974 Tasting Notes

90

Tea of the morning……

This is a sample i have had for a while. I had a pot of the regular Bailin Gongfu a few days ago, and decided this was a good time to give this one a go. I am generally not as concerned about a tea being Organic, but I know others are. I did notice that it is currently out of stock. The other thing to note is that it is twice the price of its non-organic counterpart.

So far, this seems very comparable in taste. There are definitely differences, but they are subtle. I still get the malty, chocolatey notes in the regular version. This one might be a tad less earthy, but that note is subtle in the regular version, too. Definitely a great tea if your teas being organic is important to you. As for me, I will continue to drink the other.

Usual teapot method.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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87

Tea of the morning……

Sample provided by TeaVivre.

It has been a few years since I last had this one. TeaVivre very generously offered a sample package of oolong teas to me recently. Since I know myself very well in that I nearly always stick with black teas, I respectfully declined. I know there are oolong drinkers out there that would be better served by their offer. Angel offered to send me black teas in place of the oolongs. I cannot tell you how happy that made me! There are a few I had not tried, as well as a few I had not had for some time. I am also at a place in my tea journey where I don’t seek out free samples as I have reached a point of being quite content with my tea stash. However, a custom black tea sampler from them was very tempting as I shop there frequently and will likely buy some of these at a later date. They also added in a gaiwan to my package. Can I just add how wonderful this company is? They really take care of their customers.

This one is every bit as good as I remember. It is definitely a classic Keemun taste, and the beginning of the sip is a hearty blend of cocoa, malt, and slight earthiness with a touch of astringency. But, by the end of the sip, the astringency disappears. How do they do that?! It is like the aftertaste cleanses the palate to prepare you for the next sip. Wonderful. It is definitely a more refined Keemun. I am not sure why I did not purchase this before, but it is definitely a contender. We shall see how it stacks up the the Hao Ya. Stay tuned.

Usual teapot method.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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91

Tea of the morning…..

Yes, I have a thing for black teas of funny shapes. I have loved black snail teas ever since Harney offered one years ago. This one is very good! I have had the sample in my to try pile for a while, and for some reason, yesterday and today were the right time to try them.

Notes of light cocoa, a little spice, and it is very sweet with a thick mouthfeel. There are quite a few golden tips….it reminds me of the Harney version quite a bit, except that I think this one is sweeter and a little less earthy/malty. I know they are running out of this one, so I had to buy some! Upton’s Season’s Pick version of black snail is not as sweet or spicy, and it is heavier on the malt/earthiness than the Harney.

Usual teapot method.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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89

Tea of the morning…..

I have been revisiting what is left in my stash that I don’t consider part of my standard teas (you know, the ones you must have in there at all times or there will be a disruption of the time-space continuum…) I thought this one might be one I could cut. The last few times I have been drinking it, I decided it must stay. Unfortunately, Upton is all out. I guess I will have to just savor this bargain tea.

Notes of cocoa with a very decent mouth feel. Roasty and light malt. I cannot believe I ever considered getting rid of it.

Usual teapot method. OMG, the leaves swell up so huge!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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92

Tea of the morning…..

Happy Fall! I thought this would be an appropriate tea for today. I love the spicy sweetness that I get from this tea. I also love that I can drink it without additions. For me it is a love, but it needs to have chilly weather to go along with it!

Usual teapot method with the tea scoop slightly heaping to accommodate those orange pieces!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec
Nicole

Coworker was all excited last week because it was finally cold enough in the morning for him to have Hot Cinnamon Spice again, so you aren’t the only one. :)

Rebecca

This sounds lovely! I need a good selection of fall teas.

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91

Tea of the monrning…..

I love this. It is a basic China black tea with notes of malt and cocoa, which is then lightly scented with rose. It is not the super floral variety, but there is just enough that you know what you are tasting. This is my favorite bargain tea.

Here we are pretty far into September. I know I set out to not buy tea for most of the Summer. There was at least one company that had a 2 year anniversary sale that got me twice, but other than that, there were very few new tea acquisitions. Just one or two that had been on my list to try for ages. Now that I am sitting here in September and perfectly able to try something new, I have to say, that I am so enamored just drinking my favorites. I will admit that it takes quite a bit to catch my interest to try new things at this point. Who knew I would ever get here? I like what I like, and I am tired of teas not living up to their hype for me. I completely think it is just where I am in my tea journey, and really not anything to do with the teas I have tried as of late.

I guess it is just time to enjoy what I have. What a great place to be. Content.

Usual teapot method.

TeaBrat

I haven’t been buying as much lately myself and that’s fine with me! :)

ifjuly

i’ve been curious about this one, and your description makes me think next time i order from upton i should go for it! thanks.

ifjuly

and i agree, i’m getting to that point too where it takes a lot to catch my eye and even when i’ve got exciting new stuff in my stash often i just want my tried and true favorites. it’s a great place to be finally, agreed.

