235 Tasting Notes
Brewed using 2 pearls in a basket infuser with a 6oz teacup. The vendor’s description was dead on as it was a surprisingly sweet and smooth brew, with a lingering sweetness upon the lips after each sip. While I would not call it as being earthy, I would agree with the subtle cocoa notes but quite honestly they are light enough that I doubt I would have noticed them without looking for them without it being in the official tasting description. I was also impressed that I was able to get a second good cup of tea on a the compressed pearl limiting the exposure of the leaves to the water during the first brew. An excellent black tea that I can wholeheartedly recommend to anyone who enjoys black tea and one that if I drank more black teas would order in a size larger than a sample size.
This was the darker of the two Ti Kwan Yin teas offered by Indigo, which I would have to call more medium as the color of the tea is still more yellow than brown. The brew is sweet with a faint mix of both a floral taste and the smoother richness of roasting, which comes off as a more unusual combination. Not a bad tea overall but not a good enough tea for me to be reordering either.
A sample from Puerh shop. Brews up a dark amber brew that is surprisingly light and fresh for its color. While Fu Zhuan is described as being fermented or cooked, it has a freshness and a slight hay like taste more commonly associated with green puerh yet at the same time a smooth richness and sweetness which is more common among ripened puerh.
First off I should give a bit of personal history with this tea which dates back to my freshman year of college and the start of my interest in teas. At the time when I started college I was used to drinking mainly soda but being cheap I soon realized that tea (and sugar) was a lot cheaper than soda to have around the dorm room and I soon found that Twinings was not only the best brand of teabag tea in the grocery store but also frequently went on sale for 3 boxes for $5. At first I focused upon English Breakfast and especially Irish Breakfast tea but when they added it I got a Twinings variety pack which included Prince of Wales. Prince of Wales was my first exposure to Chinese black tea and was what initially lead to my lasting bent on favoring Chinese teas over Ceylon and Indian teas. So when I happened to be at a tea shop that had tins of loose Twinings teas I could not resist picking up a tin of Prince of Wales for old times sake.
My initial taste of the brew in over half a decade was surprise at it being higher quality than I had initially expected. The taste of the Prince of Wales blend is indeed light and smooth as described and it is clear that a good part of the blend is Keemun black tea. Clearly it could be better especially if it was blended using higher quality whole leaves instead of the broken leaf grade, but while it lacks any slight traces of natural semi-sweetness found in some blacks I also would not call it bitter either. The Keemun that it was made from is a good mild variety without any traces of smoke. Finally to complete the experiment of duplicating my early tea experience after finishing half of the contents of the mug of tea I emptied 2 sugar packets into the remaining half cup of tea to make it in the style that I drank my tea during my college days. Wow I never realized how much sugar can destroy the more subtle notes of tea before this experiment not to mention it is no wonder why I gained so much weight during my college years with all that sugar in my tea all the time.
Brewed gongfu style in a yixing pot. This is a very fine example of a good jade oolong at a very reasonable price. Light smooth oolong taste with buttery notes. This tea is also amazing at how many times it can be reinfused to the point that it frequently outlasts me which is very rare considering that tea tends to have a very short lifespan around me.