144 Tasting Notes
I think it is really cool to be able to drink tea that is commercially grown and produced in my home state. For a long time, we South Carolinians were the only folks in the country who had that priviledge (see the below). What has made the honor even sweeter is that the Charleston Tea Plantation teas are also very good.
Since South Carolina is also the #1 peach mecca in the country, I was looking forward to tasting this blend. When I opened the container, the pre-brewed tea leaves had a very nice fresh peaches aroma. There was no physical evidence of peach chunks among the leaves, however.
I steeped this tea at 212 degrees for five minutes. The result was a reddish gold brew.
With the first one or two sips, my tastebuds could not locate the peaches. After the third and fourth sips, though, a subtle peach taste began to emerge. Sip #5 and on continued the very light and unassuming peach taste with a full Charleston Plantation tea flavor alongside it. There was no bitterness and I have no complaint about the flavor, except that I prefer strong flavors in everything I eat and drink.
If you crave robust fruity taste in your flavored teas, you may be disappointed by this blend. However, if subtlety is your desire, this tea is tasty, even, and pleasant. The discernible peach taste is fresh and natural, just not particularly hearty.
Many thanks to Steepster Bonnie, who just made me aware of another tea producer in the lower 48 states (besides South Carolina)! About five years ago, Sakuma Brothers Farms Market Stand in Burlington, Washington began selling teas grown and produced there. Here is more information about that: http://www.heraldnet.com/article/20070911/BIZ/109110041/-1/headlines
Also, Steepster Bonnie put me on the trail of a collective of small growers in Hawaii who started a pilot project producing and marketing tea several years ago. I will do some research on that too.
I can see that I still have a lot to learn about the world of teas, but it’s a fun adventure!
I always know that a treat is coming when I reach for a Teavivre tea. Even when the tea isn’t of one of my preferred types, I consistently admire Teavivre’s rendition of it.
Oolong is one of those types that I don’t pursue or drink often, but I’m always willing to entertain new attempts to make me a fan.
I love the title of this tea. Is it really picked by monkeys? Do monkeys drink tea or eat it? Those are questions that will have to be answered another time. Now, on to my sampling of this tea…
I steeped this tea at 212 degrees for three minutes as Teavivre suggested. The brewed beverage was a light greenish yellow in color.
Brewed and unbrewed, the aroma was grassy and similar to some milder green teas that I tried.
The taste of this tea was sweet, grassy, and fresh. The flavor was very light and smooth, yet full. There was no bitterness and it seemed to go down my throat extremely easily. In fact, I had to restrain myself from chugging it a few times. It is one of those teas that I ENJOYED drinking.
This is simply another perfect tasty tea from Teavivre. I’m not sure if I’m an Oolong fan yet, but I am DEFINITELY a fan of Oolong tea.
In case you are wondering about all of my glowing reviews of Teavivre teas, I need to specify that I am not affiliated with Teavivre in any manner. I am not obligated to write tasting notes (positive or negative) about these teas. I’m also not compensated for my Teavivre tea tasting notes whatsoever, other than the prior receipt of these wonderful samples for which I am extremely grateful.
I personally consider all of Teavivre’s teas to be among the top of the best that I’ve tried during my 10 months as a Steepster. The Monkey Picked (Ma Liu Mie) Tie Guan Yin Oolong Tea has only reinforced my assessment!
again to Steepster Bonnie for sharing her very interesting teas with me!!!
The title of this tea is fascinating. I didn’t know what to expect from an Organic Cream of Earl Grey tea. When I opened the packet, I couldn’t detect the familiar aroma of bergamot that I was accustomed to in other Earl Grey selections. Instead, the scent was more like pipe tobacco or cough syrup.
I steeped this tea for six minutes at 212 degrees. A golden orange colored brew was produced.
The flavor of this tea is a cornucopia of fruity, flowery, sweet, and almost perfume-like taste. Ironically, the only attribute I don’t recognize is bergamot. However, it must just be a consequence of my allergy-plagued tastebuds because my fiancee commented on the bergamot scent when she walked into the house! There is no bitterness and nothing that I would describe as unpleasant.
