1112 Tasting Notes
I haven’t the foggiest what’s in this stuff. Lemongrass, because I can see that. And green tea because that’s what it says it is. There are some other leafy bits of some sort mixed in that I don’t know what are. The actual green tea looks rather a lot like this kokeicha I had from Nothing But Tea once, except here they are tiny pellets instead of tiny needles. The kokeicha, for those who wonder, is matcha is made into a dough which is then kneaded and passed through a machine to create these uniform little needles, which are then dried and subsequently brewed same you would regular green tea’
It’s rather dark in colour, but it turns out that although the leaves, the word ‘leaf’ used in the broadest possible interpretation of the term here’ look like kokeicha, they can’t be because they haven’t disintegrated into dust. They just really are this mangled from the beginning, it seems. CTC green? O.o What a travesty.
The aroma is somewhat spicy. There’s definite lemon there, but also notes of something that I can only describe as coffee-ish. I believe my views on the various coffee blends out there are well known. Yuck to the nth degree. Nothing can ruin a good tea like a coffee bean. Just the thought of what happens to a tea if served in a coffee pot. Blech and blech again. There is a reason all the literature out there will advice readers to avoid teashops in which they are also grinding coffee. The aromatic oils of the coffee ruins the tea, there is just no two ways about that. Fact.
So yeah, one thing is coffee notes in a black tea. That’s bad enough. But in a green? Wow, that’s just unthinkable. How is it not punishable by law?
There is also a pseudo-lemon-y note from the lemongrass which I assume is what the ‘citron’ in the name refers to. I have a problem with the use of the word ‘citron’ here. I am aware that this is not danish, but ‘citron’ = ‘lemon’ in danish. As in the actual yellow fruit. So even though I know this is an english languaged tea with a ditto name, and I can’t expect it, that name makes me expect actual real lemons. Not lemongrass or verbena or whatever other pseudo-lemon flavoured stuff you can think up. Certainly not this other weird citrus fruit that the word apparently covers in english. Lemons. I can’t help it. It’s probably because I had never heard of citrons (as in the english meaning) before.
And this is very definitely not lemon
Obviously. It isn’t supposed to be either, is it, but that’s what I, try as I might, can’t help but expect.
The taste of it is a little closer to my expectations than the smell though. The first sip is heavily lemon-y and slightly astringent, so my very first thought was one of relief that I wasn’t about to have something that just totally didn’t come anywhere close to my expectations.
And then halfway through the sip, it turned so bitter I couldn’t swallow it with a straight face. I can’t tell if it’s the flavouring that does that or if it’s the nature of the leaves. I’ll have to experiment a little further with that before I can tell for sure. Right now it tastes like a combination of all of the above.
It’s not very nice. The first bit of the sip, where it still tasted nicely lemon-y, that was pretty good and refreshing, but the bitterness it turns into so quickly is just destroying it so utterly. For something lemon-y and refreshing, I believe I’m way better off sticking to the Lemon Oolong from Nothing But Tea.
Are we SURE this really is actually what it says on the bag? Really?
I mean, okay, it’s the second steep of the leaves.
But I forgot them, so it’s had a good half hour. It’s gone a bit lukewarm bit it’s not even remotely bitter. It’s not even astringent for crying out loud!
I’m shocked. Shocked, I tell you! How can this happen with a Ceylon?!
It defies logic. I’m pretty sure it defies a number of the laws of nature. It ought to be completely and utterly undrinkable at this point. What’s going on???
I really am getting more and more keen on this. Maybe it’s not so much that I’m not really a bergamot fan. Maybe it’s just bergamot alone that I’m not too fond of. In this combination with smoke, it’s far more pleasant than I’ve ever found it to be on its own.
It’s too early (‘Early’ ‘Early Grey’ Teeheehee!) to say at this point because there’s still so much left in the tin, but yes, I could definitely see myself keeping this one around for a while. Maybe even making it a Standard Panel tea.
Standard Panel. There, I said it. Well, nothing’s certain yet, but I am going to give it a few more points.
Oh hai, still probably going to be distracted away from actually writing this. Here’s a green one that we’re having after our walk, and as the boyfriend tend to prefer green that isn’t flavoured my selection is fairly limited. Like… I have two, I think.
I don’t know anything about it, I couldn’t find anything on Adagio’s site about it when I added it, so I’m thinking it’s probably not the newest of teas.
It’s extremely light and sort of pinkish in colour and it made me a little concerned that I hadn’t steeped it enough or should have used more leaf, but there seems to be both aroma and flavour although they’re both pretty delicate.
