The ‘little oolong tea adventure’ contains a number of oolong teas, amongst which the Golden Water Turtle, the White Cockscomb and the Big Red Robe. It may be my not so advanced palette and the fact that I haven’t been tasting these side by side, but to me they are rather similar. In all these teas the roasted mineral impression is the dominant feature. I really love it…, but won’t be reviewing the others as I can’t really pinpoint the exact differences…
49 Tasting Notes
I received a sample of this with my ‘little black tea adventure’.
I divided the sample in two and prepared two cups on two separate days. The information provided by tea-adventure is rather accurate. I wasn’t overly enthusiastic after my first cup and thought the tea to be a bit curious, with overly fruity tones or an excessive ‘fruity freshness’. When having my second cup I knew a bit better what to expect and that seems to have had a positive impact on the tasting experience. Rather like when you put a sandwich in you mouth, convinced that it has peanut butter on it, while actually it has jam on it…
While tasting the different samples I’ve discovered that my profile remains true. I prefer flavored black teas to unflavored black teas. Nevertheless I’ve tasted a few I’m considering to buy and this is one of them. Once I was used to the flavor I found I actually appreciate it quite a lot. A great black tea for the summer in my opinion…
Cteresa warned me that this tea wasn’t a love-at-first-sight experience, but had to grow on her over a certain amount of time. Taking that into consideration, I’ve been trying this tea for some days now (Cteresa, thanks for the very generous sample). I even went so far to take this tea with me to work.
Despite my efforts this tea hasn’t grown on me. I don’t have the advanced palette some of you clearly do have (gosh, the number of different flavors you pick up on!). To my taste the sweet (vanilla, almond?) and cinnamon dominate the entire experience too much. It’s certainly not a bad tea, but just not my thing… I’m apparently just not a fan of the nutty-cinnamon-floral combo.
Nevertheless, thanks Cteresa!! As I’m quite taken with MF, I would have ordered this sooner or later and you’ve saved me the disappointment.
The last week I’ve been tasting plain (or straight) black teas. So far this is one of my favorites, although I must confess not having tried Keemun, Golden Yunnan and Bailin Gong Fu yet… (which are supposed to be very good as well)
This is a very smooth and sweet tea. It has an earthy character with malty undertones. The sweetness precludes it from tasting too earthy.
No notes yet.
I received a sample of this tea from Dustin. Thanks Dustin!.
This tea is unlike anything I’ve ever had before. I don’t really like rose, so when smelling the dry tea (with a very dominate rose smell) I was hesitant. After brewing the rose smell still is very present, but you also smell something ‘behind’ the rose, something sweet and dark. It’s really very intriguing.
The taste holds up well to the promise of intrigue. The first or top note is floral, but the roasted almonds and cinnamon follow fast on its heels, so that overall the first impression is a dark and intriguing rose+. It has a body and complexity that is very similar to expensive red wines. A very true desert tea and one that has converted me to not strike rose teas off my list of to-try-teas.
This isn’t an everyday tea though. More like a special occasions or special mood tea. And it probably is a hit-or-miss tea as well. My partner can’t stand the smell of it and complains when I brew a cup. :-)
I’m doing this one from memory, as I’ve been so stupid to accidentally lock the drawer of my desk at work. As you may guess, I don’t have a key to open it and the sample of Wedding Cake rooibos I received from Dustin is in it. Darn! Hopefully someone will be able to open the lock next week.
Anyway as Dustin I find the tea’s to be similar in that they both have a powerful almond smell and flavor. I think because the rooibos in itself is sweeter, it blends more into the mix than the green tea base of Almond Cookie, which is a pity. Although a very good rooibos, it isn’t as interesting as the Almond Cookie Green in my opinion.
I’m not really sure how I could have been so stupid, but I posted this note accidentally with Amaretto of Davids Tea.
I received a generous sample of this tea from Dustin. Thanks so much!
This tea smells very amaretto-y, a smell I find infinitely comforting. Although the taste also is rather amaretto-y or almondy, it isn’t over the top. Generally I’d associate almond and amaretto flavors with black tea bases. I would have thought a green tea base too delicate to carry such a flavor. In reality that doesn’t pose a problem. Actually the green tea base provides a rather neutral base, due to which the almond/amaretto is more noticeable than it otherwise (probably) would have been, without tasting artificial (like some other fancy flavors).
PS: After relocating this tasting note, I’ve had a look at the ingredients. I wonder if I can actually discern between the taste of almond cookies and amaretto. They rather belong together. Anyway after reading the ingredients, I can imagine that what I perceived as amoretto-y is rather the combined flavors of almond and coconut. After all it’s very long ago that I’ve had amaretto and then I’ve never had it by itself, but always with either almond cookies or stratiatella ice crème.
A received a sample of this from Cteresa, thank you very much!.
Although this is arguably the best peach flavored black tea I’ve ever had, it still isn’t a favorite for me.
The black tea base is mellow and rather neutral. On the first steep the peach dominates nearly entirely. The vanilla notes stay firmly in the background, way back… The first steep is a bit too fresh peachy fruity to my taste. On the second steep the peach fades a bit so that the vanilla becomes more prominent. Due to that I actually like the second steep better (and that’s a first for me :-)).
