2855 Tasting Notes
I probably should have more to say about this one, but I’ve had a rough time with tea this morning! I had to be out the door at 9am to go play a wedding, so I started a cup of this one, & forgot to set the timer. I was making breakfast, changing a broken string, & other multitasking activities, so it probably steeped 10 minutes. Needless to say, it was bitter, so it was dumped. I made another cup, took a sip too soon & burnt my tongue, loaded my harp, changed into my gig clothes, & it was tasty, but lukewarm at that point.
I got back from the wedding & made a third cup, and then sat with it until it was cool enough to sip. It’s quite good. Nicely malty, the floral aspect is a little more on the savory side, just a little bitterness, with a nice milky kind of mouth.
I am suffering from not enough tea, & I need food too. The only real decision I have to make is what teas I’m taking to Tony’s house & which pjs I want to spend the next 36 hours in.
Sometimes I really wonder how it is that this tea tastes the way it does. I mean, really, how? If I don’t drink it for awhile, I start wondering if I just imagined it’s awesomeness, or maybe it was the power of suggestion. But then I drink a cup, & there it is: Chocolate! Awesome roasty chocolate goodness. Not just the feeling of it, but the actual taste. It varies from season to season, sometimes more beanier. But ultimately, this tea is pretty awesome.
I think they take tons of cacao hulls, chop them up, & bury them near the tea plants.
Yup, that’s got to be it!
I drank this earlier today:
1T + 8oz X 3/5min
Like nearly every YS tea I’ve tried, it’s delicious! A pleasant thick mouth, nicely malty, creamy, sweet, & slightly savory at the same time. There is a chocolate sensation, but it doesn’t really taste chocolaty to me. I think the 2nd steep was just as good as the first!
This tea is part of the Life in Teacup sample set #7, shu of 9 years & Above.
When I first sampled Puerh, it was Shu. Initially it was in blends, my favorite being the tea spot’s Bolder Breakfast. There was something about the earthy taste of it that really appealed to me, in the way that the aroma of damp earth appeals to most gardeners. I love the smell of the earth, of the compost pile in the spring, of both fresh & aged straw, of rain.
Even though the puerh was only part of those blends, it spoke of those things & I crave it.
Then I tried it alone. I don’t pretend to be any kind of expert, but I do enjoy sampling things. Some of the samples I’ve tried have reeked of ammonia or mushroom, or even fish. Others have been like sweet molasses. Other’s gave me a serious buzz! My favorite Shu are the ones that taste similar to this one. The aroma is sweet & rich, the early steepings are cream, cinnamon, & sweetness. A woody aromatic, like cedar, builds, leaving that ‘after aroma’ effect that I really like in the soft palate & sinuses. I’ve been through several steepings of this now, while watching “How to Tame Your Dragon” with my 25 year old son, so however many 4oz Yixings you can go through in a couple of hours. Currently the flavor is a very ‘clean’ forest floor, with a sweet aftertaste that reminds me of agave with a touch of Maple.
I’m sure I can get a few more rounds out of it!
First tea of the day, enjoyed while I was fixing breakfast. This comes is 5 G beautiful bright red packets, & I bought 5. The leaf is a mix of black with gold, & of course, I love these small leaf Fujian teas anyway, so I’m sure I’ll love this one!
5G + 8oz X 1min/2min/& 5min
I plan to sample this tea using all of the methods that I enjoy, & see which one suites it best. I really wanted to go with the gongfu session, but I have things to do, places to go, people to see, so that will be reserved for maybe next time.
This session was very nice, & without going into to too much detail, the resulting tea was delicious: Somewhat floral, with a lightly tangy & shiny sensation on the top of my tongue, sweet & juicy underneath.
Now I’m off to move some rocks with my sons.
I grew up reading comic books, including the Incredible Hulk comics. Comic books were just part of the deal in my house. My oldest brother bought them with his newspaper route money, & then they trickled down to the rest of us. I loved Bill Bixby, I love Edward Norton, & I love Mark Ruffalo, so of course, I love Bruce Banner, who doesn’t? Super smart, sensitive, & good looking, with a side of tortured psyche. Did you know his father was a mean alcoholic? He was screwed from the start: an emotionally shut down introvert, haunted by an abusive past, a ticking time-bomb of rage.
Then he became the Hulk.
How poetic, right?
So it doesn’t surprise me in the least, that the main component of this tea is chamomile. Poor guy, trying desperately to ‘maintain’, as we used to always say way back in my trippy hippy days. “Maintain, Dude!”
Personally, the bergamot green doesn’t really complete this blend, IMO. I know green tea can help with anxiety, but I think if I was doing a blend for Bruce Banner, it would be chamomile, lemon balm, hops, no caffeine whatsoever, maybe a little lavender (but not too much), a little lemon peel, & a large dose of Valerian Root!! I love my Valerian!
Still, good to try, as I am a fan of Cara McGee’s blends, at least some of them, so I thank Sil for sending it to me, & Schmiracles for sending it to her!
Oh, & this is my daily sipdown! 389
I don’t think I’ve ever met a tea from Fujian Province that I haven’t enjoyed, & this one is no exception! I enjoy Rou Gui Oolongs, with their sweet cinnamon & caramelized sugar flavor, & this is a nice one, with a slight hint of charcoal in the background.
1 T in 8oz @ 200, for 2 minutes, enjoying this first cup & looking forward to re-steeps.
Thanks Brett for sending a sample! You’re awesome!
As soon as IndigoBloom mentioned the Jalam tea club, I knew I was in, LOL. I started reading the website, ordered samples of some of the previous teas, joined the club, & downloaded Jeff’s book, The Ancient Tea Horse Road, which I started reading last night.
Yes, I know, I probably have a problem that requires a 12 step group, LOL, but having been a member of several 12 step groups of the last 30 years, I promise, I’ll be ok.
(or maybe I’m in denial?)
My samples all arrived a few days ago, & I’m very excited to start sampling them (along with samples I’m working on from Teavivre, Life in Teacup, Tribute Tea, & Yunnan Sourcing…oh, & all the tea trades!! It might take awhile, but I WILL enjoy every single one!)
So this is my first sample from Jalam!
The dry tea, in shades of grey, beige, & wheat, with a green undertone, has the light aroma of a clean horse stall.
Leaf warmed in a preheated yixing = a clean horse stall on a humid day, hint of apple.
4G + 4oz Yixing (15 sec rinse) X 20 seconds = mild clean straw
30 sec = the energy is immediate & restorative
40 sec = A slightly bitter & tangy cup, with a hint of apple peel
50 sec = bitterness subsiding, energy spreading, sweet applesauce on the back of my tongue
60 sec/70 sec = If I still have the headache I woke with, I no longer care
80 sec = oops…I really oversteeped this one! It was really over 2 mins…but guess what? It’s still very drinkable. A little on the astringent side, with a potent green taste, but not bad!
1min 30 sec = I’m sure I lost somethings in the long steep, but this is a pleasant mild cup.
1min 40 sec = lightly sweet, still reminding me of apples
1 min 50 sec = & the sweetness grows, just a little, still apple, plus a hint of sweet grass
2 min = Sweet water
3 min or so…forgot to set timer…Taichi anyone?