1279 Tasting Notes

59

I’m still a freezing bugger, so I went to make some fresh tea and then I spotted this one on the table.

A warm sort of flavour. Perfect.

I remember liking it best with milk, but I don’t have any. I’ll have to do without.

I just realised when I poured that there were a couple of Yunnan Jig leaves still in the cup that I forgot to rinse out. Doesn’t seem to have made any difference though.

Added a bit of cane sugar to it. Not a lot, just a pinch. Maybe it’s the sugar or maybe it’s just because I really needed a warm flavour like this right now, but I’m feeling generous today so I’m upping the rating a bit.

Cofftea

I wonder how this would compare to SBUX’s version if you made it latte style.

52teas

Who’s Starbucks? :)

Jillian

An evil, soul-sucking corporation that inflicts the scourge of over-priced beverages on the people. ;D

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77
drank Yunnan Jig by Adagio Teas
1279 tasting notes

I’m a lazy freezing bugger this morning, so we’re going to see how this holds up to a resteep. I’m not expecting miracles here, but if it doesn’t work then what have I actually wasted other than time and half a liter of water? Might as well give it a shot.

After I wrote mine yesterday, I’ve been looking through what other people have said about it. I’m glad I’m not the only one to pick up that honey note, because for me it’s really strong and I couldn’t immediately recall anybody having mentioned it before. One person said that it was also quite nice when sweetened with honey, so if the resteep works to my satisfaction, I will try that. Otherwise I have enough leaves left for one more pot, or most of one.

Being impatient, I’ve been sniffing at the pot. The smoke, or pepper, (because I really think it’s the same flavour that people recognise differently. For me it’s smoke. Not even remotely as strong as in Lapsang Souchong, but still smoke.) seems to be a little diminished but the honey is as strong as ever.

The colour looks the same too. Possibly a little darker, which sort of surprised me. It seems logical that resteeps should provide a gradully lighter colour.

It’s like an entirely different tea! I’m getting a strong honey note out of it and the smoke or pepper or whatever is almost entirely gone. It’s just there in the finish, giving the honey some sparkles. I can almost almost recognise it more as pepper than as smoke here. I don’t think it’s quite pepper but it’s more pepper at this point than it’s smoke. It’s got the same sort of prickling sensation on the tip of the tongue, whereas smoke, I think, is more prickly all over the mouth. Does this even make sense?

At any rate, yes, Yunnan Jig holds up nicely to a resteep.

Jillian

Sweet, I guess I’m not the only one who tastes the maybe-pepper only on the resteep. :)

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77
drank Yunnan Jig by Adagio Teas
1279 tasting notes

Another Jillian tea!

The leaves are pretty! They’re golden yellow, large and twisted. The smell mildly smokey. Long ago I had a Golden Yunnan that I thought was rather smokey in flavour, but since then whenever I’ve mentioned that I have been met with disbelief, until I finally began to think I was remembering it wrong since I seemed to be the only person in the world ever to have thought it was smokey. I’m also picking up a note of honey, a really flavourful kind of honey so strong that when you eat it you almost have to cough.

That note goes quite well with the honey-golden colour of the brew. The aroma after steeping is the same kind of honey, but not so much on the smoke. It’s just to throw you off, really. You almost expect to get a mouthful of liquid honey and instead you get a prickly mouthful of smoke. I still agree with myself that it’s a very smoky tea. I am getting a small note of honey, but not nearly to the extent that I would have thought from the aroma.

I’m trying to find the peppery note that people have been talking about and so far I’m failing. I get some pricklyness, but that’s from the smoke I think. I can’t find any pepper.

Back in ancient prehistoric times when I last had a plain yunnan, I remember not liking it much. I believe my tastes have changed. I think it’s a type I’ll have to stock up on again next year. It’s not one that I think is OMG fantastic! But it’s a nice one to have in the cupboard.

MH_Bonham

See, now I wouldn’t call Yunnan Jig smoky, but instead peppery. Maybe it’s just semantics?

Angrboda

I think it’s probably the same flavour but recognise it differently. It was the same thing with the white cucumber I got from Ricky a few days ago. Others had found a cinnamon like flavour, but to me it was like a mouthful of dill.

sophistre

I don’t know…I found some smoke flavor in the weaksauce yunnan I ordered the other day. It was on the tail end of the sip, and showed up primarily after the cup had cooled down. Now I’m going to have to make a cup of this and see if I can find the pepper in it.

