3525 Tasting Notes

63

Mastress Alita’s sipdown challenge Sunday, October 17th: National Mulligan Day Tea #2

additional notes: Another fitting tea for Mulligan day.  I wanted to like this, so wanted to try the rest of it today.  I’m mostly tasting hibiscus, even if it IS LIGHT hibiscus.  Blueberry on the lingering aftertaste.  No lime.  I really tried to be delicate on the steeping and not let the hibiscus run things.  Ah well, I’m glad when I don’t want to stock up on everything from B&B. I guess it deserves better than a 59 rating though.
Steep #1 // 2 teaspoons // 20 minutes after boiling // 1 minute steep
2021 sipdowns: 135

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76

Mastress Alita’s sipdown challenge Sunday, October 17th: National Mulligan Day Tea #1

additional notes:  This was a fitting tea to try again today.  I KNOW it deserves a better rating from me… my original note called it confusing.  The dry leaf has an intoxicating creamy sweetness to it, but the flavor is entirely different.  It’s fruity, maybe maraschino cherry!  With a drying mouthfeel.  Second steep, I could swear is blueberry and artificial vanilla.  Sweet and various fruits. Maybe since this is a mix of cultivars, that makes it a confusing tea for me. The name of this is lovely though. I will keep editing this note and adding what I find, as I will be steeping this tomorrow – I just wanted to get this posted for Mulligan day. 
Steep #1 // 2 teaspoons for a big mug // 34 minutes after boiling // 1 minute steep
Steep #2 // 35 minutes after boiling // 1 min
2021 sipdowns:  134

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95
drank Milk Chocolate by sTEAp Shoppe
3525 tasting notes

additional notes: I will miss this! It was a special one. And a special tea shop I was never able to order from – only able to try a handful of teas through the kindness of others. Three solid steeps to send it off. It always seemed a bit more like maple than chocolate – or maybe it was a balance between both. I liked everything here – the base mixed with hojicha, the vanilla beans, however they did the chocolate/maple. I wish Steap Shoppe would sell teas again.
2021 sipdowns: 133

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81

From SkySamurai a while ago, thanks very much!  I keep trying this, but the flavor always seems a bit muted for my ideal Yunnan, so I haven’t written a note.  I tried to overleaf this time.  It was still very light on the first steep, but I went for a long steep that second steep and it was much deeper and delicious with a sweet smoky note.  Sweet potato & squash.  The second steep: THAT’S the Yunnan profile I’m looking for.  It was a satisfying tea today.  Maybe the trick with this tea is to steep it only once, but very long.  I will try that next time. 

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90
drank Keemun Finest by Zen Tea
3525 tasting notes

additional notes:  Evol Ving Ness’ admiration of this tea made me dig it out of the stash.  And it just so happens it was a sipdown over my goal of 130 for the year! HOW IS IT THE MIDDLE OF OCTOBER? I finished a sample size of this and have one sample size remaining. Yesterday it was a sipdown of an unnamed Butiki purple oolong sample that I couldn’t write a note for without a name on it and it happened to be JUST the flavor profile I was craving yesterday… and I didn’t even remember having the purple oolong until I stumbled on it in a Teavivre pouch… 
2021 sipdowns: 131

Evol Ving Ness

Hurray for this wonderful tea! If anyone finds a suitable replacement Keemun, please let me know. In particular, one that captures the faintly smoky element of this one.

tea-sipper

Yeah, as I’m trying it again, I’m trying to think of similar teas for you, but I haven’t really tried many keemuns other than Teavivre.

Evol Ving Ness

Thank you. I am currently working on keemun’s from Capital Teas Ltd. So far, delicious, but no match.

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96

additional notes: Ancient tin that I have finally finished. Of course I can’t just throw out the tin. It’s amazing I rated it THIS highly. It’s not bad.
2021 sipdowns: 132

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45

additional notes: I tried this one again, but no, I’m throwing out the few teaspoons remaining. It tastes like a jumble of jelly bean flavors, including licorice. Not worth it. I just wanted to give it another chance after the bad steep session last time. This one ages terribly.

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96

Mastress Alita’s sipdown challenge Sunday, October 10th: World Mental Health Day Tea #2

Additional notes:  Another for Mental Health Day.  Cozy coconut, cocoa nibs and cinnamon.   If there were cocoa shells it might drown out the lovely coconut, so it’s probably better they aren’t in this blend.

AJRimmer

Oh this one is a good choice!

