513 Tasting Notes
Literally almost crying. Among the saddest sipdowns I will ever have. Butiki was the first small tea company I ever fell in love with, and stacey’s teas will never be replaced in my cupboard. I remember feeling such a mix of feelings when I found out Butiki was closing: panicked sadness for sure, but also an incredibly selfish irritation: how could this happen? How on earth could stacey, you know, have other things to deal with? other plans? other priorities? why wasn’t she sharing her blending secrets so the rest of the world could discover and fall in love with her teas? and even as I thought those things, i realized how much I could understand. Those discoveries, that magic belongs to her. It’s her legacy, and her right to keep it. I mean, i won’t even share my mom’s chicken and rice recipe with friends who’ve been begging me for it for years, and it hasn’t reached nearly the audience stacey has. And so here’s to you, Stacey: to an artist who’s legacy will be remembered, missed, admired, and yearned for for decades to come. There won’t be another like you, and there won’t be another tea like yours. I hope you are happy and doing well, because heaven knows you deserve it! Your blending abilities and artistry helped me find more beauty, made me fall in love again, helped me dream, grounded me, made me remember such wistfully achingly wonderful memories, and also just tasted friggin amazing.
I got it all today: creamy caramel and vanilla, the mault of the assam, and this was seriously the last dregs, the bottom of the can. No whole tea leaves even left, and it still blew me away.
You know when you feel sick but don’t look sick? that’s how I am right now. My ear hurts, my head feels “full”, and my face and hands feel flushed. I’m also getting the chills, but am sometimes just fine. I do wish my body would make up its mind about being sick or not.
Anyway, this tea is two years old, and has lost pretty much all of it’s white chocolate flavouring, so is basically a slightly creamier peppermint tea. No peppercorn taste, either. It’s ok, though. It felt hot on my throat and that was heavenly. I think I’ll toss out the rest of the leaf though. This was my favourite dt blend two winters ago, and I’m excited that they’re bringing something similar back this winter. Although “similar” doesn’t necessarily mean better, as it could be like “as if white chocolate and peppermint weren’t enough (they so, so are), david thought he’d add in a touch of peach/apple/pineapple/whatever else that wouldn’t make sense” LOL.
I don’t have anything more to say. Oh no wait! Reading about mislena organizing her cupboard, I felt inspired to organize mine, and got rid of so many teas that were either too old or ones that I said i’d get around to but realistically never did. It feels so much more manageable now! It also helps that I’m not doing any more swapping, because those tiny little bags just end up piling up and getting neglected and that’s sad on so many levels.
This tea is the most interesting strawberry tea I’ve tasted. Not because the strawberry flavouring is particularly unique, but more because the tea tastes as though the taste of strawberry is somehow in the leaf itself, and not added as a flavour. You don’t necessarily get the layers of flavour that you might with most flavoured teas. It kind of tastes as though the tea-leaves themselves grew in strawberry-saturated soil or something. Anyway, it really is a wonderful tea, and has been languishing in my cupboard for two years now, and still tastes very much like a gentle campino candy. I actually hadn’t intended on drinking it this morning, because I thought I’d have one of my butiki teas, but when I realized that my butiki stuff was further back in my cupboard than this, and not wanting to topple over all my other tins and assorted clutter, I opted for this and was really happy. I don’t know if I’ll restock it, but I’d also be happy to if that makes sense. You don’t need to think deeply or be craving anything in particular or be in a particular mood to enjoy this tea.
And now for a blessedly shortened work week. I do love my job, but hate how much of my life it takes up, and the hours aren’t even that bad. It just feels like, I don’t know. Like this is it? Get educated and get a job, and then just work until you die or retire. Bleak-sounding, I know. But I’ve always maintained that the ideal would be to work part-time. But then I might not be able to afford the kind of lifestyle I want, and so you win some you lose some, I guess.
Another tea from DT! There are a few blends from them that I really like, and because they’re right down the street and easily available to me, and also don’t have many of the same problems associated with small businesses, I’m always particularly excited when I like a tea from them. Also, I flat-out refuse to become one of “those people” who looks down my nose at an entire company, although i do of course understand how tastes can evolve. I feel similarly about perfume. I am a huge, huge fragrance lover (as in I love them a lot, not as in I am huge, although I guess to some I am haha), and started my journey by falling in love with a lot of department store offerings, and then discovered a whole other world of niche fragrances and it just blew my mind: that there could be smaller perfume houses with a budget dedicated entirely to sourcing high quality ingredients to make such beautiful scent profiles that I could not find anywhere else, but I never gave up on the department stores, because I’m just never one to turn down an opportunity to fall in love with something. I just love the feeling of loving wonderful things. LOL I must sound so annoying, sorry I’ll stop.
This tea is so wonderfully thick and creamy all on its own. That said, a spot of cream just takes this tea to the next level and amplifies the creamy flavours tenfold. I was also perusing facebook earlier and saw omgsrsly talking about vanilla sugar, and realized that I have some of that as well. I am so, so going to throw in some vanilla sugar next time I brew this up. The people who liken the scent of this to bubblegum are probably right, although I imagine that’s the “pear”. You can’t really smell the cranberry in this, although if you inhale deeply enough you might pick up on some tartness. The taste feels similar: the pear up front followed by a hefty dose of cream and a very subtle tang of what could be cranberry but will inevitably keep this tea from ever being cloying or “kid-like”. I really hope dt always keeps this in stock. I also think it’ll do really well in a travel mug, and I intend to do just that when I pick up some more later on. Great, great tea. I also woke up with a scratchy throat this morning and this tea felt heavenly against it.
