224 Tasting Notes

drank Yunnan Jig by Adagio Teas
224 tasting notes

So against my better judgement and the safety of my wallet, I’ve been considering an order from Andrews & Dunham teas (in addition to a golden moon order). Specifically of their Yunnan Gold Tips, which sound oh so tasty, but is oh so expensive for a tea I have no idea if I’d like or not. Unfortunatly I have very little set distinction between the differences of Assam, Ceylon, Yunnan, Keemun, etc aside from what they’re vaguely supposed to taste like and what people say. I’ve been mostly concentrating on flavored teas since I started. One day I’m going to get solid examples of each and make them all and compare. But that’s a project for another time.

Anyway, I found this Yunnan in my Adagio samples and figured that it would give me something vaguely to expect, though probly comparing this and the A&D tea is like comparing apples and cherries. XD But it was something.

Dry this smelled chocolaty and rich ish. I only had about two tsp left so I dumped the rest into a strainer and added a bit over my usual 12oz. Now this is where I may have gone wrong, or possibly the temp (205*), or even the time (3min), but this cup is pretty undrinkable to me.
It’s fruity and chocolaty smelling, and the very beginning instant of the sip is good, but it immediately turns bitter and astringent. So I’m not sure if it was me or the tea, though I remember making a fine cup when I first got the sample, so it’s probly me.
But now it makes me question whether I want to take the chance with the fancy A&D yunnan tea. /sigh/ making this cup didn’t help and now I’m dissatisfied. Meh. But then again, it means that I’ll just have to brew another tea to make up for this one. Lol.


did you ever order from Andrews and Dunham?

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drank Ruby Pie by Butiki Teas
224 tasting notes

Yeesh. I’m so far behnd on logging teas that I’m pretty sure I’m never going to catch up. Lol. Logging them on an Ipad just sucks too much and tests my patience to the line. Lol.
I was originally planning on finishing up a random mix of teas left over from when my friends and I had a blending tea party (I ended up taking all the tea blends left over and tossed them all together which actually isn’t as awful as it sounds….the cinnamon kinda covers most of the weirdness. Lol). But I digress. Anyway. I picked this out of the bin of ‘teas I absolutely have to at least try before drinking anything else’. Got it in a swap….gods, I have no idea when. Smelled fruity though so I thought what the heck.
I’m pretty sure I got no bunny grahams, chocolate chips or even any cinnamon chips in the remnant bag I got. But there were a few bleached out pieces of fruit that I’d guess were strawberries. Lol.
Brewed this according to Butiki recs and it came out….nice. Not really sweet, it tasted like fruit water to be honest. But it was still nice and fruity. Added, well, more Truvia than I usually do to make it sweet enough to really like, but so.
It was nice….but it would probly do better being drunk ‘quickly-ish’ and not sit on a hotplate for an hour+ plus while one gets sucked into reading a book. Lol. Sitting that long it was still frui and sweet, but it was definately turning towards bitter with a coming vengeance. And it had an odd, almost minty sort of effect. Not astringency but more the sensation you get after taking a menthol drop or something. Not…well, not pleasant for me at least.
But all things considering, and after a rather rambling review, I think I would be tempted to pick up a measure of this for myself. To see if it differs from what I got, and gets better than the potential I could taste.

Terri HarpLady

I still have some Ruby Pie…I’m thinking cold brew maybe?

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drank Caramel by Kusmi Tea
224 tasting notes

So I feel pretty guilty because I have four teas backlogged that I really need to write reviews for still. But I’m drinking this one now so I figure I should probly just review it….even though trying to review something is unfriendly with my Ipad.
Imremember drinking this when I first got it in a swap from….shmiracles I think? But I guess I never got around to typing it down. I remember it being amazing and with that Rue La La promotion with Kusmi I was planning on buying this and maybe two others. But I had this and wanted to try it one more time to make sure it was as amazing as I remembered.
Unfortunately it really isn’t anymore. I’m pretty convinced that there’s something wrong with my tastebuds at this point because it seems that every tea that I drink now that I thought I remembered as amazing is…well…not so much anymore. Which makes me horribly depressed when I let myself think anout it and the cupboard of teas I’ve collected.
But back to the review. This one isn’t as caramelly as I remembered it being. It’s not even a particularly good black tea to me either. It’s just kinda meh overall. I’m wondering if I underleafed it (I used 1 1/2 tsp for like 9 oz ish of water for 2:30min)? Possibly but since that was the last of what I had, I have no way to give it another try.

Totally bummed that this isn’t what I remembered it being, but I guess it saves me $17. Or rather the $25 of the promotion. /sigh/


I think my tastebuds changed recently too! Some of my teas aren’t tasting like I remember. I just looked it up… apparently they change every 7 years.


Ugh. I hope that’s no my problem, though it sounds plausible. That’s my issue with allergies. Years ago I became allergic to alot of fruits/veggies that I was fine with before. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that this is my year to phase out of them because I absolutely detest being allergic to apparently every fruit I ever loved when I was younger, with very few exceptions.
I didn’t realize that it was the same with just general tastes. (Which also sucks, by the way). Lol.

