2955 Tasting Notes

I made a cup of this, with a little maple syrup, & brought it with me to my gig today. I love the combination of smoke, ginger, & maple. Tasty!

MissLena

Sounds really good!!

NofarS

I love the tea’s name!

Terri HarpLady

Me too! I just looked on their site, & they don’t sell it by the tin, as they do with their other teas, but I’ll probably buy more of it at some point, I think.

Sil

did i try this one?

Terri HarpLady

Nope! You & Cavo got a bunch of other samples, & I got this & the coconut milky oolong, & maybe one other…I’ll have to look through my notes! I’ll have to send you the last cup, to see if you like it. :) (tossing it in your box)

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drank Black Beauty by Mandala Tea
2955 tasting notes

I’m backtracking. After breakfast my day got busy. First there were a few students, & then this evening I played a 3 hour gig at a retirement home.
Somewhere in between those 2 things, I enjoyed a lovely cup of this sweet tea. I wish I had more to say, but I have written several reviews regarding this tea already, so that’s it for now.

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Hmmm…for some reason this tea didn’t come out quite as expected…
It seemed like the time went off kind of quickly, so I put the brew basket back in the cup for a few more minutes, and yes, that’s better. That’s more like what I was expecting! Bold, tangy, bright, & a little smoke. Much much better.

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Hey Sil, did your TTC order come yet? I think you’re gonna love the samples I’ll be sending you from mine, because I think I’m gonna love them! Since we love most of the same teas…well, except for that Jin Jun Mei thing…& the occasional floral…heh… ;)

So this was my first tea of the day, & I want to thank my tea sister Sil for turning me on to this company. It was fun going a little nuts during their recent sale, but I didn’t really go any more nuts than I usually do. I’m really looking forward to trying some of the sample sized I bought, & I got enough of this lovely black tea to enjoy for a little while. It’s a very sweet & fruity tea, perhaps not as bold as some of the teas I love, but unique & tasty in it’s own right.
I steeped 1 Tbls in my mug for 4 minutes, resteeped for 6. The resteep is, or course, not as exciting as the original cup, but still flavorful in it’s own way. To this tea I say, “Welcome to my collection!”

Sil

no. no order yet sigh

Terri HarpLady

OK, I’ll try not to rub it in too much. :)

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I’ve been drinking multiple steepings of this Dancong since about 4:00, alongside the Mi Lan Xiang Phoenix Mountain Dancong, to see if I can really tell a difference. I can!

I used the same steeping parameters with both, 4G in Gaiwan, rinse, then 2 sec for the first 3 steeps, adding 2 seconds per steep.

To me, this one smelled like ripe cherries, tart apples, flowers, & sweet incense.
The other one smelled of tart pink grapefruit, apricot, & a thicker incense.

Both teas were sweet, & delicious. I found this one to be a little more refined, in that the the floral & incense aromas were very delicate, but amazingly heady, & the cup was sweeter in general. The other tea had a stronger & denser incense to it overall, with a red grapefruit mouthfeel early on.

Quite honestly, I think they both have more steeps left in them, & I may try refreshing them tomorrow with a quick rinse, & then go for a few more cups!

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I’m having a ‘tea comparison’ day. This morning it was Keemuns, this afternoon it’s been Jin Jun Mei. I have 2, but I’m only actually writing a review about this one. The other way (which will remain nameless) is there for me to have a way to see how this Jin Jun Mei stands.

Both teas were steeped identically, with equal amounts of tea @ 1min, 2min, 3min. Then I sat & sipped them side by side to see how they differed. The ‘other’ Jin jun mei was & is delicious, just for the record, with a thick feel & flavors of honey, malt, & butter, liked butter & honey on toast. There’s also some roasted sweet potato in there.

Wang Yanxin’s Jin Jun Mei is perhaps not as malty/toasty, but sweeter, without a doubt, & with a chocolate taste to it as well. It also presents as a more refined cup, although I’m having trouble defining exactly what I mean by that.

All in all, I thoroughly enjoyed them both, & on any given day would be very happy with either one. I have just enough of this one to drink it one more time, & I have some other Jin Jun Mei’s coming, so I may do a Jin Jun Mei Marathon at so point in the future, LOL.

TastyBrew

Now I’m curious what the other one is! I loved the Wang Yanxin one. It was the first jin jun mei I’d had. I’ve had one more since and it didn’t live up.