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99
drank Earl Grey Cream by Zen Tea
3525 tasting notes

Mastress Alita’s sipdown challenge Sunday, October 10th: World Mental Health Day Tea#1

additional notes: I haven’t had this treasure in A. WHILE.  And it’s one of my favorite Earls and also the particular “harvest” that is almost gone. The perfect cream flavor is nonexistent at this point. But it’s definitely a tea I consider great for Mental Health Day.  I probably needed this today. This is the tea I most miss from Zen! If anyone is interested, they still sell teaware: zentealife.com

Leafhopper

I’m also sad that Zen stopped selling tea. They had a peppermint tea that I really liked.

tea-sipper

I loved MOST of their teas and would have kept restocking a bunch of them.

Evol Ving Ness

I also miss Zen teas. Especially Keemun Finest, which I haven’t found a substitute for. I still do have some of this one, but a latter vintage, not of this harvest/recipe.

CrowKettle

Zen was solid. They were an easy and cost efficient way to get Coconut Oolong. Never tried their Cream of Earl Grey but sounds like another easy staple.

Evol Ving Ness

Also, coconut island was awesome.

Evol Ving Ness

Oh yeah, coconut oolong is another favourite.

tea-sipper

yes, all of those teas. I will dig out my sample of Keemun Finest and have a cup soon, Evol.

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83
drank White Tea (2018) by Old Ways Tea
3525 tasting notes

Mastress Alita’s sipdown challenge Saturday, October 9th: National Chess Day Tea#3

additional notes: Then I wanted to have a white tea with “white” in the title.  And it’s a sipdown!  I can’t really expand on my last note.  It’s a good white!  Still tastes like white paper (in a good way) which is a weird note from me.
2021 sipdowns:  129

eastkyteaguy

White paper is not such a weird flavor note for this tea. Wuyi white tea always has a chalky mineral note to me.

eastkyteaguy

Oh, and your note made me recall that one of my best friends from college used to eat paper napkins when he got stressed. He also had a pet named Steven that was a moldy loaf of bread that he kept in a bag on his bookshelf. My friends are weird.

tea-sipper

A moldy loaf of bread! Well, I guess the mold IS alive.

eastkyteaguy

He doesn’t have Steven the Mold Loaf anymore, but he still eats paper. We’re still friends. He’s a doctor now. He’s also one of the more normal of my friends. My best friend from college exists in a towel, boxers, or a bathrobe when he is not at work. He’s very McPoyle-like in that respect. He has to be completely nude, or he can’t go to the bathroom. If he gets excited, he starts dancing and yelling. He does this everywhere. He’s never grown out of the toddler-like tendency to investigate the world with his hands and mouth either. He will put things in his mouth that I will not smell or even look at. I have literally stopped to look out the window to see this person with his arms out spinning around to make himself dizzy. Another of my friends runs a Neopagan and occult supply store and makes components for cosplay outfits. Her nickname is “Nerve Pills.” She’s married to another friend of mine who decided to take up leather tanning and blacksmithing as a hobby, enjoys drunkenly throwing axes at trees, and if what she says is true, has to be prevented from wearing a fursuit to work on his car, because that’s just what you do if you’re going to work on your car in the driveway at 2:00 pm on a Sunday. I have another friend who drinks ritualistically, chainsmokes like Bill Hicks, does everything in his power to avoid acknowledging that anything after 2005 has ever happened, frequently declares tequila to be the cure for the human body, and enjoys wallowing around in the snow in his underwear. My best friend is obsessed with horror films, heavy metal, and professional wrestling and decided to become a plumber’s helper at the age of 34. To say my friends are odd is an understatement.

eastkyteaguy

Have you ever had to drop what you were doing because your boxer clad friend got his head stuck in a heating vent? Have you ever had to go looking for one of your friends at a ski resort in West Virginia and found him walking around barefoot in 18 degree weather wearing only jeans and a t-shirt eating handfuls of artifical snow? Because I have had both of these experiences.

eastkyteaguy

Have you ever been taking a shower and turn around to see one of your friends watching you and eating popcorn? I have had that experience too. He wasn’t even trying to be creepy either. He was hungry and lonely, made popcorn, and thought I might want some, so he decided to bring popcorn to me in the shower. We had to have the boundaries talk after that.q

tea-sipper

My eyes grabbed McPoyle and I laughed because I was just thinking of that show. Your buddies sure keep things interesting and unique. haha.

eastkyteaguy

I guess that you can look at it that way, but if I can successfully manage to present myself as the most normal person in a group of people, that might be a problem. Okay, there is no might to be to it. That is a problem. I’m a very odd person. I should never be the most normal person in any group. I have been described as a more athletic combination of Frank Reynolds, Carl Brutananadilewski, every Christopher Walken character ever, and Will Ferrell’s take on Harry Caray with an occasional bit of Larry David thrown in. I have also been told that I’m like if Philadelphia were a person who bizarrely never lived in Philadelphia yet inexplicably just is that way.

