313 Tasting Notes


I was curious about this tea because I tend to appreciate plain black teas that have a figginess about their flavour already. This tea is kind of like that, turned up to eleven. To that end, it’s really lovely – lots of what I like in a black tea. This review is late so a lot of the finer details have escaped my seive-like memory, so further notes, I hope, will be better on the whole detail thing. But I quite liked it! Thanks to Ysaurella for sending this my way!

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Well, I’ll be. I have a job interview next week. Huzzah!

And this tea is very nice! I’d completely forgotten what was meant to be in it when I made it, but as it brewed I got a fragrance most strongly reminiscent of biscuits. Like, plain rich tea biscuits: that simple comfort, not too sweet, the kind of thing your gran always has on hand to serve with tea when you come round to visit. A tea that smells just like those biscuits is kind of the best kind of meta.

And then there’s the flavour. And it’s rich and nutty and cozy and very nice indeed. I’m not sure I’d have picked out that it was chocolate I was tasting until I read that it was chocolate and almond, but then I was like, yeah, I totally get chocolate. So there’s that. And it’s not the sort of very marzipanny sort of almond flavour you get in a lot of almond teas, but more just a nice, creamy nuttiness. And I’m not sure I’d have picked out orange in it either, but I think it serves to sort of bolster the other flavours, rather than standing out as a flavour in itself. So all things considered, it’s a very interesting tea, and also very very good. Many thanks to Ysaurella for sending this little gem my way!


fingers crossed for the job !


good luck on the interview!

Sami Kelsh

Thanks guys! It’s right up my alley, but a bit of a commute and not quite full time, but better than being a temp, I think? Oh, who knows.

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Well, I accidentally closed the window where I’d writtten but not posted a long, loving review about this tea, so the condensed version:

Almond, chocolate, cinnamon. Yum. One of my favourites of all time ever. Also, sent a story I’ve been agonising over to the editor today, and yeah. You’ll be hearing more about that on Monday when I’m, like, allowed to talk about it.

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So, Gentleman and I are moving in together a lot sooner than we’d planned because of reasons and am I ever not over the last move yet! Blerg. But it’ll sure be nice to actually live together in one house instead of two, yes? Yes.

So, this tea. It’s like lovely crisp, juicy peaches, and then lovely crisp, juicy apples, and then cooked plums. SO MUCH COOKED PLUMS. Not raw plums, cooked plums. Like a beautiful, flavourful, sweet and tart plum compote. It’s an incredibly beautiful flavour. I’m in love. Thanks for sharing, Ysaurella!


I’m happy you liked this one too :) plums and tea are pairing so well together

Cameron B.

This sounds fantastic! I really need to try more DF teas. :D

Sami Kelsh

You do. So good!

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Ok, so you know when you’ve been tasked with doing something and someone gives you a verbal bollocking for not doing it, but you did actually do it? Apparently, one of my flatmates is livid that I didn’t clean the house last weekend. Which I did do. Which involved spending my entire day off waiting to hoover up after a dude came round to replace our window after, you know, we were fucking burgled. But apparently the fact that the kitchen (which I never use) isn’t tidied AFTER I did the big weekly clean is my fault too. The good news is that presumably, I’ll be out of there in under 5 months’ time as I’m, you know, getting married to a nice person and we’ll probably want an entire flat to ourselves.

Let’s just… put the kettle on at Gentleman’s house (where no one is cross with me because, quelle surprise, yes I do actually clean up after myself, yeesh) and have a nice cuppa Ian Chesterton. Oh Sir Ian, I need your delicious, brisk and fruity strength today. Grumpy Sami is grumpy.

carol who

I didn’t know you were getting married! Congratulations!


Yes, congratulations! And yay for not having to live with flatmates anymore!


And this is exactly the reason I could never share a home with anybody. (Except Husband, obviously, but that’s different) You have my full sympathy. Flatmate sounds rather unreasonable. I hope they ahve apologised since.

Sami Kelsh

Sitting down to hash stuff out with the ladies of the house today. I’m literally only ever at home to sleep, and do all my cooking at Gentleman’s, so it’s kind of like sleeping in a house where some other people I don’t know very well live. SO very much looking forward to moving out. You know, and being married. :3

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I am getting SO much honey out of this one. I’ve never had a tea that tasted so intensely and so beautifully of sweet, floral honey, without actually adding honey to it. This is so cool. There’s lovely strawberry jam in there as well (I think a good bit of the seedy jamminess is coming from the headiness of lovely fig) and I think the lavender, while I can’t pick it out as a definite flavour-in-itself, is bolstering the honeyed flavours instead. Oh, this is very nice indeed.

