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Alex Zorach

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Member since Sep. 1st, 2009. Reviewed 1247 teas.

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Picture of Wild Monsoon

Wild Monsoon from teakruthi

Style: Ceylon Black Tea – Region: Matara, Sri Lanka

87 / 100 Aroma: 9/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 3/5 Overall: 9/10
Jan. 12th, 2017

The dry leaf of this consists of big, dark, coarse looking leaves that are slightly curled. There is a mild toasty and chocolatey aroma. The leaf takes up a lot of space, and you need to use quite a lot by volume to get a strong enough cup.

Upon brewing, the aroma is distinct, different from other teas I've tried,...

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Picture of Southern Malt

Southern Malt from teakruthi

Style: Ceylon Black Tea – Region: Matara, Sri Lanka

93 / 100 Aroma: 10/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5 Overall: 10/10
Jan. 9th, 2017

The first tea I tried from Teakruthi was excellent and enjoyable, but didn't wow me. This one immediately stood out, from before the first sip, or even just smelling the brewed cup.

The dry leaf has a smell that strongly suggests a savory stew. It's malty with a hint of smoke and spice.

When brewed, wow. This ...

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Picture of Royal Midlands

Royal Midlands from teakruthi

Style: Ceylon Black Tea – Region: Kandy, Sri Lanka

83 / 100 Aroma: 9/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 2/5 Overall: 9/10
Jan. 5th, 2017

I went to try this tea first because I got the sense that it seemed the most "classic Ceylon" of Teakruthi's offerings, and it definitely delivered the character I expected. This is a little less like the types of Ceylons served in British traditions though, and more like the type of tea I find consumed in the middle-...

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Picture of African CTC

African CTC from Murchie's Tea & Coffee Ltd

Style: Black Tea – Region: ?????

83 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 4/5 Overall: 8/10
Dec. 21st, 2016

The dry leaf has a pleasant aroma that is much more complex than typical for CTC teas...there are notes of spice that remind me of Christmas as a child.

Produces a very rich and aromatic cup. Before sipping, the aroma suggests sweetness, being creamy and almost candy-like. But upon sipping, pleasantly bitter. Ful...

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Picture of Assam Tippy Golden

Assam Tippy Golden from Murchie's Tea & Coffee Ltd

Style: Assam – Region: Assam, India

83 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5 Overall: 7/10
Dec. 9th, 2016

Wow, this tea was quite satisfying, especially for cold days.

The dried leaf smells good, the aroma is mild but complex, mostly fruity and malty, with hints of spice, dried herbs or portpourri.

The leaves explode in aroma when they are steeped in water and there's a honey-like aroma that is a hallmark of higher g...

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Picture of Ceylon UVA Highland

Ceylon UVA Highland from Murchie's Tea & Coffee Ltd

Style: Ceylon Black Tea – Region: Uva, Sri Lanka

77 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 5/5 Overall: 8/10
Nov. 30th, 2016

I enjoyed this tea; it's a potent black tea of good strength, with a classic British character. One could convincingly substitute this for an English Breakfast blend. It also has a great price, and is a bit smoother than other similar teas in its price range.

The cup is moderately aromatic, a little malty but mor...

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Picture of Scottish Breakfast

Scottish Breakfast from Murchie's Tea & Coffee Ltd

Style: Scottish Breakfast – Region: Blend

97 / 100 Aroma: 9/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5 Overall: 10/10
Nov. 28th, 2016

This tea was extraordinary and was one of the best blended teas I've ever tried. I do tend to really like Scottish Breakfast as a style of tea, and this was an unparalleled example of such.

The dry leaf has a pleasing aroma with a light hint of smoke, just what I'd expect: noticeable, but a bit less than in a Russi...

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Picture of Ceylon Orange Pekoe

Ceylon Orange Pekoe from Basilur

Style: Ceylon Black Tea – Region: Sri Lanka / Ceylon

67 / 100 Aroma: 6/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 3/5 Overall: 7/10
Oct. 31st, 2016

This was yet another tea I had the opportunity to sample from a variety pack in a hotel. I have never seen this brand for sale in the U.S. It was good, considerably above-average for a simple black tea bag.

A bold and strong tea, not particularly distinctive or remarkable, but good. Aroma is malty with hints of s...

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Risheehat 1st Flush Darjeeling from Harney and Sons

Style: Darjeeling First Flush – Region: Darjeeling, India

87 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 4/5 Overall: 9/10
Sep. 28th, 2016

I loved this one.

