1412 Tasting Notes
I’m the first to write a tasting note for this lovely tea?! Another sample from Teasenz. How I love pearls and here are some really delicious pearls. I’ve tried a few, and these are really nice. I went with five of these larger pearls in a 12 ounce mug, black and gold leaves wrapped tightly. These are called “red” but Teasenz is from China and China likes to call their black teas red. This is Yunnan tea which is one of my favorite types of black tea. I went with a short rinse with boiled water then steeped for two minutes. The color of the cup is actually a luscious red. The flavor is deep dark chocolate, with hints of maple or brown sugar. Perfect level of depth and briskness. The second steep was very nice too, as the leaves were completely unraveled, maybe just not as chocolate as the first cup. The cup actually looked like some milk chocolate had been melted in the mug. Very delicious – one of the most delicious types of teas. If these were the first pearls I tried, I would have fell in love instantly. And I’m remembering how much I love them now. I wouldn’t have any problem stocking these as the pearls in my cupboard! Many of the pearls seem like they could be from the same source, since most of them are from Yunnan, but these are some of the best I’ve tried.
Steep #1 // just boiled // rinse // 2 min
Steep #2 // just boiled // 4 min
Flavors: Dark Chocolate
Thank you for your sale, Kimquat! This was in the Unflavored tea box, but I noticed Kimquat was selling some, so I left the leaves in the tea box for someone else to try. I had this tea a couple days ago, so the tasting note might be short: the dry leaf smells a bit like mint and even tastes like hints of mint! Never had that in an oolong before. The pouch was a nice one, so I don’t think there could have been any flavor contamination from other teas. Other than the mint, it has a vegetal flavor… I can’t remember anything else right now, just the surprising mint! Interesting!
This was a one teaspoon sample I took from the Here’s Hoping teabox a while back. Not a terrible green tea, but I didn’t taste too much fruit flavor. It was in a nice pouch too, so I doubt the flavor had left by much. Hints of raspberry and acai on this sencha green. The green tea itself was not as buttery as I would have liked, but it’s gone now!
Steep #1 // 25 min after boiling // 2 min
Steep #2 // 20 min after boiling // 3 min
Another sample from Teasenz! Thank you so much! Tie Guan Yin just happens to be favorite type of oolong, in my experience. These leaves are very bright jade green and have the fragrance of fresh veggies. I used a teaspoon and a half of leaves for a 12-13 ounce mug.
Steep #1 // five minutes after boiling // 1 min steep after a quick rinse
This oolong has slight fruity notes but also almost on the verge of being savory: slightly salty, more vegetal, buttery. Kind of tastes how it looks as the leaves: salty seaweed! But in the best way! Not my favorite type of oolong, but if it’s a good savory oolong, it can be delicious even if it isn’t my favorite flavor.
Steep #2 // just boiled // 2 min steep
Another delicious cup that is both more fruity with hints of peach and pineapple and also has stronger hints of the savory flavors: salty, brothy. So as the leaves unravel, it’s just more flavor overall. I just love how the flavor shifts around in the mug as you’re drinking, like a wispy mystery. Very nice.
Thank you so much Teasenz for sending some samples. I really appreciate it, though it has taken me a while to get to them. I wanted to these teas justice and take time with them. The only other Teasenz tea I’ve had was the Ginseng oolong and it was the brainiest of all Ginseng oolongs, therefore the best one I’ve tried. Teasenz looks like they have a nice assortment of different teas. The leaves here are dark and twisty and do not smell smoky at all. In fact, I’m a little confused by the labeling of this tea as it tastes like…. Laoshan Black! Not quite exactly the same, as Laoshan Black has a slightly twistier leaf and also more oily black, but I think this sort of flavor is rare. If you are not a fan of the usually smoky Lapsang Souchong, please do not hesitate to try this one, as the flavor is not smoky at all. I think everyone would enjoy this tea. The flavor is a lighter chocolate with hints of caramel, though I could have used two teaspoons to see if that works better. This type of flavor is always difficult for me to describe, but it is along the lines of Laoshan Black.. the flavor isn’t very strong, with a lighter brew, but this isn’t a tiny leaf tea. I’ve recently thought that maybe since most tea drinkers start out with black teas as CTC leaves in tea bags (whether or not you start out loving tea bags or not), the classier longer-leafed teas need some getting used to just because they are so different from the CTC tea bags. You expect the loose leaf to be strong like the CTC, but the flavor is much more subtle with the bigger leaf – not just a punch of caffeine. I know with every cup I steep up of teas like this, I love them more and more. Again, no smoke at all, so I think the name Lapsang Souchong might scare some away. Not what I expected in the way of a smoky tea, but it was a delicious surprise. I’d throw this in my Teasenz cart, though it’s out of stock at the moment. Try a sample!
