5551 Tasting Notes
Cold Brew Sipdown (128)!
As a cold brew, the bubblegum notes I observed in the first (hot) cup I tried of this are even more apparent and in your face. Downside is that the cherry is less sweet and well rounded, and sadly it gives off a bit of a medicinal/cough syrup sort of quality. The green base was more masked as well; in a way I think that’s a plus because I disliked the base in the first place. However, it’s also a drawback because it means there’s less flavour to counterbalance the medicinal aspects of the cherry.
Overall it wasn’t terrible; I did finish it afterall. However, there are some areas where improvement is definitely doable and needed in order to make this better. As is, I wont be buying it again.
Also, Bad Suns’ new album is out! I’m really loving it so far – there aren’t really any tracks I dislike although some are definitely better. It’s been fun learning the new songs alongside cups of tea and trying to work out pairings for songs I’m just now exploring.
Pairing for this one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tFSvLf0hU00&list=LL1M1wDjmJD4SJr_CwzXAGuQ&index=5
I was experiencing some pretty bad cramps earlier in the week, so I broke out the raspberry leaf again and I’ve been enjoying the occasional cup throughout the week. It’s so hard to say whether or not I feel like it’s actually doing anything – but I like the flavour and it’s not making things any worse so I think I’ll continue to incorporate it into my tea drinking routine when I’m feeling crampy…
One of the more interesting cups this week was late at night with some added in coconut milk: it was supper buttery in addition to having its usual comforting vegetal and herbaceous notes and underlying sweetness. It felt really warming; like a big hug from the inside out, and it was really smooth and tasty.
This is a queued tasting note.
Cold brewed this one; mostly strawberry but managed to stay light, fresh and vegetal which was pretty nice. This is definitely less flavourful than it used to be though; I need to start thinking of more creative ways to use up the rest of the leaf because I’m getting pretty bored of this one, as well…
Decreased my rating a little, as well.
This is a queued tasting note.
Made a tea cocktail using a cup of this one after I’d iced it
- Standard icing method was used…
- Added in a 1/3 oz of grenadine
- And then added in an oz of limoncello
Basically it tasted like this one normally tastes, but exaggerated. So, the sweet red fruit/berry notes were richer and more prominent from the syrupy grenadine and the lemony notes more powerful and aromatic. It’s a really refreshing thing to be sipping on midday. Sweet, and perfect.
This is a queued tasting note.
Made a teacup of this one with breakfast (a red pepper and egg scramble) and I found that the roasty body notes and fruity plum and raisin undertone of the tea really complimented the eggs and sweeter notes of the peppers.
All was great; that is until I finished eating and drinking my tea. About five minutes after finishing everything off I was hit with a wave of nausea that ultimately culminated in me instantly throwing everything up. The tea was not pleasant on the way up. Don’t know what went wrong; after I threw everything up I felt totally fine for the rest of the day. Either the tea or the food was just something that I guess my body needed to purge?
I’m just having a really nice, lazy morning around the condo with Eilert while I wait for Kyle to come over this afternoon, and so far that’s meant finishing Season One of Legend of Korra and drinking lots of this tea.
I’m really enjoying this one; it’s soft and sweet with these lovely, romantic floral undertones. On their own, I think the lavender would bother me but the vanilla in this is doing wonders for the flavour. Oddly, the finish of this cup seems to be kind of smoky, which is a very strange flavour note to appear in a cup of white tea that basically only has added lavender and vanilla. Not that I’m minding the smoke note so much, I just don’t know where it’s coming from…
So, Eilert always seems to try to drink my tea when I have it out at the same time as I’m drinking – and I always have to stop him because I know the caffeine in the tea is harmful for guinea pigs. I just did some research though, and apparently fennel “tea” tisane, really is actually good for guinea pigs. So, I think I’m going to look into buying straight up fennel so we can have tea time together.
Any other pet owners ‘feed’ tea to their pets? In particular, I’m curious if anyone else with small rodents has tried the fennel tea thing. Did they like it?
