drank Vanilla Bourbon by Nunshen
16088 tasting notes

Well, the May Tea Sparrow box from the subscription that VariaTea got me arrived yesterday so of course I had to break into it and try one of the new teas!

Side note – VariaTea please tell me this is the last one, ‘cause your generosity is just putting me to shame! I know you keep saying you don’t want more tea, but seriously! I feel like the recipient of so much kindness and I want to repay it somehow!

Anyway – this tea smells pretty amazing. Lots of rich vanilla notes are coming from the dry leaf, and while I’ve never considered myself a huge vanilla fan I have to say that the last few months I’ve tried a couple REALLY good vanilla teas and it’s kind of converted me. So, I’m pretty psyched for what smells like it’s going to be a really nice, silky vanilla flavour.

The flavour delivers pretty well: dominant note is 100% a strong vanilla flavour with lots of creaminess and body. I do love that it isn’t a plain vanilla flavour though; the cinnamon in the undertones is the perfect thing to make the vanilla feel even softer and more comforting. It’s just a light dusting, really, but very satisfying paired together. The biggest aspect of the tea that I dislike is actually the rooibos base; while I don’t think it’s terrible, it is pretty strong and woody and distracting from the vanilla flavour. Also, at times I found it a little bit peppery.

Overall, does this remind me of Bourbon? No, not really at all.
But is it a good vanilla tea? Yeah, absolutely!

Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C4NgsbkyeJs&list=WL&index=3

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Hello! My name is Kelly, though many people in the tea community call me Ros or Roswell.

I am a mid-twenties tea addict, blogger, and all around nerd. I grew up in the Prairies, but a few years ago I relocated to Quebec to pursue a career with DAVIDsTEA in the tea industry! I’m still working on getting my French language skills down…

My first introduction to tea, in any form outside of instant and bottled iced tea, was about seven years ago when I happened to stumble upon DAVIDsTEA while looking for a birthday present for a friend! I tried their Birthday Cake rooibos blend, and I’ve been hooked on tea ever since! In those seven years; I was introduced to the online tea community, expanded my interest in flavoured teas to include a deep love and appreciation for straight teas and traditional brewing methods, got a tea themed tattoo, started reviewing teas, amassed a sizable tea and teaware collection, became a TAC certified Tea Sommelier, & even came full circle by beginning a career in the tea industry with DAVIDsTEA!

I consider myself a Jack of all Teas, and strive to have a knowledge and appreciation of all tea types, formats, and styles of drinking. I don’t like to feel boxed in to just being a “flavoured tea” or “straight tea” drinker – my expectations may vary depending on the type of tea or how it’s been processed/prepared but if it’s good tea, it’s good tea no matter how it’s been made!

You name it, I probably drink it- and I’ll absolutely try anything at least once.

My default method of preparation is hot, Western style, and straight – but I’m not opposed to additions if I’m in the right mood. If I ever add something to a tea or use a different method of preparation I will ALWAYS call it out in the tasting note though.

I like to listen to music when drinking tea, especially when I’m brewing a large pot at a time or steeping Gongfu. Often I curate very intentional tea and music pairings, and sometimes I share them here in my tasting reviews. Music is something that I find can deeply affect the experience of having tea.

I’m also one half of the “tea and fandom” podcast GeekSteep where, weekly, we discuss newly explored fandoms over tea as well as try to figure out the perfect tea to pair with each fandom. You can find us on Spotify and Apple & Google podcasts.

Favourite flavour notes/ingredients: Pear, lychee, cranberry, cream, melon, pineapple, malt, roasty, petrichor, sweet potato, heady florals like rose, hazelnut or walnut, sesame, honey (in moderation), and very woody shou.

Least favourite flavour notes/ingredients:
Lemongrass, ginger, strongly spiced profiles (and most Chai in general), mushrooms, seaweed, chamomile, stevia, saltiness or anything that reminds me too much of meat that isn’t supposed to taste like meat…

Currently exploring/obsessed with: Sheng from Yiwu, Yancha (Qilan in particular), anything with a strong sweet potato note. Also, I need to try ALL the root beer teas! Searching for a really good caramel flavoured blend, ideally with a black tea base.

Please contact me at the instagram account listed below if you would like me to review your teas.

Currently I’m employed in the tea department of the DAVIDsTEA head office. While I’m still sharing my own personal thoughts on new & existing DAVIDsTEA blends, I am no longer numerically rating them due to the obvious conflict of interest. Any comments expressed are a reflection of my own thoughts and opinions, and do not reflect the thoughts and opinions of the company. Any DAVIDsTEA blends you currently see with a numeric score were reviewed prior to my being hired there and have not been adjusted since becoming a DAVIDsTEA employee.


Montreal, QC, CA



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