223 Tasting Notes

94

This Dayi Yue Chen Yue Xiang is a simple ripe puerh at its best. While it lacks some of the more complex flavor notes that some ripe puerh has it also lacks any earthy and musty flavors. Which leaves behind the basic sweet mellow ripe puerh that drives most ripe puerh drinkers to love it. This one also has a nice smoothness in its thicker brew and is a very friendly puerh for more casual everyday brewing, although if you want to have a serious tea session you might want to go with a more exciting ripe puerh than this one.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 30 sec

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89

Silk Oolong has to be one of the best green oolongs that I’ve had to date or at least the first infusion. The aroma of the dry leaf had me initially uneasy as it reminded me slightly of a mix of sour milk and fruit but luckily the brewed tea tastes a lot better than the dry leaf smells. This is my first silk or milk oolong and it is clearly wonderful and amazing at how much it tastes like milk cream with a sweet fruity and maybe a tad floral notes that remind me of mango. From what I understand Silk oolong is designed to imitate the taste of Jing Xuan and I must say I enjoy the “fake stuff” made with real cream over the Jing Xuan grown to imitate the taste of cream in the tea itself. For me this tea peaked in the first infusion as it came off as declining a bit in the future infusions but it still left a very good impression on me. So you do have to at least admit that real Jing Xuan does hold up a bit better for more infusions than Silk Oolong.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 15 sec
Thomas Smith

I had this sitting on my shelf for a year. I have such a hard time getting past that dry fragrance and hardly ever brewed it because of it. Wound up giving it away…

John Grebe

Thomas, I can understand as it took me a while to get around to brewing it the first time after having it around for around a month. Still regardless of its great taste the tea dies too soon in my gaiwan for it to be worth its high price so I won’t be reordering more, which is a shame as if it was not so expensive I could see this being a semi-regular tea for me.

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89

My first taste of Jing Xuan which comes off to me as a lighter green buttery oolong with a medium floral taste. While I do not have enough experience with Taiwan oolongs to tell between different varieties this Jing Xuan has been the first time that I have encountered a buttery and floral green oolong combined together into one instead of the either or that I’ve often encountered. This is truly a very good quality oolong with an enjoyable sweet smoothness in the aftertaste, which I am glad that I ordered a 1 oz bag with my last order. Although quite honestly I am not sure what to fully think of it as while it is unique and difference I personally do not find it worth the $100 a pound price tag but then again I generally lean strongly toward the darker oolongs.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 15 sec

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83
drank Ti Kuan Yin Tea by Ten Ren
223 tasting notes

This one also came as a free sample from a different order with Ten Tea (Ten Ren’s online sales site). This one really surprises me by how good it tastes as quite honestly it tastes almost too good to be coming out of a teabag, especially one that contains a lot of really finely chopped leaves. The brew produces a taste of a very nicely darker roasted style of Ti Kuan Yin with both some smoothness and sweetness to balance out the brew. This would make an excellent office or travel tea for a dark oolong lover to have on hand for the situations where one’s options are limited to no tea or teabag tea.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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43
drank Green Tea by Ten Ren
223 tasting notes

I did not buy this tea but a box of the bags came free with a past online tea order with Ten Tea. Not bad for a teabag green tea, it has some slightly astringent notes and is a tad on the grassy side but luckily neither of them are too overpowering. Regardless I gave away the rest of the box to a friend who drinks mainly teabag teas.

Preparation
160 °F / 71 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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5

After a double rinse and dumping the first 2 infusions in the hopes that the later ones would be better I gave up on this tea when the 3rd infusion was not any better. Way too smoky and reminds me a lot more of really bad green tea than raw puerh.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec

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100

Wuyi Amber stands out as a nice surprise of its pleasant flavor and quality as it is not only the cheapest Wuyi oolong that I’ve had to date it is also likely the best quality one as well. The brew has a pleasant burst of spicy flavor which while contains some traces of smoke is not that strong so don’t be cared away if you do not like smoky teas. The robust initial taste is hard to really describe but I think the vendor’s attempts of hints of chocolate and spicy does it justice and butter and caramel for the lighter and lingering sweeter after taste. Although without the suggested flavor profiles I would probably just say an initial robust spicy roast taste that fades away into a smoother sweeter aftertaste. A very wonderful wuyi that I plan on sticking to when it is time to reorder for as long as this one is around.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec

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87

Honestly I had very low expectations coming into this sample given a number of bad experiences with so called bargain cakes. Lacking an entire cake, I am not sure if this is a blended cake or a pure gongting cake as if it was blended with a cheaper grade of puerh it was done very well. As with the other gongting puerh that I’ve had before as it lacks any off tastes and has some smoothness to it but not enough that I would call it creamy or silky. I would say that this cake represents the quality mid-range ripe puerh well as it is a fairly good tea overall but lacks the extra quality that comes with the upper end premium cakes for an added price.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 30 sec

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39

Brewed from a free sample from the vendor which was unfortunately too small of an amount for my larger ripe puerh yixing so I brewed this one in a gaiwan. The sample also contained a lot of dust and crushed leaves which I am not sure is at the fault of the cake or the person who broke up the cake. Even though the vendor claimed that rinsing was not needed for this extra clean puerh I started out with a quick rinse anyway for consistency purposes. The first infusion was clean and very light with a slightly fresh minty taste to it; which I think I might have under brewed. The next infusion I brewed longer and it was still on the light side with some smoothness and a light taste that reminds me of being a bit like Liu Bao. Depending upon one’s overall preference Liu Bao either comes off a as a cleaner taste than most ripe puerh or as a more plain and boring taste. Personally I am not that fond of Liu Bao overall so unless you do or you are curious about it I would not recommend this cake to you. I’m guessing that it probably would have been possible to get 2-3 more infusions out of the leaves but I had no desire to drink more of it so there was no third infusion.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 30 sec

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97

This is probably one of the darkest rolled oolongs that I’ve been blessed to drink that was not overroasted to the point of having a burnt taste to it. This Premium Tieguanyin tea brings a wonderful sensational experience upon each sip in the range of flavors that roll upon my tongue. During the initial start of the sip I experience the initial roasted taste before it fades away into a sweet mellow smoothness that lingers in my mouth. The later infusions maintain the same shift, although it slowly becomes less subtle as the roasted taste slowly fades out and the sweeter mellowness becomes more predominate in the tea. In the end I lost count of how many infusions I was able to enjoy out of the leaves but I can safely say that it was over 5 which was really impressive for such a dark tea.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec

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A Christian mystic who loves ripe puerh and darker oolongs.

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