1241 Tasting Notes

I found the bright base kind of lacklustre and meh (Sri Lankan/Ceylon black tea) but I did enjoy how much this one reminded me of a “chocolate” covered Turkish Delight candy bar (but a twist of violet instead of dusty rose). I think Big Turk is a Canadian candy bar but this tea does a good impression.

Thought it was satisfying with or without milk.

Flavors: Candy, Cocoa, Floral, Malt, Powdered Sugar, Sweet, Violet

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 30 sec

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76

I thought this was decent and comparable to the bold caramel teas from TeaGschwendner and August Uncommon Teas. My mom loved it on a whole other level though – the smooth, buttery caramel toffee flavour on top of a builder’s blend (with Assam) is a winning combo, especially for a decadent morning wake-up cup.

It also takes to milk well – but would have to experiment with it more to see how it handles plant-based milks. Another time though, because this is gone!

Flavors: Astringent, Brisk, Burnt Sugar, Butter, Caramel, Malt, Raisins

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 30 sec

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90
drank Violet Cremes by Brutaliteas
1241 tasting notes

My family thinks this smells like flower candles but I’m hardcore obsessed with it at this point. I even get moody if I don’t reach at least 7 re-steeps.

Flavors: Berries, Butter, Candy, Creamy, Floral, Smooth, Sugarcane, Sweet, Vegetal, Violet

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 1 min, 30 sec

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75
drank Coconut Lime Snowballs by 52teas
1241 tasting notes

One of my many fridge brew casualties from the last week (ie – I mindlessly chugged this down because it was cold and there). Fab lime flavour that could veer into nippy rind territory if left for too long (but still refreshing). Tastes and smells a bit like a citrusy tropical drink, veering into acidic territory. Very refreshing with those + 30°C/86°F days. It will be missed but I luckily have more citrusy/tropical fruit goodness from 52Teas and other vendors.

Flavors: Acidic, Citrusy, Coconut, Fruity, Lime, Tangy, Vegetal

Preparation
Iced

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drank Apricot Rose by Tofino Kombucha
1241 tasting notes

I don’t normally leave tasting notes for kombucha or bubble tea but, considering the increasingly warm weather, they and cold brews consist of what I’m mostly drinking right now. I don’t know how to really review or rate them though.. they’re effervescent? Fruity, sour, floral? Flavour-wise I get a good sense of both Apricot and Rose which means the name is accurate – what more can I ask for?

I discovered this brand while staying in Ucluelet (near-ish to Tofino) and was completely seduced by the Jasmine Hibiscus. I tried to stock up on that flavour, and accidentally grabbed a few of these as well, only discover upon returning home that they sell this brand at select stores around Vancouver too. Woops. I have no regrets though.

Flavors: Apricot, Effervescent, Floral, Fruity, Hibiscus, Pleasantly Sour, Rose, Stonefruit, Sugarcane, Tangy

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drank Raspberry Parfait by 52teas
1241 tasting notes

Another tea pouch I finished off in May but failed to log in real time. I don’t recall much about this tea except that it last about three days in my posession. I love raspberries, especially when they’re paired with vanilla and multi-note black tea blend like seen here.

Flavors: Creamy, Malt, Raspberry, Smooth, Tangy, Vanilla

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drank Ginger Peach by 52teas
1241 tasting notes

Mastress Alita’s sipdown challenge, June 2022: An iced/cold brew tea

I only ever cold steeped this in the fridge for 5-8 hours. First batch was more astringent and collard greens than I generally like it but the second batch I’m currently finishing off balanced the veggies with a good dose of canned peach and dry ginger notes. Not a large amount of heat to the ginger but its zesty earthiness is pleasant enough.

As always, the canned peaches take me down memory lane.

Very refreshing, although there isn’t much need for refreshments here right now. The Northwest Coast is deeply committed to a wet spring and mild temperatures this year. Overcast a few days before Summer Solstice. Hope it doesn’t rain for my upcoming six day camp/hike next week, but it probably will.

Flavors: Asparagus, Astringent, Earthy, Ginger, Kale, Peach, Stewed Fruits

Preparation
Iced

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83

2022 reblend (and sad sipdown)

It’s good. I think I like it more than Banana Genmaicha but then I love generous coconut during the late spring and summer months. Simply a nice balance of smooth, creamy (approaching velvety) and tropical flavours on top of a toasted rice profile.

Edit – the thing I particularly love about this is the touch of matcha present. Gives the blend that extra fancy “omph.”

Flavors: banana, Coconut, Cream, Grass, Smooth, Toasted Rice

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 0 sec
Aiko

Ohh, what an interesting sounding flavor.

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88

It appears I drank this ages ago but had hoped I was mistaken. After rummaging through all the cupboards a half dozen times I must conclude that I drank it all up within the week it arrived (despite my best efforts).

My memory is hazy on the details, but I recall cold brewing it a lot and mentally dubbing it “the perfect sequel to Anne’s Pineapple Sencha” – which I also enjoyed very much. Have I mentioned I love Japanese sencha? There’s not enough flavoured teas using the base and it turns out that pineapple and/or coconut work very well to convey a mood (marine + tropical fruits = beach life).

