556 Tasting Notes
Sitting in Starbucks, having my first bit of tea in months. I got out of the tea habit when it got hot and combined with my complete inability to make iced tea, well, means no good tea for me.
I have had this tea before and it hasn’t gotten any better since the last time I had it, and was not helped by my inability to control all the variables, especially considering the fact that I ordered one of the herbal teas and therefore did not pay much attention to the steeping time.
Anyway, this is strong and malty but ultimately more bitter than I like with the amount of sugar that I am willing to put in it. I will make my next refill (for free since I’m a green level member or whatever the term is) the herbal I originally ordered, assuming they are still open. I am spending a lit of time here since I am out of work on a medical leave of absence right now. They also said they would give me free hot water if I brought my own tea, just have to get a thermometer because they use the same temperature for all of them.
At any rate, it’s nice to be back on steepster., even if it is hard to navigate the site on my phone.
This tasting note is for the first infusion, Western style, of this tea. Sweetened slightly, don’t hurt me. It tastes slightly beany, as I’ve noticed that Laoshan green teas do, but less than I expected. It still tastes very vegetal but less bean and more other vegetables. I taste some of the milder ‘greens’ but mostly it’s all muddled up.
In other news I am SO BORED. I signed up for a class on aeroelasticity on my Saturday (off-hours) and we spent 2 hours going over linear algebra, which was a complete waste of my time. Using Excel of all things. Awful. I used my lunch break to go over to my own building, which is conveniently within walking distance, and made myself a cup of this tea and carried it back with me. So it looks a little weird because I’m the only one in the whole room with a mug.
Go go gadget airplane flutter.
This isn’t terrible as iced tea but it’s not nearly as good as what I made yesterday. Perhaps because I didn’t let it cool down in the fridge for very long before getting impatient and making myself a cup with ice cubes. Same amount of sugar this time, but I think since the tea quality is lower, it might need more. 5 heaping tsps of tea to 1200 ml. 7 spoonfuls of sugar.
So I finally decided to make iced tea with ‘real’ tea rather than the generic black tea that got sent to me with the iced tea maker. I didn’t follow instructions at all. What I did was use my Breville to brew 1200 ml of tea with ~2tsp per cup (5ish cups). Then I poured it into the iced tea pitcher (which filled it up completely), then put it in the fridge for…a while. Kinda forgot about it for a few days. Then a couple of minutes ago I put in ~7 spoonfuls of sugar (using the special flat sugar spoon) and then filled a cup with ice and put tea in it.
First assessment, good amount of sugar. Second assessment, very strong tea. Tea tastes comes out clearly. Very clearly. It’s not…bad, just very strong. Will probably tastes less strong as the ice melts, if I let it melt before drinking it. It’s wicked hot so that might not happen. On the upside, it does actually taste like TEA rather than “iced tea flavour” which really isn’t tea-tasting at all, for my taste buds. “Iced Tea flavour” doesn’t taste bad per se, just doesn’t taste like TEA. This tastes like tea.
That said, I haven’t decided whether I like it this strong or not, but I have a whole quart of it to go through so I’ll probably decide by the end of all that.
Another day, another oolong. I’ve been making relatively few tasting notes because it takes me so long to get through a pot of these Verdant teas, especially when I haven’t tried them before because then it always takes me forever to take the first sip. Case in point, this one. I made this tea before 7am this morning. It is now 2:15pm. I am not going to reheat it. I think my subconscious has something against hot tea right now.
Now, onto the tea. It definitely tastes my definition of ‘roasted’. The bread qualities are really strong. It smells more floral than it tastes. I’m not picking up the pineapple that some people are tasting, nor the cinnamon, for which I am grateful because I don’t like cinnamon. Less chocolate than I would have expected too, although I really have a hard time tasting chocolate unless it’s really blatant. Mostly this tastes like a lot of things rolled together and I can’t pick them apart really well, but the strongest is ‘roastiness’ and bread crusts.
So! Attempt #2 at making iced tea for real. The first one was a lemon tea and I did not find it palatable at all. This particular tea came with the iced tea pitcher thing I bought.
Overall…I oversweetened it. It’s not terrible, just very sweet. Well, I’m still getting the hang of iced tea and I’ll know not to put that much sugar in next time. The iced tea pitcher performed admirably. I cold brewed the black tea (one packet’s worth, loose) in the steeper overnight for about…11ish hours.
Attempt #3 coming soon.
This is under a different name on the page of notes that came with this tea from the classic TOTMC. There are a lot of oolongs this month. I’m hoping that this will help me develop a fondness for oolongs when I can try a lot of them (4) as I did with green tea last month (Dragonwell is awesome).
Drinking this it tastes very…oolong. Not sure how I can explain it. It’s okay but I’m not really craving it to drink the rest of my cup. From the notes, I’m definitely picking up on the sweetgrass and mineral notes with something kinda vanilla like in the aftertaste. I definitely don’t taste pine and I have no idea what “crisp apple texture” is supposed to be. And I have no idea what saffron tastes like. It is definitely on the floral side of the tea spectrum. I’m finding I’m not too fond of the more floral teas, wanting those that taste more like vegetables.
I’m logging a rating because of my own tastes and I want to remember, but it shouldn’t be considered really if you have a taste for oolongs already. If you like oolong tea, you will more than likely like this one.