133 Tasting Notes

drank Tokyo by Harney & Sons
133 tasting notes

Trying to get through some more samples today sent from fellow Steepsters before a few new orders come in…

It’s light on the vegetal! While I’m not tasting full-on caramel, there is a nice sweetness and smoothness coming from this blend. I assume the “caramel” is aiding in that somewhat. Also not getting much in the way of toastiness from the sesame seeds.

Probably not something I’d purchase, but really nice to have tried it! Thanks, Alphakitty!

175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec

I think this one is better iced, the flavors are pretty subdued both ways though.

Will Work For Tea

I am resteeping those leaves in the fridge! How’d you know? :)

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This is a new one that caught my eye – chocolate and yerba maté with a dash of cinnamon? Color me intrigued!

BoxerMama picked me up a sample of this when she made a recent DT run – bless her!

Now I’m pretty picky about chocolate in general. I’m a weird one – I don’t tend to crave it like many others do. So naturally I am very leery when it appears in tea. But this excited me. It’s not your regular black tea base. (Lately, I’ve been drawn to flavored guaysua and yerba maté.) There’s also some real chocolatey goodness here – cocoa nibs and powder, cinnamon and chocolate chips!

Brewed, this is the dirtiest tea I think I’ve ever drank. There’s a film of cocoa powder all over my mug! So if your into “neat” teas, this may not be for you.

The first few sips without any additions tasted like hot chocolate water. There was a nice balance of chocolate to cinnamon. I tend to be heavy handed with cinnamon, so this was pretty pleasing to me. Cocoa Canela got better with additions. A little rock sugar and I could start to see the potential. More rock sugar and a healthy dash of milk and it was pretty close to a lower calorie hot chocolate, but with a layer of cinnamon warmth.

DT is really killing me now because this is another tea that I will be adding to my next order. Grrrr! =D

205 °F / 96 °C 6 min, 45 sec

Mmm… this one sounds really yummy!


Glad you enjoyed it! :) And yes milk and your choice of sweetener really amps this one up!

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Received this as a sample from Butiki awhile ago. I really need to get on the ball and try the newer samples she sent me from last month’s order!

Brewed this sample (1.5 tsp) for the full 10 minutes. There’s a rich brownish-red liquor it produces. There’s definitely an earthy smell/taste coming from this and it’s quite smooth. My preference is to drink flavored teas, but this is something I’d like to have around in sample form for that rare day that I feel like a plain kick-start.

160 °F / 71 °C 8 min or more

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YUM!!!! This tastes like fruit juice, but less sugary-sweet. There’s so much fruity-sweetness going on that I’m contemplating making a little room in my cupboard for a small permanent stash of this! Actually, I might alternate between this and Tropicalia. (Checking out DT’s site…) This is a lot more expensive than Tropicalia though. Hmmmm….

For those who want more tea flavor in their… um, tea – I’d advise to not look for it here. The fruit flavors are totally masking what little tea there is in this offering. But the tangerine and pineapple chunks in this mix are HUGE!

I cold steeped this awesome bonus sample from Sil for 2 days. Thanks, Sil!!!

Iced 8 min or more

I’m soooo glad you cold steeped this. I haven’t yet tried doing that (I know i’m silly) but it’s on my list to try. It is a bit on the expensive side considering there’s not a lot of tea going on, but I do love me some mango haha

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Resteeped leaves from the day before…

So, yesterday I couldn’t really find the strawberry in the oolong via the traditional (hot) brew method. Using the leaves from that attempt, I iced them down in the fridge for about 24 hours. I’m still getting a strong buttery oolong base. There is some sweetness, but I’d be hard pressed to say its strawberry. Who knows – maybe I damaged the delicate tastebuds I had years ago with my coffee-drinking, hard-partying days of yore. No matter, the base is still really, really good!

Iced 8 min or more

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It was nice and cool this morning and very wet still from the overnight rains. This felt like the right choice to take on my morning walk with one of the dogs. It was enjoyable – the walk was not (unruly pup)…

I did try this out before walking out the door. First sip was very nice – smooth guayusa base with apple cider spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, maybe a touch of clove). Very drinkable by itself! However for some reason when I think of cider, I think of maple. So I added just a touch of real maple syrup and that took it to the next level! A little sweet cidery goodness with punch of caffeine!

This is resteeping iced in the fridge, so we’ll see how that fares later on…

Thanks to Sil for sending me a nice sample of this! It’s going on the list for my next Butiki order!

And what better tea to celebrate 100 tasting notes? Woot!

190 °F / 87 °C 6 min, 0 sec

oooh maple..never would have thought of that. I’ll have to try that next steep. Glad you enjoyed it.

