2966 Tasting Notes

This is a wonderful tea with a creamy smooth textures, hints of butter and chocolate. Really, there is so much more depth to it than that, but I’m not always the best at describing these things. Let’s just say that it is incredibly satisfying today!

I’ve already had a long day. I got up At 5, left the house at 6 for a Gig, armed with a 12 oz cup of this & a 16oz of Shagadelic English Breakfast (tea spot). When I arrived at the Gig, which was the lobby of an office building, I immediately noticed a Starbucks just off the lobby. Now, I’m not a real frequenter of that place, as I don’t drink coffee, although they do have some decent gear for hauling your beverages around. I once had a Tazo iced Chai habit that required me to either stock cartons of the stuff, or visit starbucks often, and as we say in 12 step programs, addiction runs deep. My 12 oz cup was empty and was miraculously immediately filled with a hot soy Chai. It had been awhile, and let me tell you, that was a serious sip down, because in the 10 minutes it took to tune my harp, I had already drank it and started on another one. I nursed that one, and the Shagadelic, throughout the gig. Now I’m home, and just polished off a re-steep of the Yun Nan, & it held up well for a 2nd cup!

Now off to get a massage…I love being self-employed!


Lucky you!!!

Terri HarpLady

Yes, lucky me! But those massages I get are important. Because I play so many gigs, & some of them are pretty long (4 hours), I have to treat my body as if I were a professional athlete. That means yoga, massages, chiropractor, taichi/qigong, free weights. I need to start swimming laps again, I keep planning on it, cuz it’s so good for my shoulders, but it seems like I can never find the time…

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I’ve had enough caffeine today!
I have an early morning gig, playing my harp from 7:30 – 9am in the lobby of an office building while the people who work there come in to work. The building manager will have a breakfast buffet set up for them as well. I do several of these types of gigs every year at this time. I’m not an early morning person, & it will take some effort to get myself to go to bed at a reasonable time so that I can get up early enough to leave the house by 6:30, so no more caffeine for today.

This is not a favorite blend, as I’m not a huge fan of sage (except in food) or tulsi, but it’s ok, all the ingredients are high quality, and I really like most of the other ingredients. Since I’ll be working a lot for the next 3 weeks, (I booked 3 more gigs today) I figure my immune sys can use all the help it can get. I’m still not sure what I did with that bag of Sichuan Caravan, so this will do for now.

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This is another sample given to me by Eric Glass, the owner of The Fragrant Cup, a Tea Importer here in St. Louis. www.fragrantcup.com

It’s a ridiculously amazing day outside, clear skies, 75 degrees. I should be riding my Harley, but I’ve had students all day & have been sipping this tea, gongfu style, for most of the afternoon. Right now I have a bit of a break, & have been contemplating the re-arranging of my Studio & watering my abundant house plant. I was pleased to see that a few of the fruits on my Kumquat tree are starting to turn orange. It will still be at least a few weeks before they are ready to eat, and I just get to eat one here & there, but that’s nice because I don’t take them for granted, each one is a special treat.

This is a really nice bold brew. The flavor & aroma are both lightly floral, with a roasty kind of taste. There was initially a unusual sensation in the center of my tongue, and after several steepings I got that buttery feeling around the edges & under my tongue, kind of a sparkling sensation. I’m not always good at describing flavors: There’s a little chocolate, a little orange peel, maybe some cinnamon, and there is a deep fruitiness, & I keep thinking I should try adding some Elderberries to my cup. I love elderberry tea, for the taste, and for the medicinal value, & I think I may go ahead and mix some into my Gaiwan, just for the heck of it. Or not…

Oh Joy! The mail came & I just got packages from TeaVivre and Verdant!

Invader Zim

I just got a package from Verdant today too!

Terri HarpLady

I’m dying to dive into those new teas, but they will have to wait until tomorrow…(sigh)…

Invader Zim

Same here, it’s too late to really dig into the new teas :(

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After students from 9 – 1, a quick lunch, and the booking for 3 xmas gigs (Yeah!), I had a few errands to run and wanted something sweet, and a break from caffeine, so I went with the last cup of this, with some stevia. It is creamy, and well flavored, tasting of coconut, graham cracker crust, even with a hint of lime. I used the finum and was extra careful not to get any of the ‘shake’ into the cup itself, but still have that ’akkkk" feeling in my throat. Sometimes rooibos just breaks into teeny tiny particles, and they find their way into my cup. I should have included the muslin tea bag, as a double straining system. It works so much better that way. At least the tea tasted good!

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I miss-placed 2 oz of Sichuan Caravan…(sigh)…I know it’s around here somewhere…there is no way I already drank it all!! Oh well…

I’ve drank this YuLu a couple of times now, both western brew and gongfu, and I have to say, it is not my favorite of Verdant’s Teas.
It does have a flavor profile that in some ways reminds me of Jin Jun Mei, with it’s peppery honey qualities, and a little of my beloved Laoshan Black chocolate-ness, and the color of the liquor is a beautiful honey, with a stunning saffron yellow backdrop.

So what’s my problem? It has a burnt smell to me, and after drinking it I had what I call the ‘rock gut’ sensation, which I don’t care for.
Will I drink it again? Sure, I still have plenty of it, so I’ll add it to my rotation and give it another try in a week or 2, and I may experience an entirely different feeling. That’s one of the things I love about tea! I can drink the same tea many different times, and it might not always be the same for me, as my experience is in part effected by my mood, and I’m a little grumpy today, and other factors.



