1138 Tasting Notes

drank Terry's Tea by Bird & Blend Tea Co.
1138 tasting notes

This tea is giving me the hibbie jibbies, which is to say it has hibiscus in it that I can taste, which means it tastes gross. It smells great, all chocolate orange like, but all I get on the sip is tart hib. I wonder if hibiscus hate is similar to cilantro hate where it’s actually something in your brain that registers the taste in a way that the majority of the population doesn’t and it’s all you can taste while it overpowers any other flavors. Anyways, I’m done trying to make friends with this tea.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec
Mastress Alita

At least based on the reviews that come through my dashboard, I’d tend to think it’s a minority of the population that likes hibiscus and the majority that hates it, heh. I swear I see about 90% reviews that hate the flavor of hibiscus and only 10% that like it (with me being in that rare 10%, so I feel somewhat like an alien on this site). I had to actually add plain hibiscus petal from my stash to my tea last night because it was somehow missing from the teabag in my advent calendar and my tea tasted weaksauce and gross without it. I am probably the only person on here that was legit upset to get a hibi-cider that was missing the hibi. :-P

Cameron B.

I don’t hate it per se, but I do dislike when it overpowers the other flavors in a blend.

Mastress Alita

I personally think something has to do with the receptors on individual tongues; I’ve always believed a person’s tastes seem to be as personalized as their fingerprints. For example, I’m extremely sensitive to spicy tastes, and avoid really spicy food, while I have friends that are very much, “The spicier, the better!” You could give each of us the same spicy food and ask us to rate it, and something they say is a “3” on a scale of 1-10 I’d say is a “13” and is burning my mouth off. I think my tongue is personally very receptive to the sour/tart/tangy areas of taste, while I think other people might overly sensitive to these sorts of flavors, hense me finding a flavor like hibiscus quite pleasant, while someone with that sensitivity finding it super sour and getting that puckery effect… the way I get a burning mouth from a spice that someone else might find mild.

Nattie

I didn’t know that about cilantro! How interesting. I’m going to have to look that up as I’m one of the haters and nobody seems to understand why. I hated this tea, and don’t have a problem with hibiscus usually, so I’m leaning towards this just being gross.

Mastress Alita

My friend actually has the “cilantro effect”. It’s something genetic with certain people. It tastes like soap to him! He knows immediately if even a tiny amount of cilantro is in something, heh.

Nattie

I’m like that, too. It always baffles my family how I can tell.

Dustin

A friend of mine who is a cilantro hater (he describes it as a mix of aluminium foil on a filling and soap) noticed his kids got the cilantro hate gene too. Because it is in so many types of food and one leaf ruins a dish for him, he has worked for years to overcome it by eating small amounts at a time.

Arby

Cilantro is so obnoxious. Like bitter metallic parsley with some chemical soapy flavour in there. Yuck, it ruins anything it touches. I don’t like hibiscus either.

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drank Earl Grey Classic by Fortnum & Mason
1138 tasting notes

Advent Day 4

I’m missing something here. All the reviews of this tea talk about it being the best EG ever and I’m not getting that in this cup. Maybe it was a bad batch of tea? Maybe it was old stock? Either way, what I’m tasting is and EG light with the strength of a third steeping of any other EG. The base is nice and smooth… a little malty, but the bergamot is almost non existent. Adding creamer drowns out the berg and makes it a little more malty, but it’s still not worth drinking this cup. Down the drain with you!

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

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drank Sticky Chai by Bird & Blend Tea Co.
1138 tasting notes

I’ve had this chai a couple of times now and it has been a disappointment every time. I have tried steeping it, boiling it in nut milk and now doubling the amount of tea to try to pull some flavor out. Chai is usually spicy and warming, filled with delightful flavors with a base of tea to carry them. This doesn’t have that. At all. I can smell a little bit of the spices as I sip, but get next to nothing on the palate. The idea of a tea kept wet with a sweetener is interesting, but the company has WAY oversold this tea as “the best chai this side of Mumbai”, which raises expectations to something this tea can not deliver.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec
tea-sipper

I always wanted to try this one. But saying it’s the best chai does set the bar a little high.

Dustin

You really aren’t missing much. It sounds way better than it is. Should have been more like “the okayest chai this side of Mumbai”.

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Advent Day 3

Hibiscus! Ugh, no! I tried for a couple sips, but the only thing I got before giving up and dumping my cup was a mouth full of sour hibiscus. Might as well have had a teabag full of coal!

Maddy Barone

I hold hibiscus in the same high regard.

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Day 2 of Advent

This is a smooth cup, no bitterness. There is almost a truffle hint in the sip which is strange! Even so, I find the cup a little boring with nothing standing out and grabbing my attention. Adding cream makes it a little more interesting and makes it a little more buttery, but doesn’t change it enough to where I’m excited about it.

