3042 Tasting Notes

drank Peach Serenity by Adagio Teas
3042 tasting notes

Thanks again for the swap, AJRimmer!  I like this one!  I guess I’m surprised?  Dry, the blend has that artificial peach flavor (AJRimmer says “peach rings” and I say YES), but on steeping, the flavor tones down a bit.  My sample looked to be mostly apple and rosehips (so yeah, very surprised these ingredients brought such a tasty flavor), though the mug stayed a bright yellow color and never resulted in anything tangy.  It was a nice, delicate, fruity, bright couple of cups.  I wouldn’t have minded more chamomile, but I’ll be saving the sipdown for the hottest of summer days (well… night… it’s no-caff.)
Steep #1  // 2 teaspoons for full mug // 15 minutes after boiling  // 2 minute steep
Steep #2  // just boiled //  20 min steep

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drank Red Queen Cupcake by Butiki Teas
3042 tasting notes

Additional notes: Revisiting this one! Wow how the flavors still pop. Really I just wanted to leave a note for the steeping parameters that seemed to really work well this time. I noticed the cup got VERY dark on the first steep and only went with a minute. Here is hoping I check the note before steeping it next time. Probably won’t. Still sososo good. Still so much Butiki love! Anyone know what Stacy is up to?
Steep #1  // 1 1/3 teaspoon for full mug // 20 minutes after boiling  // 1 minute steep
Steep #2  // 2 minutes after boiling //  3 1/2 min


I guess a big keyword for my tea collection would be “STILL”? I guess there are worse words…


STILL?’ has a different meaning for my collection. Like I STILL haven’t finished this? And my collection is nowhere near the size of yours. You must be a master of the tea storage environment for your teas to STILL have great flavor!


Exactly. STILL can have many meanings for my tea. muhaha. And I’m very meticulous with tea storage.

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drank Forever Frosty by DAVIDsTEA
3042 tasting notes

Thanks so much for the swap, AJRimmer!  I wanted a cinnamon tea, and just guessed that this had cinnamon and I was right. I figured snow yesterday in April is a goodatime as any to try this one.  Upon steeping I saw the PINK cup and noticed the similar name to Forever Nuts!  Huh.  How did I not make that connection?  Though the dry blends LOOK different.  Those frosty almonds!  Those bright orange slices!  And with marshmallows!  The flavor is a bit similar to Forever Nuts somehow but the blends seem like they should be completely different. There are hints of cinnamon and orange.   I wish more of the flavors would pop, I wish for more toasty almond (maybe with a third teaspoon?) I’m not sure how much entire almonds impart to the flavor of a tea, rather than chopped almond pieces, but I do like this one. I don’t understand the low rating.   Not as lovely as Forever Nuts. I REALLY steeped the second steep but it hardly tasted any different than the first cup. It didn’t hurt though!
Steep #1  // 2 teaspoons for full mug // 12 minutes after boiling  // 3 minute steep
Steep #2  // just boiled //  53 min steep

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From SkySamurai a while ago!  Thanks so much.  An invigorating cup of matcha.  I added some matcha to the bottom of a mug then waited for the kettle water to cool about an hour (longer than I wanted) and then whisked the matcha with a fork while slowly pouring the water into the mug.  (It probably would work better with a dry mug.)   It’s tasty!  Like fresh green tea with a bit of a creamy note.  Lingering delicious flavor.  No clumping!  It passes the matcha test anyway. 

I have found a new favorite show:  Motherland: Fort Salem.  I have only watched two episodes but it is good stuff.  Hooked me within the first twenty minutes. Witches in war from historical times.  I can’t wait to see where it goes.

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Thanks so much for this sample, Tiesta Tea!  I’m always up for trying any Earl Grey Cream I can get my hands on!  Those blue flowers in the blend were really making me nostalgic for my favorite Earls from the past.  It seems like good ones are hard to find these days. This one is middle of the pack of my favorites – not the best I’ve had but not the worst!  The short leaves make a robust base, which is necessary for any Earl I gravitate towards.  The bergamot is fine – not strong enough for me and also not the preferred flavor type.  I wish there was more cream.  It seems any EG that is supposed to be cream is just so very faint with the cream now.  I’m talking about every tea company.  I wonder if companies had to switch to a more natural flavor these days… I don’t prefer it.  I like the obvious thick cream notes of older blends.  To be fair, I have had this tea for almost eight months now and the flavor of the bergamot did seem stronger before… but still no cream either way.  Got to have that cream.  It is odd however, when a tea has bergamot I cannot usually pick out any flavors from the actual base.  I like this, but still on the hunt for a GREAT Earl Cream.  Especially in these sad times.
Steep #1  // 1 1/2 teaspoons for full mug // 15 minutes after boiling  // 2 minute steep
Steep #2  // just boiled //  3 min
2020 Sipdowns: 30 (Bird &Blend – TEA Wells)

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drank Ceylon Estate by Octavia Tea
3042 tasting notes

I still have a handful of Octavia samples to write up.  Thanks, Octavia!  They are having a 25% off over $45 sale for a few days with code ‘WELLNESS’ however their free shipping code doesn’t work along with it.  The leaves don’t really look like the photo – mine are much shorter and no gold…  I’m not one for Ceylon, but his one is robust and full of flavor (what I don’t usually expect from Ceylon).  It’s almost like an Assam in flavor profile.  Strong, brassy, malty.  The second steep is brisk.  I’m glad I only used one teaspoon.  Flavors of bread turn into thick rye bread when cooled, maybe a bit of red wine with a hint of dried hay.  Definitely a Ceylon black I really like! 
Steep #1  // 1 heaping teaspoon for full mug // 15 minutes after boiling  // 2 minute steep
Steep #2  // 3 minutes after boiling //  3 1/2 min

Flavors: Hay, Malt, Red Wine, Rye


Still really want to stock up on their French Breakfast, but I must not..do..it.