No picture of this because unfortunately it was removed from Harney's catalogue before I posted my review.

The dry leaf of this smells wonderful, and unexpected. It smells more like an autumnal flush tea, with more malty notes and a sort of soft, rich, caramel smell. There are floral and caram...

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Picture of Handcrafted Kenyan

Handcrafted Kenyan from Murchie's Tea & Coffee Ltd

Style: Black Tea – Region: Kenya

93 / 100 Aroma: 9/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5 Overall: 9/10
Sep. 22nd, 2016

This tea was exceptional, and was among the best Kenyan teas I've sampled yet.

The dry leaf of this tea looks intriguing: long, completely intact, irregularly twisted leaves. It has a very pleasing aroma, suggestive of a high-quality tea, evoking thoughts of sweetness.

Upon brewing, produces a fascinating cup wi...

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Picture of Premium - Loose

Premium - Loose from Chai Bora

Style: Black Tea – Region: Tanzania

73 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5 Overall: 7/10
Sep. 21st, 2016

Thanks again to Jim, who brought this to me from Tanzania. I tried this side-by-side with the Tanzanian Green Label Tea. Although both are dark, finely-broken black teas from Tanzania, the two are surprisingly different.

The dry leaf of this tea is a little more uniform in size, slightly darker, and slightly less ...

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Picture of Darjeeling Tea - Specialty Classics

Darjeeling Tea - Specialty Classics from Basilur

Style: Darjeeling Black Tea – Region: Darjeeling, India

70 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 3/5 Overall: 7/10
Sep. 14th, 2016

This was served to me at a wedding and I was able to take a few different tea bags to try them later. I was surprised at the quality of this one.

The tea bag is not extraordinarily aromatic, but the brewed cup has a very nice, strong black tea smell. It reminds me a lot of sticking my nose into a bin of fresh, loo...

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Picture of Green Label Tea (Tanzania)

Green Label Tea (Tanzania) from Green Label Tea (Tanzania)

Style: Black Tea – Region: Tanzania

77 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5 Overall: 8/10
Jul. 24th, 2016

Thank you to Jim, who brought this back for me from Tanzania!

I was really impressed by the quality of this tea. It is among the best finely-broken CTC teas that I've tried. It reminded me quite a lot of the Fahari Ya Kenya Tea, although I think I preferred that tea slightly to this one.

Like the Fahari Ya tea,...

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Picture of Lapsang Souchong Wild Black Tea (Ye Sheng Zheng Shan Xiao Zhong)

Lapsang Souchong Wild Black Tea (Ye Sheng Zheng Shan Xiao Zhong) from TeaVivre

Style: Lapsang Souchong – Region: Wuyi, Fujian, China

93 / 100 Aroma: 9/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5 Overall: 9/10
Jun. 16th, 2016

A lovely tea, mellow, and complex, among my favorite Lapsang Souchongs ever sampled. Thank you again to TeaVivre for the sample! This is a traditional Chinese lapsang souchong, it lacks the strong smoky aroma that the more widely-known style of tea popular in the West has. Compared to other traditional Lapsang Souch...

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Picture of Panyang Congou

Panyang Congou from Harney and Sons

Style: Black Tea – Region: Fujian, China

43 / 100 Aroma: 4/10 Flavor: 2/5 Value: 2/5 Overall: 5/10
Jun. 13th, 2016

This was the most disappointing pure tea I've ever tried from Harney & Sons.

Dry leaf not very aromatic, but the aroma is pleasant. The leaf is pretty, with fine wiry pieces, fairly finely broken...the faint aroma suggests spice and dried fruit, like fig or date.

The brewed cup is surprisingly lacking in aroma. ...

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Picture of Kairbetta Frost

Kairbetta Frost from Harney and Sons

Style: Black Tea – Region: Nilgiri, India

80 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 4/5 Overall: 8/10
May. 16th, 2016

This tea is the most like a Darjeeling that I've ever had from outside Darjeeling and neighboring areas (like Nepal, Sikkim, etc.). It barely resembled other Nilgiri teas, so I'd recommend it more for people who like Darjeeling than people who like Nilgiri black teas.

Dry leaf looks wiry and robust, inconsistent le...

