69 Tasting Notes
Hello, Friday Afternoon Delicious Tea!
This is not my first time to the Dulce & Banana dance, but I’m going to try it just with milk today; no sugar.
I usually add the sugar and milk BEFORE I steep, because I’m crazy-lazy and it saves me from having to stir it.
But today I steeped it with nothing in there and BOY, can you ever smell the chamomile! Milk really deadens that smell, but now that I’ve smelled it, it pops a lot more. It reminds me of the enormous patch of chamomile growing in my parents’ parking pad. Gravel + chamomile + driving over the gravel & chamomile = such a sense memory!
This tea adds a beautiful banana sweetness to the smell, though. It makes me think of little banana cakes and afternoon tea as a little girl. (I was allowed to have chamomile because it’s herbal.)
The taste is really lovely, too. Reminds me of afternoon sun. It has that unfortunate chamomile side-effect, though, of stimulating the parts of my tongue that make me turn the corners of my mouth down. It isn’t the flavour itself, it’s just like pursing your lips when you taste something sour. But other than making me LOOK sad, this is a lovely, happy tea.
Something I want to share with my little girl with some freshly made tiny banana cakes in the afternoon.
The smell coming off this tea is exactly what I wanted this morning: deep and earthy; lush, shaded vegetation; like a summer afternoon spent deep in the woods, away from the sun, surrounded by slowly trundling beetles and small frogs trying to keep wet and cool.
This promises to be a lovely departure from the flavoured teas in which I’ve been indulging of late.
Drinking this one naked and by the book.
Now UNFORTUNATELY my husband came in rocking the sexy-man cologne, so my nose and mouth are more full of Burbury Brit than Japanese Sencha, but we’ll give it a whack regardless.
Mmmm… It isn’t as brothy as I wanted it to be, but it is plum delightful regardless. The mouthfeel is wholesome and satisfying, although it has an odd astringency in the aftertaste.
This could replace my current favourite for straight green tea, but I’ll have to experiment! (Oh, nuts, amiright?) For now, I can see brewing myself a second cup of this this afternoon for sure!
The dry tea smells like you should have to pluck it out of a lucite container with provided little plastic tongs and pay five cents a piece for it. (That is to say, like penny candy.) There’s a specific piece of candy that I’m thinking of, and I have no idea what it’s called. It’s a take on the orange-and-cream as well. It’s like a long round tube of orange with a chewy white middle. Whatever, it’s awesome. And this tea smells awesome.
I tried a tepid little sample at David’s when I went to get their spring teas, but I’m not counting that as actually trying it. That’s not the same way I’d do it at home.
I’m steeping it a little heavy, but I’m also steeping it in a large cup.
I’d forgotten it was a green tea or I would have tried it earlier for a late-night kick in the pants. It has an almost distractingly buttery smell (distracting me from work, not from enjoying the tea.) Like candy again; those buttered popcorn Jelly Belly beans. Mmm…
Seriously, though, the tea itself smells like a baked treat. Maybe a mini loaf with poppy seeds in it? Perhaps a drizzle of white chocolate over top?
Mmm, there are those oily drops again. I’m thinking they must be from the white chocolate. The tea smells so much nicer in my cup than it did at David’s. It was tasty at David’s, but the tiny little sample didn’t do the smell justice. I want to pour this tea over my head and massage it into my skin.
I’m finding it difficult to wrap my head around it being a green tea. I’m not geting any of the usual vegetable brothiness behind all the orange treatiness.
Ooooooh, nice! The green is 100% in the taste. It’s almost more of in the way it hits your mouth than the way I’d process it as a flavour. Instead of having the chewy baked-goods sweetness I expected in this tea, it ran its green tea farm equipment over my tongue and across the roof of my mouth. Absolutely not in a bad way, but not in a way I anticipated when I invited this tea in for a slurp.
It detracts from a little bit of the what-a-treatness of this tea, but I’ve been lured into the treat tea trap before (with Read My Lips) and I’ve managed to over-do it to the point where I had to put aside my bag of tea leaves for months at a time. (I still haven’t gone back to Read My Lips. I don’t know how far back that was.)
This is a good dessert tea to be sure, but I can also see drinking it first thing in the morning sun, sitting in the kitchen in my jammies, reading a Martha Stewart magazine or my politics-heavy Twitter feed, waiting for my daughter to wake up.
A nice tea experience to be sure.
The dry tea smells alternately limey and coconutty. They’re both excellent smells, but together they’re almost off-putting. Like they’d taste like orange and toothpaste or milk and mustard.
When it steeps, the tea is a fairly “ordinary” black tea colour. I almost never drink black teas without milk, but the lime has me trying this one as naked as the day it was born. There’s a delightful skiff of oil drops on the top of the liquid. Presumably from lime oil? I love oily teas, so that makes me happy.
The lime in the steeped tea almost smells minty. Again, almost off-putting. But I needs me some black tea, so let’s do this!
