702 Tasting Notes


This was in the TTB and is my very first Desserts by Deb tea! I’ve been looking forward to trying her teas for a long time, so I was a little nervous – would this be good? Would I enjoy it? Would it be too sweet? Would it live up to the name? Thankfully, I was worried over nothing!
I was craving a sweet herbal tonight so I brewed this on the longer side at six minutes, but even so I found that there was not much sweetness to it. Peppermint was definitely the dominant flavor, along with a subtle coconut that’s almost more marshmallow-like, at least in texture. But once I added some oat milk, the whole blend really came together into something lovely. The mint mellowed, the sweetness came out, the cookie vibes got stronger. All in all, I’m really glad that this was my first Desserts by Deb experience!

Boiling 6 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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I got a few packets of this in a Tea Thoughts countdown box and haven’t gotten around to trying them until now. For a fun summer vibe, I decided to make one of the packets in watermelon juice. I took a few pieces of watermelon, blended them on the lowest setting, and filtered the result through a sieve to get the watermelon juice. Then I added a packet of this matcha powder, which was bright green and smelled pleasantly grassy and vegetal. I was worried about being able to adequately get the sugary watermelon juice off my bamboo whisk so I opted for a modern preparation using my milk frother. I was able to get lots of froth this way. The liquid itself was a dark moss green but the foam was pink, which was fun. Unfortunately, I used way too much matcha for the liquid! I had maybe 4 oz or so of juice and should probably have used about half the packet. It wasn’t really drinkable until I let it sit for a while so some of the matcha could settle to the bottom. Eventually I ended up with a good drink but I definitely took the long way to get there! No grittiness, no bitterness, overall a really good option for mixed beverages assuming you get the ratios right. Looking forward to trying it plain.

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I lost my sense of taste/smell for a while when I had covid, but I’m very grateful to have it back. With the weather finally warming up, I’ve been making iced tea the past few days. This one I made by cold brewing it overnight, which the leaf responded to really well. It’s got a nice medium mouthfeel, honey sweetness, some floral notes, and a generally pleasing smoothness that’s perfect for a warm day.

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Huge fan of the robust roast of this tea. Plus, I can have it in the evenings because it’s low caffeine. I usually get at least two and up to five steeps out of it, depending on amount of leaf and length of steep. I bought a bunch of it a few years ago and then neglected it for a while, which is a sin with tea this good. I’ve been on a delightful mission to drink it down over the past few months. This has led to some experimentation that the tea is probably too high quality for, but I do occasionally enjoy it with oat milk, vanilla agave, and pumpkin spice honey (so basically a hojicha pumpkin spice latte).

Mastress Alita

Maple also goes great in a houjicha latte!


Pumpkin spice honey sounds amazing!


Yes maple! I love maple syrup in hojicha and also coffee.

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Two sipdowns today from Mastress Alita’s March sipdown challenge:
- A discontinued/otherwise unavailable-for-purchase tea
- A tea from a woman-owned company
Years ago, a friend traveled to Spain and brought me back a floral berry herbal tea. I’ve been stretching it out but finally finished it off today. It’s a sad sipdown, both because it can’t be replaced and because it was a really good blend – juicy and sweet without any tartness.
I also finished off the last of my Te Company Ruby Brew, easily one of my favorite teas of theirs. This is another one that I had been holding on to and stretching out but I finally decided that it was time to give it a proper goodbye and make space for other teas (though I’ll probably replace it eventually). It doesn’t actually taste like Oriental Beauty but it reminds me of Oriental Beauty… I think because of its sweetness, gentle roast, and satisfying mouthfeel.

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drank Venetian Tiramisu by Harney & Sons
702 tasting notes

Work has been absolute exhausting chaos for the past few weeks, but I’m trying to get back into the groove of tea writing. I took a breather today and felt like something chocolatey, which I don’t have many caffeinated options for. This fits the bill though! About a teaspoon of brown sugar really brings out the chocolate and brandy notes, perfect for a cold winter day. I’ll be sad when this one is gone.

Flavors: Brandy, Chocolate, Vanilla

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drank Indigo Punch by Harney & Sons
702 tasting notes

So sad to see others haven’t enjoyed this! I got the pitcher pouches and really liked them. I prep this by steeping a pouch (in a pitcher) in about two cups of boiling water. After 15 minutes, I top with cold water and stir. I leave the bag in – it doesn’t oversteep. I love the purple color and juicy flavor that results, so I’m a bit bummed that once I’m done with this pitcher it’ll be a sipdown. The most prominent notes are apple and berry, which works well in an iced tea. Hibiscus is the first ingredient but this isn’t tart the way a lot of hibiscus blends are. If I didn’t have a million things in my cupboard I could see restocking this come summer.


My eldest daughter bought this one and liked, but she does love hibiscus tea, as well. I may have to give it a try sometime.


Yeah, in fairness I don’t mind hibiscus generally and actively enjoy it when it’s done well, so I’m not sure how this would go for someone who doesn’t like hibiscus!

Lexie Aleah

I have both the pitcher pouches and the loose-leaf and for whatever reason much prefer the pitcher pouches. It’s good mixed with a bit of grape juice during the summer.


Ooh maybe I’ll get some more pouches for the summer and try them that way, thanks!

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drank Red Choc Mint by T2
702 tasting notes

Made this tonight after sleeping through half the day – rest which I apparently really needed. I made it as an oat milk latte with vanilla agave (I’m obsessed with vanilla agave lately!). Prepared this way, it’s quite serviceable as a hot cocoa alternative! I didn’t really make out much of the mint, but when I gave my partner some to try he immediately sensed something sharp about it that he found off-putting. He’s not a great metric though, since he isn’t particularly fond of tea as a genre.

Flavors: Chocolate

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drank Ginger Lemongrass by Tea Forte
702 tasting notes

Why is this sweet?! I was hoping for a nice, straightforward tea that lives up to its name. Instead I’m tasting sweetness at the front of the sip, so much like stevia that I had to check the ingredients list. Stevia isn’t on there, so I’m guessing that the sweetness is coming from the licorice root. Unfortunately I can’t shake that stevia vibe and I really really dislike stevia. Thankfully this is a sipdown and I’m counting it towards Mastress Alita’s January 2022 sipdown challenge as paired with a favorite hobby because I drank it (or tried to) while decorating my planner for the week.

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drank Snickerdoodle by Anna Marie's Teas
702 tasting notes

Second sipdown of the year and of Mastress Alita’s sipdown challenge for January 2022! I divided this sample into two small cups so I could try it both straight and as a latte with oat milk & brown sugar. It’s definitely better as a latte. Both ways, the flavoring tastes like sugar cookies but I’m missing the snickerdoodle spice. Straight, the black tea is very present but pretty generic tasting – frankly I’d rather have the snickerdoodle flavoring be stronger at that point if I’m already having a dessert tea and there’s nothing interesting about the base. As a latte, the oat milk and sugar drown out the base tea and highlight the sugar cookie flavor, which definitely makes for a tastier and more enjoyable cup for my palate – think brown sugar black milk tea from the boba shop.

Flavors: Cookie, Sugar

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Geek and nerd (shoutout to GeekSteep). Still trying to get a handle on this whole work/life balance while ALSO succeeding at work thing. I have some chronic illnesses that make that harder. Tea is my respite.

Favorite tea types, in order:

Don’t drink:

A sampling of tea shops I like:
Te Company
Tea Thoughts
Harney & Sons

RIP Butiki



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