620 Tasting Notes

drank Neptune by Lupicia
620 tasting notes

Sample sipdown 194/397 courtesy of the lovely Marzipan

My thoughts on this tea are very much in line with other reviewers here. The tea is smooth and a touch malty, and I’m picking up some mineral notes too. The flavouring is very natural and elegant as I’ve come to expect with Lupicia; stewed fruits reminiscent of date, plum and apple with some honeyed notes which help to give the overall impression of preserved autumn fruits. It smells a lot better than it tastes, in my opinion. The scent is heady and draws you in, while the flavour is milder and more generic by comparison. I am enjoying the cup, but not enough to consider purchasing more.

Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 20 OZ / 591 ML

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drank Mayan Chocolate Chai by 52teas
620 tasting notes

This is the chilli chai to end all chilli chais. I’ve tried many, and this is by far my favourite. The chilli is really hot, and it builds at the back of your throat the more you drink, so if you’re not a fan of spice I would stay clear of this tea! I love spice, and this is the perfect amount for me – it’s a pretty intense heat, but it doesn’t hurt your mouth or drown out the other flavours. In fact, it complements them beautifully. I can actually both smell and taste the chocolate among the spices, too, which is a novelty for me since I typically don’t enjoy chocolate flavoured teas as I don’t think the flavour translates well. This is the exception to that rule. It’s a deep, rich dark chocolate and it tastes authentic rather than artificial – it’s definitely reading as chocolate rather than cocoa butter, which is what I usually get when I drink chocolate teas. Anne has done a fantastic job blending this, and I was excited to see that it has recently been reblended and is still on the 52teas website. I might have done some window shopping and compiled a fantasy basket which this has been added to… let’s hope I get through my self-imposed cupboard cull quickly enough to place an order while this is still in stock!

Thank you VariaTEA for introducing me to this mind-blowing chai. Sipdown 193/397.

195 °F / 90 °C 8 min or more 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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drank Tea Rex by Adagio Teas
620 tasting notes

Cold brew sipdown! (192/397)

Yep, this is much better as a cold brew. I can actually smell and taste the chocolate, and the cherry isn’t as overwhelmingly strong and artificial. In fact, I think the cherry note is coming more from the honeybush, which always comes off as cherry-like to me, than it is from any artificial flavouring. Upping my rating quite a bit from 53. I still wouldn’t purchase this myself, but I’m enjoying my cold brew cup.


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drank Pumpkin Chai by DAVIDsTEA
620 tasting notes

Probably my favourite pumpkin tea. Afternoon treat with a panna cotta type dessert thing. Yummy.

Edit: found another pouch of this (yay!), but I’m not going to add it back into my cupboard because I’ve already counted it as a sipdown.

205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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This Butiki favourite is almost gone. I got distracted while I was pouring the water into my IngenuiTEA and ended up adding way too much, so I had to quickly add more leaf to save from wasting the tea. It’s still a little watery, but disaster avoided. I’m actually finding the almond to be peeking through a little more than usual this way, so it’s even more accurate to the name. This will probably be what I’m drinking for a while now, because I’m going to resteep the crap out of the leaves. It’s hard to say goodbye.

185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 30 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

Nice to see a recent note on this! tea-sipper so kindly sent me some in a swap. Waiting for the perfect warm and sunny spring day to try it.


That’s awesome! It’s one of my favourites. I would say to resteep your leaves a couple of times to get the most out of what you have. I did 3 steeps, all still delicious, though the third was mostly just tea, and could probably have gone for a fourth if I wanted. It’s a subtle flavour, partly from age but it always has been more on the subtle side, so make sure not to underleaf too much like I did at first. Enjoy! (:


Thanks for the info :)

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Tea latte again, but tonight I steeped the leaf for 4 minutes instead of 6 and the caramel and honeybush notes aren’t as strong now. It’s mostly almond, with some hazelnut notes and woody and cherry-like honeybush in the background. I prefer it this way, nutty instead of just sickly sweet. Upping my rating just a bit from 70.

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drank Eggnog by DAVIDsTEA
620 tasting notes

People seem to be polarised on this tea – they either love it or hate it. Unfortunately, I don’t love it. It’s very thin and watery even though I used more leaf than usual and gave it a long steep. Warm, sweet water is what this tastes like. I think I’ll either use the rest of this up at once and try to up the flavour with more leaf, or I’ll mix it with something else that actually does taste like something.

