224 Tasting Notes

drank Pineapple Tea by Culinary Teas
224 tasting notes

So this is actually the second time I’ve made this, but I was so underwhelmed by it the first time I made it that I decided to just toss it back in my untried bin and after awhile, try it again. Lol.

Great pineapple smell in the bag, in a mouthwatering way. So I was pretty excited. And the brewed tea smells pretty pineapple-y also.
But after sipping it, I don’t really get much actual pineapple taste. Maybe I’m expecting too much, but if a tea is labeled pineapple, it should at least be pretty strongly pineapple. Even with sugar added, not much pineapple.
It could also be that this tea was so astringent to me that I couldn’t drink much more than half of it before pouring it out. Even 5ish minutes later my mouth is still all wonky from the astringency.

I’d keep this and finish it out, but that astringency is just too much. Ah well. One day I’ll find a good pineapple tea.

205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 15 sec

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drank Prairie Berry by DAVIDsTEA
224 tasting notes

So this second time around I poured my whole bag into a bowl and made sure the teaspoon I got wasn’t heavy on fruit with no tea.
It’s definitely not as tart as it was when I first made it. But I didn’t really get any sort of definite oolong taste from it either. No hint of maple sweetness that I could tell, but I wasn’t really expecting much from that to be honest.
It was just a kinda fruity/berry, lightly tart-ish tea. With sugar it was a bit better, but kinda meh overall.
Going into the swap bin…which I really need to empty out soon. Lol.

205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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So I’ve been looking forward to this tea since I read about it on Verdant’s website. It sounded so good that I almost got a full ounce of this, but managed to contain myself (just in case) and just get two samples of it. I’ve been wanting to make this tea for awhile, but found that I didn’t have enough time to be able to fully appreciate all of the steepings I was bound to get from this, so I kept putting it off. Finally I decided to go for it since I have a late shift for work the next day so I could possibly stay up late if necessary to drink through this. Lol. Originally I was going to use my new gaiwan for it, but Verdant had western style brewing suggestions on the site and I felt kinda lazy.

I used the one tablespoon per cup recommendation (that’s alot of tea, yeesh), which was exactly what I had in my sample packet. Into my ingenutea it went, followed by 205* water. Then to sit and wait. The following steeping opinions I wrote as I made them over the course of a couple hours. (Yes, I was a slow tea drinker tonight.)

1st steep – 205* / 3min – I can understand the wheat bread descriptions since that’s what I first thought when I opened the sample packet. Kind’ve a grain-y, roasty smell. The steeped leaves have the same smell. For the brew, the same roasty flavor, but this is bordering on more of a burnt flavor. Actually I can’t really get past this to find any other flavors. The burnt taste really overpowers everything else for me, which makes me kinda sad. But hopefully it’ll get better in the second steeping.

2nd steep – 205* / 4.5min – Still roasty, but the burnt flavor has died down quite a bit. Don’t get much more than that roasty flavor still.

3rd steep – 205* / 6min – The roasty flavor is gone mostly, not in your face, but kinda chilling in the background. I’m not quite sure what to think of this third brew really. It’s sweet by itself, but I can’t really associate any particular flavor or impression to it. It’s not a weak tea flavored water. It’s more than that but I can’t figure out what. It’s very frustrating actually.
Originally I had done this for 5.5min, but found it watery and dumped it back in the leaves for a bit longer steep, which came out much better tasting, all things considering.

4th steep – 205* / 8min – So I think this is the last steep I can get from this. I probly should’ve stopped at the 3rd, but I couldn’t resist at least trying. After all, it’s only water I’d be using, not like money or my bottled fairies (kudos if you get the reference). This brew is just slightly roasty in an oolong-ish sort of way, but mostly just watery and getting unpleasantly astringent. I actually might just pour this one out since it’s definitely not appealing to drink at this point. If it weren’t so late I might try just dumping the brew back into the leaves and letting it sit awhile longer. But alas, I have to have a cutoff sometime and quarter past 1 in the morning seems as good of one as any. Lol.

My impressions overall are that I don’t think this one is for me just yet. I’ve decided not to leave a rating on this one since I think my dissatisfaction with this tea might be more my own taste than the tea itself, especially since there’s so many other people here that it’s such a big hit with. Normally I’d probly have rated this a 48 or 49 on my own opinion scale (which is at the higher end of my ‘good to try, won’t reorder’ area), but I feel it’d be unfair to potentially bring the rating down because my taste buds are uncooperative. Lol.

I might try my second sample packet later on down the line to see if I can find the nuances of this better. Or I might just try this with cooler, more oolong temperate water and see if that helps. We’ll see, but for now, this isn’t going on my reorder list.