This is a likable tea. It’s a little more flowery and fruity than I prefer but that isn’t stopping me from enjoying this sample.
I thought I’d start my day by sampling this new player from Teavivre. I have no problem with black and smoky before 9 AM. I could just as easily enjoy a plate of barbecued ribs for breakfast.
When I snipped open the sample package, a wonderful smoky aroma burst forth. I set the tea maker on 195 degrees for two minutes and anxiously awaited the result.
The steeped beverage was a medium gold/orange color. A sweet smoky fragrance wafted from the glass teapot. I would love to find incense in this scent.
Even at my very first sip, the flavor was full, smoky, and slightly sweet. The black tea taste was there but it blended so well with the other attributes that it didn’t draw attention to itself. The overall sensation of this tea is like a cross between a campfire and a delicious plate of barbecued pulled pork.
The smoky flavor is well defined but not so severe that it leaves a prolonged aftertaste. It is a symphony of smoky, smooth, sweet, earthy, and delicious, with no bitterness.
This is another EXCEPTIONAL tea variety from Teavivre. I’ve tried a lot of selections from this company and they have never disappointed me.
Another to Steepster Bonnie for this sample!
About the only tea that I enjoy more than black tea is flavored black tea. I love them all- fruity, sweet, nutty, chocolate, coconut, you name it! So, this was another variety that I was excited to try when it arrived in the mail.
When I opened the packet, a wonderful sweet, chocolatey, coffee-like smell emerged (I don’t like the taste of coffee but I love its aroma) from the packet. I had a feeling immediately that this was going to be good!
I followed Steepster Bonnie’s recommendation and steeped this tea for three minutes at 212 degrees. The color was a light amber. I thought that was interesting for black tea.
At first sip, my palate was instantly pummeled with a terrific sweet taste. I could also detect a slight fruity attribute. Altogether, the flavor is evenly spread with sweetness, tea, and fruit, in perfect harmony. One sensation does not overpower another and there is no bitterness. This tea is extemely pleasant and tasty.
On the packet, with the instructions, Steepster Bonnie summed up this tea in one word: “” I couldn’t have described it any better myself so I’ll leave it at that.
I’ve been very fortunate to be able to sample some great pu’erh teas lately. I’m becoming a huge fan of the variety and would now place pu’erh as one of my favorite classifications. At the top of my pu’erh tea list (so far) is Teavivre’s Ripened Aged Pu-erh Mini Tuocha. I was anxious to see how the Mengku Palace Ripened Golden Buds Loose Pu-erh Tea measured up.
I steeped this tea at 212 degrees for two minutes as instructed on the sample package. A rich molasses-colored brew developed.
The flavor of this tea is earthy, woodsy, and leathery. This follows the pattern of the other pu’erh teas that I’ve tried. The taste is somewhat milder than the Mini Tuocha blend. I also found the flavor to have a nice twinge of sweetness to it. As with all of the Teavivre teas that I’ve sampled to date, there is no bitterness.
This is another solid tea entry in the Teavivre family. If I were forced to choose between Mengku Palace and Mini Tuocha, I would have to go with the more robust Mini Tuocha. That does not diminish the quality of Mengku Palace. I’m just a strong tea kind of guy.
Another special THANKS to Steepster Bonnie for sending me this sample! The title of this tea had my name written all over it. Chocolate Orange Pu’erh! Well, that’s not really my name…though…Stoo C. O. Pu’erh…hhmm…it does have a bit of class!
Anyhow, this tea sounded like it had all of the ingredients that I love, in tea, or anything! Chocolate and orange are a great combination. I was extremely psyched to brew this baby.
I steeped it at 212 degrees for six minutes. The instructions said 98 degrees celsius (208.4 degrees fahrenheit) but my one-touch tea maker isn’t quite that versatile. No matter, what’s 3.6 degrees between friends?