On my recent trip to Puerto Vallarta I’d be inspired by this tea to drink many cocktails sharing the name (not usually my tropical cocktail of choice; I’m in a committed relationship with mai tais). The vacation (and drinks) were well received, but I think I prefer Japanese Sencha ever so slightly.

Flavors: Coconut, Floral, Grass, Pineapple, Smooth, Tangy, Tropical, Umami

Preparation
Iced
52Teas

I love Japanese Sencha so much – it’s just pricy so it’s not something I typically turn to as a base. And – it also has a distinct flavor that the right flavor (or combination of flavors) needs to be paired with it.

CrowKettle

For sure – I wish the cost, profile, shelf life, and niche appeal of this tea wasn’t so prohibitive to playing around with it. It’s a real treat for me to have any Japanese Sencha or Gyokuro varieties on hand so was thrilled to see it pop up in your subscription box not once but twice!

Similar to matcha, it takes to pineapple and coconut well :)

52Teas

I’ll be honest with you – I’m not so comfortable with flavoring Gyokuro. Not just because of the cost but because it’s Gyokuro. I feel like it’s one of those teas that are simply perfect without flavoring. Similar to huángchá – I can’t see me flavoring it because it’s simply perfect without flavoring. I also love a true Jin Xuan – but I have considered lately maybe using it in a blend – because the natural notes in a good Jin Xuan would compliment the flavors I’m contemplating. But I’m still in meetings with myself over it. So, whether or not that will actually happen, time will tell.

CrowKettle

Agreed on Gyokuro (and also kabuse sencha). There’s probably some unwritten tea blasphemy law not to tamper with the perfection that is shade-grown Japanese green teas. I only name-dropped it because I recently finished some off and it’s on the top of my mind; whatever Japanese Sencha you used for this green blend and more-so the Pineapple Sencha made me temporarily forget that sad absence. It also satisfied the part of me that’s too lazy to whisk or shake up a matcha lemonade or coconut latte (Note to self: should do that more often).

I believe you’d pull off a fantastic Jin Xuan blend and will definitely be all over that if you proceed down that path! I’ve enjoyed all of your oolong blends that I’ve tried though, regardless of variety or grade, so may be slightly biased.

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86
drank Lassi Mango by Dammann Freres
1241 tasting notes

Sipdown! Checking this off for “June 2022 – A tea from a place you’d like to visit.” This is true for both France (never been) and Punjab, which influenced this tea. I’ve travelled to India in the past (Jaipur, Delhi, Agra, Varanasi) I’d love to go back.

I’d also love to order more of this mango almond cookie tea (it fails as an authentic lassi) at some point – unless I find an even better mango tea. I’ve been savouring it, but when a point is reached where there’s only 1-2 servings left it’s nice to open up the cupboard space.

Until next time, Mango <3

Flavors: Almond, Astringent, Cookie, Fruity, Malt, Mango, Sweet, Tangy

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 15 sec

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Profile

Bio

I started my Steepster loose leaf adventure back in 2012. I can’t say I’m completely new anymore, but I still view oolong as a magical, extraterrestrial creature that unfurls in water.

My favourites are teas like Milk Oolong, Silver Needle,and Japanese Sencha/Gyokuro, or fruity and floral flavoured ones. However, I generally enjoy ALL the teas, including a good old cup of Earl Grey or Breakfast blend.

FAVOURITE INGREDIENTS/NOTES:

DESSERT FLAVOURS
Vanilla, Maple, Caramel, Butterscotch, Cream, Toffee, Nougat, Marzipan, Butter

FRUIT & BERRIES
Blackberry, Raspberry, Currants, Blueberry, Elderberry, Banana, Melon, Pineapple, Persimmon, Rhubarb, Passionfruit..

CITRUS
Lime, Grapefruit, Lemon, Bergamot, Yuzu (orange is a hit or miss)

SPICES
Ginger, Turmeric, Clove-forward chai

AROMATIC & HERBACEOUS NOTES
Musky, “Fresh,” and/or Woody Incense-like stuff: Sandalwood, Frankincense, Juniper, Eucalyptus, Mints

FLORALS
Lavender, Jasmine, Rose, Lilac, Violet, etc. ALL the flowers!

VEGGIE/GRAIN NOTES
Spinach, Grass, Hay, Cucumber, Rice, Sweet Potato

Less Preferred Flavours/Ingredients:
Stevia, Apple, Cocoa Nib, Almond, Licorice, Cinnamon-forward blends, Chinese Sencha

Subjective Rating System:
I don’t give a lot of low ratings out, since a) I tend to grab tea I know will appeal to me, and b) I don’t have a lot of strong dislikes.

90-100: Favourites. The Desert Island Teas.
80-89: Loved teas. Possibly staple-worthy.
70-79: Good teas, but I’m less likely to repurchase. Minor quibbles.
60-69: Ok teas. Likely a few preference and/or quality issues.
50-59: Cup of meh. Will do in a pinch.
11-49: Varying levels of undrinkable tea.
1-10: Nightmare tea from the chaos realms. This tea is the embodiment of the primordial swamp, an unholy abomination. It’s very gross and I’m almost positive it doesn’t exist.

Location

BC, Canada

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