Starbucks

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Recent Tasting Notes

73

Spent the afternoon at Barnes & Noble yesterday while my car was in the shop. It’s funny, although I read almost exclusively on the Kindle these days, nothing beats the experience of browsing an actual bookstore. I’m aware that bookstores and libraries are an endangered species these days, and try to support them in some way whenever I visit. So I went to the cafe and ordered this unsweetened Teavana iced tea.

As soon as I took a sip, I instantly recognized it as the old Starbucks Tazo Zen Green Tea now rebranded as Teavana. A tea I used to be quite fond of but hadn’t tasted in years. The tea was light amber in color and very heavy on the mint. Not the fresh mint you taste in Moroccan mint tea but the dried variety in your spice jar. There is a bit of lemongrass and citrus but the dominant flavor is mint. When I’m drinking a blend, I like to be able to taste some of the base tea however this felt like I was drinking dried herbs steeped in water.

It’s interesting how your tastes evolve over time. Although i used to love this tea, I struggled to finish the entire cup. It’s palatable and was nostalgic for me, but wouldn’t recommend it unless you really love mint.

Flavors: Herbs, Mint

Preparation
Iced
Mastress Alita

Libraries, an endangered species?! I should hope not, I’ve worked at one now for 15 years…

I also have converted to reading on Kindle, for two reasons: 1) I just don’t have the storage space for physical books, and 2) I have a hard time holding a book while I’m eating or sipping a cup of tea, but can easily lay a Kindle on the table and free up a pinky for page-turning-via-swipe. That said, I agree there is still something “zen” about the “paper smell” of a bookstore/library and the experience of holding a book/physically turning pages; zen, and also nostalgic as a long-time reader/book-lover.

LuckyMe

I hope not either but the funding cuts at some branches and the decline in foot traffic concerns me. As someone who basically grew up in libraries and worked at one for 5 years, I hope they can evolve and remain popular in the digital age.

The convenience of an e-reader can’t be beat. I often read multiple books at one time and I love having them all in one place. Plus I realized I seldom re-read books, so with the exception of a few non-fiction reference books, I’ve been Marie Kondoing my physical book collection. And speaking of libraries, I love using the Libby app to check out e-books and send them directly to my Kindle in seconds!

ashmanra

Our community college library was recently gutted of books and filled with nonsense and computers if the irate traditional instructors were accurate in their descriptions. They were very upset. I love “real” books, but I, too, read a lot on my tablet. If I really love a book, a hardcover is purchased, needless to say, we are short on space now,

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drank Iced Matcha by Starbucks
9779 tasting notes

This was another one of the teas I grabbed while waiting in the Montreal airport – iced because at this point I was overheating from hauling around all my luggage and the stupid hoodie and sweatpants combo I’d decided to wear (I thought it would be comfortable on the plane but it was just hot). I needed something iced and refreshing, stat!

I’ll be honest, I haven’t tried a lot of things from Starbucks and I definitely have this predisposition to not take their tea offerings very seriously – so I was skeptical about how good this would be right off the bat. Even after trying to remind myself to be reasonable and open minded, I was still pretty disappointed. This tasted ridiculously sweet – especially since I’d not asked for any type of sweeteners. Far sweeter than I ever would have expected from just a regular old iced matcha. If that wasn’t enough, it was super clumpy and not well whisked at all.

It worked to help cool me down, but it was not a tasty cup – I ended up drinking it with a killer abricotine pastry from a different place in the airport and I found myself really leaning on the pastry as a crutch to munch on after taking a big swig of the tea. Usually you use a drink to wash down your food, but this was definitely the reverse of that…

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45
drank Defense Wellness by Starbucks
12 tasting notes

A tea for people who love pieces of fruit and a mess of spices. For me, the taste of the white tea was non-existent as the pineapple and other pieces stole the show. For a tea, I place great value on having essentially no or only a single added ingredient as I do enjoy the taste of tea; not the taste of apple, pineapple, or other elements in addition to the tea. There is no way to judge how high grade Starbuck’s white tea is.