205 °F / 96 °C 6 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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drank Raspberry Macaron by Fauchon
620 tasting notes

Sipdown of the day! 191/397

I saw that this was a Darjeeling so steeped it at a lower temperature than I usually would, but there is still some bitterness coming through and a drying feeling at the back of my throat, unfortunately. Like others have noted, I am picking up on rose notes most prominently, and when combined with the floral Darj it’s just a bit more overpowering than I would have liked. I’m also noticing some violet notes which are adding to the perfumed aroma. The raspberry is present, and in fact my very first sip was dominated by the raspberry note, but since then it has faded and been overpowered by the floral bouquet which is very loud, only allowing the raspberry to peek through as a background note. I don’t seem to be picking up on the almond, or anything that reminds me of a macaron. It’s a very typical ‘French style’ perfumed tea, I would say, with a hint of raspberry. Thank you for the sample, Marzipan, but unfortunately this one was not for me.

190 °F / 87 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 20 OZ / 591 ML

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Cold brew! 3tsps steeped in 12oz of water in the fridge for almost 24 hours.

This is the best ‘cola’ tea I’ve tried. In fact, it might be the only one which gets across a strong and accurate cola note. Though it smells very cakey, as well as like coke, the cake doesn’t translate through into the sip when cold brewed, except as a very faint background note which I could be imagining. I remember it coming through more when hot, but cold brewed this is all cherry coke goodness (and the ‘coke’ feels less confusing cold). I don’t get any chocolate from it either, but I think I prefer it that way. I wish I could remember which company Della Terra sourced their teas from or who else sold the same blends, because I would love to pick up some more of this for the summer. As an iced tea it does a good job of killing any coke cravings! Thanks for sharing this with me, KittyLovesTea!

ETA: I resteeped my cold brew leaves in hot water, and the cake is much more prominent as is the base tea.

Iced 3 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

Thank you for the reminder—it is probably lodged so far back on the shelf I can’t reach it, but I have remnants of a tin of cola tea that I should cold steep and be done with.


Any time! My teas are ageing terribly at the moment (most are from around 2018, some from as early as 2014) so I’m trying creative ways to use up the leaf while still getting maximum enjoyment from them. I won’t let myself buy any new teas until my cupboard is below 100!


I think this is the wholesaler of Della Terra, but you order through e-mail for some reason: http://www.eastindiescoffeeandtea.com/tea/
Also, when I was looking for the pineapple coconut tea the other day, it looked like Specialteacompany.com had some of the Della Terra blends.


Yay, thanks @tea-sipper!! :D fingers crossed I can find the teas I’m after – Oatmeal Raisin Cookie especially still holds a piece of my heart. Weird about the email ordering though. I’m looking now (:


Okay it looks like Special Tea Company has both this tea AND my beloved Oatmeal Raisin Cookie in stock! Thanks so much!!


oh good. :D

Mastress Alita

Wholesalers like East Indies Coffee and Tea, Metropolitan Tea Company, Dethlefsen & Balk, International Tea Importers, etc. (and I’d say those are some of the biggest ones) usually wholesale straight to teashops that then distribute the blends as if they were the shops “own” (sometimes renaming the blends, even, and repacking in their own packaging) and usually only sell in bulk sizing and not directly to consumers like you and I. So if you are looking for a particular blend by these types of resellers, the best way to find them (if the blend isn’t gone from the source wholesaler itself), is to search by the exact ingredient list on Google to find other tea companies that are wholesaling from these wholesalers. I’m pretty good at “hunting down” wholesale sources of teas from shops doing this (and am one of the few people on Steepster that log under the source wholesaler rather than the individual teashop), so if you are looking for something, feel free to let me know. (Though looks like you’ve already got this one pinned down — Speciality Tea Company has a bunch of ITI’s stuff too)

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drank Cookie by Lupicia
620 tasting notes

Ah, Cookie. Buttery, brown sugar cookie goodness. This makes a good breakfast tea with milk because of the CTC leaf, and the additional flavours hold up to the milk well. Cinnamon and almond notes are most prominent, alongside something deeper and almost earthy, but sweet at the same time, that I’ve never been able to put my finger on but is instantly recognisable to me as this tea. My cup is already empty, and it smells like shortbread.

