58 Tasting Notes


On occasion, I’m moved to buy things because the planets have aligned.

Let me explain. I like to look at items on sale, but I don’t convince myself to buy them merely because they’re on sale. I only buy them, generally, if they’re something I can (and will) actually use.

On rare occasion, I’ll make an exception…such as when I find something that looks as though it really shouldn’t exist. At all. Because I’m in such disbelief, I’ll laughingly buy it.

This tea was an intersection of those two habits. Look at the name: Orange Chocolate Green Tea. Any two of those things sound like they’d go well together, yes? BUT NOT ALL THREE. THREE IS RIGHT OUT.

Except…it’s…not bad! Not great, either. It’s kind of like when you’ve got a dessert sampler platter and you’ve eaten the delightful morsels it once held…and you’re surreptitiously trying to get those last little crumbs of everything up because it would be a shame to waste it. Everything sort of gets mashed together on your fork, but because you were familiar with the distinct flavours of each thing beforehand, you don’t mind it as much as you otherwise might.

It’s…a curiositea. Yes.

Boiling 2 min, 30 sec

Once the number three, being the third number, be reached, then lobbest thou thy Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch towards thy foe, who being naughty in my sight, shall snuff it.

At least, I hope you were quoting Monty Python. Otherwise I just sounded completely insane. [Then again, what else is new?]


Sokay, you were spot on. XD

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Light, mildly flowery, but not in an air-freshener sort of way. Perfect with freshly baked scones and just a hint of honey. Don’t overbrew, though…it goes very bitter very fast.

205 °F / 96 °C 1 min, 30 sec

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Velvety and light, almost a whisper of a black tea. Good for winding down, not winding up.

Boiling 3 min, 30 sec

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drank Christmas Tea by Twinings
58 tasting notes

Although it’s got cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves in the mix, Twinings Christmas Tea isn’t overly spiced. It’s easy to go overboard with holiday spiced teas…I’ve had some where I’ve seriously wondered if I haven’t accidentally steeped potpourri instead of tea.

This isn’t like that. It’s lovely for an afternoon or evening…I hesitate to recommend it as a morning cuppa, simply because like a lot of Twinings bags, I don’t think it’s strong enough. However, it should be noted that I like my black teas very, very strong, so to each their own.

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drank Masala Chai by Peet's Coffee & Tea
58 tasting notes

Not the best chai I’ve ever had, but not the worst either. Little overboard on the cardamom, making it almost bitter. Possibly overbrewed; not sure. Had this at the shop, so I didn’t brew it myself.

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drank Genmai Cha by Yamamotoyama
58 tasting notes

I’m not always in the mood for this tea, but when I am, nothing else will do. It’s incredibly nutty and soothing, kind of like a really good bowl of oatmeal.

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drank Palekaiko by Lupicia
58 tasting notes

Ginger always makes me think winter. I know that’s slightly absurd, considering it doesn’t ever dip much below the 60s in Hawaii, but this tea does work quite well in Midwestern US winters. Just saying. It’s warm, dark, spicy, and thoroughly comforting.

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drank Anela by Lupicia
58 tasting notes

I don’t know about the pink argents looking like flying angels. They are pretty, though. At first, the lychee scent is slightly overwhelming, and I started to wonder if this might be one time when Lupicia hadn’t hit it dead on. I’m sure it’s got to happen once or twice.

A few sips convinced me otherwise. I’d have to be in a very specific mood to want to drink this tea, but it’s intensely fruity and refreshing. The jasmine is actually more of a solid background, while the lychee is star soprano.

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drank Anuenue by Lupicia
58 tasting notes

This is tea as performance art, and is best brewed in clear glass so you can watch it as it brews. The act of watching is nearly as meditative as drinking. To drink is to touch instant clarity.

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drank Malama by Lupicia
58 tasting notes

This was maybe the first instance of my thinking chocolate in a tea context could be delicious. Mind you, I’ve baked chocolate cakes with Earl Grey before. Tea in a chocolate context can work wonderfully, but I wasn’t drinking that cake, you know? ;)

This, though…the balance is superb. I think I trust Lupicia’s blending prowess more than just about anyone.

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Chef. Writer. Knitter. Inveterate tea lover. The first two are professional; all four are personal.


Chicago, IL



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