2859 Tasting Notes

My morning session of students has ended, & after four back to back steepings of Jin Jun Mei, it’s time for something light!

This tea is a pleasant one. Opening the canister I get a tingly whiff of ginger, then a mild citrus & bergamot, & a hint of anise. It brews up a pale orange liquor, naturally sweet & juicy. It’s nice counter balance of flavor to the deep dark chocolatey brew I had earlier, & will cleanse my palate for what is to come.

Ms. Whatsit

Sounds lovely.

Terri HarpLady

I think I sent you some…:D

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98

Breakfast:
*Sweet potato hash browns cooked in coconut oil with cinnamon added.
*Locally raised eggs scrambled with locally made chorizo (from locally
raised pigs)
Tea: Wild Picked Junnan Jin Jun Mei

Dry: What a pretty tea! Skinny little strands of black & tan, with an aroma of sweet potato, sprinkled with cocoa & cinnamon.

Prep: I actually followed David’s instructions, 2 t (rounded) in my cup, brewed 1.5 minutes.

Cup #1: It’s a very dark, chocolatey looking brew!! That alone excites me! There’s also a foam on top, which is unusual & enticing, so I scoop it off with a spoon, & I swear it has a cocoa powder taste! I sniff the cup. Undeniable scent of buttery toast with honey. I burnt my tongue, I couldn’t wait…malty, robust, & peppery! Yum! I added a tiny bit of Stevia & almond milk for the last couple of sips, & that touch of sweetness brings forward chocolate & a very small hint of orange (it’s probably in my imagination…I used to love love love orange marmalade on my toast).

Cup #2: (2.5 min) The peppery notes are definitely more prominent in this steeping, & my tongue is wrapped in velvet. A little stevia, & it’s the sensation of a chocolate croissant.

Cup #3: (3 min)Still a very dark tea! I went ahead & steeped #2, 3, & 4 while I was drinking the first cup, so that I could attempt to compare them. In this cup I begin to notice cloves & a tiny bite of tannins.

Cup #4: (3.5 min) a little tannic, but still a deep, toasty, tasty cup!

My first student of the day has arrived! I just combined what’s left of brews 2, 3, & 4 into one cup, & “Hi ho, hi ho, it’s off to work we go!”

Azzrian

This whole tasting note is YUMMY!

Terri HarpLady

:D It was a really tasty tea!

Terri HarpLady

and the breakfast was good too (actually I had the exact same breakfast yesterday…)

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86

I am out of Meditative Mind Tea, & I keep waiting for Whole Foods to get some more. I think I’ll have to order directly from the Tea Spot. I wanted a cup this afternoon (on Tuesday) to commemorate the anniversary of 9/11, the saddest day of the 21st Century. Even now I can’t begin to comprehend the tragedy of that day, I am still numb.

Meditative Mind is a beautiful tea to look at: an amazing blend of white peony tea, green jasmine pearls, mint, & lovely pink rosebuds!! The first time I bought this tea, I opened it & it was a visual feast! I breathed in, & the combined scents of Rose, Mint, Jasmine, & Tea are pure Heaven.

This is a tea for healing the soul, for soothing the spirit, for opening the heart. It is a tea for Peace, which I hope we will someday find in this crazy world of ours. Preferably sooner than later.

Terri HarpLady

After I posted this, I went to the teaspot website & ordered a new tin of Meditative Mind, plus a few samples.

Bonnie

I know the Tea Spot will be very glad that you chose this tea on such a special occasion!

Ms. Whatsit

Rose, mint, and jasmine….these are a few of my favorite things…

Terri HarpLady

Bonnie: it seemed like the only appropriate choice. I only wish I’d had some! BTW, meet my sister, Ms Whatsit!
Whatsit: I’ll be sure & send you some in your ‘next’ care package (I say next because I finally went to the PO today!)

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83

I’m a lousy employee (at least when it comes to doing desk work), but luckily, I’m a really NICE boss! I spent the morning drinking tea & basically trying to get motivated, & stayed in the tub way too long. I had a more productive afternoon, what with the gig, & some errands. I booked a funeral for this Saturday morning, scheduled a new student, & I also have a wedding on Saturday afternoon.

Being a musician is not all just sitting around, being creative, & plucking & strumming. I’m a performer, sure, but I’m also my own promoter, manager, & everything else (teacher, composer, arranger…)
The desk work is always the hard part. I have a whole list of things to do: phone calls & emails to return, website to update, bills to pay…
I’m (suppose to be) working at my desk now (“Actually, I am working at my desk, this is my break”, she said.), so a little more caffeine was in order.

I drank a cup of Chocolate Phoenix Chai last weekend, using 2 tsp & brewing as directed, & it wasn’t really what I expected, I was kind of disappointed. I really hate saying this, but it wasn’t as spicy or as chocolatey as I thought it would be.

So today I used a heaping tablespoon & brewed for 3 full minutes. Much better! This is a tasty treat! The background is dark unsweetened cocoa powder, with a gingerbread flourish. There is both a powdery feeling on the back of my tongue, & the decadently rich sensation of vanilla tinged whipped cream. I re-steeped, & the 2nd cup was tasty too! I also started a pint of cold-brew, & tomorrow I’ll let you know what I think!

Now for some administrative work…

Bonnie

Most of the alchemy blends use more tea quantity than regular tea because the flavor’s aren’t coming from chemicals. I had to get used to that myself at first (real herbs and such added to the tea creating bulk and needing a bit more for steeping).

