Featured & New Tasting Notes

83
drank Beach Bellini by Teavana
2332 tasting notes

I enjoy the mild mango/nectarine-y notes! It’s light and fruity without being sour at all. I never got to try this one when Teavana was open, so I was happy to find these bags at Target. I might buy more because this flavor really works for me!

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Sipdown

Ashman and I have been drinking this one at breakfast on the past couple of weekends. We do not add milk or sugar and for us this tea doesn’t need it. Some Assams are super brisk and might need that smoothing but this one is just right.

The vanilla is present but light. It really does present as a breakfast tea rather than a stand alone dessert cup to me, because it isn’t super sweet and cloying and it is not heavily flavored. It does have enough briskness to pair with food and clear the palate. The briskness comes as that fruity/raisiny end of sip aftertaste.

If you like your tea with milk and sugar this can certainly take it without any loss of its character, but we consume more sugar than we should already so we leave it out where we can.

If you enjoy Assam tea, this is definitely one to treat yourself to one day.

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drank Assam Brahmaputra by Savoy Tea Co
2917 tasting notes

Savoy tea is in business and thriving, but the storefront we visited yesterday is preparing to relocate, so what we found there yesterday was a little hodge-podgey. (Mind you, this did not keep me from restocking several favorites.) This was the only one of its kind on the sample rack and it isn’t on the website, so I’m wondering if it might be a base tea they have used for blending.

At any rate, it is one of the least Assam-y Assams I’ve sampled in the recent past…has a fresh floral smell (lilacs from across the yard, not lilacs under your nose) and that carries over to the flavor. It’s more oolong-y than Assam-y and needs a lighter touch than I gave the first cup…is a little bitter now that I’m toward the bottom. Next time I’ll back off the steep time to 3 minutes instead of the sloppy 4 I gave it.

Last word; it’s a tea party-pinky up Assam. Not for sleepy mornings.

ashmanra

I would love to hear how you like it with new steeping parameters! Are they relocating to a place where you can still easily access them?

gmathis

Sounded like they were looking for a nearby option. They have another storefront in Fayetteville (AR) about 30 minutes further south—we just generally have no need to venture that far.

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drank Jasmine Oolong by DAVIDsTEA
1161 tasting notes

Not a true sipdown because I have another bag, but this one is done. I like this! I had better notes jotted down somewhere, but from memory: I like the floral jasmine here, I recall the underlying oolong being smooth and creamy, and it resteeps well Western-style as well as being good for grandpa-style brewing.

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drank 2023 Veldt Mini by white2tea
15829 tasting notes

Grandpa Style!

I have to admit to drinking this raw pu’erh somewhat absent mindely – enough so that I am confident I missed much of the nuance this tea seems to have to offer. However, I did quite enjoy the almost fuzzy feeling texture of my brew; it was just enough astringency to be assertive and pleasantly captivating without dipping into that more sandpaper sort of territory. I also got tasted a sort of pithy citrus note in the finish, like grapefruit zest. I’m quite intrigued to see how that flavour may fit in the overall picture of this tea when brewed with more care and attention. Thankfully I still have a good handful of minis left, so I will definitely get my mulligan in the future!

Tea Photos: https://www.instagram.com/p/C7W6_LtOZkS/?img_index=1

Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SR4UxVJ1DQo

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This was a gift from a very sweet couple I know. They gave me lots of matcha and I have been sharing that love because there is no way I can drink all this by myself before date.

My neighbor who is just getting into tea was visiting. I have shared a different matcha with her already and will be giving her some of this one when her tin is empty, but I wanted her to see the difference between really good matcha and culinary. We compared the color and fineness of this one with Harney’s top grade, the extra thick, as they call it.

This one is dusty army green and Harney’s was brilliant verdant green. Harney’s powder also appeared to be a much finer grind.

But she and her husband are drinking matcha for health benefits and they just shake it up in a jar and drink a bit cold each morning. They love it!

