623 Tasting Notes
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
I finished off my Keemun Concerto, and while most of Adagio’s Teas have been very hit-or-miss for me, that one was definitely a hit for me… it will be very missed. This is another of their Chinese blacks that I have a small sampler of back from Meowster’s cupboard destash a few summer’s ago, and I have just enough for a small pot, so I decided to brew it up for breakfast this morning.
The tea has a strong warm, baked bread aroma, and a subtle hint of warm cherries. The tea has a strong malty, bready flavor, with a more subtle note of smoke, and some minerality that comes out toward the end of the sip. I get a very subtle cherry note left on my tongue after the sip, as well, but more of a malt and burnt toast note during the sip.
It is a nice breakfast tea, but I still like the Keemun Concerto better. Thanks for the sample!
Flavors: Baked Bread, Burnt, Cherry, Fruity, Malt, Mineral, Smoke, Smoked, Smooth, Toast
One of my older 52Teas packets (a 2017 reblend, I believe). I’ve been missing my Chocolate, Hazelnut, and Strawberry Honeybush and figured this would probably be similar, and it is, minus the strong nutty flavor. I get the strawberry note, and a cocoa flavor, and even a subtle nuttiness that I’m assuming is coming from the honeybush. I’m not really picking out a vanilla note, but admittedly, that can be a hard flavor for me to peg with stronger notes in a cup. It’s very sweet and pleasant on a very rainy day that has flared my migraine head up terribly. I’m just happy it tastes so much like the tea I was craving so badly and scratched that itch for me.
Flavors: Cocoa, Dark Chocolate, Fruity, Nutty, Strawberry, Sweet
This is the last Adagio white tea in my cupboard, and I’m finishing off the sample with another liter of iced tea and one hot cuppa. It’s from a very old order (2017 sometime) but the sampler was still sealed, so at least there was that.
My warm cup is smelling quite floral (but confession, the last thing I brewed was straight lavender to make some scented mists I like to use around Chiya’s kitty boxes) and I also smell mandarin, melon, cucumber, honey, and warm hay. I’m… definitely getting some lavender contamination coming through in the flavor, but honestly? It’s not a bad thing! It’s not a strong oomph of it (I could go deep clean the infuser but probably another use and it’ll be gone, or simply letting it dry overnight… I think it was only using it so soon after steeping my flowers that probably caused the issue) and it’s not at all a bad flavor on this white tea… daresay, maybe I should be adding a pinch of lavender to some of my whites in the future? I do realize that isn’t how it was supposed to be though, and does little for a proper review though. Oops.
Tasting around the lavender, I am getting a hay vegetal flavor, as well as cucumber and melon notes. It seems quite sweet to me, but that may just be the floral contamination. My iced tea, however, has no such issue. It has been in the fridge a little longer than I should’ve kept it, but that aside, I am getting a grassy/hay vegetal flavor, the cucumber note seems a little more pronounced, and there is a subtle watery melon note. It’s very crisp and tastes a lot like a clean green tea iced.
Flavors: Cucumber, Floral, Hay, Melon, Sweet, Sweet, warm grass, Vegetal
This was one of the teas provided to me for sample by Plum Deluxe, thank you so much Plum Deluxe! I selected two of the three flavors offered and just chose “blender’s choice” for my last flavor, and this was the tea Plum Deluxe selected. I’m home with a migraine today and feeling like some hot tea, so it seemed like a good time to brew it up.
The dry leaf smells very nice; I’m not extremely familiar with elderberries, but the aroma reminds me of plums and apricot, which is is a very pleasant fragrance. Steeped, the smell of those fruits is much stronger, and I’m also getting a peppery note on my nose. The apricot is very forward in the flavor, with that plummy flavor coming out toward the end of the sip, and a touch of a spice note. There is a slight berry tang, but not much, the honeybush mellows the tea out a lot. It’s really nice, and I’m enjoying it a lot on a day where I’m feeling very under the weather.
Flavors: Apricot, Fruity, Pepper, Plums, Spices, Stonefruits, Sweet
Another Adagio tea from Meowster’s cupboard destash, thanks Meowster! I took this out and stuck it in my sipdown spot last month, but only now am getting to it… ah well. The tea has a nice chocolately-rose aroma, which is one of my favorite flavor combinations, but it also smells a hint musty… I think age has taken it’s toll on this one (I got it in summer of 2018, but I really have no idea how old it already was at that point in time…)
The flavor honestly isn’t too bad considering it may be an older tea, the chocolate is pretty fudgy, if not a touch artificial. The rose is coming through, and I’ve always really liked the rose flavor that Adagio uses (one of the few flavorings, along with their cream flavor, that always hits the mark with me). I do taste a hint of berry, but it is more subtle… the mix of flavors is a good one, the problem I’m really having is the base tea is coming off a bit too astringent for what should be a sweeter, more desserty type of tea. I’ve been drinking the tea straight the last few days but decided to make it a latte this morning (3 parts tea to 1 part vanilla almond milk) as I thought the sweet milk would cut through that astringency and it would work well with that chocolately floral flavor… but my plan failed and even with a sweet milk added, it still had that sort of sour note. It also didn’t taste as chocolately, and I thought the creamy milk would have brought out even more of a chocolately feel, but the latte was just a fail on the whole.
I think this tea could really work for me… it’s hard to tell if age has done it dirty, or if the base tea Adagio uses on this one just sours what would otherwise be a combination of flavors that would work well for me. I’m happy to have had the chance to try it!
Flavors: Artificial, Astringent, Berry, Bitter, Chocolate, Dark Bittersweet, Rose
This is the last of the Adagio white teas I got from Meowster’s cupboard clearout a couple summer’s ago (thanks Meowster!). I made the one warm cuppa and then used the rest on a quart of cold brew, like the others.
The base tea of this tastes exactly like the White Pear tea… a bit vegetal, with heavy autumn leaf and wood notes, just without the pear flavor. But I don’t taste any cucumber. I don’t even taste the melon that I get as a natural note out of white tea often, which I find often accompanies cucumber teas. So basically it just tastes like a typical low-quality unflavored Bai Mu Dan. It isn’t bad, but if you are going to drink Bai Mu Dan without the novelty of the flavoring, you may as well drink a nice one, right?
At least with the White Grapefruit tea, I could taste the grapefruit flavor (it just isn’t a flavor that I particularly enjoy), but since I can’t taste this flavor at all, I actually have to rank it lower than the White Grapefruit. (And I see that Adagio currently has this on their “soon to be discontinued” list… I’m honestly not surprised.)
Thanks for the sample, Meowster! I’ve enjoyed having the chance to try these! I only have one more Adagio white in my stash, and it’s a plain white that I purchased ages ago. I wonder how that has held up after all these years…?
Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Vegetal, Wood