Apparently peaches aren’t that much my thing or rather I prefer berries & vanilla to peaches & vanilla. As I do like peaches in itself, I think I’ll be looking to peaches in a more tropical setting next.
Cteresa packed a teabag of this tea by way of a surprise with the swap we had agreed upon. Thank you, Cteresa!. While I was sipping this tea the first thing that came to mind was that I would really like to order some of it…
This tea actually has what I miss in Theodor’s Place Saint Marc: balance between the tea base (a very smooth green tea), the fruity top note (red berries) and the vanilla impression in the aftertaste. Everything comes together beautifully in a well rounded and balanced taste.
Today I finally received my “little” black and oolong adventures from Tea-Adventure. The “little adventures” are sampling packages with samples of all the teas of the specific category (so a little black adventure contains samples of all the black teas Tea-Adventure sells). I’m sooo happy. The only downside is that now I have such a great many samples that it’s neigh to impossible to choose :-)
With a previous order I had a sample of this tea and I really really liked it. So therefore this tea is the first on my to-try-list of today.
The taste is sweet, toasty and with a very definite mineral impression. I can’t say I recognize anything fruity floral. According to the description of Verdant Tea (I reckon it’s the same tea based on the name) there should be notes of caramel, hazelnut, elderberry, custard, honeydew and/or orchid. I can’t say I can discern those either. Sometimes I wonder if you can and should compare certain teas with the flavors of known foods. This tea definitely is something totally different from anything else I know and I love it!
It’s going on my to order list.
In the second steep the sweetness increases and becomes nearly caramelized like. I believe a detect a very slight hint of maltiness as well. Overall the mineral impression remains the most dominant feature. All in all, the second steep is just as worthwhile as the first, and I don’t say that often…
This is an interesting tea.
I’ve only tasted one other Yumchaa tea – and like this one – it was kindly provided by Cteresa, thank you!.
Both that one – Notting Hill – and this one are similar in the way I can’t exactly put my finger on. It is as if they share some of the same ingredients, which evidently isn’t the case (according to the descriptions). Actually the one is a black tea and the other (this one) a green tea. So the similarity is rather surprising! Perhaps it’s a sameness in the way the flavors blend, because they do blend very well…
If apple crumble is a kind of apple pie or tart (I’m not sure), this doesn’t really remind me of that. Or rather, this tea has too much character to compare to something as mundane as apple crumble. The comparison to hot apple cider however does ring several bells.
If – like me – you don’t really like apple cider, you should still consider this to try this tea. Although this tea definitely reminds me of hot apple cider, it does not taste exactly the same. It’s sweeter and more mellow. Also it’s not as “heavy” to the stomach.
In the winter there are always a number of Christmas markets here in the region. Usually they have these little stalls serving hot wine, hot apple cider and the like. People sit outside in the cold (with no more than some heat lamps) savoring those hot alcoholic beverages. This tea would be great for such an occasion.
On the one hand I can already see myself happily sipping this tea after a cold winter walk through the woods, on the other hand I’m fervently awaiting spring and this doesn’t make me a believer it’ll be coming anytime soon … so that makes rating it honestly at this particular moment somewhat difficult. I’ll hold on to my thoughts on that subject for the moment and have a few more cups… :-)
I got a sample of this from Dustin. Thanks Dustin!!
I really loved the smell of this tea, esp. when still dry. Unfortunately I had a similar ‘grape-medicine-like’ tasting experience as one of the other reviewers. The tea was very soapy to my taste. Perhaps overly floral? I really couldn’t finish it… :-(. Due to the very good ratings of the others I’m somewhat hesitant to give it a 1… After all I could just be me… I’ll skip on rating this one.
Nevertheless I’m very happy that I had the opportunity to try this one…
I ordered this tea shortly after my last post regarding the sample I received earlier. Last week my order finally arrived. Since then I’ve been rather committed to this tea. I’ve been drinking it at least a few times a day.
On second, third and forth taste I have to say that this tea is much sweeter and less woody than I originally though. Other than that I’m still not able to describe it accurately, unfortunately…
I thought to revisite this one a second time. I figured that my palette might have changed or that I might be able to brew this one better the second time around.
On second try I liked the tea even less!! I’ve crashed my rating to the yellow “mweh” smiley and tossed the remaining bag of this tea with the trash.
I’m bumping the rating on this one up with 3 points. Lately this has been my breakfast/morning tea of choice. Really love this one. It’s becoming a staple…
Took the sample I recently got from Dustin, with me to work. Half my office (my room, not the entire building) smells like this tea when it’s brewing on my desk. Certainly one of ten ways to improve working conditions :-)
Although I ordinarily am not overly fond of rooibos, I figured that might also be due to the fact that previously I’ve only had rather ordinary rooibos blends. So when Dustin and I set up a swap, I took a chance and asked for som rooibos. One of the blends she sent me was this one and it truely tastes great! Thanks Dustin!
