2296 Tasting Notes


Thanks so much, Teavivre! I’m enjoying these lovely teas! I tried to steep this using similar parameters to the Fuding 2011 cake I tried the other day. First, the cake looks MUCH different than the 2011, as far as I can remember from the other day. The leaves here seem much more compact, uniform looking (instead of a mix of leaves, at least in appearance), leaves much darker and has a shiny sheen to the cake. So basically completely different from the 2011 cake which is interesting! The leaves look intimidating but the flavor is a lovely white tea – all light and airy and sweet. I think the 2011 was much sweeter though. And it is such a tightly pressed cake that it has hardly unraveled on the second steep. The third steep unravels with such a lengthy steep time so it has more flavor but also somehow is much sweeter than the other steeps. I like overbrewing the last steep. It’s a much different, autumnal flavor that can’t possibly get astringent anyway. I’m not sure how this cake can be so different from the 2011, but I think I prefer the 2011 to this one. This is a great way to drink white tea though — I’m a fan.
Steep #1 // half sample for a full mug// 20 minutes after boiling // 2 1/2 minute steep
Steep #2 // 17 minutes after boiling // 3 minute steep
Steep #3 // just boiled // 6 minute steep

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additional notes: This harvest is ANCIENT but it is still so shockingly floral. I’m so glad it hasn’t aged too much. (Teavivre’s amazing packaging probably helps). I adore this oolong. <3 <3 <3 Yeah, little hearts. It might be my favorite oolong. Have I said this before? Bonus for the newer tasting notes on Teavivre.com for the current harvest also saying that this particular oolong is still floral! I love how consistent Teavivre teas usually are.

Flavors: Butter, Cream, Floral, Flowers, Orchids

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drank Pumpkin Spice by Bigelow
2296 tasting notes

This is actually probably very old… I snagged it from a teabox a while ago. But it is actually pretty tasty! Bigelow has quite a few good teabag options. There is quite a lot of that pumpkin spice flavor on a sturdy black tea base… and there are even pumpkin flakes listed in the ingredients! I couldn’t taste too much of the pumpkin under all that spice but I sure do appreciate that Bigelow actually tried with the pumpkin. I’d buy this! Also, this is insanely better than Celestial Seasonings Pumpkin that I tried years ago. (Sidenote: “spice” just reminds me of the Dune movie that I personally like a lot… I haven’t read the books… yet.)
Steep #1 // 13 minutes after boiling // 3 minute steep
Steep #2 // just boiled // 3 minute steep

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Another lovely pu-erh from Teavivre! Thanks so much! They have a few loose ripe pu-erhs now. The dry leaves are on the smaller side for pu-erh, with hints of lighter color in the dark and have a fresh hay scent. I decided to steep two teaspoons — that sounds close to the suggested 5 grams from Teavivre. The rinse brew does seem to have a fishy scent but that disappears with the actual first steep. Even before the cup is cool it has a fantastic starchy biscuit flavor with hints of unsweetened chocolate but it also somehow has a thirst quenching quality. I love the flavor of the first steep but the second steep seems a little weaker and doesn’t have that strong biscuit flavor… I possibly could have steeped for another minute or two. The third steep was also like the second. If only the flavor had maintained from the first steep but overall this is a tasty shou! I’ll try to see if this happens again when I try to perfect future steeps. I did like that this wasn’t an appetite increasing pu-erh… it’s interesting when some pu-erh makes me want to eat more but other pu-erh doesn’t. I always have to note those.
Steep #1 // 2 teaspoons for a full mug// 13 minutes after boiling // rinse // 3 minute steep
Steep #2 // just boiled // 3 minute steep
Steep #3 // just boiled // 7 minute steep

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I received this teabag as a sample with my order months ago. It’s a Bluebird classic that I believe was available when Bluebird started. I was a fan of Bluebird since the beginning but somehow haven’t tried this one yet! Personally, I would have used more leaves than the teabag contains. I shouldn’t be too scared of the hibiscus though, as Bluebird usually includes a tame amount. They do here, even though the hibiscus is the main note anyway. That is possibly the luck of the teabag goodies and what was included. Even though the cup is a deep red, the flavor isn’t too tangy. However, I would love to see a strawberry lemon blend without hibiscus at all. I do taste hints of thirst quenching fruit (strawberry, apple, lemon) but I’d love more of those and less hibiscus. The second steep had a lot less flavor, but I don’t usually resteep hibiscus blends. Also drinking this out of my Bluebird mug I received FREE with the order this teabag came with. Free tea! Free mug!
Steep #1 // 1 teabag for a full mug// few minutes after boiling // 3-4 minute steep
Steep #2 // just boiled // 5+ minute steep

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Another sample from Teavivre! Thank you! I’m trying to write tasting notes quickly because they were nice enough to send some samples over, and sometimes I don’t try the samples at their freshest. Oh but this one is fresh! Such lovely fragrance even just opening the sample — sweetest creamy corn and the flavor is exactly the same as the scent. And I adore these types of green teas. The flavor is lighter, but so delicious. The brew is smooth and clear even though the leaves have plenty of fuzzies. The dry leaves are extremely spiky, long and twisted together. I used two teaspoons, or possibly more because they were clinging together so much. Over the years of trying Teavivre’s teas, I’ve wanted to stock up on most of them that I’ve tried! How does Teavivre find these amazing teas? They are the tastiest teas! I couldn’t even pick a favorite green from Teavivre because they are all so good. I definitely wouldn’t need to buy my green teas anywhere else.
Steep #1 // 2 teaspoons for a full mug// 33 minutes after boiling // 3 minute steep
Steep #2 // 25 minutes after boiling // 3 minute steep
Harvest: 2017

