149 Tasting Notes

84
drank Cherry Blossom by Tea Forte
149 tasting notes

My husband and I had our hanami at a local park that happens to have a bunch of cherry trees. They’re small, but loaded with blossoms. This tea was the perfect accompaniment to the onigiri, shrimp shumai, strawberry daifuku, taiyaki (custard AND azuki bean filled!), and a mini baumkuchen that I brought. I brewed it up beforehand according to the instructions, and put it in my thermos. Delicately floral, light cherry fruit, soft green tea flavor, nothing was too heavy, nothing overpowered any of the other elements in the tea. We enjoyed it so much. I wasn’t expecting much from this, since my previous experiences with cherry blossom green teas have been mixed. They can get cloying, metallic, overly floral. Not so here. This is a winner.

Flavors: Cherry, Cherry Blossom, Floral

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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94

Had a pot of this loveliness while at afternoon tea in honor of my birthday. It’s become kind of a tradition. I’ll need to do a review of the place we went to – it’s called Brooklyn High Low and it was fantastic! Everyone got to choose their own tea, which came in a very generously sized pot. This was my pick. I loved it so much I ended up purchasing some to take home. Comforting, warm and sweet, this was such a wonderful tea. Not sweet like sugar sweet – I rarely if ever sweeten my tea – but more like the sweet you get when you add vanilla to anything. I had it with milk, of course. The vanilla is rich and deep, not that flat, marshmallow-y vibe you can sometimes get with lesser vanilla flavoring. Cardamom was perfectly balanced with the vanilla and didn’t overwhelm the tea. Loved it!

Flavors: Cardamom, Malt, Vanilla

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
ashmanra

Happy birthday! That sounds like a lovely way to celebrate!

gmathis

Oh, I wish we had somewhere like that locally! Happy Birthday!

Sakura Sushi

Thanks, you guys! It was truly wonderful, especially since we were in the back patio and it was a lovely day. Plus not crowded at all – I felt extremely safe.

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20
drank Joyeux Noël by Lupicia
149 tasting notes

Oh, dear. I was hoping for something along the lines of my beloved Chaud Les Marrons, but this is not it. Hard to believe this is from Lupicia – I’ve never had a bad tea from them…until now. I was worried from the get-go since the dry leaf had a strong tangy smell, acrid, very unpleasant. Once steeped, this odd scent mellowed quite a bit, which was a little bit of relief. First I tried it with nothing added: burnt sugar. Like, not nice, but when you bake something sweet for too long or at too high a heat and it turns bitter. I added milk to even things out and it did help, but I was not getting ANY chestnut flavor. Maybe I overleafed, or it needs less time for the steep. I’ll try again with less leaf and a shorter steep time. But dang! this is not going to be easy to get through. I miss my Chaud Les Marrons.

Flavors: Acidic, Burnt, Burnt Sugar, Pungent

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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65

Picked this one up on a trip to Scandinavia, too many (almost 5) years ago. I know, I know. I am trying my damndest to get through my oldest teas and I think I see the light at the end of this tunnel of shame. This was stored in its original sealed envelope, so when I opened it, it smelled exactly like I remembered. A very vanilla scented milky oolong – so different I needed to try it. That day in Stockholm was a freaky 90 degrees and the tea house had no A/C, so no way was I going to go in to have some hot tea and cake. I decided to just buy a small amount to try once I got home. Fast forward to…this morning! Not the typical milky oolong. Yes, it’s scented, but most milky oolongs are. Very vanilla forward, but with a vegetal note from the oolong. Really pleasant tea, sweeter than other milky oolongs I’ve tried. I will have no problem finishing this now that I’ve opened it.

Flavors: Milk, Vanilla, Vegetal

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 4 min, 0 sec 7 g 7 OZ / 200 ML
ashmanra

“Tunnel of shame” LOLOL We have all been there. (Some of us never left.)

