4081 Tasting Notes


Sipdown! (15 | 376)

Second tea down from the pretty fall stackable tin I bought on impulse. I actually really liked this one – it does taste just like apple cider. Specifically, it reminds me of the instant apple cider in the packets that my mom used to buy. Nice crisp apple flavor with just a touch of mulling spices. I do think it could use perhaps a hint of tartness, just to give a bit of dimension.

But I really enjoyed these 12 teabags, so I might need to go and see if they offer the tin of this on Amazon… :P

Flavors: Apple, Cider, Cinnamon, Clove, Crisp, Spices, Sweet

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

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Sipdown! (14 | 375)

Finally finished off the Pumpkin Spice sampler! This remained my favorite of the bunch, I don’t generally love marzipan-flavored teas, but here it plays a nice supporting role to the mellow pumpkin spice. It’s sweet but not overly so, and the marzipan has a nice richness to it that pairs well with the creaminess of the white tea.

All that being said, this is a bit too pricey for me to purchase a full bag of it. But I really enjoyed sipping through the sample pouch. Now that I’ve finished this sampler, I’ll have to move on to the other samples I purchased! :)

Flavors: Allspice, Almond, Amaretto, Cinnamon, Creamy, Hay, Marzipan, Nutmeg, Spices, Sweet

185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec 4 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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drank Hearthfire by Friday Afternoon
4081 tasting notes

Starting off the Studio sampler with this Calcifer-inspired blend.

It’s a nice enough blend, a combination of lapsang, roasted oolong, and hojicha. Nice balance of the savory smoke with the cozy toasty notes. However, I wish I was tasting more of the spices – there’s cinnamon and turmeric here and I feel like I taste neither of them. I think a bit of cinnamon sweetness would really add some nice dimension here and would offset the more savory notes well.

Ah well. Still a tasty tea, but not something I would personally order.

Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Charcoal, Mineral, Roasted, Savory, Smoked, Toasty, Wood

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

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Sipdown! (13 | 374)

So I ordered a whole bunch of these Nightmare Before Christmas fandom teas from Adagio, because a friend (Marjorie AKA knittingopera) had recommended one of them in one of her empties videos. Of course, somehow that translated into me ordering almost all of them that were available. Funny how that works… :P

I’ve kind of been saving them, but I figured since it’s mid-October now, I should probably get to work on sipping through the little tins. This one is a blend of pumpkin spice black tea, coconut black tea, and vanilla oolong. It smells wonderful dry, like a sort of pumpkin spice and eggnog combo. But I don’t find that it translates very well to the actual flavor, there’s not a lot of creaminess going on and I don’t really get vanilla. The coconut is almost a touch soapy? Not sure if the shreds are old or if it’s just coming off that way.

So mostly I get mediocre black tea with a touch of spice and a bit of soapy coconut. Definitely a far cry from the amazing dry scent. Oh well, coconut teas are never my favorite anyway so I can’t be too upset ha ha.

Flavors: Astringent, Clove, Coconut, Metallic, Pumpkin Spice, Soap, Spices, Tannic

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

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So I ordered the advent calendar from Sipology, and they had a special offer where since I spent more than $65, I could get the monthly special for half price. For October, it was three 25g pouches of matcha for $18. Normally you can only get their matcha in 100g (?!) bags so I figured I would try it, even though two of the three flavors are sweetened.

Unfortunately, I can’t get past the stevia aftertaste here. The matcha itself seems decent, it’s a bit on the yellower side of green but the flavor seems nice enough. I do like the salted caramel flavoring, and overall it’s not ridiculously sweet considering it contains both sugar and stevia. But that cloying stevia sweetness at the end of the sip, sigh…

Into the rehoming box it goes! :P

Flavors: Butter, Caramel, Grassy, Green, Smooth, Stevia, Sweet

Iced 1 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML
Martin Bednář

100 grams of matcha? One must be a lover of it to drink that much. Moreover powder will go stale just quickly.

Cameron B.

I mean it is partially sugar but yeah, very weird IMO.


Cameron – did you see the fall teas at Lupicia are available now, including Momijigari and the matcha sampler as well as caramel matcha?

Cameron B.

Yeah, I already placed my order! I’m not a fan of their matcha, but had to get my Momijigari tin. :D

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drank Warm Heart by Friday Afternoon
4081 tasting notes

Last one from the Fall sampler box!