ZINGY! I LOVE the lime. I may put lime in all of my black teas from now on. Full disclosure: I just ate two pieces of raisin toast, but I can’t taste the coconut at all at first. Just lime and black tea. The SMELL is there for sure, but it’s hiding behind the lime kind of like a fearful pre-schooler hides behind his mom. (Also, I can’t slurp/aerate the tea as much as I’d like to/usually do because my husband is watching television and it sounds ultra-rude.)
Nope. Even after I let it cool off a bit and let it sit in my mouth a LOT, it’s all lime, lime, lime.
This isn’t a complaint per se, because the lime is just so lovely, but I wish I could taste coconut as well. Me likey da lime in da coconut. (See what I did there?)
The tea itself looks like a snack, but of all of the new teas in David’s Tea’s spring line-up, this is the one that made me go “Mmm” when I smelled it. It smells like hubba bubba bubble gum and makes me want to go put on boots and play in puddles. (Maybe this really IS the fountain of youth!)
When it’s steeping, it’s turning a very pale almost dusty pink colour and smells no less amazing. I want to buy fabric this colour and make accent pillows and drapes for my daughter’s new bedroom. I also want her room to smell this good and sunshiney. It goes well with her illustrated print reading, “Let’s Have Fun Today!”
Well, Goji Pop*, let’s do this.
Let’s have fun, naked-style**.
OOoooOOooooh. Mellow! The melon really pops out, and the sweetness hits the roof of my mouth like a delicious summertime popcicle treat. The “pop” in Goji Pop, perhaps! I feel like I’m sitting in the grass, shaded in a mottled pattern by our enormous weeping birch. I’m barefoot, freshly un-flip-flopped and enjoying iced treats with my daughter after we chased down an ice cream truck. There’s enough of a breeze to keep the bugs off, but it wouldn’t matter anyway because it’s such a beautiful day.
Back to the tea: I can’t get over how delicious it is. It’s exactly what I had wanted Luscious Watermelon to taste like last summer. I’m going to brew a batch of this double-strong and make popcicles out of it. Or at least try it iced. I’m very lazy after all.
Thank you, David’s Tea, for reminding me that spring will happen, even though there’s a meter and a half of snow in my back yard and it’s -12.
*I’m currently deep into the last season of Big Love. The third sister wife is selling a product called Goji Juice. It’s more or less a multi-level marketing scam, but whatever. This last season is epic and extraordinarily tragic for television. Anyway, every time I hear Goji, I’m overcome with an unobstructed sadness. Luckily, the smell of Goji (sad) Pop surmounts that sadness and makes the sun come out.
**You wish. Naked as in no milk or sugar, of course.
Full disclosure: this is my third cup of green tea already today. Last night was a little rough, so I’ve been self-medicating. 1) Detox (Organic) from David’s Tea; 2) Electric Lemon from David’s Tea; 3) North African Mint from David’s Tea.
You know… this one.
I’m on a bit of a no-milk teas kick (I have almost a need to cloud my black teas and most tisanes and rooibos, so that leaves the earthy greens in my arsenal.) I did slip some honey in, though, because the throat, she’s not doing so good these days.
I don’t know what I think about the smell of the dry tea. I certainly don’t get a “mint” smell from it, like I love and am used to, but it has a firmly enigmatic and foreign sense to it.
Steeped it in my infuriatingly pine-green-interiored mug (but it’s such a great size and shape that I can’t stop using it), so I can’t tell if it has any colour to it. I suspect it has darkness, but can’t (am too lazy) to confirm.
Oh, THERE that mintiness is! It’s hidden in the warmth of steeping! It’s not as toothpastey as I tend to find peppermints. All the other spices really keep it in check. I am absolutely getting cloves in the smell. Very nice. The licorice is largely hidden, and the ginger kind of lingers in your nostrils as an after-smell.
First taste is a punch to the mouth. I took too big a gulp (because I steeped it so low and it’s so cold here that tea gets undrinkably cold very quickly, so I’ve developed the habit of chugging my tea. There’s so much happening. Heat, coolness, spiciness, body… let me take a proper sip and try to figure out some of this craziness.
Gingery burn is the first thing that happens. It teams up with the pepper and lasts as long as the tea is in your mouth. Immediately above that burn is the cold of peppermint. It’s a very nice sensation. The fennel and cloves almost make me feel like I should see my breath in a puff of ice crystals like I was outside on a very cold day.
I have to be honest and say that this little tin sat in my World Tour box for a long time because I just didn’t want to try it; that was a mistake. I’m finding that the teas I wind up liking the most at David’s Tea are the ones that I hesitated to try. I can see replacing my current mint (which was ruined by going to a different format and which will remain nameless) with this green tea version. Yum!
I left my tin at a friend’s house a MONTH ago and I’ve been without my Forever Nuts since then. I’ve wanted it every single day and I finally have it back. (Of course, after this cup I have enough for one more cup and then it’s off to David’s. What’s that? Just in time for the spring teas, you say? Fortuitous!)
