1148 Tasting Notes

drank Spiced Chai by Bigelow
1148 tasting notes

Better than the Vanilla in my opinion, but I prefer a purer chai. This is where I start to get to be a tea snob.

185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec 8 OZ / 236 ML

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drank Vanilla Chai by Bigelow
1148 tasting notes

Vanilla is a flavor that I have to be in the mood for, and really a hit or miss when it comes to teas for me. It either accents a black, green, or white equally or overpowers more subtle flavors. Here, the flavors never balance out for me and I personally like the Spiced Chai better.

185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec 8 OZ / 236 ML

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Thank heavens I get this with my lunch combos at Michigan State. This is a staple for me since it’s the easiest for me to buy and access. I personally buy this one on discount at my Kroger, and would not buy it full price since I’ve had better jasmine greens, I.E. Jasmine Dragon Pearls. The taste does come fairly close though.

As for the taste and aroma, I’ve had either really great bags with a great smell and buttery body, or I’ve had grass, flower dust from this same brand. I think it really depends on how new the bags are; the younger, the better.

Flavors: Butter, Grass, Green, Jasmine

185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec 8 OZ / 236 ML

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I thoroughly enjoyed this tea and was delighted with how sweet it was. My mom and used to get dragon pearls in Hawaii pretty often, and this one comes really close to matching the memory. This tea was really refreshing, clean, and sweeter than I expected. Numi’s jasmine does have a little bit more body because of the buds, but honestly, it would depend on my mood and the price to choose between the two. I slightly prefer this one because of how clean and fresh it is, which is to be expected given the loose leaf quality. I just wish that this type of tea was more available in the areas that I live in, and that shipping wasn’t a burden. Moving on from that note, I would like to try the superfine version to see if its any better, though it might be a few steps higher. I definitely recommend this tea though to Jasmine lovers, experienced or not.

Flavors: Honeysuckle, Jasmine, Sugarcane

185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec 7 g 8 OZ / 236 ML

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Very floral, green oolong. The milky aspect was there, but a little to subtle for my tastes. Has lasting power, but not one that I would drink over and over. I am not entirely sure that I would recommend this one. I was kinda bored. I love oolongs anyway, and did enjoy the little bit I had.

Flavors: Grass, Milk

195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 15 sec 7 g 8 OZ / 236 ML

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Really, really smooth and sweet. I wanted to try a golden tipped tea, and the only other black that I could compare this to would be a Mokalbari Assam, and maybe a Keemum. Like the Assam, it had a malty full bodied aroma and taste, but with the smooth cocoa notes of a Keemum and its lack of astringency. I drank it on an empty stomach and thankful that it didn’t upset it like the Assam.

If I had the option of drinking higher grade black tea consistently, I would probably pick this one as one of them. The only deterrent would be the simplicity of this tea. The taste and smell are certainly sophisticated, but I personally was expecting a little bit more flavor. A stronger Keemum, Ailoshan, or maybe Fujian black might be more preferred because of their more distinct cocoa.

Altogether, probably best for someone who likes black teas and wants to try something smoother and different. Gotta drink them all!

Flavors: Caramel, Carrot, Cocoa, Malt, Sweet

185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 g 7 OZ / 207 ML

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I was able to get 9 full bodied steeps from one sample in a western style. For being a white tea, it endured. The jasmine taste and smell balanced perfectly with the smooth, almost silky texture of the silver needle itself. My only set back was the fact that I’ve had very similar tasting flowering teas to this one for cheaper. Nevertheless, it reminded me of the tea that I used to drink a lot growing up in Hawaii. The flavor was almost the same, and honestly, the taste was best by the fourth steep and kept on getting smoother and smoother save the very last two steeps.

This is my first tea from Teavivre, and I got it pretty promptly considering the distance from China to Michigan. All the teas in the sampler I got were fairly fresh, and out of all of them, this one is probably my favorite. The service was great, and I am so glad I got free shipping. If it weren’t for the sale, though, I am not sure if I would have gone out of my way to get this one.

You can say that I was very satisfied, but not jumping up and down for it. I would introduce someone new to tea using this one, and maybe drink it with my more tea obsessed friends if they like jasmine.

