374 Tasting Notes
I just ate a bunch of leftover melted dark chocolate from making macaroons, so at first this tasted sour. The dominant aroma in this was definitely strawberry, but I also thought I might smell: cherry, apple, vanilla, chocolate, floral, and cranberry. This is a complex tea and it’s really difficult to pick out what flavorings they use, especially since they keep it a secret. I enjoyed trying this famous tea.
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.
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…
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.
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.
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.
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….
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.