Thanks Shredsofmetal for giving me an excuse to try this sample out; you didn’t really have to twist my arm all that much for me to test it out and give you a summary of the flavour notes, but when you get to having 600+ teas sometimes it is hard to decide which ones to prioritize…

This wasn’t my thing – I gave it as much of a fighting chance as I could and tried to be open minded throughout the session but the flavour notes aren’t ones I particularly look for in a black tea, and I found that overall the whole tea lacked body/sweetness which just made for an ultimately very flat/dull tasting cup. The plus side, I suppose, is that it was very smooth and forgiving to steep – it was impossible to make it come out either bitter or astringent; and that’s a HUGE win for some people. I personally just needed some bitterness or astringency to give it any sort of life…

Here’s my instagram summary:

This was an inoffensive black tea with a mix of malt, plum, and black peppercorn notes – with the latter being the most consistently present throughout the session. Those peppery elements lingered LONG after each sip. Throughout the session the plum, notes went from “plum-ish” to becoming much more distinct, and a more raisin-y note was introduced as well. Some infusions had a note of pennies, as well.

Also – I brewed 7/5g in a 130ml gaiwan, for six steeps before I just couldn’t do it anymore.

I have one other black tea sample from Kuura to try, but so far I’ve enjoyed the Go Juice coins (but not this one), and I liked both Honey Jar and Ghost (the white teas). Honey Jar is by far my favourite thing I’ve tried from Kuura thus far, though.

Photo: https://www.instagram.com/p/ByXn1ClAtTi/

Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uOYj7WfJQD8


I was trying to think of what assam reminds me of today, and I think you nailed it: pennies.

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I was trying to think of what assam reminds me of today, and I think you nailed it: pennies.

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My name is Kelly. I’m a twenty something tea drinker and reviewer originally from the prairies, but recently relocated to Quebec. I was introduced to DAVIDsTEA and started drinking tea fairly casually about six years ago. At some point, that casual hobby became an ingrained part of my daily life; I became a part of a greater community, incorporated tea into my daily routine, and it became my career.

You know you’ve got it bad when you get your hobby tattooed to your arm.

I’m a TAC certified Tea Sommelier!

I drink a balance of flavoured tea and straight/traditional teas – in all formats. I prefer to have a wide, and general knowledge over many types of teas and catagories rather than focus on any one specific tea: a jack of all teas, master of none. Loose, bagged, matcha, Western style, iced, latted, Gong Fu…

You name it, I probably drink it.

In that vein, I’ll drink just about any type of tea – the only ones I have a particularly strong distaste for are green teas and Chai, with some exceptions of course. I have a weird relationship with Sheng pu’erh, but have been gradually increasing the amount of it I consume – currently I have a particular fascination with Yiwu Sheng. Other types of tea that I greatly enjoy are Yancha and other dark, heavily oxidized or roasted oolongs, most shou, black tea, and compressed/aged white teas. I’ll absolutely try anything once though; and I like to have an open mind and explore lots of tea types, even if I have reservations. I’ll probably never leave that “Exploratory” phase…

Usually I drink my tea straight, but I’m not opposed to additions if I’m in the right mood. If I ever add something to a tea, I will ALWAYS call it out in the tasting note though. If I’ve not mentioned an addition, you’re safe to assume it’s been prepared straight up.

I like to listen to music when drinking tea, especially when I’m brewing a large pot at a time or steeping Gong Fu. 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.

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

Least favourite flavour notes/ingredients:
Lemongrass, ginger, strong Chai spice profiles, mushrooms, seaweed, chamomile, artificial tasting mango or peach, 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.

Tea Pet Reference Guide:

Clay Pixiu Dragons: Zak & Wheezie
Clay Goldfish: Dot
Clay Monkey: Enzo
Jade Pixiu Dragon: Whitaker
Ruyao Carp: Splashy
Ruyao Dragon: Pablo
Ruyao Frog: Bebe
Sculpted Pig: Nelly
Sculpted Tuxedo Cat: Pekoe
Sculpted Tabby Cat: Marmalade
Ceramic Rabbit: Rupert
Ceramic Stringray: Irwin
Ceramic Horse: Bergamot
Ceramic Snail: Snicket
Ceramic Cat: Saffron
Wood Fired Man: Leopold

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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