2861 Tasting Notes
My friend Barb called this morning to tell me that her food coop order came, & they had extra cukes & Kale, if I wanted them. Yes!
So she came by for tea, bringing the veggies, & this was her selection.
I used to be a huge fan of oolongs, with their floral essence & green backdrop. The first cup or 2 are always wonderful, but then I start to lose interest. Nonetheless, I continued to steep a cup here & there during the afternoon, in between other things.
This tea makes me think and feel the color yellow, and surrounds my tongue with a bright sunny sensation. Bright florals up front, with later steepings a little astringent. There arose the taste of blanched almonds & a mouth-feel somewhat like almond milk.
What more can I say of this tea, that I haven’t already said?
My son Leif (age 20) had breakfast with me this morning, & this was his selection!
Previously I’ve weighed out 5 oz, trying to get a mix of the Yanxin’s Reserve nuggets & the various other smaller components of the tea (licorice root, elderberries, ginger, & sichuan pepper).
This time I weighed out 5 oz of the puer, then added a few oz of the ‘other stuff’. I’ll do it that way from now on!
It’s been in one of my Gaiwans, & I’ve been sipping on it on and off, throughout the day. I just drank the final cup, and at this point the flavor is gone, but the bite of the ginger still lingers on.
I enjoyed drinking this throughout the afternoon & early evening. I’ve reviewed it before, & my previous comments hold. To me it doesn’t taste so much like ginger, rather it has the warming sensation of ginger, along with some nice fruity sweetness. I wanted something bold, yet grounding, & this hit the spot.
I’m feeling much better than I’ve felt for a few days, & energized, so I spent the evening starting 2 new batches of cultured veggies.
The first one is a root kimchi: Daikon & Turnips from my garden, carrots, burdock. All are cut in matchsticks (I’ve been known to cut them in much more novel shapes, but I wanted to keep it simple). They’ll soak overnight in a salt brine, & tomorrow I’ll drain them & add ginger, onion, garlic, horseradish, & chilis. It will take about a week to mature. A potent, earthy Kimchi!
The 2nd one is a new batch of sauer kraut, which we eat a lot of around here. This one is a coleslaw style kraut: green cabbage, onion, garlic, grated carrot, dill seed, & salt. Once everything was chopped & mixed together, my son Drew & I ate a few bites. Like a young puer that you know is going to only get better, that’s how I feel about this kraut. Right now it’s a tasty & somewhat nippy salad. A month from now it will be tangy, delicious, & loaded with probiotics.
I currently have 3 in the frig that we’ve been eating:
1/2 qt of pink kraut (we went through almost 4 qts in a month!)
1/2 qt of kimchi (the regular kind)
4 pints of newly ripened Christmas Kraut: purple cabbage, cranberries, apples, cinnamon sticks, ginger root, orange juice, & salt. I’m still not sure how I feel about that one…its VERY tangy…
1/2 qt of green beans, peppers, & garlic cloves.
This satisfies my ‘mad scientist’ tendencies!
and the sipdown continues:
This is the remainder of the sample I received from Angel @ TeaVivre. Thanks again, Angel, for this generous sample!
I had thought at one point of steeping several dragonwells, side by side, & comparing them. This never happened, and really, it doesn’t need to happen. Why compare? Why not enjoy each alone, for what they offer? So that’s what I’m doing.
Beautiful flat green leaves, sweet, crisp, & green taste. I used to steep green teas in a cup, but more & more I prefer short steepings in a Gaiwan. The ‘fresh’ taste is like a reminder that spring will come soon. I look out over my garden, & begin to contemplate the season…
I was gonna have a cup of Dragonwell, but I overheated the water, so I had some of this instead. We (that would be me, little Terri, & the cup of tea) went out onto the pack porch & stood in the sun, the beautiful glorious sunlight, sipping & absorbing: the golden warmth of the sun on my skin, contrasting with the coolness of the air; the rich and buttery sweet smoothness of this tea, the song of birds, the glorious blue sky, the view of my garden in winter. As I breath these in, I feel uplifted.
I re-steep & return.
And the sip down continues…
Another grumpy morning, I still feel like I’m fighting something, even though I don’t actually feel sick. Monday it was trying to hit my lungs & throat, yesterday it was my head. My eyes had that feeling you get when you have a fever & I ended the day with a burning headache (maybe it was from that big tea order I placed…). So I woke groggy for the 3rd day, and after my morning cup of elderberry tea, I treated myself to a breakfast of a pork chop, sweet potato, & cinnamon fried apples. This must be accompanied by a robust & malty black tea, & this one fits the bill nicely. The sun is shining & I think I feel better already! :D
The January tea of the month reserve club package arrived last week. Part of me feels that being a member is perhaps more money than I should be spending, but so far I have not been disappointed!
