But, I realized that percentile ranking might make a lot more sense: forget about means and distributions and just write what percent of similar teas you think are worse than the current tea.
I like this but I think, as a community, we're starting to divide around two separate ideals. One, as above, based on personal experience. The other, as mentioned by RoseWood, attempts to remove personal preferences and level experience by assessing a tea based (in some part) on defects or lack of them. Neither is wrong. In fact, both are used extensively in tea, coffee, and wine.
The problem with tasting for defect is that it should have already been done at the vendor level. Theoretically, when using a good vendor, the consumer should not need
to do any "defect tastings". All teas with debilitating defects should have been culled by the vendor before the consumer is allowed to buy them.
The problem with preferential and thus experience based tastings has been fleshed out in the last two pages of this thread. Some seem to feel it's best to keep the integrity of the scores by vetting reviewers. Others, seem to prefer re-working the scoring system rather than the people who can participate.
Maybe these are mutually exclusive ideals, but I hope they aren't.
RoseWood wrote:Here's what I think (albeit coming from a newbie who hasn't yet participated in an Otti):
1. Chuck the grading system. "Would buy/would not buy" would give enough information for fellow 'chatters and vendors alike. After all, most of us wouldn't purchase a product again that earned a C or 3 or whatever..
3. Yes, to say something "sucks" is rude. And definitely falls into the not-helpful category. Was it weak, strong, bitter, astringent, grassy, flat, fishy, gym socks? A gentle reminder of etiquette sent with the order confirmation is probably a good idea. If a participant continually smashes the products, simply reserve the right to not ship to that individual.
This is probably my favorite of the group. However, I realize my two cents don't count for much.