100

I think officially spring is here, it is warm, bright, and sunny…and I have started getting Pollen Alerts in my email. Though if I have learned anything in my time living in Kansas City, it is that the weather and seasons are very unpredictable, it might feel like spring now but in a week we could be buried under snow again.

Today’s tea arrived in the mail when I was recovering from the flu, meaning I had to wait till I could fully taste and smell things properly, and it is finally that time! Tiger Monk Roasted Oolong by Temple Road Tea is a roasted oolong from Taiwan and is of the Shan Lin Xi variety and is the first tea in their Martial Monk series. The aroma is really quite intense, blending caramelized sugar and roasted nuts with lesser notes of raisins. The tightly rolled leaves have a finishing aroma of coal and fresh wood. I was pleasantly surprised at how sweet the aroma is, it blends really well with the smoky coal finish.

Once steeped and unfurled a bit, the leaves take on the complex blend of cherries and coal, milk and cocoa. It is very rich and has pleasant layers of aromas that fills me with the desire to keep sniffing, I want to see what other aromas come wafting off the wet leaves. The liquid is creamy and rich with strong notes of coal and a hint of sweet cocoa.

The first steeping is very smooth, the first thing I notice is the initial buttery mouthfeel, the creamy taste that accompanies the tea is wonderful. The tea is sweet with flavors of dried cherries and raisins with a strong wood smoke and coal finish. If the first steep is anything to go by I can say I am going to love this tea, it mixes some of my favorite qualities of Jin Xuan and Roasted Da Hong Pao.

The aroma of the leaves from the second steeping still has the sweet fruity aroma from earlier, but the cocoa and coal notes are stronger, now there is also a hint of roasted nuts. The aroma of the liquid is caramel sweet and cocoa rich with a pleasant kick of roasted nuts. The mouthfeel of this steeping is not as buttery, in fact it has a bit of a bitter dryness to it, similar to a mouthful of roasted hazelnuts (yes I do know exactly what that tastes like). The coal and wood smoke taste is much stronger with this steeping as well, it is a potent steep rivaling Lapsang Souchong for smokiness, except it is like cherry wood smoke rather than pine wood since it has a distinct sweet floral quality. Speaking of sweetness the finish is powerfully sweet, it goes from coal to smoke in an instant and the flip-flop of taste is an awesome transition.

The third steeping’s aroma is almost identical to the second, but this time the liquid had a slight hint of malt. The mouthfeel is dry and the flavor is mostly sweet this time, I think almost all the smoke was left behind in the previous steep. This time I get honey, cherries, and roasted nuts as the main flavor notes. There is a hint of cocoa at the end, throughout the entire sipping experience is the ghost of smoke, like a strong breeze blew away all the smoke from a forest fire, but the memory is still left in the nose and mouth. This tea kinda blew me away, I almost feel like the tea was misnamed, it should have been Phoenix Monk since I felt much like the Phoenix going through a smoky journey with this tea. I think I found a new favorite.

For blog and photos: http://ramblingbutterflythoughts.blogspot.com/2014/03/temple-road-tea-tiger-monk-roasted.html

Flavors: Cocoa, Honey, Stonefruits

K S

I have a sample of this on the way. Reading your review I can’t wait. It just may get bumped to the front of the long line when it arrives.

Amanda 'SoggyEnderman' Wilson

I hope you enjoy it! I am so glad I waited until I was fully able to taste it because wow!

Temple Road Tea

Hi Amanda, Max here. Now that is a review! We’re so glad you enjoyed the tea and that you took the time to write such a detailed review, Thank you! Phoenix Monk?! Really?! Haha, I have to admit it is a pretty cool name, but the Tiger Monk shall live! As a token of our appreciation we’d like to send a little treat your way. Look for an email from us in the next 24 to 48 hours. Cheers!

Amanda 'SoggyEnderman' Wilson

Hehe, I couldn’t help myself with the Phoenix Monk, Tiger Monk is of course a wonderful name, and certainly quite distinctive…just like the tea! Thank you for the treat, I will be sure to keep an eye out. :)

Temple Road Tea

I’m sorry, we’re experiencing some delays. Rest assured you’ll hear from us soon!

