286 Tasting Notes
This tea smells richly chocolate-like when dry, and tastes practically like a Verdant Tea Laoshan Black double, and I do not say that lightly. The leaves are long and twisted, mostly golden with shades of black and quite fuzzy. There’s no astringency to this tea, but it does have a long, sweet lingering aftertaste. Fantastic!
Backlogging a cup of this on my birthday a few days ago. I tasted Norbu’s Ya Bao again (in a gaiwan, for three resteepings) after I tried Verdant Tea’s Ya Bao, because I remembered enjoying Norbu’s more. Verdant’s Ya Bao is excellent, but it’s somehow harsher, more “in your face” flavour-wise, whereas Norbu’s is sweeter, more mellow, and it gently caresses your tastebuds with its cooling, soothing, toasty goodness. There was also a greenness – almost pine-like – to Verdant’s Ya Bao that was not present so much in Norbu’s. I’ll have to do a side by side tasting to make sure, but I’m certain that Norbu’s is the tea I will reach for when I’m feeling the need for a comforting white tea.
This is a very good Qimen/Keemun (I just read Terri HarpLady’s notes and I agree with them entirely – the tea’s red liquor is smokey, but not overwhelmingly so, and brown sugar/caramel/maple like in sweetness), but I wasn’t floored by it. I have a F&M Keemun which is just as good, and so I’m a little surprised that this tea was part of Verdant’s TotM Reserved club. Once again – this is an excellent tea, for western and gong fu brewing, it just isn’t quite as unique as I expected it to be.
Had a cup of this, with milk, this morning. Not as strong as I thought, but still a good breakfast tea. Reserving judgement for later – I’ve decided to take my time with marks from now on, giving each tea at least two separate tastings before rating it. But for now this tea is in the 70-80 range – a good, solid breakfast tea, but not something to go out of your way to find.
Drinking Lao Cong Zi Ya and working on my thesis. I haven’t logged tea in a while, even though I have been drinking quite a bit, and I’ve got a ton of teas to review. Just too busy with my work and thesis to properly log the tea that I’m drinking. I am trying to find time to organize my tea cupboard, and list every tea that I have in a google spreadsheet and here.
This tea is lovely, fruity, a little malty, and the first 50g that I bought are almost gone.
I went to our local farmer’s market this morning, and chatted to a few of the regular famers there as I was shopping for fruit and vegetables. They’re all very worried at the moment, as two swarms of locusts have crossed the Sinai desert from Egypt and landed in the Israeli south, with its fields of produce and lush hothouses. The beasts are a menace, destroying whole fields in minutes, and getting rid of them won’t be an easy task. Right now everyone’s watching the wind, to see if it will carry more locusts across the border or not.
I just remembered it now, while sipping this tea – the fragility of crops, the hardship that farmers face, the pride that they take in their produce, and how we miss so much of that aspect of food growing when we buy a shrink wrapped tin in a supermarket. That’s part of why I appreciate sites like Verdant Tea, who highlight and expose some of that hidden aspect of consuming.