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97
drank Tan Yang Te Ji by TeaSpring
974 tasting notes

Tea of the morning…..

Yes, this is perfect to get me going on a Monday! Time for a resteep!

Notes of awesome and coziness. Yeah. Not really descriptive, but that is what I am feeling this morning. I absolutely love this one! I highly recommend picking your perfect tea for a rough start on a Monday.

What would be your perfect rev me up tea?

Usual teapot method.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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90
drank Hong Tao by Harney & Sons
974 tasting notes

Tea of the morning…..

We are finally into the first full week of school. It has taken quite an effort to get here. There were lots of meetings, shopping for supplies, and just more to do than we had been doing in our leisurely Summer. Oh, and band. Band seems innocuous, unless you are the uniform Mom. I am feeling like I kind of have time for some catching up.

As I look back over the Summer, I realized I did not drink near the amount of Earl Grey that I usually consume. My tea consumption has mostly gone over to China black teas and black tea blends. There has been almost no consumption of flavored tea other than Earl Grey, Rose, and Lychee. My favorite jasmine black tea has kind of lost its flavor. PSA: Drink the delicate flavored teas quickly! I do have another sealed pouch of it. We shall see if that made a difference.

This is the only Keemun I have in my cupboard right now as I drank all of the others. This one can handle being the only. It is roasty, cocoa noted, slightly malty, with a very, very light hint of smoke. It feels heavy in the mouth. It is a wonderful, extremely enjoyable example of a Keemun, and it looks like it is sold out online. That is a shame. I stocked up, though, and have a few more tins to go!

Usual teapot method.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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drank Earl Grey by Nina's Paris
974 tasting notes

Tea of the morning…..

This one I ordered based on recommendations. I did not get in on the free sample frenzy offered by Laurent, but just jumped in with this one. I mean, it has a Keemun base. It should be a favorite. I did order through Amazon, and purchased 100g in a bag.

The bags can only be temporary storage in my opinion. They are a very heavy plastic, but one side is clear. My 100g came in two bags, and they were not even sealed other than the zip closure. Most companies heat seal them. All in all, it still works out for me because I have more tins lying around than I care to count. It was easy to pull the stickers off of one bag to put on the tin because they were small. To purchase in a tin, the price was going to jump $6 ($5 for the actual tin and a little more in the shipping.)

So far, I do like this one. It has a wonderful base, but I am still trying to wrap my brain around the bergamot. It is pretty mellow. I think I will need a few more tastes before I can place it.

All in all, a good experience. I have been wanting to try it, but so far am not wowed. Usual teapot method.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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Bio

My motto: Drink the good tea!

Tea enthusiast, trying to keep up my cardio for the zombie apocalypse. I have come to accept that I am a western brewing black tea drinker as that is where my ‘tea heart’ lies. I started on loose leaf as a way to have my dessert and not suffer the caloric issues. Once I tried it, I was hooked.

I drink what I like, which is mostly China blacks, a few traditionally scented blacks and Earl Greys, plus a flavored tea here and there. I don’t mind spending a bit on premium varieties on occasion, but an expensive tea has to deliver. My favorite places to order are Harney & Sons and Upton Tea Imports. TeaVivre is great for Chinese tea.

My ratings are pretty subjective. If it falls under 70, I may not take the time to post about it unless I had something specific to say. If it is 70-80 I like it, but I will probably not rebuy. Favorites are over 80 and up, but sometimes the less expensive or more easily obtainable version of a similar taste will win out for my cupboard space.

Usual teapot steeping method: 24 oz teapot, 3 perfect scoops of tea (4 1/2 actual tsp), freshly boiled water, 4 minutes. Lightly sweetened.

Usual mug steeping method: 15 oz mug, 1.5 perfect scoops of tea (just over 2 actual tsp), freshly boiled water, 4 minutes. Lightly sweetened.

Usual pan method: 1 1/2 cups water, 2 perfect tsp chai (3 actual tsp). Simmer for 3 minutes. Add 2/3 cup skim milk. Simmer for 2 more minutes. Strain and sweeten.

Usual pitcher method:
5 or 6 Perfect Spoons of tea (this means about 7-9 actual tsp), freshly boiled water, brewed essentially double-strong in my 24 oz teapot for 4 minutes. Fill my Fiestaware Disc pitcher (about 60 oz.) halfway with ice. Add brewed double-strong tea to the pitcher. Stir it a little and enjoy. No additions.

(*SRP is my Sample/Stash Reduction Plan starting on April 12, 2012. I got so far, but just decided it was too fussy to keep track.)

Location

Ohio

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