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62
drank Matcha Latte by Starbucks
9779 tasting notes

I’m a little surprised that I had to add Starbucks’ Matcha Latte to Steepster’s database…

Anyway, I found myself in the situation earlier in the week where I was out running errands and wanted to grab a tea, but had nothing with me to make one (very out of character) and wasn’t anywhere near a decent tea place. So, I went with Starbucks and just grabbed a matcha latte. How bad could it be?

Honestly, it didn’t taste bad – just vert typically, strong/bold grassy notes. However it had a ghastly mouthfeel. I swear, it felt like I was sipping on powder. Like, how much matcha must have been in that latte for it to feel powdery!? That’s definitely not something I’ve normally experienced with matcha.

annie

I had a kinda similar experience a couple of months ago. I work at a university and was getting so tired and needed even just a little bit of caffeine. so, I walked across the “street” (historically, it was once a street [like several decades ago, my dad remembers the street being there] but the actual street doesn’t exist anymore, it was repaved and there’s places to sit and a huge fountain without any running water bc that fountain was a waste of water AND a breeding ground for mosquitoes, bUT I DIGRESS) and decided to go and get some kind of tea from Starbucks (it’s in a B&N, don’t know if that makes a difference?), also got a matcha latte and it just tasted like sweet/iced milk? I saw that it was kinda green, but didn’t even taste the matcha, but defintely felt the powder. it was confusing and 0/10 would not recommend.

VariaTEA

My Starbucks go-to is an iced chai latte. It’s more sugar and probably not really tea but I enjoyed it.

Lexie Aleah

@Annie- Someone told me that Starbucks inside B&N stores carry Harney and Sons brand of tea. So if you go there again you might ask. (:

Taylor

^true!! I used to work at one. I drank so much Hot Cinnamon Spice during the winter….and their coconut green!

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So, I was pretty pissed at my city’s transit a few nights ago…

I bus basically everywhere; and with the way scheduling works at my job when I’m working a closing shift I finish work about ten minutes after the bus has left – and the buses run once an hour at that time of night, so I have about a 50 minute wait downtown for the next bus. I usually just hang out in the store, and prep things for the next day to save the opener some time in the morning or I’ll watch Youtube Videos on my phone or write tasting notes…

Well, a few nights ago I was waiting for the bus and about forty minutes has passed so I decided to go walk down to my bus stop and wait for the bus. I get downtown, and as usual there’s like twenty or so other people waiting for the bus. This is downtown, and it’s the ONE spot in my city where every single bus route intersects/every bus stops. So it’s a pretty main transit hub. I’m waiting, and I realize it’s been like twenty minutes; the bus should have shown up and left ten minutes ago! So, I call the transit hot line for an ETA on when the bus is going to be arriving – and the hotline says there’s no expected buses for the rest of the evening at my stop number. That’s really fucking weird, right!? So I ask a couple people downtown – hey, should your bus have shown up already? What bus were you waiting for? Shit like that. Everyone is confused – no one’s buses have shown up. As we’re all talking to each other and figuring this shit out, a representative from the transit station walks over to the stops and tells us that all bus routes have been redirected for the rest of the evening because there’s a parade that is going through the main block downtown.

People are pissed – why was there nothing posted at the bus stop to let anyone know? Or, no message on the transit hotline saying that all routes were going to be effected!? Usually when something it up with the routes it’ll say something when you call in. Either “routes will be running on the Sunday schedule due to the holiday” or like “The #1 Broadstreet has been rerouted due to the construction, please use the alternate bus stop located at INSERT STREET ADDRESS HERE” – but there’s been NOTHING posted. All twenty some of us waiting downtown have been here, waiting for the bus totally clueless. It’s BAD communication…

So of course I ask her what the alternate transit stop is for my route – and it’s TWELVE BLOCKS AWAY. In the opposite direction of where I’m trying to go home. So that’s MIGHTY frustrating. Next question; what time is the next bus? She looks down at her clipboard. It’s ten minutes from now. I can’t walk that distance in ten minutes. The next one is an hour later. If there had been something posted downtown I could have walked to the rerouted stop by now, and caught the bus that is about to leave…

So I’m fuming. Just FUMING. But I start walking to the stop, ‘cause what other option do I fucking have!? As I’m walking, I pass the parade – the main street to get to the rerouted stop goes through the parade route. I have to stand there for like ten minutes waiting for a gap in the parade and run across the street. It’s bullshit. Such bullshit.

