1018 Tasting Notes
Thank you for the lovely test samples, Stacy! It felt like it my birthday yesterday, after I received my individually wrapped sample parcel, and it seemed fitting to drink this one first.
The name of this herbal should’ve clued me in, but I wasn’t expecting it to be so sweet and honeyed. It tastes like sweet sponge cake- light and fluffy, with an alluded cream filling. Marshmallow flavour lingers as an aftertaste, and is veined with vanilla notes, a light vegetal tone, and a gentle saltiness. The now empty cup smells strongly of marshmallows.
Despite the lightness of the flavours, I find this cup to be rich and filling. This is enough cake for me to step into the role of “dessert”. That it’s herbal makes it a perfect substitute for a late night treat.
Also, add this onto the list of teas and tisanes that taste amazing once they’ve cooled down a bit. It’s up there with the Pistachio Ice Cream tea I polished off yesterday.
This is not my favourite Assam. Even with the addition of soy milk, the mouth puckering dryness seeps through. Without milk, this tea may not outright own it, but I’m pretty sure it has partial claims to the term “astringent”. A definite “wake-me-up-kicking-and-screaming” tea, at least for me!
The liquor’s aroma is malt, honey, and raisins, which is per usual. I do like that the tea tastes as if a tablespoon of honey has been stirred in. It’s a nice, crude morning cup.
Thanks, OMGsrsly, for this sample from Steam- this is the last of them!
OMGsrsly and I met up today so I could grab my part from the massive Butiki group order we did. Wow, that was a lot of tea (back up to 113 from 86)! Thank you, Stacy and OMGsrsly, for the lovely packaging (and repackaging) of that crazy amount of tea.
The loose leaf smells exactly like chocolate oranges, a seasonal favourite of mine. I’d forgotten that Zhen Qu is the base for this; it’s a neat tea to see and deliciously chocolaty.
Steeped, the chocolate orange aroma becomes a little more subdued and the marshmallow comes out. The orange, chocolate, and marshmallow flavours are all easily distinguishable. The chocolate in particular is dynamic. Through the course of the mug it went from being as strong as cocoa nibs to being as creamy as milk chocolate, with the wax and wane of the prevalence of the marshmallow and tea base. There’s a subtle hint of nuttiness, that when coupled with the citrus, suggests a bitter intonation.
Not that this tea even needs it, but I gave the last of the sample the soy milk treatment. I think it may have multiplied the marshmallow flavour by a hundred. The orange is toned down too, and the chocolate is now strictly milk chocolate. This cup is insanely rich and indulgent.
Mmm, I see myself picking up more of this near the fall, as a healthier alternative to marshmallows, chocolate, and chocolate oranges.
A backlog: this tea marks the first time I’ve ever tipped over a mug. I spilled it Everywhere! Blergh. in a cruel twist of fate, enough remained in the mug to take a few sips- enough to know the session was delicious. I can’t believe I did that to this amazing tea. That’s what happens when you try to drink tea and bolt out the house at the same time, Crow. Thus I ran on that tiny amount of tea for the rest of the day.
That first tragic steep tasted of chocolate and hot waffle cones- smooth, malty, and sweet. Second steep, of four minutes, happened hours later when I returned from an adventure around Waterfront and Stanley Park. This cup was an even smoother malt, with an amazing sugary undertone- just the thing to take my mind off of sore feet.
Five minute third steep suffered more abuse, and was consumed cold after taking my grandmother home. This cup was on the muted side, and reminded me of a watered down doughy cinnamon bun for some reason. I didn’t pay too much attention and just gulped it all down.
This tea is easy to drink and definitely makes the permanent list. A few of the Assam teas I’ve encountered have left astringent, dry first impressions; this one seems to be gentler. I didn’t pick up the trademark raisin notes today but I’ll pay more attention tomorrow.
I didn’t pick up any rhubarb from this when I first tried this, yesterday. It gave an overall impression of those Strawberry Shortcake toys (you know how they smelled like fake watery strawberries?). To be fair, I’d just finished drinking a big mug of Butiki’s Ruby Pie (sample from Sil); the rhubarb tartness of that tea made most things I drank afterwards taste sweet and bland in comparison.
Tonight’s cup of this tisane was a lot better. While the rhubarb is still not screaming its presence, it peaks through subtly in the finish and aftertaste. It’s so gentle you might miss it. It’s a citrus tartness that goes from strawberry to rhubarb (albeit an extremely sweetened rhubarb). Mostly, the cup boasts sugary strawberries, and another texture-flavour I like to think of as “doughy”.
Thank you, Sil, for the samples! As far as honeybush blends go, I enjoyed this one, even if there was more strawberries than rhubarb.
Sipdown! Goodbye autumn leaves, and hello summer!
This was decent but I think I’m going to stick with the black tea based Maple Seduction from Steam- the sweetness isn’t as cloying there, which is great. This, and the version from David’s, are a bit much for me, unfortunately. Neither rooibos or maple are a particular favourite of mine, although I enjoy them in small doses.
I’ll have to pick up some maple rooibos another time, though- I keep forgetting I want to try mixing it with lapsang souchong.
The dry leaves have a sweet and dry aroma, and the liquor smells honeyed with the faintest touch of malt. The lightness of the cup prevents it from pairing too well with milk but it re-steeps great.
This is a nice smooth and round tea; I can see where they draw the sweet potato comparison from. I most easily pick out the fruity and floral sweet notes, and then the malt. Bigger gulps make me think of fruitier dark chocolate near the finish, but it’s a loose association. There’s a lot going on with this tea- it’s deceiving.
Despite the gentleness of this tea it makes me think of rainy winter days where my clothes have been soaked through; I can see me wanting a cup of this then. It’s not something I’d reach for all the time though.
This is a lot more floral than the other cherry green I’ve had in the past, but that’s not surprising since there are rose petals in this blend.
The liquor smells like sour cherry blasters. The flavour reminds me of those same cherry blasters, coupled with Turkish Delights (it’s the rose). It’s a very, refreshing dessert-like cup that I enjoyed most when it naturally cooled. If I ever crave cherry blasters without wanting all that extra sugar I’ll probably reach for this.
Thanks, OMGsrsly! I only have one Steam Tea packet left to try from you.
Fiddling was kind enough to send this my way, along with a load of other Harney & Sons samples. Thank you!
This is a backlog from two days ago- I oversteeped this tea twice, but it didn’t bite me for it. It had a pleasant nutty sweet flavour that is a nice alternative to the more common peach black blends. I added milk to the last cup and that was good too.