Will Work For Tea

Yes, thank you again! :)


Hmm, I never would have thought maple with cider but I guess it makes sense! Happy 100!

Butiki Teas

Congrats on 100 tasting notes! Mmmmm, I definitely need to try adding real maple syrup to this.



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This is a pretty great buttery oolong! I like how smooth this is! Unfortunately I’m not getting a lot of strawberry flavor in this. (I haven’t added any sweetener in it yet.) The strawberry peaks through every now and then if I’m really searching for it, but it’s not a consistent reminder that it’s a strawberry-flavored oolong.

Luckily I do have enough of this to try cold steeping some fresh leaves, so I’ll try that at another time.

For now I’ll try re-steeping the leaves I used for this mug in the fridge for a day and see if that does anything different.

Thank you to Butiki and Sil for passing along samples of this tea!

180 °F / 82 °C 4 min, 0 sec

Let me know how the cold steep goes. I never did try that. Lol I have much the same problem yore having. It’s a lovely tea though.


love the iphone for spelling. bah. want to buy the ability to correct posts :)

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I didn’t realize I was so low on this! Had just enough to make a large, tasty mugful. It was nice and strong – black tea that was over-powered by the coffee flavoring and a nice caramel undertone. Rock sugared and half & half! This is what I want when I don’t want the full effects of coffee, but want it for the taste.

Kind of bummed because I thought I had a back up package of this when I placed my last Lupicia order… Sadly I don’t… :( goes to check out Lupicia site.

Boiling 2 min, 30 sec

Mmmm this sounds yummy

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I got this a little while ago from a swap with Ninavampi and finally got around to trying it last night.

Brewed this smelled delicious – caramel, creamy goodness! The first few sips were decent but a little more hollow than the wafting smell. Thinking the taste could be bettered, I added a little sweetened condensed milk (SCM). Mistake! I got over zealous by doing that; lost a good amount of the caramel taste due to the heaviness of the SCM. I hate when that happens!

Next time I’ll leave out the SCM and maybe just put in a little rock sugar…

Boiling 8 min or more

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Now I realize this is not an actual tea. But because it says it’s “black tea flavor” (yeah, yeah, go ahead and scrunch up your nose!), I’m calling it tea anyway.

First off, let me explain myself: Sadly I’ve never had an actual boba bubble tea from someone who actually knows what they’re doing. Everyday I would pass by this bakery on my way into work when I lived in Los Angeles. I even stopped in exactly 3 times in five years to grab a healthy donut or two. Anyway, they also had bubble tea on their menu. Did I ever get one? Nope! I always figured the donut was bad enough.

Fast forward to today (in Indianapolis). I wanted to go to the local ethnic market to pick up a few things and saw this. It quickly found it’s way into my cart along with some large black tapioca pearls.

In the few hours I have had this, I’ve sucked down 2 ice cold, delicious glasses. Seriously, that’s all I’ve had today, well other than the thai tea ice cream bar I devoured in the car on the way home. I’ve not had anything else to eat all day… Am I satisfied? YES! This was delicious (and probably oh, so bad for me!).

Two tablespoons (about 30 grams) of this mixed 5 ounces (about 150 ml) of warm water. Pour that into a glass that has about 1 tablespoon (15 grams) of sweetened condensed milk and 1/4 cup of fully cooked tapioca pearls. Ice it down. = AWESOME!

Ignorance is bliss! :)


I love bubble tea. Maybe it’s not technically “tea” but it’s too darn good for me to care!


If you think this is good, you have to a try a real fruit bubble tea – sooo good!


I do love bubble tea too – and yes, I agree, while it isn’t “real tea” it is just so tasty. YUM!


Great day! :)

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I’m a native Midwesterner (Iowa, specifically) who was happily uprooted to California twice. SoCal is what I consider home, even though I currently don’t live there. I hope to return home again!

Tea has really come to fill the void of my current displacement. My husband & I (with our two tiny weenies) moved to Indiana hardly knowing a soul. It’s been a tougher transition for me than I’d thought it would be. I have amassed a cupboard of teas to keep me company until I feel more familiar in my newer surroundings.

I will refrain from giving numerical values to teas because I am a faddist. My likes and dislikes are constantly changing. Flavored blacks are what I gravitate to the most. Having said that, I do enjoy a wide variety of teas – you name it, I’ll try it. I may not like it today, but I might revisit it later and love it.

Flavor note: I prefer my teas to be bold in flavor. I am starting to come around to drinking tea without additives. But I do like to dirty my tea with rock sugar/simple syrup and sometimes with half-n-half/milk. Unflavored greens are unsweetened, but flavored greens I usually add rock sugar. Lately I have been favoring flavored guayusa and matés.



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