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59 Tasting Notes

90

Dry Leaf: Has a light osmanthus fragrance with a light sweet smell almost like a fruit aroma.
Wet Leaf: This is were the osmanthus fragrance is more noticeable and you get what appears a fruit aroma in the background.
Liquor: Is a bright, clear golden yellow color.
Taste: I got a osmanthus flavor with a light fruit like a berry of some sort. The broth was smooth but also felt full-bodied in the mouth. There was a nice sweet after taste to this tea too.
Vessel: 100ml (3 oz.) gaiwan and 5 grams of leaf for 5 steeping’s. FYI: I followed Garret’s tea instructions. Just a side note to all.
Overall Opinion: I give this tea a 90. The tea was good. I enjoyed it. I think if you enjoy lighter oolongs or even Tie Guan Yin you will enjoy this tea as well.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 1 min, 0 sec

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89

(This tea was generously provided to be by JK Tea Shop due to postal issues that were out of companies hands. Big thank you to the whole JK Tea Shop Team!)

Dry Leaf: I get a nice smooth roasted or toasted grain like aroma or even a caramel type of aroma.
Wet Leaf: I get a heavy roasted like charcoal type of aroma but there is a slight fruit type of aroma the opens up some sweetness. But, the roasted charcoal aroma is the main player in the aroma.
Liquor: Golden yellow brown type of color.
Taste: I get a smooth roasted flavor like peanut and oats with a charcoal flavor over it. There is a fruit type of flavor that adds the sweetness to this tea and I even get a light kiss of floral in this tea. The broth of this tea has a nice thickness feel in the mouth.
Vessel: 100 ml gaiwan (3 oz) and used 5 grams of leaf.
Overall Opinion: I give this a 89 my way of scoring. This was a enjoyable tea and maybe one to try for the people who are lighter Tie Guan Yin tea drinkers and want to transition over to roasted.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 15 sec

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88

(This tea was generously provided to me by JK Tea Shop due to terrible postal issues that was out of their hands. Big thank you to the whole JK Tea Shop Team.)

Dry Leaf: I get a mellow roasted aroma along with a sweetness that I almost want to associate it to some kind of fruit. This tea has a fresh aroma to it also.
Wet Leaf: I get a fresh orchid like aroma with almost like a fruit aroma that show some sweetness to this tea.
Liquor: I got a yellowish green type of color.
Taste: This tea is smooth with a roasted orchid like flavor with some sweetness again I want to say some kind of fruit. There is some astringency I pick up with this tea. I also notice the way this tea feels in your mouth for me it sits more on front of your mouth and gives that more dry feeling in your mouth.
Vessel/Leaf: I used a 100 ml ( 3 oz.) gaiwan and used 5 grams of tea.
Overall Opinion: I give this tea a solid 88 from the way I score. This is a very serviceable tea. One thing I would like to add about this tea shop is they offer the same tea with different grades which allows you the tea connoisseur to expand your palate with being able to compare taste, texture, the body of the tea and it’s smoothness and how the tea builds it sweetness in your mouth. One tip to everyone grade does matter as a whole in the overall experience you have.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 15 sec

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90

(This sample was generously provide to me by Mandala Tea with my order. Thank you Garret.)
Dry Leaf: Has a spicy aroma with a light wood aroma think pine or cedar.
Wet Leaf: Has a spicy aroma the wood aroma was very faint.
Liquor: Was clear
Taste: This tea was very light think “white tea.” There was a spicy aspect to this tea that warms you up. When I say spice think pepper. There is a light wood I get like pine or cedar which can give that earthiness some may describe it. But, for me it’s a woody taste.
Vessel: 100 ml or 3 oz. gaiwan and sample we will call 5 grams. I brewed it gongfu style and brewed it about 15-18 times I would guess. Sorry, I didn’t keep track. But my number should be close.
Overall Opinion: My score is a 90, I have not had enough of this tea to know the good,the bad, and the ugly from this type of tea. What I can say is this tea is very intriguing. The texture of this tea as you steep it out is soft and smooth. After I was done steeping this tea I threw it in a container with water and put it in the refrigerator and cold brewed it and actually had nice iced tea the next day. So, amazingly enough this tea is great hot or iced. As for the people who always need to add a sweetener to their teas this one works well with honey in my humble option. I am more of a guy that keeps things plain but I had a hunch that a dab of honey would work fine with this tea and wanted to try it out for all the people who have sweet tooth’s out there. I also want to add this is a very forgiving tea. I am very curious on how this tea will taste aged.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 15 sec
Garret

Interesting what you say about sweetening this. Had not occurred to me to do so, I guess because I find these kind of sweet in their own right. But… for those customers of ours who do like a little sweet, it does seem to me that honey or perhaps a hint of light agave nectar might go well in the tea liquor, particularly for the iced version. I shall have to let a couple of our folks know about this.