Big thanks to Ysaurella for sharing this with me!


I’m glad you liked it. This is a lovely one for sure

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drank Kukicha by Adagio Teas
313 tasting notes

Oh, this is beautiful. It’s got a wonderful smoothness, with a dry aroma of sweet and nutty grass, that gives way slightly to a brewed fragrance reminiscent of steamed vegetables and freshly-mown lawn. This probably doesn’t sound as delicious as it is. It’s got a lovely gentle sweetness and has a smooth, very soft mouthfeel. A quintessentially green tea in the best possible way, really.

I have like a million things to be stressed about at the moment (like the way that my banking app seems to be really rubbish with actually showing me how much money I have in real time, so I keep getting unpleasantly surprised by how poor I am, GREAT) so it’s really nice to have something mellow and nice to make me feel all warm and happy in the evening.

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OH GOD NO ANYTHING BUT KANDYMAN IT IS THE STUFF OF NIGHTMARES and I’m almost sorry that it’s actually cracking good stuff, for reals. I mean, the tea’s a visual cacophony of myriad bits and sprinkles, but it smells gorgeous, all sweetness and berry candy, with a splash of watermelon to finish. Once it starts to brew, the aroma turns sour, like, mouth-puckeringly tart and tangy sour sweeets, with a liberal dose of sweet-tart lemonheads thrown in for good measure. And it’s definitely tart when it’s brewed up too, but with waves of juicy fruit flavour and a little sweetness. Add sugar and it tastes like melon berry skittles and still smells like lemonheads. And it’s definitely safer than the fondant surprise. And sprinkles.

Seriously, I had panic nightmares at least once after Miwk commissioned me to paint the Kandyman because he scares the living crap out of me. But I persevered in the name of, like, a paid illustration job for publishers I love doing Doctor Who.

In other news, I’m wearing an elastic sort of awkwardly looped on my finger as a placeholder because HE SAID YES, GUYS. Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee


Congrats! Such exciting news and the latest Steepster freeze kept us from hearing it until now.


Woot! Woot! Congratulations!

Sami Kelsh



Congrats on the engagement!!

Sami Kelsh

EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEeeeeeeeee, thank you!

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drank Yunnan by T2
313 tasting notes

Hay. So much hay.

Okay, not a TON of hay, but hay is the predominant note I’ve gotten out of this twice now. Go figure. Fruity a bit when it cools down a little, but wow. Totally hay.

Also, now working in an office where I’m not supposed to drink tea at my desk because it doesn’t “look professional”. It’s a nightmare. I hate it. I am so the wrong person to be working there. Thank Gosh it’s only a week and a half.


Tea is always classy :-). That office sounds absurd


hummmm drinking tea doesn’t look professional ? Sounds weird especially in the UK ! Are you working in a Coffee bar ? It could be the only reason for a manager to say that !

Sami Kelsh

I can’t eat or drink anything. It’s awful. I was starving by the end of the day and I still have a headache because I’m dehydrated. I’m used to being able to graze on stuff like raisins during the day. I’m not a big hoover-an-entire-sandwich-in-5-minutes-at-lunch person. Plus I’m having to try and get all my daily water in after work’s done, which means I’ll be up all night needing the toilet. I hate it and I hate how much it bothers me with my stupid needs.

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I’m just going to drink all the comfort tea until everything’s okay, and this is one of the most comforting tastes I know. And also, it’s Doctor Who night. Comforting times.

I just can’t eyebrows like Capaldi, but MAN Twelve tastes like love. The scent comes on strong, with a bold bang of rose, backed by dark chocolate. This carries into the brew, the rose sharpened and brightened with a touch of sweet-tart lemongrass, then rounded by the creaminess of the chocolate. Milk and sugar bring out its hidden cuddly side and bind it all together into something incredibly comforting. It’s at once sophisticated and silly, dark and complicated and perhaps an acquired taste, but oh so worth getting to know. This is making me feel better.

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My Time Lord name is the Brewmaster. Currently working on People Of Who, an exhibition of portraits of the people who made Doctor Who happen. Professional dilettante. Literary enthusiast, frustrated sometime writer. Knitter of things.


Probably a small grey sofa in Oxford



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