This oolong is what people think of when they imagine “Chinese restaurant tea.” A classic dark oolong, not exactly roasty, but with a toasted chestnut note. The sensation as you sip it is syrupy, sweet; almost heavy. It lacks the subtlety of, say, an Oriental Beauty oolong, but for what it is, it’s very good.
102 Tasting Notes
Thank you to Butiki Teas for the sample.
Gyokuro is just about my favorite style of green tea, so I’m always happy to sample it. In the sample bag, this didn’t smell like anything special, but when I brewed it, it yielded a flavorful cup with no bitterness whatsoever, and a nice umami flavor. The liquor is medium greenish yellow. Normally I add a touch of sweetener to gyokuro, but this one did not need any. I am getting vegetal and seaweed flavors, something almost a bit salty, but kind of sweet at the same time. It’s a smooth, delightful cup of green tea, and the flavors are such that I think it could convert someone who is not a gyokuro lover. Although vegetal, this doesn’t have that ‘boiled spinach’ aspect that some green teas and gyokuros have. Very tasty. I almost have an urge to eat the leaves. I will update later with the results of the second steeping.
This is a good all-around Yunnan. What I like about it is how smooth it is — there isn’t even the slightest hint of astringency or bitterness. It’s not the strongest Yunnan I’ve ever had, but perhaps that’s because I tend to brew my tea fairly strong, and this sample was on the small side. It’s not spicy or peppery, but a little bit biscuit-y. Very easy to drink. Overall, a nice mellow black tea with a pleasing flavor.
Let me preface this note by saying I’m not a big fan of heavily flavored teas. I decided to try this because I tend to be fond of almond and vanilla flavors, as long as they are not too strong or artificial. For a flavored tea, this is good, but it doesn’t really taste like almonds to me. It’s kind of fruity and mildly spicy, and reminds me of a cup of mulled wine or spiced cider. I can taste the tea, but the tea is definitely overshadowed by the flavors and spices. Again, this isn’t bad, but I don’t think I’ll buy it, because it’s just a little too much like a cup of hot cider for my tastes. If you like dessert-y flavored teas, this is worth a try, as long as you don’t expect it to taste purely like almonds. Thank you to Butiki Teas for the sample.
Sometimes in the morning I want more than just a straight cup of black tea — I want something with some extra flavor. This tea is perfect for those occasions. I have it in the pouches, so it’s great for travel or to take with me to the office. I’m fairly fussy about flavored blacks — I can’t stand anything that has an artificial taste or is overly fruity. This tea is perfect in that the flavors enhance the black tea; they don’t overpower or overshadow it. Also, the bergamot note is not overdone.
I especially like to make this one into a tea latte (in a 16 oz mug, using two teabags, brew 8 oz. of tea, then fill the rest with steamed/foamed milk). This goes particularly well with a waffle and some preserves. Yum!
I’ve had this tea for a while. I bought it at a tasting at Tea Gschwendner based on the tea sommelier’s suggestion. He said it was somewhat between a green and a white in flavor. I think it tends to come off more as a white tea, but more robust and “leaf-like,” if that makes any sense, than, say, a Pai Mu Dan type of white tea. It’s kind of nutty and toasty, has a great aroma, is not floral, and tastes best with a bit of sweetener added (I used liquid Stevia). The leaves are very large and impressive looking. This tea is pretty forgiving with regard to steep times — I once accidentally let it sit for 10 minutes (terrible, I know!) and it still tasted good, if a bit strong. If you like white teas, you really can’t go wrong with this one.
I’m a huge Jane Austen fan, so when I saw this blend I jumped on the bandwagon and ordered. I’m glad I did — it’s a wonderful blend. It does strike me as the sort of tea that would go best with food of some kind, so I drank it while eating a croissant, and the two went together perfectly. I think it would be equally good with toast, a scone, an English muffin, or any other typical tea accompaniment. It does need a bit of sweetener, IMO, but once that’s added, the flavors come out and they are well balanced. It’s not too fruity, as some blends can be — you can still taste the black tea. Looking forward to drinking this with breakfast tomorrow!
I’ve read a lot of raves about this tea; some people, apparently, go out of their way to stock up on it during the holidays. Naturally, I had to jump on the bandwagon, so I brought a box home. Finally got around to trying it. The verdict? Meh. It’s not the worst thing I’ve ever had, and it doesn’t taste horrible, but it’s nothing special, and I don’t understand the hype. It’s a minty green tea, emphasis on the mint. It hardly even tastes like tea. It’s like a watered-down Shamrock Shake. Very sweet, very candy cane-like, just a weak, minty flavor. No bitterness or astringency, even though I oversteeped it on the second brew in a desperate attempt to bring out some kind, any kind, of flavor.
The whole thing is kind of puzzling, because I have yet to find a Celestial Seasonings tea that I like. And I’m not that much of a tea snob…I mean, I still drink Constant Comment and Tazo bagged teas from time to time. Ah well.
