2725 Tasting Notes

68

Sipdown! (22 | 22)

From the December subscription box, which was apparently the last one.

So, I was expecting a chocolate orange tea from this, given the name. However, there’s cinnamon in it, and to me it ends up tasting more than an orange spice tea because of that. I don’t get a lot of chocolate flavor from it. Maybe the cinnamon was meant to convey the “muffin” part?

It’s fine, but it’s not chocolate orange to me. I do enjoy Deb’s orange teas though, because of the real orange pieces. So juicy!

Flavors: Candy, Cinnamon, Orange, Smooth, Spices, Sweet

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML
Courtney

What! Deb isn’t offering a subscription any longer?

Cameron B.

Apparently not. I haven’t seen it announced anywhere (although to be honest, I only skim her emails…) but she mentioned it in her note to me in this December box.

Courtney

Oh, wow! That’s a shame.

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78

So I bought this on a whim last fall, as an addition to my Momijigari restock order. Just got around to opening it today and… Discovered none of the four teas from that order were listed in my cupboard or spreadsheet. Sigh…

It’s lovely for a before-bed tea. Chamomile is the strongest note, with its slightly honeyed, slightly musty haylike flavor. I happen to love chamomile but I know it’s not universally loved. The elderflower makes itself known as well, though it does meld a bit into the chamomile. Elderflower has such an effervescent flavor to me, and it lifts the heavier chamomile and adds a nice bubbly lightness. Then there’s mint, which mostly shows itself at the end of the sip. It’s light, definitely an accent flavor, but I think it’s a nice addition to add some freshness to the slightly mustier florals.

Perfect for winding down on the couch with an animated movie. :)

Flavors: Chamomile, Effervescent, Elderflower, Floral, Hay, Herbaceous, Honey, Mint, Musty, Peppermint, Sweet

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML
Evol Ving Ness

It’s lovely when whims work out.

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72
drank Royal Blend by Fortnum & Mason
2725 tasting notes

Sipdown! (21 | 21)

22 more advent tins to go! I’ve been sipping this as my morning tea lately, with a light drizzle of milk to smooth it out and keep it from angering my empty stomach lol.

Nothing much else to say about it, a pleasant breakfast brew but nothing particularly special. I have another mini tin of it to finish, but I’ll save that for another time. :)

Flavors: Brown Sugar, Caramelized Sugar, Dry Leaves, Malt, Raisins, Tannic

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 2 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
ashmanra

I think I have seven tins sipped down from the advent! A few of them are going to take a while…

Cameron B.

Wow, nice job! I’m slow ha ha.

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75
drank Dandelion Dark Roast by Teeccino
2725 tasting notes

Sipdown! (20 | 20)

The last of the Teeccino dandelion tisanes. (Truthfully, I have two more, but I’m putting them in my rehoming box because they’re coconut and turmeric, neither of which sounds particularly appealing to me…)

This one really does taste like coffee. If you gave me a mug of this and told me it was coffee, I think I would believe you. It’s somewhat bitter, somewhat acidic, but well-balanced with a deep roasty-toasty flavor.

Added some oat milk to the second half of the mug, and it wasn’t my favorite combination. Something about it tasted plastic-y or something? So I definitely preferred it plain.

Not something I would order, as I’m not a big coffee drinker. But I could totally see this as a nice evening-friendly replacement for coffee if I were so inclined.

Flavors: Acidic, Bitter, Coffee, Roasted, Roasted Barley, Roasted Nuts

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 14 OZ / 414 ML
gmathis

I have really liked the Teeccinos I have tried for their coffee-ness, but I haven’t ventured into the dandelions just yet. Their just plain dark chocolate is absolutely delicious.

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70

Sipdown! (19 | 19)

So I’m wondering if Deb starts with pre-flavored teas for her blends, because this tastes almost identical to the other two strawberry green teas I’ve had. Same base, same strawberry flavoring, and I’ve never seen a non-green strawberry tea from her. Just a thought.

Anyway, it’s fine. A mellow and smooth dry grassy sencha base with a somewhat candylike strawberry flavor. There’s a slight honeyed note to the strawberry as well, and a gentle sweetness overall. I wish I tasted more of the toasted rice, I’m only getting a hint. So not getting much “toast”, just strawberry.

Flavors: Artificial, Candy, Dry Grass, Honey, Smooth, Strawberry, Sweet, Toasted Rice

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML
Kittenna

Are you 19 sipdowns in already?!

Cameron B.

I’m off to a good start ha ha. :P

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Hmm…

So generally in the mornings I drink matcha in cold oat milk, and I’m lazy so I usually just use the cold stir function on my milk frother, and sift the matcha in once the milk is whizzing.

I tried that method yesterday with this matcha and it felt very slightly gritty to me. So today I actually prepared the matcha shot with warm water and a chasen, and then poured it into the milk. Still very slightly grainy-tasting. I don’t get it.

I’ve had this matcha straight before and I don’t remember having this issue. :(

Preparation
Iced 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Evol Ving Ness

FWIW, my DT’s salesperson told me that this can be an issue with the higher grade of DT’s matcha. maybe that’s the case here?

