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Recent Tasting Notes
I have tried to like this tea as I got a whole bag of it when I ordered my Tuffy tea steeper. Alas, while I do taste the black tea and maybe a bit of creamy puerh, I get a weird chocolate aftertaste. I don’t mind the cocoa addition to this breakfast blend, just don’t appreciate the artificial taste it leaves in my mouth. In my mind I compare it to the Vanilla SF herb tea that is so very simple vanilla flavor that it doesn’t try to be something else. Bolder breakfast is a chemical aftertaste in a puerh disguise.
Flavors: Artificial, Creamy, Dark Chocolate, Metallic
I got a sample size of this tea when ordering the Tuffy travel steeper (which is quite nice I think, though I haven’t actually used it for travel yet. It does tend to leak tiny leaves in to the remaining brew, but is compact and easily washed so I won’t be too fussy bout floaties in my cup)
As a morning breakfast tea, its just ok. I guess I brew my normal Assams and Yunnans pretty strong, so this doesn’t stand up to my brisk morning cuppa. As an afternoon pick me up, its still just ok. I’m not sure how to describe it as generic black tea with a metalic aftertaste? I guess with a name like Shagadelic I’m expecting a bit more nutty or malty or astringent taste, and its just a bit of a muddled blend.
I wanted to like this. I really did. I love pumpkin spice, and it smells wonderful. It remind me of pumpkin bread, all toasty and warm and full of spices.
Sadly, the pleasant smell is as far as it goes. The base is way too strong and astringent, overpowering all of the spices. You get all the nice pumpkin spice flavor, but pushing it’s way front and center is the bitter, astringent base, so it’s hard to enjoy it. Steeping it for three minutes or less tones down the astringency, but at the expense of the spices as well.
And pumpkin? Forget it, it’s not even there.
Flavors: Astringent, Bitter
This isn’t bad, but it needs more body to it. It is chocolate, and it is mint, but they both feel kind of thin somehow. I might try brewing it extra strong and adding some milk to it, and see where that gets me. There’s no real complexity here, it’s pretty much exactly as advertised, except that with a term like “truffle” I expect a richness that isn’t present. It’s not bad, but not great, either.
Flavors: Chocolate, Mint
This is definitely nice and spicy, but I’d like a bit more actual tea in it. However, I’m so over weakly spiced chais that this was a relative delight! It does come across as a bit thin-bodied and astringent, which is why I think more tea would help. Adding milk helped with the astringency but then dulled the flavor too much.
Flavors: Cinnamon, Ginger, Pepper
Sample Sipdown! (5 | 74)
I think this may have been left over from a past Sips By box? Unsure though…
Anyway, it’s a very robust Chinese green tea. It has strong vegetal and umami notes that rival sencha, as well as a hint of seaweed. But there’s also the harsher mineral and smoke flavors that are also found in gunpowder green tea. And at the end of the sip, a dry apricot note that I often find among Chinese greens.
It’s a bit too heavy for me, as while I do enjoy vegetal green teas, I don’t often love the ones with smokier flavor profiles.
Flavors: Apricot, Astringent, Bitter, Mineral, Seaweed, Smoke, Spinach, Stonefruits, Thick, Umami, Vegetal
Especially delicious with all the coconut clustered at the bottom though truly it was delicious throughout. I persist in wanting to call this Coconut Caribana. Honest sweet coconut delicious
regardless. Perfect for a winter day of leaping over slush rivers at the curbs leftover from the frozen snow/sleet/rain earlier in the day.
I had another travel mug of this that had gone cold overnight, but wow, super nice as a cold tea too. There was a bit of oily film on the surface, but nevermind.
Would welcome this into my cupboard again. A very tasty blend indeed.
And it’s a sip down!
(9 of 2019)
This is my very first pumpkin flavored tea. hehe (Thank you Cameron B.!) and I seriously over-steeped it… Like by an hour. lol
It’s good though. I saw some poor reviews but it tastes like pumpkin to me. I also picked up cinnamon, clove, and nutmeg notes. Typical spices that pumpkin coffee, pumpkin lattes, pumpkin pies… Etc. have in it. Some other spices, maybe pepper… And it’s creamy. I only began trying flavored teas a month or so ago, and I think with flavored teas, I favor those that have “latte” or cream taste. I think if it wasn’t creamy, I wouldn’t have liked it so much. It really added to it.
Note: I ‘m staying away from bitter-astringent talking point since I over-steeped it and I didn’t ding it for that either because of it.