One of the things that I had to be careful about was timing on this one. 15 seconds seems short but was really enough time for all the flavor to develop. Once I let the steeping go a little longer Western Style and it was harsher. OOPS! I learned my lesson and pulled back. Using Spring water was better too. (Not saying you didn’t do these things because you are a pro at this, but I’m just sharing my own experience with this tea.)

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I’m back in my PJs, feet propped up on the coffee table, relaxing at Tony’s house.

I love this tea, it is mildly sweet, with a buttery feeling, and hints of vanilla and pastry. Yum! I went with the western brewing method, as Tony doesn’t have a Gaiwan. That might be a good idea for a holiday gift, but that would be like Homer Simpson giving Marge a bowling ball, if you catch my drift. So 3 minutes in a cup, and I stood there the whole time with a spoon, dipping it in the cup and taking a little slurp until the timer went off.

I’m on my 2nd steeping now, and although I like it even better done gongfu style, this is good. I will sip this for the rest of the day.


Gongfu sounds like a martial art to me. I guess I need to study up.


Or it can sound like… ‘go on fool’.

Terri HarpLady

You both made me smile! :D


I’m not convinced Homer wouldn’t actually do that…

Terri HarpLady

He did! LOL, that was one of the earlier seasons. :D
He bought her a bowling ball, fitted to HIS hand, so she took bowling lessons & ended up having an affair with her instructor.

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Hey Steepsterites! I hope everyone is having an awesome Sunday!

I woke up around 9, drank my last cup of Yunnan Jig (adadio, I like their Yunnan Noir better) while Tony had a cup of his beloved Jubilee (London Tea Room, aka LTR). We went out to breakfast, where we both had a cup of Numi’s Breakfast blend (basically, it’s ok for a restaurant bagged tea…). Then we headed downtown to the LTR, where we each ordered a pot of tea. He had Lavender Earl Grey (which he bought 2 oz of, along with another 4 oz of Jubilee), and I had Keemun Mao Feng (sweet, malty, a little smokey). I got 2 oz of this LTR Blend, as I haven’t tried it yet, and I’m having a cup now.

Some breakfast blends have what I would call a ‘bright’ flavor, and an acidic quality. This one does not. It is a dark and bold cup, with a buttery mouth feel. I like dark and bold much more than I like acidity and brightness. I’ll add it to my breakfast rotation.

Terri HarpLady

I drank another cup of it this morning, and although it isn’t one of those spectacular, blow you socks off, type teas, it is a decent breakfast blend.

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Part II

I’m at home, getting ready to leave for my second gig of the day, I’ve eaten lunch, and refilled all of my tea containers, LOL. Oh, and (one of) my Verdant orders arrived!! Here’s what I’m taking:
1. a travel cup (just regular size) of (dreamy expression on face) Golden Fleece (It’s so beautiful, and tasty too!) I’ll drink that while I’m driving
2. My thermos type cup, I’m going with more of the Aquarius, with stevia. That Hazelnut flavor is kind of nice, and something sweet to sip on between songs sounds good.

Oh yeah, I sample the Yu Lu Yan Cha Black with lunch. No comments at this time, I’ll come back to it when I have time to contemplate…
Now I’m off to entertain the masses!

Have a great evening everyone! Tomorrow is my Pajama Day!!


I’m so excited to try Golden Fleece and the Yu Lu Yan Cha. Sadly, our postal service isn’t the greatest, and today the mail person left a “go pick this up yourself” notice without even ringing our buzzer. :(

Invader Zim

Claire, I hate when they do that! They don’t do it a lot to us, but it still irks me when they do it.


It’s a real crap shoot in SF. Sometimes we get packages, and sometimes the person never even attempts to ring our doorbell.


Pajama days are the best. I was fortunate enough to have 3 days off in a row and today is day one. I haven’t showered or gotten dressed and I’ve broken my own rules by leaving the house looking this way. lol

Terri HarpLady

I’m finally done for the day…whew…a lot of driving…time to couch potato it! Claire, you’ll love it! Boxer, I leave my house like that all the time. I just don’t really care, lol

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I’m at a gig. It’s a combo craft show & tea. I have a 1 hour break between sets, while they have a presentation from a lady that makes amazing vintage hats.

I had to leave my house at 7:30 this morning & drive an hour to get here, & I needed tea. I left with a 12 oz mug of wild picked Jin Jun Mai (verdant), a 16 oz thermos of black dragon pearls (Teavana), & a 20 oz thermos of Aquarius (adagio, & yes, that is my sign). All I have left is the Aquarius!

I’m gonna play another hour, then load up & head back to St Louis, grab lunch, refill all of my tea containers, & drive an hour & a half south to play another gig from 6:30 – 8:30. A full day!


That does indeed sound like a very busy day. I hope you have a jolly good time :)

Terri HarpLady

It is! The best part is I get to do my favorite thing, and they’re paying me to do it! I sold some xmas CDs at the first gig, and will hopefully sell some more at the 2nd.

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This is a little more substantial for my morning, with a more grounding sensation, the richness of chocolate, etc.

I have a busy day, I’m getting ready to hit the road to play a bridal shower lunch gig, and I really need more tea. Looks like I’ll be breaking out my insulated 16 oz travel cup…but what to put in it?

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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!


St. Louis, MO



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