New Tasting Notes

drank Orange Creamsicle by Cuppa Geek
2537 tasting notes

Raging hot here, and lots of outside work to do with the garden going strong. I made a pitcher of this iced and sweetened and it is so good I might cry. Definitely one I need more of, and I think I have ordered it twice already.

Orange is so refreshing to me and the vanilla creamy aspect makes it so smooth. I think I could chug the whole liter with no problem.

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79

Cold Brew Sipdown (1421)!

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – Pouchong/Bao Zhong and coconut are just such a spectacular combination! As a cold brew, this was soft and delicate with silky notes of buttery floral oolong and creamy coconut. It’s light but doesn’t lack richness, and honestly it’s just a very hydrating and soothing thing to sip on.

I have DT’s Coconut Oolong, which is similar (but a bit stronger coconut) so I’m not upset to be finishing this one off – but if I didn’t have a more convenient/accessible tea in the same vein then I would probably consider repurchasing this tea a lot more heavily.

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85
drank 2016 We Go High by white2tea
18 tasting notes

At first an intense aroma from the wet leaves: leather, wood, vanilla, dried fruits.
Then something more like clay… soil… fermentation… I don’t know.

The liquor is very tasty from the first steep. I immediately get a wobbling qi rising in my head from the back of my neck. My heart beats faster. My brain is slowly freezing. I sit still observing, and I stop taking notes.

Few hours later:
The tea is good. It gave me some kind of focused/stoned feeling, without making me nervous like other stuff does. This was a quite meditative tea session, strong teas like this demands attention. Flavours and aromas were good but not so defined or remarkable (I had just one session). The liquor was nicely thick with a medium-long aftertaste. There was some sharp bitterness but not overwhelming.
I stopped after 11 infusions, with a 3 minutes steeping. Taste was flatter and I was full. Did I miss something?

Preparation
5 g 3 OZ / 75 ML

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Sipdown (199)

Thank you for sharing this one with me, Sil!

Also hi steepster! I miss you a lot. My exam is next Friday and then I have July off before starting work in August. I have fun plans like reading my many new books, learning an instrument and a language, but tea will be a lot more apart of my life again so I’ll be back here too!

Today I literally made tea for the caffeine. I’m at the tax law part of my material and in addition to it basically being a different language despite looking like English, it made me super sleepy yesterday. So I am procrastinating getting back into it today and also arming myself with tea.

I picked this one because I wanted a strawberry black tea to go with my strawberry (/raspberry) tart breakfast bowl. The bowl was delicious. This tea isn’t bad. However, unlike the Tea Girl’s vanilla flavor – which is super strong and lovely – this tea is rather bland. Mostly just a fruit black tea. Not bad but nothing special either. Still fun to try though!

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drank Mango Sunrise by DAVIDsTEA
11413 tasting notes

Cold Brew!

Contrary to the other mango tea I had this week, this one is much more candy-like in nature. It’s a bright and lively brew with notes of sweet mango, a bit of passionfruit and some light citrus-y top notes from the lemongrass. Maynard’s has a gummy mango candy now, similar to Fuzzy Peaches, and it reminds me a bit of them – but not sour/overloaded with citric acid. Similar juicy mango gummy taste though. It’s tasty, and a nice option to be able to turn to instead of scarfing down a bag of gummy candies.

Friendly reminder that I do not numerically rate DAVIDsTEA blends as I’m currently employed there and it would be an obvious conflict of interest. Any blends you see with numerical ratings were rated prior to my employment there. These reviews are a reflection of my personal thoughts and feelings regarding the teas, and not the company’s.

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81

Iced Tea Sipdown (1422)!

As I said in a tasting note earlier this week, it’s been pretty hot in Montreal aside from the few storms we’ve had scattered throughout the week – I’ve been having lots of iced tea when at the office. I picked this one because it was the perfect amount to ice and finish off – I’m still trying to push myself to sipdown!!

I added a bit of agave to give the mango flavour just a tiny little lift, and the result was very good! I love that the brisk malty and floral black tea comes through really clearly in the cup – making this feel like quite a classic and traditional iced tea. The mango is sweet and fresh, but not syrupy – leans a bit into that pine-y mango note I like without going full blown turpentine. It’s very clearly mango, and just a nice direct flavour.

Thanks again to Hotcups for sending this one my way – I liked getting to taste through the sample! It was really nice.

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78
drank Dreamsicle Puerh by 52teas
11413 tasting notes

Treated myself this past week to a cup of this scrumptious sheng!

I botched the steep time a little bit so the astringency was a little abbrasive on this cup, but the flavour itself was still quite lovely – bright and sweet orange with a creamy vanilla finish. Light and decadent all at once. The last sip of the mug, though? Oh boy! I guess a few smallish particles escaped my infuser and were just angrily stewing in the bottom of the mug – it was a bitter last sip!

ashmanra

“Angrily stewing”. I know the feels.