I have loved this herbal tea for many years now. I’m an insomniac, but nothing helps me drift off to dreamland better than a hot cup of Easy Now right before bedtime. As a bonus, this tea tastes delicious, with flavors of mint, chamomile and lavender. It really does the trick when nothing else will. I suppose at this point it might be more of a placebo effect than anything else, but that’s OK. It works.
I always use two teabags, about 10-12 oz of water, and I steep it for 15 minutes, covered, as per the directions. I don’t know if this maximizes the effect, or if it would have the same effect if I steeped it for only six minutes.
In general, I like herbal tisanes, but this one is not something I’d go out of my way to drink again. It’s not terrible, but there’s something about it I find disagreeable. The scent of the tea is like the smell of the inside of a plastic bottle of Vitamin C tablets — fruity and orangey, but kind of artificial. While drinking it, the orange overpowers the chamomile flavor, and I get a weird chalky sensation at the back of my throat.
I do feel relaxed after drinking this, but I don’t like the way it tastes, and I don’t like drinking it. I’ll stick with my tried and true Traditional Medicinals Easy Now, which is a “relaxing” chamomile blend that tastes far better than this, even if it is a regular bagged tea!
This is a very good flavored black tea. It’s smooth, forgiving (if it gets steeped a bit too long, it won’t turn bitter), flavorful and uplifting. The scent is as delightful as the taste — brewing a cup of this is a sensory experience. It’s not a rich or malty tea, and I’m not getting much “spice” from it; my impression is that of a well-mannered black tea providing a base for the apricot and saffron flavors to “pop.” As I sip this it brings to mind images of biting into a flaky, buttery, apricot tart…yum!
Anyone who likes flavored black teas ought to try this.
I’d been wanting to try this tea for some time, but couldn’t justify paying $39 for two ounces of tea that I might or might not like. Then ATR posted a discount code, which allowed me to justify placing an order.
Secretly, I was kind of hoping I wouldn’t like it. Well, my hopes have been shattered, because this tea is amazing. It doesn’t smell all that promising in the bag — but once brewed, it becomes a creamy, milky, sweet delight. I added just a small amount of stevia and it became so sweet and delicious it was like dessert in a cup (although sweet, it is not cloying or heavy, or at all artificial tasting). The green oolong flavor is there as well, but this tea is lacking the floral notes I would expect from an Iron Goddess tea. That’s fine with me, because I don’t like those floral notes. I would not refer to this tea as buttery, but it is mildly vegetal. And it tastes great at any temperature. Even when the tea has cooled to room temp, it still tastes delightful. So pleasing, so creamy, so smooth.
Sigh. I’ve fallen in love with another expensive tea. I guess I’ll have to wait for the next discount code from American Tea Room.
This is the first Milk Oolong I’ve tried. It came recommended by a fellow tea lover.
The scent in the bag is delightful, and redolent of milk tea candy that I purchase at the Japanese supermarket. The taste, however, is different. It tastes like a green oolong with creamy and floral notes. I definitely detect the milky flavor, but it’s not overpowering or buttery — it just adds another dimension. It’s smooth and somewhat sweet, not astringent or bitter at all. The warm, milky aroma makes this a soothing and relaxing tea to sip before bedtime.
I like this very much, and when it runs out I will purchase more.
No notes yet.
This is a sample I received in my order from this company. I brewed it this morning and made it into a tea latte with half tea, half steamed milk (18 oz total). It was wonderful! On its own, it’s a strong, robust black tea with a bit of a roasted flavor and notes of chocolate. With milk it becomes a treat, something in between a cup of strong black tea and a cup of dark hot chocolate. I did have to sweeten this tea, because it was a teeny bit bitter (to my taste) when plain. I added one packet of Stevia and one packet of Splenda, and then it was perfect. But that’s what I do to almost every black tea I drink, so what I consider “bitter” may not be so to others.
This, to me, seems almost identical, if not the same exact tea, as Teavana’s Black Pearl tea. There seems to be a reasonable amount of caffeine present, and I feel more alert after drinking this. I enjoyed it quite a bit and will purchase again, either from Teavana or thepuriTea, whichever place has a better deal.
I wasn’t sure this would live up to the hype. Well, I was wrong. This tea is absolutely delicious, and as the name implies, it has a “pure,” fresh quality I don’t think I’ve ever experienced in any type of tea. There are many flavors here — honey, floral, a bit vegetal — no roasted or chestnut type flavors, though, which I attribute to the tea’s minimal processing. It’s naturally sweet, and just as good on the second and third steepings. I steeped the leaves four times before the flavor began to fade.
Delicious hot, at room temperature or iced. One of the best teas I’ve ever had. I’m going to order more very soon, because I think I am going to go through this quickly.
This is the most floral oolong I’ve ever drunk. With each sip, I get a very distinct jasmine flavor for the first 10 seconds or so. The jasmine flavor then dissipates and leaves behind a non-specific floral oolong taste. It’s a very green oolong and does not have that roasted/chestnut type of note so many oolongs seem to have. However, I don’t find it particularly vegetal.
