424 Tasting Notes


Finishing this sample off, and I think this is actually my first Note on it. I’ve been neglectful.

This was my free sample with order. I’m not usually big on jasmine, but I’ve actually been enjoying this one. It’s not as strong and floral. The jasmine scent is pleasant, there but not overpowering, the green tea light and savoury, and mixes well with the floral.

I’d probably keep some of this on-hand for those days that I’m in the mood for something floral, since I already know I like it.

185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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Finally just gave up and tossed this. It’s been kicking around my cupboard too long, and even the smell of it is pungent. I’ve just never thrown out a tea before.


I need to do that with a few of my teas that I know I’m never going to finish, but I just can’t bring myself to do it.

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drank Joy by Tazo
424 tasting notes

It’s that time of the year again, so I picked up a box of the full-leaf from Starbucks yesterday. Checked out Tazo’s fancy new website (redone for the launch of the standalones, I suspect?), and noticed that it describes Joy as having “peachy notes”.

Didn’t think much of it at the time, as it could just be describing one of the teas in the base as having a fruity note to it.

Picked it up from Starbucks and returned home, opening the tin to take a whiff. And getting… a strong peach scent. Confused, I looked it over—still Joy, still black, green and oolong. But looking at the “ingredients”, I found “natural flavours”.

I’ve had this tea many times before, last year. My brother worked at Starbucks back then, and he brought me home the full-leaf bag, which is what introduced me to this tea. I got it many more times after that, and I don’t remember any peach.

This is the second time I’ve made a cup from this tin. It’s definitely lighter than I remember, less unforgiving with steeping parameters despite being green, black and oolong. And I’m getting definite notes of peach. But I don’t remember any peach before.

I could have sworn this tea didn’t have peach in it last year. Am I going crazy?

I googled for an article about blend changes. Maybe this is the first year they’ve added peach? But I keep coming up with no results. So I don’t know (then again, when they switched from earl grey fannings to full-leaf, didn’t they throw lavender into the mix without saying anything too?). Maybe, because I had always had this tea from an already-opened tin, the ‘peach’ flavouring had dissipated before the tea made it to me. And since I bought a fresh tin…? But the tea overall is lighter.

Seriously, am I going nuts? I checked Steepster’s “Joy” reviews for any mention of “peach”. I found that the ONLY mention of peach was from a review from a few days ago—from this year’s release of Joy. No mention of peach in any reviews from last year or earlier, that I could find.

I feel like I missed something. Maybe I just suck at finding news articles. It’s an all-right tea, but definitely not the tea I remember (and loved) from last year. Peach just doesn’t do it for me in this (and peach is a fine tea flavouring—I have a peach white). I loved this tea because it was a black-green (and oolong) blend. My favourite.

Not changing my rating from last year. For now.

Last year’s tasting note, for comparison: http://steepster.com/supermoon10/posts/55853

205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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drank Strawberry Shortcake by Teaopia
424 tasting notes

Managed not to write a single review for this one, either! I’m on a roll of negligence. I did like it, though. And if Teaopia wasn’t gone, I’d probably consider buying more. Although DavidsTea has their own version, hm.

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drank Chocolate Chili Chai by DAVIDsTEA
424 tasting notes

I’ve been waiting for this tea all year. I picked up a cup last year, but they ran out of regular supply before I had decided on buying a few ounces.

The strongest chocolate flavour I’ve ever found used in a tea (their other chocolate teas don’t seem quite as strong), although it and the spices COULD be stronger, but the smell is delicious and what I get in the taste is lovely too. Very reminiscent of the two-bite brownies.

My mother tried to make off with my cup.

Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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drank Saigon Chai (organic) by DAVIDsTEA
424 tasting notes

Drank this one up without even logging it.

Pretty straightforward chai. Didn’t get much from the peppercorns, honestly. I liked that it had them and cardamom added, plus ginger—always my musts for a chai. Only picked up a small sample, and never once made it the proper way as I hadn’t the time.

It seemed like it would have made a good one, although otherwise I never found it particularly strong.

Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

try crushing or grinding the spices before you steep it. I find that a lot of spice based teas (especially ones with whole cardamon) taste weak because the flavours haven’t been woken up yet. Grinding the tea before I steeped it defiantly made the flavour more pronounced.

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I guess I didn’t make a note of this tea the first time I tried it. I made it as per the instructions on the packet, and it came out too strong. Very astringent, even bitter as it cooled.

This time, just under boiling, twenty seconds (plus a ten second rinse). This time, it’s almost sweet, becoming vaguely astringent as it cools (which seems to suit it).

Steep two: More astringent. Bit stronger overall. Darkly vegetal.

205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec

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drank Keemun Panda by Great Wall Tea Company
424 tasting notes

And that’s the last of this.

Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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drank Salted Caramel by DAVIDsTEA
424 tasting notes

I finished this in record time. I like it. It’s bold and deep, toffee sweet, vaguely salty but not in a way that turns me off. I’m not a huge fan of salted caramel, but I see the appeal. It’s just that all the salted caramel I’ve tried have been giant salt crystals mixed with caramel, so instead of a consistent salty-sweetness, it’s just giant pockets of salt with sweet.

Boiling 4 min, 45 sec

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This reminds me a bit of a Keemun. Mellow, sweet (whoops, just quoted the Description), faintly nutty. But definitely lighter, “greener” than a Keemun black. Very lovely.

185 °F / 85 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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A tea-drinking transgendered Canadian, currently in their last year of university, majoring in geology (yes, “rocks and things”). I take most of my tea made straight into a mug, although occasionally if I’m not in a hurry (this isn’t often), I’ll have time to sit down with a pot or gaiwan. It’s the highlight of a good day.

My notes are pretty disjointed because I’m absent-minded, and I also keep a teatra.de blog for reviewing and rambling about tea books/publications.

I’m a Doctor Who fanatic (Jon Pertwee, if you were wondering).

“But you should never turn down tea, when it’s offered. It’s impolite, and impoliteness is how wars start.” ~Eighth Doctor, Paul McGann





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