The boyfriend thinks that the aroma has notes of geranium in it, very faint ones. I can see what he means but I don’t really think it’s stinky enough to be geraniums.
The flavour is pretty delicate, and if you’re used to stronger tasting teas chances are you won’t be able to find any flavour at all. It reminds me a bit of the Daughter Rings from …somewhere that Wombatgirl shared with me. The ones that didn’t have any flavour what so ever.
What little flavour there is there if mostly floral and slightly nutty, but as there is so little of it to be found in this cup, it’s not really anything that really matters much at all.
There are two version of this in the database, one with a sinensis variety leaf and an assam leaf variety. Unfortunately I have no clue which one of them I actually have so I ended up just picking one, and this one seemed more standardised.
Right, I’m a little distracted while writing this as I’m sharing it with the boyfriend and trying to have a conversation of sorts at the some time.
The aroma of the cup is a bit agricultural, sort of spicy and hay-like. A bit grassy as well.
Flavour-wise, it’s gone a bit cold because as mentioned, I’m distracted, but I seem to find some honey-ish and raisin-y notes in here. A bit floral on the finish, but I’m plocky plocky wock-wock (The boyfriend told me just fill it in with that when I couldn’t remember the last half of that sentences). Anyway, a little floral on the finish, but not overly so.
I’m wondering actually if I picked the right variation from the database at this point because the honey and raisins remind me rather of assams when done right.
It’s been a long long time since I last had a Tie Guan Yin of any sort, so when I was looking through the sample basket for something interesting, that’s what I decided to do. After all, I need to drink all these samples so that there are less stuff to move with. :D
The dry leaf had a sort of floral aroma to it, sort of scented and bizarrely a not of something curry-ish. I don’t know where that came from, but it’s possible it’s just one of those floral notes that are showing up weird to me.
It’s a fairly pale yellow cup, but the aroma after steeping is strong. It carries significant notes of steamed spinach and again something floral-y sweet. Like a bouquet of wildflowers.
The flavour is heavy with asparagus notes. It has asparagus notes to the point where I went O.o and double-checked the sample wrapper. I’ve found this sort of green vegetable note before many times, but this particular tea is extraordinarily strong on the asparagus. A person who didn’t like asparagus would not like this tea.
Once the worst of the asparagusness has dissipated, ever so slightly dusty floral notes are coming out again. I could almost believe that this had been lightly scented with something. They’re not jasmine-y or rose-y, they’re sweeter than that, but it’s definitely floral.
I’m not getting a huge amount of aftertaste on this one, but I suspect it might be one of those that will build up as one drinks. At the moment what I am getting is thankfully free of that sourness that typically bothers me in non- or lightly fermented teas.
This seems very nice for its type, but somehow I’m not sure I’m really that into TGYs anymore…
(Also, looks like someone’s tasting note has become mixed up with the product description. If you’ve posted about this tea before, you might want to see if it’s yours)
As mentioned this morning, it’s a special occasion day for me. I have resolved myself to ONLY do things today which are fun. Logging a new tea for the first time is fun and lucky for me, I have a huge supply of those.
I am also resolved, as you may have guessed from the Aijiao, to only have awesome teas today, which made finding an untried one rather challenging. Eventually I found this one in the basket and was drawn in by the ‘fruit and caramel’ description. It seemed just the thing, so if it’s not awesome now the entire day-plan will be in shambles.
No pressure, then.
So, currant, caramel and citrus. Bergamot, in this case, if I’m not mistaken. Yes, it smells like all three. The caramel makes the aroma feel all thick and gooey, while the fruit, both kinds, adds freshness to it and sweetness that isn’t just sugar. It smells very much like sweets. I’m trying to pick up some actual tea aroma as well, but I’m not having much luck. It’s not overwhelmed completely by the additives, but it’s sufficiently camouflaged that I can’t tell anything about it.
Yes, that is definitely bergamot. And caramel. What a bizarre combination, really. I know Kusmi utilises it as well in their St Petersbourg blend, but it still strikes me as odd. And yet, somehow, it just works.
The bergamot is in the forefront here, which is something I tend to have a problem with. Bergamot has this old, dusty and somewhat perfumed flavour that I’m not generally that fond off, but the addition of caramel seems to keep the worst of that in check and makes it bearable.
And then on the next sip, it’s changed completely. Now there’s a ton of berries, pushing the bergamot towards the back of the flavour. I can only imagine that this is caused by the tea having cooled slightly in between these two sips and the berry flavour has been allowed to develop properly.
