10

I’m going for an adventurous start to the new year, with another neglected Bluebird sample. I’m not so sure about this one. Straight off, the scent is telling me it’s a pu’erh. It’s earthy, kind of compost-like, a little bit…putrid? There’s no mistaking it, unfortunately. I distracted myself looking at the coffee beans for a few minutes — there are at least 6 whole, actual beans in this one cup sample — and then I went back to feeling scared. I didn’t give this too long in the water, because I was worried what it would turn into. The liquor is pretty dark after only a couple of minutes, and it’s quite strongly scented. Fortunately, I can detect some coffee notes now, although the overwhelming scent is still pu’erh.

I waited for this to cool a good deal before taking a tentative sip. It’s not as bad as I was expecting — the pu’erh is actually quite mild to taste, but the smell is pretty overwhelming. Deep breath before taking a sip, then! I’ve tried a couple of coffee flavoured teas before, and they’re not really my thing. Logically, perhaps — if I wanted coffee, I’d drink coffee, after all. I requested this as a sample because I was curious to try a couple more pu’erhs, and it was one of a few fairly limited options available to me. I was also hoping that the strong flavour of coffee would mask the pu’erh a little while I get used to the flavour. That was a good assumption to make, but on the whole I’m not really feeling this one. I can taste coffee, but it’s not a particularly fresh tasting coffee. I am pleased that I didn’t have to dump the cup, though. It’s pleasant enough that I’ll be able to finish it, but probably not one I’d come back to again. Sorry Bluebird — it’s not you, it’s me.

mild pu-erh but you can tell it’s a pu-erh and it blends very well with the coffee.
Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 0 sec
Anna

I want to try more pu’erhs, too. They can seriously range all the way from horrifying to delectable. This is a flavoured one I loved:

http://steepster.com/clareborn/posts/196900

Sil

mmm i second puerh gourmand. You might also like lupicia’s chocolate/strawberry puerh and there’s another one i can’t for the life of my think of right now..

Anna

Ugh! This website will be the death of me. Okay, FINE, Sil, adding Lupicia’s choc/strawberry to the shopping list.

Sil

be warned it’s more flavoured than puerh…whereas i consider puerh gourmand to be puerh with some flavour…if that makes sense.

Anna

It does make sense. Either way, you’re evil.

Sil

if it makes you feel better i now have a cart built at lupicia, though i will do my best not to “buy.”

Anna

That makes you even more evil, because I can’t get Lupicia tea here and it makes me want to cry. They only ship in/to France, and I won’t be in the US until March. Patience. Patience is a virtue.

Sil

they don’t ship to canada…i have to beg my tea mule to bring it up for me heh

Anna

Okay, I feel better now. Shared tea pain is lessened tea pain.

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Comments

Anna

I want to try more pu’erhs, too. They can seriously range all the way from horrifying to delectable. This is a flavoured one I loved:

http://steepster.com/clareborn/posts/196900

Sil

mmm i second puerh gourmand. You might also like lupicia’s chocolate/strawberry puerh and there’s another one i can’t for the life of my think of right now..

Anna

Ugh! This website will be the death of me. Okay, FINE, Sil, adding Lupicia’s choc/strawberry to the shopping list.

Sil

be warned it’s more flavoured than puerh…whereas i consider puerh gourmand to be puerh with some flavour…if that makes sense.

Anna

It does make sense. Either way, you’re evil.

Sil

if it makes you feel better i now have a cart built at lupicia, though i will do my best not to “buy.”

Anna

That makes you even more evil, because I can’t get Lupicia tea here and it makes me want to cry. They only ship in/to France, and I won’t be in the US until March. Patience. Patience is a virtue.

Sil

they don’t ship to canada…i have to beg my tea mule to bring it up for me heh

Anna

Okay, I feel better now. Shared tea pain is lessened tea pain.

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Bio

Hi :) I’m Sarah, 25, and I live in Norwich in the UK. My tea obsession began when a friend introduced me to Teapigs a good few years ago now. Since then, I’ve been insatiable. Steepster introduced me to a world of tea I never knew existed, and my goal is now to TRY ALL THE TEAS. Or most of them, anyway.

I still have a deep rooted (and probably life-long) preference for black tea. My all-time favourite is Assam, but Ceylon and Darjeeling also occupy a place in my heart. Flavoured black tea can be a beautiful thing, and I like a good chai latte in the winter.

I also drink a lot of rooibos/honeybush tea, particularly on an evening. Sometimes they’re the best dessert replacements, too. White teas are a staple in summer — their lightness and delicate nature is something I can always appreciate on a hot day.

I’m still warming up to green teas and oolongs. I don’t think they’ll ever be my favourites, with a few rare exceptions, but I don’t hate them anymore. My experience of these teas is still very much a work-in-progress. I’ve also never really tried pu’erh, and that’s something I’m just starting to explore.

I’m still searching for the perfect fruit tea. One without hibiscus. That actually tastes of fruit.

You’ve probably had enough of me now, so I’m going to shut up. Needless to say, though, I really love tea. Long may the journey continue!

My rating system:

91-100: The Holy Grail. Flawless teas I will never forget.

81-90: Outstanding. Pretty much perfection, and happiness in a cup.

71-80: Amazing. A tea to savour, and one I’ll keep coming back to.

61-70: Very good. The majority of things are as they should be. A pleasing cup.

51-60: Good. Not outstanding, but has merit.

41-50: Average. It’s not horrible, but I’ve definitely had better. There’s probably still something about it I’m not keen on.

31-40: Almost enjoyable, but something about it is not for me.

11-30: Pretty bad. It probably makes me screw my face up when I take a sip, but it’s not completely undrinkable.

0-10: Ugh. No. Never again. To me, undrinkable.

Location

Norwich, UK

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