1018 Tasting Notes

drank Birthday Cake by Butiki Teas
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.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec
Chizakura

I’m so excited to try this, I can’t even explain it. Butiki has the BEST flavors, and as you said the fact that this is an herbal is even better. I find once it’s nighttime, I want something sweet, and this just seems so perfect. Super excited for this to be on the website. :D

Alysha

Lucky you! This sounds so delicious! I’m guessing it’s not available yet?

CrowKettle

It doesn’t appear to be yet. I’m not sure what the plans are for this herbal but I hope to see it around soon; I don’t have enough fun tisanes for late evenings. :)

OMGsrsly

I need to buy a lot of this one once it’s available. A lot.

Plunkybug

Kris, is this in our sample extras from our order? I’m drooling and want to try this now.

OMGsrsly

Yes it is! I’m waiting for it to go on the website, and then I’m going to make an order. ahem

Butiki Teas

OMGsrsly-Unfortunately, it probably won’t be up for 2 weeks. Right now, I’m focusing on preparing to shut the company down for 6 days since I’m going on vacation. Then when I get back there will be backlog when we open back up. We have already been selling the Birthday Cake. If you would like to purchase some in advance, just purchase something of equal value and email me to swap out that tea for Birthday Cake. Here are the prices:
10 grams (19 servings) $3.50
20 grams (38 servings) $6.50
40 grams (76 servings) $12.00
80 grams (152 servings) $19.75

*The price/cost is in the flavoring. Since the herbal is so fluffy, it takes a lot of flavoring to cover the herbal.

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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!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec
OMGsrsly

I basically agree with you. I’ve had my sample sitting in the cupboard for a couple months now, and it gets passed over for other teas daily.

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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.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec
JustJames

the shipping gods hate me….. i’ve been waiting for my butikis for 10 days.

CrowKettle

Waiting any length of time for a Butiki order is a awful, but I’m impatient. I hope it get’s to you by Monday! Did you order this one?

JustJames

alas i did not! when i spoke to stacy she said i had three samples i could choose… i chose three, would switch one, then two… i was playing three card monty with teas! i finally settled and refused to look any further, lol.

CrowKettle

What did you end up getting? I know I find it hard to choose too. :)

OMGsrsly

I’m glad you enjoyed drinking this one! Definitely not a favourite smell for me. :)

JustJames

grrrrr… can’t remember… one second….. tick tick tick: rose violet calendula oolong, pineapple cilantro creme and the lychee oolong. these ones! along with 5 guyasas (the sampler), some caramel vanilla assam and something else that i have lost track of.

JustJames

P.S. i have been told that stacy is the best in the business for flavouring. so i went for so more challenging samples because it will show just how great she is!

OMGsrsly

James, I’ve been pretty well impressed so far! The base teas are also really lovely.

JustJames

i am exceptionally excited…. and distinctly impatient, lol.

TheTeaFairy

I will say this: one has never tasted real flavoured tea until he/she has tried Butiki’s. And no one is paying me to say it!

Michelle Butler Hallett

Ooh, this sounds good. I’m always willing to try flavoured teas, but they so often disappoint. (Googles Butiki…)

Plunkybug

Did you get OMGsrsly the Pineapple Cilantro Cream for her and I to share, out of curiosity?

CrowKettle

I’m probably extremely biased, but it’s hard to go wrong with Butiki, whether they teas are flavoured or unflavoured. :)

@JustJames, I picked up the rose violet oolong for a sample too, this time around. I haven’t tried most of those yet, but have only heard good things about the caramel vanilla assam.

@Heather, yes she has it! ;)

Plunkybug

Awesome, awesome!

OMGsrsly

I haven’t been brave enough to try it yet, Heather! But I’ll take a couple spoonfuls and pass it on. :)

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95

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.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec
Sil

Yay that you tried this! Boo on spillage!