205 °F / 96 °C

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drank Mamma Mia by DAVIDsTEA
224 tasting notes

So I wanted something today, but I couldn’t decide which tea. I didn’t really want to drink a tea I have already, but I didn’t really have a taste for most of the new teas I do have. And the ones I did have a taste for were all multiple steep teas and it’s much too late for that.
I had made the Konami Mystery tea from Adagio, but it turned bitter because I think I used too hot of water. So I dumped it and grabbed this one to make instead.
It’s supposed to be fruity, and while I have serious doubts with anything that has so many different ingredients (especially cinnamon & hibiscus) it smelled so good in the store I figured I’d give it a shot. I had gotten a 2oz bag from a bin on the counter for $3.
The dry mix reminds me strongly of cinnamon apple pie and I don’t really get much else unfortunately except fleeting vague other fruit scents. I added about 2ish tsp, closer to 3 tsp really, to a teaball and dropped it in a cup of a little over 8oz of water. Not exactly sure since it was more than how much it’s usually filled, but not quite up to the top. Lol. Steeped for about 5 min.
The brew is a dark red and still smells like cinnamon apples. Taste wise it’s very tart and cinnamon-y. So much so it overpowers everything else. Which is really unfortunate. I had to add almost a full packet of truvia just to be able to drink it, which I’ve never had to do with a tea before. And while it tones down the tartness somewhat, it’s still very tart. Hibiscus strikes again. Really I should’ve know better I guess.
Ah well. It was still nice to try. And as it cools it’s still nice. Makes me think it could be used for a nice fruity cold drink. I might try that with some of what I have left. But this one it definitely going in the swap bin.

205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 15 sec

I think I bought this one as part of the same deal and I hated it. It was the worst of hibiscus that I had encountered. I never did try it iced, but maybe that was the fix…


It was a 2 for $5 deal bin, but since I was buying 3, one cost $3. XD
I try to stay away from hibiscus after trying one tea with it and hearing all the awful experiences people have had.
Honestly, I’m not sure if I really want to try it iced, though it might tone down the tart if it was diluted with ice…Ooh. Maybe make ice cubes out of a strong black tea and pour this over it. /ponders/ That might be tasty. I have to get over this experience first though. Lol!

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I wanted a good solid plain black tea and essentially had a craving for this. Sitting here sipping it, it’s not exactly the tea my mind told me I was craving, but it’s close enough that the craving is sent back to rumble in its cave.

Earthy, with an almost peppery sort of sense to it. Which is weird. Not sure if that’s what I’m getting, but it’s what springs to mind first. A bit more astringent than I remember, but not to the point where I feel like I’ve been chewing cotton.

Did two single serving brews then poured it all in one cup. Added a bit of sugar. Mmmmm. Tasty black tea nummy-ness. Lol.

205 °F / 96 °C

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drank Prairie Berry by DAVIDsTEA
224 tasting notes

I wanted a fruity tea this morning and I figured this would be a good one. What with all the fruit in it and it smelling just as fruity.
Lots of big chunks of berries when I measured it out, but not much actual tea. I probly should have put it back and stirred the bag up better. That might explain why this was so tart when I went to drink it. All I could taste was tart cranberry water essentially, with no hint of any sort of oolong tea. And since I have no idea what a Saskatoon berry tastes like, forget trying to pick that out. Lol.
I added truvia to this and it helped somewhat with the tartness, but not enough since it was still almost undrinkable to me.
Second steep – same temp – 4 min – weak/watery tasting with that tart/sour overlay.

I’ve held off rating this because I’m pretty sure didn’t get a properly mixed measure out of my bag. It wouldn’t be fair to rate it lower than I might otherwise have rated it if I had actually gotten tea with this. Lol.
I’ll add a rating when I make this again with a better mix…hopefully. In any case, I’ll rate it regardless on if I get the same tart/sour taste out of it. Lol.

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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drank Nepal Black by DAVIDsTEA
224 tasting notes

Another tea I got from DavidsTea the other day that I had rather high hopes for. While it didn’t completely crash and burn like the other one I tried tonight, it didn’t quite reach what I was expecting.

I didn’t really get any of the honey notes like the description mentions, just earthy/woody, maybe a bit of fruityness (which was strange and I may have imagined it).
I kinda wish I had read the reviews on here so I knew better what I might be getting into, and kinda glad I didn’t since I likely would’ve never bought this if I had. Mainly because I think my tastebuds are just not cut out for Darjeelings and those teas similar to them. I just don’t care for that kinda of musky/woody/earthy sort of taste. Though where I didn’t care at all for the first (and so far only) Darjeeling I’ve had, this tea is just unsimilar enough to a Darjeeling that I find myself finishing my cup and pondering another (or trying a resteep), but similar enough that it could be considered vaguely comparable. Even possibly as an easy introduction step to actual Darjeelings.

It has no astringency or bitterness that I could detect, but then I steeped it for 30 sec less than the minimum recommended temp, and at a slightly cooler temp. (Though I’m not sure how a few degrees really would have made a difference.)

