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456 Tasting Notes

15

I brought this sample from Shmiracles over to my parents house and shared small cups with everyone. I was really excited to try a coffee pu-erh as I’ve had my eye on a few from other companies for a while. I didn’t know this had other flavors in it too, so we were all surprised by the caramel flavor. I was hoping I’d detect some coffee notes, but I did not. For the most part, I don’t like sweet/dessert flavored shu pu-erh. The unique earthy mushroom qualities really don’t seem a good match for most sweet flavors. There has been only one sweet flavored pu-erh that I liked (just a little). it tasted like the original dentine gum and hardly like pu-erh at all. I think that’s the only way a sweet pu-erh can work for me: the flavor has to completely mask the pu-erh. Otherwise, sugary mushroom flavor just makes me feel nauseous.

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

basically if you ask me, the david’s pu-erhs that i sent you are the ones that nobody should be drinking. (except chocolate orange. that one is pretty tasty.)
but if someone told me that, i’d still wanna taste them. curiosity always gets me hah.

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75

I just realized that I haven’t been adhering to the recommended brew temperature. I was brewing this like most oolongs at ~195-200. I did try a shorter steeping this time. I did 2min30sec this time for 3 tsp of leaves in a 20oz pot.

It is sweet now without the musty characteristic from before. I wish the sweetness was more pronounced though. I might up the rating after I try a 170deg steeping, we’ll see.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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85

After surviving that last batch of samples, I needed to reward myself with a trusted tea so that i could be all (*^◇^)_旦

I sure hope the new Irish Breakfast blend is just as good!

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 30 sec

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45
drank Caramel by Kusmi Tea
456 tasting notes

Oh gee, look at all the fancy ratings for this one!! There must be something wrong with mine. What’d you do to it Shmiracles?! lol j/k (^^)

This tastes like a cheap bagged tea with artificial funky caramel flavor. Yuck!

It’s drinkable, but definitely not to my standards.

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

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I sum this one up best as a burley man tea. It’s definitely reminiscent of Thorin, but not the tea for me. Thanks anyway Shmiracles!

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

perhaps it’s like drinking beards!
ah perfection a dwarf can appreciate.

Shelley_Lorraine

are you a dwarf?

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65

Tastes like the end crust of a pie with residual pumpkin. I am surprised that there is even a detectable pumpkin flavor in this, rather than just spice, but it’s artificial tasting. The overall flavor is rather flat and unexciting. Of course, after finding Butiki’s Pumpkin Creme Brulee, I have high standards for pumpkin and spice teas :D Thanks for letting me try this one Shmiracles :-)

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 30 sec

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45

I just samples a whole bunch of teas (all from my mystery swap with Shmiracles). As I have a bunch to log now, my notes will be brief.

The dry leaves of this one smell like champagne. I’m really not so into champagne or most alcoholic beverages really. I do pretend to like them when the occasion calls for it or if I really just need the after affect (^^) but that’s about it. I brewed this one tea up anyway, hoping it might taste different than it smells. Oh, sure it does. It tastes like, like, well I don’t really know. Fruity, sure, but the rest? Something in there tastes nasty. Is that the chocolate or the bluebonnets? It doesn’t taste like either, its just a strange flavor mixed in with the fruity. But on the brighter side, it didn’t taste like alcohol (^o^)

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

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95

I did this gong fu style this time, but I think I liked my western cup better. The shorter infusions brought out more tart and mineral flavors and less savoriness.

1st infusion (after rinse) 5s:
I detect a slight floral aroma and flavor that was lost to the western-brewed cup (this, to me, is the only discernible benefit of short infusions for this tea). It is also vegetal, but not very creamy.

2nd infusion 10s:
stronger vegetal and floral flavor than 1st infusion, still not creamy.

3rd infusion 15s:
the floral characteristics are almost non existent. Still vegetal. Some mineral. This infusion tastes similar to the western-brewed cup of Dong Ding from thepuriTea that I logged the other day.

4th infusion 25s:
vegetal, more mineral, slightly tart

5th infusion 35s:
tart and mineral, mild vegetal.

I ran out of time to go past 5 infusions, but I feel like the savory and creamy aspects that I liked about this tea are lost in the gongfu brewing. The first two infusions were the best, imo. I wonder how it might fair for more steepings. Some other time maybe.

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75

Backlog:

This tasty caramel rooibos comes to me from Shmiracles! yay \^.^/ I brewed it up this afternoon. The caramel is just enough to add a touch of sweet to the rooibos. I think rooibos and I got off to a bad start. The first few rooibos blends I had were not for me at all! Although I’ve discovered that rooibos can be good in the right blend, I still have to be in the right mood for it. . .unless its DavidsTea Birthday Cake blend! I like that one more than this, but hey, can’t be having birthday cakes everyday now can I?

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 6 min, 15 sec

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45

Backlog:

I made this one yesterday when I was sampling a couple of others as well. This one came to me from TastyBrew. Of the three I sampled at the time (incl. Disney Mad Hatter and Java Tea Co Revolutionary) I liked this one the least. I was surprised at how little the rooibos stood out in both this one and in the Revolutionary. In this one, though, it seemed like the caramel flavor was trying too hard to take over and it ended up producing a strange musty flavor. It was still drinkable, but not something I’d want to have again.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 5 min, 0 sec

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Profile

Bio

Name: Shelley Lorraine Limegrover
Location: Wyoming
Occupation: Student and Evil Genius
Ward: 3 Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, 1 Cocker spaniel, 1 super cranky but lovable siamese cat, one bipolar black turkish angora, and my husband’s black and white cat.

Hobbies: Learning, reading books, math, physics (have a degree in it), literature (have a degree in it too), anthropology, traveling, piano, and making TEA, of course (^o^)

Future plans: World domination >-)
Graduate school for Comparative literature (in German, Latin, and Greek) (this will be my 4th degree, but first/only graduate one :) )

Favorite teas: Kukicha, Green teas in general, aged oolongs, charcoal roasted oolong, taiwanese oolongs, Assam . . .

Don’t like: Genmaicha, Earl Grey, Darjeelings, ginger, coconut, smokey teas (even mild ones), nut flavors, overwhelmingly strong floral flavor (esp. Jasmine), most della derra and adagio teas. . .

My Rating System

100 My happiness absolutely depends on it

95 Will definitely repurchase

85: Might repurchase (teas that depend on my mood)

75 Won’t repurchase (but I would drink it again if offered).

65: meh

45: I reluctantly finished a cup.

15: Couldn’t finish a cup.

I simplified my ratings to single numbers rather than ranges because I can’t precisely compare so many teas with a system more detailed than this.

An unrated tea most often one that I recognize as having significantly notable quality, but that does not suit me personally. Sometimes, I leave teas unrated for other reasons, such as I am undecided or I brewed it wrong, etc.

Note: Boiling temp. barely reaches 200 where I am (and a few times it sticks at 195, I assume due to unexplainable shifts in altitude or the position of the moon. . .aliens?. . .).

Location

Wyoming

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