CrowKettle

I don’t know why I waited so long to try this tea. I understand why everyone loves it. Also, I didn’t think it was possible for me to get more excited about trying the Caramel Vanilla Assam..

Sil

it’s delicious

OMGsrsly

Caramel Vanilla is SO good.

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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.

Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 30 sec
Sil

You’re welcome. I too found this one more of a strawberry blend…decent but still mostly just a strawberry blend

CrowKettle

Yeah, I was a little disappointed by that. I mixed some of it up with the the Ruby Pie, though, and that was fantastic. I’m glad OMGsrsly has more of that for me, from the giant Butiki order. :)

Sil

if you get to it before me, i’d love to hear your thoughts on what i sent you vs your ordered one haha. i still haven’t done a comparison.

CrowKettle

Oh, I’ll definitely do that! I still have cup’s worth of the custom blend so I can drink them both side by side.

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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.

Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 0 sec

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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.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 15 sec

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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.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 1 min, 30 sec

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drank Apricot by Harney & Sons
1018 tasting notes

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.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec
OMGsrsly

Amaretto is made of apricot pits, because they taste like almonds. So that’s probably why it’s nutty and sweet! :)

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drank Cotton Candy Black Tea by 52teas
1018 tasting notes

Iced latte makes this. Just creamy, fluffy sugar goodness.

I wonder what the difference is between this and the Southern Boy Cotton Candy Iced Tea. CTC?

Preparation
Iced 6 min, 30 sec
Southern Boy Teas

The base tea is the only difference. The 52teas version uses our black tea blend base of Chinese and Indian teas (Assam and Darjeeling), the SBT version for iced teas uses an organic Nilgiri BOPFS base.

Sil

thanks for letting us know frank!

canadianadia

I had wondered that myself, thanks for asking CrowKettle, and for answering Frank.

CrowKettle

Thanks for the information, Frank!

CHAroma

The different bases do make a big difference for me personally. I love the 52teas version hot and don’t think it’s that great cold. Whereas the SBT version is perfect iced and I really enjoy it. I also prefer the 52teas version sweetened and the SBT version unsweetened.

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Bio

I started my Steepster loose leaf adventure back in 2012. I can’t say I’m completely new anymore, but I still view oolong as a magical, extraterrestrial creature that unfurls in water.

Favourite Flavours/Ingredients:

-Vanilla, Maple, Caramel, Cream, Toffee, Nougat, Marzipan
-All Citrus: Lime, Grapefruit, Lemon, Bergamot, Orange, Yuzu
-Anise, but not licorice
-Ginger or Clove-forward chai
-Rosemary
-Grass/Marine/Vegetal/Nutty Green teas
-Florals: Rose, Lavender, Jasmine…
-Musky and/or Woody Incense-like stuff: Sandalwood, Frankincense, Eucalyptus
-Berries: Blackberry, Raspberry, Currants, Blueberry, Elderberry
-Bananas, and most fruits actually.

Less Preferred Flavours/Ingredients:

-Stevia and most sweetners
-Cinnamon-forward chai/blends
-Apple & Cranberries
-Mango pieces (love mango outside of tea though)
-Coconut pieces (as a sub/filler ingredient)
-Metallic or overly artificial teas
-Cocoa Nibs, 95% of the time.

Subjective Rating System 3.0:

90-100: My absolute favourite tea. I’ll impulsively buy in large quantities and hoard like a dragon.

85-89: A favourite tea. I’ll try to keep this one around when it’s practical.

76-84: A good tea, but not one I’m likely to order again.

70-75: Alright, but I may have a few problems with quality, consistency, ingredient chemistry and/or personal preferences.

50-69: Average to mediocre cup.

11-49: Varying levels of undrinkable tea. I don’t give a lot of these ratings out, since I tend to grab tea I know will appeal to me.

1-10: Nightmare tea from the chaos realms. This tea is the embodiment of the primordial swamp, the unholy abomination that is a chimera. It’s very gross and I’m almost positive it doesn’t exist.

Location

BC, Canada

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