Terri HarpLady

Right! I originally followed the instructions on the Verdant page, which said 2 t, so I’m wondering if it was a type O, and should have said 2 T. :D

Bonnie

I think you did what I would do. Brew as directed then adjust to taste the next go round. Easier that way then the reverse which many people do and throw down too much leaf to begin with. Same with puerh. I usually brew about a tablespoon (I’m talking about a chunk) of pu in about 3-4 oz gaiwan and get tons of flavor.

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I took a long hot bubble bath, with a book, 2 cups of tea (premium Taiwan Assam & Zingiber Ginger), a glass of ice water, & the “calm Meditation” setting on Pandora. The EO company makes a wonderful line of essential oil bubble baths, by the way, & the one I like is ‘Renew’, which is scented with Rose & Chamomile. …ahhhhh….

Next on my agenda for the day was a one hour ‘Tea time’ performance at a local nursing home. I’ve been playing this tea event on the 2nd tues of every month for over 12 years! I brought along my own teabag, because the stuff they serve is terrible! As far as bagged English Breakfast teas goes, Stash is currently my favorite. I think it’s really because the name of the company harkens back to my Hippy days, when I often carried illegal contraband. Of course, now my only vice is tea (the legal kind), & I always make a point of having a tea Stash with me at all times.

For Tunes & Tea, I’m including a list of the pieces I played:
Blue Bossa – Kenny Dorham (made famous by Joe Henderson)
How Insensitive – Antonio Carlos Jobim
All I Ask of You – From Phantom of the Opera
Equinox – John Coltrane
Footprints – Wayne Shorter
Georgia on my Mind – Hoagy Carmichael
Misty – Errol Garner
Black Orpheus – Luis Bonfi
Corcovado (Quiet Night of Quiet Stars) – Antonio Carlos Jobim
Over the Rainbow/What a wonderful world medley
(there may have been a few more…that’s all I remember)

The audience is wonderful there, a fairly lucid group, & they especially love the Latin Jazz. My favorite moment ever playing there: I was playing ‘How Insensitive’. 2 80+ old gals were sitting at one of the tables with blissful expressions, teacups in hand, eyes half closed. One turns to the other and says, in a sultry voice, “This music makes me feel SO Sexy”, & the other says, “Oh yeah”.

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100

I’m getting ready to start on my 3rd cup of black tea this morning!
First, I want to say that the dry leaves are wild & crazy looking, & I like that! Dense, almost black with a green undercast & occasional peek-a-boos of mahogany (that seems to be my word of the day), hint of malty aroma. I struggled with measuring it out, as they are unruly, crazy little snakes, unwilling to conform (kind of like me). In the end, I just put some hefty pinches in my cup (probably way more than the recommended 2 tsp)

Brewed, it is what I’m looking for this morning. A deep brown red, bold mildly malty flavor, & with the addition of a little soymilk & stevia, I’m off to bubble bath land.

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82

Breakfast is over, and I’m relaxing in my sun room, sipping this bold tea, still trying to wake up. The color is a dark honey, the aroma toasty, the flavor is not as malty as I’d hoped, but robust & smooth at the same time. A few granules of stevia for the last sips lift the flavors, & I close my eyes: Collin Farrell winks at me & says, “Ay lass, pass me a sip.”

Azzrian

haha awesome!

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82
drank Mi Xian Black by Butiki Teas
2859 tasting notes

I’m having a slow morning. Last week I couldn’t sleep, this week I’m having trouble waking up. I hate allergies!

So, Stacy sent me this sample with my order, & I meant to enjoy it much sooner! It sounds so delicious! It is my first cup today, my breakfast tea.

Before brewing: Visually, it reminds me of Arame, a sea veg I used to eat a lot of. Almost black, thin twisted strands, with an underlying greenish tinge & accents of Mahogany. I don’t smell a lot, but it’s allergy season, & although my sinuses aren’t clogged (it goes straight to my lungs), they are still dulled a little. I turn on the kettle…

As I pour the water & breath in the steam, a begin to experience that essence of apricot that everyone has raved about. The beautiful amber color in my cup says, “Drink me”, and I do. My breakfast gets pushed off to the side…

This is a very gentle, mildly sweet tea, with a lovely mouth feel. No need for sweetener here. I had actually planned to add a pinch of stevia to the last couple of sips, to see what came forward, but, alas, it’s too late, I finished the cup! Very tasty, thank you Stacy!

Bonnie

I like the way you write.

Azzrian

Me too :)

Terri HarpLady

Thanks girls!! I like the both of you write too!

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89

This is my last cuppa the day. I wanted something sweet, soothing, yummy, & here it is! I LOVE love LOVE Ginger, & I also love coconut, & in this tea I get a little of both, & some almond. I always expect more of a Chai taste (& as they’ll tell you at Teavana, it’s also great mixed with Chai). Of course, if I really wanted Chai, I could have brewed some of this. This has some Rooibos, which I usually don’t care for much, but in this tea, I’ll make an exception. I use 1 T (sometimes more)per cup of hot water, leaving a little room at the top for some almond or coconut milk, & some stevia. I wanted a treat, & it is!

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After teaching on & off throughout the day, & revisiting my Gaiwan for additional oolong steepings, I needed something different, preferably sweet, & without caffeine. Digging through the cupboard, I came across the Twinings Fresh & Fruity sampler box. There’s not much left in the box, but I figured I’d give this one a try.

It is tart & mildly sweet, more cranberry than rasp, & with the addition of a little stevia, juicy! Really, it’s like warm Koolaid. Now I want something else…

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Profile

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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