Reviews of Pure Tea (Camellia sinensis)

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Tchuggin' Okie

(259 reviews)
Picture of Organic Darjeeling Green Tea

Organic Darjeeling Green Tea from Trader Joe's

Style: Darjeeling Green Tea – Region: Darjeeling, India

43 / 100 Aroma: 3/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 3/5
Feb. 17th, 2020

Similarly to my review of TJ's Darjeeling white tea, I hope this isn't very representative of Darjeeling greens; for it lacks aroma and flavor. The dry-bag aroma is basically nil, with the in-cup scent only very faint. Only the wet bag has something resembling a smell I would associate with green tea, and it's still ...

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Organic Sencha Tea from Trader Joe's

Style: Sencha – Region: Japan

74 / 100 Aroma: 6/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 5/5
Feb. 14th, 2020

Despite having a wide spectrum of experiences with TJ's teas (from excellent to revolting...but mostly good), I somehow thought this would be a cheap knockoff and not very high quality. Somewhat surprisingly, while not the best bagged green I've had (that would be an unbranded tea my daughter brought back from Japan)...

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Gray

(28 reviews)
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Hot Brandy 2016 from white2tea

Style: Black and White Blend – Region: ?????

45 / 100 Aroma: 6/10 Flavor: 2/5 Value: 2/5
Feb. 11th, 2020

I commend White2Tea for the attempt at combining white tea with black tea in a cake like this. It was an interesting experiment. But, while the taste really isn't bad, the effect it has on me is very uncomfortable. That also hasn't changed over the years (I've had this cake for a while and have been aging it and period...

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Tchuggin' Okie

(259 reviews)
Picture of English Breakfast

English Breakfast from Lipton Tea

Style: English Breakfast – Region: Blend

54 / 100 Aroma: 5/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 3/5
Feb. 11th, 2020

I bring news! Whether it's good news or not is up to the reader. This tea, as a brand with the same name, is not retired after all, as of Feb. 2020. Instead, it has found its way to the food-service division of Unilever, Lipton's corporate overlord. I'll upload a photo of its newest packaging separately. I was abl...

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Picture of Organic Spring Blossom White Tea

Organic Spring Blossom White Tea from Trader Joe's

Style: White Tea – Region: Darjeeling, India

41 / 100 Aroma: 6/10 Flavor: 2/5 Value: 2/5
Feb. 10th, 2020

This was my first Darjeeling white tea, and it's about as impressive as sitting through an hour-long staff meeting with a well-advertised, nicely dressed, but ultimately monotonic guest speaker droning on about an uninteresting subject.

At first, I was intrigued. The best part of the experience was the dry-bag ar...

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Gray

(28 reviews)
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Nightlife 2017 from white2tea

Style: Moonlight White – Region: ?????

80 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 3/5
Feb. 9th, 2020

I wasn't feeling well lately. I think I may have caught the flu, which has been going around. I tried a remedy of tea and herbs that often helps me, but it wore of quickly. So, I felt the urge to try some of this white tea, because I remember something I was told by someone regarding white tea being considered medicine...

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JGS1122

(71 reviews)
Picture of Hu-Kwa Tea

Hu-Kwa Tea from Mark T. Wendell

Style: Lapsang Souchong – Region: Taiwan / Formosa

80 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 5/5
Feb. 8th, 2020

As expected the aroma is similar to a pine forest on fire, or a freshly paved road. For those new to lapsing souchong, it might be a bit intimidating. Those who are adverse to trying because of the aroma are missing out on a wonderful cup of tea. The liquor is a deep amber color. The flavor is nice. Once brewed, the bu...

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Gray

(28 reviews)
Picture of Organic Darjeeling

Organic Darjeeling from Harney and Sons

Style: Darjeeling Second Flush – Region: Darjeeling, India

0 / 100 Aroma: 1/10 Flavor: 1/5 Value: 1/5
Feb. 7th, 2020

I suspected something was wrong with the quality (or lack thereof) of this tea when I opened up the tin and there was no scent. (Side note: The best by date isn't for about 2 years, so that's not the issue.) Some teas have a very, very light scent, though. So, I tried to suspend judgment and brewed a cup as the packagi...

