603 Tasting Notes
I don’t want to be too hard on this because I have yet to find a chocolate tea that comes close to being actually chocolatey. This one is no exception, but it only fails in the way they all fail. The richness of chocolate just does not translate into tea, in my opinion. The strongest note in here is actually the sunflower seeds. It’s not bad, it’s just not as robust as some of 52Teas’ other black teas.
I think this is my favorite of the samples I tried. The description says mango and passionfruit flavors, and the tea does have a tropical vibe, but I feel like there’s strawberry somewhere in there as well? Trying to pick out individual fruit notes is actually pretty hard here — it’s more like a blend that I would label ‘upbeat fruit’ or something, but it’s good. Base tea could be a twinge better, but it’s still enjoyable.
I was really happy to finally be able to visit the Gaiwan Tea House in Coeur d’Alene. It’s a beautiful cozy place, and I got a delicious curry and an iced coconut tea latte there. I picked up some of their loose leaf samples to try at home, and this was one of them.
I’d never tried Russian Caravan before, but I heard it was like a light lapsang souchong. This actually tastes just as strong as lapsang souchong, but the flavor of the smoke seems different. It’s quite barbeque-smelling. It reminds me of mesquite smoke, though I know that’s not the wood traditionally used for this. The flavor is quite smooth. Quite a nice cup, overall, and not badly priced either: http://www.gaiwanteahouse.com/product/russian-caravan/
I steeped a mug of this yesterday even though it was seasonally inappropriate because I had a headache and sometimes spices help a bit when my head hurts? It’s weird, I know. This was a fairly mild but nicely balanced chai. The strongest notes to me were the cardamom and the smoke of the lapsang souchong. Anyway it was comforting and did the trick, no more head pains :)
Loved the lemon ginger aroma that hit me when I opened the little pouch. Lots of pretty flowers in this too. The description talks about how spicy this is but I am getting only the tiniest tingle of heat. I may need to shake the pouch up more, once there is a little room in there for stuff to move around. I can just barely tell that there is green tea in this, it mostly comes across as an herbal. Still, the lemon and ginger taste great together, so even if it’s not what I was expecting, this is a pleasant tea.
I was slightly leery of this when I opened the pouch because it smelled SO smoky! I get quite a bit of smoke in the flavor too, but it’s a mellow barbecue smoke, doesn’t dry my throat out as some lapsang souchongs have, and it really goes with the peach, which is coming through nicely. The butterscotch doesn’t really stand as its own note, but I think it’s tying the other two together. This tea is putting me in the mood to grill something.
The mystery teas arrived in the mail today! Trying this one first because I just pulled some cranberry almond muffins out of the oven and this sounds like it will match.
Amaretto flavor is spot on, so that’s nice. Picking up on that light spice blend that I’ve noticed in some of 52teas other rooibos teas. I don’t know about chestnut — I’ve only eaten chestnuts once and the flavor was so different from the aroma that I’m not even sure how a chestnut flavor would present itself in tea. It’s hard for me to get excited about anything rooibos, but I do like the amaretto here, and it goes great with the muffins :)
Sipdown for this too. It took me awhile to notice the instructions on the bag that said steep this at 180 for God’s sake, so I made several cups with boiling water. And it was good that way, but 180 was DEFINITELY better. Smoother, mellower, and more balanced. This was a good tea, but not exactly a must have. Nice but not distinctive. If Zen Tea ever starts actually selling tea again, I might grab a bag, but I am not mourning over it like I am mourning their Coconut Oolong, because how could they just stab us in the heart like that? The world NEEDS their Coconut Oolong.