2635 Tasting Notes

The first tea of tea party today – this was served with a warm Blueberry Upside Down Skillet Cake that my youngest daughter made in my ancient cast iton skillet using blueberries from my friend’s blueberry bushes! We also made home made vanilla ice cream to serve with it.

The tea is smooth and rich, not too strong but resteeps decently. It is great by itself or paired with food, doesn’t need milk and sugar but can handle it if that is how you prefer your tea. The dry leaves are curly and light as a feather with lots of gold mixed in. It looks almost like a Bi Luo Chun, but a black tea. Delicious!


Ohh that sounds lovely!

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drank Madame Butterfly by Gurman's
2635 tasting notes

I drink this one a lot more often than I log it. Super peachy and fruity, a great all around tea and well-liked even by kids, even without sweetener. Even my black tea loving friends like this one. I have bought it three times now – twice from Gurman’s in Dublin, Ireland, and once from Tin Roof Teas who carried it under the name Fuzzy Navel. Alas, they no longer carry it, but Gurman’s does I think and since my daughter and her husband go to Ireland a couple of times a year, I don’t have to sweat getting it. Also, Gurman’s has been great about sending us teas, even ones that I know they carry that are not featured on their website. Go, Gurman’s!

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I seriously like this tea a lot. I had one teaspoon left of my sample, maybe a little more and needed a green tea I could fix in a hurry while multitasking as I was making a stir fry for supper. I put it in my Kamjove pot and steeped very irresponsibly, leaving it for two minutes, then thirty seconds, then who knows how long.

I made five or six steeps, using about a liter of water I had heated and letting all the steeps mix in the pot.

When hubby got home from work, we had a great pot of tea to enjoy with our meal. This one resteeps so well and is so forgiving, and it really isn’t expensive. All those pros make it a real winner for me. Hubby (Ashman) is almost 6’4" and it takes a lot of tea to supply him at a meal. I need good resteepers!

The color of the tea was great even with so many steeps and the flavor went with our meal very well. I kept sipping after supper and the tea just got better as I could taste it unmasked by the food. Great tea, great buy.

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After my best friend and I went to the spa today thanks to an anniversary gift from my husband, we had tea at my house. I wanted to give her something unique that she hadn’t tried before.

We made this in a glass pitcher that my son and his girlfriend gave me for Christmas. The leaves are so pretty to watch. After about two minutes I poured our two cups of tea and poured the rest into a fair cup so it wouldn’t oversteep.

Initially the tea tasted like creamed peas, mild and milky. As it cooled, flavors of mild rutabaga and a hint of spinach crept in.

If you add more leaf and more time, you can have a brisk tea with lots of spinach flavor, but I prefer the milder way.

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drank White Ambrosia by White Lion Tea
2635 tasting notes

I couldn’t leave the spa without having one more tea, and there was only one sachet of this left on the tea cart. I made a cup and split it with my best friend. I am glad I did because this turned out to be one of her favorite flavors.

This white tea just screams COCONUT! It is a rich and creamy coconut, too. I did not taste pineapple very much, and since all we had was the name of the tea we really didn’t know what to look for in it. I thought I tasted almond but I guess that was the vanilla, and when tasted with the coconut gave me that nutty vibe of almond.

The sachets are too expensive at the spa and are not packaged for longevity, plus I think they may not sell very well and therefore get stale. ($17 for I think 12 sachets?)
It would be worth it to order it loose leaf from the company so you know it is fresh and so you can put it in a good tin like it deserves!

It was really great tea and a big hit with my friend, who has been drinking a lot of the coconut green from ZenTeaLife lately.


I’ll have to keep an eye out for this.

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drank Vanilla Dolce by White Lion
2635 tasting notes

This morning, I used a gift from my hubby that I have had for over a month – a Swedish massage at the spa for me and my best friend! We arrived early and lounged around in our robes drinking fruit-infused water and chatting until time for our massage. Then we came out and lounged some more and drank tea!

This is much fresher made there at the spa than the sachets we bought and brought home last time. I guess their stock for the lounge turns over fast and the sales stock doesn’t. This was rich, rich, RICH vanilla. Very good, but I will not buy the sachets at the price they are selling for when I can get Vanilla Black from Tin Roof Teas so much cheaper and it is every bit as good. The glass jar the sachets come in is cute, but a terrible way to store tea. That cork is not keeping it fresh!

