52teas

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Recent Tasting Notes

90

Had this earlier in the day during a meeting, and to be totally honest I kept getting distracted in my meeting because the tea was sooo good! As soon as I opened the sample packed I knew it would be, because the aroma was so richly lemon curd, pastry, and cream cheese! The cream cheese was sort of shocking; to be honest I think the “cream cheese” part of 52Tea’s assorted “cream cheese danish” teas is typically the weakest part of the blend – and that’s not on them specifically, it’s just that that sort of sweet and creamy cheese with a “tangy” quality is soooo bloody challenging to capture in general. You see it all the time too with cheesecake blends that don’t taste like cheesecake, and its consistent across multiple vendors…

This was probably the best “cream cheese” I’ve experienced in a tea to date.

The lemon was excellent; fresh and sweet but with the acidity/high notes of a lemon curd type of pasty filling and it only made the cream cheese better. Honeybush as a base is brilliant; it lends the needed sweetness and nutty/graham style notes that work for pastry inspired dished. Everything just clicked, and I loved it.

VariaTEA

This is quite the endorsement. I remember really getting the cream cheese element in another 52 Teas blend and for the life of me, I can’t remember which one now

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82

Got this one from a mystery bag. The first time I had it, I mostly tasted the green tea, which was a bit harsher and grassier than I prefer, but kind of tasty in its own way. I could also taste some light pleasant fruitiness. In some sips, there was a bit of spice, but it’s not very obvious. The second time I tried this tea, I paid more attention to my steeping parameters, and found it to be rather gentle and creamy. I’m glad I gave it another chance and didn’t just pass it along. It really is like apricots and cream. This one is super well executed.

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78

I just re-signed up for the 52teas subscription, so I figured I would break into the few unopened sample packs I have from my previous term. It looks like this one was the reblend from the February box in 2019. I love both genmaicha and mango, but I’m not the biggest coconut fan, so I’m managing my expectations.

The flavoring here is somewhat light, an accent to the toasty genmaicha. The coconut adds a lovely buttery creaminess and definitely reminds me of Thai coconut sticky rice. Thankfully, it does not taste like suntan lotion, as coconut flavor often does. I think I get a little hint of mango at the end of the sip? It’s definitely very subtle.

This is a very tasty creamy genmaicha with a light coconut flavor, and it definitely does remind me of rice pudding or coconut sticky rice. Not sure about the mango part, but that’s okay.

Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Butter, Coconut, Cream, Dry Grass, Mango, Sweet, Thick, Toasted Rice

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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76

Coldbrewed what I had left of this. Really tasty! Predominantly blueberry.

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77
drank Blackberry Dumpling by 52teas
769 tasting notes

The first time I tried this tea, I found it a bit thin and boring, even bitter. Next time, I made sure to overleaf and steep it properly. I’m not a huge fan without adding milk, but with milk, it can be nice. It’s a sort of berries and cream flavor. I don’t get any pastry notes. I accidentally spilled the rest of the bag on the floor, so unfortunately, I won’t be having more of this one. But I did like the black base and found the whole combination to be rather pleasing.

tea-sipper

oh no! poor tea. I hope it was only sample size.

AJRimmer

Yeah, there was only one serving left, so it wasn’t the worst of losses! But I should really only open bags when I’m standing over the counter – lesson learned!

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88

I was positive that I wrote a review on this, but obviously that’s not the case. I really love this one. It’s one of the rare earl greys that I find myself enjoying these days. The blackberry is the most prominent flavor- so juicy and authentic tasting, much like other 52Teas blackberry blends. The bergamot is subtle and works with the blackberry so well. I ended up buying another small pouch because I was missing it.

Cameron B.

Sounds tasty! I love Earl Greys with added ingredients.

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drank Black Forest by 52teas
722 tasting notes

Wow, this is chocolatey. Not the synthetic chocolate flavor you so often find in tea blends, but a rich, melted chocolate. I find the cherry more in the aftertaste. Added some oat milk, and it made for a pretty decadent drink.

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74

Really tasty, distinguishable pear flavor that lacks in other pear teas. A bit of cream flavor, but no discernible amaretto.

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67
drank Strawberry Kiwi by 52teas
5276 tasting notes

Sipdown (273)

I found steeping instructions online for this. My cup was slightly overleafed but ultimately I think I stayed pretty close to the recommended steeping parameters. That definitely improved this cup from the last but I am still not overly enthused about it.

