372 Tasting Notes

77

Drinking this one tonight. It seemed like it would be good with the macaroons I made- half were dipped in dark chocolate, 1/4 in white chocolate, and 1/4 plain. I also made some coconut cardamom rice pudding. Went a little crazy with the desserts, I guess. Anyway, I tried brewing this one at a lower temperature and with a shorter steep, but it still isn’t really doing it for me. Maybe I will try brewing this at a higher temperature next time? Honestly, adding a bit of bitterness might be an improvement for this one.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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91

I finally got a day off today! I got to sleep in past 11 AM, ran some errands, and took a walk with my mother and Fritzy (my adorable Wirehaired Dachshund). I am just now sitting down to enjoy the second half of this pot of tea (Fritzy is at my feet with his bat toy in his mouth trying to get me to play. He has unlimited energy). I’ve been very impressed with the two Teavivre black teas I’ve tried so far. This one especially is incredibly smooth and “seamless” (as I’d say in the tasting room). When brewed per the instructions, this is neither bold nor assertive. It would make a nice afternoon tea with pastries. I gave one of each of the 7g samples I have to my boyfriend, CaseyZero, to bring to work. Maybe one day he will write a tasting note…

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec 7 g 24 OZ / 709 ML

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88

I did doubt the brewing instructions for this tea. 95 degrees Celsius for 4 minutes seemed both a little too hot and too long to brew a green tea. However, I initially stuck to these parameters. But tonight I used 85 degree water for 3 minutes and it produced a much improved cup. It makes me wonder how they came up with their brewing guidelines, which seem exactly the same for all of the teas in this collection- blacks, greens, and rooibos alike.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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89

So, as I mentioned before I am trying to work through all of my sample-sized teas. I’d ordered some black tea samples from Teavivre a while ago, but this is the first I’ve tried. I must admit that I was exhausted this morning, so I brewed this tea without even smelling the dry leaves first. I had some of this with hot with my breakfast (cold pizza) and some of it cold with my lunch (brown rice and tofu). This is very similar to Zhi Tea’s Gong Fu black, but I believe I would like this one much better if I had enjoyed it with a cookie or something sweet instead of having it with a savory food. This is definitely something I could see keeping in stock.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec 7 g 24 OZ / 709 ML

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83

I received this as a sample with an order. I did some reorganizing of my teas last night, and I decided to try to sipdown the teas which I have 3 servings or less of. There was just enough in this sample to make a small pot of tea. This was enjoyable, but not my favorite. This is a very subtly flavored Earl Grey Creme with a bit of violet. The violet threw me at first, because sometimes bergamot can smell floral to me, but this smelled like there had to be something else in it besides the bergamot and vanilla. Florals can be difficult to detect for me when there’s citrus too. I wonder if anyone else has that issue.

boychik

i just had a cup of EG Shanghai, i think I need it. Romanoff and Lady Grey just too subtle for me

CharlotteZero

The Earl Grey Shanghai sounds interesting. Ack. I did not need to be reminded of the ATR free shipping! At this moment in time, I just dump everything that comes into my “promotions” tab in gmail before I can even be tempted by them…

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81

Sipping this one down tonight, and bumping up this rating. This is really very good. I hope to have this in my cupboard again soon.

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96

This is my favorite tea from my recent Mariage Frères order. I had a busy weekend, so I wanted to start Monday off well. :-)

I’m trying to plan a trip to Japan soon, and if it works out, I will definitely make the Mariage Frères in the Ginza district one of my stops. Heh, but I have no other ideas on where else I should try to go. Maybe the Steepster message boards have some good suggestions….

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec 4 tsp 24 OZ / 709 ML
Excelsior

There’s the Fortnum and Mason tea salon in Nihonbashi Mitsukoshi. There is a Harrod’s tea shop in the same Mitsukoshi The TWG tea salon in Jiyugaoka. Lupicia in Ginza. Also, all the Department stores have food markets in their basement. There’s a wide variety of Japanese teas you can buy there. On weekends, they might have small paper cups of brewed green tea samples. All the hotels, Peninsula, Shangri La, Mandarin Oriental will have tea salons.

If you go to the Mariage Freres store/salon in Ginza, say hi to the store manager, Nozaki-san, for me.

CharlotteZero

Thanks for the advice!!! :-) Is TWG worth stopping at? They have a great reputation, but the only teas I’ve tried from them have been a couple of flavored ones from Dean & Deluca, and I was not impressed. I will say hello from “Excelsior”. Haha…

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93

This was another excellent gift from my excellent mother. I brewed this gong fu style while Casey and I watched the original Terminator movie tonight. Some of the outdated special effects made me giggle. It was like watching that Russian alien in the X-Files episode from “Jose Chung’s From Outer Space”. Never mind.

Anyway. This tea was really nice. The first steeps were like caramel and nuts and coffee. The texture of the tea was creamy and smooth. It held up to many steepings, and didn’t become too drying at the end like some teas can. Looking forward to enjoying a few more steeps in the morning, but for now we’re going to bed.

boychik

Terminator is my hubby’s all time fave. he can watch it any time from the middle and even the end is good enough for him. He introduced my 7 yr old son to it and now they watch together;)

CharlotteZero

Neither Casey nor I had seen it before last night, and we both really enjoyed it. We’ll probably watch the sequel either tonight or tomorrow. Apparently there’s also a new Terminator movie due to come out next year…Are your husband and son planning to go see that one?

boychik

yes. Im going to watch it too. After all I saw it so many times, i practically know his lines. Some other my hubby faves are Robocop and Die Hard. So you have an idea:) i watch lots of movies, foreign, independent, sometimes I forget if i saw it. we love Charlie Chaplin. its endless but those 3 i mentioned above are like DeBeers diamonds. Funny right?

CharlotteZero

Sounds like you have a broad range of movie tastes! I also haven’t seen Robocop or Die Hard. Now that I’ve found that Terminator was an enjoyable movie, maybe I will give some other vintage action movies a try…

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92

This was an awesome birthday present from my mother. I’m still not the biggest fan of Dragon Well tea, but of the Longjing I have tried, this is one of my favorites. What I like about this tea that makes it better than others I’ve had is that it has a beautiful long-lasting finish. I made 4 infusions of this. I believe this is also the greenest in color of any Longjing I’ve had. I wonder how the flavor of this typically varies between different harvests.

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88

This one reminds me very much of Cantaloupe & Cream. The aftertaste is lovely- a very natural watermelon flavor. This would be nice iced in the summer.

Terri HarpLady

This is one of the only flavored whites on my shelf, a rare indulgence! :)

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Bio

Tea means so many things to me, it is so deep and it is revealing new meaning to me all the time.

Tea is a mindfulness practice, and a doorway through which to explore different philosophies, cultures, and historical times. Tea is hospitality and a way of communion. Tea is an art, a ritual, and a tradition. Tea is a complement to the foods I eat (preferably vegan desserts) and is something I enjoy collecting and curating.

I love to swap, or even just send people samples, so if there’s anything in my cupboard you’d like to try, just send me a message!

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San Francisco Bay Area

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