1238 Tasting Notes
This morning has not been great. I awoke to the noise of a screaming cat (it turned out to be Ivory playing with a toy that his brother Sooty tried to also play with) which gave me a headache and groggy feeling due to lack of sleep. On top of that my mobile phone has broken, it refuses to charge and my contract supplier said to get a new battery and charger but only official brand which as it turns out is no longer sold, and until I try that I can’t get them to fix my phone for free. Otherwise a replacement is £150 and I can’t afford that right now.
So, with a groggy state of mind I pour myself a glass of Red Berry by Suki Tea. Previously reviewed in hot variety but not enjoyed above average expectations I decided to try it cold steeped. Worse case scenario in flavour would be best case scenario for using up the leaves. Though I am actually taken by surprise, it reminded me a bit of Ribena, but a little tart and less sweet. It has pure berry flavour this way with only a minimum tartness and herbalness from the hibiscus. Berry wise I would say cranberry or lingonberry, I’ve had similar from Ikea on my last visit. Much nicer than I expected and is my first positive of the day. I will certainly be cold steeping the rest of this.
This arrived in my last sniff, sniff Butiki order as part of the mystery package and I was over the moon. I LOVE PURPLE TEA! Not fussy about which type as long as it’s purple.
The leaves are rather small and dark, not completely purple coloured but almost, with some brown there too. They smell grassy yet spicy and floral.
Once steeped the resulting liquid is dark honey coloured and matches it’s raw scent nicely.
Flavour is of medium strength with grass, peony, chestnut and plum with some astringency and sweetness. Also is a little dry at times. Despite the touch of astringency it is very easy to drink, it’s even creamy at times and slips down very well.
Green tea is not simple, in my opinion you have the grassy and light greens, you have the dark almost toasty greens, you have the umami Japanese greens and you have the super sweet Cloud Mist style greens. That is the basics of what I go by when it comes to green tea. This Steamed Purple Green is in between being grassy/light and dark/toasty. Think of it as lightly toasted grass that is neither too dark nor light and that is the basis for this green. Plus with the added flavours, makes this one a winner for me. Not perfect but damn fine!
Plus thanks to trying this one last week I also know it re-steeps rather well.
Flavors: Chestnut, Flowers, Grass, Plums, Toasted
EU TTB BOX – ROUND 3 RETURN
Something to sip while I replace the pictures on my website. A few weeks ago Tea Trade had a bug and in turn all of their users pictures were deleted. Three years of pictures deleted….and I found out the day before my birthday when I was ill. Not the greatest time for me right now but I’m getting on with it. Each page takes roughly 30 minutes to update with the new pictures so I have my hands full.
The raw leaves smell herbal, tart and fruity – particularly berry and lemon like.
Once steeped the tea is red/pink and has a tart berry scent, matching it’s raw form.
(Looks at pictures of Anton Yelchin while the tea cools)
In flavour this is very mild with dominant lemongrass tones, some sweetness and a herbal after taste. Also getting some tart hibiscus after a few more sips.
As it cools the tartness reduces a little, though on the whole it’s still a lemongrass and hibiscus dominant blend.
Glad I only had a sample of this one, as much as I love lemongrass I happen to dislike hibiscus (for the most part) and this blend is nothing above average for me. Drinkable and enjoyable but not something I would want more of. Just as well I suppose, considering River Tea has since closed.
Flavors: Hibiscus, Lemongrass, Sour
“Jam in a cup” is how this one is advertised which I find rather appealing this morning. A Christmas gift from my parents as part of their random tea hamper that has become somewhat a traditional gift.
The raw blend had a strong berry and hibiscus scent, tart and sour but with some sweetness and a herbal touch.
Flavour is strong and very tart with mild sweetness and heavy hibiscus and herbal tones. Almost so tart that I pucker my lips, like I’m sucking a fizzy sweet. As it cools it does develop a sherbet likeness.
Does it taste like the proposed ‘jam in a cup’? No it does not, it is nowhere near sweet nor berry enough. Instead it’s a hibiscus heavy blend with moderate herbal tones and only a delicate touch of sweet berry.
Flavors: Berries, Hibiscus, Sour
HAPPY VALENTINES DAY! Not that I celebrate it as such since you should celebrate love to your partner every day…but I understand the sentiment. Planned for today is to play Borderlands The Pre Sequal pretty much non stop on split screen, drink lots of tea and cook a diet friendly 3 course meal. Such a thing is possible I found.
This morning I started with English Rose black tea from Whittard of Chelsea, the most romantic tea I could think of this morning, and now I’ve gone for this Gianfranco’s Earl Grey which is still simply amazing. Full of flavour without being overly strong due to the Darjeeling base but keeping fresh and pleasant through storage. Almost out of this one one but I will definitely be re-stocking it.
Hope you all have a nice day!
Firstly – I want to apologise for not being active on Steepster recently. Unfortunately I caught a bad cold and chest infection which left me without a sense of taste for over a week, including through my birthday too. That left me a little numb and disheartened with tasting (or at least trying to taste) tea and so I took a back seat, finished some tea samples I had already reviewed and did my very best to recover. I believe that now is good time to come back, though my taste may not be perfect to my usual standard it should be good enough, as with my sense of smell also. At least the illness caught me well before my holiday as I leave for Fuerteventura, Spain at the start of next month.
