1107 Tasting Notes
This is a shared with the boyfriend pot. He requested something green that wasn’t flavoured, and I suggested a green type oolong because it was the first one I came across when diving into the Bits and Bops Basket.
The dry leaf had a citrus-y note to the aroma but after steeping the aroma is wildly floral to the point where you would think it was scented with something or other.
The flavour seems to be a bit weakly and watery, but I’m not sure I can really count on that, since I’m brewing (because it’s a shared pot) in a different pot than I’m used to and I’m not sure I really had enough leaf to get the strength that I prefer and am accustomed to.
Apart from that weakly beginning the first bit of the sip is something smoothly vegetal, kind of asparagus-y and a bit spinach-y. It has some floral overtones as well, but not nearly as much as the aroma would lead me to believe.
There is a strong feeling of citrus as well, sort of an umbrella note, covering everything. Not really a flavour of citrus, but sort of like you can sense the presence of a lemon-y note being in there somewhere. The flavour that doesn’t really show itself much but is secretly pulling all the strings behind the scenes.
It’s quite nice, but I’m getting more and more convinced that I’m really outgrowing this type of oolong. I can definitely have one and say ‘this is a good oolong’ and I could even have one in the collection (unflavoured), but it wouldn’t be one I’d be reaching for very often. As close as we get to green in the Standard Panel, after all, are flavoured green oolongs.
Get into mah belleh!
Om nom nom nom!
I have biscuits. Sugary, cinnamon-y, almond-y biscuits. And they go uncommonly well with this tea.
This particular tin seems to be getting more attention from me than I had previously thought it would. For a fruit flavoured black this almost always seem to do the trick unless I very specifically want something else. Maybe I will make it part of the Standard Panel in the future. We shall see, we shall see.
It’s so summerly and so fresh. It makes me wish I had a black currant bush nearby as my mother told me that the leaves of same would be good for herbal tea. Those of you who DO have access to black currant bushes may wish to try this out. (I’ve never actually tried this myself, though, so if you’re feeling curious about it you may wish to do some research of your own first.)
Black currant really is the overlooked berry.
Irrelevant to this particular tea, but relevant to me,
attention Steepsterites who sometimes shop at Necessitea! Might I prevail on one of you to get something for me and send it on the next time you shop there anyway? I will of course repay you for the purchase and shipping either by sending you something of equal value of your choice or paypal or something. I’m sure we could figure something out. It’s not urgent or important, just keep me in mind the next time you shop, yes? Shoot me a PM or an email (address in my info) if you will help me. Sorted. Thank you QuiltGuppy
Today, a Yunnan. I’m experiencing a loss of words today. I can smell the aroma but I can’t for the life of me come up with the words necessary to describe about it. It’s just… an aroma. Nothing really stands out to me in this cup, but I don’t know if it’s the tea’s fault or if it’s just me. It’s very standard Yunnan, spicy and peppery and with a strong note of raisins.
Taste-wise it’s the same problem. It’s a Yunnan. It’s spicy and peppery with hay notes like Yunnans just are. There are only small traces of aforementioned raisin note. But again, that’s it.
That doesn’t mean that it’s not a good tea. It’s very suitable for this morning hour with a nice strength and were I in a different, more alert mood I might even have been able to actually describe it.
I don’t think I’m in the right sort of mind-frame for writing Steepster posts. Too tired. I shall enjoy this with some Stargate instead.
Okay, second steep of this is incredibly thick and creamy. It’s almost like actually having some sort of tea-flavoured cream, clinging to the inside of the mouth, smooth and viscous. It’s rather too much, really.
This wasn’t at all what I wanted either, but I was fricking desperate, and these leaves were still in the pot from this morning.
Don’t ask about my day. Seriously.
From the Bits and Bops Basket. This is another one with a name that sort of appeals to the imagination, isn’t it? You may remember that I previously had a tea, procured in the same way, by the name of Ancient Forest which gave me a similar experience.
Apparently this is a black, which sort of surprises me becuase the leaves are unbroken. They’re large and pretty and rolled a bit and all in all look identical to a dark type oolong. A little further investigation shows that in the Steepster info from Norbu itself it says the tea has been 70% oxidised. Well, there you have it. It is in fact an oolong and Norbu doesn’t have a proper grasp of the tea types. Tut tut tut. Norbu, for the record, if it’s not a 100% oxidation, it’s not a black tea. Regardless of the colour of the leaf. Oolongs do actually come in other shades than green.
