1403 Tasting Notes

A bit late on the Christmas Teas Box (of 2018), hehehe.

Cracked this one open and steeped it up today. First sniff in the pouch of leaf gave me cough syrup. Waiting for things to cool. Let’s see.

Hope the kid next door stops wailing before I get to this.

edit—ok, the wailing stopped and now the kid’s brother is leaping up and down. Eh. These people suck. Seriously.

The tea, however, has gotten better. The honeybush has calmed down the flavouring to a gentle raspberry muffin pastry. Not detecting any almond, but to be fair, I am coming down with a cold or the flu and my tastebuds are not what they could/should be. I am hoping that this is going to pass quickly and easily.


Your neighbours sound like the worst.


Ugh, sounds like a nightmare. Hope they move out. I’m waiting for the next ones to move in since the others were evicted. I prefer renting over owning but a wailing kid and a constant jumping up and down would probably change my mind. Sorry Evol Ving Ness you’re having to deal with that. >.<

Evol Ving Ness

Thank you guys for the commiseration. Yeah, my neighbours on both sides suck, really suck. However, I had 16 or 17 really really good years with three different sets of people who I share adjoining walls with. And now, the shrieking, wailing, jumping, exercising, drinking neighbours. It all changes in an instant.

FTR, currently, it is very difficult to find a reasonably priced rental in the city, so there’s that.

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It might be Spring somewhere, but perhaps not here. Snow continues to blanket the ground and now cold cold rain is pelleting down. The sore throat that has been rasping away for a week now just might be turning into something even more wicked and the clock has sprung forward.

This may not be the day for the laundromat outing.

I shopped in my stash for something tempting to help me let go of the tea that I’ve been haunted by for the past week and lookie what came up! (Maybe not real shopping in my stash because this was not an unopened packet but rather in a different bin than my usual go-to and focus teas.)

Just when other steepster threads have been discussing whether Anne has experimented with marshmallow and oolong! And yes, steepster-ites have been hinting that this may be a good idea.

Mint is not one of my favourite things, but this blend is. Pillows of marshmallow and gentle chocolate and just the right amount of peppermint. Yes indeed.


No to mints unless it’s with chocolate. This sounds good. <3


The clock sprang forward?! Whoops.

Evol Ving Ness

yeah, this one is pretty fab (despite beginning to age, some might say already aging.)

Yes, the clock sprang forward here in EST, perhaps not in other places. Thankfully, all my things readjust themselves. Me, well, that’s another matter.


It’s good you mention marshmallow oolong in your post… Anne might have a better chance of seeing it if it’s on a 52Teas blend. :D


You had me so confused, I had to double-check that the clocks hadn’t gone forward here yet haha. I had no idea it was different dates around the world!


please note: If you want me to pick up hints on trying certain flavors with certain tea bases, it helps bunches to actually put those hints in tasting notes of 52Teas’ teas because they are the tasting notes that I read. I wish I had the time to read all the other tasting notes out there, but I seldom do. I used to take the time to do that when I was a reviewer because I was kind of “shopping” back then for teas that I should try. Now, I don’t have a lot of time to sample teas other than my own and the occasional Matcha (so I do read most of the pure Matcha tea taste notes when they appear in my feed) – and I will also occasionally read the tasting notes of pure or orthodox (unflavored) teas to see if there is something I’d like to try to potentially use it as a base. So – simply put, I am more likely to read something you’d like me to blend/reblend if you post it in tasting notes of one of my teas. I can’t guarantee that I will actually blend or reblend what you mention in a tasting note but I’m far more likely to if you post it on a tasting note of one of my teas. :)


100% understand! I was pondering if you had made a marshmallow oolong in my tasting note yesterday for ESP Emporium’s Japan Genmaicha (which I thought to combine with a milk oolong — it is delicious, even with old teas). I knew you would never see my tasting note and question as I was writing it(I was mainly asking others if you had made a marshmallow oolong).


Winter Treat has some marshmallow root: banana, cinnamon, marshmallow root and rum essence with a charcoal roasted tieguanyin.


Oooo… I didn’t know about winter treat!


it was the 12th Tea of Christmas in 2017.

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Yet another morning of getting up and walking directly over to this tea to steep as my morning brew. Has it been a week now already?

As an aside, does anyone know why boys, around age 7 or 8, make sound game noises, like an ongoing repeated rhythmic grunt aloud? And why does it need to be at my bedroom?

