August Uncommon Tea

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Recent Tasting Notes

84

I find this one to be pretty similar to Golden Arrow from the same company, except it’s less smokey caramel and more sweet spirits. Unlike GA, It has a thinner but flavourful mouthful that takes me right to the downtown distillery! Vanilla, cocoa and malt, with hints of burnt sugar and smoke. It doesn’t burn the throat going down like bourbon does, but it’s close!

It’s a pretty accurate rendition of a alcoholic drink, and also brings to mind O’Connor’s Cream from TeaGschwendner (that one’s way bolder though).

Taken with both dairy milk and oat milk on different occasions. That may be what turns this bourbon into an Irish Cream sibling.

Steep Count: 2

Flavors: Alcohol, Burnt Sugar, Cocoa, Malt, Smoke, Vanilla, Whiskey

ashmanra

White Antlers sent me O’Connor’s Cream and it is a definite repurchase. I was happy to find out I can get it at Tin Roof Teas in Raleigh where we love to take a day trip shopping anyway.

gmathis

This sounds similar to the Irish Whiskey variety from TeaMaze that I really like.

CrowKettle

O’Connnor’s Cream is pretty rich and unique; I wish their teas were easier to get a hold of where I am!

This one is more a pale memory of it. Subtle notes of Bourbon, vanilla, and cocoa isn’t the same as full-throttle Irish Cream Whiskey.

CrowKettle

I’ll have to check into TeaMaze! I seem to like boozy teas, although the thing that wins me over here is probably that it’s a vanilla black I can take with milk (that time of the year again).

gmathis

It’s still too warm in Missouri for tea with milk, but we’re seeing glimmers of seasonal change! I leave for work just pre-sunrise now, so got to gawk at a trio of deer who came down to the creek for breakfast.

CrowKettle

That’s a lovely scene and a wonderful way to meet the dawn! Are there lots of deer around where you are?

We had a lot of rain today. You could’ve missed the skyscrapers and mountain peaks for all the low clouds and precipitation. ‘Raincouver’ has reverted to its original state.

gmathis

We’re in a little burg of a suburb with lots of brush and farm pastureland, and if you pretend, you can almost ignore the noise from the interstate about a half mile away :) Pretty healthy deer population, the usual possums and armadillos, but sometimes you get bonus critters: wild turkeys, cranes (on the creek), and my husband recently spotted a bald eagle. About 40 miles north, in northern Barton and Dade County, eagles are pretty common.

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86

SMOKE!!! Caramel, and vanilla. I seem to fall into the group that loves this tea.

I find the smoke to be pretty front heavy and undeniable; I think it runs the risk of dominating the sweet dessert notes and ruining the blend if you’re lapsang souchong opposed. I like my campfire smoke tea though and think the addition of caramel and vanilla notes makes it even more drinkable. For those who want a tad less smoke but like the burnt sugar and vanilla – Low Country is similar but boozier and without the caramel toffee (I personally prefer the latter).

Taken with oat milk. This tea can handle the thickness, and the grains emphasize sweet smoked malt goodness. Underleafing and a milk also helps minimize the smoke.

Steep Count: 2

I’m all out now, but If I order from AUT again this will be in the cart. EDIT I should also add that my mom, who hates Lapsang Souchong and loves to threaten to throw it out, found this to be pretty delicious.

Flavors: Burnt Sugar, Caramel, Malt, Pine, Resin, Smoke, Toffee, Vanilla, Whiskey

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec
tea-sipper

oh man, I always think of a smoky vanilla tea. Tried to mix two teas yesterday, just to try for a cup of smoky vanilla (didn’t work.)

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77

Had this the other evening and while it’s not super exciting I did get rhubarb from it. It’s like chamomile with a little accent. I like chamomile so we’re good. (I’m giving this my default rating for chamomile +1 for rhubarb. And, yes, I do rate chamomile highly. Love that stuff)

Flavors: Chamomile, Citrus, Herbaceous, Rhubarb

Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 0 sec

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Gongfu Sipdown (1461)!

Yesterday I finished off the last of this sample with some juicy blackberries nibbled on in-between the steeps! This Taiwanese oolong has a beautifully buttery mouthfeel with medium bodied notes of gently toasted hazelnut, coconut milk, and undertones of pandan. It was exactly the kind of cozy oolong that I needed for a super rainy afternoon and evening!! Six steeps and it was tapped out though. Honestly, I didn’t have a ton of leaf for the size of gaiwan I was using so I was pushing the steep time longer to compensate & I’m honestly surprised it lasted as long as it did.

