1350 Tasting Notes

drank Strawberry Oolong Tea by Teavivre
1350 tasting notes

The dry leaf was fresh strawberry, but as soon as the water hit the leaves I got a strong aroma of cooked spinach. I used 2.5 grams (all that was left in my sample packet), though Steepster will not recognize it and will say I used only two.

This does taste somewhat vegetal and is very light in color. I don’t taste any of the strawberry, which is disappointing after reading such high praise for this tea in other reviews.

I’ll leave off the rating since this tea seems to be loved by many. It must just be that it’s not for me.

Flavors: Spinach, Strawberry, Vegetal

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 6 OZ / 177 ML

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Harvest & Year: Spring 2020

Flavors: Astringent, Metallic, Roasted

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74
drank Cinnamon Spice by HEB
1350 tasting notes

There are quite a few ingredients in this rooibos blend, but all I can smell and taste is the cinnamon. It’s that Big Red gum cinnamon, so I thought I wouldn’t love it, but I really actually do! It’s sweet, not spicy like I expected, and really tastes just like Big Red (without the mouth burn). Still not tasting any of the other flavors, but I’m cool with it. Thanks for letting me try one of your favorites, Michelle!

Flavors: Cinnamon

Preparation
Boiling 7 min, 15 sec 8 OZ / 236 ML
Michelle

You certainly wouldn’t guess that the base is chamomile here. It makes a soothing bedtime cup in the winter. Glad you liked it :)

Shae

I’m not much for chamomile, except for one AQ2T blend, and I never would have known there was chamomile in this if I hadn’t seen the ingredients. Even knowing it was there, I couldn’t taste it.

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78
drank Earl Grey Creme by Teavana
1350 tasting notes

Such a nice treat for a Saturday morning. I’m really surprised I never tried this one when Teavana was open. If I did, I never left a note about it here. It’s a fluffy marshmallow bergamot delight.

Flavors: Bergamot, Marshmallow

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 5 min, 0 sec 8 OZ / 236 ML

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82
drank Juniper Mint Honey by Tazo
1350 tasting notes

From Michelle.

I’m not too familiar with juniper, but I had some juniper berries in my spice cabinet so I pulled them out to compare. I don’t notice any connection in the aroma or flavor of the tea. Instead, I smell and taste vanilla mint. I really like it actually.

Flavors: Mint, Vanilla

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 8 OZ / 236 ML
gmathis

Ooh! Bet it’s good cold.

Shae

I bet it would be!

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79
drank Blue Lady by Zest Tea
1350 tasting notes

I used the least amount of leaf and the most amount of water, steeped for the shortest amount of time so that the caffeine does not overwhelm my senses. Surprisingly, I like it! I’ve been putting this one off not only because of the added caffeine but also because of the hibiscus. I’m not opposed to the flavor so much as to the fact that I can’t add milk to my black teas when it’s present. But I have to say that this tastes good without the dairy, so I’m pleased with the cup. I also really enjoyed Zest’s Earl Grey, but I had to space it out over the course of the day because it was just too much. This one has CBD, so maybe that will help balance the jitters a bit? James loves, loves, loves the Superberry Samba green tea from Zest (the CBD version) so much that he rarely drinks any other tea these days.

Second Steep
8 ounces water + 212 degrees + 20 minutes

The second cup still has flavor, but I’m not sure it’s enough to warrant an additional steep. Especially since I’m already fully caffeinated from the first cup and I’m getting into the afternoon now.

Flavors: Citrus Zest

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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78

Harvest & Year: Spring 2020

I had a cup of this earlier and all I stopped to write was

Very flavorful.

Well that’s very helpful. I did like it.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 3 g 8 OZ / 236 ML

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49
drank strawberry cheesecake by Red Rose
1350 tasting notes

My “something borrowed” for a A June Wedding, sent to me from Devon Bartholomew in a recent swap.

I only smell hibiscus when I open the tea bag and now I’m disappointed. I knew hibiscus would be involved, but I’d hoped for something more. But then, as the hot water hits, I smell strawberries! Fresh strawberries, strawberry candy, strawberry jam – a mix of all of it! I’m starting to get excited.

