2725 Tasting Notes

85

I chose this as a nighttime tea from my Løv Organic sampler. This is one of the ones I was most excited for, as I’ve taken an increased liking to rooibos lately and I love all things almond and marzipan-flavored. The package is such a lovely and happy teal color, the same as in the picture. I can see a few small pieces of almond mixed in with the red rooibos base, and the dry scent is powerful marzipan/almond extract. I must say, it was quite gorgeous when I poured the water over it. It immediately turned a lovely goldenrod, which then transformed into a stunning orange and finally changed to the dark mahogany that I associate with red rooibos. It was like watching a sunset in my mug! I don’t often get to see this type of thing, as generally I steep my tea in a brew basket and in an opaque mug (this is a sachet instead and I used a mug with a white interior). Lovely!

I can smell the same marzipan aroma in the steeped tea, though it has lost some of its potency (which is not a bad thing considering the strength when it was dry). The taste is more subtle than I expected, but I still enjoy it quite a lot. I can taste the rooibos base, with its slight woody character, and then the flavoring melds so well with it. Yum, definitely the better almond rooibos out of the two that I’ve tried!

Flavors: Marzipan, Rooibos, Sweet

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 8 OZ / 236 ML
Fjellrev

Mm, sounds good!

Cameron B.

It’s quite good, if you like red rooibos. :)

Fjellrev

I normally don’t, but almond/marzipan/amaretto seems to go so well with it. Covers up some o’ that woodsy flavour haha.

Mikumofu

sunset in a mug sounds exciting!

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75

I must say, I’m really happy I got in on the Bluebird Tea Co. group order a while back, just because their teas are really unique and interesting (plus the shipping is $15 or something). So hooray for Steepster! Anyway, I confess, this is actually the second time I’ve made this tea. The first time, there was way too much raspberry leaf going on for me – I’m not sure if I just got a lot of it in my 1.5 teaspoons or what, but it was strong. I don’t consider raspberry leaf to be a particularly pleasant flavor, it’s one of those things that people drink for its health benefits, not for its taste. It’s kind of musty and weird. So for this cup, I picked the raspberry leaf out of the tea after measuring it out. Don’t laugh!

Steeped, it smells like raspberry jam. Hm… There’s not a lot of flavor here, which is a shame. But at least there’s not a ton of raspberry leaf going on! I can taste a bit of tart raspberry, more similar to the fresh fruit than jam. Otherwise, there’s not much going on except a light-bodied black tea base. I think this one may just not be for me, as others seem to love it…

If anyone has any suggestions on how to steep this better or make it taste more like the sponge cake that others seem to find, let me know!

Flavors: Raspberry, Tart

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
tea-sipper

Yeah, not a fan of raspberry leaves.

Cameron B.

Yeah, it’s one of those herbal ingredients that really tastes like it’s good for you. :P

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65

Another one from Sil! And it’s another multiple base tea, although this one is black/green/oolong. Interesting… The leaves are quite large, and I can see all three kinds. The oolong in here is definitely an oxidized and unrolled variety, though I don’t smell any roastiness to speak of. Dry scent is vaguely caramel-y.

I can definitely smell a touch of roast in the steeped tea, as well as the oolong itself and strawberry and caramel flavors. Hm, this kind of just tastes like a generic roasted oolong with not a lot of distinguishing characteristics. I’m not picking up on much flavoring either, maybe a tiny hint of caramel. Sad panda.

Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Caramel, Roasted

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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80
drank Pour Maman by Nina's Paris
2725 tasting notes

This sample came from Sil. I’m not sure why tea companies insist on making black/green blends, as they make no sense to me and I can never taste the green tea anyway. It just makes it more of a pain than anything, having to lower the steep temperature because of the green tea. Bah! Anyway! This is a black/green mix with some flower petals in it. Dry scent reminds me of strawberry candy.

Mm, once steeped I can definitely smell the vanilla as well as the red fruits. The flavor is actually quite good (though all I can think about is that it would be better if it were an all-black base). The red fruits is mostly strawberry to me, with some raspberry as well, and it’s sort of candylike but in a good way that adds dimension. The vanilla is soft and smoothing. Overall, pretty good.

Flavors: Candy, Raspberry, Strawberry, Sweet, Vanilla

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Marzipan

I don’t like the black/green blends either.

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75
drank Løv is Pure by Løv Organic
2725 tasting notes

I was unsure what to expect with this one, as the name tells me nothing about it. I remembered that it had green tea in it, and once I opened the packet I could see green maté in the sachet, as well as pieces of dried apple. Wow, for some reason the dry scent was very powerful in an almost spicy manner, and I have no idea where that came from… Strange!

