It’s been a crazy last few days and before I get into the tasting note I just wanted to write a small personal Corona Virus update because I’ve had a few people reach out to me asking if I’m still working and things like that.

As things with the Corona virus are rapidly escalating, what’s been going on with work has rapidly been changing. As of today, all of the retail locations have been temporarily closed and sadly all the retail employees have been laid off – along with probably about ninety percent of the office staff. I have conflicting feelings about this – obviously it’s good for stores to not be open to minimize the spread of the virus as much as humanely possible but my heart aches for everyone who has been laid off. Thankfully, it is a temporary lay off and when everything settles everyone should be hired back on. While being laid off is scary, I do think it’s the best call for the most part? I spoke to my brother who works FT at an Olive Garden – so, retail industry. He’s in a spot where their store is still operating, but have DRASTICALLY reduced the amount of shifts/people being scheduled. They’re not penalizing any staff that choose not to work/are taking sick time for self quarantine but at the same time in not actively laying off their employees many of them are having their income massively decline – my brother included. I was initially very frustrated that all the retail staff at DT locations weren’t kept on, but my brother telling me how being laid off would be BENEFICIAL to him changed my opinion. He would be able to collect unemployment insurance, which calculates how much you’re paid based on the average hours you’re working – if retail employee’s hours taper off to a minimum then they actually will make less in most cases than what they would on EI…

As for me, I was part of the small selection of staff that wasn’t laid off – for which I am both very grateful, and left feeling highly guilty about. The majority of staff who were not laid off will be working from home until further notice, but because it’s not possible for me to do my job from home I am continuing to come into the office for the time being. I’m obviously taking a lot of precautionary measures, and aside from the commute there and back I’m self isolating. There are actually less than ten employees now who have access to our office, many of them being lab staff, so it’s pretty safe at the office all things considered – it’s empty enough we can all be in completely different rooms and never interact if we don’t need to/want to. We’re working reduced hours to minimize the time we need to spend away from home; and to avoid high traffic periods on the metro.

So, that’s what’s going on with me.

I hope all my friends here on Steepster are doing well and taking precautions/working from home where possible and self isolating. I’m thinking about you all. And enough of the sappy stuff, time to talk about the tea…

I made this cup with some peppermint agave, which may initially sound like a weird pairing but this white tea blend has mint in it already so it really just exaggerated the cooling/refreshing notes that were already present. It also had the added bonus of adding some brightness, juiciness and general life to the watermelon notes. It was delicious overall, and an improvement upon how this normally tastes without additions.


Thanks Ros, you all take care too.

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Thanks Ros, you all take care too.

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Hello! My name is Kelly, though many people in the tea community call me Ros or Roswell.

I am a mid-twenties tea addict, blogger, and all around nerd. I grew up in the Prairies, but a few years ago I relocated to Quebec to pursue a career with DAVIDsTEA in the tea industry! I’m still working on getting my French language skills down…

My first introduction to tea, in any form outside of instant and bottled iced tea, was about seven years ago when I happened to stumble upon DAVIDsTEA while looking for a birthday present for a friend! I tried their Birthday Cake rooibos blend, and I’ve been hooked on tea ever since! In those seven years; I was introduced to the online tea community, expanded my interest in flavoured teas to include a deep love and appreciation for straight teas and traditional brewing methods, got a tea themed tattoo, started reviewing teas, amassed a sizable tea and teaware collection, became a TAC certified Tea Sommelier, & even came full circle by beginning a career in the tea industry with DAVIDsTEA!

I consider myself a Jack of all Teas, and strive to have a knowledge and appreciation of all tea types, formats, and styles of drinking. I don’t like to feel boxed in to just being a “flavoured tea” or “straight tea” drinker – my expectations may vary depending on the type of tea or how it’s been processed/prepared but if it’s good tea, it’s good tea no matter how it’s been made!

You name it, I probably drink it- and I’ll absolutely try anything at least once.

My default method of preparation is hot, Western style, and straight – but I’m not opposed to additions if I’m in the right mood. If I ever add something to a tea or use a different method of preparation I will ALWAYS call it out in the tasting note though.

I like to listen to music when drinking tea, especially when I’m brewing a large pot at a time or steeping Gongfu. Often I curate very intentional tea and music pairings, and sometimes I share them here in my tasting reviews. Music is something that I find can deeply affect the experience of having tea.

I’m also one half of the “tea and fandom” podcast GeekSteep where, weekly, we discuss newly explored fandoms over tea as well as try to figure out the perfect tea to pair with each fandom. You can find us on Spotify and Apple & Google podcasts.

Favourite flavour notes/ingredients: Pear, lychee, cranberry, cream, melon, pineapple, malt, roasty, petrichor, sweet potato, heady florals like rose, hazelnut or walnut, sesame, honey (in moderation), and very woody shou.

Least favourite flavour notes/ingredients:
Lemongrass, ginger, strongly spiced profiles (and most Chai in general), mushrooms, seaweed, chamomile, stevia, saltiness or anything that reminds me too much of meat that isn’t supposed to taste like meat…

Currently exploring/obsessed with: Sheng from Yiwu, Yancha (Qilan in particular), anything with a strong sweet potato note. Also, I need to try ALL the root beer teas! Searching for a really good caramel flavoured blend, ideally with a black tea base.

Please contact me at the instagram account listed below if you would like me to review your teas.

Currently I’m employed in the tea department of the DAVIDsTEA head office. While I’m still sharing my own personal thoughts on new & existing DAVIDsTEA blends, I am no longer numerically rating them due to the obvious conflict of interest. Any comments expressed are a reflection of my own thoughts and opinions, and do not reflect the thoughts and opinions of the company. Any DAVIDsTEA blends you currently see with a numeric score were reviewed prior to my being hired there and have not been adjusted since becoming a DAVIDsTEA employee.


Montreal, QC, CA



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