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Tchuggin' Okie

(259 reviews)
Picture of Organic Autumn Harvest Black Tea

Organic Autumn Harvest Black Tea from Trader Joe's

Style: Black Tea – Region: ?????

69 / 100 Aroma: 6/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5
Feb. 6th, 2020

This is not to be confused with the apparently much-better-known Trader Joe's "Harvest Blend" herbal tea, which is a completely different product. Instead, this black tea came in a 10-bag sealed wrapper, tucked into one of four squares of a wooden gift box. The outside paper wrapper of the gift box describes all four...

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Trailesque

(75 reviews)

Season's Pick Vietnam Eastern Beauty Oolong from Upton Tea Imports

Style: Oolong Tea – Region: Vietnam

40 / 100 Aroma: 6/10 Flavor: 1/5 Value: 1/5
Jan. 29th, 2020

This gets some good reviews on Upton's website and sells for an above average price, but it didn't do much for me. The aroma is pleasant enough, but the flavor is bland and weak. I can't recommend this one.

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spaflam

(177 reviews)
Picture of Japanese Sencha (Sachets)

Japanese Sencha (Sachets) from Harney and Sons

Style: Sencha – Region: Shizuoka, Japan

71 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 3/5
Jan. 23rd, 2020

I had this tea at a local restaurant (in a bag) and got 2 cups out of 1 bag - even though the restaurant offered me a second bag. It had a slight grassy note but also a pleasant roasted flavor vaguely reminiscent of a barley or genmaicha. I really enjoyed this tea - hot - no lemon - no dairy - no sweetener.

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Alex Zorach

(1410 reviews)
Picture of Gold Leaf Tea

Gold Leaf Tea from Akbar

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

90 / 100 Aroma: 9/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5
Jan. 15th, 2020

I was astonished by this tea's quality as well as value for its price. One of my friends recently bought this from a Russian market, and he had only recently opened the container so it was very fresh.

The dry leaf though is explosively aromatic. This is by far the most aromatic Ceylon black tea I've ever found in th...

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Trailesque

(75 reviews)

Upton South Street Breakfast Blend from Upton Tea Imports

Style: Black Tea – Region: Blend

65 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 2/5
Jan. 6th, 2020

This is a new entry in Upton's growing list of breakfast blends; it was created as on of their 30th anniversary specials. It is not as robust or malty as some breakfast blends, but not extra mild either - it falls somewhere in the middle. This has a little nip to it. The price is a little high.

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Formosa Oolong Standard Grade from Upton Tea Imports

Style: Oolong Tea – Region: Taiwan / Formosa

70 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 3/5
Jan. 2nd, 2020

A flavorful and complex oolong that is better than your average Chinese restaurant tea. This has a very nice garden/forest like aroma. The flavor is complex and leans toward the brighter, cleaner end of the oolong spectrum. The price is a little higher than I would expect for an everyday oolong, but it makes sense g...

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C.T.C. Irish Breakfast Blend from Upton Tea Imports

Style: Irish Breakfast – Region: Assam, India

85 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5
Dec. 30th, 2019

A blend of Assam teas that turns out to be smooth and flavorful, and offered at an excellent price by Upton. It has been one of their top sellers, for a long time, and it is not hard to see why. This does not have the rough edges or iron notes that some breakfast teas have. It is earthy, nutty, and not a challenge t...

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Picture of Organic Ho-ji Cha Kamakura

Organic Ho-ji Cha Kamakura from Upton Tea Imports

Style: Hojicha – Region: Kanagawa, Japan

80 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 4/5
Dec. 30th, 2019

This is a very nice hojicha. It is pleasantly roasty, but there is some complexity (dashes of soy sauce and caramel) and the underlying bancha comes thru well. The aroma is woody and fresh.

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Gray

(28 reviews)

Organic Jinhao Golden Tip Black Tea from TeaVivre

Style: Black Tea – Region: Guangxi, China

89 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5
Dec. 23rd, 2019

I love this tea. I don't often purchase larger quantities of tea without trying it first, but this was on sale around Thanksgiving and I decided to give 50g a try. The leaves were nice and large. I wasn't surprised when I saw that this came from a Bai Hao tree, as the large leaves reminded me a bit of TeaVivre's Bai Ha...