The pinkness makes me so happy when I bring it to my lips. It’s ridiculous. I feel like I’m drinking a princess drink in the best possible way.
It smells like a freshly-baked apple oatmeal muffin and it tastes as amazing as it smells. I can’t pick out any specific tastes (although the dried apples linger nicely), other than “muffin”, but that’s all the description that I require.
Even though this is a tisane, it’s what I chose to get me through tonight’s working blitz. More for the mood than any keeping-me-awakeness.
My mouth is happy. My face is happy. Even my mug is happy.
Thank you, Forever Nuts!
(Whoops. This didn’t show up when I searched “Detox David’s Tea”, and I looked for it under “Detox (Organic)” and didn’t find it so made my own. But here it is, all sitting pretty under “Organic Detox.” Durh…)
Okay, Detox. I have a confession; your herbal zinginess kind of makes me a little bit afraid. The lemongrass I’m cool with; the ginger, okay. But the juniper berries make my nose quiver like a bunny’s, and I’m more than a little afraid to sip you.
BUT it’s been that kind of a day, and after three days of trying to eat healthy (and falling to the call of If I Had 1,000,000 Flavours ice cream, my home-made oatmeal chocolate chip cookies and countless lattes) it’s time I took more concrete measures.
That’s where you step in.
I’m doing this naked*, the way the tea gods intended. No messing around with time, temperature or proportion. I’m following the instructions to the letter.
I brewed this in a cup with a forest green interior, so I can’t see the colour of the tea. It’s darkish, though. The smell mellowed SIGNIFICANTLY after brewing. The lemongrass is like a sweet hint of summer and the ginger promises to sting you a little but, but thinks that you’ll enjoy it. The juniper berries lurk directly under that ginger, their enthusiasm for zappiness barely contained.
As per usual, I can’t sip it this hot. My lips curl back in fear. I’ll wait four minutes and try again.
Okay. Oh, very nice, very nice!
The juniper berries are a lot subtler in flavour than they originally came across in smell. They combine with the ginger to kind of give your tongue a lingering slither of heat down the sides almost as an after-thought. I have to admit that I forgot this one was a rooibos/sencha blend, and I have to say that I reeeeally like it. It has the vegetativeness of green with the whole-milk mouthfeel of rooibos. It’s a very satisfying combination.
I got this tea in a Beauty Trio pack from my mum for by birthday (okay, I got the chocolate trio, but had two of the three teas in there in my cupboard, so exchanged it), and I’m pretty sure that this Detox is going to be the first one to go.
I’ve found my new working-at-night tea!
*not LITERALLY naked. Naked as in no milk, no sugar.
Full Disclosure: I hate Earl Grey teas and pulled this one because I need a black tea to kick my brain into working mode. But the leaves smell DELICIOUS.
I unceremoniously dumped a glug of whole milk in before I even started steeping it, which may account for the light brew, but this is a very light tea. When it’s done steeping, the vanilla really pops, but in that kind of not-so-awesome way it does in teas.
I’ll give it a minute to cool down before I chug away.
Okay. Not bad, not bad. You kind of feel it in your mouth the way you would a vanilla pudding. Not the mouth-feel at all (although it is quite heavy and creamy) but more where it hits you in the flavour centres. It’s pretty satisfying.
I’ll be happy to finish my little sample tin (Tea World Tour, YEE-AH!), but I don’t think I’d buy it. Just because I’m not an Earl Grey fan and I can see overdosing on the vanilla rather quickly (like I did Read My Lips, which is still tragic…)
Pretty good little sip.
The tea itself looks very, very fancy. The scoop that I’m using tonight had this delicate little spear of purple flower. I don’t know what it is, but it makes me feel kind of like I’m drinking a princess tea.
The smell dry made me smile, so that’s why I chose this one for tonight’s shenannigans (read: working, as per usual.) Hot, it has a smell that brings to mind those little plastic fruit-shaped powder-filled candies of my youth. You’d buy the purple plastic bunch of grapes, take off the little green plastic friction-fit lid and tilt your head back to have your mouth filled with a Lick-M-Ade style flavoured tangy powder. I loved those. It’s making me think that my decision to drink this tea naked was the right call. I’m thinking sugar might have made it diabetes-sweet.
It brewed darker than I anticapted. Almost a honey colour. I’m under the impression that it’s a white. I could be wrong, but I’m honestly far too lazy to actually check.
Taste: DISAPPOINTING! It tastes like hot water with a lovely smell! I’m going to let it cool down and then try a bigger mouthful. This can’t be the taste of this tea. Okay, it’s got a slight sweetness, and a great kicky aftertaste of white grape. It’s more like a fruity wine taste than a juice taste, though. Not like a wine you’d bring out during a dinner party; more like a wine you’d keep beside the sofa during a pyjama-wearing popcorn-munch Sleepaway Camp (horror trilogy, not a place you’d actually camp) marathon.
All in all, I’m not super impressed, which is disappointing because this is several nights in a row that I’ve been left with a tea that I haven’t really enjoyed.
Oh well. C’est la vie.