1269 Tasting Notes


My sickness has not left me yet. Blargh. But I feel a little better than yesterday evening, although I wasn’t sure about it at 5 am I woke up. Let’s see tomorrow if I will call doctor or will go to work. I hope for the latter.

So close to the end of Advent season again?
But luckily, not a tea I had in advent calendar yet. I wonder how long I have steeped it today, but I am pretty much sure it has been more than 3 minutes as I did last time. It was nice strawberry tea, but no rose today… maybe because my stuffed nose (again!). Again no basil for me, or just so little. I noticed strawberries and light hibiscus. And pretty okay green tea base. Get me more basil in this and I will raise the rating.

Flavors: Hibiscus, Strawberry

180 °F / 82 °C 10 OZ / 300 ML

I hope you’re feeling better, Martin!

Evol Ving Ness

Martin, so sorry to hear that you are/were feeling poorly. I hope whatever it is/was has passed and that you are ok. Please keep us posted.

Martin Bednář

Thank you both. It seems it is in the end just a common cold (again!) and I feel slightly better today.

Martin Bednář

Two days later… or actually three since I wrote this tasting note and lots of changed for me. First of all, nosebleeds has started. That is common symptom with cold for me. But, it was yesterday and today so bad I went to the specialist. She looked inside, “fixed” it and said no hot drinks, no caffeine and no alcohol today. And I got sick leave for those two days. Friday is already a bank holiday here.

Evol Ving Ness

Oh dear. But hurray for sick leave! But no hot tea? Whatever will you do with yourself? Maybe cold steeping all those hibiscus blends?

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drank Winter Spice by Twinings
1269 tasting notes

You know what is worst? I have prepared this tea in a family pot and I was feeling that miserable, that I wasn’t able to enjoy it fully.

But noone was complaining it has got chamomile base. Actually, they rather liked it.

As for me, and as much I was able to notice, it was indeed nice mild tea with light sweet and red apple flavour complemented with cinnamon, but the spices were quite muted in my opinion. Age-related thing? My sickness? Dunno. Thank you anyway derk!

Flavors: Chamomile, Red Apple, Spices


You’re welcome. Take care of yourself.

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Now it is repetition. It’s sad, honestly.

And today, somehow… it was so generic spicy. Maybe I have oversteeped it, maybe I just wasn’t in the mood to enjoy a hot cup of spicy tea.

It wasn’t bad. It was just too plain for me.

10 OZ / 300 ML

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Thank you derk for those two tea bags. Nice addition to my collection!

However, in taste it is rather boring. There is nothing that says it is Darjeeling for me and the lemon taste is rather lemongrass.

Somehow too simple. I know I did steep only for 5 minutes while they suggest 10, but I didn’t wanted to have tannic and bitter cup.

Flavors: Lemongrass

205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 0 sec 10 OZ / 300 ML

A 10-minute steep! Can you imagine haha.


10 minutes with Darjeeling would turn it into paint thinner or kitchen cleaner!


I sent this to you solely for collection purpose. Please don’t feel obligated to drink the other one!

Martin Bednář

I may give it to a guest. It’s very mild so, it will be welcomed by some.

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Thank you Michelle for this tea from Rich — so thank you too, however, not sure when and if you will read this. But that’s not important. Sharing the tea is lovely.

So, yeah, after long shu puerh hiatus, I am trying a few again. I have received some tea samples from Michelle, so I am curious if I find love for them.

Searching for actual teas is sometmes hard. For example I thought there are spaces in the name of this, but apparently they aren’t.

First steep also as a flush, 5 seconds long
It has changed the color rapidly! While dry, the leaves were smelling after chocolate, but when wet, they are a bit peaty, woody and mossy. A little mushroomy maybe as well.

Brew is very light though, with strong woody presence and I notice some “dirt” taste. which can be only because it was brewed so weak and flavours weren’t able to develop well.

