1190 Tasting Notes
Here’s the tea I’ve been using other Dragonwell batches to revitalize. Seeing the original picture on here makes me so sad; my 2oz is no longer the beautiful display it once was, and only the strawberry pieces have retained any of their original colour (let this be cautionary tale demonstrating why there is no point in hoarding tea).
I’ve had a few people request this in swaps over the years but I don’t really like to send it out because it just looks so bad. The profile’s original chemistry is also much diminished; if you’ve never had a Butiki tea but wished you had, I’d say it’s better to imagine what this one in particular would’ve been like as opposed to drinking it’s pale shadow. The original leaf has greatly wilted wilst the ginger and strawberry pieces have fermented into a drunken dictatorship.
I dearly miss Butiki. Stacy wasn’t afraid to take “nicer” teas and build off of their already amazing natural profiles to create some truly unique and exquisite flavoured teas. However, it’s time to say goodbye and move on. I’ll try to drink this one up over the next week or two. (Also, at 18 teas in my cupboard I caved and ordered new teas so…).
Flavors: Fig, Floral, Ginger, Grass, Nuts, Strawberry
This Dragonwell isn’t anything special but it is a pleasant cup; it strikes the right balance between a pleasantly nutty and grassy profile. Nuts are the thing that hooked me onto this type of tea years back when I was just learning that green tea doesn’t necessarily equate to Bitter Veggies of Death. To this day, as long as a hazelnut, peanut, or sesame profile is present and the leaves aren’t burnt and astringent (looking at you David’s Tea Dragonwell circa 2012), I’m more or less in a nostalgic happy place.
To double the nostalgia, I’ve been using this as a filler base for my remaining With Open Eyes from Butiki (A Strawberry Ginger Dragonwell blend from 2015). That Butiki blend is essentially a wilted brown hue now, but the ginger and strawberry are still quite bright; they just need a nut-grass pick-me-up!
Flavors: Floral, Grass, Hazelnut, Nuts, Peanut, Spinach
I cannot with this tea (especially straight), but I think I finally found a solution that will help me drink it away once and for all:
Coconut Whip Cream.
Lots and lots of Coconut Whip Cream.
I suspect that the coconut flakes from the blend have long gone rancid but I sure can’t tell underneath all that Coconut Whip Cream. The sugar helps bring out the “chocolate pudding” too in what is otherwise a dominantly smokey pepper tea.
Edit: You know what? I think I’m just going to toss this one. It hasn’t aged well at all and I’m just not a fan of the chocolate flavouring in AQ2T’s blends (it’s not you, it’s me).
Flavors: Cacao, Coconut, Pepper, Smoke, Spices
It’s true that the most delicious tea always gets consumed first. This one gets added to the growing pile of deeply missed absentees, along with others like Milk Oolong, Golden Snail, and Sticky Rice Oolong. I have no Japanese greens, Yunnan black tea, Shu puerh… OMG. Soon I will be left only with a bancha hibiscus cupboard. It’s going to be so gross.
Please make this hiatus end.
Flavors: Cream, Earth, Mushrooms
This is probably the definition of a big brand candy dessert tea. There are better chocolates out there but sometimes you just want the equivalent of an Oh Henry bar (for me it’s a Caramilk).
It turns out that a drawer well stocked with Caramilks is good for office morale.
I’ll actually be a little sad when this runs out.
Flavors: Artificial, Candy, Peppermint, Vanilla
I’ve apparently never logged this tea on here? Weird.
This is one of the first loose leaf “teas” I ever bought, back in 2011. It’s also one of my mom’s favourite teas. Every time I would go to make it for everyone she would say “maybe make another one.” Today, I open the 100g tin to find there is barely half a spoonful left; apparently she was taking it to curling with her and she was hoarding the remains.
I remember my first tin from 2011 went a lovely pink colour from the beets. This tin from.. I don’t know.. never went pink, which was half the fun. Still, when you’re craving desserts but trying to resist snacking, this sweet nutty apple tisane is relatively satisfying. Also, no caffeine, so indulge away at midnight!
Flavors: Apple, Cinnamon, Nuts
Bought this because I was craving an Anise tea, and then let it sit in the cupboard for a while because this tea actually smells like the “Chinese Five Spice” you find in the spice section and your friendly neighbourhood grocery chain (sniff some McCormick and you’ve got it). It was too much and has been too much for quite a few months now.
Luckily, I caved in a year later after buying it (The dog has passed the torch to the pig), and tried it as a part of my “drink up your unwanted tea” conviction. Turns out this is actually lovely, and just the right amount of cloves, anise/fennel, ginger, peppercorn and cinnamon. (although I wouldn’t mind more citrus). It’s still on the unique side (read: savoury), but I won’t have a problem drinking up the rest!
Edit: I find once this tea is steeped the flavour and aroma profile sometimes cross over to dessert territory; this happened the other day. Tastes like cinnamon anise malt cookies.
Flavors: Anise, Cinnamon, Clove, Fennel, Ginger, Malt, Orange, Peppercorn
Is this black tea exciting? Not really.
Is it appreciated by my Red Rose loving parents? Yes, it absolutely is.
This one might be perfect for casual black tea drinking when you don’t want to break into your fancier and frillier stash, as well as for guests who want tea but aren’t used to loose leaf or who think the title “Yunnan Pure Bud Golden Snail” is a bit intimidating to start.. Although, I find the Snail wins people over regardless of their prior concerns and biases (such an amazing tea; why is it not in stock and why am I on a tea buying hiatus?).
Flavors: Floral, Grapes, Hay, Malt
David’s Tea points rolled over and I decided to pick up 50g of this for old time’s sake. It also seemed like the perfect way to get around not having a milk oolong while remaining on my tea buying hiatus (I want Mandala’s Milk Oolong soo much). Needless to say, I’ve been drinking this tea at work everyday and nothing else.
While this oolong is no subtle beast and ascribes to the same general “hit you in the mouth with all my dessert powers” David’s Tea swagger, I like this one. It’s like all those serious wine drinkers who stick up their noses at those over-the-top oaked California Chardonnays because Butter. Sure, it’s uncouth and removes much of the subtly, but butter is delicious. I love that I can have so much butter without ingesting a ridiculous amounts of fat calories.
Here’s to butter, crass California Chardonnays, and this special oolong. You are not complex but you know what you want! I respect that.
Flavors: Butter, Cream