135 Tasting Notes
Yum, I somehow managed to make the perfect cup of lemon meringue chai this morning. My previous attempts with it have been alright, at best. I usually wind up with a quite bitter, overly spiced, lemon candy scented brew that somehow lacks body. I was always disappointed with how the super sweet lemon played with the bitter black tea, even with a short steep. It smelled fantastic and complex in the packet, but I couldn’t seem to get a similar flavour out of the actual brew.
This morning, though, it’s tasting exactly how I had hoped it would all along. When I bought it I was thrilled at the prospect of a blend with three of my favourite flavours; lemon meringue, chai spices, and black tea. Pleased to report that those are the exact flavours I’m tasting now, in perfect balance! The lemon is present & creamy-sweet without being overwhelming, the spices are subtle & on point, and the black tea base shines through without a hint of bitterness. This cup also seems less ‘thin’ or watery than my previous ones as well.
I’m suspecting that the culprit in my previous underwhelming experiences with this blend might be due to over leafing, which would explain the bitterness & the overpowering, almost artificial lemon candy vibe I was getting. This time I just put a scant teaspoon at the bottom of my infuser, and steeped for 3 min. I’ll have to try and replicate this to determine whether it was a fluke. Either way, I was pleasantly surprised by the perfection in my mug this morning :)
I had this iced today and it was pretty tasty. Not really vibing on the bubblegum scent, but the taste is more fruity and less candy. I wish it were a little bit tart, it just feels like it’s missing something. Overall though it’s fairly refreshing and nice to sip on. I like to do a shorter steep on rooibos and honeybush, especially when I’m planning to drink it cold, so a 2 min steep was perfect.
I’m wondering if a cold steep would fair better with this one. I don’t mind it, but it’s pretty forgettable and I’m not nearly as fond of it as I was when I first got it.
In other news, I picked up my first CSA share of the season! I always get way too excited about my veggies. Nothing like fresh produce every week, and it’s so nice to have already paid for it. The farm we buy from lets you choose which veggies you’d like from their market stand, and they had a pretty substantial selection already. We left with broccolini, baby kale, carrots, new potatoes, zucchini & pattipan squash, snap peas, and raspberries. I cannot wait to shove it all in my face :D
A perfect choice for my first cup of the day. I’m still working away at my first pouch of this guy, from over a year ago. Maybe closer to two years, now that I think about it. It still tastes lovely and fresh, with those wonderful warm and toasty cocoa notes. One of the few straight black teas that I truly enjoy. I also love that I get several steepings out of each serving, which is likely why it’s stuck around my cupboard for so long. It’s a nice treat that I get to enjoy occasionally but thoroughly.
Every time I open my pouch I’m always so impressed at how gorgeous the leaves are. Such long strands that are delicately curled and silky; almost glossy looking. You can certainly tell the quality by sight alone, which adds to the anticipation of a great cup of tea. So much respect for the care that obviously goes into the growing, harvesting, and preservation of these truly stunning leaves.
Sipping on this while munching some chia pudding. It’s a lot tastier than I remember it being! I suppose the folks who swear by aging (curing? I’m not sure what the correct tea terminology would be) their 52teas blends are on to something. This has been sitting in my cupboard for well over a year, and now it lacks the woody astringency that I wasn’t too fond of when I first tried it. Now I’m getting sweet, toasty caramel. Really quite nice.
I’m so happy to have this in my cupboard once again! It is incomparably lovely. I wish I could have a cup of it every morning. I’ve found that 3 mins is my ideal steep time with this one for the most cheesecake flavour. Any longer and the base overwhelms it; any shorter and it tastes a little weak.
Also the perfect black tea to have with a rich dessert. Yum.
Ah, the inevitable return to steepster. You know, even though I’ve been away so long, my dashboard still feels like home. * waves hello to familiar faces *
It wasn’t really an intentional absence, although it started out that way. I decided I needed a mini hiatus, to quell my spending spree and start drinking down my collection, since I just couldn’t stand the temptation of hearing about new blends from companies I love. But that little break set the precedent for an unexpected year-long absence from one of my favourite websites. After a really tough year in many aspects, I’ve found my way back and can’t wait to talk tea with old friends and new faces.
I still have about 50 grams left of this lovely Coffee Cake tea; the girlfriend and I have been really enjoying it. Tastes like an almost exact clone of Della Terra’s Pineapple Upside Down Cake, which I never found to taste much like pineapple anyway.
It’s a rich, fragrant blend, and the scent of the sweet caramel, butter, and baking fills my whole kitchen as soon as the water touches the dry leaf. If you make this one at work, be prepared for a horde of coworkers to show up at your desk demanding to know what you’re eating that smells so darn good.
I always hate when a tea smells incredibly potent both dry and while steeping, only to have the barest hint of that potential transfer to the actual flavour of the tea. Not the case with this guy; happily it tastes as lovely as it smells.
This is the epitome of a dessert tea in my eyes, and it would be almost sacrilege to have a cup without a healthy dose of milk and sugar :)
I had this yesterday morning for the first time in quite a long time. It’s one of my favourites but I think I overdid it on chais and spice based teas for a while, and kind of drank myself sick of them. That, and I used to brew every black tea I owned at boiling for 5min. Ummm…no. 5min is much too much for a lot of black teas, flavoured or otherwise. So needless to say I’d often end up with a cup of bitter, overly flavoured, sorely oversteeped tea, which I blamed on the tea itself rather than my bad steeping parameters. I think this blend was a victim of that.
So at a 3.5 minute steep, I’m enjoying this a lot more! The vanilla and orange notes come out, whereas before I was just getting straight up sweet cinnamon. I’m almost finished my tin but I might have to get a bit more to play around with. Made a tasty, warming cup.
Drank this in a frenzy yesterday morning while trying to get myself (and my apartment) ready for a visit from the parents. They’re not in town often but they always seem to catch me at a super busy time when my place happens to be a mess. Sigh. I got everything in order just about in time though, and obviously I couldn’t skip out on my morning cup of tea.
I love pumpkin teas and this one is nearly perfect. I love the rich spices and the addition of caramel. I’m really glad I picked up a pouch. Especially since I’m kicking myself for getting 3 pouches of Butterbeer, which I swear has changed. I keep getting bitterness. Sigh. At least I have lots to experiment with I suppose.
Della Terra Dubbele Chocolade + Caramel Creme
Sipdown on the Dubbele Chocolade! And not quite enough left for a mug. So I tossed in some Caramel Creme and was blown away by the deliciousness. These two seem meant for eachother, soo much more tasty when paired (which is saying something, cause I loved them both individually). The result is sweet-but-not-too-sweet dark chocolate and burnt sugar with an ever so slightly creamy quality that rounds it out keeps the darker flavours from being too much.
Second tea of this lazy morning for me. Enjoying being curled up on the couch by the window with hot tea and a hefty book & happy to have some quiet time all to myself while my love sleeps in.