New Tasting Notes
Layered rich, warm and spicy-sweet aroma with a strange something – I think it’s the echinacea. The sweetness on the tongue is more mellow than expected, considering licorice root is the first ingredient listed. It is also liquidy brown sugar tasting rather than cloyingly sweet. Its thickness hits on the sip where it transitions to the taste of echinacea-mild orange peel mixed with subtle tart and earthy berry-type flavors and then swallows with the elderberry syrupy flavor and mild ginger mixed with licorice root; lingering tart aftertaste.
Simple conclusion: good enough bagged herbal tea.
Flavors: Berry, Brown Sugar, Earth, Elderberry, Ginger, Herbs, Licorice, Orange Zest, Sweet, Tart, Thick
April Sipdown Alphabet Challenge: “J” Tea
So I don’t have an “I” tea for some reason so on to “J”. I added a splash of soymilk to this cup but think I prefer it without. It actually was really good with a bit of milk very rhubarb heavy and creamy tasting. Maybe I just prefer my rhubarb teas without cream? I don’t know. I’m glad I snagged this off of amazon fresh when I got the chance because I don’t think it’s on there anymore. I’m gonna have to try this one iced at some point this spring or summer. I think it would be really nice.
An Ode to Tea challenge – W
Sipdown! About time. It was a good one while it lasted (for years and years). Rooibos, tulsi, chocolate and peppermint. Mostly tulsi now. Not a bad thing. This isn’t very hard to find sipdowns with letters, as I have an email draft containing last-session-sipdowns.
2021 sipdowns: 46
N is for…Noel a Venise
This came via Roswell Strange and I need to be honest because she loves it but I have had this multiple times and it always seemed to miss the mark for me. Until today…
Today I took a sip and I guess it was at the perfect temperature for this tea because it was a perfect cookie flavor with a lemon rose glaze. It was so sweet and decadent while still being light and just perfect. Think a cute little petit four. That’s what I got and then it cooled and that flavor dissipated a bit and now the base tea is peeking through and taking away from what this was.
Thank you Roswell Strange for sharing! It’s amazing how finicky some teas can be but at that perfect temperature, this is amazing!
Cold Brew Sipdown (245)
N is for…Nutcracker…again
I figured I didn’t much care for this flavor profile and I have basically the exact same tea by My Tea Box so I could either save one serving or just finish it off. The latter was more appealing.
As a cold brew, its basically the same as the hot tea, though perhaps slightly fruitier. It’s fine.
N is for…No Obligations
Decaf teas almost always have a weirdness to them. This has that weirdness. It’s like the metallic briskness at the end of the sip that mediocre black teas get. Other than that, this has some vanilla but if I want a good decaf vanilla, I’m going with Harney’s Vanilla Comoro.
Sipdown! (30 | 234)
This one seems so intriguing to me, so I was so thankful to get a few bags in a swap! I love pine and juniper, so I’m always happy to try more teas with those notes.
Unfortunately, this is not for me. It’s mostly honey, and the flavoring is fairly artificial-tasting. There’s also a sort of cloying floral note that I assume is part of the honey. I do get a bit of mint, and it’s nice and cooling and refreshing. Juniper? Nah, not really. There’s a weird bitterness in the aftertaste as well.
So mostly it’s artificial floral honey. Womp womp.
Flavors: Artificial, Bitter, Floral, Honey, Mint, Perfume, Sweet
“An Ode to Tea” Alphabet Challenge – N
I was looking through my (physical) cupboard for some milk tea candidates, and realized I hadn’t tried this one from the group order yet. And how perfect for ‘N’ day!
This is a strange one. If I didn’t know better, I would swear it was a rooibos blend, because it has that medicinal taste that I sometimes find with red rooibos. Woody, medicinal, maybe slightly fruity in a fig jam sort of way? I don’t really get honey per se, more of a jammy dried fruit sweetness. I almost taste a hint of lavender as well, but maybe I’m just making that association because of the similarity to Dammann’s Noël en Provence. Okay, now I’m getting a hint of wildflower honey in the aftertaste.
Anyway, it’s fine. There’s less honey than I would expect from the description, but I do get the dried fruit part and the flowers. Certainly not a favorite!
Flavors: Dried Fruit, Fig, Floral, Jam, Lavender, Medicinal, Sweet, Wood
Yay, first fresh green of the year. Thick, sweet, smooth and round. My smart-ass boss asked what the phluck I was drinking (grandpa in a glass cup). I think he said something about seaweed. My work partner-in-crime said it looked like an anemone in the cup. For all the marine references, it’s amusing in a tea snoot way that I think this tastes like fresh, sweet scallops. Maybe I’m not crazy? I felt so crazy this morning, though, that I left work 2 hours in. Turns out the vaccine is kicking my ass 2 days later. Shame I’m glued to the bed with fatigue and aching arms and legs – it’s a beautiful day and the garden needs working.
