514 Tasting Notes
Thanks Angel for this sample!
Sorry everyone that I kind of fell off the planet. I basically got into a school-induced rut. But here I am, with a new review for the tea I just received today and I’ll be brewing in the precious little gaiwan that Teavivre also sent me.
The dry leaf smelled surprisingly fruity to me. I’ve only had one other dong ding and it was much more roasted smelling than this one. The leaves are rolled into large balls, maybe even a bit larger than what I’m used to seeing.
I managed to use the gaiwan without burning myself too badly! It was my first time using one and I’m surprised it was this simple. I think that the leaves are gorgeous when brewed in this fashion. I had been worried about using the wrong amount of leaves, but it turned out just like all the photos I’ve seen!
The aroma of the tea is very floral and green. I love lighter oolongs, so this is right up my ally. There is a very light roast to this as well. I enjoy that it is there, but not so upfront that it overpowers the other smells and flavors. There seems to be a lot of flavors in this cup. Sweet, green, floral, roast, and something else that is a bit elusive; pepper?
Either way, this is a pretty brilliant tea that I’m going to continue enjoying tonight.
I was looking for an alternative grocery store tea that I could pick up because the kava wouldn’t go well with my migraine pills I’ve been taking. This one is still not quite what I was looking for (wanted St. John’s Wort) but it’ll work. I picked this over one of their other “calming” teas because I really love cardamom and fennel. I don’t know if I’m really going to taste it once the tea is brewed, but they’re in there!
The bag smells very medicinal to me. Or like some kind of odd forest floor type smell. Brewed I can tell they must have added a sweetener or something as that is the first thing I can smell. Brewed it smells almost just like my friend’s home from childhood. They were Chinese and always had something interesting brewing. This was one of those don’t ask, just drink/eat situations; but it was always something wonderful in the end.
The flavor is..interesting? It tastes like an oriental market to me. I don’t really know how to explain that? Sweet, but also like herbal medicine. Maybe almost minty? This tastes like a grab bag to me. I just hope sipping might calm down the anxiety a bit. We’ll just have to wait and see!
edit I have to comment to say that it might just be the being home and not doing my homework, but I do feel significantly better. No more headache, but my ears are still hurting. So at least the anxiety has gone down a bit. I’ll try it again next time I feel blah and see if I get similar results.
Dry, this tea kind of smells like the Master Han’s sheng to me. I think I may have been skimping how much tea I’ve been adding to these small, short brews, so I put in a bit extra this time (I don’t have a way to weigh it).
Cups 1&2 (3sec): lighter brown brew, smells a bit thin for what I was expecting. This tastes of light chocolate and crunchy bread to me. It is reminiscent of the laoshan black, but then again, my tastebuds are still all over the place. :(
I’m starting to think that all the past pu’erh teas I’ve had were shu; so this will be an all new experience! This is another tea from Verdant that I was excited to try. I just realized that all but 1 tea that I ordered was black or pu’erh. I’ve been really wanting to branch out and try these teas, so to the tasting!
In the sample bag there are a few large pieces of the sheng, as well as bits n pieces. I used the loose stuff for this brew. The leaves are so many colors! It is quite interesting to inspect. For these I will be combining 2 steeps per cuppa; mostly because I just so busy today.
steep 1&2 (5sec/7sec): When I first poured this I knew I was into something interesting! It did scream olive oil; which I have never smelled in a tea before. The wet leaves also remind me of some kind of bitter cabbage. To me this tastes oily, green (cabbage), and almost fairly mint (?). There is something about this that I can’t quite put my finger on, but I do enjoy it. Very different than any other pu’erh I’ve tried so far.
flails My package did end up showing up today! I asked for no jasmine for my sample and ended up getting Yu Lu Yan Cha black; which I’m really excited about because I wanted to try it, but couldn’t fit it into this small sample order. I also got a very nice, personal thank you note. :)
I have wanted to try this type of tea ever since I first started to study pu’erh online. It was really interesting to me and it is just cute. At first I had a difficult time placing just what the smell reminded me of and then it hit me! Peppery sawdust. (not in a bad way either)
I am steeping this in my very small (6oz) little teapot. I am using just about half of the given sample and brewing in short steeps.