Had this tea in latte form when i was at DT today picking up the last mulled wine curve travel mug they had. Yes, I am obsessed.
This tea is a latte is phenominal. it is not complicated, tastes a lot like candied almonds/marzipan, and that’s fine by me. The choice to make this a rooibos actually ended up working remarkably well, because the very slight woodiness of the rooibos actually compliments the almondy marzipan flavour perfectly. That, and I’m always looking for more caffine-free options. I got myself 25 g of it to play with at home, because I still need a fail-safe latte recipe so that I can replicate my in-store experience. Any of you guys care to share your latte-making methods here? I don’t own a frother, although it’s more the milkiness i’m after, and not a pile of foam, so it’s ok that I don’t have a wand or whatever.
This tea is disgusting and undrinkable. It tastes very artificially sweetened and fake, and this is coming from a girl who’s just fine sweetening her tea all on her own. It’s so sad, because it’s such, such a far cry from the delectable smell of the dry leaf, which smells like a fresh apple candle that you’d set out in your living room to make your place not smell like people really live in it. Actually, I do have the candle for this tea as well, but it’s because I spent an obscene amount of money there the other day and got it for free. I’ll enjoy the candle a lot more than the tea, that’s for sure.
Loved the jays game yesterday, although their loss was devastating. and then mr. keychange and I had such a hard time getting home. It was such a long and drawn out adventure that unfolded slowly and terribly, complete with greyhound being predictably unreliable and uber drivers refusing to take our guide dogs. We were supposed to get home around 8:00 but ended up spending over a hundred dollars on an uber ride and got home after 11:00. It is what it is, but man I do not know how any blind person lives in Toronto and doesn’t want to kill themselves/other people on a regular basis.
This tea sucks. I can’t wait until I get my 52 teas order in the mail.
Yeah, so this tea is alright. It’s been languishing in my cupboard (though sealed) for about two years now, no maybe even longer than that, so I’m certain it’s lost some of its flavour, but I think it still at least hints of the taste it intended to have. 3 tsp in 12 oz of water in my curve mug today. I am hunting for teas that don’t require any additions, and although this one tastes…fine, I’m not lusting after it and am grateful, as rivertea is no longer around. I don’t really deserve to write a tasting note for this tea, because i don’t even know how to describe it. I can definitely taste the white tea base which has an unusual amount of heft here, and I suppose the rest of what I’m tasting is…hang on, let me sip again and see. yes! yes to the person who said this reminds them a bit of cantaloupe and cream from Butiki. Very much so, actually. I’m just dying to add a touch of sugar to this, and might actually do that next time i brew it up. I also don’t know what mulberries are supposed to taste like, so there’s that. The more it cools, the more delicious I’m finding it. But man oh man how a touch of sugar would transform this.
Ok so I bet you never thought that this tea would go amazingly unbelievably swimmingly well with a tuna sandwich, but it’s one of the best ways to enjoy it. I don’t even know why. Something about washing the sharp tang of tuna with dill and lemon down with a warm blast of cinnamon is just so cozy and perfect. I made this in my curve mug, used 2 tsp of leaf for 12 oz. of water and drank it straight. Cinnamon teas seem to do exceptionally well in travel mugs, or at least they do for me. Definitely a winter staple.
In other news, it’s been a bad week for sleep. I have slept poorly for the last few nights, and that is almost always a recipe for the quick unravelling of my stability in pretty much every imaginable way. Hopefully that rights itself soon, and if not, the upcoming long weekend should at least help me recover somewhat.
Took this to work in my new curve mug, which I am still worshipping btw.
I made it too sweet, and that made it a bit disappointing to finish. I don’t think sweet teas do well in travel mugs, because something about the flavours being “trapped” does something to the sweetness that in other contexts would be lovely, but kept in a travel mug can be quite cloying. That’s ok though: trial and error, right? It’s so frustrating, being the obsessive perfectionist that i am, to not “get it right” when I’m taking tea to go, because it’s not like i can make up for it. Oh well, I suppose we’ve all got bigger fish to fry. Anyway, I’m wondering if this isn’t the best travel mug tea, but would not ever change my opinion of this tea. I’m somehow nearly finished my 50 g and will track down some more once I’m done.
In other news, I’m going to the bluejay’s second playoff game on Friday! My husband is a huge, huge fan and gets seasons tickets each year, and so got first dibs on playoff tickets. So he’s going to all the games, and I get to go to one with him. Yaaaahhhh!!
It’s been a long time since I’ve had this tea, but like an old friend, it never fails to feel familiar and comforting. I had a fitful night, and despite having slept some, was in need of calming steadiness in my morning tea. I was going to try something new this morning, but reached for an old favourite instead. I’m still adjusting for the larger cups I’ve started using, but this tea was pretty near perfect, although I might try steeping for three minutes instead of four next time. It’s ok, though; this tea has all the sophistication and soft character of a French tea: light on the bergament, a hefty dose of stone fruit, and the hint of vanilla that rounds out each sip, making you want to search out more with your tongue. It was a nice counterpoint to my salty hashbrown, and the morning was off to a good start. I also woke up fifteen minutes earlier, which seems to have helped a lot. I hate rushing in the morning.