Okay this is super tasty. I’m getting better at making matcha or at least I like to think so! I still use a mechanical whisk though so not very traditional but dang if it doesn’t froth nicely. I decided to turn it into a latte since it’s my first time with this matcha. Super tasty and definitely recommend it!
Flavors: Green Beans, Vegetal
N is for…Ning’er “Golden Honey Aroma” Yunnan Black Tea
Thank you Sil for this sample. Last time I had this, I remember being surprised it did not have as much honey as expected given the name. Today I am in the same boat. It is more savory (for lack of a better term b/c that isn’t quite right – smoked w/o being overly smokey? I don’t know) than you would anticipate a tea called honey to be. That isn’t bad, just different. That said, its not exactly savory – more bready…maybe like slightly charred crust and malt.
N is for…Nutcracker
This tastes just like Marzipan Yum from yesterday. Makes sense since the ingredients are basically the same except this has some fun snowflake sprinkles and metal balls.
These marzipan rooibos blends have been better than expected. I think because the marzipan flavor is subtle and fruity and overall its just a soft sweet tea. It’s nothing particularly interesting but I am not looking to give them away either. Also, the last of this sample was used for a cold brew that I will have later.
2021 sipdown no. 75
I cold brewed this and somehow it’s even less enjoyable than hot brewed. The cold brew has allowed the full fledged cloying-ness to come forward and I just can’t understand why there has to be so many flavours in this tea. Less would definitely be more here.
For National Peach Cobbler Day.
Not peach cobbler but (supposedly) peach-flavored. It’s not fresh, juicy peach and barely even reminds me of peach flavoring. It tastes more like peach gummy candy and chamomile. Maybe apple too? Hot or cold, I don’t ever seem to like this. My husband finished off the rest of my cup. Dropping my rating from 56 to 45.
Flavors: Apple, Candy, Chamomile, Peach
2tsp for 250mL water @90C, steeped 5 minutes, drunk bare.
The description intrigued me: “toasted cereals, firewood, hint caramelized” — which sounds like a good Keemun, but this is grown in Darjeeling.
Cross a good and subtle Keemun with a lively Darjeeling and you get Lopchu.
It is absolutely delicious. It even has some buttery and mineral notes in the finish. It’s not smoky, not like lower grade Keemuns or a full-on lapsang, but there’s definitely a toasted grains/ Grape Nuts thing happening. It’s a tiny bit drying on the tongue. Some floral notes as it cools.
Complex and fascinating.
Sipdown! (29 | 233)
Finishing what’s left of this as a giant iced milk tea in one of my pretty DAVIDsTEA tumblers!
I definitely added just a touch too much sweetener, but it’s delicious, hah. I can taste more of the peach than the mango with this preparation, and it reminds me of peach ice cream. The mango comes in a bit more near the end and adds a nice tropical hit that keeps it from being too much of peaches & cream and takes it more into smoothie territory. Also I think I taste coconut, which I don’t remember being there before.
Very yummy! And hooray sipdown!
Flavors: Coconut, Mango, Peach, Sweet, Tropical
This came out a little strange for me. It’s an unremarkable light black tea with artificial-tasting berry. Not peachy enough. Oh wait, I totally forgot this had rose in it. For some reason, rose sometimes tastes weirdly sour to me in tea. So I’ll blame the weirdness on the rose since I like Cuppa Geek’s flavoring in general and haven’t really had these problems before.
This is one of those times where a black/honeybush mix really makes sense. I feel like the honeybush lightens up the black tea and keeps it from taking over, and the black tea adds nice depth and holds up the flavorings well. I get a clear, sparkly peach flavor, and maybe something desserty like vanilla. It reminds me sort of like a peach sparkling water? I’m drinking this cooled to room temperature, and I’m really enjoying it. It’s a new take on peach, or at least not one I’ve seen before. Very refreshing and delicious.
Prior to trying this tea I really hadn’t developed a taste for hojicha. I decided I would order this tea based on some great reviews I had seen and wow, it didn’t let me down. I should start by saying I love cinnamon raisin bread, absolutely love it! I can safely say that this tea is cinnamon raisin bread….in a cup!!!!!!!! The hojicha base gives this tea a darker quality, makes me think of when you are eating raisin bread and the crust ends are all dark and browned, this is the taste that is captured here. The raisin and cinnamon are there, I get everything! I do enjoy this one as a latte, as Deb suggests to make it as, and I think the latte aspect brings out the pudding part of the title. This tea actually was my top tea of 2020, it was that good!!!!! As someone who tries a lot of teas it take a lot to really wow me and this tea really did wow me!!