15 Tasting Notes
Sampled Duck Dinah’s blend this evening. A very interesting tea! One would think that chamomile and lemongrass combined with gunpowder green and cinnamon might be at odds in a tea — kinda like having someone gently rub your temples while kicking you in the butt! Somehow it works, though.
Very little dry scent, but there was much to taste. Each sip seemed to highlight one of the flavors in turn, which tells me that this is a near-perfect blending of ingredients. Don’t let the chamomile fool you; when it says “contains caffeine” they’re not kidding. It’s 4 a.m. and I’m still wide awake. I’m calm, though — very calm.
Looking forward to a second steep.
I received a small sample of this tea, and its intense scent hit me as soon as I opened the mailer. It would make a lovely potpourri indeed! To me it has a heady “incense” quality that I love but seldom find in a tea, other than certain chais. Very sweet; very orange. Even now, several days later, the scent is still strong in the empty cellophane packaging.
On brewing, a lot of the intensity dissipated, but the scent and flavor were still very nice and became more pronounced as the tea cooled. I added a packet of Truvia, as I do to most of my flavored teas, which helped to bring out the sweetness.
All in all, a yummy tea! Thank you, Columbia Kate’s, for the sample. Thinking about ordering more of this.
Overall impression: A delicious pu-erh with just the right amount of mango flavor to make it special.
Packaging: Zip-lock foil pack with a clear front; steeping instructions on label
Dry scent: delicately fruity; can easily recognize mango
Cup size: I light-leafed this, as is my wont, but 2 tsp. in my 14 oz cafe cup brewed a LOT of tea!
1st steep: 2 min (approx). I did not rinse this but the brew was very clear; mango scent more delicate, but still definitely there; lovely amber color; taste smooth with a creamy mouthfeel. (Yes, I’m actually learning to use that word!) I kept thinking I tasted the marigold petals as well, giving it a slightly vegetal taste and added complexity. I like to try flavored teas with and without sweetener, but had my first mug of this one half consumed before I could bring myself to add anything to it. Truvia sweetened the brew, but did not really add anything to it as it’s fine on its own.
2nd steep: Color still dark amber. Mango scent and taste somewhat reduced, but still a very nice pu-erh tea. Very satisfying, even when I left about 8 oz. in my cup overnight and finished it cold in the morning — the mango is even more pronounced in the cooled tea.
Add’l steeps: 3rd steep was still a nice dark amber but quite weak (still nice enough to drink, though!), and I retired the spent leaves to my houseplants. Still, 42 oz. from 2 tsp. of tea is impressive.
Would I buy this again? Yes
I’m not too good at writing these tasting notes, as I find myself rather intimidated by everyone else’s tea erudition — so I guess I’ll just take the redneck route…
This was yummy-smelling right out of the package, if a bit strongly of black tea — which, of course, is what it is. (The art alone on those packages is drool-inducing!) Unsweetened the tea was okay; I could definitely taste the coconut — but with a li’l bit of Coffee-Mate French Vanilla it was truly dessert.
I only used a heaping teaspoon for a 12-oz. cup and the second steep was, as expected, rather light. Next time I’ll use more tea. I’m still getting the hang of the steep time vs. amount of leaf thing.
Being only familiar with matcha powder (Teavana) for my lattes I was a bit hesitant to try anything else, but finding good prices on SA’s sencha, genmaicha and hojicha powders I figured it was worth the risk. I found the sencha powder darker and more bitter than my matcha but am relieved to discover that it tastes just fine in my lattes (tea powder, skim milk, sugar-free Torani syrup). The taste is different, but just as good. (I’m tempted to say “almost as good”, but that may well be because I’m so used to the taste of the matcha.) Obviously a slightly coarser grind than what I’m used to, as it doesn’t clump in the sifter and exhibits a bit of a chalky(?) feel in the mouth towards the bottom of the cup. I don’t know how good this might be prepared traditionally, but in a sweetened latte it’s definitely acceptable.
I was all set to break free from Teavana — and then I tried this. Wonderful bouquet, although I don’t notice much sage. The orange, pineapple and lavender are pronounced, though, and absolutely delicious together. I’m usually not much for herbals, but the Teavana shop at the mall ensnared me with their sugar-laden brew. Now, at home and with a minimum of sweetening, this tisane is even better. (I think all that sugar actually masked most of the flavor.) Drinking it hot, but I would assume this would also be great iced.