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Alex Zorach

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Member since Sep. 1st, 2009. Reviewed 1386 teas.

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Picture of Japanese Matcha Gen-mai Cha Premium Organic

Japanese Matcha Gen-mai Cha Premium Organic from Upton Tea Imports

Style: Genmaicha – Region: Japan

76 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 3/5
Dec. 13th, 2018

An enjoyable, but not super interesting tea that struck me as a little pricey. One of my favorite genmaichas yet. Thank you to Upton, for throwing this in as a free sample with my order!

Dry leaf looks a dusty bright yellow color, much more yellowish than most Matcha. Aroma is very mild, mostly of the toasted rice.
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Picture of Mouling Estate SFTGFOP Arunachal Pradesh White Tea

Mouling Estate SFTGFOP Arunachal Pradesh White Tea from Upton Tea Imports

Style: White Tea – Region: Arunachal Pradesh, India

54 / 100 Aroma: 6/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 2/5
Dec. 9th, 2018

An exorbitantly-priced tea that didn't deliver the quality I demand in this price range, and in the end, wasn't that enjoyable to drink. This is the first white tea I have ever tried that was produced in any region of northeast India other than Darjeeling. I remain open minded, but this experience was a let-down. Thin-...

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Picture of Earl Grey Choice

Earl Grey Choice from Zhi Tea

Style: Flavored Black Tea – Region: Blend

31 / 100 Aroma: 3/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 1/5
Dec. 7th, 2018

This tea pissed me off. It's a mediocre flavored tea, it's mismarketed, and it's grossly overpriced. It doesn't even taste like Earl Grey, it tastes nothing like the commercial description, not the current one listed on the site nor the one listed on my sample bag, nor is there any explanation of the discrepancy on the...

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Picture of China WuYi Mountain Tea

China WuYi Mountain Tea from Organic Herbie

Style: Green Tea – Region: China

78 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 4/5
Dec. 4th, 2018

After being disappointed with Organic Herbie's other teas, I was a bit apprehensive about trying this, but I turned out to like it a surprising amount. I also notice an inconsistency in the marketing: the description says it is grown in the Wuyi mountains, which are located in Fujian province, but the website says that...

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Assam FTGFOP1 Tonganagaon from Socra Tea Detroit

Style: Assam – Region: Tinsukia, Assam, India

79 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5
Nov. 27th, 2018

A fairly typical Assam of slightly-above-average quality. This was one of four teas we tried on our recent visit to Socra Tea Detroit, a great cafe and tea shop that I recommend checking out if you're in the area.

I've now tried three teas from Tonganagaon estate, a tea garden in upper Assam that seems to produce sm...

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Picture of Special Golden Black Tea

Special Golden Black Tea from Socra Tea Detroit

Style: Yunnan Gold – Region: Yunnan, China

82 / 100 Aroma: 9/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5
Nov. 27th, 2018

This was a smooth, naturally sweet tea (even with no sweetener added) that had a pleasing and somewhat complex aroma.

We ordered four teas (two true teas and two Rooibos) at Socra Tea during our recent visit to Detroit, and this was the tea that jumped out and left the biggest impression on me.

Very smooth flavor...

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Picture of Ceylon & India / Orange Pekoe (Teabags)

Ceylon & India / Orange Pekoe (Teabags) from Harney and Sons

Style: Black Tea – Region: Blend

72 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5
Nov. 27th, 2018

An above-average, basic black tea in a tea bag.

I've tried the loose-leaf version of this tea, and gave it a very good review, but I only had the opportunity to try the tea bag recently, when I stopped at a rest stop on the Ohio turnpike and ordered a cup of tea at a Gloria Jean's coffee stand.

First of all, I wa...

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Picture of Black Tea

Black Tea from Farmer Brothers

Style: Black Tea – Region: ?????

33 / 100 Aroma: 3/10 Flavor: 2/5 Value: 1/5
Nov. 27th, 2018

A very strong black tea that didn't have much going for it other than its strength.

Served at the Gander's Family Restaurant in Luna Pier, MI (super cheap diner with pretty good but very basic diner food! I recommend it more than this tea!) Tea isn't usually the strong suits of these types of restaurants, but I do t...

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Picture of Taiwan Lapsang Souchong Black Tea

Taiwan Lapsang Souchong Black Tea from Organic Herbie

Style: Lapsang Souchong – Region: Nantou, Taiwan

41 / 100 Aroma: 2/10 Flavor: 2/5 Value: 1/5
Nov. 14th, 2018

This tea sorely disappointed me and left me feeling sad and empty. I thought from the description that I was going to like it, but the description was somewhere between severely misleading and blatantly wrong. Thank you to Organic Herbie for the free sample. But PLEASE, update the description for this tea because it is...