Jillian

Glad you’re enjoying this one! _

East Side Rob

If you want to have a completely different Yunnan experience and really get a taste of how diverse Yunnan teas can be, try an all-bud Yunnan, such as Itoen’s Yunnan Gold Tips (which I currently can’t find on its website) or Rishi’s Organic Ancient Tree Golden Needle http://www.rishi-tea.com/store/golden-needle-organic-fair-trade-black-tea.html.

Angrboda

East Side Rob, due to shipping issues and fees and customs and whatnot those aren’t really available to me :(

Ricky

I love tea from the Yuannan region. I was actually building an order from Rishi. 25% off! If only there was free shipping as well. I won’t cave! You could always get steepster members to send some tea your way.

East Side Rob

Surely, there are Yunnan bud teas available over there — it’s Europe, the cradle of fine food and drink. Try Le Palais des Thes at www.palaisdesthes.com. They have a Bourgeons de Yunnan that’s an all-bud Yunnan. They’re French and they ship to the United States (and the French are so ambivalent about us Americans), so surely they’ll ship to Denmark. (You guys are such an uncontroversial lot, except of course when the local newspaper publishes a cartoon of Mohammed, but, hey, I digress.)

Anyway, Le Palais Des Thes, I think, even has a store in Oslo, so surely they can hurl a sample across the Skagerrak or the Kattegat, or whatever body of water it is that separates you guys.

I haven’t tried their Yunnan bud tea myself, but I bet it’s pretty good. I found a link, but it’s to the American version of their site.

http://www.palaisdesthes.com/us/tea-shop/yunnan-tips-2424.html

Let me know if you have any luck.

Angrboda

Ricky, I do have some secret plans in that regard, but it’ll have to wait a while.

Angrboda

East Side Rob, oh I can get the type, no problem. Those particular vendors you mentioned would be a problem though. I’ve only ordered from Adagio once, and it was pretty extravagant experience. About $20 for the tea, about $20 for shipping and about $20 for customs…

East Side Rob

I’ve always considered drinking a fine tea an affordable luxury, something that can be enjoyed for a fraction of the cost of a good wine. But at $40 for a shipment, I can see why you’d want to avoid American-based tea purveyors. And how’s the Euro against the dollar these days?

Angrboda

No clue, we haven’t got the Euro in Denmark. Yet. It’s a question of time before they send that to a vote again. The majority for no was tiny the last time. But I think $1 = about 6 danish kroner.

Ricky

Ouch, couldn’t you just list it as a gift? Would you still have to pay customs for that? When I order stuff outside of the US that’s what companies usually list on the customs form.

Angrboda

I can’t, so far as I can see, control how they send it. And I’m not sure there wouldn’t still be VAT on it. On the other hand, I’m not particularly comfortable about the customs labels being fiddled with like that. I haven’t bought from Teaspring (who otherwise have very reasonable shipping!) since the time I ordered for some $75 tea, and when I got the package the customs label read ‘Contents: Card. Value $10’. I was lucky the customs people didn’t decide to try and open that one! O.o

Ricky

Haha, usually the items are listed properly, but the pricing is a bit fudged when it’s sent to me.

Angrboda

Yeah, I’ve only had something like that happen the one time, but it did still make me a little uncomfortable with shopping there. I think in the new year I’ll have to place an order with Chaplon. They’re based in Denmark and I haven’t shopped with them in AGES. Don’t know why actually, I’ve always been happy with their quality. They just sort of slipped off my radar, I guess.

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85

Insteresting letter from Jillian in my letterbox today!

I’ve been trying to figure out what to try first and decided I was more interested in this. When I sent Jillian my ‘wishlist’ of things I’d like to try from her cupboard, this one mostly caught me by being pu-ehr, and I haven’t had any of that in ages, and a flavoured one at that, which I’ve never had. Little difficult for me to imagine flavoured pu-ehr, for some reason. But then, I initially felt the same way about green, white and oolong too and I can’t come up with a logical reason on why it shouldn’t be possible. Anyway, I didn’t pay attention to what else was in it at the time, so it’s not until now that I notice it has rooibos in it. That’s a bit worrisome, since I don’t really care much for that… Oh well, if you don’t try, you can’t win, so here we go!

It’s bagged and the bag smells like christmas biscuits! Do I have to drink it? Can’t I just sit here and sniff the bag? It seems almost a shame to get it wet. On the other hand, if I did just sit around, sniffing the bag, sooner or later I’d forget to pay attention and try to take a bite. Reflex, see.

Luckily, after steeping, it still smells like that. Chocolate and cinnamon are the dominant smells, and underneath it the earthiness of pu-ehr. It seems very dark in colour for a pu-ehr. I can’t really spot that reddish brown colour that it usually gets, but then that might be because the cup I’m using isn’t the best for looking at the colour.

