2972 Tasting Notes

About a year ago I joined the Verdant Reserve Tea of the Month club. This was among the first offerings. I can’t believe I still have some of this. I’m trying to make an effort to drink through more of these teas, as there is no point having them if I’m not going to drink them. I followed the same parameters as in previous sippings of this (see previous notes), & the results is a soothing cup. I suppose it could be considered a white sheng, & does have a really pleasant energy about it. The dry aroma reminds me of fresh goats milk, while the wet aroma is more like canned condensed milk with a little malt thrown in. The tea itself has a mild maltiness & creamy vanilla like texture. As I continued through the cups, my tongue developed a tingle, my brain got a little buzz on, & gradually the flavor became sweeter, reminding me of sorghum, only a diluted lighter sorghum.

I played a gig this afternoon, the monthly tea at the retirement home. Just for fun, I did a full hour of Beatles music, & the residents loved it. It was fun! For some reason, by the time I got home I was exhausted, just really really tired (I suspect it’s the mold level in the air). I started drinking cups of this about an hour ago, & now, on the 10th & final cup, I am feeling quite revived!

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Ah, Laoshan Greens!
Every one of them is the freshest green tea ever, it seems.
Yes, they are a tad temperamental, without a doubt, but worth the extra attention.
This one was in my TOMC box from October, which I’m finally getting around to sampling. It’s sweet & creamy, but what is really interesting about it is the minty after-sensation. I wouldn’t call it an after taste, because I’m not tasting mint, but I am feeling it. My mouth has a ‘mint fresh’ sensation!

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oh THANK YOU, this is more like it!
This tea is loaded with flavor & nuance. My taste buds are immediately tingling, my sinuses are tickled with aromas.
AND I can re-steep the leaves a couple of times, & it doesn’t immediately become colored water.

I’d like to give a Thank You to Verdant & other companies that actually source their teas from the people who grow them. I am a big fan of buying locally, but nobody in St. Louis is growing tea, & the best teas are grown by real people, the Master Han’s of the world. I want to drink those teas. Thank you for growning them! You Rock!

yyz

Sounds like someone was really on your case today! I’m with you, I buy local when I can buy from the producers or when I am supporting someone who is doing something and unique and special, but not everything can or is produced or made locally. With tea, I like to either experiment, buy from a seller who I trust, who buys quality and attempts to buy ethically, or when possible directly from the producer or someone who at least actually knows the producer.

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I’m starting the morning with a Breakfast Assam from a local tea company that is less than 5 minutes from my front door. I’m not going to share the name of the company, lest I incur the wrath of locals who think this tea is awesome. For them it probably is. For me, it’s just ok. Every time I brag on FB about a tea company I love, I get private messages from local friends wanting to know why I’m not encouraging people to ‘buy locally’ by promoting this company. They don’t get it. I can’t explain it without sounding like the snob that I am (and if you knew me, you would know that tea & good food are the only things I’m snobby about, & I don’t mean to be. I like good quality consumables, & if I’m going to drink tea & eat food, it’s gonna be damn good, or I probably won’t bother).

Final note: I realize that not every tea company can afford to go spend weeks in China, Taiwan, India, or wherever. Thus is life. If you’re selling mostly broken leaves that are probably way past their prime, & charging premium prices, don’t expect me to buy it & brag about it.
My rant is complete. Thank you.

Sil

hahahaha you go girl!

Terri HarpLady

Sometimes you just gotta say it, right? :)

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Just finished up with a 2.5 hour rehearsal with cello & flute, all Beatles music for a gig we’ll play this thursday night. Earlier today I practiced a few hours for a gig accompanying the choir at one of the colleges I teach at. That concert is on Monday evening. I’m definitely all played out for today. Now to try to get in an hour of writing, & then sleep….sweet sleep….

This is one of my favorite non-caffeine teas, perfect for the evening. I love licorice, I love all the chai-like spices. It’s a naturally sweet treat.

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A nice Shu, sent to me by Spencer, that is earthy & woody, with a little camphor in the later steepings. There were some chocolate notes somewhere in the middle. I gave a quick rinse, then steeped in my yixing: 15 sec/30/45/1min/2min/3min etc.

In these later steepings, it’s mellowed to a nice semolina sweetness, with a creamy texture. Still sipping…

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I shared a pot of this with my student today. He really enjoys the smokey teas, & honestly, so do I!

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This is a nice tea, compliments of the leaf hoppers, with its lovely honey sweetness & hint of coriander (at least that’s how I taste it). It does have a gentle pastry quality as well.

I’ve had my lunch break, which naturally took way longer than I intended, but I should be able to get in at least 30 minutes of writing now, then I have a wedding client coming at 2:30. Where has the day gone?

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This one is a trade from Spencer. It’s a lightly refreshing gently fruity & sweet one, which was nice to sip on while I was practicing. My daughter, who recently moved back in with me (along with my grandson), woke up, & we ended up visiting for a little while, so my 45 minute practice session ended up starting about 15 minutes late, but I skipped the 15 minute break & played 90 minutes instead. So I’m basically back on track, more or less. My next 45 minute ‘work’ session will be working on my nanowrimo novel, but the truth is, I need a little food first, so that session will probably also last 90 minutes.

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First tea of the day, this is a lovely gentle assam, sweet & fruity. There is a yeasty malty taste, reminding me of fresh baked honey wheat bread. There is also a ‘cheesy’ quality to it, kind of a rich thickness, a little tangy, almost like a cheese spread, or a nutritional yeast spread. Although this is not a bold tea, it is a complex tea, nonetheless, & a tasty one.

Today, in an effort to get some things done, I’m returning to my practice of 45/15. That’s 45 minutes of doing something useful, like practicing for the upcoming HoliDaze season, or working on my Nanowrimo novel, or deskwork, returning phone calls, etc. The 15 minutes is my hourly break to make tea, visit you guys, etc. I spent the first 45 journaling & doing yoga, etc. The 2nd 45 was fixing breakfast. Next up, 45 minutes on the harp! Here I go!

Indigobloom

That’s an awesome idea! I should try that :P

Terri HarpLady

Being self employed, especially in the arts, it becomes ridiculously easy to accomplish nothing…

MissB

I’ll second the self employed working in the arts bit! Mind you, I do have days where I spend six hours straight working and completely, gloriously lose time… I like your idea Terri, I may need something to remind me however.

Terri HarpLady

When I’m really on my game, sometimes I set alarms in my iphone, to help keep me on task, because I’m one of those easily sidetracked people. Usually once I sit down to play (or redesign my website, or garden, or whatever) I get caught up in it, & hours can go by. Today it was a 90 minute session on the harp, then lunch, then instead of 45 minutes of nanowrimo writing, I ended up returning phone calls (& booking a couple of gigs in the process :). I still want to get at least one 45 minute writing session in today, but I still have another student, then a rehearsal with my trio from 8 – 10, so we’ll see. Thus is the life!

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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!

Location

St. Louis, MO

Website

http://www.harpsinger.net

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