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Picture of Organic Sweet Colombian Black Tea (Wiry 2)

Organic Sweet Colombian Black Tea (Wiry 2) from Simpson & Vail

Style: Black Tea – Region: Colombia

98 / 100 Aroma: 10/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5
Nov. 8th, 2018

Yet another Colombian tea from the Bitaco estate. Thank you Simpson & Vail for the samples! It's been exciting how many of these I've been able to try lately, and I love every one. They are only subtly different, but I am still able to appreciate the differences. This one, as the name suggests, was the sweetest one I'v...

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Picture of Kenya Kosabei TGFOP Tea

Kenya Kosabei TGFOP Tea from Organic Herbie

Style: Black Tea – Region: Nandi, Kenya

76 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 4/5
Nov. 5th, 2018

A good "sipping" tea that I found I enjoyed most when I drank slowly. This tea had some characteristics of a Ceylon and some of a Darjeeling. I found it slightly tricky to brew. I liked its aroma, but could be a bit thin-bodied and bitter. Thank you to Organic Herbie for the free sample!

Dry leaf, which has a fine, ...

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Picture of Nepal Organic Gold Pathivara Black Tea

Nepal Organic Gold Pathivara Black Tea from Simpson & Vail

Style: Black Tea – Region: Nepal

99 / 100 Aroma: 10/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5
Oct. 31st, 2018

Without a doubt my favorite tea I've ever tried from Nepal. A singular tea with an intoxicating floral fragrance and an ethereal quality overall. Another sample from Simpson & Vail, thank you, and apologies for taking so long to post this one!

This tea was fascinating: visually, the leaf looks more like a Chinese te...

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Picture of Almond Oolong

Almond Oolong from Adagio Teas

Style: Flavored Oolong – Region: Taiwan / Formosa

72 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 2/5
Oct. 26th, 2018

Thank you to my friend Joe for giving me this sample!

The aroma of the dry leaf is intense and intoxicating, an intense fragrance of marzipan or sweeet almond, like stinging your nose in a bottle of amaretto or almond extract. It's pretty much all flavoring; I can't discern any qualities of the underlying tea from t...

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Picture of Darjeeling, Puttabong Estate, 1st Flush

Darjeeling, Puttabong Estate, 1st Flush from Simpson & Vail

Style: Darjeeling First Flush – Region: Darjeeling, India

84 / 100 Aroma: 10/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5
Oct. 25th, 2018

A tricky-to-brew tea that reminded me a lot of green oolongs from Taiwan, and required a lower water temperature to brew to satisfaction.

The dry leaf, quite broken, is an intense green color, like a lot of good Darjeeling first flush. It looks exactly like pictured in the company photo (I appreciate honest photogra...

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Picture of Teng Chong Hui Long Zhai Yunnan Green Tea

Teng Chong Hui Long Zhai Yunnan Green Tea from Yunnan Sourcing

Style: Green Tea – Region: Tengchong, Yunnan, China

85 / 100 Aroma: 9/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5
Oct. 23rd, 2018

A bold-flavored green tea producing a pale-colored cup with a brisk character. Very enjoyable and easy to brew and drink.

The dry leaf has a tightly curled appearance, a lot like Bi Luo Chun but more irregular. It's very fragrant and strong, grassy and somewhat smoky, with a hint of bready qualities. The smell sugge...

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Picture of Nilgiri Korakundah Estate - Organic FOP/FBOP

Nilgiri Korakundah Estate - Organic FOP/FBOP from Simpson & Vail

Style: Black Tea – Region: Nilgiri, India

71 / 100 Aroma: 10/10 Flavor: 2/5 Value: 4/5
Oct. 16th, 2018

A beautifully aromatic tea that a strong bitterness and thin body. I found it tricky to brew to satisfaction. I have now sampled three teas from Korakundah estate, and I find they are all a bit like this, although I think this was by far my favorite of the three. Thank you to Simpson & Vail for the free sample!

The ...

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Picture of Da Hu Sai Village Wild Arbor Black Tea of Yunnan Spring 2018

Da Hu Sai Village Wild Arbor Black Tea of Yunnan Spring 2018 from Yunnan Sourcing

Style: Yunnan Gold – Region: Shuangjiang, Yunnan, China

92 / 100 Aroma: 9/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 5/5
Oct. 8th, 2018

This is one of those really dangerous teas...very caffeinated but incredibly mild and smooth tasting, so it is very easy to brew it too strongly and get uncomfortably wired.

