3074 Tasting Notes
I used to have a Harp program in the St. Louis Magnet Schools Visual & Performing Arts (VPA) Middle School (Carr Lane) & High School (Central). The VPA schools were the crowning glory of St. Louis Public Schools, with amazingly talented students in all forms of art: dance, music, visual, drama, etc. We also had the highest test scores in the district, & our school motto was, “Smart through the Arts”.
The district went into disarray, & as cuts were made & the schools went downhill, along with the pressure to make everything you teach somehow fit into ‘preparation for standardized testing’, & a new principal at the middle school who did everything he could to dismantle the arts from the curriculum, I quit a few years ago. I had given it 12 years (part time), I have students studying at colleges here & there, & I feel grateful that they keep in touch.
Today I met with the new principal at the middle school, who wants to start my program up again. This was our 2nd visit, & he is a graduate from the VPA program & even studied Harp (under a previous teacher). He really wants to have Harp available again, AND he’s a really nice guy! So, we talked about my ideas for how the program could be even better than it was, and he’s looking for funding. I leave it to the universe to decide, knowing that either way, all of my needs, desires, & dreams are abundantly fulfilled.
What does all this have to do with this tea? LOL
I steeped this before I left the house for 3 min & resteeped for 5 min, combined both in my porcelain lined stainless steel cup with a little stevia, & this was my driving tea today. Chocolate rice crispy treats!
So of course as soon as Garret mentioned these last week, I had to place an order, right? I’m not really a big fan of blooming teas, but this is a blooming black tea, so that’s my excuse!
These are malty little flowers with a sweet backdrop! I’ve tried them 2 ways this morning:
First, while I was fixing my breakfast (leftover homemade soup), I put one in my little glass gaiwan, which I don’t use much because it gets way too hot! But it was perfect for this because the flower bloomed nicely! I did 4 steepings: 1min, 2min, 3min, 4.
They were all tasty, but I think #3 was my favorite. I can foresee just blooming a single flower in a 4oz cup for 3 or 4 minutes, when I want something quick & easy, just a small cup of tea.
Then I put 3 of them in my regular cup & steeped 4 minutes. That one was my true favorite, with the full richness of what these little cones have to offer! The final cup is a resteep of all 4 cones @ 5 min, & that’s pretty decent too!
I think this is sipdown #7 today, although I’m not quite sure, LOL.
I’ve had these tuochas for awhile, & that first 1 minute steep is a little on the watery side for me. I gave the 2nd steep 1.5 min, 2 for the third, 3 for the 4th, & 4 for the 5th steep.
Leather, Oak, sweet earth, & semolina are the tastes I received.
Thank you Stacy for sending me a sample of this tea.
I’m not always a big Ceylon fan, but I wanted to try it anyway, because it’s in Stacy’s Irish Breakfast Blend, along with Khongea Golden Tippy Assam, & Hattialli Golden Lion Assam. I love that blend, so I figured I should try this tea by itself. Actually it’s pretty nice!
It’s not a bold, wake me up, breakfast tea. It’s a very clean & sweet cup, very light on the tongue, leaving the mouth with a juicy sensation. The flavor is crisp & bright, & slightly fruity. I can see why it compliments the other 2 teas in the Irish Breakfast Blend!
Sipdown #4 (I think I’m on 4).
This is a sad sipdown, as this really is a tasty tea!
This is one of the first Wuyi’s I fell in love with, & although it may not be as fancy & complex as some of the other Wuyi’s I’ve drank since then, it is delicious & wonderful. The main thing that comes to mind with this one is the banana pudding my mom used to make, with the vanilla wafers. Yeah, I bet your mom made it too!
I don’t have that many teas close to a sipdown, but I’m going to enjoy the ones that are close today. This one came from Sil, & I know she’s sending me another box soon (& I just sent her one), so I guess I’d better start whittling down some of the samples she sent me before that I still have plenty of!
This tea is bold! The dry tea looks almost like a black matcha, it’s so finely cut. The steep instructions say 1 minute, & you’d better follow those instructions to the T!
This tea is especially great if your in a hurry in the morning & want a slap in the face to wake you up! The good news is, it’s also flavorful. This is what I’d call a masculine cup of tea, without a doubt. Earthy, oaky, stout, a little fruity, & kind of tart, in the way the grapefruit is tart. I’m hoping to get some things done today, so hopefully this will help to get the ball rolling! Thanks Stacy for offering this, & thanks Sil for sharing! :)