3091 Tasting Notes
Thank you to Angel @ TeaVivre for this generous sample!
My daughter Arianna is here for breakfast & tea. We started with this wonderful sample of Golden Tip Yun Nan. Yunnan teas are one of my most favorites, with their thick maltiness & sweet caramel undertones. This one does not disappoint in the least! Malty & sweet, with a bit of sweet potato in there as well. A lovely start to my morning!
This is the 2nd of the Reserve Club offerings that I’m trying. I’m really glad I joined! Thank you to David & Verdant Tea for making this possible!
My immediate feeling was 5G?? I have done some Shengs at 5 grams & the initial steepings were pretty harsh! I reminded myself that they were newer Shengs, & this one is 6 years old, so hopefully it has mellowed.
So many times when I smell & taste these things, it is hauntingly familiar, just on the edge of my mind, not quite accessible to my brain.
Here, the dry smell is like that. Slowly, my mind settles on a nutty, slightly sweet aroma.
The first couple of steepings are not harsh at all! It’s a very mellow, slightly fruity & floral tasting golden brew. I’m thinking stone fruit, but it’s a fruit I can’t quite identify. As I go through the steepings, the color evolves to a beautiful apricot orange, & interesting flavors emerge: yellow summer squash, almond, & a bit of carmelized… something…something savory & green…
A nice mellow savory tea.
So, yes, I did join the Verdant Tea of the Month Reserve Club!
This afternoon I have been hanging around, sampling this offering for a couple of hours now. I’ve also been returning phone calls & emails, in an attempt to maintain some semblance of business-like behavior in my
These are interesting cubes of pressed tea, and I followed the instructions, rinsing & steeping half a cube, 6 seconds. The dry tea has a lovely aroma, making me think of the vanilla malt powder we used to get when I was a kid. It smells of cream with a hint of malt.
The tea is a beautiful liquid gold! The taste & mouth-feel also remind me of cream with a little malt & vanilla, each cup is a little sweeter than the last. I think I’m on my 7th cup.
A very soothing, gentle, & pleasant delight!
Here is a sample I got from Stacy, who is awesome, at Butiki. Thanks Stacy!
This is very different from the other teas I have been drinking.
The dry leaf had a fruity & floral aroma.
The tea itself has an amazing array of flavors:
Initially I’m hit by a ‘perfume’, of sorts. It’s a floral, but not orchid, rose, or any of the floral tastes & smells that I recognize. It has an incense quality to it, & then there is a deep fruity flavor as well. It’s very earthy, a little malty.
Not my cup of tea, but an interesting experience, none the less.
I’m finally sampling Bailin Gongfu, thanks to our dear friend Angel, @ TeaVivre.
I’ve read various peoples reviews of this tea over the last few months, & as I recall, it is a bit temperamental. I was careful to make sure the water temp was 185, meanwhile wafting the addictive smell of cocoa tinged maltiness emanating from the leaves as I painstakingly weighed them, first all in one cup, 7oz, & then taking away leaves until I was down to 3.5 oz. The other half of the sample got tucked back into my black tea sample bag for another day.
I got a massage this morning. I’m feeling very ‘open’, my breakfast is sitting here waiting to be eaten. This tea is luscious, mouthwatering, and delicious: Malt, chocolate, & bit of caramel sprinkled with a pinch of sea salt. My mouth is watering, my qi is flowing, & I’m smiling. Good start for my day!
I bought this awhile ago, simply because it is my sun sign, & I like hazelnut. Once it’s gone I probably won’t re-order, but sometimes when I’m playing a gig, I enjoy something a little sweet. Brewed with stevia, this is another nice diversion to sip on. Kind of bold & Hazel-nutty, with a little vanilla (a little more would be nice).
Backpeddling a little:
For a tea to drink on the way to my gig today, I made a travel cup of this creamy eggnog. It is sweet (with the addition of stevia) & creamy, & definitely has an eggy creamy taste, with a hint of nutmeg. Not something I’d purchase, but a pleasant diversion.
We used to make homemade eggnog when I was a kid all the time (that was our version of instant breakfast). In later years it required a shot of rum or brandy. I haven’t had it for a long time, but I’m thinking I could make some with eggs, coconut milk, vanilla, & nutmeg. That sounds good!
I’m the first to review this?
I’m home from my gig, relaxing in my PJs, & haven’t had any puer for a few days (sorry, from now on I’m leaving out the apostrophe & the h, there’s just so many ways to spell this, I’m making it easy on myself.)
The dry leaf smells very green, & wet it smells smokey as well.
1. My formula: 3G + 4oz (one rinse) + 4 sec = a very drinkable yellow infusion, slightly saline, but in a pleasant way.
2. 10 sec: It’s still mildly salty, but not so much sea salt, more like a mineral salt. I’m getting a nice mouthwatering up the center of my tongue. Bright yellow! I’m steeping in my Earthen Gaiwan (Butiki) & drinking out of my glass Gaiwan (TeaVivre) so that I can really enjoy the color.
3. It looks like I’m drinking a urine sample, sorry, I know that’s crude, but little Terri can be pretty crude…
I forgot to count, but I’ll guess 20 sec: Umami! I’m thinking fish sauce. It doesn’t really taste like fish sauce, but with it’s pleasant saline mouth-feel, & savory greens taste, my mouth is really watering.
This also reminds me of the soup broth I used to make with Kombu &/or Wakame.
4. 30 sec: Now a sweetness begins to emerge. It is both sweet & savory at the same time, and a little creamy texture under my tongue. I’m tasting a faint hint of bitterness up the center of my tongue, so maybe 30 sec was a little long, but I actually like a little bitter edge occasionally, as it makes the sweet taste more noticeable.
As in tea, so in life: Sorrow enhances Joy, Having less helps to heighten appreciation for what we do have. My mouth is watering wonderfully!
5. Another 30 sec infusion, still bright yellow! One thing I’ve noticed about drinking puer in the early evening. It doesn’t make me wired, but instead I feel very relaxed, very present, very open. I don’t have to do anything, so I’m sitting here in a semi-meditative state, breathing deeply & enjoying this cup. I’ve got the skull shine on a little bit, I feel subtle movement in my body, & this moment is fine!
6. 45 sec: A fresh taste, like spring green sauteed & sprinkled with a few drops of Mirin, tingly numb tongue, watering in the back of my mouth.
7. I’m letting this one steep for 1 min. (Meanwhile, I still had the Laoshan black in the other Gaiwan from earlier today, & I drank a cup of that. So sweet! It’s caramel & chocolatey goodness!) This cup has a quality & can’t quite define. It’s sweet & savory & mineralize & …earthy! That’s the only word I can think of.
I’ll continue to steep this out for a little while longer.
Yesterday I had a wonderful pajama day, no gigs anywhere, no students, just me, Tony, tea, & relaxation. We sampled the Exotic Pear (Butiki), but I didn’t write a review on it. That’s a tea I’ll have to drink a few times before I have anything to say.
I have a gig today at a retirement home. I’ll be playing for their Holiday Open House. I started the morning with an English Breakfast (Adagio), and now I’m doing Gaiwan steepings of Laoshan Black.
5G + 4oz (quick rinse) = one of the best teas ever!
I’ve reviewed this tea several times, as have many others, & if you are one of the few who hasn’t tried it, you’re missing out!