CrowKettle

@easyteaguy, Ok – I love your thorough, technical tea tasting notes but these personal stories & experiences are entertaining.

Maybe Steven would enjoy wuyi white teas?

eastkyteaguy

Probably not. Steven’s favorite thing was lounging in the sun that came through the window while stinking horribly. It was alleged that he enjoyed peanut butter and pretzel sticks, but I never saw him eat any.

CrowKettle

Steven deserves a book or tv series. I’d read it lol

Also, sorry for the name typo, eastkyteaguy!

eastkyteaguy

I didn’t even notice the typo. Sadly, Steven is mo longer with us. We forgot to remove him from our dorm during a break, and cleaning staff threw him away. There were a couple of other Stevens, but they didn’t last as long.

eastkyteaguy

I think we had one named Andrew as well.

tea-sipper

Whoa, very specific comparisons for you, eastkyteaguy. haha.

eastkyteaguy

tea-sipper, I have been meaning to ask you this for a bit, but you describe yourself as always being in search of teas from Hattialli. Why that estate in particular? I’ve had a couple Hattialli teas prior to the last one I reviewed, but so far, I’m having trouble getting into their products.

derk

I think we all needed a laugh :) People are strange.

derk

And yeah, I get limestone with this tea. That could come across as papery.

derk

My roommate is one of those handsy-mouthy people. It makes her a good glass artist. Yes, she ate a piece glass a few days ago. A simple mistake, no?

Leafhopper

Eastkyteaguy, your friends make me feel better about some of my stranger habits. :) I don’t have a mold loaf, but I’ve unintentionally cultivated mold in some of my teaware.

Derk, I hope your roommate is okay. I’m not sure glass is one of the food groups.

derk

I don’t watch much TV but I binged hard on Curb Your Enthusiasm several years ago. This winter would a great time to wallow in It’s Always Sunny.

Leafhopper, I don’t know if she’ll ever recover. RIP Kiki.

CrowKettle

Yes, I had a beautiful mold colony in one of my teapots during first year – it flourished unbeknownst to me for a few weeks on the dregs of Celestial Seasonings Bengal Spice Herbal. I felt bad ending so much life (which was green-grey but smelled of cinnamon). Never drank that brand again.

I hope it was a dull tiny glob of glass! :O

tea-sipper

Eastkyteaguy – I just really loved the Hattialli from Butiki and haven’t really had many other Hattialli… I haven’t seen many available.

tea-sipper

I’m halfway through It’s Always Sunny and I’m still wondering how I find these screamy people who work in a bar so endearing (everyone except Dennis anyway).

Leafhopper

CrowKettle, mold grown from PG Tips doesn’t smell nearly as nice! :P I also recently dumped some almost spent leaves of a beautiful Shanlinxi oolong from Ethan into a mug, then forgot about them for two days and wondered why they smelled off. Into the garbage they went, along with the budding mold colony, and the mug got a good scrubbing.

Derk, I’m not sure whether “death by glass ingestion” would make a good epitaph, but I’d miss Kiki’s tasting notes!

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Bio

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):
birdandblendtea.com
teavivre.com
52teas.com
svtea.com
harney.com
angrytearoom.com
Dammann Freres
Yunnan Sourcing
fusionteas.com
AprTea.com
Javateaco.com
Lupicia
Octaviatea.com
Davidstea
eco-cha.com
what-cha.com
justea.com
singleoriginteas.com
teasenz.com
tealyra.com
whisperingpinestea.com
Mandala
verdanttea.com

Favorite tea shops (RIP):
butikiteas.com
steapshoppe.com
steepcityteas.com
aquartertotea.com
dellaterrateas.com
zentealife.com
theteamerchant.net
joysteaspoon.com
tealiciousllc.com
Rivertea
Specialteas

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! Many of my teas 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!

I’m always in search of: Hattialli, Qu Hao black, Jin Jun Mei, teas using marshmallow root.

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

My ratings:
95-100 – Super awesome deliciousness favorites – cupboard essential
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. (Or as evidenced by the great computer hiatus of 2019, something happened to my computer.) :D

Happy sipping!

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USA

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