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Recent Tasting Notes

Second sipdown of the day! I’m still coughing, so sick teas remain in heavy rotation. I had the last cup of this one intentionally oversteeped for maximum effect, plus I added a whopping dollop of manuka honey. So it came out tart and a bit medicinal from oversteeping the licorice root, with a cooling, menthol-like effect after the sip. Not ideal from a flavor perspective but somewhat helpful in soothing my throat!

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Steepster is back! I’ve been super restless without it this week, especially because I’m still sick so I haven’t been able to do much except rest and recuperate. Thankfully work has been pretty understanding; I’ve basically worked half days all week and punted everything significant to next week.

So! My senses of smell and taste are still dulled from covid. Hopefully they come back, but in the meantime I’m focusing on sick teas and familiar, cheap teas that I don’t care about fully savoring. This is a sick tea that I picked up in Taiwan. Hat tip to the DavidsTea podcast episode about licorice root’s soothing qualities. After that episode, I started actually paying attention to licorice root as an ingredient and have found that I do indeed find it soothing when I have a cough/sore throat. So that’s what I find most appealing about this tea right now. I can taste some sweet and tart lemon and feel the licorice root and that’s great when I’m coughing so hard it feels like my brain is slamming against the inside of my skull.

Side note: I miss the podcast and hope Marika brings it back!

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So, this come in sachets.

I was SUPER curious about it because I’ve had a lot of roasted barley/buckwheat type teas and I usually actually like them quite a bit. However, quinoa in tea feels like a whole other ballgame and I’m not sure if it’s something that would work well? Of course, I’m DYING to find out though!

The smell of all the tea bags in the little plastic jar that they come in it actually really unpleasant; it almost smells sour (in the sense of something spoiled) in addition to having the smell of dried out quinoa/grains. Like, it’s not really roasty in any way – just dried out grains. It’s weird, and makes me feel really hesitant to proceed with this tasting…

Steeped up, it’s actually not even close to tasting as bad as it smelled. The bulk of that weird sourness has gone away and what I feel like I’m left with it a tea that reminds me a little of drinking a “quinoa bar” (like a granola bar, but, well, quinoa). It’s not that it’s unpleasant or gross, but it’s just not very good either. Like, apart from the taste of the quinoa it’s rather flavorless and it lacks any sort of depth at all: there’s not really any sweetness or any sort of roasty quality at all. Roastiness is definitely what I personally look for in these sort of teas, so the lack of a roast is pretty disappointing to me.

However, even letting that aspect go I just can’t figure out what I’m supposed to be enjoying about this in terms of flavour? Like, am I just supposed to be all “Hooray – a tea that tastes eerily close to quinoa! The taste of grains without literally any of the benefits! My favourite!” ’Cause… Well, no.

I don’t know. It was weird. At least I can say that I’ve tried it though, I suppose?

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