It’s definitely a shame that this isn’t a tea still on the AU site because it’s definitely one I would order. This and Ventura Highway, both straight oolongs from AU, were very good. I know they have a third called Eventide, and I plan on getting a sample whenever the new blends launch that AU recently teased in an email.

I know I got this sample from someone but I can’t remember who. So, thank you to whomever it was that passed it along – maybe VariaTEA or Sil!?

Photos: https://www.instagram.com/p/CTe9oNCgXGP/

Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-PzATU-45U&abchannel=SaidTheWhale

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75
drank Dark Iris by August Uncommon Tea
1028 tasting notes

I love the concept and the dry leaf aroma. Mmm.. peach candies and lime blossoms. Both dry and steeped, this reminds me a bit of Buddha’s Blend from David’s Tea – floral, peachy, candy elements, but a tricky base that can get a bit nippy or fall flat underneath all the floral, fruity, candied, and roasted ingredient notes.

Besides a mixed bag of fruity candy, this one tastes a little like a signature cocktail. If I focus on the lime and the base comes out sharp it’s a margarita (predominant in first steep); if the peach and rose notes are stronger it’s a Bellini or Fuzzy Peaches (2nd steep). I don’t really pick up on the pistachios much beyond a mild roasted creaminess (and bitterness, which adds to the boozy illusion for me). The rose, peach, lime and white chocolate notes are generally more apparent if inconsistent (I don’t know what’s going on with this tea sometimes).

It’s weird, it doesn’t quite work as advertised, and has a funky mix of ingredients that never seem to come across the same way, but I kind of like it anyways.

Steep Count: 2

Flavors: Candy, Champagne, Cream, Floral, Lime, Peach, Roasted, Rose, Rum, Vanilla, White Chocolate, Wood

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 30 sec
Sakura Sushi

Try it iced – it makes an amazing iced tea! I never drink this one hot.

CrowKettle

I’ll give that a shot! I forgot about this one today and it tasted like a completely different tea cooled down; more pistachio :)

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75

This is an interesting tea, certainly different from most of what I’ve tried.

For once, I’m relieved the scent doesn’t come through as much in the flavor. The scent is overwhelmingly sweet – a little bit of something bitter, but a lot of butterscotch candy vibes.

The taste continues to fascinate me. I definitely got the smokiness and something bitter, and the sweet was a nice edge to the flavor. It felt almost rich, especially when steeped a longer time. The tea reminded my partner (not a tea drinker, fwiw) of a pipe tobacco.

I don’t know if I’d buy it, but I’d be excited to drink it again.

Flavors: Smoke, Sweet

Preparation
Boiling

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91

I was intrigued by the August Uncommon brand and the idea of a violet tea named “metallic”. The scent did remind me of something metallic, though also bright and fruity. The taste is something more subtle, but pleasant. Each sip felt a little bit different at first; there’s more going on than my limited palate can discern! I’m excited to try more from this brand and hope to get more of this tea soon.

Flavors: Fruity, Violet

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65

I really thought I’d like this one and was excited to try, but sadly did not enjoy. To me it’s slightly bitter and cherry tasting like the same cough drop or candy type flavoring that I don’t want to see in my tea. Not my thing at all.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 4 OZ / 118 ML

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75

I wasn’t sure I’d like since the primary note is listed as Pine Needles, and then Maple Sap. I do like it well enough, but likely not for a reorder other than this sample.

Steeped at 4 min. I can see a tendency of this tea, and a few others I’ve tried from this company, to be easily bitter.

It’s a strong tea, and I added two sugar cubes to help offset. May try rest of sample at a weaker 3 minutes.

I do like that it’s different and unique, but not a huge fan.
Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 15 sec 1 tsp 5 OZ / 147 ML

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91

My third of the samples, and the one I enjoyed the most. Two other two are reviewed on notes on my phone, will have them up soon (it’s charging). I havent’ been that impressed so far with the samples, but I have a lot to try fortunately. This one is delicious!! Sweep and reminds me of maple syrup, sweet luxury, warmth, and pleasant nights. I added in two sugar cubes to really heighten the sweetness. It’s pleasant and not at all bitter. Brewed 4 minutes at boiling. Will be a keeper and a re-order.