Ten seconds steep
Peaty chocolate? Weird aroma, but it is exactly what it reminds me. Taste is even more woody, thick, with red fruits aftertaste? It’s so short, but I bet it’s fruity.

15 seconds steep
See second steep and double the intensity.

30 seconds steep
Very thick, tends to be sweet and mostly chocolate. Again, red fruits aftertaste. Sadly, short and almost no mouthfeel overall.

45 seconds
Is it a hot chocolate? Nope, it’s Yiwu puerh. Tastes great, but thin. No aftertaste, no mouthfeel after a sip. Sadly. That’s reason for lower rating.

60 seconds
Just right timing to call it done. Brew is light and I got only woody notes. Maybe I did too big increments.

Flavors: Chocolate, Mushrooms, Peat, Red Fruits, Thick, Wet Moss, Wet Wood

200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 15 sec 4 g 4 OZ / 125 ML

If you have more, try brewing longer with a lot of leaf.


If brewed that way, a lot of shou can have the intensity and body of a good coffee.

Martin Bednář

I will try that derk. But I don’t feel I have underleafed it, but I can be wrong :)

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One month later.


Yes, exactly one month later I have this tea again and this time from Advent Calendar. I have oversteeped it though, but it was somehow welcomed, because… I had slight headache and I really wanted bold and strong tea.

It was. All the mellow notes has disappeared. No marzipan, no nutty notes. But strong almond and malty cup. Slightly tannic and light astringent aftertaste.

Yes, it is intended to be drank with more careful steeping, but longer steeps aren’t turning it wrong.

Flavors: Almond, Astringent, Malt, Tannic

205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec 10 OZ / 300 ML

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It’s sad to see another repe… wait, this is not tea I have tried before? I took the other, tea bag with same design and… indeed it is a different tea! YAY!

I have to say that today mint tea is greatly welcomed. We had an awesome, but very fatty lunch paid by the company. We had roasted duck leg, with two types of dumplings, gravy and red sauerkraut. But that’s not all. We had soup before. It was beef broth with vegetables, noodles and liver pastina. Again, not all. We had also a piece of honey cake and non-alcoholic punch as a drink.

So, pretty much I was stuffed and I haven’t been hungry even in time I have arrived home. That was 4 hours after the lunch! Yes, we have heavy lunches here and light dinners, not like vice versa in the English-speaking countries.

So yeah, spearmint tea. Settles down my stomach well, and it was minty. Obviously. It has got nice mouthfeel and sometimes it was even a bit citrusy and sometimes honey-ish.

Delightful, however a bit boring tea. I mean, what can go wrong with simple spearmint tea? Probably just using old and musty herbs.

Flavors: Citrusy, Honey, Spearmint

205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec 10 OZ / 300 ML
Evol Ving Ness

Thank you for describing your lunch. It sounds delicious. What kinds of dumplings? (i live food details.). And yes, it sounds very heavy but well worth it.

In North America, many if not most, companies have cut back on Christmas lunches and staff parties. My department, for example, asked staff to partially pay for a buffet lunch at Christmas (while progressively adding tasks and new responsibilities that staff was not paid for.). So it makes me happy to hear about your holiday lunch.

Heavy lunches and light dinners are the way to go.

Evol Ving Ness

Also, mint tea after duck and the rest sounds like a good solution.


I think all the health books recommend that everyone eat breakfast, have a hearty lunch, and a light supper. Many if us woukd probably have fewer gastric issues if we had done so!

Dumplings and gravy? Yes, please. YES YES. I love gravy. I could just drink gravy. So definitely, I would welcome a cup of mint tea after that!

It sounds like a delightful gathering!


Do you always have heavy lunches rather than dinners? Whenever I have a heavy lunch, I feel like I could have a nap mid-afternoon — which I’m sure wouldn’t be appreciated by my employer! XD

Cameron B.

I felt the same when in Germany, they often have a large lunch and then dinner is a smaller meal.