From last night!
This is one I’ll definitely need to revisit before rating because I drank it in a hurry last night since I was (poorly) multi tasking. I definitely didn’t give it the same care and attention that I like to give teas the first time I try them…
I will say, the dry leaf aroma gave me a mixed impression. The pineapple smelled really sweet, juicy and fresh but the coconut gave off quite a lotion-y aroma so that was sort of a mixed boat for me. I forgot I was steeping this, due to the aforementioned poor multitasking, so it got a steep time of well over ten minutes and because I was brewing in a smaller teacup that I’ve been using recently for first tastings it was already cold by the time I pulled out the strainer. Boo!
I very quickly drank it, and I will say that I do remember it being rather pleasant overall albeit quite strong and sweet. Much more of the “Pinita Colada” from my brief tasting than anything resembling carrots or carrot cake. Don’t recall it tasting specifically lotion like either, which is good. But like I said – proper care and attention wasn’t given. So definitely revisiting this one sooner rather than later. But as far as first impressions go, I think there’s something here.
Cold Brew from yesterday…
This one doesn’t have the worst flavour in the world, I just wish that the strawberry notes were a lot less artificial tasting. Add on top of that the fact that, even as a cold brew, it comes out astringent as heck.
Need to start looking for a new flavoured Earl Grey alternative… Suggestions?
Bonus tea from my 52Teas order…
This one smells really nice; strong apricot notes for sure. Technically, these are pluots used in the blend but my initial impression is that they’re definitely more on the apricot side than the plum side.
Brewed up, this is pretty smooth with a really nice, lush and present stonefruit note all throughout the entire sip. Again, I definitely think it’s a much stronger apricot flavour than plum but regardless it’s very delicious and natural tasting. As well, it’s definitely the perfect level of sweetness. Similar to the Grapefruit/Ginger tea from 52Teas I had earlier in the week the ginger isn’t overly apparent, with the strongest point I’m experiencing it being at the end of the sip. I think I may even like this pairing of apricot and ginger better than the grapefruit and ginger due, though.
The base oolong here is nice; it’s a little nutty which is a nice added component to the cup. Other than that one dominant note, it doesn’t offer a whole lot of other added flavour nuances, but it more so just a nice complimentary backdrop to Anne’s other added ingredients.
Aside from flavour; the name of this tea is really fun. It reminds me really strongly of my birthday twin Marzipan who has always had a penchant for sparkly teas. I miss seeing her here and active on Steepster; but hopefully she’s doing well. Sadly, my cup wasn’t really sparkly at all – but it was tasty, and that’s what counts the most.
I was light on pretty well everything when brewing this up because I just wanted a light taste of the smoke notes, and nothing assaulting. So, less leaf and less steep time as normal and then on top of that I added milk as well to cut the smoke a bit. And I got my desired affect; this was a weaker/muted smokey flavour with, dare a say it, both anise and wood undertones. So, I did kind of eventually get the licorice flavour CS advertised and which had been missing in previous cups.
I also paired it with some food in addition to my typical song: in this case a poached pear ice cream which was a delicious counterpart to the more savory smoke. Such a light, subtle and soft fruity note was a really good way to juxtapose the smoke notes and make each tiny sip really ‘pop’ in a memorable way.
As for my song pairing…
I really love pairing smoky teas with slower, sadder music because something about teas with strong smoke notes is really reflective and nostalgic to me. So, immediately I thought of the album ‘Hospice’ by The Antlers. Honestly, you could probably pick any song from this album and it would work well. It’s a beautiful ‘story telling’/concept album filled to the brim with sad, reflective songs.
This one was the standout though: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=egsSN31uAFk
It’s just filled with so much pain, and anger. I don’t know why, but relating to it and connecting to it through the tea I’m drinking is almost therapeutic in a way. I find the whole experience really puts me in both an introspective mood and a relaxed one.