I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t reorder this one, but if I drink enough, the taste may grow on me. But I can at least see myself finishing what I have. Which makes me happy that it wasn’t a complete bust or I’d’ve been really irritated. (I also got cajoled into buying an ounce of this instead of a half ounce. _ I need a backbone. Lol!)

Edit – Second steep – Same Temp-ish/ 4:30 min – Much like the first but toned down on the woody bite. Stiil a pleasant black tea. Not bad. /Ups the rating just a smidge for that./ Lol.

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 30 sec

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drank Fantasy Island by DAVIDsTEA
224 tasting notes

So I picked this up the other day when I was at DavidsTea since it smelled so tasty. Toasty coconut with a hint of fruit. Despite my original intention, the clerk managed to convince me to get an ounce of this when I’d originally wanted only a half ounce…..I should’ve stayed with what I wanted originally. /sigh/

Steeped this smells heavily like coconut, with no hint of fruit. And it tastes just like coconut…and nothing else. Which is unfortunate because it smelled so nice dry. Toasty coconut, which is nice if you like that sort of taste. Though the black tea is rather bitter under it. I should’ve just steeped it at my usual 3 minutes rather than listening to what the package said. Though I’m not sure I’d’ve liked this even without the bitterness.

This is just too pure coconutty for me. I guess I know better now that coconut isn’t really my favorite taste. Maybe I’ll try to mix some of this with one of the pineapple blacks that I have to see if that does anything for it. That may help me get through what I have (along with swapping) but I’m not going to order this one again. But it was nice to try anyway.

Definitely one I’d recommend to anyone who likes coconut, though I wouldn’t count on tasting any fruit in this. Lol.

205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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After oolongs and blacks I decided on something light. So this one came out of the untried bin for the day.
The dried leaves are fuzzy and a pain in the butt to try to measure out. I think that’s just a characteristic of white teas since I had just as much trouble measuring out the whites from Butiki. Lol.

Steeped this for the 2 min minimum for starters and I’m wondering if I should’ve either let the tea steep longer, or increased the amount of tea I used (which was approx 1.5 tsp near as I can figure). This tasted very light overall. Lightly vegetal, lightly tea flavored. Though it had a nice crisp taste. Just not much other taste overall.

As this one was steeping, most of the leaves were a nice light green, but I noticed a few that were yellow-y and brown spotted. Is this a common thing in white teas? And should I try to spot them before steeping and pick them out?

The package says that this should be steeped 3 – 4 times, but I’m very doubtful since after a second steeping, this one had even less flavor than the first. It just tasted like hot water with a bit of extra something.

Maybe it’s because I’m not used to flavor of white teas that this tastes so light overall. I’ll have to try this again when I’ve been either off darker teas, or off tea altogether.

180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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I wanted to cut soda out of my life, so I started drinking more tea. Now I’m quickly becoming addicted. But that doesn’t seem like so bad of a thing considering all there is out there to try.

I started with blacks, but oolongs are quickly becoming my new favorite. Unfortunately, I haven’t really been able to find a green or white tea that I really enjoy. Eventually maybe.

Always open for swaps. If you see something in my cupboard that you’re interested in, feel free to send me a message about it. I do have alot of sample sizes in my cupboard, so there might be a few that I won’t be able to swap. But it never hurts to ask. ^^

Likes – Fruity teas (Peach, Apricot & Pineapple to be specific, but I’d likely be open to others). I’m always on the lookout for a good caramel tea too…and a vanilla one. Or any sweet, dessert teas.
Oolongs and Blacks over any others.

Indifferent/Undecided – White teas are a bit delicate for me but I’m not opposed to trying something new. I haven’t yet found a green tea I like since I dislike vegetal flavors, but there has to be something out there. Coconut can be too strong, or alright depending on the tea.

Dislikes – Spicy/chai stuff not so much since I can’t seem to get past the spice taste to anything underneath. Anything overly astringent, though I can’t imagine anyone /liking/ astringency (but I’m probly wrong. Lol). Earl Greys, heavy florals, tart/sour teas, rooibos heavy, mint of any sort, vegetal, musky/leathery, citrus, hibiscus, coffee-esque flavors, lemon.

Allergies – Mangos, some nuts especially walnuts, cherries. Rose petals/heavy rose teas make me ill though it’s not an allergy so to speak. Heavy artificial flavors also make me ill.

Brief ‘How I rate things’ scale:
(Subject to change at any time. Lol)
100-80: I’d definitely reorder this/Keeping this in my cupboard.
79-50: Possibly reorder these. Either if there’s a sale or I’d consider swapping for it’s on a list and I don’t see anything else.
49-40: It’s alright. Glad I tried it but I won’t be ordering/reordering this.
39-20: Glad I tried before buying ‘cause I’d be ticked if I bought this. Ick.
20-lower: UGH! Get it away!


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