1135 Tasting Notes


Well I couldn’t review Golden Orchid today without reviewing Rivendell as well! I also had my first cup of this last weekend while at the lake, but logging the cup I’m drinking right now!

The dry smell is much more green, definitely that lovely Tieguanyin scent, minerally and fresh, and the vanilla adds a nice sweet smell in there too. Also a slight woody scent from the cedar. I followed Brenden’s brewing instructions again, 0.5 TBSP in 190 degree water for 3 minutes.

The brewed tea is light in color, and smells mainly of Tieguanyin, a good one at that! As for the flavor….mmmmmmmm, this really does taste good too. It’s light and has a definite mineral quality, a fresh stream over rocks. The vanilla is light and sweet here, not drippy and fudgelike as in GO. This one is light, so fresh. The cedar finishes with a light woodsy quality, bringing out some florals in the tieguanyin and putting in mind a clean forest.

This tea embodies Rivendell. It truly is pure, light, fresh, and magnificent. It evokes water over rocks, quiet forests, and soaring in crisp air. If I was an elf, this would be my drink of choice.

Overall, a very fine tea indeed. This brings about an immense sense of peace, and is not a tea you can rush through drinking. It needs to be enjoyed and savoured. Beautiful tea drawn from beautiful inspiration. And I love LOTR, so that is also a big win :D thanks again for a wonderful tea, Brenden!

Flavors: Cedar, Mineral, Vanilla, Wet Rocks

190 °F / 87 °C 3 min, 0 sec

I hope you steeped it more than once! The 2nd steep is even better :) I got 7 steeps out of my first cup!


I had to go to a friend’s house warming so I didn’t have time for multiple steepings this time :( but definitely the next cup I will do a few!


I like the “wet rocks”. It really makes me want to try this tea.

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Sooo…yes, I had to get this tea after review after review praising its amazingness. And I confess – I’ve drank at least 3 cups before logging this tea. And might as well get it out now – I am ALSO on the GO fan club train!!!!!! :D

I first had this tea last weekend at the lake, where i have zero internets most of the time so I couldn’t log the awesomeness of this blend. But I am finally taking the time to write a review instead of downing the cup and sighing with happiness lol. So here we go!

The dry smell of this tea is HEAVENLY. It smells like pure fudge. When I first smelled it I exclaimed in excitement and immediately shoved the bag under various people’s noses for them to enjoy it as well (my mom..my dad..they know I’m a bit crazy about tea at least lol). And having it today, it still smells just as amazing.

I followed the brewing instructions – ~.5 TBSP in 200 degree water for 3 mins. The resulting tea is a deep rich brown and smells like an amazing Yunnan black tea with added sweet notes – honeyed, malty, rich.

As for the flavor…mmmmm. This is GOOD TEA. The base is an excellent quality, I picture a lovely Yunnan black bursting with honey and malt notes..then add in vanilla beans. Folks, this is by far the best vanilla tea I have had in my life. The main notes are honey, vanilla and yes…when they all meld together, you get fudge. The sweet notes come out more as the tea cools, and is is just wonderful. I also found I didn’t get a crazy caffeine buzz or have my anxiety act up from this tea – major plus in my books! Oh and this also tasted great, maybe even BETTER, up at the lake with non-filtered water…might have to try that! Or the water is just better up there haha.

So overall, this is a masterpiece. I have told Brenden on FB that this tea is a masterpiece, and I will tell all of Steepster too haha. If you like fudge, vanilla and good black tea, try this. I can’t even imagine how good Cocoa Amore is haha since it also has vanilla and different black teas lol. But this one is a win and a half for me. I am going through my ounce at an alarming rate, and with all the teas I have in my cupboard, I really shouldn’t order any more until Black Friday. But this one might make me…oh how I wish it was free shipping to Canada too! I applaud the maker of this blend! SUPERB TEA.