The little satchel the bag was in says that the chocolate might sink to the bottom of the cup, so I’m giving it a little stir before tasting.

It tastes like sweets! Chocolatey and cinnamony like the blend I made yesterday (fate perhaps? Preparation for trying this?), but sweeter. I can pick up pretty much everything they say is in it, except possibly the nutmeg, but then I’m not really entirely certain which flavour I’m supposed to be looking for with that one. It’s not a spice I ever use for anything at all in my kitchen. And to my great relief, although I can defintiely find the rooibos, it’s only there to sort of add a little boost to the other flavours. If I hadn’t known it was there, I wouldn’t have noticed, but knowing that it is, I can tell what it does.

Great choice, me!

Suzi

That sounds so yummy :) Perfect for this time of year!

Angrboda

It is yummy! I had a brief OMG!!!-stare-into-cup moment. Jillian sent me two bags. I’ll save the other one for a special occasion. Like christmas eve for example. That seems to be suitable.

Ricky

This certain sounds better than my cup of bacon tea sitting in front of me. I’m slowly withering away, the smell’s killing me.

Cofftea

The ONLY pu erh I MIGHT be willing to try;)

Ricky

Rishi’s Vanilla Mint isn’t that bad =D Doesn’t taste like pu-erh that much.

Angrboda

Ricky, I just saw. You poor thing! It’s one of my favourite types, but it definitely isn’t for everybody. Go make something mild and fruity instead. :)

Ricky

I feel as if I’ve ate bad unsanitary Mexican food. It was definitely an interesting experience. If I ever need to fake an illness, I know what I can turn to.

Angrboda

LOL! “I’m sorry, boss, I can’t come to work today. My breakfast made me sick.” I’m not sure they’d buy that. :D

Ricky

Delete 1 minute ago

Naw, I’d just blame it on food poison, or tea poison in this case :D If they don’t believe me I’d brew them up a cup. Actually, I’d probably get fired for giving them poison (assuming they don’t like it).

Angrboda

That would be a bit of a gamble. If they did like it, they would know you were skiving off. :p

Jillian

Sweet, I’m glad it got to you safe and sound. The nutmeg is probably easiest to smell when the bag is dry – it might be what you’re thinking of as christmas biscuits. :)

teaplz

Sounds yummy!

__Morgana__

I am breaking out my box of this to give it a try after reading your post!

Stephanie

Good to know that the rooibos doesn’t really make an appearance!

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70

Wanted: A nice, plain black tea with some good substance to the flavour.
Has: A white Darjeeling with a delicate flavour and a flowery note.

How did this happen? Your guess is as good as mine.

East Side Rob

It seems like all the tea growers are trying to expand their markets and are starting to make teas that aren’t traditionally from their region. The Indians and the Sri Lankans are now making greens, oolongs and whites. China is making senchas to feed the insatiable Japanese markets. And, for the most part, Yunnans and Keemuns are grown in China to export to the European and American markets, where black teas are the beverage of choice. The Chinese themselves would rather drink oolongs or greens. How long before Japan starts dabbling in black tea?

I’ve tried a Darjeeling oolong, which was very good. Didn’t realize Makaibari was now making whites as well. The guy who owns/runs Makaibari, Rajah Banerjee, is an interesting character. And character is the right word. See link below.

http://www.makaibari.com/films.html

Angrboda

I haven’t been there myself. I got it as a gift from a friend who lives in the area along with a first flush and I think a second flush. Or an autumnal. Not sure. Those are both long gone. That must have been hmmm… last year I think. Anyway, from what I understood, she gets almost all the tea she drinks from there and it sounded like she bought it directly at the estate. This one is good, but it doesn’t measure up to the chinese whites.

I had a Darjeeling oolong once which was either from Puttabong or Puttimbing. I found it fairly boring and gave it away to someone who luckily loved it and claimed that it was capable of curing the common cold. :p I think it disappointed me because I was expecting something different. This has only occurred to me recently when someone over at LJ told me that the many Darjeeling blacks are oxidised for such a short time that they could be considered borderline oolong. Certainly explains why the leaves often look so green.

Angrboda

Sorry, that would be Pussimbing! I can never remember that name!

East Side Rob

I heard a similar thing regarding the oxidation of Darjeelings — not that they’re oxidized for such a short time, per se, but that the oxidation process is deliberately very uneven, so that you get black leaves mixed with oolong-like leaves, and even nearly green ones. And that, supposedly, was why Darjeelings have such a melange of flavors, because they’re virtually a blend all by themselves.