Terri HarpLady

I compared it to the yunnan sourcing, "Spring 2013 Premium grade Jin Jun Mei. I’ll send you samples of all my Jin Jun Mei’s when the box comes around, if you want. Just for fun!

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I’m having a bit of a qimen morning. I enjoy a good Qimen tea, & this one is pleasant enough. I divided the last of my stash, which was 4G. I put 1 tsp, which was roughly half of it, into a regular steeping basket, & put the other half into my little 4 oz teapot, which I only filled halfway with each round. The smell of the dry leaf is sweet, lightly smokey, & very nice, definitely more fragrant than any of the other Keemuns in my collection.

The gongfu session was first up. I was teaching, so I didn’t take notes, but I thoroughly enjoyed each cup, as the flavors gradually built up layers of flavor:Fruit, chocolate, creaminess, smoke, incense.
Definitely a very nice representation of what a Keeman can be, & what so few really are.

I don’t know how many steeps I ran through, but as the flavors died down, I made a regular mug of Qimen, steeped 4 minutes. I wanted to have a cup to compare with another Keemun in my collection, because I’m really trying to figure out if THIS one is really all that. I also thoroughly enjoyed it. All the flavors were there, it’s a nice rich cup. If I had more, I’d probably go a little heavier on the tea.

Some of the Keemuns I have in my collection are ok, & very drinkable, but not of this same profile. They tend towards the earthy profile, with maybe some brown sugar and/or smoke, but don’t have quite the nuances that this one has. And that’s the end of that. Sipdown.

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Sil & I have been sampling teas from Taiwan Tea Crafts, & so far they have all been tasty & interesting, rather different from some of the other teas I usually drink. This one is no exception!
The dry leaf is small nuggets, similar in color & size to dry elderberries. The dry aroma is a yummy fruity jam, thick & sweet. I preheated the gaiwan, & then let the tea sit in there for a minute & the aroma was of a fruity pipe tobacco. After a quick rinse, it smelled like roasty fruit wood.
I started with 5 G + 4oz Gaiwan X 15sec, adding 15 sec to each steep.
The first 3 steeps were almond/hazelnut butter, sweet & creamy with a caramelized fruit jam, increasing in butteriness with each steep.
4 – 6 A heavenly elixer! Hazelnut crusted fruit torte, I can’t quite pinpoint the fruit, with a brown sugar crust.
I smelled the leaf at this point, & the aroma was of roasted honeyed apricots!
7-9 I feel like I could keep steeping these leaves forever. The brew is still dark, the taste is still sweet & nutty, with a creamy nut butter sensation after the sip is swallowed.

This is a delightful tea! Everything I had hoped it would be. If it was earlier in the day, I’d keep steeping, but since it’s not, I put the rest of the leaf in a jar of water in the frig, where it will hopefully become a tasty refreshment for tomorrow!

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Thank you Nicholas & Misty Peaks for this wonderful cup of Yum!

Although this is a young sheng, it lacks the wild & brash unruliness of so many of the shengs I’ve tried. This is perfectly delicious & refined tea, with a sweet smooth fruity taste. I’ve been drinking it for a couple of hours, & it really is a delicious nectar. I’m probably gonna have to add some of this to my collection too.

Terri HarpLady

When I have money, that is…lol

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This afternoon I loaded up my Harp & gear, & a go cup of this lovely lovely tea, then headed out to play my monthly tea gig at the nursing home. I consider this tea to be a special treat, a wonderful combination of toasty roastiness, chocolate, caramel, & Yum! Perfect alone, but today I added a tad of Maple syrup, cuz it’s also yummy that way!

Sil

“terriharplady has started following you…” uh…started? say what? hahaha

Terri HarpLady

LOL. If you must know, I miss you & visited your page to read your most recent posts. Somehow I accidentally hit the button so that I wasn’t following you, so I had to hit it again, & now I’m following you again! :D

Sil

i miss me too. sometimes i remember me and i get a little sad.

Fjellrev

Sorry to jump in since it wasn’t directed at me, but I’ve nearly unfollowed people HOW many times already. There’s something about that huge green button that makes you want to subconsciously press it. It feels like it should take you somewhere else, like back to everyone’s tasting notes or something. Glad I’m not the only one experiencing that!

Terri HarpLady

Also, for awhile the green wasn’t working right. I like to go read a person posting notes sometimes, rather than scroll through the whole group, & it would say I wasn’t following that person, so I’d be hitting the button over & over with no results.

Terri HarpLady

Luckily that appears to be fixed

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Bio

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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