While I was ill I ended up playing through some of my games of which I have accumulated 859 of via Steam. They recently had a sale and I noticed they were offering The Testament of Sherlock Holmes at a reasonable price so I scooped that up and began playing last night. It reminded me of the teas from Adagio that I got around Christmas time, I waited so long for the tins to come back into UK stock. It’s time I tried them.
Starting with Sherlock Holmes, the musky, dark and pipe tobacco smoke scented tea. It’s strongly smoky yet I get a mature and rather debonair feeling about it.
Flavour is rather smooth yet smoky throughout with malt, tobacco and sweet under tones. It’s not too strong, nor smoky nor dry but rather a perfect balance of all so that you can taste each flavour equally. Considering it’s Lapsang Souchong part base it’s milder than I was expecting. There is also a mild spicy after taste mixed in with the smoke.
I rather like this blend overall and admire it greatly. Assam and Lapsang Souching, who would have expected a pleasant union? Well played Cara McGee.
Flavors: Malt, Smoke, Spices, Sweet, Tobacco
Putting my morning frankly: I woke up and packed a bag ready for the gym, prepared a litre of iced Sencha for hydration, did some exercise, almost black out because I pushed myself too hard, did some food shopping, won £1 on a scratch card and am now watching last nights UFC fight. Not a great day so far but I am hoping it gets better.
The raw leaves are a blend of dark brown, gold and red brown colours with some golden tips and sticks present. Scent is earthy, smoky and rather sour.
Steeping roughly 6g of cake
With 100c water
In a 200ml Yixing teapot
Rinse 1 – 10 seconds
Rinse 2 – 10 seconds
Steep 1 – 10 seconds
Once steeped the colour is orange/yellow in colour and bares a smoky and damp earth scent.
Flavour is fairly strong, astringent, smoky and rather dirty, musty. Stronger than anticipated and the astringency carried on in the after taste. Not a great steep.
Steep 2 – 5 seconds
Even stronger and more astringent. Heavily smoky and dry and rich, damp earth and must notes. I’m finding myself pulling a face when I sip.
Steep 3 – 5 seconds
I took a minute sip and screwed my face up. Far too strong and astringent, generally unpleasant and not something I wish to have more of.
I’m leaving it there, this tea was just horrible! Short steeping times didn’t even help with the harshness of this Puerh. Frankly, life is too short to drink bad tea.
Re-visit from 2 years ago.
Still not overly impressed with this Sheng, it tastes musty and old. Compared to my knowledge 2 years ago I now see why, though the leaves are mostly whole they are rather dark too. I tend to prefer silver tipped, large leaf Sheng. This type I consider to be part way between Sheng and Shue which I’m not always a fan of.
Oh well, one or two more servings after this pot and I will know not to re-order.
Thank you Angel for this sample.
My hubby has next week off work which he usually does for my birthday (which is also next week). Hopefully that means we will fit in a lot of tea sessions during this time to help me clear some of my stash.
The raw cake contains whole leaves that are a blend of: dark brown, silver, gold and red/brown. Very high gloss/shine is present and lots of furry silver tips.
It has a sweet yet smoky, wood and earth scent.
Water: 100 C
Pot: Yixing 200ml
Rinse 1 – 10 seconds
Rinse 2 – 10 seconds
Steep 1 – 10 seconds
Colour is light yellow and has a gentle, smoky and damp earth scent.
Flavour is subtle with sweet and creamy earth notes with a hint of smoke. The sweet honeysuckle notes linger into the after taste.
Steep 2 – 10 seconds
Colour and flavour are thicker. The smoke has increased though for the most part it is still sweet and creamy. Slightly dry in the after taste now though the honeysuckle still dominates. Also getting some fresh wood tones and an increase in the cream as it cools.
Steep 3 – 15 seconds
Thicker and smokier with some astringency. Also the dryness increases to the point of being perfumed. Very rich and mineral like, sweet grass perhaps or sweetpea.
Steep 4 – 10 seconds
Creamy, sweet, honeysuckle, thick, smoke. All balanced much better in this steep than the previous two. It’s still astringent but toned down. My favourite steep so far.
Steep 5 – 5 seconds
Soft, floral, sweet and slightly smoky. Another well balanced steep. Not as thick and losing strength though the dryness and astringency have also lessened.
I will continue to steep though out the day but will stop my writing for now.
Overall: The Puerh started soft and sweet which increased in strength rather quickly, with it’s later steeps calming down to bring a more balanced tea. The main flavours were honeysuckle, cream, smoke, sweetpea and wood. It’s a very nice raw/sheng that tastes better over time, put simply.
The leaves appeared to be very nice quality both before and after the steeps, as such I will consider buying a cake of this in the future should I get the opportunity.
Flavors: Cream, Drying, Earth, Honeysuckle, Perfume, Smoke, Sweet, Wood