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So after drinking some Caramel Vanilla Assam all day I wanted something different and new. So this is the 4th tea I got as a free sample from Teavivre’s very generous sample offer.
Opening the package I get woodsy, malty, grain-esque smells. It actually made me think of really good iced tea. Lol. Or the first time I had black dragon pearls, which is strange because they’re totally different teas. Lol.
I used 2 tsp in 195* water for 2:30min (I write this down because it is nigh impossible to use the slider selector bars while on an ipad).
Smells the same brewed as dry. First sip is …..oh man. I think this is the sort of tea I’ve been craving without actually knowing what I was looking for. It’s slightly woodsy, and fruity and sweet. I get almost a gentle smokeyness from the sip too.
I get a touch of bitterness and a medium strong astringency from the end of the sip, but it might just be because I overleafed my cup. Next time I might just try 1 1/2 tsp just to see.
Otherwise this tea is absolutely delicious. It might even become a staple in my cupboard after I’ve given it a few more tries….and pared down dome of my cupboard. It’s certainly not going into the swap bin. Lol!
I’m also going to have to give this a shot iced, though I haven’t decided if I want to straight up cold brew it or brew it hot then chill.


Mmmm… I’ll be trying this with my next Teavivre order… I wanted to order it this month but there was so many other samples I wanted to try. Definitely next time.

Terri HarpLady

I really enjoy this one, it is definitely one of my favorite Keemuns.

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I wish this tea had brewed up purple, because that would’ve been awesome. But alas, it only brews up a fairly paleish golden color. The smell at first reminded me of one of the aged Butiki oolongs I had (might’ve been the 2003 aged oolong, but I’m not sure.), which was something I dislked quite a bit about that. But after letting it sit a few minutes, that smell changed into more of an almost wine-y sort of scent.
Sipping at it I get a plum-y taste that’s surprisingly full for a tea. It’s vaguely woody and I get that wine-y sort of taste at the back of the sip. I don’t get any sort of sweetness from the tea itself or at least nothing that I would deem as ‘sweet’. But there’s no bitterness, only a very slight sourness that doesn’t ruin the tea but adds to it, and the astringency is very faint if there’s really any at all.
Adding a bit of truvia made the fruityness pop out a bit more. (Because I can’t resist trying any tea withoug sugar. Lol.)
All in all it’s not a bad tea. I’m not sure it would go on my reorder list, but I’m not going to get rid of it outright.

170 °F / 76 °C 3 min, 15 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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So this was one of the samples I got from Teavivre’s reviewers sample offer. This is actually the second time I’ve had this, but the first time it was kinda unexpected since the packet had split open during transit and I wanted to use some so I could tape the packet closed.
This time around I was much more prepared, though I’m not sure I used the correct amount of leaf since there was no recommendation on the packet. But it turned out nicely anyway. Lol.
It’s gota pretty strong roasty taste to it, with an added woody element, but it’s also oddly sweet. I get a small bit of maltyness but I mostly get woodsy/roasty tastes. Very little astringency which is nice. And the more I ponder each sip, I get a vague peppery sory of feeling/taste.
It’s not really to my taste at the moment, but I’m not about to pour my mug of it out because of that. Lol. I’ll probly end up either giving the remaining two packets to friends/family, or keeping them to add to the travelling tea box I’m pondering on putting together.

Unrelated note but I wanted to vent – typing this on my Ipad stinks. It deleted this at first, but I found out you can undo typing (or in this case deleting text accidentally) by shaking the ipad and it’ll give you an ‘undo typing’ prompt. I wish I had know this sooner since it would’ve saved me much frustration. Lol.

195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 45 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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Tea #4
This is such a pretty blend in the package with the little sprigs of red mixed into the rest of the tea. Maybe I’m strange but that was my first thought when I opened the tin. Lol.
The dry tea itself doesn’t have much of any particular outstanding smell. It just smells like, well, tea. Lol!
Brewed it’s vaguely cinnamony, a bit roasted with a pecular wet sort of smell to it. Not like musky wet dog smell, but just sort of damp. I know that probly doesn’t make any sense to anyone else, but when I figure out something better, I’ll fix it.
The taste is kinda meh for me with nothing standing out except some cinnamon notes, something kinda smokey and another taste that I can’t identify. Maybe it’s the ‘mineral’ taste that the Mambo is supposed to add, I’m not sure. I’ll have to just make some Mambo (I had picked up a sample pack with my order) and see if that’s what it is.

Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

I’m not sure I could try this one because of the name.. Weird.

Roswell Strange

I should finish the Welcome to Nightvale podcasts… I think I only finished up to the third?


Yikes! I just realized you were rating these so low! I hope you find a few that make the path worthwhile!

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Tea #3
This has a nicely spiced scent dry, but not sharp like a chai. The brew also smells slightly spiced and vaguely green. I did notice that the brew has a scummy green tone to it. I’m not really surprised since I’m betting that’s just the sprinkles fault. I have another tea from Adagio with sprinkles that does the same thing, though it’s not quite as noticeable with a black tea.
I was surprised at how watery this tasted to me though. Maybe I should’ve used 2 tsp instead of the 1 tsp for my 8oz? Next time I make this, I’ll have to up the measure, or else brew it for a bit longer than 2 min.
As it stands it was a green, spiced sort of brew to drink, though nothing particularly outstanding to me. It’s nicely light and doesn’t seem to want to knock you down with flavors, which is refreshing.

180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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Tea #2 from my ‘The Town We Do Not Speak Of’ (aka Nightvale)
Dry this one has a very strong grapefruit scent. Sort of a sour/tart sort of scent.
After brewing it’s got this strange sweet/sour thing going on with a grassy sort of green taste. Adding some truvia mellows the sour taste, though doesn’t really bring out much more than what I’ve already tasted.
I’ll have to try cold brewing this one too since maybe that’ll bring out more sweet fruityness. As it is, it’s a pretty alright tea to drink hot.

200 °F / 93 °C 3 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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