Flavors: Cream, Herbaceous, Honey, Jasmine, Sweet

185 °F / 85 °C 2 min, 45 sec 5 g 8 OZ / 236 ML

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Wow…talk about a pick me up. I got it as a gift from a friend up in college, and the saffron is what I needed to get through the day and the tea kept me awake. This one is really fruity, and pretty great for a bagged tea. The green tea could either be a Sencha or a Dragonwell and could definitely be tasted. The saffron adds another warm, sweet layer with the mango bringing the green tea and this spice together. I enjoyed it with or without honey as sweetener, though I used honey more often when I drank this to treat my cold. I probably will buy it again this coming semester. Probably good for people newer to teas or intermediate to them.

Flavors: Fruity, Grass, Green, Mango, Saffron, Sweet

185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec 8 OZ / 236 ML

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I tried this one at a standard Barnes and Noble Starbucks, and I was pleasantly surprised with it. Other reviews of this one were not stellar, but I can say that compared to the Teavana and Tazo lines owned by Starbucks, this Oolong tea was way better than any of their other teas. This Oolong was definitely and An Xi variety. Green, nutty crispness dominated the cup over the pomegranate which for me, was a relief. The flavoring does add a slight sweet kick which is pretty nice, and the leaves aren’t too bad looking.

If I were limited to my choice of teas, this would be a descent go to for me since its a greener oolong. However, this one really loses out on oolong’s full complexity and I personally would save my money for something to savor. Considering that I was able to drink this at a Starbucks, I can say it was worth it for that slightly better drink. I would recommend this maybe to a friend, yet I wouldn’t try to sell them on it.

Flavors: Fruity, Grass, Green, Walnut

185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 45 sec 12 OZ / 354 ML

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This was the first Oolong that I have ever tried, and probably my first stone for comparison. The name sold me, and my taste buds freaked out when I first tried it. Was it a green tea? Black tea? Was I smelling a plumeria, or an orchid? And that roasted smell, that taste. What-is-this? From there on, it became one of my favorite teas.

Pretentious story line aside, this is a good clean tea with staying power. It’s lighter with a paradoxical full body, smelling and tasting like a floral forest. I’ll definitely have to try this one again, and do another review to see if the experience is different. I’d say it’s probably for some one who likes Oolongs and green teas, maybe for a newbie.

Flavors: Creamy, Flowers, Green, Roasted, Sweet, Wood

195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 15 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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First Off, Current Targets:
Taiwan Sourcing Luxurious Jade Sampler (FRICKIN’ PRICEY)
Taiwan Sourcing Longhan Nectar Red Oolong

The best Alishan and or Lishan for the best price
The best Jade Oolong Period.
The best Dancong Period.

Nepal Jun Chiyabari ‘Himalayan Tippy’ Black Tea
Lishan (I’m always stocking up on it)

My wish list is fairly accurate though it is broad.

Current Favorites:
Shang Tea/Phoenix Tea:
Tangerine Blossom

Golden Tea Leaf Company:
Iris Orchid Dancong Oolong
Dung Ting Oolong (green)
Ali Mountain Oolong

Taiwan Amber GABA Oolong
Vietnam Red Buffalo Oolong
China Yunnan Pure Bud Golden Snail Black Tea
Taiwan Lishan Oolong
Kenya ‘Rhino’ Premium White Tea

Hugo Tea: Vanilla Black Chai

Liquid Proust Teas:
French Toast Dianhong

Floating Leaves Tea:

Beautiful Taiwan Tea Co.:
“Old Style” Dong Ding


I am an MSU graduate about to become a high school social studies and history teacher. I formerly minored in anthropology, and I love Egyptian and classical history. I love to read, write, draw, paint, sculpt, fence(with a sword), workout, relax, and drink a cuppa tea…or twenty.

I’ve been drinking green and black teas ever since I was little living in Hawaii with a dominant Eastern Asian influence. I’ve come a long way since I began on steepster and now drink most teas gong fu, especially oolong. Any tea that is naturally creamy, fruity, or sweet without a lot of added flavoring ranks as a must have for me. I also love black teas and dark oolongs with the elusive “cocoa” note. My favorites are lighter Earl Greys, some white teas like What-Cha’s Kenyan offerings, most Hong-Cha’s, darker Darjeelings, almost anything from Nepal, Green Shan Lin Xi’s, and Greener Dong Dings. I’m in the process of trying Alishan’s. I also tend to really enjoy Yunnan Black or Red teas and white teas. I’m pickier with other teas like chamomile, green teas, and Masalas among several.

I used to give ratings, but now I only rate teas that have a strong impression on me. If I really like it, I’ll write it down.

I’ll enjoy a tea almost no matter what, even if the purpose is more medicinal, for it is my truest vice and addiction.


Michigan, USA

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