1379 Tasting Notes
Opening the packet reveals a dark brown leaf that is loosely broken and bares a super strong pine smoke scent. Like a smack in the face sort of smokiness. Perhaps on par with Lapsang Souchong.
Steeping Parameters: 5g leaf, 90C water, 200ml
The resulting tea is dark brown/black in colour and bares a smoky pine wood scent similar to it’s raw scent.
Flavour is wooden and dry with strong a strong smokiness that quickly dissipates. It’s only medium strength considering it’s strong scent, perhaps a longer steeping time would change that.
The smoke has a clinical taste which I believe must be the pine. There is some astringency but it’s easy to drink. The smokiness lingers in the after taste but not as much as the dryness.
Overall: It was a pleasant enough smoked black tea, though it has to be said the smoke was perhaps a little too strong for my usual taste. The clinical almost medicinal taste was unusual but interesting. Again I would have to be in the mood to drink this tea.
I haven’t tried that many flavoured Japanese teas before so this is something of a novelty. All the same I like peach and I’m partial to a Japanese black tea so what could go wrong?
Opening the packaging (which is plain but re-sealable) I am met with a super sweet and fruity peach scent. It sent a smile to my face instantly as it fulled my nostrils. It’s so strong and sweet and juicy it’s hard not to want to devour it all on the spot.
Steeping Parameters: 5g leaf, 90C water in 200ml Kyusu.
Once steeped the resulting tea is brown/red in colour and bares a sweet, peach scent with a wooden under tone.
Slurping the first few sips (as you do) reveals medium strength wooden base which lightens and becomes sweet with fresh peach notes in the after taste. It’s balanced wonderfully, it’s not too strong and you can taste both elements equally. The after taste is sweet but also with some dryness. Considering it’s a black tea this is pretty smooth, there is only a hint of astringency.
The peach flavour itself tastes natural but the sweetness isn’t, so I believe it must have had something added to it to be so sweet. I can’t say if that is natural or not, it could be stevia for example. Either way it’s sweeter than an actual peach.
Rating: It’s a nice flavoured tea. The balance is good, flavours good and my overall drinking experience good. It is perhaps a tad too sweet for my usual liking if I was to be critical. I actually think this would be amazing iced, which is probably how I will steep the rest of this.
Opening this bright green packet reveals a loosely broken mixed green leaf that bares a dry, herbal, toasted grass scent.
Steeping Parameters: 5g leaf, 80C water, 200ml Kyusu
Once steeped the resulting tea is a deep, cloudy, yellow/green in colour and bares a light yet toasted sweet grass scent.
The first sips reveal a toasted, grass flavour (matching of it’s scent) with a touch of astringency and dryness. Good umami notes, sweet and floral with a lingering aftertaste. Only medium strength, not as strong as I had expected considering it’s intense colour.
It has a wooden, herbal sort of taste. Similar to the toasted rice in a genmaicha.
Overall: Honestly this is not one of my favourites, it’s a little dark and oddly herby for my liking. I prefer tencha in matcha form than in original form. It’s also rather dry. But again this was just a basic grade so I didn’t expect much from it. It’s drinkable by any means but it would not be one I would pick if given the choice.
Beautiful colours on the packaging, that’s the plus side to many Japanese teas. Opening the packet reveals a a sweet, fresh, grassy scent full of vegetal notes. So beautiful, like cut grass on a beautiful Spring day.
The tea itself is quite dark green (with a few stems present) and loosely broken into quite fine pieces. The pieces look and feel glossy.
Steeping Parameters: 5g leaf in 70C water. Vessel: 200ml Kyusu
Once steeped the resulting tea bares a gorgeous, cloudy green glow and smells of toasted sweet grass with a hint of fresh spinach.
In flavour this is of medium strength with real mouth feel. One sip coats my entire mouth with flavour. Grass and spinach mixed with vegetal dark green cabbage notes and a lingering umami that becomes slightly dry in the after taste. Yet it’s fresh and very easy to drink. There is some sweetness mixed with a touch of bitterness but they are quite evenly paired.