Flavors: Black Pepper, Cinnamon, Cloves, Natural Pumpkin Spice Flavor, Nutmeg, Pumpkin, Spices
It smells like it’s trying for strawberry but didn’t quite capture it. It’s a confusion of strawberry, vanilla, and green tea.Recommended steeping time is 2-3 minutes. Steeped for 2 min with dunking. It tasted…leafy? I could pick up green tea, and sometimes the strawberries, but the flavors were confusing. Tasted 01.2019
Flavors: Berry, Green, Tea, Vanilla
Recommends 3-4 rosebuds in 8 oz of water, steep for 6+ minutes.
Smells like perfume, and tastes…like perfume. I like rose teas, but this was something else.
Very watery. It’s drinkable if I have to, but it’s definitely not something I would choose. Tasted 11-2018.
This tea is described as a “ruby red infusion.” Directions state to steep for 6-7 minutes.
The tea smells minty with sweet undertones. Not quite fruity, but sweet. Tastes good and feels nice on an upset stomach. Not an amazing tea, but pleasant. Disregarding claims about a “flat belly,” it’s a nice tea to soothe the stomach. Tasted 11-2018.
Flavors: Mint, Sweet
Smells like it might be bitter after steeping, but it’s surprisingly not. It tastes like warm, plain black tea. Don’t really taste any orange. Not a lot of flavor, but just enough that you could have it with a meal/other food and not worry about competing flavors. Tasted 11-2018
This was presumably a sample from Sil, since it’s my writing on the sample bag – thanks! This is dang good. Malty, creamy, bold, smooth. Really quite delicious. I did not expect this! I would drink this again in a heartbeat. I did notice that the flavours were better after the tea had cooled, but I drink most of my tea cool anyhow.
I love the balance on this, very nice and spicy sweet without one spice note overriding everything else. It’s strongly spicy but not overwhelming and makes me want to try their other chais. However, there’s a note to both the fragrance and the flavor that I really dislike – I’m assuming it’s the yerba mate, which I know I’ve had before but not much. It’s a flat woody smell that has a somewhat rotten smell/flavor to me. It’s not too strong but I really dislike it. If not for that, I’d drink this tea 24/7, but with that note, I can’t stand it. I think it’s not fair to give it a numerical rating because of that. I would probably give it an 85 without, but like a 10 with.
Flavors: Cinnamon, Wood
It’s good but not all I was hoping for. I love chocolate and I love cherry, although I have yet to find either in a tea form that I adore. This is a nice smooth black base, and the chocolate flavor is present more in the aftertaste to me. The cherry is more of a fragrance than a flavor, but it’s there and it’s cherry as opposed to medicine. I wonder if part of the problem is that I bought this in a gift pack, so it was prepacked and sealed – that may be more likely to be a bit old and I’d bet cherry is somewhat volatile. Just musing, though. All in all, a nice solid and enjoyable cup with a sweetness to it, but not deserving of exclamation points in the name. :)
Flavors: Cherry, Chocolate
For a red rooibos, I like this. There is a creaminess and yet a tartness to it. It definitely has that woody tobacco scent, but that doesn’t carry over into the flavor. I can’t say I love it, because I really am not a red rooibos fan, but I will drink the rest of the small amount that I have.
Flavors: Tart, Tobacco, Wood
Home – 6:00 PM
Another one from The Tea Spot. This must have been the one I placed the order for, as I have a full 100g or so of it. I really love that they use whole allspice in this blend, it’s unusual and it looks gorgeous in the dry leaf.
Yum, this is definitely the best pumpkin spice black tea I’ve had. It actually tastes pumpkin-y and has a slight creaminess to it. The spices meld together very well, but I think I can pick out cinnamon, clove, ginger, and perhaps nutmeg. Looking at the ingredients, there is no nutmeg, so perhaps it’s the allspice I’m tasting. The base tea is a bit brisk – I think this would perhaps be better with a Chinese black tea base. Next time I’ll try to remember to steep this one a little shorter or at a slightly cooler temperature, as it did come out a touch bitter and astringent.
I added a drizzle of maple agave and a splash of soy milk to the rest of the pot after drinking the first cup plain. Delish.
I’m not a great lover or chai or pumpkin spice, but this here is a good ’un.
Flavors: Astringent, Bitter, Cinnamon, Clove, Ginger, Nutmeg, Pumpkin, Spices, Sweet