It’s unique, and it’s a good tea, smooth and flavorful, but unfortunately I am not terribly fond of jasmine flavors in tea. So I probably will not purchase it. I’ve had other Tie Guan Yins which did not have this jasmine note, so I’ll stick with those.
Toasty. That’s the first word that comes to mind when I open the sample baggie, when I smell the brewed result, and when I taste it. It’s a bit astringent, so I add a little stevia. There, that’s better. Now it’s a smooth, rich flavor. The liquor is a medium reddish brown.
This is a strong, slightly malty, black tea. Seems to have a reasonable amount of caffeine, so I’d say this would be a good breakfast tea. The flavor is more subtle than some other Yunnan teas I’ve tried. It has a smooth, creamy aftertaste.
Toasty and biscuity…a good tea to have with something to nibble on the side…cookies, toast, etc. I’m having it with cinnamon toast and it’s perfect.
This would be a great tea for someone who is primarily a coffee drinker — it has a roasted/rich flavor without being too overpowering and bitter. I may have to get some of this when I finish the other Yunnans in my cupboard.
As a birthday gift, my husband signed me up for Golden Moon’s monthly tea club. I just received my first shipment, Honey Orchid. When I opened the tin, I couldn’t believe how BLACK the tea leaves were — and how large. They even have a sheen to them. They look like they are made of black silk. It’s hard to believe this isn’t a flavored tea.
I brewed some water and steeped the tea for 4 minutes (the card said 3 min. 30 sec., but I always like to go a little longer). I’m drinking it right now. I normally put a few packets of Stevia in just about everything, but this tea needs very little sweetener. For a tea with such black leaves, it doesn’t even taste like a “black” tea to me. It’s somewhere between a black and an oolong in its flavor profile. It has an almost biscuit-like, sweet note and I’m definitely getting the floral and honey flavors as well. It’s smooth and has a sweet aftertaste. Really a lovely tea – but if you’re looking for a hearty or robust black, this isn’t it. It’s kind of delicate. I’m looking forward to the next steeping already!
This tea is almost bursting with flavor, yet its flavor profile is still what I would call “delicate.” I know that seems like a contradiction in terms, but bear with me. It’s definitely an oolong — it has that toasty, sweet note you get in most oolongs — but it’s lighter than a Formosa oolong and not that far off from being a green tea; there’s a bit (but not a lot) of grassy, vegetal goodness in there as well. The color in the cup is yellow, similar to a green tea. It’s just a wonderful flavor; I’ve purchased this one several times, and it’s become a staple in my tea cabinet. It always delivers what I’m looking for when I want a light (but not weak) oolong that goes with just about anything. It’s great to serve with dessert, but also delicious with any type of Asian meal.
I’ve noticed a few reviews stating the tea is too weak. I suggest brewing it a bit longer. I think you need to brew it for at least three minutes; as for me, I always brew it for four minutes, at a slightly lower temperature than the label advises (the label says 194, I brew it at 180), to really bring out the flavors.
Smells better than it tastes. Not bad, but there are so many better flavored black teas out there. Harney’s Vanilla Comoro, decaf though it is, is superior to this.
I’m surprised this tea has such a low rating. I like this tea enough that I’ve purchased it twice since initially sampling it over a year ago. One thing to bear in mind with this tea is that it’s not delicate or fussy about steep times and temperatures, like a gyokuro, sencha, or so on. It’s an entirely different style of green tea. The leaves themselves are larger and more robust looking. The tea has a mellow flavor, but is not too delicate. It does not have richness or depth like a gyokuro. I love gyokuros; in fact they are my favorite green tea, but sometimes I want something a little less fussy, something requiring a bit less attention. Sometimes I just want a trustworthy, serviceable green tea, one that I can brew and drink while turning my mind to other matters. This one delivers. It is smooth and pleasant. I brew this at a higher temp than I do other green teas to help bring out the flavor. It blends well with other teas, particularly oolongs.
I was eager to try this based on the description of the notes. Unfortunately, I didn’t get any lotus, honey or sweetness from this blend; it was sort of dry, astringent and a little bitter, similar to some lower quality Darjeelings I’ve tried. It’s not a bad tea, but I don’t see myself buying this. I prefer black teas that are full bodied and rich/malty. This definitely is not. If you like more delicate and dry black teas, you may want to try this.
The first time I drank this, I thought it was kind of bitter. But that was back in the day before I was fully aware of the need to steep green tea at a lower temperature and for a shorter time. So I gave it another try today, about 2 minutes at 160. It turned out well, and was much better than another sencha I recently drank (whose name escapes me now). This one is not overly vegetal but has a smooth flavor. I have yet to try a repeat infusion but will update when I do.
When it comes to Japanese green tea, I still prefer the richer flavor of a gyokuro, but this sencha will be a good alternative.