246 Tasting Notes
This is my first time ever trying the exalted Golden Fleece I’ve heard so much about. First of all, the dry leaf! It might be the most beautiful that I’ve ever seen. With hues of bronze, orange, and gold, there pekoe all over each long, twisty, unbroken piece. The smell from the bag is heavenly- spicy sweet malty goodness.
I must say the liquor is totally different from most teas also- it looks almost earthy olive-brown in my white cup. There is the slightest film at the top in the teapot because I didn’t rinse the leaves, but the tea itself is clear. It smells of honey and spice. Maybe cinnamon and pepper- but as odd as it sounds, it works.
And now for the taste. I’ve never had a tea before that is both so sweet and savory. It is a contradiction across the palate. At first I get a burst of sweet honey maltiness that is notably smooth on the tongue. There is a hint of sweet potato, but not that brown sugar cooked version- more like the raw potato that is starchy and vaguely sweet when you cut it. This is followed by (and I kid you not) a strong and savory taste of mushrooms that may have been cooked on a cedar plank or something similar and woody. The mouthfeel is very thick and almost like it coats my teeth when I swirl it in my mouth. I’ve never had a tea like this before and has truly been a one-of-a-kind experience this morning! It tastes like the winter woods. I don’t think a wild mushroom wood honey tea would normally be my thing, but it is so different that I find myself surprised with every sip. As far as I know, this is the Autumn harvest- sound right? Now I want to try the Spring harvest next- or whichever one was totally different from this harvest as compared to previous reviews. TGIF!
Flavors: Honey, Malt, Mushrooms, Smooth, Spices, Sweet, Wood
Oh this is a sipdown I’ve been dreading and putting off again and again. My very last teapot of Taiwanese Wild Mountain Black. You can’t see it, but I may need to wail and gnash my teeth at the horror of it all. Fortunately, these final sips of goodness do not disappoint. Honeyed pastries meet smooth malt with a hint of baked sweet potato and raisins. Good to the last drop, literally. Now someone just needs to convince Stacy to share her vendor with another seller so this tea can live on once Butiki is closed. Or at least hang onto the contact info so if Butiki resurrects in the future then I can order ALL OF THE TEA. Happy Thursday everyone!
Flavors: Honey, Malt, Pastries, Smooth, Sweet, Sweet Potatoes
Backlog as I couldn’t get the page to load when I had it yesterday. This is really tasty s’mores tea and is currently my favorite one of this type of nommy dessert! I will review more thoroughly when I have it again, but it was straight up smooth and malty black tea with notes of cocoa, gooey marshmallow, sugar, and graham. What’s not to like? I’m glad I bought 2oz.. kinda wishing I got more of this and Choco Pumpkin Pie so far because I could easily kill it. Della Terra has dessert teas down pretty darn good! :)
Flavors: Cocoa, Graham, Malt, Marshmallow, Sugar, Sweet
I have been craving sweet foods now that the pies are vanishing around here until Christmas. I don’t even normally eat breakfast and it has been pretty much constant food with family visiting since Thanksgiving. So they are home and I am taking a break from stuffing my face with food and am going to enjoy lots of tea instead. This morning I went with a no-fail sweet pastry tea. This is nothing if not strawberry (maybe with a little rhubarb?), sweet and tart both, all wrapped up in graham cookie goodness. Just a lovely fruity dessert blend all around.
Flavors: Graham Cracker, Rhubarb, Strawberry, Sweet, Tart
What a nice treat! I had wanted to try this for a while after hearing some people liked it better than the “standard” pumpkin pie teas. I am somewhat obsessed with David’s Pumpkin Chai as many of you know, but was still curious about what I was missing. The dry leaf is very attractive with shorter dark tea leaves, orange pumpkin candies, chunks of what appears to be dried squash/pumpkin, and even whole cloves.
The steeped tea is a dark brown clear liquor and I didn’t notice an oil slick inside my cup, but the candies and other goodies do melt a bit into the infuser. The smell is heavenly! My whole kitchen smells like a fresh-baked pumpkin pie with hot chocolate to serve with it.
