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Alex

Tea Reviewer

Member since May. 6th, 2018. Reviewed 33 teas.

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Picture of English Breakfast

English Breakfast from Revolution Tea

Style: English Breakfast – Region: Blend

70 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 3/5
Aug. 5th, 2018

I got a cup of this at a gas station, surprisingly. I think it's better than the average English Breakfast, though I'm comparing it to the common bagged English Breakfast blends like Twinings because I have never bought it loose leaf. It mostly tasted like Assam to me, with the hint of a bright honey flavor being the o...

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Picture of Darjeeling (Sachets)

Darjeeling (Sachets) from Hampstead Tea

Style: Darjeeling Black Tea – Region: Darjeeling, India

75 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 5/5
Jul. 30th, 2018

This actually tastes like Darjeeling: the fruity, woody notes are similar to the loose leaf Darjeeling teas I've had, and it even has that smooth muscatel flavor (or at least the flavor I taste in most Darjeeling tea that I associate with the word "muscatel"). I guess this shouldn't have surprised me as much as it did...

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Picture of Japanese Sencha (Sachets)

Japanese Sencha (Sachets) from Harney and Sons

Style: Sencha – Region: Shizuoka, Japan

75 / 100 Aroma: 6/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5
Jul. 30th, 2018

Surprisingly good for a tea bag. I feel like I've been saying that a lot lately (which reminds me that I have a couple reviews to add), but with all the terrible tea bags out there, it's still a surprise when a bagged tea taste much like the loose leaf version.

I'm not going to describe this in detail for two reaso...

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Picture of Imperial Keemun Mao Feng Secret Garden

Imperial Keemun Mao Feng Secret Garden from Culinary Teas

Style: Keemun Mao Feng – Region: China

90 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5
Jul. 30th, 2018

Finally, a good Keemun! The dry tea has an aroma of aged wood, with a smoky scent that's more like the smokiness of a smoked cheese than the harsh smokiness of lower quality Keemun. I brewed it in a French press with water that hadn't reached boiling yet. The brewed tea has a similar aroma to the dry leaves, but this a...

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Fengqing Golden Buds Ripened Puerh from TeaVivre

Style: Ripened (Shou) Pu-erh – Region: Fengqing, Yunnan, China

76 / 100 Aroma: 6/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5
Jul. 27th, 2018

I'll be surprised if I ever give more than 3 stars for aroma in a ripe puerh review. They all smell the same to me, excluding the odors of too fresh, poorly made, or improperly stored examples. The taste, though, is something else. Each one tastes noticably different in both subtle and obvious ways. What they all seem ...

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Picture of 2017 Old Reliable

2017 Old Reliable from white2tea

Style: Ripened (Shou) Pu-erh – Region: Yunnan, China

78 / 100 Aroma: 6/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 5/5
Jul. 23rd, 2018

At first, this mostly smells and tastes like generic ripe pu-erh: wood, leaves, earth. It's sweet and syrupy, but the interesting flavors aren't immediately obvious. It does have subtle, non-generic-shou flavors that can be brought out depending on how you brew, though: caramel, cherry cola, dried fruit. Typical gaiwan...

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Picture of 2017 Little Ducks

2017 Little Ducks from white2tea

Style: Raw (Sheng) Pu-erh – Region: Yunnan, China

86 / 100 Aroma: 9/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 4/5
Jul. 21st, 2018

While the dry leaves have a rather muted scent, the wet leaves and brewed tea both have an amazingly sweet aroma, like if flowers were candy. Like the Daily Drinker, this is on the mellow side, but this one can be pushed further if you can tolerate bitterness. Brewed normally, the first couple steeps are grassy and veg...

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Picture of 2017 Daily Drinker

2017 Daily Drinker from white2tea

Style: Raw (Sheng) Pu-erh – Region: Yunnan, China

77 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 5/5
Jul. 19th, 2018

This tea has a wonderfully bright, fresh, floral fragrance, and a light bittersweet (more sweet than bitter) taste. It's moderately astringent, so be careful with brew times. As the name suggests, this won't be the greatest tea you've ever tasted; it's called Daily Drinker for a reason. It is quite good for the price, ...

