75 Tasting Notes
Another sipdown. I thought my cupboard was pretty much at full capacity, but I realized going through it today that I am nearly out of several good teas. Glad I have some new ones on the way to try!
I overleafed a little bit to use up the last of the loose leaf and it was even more enjoyable than last time with bolder flavors. Not getting any cocoa or fruit, but the lovely malt and honey goodness is just right for a chilly winter afternoon. Wonderful!
Dry: Finely chopped bits of black tea (looks CTC for the most part) with bits of soft green peppermint mixed in. Smells overwhelmingly of mint straight from the bag, so no skimping on the minty side of this for sure.
Steeped: Clear brown liquor with bits of tea floating on top. This is very finely shredded and the tiny holes on my infuser couldn’t keep them all in. Smells very nice though, like dark chocolate and mint.
Taste: This is a nice afternoon or after dinner tea! It is supposed to be chocolate mint and that is exactly what I get with each sip. It is heavier on the mint than on the cocoa side, but both are present for sure. It is smooth, refreshing, and I like it particularly with a dash of milk. I’d like to keep a tea like this around as a staple, but I will have to compare this to some of the other mint/choco teas out there in the future. Right now though, it is a fine addition to the cupboard.
Another sipdown. I finished the last of my organic Dragonwell from Teavivre yesterday and forgot to review it, but I hope I will meet it again in a future order. Not so much with this H & S tea, unfortunately.
I know that a lot of folks like this one, but it is just too artificial on the cranberry for my palate. I was longing for any of my other better blacks the whole time I was drinking this. I will stick with Paris when I am looking for fruity and wonderful. Goodbye, Boston Blend! I will not miss you! :)
Dry: Medium length black, dark bronze, and golden-tipped black loose leaf. Nicely aromatic and malty with a tiny hint of smoke.
Steeped: Clear medium-brown liquor. Rich and balanced aroma with honey and smoke undertones in the steam rising from the teacup. I’m not getting any spice, but that works for me because I am not a fan of pepper notes anyway.
Taste: I only ordered a sample of this one, but I am kicking myself because I really like it. This is smooth, balanced, and flavorful without being too potent for a peaceful Sunday morning. Malt and soft smoke meets subtle cocoa and rich honey for a lovely tea experience. I definitely note the contributions from the Keemun and Yunnan, but this blend is very nice and doesn’t need anything added to make a great cuppa. If you like Chinese blacks, this one might be a good choice to try out. I will be ordering a full-size tin next time I place a Harney order for sure.
Was in the mood for a straight green while I try (once again) to get started on my last paper for the semester. It is a family case study with regard to health policy, so pretty boring to research and write about. At least to me. :/
Anyhow, I was happy to find one more sample bag of this hiding behind the flavored matcha. I used a little bit less leaf than last time and it is still great. Fresh, sweet, and a bit buttery with that hint of water chestnuts that I like so much- just what I wanted this fine afternoon.
Dry: This is made up of light and fluffy shorter black leaves with numerous golden tips. It smells pleasantly malty and sweet in the bag.
Steeped: Clear medium brown liquor. Still has that lingering sweet aroma from the teapot with hints of malt and honey.
Taste: This is a lovely tea, with a nice malted burst that becomes honeyed on the tongue with a light lingering almost sweet potato sweetness in the aftertaste. It is subtly complex and makes a nice cup. That said, I don’t plan to buy a larger tin of this. I’ll stick to some of my other H & S favorites like Paris and Scottish Morn. I tried Teavivre’s Golden Money first before I ever sampled this one and they are very similar, but Teavivre’s was my favorite of the two. It seems more flavorful and had a higher quality dry leaf, so there we go. :)
Happy Thanksgiving Steepsters!
Dry: Short black tea leaves with some stems noted. Smells like sweet and creamy vanilla. Not vanilla extract, but a sweet and lovely vanilla none-the-less.
Steeped: Clear brown liquor. Smells a little more like vanilla extract once boiling water is added to the loose leaf, but it calms down as it expands back to that dry creamy scent.
Taste: This one is a nice and sweet vanilla tea. It is not complicated nor overpowering, just rich and lovely. No bitterness or astringency noted. I have been on the search for the perfect vanilla black and I like this one quite a bit. I went back and forth, but I think in the end I like it just a bit more than the Harney Vanilla Black, too. I do not need any more tea right now, but I might snag a larger bag this weekend to keep it stocked up in the cupboard. I only had 1oz to begin with, but I think I’ve had it for breakfast the past couple of days straight plus some random afternoons this week and last so there is only enough for one more teapot. I need to try this with milk and sugar as I’ve been drinking it with nothing added this entire time.
Hope you all have a wonderful day!
Thank you to Angel at Teavivre for this wonderful sample!
Dry: Tightly rolled olive bundles that seem to include a bud and full leaves when unfurled. Smells green, almost grassy, and mild. I wasn’t sure what to expect at all in the brewed tea from the package because the dry scent is not anything that really caught me initially, but (spoiler alert) I was very pleasantly surprised.
Steeped: Clear light green liquor. I brewed this with the Western method and it needs even more room than most oolongs to expand as the bundle of leaves are quite large and whole. It smells sweetly floral and fresh.
Taste: As soon as I took my first sip, I was falling in love. It is my new favorite Taiwan oolong. I am greeted with creamy milk blended with soft floral notes. I am not into flower teas usually, but the flavor of this tea is lovely and elegant with a silky mouthfeel. The aftertaste is sweet and mild, leaving me wanting to take another sip time and time again. I daresay I like this even more than the milk oolong with its smooth buttery goodness and natural milk flavor.
Everything is frosted and quiet outside, the sun is just starting to peek over the towering trees, and I am sipping a taste of the mountains on this fine Sunday morning. Yes, please!
This tea somehow works beautifully for a chilly grey Fall day. Coconut meets cocoa and while it sounds summery, it is warming and delicious. If you haven’t tried it with a dash of 2% milk, it adds depth in the form of a lovely creamy note. I’m really glad a bought a larger tin of this because it is a keeper in our house for sure and is a very tasty tea overall.
Thank you to Angel at Teavivre for this fantastic sample!
Dry: Twisty longer black tea leaves with tons of lovely golden tips. This is not one of those teas that is supposed to have tips that has a few lighter bits sprinkled into the black leaves. It looks at least half gold in the infuser. The dry aroma is very fragrant, thick and bready.
Steeped: Dark orange-brown clear liquor. Smells earthy and almost a touch smoky-sweet from the tea pot, like roasting sweet potatoes with natural burnt sugar bubbling on the potato skin. The leaves expand and unfurl quite a bit in the infuser, so they need a little extra room to breathe.
Taste: This is my first Golden Monkey black and it is quite lovely! I brewed it with the Western method and it came out as an enjoyable cup. Very mildly fruity with nothing added and there are still those roasty, malty sweet potato notes. In the aftertaste, there is an earthy, almost bready lingering flavor that lasts far beyond each sip. I would agree that this is a distinctive leaf, completely different from the other I’ve tried before and I am looking forward to steeping it again!