148 Tasting Notes
I’m supposed to be hoarding this tea because it’s one of my highest rated teas AND the YS website says you can keep it and it gets better with age. I am failing. This tea is the fall/winter version of YS gorgeous golden yunnans. It is a beautiful yunnan with a sweater on. The toasty notes make me toasty inside. Chilly mornings beckon for this tea. And I caved this morning…. nom.
When reading other reviews for this mug, I was quite surprised that everyone loved it! Perhaps I have been spoiled by my Zojirushi without even knowing it. The Timolino has the convenience of the tea basket, but there are no holes in the bottom, which makes no sense…it is difficult to remove when the tea is hot, as your fingers get burned when removing the basket when the steeping time has been reached. I also found that the tea cooled to lukewarm within 4 hours…even with boiling water used as a prep to heat up the Timolino. My Zojirushi has burned my mouth at 2pm when I’ve made the tea at 5:30am…. there is no lock to make sure the lid doesn’t unscrew either…. Now is it attractive? Heck yeah! Especially in the David’s Tea teal. Is is functional? Absolutely. Does it work? Yup! Is having the tea basket better for the environment than the wee little throw-away filters I use in my Zojirushi? Yes. Will I use the Timolino? Yes…for the days when my tea is drunk before 9am. I will review the Zojirushi soon…. no tea enthusiast should be without one…
I had hopes for this Irish blend….especially after tasting What-Cha’s English blend and finding it quite lovely and complex. Dry, this leaf is intriguing, with it’s deep dark assam leaves mixed with twisty ceylon and the green touches from the Nepal tea that create this blend. The smell from the cup….well, this is not your typical Irish Breakfast tea. There is beautiful deep malt and cocoa as bottom notes that are joined by mid notes of a green wood spiciness and a lingering apricot top note that gives this tea a long malty sweet finish. The true beauty of this blend’s finish is held in the buoyant briskness that the ceylon brings. There is a touch of astringency to the cup, but it is just enough to make you look forward to the next sip. Which is hard not to do. If you are a black blend drinker, give this one a try. It is a captivating alternative to what you’re used to.
Flavors: Apricot, Cocoa, Green Wood, Malt
One of the amazing and frustrating things about being on Steepster is how quickly your tea tastes change. Amazing because it’s a wonderful educational process, frustrating because you go and buy tea you “love” at the time but then your tastes change and you have a big 8 oz tin of a “simpler time” tea in your tea cabinet that stares at you longingly every time you reach for a new fancy sample. Well, today I reached for my first love, Malachi McCormick by Harney. I made 2 big old mugs, one for my husband, one for me and I just took that first sip. Oh Malachi, why did I forsake ye??? Ye is still so NOM!!! Somehow, (probably with years of experience :) ) Harney did actually create a delicious, down to earth breakfast blend to stand the test of the ages. There is something about how the malty assam blends with the earthy (but not too earthy) keemun that builds this tea into a big old cup of brown joy. Lovely body, great mouthfeel and incredibly low on astringency…. what more can a girl ask for? Suddenly that 8 oz tin sitting in my cupboard doesn’t look like it’s just sitting there taking up space anymore…it looks like a well-loved piece of comfy clothing that had been forgotten but is again found. It’s already a good day.
What’s your “comfy clothing” tea?
Flavors: Earth, Malt
I have 100g of this tea sitting right next to my Laoshan Black….and I haven’t touched them for months. It seems that I’ve relegated these teas to winter drinking without even knowing it….which is not good, because in southern california you’re lucky to wear out one sweater in your lifetime because you never need to wear one! So it’s time to pull out the winter sweaters of tea, albeit a little early in the season and start enjoying their warm fuzzies again.
As with other fujian blacks, my nose and palate always seem to pick up a cannabis note first. After that comes all the wonderful complex flavors that Chinese teas can bring…baked bread/grains, cocoa, malt, yam skin… and all balanced beautifully. Bailin gongfu has a lovely round mouthfeel and no astringency, which I adore. If you’re ordering from TeaVivre, ask for this to be your free sample….as you shouldn’t miss what this tea has to offer. It is refined, complex and just plain yummy.
Flavors: Baked Bread, Cannabis, Cocoa, Grain, Malt, Yams
Exotic Assam is a signature blend from Golden Tips that is a pretty straightforward assam flavor profile. It has a simple medium maltiness with a touch of woodsy spice and a slight aftertaste of malt that stays on the tongue. Nice is a good word for this tea. It is smooth, has a medium mouthfeel and enough body to do what Assams do well: make it feel like you’ve had breakfast even when you haven’t. Nice tea.
I finished off my sample of this tea today and it tasted so good that I thought I’d order more….AND THERE AIN’T NO MORE!! And it was SO good that I drank it super fast and didn’t savor the flavor and waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah!!!!!
(i think this is my best review ever. What a whiner i am.)
Flavors: Malt, Nutty, Smooth
We’re a funny bunch on Steepster…..we love strange and unusual teas with unusual flavors…complicated teas with secret histories….there is such mystery in the flavors that are unlocked in our cup that we go on mental journeys with our palate…sometimes quiet contemplative journeys, sometimes raucous wild rides. But we travel…. These days
I love to “cup” travel to Assam. I love the subtle simplicity of the notes in a cup of Assam loveliness. Not many on Steepster travel to this region to fill their cup, but I’m a frequent flyer these days….and this 2nd flush Assam sourced from Heritage Tea Plantation is exactly the reason why I fill my cup with Assams so often.
The dry leaves are long and dark with just a few light golden tips interspersed. The smell of these dry leaves is vibrantly malty with a touch of cooked stone fruit. Wet, the leaves are whole and broken, but much larger than those found in many Assams. The coppery infusion is deliciously and straightforwardly malty and incredibly smooth. There is little astringency here when steeped at 3 minutes, just a lovely round mouthfeel and medium body that leave the taste of wonderful malt in your mouth. the stone fruit note is still present, but what is most noticeable is the smooooooooth……
The differences between Assams isn’t as pronounced as the differences between, say, Keemuns or Darjeelings….but it is there. What-Cha has offered a wonderful assam for any tea drinker who would like a wonderful example of what a tea from this region can be….and IS. Recommended.
Flavors: Malt, Stonefruits
This tea is beautiful. Gorgeous golden leaves, wrapped tightly, promise something wonderful in the cup. Steeped, the leaves unfurl into long lovely light brown leaves and tips that smell of apricot, bittersweet cocoa and …well… tea!! Whenever I have this tea, I am delighted. The combination of cocoa, apricot and a subtle keemun note of light earthiness gives this tea a beautiful round mouthfeel with just the right amount of complexity to deliver a great cup of tea. There is no astringency in this tea, which makes the finish true to the lovely notes of this tea. Highly Recommended.
Flavors: Apricot, Cocoa, Earth, Loam