15678 Tasting Notes

drank Wild Strawberry by DAVIDsTEA
15678 tasting notes

This was my first tea this morning. I usually don’t choose to begin my day with something caffeine free, but I just woke up with such a particular craving for this tea. It wasn’t just that I wanted a jammy, tart strawberry note (which this tea delivers on), but that I wanted that flavoured tinged with the herbaceous, pine-y and savory note of rosemary that’s in this blend. It was very satisfying, and I only realized after finishing the mug that I drank several teas this week with a prominent rosemary note. Very weird and particular as far as subconscious ingredient cravings go.

Friendly reminder that I do not numerically rate DAVIDsTEA blends as I’m currently employed there and it would be an obvious conflict of interest. Any blends you see with numerical ratings were rated prior to my employment there. These reviews are a reflection of my personal thoughts and feelings regarding the teas, and not the company’s.

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I don’t like this quite as much as Parlour Room Blend, but it’s still really delicious and very up my alley. Smokey with a little bit of a brisk bite to it, but also sweet and lush with silky notes of vanilla and a hint of citrusy fruit from the bergamot oil inclusion. I’ve had smoked Earl Grey blends before (though I wouldn’t call this an EG) and not loved them – it’s just a little too much going on all at once and the notes get competitive. However, the bergamot inclusion works here to add complexity and brighten the top notes. Maybe because it’s a lighter touch.

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Really enjoyed this cup of tea that I made earlier in the week – the vanilla note is very authentic and aromatic but still has a bit of an indulgence to it. With the other spices and flavourings in the blend I feel like I get the best of both worlds with the mix of “true vanilla” (which is less sweet/creamy and more floral and fruity) and a more custard-like vanilla cream flavour. Sometimes it was a little like eggnog, because of the way the spices would interact with it. Very complex for a tea with a name like “Cake Batter Breakfast” that you’d expect to be just pure, unhinged dessert.

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Sipdown (2583)!

I’m not exactly sure how “energized” I felt after drinking this tea but I did really enjoy the taste. It was more medium bodied, but the pure note of sweet, freshly juiced orange was so delicious and full of life. One of the best orange flavours I’ve ever tasted in a tea bag – mostly because it was sweet but still had a slight tang and acidity to its top notes too. Very dynamic for just a mono-flavoured tea.

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drank Winter Warmer by Pukka
15678 tasting notes

Sipdown (2584)!

Based on the copy printed on the overwrap of this tea bag I was expecting more of a spiced citrus flavour that could potentially be a little more “mulled” in vibes, but to my surprise the citrus was relatively subtle as were the spices. Mostly I just tasted a smooth and sweet anise flavour tinged with the other aforementioned ingredients. I actually enjoyed it a lot, but mostly just because I like star anise. I feel like it could have been better with either the depth/heat from more spices (like clove) or a brighter orange, though…

So a little weird because it was an enjoyable mug of tea, but not the mug I thought I was going to have so I was still partially let down in some ways!?

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Iced with a splash of milk!

This was the tea that I drank at this week’s board game meet up. I don’t think I’ve tried this cold before, so I felt like I was taking a bit of a risk making such a large iced tea of it as my sole drink during the three hour meet up – but it was pretty good. Didn’t taste caramel, but the notes of sweet milk chocolate (emphasized through the addition of milk) and rosemary both came through really clearly. More rosemary than expected, but not enough to push this into super savory territory. Ironically, early in the day, I’d had a brown sugar and sage flavoured chocolate bar and this actually loosely reminded me of that, but with rosemary instead obviously. Still pretty smooth despite the herbal edge.

We played two games at the meet up. The first, Istanbul, was one that I really liked and am considering buying for myself. The second was called Time Masters and I felt like it was something I could get into, but the version we played was printed in French so I struggled to play optimally since I was relying heavily on my other players to translate the cards for me.

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drank Iced Black by Lao Kombucha
15678 tasting notes

Drank this earlier in the week and I think I appreciated it just a hair more this time around. The tangy kombucha vinergar note is pretty pronounced, but it’s also well balanced with the strength of the Indian black tea used as the foundation for this tea. The Nilgirir Conoor is very malty but also a smidge floral and laced with honey and citrus notes too. It’s all very complimentary, and shockingly complex for a kombucha too. But also classic feeling.

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Tea Pop!