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82

Another excellent tea from Teavivre. I’m down to my last couple of samples from them: a Dragonwell and this. Woke up to a beautiful snowstorm, everything looking like it had a ton of powdered sugar sprinkled over it, and decided that black tea would be fitting. Getting the notes of sweet potato, getting a little earthiness, and orange/citrus on the finish. It brewed exceptionally dark, and I was afraid I’d overleafed, but no, it was perfect. The second infusion was still great, a little lighter, but still flavorful. Damn, Teavivre has such great stuff!

Flavors: Earthy, Orange, Sweet Potatoes

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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72

Laziest review ever: I liked it. Complex. Nothing I can add to the tons of reviews of this tea already on Steepster. Wondering if I should have brewed gongfu as I started doing or if Western (how I ended up brewing) was the way to go. I only had a sample so I’d need to buy more to try out the other method. Still, I got two steeps out of it.

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83

Yet another tea I bought way too long ago and never finished. Now that the colder weather is here, I thought it would be nice to start the day with a cup of this. It’s definitely one of those teas that makes me wonder why I don’t drink it more often. There’s really no smokiness, just a hint of toasty-roasty flavor, and a lovely honey sweetness. So good! I think I may just make this a priority for my morning tea until it’s gone. I have to remember how good it is! Brewed it western style because I didn’t have the time for a gongfu session. It doesn’t matter – still great.

Flavors: Honey, Roasted

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 6 OZ / 177 ML

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81
drank Iseul Balhyo by Tea Dealers
149 tasting notes

How is this a green tea? Amazing. Roasted cocoa with some almost grain-like notes. This was a gift from 29b Teahouse for a tea-tasting event they had several years ago. Upon opening the bag, I saw that these were actual sachets rather than loose tea, but that’s OK. I’m spending these autumn mornings plopping a sachet in my tea bowl and surveying the beautiful foliage while I sip. It’s delicious! They say you can get 4-5 steeps out of it, but after 3 my tastebuds are done. So good!

Flavors: Cocoa, Grain, Roasted

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 1 min, 0 sec
gmathis

This sounds delicious!

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67
drank Melbourne Breakfast by T2
149 tasting notes

I haven’t been into getting T2 teas for quite awhile, but when I saw this in ye olde Home Goods, curiosity got the better of me, and the price was so good, I decided to go for it. A nice, creamy vanilla black tea, quite nice. I drink it as a breakfast tea with milk, and although I don’t tend to like a marshmallow-y vanilla, I don’t mind it with this tea. This one is not loose leaf, so yay for convenience.

Flavors: Cream, Marshmallow, Sweet, Vanilla

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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70
drank Jade Mountain by T2
149 tasting notes

i do believe this is the oldest tea in my current cupboard, and I finally opened it today. The T2 retail shop I bought it from is long gone, sadly, and I remember getting it on impulse. You know how it goes, they always have a couple of teas brewing for tasting when you’re in the store and somehow you end up buying. Sneaky devils!
I admit I had below low expectations. Although unopened and still sealed, this tea’s been languishing in the back of my tea shelf (technically two shelves at this point) for years. Essentially, it’s a genmaicha with chocolate flavor. Sounds rather disgusting at first glance, but it works – I really like it. The genmaicha is very faded at this point, so I’m not getting a ton of nuttiness, but the chocolate is very cocoa-y and really pleasant. Imagine if I had opened this up years ago – probably would have been excellent. So weird, but really good.

Flavors: Cocoa, Nutty

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Cameron B.

I’ve only found one tea I like from T2, and I’ve been disappointed so many times that I stopped ordering from them. This does sound intriguing though, especially because the chocolate element is from cacao and not flavoring…

Sakura Sushi

Hmmm, just one? Which one is it? I’m curious. I was on a T2 Terrific Toffee binge for awhile, but I do tire of their teas over time. Lamington was another that I really liked. I find that I’m really particular about flavored teas at this point, and always seem to go to my tried and true favorites, so the odds of replenishing any T2 teas are slim at best.

Cameron B.

French Earl Grey is the one I like (though I find the name very misleading). It’s a fruity Earl Grey. I will say I tend to dislike chocolate flavoring, so perhaps that’s why I don’t enjoy a lot of their dessert blends. :(

Although I see they have their advent calendar out… Hmm… XD

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