Re-steep – 55C for 40 seconds and only 100ml (lower temperature to try to draw out more umami)
More flavour and with a touch more bitterness though it’s not bitter by any real means. The sweet umami once again fills my mouth with it’s savoury notes. Still dark green cabbage like but also toasted seaweed. Very mineral and ‘green’ tasting. Beautiful all the same.
Overall: This was a beautiful green tea that was incredibly easy to drink and very fresh. It was not as umami rich as some other teas but it was pleasing and would be a great tea if you’re interested in introducing yourself to Japanese greens. I have a feeling this would be nice iced.
Ingredients: Black tea, Rose Petals and Rose Essence.
Another strong scent is unleashed as I open the packet. Pure rose, sweet and very perfumed fills my nostrils. It smells rose enough to be a natural perfume, or essential oil. It’s beautiful!
Steeping time of 3 minutes in boiling water with a splash of soy milk added.
Once steeped the tea contains the same strong rose scent as it’s raw form.
The first few sips reveal a sweet, creamy rose flavour that resembles Turkish Delight. It’s super sweet, super strong and super natural rose. Unbelievable! Each sip carries a burst of flavour and is as delicious as the first sip. The base is lightly malty but is behind the beautiful rose flavours.
As it cools it reminds me of Rose Syrup, a thick cordial drink I get from an Asian supermarket nearby. It’s nothing but rose and sugar, again fitting with the Turkish Delight vibe.
The bags are pyramid shape and see through organza.
Ingredients: Black tea, Orange & Lemon Peel, Cornflowers, Oil of Bergamot & Lemon Essence.
Opening the packet gave a punch of scent, this is one of the strongest Earl Greys I have sniffed. It’s thick, sweet and perfumed though natural smelling. Perhaps slightly soapy because it’s so strong but in a nice way.
Steeping for 3 minutes in boiling water with a splash of soy milk.
It smells as strong and perfumed as it’s raw scent.
Flavour also packs a punch in the first few sips. The black tea is malty and rich before a thick and perfumed meld of bergamot and orange explodes on the tongue with some sweetness and dryness.
As it cools the perfume quality lessons but it’s still big on flavour.
It has to be one of the strongest Earl Greys I’ve experienced, period. Especially considering it’s pre-bagged. Despite being in a bag this tea did not disappoint. I love strong tea and this fit the bill. It had strength, character, charm and easy drinkability. Frankly everything I look for in an Earl Grey. It’s strength makes it perfect for a builders brew.
If you love strong Earl Grey then this is definitely worth a try.
This tea is no longer sold by Compass Tea but it may be something they restock in the future, or have something similar to.
The leaf is dark green with a high shine and a sweet, floral scent with a touch of grass. The leaves are of medium size with some broken pieces present, overall it looks as expected ie no discolouration or holes.
Steeping this at a lower temperature around 65C for one minute to try and draw out some of the umami and sweetness.
A golden brown/green liquid is produced (again typical of Superior Sencha) and it bares a toasted grass and seaweed scent, also slightly vegetal.
Flavour is medium strength with sweet grass highs and toasted peony lows, with a salty seaweed and kale type mineral after taste that lingers and becomes dry.Only a touch of astringency but some umami is present. Half way down my yunomi and it becomes so sweet and floral it’s picked up a perfumed quality has real mouth feel to it. Also slightly bitty at the bottom of my bowl.
A second steep of the same parameters reveals: less sweetness but more umami, mimicking soup broth in this steep. More mouth feel and dryness in the after taste and less perfume. Still it bares little astringency as such and it remains vegetal. It reminds me of Matcha, has a similar sort of flavour and feel about it in this steep. Just a very watery and non foamy Matcha.
Overall I was impressed. The quality was expected (average for a Superior Sencha) but it steeped well and had wonderful characteristics and flavours. A nice example of Sencha and pleasing to drink. I recommend low temperatures if your an umami fan though, at least to start with, I’m an umami fan at heart.
A nice introduction to Compass Teas for me and while this is no longer sold I will certainly keep my eyes open to see what line of Sencha it has in the future.
