Feeling a wave of emotions, some positive and some negative, about the recent news of Adagio taking over Steepster…
1. I’m very thankful that Jason/Mike didn’t just spontaneously shut the site down, which it looks like is something that was considered.
2. I worry that Steepster will look like a carbon copy of the other Adagio owned websites or that the impartiality of the review platform will be compromised because of potential bias that Adagio may have given that this platform obviously hosts reviews for their competitors. I think it’s important for Steepster to maintain a separation from Adagio (perhaps not entirely, but there needs to be distinction) and have its own visible identity and maintain impartiality.
3. I believe I am the second highest contributor of tasting notes/reviews on the platform, right after Sil, and I have invested hundreds if not thousands of hours into writing often very thorough and detailed tasting notes spanning nearly seven years now – it terrifies me on a personal (and obviously biased) level that this living journal of tasting notes might be lost.
4. On a non-personal level, losing any of the tasting notes/discussion board conversations would be a devastating loss; the thing that even gives Steepster value at all (aside from its community) is the mass accumulation of information and reviews – which have been largely self moderated by the community – and quite strictly. I include myself in that; no one forces me to disclose so often/consistently my DAVIDsTEA affiliation but I make every effort to maintain that transparency and hold myself to a standard of being as impartial and open about it as possible for that sake of keeping an ethical balance to the content I generate for myself and others who may find it and I have always taken the comfort level of my other community members here into consideration in how I have approached writing tasting notes since becoming a DT employee three years ago…
That said, I’m cautiously optimistic about new life coming to the site, so I’m going to try to continue to write my tasting notes as if nothing had changed – because that’s just what I do , and damnit I’m going to hit that 10,000 mark!
REVIEW STARTS HERE:
This is my favourite from Hella Tea so far – I had it iced on Monday, and it was just so refreshing. It’s a very simple blend, basically just black tea, lemon flavouring, and some floral accents (hooray for it having an accurate ingredient list) but it’s just so well executed and balanced/refined. Brisk, bold and clean/smooth tasting lemon where you can still taste that malty and tannic black tea. It’s that classic, quintessential lemon black tea that can either by so good or so wrong. I think this is the former!
I picture this as an incredible base for a Southern Sweet Tea or even making killer kombucha. Is it unique? No – but not everything has to be unique. The classics are classics for a reason; and this would make a killer cupboard staple for anyone seeking that traditional lemon black tea type of profile!