Flavors: Kettle Corn, Sweet

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Thanks again for the samples, Teavivre! I think I’ll have tried most of Teavivre’s teas now and it’s unbelievable that most of them are delicious. Teavivre loves what they do, you can tell in the tea they find. This is one of those white teas that look like there are all different leaves pressed into a cake. Like raking leaves in the yard and making tea out of them. The flavor is all sweetness and light. Teavivre mentions white tea has three types of sugar, so I can see where the sweet flavor is from! I’m not really sure how aging this tea is supposed to make it taste differently but this tastes similar (as much as I can remember) to the Shou Mei cake I tried previously. The steeps stay very consistent and you can’t really oversteep it. I wanted to see what would happen on an extreme third steep: The third steep was like a light black tea in brew color, with the flavor of a smooth golden yunnan but with slight notes of autumn leaves. Interesting! The description says that loose Shou Mei and cakes of same quality can have the same flavor, and I can see that. The cakes save space with these big leaves and cakes are better for aging teas. I think the tea tastes sweeter as it ages. White tea cakes are a treasure after seven years, so this one just has one more year to go!
Steep #1 // half sample for a full mug// 20 minutes after boiling // 2 1/2 minute steep
Steep #2 // 17 minutes after boiling // 3 minute steep
Steep #3 // just boiled // 6 minute steep

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Thanks again for the samples, Teavivre! I’ve seen so many recent Teavivre tasting notes lately! I’m glad they’re doing so well. This tea is divine not so much for the rose but for the black tea. As soon as I opened the sphere from the cute wrapping with little pink stars, the scent of the dry leaves was so syrupy sweet. I knew I’d love this one. There is such a surprising amount of leaves left in the basket after steeping — at least 3/4 basket full of lovely black tea and ENTIRE ROSES. At least two whole roses! How ever did they fit? The flavor is so tasty, even though there are only hints of rose flavor, if some of you are intimated by too much rose. The flavor of the black tea is deep yet very syrupy sweet just like I love the perfect Yunnan to be. Though there seems like a lot of leaves in the basket, the flavor definitely isn’t overdone. All three steeps are delicious yet never astringent. It could be the amount of flowers to black tea or the difference in steeping, but I think this tea seems different than the Jasmine Dragon Ball, even if it might be the same black tea. I didn’t notice the sweetness with the Jasmine Dragon Ball that I notice here. Though the Jasmine Dragon Ball doesn’t look as gold as the Rose, so that must be where the sweetness is from. I love a good Yunnan!
Steep #1 // 1 piece for a full mug// 10 minutes after boiling // 3-4 minute steep
Steep #2 // few minutes after boiling // 3-4 minute steep
Steep #3 // just boiled // 4 minute steep
Harvest: 2016

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drank Lime Chiffon by Della Terra Teas
2296 tasting notes

Additional notes: Sipdown! I notice this one has lemongrass and the lemon chiffon doesn’t… so maybe the blend I just bought from Tealyra is really the lime chiffon? But this one doesn’t have the cornflower in it like the other two blends. Hmm. There isn’t really much of a difference between the flavor of the two anyway. Both delicious.

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I bought this a few months ago… looking for some root beer teas and S&V delivers! For such a small amount of ingredients here (mostly rooibos and some sarsaparilla) this PACKS flavor. Whoa. And this is some definite root beer here… I can almost taste a creamy flavor, maybe I’m imagining it, like it’s a root beer float with the tiniest amount of ice cream. The rooibos has the deepest red color, which I don’t usually see with rooibos. If you don’t like the idea of hot root beer (I don’t mind it at all), you could always brew it hot and throw it in the fridge for a while. Or there is so much flavor, I’m sure an iced tea would be great. The second steep the next night was brewed for a WHILE and there was even more flavor which was surprising and addicting. I almost didn’t brew the second steep but I’m glad I did. S&V aces the flavors almost every single time. Love this. Half the mug disappears while writing this review.
Steep #1 // 1 1/2 teaspoons for a full mug// few minutes after boiling // 3 minute steep
Steep #2 // just boiled // 7+ minute steep

Flavors: Root Beer


Their root beer flavouring is bang on!


Most of S&V’s flavors usually are so accurate!

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Hi! I love tea and trying new ones – it adds a bit of variety to my day! Books, music, TV & movies are my thing… and tea, of course.

Some of my favorite tea shops (still operating):

Favorite tea shops (RIP):

My icon photo is Richard Mayhew from the graphic novel ‘Neverwhere’ by Neil Gaiman, Mike Carey & Glenn Fabry.

Most of the teas listed in my cupboard are actually sample sizes. I don’t really have 2,000 ounces of tea around here! I was bored one day and found out that most of them have only one teaspoon left… maybe two. But I like keeping them in my cupboard list for reference to what I could be sipping. Usually, I write tasting notes once for each tea. I’m still drinking them, just not writing tasting notes each time!

My dislikes: hibiscus, ginger (unless in chai), charcoal type flavors

My ratings:
95-100 – Super awesome deliciousness favorites
80-95 – Also pretty delicious
65-80 – Pretty good
50-65 – Okay
1-50 – Probably won’t want to sip it again

I’m planning on being a Steepsterer as long as there IS a Steepster, so if you’re not hearing from me, that means something happened to my health… if you know what I mean. :D

Happy sipping!



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