94 Tasting Notes


Normally, when I add a tea to the database, I like to link back to the website where I can order it. This tea, which came in my Advent of Tea from Steepologie, appears to have been discontinued between when they shipped the advent calendar and now, which I am bemused by, and which also is a bit of a shame because I liked this one.

This tea tastes like a be-tea’d version of my spiced peach cobbler. I don’t make cobbler in the winter (I can do it with canned peaches, but it’s not as good) so getting a tea that reminds me of summer on the second day of winter was a delightful surprise. It’s not as strong as my cobbler (unsurprising, really) but given that it has no sugar and no actual peaches, that’s OK.

As it’s been cooling while I write this, the flavor has been getting stronger, too – apparently, this is one that needs to sit a bit in the mug after it’s poured.

Oh well. Can’t buy this one, but I do recommend it.

Flavors: Cinnamon, Clove, Peach

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

This tea tastes really strange. It smells fabulous, although slightly soapy (?) – like one of those really fancy soaps you can sometimes find in spas or something – and looks lovely, but it tastes WEIRD.

I can absolutely smell the apples in it, and the plums. It does not have the overpowering currant flavor of a black currant tea, so if the currants are there, it’s subtle. There is no taste of saffron at all, which isn’t surprising, as although the name says saffron, there’s only safflower – not the same thing. This smells like something I’d want to render down into a sauce and pour over a roast pork loin, and I rather strongly suspect it would go fabulously.

What it tastes like is very difficult to describe. The apple is fairly pronounced, moreso than the plum. The celery is also fairly obvious – more than I would want, honestly. I can’t pick out the quinoa either, but I don’t doubt that it and the celery together are what’s making this tea taste very peculiar to me.

The celery is jumping out at me in the aftertaste, and not in a great way either.

I…have no idea whether to recommend this tea. It’s certainly something that I’m sure somebody would like. I’m definitely not that somebody, however. I don’t think I’m going to finish this mug.

Flavors: Apple, Celery, Plum

Login or sign up to leave a comment.


Yup, that’s definitely a currant-flavored tea. Smells like it, tastes like it.

Initial thoughts on this particular advent-of-tea from Steepologie: This tea needs more tea in it. There’s a LOT going on in here, but the currant flavors are the strongest. I could pick them out pretty much instantly, then the apples, and a little bit of the licorice. Handing it to my spouse, he tasted it and said, “This might want sugar.”

I added a little honey, and indeed, all the fruit flavors got stronger – as did the honey flavor, which melded very well with all the others. Unfortunately, the licorice is leaving a pronounced aftertaste in my mouth – not a pleasant one, alas. Also, the tea flavor is being completely drowned out by all the fruit. I think if I were to drink this one again, I’d cut it about 50-50 with a black ceylon, because it doesn’t need anything as malty as an assam or a yunnan. But if you want tea (I want tea) this one may not be for you.

If you want fruit, though? Yup, this one’s fruit all the way down.

Flavors: Apple, Black Currant, Fruity, Red Currant, Sweet

Login or sign up to leave a comment.


Oh, how I want to love this tea, and…it didn’t happen. But it might not be the tea’s fault.

I love juniper. I love the smell of it, I love the zing it adds to things. (I love how it’s rot-and-insect resistant and can live for at least 3000 years and maybe 6000 years.) So, this tea? I wanted to love it. And when I saw that I’d gotten a bonus packet of it in the advent calendar, I was ecstatic.

Unfortunately, the Steepologie advent calendar only gave me a small sachet of it, and like a complete doof, I steeped in the 16 oz tumbler that came with my advent calendar – which was probably too much water.

The smell was there – but not strong. The taste was plain tea. No juniper flavor at all.

My reaction could be summed up as a Luke Skywalker scream of, “NOOOOOO!!!”

I’m such a fool! And I don’t have any more of it to bulk it up. :-( Suffice to say, I need to buy an actual sample of this tea (none of this sachet nonsense) and try again. And if that doesn’t work, I will take the second half of the sampler and mix crushed juniper berries into it to see if that fixes the problem. But in the meantime, this tea remains unrated, and I’ll be over here kicking myself for being stupid about how much water to use.

Flavors: Tea

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

Steepologie Advent of Tea Day 14: This tea would smell like lemon-scented cleaner, except the basil in it adds a very strange meld to it in my nose, and keeps it from smelling that way. Actively holding the mug to my mouth and sniffing makes the basil scent clearer, but it is still strongly overpowered by the lemon in general.

The taste reminds me of the lemon-basil shortbread my father makes around the Christmas holidays sometimes. And because of all the lemon (and because it’s an oolong) I’m not adding milk to it, so there’s a tangy mouthfeel to it that I don’t normally have in my teas. The acidity of the lemon, however, is leaving my mouth slightly puckered after drinking. Not in a bad way, but definitely in a “you have encountered citric acid” way.