Still, it was an excellent cup of tea to sip on for free…well, built in to the cost of that massage! A great Monday, all in all.

Recommended? For taste, yes. For price, no.

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drank Anji Black by Harney & Sons
2635 tasting notes

This morning, youngest and I took some time to enjoy a couple of tea samples from Harney and Sons 2015 offerings. She wanted to start with black tea since she had just gotten out of bed. We used a gong fu set and aroma cup set, but we were steeping just over a teaspoon of leaf for four minutes in boiling water. We made four steeps in all.

The package let out a burst of bready aroma as soon a it was opened. It was so fresh. The steeped tea had an amazing scent in the aroma cup – pure sweet potato complete with brown sugar and the barest hint of cinnamon. Maybe even a touch of butter.

The liquor is pale for a black tea. The flavor is not “pale.” I consider this to be a light bodied tea but the flavor is pure and sweet. I do not taste a lot of the classic “tea” flavor with bread and malt as the scent made me think I might. I believe it would be a terrible injustice to add sugar or especially milk to this tea. It doesn’t need it, and I think it would suffer for it, but since I don’t add anything to my tea anyway, perhaps other people would feel differently.

If you could give someone the essence of a holiday sweet potato dish in a cup, this is it. I would compare it to a fine Golden Monkey (and there is none finer than Harney’s) that has had the breadiness reduced and the malt removed.

After trying a cup of it on its own, I had it with one square of a Godiva strawberry truffle bar. The first sip after the chocolate as heavenly, so I know this is going to pair beautifully with sweets and tidbits at tea time!

Subsequent steeps are pale but flavorful.


Love this one! But your review, plus the Harney coupon in my email forced me to buy a pound of Golden Monkey. Yeah, ‘forced’. ;)

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Like the widow’s cruet of oil (for all you Sunday school go-ers) this tea never runs out. I am on my original bag. It calls for double the usual amount of leaf because of all the flower petals. It is dearly loved by the writers’ group folks who meet at my house, and we drink at least one and sometimes two or three large tetsubins of it. It is so floral and sweet. Honestly the color of the tea in the cup is not appealing. It looks a bit like dirty, slightly purple water. But the aroma and taste are lovely like the dry leaf.

I will probably have to repurchase when it does run out or there may be a well-written insurrection.


This sounds very intriguing. I like a well done fig tea sometimes and my mom loves them.

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I love love love Teavivre’s Jasmine teas. I have an order of Peach Jasmine on the way and arriving next week. I think I have tried every single one now.

This has been my go-to Jasmine tea with meals. It lacked the finesse I want for solitary drinking but was perfect with a meal and tasted just as good as my favorites from Teavivre when paired with food.

Last night I had a idea and had my daughter cut the steep time to two minutes in 174F water. She made two steps and combined them, it was fantastic with the meal as always, but afterward was much, much better this way when we were drinking it by itself.

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drank Summit Grey by Summit Tea Company
2635 tasting notes

I decided to try this again. My daughter was drinking this and she likes it. She said she liked how mild the bergamot is. It seemed to her more like a tea that was badly stored BESIDE an Earl Grey and absorbed some of the aroma, which made it just right for her.

My first sip was okay, but the aftertaste still offends me. The truth is that I don’t like Earl Grey teas that are made with a Ceylon base. In fact, I really only like the ones with a Chinese base, preferably Keemun. The lemony sharp taste of the Ceylon is just too much with sour bergamot, though I like the two elements separately well enough.

If you love Earl Grey “the stronger the better”, then this tea isn’t for you. The former Nina’s Earl that had a Keemun base is still my favorite Earl, with Harney and Son’s Earl Grey Supreme running close behind.

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I am a music teacher, tutor, and former homeschool mom (25 years!) who started drinking loose leaf tea about twelve years ago! My daughters and I have tea every day, and we are frequently joined by my students or friends for “tea time.” Now my hubby joins us, too. His tastes have evolved from Tetley with milk and sugar to mostly unadorned greens and oolongs.

We have learned so much history, geography, and culture in this journey.

I am also reviewing for Sororitea Sisters now!

My avatar is a mole in a teacup! Long story…


North Carolina

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