629 Tasting Notes
I’ve tried a few different Rooibos EG’s and haven’t liked a single one thus far. I’ve had this one in my cupboard for ages and have yet to have tried it, probably because of my bad track record with bergamot on rooibos. However, I’m out of a black lavender EG and that was what I was craving to go with my lemon poppyseed cookie, so I finally decided to try this. Maybe the lavender made a big difference, because I actually didn’t mind this. The bergamot tastes a little grapefruity, but doesn’t come across too sour, even on the lighter base. The lavender is lovely and strongly floral, and pairs well with the strong citrus flavor of the bergamot. The rooibos is a strong flavor, a bit woody, hay-like, and sweet. I wouldn’t select this over a good black lavender EG, but this is surprisingly suitable for a rooibos alternative when I have traditionally hated bergamot paired with rooibos.
Flavors: Bergamot, Citrus, Floral, Grapefruit, Honey, Hot hay, Lavender, Sweet, Tart, Wood
I received this from Ost’s cupboard sale in summer 2018. I had about enough for a single cup so I brewed that up this morning. The tea is a lovely brown color and does have a nice fruity aroma.
The taste of the tea is slightly malty with some honeyed notes, but the lychee flavor fills out strongly in the brew. I really love the taste of lychee, I get strong notes of pear and rose. The fruitiness and florality leave a lot of sweetness in the brew and the tea is very smooth. I think I enjoy Art of Tea’s Lychee Peach a bit more, but the age of this sample might have something to do with that; fresh, it could easily be on par with that one for me. Even aged, it is still a very enjoyable cuppa.
Thanks for the sample!
Flavors: Floral, Fruity, Honey, Lychee, Malt, Pear, Rose
I thought I had reviewed this before, but a Ctrl+F of my steepster.txt file proves that my memory is atrocious as ever. And since I’m working on sipping it down, I’d better rectify that before it is gone. I received this from tea-sipper in a cupboard sale in early 2018, so thanks, tea-sipper! I’ve prepared it as a cold brew, letting the leaf soak in a glass mason jar overnight before straining and then drinking ice cold.
The tea is a purpley/crimson hue, and has strong aromas of berries (a bit of a blueberry/muscatel scent), citrus (heavily lime), and pine/sage. And the flavor reflects the aroma. I’m getting hit with a strong lime flavor, and this nice, fresh pine note from the juniper and find this sort of cooling effect left on my tongue from the citrus and pine. The fruity notes are more muted against the strong citrus/pine, but there is a berry sweet/tart note beneath that, and it can be tasted at the back of my tongue, especially as the citrus and pine starts to wear off. The berry flavor tastes more like red berries in the brew, while the aroma smelled more like blueberries/grapes on the nose.
It’s a nice iced tea, and I always like the inclusion of juniper in a blend. I’m not sure how I’d feel about this tea as a warm brew, and am kind of content to just drink it as a refreshing iced blend during these warm months.
Flavors: Berries, Citrus, Fruity, Lime, Pine, Sweet, Tart
I received this as a sample from Plum Deluxe some time ago, only now getting around to it. I love chocolate and lavender as a flavor combination but have never seen any tea go down that route and was excited to see they had a chocolate lavender tea so of course I selected that as one of my samples to try. Thank you, Plum Deluxe! And this is a lazy, Sunday morning, so it seems appropriate, even if I do usually reach for caffeinated tea in the mornings and reserve my herbals for the evenings. I felt the mood for this and a cookie for breakfast… the sweet hankering hit me hard today, I guess!
I didn’t really like the aroma from the dry leaf, which smelled a bit artificial/alcoholic in the bag around the chocolate. But brewed up. that isn’t really coming out so strongly as it was letting off. The chocolate is a bit liquer-like when it hits the back of the tongue, but also more fudgy, in both aroma and flavor, but the lavender is a nice, strongly floral note that helps balance out some of the artificialties of chocolate-in-a-bottle flavorings. It carries a lot of weight here. The tea is fine on its own, but I think it would probably do a little better as a warm latte, as I think the creaminess would help it even more. Doubly so with a chocolate almond milk. That may be what I do with it next time.
