I’ve been gazing at the Reserve TOMC box for a few days now. For some reason I seem to always get the box before everyone else, & so I was waiting a few days, to give someone else a chance to be the first to post about these teas. Last night before sleeping, I decided to do a comparison today of this Jin Jun Mei (JJ) to the Wild Picked version (WP) that I also have from Verdant. Every month I struggle with my cynical self (that would be Ms. Theresa) over whether these reserve teas are really so special & worth the price.

I have enough of the WP for about one more session, stored in a tin, but I also have a foil sample packet from awhile back. I decided to use the sample because I felt it would have the freshest taste. I followed the parameters given for each tea, which are not exactly the same, but close enough. These are the only teas I’ve had so far today, & in my tea journal, I took extensive notes all morning long, comparing each individual aspect of the teas, side by side, but rather than bore you with all those details, I’m gonna attempt to narrow it down.
Appearance: JJ = compact dense strands of black & Mahogany, WP =
Fluffier strands of Gold, beige, grey, & black. The look is similar, but by weight, the JJ looks like less tea due to it’s density.
Dry Aroma: ohhh, malt & honey! They both smell awesome, but admittedly, the JJ has a little something more, as if new smelling cells are waking up in my sinuses.
Warmed Aroma: Both smell like fresh bread with butter, but JJ has a sweeter smell, of a fruity honey.
Wet leaf aroma: Similar, with a ‘thick’ quality, WP has a peppery aroma.
Rinse: of course, I sampled the rinse water! Who could resist? To me they were both like unsweetened chocolate water, with the WP a little less pronounced.
Formula: JJ 4G + 4oz Gaiwan (rinse) X 5 sec, adding 2 to each steep.
WP 4G + 4oz Gaiwan (rinse) X 3 sec for 3 steeps, adding 3 to each steep

Throughout all steepings both teas were a beautiful orange brown, with the WP being a slightly browner & cloudier color, with more sediment in the bottom of the cup. Both teas had a lovely malt, butter, & honey flavor, & thick linen feel, with the biggest difference being that the WP gradually became more peppery with a slight bitterness, & JJ also had a fuller flavor all along, even though the color remained lighter, & it also had a sweet potato essence to it.

I love them both! I can see that JJ is a little more refined, but they are both delicious!

Dinosara

Yeah I always get the box super early relative to anyone else. After I got this one I added the teas to the database but haven’t gotten a chance to try them out. This weekend!

Fjellrev

Oh wow, I like the sound of this one. :D

Terri HarpLady

I think I have enough of both to do the comparison western style too :)

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Dinosara

Yeah I always get the box super early relative to anyone else. After I got this one I added the teas to the database but haven’t gotten a chance to try them out. This weekend!

Fjellrev

Oh wow, I like the sound of this one. :D

Terri HarpLady

I think I have enough of both to do the comparison western style too :)

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I’m so excited to have found this community! I’m a self-employed Harpist (acoustic & electric – Originals, Classical, Rock, Jazz, etc) & Singer/Songwriter. My days & nights revolve around teaching at home, playing gigs, gardening,& fixing awesome food to eat. My schedule is different everyday, but I just go with the flow, & I sip a lot of tea!

My love of Tea began with Herbals back in the 70’s. One of my favorites was a licorice blend from House of Hezekiah, an old tea shop in Kansas City. There was also a tea with mint, rose petals, chamomile, etc called Nuclear Casual Tea.
In the 80’s I gave up caffeine, chocolate, alcohol, (& a few illicit substances…), and brewed medicinal blends & tinctures to support 4 pregnancies (all children born at home). In the 90’s my love affair with green teas began when I discovered ‘The Republic of Tea’. Their beautiful teas & packaging inspired my original song, “TeaMind”, from my CD “Zen Breakfast”. If you’d like to hear the song for free, drop by my website.

In general, I drink my teas straight, but occasionally I add a pinch of Stevia & maybe some coconut or almond milk (I’m allergic to dairy, gluten, & various other things & avoid most sweets.)

I’ve explored a variety of teas:
Whites tend to be a little bland…sorry
Oolongs – wonderfully sensual
Roobios – I’m not a fan in general
Puehr – a fairly new direction for me
I’m not a huge fan of flavored teas, but I do make exceptions, & I’ll try just about anything once.

And Black Tea, Oh how I love thee!!
I am on a quest for the most wonderful breakfast cup! I will find you, my Love!

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St. Louis, MO

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http://www.harpsinger.net

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