Finally, I get to the stop. There, posted on the bus sign, is a piece of paper typed out that simply reads “Route #1 Alternate Bus Route”. Are you fucking kidding!? In what way does it make sense to post it THERE and not on the stop that you’re rerouting it from!? Next to the stop is a Starbucks. I still have like twenty minutes to kill until the bus gets here, so I walk in and order the first tea related thing that I see on the menu – a rooibos tea latte.

It tastes like hot milk and sawdust, and more than half the cup is milk foam so I feel a little ripped off that I basically paid for half a cup of sawdust latte. I dowsed it in nutmeg powder, to cover the sawdust taste, and it helped a bit…

I finally got home, almost three hours after my shift had ended for the evening. Fuck you, Regina transit… Fuck you.

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64

I got this without the lemonade (just the white tea). It is a bit weak, some light tea flavour and a touch of apricot (could be peach), but no citrus and it is only barely fruity.

Flavors: Apricot, Tea

Preparation
Iced

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48

I’m slowly working my way through all of these Starbucks teas on the mornings I don’t have time to make my own before I leave the house. This one is iced with lemonade and unsweetened. The whole sip is a sweet and sour strawberry flavor – but then the aftertaste kicks in and it is gnarly. Like intensely artificial prunes. I also don’t get any green tea in any of this. Definitely my least favorite of the three flavors I’ve tried.

Flavors: Artificial, Lemon, Sour, Strawberry, Sweet

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78

This has that distinct “Teavana fruit” element I remember so well from their loose leaf blends. The lemonade is a refreshing addition, and makes the drink sweet enough without adding sweetener (careful – they put it in automatically unless you ask for it without). Not sure if they still have the Passion tea, once my great iced tea true love, but this hits a lot of the notes Passion does. Hibiscus is a strong note here, second only to the peach.

Flavors: Hibiscus, Lemon, Peach

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74

I ordered one of these the other day and holy cow SWEET. Totally forgot that Starbucks adds ungodly amounts of syrup unless you say no. Today I had it unsweetened, but still with the lemonade – much better! The pineapple flavor in this is so strong, I’m actually a little impressed. Really excited to find a “fast food” tea option for the mornings I can’t make my own!

Flavors: Pineapple

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74

So, I did a sort of blasphemous thing and on my way to work, at DAVIDsTEA, I stopped into Starbucks and bought an iced tea…

They just had the sign out for these tea lemonades; and they looked REALLY good! Plus, I’ve been super into tea and lemonade fusions all summer, and everyone knows I’m a sucked for pineapple things on top of that. I was actually kind of impressed by how good it tasted too; really natural and well defined pineapple notes that reminded me of slices of perfectly ripe pineapple, with the juices dribbling down your chin and everything. The black tea tasted noticeably of black tea, and the lemonade didn’t overtake the tea flavours. Really it was quite good!

Only complaint I really have it that it was fairly sweet; I think it would have been fine if I’d ordered a smaller size but I got a larger one and it was just a bit much by the end of the cup. Tasty otherwise, though!

Lexie Aleah

I enjoyed mine a lot as well but order it just as an iced tea without the lemonade. I also chose pineapple.

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68

Not bad! Seriously, a mix of a mocha and chai. Mochachai?

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C

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66

Sweet, refreshing. Matcha adds the perfect hint of “tea” to the classic summer lemonade. Yummy, great recommendation from a friend.