Um… So the steeped liquid actually smells smoky. (Is that a maté thing…?) I can also smell apple and citrus, but the smoke is quite strong. According to Steepster chat, green maté “tastes like green beans and dirt”, so maybe the strong earthy presence is what I’m smelling here. Wow, this certainly tastes quite earthy in an almost mineral way. The citrus is actually a really nice complement to the flavor of the maté, though I don’t think I taste apple or green tea here. Strange, but not bad.

Flavors: Citrus, Citrus Zest, Earth, Mineral

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec 8 OZ / 236 ML
Kittenna

Yes, I think smoke might be a mate thing to some degree.

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65

So, this is odd. I opened this sachet fully expecting to find a red fruits-flavored black tea. However, this is actually a flavored green tea. Also, it doesn’t appear to be on Løv Organic’s website at all. And the only pictures I could find on Google were of a tea with the same name, but using a black base. WTF? Anyway, flavored greens aren’t generally my thing so I was quite disappointed to discover that my sachets are the green tea version. Dry scent is mild and very candy-like red fruits.

The flavoring in this tea is far too light for my tastes. It’s just a subtle suggestion of fruit candy in the background, and the focus is on the rather unremarkable green tea base. Overall, doesn’t taste like much and has only a slight grass/vegetal quality about it.

Flavors: Candy, Grass, Vegetal

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec 8 OZ / 236 ML

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60
drank Sleigh Ride by DAVIDsTEA
2725 tasting notes

Welp, this is the last of my David’s winter & holiday samples (thanks again Roswell Strange). This one is a food tea, like I commonly see at Teavana and David’s. It looks and smells quite similar to the Forever Nuts type of tea that has so many versions. There are big chunks of fruit and stuff, and I can see hibiscus as well. Smells fruity, cinnamon-y, nutty.

Meh, this is similar to the other teas I mentioned, except that it has a lot of hibiscus tartness involved. The beginning of the sip is pure tart, and then near the end I can taste the nuts, cinnamon, apples, etc. It’s not horrible, surprisingly, but it’s not something I would drink given other choices.

Flavors: Apple, Cinnamon, Hibiscus, Nuts, Tart

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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78
drank Cocomint Cream by DAVIDsTEA
2725 tasting notes

Just a couple more of these David’s winter/holiday teas to go! (Thanks again to Roswell Strange for sending me samples!) This one sounds rather odd to me, but some Steepsterites seem to really enjoy it. The tisane is mostly chunks of apple, though I can see coconut shreds and some crushed leaves. Dry scent is quite minty but I can smell the creamy coconut as well.

The aroma is both minty and coconutty as well, but there’s also some kind of weird sour-ish scent that I don’t enjoy. Okay, this isn’t as bad as I thought it would be. I think that slight tart taste comes from the apples, but it’s not tart enough to be weird with the coconut. The mint is super subtle and just adds a nice freshness, while the coconut is smooth and creamy. Actually pretty good! :P

Flavors: Apple, Coconut, Creamy, Mint, Sweet

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Christina / BooksandTea

I was really excited to try this, but when I checked it out in-store, the dry leaf smelled, of all things, like dill pickle.

The sales rep told me someone else said the same thing. I doubt they’d put dill in, but I really do wonder what that sour note you mentioned is…

Cameron B.

I think the sour was just the apple, because it was giving a very slight tartness in the flavor as well. It does have a little bit of an herbaceous note similar to dill – I think it’s the combination of the mint and the raspberry leaf perhaps?

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68

Dammann Frères Advent Calendar – December 4th

Ooh, I’m very excited for today’s tea! I’ve heard very good things about this one, and the flavors involved sound right up my alley. Inside the sachet are small and dark black tea leaves mixed with various flower petals. Dry scent is… heavenly. It smells luscious and sweet and buttery, definitely reminiscent of a poppy seed pound cake with almond extract added. I just stood there whiffing for a full five minutes, then with a sigh decided it was time to steep this baby.

Mm, the steeped tea also has a lovely pound cake and marzipan aroma. (Now I want to bake an almond-flavored pound cake…) Hmm… There’s a very strong musty/powdery taste at the beginning of the sip, which I’ve found a lot in French teas. I’m not sure if it’s something to do with the flavorings they use or what. After that flavor subsides, I can taste the lovely almond pound cake that the aroma promised. I dunno, maybe that musty flavor is supposed to be the poppy part of this? I don’t know what poppy tastes like!

Ugh, so sad. I was really excited for this one… :/ I guess I’ll withhold my rating and try this another time, since others seem to love it so much.