Not getting any smoke in this first brew, though.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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80

Happy National Apple Turnover Day! Today the sipdown prompt is to drink a tea with apple flavor notes!

I have been pretty much exclusively drinking cold brews and tea pop from the fridge, but brewed this as a warm cup with my breakfast this morning. 3.5g to 350ml 205F water, steeped for three minutes. The cup has a pleasing green apple and spices aroma, particularly of the peppery licorice scent of fennel.

Perhaps a bit autumnal in flavor profile for this unending heat wave, but I really enjoy the flavor. I’m getting two different apple flavors; a sweeter red apples baked in cinnamon and a tarter, juicier green apple that is more prominent at the end of the sip. There is a strong fennel flavor in the tea which lingers in the aftertaste, which does add a layer of pepperiness/black licorice to the flavor. I personally really like how the fennel tastes in combination with the apple.

A nice tea to lazily sip on during my “faux Sunday” morning, while munching on a breakfast rice bowl.

Flavors: Apple, Baked Bread, Cinnamon, Fennel, Fruity, Green Apple, Licorice, Pepper, Red Apple, Smooth, Spices

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 g 12 OZ / 350 ML
ashmanra

I liked this one!

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79

It was one of those mornings where, actually having the time to properly prepare a cup of tea without having to be in a rush out the door for work, I stood in front of my massive tea collection and couldn’t decided what I wanted. When I saw my two sampler pouches of this in the (almost empty now) flavored black teas sampler bag, I decided I really was in an Earl Grey mood.

I actually do smell the plum and clove from the dry leaf… and something coming across peppery? Lazily scooped one perfect teaspoon leaf instead of measuring grams like I usually do, steeped in 350ml 205F water for three minutes. The steeped leaf smelled more strongly of a lemony/bergamot citrus. The brewed up has a very appealing aroma; beramot, plum, and spices.

Mmm… this is interesting, and I like it! To me, it tastes like an Earl Grey and a Mulled Wine tea had a child, and those are both tea types I really like. There is a deep fruitiness to the cup; I do taste plum, but it is also reading a little like lychee to me, since I’m getting a slight floral undertone. The bergamot is pretty pervasive and fills the sip, with a crisp, citrusy, and slightly tart/sour lemon note. When the berg settles on the touch, there is a strong aftertaste of spices; I taste the clove, but the nutmeg is reading to me as more of a black pepper taste.

Perhaps a strange combination of flavors but it’s working for me… and it feels nice to get to lazily sip on a warm cup of tea, taking my time and savoring the sips!

In other tea news, I recently bought one of those CO2 infusing “soda” machines to experiment with my cold teas. The first one I tried (B&B’s Peppermint Cream) tasted questionable, but I looooooooove TeaSource’s vanilla black, Moon Over Madegascar, that way! Looking forward to experimenting with other teas (I have some of Lupicia’s Ramune tea to try next!)

Flavors: Bergamot, Citrus, Clove, Floral, Fruity, Lemon, Lychee, Pepper, Pleasantly Sour, Plum, Spices, Tart

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 350 ML
teepland

I’ve never considered carbonating a cold tea, but that sounds like a wonderful idea! I will have to try that with our machine. I hope you’ll share some that you try and it turns out well!

Mastress Alita

Right now I’m having the French tea I made yesterday (my leftovers from work went into the fridge to get ice cold). It was called C’est Sympathique and supposedly was melon-flavored, but has a strong tart lemony taste to me. That strong, bright citrus flavor also tastes really good carbonated.

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National Superhero Day Tea!
I don’t watch marvel movies or shows with the exception of Jessica Jones which I loved. I chose this one because it’s described as a “strong” black tea with “Bourbon”. (I actually thought Golden Arrow would work for Jessica Jones in terms of her office and desk with the mahogany. I also thought Black Metallic would work as well with the purple flowers and elderberry for Violet from The Incredibles.)I’ve never had Bourbon before so I can’t comment on if this tastes like it or not. I realized that I actually have had this tea before and just had forgotten since there was no tasting note on it. It’s quite smoky and does have a kind of burnt flavor that’s left on your tongue and isn’t pleasant. I’m not liking this one so far but maybe I just need to brew it at a lower temperature next time. I love Golden Arrow and thought this one might be similar but it’s just not working for me. Maybe this one does better with milk.

