HELLO! My name is Shanie and I am a budding Tea Aficionado! While I have always loved various types of tea, for almost my entire life it has come from a grocery store. I am only now starting to stick my big toe in the pool of goodness that is loose leaf. As such, there will likely be tasting notes I do for bagged tea as well as good quality (and not so good quality) loose leaf teas. I’m still learning as I go so have patience please!
Some of my favorite flavors include: Cocoa, Malt, Bread, Honey, Earthy, Sweet Citrus, Caramel, Apple, Spices, and Cinnamon.
Some flavors I don’t like: Coconut, Bitey Citrus (like Citric Acid), Sour, Smoke, Overpowering Fake Vanilla, and Stevia.
NOTE: I am Type 2 Diabetic. As such, I can really not have sugar added to tea without suffering problems. This prohibits me from using either plain sugar or honey. Instead, I use Splenda as I found my system can handle it well and I like the flavor. I try to avoid stevia as I’ve found it often ruins the flavor of tea. However, good quality teas require no sweetener. Because of this, if I add sweetener to a tea, I will mention it in the tasting note and say what kind and how much. Usually I sweeten flavored and herbal teas, but leave true teas unsweetened. There are exceptions, but this is a general rule of thumb to go by.
GREAT NEWS! After the recommendation of the discussion board, I invested in some reusable tea baskets. These make brewing tea much easier and eliminates the constant need for disposable cups. Of course, sometimes, both baskets are full and in need of cleaning and I just can’t be bothered, so I use the old cup-to-cup method. Also, if I’m brewing tea for a guest I tend to use the disposable cup method. But as far as personal tea goes, I use brew baskets now!
I have decided to try and make a scale for my ratings. So here goes.
As of March 2019.
100-91: These are my go to favorites. I will likely go out of my way to always keep these on hand, including going on third party websites to obtain out of season.
90-81: This is a tea I really did enjoy, and I will likely purchase again. However, I wouldn’t go to the ends of the earth for it, and it isn’t my all time favorite.
80-71 This is a tea that, while I may have somewhat enjoyed, something is holding me back from making it a mainstay. Maybe because it requires sweetener. Maybe there is an offputting aftertaste. It varies. But something about this doesn’t suit me and while I will likely finish what I have, I may or may not not get more.
70-61: This is a tea which I drank, but I really did not enjoy it. It wasn’t bad enough to dump, and if it is the only thing available to drink, I would likely choke it down. But in the end, this is just not my literal cup of tea and I will likely not get this again.
60-51: This is something that I hated, but for one reason or another, refused to dump. It just is awful, but I suppose I can choke it down and not waste it. These are teas which I will not be buying again, and may not even finish what I have.
50-41: Yeah, whatever this is, I probably dumped it. At this level, it is barely recognizable as tea or any tea like substance, and has few redeeming qualities. On the bright side, it isn’t sewage water, so there’s that.
40-31. On it’s best day this tea has no redeeming qualities. This not only got dumped but the package it came in either got thrown away, traded, or shoved to the back of the cupboard to never be touched again. Not the worst thing I’ve ever tasted, but darn sure close.
30-Under: The worst thing I’ve ever tasted. This not only has no redeeming qualities, but it is gag inducing. “Teas” in this range are so bad I not only will never drink them again, I really don’t feel like offloading them onto anyone else because they are just that bad. Actual sewage water.