That’s the treatment I gave this tea today. One teaspoon shaken in a mason jar with fifteen ounces water and two ice cubes. I then poured three ounces of that, three ounces of unsweetened coconut milk, and a tiny dribble of maple syrup in a small glass and gave it a stir.

Prepared this way, it makes a tasty mid-morning drink for a little extra energy and hopefully some antioxidants.

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65
drank Decaf Cream by Adagio Teas
2332 tasting notes

At first, I quite enjoyed this one. The cream really comes through, and the decaf black base isn’t bad at all. With sugar and milk, this becomes a desserty tea. The resteep was strong too. My mistake was buying 3 oz, and I unfortunately got pretty tired of it since it’s a simple flavor profile. The cream just started tasting thin and fake to me.

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75

I pulled this out a week ago when my friend Todd was visiting for the weekend; I have chronic migraine and kept waking up with my head being uncooperative, so I was hitting it with all the things first thing in the morning, including a stronger-than-usual hit of caffeine. I think this was the only “coffee tea” in my current cupboard that wasn’t an herbal substitute to coffee and would actually have the caffeine I needed.

It’s pretty good! I have been brewing it a bit stronger than I would typically brew blacks or mates, so that combined with the coffee beans does make it a little bitter, but that bitterness also just sells the coffee flavor, which is pretty prominent. I can taste a bit of vanilla on the backend, but mostly I taste the really sharp notes of coffee bean and the roastiness of the roasted yerba mate. Very nice for a kick-in-the-pants morning, or a drizzly rainy afternoon at work.

Flavors: Bitter, Coffee, Dark Bittersweet, Nutty, Roasted, Vanilla

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 350 ML
ashmanra

A friend recently told us that he heard from a coworker that if you run as soon as you feel a migraine starting, it will go away. he tried jumping on his treadmill, and it worked for him. The last time Ashman had a visual aura and felt one coming on, I reminded him and he immediately took the dogs for a walk/run. It worked for him, no headache although his scalp felt tender as if he had recently had one. It may only work for certain tyoes. Ihope it will continue to work for him as he has complex mograines with aura, loss of speech, tingling of hands, etc.

Mastress Alita

Interesting, physical activity aggrevates migraines for a lot of people (mine included). Caffeine, too, can help some and make things way worse for others (thankfully for me it either helps a little bit or has no affect, but doesn’t make them worse). I’ve had chronic migraine (15+ attacks a month) since I was in my teens, and they used to be unlivable. A new class of medications that came out in 2019 (CGRP inhibitors) has actually given me some quality of life back, and now I have a more manageable number of attacks and the attacks don’t last as long and not at the same intensity. The bad part is the medication is extremely expensive and hard to get, I have a battle between insurance and Patient Assistance Programs every year to stay on it. I hope the best for his migraine journey, it is crazy how many different symptoms they have on the body (once I woke up with my hearing lost in one ear completely for 24 hours!)

ashmanra

Caffeine seems to help him, also.

Sofia Vaz

as a fellow migraine-haver, I feel you!
I’ve been waiting for a year to have an appointment with a neurologist, so at the moment I can’t really prevent them, and instead deal with them with a strong NSAID whenever they appear, as was ordered by my family doctor
if I get them earlier in the day, coffee also tends to help me! It’s cute how these little tricks are so universal among us :)
when the migraines are milder, eating really greasy and salty foods also helps — I’ve found that McDonald’s fries have the best grease and salt ratio for me

I hope you don’t have to fight with your insurance and PAP too much; it sucks that you even have to do that :( sometimes, I wish there was a simulator to make them feel the pain we feel so they’d understand how vital treatment is

by now, your migraine is (hopefully) gone, and if it isn’t, please go rest! I usually just lie on the couch watching Arrested Development with a very low volume and most lights turned off, you could do the same with the original Alita! :D

Dustin

My neurologist suggested some supplements that haven’t helped and wanted to put me on 900mg of gabapentin daily, the current cure all medication. I was on 100mg daily already and hated it, so I opted not to go up to 900 and had to wean myself off the 100mg. I hope you get better results with your neurologist. I’ll have to try running to greasy salty foods the next time I feel one coming on! I’m willing to try almost anything (besides all the gabapentin).