I get fruit. Subtle and soft fruits. Nothing really stands out though. I can arguably get either strawberry or kiwi but if I am being honest, I think it is more because I am looking for them and expecting them to be there. It’s fine but there are so many better fruity tea/tisane offerings, even just from 52 Teas so this won’t be a restock for me.

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67
drank Strawberry Kiwi by 52teas
5276 tasting notes

My package of this tea was mislabeled which means I was brewing this blindly. However, I do know that 52 Teas rooibos blends tend to be steeped at a slightly lower temperature for a long period of time. So, with that in mind, I put about 1.5 tsps into a tea bag and tossed it into 10 oz of 190F water. I meant to leave it for like 10 minutes but I started playing Crash Bandicoot with my brother-in-law so this steeped for closer to 30 mins. Oops.

With all that said, something went wrong somewhere. It’s fine but surprisingly bland for the long steep time. It’s got a sort of strawberry-ish but mostly generic fruit note which is super subtle and a touch of the rooibos base. It isn’t bad but it isn’t necessarily good either.

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80
drank Blue Star by 52teas
769 tasting notes

I really didn’t know what to expect from this one. At first, I found it to be a little sour and strange. I added some milk and extra sugar, and actually, I kind of like it in its eccentricity. I totally get both the chocolate and the fruitiness, and the combo works. It’s like having a bar of dark chocolate with dried fruit bits in it.

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65

Sister was sent up for more work, and she got a cinnamon roll cheesecake slice for us to split, so I brewed this sampler I received from 52Teas at one point with an order to go with.

Tea has a strong cinnamon aroma, and I do think I am getting a little bit of a creme cheese aroma, albeit subtly. On the flavor, however, I’m only tasting honeybush and cinnamon; the cinnamon has a bit of a spice-bite to it, slightly peppery? Occassionally I get pepper notes in rooibos or honeybush, so that could be it, as well. Also some honey notes.

Wasn’t wild about this one, but enjoying it with company made it worthwhile.

Flavors: Cinnamon, Honey, Pepper, Spices

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 17 OZ / 500 ML

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An overnight cold steep for this one. I used the full bag of tea in my 34 ounce pitcher. Tried measuring but the leaves were so big and twisty that the spoon couldn’t contain their magnificence. It being a white tea, this doesn’t taste like much to me. I don’t taste the watermelon and I’m not familiar enough with papaya to pick up on that flavor, so really to me it’s just lightly flavored tea. My husband, on the other hand, loved it.

Preparation
Iced 8 min or more 12 g 34 OZ / 1005 ML

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Cold Brew!

Did my best to follow the name instructions for this one, but I don’t have ice at home so I had to settle for cold brewing it! It was very good though; super smooth with the appropriate titular “mixed berry” flavour – but skewed a bit towards raspberries. It tasted very familiar to me, and familiar in the sense of another tea I’ve had quite recently but I couldn’t put my finger on what the was specifically. I enjoyed this one a lot though; it was refereshing and flavourful while still tasting natural and not being cloying.

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I placed a pretty big sample order from 52Teas recently and while there were obviously many teas that I had an interest in trying this is definitely the tea that based on name alone I was most excited for. Something about the name just sounds so delicious to me, and the potential/concept had me practically drooling…

Sadly, it’s not what I expected it to be. Mostly it tastes like some type of orange infused wildflower honey, and while that is delicious it’s not exactly what my brain associates with “honey butter cookies” so my initial reaction was to be let down. The orange just felt so out of place to me. Now, I think next time I drink this (with my adjusted expectations) that I’m going to enjoy it a lot but this cup was just more of a write off.

And it’s okay if the tea didn’t totally fit my picture of it – so many other ones from this order have either met what I thought they would be or excited that expectation, so I’m a happy camper either way, haha!

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79
drank Firebolt by 52teas
722 tasting notes

I brewed this right away when it first came in my subscription, and really didn’t care for it. I found it tasted like sticks and slightly of cinnamon. I was almost going to give it away, but decided to try again with the remaining bit I had left. What a difference a month makes! It’s a lovely soft cinnamon, with tasty caramel notes. Very sad it’s actually sold out now. I’m actually finding that many 52Teas blends benefit from a rest of a month or more. I always get so excited when my subscription comes in, but the flavors definitely need time to develop.

CrowKettle

I had the exact same experience with this one! Didn’t like it when I tried it initially. When I revisited it a month later it was good. :)

Maddy Barone

Huh. maybe I should try it again.