Flavors: Chocolate, Honey, Malt, Vanilla

200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec
Whispering Pines Tea Company

I’m so glad you’re enjoying this one too! :)


It’s the best :D well, Rivendell is close haha, still need to write a note on that one too! You, good sir, know how to blend teas! I need to take a trip to the US in the near future to cash in on that free shipping…hehe

Whispering Pines Tea Company

Hehehe, I try :)

There is free shipping on Canadian orders over $75! :)


Welcome to the GO cheerleaders club misslena :-)


Haha with the rate I’m going enjoying tea, $75 does not seem unattainable :D

And a proud new member Teafairy! I’ve already been telling more people about it, and made a new tea friend at a party yesterday too :)

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First tasting note! Haha I hardly get those anymore lol…let me preface this review by saying why I haven’t tried this tea sooner. As I have a severe food allergy (peanuts), I am very wary of trying things with unfamiliar ingredients – in this one the culprit was ashwaganda. But after a skin test I decided it’s safe to have (and I’m writing this review, so I’m still good haha)

So onto the review! The dry smell in this one is…to put it simply – MEDICINAL. Man oh man, I have never smelled a more herby smelling tea haha. It is strong and almost like Vicks mixed with tonic and some basil…strong and sharp and almost hurting the nose buds. I suppose you could compare this to alcohol in that it’s sharp and almost brutal smelling lol. But don’t let that deter you! I steeped this for 1 min with boiling water, and the steeped smell was much nicer – more chamomile with mild herbs that I couldn’t really identify, probably peppercorn though as that is a strong component.

As for the flavor, again this is quite medicinal, but I think it captures the feel of a strong spirit lol. I haven’t tried Chartreuse (the beverage) but the tea form is peppery, with an almost tulsi-like component. OH LOL there is tulsi in it, well that explains it hahaha. Not much in the terms of rose or fennel, so fennel haters rejoice? Haha, and the chamomile is just providing a neutral backdrop to the strong pepper and tulsi flavors I imagine. As for the ashwaganda, I don’t know what it is like but it might be provided the smoother mouthfeel like ginseng does, since it’s supposed to be Indian Ginseng.

Overall, a pretty bizarre blend. I can’t really compare it to what the tea is modelled after, so this is not a very helpful review probably. But it was an adventure, and I now know I can have ashwaganda! It might take me a while to get through the bag though because it is so weird….haha, happy to have tried it anyways though! No rating, because I don’t know what it’s supposed to be like.

Flavors: Herbaceous, Peppercorn, Spicy, Tulsi

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Ehhh this is a little bit astringent this morning unfortunately, I think I brewed it a tad too long with a bit too hot water. Ah well, it still is bold and bright and is serving the purpose of kicking me awake, well, the tea and the classic rock blaring from my computer at work lol. I made myself get up early and come to work at 7 so I can get off at 1, so my brain is a bit blarggghhhh right now haha. Ah well, only 5 more hours! See previous notes on this tea :)

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I have never written a note on this tea! That is not good haha because I loveee this tea. Yesterday I was going through my cupboard and found this one and thought yeah, I want that tomorrow. So I made it for the morning at work today. Yes, the flavors are a bit muted from the travel mug, but this is a delicious light black tea just dripping with honey flavor. Like this is a HONEY tea. A favorite black tea of mine that I definitely do not drink often enough. This is fresh honey from the comb on toast with creamy butter underneath. Or a cup of cream mixed with honey. Whatever it is, honey is the dominant note and it is just so yummmm.

In other news, I am still ridiculously tired..I think my sleep schedule got messed up beyond repair with the long weekend (late nights, relatively early mornings) as well as the cat waking me up with his meowing at various times in the night (different each day, sometimes 2 am, 3 am, 4 am….ughhh). This weekend hopefully I can recuperate and fix up my body, I am zonked at work again.

Back to the tea briefly, overall, a delicious tea that I highly recommend!

Flavors: Baked Bread, Creamy, Honey


I hate when the cat does that. Usually only when I really need a good night’s sleep does that happen.


Oh, my cat does that to me too sometimes, and he does have a tendency to do it during nights when I’m super tired, or when I need to wake early the next morning.


Haha my cat unfortunately is in the habit of doing it EVERY night…I might have to keep him in the basement a few nights until he gets out of it lol it’s gradually building up to a mountain of tiredness. :( ah the things we put up with for our cats lol


I love honey! I can’t wait to try this.