When I opened this first one, I was immediately caught up in the aroma of the dry leaves. Smokey & sweet, it brought up images of kettle corn, being made in large kettles the old fashioned way. The smokiness made me thing of a fine pipe tobacco as well. There are other faintly familiar aromas that I’m having a hard time placing. Like canned condensed milk (crazy, I know, but there is a hint of it) This is a very complex & interesting tea!
5G of tea + 4 oz Gaiwan (rinse) X 4 secs (+ 2 secs each steeping)
I’d like to say at this point that I have not always been all that into Lapsang Souchong. Having said that, I’ve been sitting here, sipping cup after cup. I’ve never steeped Lapsang this way, & I was missing out!
The smokey flavor is there, especially in the initial steepings, but not in your face.
There is a real nice sweetness that expands with each steeping. It brings to mind the aforementioned kettle corn, with it’s caramelized brown sugar.
I lost count, but after several steepings there is a creamy mouthfeel & the sweetness lingers, making me think of some kind of vanilla pudding topped with brown sugar that’s been given the flambe treatment. The smoke is still there, but in a very pleasant subtle way.
In the later steepings the sweetness gradually dissipated, giving way to a ‘rocky’ taste, a bright feeling on the tip of my tongue, & yet there were still sprinkles of sugar on top.
I actually made it through 15 courses, although admittedly I only drank about half of some of the cups, combining the 2nd half into a jar, which is in the freezer to chill. I’ll report on that in a little while.
A very yummy tea! Thank you David & Wang Shilin! I will savor it!
I picked a kumquat from my kumquat tree this morning. I’ll probably post a picture on my facebook (Terri Stamper Langerak, if you want to be my friend). I love my kumquat tree! Every winter I get a small crop of fruits, each bitesize. I savor each one! Some years there are many, this year is not that year. There were 2 ripe ones, & I ate one today. I thought I could probably use the boost of Vit C that it offers. There are quite a few green ones that will be ready in March. I also still have 3 meyer lemons on another little tree, & tons of key limes! Anyway, that kumquat was like heaven: sweet, tangy, juicy, yum!
I’ve been hoarding this bergamot rose tea for awhile now. Like toast with butter & orange marmalade on it, this will be my other bubble bath tea, & while I’m bathing I’ll try to get through more of Anna Karenina. At the risk of offending my fellow book club readers, I’m gonna confess right here: It’s not my favorite book. I don’t go in much for whining drama, angst, and intrigue. I have several other, much more exciting books in my Q, but I said I would read this book with the group, & I aim to finish it!
OK, if you didn’t know by now, I LOVE THIS TEA!
It’s loaded with a bunch of good stuff: ginger, licorice, elderberry…
This will be one of the 2 teas joining me in my bubble bath therapy session, where I will soak in the bubbles of my favorite aromatherapy bubble bath (EO brand, I think the flavor is ‘calm’, & it has essential oils of rose and chamomile).
Little Terri is grumpy. It started yesterday, & I feel that perhaps we are fighting a viral invasion, but fight it we will! We’re drinking elderberry, & various other medicinals, eating cultured veggies & drinking kombucha (probiotics, you know), & keeping a low profile today. Tuesday is my day off from students, although I have a ton of desk work to do, but that requires very little energy. I spent last evening returning calls & emails, booked 2 gigs, & updated my website (www.harpsinger.net). Today I’ll eventually do more of the same.
This is a very flavorful & grounding tea. I originally planned to brew gongfu style, but didn’t feel like messing with it, so I steeped four 8-oz cups back to back, using 2 heaping tsps of tea. 1 minute, 1.5 min, 2 min, & finally 3. I’ve been sitting here, drinking them in series.
The profile of this tea is malty, savory, with a nice thick feeling, & always reminds me of powdered unsweetened chocolate, but here I’m not so much talking about the flavor as the body & texture.
There is also that clean & smooth ‘linen’ feeling.
I like the description of buttery toast that many have used.
Each successive steeping becomes a little more peppery.
The 3rd steep offers a hint of orange peel.
The 4th reminds me of allspice…