The dry leaves are lovely to look at with lots of golden tips. Even smell nice, something I don’t usually notice much with Assam. Once brewed, it has a creamy feel, moderate malt, and something else I couldn’t place at first, but then pecans came to mind. Lovely!
36 Tasting Notes
I’ve had this one several Sunday’s in a row now. It is my third TeaGschwendner assam to try out of four. As with the previous ones, this Assam also has a lighter profile. For me, this tea is just OK. For a top tier Assam, it just doesn’t compare to the Mangalam, Nahorhabi, Duflating, or Doomni teas I have been drinking lately. There is nothing really wrong with this tea – it just isn’t very exciting. Mostly just bright tea flavor. For the price, I would much rather have one of the other top tier Assams.
As a side note, I also expected more golden tips for the price of this tea. There were very few. The other thing – I don’t really care for the packaging TeaGschwendner uses. The tea comes in bags that simply crimp over the top – not air tight. I’ve been spoiled by Upton’s packaging.
I added a new entry for this as the older entry looked to be for a different year. This is the second tea in my current tour of Upton Ceylon teas. It has some similarities to Upton’s 2011 TC27: New Vithanakande Estate FBOPF Ex. Spl. Some nice chocolate notes that deepen as it cools in the cup. The initial taste also includes a hint of the bright tea flavor I usually associate with Ceylon tea. There might be a hint of spice that Upton mentioned – I’ll have to think about that more.
I made enough for a 16 oz cup, adding a splash of milk but no sweetener. Will be interested to see how it does when I brew a whole pot for our regular breakfast tea. Very nice for my initial tasting.
Yum. Now that I figured out the right quantity and brewing time, this tea is heavenly. A perfect breakfast tea – very rich with nice chocolate flavor. Great with just a touch of honey and a splash of milk.
Of course, after figuring out how to brew it, I have just a tiny amount left! Hummmmm – will I purchase more? I have a few other Ceylons to try first, but maybe!
Just received this yesterday. I do wish Golden Moon would call the teas by their proper name (e.g. not just First Flush Darjeeling) and would include the grade of tea as well. This was from their monthly tea club.
It is my second 2011 Darjeeling to taste (first was Upton’s TD57: Margaret’s Hope Estate FTGFOP1 Tippy/Cl First Flush DJ-23). I actually liked this better than Margaret’s Hope although I need to go back and try that one again.
I liked this quite a bit. It reminded me of a nice First Flush Darjeeling I drank for breakfast during my trip to India earlier this year as far as flavor, although this one is a bigger tea. I followed more closely to Upton’s brewing recommendations for the Margaret’s Hope tea, rather than Golden Moon’s recommendation for this one. I used 3 gently rounded tsp to 500ml water in my Breville. The fresh leaves smell sweet like freshly mowed grass (in a good sense). I usually forget to smell the leaves after brewing, but I will say these were a bit stinky so I couldn’t help but smell it.
This is a more full flavored Darjeeling, which is fine with me. I drank it without any additives although I’m thinking it might do just fine with a splash of milk and a touch of honey. I can perhaps see just the beginning of a pineapple hint – it is not real obvious. I liked this one quite a bit and look forward to trying it again. I was drinking this one right after doing yoga, so didn’t do the best with tasting notes.
Golden Moon recommends 2 minutes brewing time on this, saying it will get quite astringent with longer brewing. I brewed for 3 minutes and did not find it all that astringent.
This one has been very interesting. We like our tea strong. For assams, that is usually 2 lightly rounded teaspoons per cup, brewing time either 4.5 or 5 minutes. I started at that with this tea, brewing for 5 minutes, initially just making a single 16 oz cup for me. That was my initial tasting note, and I was very impressed. But then I tried making a pot for my hubby and I to share, using the same time and measurements. It was not very good. Second time tried it again, still 2 gently rounded tsp/cup to the pot, but this time 4.5 minutes. Yuck – bitter chocolate :( I like chocolate in my tea, but this was not the bittersweet chocolate in some assams – just bitter. Blah. Yuck. Tried adding a little honey, but that seemed to make it worse. Was thinking maybe I didn’t like this tea as much after all. But gave it one more try, this time reducing the tea just slightly – and wow. It was excellent!! Rich chocolate – even better with that touch of honey. Oh, and I use milk as well.