The taste of this tea is quite a pleasant surprise. Not too sweet, not too mild- it carries with it the actual taste of smooth black tea along with the pumpkin pie spices and a hint of chocolate at the end of the sip. The chocolate is more fragrant than in your face for the taste- it is there, but far from overwhelming the pumpkin pie.
The verdict? Truly, I am still mad about Pumpkin Chai, but this is my favorite closest second so far to any of the seasonal pumpkin-y teas I’ve tried over the years. I really like it and am glad I have more to play with. Next time I might make a milk or eggnog latte and see how it comes out. :)
Flavors: Cocoa, Malt, Natural Pumpkin Spice Flavor, Smooth, Sweet
I made a 64 oz pot of this while I had family visiting. It is almost a year old now as I recall and unfortunately I think it lost some of its nuances like graham cracker and the lime has become more astringent. It was still decent with the smooth black base, but I don’t think I’d re-order it. I have other teas from Della Terra I just like so much more. :)
Flavors: Citrus, Lime, Sweet, Tart
Made this one for a family member that flew in yesterday to visit. They are not much for tea, but landed with a cold and I wanted to give them something soothing and flavorful. Boy did this hit the nail on the head! He really enjoyed it and helped me finish the big 64oz teapot worth. Gentle Laoshan Black chocolate meets chamomile, spearmint, and spices. Calming, flavorful, and sparkling! The tea itself is absolutely gorgeous with long twisty leaves and whole flower heads mixed in. I don’t think I could drink this as an every day tea, but as an afternoon calming blend, it is perfect. Bumping the rating up a bit to reflect both of our enjoyment.
Flavors: Cacao, Flowers, Spearmint, Spices, Sweet
Sipdown! I tried to enjoy this tea, but it never was anything remotely similar to a pumpkin milkshake for me unfortunately. Today I made the last that I had exactly according to the directions and it also had a strong bitter note- maybe some of the flakes at the bottom of the bag contributed to this? Either way, I have really enjoyed most Butiki teas but this is one I really won’t miss at all. Hope everyone has a great Thursday!
Flavors: Bitter, Cinnamon, Cloves, Nutmeg, Spices
This is truly a lovely tea experience. I have enjoyed all Keemun teas from TeaVivre, but I especially like that this is organic. The dry leaf is small, very dark with a few light buds mixed in, and tightly twisted. They feel airy and light as they go into the infuser. The smell is fresh and malty. The liquor is clear mahogany- very attractive to look at. The smell of the steeped tea is something particularly enjoyable as it is an unusual combination of honeyed flowers with malty yams or sweet potatoes. I can see why some people would think of brown sugar or baked goods, though this completely lacks any nuances of yeast or baked breads found in some other teas.
The taste of this tea is a deepening of the fragrance- mild, smooth, malty on the tongue with the notes of sweet flowers, malt, a hint of fruit (apricots?), and sweet potatoes. The malt is fine and low on the flavor profile. This tea takes many common Western black tea flavors and replaces them with delicate sweetness that is difficult to describe other than what I’ve said above. Do I like this tea? YES! I just placed an order with this vendor for Dragonwell and I am already planning my next..
In other news, Steepster is breaking again! Last night I couldn’t get back to reply to a discussion and today I can barely load any other tasting notes or reviews. I am liking other posts and the likes are vanishing right before my eyes. I also went to look at some of my historical notes and the number is there, but the review is gone. Thank goodness for this delicious tea to keep me calm while trying to load pages over and over. :)
Flavors: Flowers, Fruity, Honey, Malt, Smoke, Sweet Potatoes
I have been enjoying Zhu Rong all day. Literally, all day. Resteeping these long and twisty dark leaves with golden threading yields a flavorful and lightly spiced tea. It makes me think of honey, cedar, and wheat with a touch of earth. I only have enough left for maybe one more pot of this after carefully hoarding it for a long while, so it is fortunate I ordered more yesterday. Yis!
Flavors: Cedar, Earth, Honey, Wheat