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Alex Zorach

RateTea Editor

Tea Blog - Website

Member since Sep. 1st, 2009. Reviewed 1412 teas.

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Picture of Genmaicha Green Tea Whole Leaf

Genmaicha Green Tea Whole Leaf from Ten Ren Tea

Style: Genmaicha – Region: ?????

73 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5
Apr. 5th, 2014

An above-average genmaicha, with a bolder green tea presence and less rice. The base tea is smooth, fruity, and less vegetal than typical for Japanese green teas.

The dry tea bag, which is a flat paper bag filled with relatively intact whole leaf tea, didn't smell great, but as soon as I poured water over it, a ver...

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Picture of Tazo Chai Full Leaf

Tazo Chai Full Leaf from Tazo Tea

Style: Chai / Spiced Tea – Region: ?????

80 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5
Mar. 28th, 2014

Like most of Tazo's teas, I think this improved greatly in the change to the full leaf version. But I don't think it's just the quality of ingredients, I think the blend of spices has changed considerably.

The old, flat tea bag was dominated by clove, and although it wasn't too heavy on the cinnamon, it was also to...

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Picture of Lemon Ginger Tulsi Tea

Lemon Ginger Tulsi Tea from Organic India

Style: Herbal Tea – Region: ?????

67 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 3/5
Mar. 7th, 2014

Very strong tasting, and completely dominated by the ginger. Brews up a hazy yellow color, with lots of dust sinking to the bottom.

Peppery, even fiery. The lemon has only a very subtle presence, most evident in the aftertaste. The tulsi is also backgrounded, but is more noticeable than the lemon, especially if I...

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Picture of Silver Needle

Silver Needle from Octavia Tea

Style: Silver Needle – Region: ?????

63 / 100 Aroma: 6/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 3/5
Feb. 12th, 2014

To be fair, I'm not a huge fan of silver needle white tea, so this wasn't among my all-time favorite teas, but but I thought this was a good example of this style, and very enjoyable to drink. Served in Velvet Sky Bakery in Jenkintown--an ongoing thank-you to Velvet Sky for ordering numerous small samples to allow me ...

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Picture of Sweet Rose Tulsi Tea

Sweet Rose Tulsi Tea from Organic India

Style: Herbal Tea – Region: ?????

67 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 4/5
Jan. 16th, 2014

Thanks to Jenna for providing me with this sample!

The tea bag is wonderfully aromatic, smelling strongly of rose, almost intoxicating (even before brewing) and suggestive of sweetness.

Although this blend contains Stevia, thankfully it's only a dash...I only notice minimal sweetness. I notice there are a lot of...

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Picture of Bombay Masala Chai

Bombay Masala Chai from Chai Diaries

Style: Chai / Spiced Tea – Region: ?????

70 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 3/5
Jan. 9th, 2014

A creamy chai, light bodied yet with a slight tannic kick.

Sample at the Philadelphia Coffee and Tea Festival...I've taken very long to post my reviews.

This was the first tea I sampled from Chai Diaries, and it impressed me and made me eager to try more from this new company. The vanilla is just enough to impar...

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Picture of Green Tea Chai

Green Tea Chai from Salada

Style: Chai / Spiced Tea – Region: ?????

60 / 100 Aroma: 5/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5
Jan. 4th, 2014

A sample from the Philadelphia Coffee and Tea Festival. Thank you, Salada, for providing me with many samples. This one surprised me; I don't think of Salada as a brand that I normally like, but I always approach teas with an open mind, and I'm glad I did because I really liked this tea.

Brews a cup, dark in color...

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Picture of Decaffeinated Antioxidant Green Tea

Decaffeinated Antioxidant Green Tea from Salada

Style: Wellness Tea / Medicinal Tea – Region: ?????

25 / 100 Aroma: 3/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 1/5
Jan. 2nd, 2014

I don't like (or recommend) eating or drinking antioxidant supplemented products because there is some scientific evidence that they may be harmful to consume, in contrast to whole foods and drinks which are naturally rich in antioxidants. It's the same reason I don't believe in taking vitamin pills. So I wouldn't dr...

