91 Tasting Notes
1/19/14 First morning tea for stuffy nose. 3 tsp tea, 1/4 cup milk, 1 tbs sugar, 1 quarter of fresh ginger, 8 oz boiling water. Sugar, milk and ginger in the mug first, boiling water poured over, steeped until I get around to drinking it, but never fewer then five minutes.
Caveats – my single cup is never as good as when Uncle Lakhi makes the big pot of it on the stove whenever we get together.
1/18/14 Late evening yixing practice. 3g/6oz/212F/5min after a 200F wash.
Disappointing, but I’m not surprised. The tea itself is pretty old – from 2005, and the teapot is very new. It’s my first yixing style pot, and this is the first real brew I’ve done in it, so I’ve got no clue how it brews. For this brew I followed the brewing directions on the tin, which last time I drank this tea (sometime last spring) made a decent cuppa brewed English style. This brewing made a bitterish tea that tasted primarily of stale hay and dirt. Tomorrow I’ll brew a cup with my usual technique so I can evaluate the tea itself, and decide if I want to keep using it with the pot.
1/17/14 Before bed cuppa. 2tsp/12oz/212F/15min. Brewed before bed to help me sleep. Nothing special – light minty aroma, light minty/chamomile taste. More a medicinal tea then a drinking tea. It was a gift, and I am enjoying it, but nothing I’ll seek out for the future.
1/18/14 A potful for the afternoon. 3g/6oz/212F/3min. Had a cup earlier, and had to make a potful. I was right, it is wicked good with milk. The fantastic smoky aroma and brisk liquor buddy up with the milk to make a cup that drives off the chill and makes the whole world seem a finer better place.
caveats – drinking this made me want to read Wodehouse
1/18/14 Noontime cuppa. 3g/6oz/212F/3min First impressions. A thick smoky/malty aroma. This tea is gorgeous in the cup, a rich red-gold. Brisk and bright to drink with a good punch of astringency – like most UK blends, this would be great with milk. A good eye-opener that’s making me wish I’d brewed more then just the single cup.
1/18/2014 First tea of the day on a cold morning. 3g per 6oz @ 212F for 4min. First impressions. Dark in the cup but lighter in the mouth. Aroma is … tea. Good, straightforward, simple. Aroma matches to taste – a smooth and straightforward cup of tea flavoured tea. It’s making me want to play with it, try it with milk and sugar, try it at different steeping times, try it with a wash before steeping.
Caveats – first morning tasting which is when I can’t taste or smell well, tea has been stored (unopened) since 2013.
1/17/14 Drinking in the afternoon on a chilly day after a busy morning. Brewed 3gm per 6oz of approx. 175F water for approximately 2.5 minutes.
First Impressions. Rich gold in the cup, with an aroma that is floral/buttery. Bright and sprightly in the mouth, with a slight astringency. Leaves a smooth dryness. Deeply relaxing while still uplifting.