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Recent Tasting Notes
Old sample from Tea Sipper. Thank you!
I’m tired and easily distracted this afternoon, so I think I overbrewed this. The rose comes through clearly and is definitely pleasant, but the white tea is a little bitter and a little more vegetal than I prefer. I prefer white peony with floral teas.
Flavors: Bitter, Rose, Vegetal
I had bought this nearly three years ago, when I was still a newbie to pure loose tea. To finish it up quickly, I cold-brewed the remainder. Surprisingly, it still held up event though it was a couple years old (???).
As far as an oolong of which I know nothing about – except the fact that it’s rolled and seems to have gone through ~35% oxidation – I found this delicious cold-brewed and then poured on ice. A simple scented oolong suited this brewing method. The flavor profile isn’t complex: sweetly floral and light, very refreshing and hypothetically relieving for the summer heat (I drank it in an icy office the entire time hehe).
This blend has some many different flavors coming into it. You have the desert earth flavor of rooibos, sweet vanilla, milky coconut, and a calming floral lavender. The initial flavor is of a grassy lavender. After this passes it is soothed over with a milky vanilla. This brew has a very soothing effect but still being very bold and robust. Its a nice blend and so herbaceous. I enjoy it but not something I’d buy for myself.
Flavors: Creamy, Herbaceous, Lavender, Smooth
This was a one teaspoon sample I took from the Here’s Hoping teabox a while back. Not a terrible green tea, but I didn’t taste too much fruit flavor. It was in a nice pouch too, so I doubt the flavor had left by much. Hints of raspberry and acai on this sencha green. The green tea itself was not as buttery as I would have liked, but it’s gone now!
Steep #1 // 25 min after boiling // 2 min
Steep #2 // 20 min after boiling // 3 min
Today’s tea is Organic Wild Rose by Tea District, a blend of whole-leaf white tea blended with wild roses. I love roses in tea, it might be my favorite flower to add to tea, but clearly I will need to sit down and do a test one day. The aroma of this tea is clearly rosy, but not the really strong rose perfume you can get at times, it is like a faint rose garden. There are also notes of new growth, sage, and a hint of pepper. It is vaguely reminiscent of early summer.
Once the tea leaves have been steeped the aroma of the wet leaves is a balanced blend of sweet roses and fresh vegetation with just a gentle finish of pepper. The liquid without its flowery leaves is rosy and sweet with just a hint of hay and honey.
The taste is fairly sweet, like flower nectar and fresh roses. After the initial flowery taste there are notes of lettuce and a hint of sage.There is a slightly dry yet refreshing mouthfeel, and just a gentle hint of fuzzy trichomes. he aftertaste is a touch of fresh vegetation and morning dew. This tea is also quite good chilled, very light and refreshing.
For blog and photos: http://ramblingbutterflythoughts.blogspot.com/2014/07/tea-district-organic-wild-rose-tea.html
Small Big Traveling Tea Box
The leaves of this tea smells like hay to me. Haha. But, luckily, lemon is the strongest flavor of this tea. I would suggest sipping it rather than taking larger gulps… the smaller the sips, the more lemon and the less grassy flavor you get.
Flavors: Grass, Lemon
Happy Steepster-versary to me! It’s been a year since I made my account now. Here’s to another!
This is a pretty fair tea. It appears to be a blend of estates, but it’s satisfying and comforting in the way that Darjeelings are. It has notes of cocoa and malt, but not as strongly as a second flush Darjeeling would, and slight notes of muscatel with an earthy/grassy finish.
I can’t see myself reaching for this over my second flush single estates, but I won’t have a problem with what I have at all.
Thank you to justnord for sending me a sample of this one. The flavor matches the name perfectly. This tea contains both rooibos and honey bush but I think honey bush is the prominent one. Which is surprising because hibiscus is also listed and that is the one flavor that usually takes over but I can barely taste it. This tea almost has too many flavors going on.
Tea #5 from Another Traveling Tea Box?!?!?!
I had this the other evening and forgot to log it… or the NyQuill kicked in. From what I remember, the rooibos’ carmel notes were pretty distinct, but the lavender and coconut did make their presence known. A nice tea for just before bedtime.
Dry this tea isn’t much to speak of – the rooibos is very finely shredded (to the point where it came through my strainer) and the only fruit I saw off-hand were the dried blueberries. Once steeped the liquid is deep purple/red and (thought this is going to sound odd) has a scent oddly reminiscent of black olives…not exactly pleasant.
A few sips in and this really does taste like black olives, also. I can maybe pick up hints of blueberry, but it’s certainly not palatable. I may try to resteep this at some later time, but for now it’s not one I’d be willing to try again.
(First review post-redesign, so my apologies if anything goes wrong)
I received this from justnord a while back and I’ve been looking forward to trying it out. I steeped according to my usual “herbal” guidelines – 2tsp into the cup, 2tsp of sugar and add water at boiling for ~5min.
It smelled a little unpleasant – kinda sickly, fruity sweet in the same way that the Youthberry did…but this actually steeped up rather nicely. It was a surprising deep red/burgundy colour in the cup and had a delightfully fruity taste (a bit reminiscent of Hawaiian Punch, in a good way). There’s a slight bitterness that I think comes from the hibiscus, but it doesn’t really detract from the other flavours.
This tasted much better once it cooled off, so I’d be much more likely to make it as an iced tea in the future. It’s quite tasty, though, and I’m glad I got to try it out.
Tea #1 from Another Traveling Tea Box?!?!?!
My husband made off with my travel mug and used it for coffee… he managed to get the coffee taste out, but what I didn’t know is that he left a little dish soap flavor, too.