Now that we have that settled let’s move on. The aroma of this is quite surprising. I’ve come to expect cocoa notes primarily from dark type oolongs, but this doesn’t have that at all. It’s sweet and a bit malty, but also sort of broth-y somehow. It’s a small note but it’s there all the same, lurking at the bottom of the aroma profile. Odd. That’s definitely a first for me.
The flavour profile is a bit odd as well. It’s sort of weakish and strong at the same time. The different notes in it doesn’t quite seem to mesh which gives it a watery thin topnote and something darker and stronger below. Like a sauce that separates. Given a little more time to develop, everything seems to come together again and I get a fuller flavour. That’s a bit easier to work with.
It still doesn’t have any of those cocoa notes, though. It has retained the sweetness from the aroma and a touch of maltyness. It’s not entiremly impossible that there’s a touch of raisin on the aftertaste, but it isn’t really much. It’s more an association than an actual flavour note. The jury is out on whether or not it’s there or I’m just hallucinating.
Norbu says that there should be a mild, pleasant astringency in this cup, and I can sort of catch the hint of a glimmer of one. If there is astringency to be found here, then yes, it’s certainly mild. So mild, in fact, that it’s almost not there. Not quite gone, but not quite there.
I’m finding this quite different from other dark oolongs I’ve had, and I wonder if I’ve hit upon a regional difference here. This one comes from Taiwan, where all other dark oolongs I know generally comes from China. This is the oolong that makes me wonder what the result would be like if someone in the Assam region decided to make a dark oolong. Or someone in Sri Lanka, for that matter. And what would happen if those two were blended?
In conclusion, it’s not the best dark oolong I’ve ever had in my life, but it’s a fully functional one.
A while ago I bought new teas for work and took aside a sampling for myself so that I could log it on Steepster. The Late Summer Blend, the Travancore and this one. This is (I think) the only one I never got around to actually writing about on Steepster.
I shall do it now because it was the tea I thought I’d have at work today, only the boss had already started making tea for us when I got that far and she had chosen the Late Summer Blend (which is also awesome, so no biggie)
This one, chinese black. Supposedly medium strength between Keemun and Yunnan, where, mysteriously, Keemun is supposed to be a mild tea. I don’t know, it usually strikes me as pretty robust, but perhaps that’s because of the smoky note it tends to have for me.
The aroma of the dry leaves are fairly similar to the Keemun, only without a smoky note. After steeping it’s very different. This is very sweet and grainy, and it has a fruity hint as well. Dried fruit though, rather than fresh. At the top of all that there is a whiff of floralness. So the aroma itself has a fairly complex profile.
Flavourwise, yes it does have a fair strenght, although I still wouldn’t say that it was necessarily stronger than your average Keemun. It’s quite floral in flavour, but not as fruity in flavour as the aroma was. Actually the flavour profile is a whole lot simpler here. Lots of floral flavours, a sweet underlying tone of rye bread-y grainyness and on the whole just an honest flavour of tea. Keemun-like, but entirely its own. People who enjoy Keemun should check this type out as well.
This particular cup is a bit overbrewed because I nearly forgot about it, so I can’t really describe it any further than that at the moment, but I’ve had it several times at work so far. It seems to be the one I go for if I’m the tea-making person that day and I’m not feeling in the mood for flavoured. I’m not sure yet what the boss thinks about it, though, I haven’t asked her. If she doesn’t much care for it, I’ll happily buy her out. I could definitely see myself having it at home.
I’m not sure exactly where it comes from though, other than just China. A C Perch’s aren’t too informative on that count, so if anybody can clue me in, that would be great.
First time for this one. I completely missed out on A&D series 1, but later decided that it didn’t really matter since I wasn’t a very big fan of any of the teas in it. Dragonwell has a funny mushy fishy flavour that I only in rare occassions can appreciate, the Himalayans don’t really produce tea at all that suits my particular taste, it’s all rather too Darjeeling-y and I hadn’t had all that good luck with Ceylons either.
In the recent box of hugeness, however, there was a Kenilworth Ceylon from SBS that to my surprise I’ve discovered is really very nice. Fruity and interesting and not at all like the somewhat astringent and stuffy Ceylons I new from before. Bit like an Uva Highlands I had once in the days of yore. I think it was from Chaplon. It was lovely, but no Uva Highlands sample I’ve had since have been able to live up to that. It must have been a remarkably good year that particular year.