The aroma that emerged from the steeping brew was interesting. I could detect the somewhat fishy aroma of the pu’erh mixed in with a sweet orange attribute.
The color of the steeped blend was light brown with orange hues. This is what I would expect if I put orange juice and pu’erh tea in a blender.
At first taste, the pu’erh flavor comes roaring through like a freight train. Then, the orange caboose begins to bring up the rear. As I guzzled more and more, I could discern the orange/pu’erh hybrid qualities of the flavor. The taste is smooth, sweet, and fruity, with the pu’erh presence complementing it perfectly. Bitterness is completely absent.
This is a fantastic tea. I’ve already enjoyed pu’erh with coconut. I now know that orange also is a great mate for it. I am looking forward to trying more pu’erh combinations in the future!
These two flavors are actually a great match. Besides tea, this would be a great selection in a box of chocolates. Are there any mad scientist chocolatiers out there? :-)
I was excited to try this new tea from Teavivre. Teavivre’s products are consistently great in taste and value. The little unbrewed leaf balls, which I assume are hand-rolled, are also a fun concept.
I followed the recommendations on the package and brewed it for two minutes. There was no suggested tea amount listed so I filled my official tea spoon as I normally do with loose leaf. This came out to about four balls per eight-ounce cup. When the steeping process had completed, a brew with a rich amber color appeared.
At first sip, I could detect a little sweetness and the familiar woodsy taste that accompanies most of Teavivre’s black teas. In the beginning I was a little disappointed with the flavor power. However, the taste seemed to amplify and become more pronounced with each sip. By my sixth swig, I was really enjoying the blend and thinking that is what I’ve come to love and expect from Teavivre.
I can’t say that I noticed a chocolate taste as some reviewers noted. To me, the sweetness was more like honey. Of course, you can’t go wrong with either flavor.
This tea is a great new addition to the Teavivre collection. It most likely will be on my order list the next time my Teavivre supply diminishes…soon!
A very to fellow Steepster, Bonnie, for sending this sample to me! I LOVE ice cream! If I could keep my weight and cholesterol down, I would a la mode everything, maybe even Brussels sprouts. So, I knew that ice cream flavored tea would be no stretch for me.
When I opened the little package, a wonderful sweet and nutty pistachio aroma emerged. I couldn’t wait to plop the sample into the tea maker!
I steeped this tea at 180 degrees for 2 1/2 minutes as recommended. A pale green brew was the result. I didn’t notice any distinctive pistachio smell but that could be because it’s allergy season.
The flavor of this blend is amazing! It is sweet and nutty. The pistachio taste lingered on my tongue after each sip. The flavor is smooth and totally absent of bitterness. There is also more than a hint of vanilla in the taste and a slight milky quality.
Although I prefer black tea over green tea, primarily due to the shock therapy that black teas give me in the morning, I could easily make this tea an afternoon habit!
I have an insatiable sweet tooth. In fact, I probably have a mouth full of sweet teeth. If you put sugar on asparagus, I’m interested and there! I was very excited when I read about Kusmi’s Caramel Tea. This blend sounded like it would combine two of my favorite indulgences, sweets and tea.
I brewed this tea for four minutes at 195 degrees. A broth with an amber color emerged.
I expected (or was hoping for) an aroma that would be similar to a caramel apple on a stick. This was not the case, though. The faint smell was more like pipe tobacco. It was sweet but unlike my recollection of caramel.
When the first sip hit my tastebuds, I found myself asking, “Where’s the caramel?” There was a pleasing tea taste but I didn’t experience the presence of the advertised confection. However, with each sip, more sweetness and a slight caramel taste began to emerge and linger. Maybe I don’t detect a major caramel attendance because I’ve bombarded my senses with candy, cookies, cakes, pies, and ice cream for my entire life. If you partake of the sweeter things in life with more self-control than I, perhaps you will find a stronger and more luscious caramel occupation.
Either way, this is a nice pleasant tea with no bitter aftertaste. I’m not sure that I will drink this tea in the morning. Its attempt to be a “dessert tea” may make it more suitable for the afternoon.