Steven Smith Teamaker

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Popular Teaware from Steven Smith Teamaker

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Recent Tasting Notes

Early in my tea journey I didn’t like Breakfast Blends, but I am warming to them now.
This is fairly nice. Strong, but not so strong that it affects the taste. Its just the sort of gentle hand I like to ease me into a morning.
I rarely have tea with milk or sugar in it, but i think it would taste really nice with this tea. Maybe I’ll have to try it.

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70

This needs a short steep so it doesn’t get too murky. It’s not the best mint, just sort of average. Cold and sweetened, it’s enjoyable, but not the freshest or most delicious. I still wouldn’t turn down a cup!

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69

Another from the TTB. I taste a lot of different herbal ingredients here. The strongest one is definitely mint, but I sense something savory too – maybe the pepper. Everything combines in an okay way, though it’s not great. There’s just a lot going on. It’s best cold. There’s something that lingers – maybe the licorice and/or echinacea.

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This one continues to be good. The blend borders on grassy from the other green tea bases, so I am following my two to three minute rule with it. I’m still not sure what to rate it. Flavoring and combo of flavors is in the 90s because it highlights what I like about Green teas. None of the flowers clash, and it remains heady and fruity without cloy. I’m going to have to pick it apart some time.

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I only have 5 bags left. My mom, girlfriend and I have gone through this one fast. Ordered more impulsively, but it’s officially a top tea from Steven Smith.

Paired incredibly well with a peach bourbon garlic butter trout I broiled.

eastkyteaguy

It has long been my opinion that Steven Smith Teamaker handles jasmine teas exceptionally well.

Daylon R Thomas

I almost bulk ordered their standard jasmine from a barista wholesaler.

Daylon R Thomas

The odd thing is that the jasmine is not the most forward of the flavors. It serves more as a body for the nectarine flavor.

Leafhopper

Sounds like a great pairing! I can’t remember when I last had a jasmine tea and may have to rectify that.

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I didn’t expect this one to be a hit. I expected good and unique. Instead, it’s a tea on the levels of good as Rose City Genmaicha. The smell is incredible, fruity and floral with some household freshening spice hints. Having cardamom and ginger with a jasmine tea would probably clash badly, but the flavoring, rose, and osmanthus smooth this out. I actually didn’t really taste the jasmine that much. First brew is primarily jasmine, nectarine, and rose. As it cools, the ginger is a little more prominent with the osmanthus. Second steep was more cardamom, but it’s not dominating. It enhances the rose and nectarine in a skittles like effect. Got it to the third cup, more ginger. Good hot or cooled way down.

So yeah, in short, it tastes like skittles. Taste the rainbow this spring. I will likely down this soon.

Flavors: Candy, Cardamom, Floral, Ginger, Green, Jasmine, Nectar, Nectarine, Osmanthus, Rose, Smooth, Sweet

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Backlog and current log. Hot tumbler brew.

Decent, went lighter on the leaf around 3-4 grams ish. Butter, herbs, lilac after about 5 minutes. More florals and green flavors later, edging on pineapple skin. The fruit flavors did not develop until about 10 minutes in. I think it was a little too hot. I swear the metal raised the temperature in the tumbler, but it gote sweeter as it sat. I’m re-brewing the leftover leaves in a regular kyusu since they are open and smell fresh and fruity. I hope it gets something good…

And yes. WAY fruitier notes. Still soft green oolong, but clear lilac pineapple, and a little bit of creamy mango in texture. Not super forward, though more what I like. Maybe I should do longer steeps western with less grams?

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Surprise-it’s been more flavorful as a coldbrew. I stuck some, maybe 3-4 grams or more in my bamboo tumbler and let it sit and steep as I worked today. First time after about an hour it was creamier and sweeter than when I had it hot. It had the Qin XIn texture and pineapple skin floral flavor, but the mouthfeel was fuller cold. Second time I refilled my bottle, and more cream. It was subdued, but then after about 10ish minutes, diffused faster than the first one. Lilac was prominent in a soft green edamame-ish body, and then a sweeter finish sneaking up. The drips of remaining water at the bottom soaked more juices from the tea basket/strainer, and were heavy with pineapple taste and acidity, almost being a nice ripe flavor. I decided for another go.