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Picture of Lemon Twist

Lemon Twist from Twinings

Style: Lemon Black Tea – Region: ?????

40 / 100 Aroma: 4/10 Flavor: 2/5 Value: 2/5
Jan. 2nd, 2014

Thanks to E. Alex Gerster for this sample. It was not my cup of tea but was interesting to try!

This tea smells lemony, but not intensely so. The lemon is a bit artificial smelling, more suggestive of lemon lifesavers or other lemon candy than natural lemon-scented herbs or actual lemon fruit. There is a hint of ...

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Picture of Earl Grey Black Tea

Earl Grey Black Tea from Stash Tea

Style: Earl Grey Tea – Region: ?????

63 / 100 Aroma: 6/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5
Jan. 1st, 2014

A mild Earl Grey that was sweet in flavor, perfumey in aroma, but overly astringent.

Tea bag smells more lemony / citrusy than most Earl grey, with a hint of spice.

Brews up a surprisingly aromatic cup for a tea bag, with a perfumey smell that suggests sweetness. Rich and full-bodied, somewhat astringent, but no...

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Picture of Brown Rice Tea

Brown Rice Tea from Dynasty

Style: Genmaicha – Region: ?????

73 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 5/5
Dec. 18th, 2013

I used to drink this brand a long time ago, and I liked it quite a lot. I recently had the opportunity to sample a tea bag of this particular tea again. It's just how I remember it--and very enjoyable.

Teabag has a strong aroma of toasted rice, suggestive of popcorn. Brews a light greenish-brown cup that is very ...

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Picture of Organic Oolong Tea

Organic Oolong Tea from Ten Ren Tea

Style: Oolong Tea – Region: ?????

73 / 100 Aroma: 6/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 5/5
Dec. 16th, 2013

I'm reviewing this tea from memory; it has since been discontinued, but I drank it regularly for some time, back before I had created RateTea, so I have a good sense of it.

Of all the teas I've sampled (from Ten Ren or any other company) it seemed most similar to Ten Ren's Ti Kuan Yin in tea bags--although it was no...

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Picture of Oolong Tea

Oolong Tea from Choice Organic Teas

Style: Oolong Tea – Region: ?????

53 / 100 Aroma: 4/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 2/5
Dec. 9th, 2013

A sealed sample pack from the Philadelphia Coffee and Tea Festival.

Tea bag is aromaless, and the brewed cup has almost no discernable aroma until I sip it, at which point the aroma is extremely mild. Much more flavorful than aromatic though. The aroma I do notice is a faint tone of rice, with perhaps some suggest...

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Picture of English Afternoon

English Afternoon from Twinings

Style: Black Tea – Region: ?????

53 / 100 Aroma: 6/10 Flavor: 2/5 Value: 3/5
Nov. 22nd, 2013

I received this as one of the three samples in Twinings free samples program. One thing I like about using a program like this is that I can be sure that the bag is fresh--which isn't always the case if I obtain the tea bag in a trade or sample it when out at some event or at another person's house. Twinings only gav...

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Picture of Golden Monkey

Golden Monkey from Infuze

Style: Golden Monkey – Region: ?????

87 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 4/5
Nov. 15th, 2013

I really enjoyed this tea. Dry leaf is dark with golden tips, and has a strong and pleasant aroma of dried fruit, like raisins.

Flavor is very smooth, cup has just enough astringency to give it a pleasant body...aroma is strongly of dried fruit, with tones of vanilla, and a sort of bready finish, tending towards to...

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Picture of Refresh Mint Full Leaf

Refresh Mint Full Leaf from Tazo Tea

Style: Mint Tea – Region: ?????

70 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 4/5
Nov. 13th, 2013

This full-leaf sachet definitely offers an upgrade in experience relative to the old, flat tea bag. The first thing I notice is that there is much more leaf, leading to a very potent cup.

The overall character of the blend is the same, but I thought it was a little more complex: the mint was more herbaceous and sme...

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Picture of Decaffeinated Chai

Decaffeinated Chai from Twinings

Style: Chai / Spiced Tea – Region: ?????

53 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 2/5 Value: 3/5
Oct. 11th, 2013

This one sort-of works--as the spices make it matter a lot less that the base tea is as bland as it is.