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Picture of Xi Gui Ancient Tree Raw Pu-erh Cake 2013

Xi Gui Ancient Tree Raw Pu-erh Cake 2013 from TeaVivre

Style: Raw (Sheng) Pu-erh – Region: Yunnan, China

84 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 3/5
Jul. 19th, 2018

My favorite pu-erh so far out of the half a dozen or so I've tried, but it's also the most expensive. It does smell fruity (not sure what kind of fruit), but it also has a sweet rocky aroma, sort of like smelling the aftertaste of a good Wuyi oolong. Once brewed, it's strong and sweet without being astringent or bitter...

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Picture of 2017 Mini Jimbo

2017 Mini Jimbo from white2tea

Style: Ripened (Shou) Pu-erh – Region: Yunnan, China

74 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 4/5
Jun. 25th, 2018

This was a surprise bonus in my order. Being new to pu-erh, I really appreciated being able to sample something that I wouldn't have picked out, giving me a little extra variety to figure out what I do and don't like. The first thing I noticed about this mini cake (and the other ripe pu-erh I got from White2Tea, Old Re...

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Picture of Organic White Peony (Bai MuDan) Tea

Organic White Peony (Bai MuDan) Tea from TeaVivre

Style: White Peony Tea – Region: Fuding, Fujian, China

90 / 100 Aroma: 10/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 4/5
Jun. 15th, 2018

I've had this for a few weeks now, but I've put off this review because this is my first pure white tea. The leaves were picked in April of 2016, making the tea a little over two years old as of this review. It has a gentle yet complex aroma of autumn leaves, vanilla, cinnamon, old books, and hints of flowers and spice...

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Picture of Gunpowder Green Tea (Loose)

Gunpowder Green Tea (Loose) from Pure Leaf

Style: Gunpowder Green Tea – Region: Indonesia

44 / 100 Aroma: 4/10 Flavor: 2/5 Value: 4/5
Jun. 13th, 2018

This is one of the cheapest loose leaf teas I've ever seen, so I'm trying not to judge it to harshly, but it's just not very good. It's smoky, of course, but not too much if the temperature isn't too high. The overall flavor is vegetal, tasting like cooked carrots and green beans to me. It's pretty sour and astringent,...

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Picture of Ti Kuan Yin (Oolong Goddess)

Ti Kuan Yin (Oolong Goddess) from Adagio Teas

Style: Tie Guan Yin – Region: Fujian, China

68 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 3/5
Jun. 11th, 2018

I wrote a review of this before, but I accidentally deleted it while trying to edit it. Now that I've had a few better examples of Tieguanyin, I don't think this is as good as I initially thought. It's fairly mediocre, actually, with little to distinguish it from other oolongs on the lighter but not quite green end. Br...

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Picture of Bi Luo Chun Green Tea (Pi Lo Chun)

Bi Luo Chun Green Tea (Pi Lo Chun) from TeaVivre

Style: Bi Luo Chun – Region: Jiangsu, China

93 / 100 Aroma: 10/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 4/5
Jun. 10th, 2018

This is the most complex green tea I've ever tasted. It has a very fresh nutty and floral aroma and bright, slightly tangy (but not sour like some cheap gunpowder and chun mee) taste with notes of nuts, fresh herbs, citrus fruit, and hints of vegetables.

It resteeps well, brewing at least three good cups as long as ...

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Picture of Ancient Yunnan

Ancient Yunnan from Octavia Tea

Style: Yunnan Gold – Region: Yunnan, China

83 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 3/5
Jun. 9th, 2018

This is a very enjoyable tea. The twisted, tippy leaves have an aroma of raisins, wood, cocoa, and malt. When I added water I was initially disappointed to see that the leaves were broken, as I've paid less for full leaf Yunnan. Fortunately, the taste doesn't seem to suffer from this fact, with no bitterness and only a...

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Picture of Superfine Taiwan Qing Xiang Dong Ding Oolong Tea

Superfine Taiwan Qing Xiang Dong Ding Oolong Tea from TeaVivre

Style: Oolong Tea – Region: Taiwan / Formosa

82 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 3/5
Jun. 8th, 2018

I wasn't as impressed with this as I was with the roasted version. It's pretty good, but nothing really stood out to me, and it lacks the complexity of the roasted version. Without the roast it's just another floral oolong to me. However, roasted Taiwanese oolongs are among my favorite teas, so maybe someone who loves ...

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Picture of English Breakfast

English Breakfast from Twinings

Style: English Breakfast – Region: ?????

