1238 Tasting Notes

82

The leaves are a gorgeous blend of gold and brown which reminds me of a lions mane. They are thinly rolled and long, with some being curly. It has a sweet malt scent with gentle smoke and wood notes.

Gaiwan 100ml

First Steep
45 seconds
The liquid is amber in colour with a sweet yet smoky malt scent.
Flavour is light with dark smoke, malt, wood and prune fruit tones.

Second Steep
1 minute 20 seconds
Richer and stronger, this steep with more smoke tones that lighten into a cream and malt finish that lingers. Fruit comes through in the after taste, specifically prune and fig.

Third Steep
2 minutes
Lighter but still with flavour. Malt and wood with soft leather and some dryness. The fruit is very subtle now.

Fourth Steep
3 minutes

Similar to the first steep, this is light and sweet with malt and smoke tones albeit subtle from what it once was.

This was a nice tea that offered a blend of gold tip and full leaf flavours. It was darker than I thought it would be given the high level of golden tips but still very pleasing. Not the best I’ve tried but still very nice.

Flavors: Fig, Malt, Smoke, Sweet, Wood

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C

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83

The leaves are a blend of brown, dark brown and red with some golden tips and stems/sticks present. It looks like a Shou/Ripe Puerh but that’s due to this being over 10 years old. I also want to note that the leaves look nice and full for the most part. Scent is earthy and wooden with some smoke, hay and bitter flowers.

Steeping Method: Yixing Teapot 100ml
Leaf: 7g
Water: Boiling
Pre rinse – This was rinsed twice for 20 seconds each time

First Steep – 30 seconds

Colour is orange with a light yet musty scent. Flavour is sweet and leathery with some astringency. Also some damp wood and light smoke tones.
Second Steep – 40 seconds

Less bitter than the first steep though it is still present. The mature flavours have settled down a little too and have blended better. The must and damp wood are still the dominant notes though more equal in this steep. Also getting a buttery note in the after taste.

Third Steep – 45 seconds

Tasting soft leather, toasted hay, smoke, must and dry perfume. Nothing too heavy but lingering for a long time in the after taste. The bitterness/astringency is present though rather pleasant.

Fourth Steep – 55 seconds

The bitterness has increased as has the smoke, which gives it tobacco and earthy notes. Also strong peony and dry wood notes.

Fifth Steep – 1 minute

Lighter than the previous steep though remains smoky, buttery and with dry peony notes. Bitterness is at a pleasant level again. Wonderful buttery aftertaste that lingers.

Sixth Steep – 1 minute 20 seconds

My favourite steep so far. Everything is reduced including the bitterness, and the peony and butter dominate and linger. A little dry.

Seventh Steep – 2 minutes

Another lovely steep though toned down from it’s mature beginnings. Lighter than the first steep at this point though still boasting butter, peony and wood flavours. Plus no bitterness.

Eighth Steep – 3 minutes

Very little remains though the buttery finish is uncomplicated, lasting and a wonderful end to this tea.

This was a wonderful mature Sheng, with an array of flavours such as:wood, tobacco, butter, peony, smoke and earth. It’s full bodied without being too dark, so while it may be mature in flavour it still has a Sheng appeal.

Flavors: Butter, Drying, Earth, Flowers, Musty, Wood

Preparation
Boiling 7 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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74
drank Afternoon Infusion by Graze
1238 tasting notes

This came in my weekly Graze box and I’ve been longing to try a tea and cake pairing since I saw them advertised. This was a random and pleasant surprise! The cake is banana bread which is only 55 calories and completely awesome as it’s fine for my low calorie diet. That is the reason I get Graze boxes, low calorie snacks to keep me fuelled for the week.

Anyway, the teabag has a tag which says it’s an Afternoon Infusion made with Assam and Kenyan leaves. Sounds strong to me, good.

I steep and wait, and I was right, this has come out bold and very dark. Clean malt tones with a sweet finish. Very nice!

Added milk and sweetener.

Ok taste is clean and bold with some crisp citrus and malt tones. Not overly strong but at a nice level. Nothing special though it’s a perfectly acceptable cup of tea. If I was served this whilst out I would be happy.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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93

The leaves are dark brown with some green tinges and lots of silver tips and some brown/red sticks/stems present. For the most part they are long and look whole though thin, tightly wrapped and with a high shine. They have a creamy earthen scent with elements of toasted hay, lightly smoked wood and flowers.