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Cold Brew!

On the days I work at the office, which is like 2-3 days a week right now, the first thing I do when I get home is usually strain the cold brew that’s been hanging out in my fridge all work day. This was a really great one to come home to because it’s just so cooling and crisp! I love the menthol punch that The Tea Practitioner’s peppermint has – but it’s also just super clean and crisp on the finish. It works very well cold brewed.

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90
drank Caribe by Harney & Sons
88 tasting notes

I used to drink Caribe all the time, but then I lost interest in flavored teas and has literally been years. I was doing an order from Harney for Father’s Day and I hate ordering just one item, so tossed in a few samples, including this one.

I was reminded of how intense the aroma of this tea was the moment I opened the packet. The flavor just stands out with a pleasant tropical fruity mixture that I find enjoyable without the presence of all of the fruit. Plus side and down side there.

I should have enough to try it iced again sometime soon. I’ll eventually try to decide if its something I still enjoy enough to buy in larger quantity.

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80
drank Earl Grey Creme by Teavana
1073 tasting notes

I remember liking this tea years ago, so when a bag popped up in a recent tea box, I was happy for the chance to try it again. This really is one of the better EG cremes I’ve tried. The flavoring is interesting and tasty. You get a little bergamot, but also the nice creme and some other flavor notes happening. I’m not sure I would really be able to tell this is EG without the label, but the flavors certainly combine pleasantly. The whole thing ends of pretty light, mostly just tasting like the fake creme flavor, but I like it.

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88
drank SANS COMPLEXE by THE O DOR
901 tasting notes

French Friday! This sampler courtesy of Dustin, thank you! (Only three more to go!)

I haven’t been drinking much hot tea lately on account of the weather here being solidly in the 90s for weeks now, but I also have felt more more tired lately, I believe due to not having my typical warm cuppa of black or green tea in the morning and only drinking cold brews (which extract much less caffeine, or happen to be herbals). So this morning I prepared this warm to sip before work, but may throw any leftovers in the fridge to turn to a chilled brew to drink later.

The dry leaf aroma really reminded me of a buttery lemon cookie! Brewed 2.5g to 350ml 205F water for three minutes. I’m still getting that aroma from the steeped cup, though a lemon cream smell is most dominant.

Mmm, the steeped tea definitely has a biscuity taste to it, with a sweet lemon that fills out over the tongue mid to late sip. The lemon tastes creamy, but also has a hint of tang that gives it just enough sharpness to not taste artificial. I’m really digging this lemon cookie vibe! Probably one of my favs thus far.

Thanks Dustin!

Flavors: Citrus, Cookie, Cream, Graham Cracker, Lemon, Vanilla

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 g 12 OZ / 350 ML
ashmanra

Wishlisted!

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70

This was okay. I went through the entire bag I purchased, but I wouldn’t buy this again. The depth of flavor that I wanted wasn’t there. It was malty. Not a whole lot else. I wanted a lot more than it had to give me.

Flavors: Malt

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74

So my review this morning of the Thai red naturally prompted this one of the Thai green. It is essentially the same slightly scruffy material, now processed as a green, a style
which it wears far less awkwardly than the red.

Warm dry leaf is sweet and grassy like a biluochun or maofeng.

In the review on the red I touched upon the subject of my tap water, which leans towards reasonable for most teas. Except ‘fine’ greens, which it can simply destroy whilst amplifying the fertilizer up to 11. So for an everyday green tea I look for something not too fragile. This Thai securely passes the mark. I didn’t really manage to carry the warm fragrance over into the first few cups, but neither did they carry anything of a bitter edge, so perhaps I could have pushed it some more.

Subsequent steepings, as you have it, take on a bolder green profile, where this particular tea leans towards the earthy rather than the grassy notes of a maofeng. This time I don’t have to be poetic to say that it reminds me of an African green tea. And somehow (and that’s not only confirmation bias) I did expect that from the description.

Once more I can’t really judge the old tree thing, but I can see how this could be made into sheng pu erh as well, so once more I regret not to have a sample of that. I would be interested to compare the bitters: this one has that clarity that is par to the course for a green, and I just wonder whether the sheng has that kind of cigarette-y bend to it that I have come to associate with that style.

Overall, enough to chew on.

Flavors: Bitter, Sweet, Warm Grass

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 15 sec 4 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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74
drank earl grey tea by Trader Joe's
19 tasting notes

No notes yet. Add one?

Flavors: Bergamot

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 15 sec

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64

In my order from moychay.nl the two largest bags were 50 grams of Thai red and Thai green.
I was stupid enough not to have ordered a sample of the Thai loose sheng variant as well;
and I have yet to sample the Thai green.