Hello Tea Friends!
My head is spinning at the idea of a Matcha, cocoa, mint, and orange peel combination and it’s something I have no idea of what to expect. Frankly that is why I chose this blend to try, not only is it original but it’s also from a small Etsy store and I love to give smaller businesses a chance.
So lets have a look at the tea. what can I say?…It’s medium sized pieces of what I assume is cocoa and orange peel covered in a green Matcha dust with a few rough looking chopped leaves. It looks as adventurous as it sounds. Scent wise it smells chocolatey yet dry.
I think I will steep this at roughly 75C (on the milder side) and hope that the Matcha doesn’t become too astringent. But I still want to get the best out of the other ingredients so I don’t want to go too mild. Steeping time will also be a fairly quick 20 seconds. This is going in completely blind on a guess, I imagine it’s one of those teas you have to try and alter to taste and experiment with. But for now those are my parameter choices.
As soon as the water goes in the mint fills my nostrils and bursts through the cocoa. The colour is dark green and cloudy (thank you Matcha) and it bares a strong mint chocolate scent. It looks like used paint water but looks can be deceiving.
Okay so the first sip reveals bitter mint with some sweetness and some creamy cocoa behind it, leading to a dry yet refreshing after taste. The astringency is from the Matcha I think but it quickly fades into a creamy undertone before finishing with softer mint.It’s actually so rich it’s more like a black tea base than green. The orange is lost on me though.
A second steep with the same parameters reveals: less bitterness making it creamier and sweeter, the mint still being forefront. This is more like a traditional mint green tea with a touch of cocoa. Still dry but so easy to drink.
Think of it as a mint chocolate tea with some Matcha goodness thrown in for good measure. A strange combination but it actually makes a nice change to try something so different. My husband said it’s like a chocolate ice lolly that has melted a bit.
So unusual but nice, worth the try and I am happy to have tried a sample. If you’re looking for something different then it’s definitely worth a try.
A few quick notes: A bottle is 330ml which is 23 calories per 100ml. Making a whole bottle approximately 76 calories (to my calculations and admittedly maths is not my strong suit). It contains spring water, apple juice from concentrate and Matcha green tea.
A shake and big gulp later… It tastes like a less sweetened version of apple juice. The Matcha isn’t noticeable until the end where it leaves a bit of a dry after taste, otherwise it doesn’t really carry any other Matcha characteristics at all. It’s rather disappointing actually as I really wanted it to be more Matcha flavoured than apple, but it’s the other way around. I suppose it’s good for those that dislike Matcha but still want it’s health benefits.
Don’t get me wrong, it was certainly pleasant to drink and if I was in a shop I may buy it in the future for a road trip; but I wanted more Matcha in there. I actually like the taste of Matcha and the only resemblance of it was in the last few sips in the bottom of the bottle.
A nice try but I also bet this is something you could replicate at home yourself.
This sounds inventive! A digestive biscuit flavoured tisane. Perhaps a good invention for those prone to the odd biscuit or two, especially since with a new year usually comes a new weight loss plan for many people (myself included).
It’s a large leaf blend on the whole with a lot of bits and pieces. I can’t identify it all but can note some nuts and various leaves at a quick glance.
Smell wise it’s interesting….my husband said it smells like Weetabix and he has a point. I can smell some sort of cake or baked product, not unlike biscuit but perhaps too strong for one.
Once steeped it bares a baked bread and herbal scent, I can note some resemblance to biscuits but still not perfect.
Flavour is herbal, SO very herbal. Like licorice…actually it does taste like it. It’s refreshing and dry, slightly sweet with dark baked attributes and a dry after taste. Like dipping a mild biscuit into licorice tea.
It’s not biscuity enough in comparison to the herbiness. Honestly this blend is not for me and I can’t drink it. I HATE licorice and that is all I can taste. I feel the mix of hazelnuts and herbs has made a complex licorice type flavour and it’s making me pull faces. It’s good if you’re a licorice fan or really into hazelnuts, but alas I am not.
To be fair I am not rating this tea as it’s not their fault I dislike it.