Flavors: Grapefruit, Green Wood, Honey, Lemon, Tea

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100

Amazing tasting, clean and sweet. Extra rich when had with almond milk.

Flavors: Brown Sugar, Honey, Vanilla

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100

I never get tired of this familiar friend!

Preparation
Iced

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100

I love this tea from Starbucks. It is the only thing I order when I visit with a friend every few months.

I was first introduced to the tea in 2008 while attending a friends wedding in Ottawa. I was really thirsty and I am not a coffee drinker. I was not feeling the hot tea that day and told my husband to get me something cold. He came out with the Iced Green Tea Lemonade and I was hooked!!

It is the perfect combination of sweet and sour.

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I’ve had this a couple times now. It’s meh at best. Whatever they are doing when they brew this – it’s wrong. I think they are counting on the sugar syrup to make up for the tea. I order it unsweetened. It is bitingly bitter and puckery astringent. It appears to be white peony – at least mostly. Yet it is devoid of most of the flavor that should be present. I realize I have been spoiled by tasting some of the best white teas available. This might as well be grocery aisle tea. I am not above grocery aisle tea but Starbucks/Teavana is too pricey for meh tea.
I add a packet of Splenda to make it palatable. It is nice and cold at least.

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27

I haven’t been on this site in ages. I would like to say I have drunk tea diligently, but I have always put it off, to the point that I was forced to buy a new batch of hojicha because my first purchase was too stale to brew a proper cup. I’m oversteeping a cup of the new tea now…

I spend a lot of time on campus these days, and sitting in Starbucks is the most convenient since they offer wifi and functional wall outlets. I noticed a new advertisement for an iced white tea. It sounded delicious, and the other iced teas are pretty good. So I ordered a cup of the white tea unsweetened and undiluted… it tasted like watered down black tea.

So I asked if I had the right tea. They assured me that I did. There was nothing light or floral about this tea. I’m not a white tea connoisseur, but I expected something closer to their green tea and ended up with something bitter. :(

I couldn’t discern much from the tea bags they use, and apparently the iced teas are all brewed at the same temperature. Anyway, I was disappointed by the tea and felt like I wasn’t given what I paid for. This only added to the disappointment at finding out the sugar content of their matcha the day before.

Flavors: Astringent, Bitter

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40

Like slurping on sweet, warm seaweed. Not for me.

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65

Grassy. Green. Strong not like an ordinary tea bag brew of green tea. The first time I was introduced to matcha. It was not like anything I had ever tried but it does grow on you. I like it but as far as coffee culture and tea shop cultures go, I prefer the consistency of CBTL. For a home brew, I have my Aracha Matcha from Teas.com.au

Flavors: Grass, Green, Milk, Wet Earth

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75

This wasn’t so bad today? But when you’re ridiculously thirsty after having a sodium-packed meal (ugh), I guess anything will taste pretty good. I normally get the shaken iced tea lemonade with equal parts black, green, and hibiscus but the location I went to only listed this as an option for some reason. Yeah, it was sweeter than what I’m used to since I normally never add any sugar to tea, especially iced/cold brewed, but it wasn’t as sweet as expected.

The green tea base was more prevalent than expected. It had a slightly bitter bite which helped cut the sweetness from the lemonade. I could taste the peach and lemon equally, which was cool beans. Kind of expensive for what it is though, as it was over $4 for a grande. Like please.

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drank Cherry Blossom Frappuccino by Starbucks
1719 tasting notes

Many of you may recall my complaints about Starbucks people not understanding tea. That does not change the fact that I love the green tea frap. So when my wife mentioned the limited time Cherry Blossom Frap, I had to try it. Let me start by saying it was delicious. Next let say my mind is boggled. Why is this called cherry blossom? There is no, zero, zilch, nada, cherry or cherry flavoring in this thing. Instead it is strawberry and cream with white chocolate and matcha sprinkled over the top. It, like most stuff, is overpriced but if you get the chance, give it a try before it is gone. It could be a new favorite for me if it stayed on the menu. It does need a name change.

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