After an hour steeping…not much. Darn. Either way, there’s improvements. I will have to do another tumbler test with the tea but with less leaf and cooler than 185 F water to see how it does.

Flavors: Cream, Floral, Green Melons, Pineapple, Snow Peas, Soft, Soybean

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Surprisingly pleasant note: the tea reeaally works tumbler style. The water was a little too hot to drink, so I actually poured what I had in another cup. Same notes, but balanced and evenly layered. Beginning lilac, pineapple, cream, and finishing the typical qin xin grass milk taste. I did it again, let it sit well over 5 minutes, cooled down and….not astringent. Or bland. OR BITTER. Just smooth pineapple, creamy milk in the roof of the mouth, grass and fuller texture. I am very happy with it so far. It’s not super complex or as dramatic as my other Qin Xins, but we’ll see how this tea does in other methods.

Flavors: Cream, Floral, Grass, Lemongrass, Milk, Pineapple

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I’ve wanted to try this one since Oolong Owl posted about a few years ago either at a World Tea Expo or a West Coast One. It’s also a floral fruity pineapple kind of oolong, so up my alley. I originally didn’t buy it as a limited tea because they were charging close to $40 for two oz originally, maybe less, but too much for something I could get cheaper. This time, I got it at about $27 for 3.5 oz and a tin with a new impressive seasonal release.

I gong fu’d it, and had trouble with the first steeps. 10, 20, 20, 10, 15,20, 25, 45, 55, 65 were the brews with 7 grams. Initial 10 sec rinse was creamy, milky, floral, and lilac leaning, though extremely soft like a Jin Xuan. Second was much the same, but third was floral, bordering on bitter, but again soft. Pineapple crept in profile, then bloomed in steep four making the tea more fruity and Qin Xin like as rebrewed it.

I am impressed with what the tea was able to do and has its Taiwanese flavor, but more of a Chinese tea’s texture. Since I had to coax the leaves, it was not quite as forward as I hoped. I don’t think I’ll have trouble figuring it out. I’m not sure if I’d get a full 3.5 oz again, but I won’t mind having it around nor a tin I can store my other oolongs in.

Flavors: Cream, Creamy, Grass, Green, Lilac, Pineapple, Soft

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62

Mastress Alita’s Monthly Sipdown Challenge: a tea that includes a color in its name
Sipdown 1/37

This is okay. Really, really strong lavender with just a touch of fruitiness against the black base.

Flavors: Black Currant, Lavender

getanzt

Hi there! I was wondering if you might be interested in swapping teas? There are several I am interested in from your cupboard and I see you have participated in past tea swaps so I wanted to see if you might be interested. Please feel free to send me a message if you are. :)

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Mastress Alita’s Monthly Sipdown Challenge: a sleepytime tea

Sipdown 4/29

Not really sure why I bought this…because this isn’t really something I would drink. It basically tastes like chamomile with a tiny bit of lemon myrtle. Not getting any of the floral qualities of the rose or linden flowers. Meh.

Flavors: Chamomile

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80

Mastress Alita’s Sipdown Challenge January 2022: A Tea with Bean Notes

Another tea bag unearthed during the Great Congestion. I consider this quite the find and don’t know where it could’ve possibly come from. Back when I first started venturing more into tea I really wanted to try this tea company, and this tea in particular. Don’t ask me why. I don’t believe they ship to Canada, however.

Before steeping, it was not promising – a generously filled satchet with some brown looking, sour smelling, long-leafed tea. How old is this thing? Add water and the leaf remembers it’s green and gives off a wonderful lemon-hued butter veggie aroma. To taste, it has notes found in other Chinese green and white teas (ie – Silver Needle, Dragon Well): lemon, sesame, green beans, spinach (you know how spinach has that milky calcium quality?), melon. It’s smooth, nearing cream and butter.

Yeah, this is a treasure in a tea bag.