So, I think the chocolate flavoring could be a bit better, but I am certainly happy there is a chocolate/lavender tea out there to scratch that itch, since it doesn’t do a terrible swing at it and I think it could be even more workable in a latte form.
Flavors: Alcohol, Artificial, Chocolate, Floral, Lavender
For my birthday this year my boss got me one of those glass water bottles for cold steeping with the strainer in the top, and while I still tend to make a lot of mason jars of iced tea that I strain and keep in the fridge, this is a nice alternative for something that brews a little quicker. The only real problem I have with it is the condensation on the bottom is very bad, so I have to remember to always have a coaster handy…
This was another unopened, and now expired, bag of tea from an ancient Tealyra order. I wanted a fruity hibiscus iced tea and it’s a nice red color, so hopefully it’ll deliver. I am getting pear, and it is a nice, juicy flavor, but not as strong as other pear teas I’ve had. It does have that tangy fruity hibiscus flavor, but it isn’t as tart or as fruit punchy as I’m used to in hibi-fruit iced teas, I think because the cinnamon in the blend is acting as a sweetener. I don’t really taste a distinct cinnamon flavor brewing this as a cold brew, so I may need to try this one as a warm cuppa as well, to see if it presents more as a cinnamon-baked pear or cinnamon-baked apple flavor. It is getting the job done as an iced hibiscus tea with a strong fruit flavor, though, which is what I was craving in this warm weather, and I don’t think I’ve ever had a pear one before.
Flavors: Cinnamon, Fruity, Hibiscus, Pear, Sweet, Tangy
My cat has a very weird hang-up about going downstairs to eat unless I go with her. She’ll just lurk in my room giving me the evil eye as I try to work on my computer or get downright whiny until I finally take a break and escort her downstairs… once we are both on the bottom floor, she will happily eat. Don’t know why she can’t be a strong, independant woman who can eat by herself, honestly… in any event, since today she was doing her thing, I decided I may as well have a tea break while I was sitting there letting her take her nibbles before I got back to what I was doing, and brewed a small pot of this from a sampler so old I should be ashamed. Doubly so since it is green tea (the packet says it is an Autumn 2017 harvest, cough cough). Ah well, I’m still going to drink it. With everything else going on in the world, I think drinking expired tea is the least of my worries…
It smells surprisingly floral, an aroma I’d expect more from a green oolong than a green tea. I do get a somewhat beany scent from the aroma as well, but it is overpowered by the perfumy florality. The tea is a goldenrod color in the cup, and the flavor is like some of the more floral Bi Luo Chuns I’ve had in the past. I’m getting that vegetal beany/pea sort of flavor I usually taste in a Bi Luo Chun, but I’m also tasting a sweet orchid/lilac flavor that I most often taste in green oolongs. There are also notes of hay and minerals that settle over my tongue towards the end of the sip. I really like it! Neither flavor really overpowers the other, and while they may sound quite uncomplementary, the taste is very pleasant.
Flavors: Beany, Floral, Green Beans, Hot hay, Mineral, Orchid, Peas, Vegetal
I ordered this tea so long ago that I have had the UNOPENED package sitting in my cupboard all this time, and I pulled it out, and the expiration date was 05/2019. …And THIS is why I refuse to buy/trade/etc. anything that has to do with tea. SIGH. At least it still smells nice when I cut it open, bright citrus with floral undertones, so I suppose I can use it for sachets if nothing else…
Aroma off my steeped cup isn’t very strong, which is a bit worrisome, coming across more like a standard English Breakfast — that malty black tea aroma, with a subtle lemon aroma. However, the sip is far more pungent than the waft was letting on. It isn’t so strong of bergamot (which is okay with me, I don’t mind bergamot these days, but it isn’t a necessity for me either, and this is already scripting itself as an EG blend rather than the Earl himself) so rather it’s a strong citrusy black tea, with notes of orange, lemon, and a more subtle hint bergamot mixed in that citrus flavor. I’d say the bergamot is waxing somewhere a little between a lime and grapefruit. It packs quite a tart hit with three citrus notes paired together, and they are the strongest flavor in the tea, though there is a noticable rose floral flavor that comes out at the end of the sip, towards the back of the tongue, after the bitterness of the citrus starts to subside and the sweetness of the floral is able to fill the mouth. I really like it, but I also am keen on tart/sweet flavor combinations, and I particularly am known to have a palate that can handle tart/sour flavors better than most (I drink hibiscus straight with no sweetener). I think most would probably find the citrus in this one too strong, even with the floral chaser.