Flavors: Alcohol, Bitter, Burnt, Smoke

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 30 sec 3 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

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April Sipdown Alphabet Challenge: “C” Tea
This one has a nice and authentic dark chocolate flavor. It has the bitterness and fruitiness that the darker chocolate bars have. I also get some of the booziness but unfortunately, my sample didn’t have any pieces of cherry in it. It’s also somewhat drying on the tongue. Something to note is that my cup did have quite an oil sheen to it on top and I know that bothers some people. It’s a nice chocolate tea and I bet it would be even better with the cherry. I just noticed that they recommend trying this tea with milk so I’ll do that next time.

Flavors: Bitter, Dark Bittersweet, Dark Chocolate, Drying, Fruity, Tannic

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

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I’ve steeped my other August samples following their instructions for the first cup just to see if I like their recommendations and if it helps bring out the flavors listed in their descriptions, but I’ve never had an oolong brewed western style that really wow-ed me so I’m skipping straight to gongfu with Eventide. I’m still quite an oolong newb but they’re growing on me. Water about 200°F, a few little balls of tea leaves sprinkled in the teeny baby gaiwan ‘cause I’m too lazy to weigh it out, steeps starting at 15-ish seconds.

The first couple steeps were mostly just roast flavors and aroma. Nice toastiness, not one of those that smells burnt until the other flavors start coming through. The package lists steamed banana leaf as one of the flavors this tea is supposed to have. I have no idea what steamed banana leaf tastes like but I taste something that could maybe be green leafy something. And something fruity…tropical fruit? I’m so bad at picking out specific flavors. There’s a little bit of floral too, but I only get it while my cup is hot. Once the tea cools the floral vanishes. Weirdly, one sniff of the gaiwan lid smelled exactly like my mother’s caramel cinnamon rolls. The corner rolls, specifically…the ones that start to get a little hard on the edges and the goo is aaaaallllllmost a tiny bit burnt. I don’t know if this tea would be good with baked goods but it has made me want delicious cinnamon rolls and croissants.

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The packaging mentioned Guinness-like flavors so this seemed like a good choice for St Patrick’s Day. The dry tea smells kind of like boozy raisins to me. There’s an alcohol-ish (the drinking kind, not the cleaning kind, but I can’t really pinpoint what kind specifically) scent I get from several of the darker cocoa-y type flavor August teas. Maybe it’s something in their flavorings or maybe it’s my allergy-addled brain (yay, springtime) not knowing what I’m smelling, I don’t know. The brewed tea smells like dried cherries and spices. I taste a bitterness that sort of reminds me of the bitterness of coffee but the flavor isn’t anything like coffee. There’s some dried fruit flavor. I guess I could maybe see how if you stretched your imagination you could get pumpernickel but the dry smell was probably closer to pumpernickel than the flavor. Nothing reminds me much of stout beer like Guinness. It’s not a bad tea, I just don’t really taste the flavors listed on the package.

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I thought this tea might be a good one for days I want coffee but my stomach doesn’t think it’s such a great idea. It really smells like coffee dry. While it was steeping I could smell something sort of toasted grain-like. I wasn’t completely sure if that was the barley malt or the mate. I have very little experience with mate (just a couple of flavored bagged teas from grocery store brands) so I’m not sure I could identify “mate smell”. I usually taste my tea before deciding if it needs milk/cream or sugar, and I probably should have done that with this one too…but it’s been a grumpy day of spring allergies and stressed out sewing procrastination (feeling a bit in over my head on a project) and it looked and smelled like the kind of tea I’d want to add something to so in went the sweetened condensed milk right away. I don’t teally taste the coffee. I can still smell it a bit but it’s not nearly as strong as the dry tea. It kinda just tastes like roasty black tea. I may have buried any of the more subtle flavors in sugary milky goo. It’s not bad this way but it doesn’t make me think coffee. Oh well, will taste it first next time and maybe use plain milk if it needs additions. It feels astringent in a way I’m not sure I’ll like plain but always good to try it anyway.

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Creamy cocoa notes reminiscent of hot chocolate. Sweet anise flavor as well. This tea is nicely balanced. I would like this to drink occasionally but with the anise I don’t see it as being an everyday cup. It’s definitely a unique blend true to the brand’s name.

Flavors: Anise, Cocoa, Creamy, Sweet

Preparation
Boiling

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