What of the tea I could taste – around the Seventh Generation – lived up to the name. A black base that did a quick-stepping little dance with the notes of a piña colada. Interesting!
From BrewTEAlly Sweet sale package.
Instructions said boiling water, but there is green tea in here? I did 85C for 4 minutes, and I got a nice fruity cup of tea. I think I’m getting more green base than black base, and definitely more papaya than pineapple.
This is a nice fruity tea. I like it.
Tea #40 from HHTTB2
The leaves are quite small and broken, so I was unsure they’d stand up to a 6 minute infusion time as was recommended. So I erred on the side of caution, so keep in mind my review is for the tea at the parameters below.
This is the least rose-flavored of the three rose teas I’ve tried in the box. But it’s still quite good.
The primary flavor that comes through is the white base, which is delicate with fresh hay and apricot notes. The rose adds a definitely rose flavor as well as a gentle sweetness. It’s not nearly as immersive as other rose teas I’ve had, but good for those who enjoy the flavors of rose, but can find it overwhelming.
Tea #15 from HHTTB2
This was more floral and less fruity than I was expecting. I’m glad I didn’t cold steep a cup, because it toes the overwhelming line now.
I don’t honestly get much for raspberry (or tea base), but there a light blueberry-ish note that I can bring back to the acai. It also, unfortunately, shares the baby powder taste/feeling that River of Heaven and Bouddha Bleu also have on me.
Very tasty white tea with rose! I can’t believe I still have a cold. Anyway so I’m not going to rate this one yet…
I kind of forgot about my water when it was ready so it must have been a lower temp than 212 but it came out really well. It absolutely tastes like Orange Dreamsicle! I was thinking it would need some creamer and sugar to make it really taste like it but the vanilla and orange comes out strong without it. I might need to buy this… a lot of it. Thank you BrewTEAlly Sweet!
Freaky, I thought I tea logged this?
Anyways, I got a sample of this from Kasumi no Chajin, yay ty!
First time, I cold steeped it. Very very good! I saved the rest of the sample for a hot round, which did not happen. The last of my sample is me drinking it as another cold steep.
So good! I love the floral in this tea – its like jasmine but much better as it is also sweet and light. Why isn’t there more magnolia teas? The oolong is so crisp and refreshing and the cold steep works very well!
Gah, I should of tried this hot! Oh well, I might just have to order some myself!
I get migraines around a pretty predictable schedule and have found mate tea to be helpful in reducing the severity so I’m always looking for mate teas so I get a bit of variety. What I’ve found is that there isn’t a ton of variety when it comes to mate. Most have some sort of chocolate base, which, if you know my tea preferences at all, you know I’m ok with.
This tea is a little bit more mellow than other chocolate mates and the vanilla gives it a different note than most. It’s less roasty-toasty and more cookies and creme. Very pleasant and I’m glad I got 2 bags with my groupon.
I’ll be doing a cost analysis on this vs a few of my other go-to mates to see which is the most cost-effective and hopefully adding this to my regular rotation.
I just ordered this from the Tea District, using up a groupon, and based on recommendations from Earl Grey fans. Lavender has always been a favorite of mine – usually as a fragrance but more recently as a tea!
This pairing seems to be popular – lavender with bergamot/Earl Grey – and with good reason. I’m not usually an EG fan, but this is the gateway tea that is easing me into EG waters.
Enough babbling, let’s talk tea. This is one of the more tastier versions of this pairing, but that could be due to steeping. I was at work, called away from my desk, you know how it goes. (I won’t rate it this time; I’ll pay better attention and put tea before my work (ha!) next time. There is something very warming and comforting about pairing lavender and citrus, almost like relaxing on a summer’s evening.
I am currently in a Quest to Find a Tasty Earl Grey: http://keenteathyme.blogspot.com/2011/04/quest-for-earl-grey.html
Got any other suggestions?
I’ll be following your quest with interest, because I too have been looking for my favorite EG. Although I love traditional EGs, I like all the different permutations as well.
Did I send you Metro’s Earl Grey Cream? That has been one of my top sellers.
Per the spelling, The British Earl IS “Grey” and Gray is a color.US. or Grey is a colour. British.
The Best Earl Grey tea however is a "Greyt’ quest. I have several yet to try. But Steven Smith’s Earl Grey, which I tasted at his booth at the food show, is right up there, In my opinion.
It is not canonical, but my favorite earl grey is Lady Grey. Many companies do versions (bergamot, with other citrus particularly orange) many much fancier (Kusmi makes Anastasia for example) but for my money the best I have tried yet is plain old Twinings original Lady Grey. Have you tried yet?
@ColumbiaKate – yep, that’s actually my next tea to try today. Thanks for the input on the spelling debacle. I always thought it was “Grey” for the same reasons…
@cteresa – Lady Grey is quite nice! A friend of mine who loves EG recommended I try it and I liked it. I’ve only had it once though. I liked the name “Lady Grey” because it reminded me of one of my favorite ghost stories! :)
I’m also a non-fan of EG but I’ve found that a rather strange ordinary enough brand, NUMI, has this “Aged Earl Grey” with aged bergamot… and I delight in it. The aroma knocks me out, and drinking it is actually a pleasure instead of a polite thing I tolerate when somewhere they are serving whatever random “fabulous” grey they think I’ll find irresistable :) Funny thing about lavender, which I’m allergic to in terms of the flowers being airborne (but can consume in creme brulee—my favorite use for it—or other foodstuff), I LOVE places that take a few fresh buds and put them on top of packed fresh ground espresso just before brewing. Makes a kick butt cup o’ joe (when the espresso is good, which is rare by my snootier-on-coffee-than-tea standards… and most consider me snooty on tea except for “candy teas” that are not real “tea” persay :D)