Temple Road Tea

A New Tea Is Out! You’ll receive a free 10g sample of the Crane Monk Light Oolong Premium Tea for previously reviewing the Tiger Monk. Simply send an email to [email protected] to help us link your Steepster user name to your Temple Road subscribing member email address. Also, feel free to take advantage of our 50% discount offer, go to www.templeroadtea.com. Thank you!

Amanda 'SoggyEnderman' Wilson

Email sent! Thank you so much!!

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Comments

K S

I have a sample of this on the way. Reading your review I can’t wait. It just may get bumped to the front of the long line when it arrives.

Amanda 'SoggyEnderman' Wilson

I hope you enjoy it! I am so glad I waited until I was fully able to taste it because wow!

Temple Road Tea

Hi Amanda, Max here. Now that is a review! We’re so glad you enjoyed the tea and that you took the time to write such a detailed review, Thank you! Phoenix Monk?! Really?! Haha, I have to admit it is a pretty cool name, but the Tiger Monk shall live! As a token of our appreciation we’d like to send a little treat your way. Look for an email from us in the next 24 to 48 hours. Cheers!

Amanda 'SoggyEnderman' Wilson

Hehe, I couldn’t help myself with the Phoenix Monk, Tiger Monk is of course a wonderful name, and certainly quite distinctive…just like the tea! Thank you for the treat, I will be sure to keep an eye out. :)

Temple Road Tea

I’m sorry, we’re experiencing some delays. Rest assured you’ll hear from us soon!

Temple Road Tea

A New Tea Is Out! You’ll receive a free 10g sample of the Crane Monk Light Oolong Premium Tea for previously reviewing the Tiger Monk. Simply send an email to [email protected] to help us link your Steepster user name to your Temple Road subscribing member email address. Also, feel free to take advantage of our 50% discount offer, go to www.templeroadtea.com. Thank you!

Amanda 'SoggyEnderman' Wilson

Email sent! Thank you so much!!

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

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My Rating Guide, This is a personal rating and not necessarily a reflection of the tea’s quality
100-Must have on hand, it is one of my favorite teas
85-99-Really good teas, like exquisitely good
65-84-Not bad, they can be good but generic, or just teas that I found enjoyably ok.
40-64-Not a favorite, but not terrible. I would drink it if it was in front of me but I doubt I would seek it out on my own.
20-40-Not the best tea ever, either it was not to my liking or it was really bland. Chances are I would turn this one down unless I was really thirsty.
0-19-No, just no. Either there was something wrong with this tea or it was utterly undrinkable by me.

I am a nerdy, obsessive, crafty, tea blogging, gaming nut. Yeah, that about sums me up! Ok, you want something more informative….

I am a Geek, hardcore fan-girl Geek. It shapes my life. I spend a lot of time making things out of perler beads and I bet you can guess what inspires them. Other than the obsessive pixelizing of things I spend a large portion of my time doing origami (especially Lucky Stars and modular geometric designs) it is an equal obsession. I hoard dice, get obsessed with games, and will talk about whatever fandom, game, etc that I am obsessed over until I am blue in the face. I am not just a gamer girl type Geek, I also fit in the collecting knowledge and spending way too much time reading, category of Geek.

But there is more to me than just being a giant nerd. I love tea, always have and have just gotten more and more obsessed as I get older. I love trying new teas and then writing lengthy descriptions about them on my blog, I love reading and researching the history and culture of tea, I love collecting tea pots and fancy tea tools.

When the weather allows it, I love to go mushroom hunting. I don’t eat them, instead I use them for photography and spore prints. It is my dream to one day become a Mycologist studying slime molds.

I have Fibromyalgia, it sucks, but I feel people who are going to interact with me should know since I tend to vanish because of it. So fair warning!!

I also have cats, love the ocean and all aquatic life, love cheese, and collect hats.

My favorite tea is definitely Oolong, but I also love Japanese greens and…ok I just love tea actually :P I am not a huge fan of lemony teas or tart fruit teas. I also loathe hibiscus (usually)

This is my actual tea wishlist, you know that I actually update and keep track of…I tend to forget Steepster’s https://www.facebook.com/notes/amanda-wilson/tea-wishlishtshopping-list-perpetually-in-progress/10152336515414411 I use my steepster WL to keep track of teas I have had and really want more of :P

Location

Kansas City, MO

Website

http://ramblingbutterflythoug...

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