Steeping Method: Yixing Teapot 100ml
Leaf: 7g
Water: Boiling
Pre rinse – This was rinsed twice for 20 seconds each time

First Steep – 30 seconds

Colour is yellow with a gentle, creamy yet earthy scent. Flavour is soft and sweet with a creamy after taste. Some bitterness but it transfuses into sweet honey and floral peony like tones.

Second Steep – 40 seconds

Less bitter than the first steep though it is still present. Still plenty of sweet and creamy tones with some added soft smoke and damp wood and hay.

Third Steep – 45 seconds

No bitterness at all which makes it sweet and creamy. Heavenly! It coats the inside of my mouth and lingers in the after taste. Honey, honeysuckle, cream and gentle musk.

Fourth Steep – 55 seconds

Another beautiful steep, the flavour is perfect at this stage. So creamy and sweet but with depth and flavour. The bitterness has returned albeit subtle and short lasting.

Fifth Steep – 1 minute

Now the flavour is starting to reduce in strength. The creaminess dominates though it is not as sweet as the previous steeps. Also little to no bitterness is left, just the cream and a gentle floral after taste.

Sixth Steep – 1 minute 20 seconds

Slowly reduced though still creamy and pleasing. Still no bitterness to speak of, instead it’s very smooth and easy to drink. No smoke or earthy tones remain.

Seventh Steep – 2 minutes

Even lighter though still enough flavour to be pleasing. Cream and flowers is all that remains.

Eighth Steep – 3 minutes

This is certainly the final steep. Though there is still some soft cream notes there is nothing else present.

This was a very beautiful Sheng, with dominant cream tones, soft astringency and a delicate balance of flowers and earth.

Flavors: Cream, Earth, Flowers, Honey, Smoke

Preparation
Boiling 7 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
Christopher F.

That sounds nice, I was just thinking about placing a YS order, you may have well made up my mind on what to buy.

KittyLovesTea

I must say this truly was a delightful tea, honestly nicer than I expected. The price is rather reasonable as well! If you do go ahead and try this one I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. :)

Kirkoneill1988

AWESOME REVIEW! :D

KittyLovesTea

@Kirkoneil1988 Thank you! :D

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91

The leaves are a blend of dark to medium greens with a lot of silver tips present. Also they have a high reflective shine and lots of downy hairs. In shape they tend to be long and thinly rolled but rather curly too. It smells so sweet and fresh, resembling mixed flowers (geranium, jasmine, sweetpea), soft grass and gently toasted hay.

Steeping Method: Chinese Glass Tumbler
6g leaf with 75C water

As I smell the steeped tea the flowers stand out even more, not to the extent of being perfumed, instead though they are strong it is still fresh and sweet.

Flavour is crisp yet sweet and floral enough to match it’s scent. Some grass tones and astringency though very mildly. Clean tasting and very beautiful. Along with geranium, jasmine and sweetpea I can also taste honeysuckle and lily.

Altogether this is a very floral tea that remains sweet and fresh throughout, part of that is due to this being a white Bi Luo Chun rather than green.

Flavors: Flowers, Sweet, warm grass

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 6 g 8 OZ / 250 ML
Nattie

Ooh, sounds good!

KittyLovesTea

It truly was! Nicer than I originally thought it would be. Perhaps because I tend to prefer green tea over white. This had the strength and flavour of a green Bi Luo but in a cleaner and softer form. Worked very well.

TeaBrat

sounds lovely :)

Kirkoneill1988

awesome! i have yet to open mine and try it.

Kirkoneill1988

kitty, have you read my review?

http://steepster.com/teas/yunnan-sourcing/56778-2014-autumn-moonlight-pavilion-pure-bud-bi-luo-chun-white-tea#tasting-notes

go to where it says 1 more and read the full review if you haven’t allready

KittyLovesTea

Very nice review :)

Kirkoneill1988

thankyou :D

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85

My first Yunnan Sourcing club order arrived today squee!

After a busy day of packing my suitcase and trying to get the house in order before I go away on Sunday I am delighted to have finally sit down and have tea time. I haven’t had tea all day and it’s almost bed time!