Angrboda

I just which I still had some left of the other two she sent me. Now that I’m more practised at paying attention to flavours beyond ‘I like this’ vs ‘I don’t like this’

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80
drank Green Cactus by Den Lille Tebutik
1279 tasting notes

Second steep of last night’s leaves of this.

I am not impressed. It’s much weaker now and watery. The last of the already very faded cactus flavour is completely gone and, weirdly, it has gained a note of something almost chamomile-ish instead.

I’m not quite done with it yet, though, so I’m making myself a new pot, using the last of the leaves I had.

Since I bought this one, the shop has moved twice and switched owners at least once, so it’s pretty ancient. Had the leaves been fresher, they might have held up to the resteep better. I’ve seen that they have a green cactus flower tea on their website now, which they’re calling an interesting newcomer, so now I’m not sure if this particular tea that I’ve got has been discontinued and brought back or if it’s a new but similar tea. Mine doesn’t say anything about flowers. Could be either.

The rate I’m cleaning up nearly empty tins these days, I’ll have to do some shopping before I send the travelling teabox out, or the first person on the list is in for a bit of a disappointment! O.o

Jillian

Well cactus tea does sound quite interesting. :)

Cofftea

I haven’t had prickly pear (cactus) tea, but I have had puree in drinks. It’s REALLY good! I’m looking for a non herbal tea. Preferably just cactus and green or white tea.

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80
drank Green Cactus by Den Lille Tebutik
1279 tasting notes

I was asked once, “what does cactus taste like?” and I floundered wildly to come up with an answer. I still don’t know how to describe. I could recognise it instantly; it’s even one of those flavours that it’s easy to imagine when you don’t have it, but I don’t really know how to describe it.

It’s sort of sweet and sort of fruity but not like your ordinary sweet and fruity. It has that cool sensation that you also find in mint and it has a certain freshness to it so it doesn’t get cloying. And a touch of fennel(*) too.

My leaves of this are fairly old and have been standing forgotten in the cupboard for a long time, so I can’t really remember how much flavour it had to begin with but I think it must have faded some. There isn’t all that much of the added flavour left in it, except in the aroma, but the green tea it’s based on is coming out loud and clear. It doesn’t say what the base is, but I’m guessing it’s probably Sencha, since the vast majority of the green flavoured teas in that particular shop are based on Sencha. Or at least they were at the time I bought it.

It’s been ages and ages since I’ve had a pure Sencha (that I knew for sure was Sencha) so I can’t really judge it on flavour. Only an educated guess. Due to the nature of the cup, i can’t tell you about the colouring of the liquid and looking at it as it’s poured doesn’t really give a very accurate picture. It did look a tiny bit neon-green though. Just the slightest hint.

The taste is definitely different from my chinese and taiwanese greens too. It doesn’t taste as green, kind of. As in, it doesn’t taste like it’s not a green tea, it just doesn’t invoke the same images of things that are green while drinking it. Or something. Gosh, that sounds ridiculous, but I can’t figure out how else to explain it. It reminds me very strongly of Genmaicha, to the point where I have to remind myself that it isn’t actually Genmaicha. Does any of this sound Sencha-ish to those of you who have more experience with Sencha?

.(*) Fennel, btw, might be an interesting flavour in a green or white tea, come to think of it…

teafiend

My first thought when I saw cactus tea was “owww”, then I remembered you don’t actually have to eat the cactus whole. Sound awesome actually, I’m a huge cactus fan, provided the needles are off.

Kitch3ntools

i would love to taste cactus! it sounds like such a fun flavor!

Peggie Bennett

That’s a very interesting taste you describe for the cactus. I’ve eaten cactus and I don’t remember it tasting that way. Of course, brewing it into tea might make it taste different. I’m curious to try the tea now and compare with my favorite nopalitos omelette.

sophistre

The cactus I’ve eaten tasted like green beans. I know that sounds strange, but that’s what I remember: sweet green beans. Different from prickly pear fruits, obviously, which is sort of..like…jam. Kind of. Or maybe that’s just because I had prickly pear jam.

Curious about this tea, now.

Angrboda

It’s really weird. I don’t know what they’ve actually used to flavour it with. At first I assumed it was prickly pears, but then I saw they had them in my supermarket one day and I bought one and absolutely didn’t like it. I was imagining it to taste sort of like this and instead I got something kind of more…. banana-like only not yummy like bananas. Then I started poking around on the internet and discovered that there are several different kinds of cactuses or cactii or whatever that produce edible fruit, so now I’m as confused as ever. ‘Cactus’ is all they’re giving me. Heck, for all I know it’s just a fancy name for the flavour and doesn’t actually have anything to do with the plants at all.