So yeah, my interest in Ceylons, which previously occupied the smallest of places, has been poked and prodded by that Kenilworth from SBS, and now I’m thinking if I should perhaps explore it a bit further. Nothing But Tea definitely have a wide Ceylon selection, I’ve had samples from them, but I’m thinking I should possibly do another Ceylon sample set with my next order and have a closer look.
This particular one, I have good expectations of. It’s hard not to considering the company, which is one I’ve had some very good experiences with. And the name of said company.
The dry leaves have a rich aroma with leathery tobacco-y notes and a little fruity and wooden as well. After steeping it’s very sweet and malty, but also a bit spicy and with a somewhat grassy note that took me by surprise. What’s that doing in here?
The flavour, at very first sip, strikes me as unremarkable. Second sip is much the same. Several sips later, nothing has changed. There isn’t really anything in here, it’s just tea-flavoured tea. I can’t find anything special about, nothing even semi-unique.
It’s just tea.
This is the tea for when you don’t really have much time to pay attention to it. It’s the tea to sustain yourself while doing some sort of mindlessly dull chore. It’s for when you have to get up at silly o’clock and can’t taste anything anyway.
I’m ambivalent about this. On the one hand it just goes to show that I was right not to bother being annoyed that I missed out on S1. On the other hand I’m feeling quite let down by my own expectations. It’s not a bad tea at all. It’s just interesting how remarkably uninteresting it is.
First of all, Baresso = more or less danish equivalent of Starbucks.
I’m not really sure what came over me when I ordered this. I actually went in with something else in mind, and then decided I’d rather want something a little more.. refreshing maybe? Generally though, the sign just sort of caught my eye.
Also, I figured it would be faster and I wanted to catch my train.
I’m not actually a very big fan of iced tea. I prefer tea to be warm.
Erm, right. Let’s start with the tea involved here. Outhu Pekoe, which I had seen on their signs for a long time now and wondered if it was some sort of weird way of saying orange pekoe and maybe they thought it sounded more clever or something. As I haven’t previously been particularly interested in their tea selection, I haven’t bothered to check it out before. Turns out Outhu is actually an estate in the Nilgiri region of India. Interesting.
Now, the actual drink I got. They have three different variations of this, all of them based on the Outhu Pekoe and two of them just with added flavour, the third being just plain. Anyway, the added flavour is done with some sort of syrup-y concoction and a slice of lemon.
I probably should have stirred the cup because the syrup-y stuff sank to the bottom and the first third of the cup was more or less just…. lime syrup. Which wasn’t very nice. It completely overpowered everything else and felt like drinking undiluted cordial or something like that.
After that was out of the way the actual tea bit was a pretty tame experience. It didn’t actually have much in the way of flavour. It possibly would in a warm state, but definitely didn’t on ice.
But yeah, it was refreshing. Primarily because it was like drinking ice water with a bit of lemon in it, which is generally a nice alternative to sugar-y drinks.
Points not given based on whether or not it tasted good or bad, but rather based on whether or not I felt like it had anything at all to do with tea. Which I didn’t.
It’s been a while since I had this one. This was the first tin that caught my eye when looking to see which tea to make. Good choice. I knew exactly then that it was the one I wanted today.
I’ve had a little while preparing dinner, but it was really too hot still then to tell anything about it. Now it’s cooled off almost a little bit too much, but it’s still nice.
It’s got such a LARGE flavour. It’s strong and firm and decisive. If this tea was a job it would be a some sort of boasting management position with tie and suit and private secretary. And a polished brass name plaque on the door. Not snobby, though, and well-liked by its employees. It knows what it wants and how to get it, it’s not afraid of making the unpopular decision, but without being unreasonable or mercyless.
I’m glad I decided to buy a pouch of this after having received a free sample of it in my first order. It’s not something that vanishes quickly from the tin, though. This one pouch of 50g is probably going to last me a long time, simply because it’s not just a tea to have for the sake of having tea. This is the one to have when there’s time to really pay attention to it (which, yes, I can in fact do while cooking, when dinner is as simple as it is today), or when everything kind of sucks and you just need someone take your arm and re-instate some semblance of order and purpose by saying, ‘look, this is what we’ll do.’
I’m not sure what exactly it was that prompted me to have it today. I think it caught my eye by coincidence today, but there must have been some sort of factor involved with making me stick to it and not moving on to something else. Maybe it was the connection to this particular time in my life, now that I’m so close to taking the next step into an entirely new phase with our first shared home.
(Sent a letter yesterday, giving notice on my current place. It felt good.)