896 Tasting Notes

75
drank Organic Long Jing by Steepster
896 tasting notes

This is my second and final batch of Organic Long Jing from the Steepster Select sample pack. It’s perfectly fine, but not my favorite tea of this kind, so I will not be purchasing this particular version. I did enjoy the experience and will reinfuse the spent leaves this evening…

I recently learned that Long Jing actually means Dragon Well! So when we say Long Jing Dragon Well, we are repeating ourselves! ;-)

Flavors: Lima Beans

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

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75
drank Downy Tip Green by Tea Setter
896 tasting notes

I received a sample of Downy Tip Green Tea from Teasetter. Thanks!

My first observation was that the wiry leaves looked familiar. Upon infusion, I was reminded immediately of a couple of the smokier Mao Fengs which I’ve imbibed of late. The liquor is pale yellow veering toward brown, and there is definitely more of a cooked than a fresh vegetable taste. I enjoyed the first glass, and reinfused for an equally satisfying second round. I’ll try a third infusion later in the day when I’ve passed my caffeine cut-off…

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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71

Sipdown—yes, I finished the box. That’s one less thing to pack. I suspect that I’ll buy another box in the future, but not until after I move!

Flavors: Flowers, Vanilla

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80
drank Iced Passion Tea by Tazo
896 tasting notes

I have consumed a huge volume of Tazo Passion iced tea in the past, but today was my first serving for 2014. Hoping for many more in the months to come as the weather continues to improve until at last the layers of snow atop layers of ice atop layers of snow atop layers of ice have become but a vague memory trace in my mind as I sit sweating in front of a fan.

The concentration of my iced Passion was perfect today. Sometimes I find it overdiluted slightly, but this brew was dark and rich and red. I take mine unsweetened. This is definitely my favorite hibiscus tea—leaps and bounds better than the Zingers.

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80

Today’s green tea was my old friend Tazo Green Tips. I drank it from a ceramic mug and requested some ice cubes thrown in the bottom to keep the temperature of the water down. It was good. I obviously like this Mao Feng blend!

Preparation
3 min, 0 sec

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71

I drank three very good green teas all day long, with multiple satisyfing infusions. For the final brew of the night, I decided that I needed to switch gears, having consumed not a single flavored tea—hard to believe though it might seem. Of course, I needed to sleep, too, so I opted for Celestial Seasonings Sleepytime Vanilla, a pleasant and simple to prepare herbal vanilla tea. I do need to make sure that I get my RDA of vanilla!!!

Bonne nuit!

Flavors: Vanilla

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71
drank Chun Mee Green by Tazo
896 tasting notes

I’m pretty sure that expectations play a big role in evaluations of tea—at least for me. Now that I understand what Chun Mee is—and isn’t—I am more favorably disposed toward this Tazo filter bag organic Chun Mee. It’s not bad at all—it’s just very different from most of the teas I usually drink, and it seems to be the same type of green used in many lower-grade green tea bags. Perhaps Chun Mee is the CTC of China greens? Not sure. Anyway, I have increased my rating a bit after today’s more satisfying cup.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 30 sec

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84

The folks at Shan Valley graced me with an incredibly magnanimous sample package, including a large envelope of this tea, Shan Valley First Flush Green, which has a very intriguing dried leaf form. The leaves are large and dark and hardened almost to the point of looking petrified. The scent of the dried leaves is quite assertive and almost spinachy—but more smoky than sencha—so I had no idea what to expect! In fact, I’d say that the scent of the dried tea is like a cross between sencha and Lapsang Souchong, believe it or not!

In fact, the taste reminds me a bit of the Teavivre Mao Feng (though I actually prefer this Shan Valley First Flush Green). There is definitely a darker cooked vegetable taste in the background but with some real complexity and depth and a lighter side as well. The liquor is yellowish brown—not green—and perhaps that should be expected from the dark color of the leaves. In fact, the leaves are so dark that without reading the label, I’d have guessed it was black! Only upon infusion of this tea does it become obvious that this is not a black but a green variety. I kept the steep time short and used cooler water to ensure the best possible result.

This is a solid offering from Shan Valley, and I’m looking forward to the second infusion later today, in addition to trying the other intriguing teas from this producer.

Many thanks for your generosity!!!!!


second infusion: this round was better than the first. It’s more smoky, but with lots of undulating waves of clarity and smoothness. This might be a good green tea choice for Lapsang aficionados…


third infusion: quite decent

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 2 min, 45 sec 2 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

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92

This offering from Teavivre is still my favorite Long Jing so far! Simply delicious.


second infusion: very good, as usual. Still buttery and silken and smooth. Yum.

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 2 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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85

I received a generous sample of Mountain Organic Indonesian Green Tea from Tea at Sea. The packaging and presentation were truly adorable, and I was intrigued by the appearance of the gnarled knots of dark green tea.

Upon infusion, the liquor was pale greenish yellow, and the flavor seemed somewhere between Mao Feng and Long Jing. A very nice green tea indeed—my first from Indonesia!

The leaves take some time to unfurl, so although I initially steeped for two minutes, I changed my mind and let the brew continue for another minute or so. The resultant liquor tasted very flavorful and succulent. This is definitely a high quality green tea.

I am very much looking forward to the second infusion later on today as a decaffeinated version, as there is clearly a lot more flavor left in these spent leaves, judging by their scent… So far I am impressed!


second infusion: at this point, the leaves have finally achieved their full potential—huge and beautiful like banana leaves. The flavor is excellent. I’ll try a third infusion with so much aroma still hovering above this not-so-spent tea…


third infusion: aroma and flavor still going strong. The liquor is now bright yellow!


fourth infusion: a rarity for me, but the taste is still good. I’m impressed by the huge and bountiful fully unfurled leaves of Mountain Organic Indonesian Green Tea. Who knew how much goodness was crammed into those apparently small gnarled knots! To my amazement, the third and fourth infusions were even better than the first.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 30 sec 2 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

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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/

Location

Somerville, Massachusetts, USA

Website

http://salondeparfum-sherapop...

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