Gah, my spreadsheet for once has let me down! I don’t remember who sent me a generous sample of this, and apparently I never wrote it down. I’m pretty sure it was either Sil or OhFancyThat/WhatSheSaid but I can’t say with certainty which… I’m so sorry! And thank you to whoever it was!!

Honestly I thought from the reviews that I’d be more disappointed in this than I am. Maybe the key is having low expectations. This uses the 1989 Suncha as a base, a tea which I am familiar with having been sent 4oz of it in my mystery box! It’s a very potent tea, and I’ll admit I was confused initially as to why it had been chosen as the base for such a contrasting blend, but I actually think it works pretty well in a really unusual way. Plain, it is a little overpowering, and the rhubarb and strawberry flavours barely make it through the metallic, slightly smoky, wet earthy base. The cheesecake note is lost entirely, but I’m yet to find a ‘cheesecake’ tea which I can honestly say hand on heart truly reminds me of cheesecake straight away. After adding some sugar, the fruity strawberry and rhubarb pop a little more, but the Suncha is still dominant and cheesecake nonexistent. On a whim I added some single cream left over from the holidays, and almost did a double-take when I tried it again. The cheesecake flavour actually comes through now, and the strawberry and rhubarb are much more noticeable, particularly the strawberry. The Suncha isn’t lost at all, but it becomes a lot more mellow and the earthiness actually works very well with the creamy cheesecake and bright, tart fruit. Though the strawberry note dominates the rhubarb through the sip, the rhubarb is much more noticeable in the aftertaste and becomes more prominent as the cup cools.

Considering it was mainly created so that Stacy could use up her remaining supply of tea and flavourings, it’s pretty decent! Maybe not up to vastly superior Butiki standards, but it would certainly be one of the better blends from a number of other companies. I won’t cry when it’s gone, nor would I probably repurchase it if I could, but I am thoroughly enjoying the sample that I do have.

Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

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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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