I like the idea of this one – apple paired with turmeric and fennel. But in practice, I feel like there’s too much turmeric here, and it mostly takes over the blend. It ends up being a turmeric tisane with a touch of sweetness from the apple, and I’m not sure I notice the fennel at all.

All in all, didn’t love any of these fall teas. Hopefully the Ghibli sampler works out better for me! :P

Flavors: Black Pepper, Earthy, Sweet, Turmeric

200 °F / 93 °C 5 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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From the Fall sampler.

I’m sad that I don’t taste the maple here. I can smell it a bit, if I really concentrate, but sadly it doesn’t translate to the flavor for me. Otherwise it just tastes like a generic hojicha, toasty and cozy but lacking some of the nuances of a nicer version.

Might have to try some hojicha with a drizzle of maple syrup one of these days… :)

Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Roasted, Sweet, Toasty, Woody

200 °F / 93 °C 2 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

I think the idea of adding a drizzle of maple syrup to hojicha! That sounds lovely!

Cameron B.

I’ve done it in a hojicha latte before, so why not just plain hojicha? :D

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So I’d been eyeing this one since it came out, and in my last Deb order I finally broke down and ordered a 75g bag. I usually only order her 25g size, but she doesn’t offer that size in oolongs for some reason.

Welp, I guess it’s been a while since I’ve had a flavored milk oolong, because I was not prepared. The cream flavoring here is so strong and over the top, it almost turns my stomach a bit. Very heavy and rich whipping cream sort of notes, or as Kelly (Roswell Strange) said, churned butter. Yeah, that’s pretty much spot on. I barely taste the hojicha to be honest, but I do pick up on some of those toasty notes in the finish.

So yeah, this one is going into the rehoming box. Maybe in the future I’ll try to recreate a similar tea with unflavored milk oolong though… ;)

Flavors: Butter, Coconut, Cream, Oily, Rich, Silky, Smooth, Thick, Toasty

190 °F / 87 °C 3 min, 0 sec 4 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

Ah too bad, the name of it sounds really nice.

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drank Pumpkin Chai by Friday Afternoon
4081 tasting notes

Fall sampler strikes again!

This is a nice tea, I like that I can taste a bit of the pumpkin flavoring, which is not always the case. However, I really wish the cinnamon and ginger flavoring just wasn’t there. I feel like spice flavoring doesn’t taste at all like the real thing, and the cinnamon in particular always tastes like candy or spiced potpourri. Also it kind of defeats the purpose of having actual cinnamon and ginger pieces mixed in.

Anyway, I like it anyway, but I feel like I would love it if it were just pumpkin and vanilla flavors paired with actual spices. But obviously that’s just my personal preference. :P

Flavors: Artificial, Candy, Cinnamon, Earthy, Ginger, Malty, Pumpkin, Smooth, Spices, Sweet

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

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Another one from the Fall sampler.

Tastes like the same apple flavoring as Harvest Spice, which to me tastes a bit like cucumber ha ha. Or maybe an underripe honeydew. I don’t actually get any caramel to speak of? The base is very light, both in color and in flavor, and actually reminds me of a darker white tea. Maybe it’s a Darjeeling? Not sure. It has a nice texture, with notes of hay and bread.

Anyway, drinkable and fine but not something I would order.

Flavors: Apple, Bread, Cucumber, Grain, Hay, Honeydew, Melon, Smooth, Sweet

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

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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 piano, knitting, video games, board games, miniature painting, planners, bento, KBeauty, and – of course – TEA! But really, what I’m best at is “collecting” hobby-related things… ;)

- July Sipdowns: 9
- Total 2024 Sipdowns: 75

I prefer my tea lukewarm or at room temperature and without milk or sugar. I steep Western style, and fluctuate between using big mugs or small teapots depending on the season.

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, oolong, and herbal varieties. I do have a special fondness for straight Japanese green teas, however.

I do not sweeten my teas, and pre-sweetened teas are usually too sweet for me. I also do not enjoy stevia.

I tend to reach for fruitier flavors rather than desserty ones these days, but I do have favorites from both categories. Willing to try anything once! There are a few ingredients/flavors that aren’t generally my jam, such as coconut, rose, lavender, and chocolate flavoring. But I also have teas that I love with some of those things, too! :)

Favorite Companies:
3 Leaf
Bird & Blend
Dammann Frères
Harney & Sons
Kyoto Obubu Tea Farms
Old Barrel Tea Co
Simpson & Vail
Taiwan Tea Crafts

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 or scent contamination.

Cupboard Spreadsheet:


Austin, Texas



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