I tried this out of curiosity, open to the possibility that I might pour it out without drinking (as I have with some decaf teas). I was pleasantly surprised, which in retrospect, makes considerable sense, since ...

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Picture of Irish Breakfast Decaffeinated

Irish Breakfast Decaffeinated from Twinings

Style: Irish Breakfast – Region: ?????

37 / 100 Aroma: 4/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 1/5
Oct. 4th, 2013

I admit, I'm a tough customer when it comes to decaf tea--I just don't like it. I tried this out of curiosity, in a sense, to see relatively how bad it was.

Twinings Irish Breakfast, in my opinion, is a pretty decent tea--it's one of my favorite ones, and I like it much more than their English Breakfast, so this wa...

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Picture of Good Hope Vanilla Red Tea

Good Hope Vanilla Red Tea from Republic of Tea

Style: Flavored Rooibos – Region: ?????

60 / 100 Aroma: 5/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5
Sep. 20th, 2013

A classic rooibos-vanilla blend with a strong presence of both rooibos and vanilla, and no other flavors.

There's a good balance of rooibos and vanilla, although I'd prefer a little less of the "cream flavoring"...this smelled a bit too much like cream soda for me. Flavor is subdued...a slight muted bitterness. Le...

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Picture of Three Ginger

Three Ginger from Pukka

Style: Herbal Tea – Region: ?????

73 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5
Sep. 13th, 2013

This was an interesting and innovative blend that I found very well-executed. Very enjoyable to drink! One of the best herbal teas I've had from a tea bag in some time.

Ginger is the dominant quality in the aroma, but I find it's hard to fully distinguish the three ingredients from each other: ginger, galangal, an...

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Picture of Ceylon Green Tea with Real Ginger

Ceylon Green Tea with Real Ginger from Dilmah

Style: Flavored Green Tea – Region: ?????

53 / 100 Aroma: 5/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 3/5
Sep. 6th, 2013

Brews a hazy yellow-green color. A lot of fine, granular particles sink to the bottom of the cup.

This tastes mostly like a low-grade green tea...the ginger is weak. Nearly all tea-herb blends and herbal teas containing ginger in their name, which I've tried, have been stronger than this. The ginger is noticeable...

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Picture of Eucalyptus Leaves

Eucalyptus Leaves from Cafe Moto

Style: Herbal Tea – Region: ?????

77 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 5/5
Sep. 3rd, 2013

I'm quite familiar with the scent of Eucalyptus, but I've never had an herbal tea brewed just from the pure leaves of the plant before. I was curious to try this one, and it turned out to be interesting.

Besides the usual eucalyptus scent, that sort of minty aroma that is quite strongly suggestive of Vick's Vapor R...

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Picture of Black Tea

Black Tea from Lipton Tea

Style: Black Tea – Region: ?????

35 / 100 Aroma: 4/10 Flavor: 1/5 Value: 1/5
Aug. 9th, 2013

It's been a really long time, and I haven't rated this tea yet, so I decided to finally do it.

I think Lipton gets a bad rap...it's the brunt of all the tea enthusiasts jokes, which makes sense because it's the #1 brand in the US (and some other parts of the world as well) by sales volume and presence. And I really...

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Picture of Calming Chamomile

Calming Chamomile from Octavia Tea

Style: Pure Chamomile Tea – Region: ?????

73 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 3/5
Aug. 7th, 2013

This chamomile is beautifully aromatic, with a rich, warm fragrance. It's moderately fruity and there are less of the straw or hay tones that I notice in some chamomile.

The cup brews a light color and the flavor is a little less bitter than normal for how aromatic it is. There's a little sourness in the flavor to...

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Picture of Verbena

Verbena from Ronnefeldt

Style: Lemon Verbena – Region: ?????

67 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 3/5
Jun. 7th, 2013

I love lemon verbena...this was pleasant, but pales in comparison to the whole-leaf herb or even broken-leaf variants.

Moderately lemony, light-bodied for lemon verbena. Flavor mild, pleasing. Dusty finish.

Not as smooth as the whole-leaf herb I've brewed, but not as astringent as some finely-broken herbs that ...

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