Had this tea again this morning. Still at 5 minutes brewing, 212, and 2 tsp/cup. Wow, no bitterness, just a wonderful rich malty tea. It actually starts out a bit weak but expands as the tea cools. I add a very small amount of honey to accent the malt and a splash of milk. What a sweet, rich tea. Pure joy as a breakfast tea.
I just finished the last of this one. I was kind of wishy-washy on this tea. It did kind of grow on me over time, and I did finish the 250gm pouch, but as I ask myself whether I would purchase this tea again, the answer is ‘no’. It has a nice nutty bright tea flavor and might be a good option for those that don’t like the bigger assams.
What a lovely tea. I’ve been drinking this once a week for a while now. In fact, this is I think my second tin. It’s interesting as I think I like the second tin more than the first, but perhaps I remember wrong since there was a little break between them.
We brew it strong at 2 tsp/cup and at 5 minutes there is no bitterness. The first few sips while it is very hot it seems bland, but as it cools in my 16 oz cup it unfolds nicely. I use a touch of honey to accent the flavors, and a splash of milk. There is wonderful malt, a little cocoa and I think a touch of caramel.
OK….So perhaps I do like Ceylon!! All the richness I was missing in my two tastings of Golden Moon Sinharaja is there with this tea. I believe both are from the same region, although the leaf style is very different. And the Upton selection is much more expensive. From the New Vithanakande web page it appears that this is their top grade tea.
There is definitely a rich. toasty, dusty cocoa flavor. Perhaps a touch of molasses. I’m drinking it with milk and it handles it quite well. This one has lots of yum factor. Excellent!!
Hummm….Perhaps I’m just not a Ceylon fan. Today was the second time I had this tea. I can’t remember if I added anything to it the first time but I remember a very bright tea flavor but I just wasn’t wowed. This time I thought I used plenty of leaf, but after adding some milk it just seemed completely overpowered. Too mild for a breakfast tea for me – and I can just imagine hubby complaining about it being tasteless. Could be an afternoon tea, but I just have so many more better options than this for the few times I manage to get in an afternoon cup of tea.
Humm…..Very nice. I believe this was supposed to be the May entry in the Single Leaf Club although I received it at the same time as their White Cloud in June.
The fresh leaves smell wonderful! I kept my nose tucked into the packet for a while to breath it in. A sweet citrus with just a hint of floral. I don’t usually like strongly scented tea leaves but this one is awesome. The fresh leaves also look gorgeous.
I initially followed the recommended brewing of 1 minute at 212. This was good, but after a sip I wondered if it would be better with an additional minute. Two minutes was perfect. No bitterness, just nicely full flavored.
Once brewed, their is just a hint of the fresh tea scent. The tea has a nice toasty flavor as mentioned in the Golden Moon tasting notes. A small hint of citrus for me. Not sure about the cocoa – still thinking about that one. Very nice, though. Highly recommended.
ETA: As the tea cooled, the citrus flavor that I noticed in the fresh tea leave scent became more pronounced. I really enjoyed this tea and look forward to trying a resteep.
Another entry in the Golden Moon Single-Leaf Club. It is my first white tea so I would not even attempt to rate it. The leaves are quite large. I followed the recommended steeping time and temperature.
I normally drink breakfast teas, heavy on the single-estate top grade Assams so this is quite different than those. Very vegetal – can’t say if it is leeks or not, but vegetal. The flavor lingers long after drinking it. I know white teas are supposed to be sweet, but I am not really picking this up at all, perhaps because it doesn’t compare to the honey or molasses of the assams.
Interesting. I can see why some might like it. Not quite my cup of tea. Now I’m really looking forward to the Golden Bi Lo……
Very good, and the Upton description is very accurate – "strong, bracing and malty….smooth for such a stout cup. Really enjoyed this one.
This was really, really boring. My husband said “tasteless”. I brewed it at 2 tsp/cup and still not good. I usually drink more of the top tier when it comes to single estate assams and while I wasn’t expecting it to live up to that, I was expecting it to still have good flavor. For a similar price, I think the Upton East Frisian BOP is a much better value. May not be single estate but I don’t want to just pay for a name. Ended up throwing out the tin.