This kid next door is driving me crazy. Get away from the adjoining wall, damn you.

Back to the tea—I had a bit leftover from yesterday in my travel mug, so I added that to the fresh steep to cool it enough to make it drinkable immediately. Nothing like fresh tea without having to wait the ten minutes to get started.

Oh tea, how I love you!

Bittersweet chocolate and the slightest bit of raspiness with the sweetness, almost smoke if you squint.

The question now is whether I am just going to keep going with this pouch until it is gone, or if I am going to have the will to let it go and move onto another tea to give that a try for a while.

I can’t imagine ever getting tired of this tea.


Nice! It’s been on my wishlist for the next order. lol @the rhythmic grunt sounds. The neighbors who were beating on each other a couple of weeks ago were evicted so now I have a little peace until the next people move it o.O.


That is VERY good to hear about your neighbors leaving, Kawaii. It must be far less worry for yourself after you had to call 911. Hopefully the lady can remove herself from that guy though.

Evol Ving Ness

Gah! I missed that episode, but good thing that they are gone. Sometimes it is hard to believe that the majority of people are normal, reasonable, and considerate when one has neighbours like these.

The trick with this tea which took me a while to discover is to use something closer to one and a half, almost two teaspoons, of leaf. The leaf is all bud, so it is fluffy with a lot of space. But once you reach that perfect balance, wow, perfection.


Lmao, my boyfriend makes random grunt noises like that sometimes (sometimes accompanied by hitting the air so maybe he’s playing drums in his head?) and he’s nearly 28 XD

Evol Ving Ness

hahahaha! Maybe it never goes away then. Thanks for chiming in. Helpful.

Evol Ving Ness

Except for the never going away part. :)


Yeah, sorry, there may be no end date XD

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A couple of weeks ago, I posted about the milk tea I had at Crimson Teas tea shop. Well, I’ve been craving that milk tea—a big mug of full strength Ceylon with evaporated milk and a spoon of brown sugar— since then. Today, I stopped in to have some. Omgoshwow! Really really good.

I got hungry while I was there and had the vegetarian plate with nutty rice, a variety of fresh and dry mushrooms, Chinese greens, delicately crisped tofu. Also really really good—-fresh, healthy, delicious, and reasonably priced.

I predict that the next time an out of town tea fren comes to visit, this will be one of our stops during our walking tour.

Where are you, Dexter?



Sounds delicious….I miss tea. Hoping to get some made tomorrow…Er today lol

Evol Ving Ness

Hi Sil! Are you ok? I miss you. And hmm, now hunting up your news.

Evol Ving Ness

Yeah, I would most definitely recommend this place. Not a huge selection of tea, but at least one of every category and the quality is divine. That said, it seems to be a gathering place for religious folk and students, but my interactions have been nothing but positive and the people in charge are just lovely.


I’ve had a milk tea craving all day… this is not helping! Haha.

Evol Ving Ness

hehehe, sorry (not sorry).

This milk tea is Hong Kong style, which apparently means that the base tea is steeped strong, like really strong, and then the evaporated milk is about a third of the mug.

I’ve had HK style milk tea also in a restaurant in Chinatown recently, where they serve afternoon specials with a choice of milk tea or coffee, but here at CT’s, the quality of the leaf used is far far better.

Anyway, I predict this milk tea is going to be a kind of regular semi-regular thing for me when I am in the area and need a lift.


@evol – i’m good! just getting used to having the little one at home :)

Evol Ving Ness

Hey! CONGRATULATIONS! The little one lucked out :)

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On a roll with this one—managed to get through half the pouch already this week— and each cup seems to be made with a more heaping spoon of fluffy leaf. Sweet bittersweet chocolate goodness.

Took this in my travel mug to yoga this morning in an attempt to feel something approaching to a bit more human after a dismal health week. Such appreciation for days of relative wellness— and delicious tea!

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I seem to enjoy this most when I use a huge heaping teaspoon, approaching two teaspoons, of leaf. The leaf is very fluffy bud, so this is how I justify the extravagance. And then it produces bittersweet chocolatey goodness which helps muchly on difficult days.

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Popped into a DT’s shop today to take advantage of the 2x FS points offer on leaf and yay, yet another free cup of tea of the day. Which again was this one—could do much worse. Good and gentle and nicely steeped. This reminds me of the bottled green tea blends in the refrigerator section of the corner store, plus the suggestion of green apple. The kombucha fizziness and slight sourness is missing altogether here but that is all to the good.