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drank Rose Pouchong by Fortnum & Mason
1138 tasting notes

Day 1 of the F&M advent calendar!

The rose scent was super strong as soon as I broke the foil behind the door in this packaging. It’s in tea bag form, which I feel eh about, but I’m not going to let that ruin my advent fun. I like flowery flavors, but I’m not a huge rose fan and don’t tend to gravitate towards rose tea so I didn’t expect to like this one. I like it. Once steeped, the rose is strong on the nose, mellow in the sip and comes back in the finish. The tea base is perfectly balanced and not the least bit bitter at all! It is strong enough to carry the rose without overpowering it. The end of the sip is super smooth. Adding cream towards the end of my cup was a gamble that paid off! The sip is now creamy with the rose being subtle, but the finish is filled with a hint of creamy rose at the start and as the cream tapers off the rose comes back out. I’d say I probably wouldn’t buy this tea because I’m not likely to reach for it in my cupboard when I have a ton of other options, but it’s a really enjoyable tea and I’d gladly have another cup of it in the future if given the option!

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

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Went to the SF tea festival and picked some of this up after sampling. The tea maker was there talking about how this tea is from his backyard. His backyard is a tea farm of many acres, so not the small yard I was first imagining when he was describing it. They say the company gives back to the community and workers, so that is nice to hear after reading about other tea plantations that treat their workers poorly.
The tea has a very light grassy taste. It isn’t a bright flavor, but is subtle and mellow. The tea has an almost sweet quality to is as well. My mouth is left slightly dry after the sip where the flavors linger briefly then fade. It’s a nice cup when I want something subtle.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 4 min, 0 sec
Nattie

Awesome to hear about companies like this that appreciate their workforce!

Mastress Alita

I bought the sampler pouch from them, and it has this one in it! I haven’t tried it yet, though.

Dustin

Ethical and thoughtful companies are the best! Gives me a little hope that all is not lost.
I didn’t see a sampler pack! Nice!

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I don’t know what to make of this one! It’s spicy and fruity and the hibiscus isn’t at a disgusting level where it takes over the entire cup. The hib is tart on the sip and a little tart in the finish, but it seems to be rounding out the fruit flavors. The heat comes through in the end of the sip and beginning of the finish before it fades back. I can pick out the coconut and it’s creaminess, but I can’t place any of the other fruit flavors. I may have brewed this a little on the strong side. I’ll have to try it again sometime!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec
Tabby

Ooh, no, hibiscus does not go in chai.

Mastress Alita

Mmm, I love hibi in chai! It’s the chili I’m not sure if I’d be able to handle, I’m a wuss when it comes to spice.

Dustin

If only they had replaced the hib with MORE chili, then I’d be super into it. I wouldn’t have ordered it if I had read that the ingredients had hib. There were a couple of their blends that I ordered and overlooked the hib, but I’ve been happy to realize that they don’t overdo it and make it dominate the cup.

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I’m enjoying this cup. I get lemon of the lemongrass variety, which means smooth instead of sharp lemon. It dominates the sip. The blueberry is in there somewhere in the sip, but in the finish when the lemon fades, the blueberry comes out. I’m getting a slight pastry note at the end of the sip, but instead of muffin I’m getting more of a cookie flavor. The Alternative Baking Company has a lemon poppyseed cookie that comes to mind when I’m sipping this cup. I do like this tea, but it seems like it’s missing base notes or flavors that would round it out into a heartier tea, which I favor. As it is, it seems more of a lighter tea and I bet it would be great cold steeped and iced!

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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drank Purple Chocolate by Just Tea
1138 tasting notes

Tried some of this tea at the SF tea festival a few weeks ago. From what I understand, purple tea is a type of tea leaf that isn’t commonly used. I recall Butiki having a purple tea offering, but I don’t recall being taken by it. Anyways, there were four blends this company had made with purple tea. I chose this one because of the chocolate aspect. It reminded me of Mezzo’s now discontinued chocolate tisane that I loved. This blend lacks the cinnamon and coconut that the other blend has, but it is nice on it’s own. I don’t get much tea flavor coming through, mostly the chocolate notes. I over steeped and any bitter notes are blending well with the chocolate. It looses a little bit of it’s appeal as it cools, but adding cream at that point makes it interesting again. I’m expecting this tea to become a favorite.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 0 sec

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Bio

My name is Dustin and I like tea.

I’m an added flavor kind of tea fan, but have had a growing appreciation for plain. I want my tea to remind me of cookies and cakes with coconut and almond slices with a hint of chocolate drizzled on top. I want dancing ponies and flying monkeys shooting off fireworks! And no hibiscus. Hibiscus is the devil.

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BA, CA

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https://www.instagram.com/dre...

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