Sounds good!

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Additional notes: Ah, my poor golden buds, suffering the most with age. It is a shame shame shame. What was once the most complex deliciousness, now could not be more flatter. It’s definitely a lesson to drink what I have before acquiring more teas. I think I have been drinking teas for… fifteen years now. Only fifteen? And I think I know what I like now, what favorites I should have stocked up, instead of the “try everything” phase. So hopefully the teas will sipped down, whittled down and I will have a curated collection. For example: I only have a handful of hojicha samples, but have not drank any of those in a good long while. So I wouldn’t need much hojicha around.

Edited to add: A previous note for this tea mentioned that I wish I had three pounds of this in my cupboard but that would have been a TERRIBLE idea. Even though I’m sure I knew that six years ago. I’m very glad I didn’t stock up. Little amounts of fresh at a time would be much better!

Edited again: Okay, the second steep at boiling tastes much better, but still. Not as complex. The first steep must have been very cooled before steeping.


A thousand times yes! I have too much tea but less than I used to have. I am trying not to order anything but dearly loved teas until I get this under better control. It is so sad when a great tea tastes meh because I didn’t drink it fast enough. Like…by three years.


Can relate on hojicha: I have quite a few weird Japanese teas that I cannot bring myself to finish. In general, I often try distinct, unusual teas and, while appreciating their uniqueness just cannot bring myself back to them.

That what you get for exploring and trying new teas. On the other hand, sticking to only the same favorite tried-and-true kinds feels so boring.


Sure! I LIKE hojicha, I’m just never gravitating towards it. Which means I don’t need to stock up. Having ie: one half ounce sample would work for me. Exploring teas is always fun, but I think it will be toned down a bit more now. At least until some of my favorite shops start disappearing again and I have to seek out more favorites (eek – but they tend to do that anyway, so I’m expecting it.)

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From Tamarindel a LONG time ago. THANK YOU.  It was so delicious yesterday that I looked to see if I had written a tasting note and nope, I did not.  Of course.  Though green and flavored, it’s still fantastic, more than I remembered from past steeps.  The almond is spot on.  Toasty yet sweet and buttery – an amazing pairing with this green tea and hint of cinnamon.  Two excellent steeps.It is tough for me to focus on reading normally and this virus is not helping with that at ALL.  Doubly not helpful and I’m really missing my mindscape books.
Even if the virus might be slowing, people have to realize it is because most people have only been doing the essential things for an entire month around where I live anyway. So it took a MONTH for things to slightly slow down and I really hope people don’t run out partying just because things are slowly slowing.  Isolated parties, sure.  Have at em.
A BIG musical calmer (every song really) is M. Ward and here is Along the Santa Fe Trail: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tnMPxsy8AsU

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I could kick myself.  Really kick myself.  According to an e-mail search, this was a free sample from SIX years ago.  And I never even wrote a tasting note for it.  And it’s matcha.  And it’s still very delicious.  This shop was amazing in the old days – they had SO MANY matcha flavors.  Sadly, I was only able to try a handful.  This is pure loveliness today so at least it was sitting here for six years for a reason.  I heated a mug of 2% milk for 88 seconds in the microwave and whisked some matcha in with a fork.  It doesn’t really look green.  But I think that extra percent in the milk is making it extra cheesecakey.  But now that I’m thinking about it, it’s very clumpy towards the bottom of the mug, so possibly what I’m thinking is cheesecake flavor is just plain milk flavor?  Who knows, but I won’t pour the matcha in the top of the hot milk again.  It doesn’t work that way.  Guess I haven’t had matcha in a while.  I will put the matcha in the bottom of the mug and whisk while pouring the milk next time.

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drank Candied Pear by 52teas
3042 tasting notes

Additional notes: Only an 83 rating from me? Psssh. This deserves a much higher rating. I’m raising it. I could hardly find a more delicious pear tea, and the flavor is really holding up. Next time it will be gone. Maybe I didn’t use two teaspoons last time or something. I probably steeped it wrong somehow. So many actual little pieces of pear! Who actually puts pear in tea? Probably only 52Teas. Your teas are being appreciated in these times, Anne — hope you and yours are doing okay.
Steep #1 // 2 teaspoons // 29 minutes after boiling // 1 minute steep
Steep #2 // TBA
2020 Sipdowns: 28 (52Teas – Frank’s Ginger Pumpkin Cheesecake Honeybush)


@tea-sipper – thank you. I’m doing my best to do the social distancing thing – we only go out maybe once a week or so to gather necessities. Although last night while preparing dinner, I burnt my hand severely – so – there’s that. It’s not very easy to do – well – anything at all with my hand burned and blistered. But I could be far worse – like so many others are. Thank you very much for the kind words. :) Please take care of yourself – anyone who happens to be reading this! Stay safe and take care!


Ouch – not good for tea blending. I hope your hand heals quickly!


@tea-sipper: it’s actually healing quite nicely. The first 24 hours were terribly painful. It still hurts and I can’t grip things with my right hand – fortunately I am left-handed. While there are still things that I’m not able to do without pain (so therefore I won’t do it) – it’s healing quickly. :)


Oh good. :D

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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):
Dammann Freres
Yunnan Sourcing

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! 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!

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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