The leaves are dark brown with some red patches and golden tips present. They are mostly thin, tightly rolled and curly but there are some thicker pieces present too. Also some stem/stick. It has a light, sweet and wooden scent with a hint of lychee/dark fruit.

Steeping Method: Gaiwan

First Steep
45 seconds
The liquid is burnt orange in colour and has a soft wooden scent.
Flavour is gentle and malted with sweet wood and soft leather tones. Fresh yet musty.

Second Steep
120 seconds
More sweet and rock sugar like and the malt tones are now in the background, with the wood. Also a lychee or dark fruit aftertaste.

Third Steep
2 minutes
Extremely light and all that remains is the fruity aftertaste.

This was rather a simple black but it was clean tasting and very pleasant. Not the best but something I can happily finish my 50g pouch of. Another tea where the scent showed pretty much what to expect in taste.

Flavors: Brown Sugar, Fruity, Malt, Sweet, Wood

Preparation
Boiling 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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88

Watching Toradora! (とらドラ!?) Anime got me in the mood for some Japanese tea.

I open the little sample and am met with a bright green tea with a fair amount of toasted rice, it is a Genmaicha after all! What is more interesting is that the Matcha lightly coats it all which brings out the green colour more than usual. The Sencha is rather fine which also blends well. It has a sweet, creamy and grassy tone. Rather delicious!
https://instagram.com/p/zXe4EWsd1N/?modal=true
https://instagram.com/p/zXg-bbsd5s/?modal=true
https://instagram.com/p/zXhO24sd6O/?modal=true

Once steeped it’s bright green and smells creamy and toasted with some sweetness. Softer than the raw scent though still as delicious!

Flavour is slightly astringent with some umami and grass tones, followed with a creamy and light toasted after taste. It’s thick but at a nice balance of flavours. It doesn’t taste at all like a Genmaicha other than the gentle toasted element, otherwise the Matcha is dominant and takes centre stage of this blend. Either way it works very well together.

As it cools the sweet and creamy tones come through stronger and the umami softens.

2nd Steep
This tastes a lot more like Genmaicha. The toasted rice and cream are equal but the astringency and umami have toned down considerably, also the grass tones come through more with added floral, bread and biscuit notes. Much softer and a more pleasant steep than the first, though saying that I did enjoy the first steep too.

This was an interesting blend, the Matcha was dominant in the first steep but the Genmaicha dominated thereafter, it was like getting the best of both worlds in one yunomi cup. Interesting enough for me to add it to my wishlist for more. Plus the power of both has given me a wonderful green tea head rush!

Kon’nichiwa watashinonamaeha Kayleigh to watashi wa onaji kurai watashi wa ocha o aisuru yō ni anime ga daisukidesu.

Flavors: Grass, Sweet, Toasty, Umami

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 0 min, 45 sec 5 g 7 OZ / 200 ML

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68

This was a surprise gift thanks to my RedditGifts SS as part of the colour exchange. My favourite colour is purple, specifically heather or plum. So far I have 8oz/227g of this tea, a black plum blossom candle and some purple eyeshadow. Apparently more is coming! I do feel spoilt.

Opening the tea and putting half into a tin I notice the beautiful safflowers, the contrast is lovely to look at. The blend consists of small, dark brown tea leaves that are twisted and broken with some stem/sticks present. Amongst them the red safflowers.
http://instagram.com/p/zSfqJgsd9T/?modal=true

It has a rich malt and wood scent with some mild sweetness. So far it smells like a pure black tea, interesting.

Once steeped it still smells like a standard black tea…where is the plum?

Flavour is dark and wooden with some smoke and malt tones. It leaves a slight sweet flavour in the after taste, like honey though very light. Though I am still left asking….where is the plum? It has not been present in scent nor flavour and other than a mild sweetness there is nothing out of the ordinary for this black tea. Very strange.

It’s a fairly nice black tea, not plum flavoured but another tea I can crack out the milk and sugar for on a Sunday is always handy.

Flavors: Honey, Malt, Smoke, Wood

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 20 OZ / 600 ML

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62

Tea time! As it’s late I will pick this Rooibos blend. Shooting star, how cute!

I open the packet and am met with a thick, medicinal scent with some sweetness that mimics almond. Not unpleasant but rather …well…odd.