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drank Golden Earl by Verdant Tea
1135 tasting notes

I am very behind on reviews lol, particularly of new tea I’ve tried recently (notably the famed Golden Orchid and Rivendell :D ) but I will get caught up eventually. I was at the lake all weekend and am now working away this week. Soo tired from the weekend and definitely also behind on sleep, so I hope this tea gives me a good caffeine kick. So far it is bready, chocolatey, citrusy and yum. So that’s good at least. PLEASE KICK IN CAFFEINE! Have lots to do today and it requires my eyes to be open lol. See previous notes on this tasty tea :)

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I’m at work, so this will be fast – this tea is AMAZING. SO GOOD. I am even having it from my travel mug and at first it tasted like a generic black tea…but then this beautiful honey/caramel flavor POPS OUT in your face! As it cools the keemun berry notes come out as well! Delicious and so so good on this Friday morning. Light too, not an overly bold blend, but filling and satisfying. Second Breakfast indeed! I hope everyone knows about Second Breakfast! (Also, LOTR references make my day. Favorite movies ever.)

So happy I got an oz of this, and could see more ounces in the future!

Lariel of Lórien

If somebody ever asks ‘what about second breakfast?’, you can give them that tea.


Haha yesss I am excited for when that happens! A bunch of my friends also love LOTR so it is quite likely :)

Lariel of Lórien

Hobbit party for the third of the movie adaptation.

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So amazingly, I have not rated this tea yet, even though it is my go-to when my stomach is angry or I have a splitting migraine. Today happens to be the upset stomach kind of day, not sure if I ate something nasty for lunch or what, but I feel miserable at work, and this only started after lunch…I am also out of gum and forgot my Tums, so I busted out this tea. I guess we will see if it works its magic today, it usually does pretty good. Blargh. It already seems to be helping a bit.

Oh, and this tea is basically mint mint mint in your face haha, it’s fresh and good, if you like peppermint. If you don’t, well, why are you drinking pure peppermint anyways? :P haha a good tea for when I’m feeling sick or want a caffeine break.


Haha! You’re right, this one will please any real peppermint lover…if you’re not, just stay away!


Haha yep :) luckily I am a huge mint fan! Probably will be having more today, my stomach still is not quite right :/

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Good morning steepsters! I had an amazing weekend in the mountains, hiked like crazy (probably ~20km total), drove, and enjoyed life. We lucked out with great weather again this year and it was a wonderful trip with the guy! But now it is Monday, he is back off to work for 2 weeks, and I am also at work and sooooo tired. Eyes do not want to stay open…going to be a long day.

I made this tea this morning in the hopes the caffeine would keep me alert, but it’s just making me relaxed and content haha. This tea is soo darn tasty! I like that it is a lighter A&D blend, yet still ridiculously flavorful. Bright and rich. Still that creaminess in there. A lovely cup to start the week, just hoping I wake up a bit more as the day progresses lol. See previous notes!

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Sipdown of this tea. I have soo many teas that I have tried this weekend that I didn’t log lol, and I take time to log this sipdown. Oh well, I will get around to writing notes eventually. I had an amazing weekend and now the bf is back this week, so probably not much logging this week. Ah well I am still drinking tea! This is a work sipdown, and I enjoyed this tea, but I tired of it as I went through the bag. Nice to try, but not a restock. See previous notes!

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Hello all, I am an electrical engineer (read:NERD :D), who is a bit obsessed with tea! I discovered loose tea in 2011, DAVIDsTEA in 2012 and it took off from there. I really started drinking/enjoying tea because it was excellent to take to class in the morning and because I can’t handle coffee! (unless it’s a really good cappuccino or latte, or decent decaf haha)

I enjoy a variety of teas – current favorites being ripe and raw pu’erhs, chinese black teas and herbal/green rooibos blends. I also enjoy white, green, and oolong teas, although I tend to drink them more in the warmer months. I have also tried matcha and guayusa, but I don’t drink them too often as I am a bit sensitive to caffeine. As a result I don’t drink black teas as often as I used to, but in moderation I can still enjoy a wide variety of teas.

Oh, and I have a severe peanut allergy and try to avoid most other nuts, just to be safe. Limits my tea choices a bit, but that’s ok. However I have tried almonds and found out I can eat them, so I have been trying a few teas with them in them.

mrs.stenhouse12’s rating system
(as of 04/19/13)

95+: Absolute favorite, will try to always have it in stock, and when I don’t I pine over it!
90-94: Awesome teas, will probably purchase again a few times
80-89: Very good tea, may restock at some point
70-79: happy to have tried and will gladly finish, but not restock
60-69: not horrible, but not the best, will finish if I have some though
50-59: not a favorite, probably will have a tough time finishing the bag
-50: yuck. I don’t want to have it ever again.



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