Flavors: Bamboo, Butter, Cream, Floral, Grass, Green Beans, Lemon, Melon, Nutty, Peas, Sesame, Smooth, Spinach, Sweet, Vegetal

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 2 min, 0 sec 12 OZ / 354 ML
Evol Ving Ness

This tea company has also been on my wanted list. Maybe one day.

CrowKettle

I made a mock order and they do ship to Canada – for $20.

I think I may wait to visit Portland directly (or for a particularly weak-willed evening).

Mastress Alita

I went to Portland in 2019 for the PDX Tea Fest and visited one of their local stores while there. I was a bit sad that even visiting them directly, other than ordering just a cup of tea, I still couldn’t get a bag of loose leaf smaller than 4 oz (which is just too big for me).

Daylon R Thomas

They have some unique blends like Rose City Genmaicha and a good Jasmine, but I think they are a bit overpriced. The company has become especially steep with their limited edition blends, and there are some quality loose leaf that you can get elsewhere for cheaper.

CrowKettle

The lack of size selection and generally high prices is further exacerbated on my end by the exchange rate and shipping costs.

The Rose City Genmaicha and Ice Cream Oolong are big temptations for me but, even with a 10% coupon and this delicious mystery sample, I think I’ll pass for the time being (to be revisited at a time when the tea cupboard is smaller and bank account is fuller).

Evol Ving Ness

All of those factors come out to a firm no. At least for now.

Kittenna

Ice cream oolong?!

Daylon R Thomas

They call it Ice Cream Royale. The original blend had jasmine with Jin Xuan, salt, a lot of vanilla, sugar, and some amaretto. The modern one uses chamomile. It’s a brilliant blend, but they charge close to $2 or more a sachet, which is insane.

Evol Ving Ness

That one sounds tantalizing, but with all the prohibitive factors, especially for us in Canada, still a firm no.

CrowKettle

If I ever cave and order online or pick some up while visiting Portland I’ll buy 4oz and share it. XD

Evol Ving Ness

I adore you for even the thought of it. It doesn’t actually have to happen. :)

Kittenna

Ugh, so tempting! One day. If I could get one sachet, I’d be cool with paying $2 or so for it. I mean, I’ve paid nearly $7 for drinks from Starbucks before!

Evol Ving Ness

Thank you, Kittena, for bringing logic to the tea math.

CrowKettle

Yeah, it’s just within the realm of what I’m willing to pay for tea. A coupon would sweeten the deal, but I don’t want to pay shipping on top of it if possible (US free shipping threshold is a low $39 so if I can arrange a border PO in WA that would be fine).

I don’t mind buying 3.5oz – 4oz as either as long as my cupboard is emptier and I have possible people to share it with (stale tea is sad tea). Right now my cupboard is full from DF’s 4oz Christmas splurge, and some reaaally old teas so I’m looking at spring lol.

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83

Another Christmas Giftie to try.

I have to say I really like this one; which is good because I was given a large box of it! I taste rose, grapefruit, and chamomile. I think I might add this to the list to purchase when they release the 2022 batch.

Flavors: Chamomile, Grapefruit, Rose

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 5 min, 0 sec

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88

After a hectic Christmas celebration, I thought this would be a “good morning” tea. A friend had dropped off a tea gift bag in the middle of the night including this one. She loves this brand of tea and introduced them to me.

The tea bag is huge and I’ll remember that for my next cup and brew a pot instead. Enjoyed while watching children decide which Xmas gift to break open for the day.

A good, smooth, and strong black tea. Might be a new favorite black tea for me.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 4 min, 30 sec
gmathis

I remember liking this one. We don’t have many Steven Smith retail options around here, so I haven’t seen it on shelves in ages.

Mastress Alita

I’m a fan of SST. This one is one of my favorite “breakfast” style teas. I also love their Earl Grey, which has currant notes to me.

Jen vB

The same friend gifted me some Earl Grey! Can’t wait to try it tomorrow!