Also… these particular buds were picked in very very very early spring of 2011. I’ve got 40 lbs aging in the same vault where our pu’ers are stored. I stored them airtight for one year and then opened them up for storage in there. In spring of 2013, I’ll open up the 2012 buds. And so it’ll go, year after year… buying and storing, buying and storing :) Glad you enjoyed these, my friend!!

Tea_is_wisdom

@Garret- I like to keep my tea plain Jane so I can enjoy the tea as the tea master intended. But, I do like to test adding a sweetener if I feel it could be added without it tasting terrible. LOL! But, taste is subjective. My wife adds sugar or equal to all her teas which is why she is more of your red tea drinker aka black tea. I think she does better with the English/Irish breakfast or and Orange Pekoe. I have got her to come around to some shu puerhs but again she wants that sweetener in there. So, now you know where her taste buds lie any suggestion on what else she may like? LOL!

Garret

Tell you wife better sugar than equal or any other artificial sweetener. Not to prescribe any health stuff to you, but the artificial sweeteners are really tough on the body, particularly the metabolism and the brain cells. I’ve been suspicious of them for some time, but the latest research has really made me happy that I have stayed away from them.
Your wife may very well dig the Black Pearl hong cha we have. I bought a ton of them on my latest trip to China and the success and popularity of them makes me realize that I will have to buy more sooner than I thought. We’ve had many customers tell us it is the best hong cha for breakfast they’ve ever had. Definitely worth a try. She can try them in a lighter infusion without sweetener to see what she thinks. Otherwise, many customers are brewing them up strong, adding a dash of milk and a wee bit o’honey -not the candy :) – or sugar. Rock on!!

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91

Dry Leaf: Has a fresh grassy aroma with some sweetness.I was also able to notice a very soft wild flower aroma.
Wet Leaf: Has a vegetal aroma something I would associate with like a boiled leafy green but their is a subtle sweetness that is in the background.
Liquor: Has a bright and beautiful golden color.
Taste: Has a dry grassy flavor. I can even understand if someone says hay or straw like flavor.I also got a very gentle dryness in the mouth there is a nice sweet sensation that builds up in the mouth and goes to back of mouth.
Overall Opinion: I give this a solid 91. This tea had a fresher feel to it and had a nice showing of character and sweet build up in mouth.
Vessel: SAMA DOYO Gongfu/Kungfu Teapot. 10 grams of leaf to 220ml or 7oz. of water in inner cup.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 30 sec

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91

Dry Leaf: Has a fresh grassy aroma with some sweetness.I was also about to notice a very soft wild flower aroma.
Wet Leaf: Has a vegetal aroma something I would associate with like a boiled leafy green but their is a subtle sweetness that is in the background.
Liquor: Has a bright and beautiful golden color.
Taste: Has a dry grassy flavor. I can even understand if someone says hay or straw like flavor.I also got a very gentle dryness in the mouth there is a nice sweet sensation that builds up in the mouth and goes to back of mouth.
Overall Opinion: I give this a solid 91. This tea had a fresher feel to it and had a nice showing of character and sweet build up in mouth.
Vessel: SAMA DOYO Gongfu/Kungfu Teapot. 10 grams of leaf to 220ml or 7oz. of water in inner cup.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 30 sec

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84

This sample was generously provided to me by Epi Tea. Thank you Kyle and the whole Epi Tea Team.

Dry Leaf:Had a soft lavender aroma.
Wet Leaf: Had a natural lavender aroma with just a splash of citrus which I associate with bergamot.
Liquor: Was dark in color.
Taste: Had a smooth and soft bergamot & lavender flavor with the lavender staying in the after taste.
Overall Opinion: I give this a 84 which is an average rating for me.
My personal opinion is the black tea needs to be amp up in this tea for a better base in this tea. My second opinion is it would have been nice to see this company do something different like add some lapsang souchong for a slight smokey taste and a deeper and richer flavor to this tea.
Vessel: SAMA DOYO Gongfu/ Kungfu teapot. 1 sachet in 220ml or 7oz. of water in the inner cup.

Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 0 sec

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87

This sample was generously provide to me by Epi Tea. Thank you Kyle and the whole Epi Tea Team.

Dry Leaf: Had some kind of a musty type of aroma with a spicy aroma maybe cardamom.
Wet Leaf: Had a nice spicy cardamom aroma as expected from the dry leaf.
Liquor: Is dark in color.
Taste: Has a smooth and mild taste of cinnamon and cardamom flavor.I was also able to detect a very faint peppery flavor in the after taste.
Overall Opinion: I give this tea a 87 on my ratings. My personal opinion of this tea is one of the better offering from this company. My advise to the company add more assam black tea which I assume they are using to make the base stronger and amp up the spice a notch and lets not forget the beautiful clove that is such a nice spice in chai teas.
Vessel: SAMA DOYO Gongfu/ Kungfu teapot. 1 sachet in 220ml or 7oz. of water in the inner cup.

Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 0 sec
Helena

too mild for me. I like a good does of cinnamon :D When I used to go to Starbucks I was forever adding extra cinnamon to my Chai :D

Tea_is_wisdom

@ Helena I agree. The spice was done very light and needs to be amp up like the black tea too.

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84

This sample was generously provide to me from Epi Tea. Thank you Kyle and the whole Epi Tea Team.

Dry Leaf: Has a berry and rooibos type of aroma.
Wet Leaf: Has a berry and rooibos aroma.
Liquor: Was a dark amber color.
Taste: Has a berry flavor in the beginning then came the super light nutty flavor of the rooibos.
Overall Opinion: I give this tea from the way I rate in my profile a 84. Meaning this tea was “berry average.” This tea was really light with a decent berry flavor. I was looking more for that earthy, nutty flavor you get with rooibos but it never was there. I added sugar and yes it made the berry flavor taste sweeter and did increase the rooibos flavor some but not as I would want. May have to do with not enough rooibos leaf or a lower quality. My advise for the company is use more leaf. My other advise would be I would have been more impressed if you guys did a Honey Bush & Rooibos equal blends and be more generous with the leaf. I did steep this tea 10 minutes as suggested but I want to add I usually steep rooibos 2-5 minutes and it still seems stronger then this one. A side note to people, rooibos is a very forgiving tea so I don’t think you can over steep it.
Vessel SAMA DOYO Gongfu/Kungfu teapot. I used 1 pyramid sachet in 220ml or 7oz. of water.

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more
Helena

I’ll be trying my epi tea samples later tonight :D

Tea_is_wisdom

@Helena I think the berry was nice and if you add sugar you get a sweeter berry flavor. I hope I wasn’t to hard on Epi Tea but I wanted to give them my honest opinion. Maybe, your opinion maybe different from mine. Happy steepings to you.

Helena

I didn’t enjoy it that much… it’s probably just the combination. I think it’s that I’m more of a strawberry, blueberry, raspberry, cherry type girl. It was good to try their samples though :D

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Bio

IF ANY TEA COMPANY WOULD LIKE TO SEND ME SAMPLES OF THEIR TEA I WOULD BE GLAD TO DO A FULL REVIEW ON STEEPSTER FOR YOU AND ON YOUR COMPANY WEBSITE JUST SEND ME A MESSAGE.

I am a simple guy that enjoys making new tea friends and enjoying different teas and tea culture.
My favorite type of teas are green, oolong, pu-erh.
I do have a special love for black (red) tea and chai since they were the teas that started me on my tea adventure. I wish the whole community well.

My Tea Scores
100 points: Perfect experience. Beyond what you would expect from the aroma, the leaf, the liquor, the taste.
96-99 points: Excellent. A tea that will show true greatness in it’s character with at least 2 infusions.
93-95 points: Superior.Teas that achieve high quality in one dimension, and shows it’s high quality character and their variety in other dimensions.
90-92 points: High quality. Quality leaves, liquor hold to it’s true profile, the teas character can hold it’s flavor for 2 infusions.
85-89 points: Good. Above average tea that is lacking something to make them high quality.
80-84 points: Average. Nothing special
79 and lower points: Low quality. Not worth buying and a tea you would never remember drinking unless it tasted that bad.

Location

Some where in this bad economy.

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