1928 Tasting Notes
Well, I tried to fix the picture but couldn’t get it to take. Oddly enough, there are images further down the page that seem to show up just fine.
This smells and tastes a lot like the Caribbean Crush of yesterday, but more. More color (a deep, dark red) and more flavor (described below). It may be that the hibiscus is stronger and that’s pushing a synergistic effect with all the other flavors.
This one also reminds me a lot of the late, great Teavana offering, Caribbean Breeze — a bit of a black cherry flavor, but sweeter than my notes show for Caribbean Breeze and less tart. It also has the strawberry leaning flavor I described in Caribbean Breeze.
It’s reminiscent of Tazo Passion as well, but it has a more robust flavor that I think comes mostly from not being in a teabag.
The aroma is fruit punch-like after steeping. In the packet, it’s pretty eyewateringly strong unsweetened black cherry.
This gets the same rating as Caribbean Breeze as a thank you for being a nice stand in for one of my old faves.
Flavors: Cherry, Fruit Punch, Grapes, Strawberry
Continuing to sample my panoply of new herbals and fruit blends. The weather has been chilly here, so it’s been great to have a warm drink at night.
This one has small chunks, rather than the normal big chunks. But I still over-chunked it slightly out of habit.
The dry mix smells very sweet and a little tart. It’s hard to discern the individual flavors in the smell of the dry mix.
After steeping I can’t really differentiate the flavors either, but it’s kind of nice that way. It’s rather like a fruit punch effect, like a nice Hawaiian Punch (if you’re old enough to remember that).
It is sweet, but at least my initial impression isn’t that it’s cloyingly so, and there’s a tartness in the finish and aftertaste that keeps it from being a mouth full ’o sugar.
I’m not sure I like it better than the Flamingo, but I like it as well in different ways.
Flavors: Fruit Punch, Fruity, Tart
I didn’t rate this the first time I tried it, but I think I’m ready now.
I tried it the past few days as my take it to work tea, steeping at the full 4 minutes suggested.
Even with the additional steeping time, this isn’t among my favorites. It’s tasty enough, and does have a very interesting bamboo shoot-like flavor and aroma. But it’s not a strong enough flavor for me.
Sometimes a less than amazing flavor is perfect for a work tea, because you aren’t distracted after each sip with the thought of how good it is.
In this case, the distraction is me constantly asking myself whether there’s something else I could have done to make a stronger flavor come through.
I totally forgot that I bought this.
It’s actually quite decent for a straight chamomile. The flowers smell juicy and sweet in the pouch, and after steeping they still smell juicy and sweet.
There’s none of that papery, strawy, sour-to-bitter taste that chamomile can sometimes have. This is no mouth full ’o stale potpourri. Indeed, it has a freshness to it that I find rare in chamomile.
What it doesn’t have, that I have found I like in chamomiles, is a creaminess to it. A sort of smooth and almost heavy mouthfeel.
Instead it’s crisp, with the characteristic hint of green apple.
I’ve discovered that I like this as much as the creamy, sweet kind, if not more.
While chamomile is, still, for me, a sometime thing — I can see this growing on me. I’m giving it a tad higher rating than the Samovar, which is pretty much unheard of for me. Nice job on the fresh flowers, David!
In other news, I’m pretty excited that a couple of total strangers have liked one of my stories enough to recommend that those nominating for Hugos give it a read. Here’s a link to my post about this, and you can also find a link to the story there in case anyone is nominating. :-)
I’ve been on a writing hiatus lately. Too much going on. Trying to gear up for my new role at work which is coming this spring, working hard on the weight loss (it is going well, thanks — so well in fact that my doctor wrote me a love letter about my lipid panel), and trying to keep up with my kids who are now surly teenagers and have secret lives that both amaze and worry me.
But having some folks who don’t know me like my stuff enough to post about it makes me want to at least think about breaking the hiatus. I don’t know whether it will happen soon, but it will happen eventually. It always does.
Flavors: Flowers, Green Apple
Having now had quite a few more English Breakfast blends than I had had when I wrote my original note, I’m not as impressed upon revisiting this one so I’m bumping down the rating into the good category.
It’s not that the tea has changed, it’s that my tastes have, and I now have a clearer idea of what I like in a breakfast blend. I generally prefer at least some Yunnan in mine. If there’s any Yunnan in this, I can’t tell.
Apparently, my only note about this was in reference to a cold brew. I’m almost to the end of this, so I decided to try it hot again to record my thoughts.
It’s not a favorite. It’s rather nondescript. Yes, there’s chocolate in the dry leaf and steeped aroma, and in the taste. But it’s a rather surface chocolate flavor, not a rich one. The chili aspect is even less obvious. I suppose there might be a hint of it, but it isn’t strongly peppery.
It’s not terrible. It’s just not anything special.
I thought this might be another in the same vein as Brioche and Almond Biscotti, but after smelling the dry leaves I think it’s a different type of almond. It’s less pastry and more Amaretto.
I find it interesting that The Cultured Cup sells this under the Mariage Freres brand, but it’s not available at the Mariage Freres web site.
But I digress. The steeped tea also smells and tastes like Amaretto, but without the alcohol. The underlying tea blends pretty seamlessly into the almond, to the point where it’s not really discernible as a separate flavor. Admittedly, I have a cold so my taster may be a little off, but I don’t think I’m missing anything here.
It’s an interesting change from the usually pastry flavored almond teas. It’s the sort of thing I might consider having around even if I also had Brioche because they’re so different.
I am puzzled by the fact that it doesn’t appear on the Mariage Freres web site, though.
Anyone have any thoughts on that? Does Mariage Freres have different flavors that they sell to other outlets?