Flavors: Butter, Cake, Marzipan, Musty, Powdered Sugar, Sweet

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 0 sec 8 OZ / 236 ML

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85
drank Løv is Zen by Løv Organic
2725 tasting notes

Hooray for rooibos! Seriously though, for someone reason I’ve found myself liking rooibos (red and green) blends more and more lately. At this point I think I might even like straight rooibos, though I’ve never tried it. This one is a red rooibos tisane, and there are quite a few pieces of fruit mixed in along with some kind of crushed herbs. Dry scent is yummy sweet-tart orange and lemon along with some lovely caramel notes.

Mm, the steeped liquid also smells yummy and orange-y with some caramel. Yum, this is lightly flavored but very tasty. I can taste a bit of the rooibos, but it’s not medicinal or woody or anything like that, just a pleasant herbaceous note. There’s also sweet orange combined with lemon (I guess from the lemon balm) and some apple. Over the top of everything is a nice light caramel flavor, similar to a caramel sauce. Tasty!

Flavors: Apple, Caramel, Herbaceous, Lemon, Orange, Rooibos

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 8 OZ / 236 ML
Stephanie

rooibos…you can have all of it :)

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Profile

Bio

Hi, I’m Cameron! I’m a 30-something software engineer currently living in Austin, Texas with my husband and our two pugs, Gobo and Ume. I tend to cycle between my different hobbies, and they include knitting, video games, board games, miniature painting, bento, baking, and – of course – TEA! But really, what I’m best at is collecting hobby related-things… ;)

~ 2022 SIPDOWN CHALLENGE! ~
~ February Sipdowns: 4
~ Total 2022 Sipdowns: 45

I prefer my tea lukewarm or at room temperature and without milk or sugar. I will often sweeten iced tea. I brew Western style, and fluctuate between using mugs or teapots with small cups depending on the season. Occasionally I’ll brew Gongfu style when I’m in the mood. I also use a kyusu for Japanese teas.

I am always up for a swap! Just let me know if you’d like to try something in my cupboard.

Tea Preferences:
I enjoy both flavored and unflavored teas in many forms. These days, I drink mostly flavored teas, and I tend to gravitate most toward black, green, and oolong varieties. I do have a special fondness for straight Japanese green teas, however. I also enjoy maté, rooibos, honeybush, and herbal tisanes. I love matcha and drink it often!

Fruit: All of them! My ‘go-to’s tend to be in the red fruits, stonefruit, or citrus spectra. I also really love apple, banana, berry, fig, lychee, melon, pear, and rhubarb flavors. Tropical fruits aren’t among my favorites, but I still enjoy them once in a while – especially passionfruit, mango, and pineapple. I am not generally a fan of coconut in tea, though there are some exceptions.

Dessert: I love creamy vanilla and marshmallow flavors, along with anything in the caramel family such as butterscotch, toffee, or maple. Chocolate is also a favorite, though I’m often disappointed by it in tea. And don’t forget anything buttery, cakey, or cookie-y!

Floral: I’m a little bit more particular in this category. I very much enjoy jasmine, even strong jasmine, along with sakura and chamomile. Osmanthus is also a favorite of mine. But I’m not crazy about rose or lavender flavors, and I prefer hibiscus in moderation only.

Spices: I don’t generally find myself drawn to masala chai, but I do enjoy spices combined with other flavors. My favorite spices are the warm ones, especially cinnamon, nutmeg, anise, and cardamom. A bit of heat from black pepper or chili is okay too, as long as it’s not overwhelming! Ginger can be a lovely accent, but I find it difficult to drink as a starring flavor.

Aromatics: I’m obsessed with Earl Grey! I also love cooling flavors such as mint (especially spearmint), pine, juniper, and eucalyptus. I am not a fan of strong rosemary or sage in tea.

Favorite Purveyors:
3 Leaf
Bird & Blend
Dammann Frères
Kusmi
Kyoto Obubu Tea Farms
Lupicia
Taiwan Tea Crafts
TeaVivre
Yunnan Sourcing

Tea Rating Scale:
90-100: Outstanding! Permanent cupboard resident
80-89: Great – a possible staple
70-79: Good, but I wouldn’t buy it
60-69: It’s decent
50-59: Meh… I may or may not have finished the cup
40-49: Ick. Couldn’t finish it.
00-39: Repulsive, I spat it out

I will sometimes refrain from rating a tea if I feel I’m too biased due to my personal dislikes, or if I suspect the sample has been compromised by age.

Cupboard Spreadsheet:
https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1ZEuKf1-ppR-VXajO4vV39zU1N3zjFJteEPAynqD2yl0/edit?usp=sharing

Location

Austin, Texas

Website

https://www.instagram.com/tea...

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