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I can’t help myself when I see RTD (probably because I have no mood for making tea at work) teas; and again I bought one. This one have very simple name and most importantly, much less sugar than previous teas.

I really like elderflowers and I can see it working with white tea base. It’s really refreshing and a little zingy thanks to lemon juice added. It works so well together, that I want a similar blend but in loose leaf. Any recommendations?

gmathis

That does sound like a pleasant cold drink!

ashmanra

That sounds refreshing!

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80
drank Morning Sunshine by T2
2332 tasting notes

TTB tea! This is quite hearty! With milk and sugar, it was one of the better breakfast blends I’ve had in recent memory! It definitely does best with a short steep.

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Though I feel like this tea will be best made iced or cold brewed I found myself craving something fruitier a few nights back – and turns out it’s actually quite lovely hot! Very bright and juicy with just a smidge of sourness/tartness to it. The profile is quite peach forward in more of a candy-like and sort of artificial way. Though, I don’t mean artificial in a negative sense. But I also tasted a mix of different tropical fruits and some kiwi, and the finish has a soft but lingering coconut note with just a hint of creaminess. I’d call it a cross between, like, a peach gummy ring candy and a tropical smoothie.

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79
drank Pumpkin Patch Black Tea by 52teas
2332 tasting notes

The spice combination here is quite pleasant! It tastes like a gentle, not spicy chai. I’m not sure I notice the pumpkin specifically, but I thought this cup was pretty tasty and interesting. High quality and fulfilling, as always! Perhaps the spices could be a bit stronger, but the balance certainly isn’t bad.

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78
drank Sweet Potato by 52teas
2332 tasting notes

With sugar and milk, this is quite starchy and interesting! The second time I had this, it tasted mostly like slightly malty black tea. It was plain – not bad, but not amazing. The starchiness returned in the final cup. I guess I wouldn’t mind if it were even more potato-y!

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drank Crantera by BrutaliTeas
15829 tasting notes

Cold Brew Sipdown (2619)!

Once I started feeling noticeably better I set this up to cold brew, and I ended up drinking it last night. I’m still a little low energy and my congestion hasn’t entirely gone away but I mostly feel better.

This was interesting because something about the dry leaf aroma smelled so much like rootbeer to me that I thought I was going crazy and still more sick than I’d realized. However, steeped up it’s much more on track which what it should be. Smooth and creamy with a nice red cranberry note – more the sweet and jammy side of cranberry than the tart side. It’s probably because it reminded me so much of other favourite cranberry black teas like DT’s Cranberry Pear and Harney & Son’s Boston, but it was kind of nostalgic tasting and ultimately very enjoyable!

It felt really nice to be getting back to drinking some teas other than the handful of ginger or mint forward “sick teas” that I’d brewed up earlier in the week.

Kelmishka

Glad you’re feeling better!

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75
drank Jade Oolong by Fortnum & Mason
446 tasting notes

Ashmanra sent this my way a while ago, and I saved it for an afternoon pick me up cuppa. It’s sweet and floral, but not cloying. There is a savory note here too, a well balanced oolong that doesn’t taste too green. What a nice cup, thanks!

ashmanra

You are very welcome!

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71

This isn’t as strong as some ginseng teas, so I added sugar and milk and liked it better that way. Usually ginseng doesn’t need sugar, but this one did. It was still a little bright, but not as nice or high quality seeming as some.

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78

Another tea I picked up in my last (impulsive) order, heh heh… Somehow I ended up with three oolongs.

