326 Tasting Notes
Tea Swap with @Meeka
This particular tea caught my attention because so many people on Steepster have tried it and loved it. Over the past year I’ve tried a lot of different black teas so I couldn’t wait to get my hands onto this one. Okay and now onto the tasting notes:
Sniffing the tea liquor, I’m picking up on scents of honey, spices, raisin. It reminds me of a few other black teas I’ve tried.
The first steep tastes much like the tea liquor scents suggested, with the addition of chocolate, malt, and floral rose aroma. (Personal bias: I have a low tolerance for rose flavour)
Subsequent resteeps had the same consistent flavours. At the fourth steep I picked up on more roasted notes, but the rose aroma is really starting to rub me the wrong way.
Overall I didn’t notice too much weakening until the ninth steep, which while weak was still flavourful.
I kept resteeping, and even though most of the tea body is gone there still remains nice hints of sweet honey, raisin and cinnamon which slowly fade away as I reached the fifteenth steep.
This tea was enjoyable, but fell far below my expectations. The high scores and hype on Steepster made me believe this was going to be an amazing, mind blowing experience. But I’ve had other teas like this and I wasn’t especially crazy about them either. I do not want to sound unappreciative because this is indeed a very good tea, but it is not a personal favourite.
On the plus side, I am glad that so many people here are being exposed to such a well made black tea. It is a wonderful example of how beautiful and complex black tea can be.
100ml purion teapot, 2tsp, 15 steeps (based on Verdant Tea gongfu instructions: rinse, 3s, 3s, 3s, +3s resteeps)
I liked this resteeping method, I’ll have to try it out again on some of my other black teas.
Tea sample provided by Teavivre for review
This was actually the first time I tried green tea in my purion teapot and it worked out really well. It had the same amount of water as my gaiwan, but tasted much better. I even doubled the steep time of the third cup and still wasn’t bitter at all. I know purion is more for (roasted) oolong and black tea, but I’m quite impressed with what it did to this tea.
The three steeps tasted: vegetal, buttery, with a hint of cocoa, a bit of astringency but no bitterness. Aroma made me think of wet moss and asparagus.
I don’t always brew this tea right, and the bitterness can be too overwhelming. So this experiment was nice.
Liking this tea more, but I still prefer the Premium Dragonwell (which I have purchased)
See previous tasting notes on this tea for more of my thoughts
100ml purion teapot (took lid off for steeping), 1 tsp, 3 steeps (30s, 30s, 1min)
I’m not encouraging anyone to buy a purion teapot… these notes are mostly for myself :)
Could have sworn I made a second tasting note for this tea, but I guess I didn’t. Oh well, here is tonight’s experience;
First steep was lovely, with the flavours of spices, honey and light bodied black tea. The aftertaste had a sensation of sugar syrup on my throat.
Second cup tasted much earthier and had a hint of cocoa. Mmmmm…
Third cup shifted, bringing out more cinnamon and grains.
Fourth cup was very light, and together with the previous flavours it made me think of white tea or Oriental Beauty.
Fifth through six were pretty light, but not bad. I stopped because it satisfied me enough.
Not my favourite resteeper, but a very flavourful tea. Next time I make this I’ll add more time to the resteeps.
100ml purion teapot, 2 tsp, 6 steeps (30s, +15s resteeps)
There was some mix-up with Teavivre’s manufacturer because the sample I received was “flavoured” when Teavivre’s intention was to sell the unflavoured stuff. (Old notes have been deleted because they don’t apply to the same tea) Anyway, I ordered it and received the proper natural Jin Xuan tea. So it’s like I am getting to know this tea for the first time now! ;)
First steep is slightly floral, fruity (apricot), sweet, and vegetal. There is also a slight creamy aftertaste. Seems like a nice balanced tea, nothing seems out of place.
Third to third steeps were consistent, with the third being a bit sweeter and fruity.
Taking a break and sniffing inside the teapot, the leaves do smell sweet and almost creamy. But it’s not a heavy cream scent. It also made me think of apricots
Four to fifth were more vegetal and less fruity. I kept resteeping but eventually stopped on the ninth when I could hardly taste any tea.
If you are looking for a flavoured Milk Oolong with heavy cream and fruit flavour, try somewhere else. Apparently that stuff is not natural and is flavoured to achieve that result. However this Jin Xuan Milk Oolong tastes very natural, and for me is a lovely tea with a good price. Sometimes less expensive oolongs do not satisfy my palate, but this one is tasty and cheap enough that I can drink it very often in my yixing teapot.
The leaves are quite big, and the 1 1/2 tsp I put in looks about right.
125ml yixing teapot, 1 1/2 tsp, (rinse, 10s, 15s, +10s resteeps)
First steep tasted amazing with notes of cinnamon, raisins, apple, spices and a deep, smooth black tea body.
Second steep was also nice with a much stronger black tea flavour.
And then like with Hime Hikari, the flavours get much weaker with the subsequent resteeps. The 5th hardly tasted like tea, and the 6th was just water with a hint of spice. Normally when it tastes that weak I begin to recognize the original water flavour, but not so this time. It might be due to the purion teapot, which would be nice since I use a brita filter with hard water and it doesn’t always taste great. ;)
I have to say that I wasn’t so crazy about this tea the first time I tried it, but the first short steep here was wonderful. When I long steep this one, it reminds me too much of Qimen black tea, which is a tea I’m not always interested in drinking. Anyway, this is quite an interesting tea and I’m happy to have tried it.
100ml purion teapot, 1 1/2 tsp, 6 steeps (30s, 30s, +15s)
edit: Please see my newer tasting note regarding short steeping this tea.
Tonight I’m trying one of my Japanese black teas (Hime Hikari), short steeped. Out of the two I purchased I like this one better, but perhaps when I short steep both I may change my mind.
First steep is quite nice and very flavourful with a strong black tea body. There were floral notes, cocoa, malty, juicy apple, spices, and a hint of grains.
The second steep was much stronger, to the point where it almost becomes bitter. I don’t normally like that but it went pretty well with the cocoa notes. (I’m sure it wouldn’t have become bitter if I didn’t put so many leaves in)
I continued steeping it four more times, but most of the flavour peaked on the 2nd steep. The strong tea body weakened, but they were still flavourful cups. So after the 2nd steep it’s quite a different experience.
If you prefer a strong flavoured tea I’d recommend western style or the suggested brewing directions.
100ml purion teapot, 2 tsp, 6 steeps (30s, +15s resteeps)
I received this in the mail today and promptly brewed up some in a teapot to share with my husband. I didn’t order much, but Da Yu Lin is something I’ve been meaning to try, so I couldn’t resist just purchasing a little.
The very first cup of tea left a good impression on us. Its flavours hint at vegetal, butter, fruit/spice but never get to the point where it is obnoxious, just peaceful and satisfying. I especially enjoyed the tea body, it is deep and mellow. It stayed fairly consistent throughout the 9 total steeps I did today.
This is our first Da Yu Lin so I can’t comment on how good it is compared to other Da Yu Lin teas. That being said, we loved it and are looking forward to trying more in the future.
My teapot wasn’t too crowded, so I think I’ll add more leaves next time.
125ml yixing teapot, 1 tsp, 9 steeps (rinse, 30s, +15s resteeps for 2nd-6th, +30s for 7th-9th)
Steeped this 12 times, all while chilling out and listening to Drone Zone from somafm.com
A very enjoyable tea and quite a unique experience that I’ve savoured over the months.
Next time I brew this it will probably be a “sipdown”.
See previous tasting notes for more of my thoughts on this tea
100ml purion teapot, 2 tsp, 12 steeps (30s, +15s resteeps)