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Picture of Hao Ya A

Hao Ya A from Harney and Sons

Style: Keemun Hao Ya A – Region: Anhui, China

97 / 100 Aroma: 9/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5 Overall: 10/10
Apr. 22nd, 2016

I have had a lot of Keemun, but never before sampled Hao Ya A. The overall experience of drinking this tea was somewhat different from what I expected. It's similar, but recognizably different from the Hao Ya B, and I'm not convinced that I like it better. I like both, and this one is not that much more expensive (s...

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Picture of Hao Ya B (Keemun)

Hao Ya B (Keemun) from Harney and Sons

Style: Keemun Hao Ya B – Region: China

97 / 100 Aroma: 9/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5 Overall: 10/10
Apr. 22nd, 2016

I thought this was an exceptional tea and was my favorite traditional Keemun ever sapmled.

Dry leaf is fine and dark in color, pleasantly aromatic, and the aroma is quite complex, it suggests fruit, spice, and dried flowers, a little like potpourri, with vegetal and chocolatey notes. The smell reminds me of Christm...

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Picture of Keemun Mao Feng

Keemun Mao Feng from Harney and Sons

Style: Keemun Mao Feng – Region: Qimen, Anhui, China

90 / 100 Aroma: 9/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5 Overall: 8/10
Apr. 12th, 2016

I loved this tea. It reminded me a lot of the Spring Keemun from Andrews & Dunham, both in the smell and taste, and the appearance of the leaf.

Mild but pleasant smell to the dry leaf, which looks very curly in shape, little snail-like curls a lot like bi luo chun. Smells sweeter than other Keemun Mao Feng, but st...

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Picture of Yunnan Golden Tips

Yunnan Golden Tips from Harney and Sons

Style: Yunnan Gold – Region: Yunnan, China

77 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 3/5 Overall: 8/10
Apr. 8th, 2016

This tea is really strange. I enjoy it most when I don't think of it as a black tea, and I still don't know exactly how I feel about it. I disagree with Harney's assertion that this is "vigorously assertive": to me it lacks the strength and punch of a black tea, and in many respects is more like an oolong or even a m...

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Picture of New Vithanakande

New Vithanakande from Harney and Sons

Style: Ceylon Black Tea – Region: Ratnapura, Sri Lanka

77 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5 Overall: 8/10
Apr. 6th, 2016

I liked this tea and found it very interesting, it wasn't a favorite at first but it made me write and think a lot, and I found it grew on me. I especially liked this tea's ability to evoke interesting imagery and memories from my childhood with its aromas. Many of the Ceylon teas I've tried over the years have been s...

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Picture of Kenyan Tinderet

Kenyan Tinderet from DAVIDsTEA

Style: Black Tea – Region: Kenya

67 / 100 Aroma: 6/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 2/5 Overall: 8/10
Apr. 1st, 2016

Thank you to my friend Sarah for bringing me this one! I love Kenyan teas, and this was a classic Kenyan CTC tea of decent quality. Quite good and pleasant to drink, but I think it is very overpriced.

Dry leaf is not very aromatic, nor is the brewed cup, but I find the flavor very pleasant. DavidsTea describes "l...

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Picture of Golden Monkey

Golden Monkey from Harney and Sons

Style: Golden Monkey – Region: Fujian, China

93 / 100 Aroma: 9/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5 Overall: 9/10
Mar. 24th, 2016

Truly superb! I haven't tried that many Golden Monkey teas, but after brewing this one multiple times, I think it is my favorite. Its leaf is packed with flavor and, although it had the smoothness of other golden monkey teas, I found it had a strength that was lacking from other examples of this style that I had tried...

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Picture of Colombian Black

Colombian Black from Harney and Sons

Style: Black Tea – Region: Colombia

97 / 100 Aroma: 10/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5 Overall: 9/10
Mar. 22nd, 2016

An unexpectedly top-notch tea, unlike anything else I've tried. I'm always incredibly curious to try teas from a new country or region, and I was super excited to try this one, since there are very few teas grown in the Americas. Normally, I approach these sorts of teas more as an interesting novelty, not expecting t...

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Picture of Original Blend (Green Label)

Original Blend (Green Label) from Barry's Tea

Style: Irish Breakfast – Region: Blend

63 / 100 Aroma: 6/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5 Overall: 5/10
Mar. 15th, 2016

This was a humble flat paper tea bag that surprised me with its quality. It was very different from the Gold Blend (the one with the red label) from this same company.

Brews a very rich, dark cup that is thick and full-flavored. The aroma is strongly malty, and upon drinking the whole cup there's a hint of winterg...

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