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Last week it was almost summer weather, but we’ve had a cold snap in the last few days, and I could not be happier.
I’ve pulled out this to sip down, as it feels more like a “cold weather” tea to me, so it feels right.
Ah, to be snuggled with a cup of tea. My happiest of happy places.

gmathis

Sounds like we’ve swapped weather patterns. We’ve gone from cold/stormy/rainy to BAM! Heat! This week, I’m grabbing anything that will ice down in my office, whose HVAC thermostat is set to “Russian roulette.” This week, it’s been a sauna.

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Oh, it’s been a crazy few weeks. I’ve been in a one night only play, I’ve held down my office during the busiest season of the year, my boss has taken a week long vacation immedietly after, and now, his MIL has covid, so what this week will look like yet.
Ooof. Tea to the rescue?
I hope she’s ok, and my boss is ok, and his small child is ok.
Eeeesh.

gmathis

I admire your fortitude! KPO! (Which, as I understand it, was short for keep plodding on and was how Winston Churchill bucked up his clerical staff in times of trouble.)

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Oh its been such a long week, full of so many things! And a lot of those things were highly irritating people.
We are going to go to our tasty happy place, in a warm cup of tea.
Yum. May it power me through the end of this tricky week.

Kittenna

Hope you made it through the rest of the day!

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I over steeped this one just a touch today, so it’s got a haunting bitter note.
Why do I feel as if today will be Monday 2.0?
Ugh.

Martin Bednář

Today certainly is Monday 2.0… sorry!

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I’ve had a few cups of this so far, and it is a very delicate lavender tea. This is very good, as sometimes lavender blends can taste of soap, but this one does not.
This one tastes more like currant tea, with a hint of lavender, and I really like that!

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81

Starting to get in the holiday spirit a bit early with some holiday crafting. I pulled this sample out of my shelf to take a cup with me to paint night. I really enjoyed this. Licorice is not a flavor I gravitate towards but it blended really well. I definitely would put this one on my buy again list.

Preparation
5 min, 30 sec

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84

I swear I wrote a note on this one the year before last. Anyway, Backlog, I’m glad it’s on the site. I contemplated on toxically “therapy buying” some for the incoming cold weather in Michigan. I liked this one a lot, but didn’t absolutely need it. I did finish this one quickly and a part of me wish I re-orderd it for the last order I did because it’s one of my top 6 steven smith blends.

The spices are really well balanced in warming, and I always got a nutty graham cracker vibe from it. The cocoa nibs comes in hints after the spices, but I remember the ginger and cinnamon being pretty noticeable. I think there needs to be more hojicha blends period because it works well to add nutty and more caramelized notes to a tea if it’s not overcooked, and it’s one of the few green teas that I’ll drink nearly any season, but especially in winter. Price is the only gripe.

Flavors: Brown Sugar, Caramel, Cinnamon, Cocoa, Ginger, Graham Cracker, Spices, Toast

Mastress Alita

I too find that houjicha is far, far too under-utilized in tea blends.

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I’ve been trying to find a place to get a single sachet of this company’s jasmine tea to give to a friend. I remembered them mentioning this coffee shop they loved that I’d never heard of. I figured it was worth a try to look up what tea they carry and what do you know? They serve just what I was looking for. Not only that but they had this tea!! This one has been on my to try list for quite a while. I’ve been to many places that serve Steven Smith tea but they never served this one.

This one isn’t bad it’s got a lot going on and is an interesting combination of flavors and ingredients. There’s a strong taste of roasted rice but alongside that is a slightly citrusy bergamot flavor and a hint of rose. I’m not sure how I feel about the bergamot, rose, and toasted rice all in one tea though. I like that this blend is a Portland-inspired one in name as well.
I don’t think I’d need to purchase this one since the bergamot rice combo isn’t one I’d often reach for vs. a classic genmaicha. I need to try this one again steeped at a lower temperature as they used boiling water. Perhaps it would be a bit more balanced steeped at a lower temp. Next time I’d take the sachet home.

Flavors: Bergamot, Citrusy, Grass, Rose, Toasted Rice

Mastress Alita

This is one of my SST favorites.

Lexie Aleah

I need to venture out and visit the store one of these days!

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