93 Tasting Notes

70
drank Shenandoah by Simpson & Vail
93 tasting notes

This is the last from the National Park sampler. I managed to be the first one up on this hot Saturday morning and thought I’d take some time out on the deck with a mug of tea. My alone time was very brief but it was still quite pleasant spending the early morning hours with my daughter watching birds.
I’ve not been to Shenandoah or read much about the park so I don’t know if it accurately reflects the area. I read other reviews that noted a blue hue to the tea but I don’t see it. After my steeps, the color is a rather hazy green. Perhaps my batch doesn’t have enough butterfly tea flower in it. The tea itself was a nice blend. It is a smooth green tea with a touch of ginger and lemon to it.

Flavors: Ginger, Green, Lemon

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 45 sec 1 tsp 6 OZ / 177 ML

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79

Finally broke into the literary sampler I purchased last year. Since it was Easter, I started with Beatrix Potter’s blend. I have so many of her books and love Squirrel Nutkin the best.
I got a new tea kettle and I’m still trying to figure out if I like it or not. It was a gift but seems to have too much “fancy” for me. My last kettle was great and might be rescued from the basement. The gifter lives with me, so I think I have to try this out for a little bit longer.
I used about 1.5 tsp of leaf in my infuser and steeped for about 5 minutes. The first thing I notice is the strawberry flavor. It’s definitely a sweet tea and needs no added sweetener. After my experiences with the NSP sampler, I think S&V seem to be pretty darn good at coming up with teas that reflect their names. I’m fairly positive, if I had this one blindly, I would be thinking about gardens. Maybe the next one I’ll pull at random and see.

Flavors: Green, Spearmint, Strawberry

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML
ashmanra

I have been thinking about buying this as the first tea to try with my twin grandsons, especially since we have a family tradition of reading one Beatrix Potter a night from Dec. ! to Dec. 23. They are already being read a few of the books.

ashmanra

Dec. 1*

Jen vB

Ohhhh I love that idea. When I had my first baby, my father gifted me the entire collection in one volume. It’s a bit unwieldly. But I still have my books from when I was young. They were gifted to me by our neighbors who were like 2nd grandparents to me.

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37

This tea is marked as Most Loved on Harney & Sons website. But it was gifted to me by someone who didn’t love it. Sadly, I’m not sure I love it either. I do enjoy the coconut and chocolate blend but it feels like a very heavy tea. I have been trying it in the morning but maybe it would be better as a dessert tea later in the day with a cookie.

Flavors: Coconut, Dark Chocolate

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 15 sec
ashmanra

I haven’t tried this one, but so far their chocolate flavoring is hit or miss for me, and Ashman hates the smell of it.

Jen vB

Yeah, while I love chocolate, teas with chocolate blends generally haven’t been a hit for me.

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70
drank Zion by Simpson & Vail
93 tasting notes

One of the last from the sampler pack I picked up last year. I just finished it off this morning. I love how they intentionally blended this to represent Zion. The red color truly does remind me of photos of Zion.
I feel the stronger tastes are the rooibos and sage. I don’t sense the lavender but I do taste some of the berry. I found it to be an enjoyable tea. I wouldn’t put in on my “must buy” list but I would definitely drink it again.

Flavors: Berry, Rooibos, Sage

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 15 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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70
drank Zion by Simpson & Vail
93 tasting notes

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80

For all his complaining, my husband tagged me in a town swap page where someone was giving away teas. Tea Enabler! The lovely gifter gave me several teas from companies I had not heard of before and some Harney & Sons. I thought I’d start with this one since I’ve not been sleeping well and could use a few winks.

I did steep for the maximum recommended amount of 10 minutes as I wasn’t sure how old the leaves were. Right off I smell the lemongrass through my spring allergy sinuses. I don’t catch any other scents off the mug but I definitely taste spearmint first, then the lavender and lemongrass with the chamomile. There is a hint of roses too.

It’s a pleasant mix and a nice way to wind down before bed. After looking the tea up, I’m shocked at how spot on I am at identifying the ingredients with this cup. I think I just leveled up in my tea drinking! :-)

Flavors: Chamomile, Lavender, Lemongrass, Rose, Spearmint

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more 1 tsp 6 OZ / 177 ML
AJRimmer

Oh I love that swap idea! I’ve swapped puzzles with a random Reddit person in town, but it didn’t occur to me to check for other tea people.

Jen vB

I’ve received a few teas from our local Buy Nothing Page. Some are fairly generic but I like them. Others have made me want to become their tea friend because I can tell they are tea explorers like me!

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68
drank Darjeeling by Mr. P's Teas
93 tasting notes

I received a free sample from Mr. P’s. The sample contains approx 2 tsp of leaves. I used 1 tsp in about 6 oz of boiling water. Steeped for a little over 7 minutes.

It has a smooth taste with no bitterness. There is a full, rich earthiness to it with a hint of caramel(?) or coconut (?). Pretty sure I taste coconut. I’m going to need another cup of this to re-assess.

Flavors: Caramel, Coconut, Earthy

Preparation
Boiling 7 min, 15 sec 1 tsp 6 OZ / 177 ML
Martin Bednář

Coconut in Darjeeling? Something seems wrong.

Jen vB

I agree. Sadly, we had water issues due to road construction this week and didn’t realize it until after the 2nd mug was made. It was a bit…. rusty and murky the 2nd tasting.

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33

Meh…. reminds me of tea I can get in a mid range hotel. Not bad and will do in a pinch but definitely not something I would reach for on a daily basis.

This appears to be my last bag of these, which means someone else in the house has been drinking it. It has a cloudy feel as I drink it.

Flavors: Sweet, Thick, Woody

derk

Sounds like it’s a good thing somebody’s been pilfering it :P

Jen vB

My tea tends to be “shared” when someone is short on coffee

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70

I’m beginning to suspect I’ve become the home for unwanted teas. Another friend gave me a packet of teas the other day. She could not identify this one but said there is a strawberry hint to it. After checking out the website, I figured out it is lemon berry blush.
I’m definitely saving this one for early summer. I think it will make a fabulous iced tea. I first taste the lemongrass and then I taste the strawberries. Definitely a fruity flavor. I think even the kids would like it.

Flavors: Citrusy, Dry Grass, Lemongrass, Strawberry

gmathis

Ooh, that does sound like summer just waiting to happen!

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33

This is one of the last in the sampler I received at Christmas. I kind of knew going in to this mug that it might not be for me. As I’ve said before, I’m not a fan of things that are malty. Definitely a strong malt taste and bitter aftertaste. Steeped for just under the recommended 5 minutes. I think if I was to drink this again, I definitely would try doctoring it with some milk and honey. The rest of these bags will be tucked into the “rest of the family can try” drawer.

Flavors: Bitter, Malt

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Profile

Bio

In the early 2000’s, my brother worked for a grocery company that removed items from the shelves and I ended up with a cabinet filled with random tea.

After I finished that cabinet, I started trying new things and exploring the world of tea. Still exploring, still learning, and loving this community.

I tend to take my tea with no additions and quite hot. Though often I find myself having to reheat my mug due to distractions. I’m partial to herbals, white tea, green, and blacks. But I really will try anything once.

Location

New England

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