The Tea Flavor Wheel: How to Keep a Tea Journal

The Tea Flavor Wheel: How to Keep a Tea Journal
The world is full of delicious teas. But how do you keep track of them all? Simple: keep a tea journal!
No matter where a blend falls on the tea flavor wheel, a tea journal will help you track it.
What's a tea flavor wheel? Learn more about how you can keep a tea journal and use it to document your tea-tasting journey!

What is the Tea Flavor Wheel?


What is the tea flavor wheel, you might ask?
Simply put, it’s a nifty chart to categorize tea flavors. The wheel covers the full spectrum of qualities that might show up in a tea’s flavor profile. Is the tea floral, spicy, grassy, tropical, nutty, bitter, or sweet? Does it have hints of fruit or citrus, berries or herbs, a strong body, or a nice finish?
You get the idea.
The flavor wheel covers every flavor possibility in one handy diagram.
You may have seen similar wheels for wine, beer, coffee, and even cheese. (Why anyone would go for a “burnt rubbery” wine or a “rusty” cheese is beyond me, but I’m not in charge of these things.)
Every tea will land somewhere unique on the tea flavor wheel. With a tea journal, you can chart them all. (Think of it as a tea lover’s Pokémon—or Pok-tea-mon, if you will.)
Image shows a tea journal on a wooden background, surrounded by ginger roots, apples, a lemon, and various other herbs, spices, and nuts.

What is a Tea Journal?


A tea journal is a notebook to record each new blend you try. You can log things like the tea’s name, the date you drank it, steeping time, and pairing notes. Then, chart its flavor profile on the flavor wheel and give it an overall rating. You can keep an at-a-glance, in-depth account of every tea experience.
The Plum Deluxe tea journal is small enough to fit easily in a pocket or purse, so you can take it with you on the go.  You can also slip it unobtrusively into a kitchen drawer or wherever you keep your tea accessories. It’s travel-sized, for your convenience!
The journal also includes the occasional page to jot down thoughts of gratitude,  insight, and epiphanies. After all, teatime is a great time to practice mindfulness. If inspiration strikes as you sip, you’ll want a place to write it down!
Image shows a cup of tea on a wooden background, surrounded by ginger roots, apples, a lemon, and various other herbs, spices, and nuts.

Why Should I Keep a Tea Journal?


Tea journaling is a useful practice for seasoned tea drinkers and tea novices alike!
If you, like me, acquire teas with that Pok-tea-mon mentality (gotta catch ‘em all!), then journaling is perfect for you!
Before Plum Deluxe released their tea journal, I was attempting to track my tea habit with a repurposed wine journal. It worked in a pinch, but it wasn't ideal. I just needed some way to remember my reactions to all those teas through the ages!
I have my favorites of course, (I will never stop loving you, Reading Nook) and many stand out for their sheer individuality (hello, Fireside Chat smoked black tea). Some are exactly what you want and expect them to be (tried and true, beautiful Hope Blend jasmine tea).
But I have tried a lot of tea, and I wanted to remember the nuances of each blend. A tea journal is the perfect tool.
Maybe you are just starting your tea journey. Maybe you want to become a tea drinker, but are still navigating the process. For all you tea newbies, a tea journal is just the thing to help weather the ups and downs of exploring your tea preferences.
Perhaps you find that every time you drink a tea with lavender, it gets a five-star rating. Or you want to really dive into Earl Greys and explore different flavors, steep times, and add-ins.
A tea journal will help you remember your impressions of each variation so you can hone in on your absolute favorite cuppa! (A fun way to start this process is to take the Plum Deluxe Tea Quiz. It’s fun, fast, and free!)
Tea journaling differs from classic journaling because it’s a snapshot of stats about the tea and your tea experience, rather than extended thoughts or feelings.
But who’s to say you can’t combine the two?
Use your tea journal to document the facts and figures about the blend, then expound on your feelings in a classic journal as you enjoy your tea! If you are an avid journaler, or if you have trouble coming up with your own topics to write about, check out our journal prompt series!
For anyone who enjoys tea with a side of creativity, get your hands on a copy of the “Just Keep Steeping” Mindful Moments coloring book! It combines coloring, journal prompts, positive affirmations, and tea, all rolled into one lovely package…what more could you want to feed your creative soul?
If you have a tea lover in your life who loves organization (or could use a little more of it), a tea journal makes a great gift—either on its own or as part of a larger tea-themed care package— because we could all use a little more tea-LC in our lives!

Erica Jolly

Erica Jolly is a born and raised Pacific North Westerner. Rainwater flows through her veins. She is a tea drinker by day, wine drinker by night, and lover of food, yoga, and rambling conversations.
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