My problem with the Upton single estate assams is they are usually sold out by the time I review them. This one is almost sold out, but I liked it so much I thought I would slide in a review. Nice flavor, malt, fruit, maybe spice. One of the best teas I’ve had. I liked it enough to purchase another package before it sells out.
We don’t drink flavored teas at all, but I love to mix this one in with other teas. Our favorite is to mix with Supreme Breakfast, but it also mixes nicely with assam teas. Unfortunately we discovered that ants love this tea!! I left some in my Breville overnight which was a big mistake. Didn’t do that again, but they even found the tin of sachets we had too. They smelled it right through the tin! So now it is double packaged – tin of loose tea inside a plastic container. The sachets had ants in them so had to go.
This one has really grown on me. The trick for me, was brewing for 4 minutes and using 2 rounded tsp per cup. Not a very malty tea but caramal and nuts.
This is a lovely tea. I started with a 4 oz tin and liked it enough to purchase a pound. Even better than their 2010 Mangalam. Lovely malty flavor. Great with a touch of honey. Initially was brewing for 5 minutes but it was bitter a few times so reduced to 4.5 minutes.
Tried this tea again a couple days ago. Definitely not a big malty assam that I’m more used to. On the other hand, I think it might grow on me. At 4 minutes, no bitterness at all. I think 3 minutes would be much too short and watery for me. I would not describe it as malty. Perhaps nutty and fruity might be better descriptions. As i slowly drank my 16 oz cup it did open up some and I liked the flavor. Look forward to my next try with this one. Reserving any score at this time.
Humm…..I’m going to have to try this a few more times I think. First brewing I didn’t believe the suggested 3 minute brew time so brewed for 4.5 minutes and it was quite bitter. I reduced the brew time to 4 minutes and used one heaping tsp/cup as suggested and it was pretty blah. Tried a third brewing at 4 minutes with two rounded tsp/cup and it was better but still a very light assam. I didn’t really pick up malt from it – it seemed more bright flavored and fruity. I might try again at 4.5 minutes and see how it turns out.
This is the April 2011 selection for Golden Moon’s Single Leaf club.
The idea of scenting teas is new to me. I will admit that I avoid scented products in my day to day life (e.g. unscented detergent, fabric softener, lotion, etc….) When it comes to tea, I love the scent of certain spices but scenting with fruits or flowers is not something I would seek out.
This tea has an obvious fruit scent for both the dry leaves and steeped leaves. The scent of the brewed tea itself is pretty subtle, so not objectionable for me. The tea itself seems to be a pretty basic black tea. Nothing special. Golden Moon recommends drinking the tea “neat” however, I found that a touch of milk smoothed the sharpness of the tea.
For my tastes, there is nothing really wrong with this tea, but nothing special either. I would prefer to drink other teas instead. I’m looking forward to trying some of the other teas that are mentioned as sample club items….a unique assam, first flush darjeeling, golden snail yunnan, etc….
The reviews on this tea certainly are intriguing. I’ve brewed it now on three different days, and in the end have found it rather disappointing.
I actually don’t like the smell of the fresh leaves at all. While there is a certain honey scent to them, there is also a very sharp scent that overpowers the honey. I suppose I could describe it as floral, so the fact that I don’t like floral perfumes in general might explain my dislike for the scent. The impression that comes to my mind is someone trying to cover body odor with stinky perfume.
Once brewed, luckily it looses the sharp scent. There is a nice black tea flavor, but I have a difficult time picking up any honey. I detected a hint of honey near the back of my throat as it cooled, but it was rather fleeting (since they describe the sensation as the front of the palate, this also led me to an interesting internet search to learn that taste bud mapping is over simplified).
The second time I brewed the tea, I didn’t use enough leaves and the result was very blah watery tea. The leaves are difficult to measure (I don’t have a scale) due to their very large size. Both the first and third time, though, I used plenty of leaf. The third time around I tried adding a small amount of honey to the tea to see if it would accent the natural honey flavor, but it didn’t really add much. The tea also left a bad aftertaste in my mouth.
All in all, I’m glad to have tried the tea and can see why some might enjoy it, but I think the description from Golden Moon of honey flavor literally exploding didn’t happen for me at all. I don’t generally sweeten my tea, but I do sometimes like a hint of honey in some teas. This one was a little disappointing for me at the end.
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