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80
drank Earl Grey Cupcake by 52teas
769 tasting notes

This was one of the flavors from the advent calendar that I was the most excited for. I’m not sure it totally accomplished its goal though. It’s sort of like a very mild earl grey creme. But I’m not sure I’d even know it’s early grey if I hadn’t been told. I definitely can taste the extra desserty flavor that’s in there, but it’s more like a macaron than a cupcake. And flavors are often milder in macarons anyway. So if I think of this as being an earl grey macaron, I’d say it does a pretty good job. I’m drinking it with milk, which definitely helps bring out those flavors.

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88
drank Ginger Cola by 52teas
693 tasting notes

I love pop/soda/cola-flavored teas, and not long ago finished off a bag of Gourmet Root Beer that was fantastic. I actually had the coveted rare large 50g bag of this tea, still unopened, from 2017, and as I’m trying to finish off all teas in my collection from that year, it got moved over to become my next focus tea for cold/iced brew.

I tend to prefer black teas brewed warm and then iced, so that is how I prepared this batch — I steeped 7g of tea in 2 cups 205F water for three minutes, strained, and then added an additional 2 cups cold water (and two teaspoons liquid sugar to help add to the pop factor) to the mason jar, let it cool on the counter for about 15 minutes, then put it in the fridge to chill overnight.

Mmm! While I don’t think I like this one quite as much as the Gourmet Root Beer, this is still a very solid pop-flavored tea. I’m getting a typical cola flavor (I think adding the bit of sweetener may have helped bring that to the forefront), followed by candied ginger and lime zest. I’m not able to make out notes from the base as distinctly with this one as I could with the root beer tea, either, but it is very smooth and refreshing! I’m definitely going to enjoy going through my bag.

Flavors: Candy, Citrus, Ginger, Lime, Smooth, Sweet

Preparation
Iced 3 min, 0 sec 7 g 32 OZ / 946 ML

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80

Sipped this last week, while enjoying some tea outside before the weather makes that completely not doable for the next few months…

This is a really beautiful looking Bai Hao Yin Zhen with fat, very downy buds and accents of mixed red berries; it steeps quite gentle with delicate notes of honeysuckle, peach skins, and red fruits – emphasis on the raspberry! Lovely cup enjoyed while befriending butterflies! I know Silver Needle is a more expensive tea base to work with, but I would love to see more of it from 52Teas in the future if at all possible…

Photos: https://www.instagram.com/p/CF5P75rATR5/

(I’m really happy with the second phone! The was some quick timing on my part to snap that one, if I don’t say so myself…)

Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zfldciwnHG8&ab_channel=DavidDeanBurkhart

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drank Amethyst's Gold by 52teas
1093 tasting notes

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84

Thank you very much, AJRimmer!  Always happy to try some rare 52Teas blends!  This one is a unique one — blackberry and jasmine with huge chocolate chips on a green rooibos/ green base.  I wouldn’t think of this combination.  But its creation was also inspired for a marriage proposal, so that is pretty special and its supposed to represent all the continents except Antarctica.  Also very cool.  I made sure to get one huge chocolate chip and almost an entire blackberry in the infuser.  But the green leaves might have been too much, as the flavor is a bit bitey.  I wasn’t tasting jasmine, but there was definitely blackberry mingling with chocolate which was quite good.  Why isn’t chocolate blackberry more of a thing?  The green tea kind of takes over here though. 
Steep #1  // 1 1/2 teaspoons for full mug // 47 minutes after boiling  // 2 minute steep
Steep #2  // 47 minutes after boiling //  2 minute steep
2020 Sipdowns: 79  KipersLilTeashop – Not My Mama’s Merlot

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74

I only had about a teaspoon of this left, but I don’t remember drinking it before now. I must have at some point. Guess it’s been a while ago. This is an older tea as I’m trying to work my way through those that I’ve opened. Honeybush blends always seem to taste the same to me, no matter the other ingredients. I get a kind of nutty honeybush flavor and not much else. This is no different and I could certainty attribute it to the age, but it also matches some of my other experiences with honeybush so it could just be me. I do think perhaps I am picking up on the chocolate, but whether it’s because I knew it’s supposed to be there I couldn’t say. I don’t taste banana, but that could be the age too. I’m enjoying it and I suppose that’s the whole point, so there we go.

Shameless Plug —> A few of us are doing an advent swap! I know I don’t always remember to check the discussion boards regularly, so I thought I’d share here as well in case someone might be interested but hadn’t seen the post. So far, we have people joining in from Europe and the US. Please come join us if you’re interested! I’ll be matching everyone with their swap buddies in the next couple of weeks. :)

https://steepster.com/discuss/42125-2020-tea-advent-swap

Flavors: Chocolate, Nutty

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 8 min or more 1 tsp 6 OZ / 177 ML

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