The official discription is rather spot on. It really has a “homemade lemon cake”-feel to it. Sweet, fruity and with a tart note, this is a great dessert or normally-I-would-be-having-a-hot-chocolate-tea-moment tea.
Dustin was so kind to send me a sample of this tea; thanks Dustin!
Years ago I had a cheap and simple chocolate tea. It was not a good experience. It tasted as tea with a bit of cacao powder. Since then I’ve always avoided chocolate teas, untill I recently decided to try Theodor’s The du Loup, which I really liked very much and put chocolate teas back on the my to-try-list.
Like TheTeaFairy, I picked up a hint of sourness in the smell of the dry leaves, so I was a little apprehensive about this one. Based on the smell I definately wouldn’t have bought this. And that is of course the beauty of tea swaps, because once brewed this is een tea that lives up to it’s name. Altough I can’t really discern the cherry flavour, I do get the total griottes experience: the sweet dark chocolate taste with a sense of tart fruitiness. The flavours blend beautifully.
I do wonder if artificial flavouring has been used for this tea. Not that I would mind, but it seems neigh to impossible to achieve this taste with solely natural ingredients. Unfortunately the website doesn’t give any information.
Cteresa was so kind to send me a sample of this tea. It wouldn’t have been my choice as I generally only drink (or rather drank) black flavoured teas, but as she suggested it and I wanted to step a bit out of my box, I agreed.
I’m not sure that was an altogether happy choice :-)
This really is a far lovelier tea than I would have expected based on it’s discription. It is smooth, sweet and malty and has hints of chocolate and a very slight smokiness. I think this was my first (conscious) taste of a chinese black tea (blend) and it tasted like more.
So why aren’t I happy? Well I just have one tsp of sample left and after that I’ll have to do without. I’ve only seen two places where I can order this tea, that’s at the US based Harney website or the Dutch importer. From the US website I can order a single tin, but shipping costs are some $ 34,- (about 5x the tea itself). The Dutch importer is prepared to send the tea free of shipping charge, but it can only deliver the tea in 1 kg packages… That’s a bit much considering that I like to drink a variety of different teas.
So now I know this really affordable black blend staple and I’ll have to do without…. On the upside, it has put me on the path to explore more straight black chinese teas :-). Presently I’m happily awaiting the arrival or my ‘little black tea adventure’ from tea-adventure.com (which I just ordered yesterday, so won’t be arriving for another fortnight).
BTW: how do you guys make bold typing?.
No notes yet.
I received a sample of this tea with my regular order (policy of the company, which is very nice).
The company website and description has me a bit baffled. It says the taste is/should be sweet and floral. Perhaps I brewed it wrong, though I don’t really think so as the tea turned out to taste pretty good, just not sweet and floral, but rather very much like raw chestnuts. It also smells of chestnuts, olive oil and/or some kind of vegetable I can’t put my finger on. Furthermore it has a distinctly woody quality.
Perhaps the website refers to the aged Tieguanyin, while I received the non-aged or less-aged version? (The website links through to a page about the farm, where a number of varieties are mentioned, while the website itself shows pictures of a yellow/amber coloured brew and a burnt orange coloured brew).
Anyway, it has a comforting warm but at the same time strangly crisp energizing character.
I’m sorry I can’t describe it more accurately, but it just isn’t like any tea I’ve tasted before. Maybe the taste is typical for oolongs, but this is just my second – the first being a Chinese “milky oolong” of undisclosed origin.
A very interesting tea in a positive way. Probably something I’ll be ordering in the near furtur (maybe even today… :-)).
No notes yet.
I received a sample of this tea from Cteresa – thanks again ;-) – and liked it so much that I recently bought Histoire Tibetaine from THE O DOR as it resembles this tea ingredient wise.
These teas are similar in some respects but certainly not the same.
Starting with the basis: both teas contain vanilla, bergamot and jasmine. The HT adds marigold and uses a base of black and green tea. The TT adds mandarin orange and rose and uses a base of black tea.
Although the vanilla and jasmine are very recognizable in both teas, they vere into entirely different directions taste wise.
In the HT the vanilla is really in the forefront, both scent and tastewise. De jasmine prevents the brew becoming too sweet. The bergamot and marigold aren’t really recognizable, at least not to me (actually I don’t even know what marigold smells and tastes like). The tea is warm, sweet and comforting in character. The floral notes remain in the background.
In the TT on the other hand the floral notes – and especially the rose – are at the forefront. Together with the black tea base this makes for an edgier tea with a slight smokey feeling. The vanilla is cetainly present but seems to be in a supporting role rather than a leading one. As the tea cools the vanilla becomes more noticeable btw.
It’s really great to see how two teas with for a great part the same ingredients can be so different in character. They actually aren’t comparable at all :-)
I like both teas. For the TT that’s something, as I actually don’t like rose in my tea and usually try to avoid rose scented teas. The HT is more of a ‘happy feeling’ tea as the TT is more elegant and sophisticated. Being a sweet tooth I’d probably choose the HT over the TT most times, but I can imagine that being different for others.
Prep details: HT 80 C/ 4:30 min & TT 95 C/ 4:30 min
Rating is for TT only. This review has been posted under HT too and give it’s rating there