This is a nice enough tea, but to me, it doesn’t really fit the name. The cream part is definitely there, and it’s quite rich and vanilla-y. However, I don’t really get orange at all…? Which makes me sad, as that’s the part I was excited about. The oolong base here is very oxidized and also somewhat roasty, and has some woody notes that do pair very well with the richer vanilla ice cream flavor.

But I wanted orange… T.T

Flavors: Bourbon, Creamy, Custard, Earthy, Mineral, Roasted, Smooth, Sweet, Toasty, Vanilla, Woody

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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drank April in Paris by Adagio Teas
3262 tasting notes

Yesterday I received two amazing boxes of tea in the mail from our Nichole. Thank you so much!

I am shocked that this tea wasn’t already in the database because I think it is the best tea from Adagio that I have ever had.

The aroma of the dry leaves is fruity and the bergamot and pomegranate are so balanced that you don’t get a snootful of bergamot sharpness but rather a bright and exciting fruity scent.

The steeped tea is rich and the caramel and vanilla come through more here than in the dry leaf aroma.

This isn’t an exact rehash of the popular Paris by Harney and Sons. Instead of blackcurrant we have pomegranate and the bergamot is lighter in this to me.

It is delightful and deserves a place on shelf for breakfasts as well as solitary sipping cups sans food. Would definitely purchase this.

Cameron B.

Pomegranate sounds interesting, I’ll have to remember to try a sample of this one next time. It’s interesting that they obviously copied Paris, down to the black and oolong base, but then swapped blackcurrant for pomegranate.

ashmanra

Indeed, I noted the tea base being the same. It is just different enough that I wouldn’t mind owning both! If I had more I would gladly send it to you to try, but this was a sample pack.

Cameron B.

Oh no worries ha ha! I plan to order some teas from them for fall so I’ll hopefully remember to pick up a sample then. :)

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76

With milk and sugar, I enjoyed this! I distinctly tasted the rooibos with a hint of vanilla. It’s creamy and pleasant, though not super special. This was my second favorite tea from the afternoon tea in Toronto.

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drank Glazed Lemon Loaf by Tazo
2917 tasting notes

My infatuation with GLL has worn off a little since the blend was new, but I’m the fickle one, not the tea. Still right on target with the pastry flavor, but I’ve been pastry-ing for a month (birthday, end-of-year celebrations at work, Mothers’ Day goodies). Something a little less desserty and more citrusy may be what my oversaturated tastebuds need…any suggestions?

Courtney

Moondrop Dreams from B&B is quite nice. Lemon and lavender, with a lovely creaminess to it.

gmathis

That does sound nice!

Martin Bednář

I agree with Courtney, that may go well with your tastebuds.

Cameron B.

I love lemongrass for a citrusy herbal tisane – it tastes like lemon drops to me!

Michelle

Savoy has a citrus mate that isn’t bad. And Maya’s Good Morning Oolong has a gentle lemony citrus kick.

gmathis

Ooh…we’re going to Savoy country next weekend! I may have to pawn some jewelry ;)

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87
drank Holiday Mist Green Tea by 52teas
2332 tasting notes

This one is so interesting! It definitely tastes like graveyard mist, but fruitier, almost tropical. I might enjoy it even more?? It’s nice and bright and unique.

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70

I’ve made an impact on the tea stash this week and working on the last bag from the tea swap months ago. I’ve been trying to avoid cleaning these out too quickly, but it’s time to accept that they are a part of the tea sipdown pile and they must be sipped! It’s cold(er) and rainy today in NE Ohio. I’ve been spoiled with daily walks across the street at the park until today. However, I shall get my fix by heading to the grocery stores before work. I want to take advantage of the weekend, whenever it arrives, and enjoy my time working on yardwork and binge watching the remainder of the Fallout tv series.

Anyway, to the tea…this is heavy in cinnamon and has a nice heavy spice kick. It’s fitting for the cold misty day. I’ll probably open a ripe puerh cake later on since my body has decided it’s cold enough for the ‘warmer’ teas.