I’m not sure I like it. I don’t think I actively dislike it, but it’s not a tea in my usual frame of reference. (I freely admit to having been tainted by my heritage, I drank nothing but cheap black ceylon with rose petals in it growing up.)

I think this tea wants to be paired with something like a good strong Pho soup, or possibly hot pot. It’s not the sort of tea I should be drinking while eating oatmeal or even biscuits. Or, y’know, I could pair it with my father’s shortbread, except he’s 9+ hours’ drive away and I don’t know if he’s made any this year.

Regardless, not the correct tea for me this morning, but not a bad “nope, throw that out” tea.

Flavors: Lemon

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

drank Ohana by Tea & Absinthe
94 tasting notes

I forgot that I’d already tried Ohana, so when asked, I tried it again. I ended up brewing this particular batch rather weaker than the first, because I didn’t have quite enough of the sample left to brew a full mug. It actually was better weaker! The passionfruit was able to get past the nose/taste of the pineapple, and made things rather more balanced. I could even taste the jasmine and rose.

I think I actually brewed it a little too weakly this time, but now I know it’s something to remember. It does still have a distinctly acidic mouthfeel, so it’s not a tea I will be seeking out (the fact that I am allergic to fresh pineapple may simply be making me more aware of the pineapple acidity) but it’s definitely better than my previous rating.

So. Brew slightly weaker than you think you want, and you’ll get more flavors out of it. :-)

Login or sign up to leave a comment.


:shrug: I could smell the caramel, but I couldn’t taste it. The tea taste wasn’t particularly interesting either, and I couldn’t taste hazelnut or almond at all. This one left me going, “meh,” which oh well.

Flavors: Caramel

Login or sign up to leave a comment.


The nose on this is delightful. I can’t think of any other tea I’ve tried that actually smells like pistachios, which for the record, I do like. (Pistachio ice cream was a favorite as a kid.) The flavor is less strong than the nose, but it is still there. The peony is also probably there – except I don’t know what peony tastes like. ;-) It also rebrews nicely – the second cup was almost as strong as the first.

As a pu erh, it’s fine. As a tea, it’s fine. It doesn’t grab me by the lapels and say, “Oh, yes, THIS,” but that’s rare anyway. It’s a proper brew, at least.

Flavors: Floral, Pistachio, Tea

Login or sign up to leave a comment.


If those coconut chips are sweetened, it would make the inexplicable sweetness of this tea make sense. But it’s possible they aren’t, and it’s just a sweet-flavored tea. Either is possible, neither is bad; the sweetness was thankfully not overpowering. Just enough to make the tea taste of strawberries and a bit floral, which was nice. (There have been too many punch-me-in-the-nose teas recently.)

This was an unexceptional but enjoyable tea for my morning. The fact that the strawberry leaves actually tasted of strawberry was quite pleasant, and the fact that I could also taste the tea in there was delightful. I won’t be seeking it out to keep in the cabinet, but I am happy to have tried it.

Sadly, it rebrews weak, so this is a one-and-done with the leaves. Oh well.

Flavors: Floral, Strawberry, Sweet, Tea

Login or sign up to leave a comment.


In the evening, I try to avoid caffeine, but since rooibus is not tea (grumble) I drink decaf real tea. My spouse got this one for when we have Japanese food for dinner, and indeed, it is a thoroughly acceptable green tea.

There’s nothing special about it – it’s what you’d get in the teapot of any generic “Asian” restaurant. But it’s decaf, and it works very well for the purpose of, “I would like green tea to go with my sushi and I would like not to be awake all night.”

We will continue to keep this in the cupboard. It’s not shiny or special, but it works just fine.

Flavors: Hay

Login or sign up to leave a comment.




95-100: I will keep this on my shelf at all times if possible.
85-94: This tea is probably in active rotation in my house and getting drunk a lot (or it’s about to be).
75-84: I liked it. I will probably keep a small tin of it around.
65-74: I liked it. I might keep a small tin of it around, but I will not mourn its loss if it disappears from sale.
50-64: Meh.
0-49: No.

I like real tea (camellia sinensis). Black with milk and no sugar, unless it’s a really froofy chai latte. Green with no milk.

I’ve discovered through trial and error that I really don’t like Rooibus, even when it’s mixed with black tea. (Sadly.)

Herbal tisanes are not out of the running, but I have to be in the right mood and they have to be sufficiently strongly powered that I don’t miss the tea leaves.

By preference, I drink loose-leaf, but I will drink bagged tea if it’s good enough.

My icon is a piece of fantastic art by Ursula Vernon called Cattail Tea.

Following These People

Moderator Tools

Mark as Spammer