55 / 100 Aroma: 6/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 3/5
Jun. 7th, 2018

This was my introduction to black tea, so it was interesting to try it again recently. It has that specific malty, woody aroma that makes me think "English Breakfast". The flavor is rather bland compared to everything I've been drinking lately, but I did notice a mild dried fruit note that I never picked up when I used...

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Picture of Jasmine Green Tea

Jasmine Green Tea from Twinings

Style: Jasmine Tea – Region: ?????

33 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 1/5 Value: 2/5
Jun. 7th, 2018

I got this before I got into loose leaf tea, otherwise I wouldn't have bothered. As with most cheap jasmine green teas, it smells better than it tastes, but that's especially true for bagged jasmine. It has a sour vegetal flavor that barely resembles a decent loose leaf green tea. I used a few bags to scent some gunpow...

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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

84 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5
Jun. 7th, 2018

This is a weird tea. The dry leaves smell like chocolate and flowers, but as soon as water is added it smells like baked potatoes. It takes a while to brew: I usually end up brewing it for 6-7 minutes the first time and even longer for the next two infusions for a total of three cups.

The flavor is somewhat unusual...

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Picture of Superfine Anxi Qing Xiang TieGuanYin Oolong Tea

Superfine Anxi Qing Xiang TieGuanYin Oolong Tea from TeaVivre

Style: Tie Guan Yin – Region: Anxi, Fujian, China

87 / 100 Aroma: 10/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5
Jun. 6th, 2018

The aroma of the dry leaves is very floral, more so than any other Tieguanyin I've had, and the wet leaves are even more aromatic. I'm brewing this in my gaiwan, and after a quick rinse the first infusion is floral and vegetal, with a coolness in the finish that I usually find in Taiwanese oolongs. The second infusion ...

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Picture of Yunnan Gongfu Fragrant

Yunnan Gongfu Fragrant from TeaVivre

Style: Black Tea – Region: Fengqing, Yunnan, China

85 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 5/5
Jun. 4th, 2018

It took me a few tries to get something I liked out of this tea, but I'm really enjoying it now. It seems to turn out best steeped for around 3 minutes with water just below boiling. The aroma is mostly floral and malty, with some dried fruit and a slight scent of potatoes in the background. The flavor is slightly malt...

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Picture of Superfine Taiwan Moderately-Roasted Dong Ding Oolong Tea

Superfine Taiwan Moderately-Roasted Dong Ding Oolong Tea from TeaVivre

Style: Oolong Tea – Region: Nantou, Taiwan

95 / 100 Aroma: 10/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 4/5
Jun. 3rd, 2018

This was one of the free samples I picked with my Teavivre order. I put most of the sample in my gaiwan, leaving just enough for a later western style brew. The dry leaves smell quite roasted, but also floral and somewhat woody. The first infusion has an aroma much like the dry leaves, but a bit more floral. The taste ...

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Picture of Pu-erh Classic

Pu-erh Classic from Rishi Tea

Style: Ripened (Shou) Pu-erh – Region: Yunnan, China

65 / 100 Aroma: 5/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 3/5
May. 17th, 2018

This is my first unflavored puerh, so I don't have anything to compare it to. Mine was aged for 3 years so it might be slightly different from the normal version, but probably not that much. I had to air it out for a week to get rid of the smell of fish. Once that went away, the aroma of the dry leaves became earthy in...

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Picture of Oolong Tea

Oolong Tea from Imperial Organic

Style: Oolong Tea – Region: ?????

30 / 100 Aroma: 3/10 Flavor: 1/5 Value: 2/5
May. 16th, 2018

I was hoping this would be a lighter oolong from the description ("partially oxidized green tea"), but I knew as soon as I opened a bag and smelled it that it was fairly heavily roasted. The aroma is mostly just roast. I'm having trouble identifying specific flavors. It's just kind of generic and boring. It also leaves...

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Picture of Iced Classic Black Tea (Loose)

Iced Classic Black Tea (Loose) from Pure Leaf

Style: Black Tea – Region: Kenya

72 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 4/5
May. 16th, 2018

The dry leaf is floral and malty, just as Pure Leaf and the other reviewer describe it. Once brewed, there's a hint of dried fruit as well as wood; otherwise it's pretty similar to the dry aroma. Despite this tea coming from Kenya, the taste reminds me a bit of all three of the main tea growing regions of India: the ma...

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