Steep #1 // 1 tsp // 5 min after boiling // 3 min steep
Steep #2 // just boiled // 4 min steep
This was one of the teas I was hoping for in the 52Teas mystery bag sale and it happened! Nice! I’ve never actually tried Rumchata or Horchata but they sound amazingly delicious. There are a few actual almonds in the blend, not sure how much flavor almonds can have on a tea, especially a tea that isn’t boiled. To me, this tea is eggnog all the way! Very sweet! A little nutty, surprisingly not a lot of cinnamon, though I saw quite a few pieces of cinnamon, and I made sure an almond was in the infuser. It’s very warming, desserty, satisfying. Perfect with the toasty genmaicha. Love it. It seems like a wintery drink for sure. As it cools, the rum flavor appears, not like I’m used to rum flavor! I’m usually just tea drunk. I won’t say any more about it, since I’m not sure if they will delete this tea from Steepster, as I guess someone annoyingly sued 52Teas for making this blend.
Steep #1 // 20 min after boiling // 1 min steep
Steep #2 // 20 min after boiling // 3 min steep
Flavors: Eggnog, Rum
A sample from Butiki! I love Kenyan teas, so if Butiki is offering it, it must be a good one. The leaves here are small but not CTC small. Sadly, the only flavor I’m getting yet again is tomato soup. Kenyan teas don’t usually taste like tomato soup! Many of the samples from Butiki did… I’m wondering if it’s a tea within the pouch of samples that could be changing the flavors? Nothing in my experience could do that though. Maybe one of my infusers is doing it? But other teas taste fine in that infuser. It’s like tea torture only being able to taste the tomato soup of these teas, and I’m kind of sick of mentioning it. I also had another assam to see if it tastes the same and it had the same delicious flavor as before, so I don’t know. My taste buds are destroying these teas.
Steep #1 // few minutes after boiling // 2 1/2 min
Steep #2 // just boiled // 3 or 4 min
I think this is the last tea I have to try that MissB sent me a while back. Once again, thanks so much! I promise not to order any more teas for the rest of the year … except for Bluebird towards the end of the year. This one looks like it’s mostly lemongrass though it’s supposed to be yerba mate. There is plenty of lemon flavor, I think from the verbena. I love the flavor from lemon verbena! I would have like some more yerba mate… I couldn’t really taste any at all. Not bad, but not my favorite from Bluebird.
Steep #1 // few minutes after boiling // 3 min steep
Steep #2 // just boiled // 4 min
Thank you Kimquat for sending one of these to try! These AREN’T minis! I needed some caffeine for steam-vacuuming the house! This looks the size of maybe two of the typical mini tuochas. The flavor for all steeps were the same: delicious. This is my kind of pu-erh. It’s very dark and coffee like, and not just because of the color of the brew. Very rich with a touch of astringency but it’s also sweet with no pondiness at all. it’s very much like some of my favorite pu-erhs probably just for the reason that there is so much leaf here and I usually use too much. I like too much. Every steep was exactly the same.
Steep #1 // rinse // just boiled // 1 min
Steep #2 // just boiled // 2 min
Steep #3 // just boiled // 3 min
Steep #4 // half a mug // just boiled // quite a few minutes
Additional notes: Finishing off this sample with the last of the Herbal Infusions Earl mixed in with these leaves as well. Not quite two teaspoons but the last cups of both were kind of weak with only one teaspoon. I love the sweetness of the snowflake, but to me they don’t enough bergamot. Delicious though! I needed some Earl today.