I received quite a bit of this tea in swaps with WhatSheSaid and Marzipan (thank you both), and I’m stunned that I’ve never written up a note on it before. I must have been enjoying it too much! Now I only have enough for one small cup left, and this will be making its way back onto my wishlist and – hopefully sooner rather than later – into my first Lupicia order. I’ve made the happy discovery that I can order from the Lupicia France website, if I can only muddle through my rudimentary understanding of French enough to actually place an order.

Boiling 3 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

I think this is my favorite Lupicia tea. I love it with a splash of milk.


That’s how I’ve been drinking it most. It’s probably my favourite too, but I’ve been drinking a lot of Lupicia blends lately. I think they might be the first place I order from once I’m off my no-buy!


Oooo, I need to order this!

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I first got into loose leaf teas when a friend of mine showed me Cara McGee’s Sherlock fandom blends on Adagio a good few years back, but they weren’t on sale in the UK so I started trying other kinds instead and have been hooked for almost three years (and have purchased several fandom tea sets including the Sherlock one I lusted over for so long).

Flavoured teas make up the majority of my collection, but I’m growing increasingly fond of unflavoured teas too. I usually reach for a black, oolong or white tea base over a pu’erh or green tea, though I do have my exceptions. I will update my likes and dislikes as I discover more about my palate, but for now:

Tea-likes: I’m generally easily pleased and will enjoy most flavours, but my absolute favourites are maple, caramel, chestnut, pecan, raspberry, coconut, blueberry, lemon, pumpkin, rose, hazelnut and peach

Tea-dislikes: vanilla (on its own), ginger, coriander/cilantro, cardamom, liquorice, pineapple and chocolate

I am a 25 year old bartender, English Literature sort-of-graduate and current student working towards finishing my degree. I am hoping to one day complete a masters degree in Mental Health Social Work and get a job working in care. Other than drinking, hoarding and reviewing tea, my hobbies include reading, doing quizzes and puzzles, TV watching, football/soccer (Sunderland AFC supporter and employee of my local football club), music, artsy weird makeup, and learning new things (currently British Sign Language).

I should probably also mention my tea-rating system, which seems to be much harsher than others I’ve seen on here. It’s not always concrete, but I’ll try to define it:

• 50 is the base-line which all teas start at. A normal, nothing-special industrial-type black teabag of regular old fannings would be a 50.

• 0 – 49 is bad, and varying degrees of bad. This is probably the least concrete as I hardly ever find something I don’t like.

• I have never given below a 20, and will not unless that tea is SO bad that I have to wash my mouth out after one sip. Any teas rated as such are unquestionably awful.

• This means most teas I don’t enjoy will be in the 30 – 50 range. This might just mean the tea is not to my own personal taste.

• 51+ are teas I enjoy. A good cup of tea will be in the 50 – 70 range.

• If I rate a tea at 70+, it means I really, really like it. Here’s where the system gets a little more concrete, and I can probably define this part, as it’s rarer for a tea to get there.

• 71- 80: I really enjoyed this tea, enough to tell somebody about, and will probably hang onto it for a little longer than I perhaps should because I don’t want to lose it.

• 81 – 90: I will power through this tea before I even know it’s gone, and will re-order the next time the mood takes me.

• 91 – 100: This is one of the best teas I’ve ever tasted, and I will re-order while I still have a good few cups left, so that I never have to run out. This is the crème de la crème, the Ivy League of teas.

I never rate a tea down, and my ratings are always based on my best experience of a tea if I drink it multiple times. I feel that this is fairest as many factors could affect the experience of one particular cup.

I am always happy to trade and share my teas with others, so feel free to look through my cupboard and message me if you’re interested in doing a swap. I keep it up-to-date, although this doesn’t mean I will definitely have enough to swap, as I also include my small samples.
Currently unable to swap as I’ve returned after a long hiatus to a cupboard of mostly-stale teas I’m trying to work through before I let myself purchase anything fresh

I also tend to ramble on a bit.


South Shields, UK

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