Then I taste it.

The illusion is over. All that’s left is the artificial sweetness of the stevia and the dusty, dry hibiscus. Together they are the stuff of nightmares. I managed to finish half the cup before abandoning all hope and tossing the rest down the gullet of the greedy kitchen sink. Good riddance.

Flavors: Artificial, Candy, Drying, Dust, Hibiscus, Jam, Strawberry

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 8 OZ / 236 ML

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80

Harvest & Year: Spring 2020

Chocolaty goodness. I think this might be my favorite of the Yunnan Sourcing teas I’ve tried so far. Of course I’m going to compare this to my best and beloved chocolate tea, Nepal Black from DT. I haven’t found one I like better, but this one’s very good.

Flavors: Chocolate

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 6 OZ / 177 ML

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81
drank Glazed Lemon Loaf by Tazo
1350 tasting notes

How does this actually smell like cake?! And taste like vanilla frosting?? I’ve heard a lot about this tea, and I’ve been looking forward to trying it since Michelle sent a bag in her tea box. If I weren’t selfish, I would have let James have it since he loves lemon and herbals. Instead, I let him smell the inside of the tea wrapper after I drank it. Yeah, I’m not exactly winning any awards for wife of the year. Oh well.

I added some cream for World Milk Day and it really seems to bring out more of the lemon flavor. That surprised me. I would have thought it would encourage the creamy frosting to shine, but it didn’t. I have to give this one a good rating, if only for the fact that Tazo nailed the flavor here. But I also really, really liked it.

I almost forgot – Happy Pride, everyone! <3

Flavors: Cake, Frosting, Lemon, Sweet, Tart, Vanilla

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 6 OZ / 177 ML
Mastress Alita

I am always amazed at how good this tea is, no matter how it is prepared.

ashmanra

I laughed til I nearly cried when you said you let him smell the inside of the tea wrapper AFTER you drank it!

gmathis

OHH! Milk! I have got to try that!

Shae

@Mastress Alita – I’ve only tried it this once, but I’m planning to buy a box. I’ll have to read some of the other notes again to find some new ways to try it. I feel like it would be really good if I dropped a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream in it, but maybe that’s too much…
@ashmanra – I probably wouldn’t feel too bad about it except that when he smelled it his eyes flew open in obvious excitement. This is one of those rare blends we both like.
@gmathis – I wouldn’t have normally thought of milk with the lemon, except I noticed in another note that someone had tried it and loved it. It was really good this way!

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Profile

Bio

Lifetime student. Lover of books and paper and ink. Kitchen dweller. Aspiring herbalist, excessively proud cat lady, and tea fanatic. Thirty-something elder millennial. She/her.

I love flavored black teas most of all, always with cream and honey. I prefer to sweeten my tea as it seems to bring out the flavor. I enjoy floral and fruity teas, as well as flavored or scented ones. I’m not overly fond of green or white teas, but I’ve found a few that I enjoy.

I’m open to tea swaps and/or just sharing what’s in my tea cabinet! Please reach out if you see something I have that you’d like to try. I do my best to update my cupboard regularly.

It will take me longer than usual to get to the post office while we’re in the midst of this pandemic, but I would still love to send you something next time I’m out and about!

Favorites
Any and all black teas, smoky teas, raspberry, strawberry, red fruits, bergamot, chai spices, floral teas, caramel/toffee, jasmine, rose, vanilla, peaches, plums, valerian root, cinnamon, cardamom

Not a huge fan
Lime, white teas, green teas, artificial sweeteners, sarsaparilla, licorice, lemongrass, lavender, hot hibiscus, hibiscus in black tea blends

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, James, who almost always enjoys the teas I dislike (and vice versa).

21-49: 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.

50-70: 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.

71-79: This is a consistently good tea. It’s reliable but not necessarily special.

80-90: 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.

Currently reading:

A Breath of Snow and Ashes
by Diana Gabaldon

Updated October 2020.

Location

Alabaster, Alabama

Website

https://www.instagram.com/sph...

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