The caramel isn’t very clear in the flavour. There’s a lingering sweet aftertaste that reminds me of the first time I had fudge caramels (this is not common in Denmark. Are caramels tends to be extremely chewy. Watch your tooth fillings! You can find fudge like caramels, but the other sort is far more common) that the boyfriend had brought home from England. It’s creamy and seems to put a very very thin layer of aftertaste on the tongue, much the same way as that fudge did.
I’m still not sure I can really pick anything up about the base tea. The flavour that I think I’m getting makes me lean towards Ceylon, but I can’t tell if that’s not just the bergamot notes playing tricks on me.
As mentioned, I’m quite reminded of Kusmi’s St Petersbourg here, which I quite enjoyed. I can’t say if this one is worse or better or the same, really. It’s been too long since I had St Petersbourg, and the choice of fruit in the blends vary a little as well.
Quite nice. I could have lived without the bergamot and just had the berry and caramel, but you can’t have everything.
OM NOM NOM NOM Aijiao!
Filled the cup too much though, so I have a small spillage problem…
I have posted awesome things about this one on eight previous occasions, and this morning I’m honestly not going to bother describing the whole thing again other than to say that the cocoa note is really coming out this morning.
It makes it feel rather decadent to have this particular one so early in the day, but it’s a special occasion tea for special occasions, and today is one.
GAH! Last cup!
Must restock at earliest convenience after moving!
I’ve said it many times before, so I don’t think there’s really any huge need for this disclaimer. I’ll throw it in anyway for new readers, those who forgot and just for the sake of good order.
I don’t care much for Darjeelings. To spicy and grassy and prickly in all the wrong ways with a sour aftertaste and a tendency to get bitter at the drop of a hat. It’s not a case of not liking it at all, it’s merely the fact that I’m not a fan and wouldn’t choose it out of a selection.
That said, it was shared with me, so I will try it. I have never been sent anything that I have simply refused to try at least once. Often against my better judgment and sometimes with surprising results. If people share something with me, I believe I owe it to them to at least give it a go. If then I don’t like it, I have at least tried and not just blindly dismissed it.
So I have in front of me a cup of Darjeeling and I’m not harbouring any great expectations, which makes me wonder if it’s better to go for tea types that one is not generally that fond of. No risk of disappointment. Only lucky chances of pleasure.
The aroma of this cup is very honeyed. Sweet and thick, it almost makes me expect the liquid to be extremely sticky and viscous and it puts images of golden syrup and liquid honey in my head. Equally as strong as the honey note, there’s a whole little meadow of wildflowers in here. It’s not as if it has been scented, it doesn’t have that dusty sort of quality to it. It’s more like living growing flowers visited by bees. And so we have neatly tied it back to the aforementioned honey note. See what I did there? There’s a touch of hay-ish spice to the aroma as well, but it’s very little and drowned out by the honey and the flowers.
Okay, so far so good.
When people talk about muscatel notes and ‘the champagne of teas’ I always end up imaginging it to taste of grapes. I’ve never yet really been able to find a grape note in anything, but I have found strong raisin notes in Assams on several occasions, so I suppose the association is not that far of. That said, muscatel. I’m not sure how to actually truly find this note because I haven’t the foggiest of what it’s supposed to taste like. Don’t tell me ‘Muscat wine’ because I don’t know what that tastes like either. I don’t generally like alcoholic beverages all that much. Red, white, rose and champagne is the extent of alcoholic liquids I can drink. Those I like. Others, not so much. And I definitely can’t tell the various grape types used in the wines I do like apart. I try paying attention when having it, same as I do when I have a cup of tea, but it’s not even remotely as systematic.
Anyway, the tea doesn’t actually taste like grapes that I can tell. It’s extremely spicy though, almost peppered, and that is a long lingering aftertaste even after just one sip. There is, however, also an almost alcoholic note to it, the sort of feeling of heat in the esophagus that you get when drinking alcohol. I don’t like that.
Then there is a more haylike than grassy flavour, which sort of adds to the spicyness of it, and unfortunately also provides that sour note that comes through on the aftertaste.
At least it hasn’t gone bitter, although there is a the hint of vague astringency in it. It could be worse, but it’s not necessarily good either.
It’s not as bad for me as earlier flushes of Darjeeling tends to be, but it’s not really good either. I simply fail to see the appeal in this tea type in general in spite of all the hype about about it. And I still don’t know what the muscatel note is supposed to taste like.