Flavors: Cinnamon, Spices

Cameron B.

Yay tea stash progress! I’m actually sipping Hot Cinnamon Spice right now, so I guess great minds think alike. :P

MadHatterTeaReview

It’s nice to have that hyper fixation of getting the stash depleted a little…on the account there may be opportunities to add to it once companies begin releasing their teas. Ha-ha. Hot Cinnamon Spice from Harney and Sons? That’s one of my go-to teas, too!

Cameron B.

I’m only making progress in increasing my stash lately… XP

ashmanra

I was just about to ask if you had tried HCS from Harney when I saw the comments. It is a bit strong for me, but guests adore it.

Cameron B.

I mostly only drink it with milk, as otherwise it’s too sweet for me.

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65

So this is one of several green-black blends that I ordered from Murchie’s – they seem to specialize in them so I figured I would try a few. This seems the most straightforward, just a blend of Ceylon and Keemun black teas with gunpowder and jasmine greens.

Steeped up, it looks like a black tea but tastes more like a green one. The jasmine is surprisingly subtle, just a whisper in the background. I actually taste the gunpowder the most – it has a strong earthy, mineral flavor that winds up in the forefront, potentially bolstered by the Keemun. Ceylon show itself in the finish, with its metallic, acidic character.

Overall, not sure about this one. I feel like the balance is a bit off for my tastes, I would prefer more jasmine and less gunpowder. There is also a noticeable astringency even though I only steeped it for 2 minutes, but perhaps that’s just a result of it being a teabag with very broken leaf. I’m hoping to be more enthused by some of the other green-black blends that have bergamot and lapsang and other fun things.

Flavors: Acidic, Astringent, Earthy, Floral, Jasmine, Metallic, Mineral, Tannic, Woody

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 0 sec 8 OZ / 236 ML
Roswell Strange

I find a lot of Murchie’s teas that are just blends of different straight teas like this one lean a little more astringent – but I think it’s because (as far as I can tell) their primary customer base is very much the type of tea drinker who takes most of their teas in a more British style with milk and sugar. With that prep method it balances out a lot more.

Cameron B.

Yeah, I guess to me it would be weird to add milk and sugar because of the green tea ha ha, but you’re probably right. I’m sure loose leaf would help, too.

Lupiressmoon

From my very limited experience with Gunpowder, it can be strong. I do feel drawn to anything bookish named though. Not sure how I would feel about this one from the description

Mastress Alita

As a librarian, I remember trying this blend in the past. I also had issues with astringency, but it was a pretty mellow and tasty coldbrew.

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80

Welp, my cupboard has exploded with no fewer than 17 Murchie’s teas, so I’d better get cracking on tasting some of them… ^^’ This is one of many that I got in teabag format, mainly because I didn’t really want 850 grams (total) of loose leaf tea to get through, but I wanted to try so many of their teas.

This is a black tea with currant, cream, and bergamot, and it’s quite tasty. It reminds me a bit of Kusmi’s St. Petersburg, which isn’t specifically blackcurrant but has that dark, syrupy berry vibe. I actually like this one better though, it tastes less syrupy and cloying to me, maybe because of the cream lightening it up? The blackcurrant tastes deep and jammy, and the bergamot helps brighten it up a bit. The cream isn’t super strong, but I can definitely taste it and it lightens and smooths things out.

I will say it’s a bit tannic, probably the Ceylon, so maybe next time I’ll steep a bit shorter. I’m not used to having such broken leaves as I don’t often buy teabags, and very rarely are they the traditional paper kind like these.

Flavors: Acidic, Astringent, Bergamot, Berry, Black Currant, Citrus, Creamy, Jam, Rich, Sweet, Syrupy, Tannic, Whipped Cream

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec 8 OZ / 236 ML
ashmanra

Does it taste a little like Paris?

Cameron B.

I honestly couldn’t say, I don’t like the berry flavor in Paris and haven’t tried it in a while. :P

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