puffs out. Works maybe twice. DO NOT SUCK.

ashmanra

Oh, cotton in both ends. Still, don’t suck.

gmathis

Creative, but I’m thinking I shouldn’t recommend that one as a craft project ;) (Some of my too-cool-for-school crowd would just about try it.)

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73
drank Bananas! Black Tea by 52teas
6307 tasting notes

Iced tea with cinnamon brown sugar cold foam Sipdown (220)

This was so good!

The banana is just spot on so paired with the cinnamon and brown sugar cold foam it was like someone brûléed a banana or the fried banana dessert people get at like Brazilian restaurants. Bananas foster. Honestly just all the delicious banana desserts!

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76
drank Jelly and Ice Cream by Teapigs
1535 tasting notes

I taste jammy red fruit and coconut. It’s mild, but pleasant together. It tastes lovely cold with sweetener to bring out the flavors. The flavoring in here doesn’t quite taste like ice cream, but maybe sort of like spray cream? It all goes really well together, and it stands out from other fruity teas. It’s definitely lighter and less tart, but it doesn’t feel too thin or anything. The resteep is pleasant too.

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For the June prompt: A tea that reminds you of your best friend

I just ordered this recently and opened it today just for this prompt. I have invited my best friend to tea Thursday morning and dangled this tea like a carrot.

I started wondering how I first ran into it….did she find it first? Did I introduce her to it? I checked out my tasting notes and discovered that I first received a sample from Doulton years ago. So I am guessing that I introduced my friend to it. It is now a cupboard staple for her, and definitely one that I don’t go too long without.

This is a great tea – the chocolate and strawberry flavors are so good and so natural tasting. It doesn’t have the chocolate “funk” that Ashman hates. The puer is woodsy and musky but not too strong and if you didn’t know in advance it was puer you might miss it. It is almost like a woody black tea.

I was initially daunted by the shipping costs from Hawaii, but every single time I have ordered I have received a substantial shipping refund within a few hours of ordering. Lupicia has become one of my favorite companies.

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This batch of flavored novelty teas have been a lovely surprise, and they are delicious cold-steeped in the fridge. Today’s selection was Scotch; straight up cold this morning (the day started on preheat and it’s climbed to broil this afternoon). Y’all know I love my unflavored, naturally malty black tea, and that may be why I like this one too, although I know some of that maltiness comes with the artificial flavoring.

This afternoon, I halved the rest with cold cider and it reminds me a little of an apple brown betty on ice.

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drank Merci Mille Fois by Lupicia
2879 tasting notes

A sipdown!
I liked this, and will certainly bring it back.
It was the perfect tea for the last couple of days, as we’ve launched ourselves into our over-100-degree weather.
Ick.

ashmanra

Yes, I pretty much consider this one a shelf staple, too.

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83

I finally joined the covid club, while I didn’t lose taste and smell, my current tea perception is surely affected by it.

In any case, it is fun to check up on this tea’s progression. It seems to have a more rustic character now. The aroma reminds me of forest floor and beeswax, while the taste is a mix of green wood, citrus fruits, honey, root vegetables (beetroot, celery), with some further hints of chickpeas, vanilla, camphor, cumin and apricot in final few infusions.

The tea is somewhat astringent and numbing, but it can be easily pushed to extend the session to about 14 infusions.

Flavors: Apricot, Astringent, Barnyard, Beans, Beeswax, Beetroot, Camphor, Celery, Citrus, Cumin, Dry Grass, Forest Floor, Green Wood, Honey, Roots, Vanilla

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 7 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
Martin Bednář

I wish you fast recovery!

Leafhopper

I hope you feel better soon! I’m glad your senses of taste and smell weren’t affected.

Togo

Thanks! It’s getting better with each day :)

ashmanra

Oh no! Sorry to hear that, and hope you recover quickly. Thankful you can taste your tea!

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