1st steep (5 sec+2 quick rinses): Now, I’ve called rooibos woodsy before. No, that was not really accurate after smelling and tasting this. It reminds me instantly of cedar. The liquor is almost completely clear. After this I’ll be using a different drinking vessel! I forgot that these don’t expand as much as other teas and so the level of liquid in my wide-mouth drinking bowl is near to spilling over. This cuppa is distinctly cedar and not too much else but what I could describe as warmth. At first I thought of pepper, but that isn’t quite it. More cayenne pepper, actually! Very intriguing.
2nd and 3rd steeps (5sec & 6sec): I combined these two to equal one mug. The liquor looks a bit more yellow this time than the 1st steep. I actually just ate a kashi apple cobbler bar and it tastes really great with this tea! I don’t know how to cook with tea, but some kind of warmed apple something would be fabulous with this; maybe fall themed? Still tasting mainly cayenne and cedar.
final notes I actually steeped this 4 more times. The cayenne kind of tapered out near the end and was replaced by linen flavors. It was a very up-front tea and left an interesting tingle on the back of my tongue. I am so glad I had a chance to try this, as it is one of the most unique things that I’ve tried, but ultimately, I don’t think it is for me.
I’m totally frustrated at our mail people lately. It feels like they’re holding our mail! I got my Wed. on Sat. and I’m still waiting for a book that got mailed out a week and a half ago. On top of this, I’m waiting for a Verdant order which was supposed to go out today, but is stuck in sorting. It took them a whole 5 days just to ship it from the drop off! In other words, they’re really just making me mad at this point.
As for the tea, this one is a tea that goes in and out of popularity for me. Some days I love it, some days I hate it. Notes of ginger, lemon balm, chocolate, sharp herbs, and nuts. No nonsense for sure!
I just found pumpkin spice M&Ms and waffles today! The verdict on the chocolate is a definite yum! It was a bit chocolate overdose with this, but still worth it. I feel the same about this as last time. So basically, careful on temp/steep times or else it’ll be bitter, some chocolate, berry, and nut notes. Really great tea for mid afternoon or as an after diner treat if you don’t feel like eating something heavy!
I’m actually quite upset that this one is getting retired. It is one of the only 3 teas from Teavana that I’ll even purchase anymore. Also, one of their only cheaper, mainly tea-based blends (as opposed to fruit filler). I didn’t like this as much as the almond biscotti, but it was still a great tea.
Somehow I ended up with a piece of candied violet in my tin?
Flavor: strongly black, rose, almond, and warm bread. It reminds me of some kind of iced treat, like cinnamon roll middles.
First off, SO EXCITED! I made a Verdant order of a bunch of samples and it seems like it’ll be here pretty quickly.
So someone added this, but no notes? D:
Well. I have had this one for a bit now and I’ve been enjoying it. The base tends to get bitter/astringent pretty easily. Also, it tastes like it contains lemon verbena, but I guess it doesn’t? Maybe it’s the rose hips. Either way, they can be a bit intense if brewed for too long. I try to keep it at ~3 1/2 mins.
Like most Adagio teas, the chocolate is there, but it isn’t the very best. It tastes better with black teas than anything else because this tends to make the flavor more heavy. The flavors match well together and nothing too overpowering. I drink this when I’m feeling a bit sleepy and it’s a good pick me up.
thank you Angel for this sample!
I am trying to really get into plain blacks. It is a strange thing to love pu’erh, but not like plain blacks…
Once steeped, this mainly smells like hay to me. Hay and maybe a tiny, tiny bit of chocolate. I think that this may come out more in a second steep.
Ahhh. Although it smells like hay, that note is actually quite subtle. The chocolate tones are far more evident. I also taste some of the sesame that I associate with the Laoshan black from Verdant. This is much more mellow than I expected sigh of relief.