I’m sad I had to miss this day. We’re down to one car, and my husband has soccer on Thursdays… it just wasn’t going to work for me to make it to a DT with the baby. Kind of bummed. Hopefully these Frequent Steeper events happen a few times a year!

Evol Ving Ness

Today is free cup of tea of the day day in honour of International Women’s Day! Maybe that’ll work. (Babies are cute but loud and cumbersome. But they’re cute, so there’s that.)


Yep, I saw that and think I might make my way there this afternoon after I get the car! Had it just been me yesterday, maybe I would have tried the bus, but I’m just not willing to do that with the baby (I know, so many people do, and they are incredible; I am absolutely lazy and entitled.)

Evol Ving Ness

I didn’t get to DT’s today. thought about it and that’s as far as it got.


I made it! I got a free Frozen Raspberry TOTD, which was lovely, and also a free sample of a not-yet-released tea. And then I purchased about $15 of matcha, Green Apple Kombucha, and Mango Boost samples, which would have been nice to get 2x Frequent Steeper points on!

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Steeped up a good strong cup of this and poured it in with the leftover Heavenly Cream plus cream in my travel mug and omgoshwow. All the excellence of Heavenly Cream and the heft of bittersweet chocolate of this. Score!

If only my migraine would subside…

Mastress Alita

I know those feels all too well (chronic migrainer of 18+ years). I hope it breaks soon!

Evol Ving Ness

Thank you for checking in. I feel ya! Chronic stuff is really something, really something.

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A monk sips morning tea

A monk sips morning tea,
it’s quiet,
the chrysanthemum’s flowering.

- Basho


Note to self—-you do not actually need any more tea.

My real tea obsession began in February 2015.

Not, sadly, when I had been living and working in China, though I very much enjoyed sampling a variety of teas during my travels there as well. No, no, that would have been far too sensible.

I am a reformed coffee drinker. I still enjoy a long double espresso with a good quantity or milk or cream from time to time, but for now, tea is my thing. All day.

*note—this is way out of date, so if we are doing a swap and you are checking to see what I like and dislike, mostly never mind what you find below. One of these days, I will update this. In the meantime, check what I’ve been drinking and use your own judgement. I like all the teas. Well, I am open to trying all the teas.

I tend to drink black, green, or oolong tea in the morning to early afternoon. Rooibos or
Honeybush or herbal in the evening. And perhaps some sort of sleepy-type tea in the wee hours.

This year, I’ve been discovering flavoured teas, so it may look like that is all I drink although that would provide a false impression.

Not a big fan of chocolate or mint in teas, but I will try them and, from time to time, have been pleasantly surprised. Also, usually I dislike a prominent cinnamon flavour, if untempered with other things, in teas. Again, I say usually, because there are exceptions.

Also, please note that haven’t quite gotten into the habit of updating my tea cupboard on Steepster, and it is unlikely that I will do this on any kind of regular basis.

I drink my tea black and unsweetened. If there comes a rare moment that I add something to it, I will mention it.

Finally, while I thank large and successful tea companies for tantalizing and beckoning me to the world of tea, I prefer to support independent ventures with real people, real enthusiasm and commitment, and real dreams.

Currently, I am researching monthly tea subscriptions. Perhaps it will keep me out of tea shops.

And here is Shae’s rating scale— which I am using with permission, of course— which more or less describes the way I have been rating teas. I am going to make more of an effort to stay very close to these parameters now.

Rating Scale

1-20: By far, one of the worst teas I’ve tasted. I most certainly will not finish my cup and will likely “gift” the rest to my sweet husband who almost always enjoys the teas I dislike (and vice versa).

21-40: This tea is not good but if I mix it with another tea or find another steeping method I might be able to finish it.

41-60: This one is just okay. I might drink it again if someone were to give it to me, but I probably won’t be buying more for myself.

61-75: This is a consistently good tea. It’s reliable but not necessarily special.

76-90: This one is a notch above the rest and I would gladly enjoy a cup of it any day of the week. I’ll likely be keeping this in my cupboard, but it isn’t one of my all-time favorites.

91-95: One small change and this tea would be perfect. I’ll definitely have a stash of this in my kitchen if you come over for tea.

96-100: No words can describe this tea. It’s an experience, an aha moment. Closed eyes, wide smile, encompassing warmth. Absolutely incredible. Perfect.


Mostly, but not always, Toronto, Canada.

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