This is my first experience with this blend, so this tea and I are just getting to know each other.

I will also say that vanilla teas are one of my most favourite things and that being the case, I take every opportunity to drink the ones which I find to be delicious. So yes, I have high hopes that this one is one that I start the day thinking about.

One of my favourite vanilla teas has big hunks of Tahitian vanilla bean in the leaf and this is the scent that I inhale when I plunge my face into that bag and inhale.

This leaf is a far more gentle delicate beast and the scent is more that of vanilla extract. Delicate and thin rather than the deep sensuality of the bean.

My first few sips were quite astringent, but thankfully, the tea mellows as it cools a bit.

Delicious. Not what I had expected or had hoped for, but delicious.

Maybe I have mentioned that I do mindfulness meditation. One of the things is to check into what is rather than what you expect or what you hope for, ie. to let go of the judging mind. It’s been many many many months of practice and it’s hard to shake that habit of well, it’s just not what I thought it was going to be.

Hurray for blenders who experiment with standards that people have pretty fixed ideas about.

And hurray for tea drinkers who experiment and stay open-minded. Flexibility is, after all, good for the brain. And probably good for the rest of us too.

Evol climbs down from soapbox.

Ok, that’s what I’ve got so far. To be continued.


Vanilla and marshmallow? Oooh. You have piqued my interest.


aw yum!! sounds delish

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Vanilla and marshmallow? Oooh. You have piqued my interest.


aw yum!! sounds delish

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Note to self—-you do not actually need any more tea.

My real tea obsession began in February 2015.

Not, sadly, when I had been living and working in China, though I very much enjoyed sampling a variety of teas during my travels there as well. No, no, that would have been far too sensible.

I am a reformed coffee drinker. I still enjoy a long double espresso with a good quantity or milk or cream from time to time, but for now, tea is my thing. All day.

*note—this is way out of date, so if we are doing a swap and you are checking to see what I like and dislike, mostly never mind what you find below. One of these days, I will update this. In the meantime, check what I’ve been drinking and use your own judgement. I like all the teas. Well, I am open to trying all the teas.

I tend to drink black, green, or oolong tea in the morning to early afternoon. Rooibos or
Honeybush or herbal in the evening. And perhaps some sort of sleepy-type tea in the wee hours.

This year, I’ve been discovering flavoured teas, so it may look like that is all I drink although that would provide a false impression.

Not a big fan of chocolate or mint in teas, but I will try them and, from time to time, have been pleasantly surprised. Also, usually I dislike a prominent cinnamon flavour, if untempered with other things, in teas. Again, I say usually, because there are exceptions.

Also, please note that haven’t quite gotten into the habit of updating my tea cupboard on Steepster, and it is unlikely that I will do this on any kind of regular basis.

I drink my tea black and unsweetened. If there comes a rare moment that I add something to it, I will mention it.

Finally, while I thank large and successful tea companies for tantalizing and beckoning me to the world of tea, I prefer to support independent ventures with real people, real enthusiasm and commitment, and real dreams.

Currently, I am researching monthly tea subscriptions. Perhaps it will keep me out of tea shops.

And here is Shae’s rating scale— which I am using with permission, of course— which more or less describes the way I have been rating teas. I am going to make more of an effort to stay very close to these parameters now.

Rating Scale

1-20: By far, one of the worst teas I’ve tasted. I most certainly will not finish my cup and will likely “gift” the rest to my sweet husband who almost always enjoys the teas I dislike (and vice versa).

21-40: This tea is not good but if I mix it with another tea or find another steeping method I might be able to finish it.

41-60: This one is just okay. I might drink it again if someone were to give it to me, but I probably won’t be buying more for myself.

61-75: This is a consistently good tea. It’s reliable but not necessarily special.

76-90: This one is a notch above the rest and I would gladly enjoy a cup of it any day of the week. I’ll likely be keeping this in my cupboard, but it isn’t one of my all-time favorites.

91-95: One small change and this tea would be perfect. I’ll definitely have a stash of this in my kitchen if you come over for tea.

96-100: No words can describe this tea. It’s an experience, an aha moment. Closed eyes, wide smile, encompassing warmth. Absolutely incredible. Perfect.


Mostly, but not always, Toronto, Canada.

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