Loved this as a tea pop. It was rich and jammy still with those deeper blue/purple-y berry notes. Blueberry. Acai. Currant. However, the carbonation brought it new life that seemed to elevate the otherwise complex and enjoyable berry flavours. Also hella refreshing. It’s still hard to beat tea pop I made using B&B’s Apple Mint matcha flavour, but this gives it a run for its money.

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Dry leaf smell of this tea is smelling a little… not quite “funky” but I guess clearly aged. Less of a juicy pear aroma than it used to have, by a lot. Weirdly, though, I thought this was the nicest tasting steeped cup I’ve produced. Maybe that’s because it was less juicy. Less of that floral/ripe pear meant it felt a little less at odds with the cake-y chocolate notes that seemed to reject such a fresh fruit note. This was more mellow and soothing, with a restrained decadence. Actually I liked it a lot.

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The toasted marshmallow flavouring in this tea is so good! I mean, maybe a smidge of a liqueur-like element to it that makes me think of flavoured vodka shots, but not in a bad way. It’s sweet and sorta creamy with that gooey golden sugar note to it. I really wish this wasn’t a decaf blend, because if I could enjoy this tea while also getting a caffeine bump it would definitely be verging on perfect.

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Hello! My name is Kelly, though many people in the tea community call me Ros or Roswell.

I am a mid-twenties tea addict, blogger, and all around nerd. I grew up in the Prairies, but a few years ago I relocated to Quebec to pursue a career with DAVIDsTEA in the tea industry! I’m still working on getting my French language skills down…

My first introduction to tea, in any form outside of instant and bottled iced tea, was about seven years ago when I happened to stumble upon DAVIDsTEA while looking for a birthday present for a friend! I tried their Birthday Cake rooibos blend, and I’ve been hooked on tea ever since! In those seven years; I was introduced to the online tea community, expanded my interest in flavoured teas to include a deep love and appreciation for straight teas and traditional brewing methods, got a tea themed tattoo, started reviewing teas, amassed a sizable tea and teaware collection, became a TAC certified Tea Sommelier, & even came full circle by beginning a career in the tea industry with DAVIDsTEA!

I consider myself a Jack of all Teas, and strive to have a knowledge and appreciation of all tea types, formats, and styles of drinking. I don’t like to feel boxed in to just being a “flavoured tea” or “straight tea” drinker – my expectations may vary depending on the type of tea or how it’s been processed/prepared but if it’s good tea, it’s good tea no matter how it’s been made!

You name it, I probably drink it- and I’ll absolutely try anything at least once.

My default method of preparation is hot, Western style, and straight – but I’m not opposed to additions if I’m in the right mood. If I ever add something to a tea or use a different method of preparation I will ALWAYS call it out in the tasting note though.

I like to listen to music when drinking tea, especially when I’m brewing a large pot at a time or steeping Gongfu. Often I curate very intentional tea and music pairings, and sometimes I share them here in my tasting reviews. Music is something that I find can deeply affect the experience of having tea.

I’m also one half of the “tea and fandom” podcast GeekSteep where, weekly, we discuss newly explored fandoms over tea as well as try to figure out the perfect tea to pair with each fandom. You can find us on Spotify and Apple & Google podcasts.

Favourite flavour notes/ingredients: Pear, lychee, cranberry, cream, melon, pineapple, malt, roasty, petrichor, sweet potato, heady florals like rose, hazelnut or walnut, sesame, honey (in moderation), and very woody shou.

Least favourite flavour notes/ingredients:
Lemongrass, ginger, strongly spiced profiles (and most Chai in general), mushrooms, seaweed, chamomile, stevia, saltiness or anything that reminds me too much of meat that isn’t supposed to taste like meat…

Currently exploring/obsessed with: Sheng from Yiwu, Yancha (Qilan in particular), anything with a strong sweet potato note. Also, I need to try ALL the root beer teas! Searching for a really good caramel flavoured blend, ideally with a black tea base.

Please contact me at the instagram account listed below if you would like me to review your teas.

Currently I’m employed in the tea department of the DAVIDsTEA head office. While I’m still sharing my own personal thoughts on new & existing DAVIDsTEA blends, I am no longer numerically rating them due to the obvious conflict of interest. Any comments expressed are a reflection of my own thoughts and opinions, and do not reflect the thoughts and opinions of the company. Any DAVIDsTEA blends you currently see with a numeric score were reviewed prior to my being hired there and have not been adjusted since becoming a DAVIDsTEA employee.


Montreal, QC, CA



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