Dry leaf has a potent and very pleasing aroma: strongly malty with cocoa notes, and a faint hint of smoke and vegetal notes. Contrasting with t...

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Picture of Jingmai Mountain Wild Arbor Black Tea of Spring 2018

Jingmai Mountain Wild Arbor Black Tea of Spring 2018 from Yunnan Sourcing

Style: Yunnan Gold – Region: Lancang, Yunnan, China

100 / 100 Aroma: 10/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5
Oct. 5th, 2018

Wow! Exceptional!!!

I've tried a lot of teas from Yunnan Sourcing over the years but have never ordered nor have I reviewed any of them; they were always just served to me by others, often aged Pu-erhs. I finally ordered some of my own and I am super impressed with every one. This is my favorite one of the batch.

...

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Picture of Black Tea Bar (Loose-leaf)

Black Tea Bar (Loose-leaf) from Ten Ren Tea

Style: Black Tea – Region: Taiwan / Formosa

89 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5
Aug. 21st, 2018

I bought this at the H-Mart in Metuchen, NJ. The label didn't give me much of an idea of what to expect; all I knew was that it was Taiwan-grown black tea and was inexpensive. I was pleasantly surprised to find that this quickly became one of my favorite teas for daily drinking. I highly recommend it and would gladly b...

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Picture of Buket Black Tea

Buket Black Tea from Azercay (Azerçay)

Style: Black Tea – Region: Russia

88 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 5/5
Aug. 13th, 2018

I have been wanting to try Russian tea for some time, and this is the first one I have sampled, and it exceeded my expectations!

Thank you to my friend Olga who brought this back for me! This brand sells tea both from Azerbaijan and Russia, but this batch was produced in Russia, according to the box, by Kuban Tea (u...

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Picture of Green Tea (Ato-bi process)

Green Tea (Ato-bi process) from ITO EN

Style: Green Tea – Region: Japan

79 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 5/5
May. 23rd, 2018

This was quite a discovery. I purchased this at a Chinese market in Edison, NJ. I was surprised to see a Japanese tea for sale, but I grabbed it because I saw D. Gray had reviewed it and was eager to try it. I wasn't disappointed!

The dry leaf is a rich, yellow-green color, and pleasantly aromatic, smelling sweet an...

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Picture of Ramanugger Estate FTGFOP1 Organic

Ramanugger Estate FTGFOP1 Organic from Upton Tea Imports

Style: Assam – Region: Karbi Anglong, Assam, India

74 / 100 Aroma: 9/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 5/5
May. 21st, 2018

I specifically sought this tea out because it was from a region of Assam that is a little higher-altitude, and from where I hadn't previously tried any teas. Interestingly, it did taste a little more like a Darjeeling and other high-grown Himalayan region teas. Although I thought it was a very good tea, I liked it less...

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Picture of Season's Pick Colombian Leafy Black Tea Organic

Season's Pick Colombian Leafy Black Tea Organic from Upton Tea Imports

Style: Black Tea – Region: Colombia

95 / 100 Aroma: 10/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 3/5
May. 17th, 2018

Another exquisite tea from the Bitaco estate in Columbia! This was a smooth black tea that tasted top-quality, but was a bit weak on the resteep. Tastes better when brewed strongly. I served this tea to two different people as well and they both loved it.

I've been trying different grades and batches or variants of ...

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Picture of Nandi Royal GFBOP Black Tea

Nandi Royal GFBOP Black Tea from Upton Tea Imports

Style: Black Tea – Region: Nandi, Kenya

86 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5
May. 13th, 2018

Probably the strongest tea I have had in a long time. I loved this one. It's not for the faint of heart, though!

Upton's humble "Nandi Royal OP" really blew me away, so I was eager to try this. Compared to that one, this is a higher-grade broken-leaf tea, more tippy, but more broken. The price on this is slightly hi...

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Picture of Nepal Guranse Estate Organic Oolong Tea

Nepal Guranse Estate Organic Oolong Tea from Simpson & Vail

Style: Oolong Tea – Region: Nepal

84 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 4/5
May. 3rd, 2018

A good tea that resembled Darjeeling first flush teas and probably would have convinced me it was a "black" tea if it had not been labeled as an oolong. It's more like a Himalayan black tea that had something different or unusual about it. Not what I expected; it was nothing like Chinese oolongs, nor like Darjeeling oo...

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