1085 Tasting Notes

80

I love the compact, gnarled knottiness of this Curled Dragon Silver Tips tea from Zen Tea. The scent of the dried leaves is strong and toasty. The liquor is pale greenish yellow and begins to veer toward peach after a couple of minutes.

My first glass seemed a bit low on taste somehow—probably expectations. It was reminding me a bit of subtle China greens such as Bi Luo Chun. The second glass was more flavorful—again, I believe, because the perfect drinking temperature for green tea is a bit lower than the brewing temperature.

The flavor was succulent but still subtler than I had been expecting. From the scent of the dried leaves, I was fully expecting a more robust liquor. I’ll probably increase my leafage next time…

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec 5 g 27 OZ / 798 ML
boychik

You have a gaiwan. Make it gongfu style;-)

sherapop

boychik: I began seasoning my two new yixing pots last night. I used Yunnan black tea, so that I means that I should only use them for darker teas, right? I was thinking that Yunnan black would be compatible with pu-erh…

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82

Of late, I have been focusing on the loose leaf chamomile from Harney & Sons, but tonight I wanted something quick and easy, so I infused a single sachet. I suppose that another virtue of the sachet format is … portion control!

To be honest, I am basically the antithesis of the type of tea drinker praised on the Republic of Tea cans, where they scold us for “gulping” rather than “sipping”. Is my alleged “vice” mitigated to some degree by the fact that I drink my teas and infusions with no sugar added? I don’t know—it all sounds pretty moralistic and condescending to me. Tomorrow I’ll definitely brew an entire large Bodum of scalding chamomile just to spite the scolding sippers!!!!!

As usual, the liquor was golden and shimmery, and flavor very good.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 1 g 9 OZ / 266 ML

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82
drank Jasmine Dragon Pearl by Zen Tea
1085 tasting notes

The unfurling of the dragon pearls from this Jasmine green tea from Zen Tea was a joy to behold! The leaves are whole, and they just kept unraveling, until at last each pearl (I used 10) was completely unrolled and fully extended. In fact, the leaves are so long that I was able to fish them out, rather than using a sieve to remove them.

The liquor is pale greenish yellow, and mixed in with the green tea leaves were full-on jasmine petals. A very nice tea—the flavor is lightly floral but also slightly sweet from the green leaves. I am looking forward to the second steep!

Flavors: Flowers

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 g 10 OZ / 295 ML

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drank Jasmine Yinhao by Zen Tea
1085 tasting notes

My very first experience with Zen Tea—from an order placed only a couple of days ago!—Jasmine YInhao brews up pale greenish yellow but begins to turn golden as the temperature cools. I think that I may have used overly heated water, so it took a while before it cooled to drinking temperature.

Anyway, so far so good: a nice jasmine scent and flavor. I’ll be trying this tea again soon steeped at a lower temperature to ensure that it is experienced in the best possible conditions.

The jasmine is imparted by essence, not flower petals, but it smells true to nature.

Flavors: Flowers

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 g 9 OZ / 266 ML

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80

Now that I have a cute little scale for tea weighing, I am making sure to use a full 5 grams for a regular-sized tetsubin pot. Today’s Tealux Mao Feng Superfine High Mountain did taste mighty fine as a result!

Very pale greenish yellow liquor veering peach. Very Mao-Fengy flavor with a bit of vegetal undertone.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec 5 g 27 OZ / 798 ML

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70
drank Night Time by Pukka
1085 tasting notes

I never have very high expectations for self-identified functional herbal blends, especially when they list valerian among their ingredients, which is imediately obvious from a sniff of the dried tea bag. It really smells awful in the dried form, so the higher the concentration of valerian, the stinkier the bag.

Fortunately, the brew produced from valerian blends tends to taste much better than the scent of the dried tea bag. In the case of Pukka NIght Time, the odd dominant ingredient is oatstraw flower. Perhaps it was the power of suggestion, but I felt that this was a substantial foodish beverage because of the scent and fullness of the oakstraw flower ( I presume ). The licorice adds a touch of sweetness and the lavender is detectable with being too heavy—a delicate balance I’ve found.

Well, I drank two glasses of Night Time, and I am swiftly spiraling into incoherence.
Bonne Nuit!

Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 0 sec 2 g 9 OZ / 266 ML
TheKesser

Yeah I’m always cautious of the self-identified teas too! Mostly ’cause I find they are either lavender, peppermint, or camomile. haha

sherapop

I will say, TheKesser, that this entry from Pukka in the “bedtime brew” category is a bit different, as the oatstraw flavor is unique!

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90

Another coconut craving happily satisfied! These deliciously scented and flavored bancha sachets infuse well at least three times (haven’t tried four… yet …).

Flavors: Coconut

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 15 sec 2 g 9 OZ / 266 ML

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82

I received some of the Organic Silk Dragon Jasmine (in sachets) from DavidsTea a while back and am only getting around to trying it now. Wow, it tastes good! Definitely one of my favorites among the DavidsTea selections to date.

The liquor is golden veering green, and I infused the 3 gram sachet successively in two full Bodum glasses, both of which yielded excellent tea. I would definitely consider restocking this tea, and I love the story of how it comes to be scented! For five nights in a row high-quality organic green tea shares its bed with night-blooming jasmine. How romantic!


a third and fourth glass from this sachet were also still flavorful and redolent of jasmine—one of my favorite flowers in perfumery!

Flavors: Flowers

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 4 min, 0 sec 3 g 17 OZ / 502 ML

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88

Another first for me from the vast and resplendent world of China green tea—courtesy once again of Angel from Teavivre.

I cannot comment on whether Premium Tai Ping Hou Kui is better than non-premium, since this is my very first experience of any form of Tai Ping Hou Kui. What I can say is that it’s delicious. I was very excited upon opening the silver envelope to discover the remarkable leaf form of this tea: extremely long and flat, and fairly wide, vibrant green sheaths! They look a bit like the green tops of scallions sliced lengthwise—only brighter! The leaves in my sample are much greener and less yellow than the ones pictured above.

Once infused, the liquor is pale greenish yellow and bears some similarities to Long Jing. Well, let’s just say that it’s a lot closer to Long Jing than it is to Sencha or Mao Feng or just about any other green familiar to me.

I like this tea quite a lot and am happy to have discovered another fine China green. My sample appears to be fresh from the April 2014 harvest, so it will be interesting to see whether the leaves fade somewhat with age. I see that the pictures of Tai Ping Hou Kui Green from other producers are quite a bit browner than these, so perhaps color is indicative of the age.

Preparation
4 g 18 OZ / 532 ML

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80

For some reason, I really felt like Earl Grey tonight, but it was way too late for regular, so I brewed some of this Numi Decaf. It’s very good—not only for a decaf black, but also for an Earl Grey tout court. Apparently they age the black tea with bergamot—not sure how that works, but the results speak for themselves. I drank my batch with light cream, and it was very satisfying.

Quick, easy, tasty black—decaf. Surprisingly good for a grocery store filter bag.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 45 sec

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Bio

A long-time tea and perfume lover, I have recently begun to explore the intersections between the two at my blog: http://salondeparfum-sherapop.blogspot.com//

I participate at fragrance community websites, and I care about tea as much as perfume, so why not belong to Steepster as well?

A few words about my ratings. In assessing both teas and perfumes, my evaluation is “all things considered.” Teas do not differ very much in price (relative to perfumes or any luxury items), so I do not usually consider the price when rating a tea.

What I do consider is how the particular tea compares to teas of its own type. So I might give a high rating to a fine herbal infusion even though I would never say that it is my favorite TEA. But if it’s good for what it is, then it deserves a high rating. There is no point in wishing that a chamomile blend was an Assam or a sencha tea!

Any rating below 50 means that I find the liquid less desirable to drink than plain water. I may or may not finish the cup, depending upon how thirsty I am and whether there is another hot beverage or (in summertime) a source of fresh water available.

From 50 to 60 indicates that, while potable, the tea is not one which I would buy or repurchase, if I already made the mistake (I have learned) of purchasing it.

From 60 to 70 means that the tea is drinkable but I have criticisms of some sort, and I probably would not purchase or repurchase the tea as I can think of obvious alternatives which would be better.

From 70 to 80 is a solid brew which I would purchase again.

From 80 to 90 is good stuff, and I probably need to have some ready at hand in my humble abode.

From 90 to 100 is a tea (or infusion) which I have come to depend on and look forward to imbibing again and again—if possible!

If you are interested in perfume, you might like my 2300+ perfume reviews, most of which have been archived at sherapop’s sillage (essentially my perfumelog):

http://sherapop.blogspot.com/

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