Cameron B.

Harrumph. :P

Evol Ving Ness

Indeed. But maybe there is a workaround.

Cameron B.

Maybe I’ll try to get in the habit of drinking matcha plain more often…

Evol Ving Ness

Hmm. Let us know how that works out.

Maybe today I will venture out to see if eggnog is still available. That eggnog matcha that I had last week was so very delicious.

LuckyMe

That’s odd, I prepare my lattes with oat milk too and don’t have problems unless things are overheated. Possibly something was off with the oat milk itself?

Cameron B.

It’s the same carton I’ve been using for a few days, so I don’t think so… I’ll have to try it again today, I’m determined to make it work ha ha.

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82

Prepared this one cold brewed with lemonade today, and in the process realized it wasn’t in my tea spreadsheet or my Steepster cupboard. Sigh…

Anyway, it’s lovely with the lemonade, adds a nice punch of zingy-sweet passion fruit flavor. I will say overall, the drink is a bit too sweet and intense for me though, so I think next time I’ll experiment with half lemonade and half sparkling water to make a lighter sparkling matcha lemonade. I’ve been drinking a lot of flavored matcha in oat milk lately, but I didn’t really like that preparation with this flavor so am trying other methods. :)

Flavors: Fruity, Juicy, Passion Fruit, Sweet, Tart, Tropical

Preparation
Iced 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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85

Sipdown! (18 | 18)

I used two flowers for one 12-ounce mug of tea.

Ahhh, chrysanthemum. Such a cozy and comforting tea, and really an autumnal flavor to me. I love the nectarous honey-sweetness paired with soft hay and hints of menthol, herbs, and pepper. Such an interesting combination of soft, sweet, and more savory aromatic notes. It has a slightly thick, viscous mouthfeel as well that makes it somehow more satisfying to sip on.

It makes such a cozy before-bed cuppa. Happy that I still have a few other samples of different chrysanthemum tisanes from Teavivre to sip through! :)

Flavors: Apple, Eucalyptus, Floral, Fruity, Hay, Herbs, Honey, Menthol, Nectar, Pepper, Rosemary, Straw, Sweet, Thick, Viscous

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 5 min, 0 sec 12 OZ / 354 ML

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72

Sipdown! (17 | 17)

One down, 23 more to go…

This one is pleasant enough, as orange spice teas go. Has a nice strong orange flavor accented by cinnamon and clove. I do wish I could actually taste the cacao here, given it’s the second ingredient. Maybe it just gets bullied too much by the orange and spices? That rascally clove does tend to build up as I sip though, and then it overtakes the orange and I enjoy the cuppa much less. Not something I would buy, but pleasant.

I still have another mini tin of this tea to finish, but I figured I would start off with the duplicates and then come back to the second tin later, rather than doing two tins of the same tea in a row. (Although, if I’m honest, I’ll probably set the Christmas Green Tea aside to rehome, as it was the only one I really didn’t enjoy from the advent…) But I’m still counting each tin as a sipdown and there’s nothing you can do to stop me! :P

Flavors: Cinnamon, Clove, Earth, Orange, Orange Zest, Spices, Sweet, Wood

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
Evol Ving Ness

Clove is the new star anise.

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88

Sipdown! (16 | 16)

Love this one!

I adore osmanthus, and I really should seek out more of it in tea form. Here it adds a wonderful honey-sweet, nectarous floral note. It’s juicy, almost fruity, and reminds me of a more floral apricot. The oolong makes a lovely base for it, its silky texture just adds to the feeling of drinking nectar. Otherwise it’s quite mild, with a gentle minerality and greenness that’s somewhere between grassy and vegetal.

So so yummy, I’ll definitely have to order a full-size pouch of this someday. ❤

Flavors: Apricot, Floral, Grass, Honey, Mineral, Nectar, Osmanthus, Silky, Smooth, Spring Water, Stonefruit, Sweet, Thick, Vegetal

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML
Courtney

I saw that Mountain Stream also has an osmanthus tea!

Leafhopper

I’ve always wanted to order a straight osmanthus tea or an osmanthus oolong since this is a flavour people reference in high mountain oolongs. Maybe this year!

Cameron B.

Courtney – I’ll have to try theirs one of these days! They have lovely oolong.

Leafhopper – I would be interested in an osmanthus tisane as well. I haven’t really looked, but the only one I’ve ever seen was highly expensive ha ha.

Shae

Épices de Cru has a Vanilla Osmanthus black tea too.

Leafhopper

Cameron B., I’ve been dissuaded from buying osmanthus oolongs and tisanes either because they were too expensive for what I suspected wouldn’t be very good products or because they were sold in huge packages. I think Tao Tea Leaf in Toronto has a plain osmanthus tisane and I keep meaning to buy from them during their semi-annual sale, but never seem to get around to it.

Shae, I was drooling over Épices de Cru’s catalogue over the holidays and also saw that Vanilla Osmanthus tea. They’re on my long list of vendors to try.

derk

If you’d like plain osmanthus, I can send you some. It’s over 3 years old at this point but still very nice.

Leafhopper

Derk, that would be great! :)

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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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