Flavors: Bergamot, Citrus, Floral, Lemon, Malt, Orange, Pleasantly Sour, Rose, Tart
I think I have finally entered an acceptance with myself that I will never be a “proper” tea-drinker because I simply can’t find “enjoyment” in pu-erh; I never taste all the “nuances” one should taste in these expensive, fermented tea leaves, other than dirt or swamp water. Every. Single. Time. And I don’t enjoy either flavor note. Sue me. So after a week of not particularly looking forward to my morning cup of swamp water-flavored beverage (as that is the category this particular tea fell in for me; an earthy, yet marshy/vegetal taste, like something distinctly pond-scummy, which I taste very often in pu-erh) I have finally sipped this sample down (which I think came from Ost’s August 2018 cupboard sale, thanks for sharing!), and am quite pleased to have one less pu taking up space in my house.
Flavors: Earth, Marine, Mineral, Smooth, Vegetal, Wet Earth, Wet Moss, Wet Rocks
I had pulled the sampler package I had received of this from Ost’s cupboard sale all the way back in August of 2018… and I have no idea the age of that sampler packet. I was going to make a warm cup of tea with it (we’ve been bombarded in rainy weather here) but since it was a foil-sealed package and I wanted to use all 5g up at once, I decided to cold brew the whole amount in a Mason jar for iced tea instead. And then it was just too cold for me to be in the mood to drink it. I noticed the pale yellow color of the tea started to look more orangy over the course of the week and thought… I better drink that tea. So now I’m trying to get through it, despite the fact it still feels really cold in my house…
I was expecting heavy jasmine (something I’m not especially a fan of) but mostly I’m just tasting peach. There is a strong peach note hitting the back of my tongue, with a bit of a juicy and pithy flavor. There is a floral note, but nothing I can pinpoint specifically… a bit sweet and honeysuckle like, if anything. Maybe a hint of hay beneath the strong peach flavoring. Very refreshing, but other than the peach, I am not picking out much other flavor (but that could be due to the age of the sample… or even how long I left it in the fridge, to be fair).
Flavors: Floral, Hay, Honeysuckle, Peach, Stonefruits, Sweet
This is another sampler that came to me a few summers ago from Meowster’s cupboard destash, so thanks Meowster! I honestly don’t have the highest expectations, though. For one, because it is a pu-erh, the one type of tea that despite me trying again and again, it just always taste like dirt or swampwater to me and I can’t quite understand why it’s considered the “fancy coffee” of the tea world and be a “true tea connoisseur” you should be drinking expensive puerh and nothing else… when it tastes like dirt or swampwater. I’ve been okay with a few flavored puerh blends I’ve tried, but that leads to my second point… the only other Adagio pu-erh I’ve tried was their Pu-erh Chorange, which I personally found awful, like a very fake, artificial-tasting orange was dropped in a pile of dirt. So… ya. Maybe the sheer age of this sampler at this point may have improved it?
So, this one falls into the “swampwater” realm. Again, not really a flavor I enjoy, but I suppose it is slightly more preferable than the “dirt” ones. It’s like a strong, vegetal, marine/earthy taste. It isn’t undrinkable and actually very smooth for what it is. There is an earthy taste that lingers in the aftertaste, as well as some minerality. It actually is better than the Pu-erh Chorange, since it doesn’t have that awful artificial orange flavoring smothered over the top of such a conflicting flavor. But it still isn’t really a flavor that is for me. I wonder how many pu-erh samples I’ll try, trying to convince myself to “like” this stuff because proper tea-drinkers are “supposed to like it”…
Flavors: Earth, Marine, Mineral, Smooth, Vegetal, Wet Earth, Wet Moss, Wet Rocks