It’s steeped scent is much different. I smell sweet apple sauce with almond, very sweet but also very nice. The apple is rather strong considering, and it’s more apple sauce than apple.

Flavour is thickly Rooibos with a mild, sweet apple after taste before the Rooibos takes control again. Further sips bring out the almond sweetness though it’s still very much in the background of the Rooibos, of which seems almost smoky/smog like.

It’s not as sweet nor pleasing as it’s raw scent though it’s drinkable. It’s a rather medicinal Rooibos which I am not a fan of, well not a fan of Rooibos in general but this is darker than I can usually bare.

Flavors: Almond, Medicinal, Rooibos

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more 10 g 20 OZ / 600 ML
Jude

Smog! Let’s add it to the flavor list! lol

KittyLovesTea

I agree, if sweat can be on the list then so can smog!

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84

My day has not picked up as such but nor is it worse and on the overall scale of things I am not being hard done to by life. The headache is perhaps a little annoying but I can look past that. Into the positive and out with the negative.

This was a sample from having a Tea Buffs subscription, so thank you NBT.

I open the packet and am taken back by the delicious scent. It does smell like popcorn! Sweet yet salty, buttery and toasted. Yum! The leaves (they are dark and look black though could be Oolong) have lots of dried fruit pieces amongst them (which I was not expecting as I didn’t smell fruit) and little bits of actual popcorn too. And here I was thinking it may be Genmaicha based before I opened it.

Colour is golden red with a sweet toffee scent, less popcorn than it’s raw scent though still toasted.

sip, sip It tastes like it smells which is not a common find amongst flavoured tea. Usually they differ greatly, but not this. The toffee is light and buttery with mild sweetness and there is a toasted, salt after taste which gradually lightens and sweetens. Not as strongly toffee popcorn as you may imagine though it’s not too weak either, suppose that is a long way of saying medium strength. As it cools it becomes more creamy and also has some astringency though very little.

Loving this one, reminds me of Toffee Dream from Zen Tea but this has more flavour and is generally more pleasing.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 20 OZ / 600 ML

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Profile

Bio

I’m 27 years old from Leicester, England named Kayleigh. I have a wonderful husband called Richard whom I am very lucky to have in my life.

I started off many years ago drinking herbal and fruit teas which over time peaked my interest in trying new types. Eventually I began to import and sample many different teas and cultures which I still do today. My life goal is to try as many teas and ways of having tea as possible.

Tea wise my cravings change constantly from pu erh one month to jasmine green to the next and so on.

I adore cats and have four of my own called Honey, Cassie, Mr Soots and Ivory.

I also have two fish tanks which thankfully my cats have no interest in. They house an array of tropical fish and shrimp.

I am a proud vegetarian and have been for the majority of my life. When I say vegetarian I mean just that as well, no fish or seafood, no chicken now and again, no animal products such as gelatine and cochineal.

I also enjoy watching Japanese Anime and horror films.

I am always up for tea swaps so if you see anything in my virtual cupboard then please contact me.

A short list to help swapping with me easier though honestly I am not fussy and am willing to try anything. Plus the notes below are usually, sometimes I love a tea that has an ingredient I tend to dislike and other times I hate a tea that I thought I would love.

Likes: Any fruit but especially melon and orange, vanilla, all tea types (black, green, white etc), nuts (any), flowers, ginger, chai.

Dislikes: Licorice, aniseed, clove, eucalyptus, lavender.

My rating system
I have my own way of rating teas that makes each one personal. I have different categories, I rate each tea depending on what it is made of. For example: I rate green teas in a different way to black teas or herbal teas. So black, white, green, Pu Erh, Rooibos, Oolong, blends and tisanes all have their own rating system. That way I can compare them with other teas of the same or similar type before for an adequate rating. And when I do give top marks which is very rare I am actually saying that I would love to drink that tea all day, every day if possible. It’s a tea that I would never turn down or not be in the mood for. So while I agree that no tea is 100% perfect (as nothing is) I am saying that it’s as close as it comes to it. After all, in my book the perfect teas (or close to perfect anyway) are ones that I could drink all the time. That is why you will find a high quality black or Oolong will not have as high a score as a cheap flavoured blend, they are simply not being compared in the same category.

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Leicester, England, United Kingdom

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