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75
drank Chocolate by Adagio Teas
1279 tasting notes

With a twist today. I substituted one quarter of the leaves with Adagio’s cinnamon black. It turned out to be a very nice combination. I’m glad I didn’t add more cinnamon than I did because I think that would have overpowered the chocolate.

Well. I say chococlate, but really it’s more cocoa than it’s chocolate, I think.

As mentioned, though, a nice combination, which seems pretty nicely balanced between the two flavours if I do say so myself. I think a little bit of milk would have suited it too, smoothing it out a bit, but I didn’t have any so someone else will have to test that for me.

Weirdly, it’s also a combination that works tolerably well with this I-need-to-use-these-leeks-for-something-soon-improvisation-surprise-soup that I’m having for dinner.

Cofftea

Yeah you definitely have to be careful about the ratio, but I LOVE mayan chocolate!

Kitch3ntools

ive done this b4!! :D its really good ive added milk too. the milk does smooth it out so its a nice mellow flavor.

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41
drank Soft Fruitea by Pickwick
1279 tasting notes

I’ve napped, so I don’t know if it’s still snowing or snowing again either way, it sure is adding up out there. Good thing about naps though is that you get warm! Finally.

This is just another one for the sake of variation, and I’m still lazy so I’m still bagging it. On top of that it’s pretty oversteeped because I forgot about it. Apart from it going somewhat lukewarm, it hasn’t been damaged though. The cardboard flavour is fully intact

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56
drank Melon by Pickwick
1279 tasting notes

Still snowing. Still bagging it.

I can’t get warm. Brrrrrrrr! Just trying for a bit of variety here. Seeing as I log everything in my OCDness, you can probably expect a load of quick bag-logs like this while I’m trying to make my body temperature normal again. I’m already cuddling up under my duvet in the sofa.

This one always surprises me a bit when I taste it. How melon-like it is. How dry a sort of flavour it is. How clear a picture I get in my head of melons when I taste it. Hopefully it can also warm me up.

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Profile

Bio

Ang lives with Husband and two kitties, Charm and Luna, in a house not too far from Århus. Apart from drinking tea, she enjoys baking, especially biscuits, reading and jigsaw puzzles. She has recently acquired an interest in cross-stitch and started a rather large project. It remains to be seen whether she has actually bitten off more than she can chew…

Ang prefers black teas and the darker sorts of oolongs. She has to be in the mood for green and white, and she enjoys, but knows little to nothing about, pu-erh.

Her preferences with black teas are the Chinese ones, particularly from Fujian, but also Keemun and just about anything smoky. She occasionally enjoys Yunnans but they’re not favourites. She has taken some time to research Ceylon teas, complete with reference map, and has recently developed some interest in teas from Africa.

She is sceptical about Indian blacks as she generally finds them too astringent and too easy to get wrong. She doesn’t really care for Darjeelings at all. Very high-grown teas are often not favoured.

She likes flavoured teas as well, particularly fruit flavoured ones, but also had an obsession with finding the Perfect Vanilla Flavoured Black and can happily report that this reclusive beast has been spotted in a local teashop near where she works. Any and all vanilla flavoured teas are still highly attractive to her, though. Also nuts and caramel or toffee. Not so much chocolate. It’s a texture thing.

However, she thinks Earl Grey is generally kind of boring. Cinnamon and ginger are also not really a hit, and she’s not very fond of chais. Evil hibiscus is evil. Even in small amounts, and yes, Ang can usually detect hibiscus, mostly by way of the metallic flavour of blood it has.

Ang is not super impressed with rooibos or honeybush on their own. She doesn’t care for either, really, but when they are flavoured, they go usually go down a treat.

Ang used to have a Standard Panel of teas that she tried to always have on hand. She put a lot of thought into defining it and decided what should go on it. It was a great idea on paper, but in practise has been discovered to not really work as well.

Ang tries her best to make a post on Steepster several times a week. She tends to write her posts in advance in a word doc (The Queue) and posting from there. This, she feels, helps her to maintain regularity and stops her from making five posts in three days and then going three weeks without posting anything at all.

Angrboda is almost always open to swapping. Just ask her. Due to the nature of the queue, however, and the fact that it’s some 24 pages long at the moment, it may take a good while from she receives your parcel and until she actually posts about it.

The Formalities

Contact Angrboda by email: [email protected]
Contact Ang on IM on Google chat

Find Ang on…
Steam: Iarnvidia (Or Angrboda. She changed her display name and now is not certain which one to search for. She uses the same picture though, so she is easily recognised)
Goodreads: Angrboda
Livejournal: See website.
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Bio last updated February 2014

Location

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Website

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