The inflated bag size is due to the large and unruly leaf shape, which is essentially as advertised. The hot dry leaf gave off a complex aroma which at that point I could not readily pick apart, but it must have been a mix of the bag note, which is indeed apple-y, and the wet leaf note, which after some effort I pinpointed to be (Dutch) beef stew.

It was evident that my water absorbed some high notes as usual, rendering the apple
note nonexistent in most steepings, which leaves me no other option than to describe
the flavour as if it were a half-and-half mix of black tea and bone broth.

So. It is once again confirmed that tea can come in any flavour save garlic and onion (although this one came close).

And it can get away with it, perhaps due to not actually being greasy. So if I had to sell this tea, I would perhaps have opted to describe the experience as “a very evident terroir vaguely reminescent of African green tea, but ultimately transcending any comparison”.

Meat issues aside I can’t say that there is anything that struck me as confirming the “old trees” label, but then again neither was the price. Not very much in the way of Qi.

Overall judgement: sympathetically different, though slightly too different to really recommend in general. Looking forward to compare it to the green.

Flavors: Apple, Broth

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 3 tsp 3 OZ / 100 ML

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drank Mocha Chai by DAVIDsTEA
11413 tasting notes

New tea!

You would think, by all accounts, that I wouldn’t enjoy this tea very much because it’s a mash up of three broad tea flavour categories that I don’t often like: coffee, chocolate, and chai. However, each of those categories kind of has this like “one quality” that I enjoy about them/like enough to want to venture into those flavour realms – and I would argue that as if by magic this blend touches on my own personal “best attribute” of coffee, chocolate, and chai blends respectively. So it’s not a new favourite for me or anything like that – but I do enjoy it!

So what are the three aspects of the major flavour catagories that I’m into!? Well, lets start with chocolate: this blend uses Ghiradelli dark chocolate in it and that richness and dark cacao flavour really comes through in a way that I personally find much denser and fudge-y than a lot of DT’s current chocolate teas. I’m not huge on chocolate even outside of tea, but if I’m going to reach for chocolate now it’s most likely to be something very dark…

The second main flavour bucket? Coffee. I don’t drink coffee – never have, even before I was a tea drinker. Every now and then I will find something coffee flavoured or a coffee tea that I don’t mind but those are usually coffee flavoured things that lean heavily into the sweetness or creaminess of lattes/cappuccinos. That is not really the direction here. For me, the element of the coffee flavour that I really enjoy is that it tastes noticably roasted to me. I love a nice roasty toasty note in a cup of tea, so a coffee profile that leans into the roasted qualities of coffee definitely touches on some of my flavour preferences. The use of roasted yerba mate mixed with the black tea base really helps push those notes forward to make them a significant part of the cup composition.

Lastly though, and perhaps most importantly – the chai! All of DT’s favourite spices are at the party in this blend – namely cinnamon and ginger. I don’t mind the cinnamon, though I’d personally prefer a bit less ginger even though it’s honestly pretty light as an addition. However, the best part for me is the clove! It’s not a super strong clove note – that’s still not a spice flavour that tends to make a strong splash in DT’s chai blends since it’s pretty polarizing. However, you can definitely see those gorgeous clove buds throughout the loose leaf and that lovely flavour comes through in the undertone of the sip. It just adds nice warmth and depth to the cup, and separates this blend from the other chocolate/spice mixes that are part of the collection. Any time I have an excuse to work on a tea with the addition of clove I get excited, and I just really appreciate the complexity it adds to this blend.

Friendly reminder that I do not numerically rate DAVIDsTEA blends as I’m currently employed there and it would be an obvious conflict of interest. Any blends you see with numerical ratings were rated prior to my employment there. These reviews are a reflection of my personal thoughts and feelings regarding the teas, and not the company’s.

Flavors: Cacao, Cinnamon, Clove, Coffee, Dark Bittersweet, Dark Chocolate, Earth, Espresso, Ginger, Roasted

tea-sipper

Oh cool. Great note, great sounding new tea!

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drank Hot Choc by T2
11413 tasting notes

Strange VariaTEA TTB: Tea #13

Only have a few more teas from the box to sip through and then I’ll be ready to start organizing a shipping list for this one – super exciting!

I don’t normally love chocolate teas, as I’ve sad time and time again, but it’s hard to get access to blends from T2 here in Canada so I took the opportunity to try this one. It starts pretty fine and tasty on the palate: rich chocolate with a little bit of a roasty undertone. There’s something very unpleasant to the finishing note though. I’m struggling to think of how to describe it, but it’s sort of simultaneously like breathing in a bunch of dust but also just, like, eating a packet of sugar. Really not great – I didn’t finish the mug because it threw me off that much…

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…what can I say!?

The Thai Express is really close to my apartment building and I hate cooking, so it didn’t take a lot of arm twisting to convince me to pick up some fried rice and iced tea after one of the days I stayed late at the office this week. It’s really good iced tea…

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