2895 Tasting Notes
It’s been awhile since I had a cup of zhu rong, which I dubbed Zhu Right.
What can I say that I haven’t already said?
Sometimes I really struggle with defining the layers of flavors in a tea, especially when allergies (the Bain of my existence) are high. Today I am getting that dark chocolate, with a tart fruity edge, but mostly, it’s the awesome way my mouth feels right now, & then…
Damn! My cup is empty…again!
What tea goes good with BBQ for lunch?
Lapsang Souchong, of course!
This one is very nice, in that it has the smokey quality, but is not over done. I know from experience that a little maple can really bring out the caramelized sugar flavor of this, but I elected to drink it straight, & it was just so tasty with my lunch.
We started painting my front porch yesterday. I had visions of completion today, LOL, but of course, that ain’t gonna happen. I’m one of those people (thanks to little terri) who is endlessly optomistic (unless I’m depressed, but luckily that doesn’t really happen often anymore). So no matter how long previous experience has demonstrated that it will take days to complete a project, I always think it will be done in hours. I have the same ‘time’ problem with pretty much everything. Even though I know how long it takes to get from my house to some other location, I always think I can get there in 15 minutes. I have to set multiple alarms on my calendar to remind me of things like ‘driving time’. Chalk it up to being a right brainer, I guess.
Over the last couple of weeks we’ve been patching & sanding, & if you’d like to see the ‘before’ pics, they are on my FB page https://www.facebook.com/terri.langerak
Yesterday the boys (who are actually men now) & I started with the white paint. We put the first coat on the ceiling, railings, & anything else that’s going to be ‘ultra white’. Today we’ve been adding a 2nd coat to the white paint, & laying down primer for the places that won’t be white. I’m not really done with the primer, but it keeps acting like it’s going to rain, so we’re taking the afternoon off.
Tea…yes…I drank lots of tea yesterday & today. The purpose of THIS post (before I got sidetracked) was to mention a cold steep from yesterday. My student who’s mom is from Taiwan sent over a Wulong Jasmin cold brewing tea bag from an unknown company. I left it in the frig in a qt jar over night & it made a very refreshing tea to drink while painting yesterday!
First off, I’ve really wanted to try this tea for awhile! YS offers 2 options:
1 – the entire basket of tea, 450 Grams of tea, which looks so awesome, what a great presentation, but which would probably last my entire life, not to mention that I probably already have enough tea for 7 lifetimes…
2 – a sample…a 100gram sample, that is! That’s a huge sample!
Granted, it is not an incredibly expensive tea, but as much as I want that basket of tea, I also only want it if I’m going to drink it. So I started looking around to see if anybody had some.
This sample has a history, possibly more of a history than I know about, but what I do know is that it traveled from TeaExplorer’s cupboard to Boychik’s cupboard to Stephanie, & then to me!
I’ve been drinking it for about 3 hours, a couple of cups here & there. Visually it resembles a Shu puerh in shades of mahogony & brown. The dry aroma is of bamboo shot, hominy, & molasses. When I warmed up the leaf I smelled an earthy boston brown bread & buttered grits.
I gave it a rinse & started steeping. Immediately the flavor is sweet , kind of hominy-like, & has that minty ‘fresh’ quality. This continues into a few steepings, while the flavors of cedar & molasses arise. This is a lot like a Shu, but it’s also different in that it is sweeter, & the flavor profile is slightly different. There were a few cups that were creamy textured. Flavors I’ve picked out include cedar, bamboo shoots, sorghum, water chestnut, & that minty fresh quality. Right now it’s like a sweet spring water with a menthol after feel. I think I can get quite a few more steeps out of it, but that is all for tonight.
Thanks to everyone who passed this tea on, so that I got a chance to sample it :)
The mother of one of my harp students is from Tiawan, & a few months ago she went for a visit to see family & friends. She wanted to get some teas to share with me, & I told her I really liked sunmoon lake assam.
While in Taiwan, she visited this awesome place, & got some teas from there:
This tea farm has been there since 1899, & you can go there for tours, purchase tea, etc. They do also have a website for tea sales, but the only words I could read there were ‘non-GMO’. Anyway, it’s looks like an awesome place to visit!
So the first tea I’m sampling is a Deluxe Assam Black Tea, Natural Farming No. 8.
I prepared the tea like I have steeped some of the other sun moon lake assams I’ve had, using roughly 1 Tb to my standard tea mug for 3 minutes. It’s a light, fruity, & refreshing tea, definitely more of an afternoon cup. In some ways it has more of an oolong quality to it, subtle layers of flavor, the most prominent being dried peach, or peach fruit leather maybe, with a growing tanginess in my mouth. The flavor is very light, in spite of the fact that the color of the brew is fairly dark, & there is a faint essence of leaf hopper.
Here’s another tea that I meant to review on Monday, & I’d like to thank Angel @ Teavivre for her generosity.
The dry leaf is a beautiful irridescent green, with a sweet & buttery aroma. Teavivre does include steeping suggestions of some of their teas on their website, for both western & chinese style steeping. For this session I used 3G in my test tube steeping, 30/60/90/120
The resulting pale yellow liquor had a gentle taste & fragrance of butter & chestnut, plus sunflower sprouts! Delicious!
I drank this on Monday, before I realized that steepster was out of commission, & although I didn’t take notes, I’ll do my best to share my experience, because Brett was generous enough to send me a sample, for which I’m grateful.
I do enjoy Da Hong Pao teas, & although this one is a lighter roast than what I tend to go for, it’s a lovely cup of fruitiness, perfectly sweet & fragrant with the aroma of apricot & apple, & with a beautiful clean & fresh kind of aroma, almost crisp, like a sweet tart apple.
This was my first session of the day, using 5G + 4oz (rinse) X 15/30/45/ etc
I warmed up the leaf in the hot little teapot & the aroma was heavenly, immediately conjuring up images of Maltomeal drizzled with a really fragrant honey.
I could breath that in all day. Why do I love that aroma so much? It’s not like I was a real fan of maltomeal…
Anyway, the tea was predictably delicious. The leaves are tiny & tender, & they released their flavors fairly quickly, so that this session peaked out much faster than others, but the cups were rich with malt & honey initially, then a more flavor of earth & leather, with a slight bitterness. Definitely better in the first cups.
I’ve been suffering steepster withdrawals for the last couple of days. So many teas drank & not reviewed…sigh…So I am grateful to the Steepster Gods Who Walk Among Us for getting things back on track. I’m not gonna even try to backtrack & log all the teas I drank this week so far, but I will comment on a few of them in a little while.
For now, I’m enjoying a cup of this one with breakfast (yes, I know it’s almost noon here, & 1:00 on the east coast, but that’s just the way we roll here at Terri’s Airy Fairie World).
Anyway, this is a deliciously awesome Keemun, in my opinion. Bold enough to stand up to brunch, lightly smokey & earthy & leathery & sweet like caramelized brown sugar. There’s alot of depth to this cup, & I find this one to be much more interesting than so many of the other Keemuns out there. Kind of masculine & bassy. I’m picturing an ensemble of upright bass & cello, bass clarinet, bassoon, & the low end of a marimba.