143 Tasting Notes

Lewis & Clark TTB #7

First cup of the morning. Rich color, but not much aroma. I’m not a big fan of Assams, because they tend to be bitter. This one has decent flavors, but an underlying bitterness that doesn’t do it for me.

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84

Lewis and Clark TTB #6

Try tea has strong almond aroma. It’s even more powerful in the cup. The almond comes close to drowning out the flavor of the tea, but it does peek through underneath. I like this tea, but that is because I really love almonds. Even so, it’s almost too much for me.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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87
drank Scottish Blend by Simpson & Vail
143 tasting notes

Lewis & Clark TTB #5

I usually add sweetener to breakfast teas, but started this one plain, and I’m glad I did. It has a nice, understated nose, powerful flavor, and excellent, long finish. Slightly tart but not bitter. There aren’t a lot of extraneous flavors, but this is a perfectly balanced definition of what a Scottish tea should be.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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85

Lewis & Clark #4

Soft nose. Bold flavor. Classic first flush flavor with hints of stone fruit. Becomes slightly bitter at the finish, but not enough to spoil the taste. The finish is very long, adding depth to the following sip.

There was a discussion topic about Darjeeling a few weeks ago, and this tea sums up my feeling in the discussion. There are hundreds of good, solid Darjeelings out there; each one a pleasure to drink, but few can distinguish themselves enough to rise to the top of the ratings.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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93

Lewis & Clark #3

I’m really looking forward to this tea; I almost added it to my order last Month, but fiscal reality prevailed. The nose is surprisingly light; almost green in nature. The first sip started slowly but built inside my mouth until it was just huge. Big long finish.

I’m at a loss for words to describe the flavor. It is sweet, definitely smoky, but with an almost medicinal, herbal undertone. (after writing this review I read other reviews, and realize that “smoked meat” is fairly close. It sounds weird, but tastes good.)

The most interesting feature for me was that drinking this tea put me into a powerful meditative state, similar to a pu-erh with a lot of cha qi. I don’t recall seeing this in a black tea before. My rating is based upon this aspect of the tea. Were I judging on taste alone, it would be about an 85.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 g 6 OZ / 177 ML
boychik

I love this one. Need to get more, 50g is not enough for me , I like to gongfu it

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80

Lewis & Clark #2

I need to start this review by stating that I didn’t follow the vendor’s steeping instructions. They call for a tablespoon of tea per cup and pre-packaged the sample into 4.5 gram packets. I decided to follow my usual steeping approach for black tea, which is 1.5 grams for a 6 ounce pot. It seems unfair to compare a pot that is three times as strong as the competition, especially when one of the selling points of the tea is its strength.

The nose was rich and powerful. Earthy notes dominated. The taste was dominated by what I call “forest floor”: a sort of damp woodsy taste, which I’m not overly fond of. I occasionally spotted a hint of fruit or chocolate, but for the most part don’t see all the flavors in the website description. The finish is good, but somewhat short.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 g 6 OZ / 177 ML
boychik

i had it yesterday. my parameters for black tea are 3g 8oz western.

Cameron B.

I made a cup with one of the portioned servings and thought it was too strong.

Cheri

He’s changed his parameters on the website to .5T from 1T.

Whispering Pines Tea Company

Yeah, I changed them about a month ago. I’m glad people aren’t paying attention to the labeled parameters! I highly recommend to always check on my website for recommended steeping. I have detailed info for both Western and Gongfu on there :-) http://whisperingpinestea.com/the-jabberwocky.html#product_tabs_Brewing

Cheri

I only noticed you’d changed it because I was trying to remember what you recommended for the third steep western style, Brenden. I generally look at what’s on the package because that’s in my hand when I’m making it, and my computer isn’t.

Whispering Pines Tea Company

Yeah, I wish I could somehow let everyone know when I change them :-(

Dr Jim

As I said in the review, I just think it’s fair to use the same baseline for all teas that I review. If I own a tea, then I can experiment, but for just one cup, I go with the baseline. I also like to use weight rather than volume, especially with teas that have large leaves.

Whispering Pines Tea Company

I totally agree with that method. I do the same thing when sampling potential offerings :-)

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77

very solidly compressed. 2 20-sec rinses, then (15s): Clean aroma; no earthiness. Woody with a hint of fruit; bitter at the finish. 2nd (15s): more fruit, hint of caramel in nose. Taste is mostly just woody, with a bit of earth, but less bitter than before. 3-6th steeps similar. OK but not much character.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 30 sec 4 g 3 OZ / 88 ML

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75
drank Citrus Sunburst by Tiesta Tea
143 tasting notes

1st tea from Lewis & Clarke TTB.

Mild aroma. The flavor is a bit stronger than the aroma, but what stands out is the mouth-feel: it is rich and full. Also a long finish. The flavors are fruity; vaguely citrus, but I can’t really identify individual components.

I have to confess that I find it hard to get excited about most tisanes, and this one is no exception. It is nice enough but nothing to get excited about.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 0 sec 1 g 6 OZ / 177 ML

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80

I’m combining two different tastings for this tea.

The first was steeped at 175 degrees. I loved the smoky aroma, but the taste was just too harsh to enjoy. The taste was dominated by the smoke, with some grass hiding beneath the smoke. By the 6th pot it was starting to smooth out, but still harsh. The nose was always lovely: the best part.

I was disappointed, since I’d just bought 100 grams, but decided to try again at 200 degrees. This time 1st there was the same smoky nose and taste but not the harshness. Lots of cha qi. Powerful, closed-in, just a hint of bitterness. I had about 4 steeps and each one was fairly smooth and full. Good flavors.

I’m perplexed. A month ago I had a sheng that was terrible at 200 degrees, but great at 175. Now I have the opposite. A tip of the hat to boychik, who persuaded me to publish more tasting notes.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 0 min, 30 sec 3 tsp 3 OZ / 88 ML

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94

I’m kind of upset that I just placed an order with YS, otherwise I would be buying this tea. It is great. I decided to just enjoy it rather than write detailed notes.

It started out grassy, with a fair degree of astringency and wonderful cha qi. I spent all day drinking it, gradually adding water and steeping time until I was at 6 oz and about 4 minutes. It became softer and fruitier in subsequent steeps, losing the cha qi along with the astringency. What remained constant was the deep rich mouth-filling flavor and the interesting flavors. This is a tea to savor.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 0 min, 30 sec 3 g 3 OZ / 88 ML

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Profile

Bio

Retired engineer/physicist.
My ratings will usually be based on multiple tastings. Green and oolong teas are generally 3 grams of tea in 6 oz water for 1 minute. Black teas are 1.5 grams of tea in 6 oz water for 3-4 minutes.

My numerical ratings are all based on how much enjoyment I took from the tea. Since I prefer blacks and oolongs, they will receive higher scores. I also give a couple of extra points to decafs, just because I can drink them in the evening without staying up half the night. I don’t dislike flavored teas, but find that they lack the complexity of finer teas.

90-100 = superior, worth a high price
80-89 = Excellent. Will buy again
70-79 = Good tea, but probably won’t buy
60-69 = Nothing really wrong, but…
Below 60 = Wouldn’t drink again

Location

Massachusetts

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