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Tchuggin' Okie

(259 reviews)
Picture of Storm Watcher

Storm Watcher from Murchie's Tea & Coffee Ltd

Style: Black Tea – Region: Blend

81 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5
Dec. 17th, 2019

Being in Oklahoma, the name of this seasonal tea intrigued me a lot, even though the storms inspiring it are cold, wet wintertime blasts on the British Columbia coast, instead of southern Plains severe thunderstorms and tornadoes. Then again, that makes sense. What would tornado tea be, and would it even matter? The...

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Alex Zorach

(1410 reviews)
Picture of Nan Nuo Mountain Assamica Varietal Black Tea

Nan Nuo Mountain Assamica Varietal Black Tea from Yunnan Sourcing

Style: Yunnan Red – Region: Menghai, Yunnan, China

97 / 100 Aroma: 9/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5
Dec. 16th, 2019

This was another delightful tea. Of all the teas I've tried recently, it was most similar to the Big Snow Mountain of Mengku. It also reminded me a lot of some artisanal Assam teas I tried a while back from TeaOrb, a company that sells teas from regions of Assam that don't typically reach the western market.

The dry...

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Tchuggin' Okie

(259 reviews)
Picture of English Breakfast

English Breakfast from Revolution Tea

Style: English Breakfast – Region: Blend

63 / 100 Aroma: 6/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 3/5
Dec. 2nd, 2019

The next entry from a Revolution variety pack delivered one of the strangest experiences I've had with a tea. Sniffing the dry bag (pyramid sachet) rendered an unmistakably familiar aroma that took me many tries to recall its specific origin. "Sniff, sniff, sniff...I know this...sniff, sniff, sniff...where have I sme...

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Picture of Yorkshire Tea Traditional

Yorkshire Tea Traditional from Yorkshire Tea

Style: Black Tea – Region: Blend

64 / 100 Aroma: 6/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 3/5
Dec. 1st, 2019

Yorkshire is a basic, moderately strong, reasonably tasty, unassuming black-tea blend—nothing special, but still just bold enough to sneak into the upper 40th percentile of bagged black teas I've had.

The dry-bag aroma and in-cup smell and taste can be described the same way: plain, short on standout notes or c...

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JGS1122

(71 reviews)

TSA6: Organic Coloumbian Breakfast from Upton Tea Imports

Style: Black Tea – Region: Colombia

50 / 100 Aroma: 5/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 3/5
Nov. 25th, 2019

This tea has a very mild earthy aroma. The liquor is a pale amber. A tea that is 'light' on flavor, with no after taste. I was hesitant to try this just because it is from a non traditional growing area. I am underwhelmed with this tea. It might serve as a 'base' for blending or adding a flavor. Adding sugar or milk wo...

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Picture of Black Label Breakfast Fannings

Black Label Breakfast Fannings from Upton Tea Imports

Style: Black Tea – Region: Blend

85 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5
Nov. 24th, 2019

This tea has an 'earthy woodsy' aroma. Fannings grade so it is a powder, a pound filled the large storage canister to the top. The liquor is a nice medium brown. Good flavor with no after taste. I will buy this tea again.

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Picture of Kenya OP Malaika Black Tea

Kenya OP Malaika Black Tea from Simpson & Vail

Style: Black Tea – Region: Kenya

80 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 5/5
Nov. 22nd, 2019

This tea has a mild earthy smell with a hint of chocolate. The liquor is a medium to dark amber color. I get a lingering hint of sweetness, similar to honey. Though I never add anything to my tea, I think lemon would pair very well with this tea. I was unsure about buying this. My previous encounters with African teas ...

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Difflugia

(138 reviews)
Picture of Afternoon Darjeeling Tea Bags

Afternoon Darjeeling Tea Bags from Taylors of Harrogate

Style: Darjeeling Black Tea – Region: Darjeeling, India

64 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 3/5
Nov. 21st, 2019

The dry tea is chopped up quite fine. It looks like a typical Darjeeling, having a range of colors from light green to a dark brown, indicating a range of oxidations. Taylor's puts 2.5 grams of tea in their bags, splitting the difference between the typical American 2 grams and the 3 grams of many English bagged teas.
...

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