Evol Ving Ness

Martin, do you have long lunch breaks to allow for heavy lunches and maybe a nap? Do they in Germany?

Evol Ving Ness

When I lived in places with big lunches and habitual afternoon naps, it was initially difficult to get used to, but then I loved it.

Martin Bednář

Evol Ving Ness: I love your curiosity! They were bread dumplings (search for houskové knedlíky) and potato dumplings (search for bramborové knedlíky). I am sure you will find recipes for them because it is something that Czechs miss the most while being abroad.

We had this lunch as we have to order it day before. We always have to order lunch (one from 4 meals, then there are some healthy one and one “grill”). So, if you don’t want it, you don’t get it. So, it was part of “normal lunch”.

It was indeed deligtful ashmanra, however work effeciency has lowered a lot after this lunch.

Courtney: Yes, usually we have here heavy lunches and light dinners. Sometimes it is indeed hard without the nap. So, you have to plan the work accordingly. After lunch some easier tasks, but hard ones in the mornings.

Cameron: I feel it is central Europe thing :) We have heavier lunches usually.

Evol Ving Ness: No, no long lunch breaks. As usual, we have 30 minutes for it. Depends on the job you can rest a bit or not. But no naps, no longer breaks.

Evol Ving Ness

Thanks, Martin! They look good. We also have a lot of dumplings, like these, for meals with soup or gravy. My mother many different kinds, some like your bread dumplings with bread and/or bacon.

I am especially curious about food because I love to eat. Thank you for indulging me. :)

Evol Ving Ness

Too bad about the short lunch breaks. Boooo.

Martin Bednář

You are welcome :)

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drank No. 504 Muse by Paper & Tea
1269 tasting notes


… again?
Damn. I put it into wishlist, but I haven’t been expecting seeing it so quickly. It was in day 3 and loved it.

I won’t repeat myself. See that tasting note. It’s same. For real! However, today I wasn’t able to enjoy it that much as back then. You know, busy days…

205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec 10 OZ / 300 ML

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I have to agree with Roswell Strange, it has got mojito vibe. But first, when I smelled the sachet, I got chamomile.

But brewed, it went well. Green tea with mint. Hints of citrus, quite delightful.

As Roswell wrote, it is indeed nicely balanced and mint was fresh in this tea — so no muddy taste. However, somehow quite boring? I mean that I have tried several lemon green teas and this has got added mint, which is nicely refreshing, but not adding much else. I haven’t got Julep itself yet, but I saw it should be with bourbon and sadly (or luckily?) no bourbon notes in.

Flavors: Chamomile, Citrus, Mint

180 °F / 82 °C 4 min, 0 sec 10 OZ / 300 ML

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I have arrived home, awfully tired, picked up some Christmas gifts and some work stuff I have to do at home, because I had no mod to do it in the office. I have some neglected stuff there and I have to fix it ASAP. Oh dear. Tomrrow my probation period ends. It flies.
And I am supposed to have caffeine-free tea? And again some Ayurvedish? It can be good.

Error! It was good. I calmed down a wee bit. Tea relaxes. Soothes wild mind.

Enjoyable cup with lemongrass/gingery notes. Smooth and not fiery. I guess I have Ayurveda teas connected with Yogi teas. Gently citrusy. Mellow… but just not my cup of tea.

Off to work!

Flavors: Citrusy, Ginger, Lemongrass, Smooth

205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec 10 OZ / 300 ML

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I am drinking almost everything. Tea bag collector who moved to wonderful world of loose leaf.

Trying to rate differently tea bags and loose leaf as tea bags have usually worse quality.

Photographer now and then. Postcrossing and geocaching member. Very curious person. Logistics student (should finish in June 2021).

Buried in tea right now. Is in my cupboard (trying to be updated) which sparkled your interest? Write me, I would gladly share with you. But I don’t want anything in return now :)


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