3051 Tasting Notes

November’s tea of the month club package from Verdant arrived a few days ago. I would have jumped right on it, sampling and babbling incoherently about the wonders of the teas they sent, but I was busy then and wanted little more time to really focus on the teas.

This is the first one, and David’s notes suggest drinking them back to back, to enjoy the contrasts, etc

I have to admit, after my mind numbing puerh experiences recently, I’m a little nervous about trying pu’s that are new to me. Oh well, onward through the fog (yes, I just quoted the Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers, but if you aren’t a child of the 60’s, you probably missed the reference.

I like the idea behind this tea: In 2003 a rebellious group of farmers started their own pressings and told the big tea workshops to take a hike. It’s the locavore movement in China. As a person who eats seasonal produce out of her own backyard and tries to buy as much stuff from local producers as possible, I love artisans who produce genuine things, whether it’s tea, clothing, food, or whatever. I like people like that, I am people like that, and I love it when people find their passion and just go with it. I honestly believe that the Universe supports individuality, expressions of creativity and passion, and that all of our needs, desires, and dreams are abundantly fulfilled when we go for it! Of course, I can’t buy tea from local sources, because there are none, just like there are no bananas. So when it comes to things like tea, I aim for companies that truly support real people, wherever they may be, instead of big box companies.

This Sheng is very savory, with a strong green kind of a background flavor, like aging alfalfa and clover, and there is a smokey woodsy quality to it as well.

I’m starting to feel the ‘skull shining’ effect, so I’ll set it aside for now & try the other one.

Nik

Eep! Hope you caught it in time and it subsides quickly.

Terri HarpLady

It’s mild, but there. I’m still trying to figure out if it’s a mold allergy reaction or just part of the Puerh experience for me. First thought it was just with shu’s, but that’s not the case.

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100

First cup of the day and it’s gone!

I wanted something rich and deep to accompany my breakfast of left over brussells sprouts & carmelized onions, with an egg on top. Quick and easy!

Now on to other things…

Bonnie

One thing I missed yesterday was that I couldn’t eat the green bean casserole or mashed potatoes…(mostly the beans)…now I want to go get a bunch of brussel sprouts. Even the grandsons like my sprouts (which says something for little boys!). Yummy with Zhu Rong!

Terri HarpLady

Brussels sprouts rock! I eat them all the time, and I love them. They are great carmelized in a skillet with onions & topped with eggs. Serve with Shu Rong or other yummy black tea. A side of sweet potatoes is a nice addition!

Indigobloom

I dislike brussel sprouts! intensely! but with caramlized onion? hmmm, might be ok :)

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The Chocolate midnight is done. I just finished making lemon curd (that stuff is crack!) for the lemon squares. I’m sipping sparkling water with meyer lemon pulp in it, and it rocks.

I’m also sipping this wonderful Shu, gongfu style. I love this one, and so far no 3rd eye headache or sensations of hallucinogenic shroom trippin’ or anything. I’m glad this one doesn’t effect me that way, as I just ordered more of it recently…along with a few other things… sorry Nik, I’ve been sneaking around behind your back ordering more tea ;)

gmathis

Your cooking rocks and I’ve never even tasted it!

Bonnie

I like making lemon squares too…

Terri HarpLady

This is the first time I made lemon squares ,Bonnie, i ate one, and they turned out great! I am the family pastry chef, which is crazy cuz I can’t eat much in the way of sweets.
Mathis, thank! If you’re ever in St. Louis, you’ll have to come by and let me feed you.

Nik

[chuckle] I’ve never been called by St. Louis, but Terri, your sunroom and your mini trees and the gift of yumminess they provide and your harp gigs are caaaaallinnnnng meeee… =)

gmathis

That would be wonderful, thank you!

Terri HarpLady

Nik, you have an open invitation too!
I think when we finally have out Steepster convention (at the least the north american version) we should have it in St. Louis, because we’re pretty central…

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100

Happy Thanksgiving (Gratitude Day) to everyone in the World!!
I know Thanksgiving is an American holiday, but I hope everybody everywhere has things to be grateful for everyday. I think it’s important to take a few minutes at least once a day to be grateful for all that I have, all that I am, and all that I’m yet to be, and to wish for wonderful things in the lives of others as well.

I started my day by making 3 pie crusts, all gluten free. One is for a pie that I’ve made for years called Chocolate Midnight (Originally Chocolate Almond Midnight because of a praline almond decorative topping I omitted, from the vegan Millenium Cookbook) It’s the most decadent chocolate cheesecake textured pie you’ll ever eat, and you’ll never know it’s made with silken tofu. I know you don’t believe me, if you’ve ever had a silken tofu ‘fail’ dessert, and believe me, when I was a vegan (for years and years), I tried my share.

Baby, this is the real deal, and many people have fallen in love with this pie, not knowing the tofu truth, and once they found out, they didn’t care, it’s that good. It’s requested by several people every year & is a required part of our family feast. This year I took the gluten out of the crust.

I’m in the break, between crust making and pie filling making. I had a hearty breakfast and my last cup of Stacy’s Taiwanese Assam. I’ve reviewed it several times, and it is bold and tasty, but now it’s gone. I foresee a Butiki order coming soon.

Bonnie

Happy Thanksgiving!

Nik

Vegan, gluten-free pie that is yummy. WANT.

Terri HarpLady

Oh, yeah, you want it!! It’s ridiculously creamy & chocolatey and sweet too. Very rich tasting, I can only eat a few bites.
The first time I showed up at a family thanksgiving with that pie, it was Tony’s sisters house. Not a single person there knows the meaning of eating healthy (Tony is learning). I made him promise not to tell them it was tofu, at least not until after they ate it. They devoured it! The other desserts all sat on the table, looking dejected.

It’s also easy to make. Let me know if you want the recipe. You too can blow your family away with tofu! Just don’t tell them…
;)

Nik

Terri, I would love the recipe, thank you!

Butiki Teas

Sounds amazing! I’m with Nik, would love to get a copy of that recipe.

Donna A

And I am following right behind the others, hoping you’ll share the recipe!

Terri HarpLady

ok, send me your email addresses, & I’ll get that out to you!

Indigobloom

ok I want a copy to! maybe you should just post it as a discussion item lol

Terri HarpLady

Good idea, Indigo! I’ll do it!

Terri HarpLady

Done!! Now you guys can all go over to the discussion board, where we have a recipe sharing discussion group!

Indigobloom

sweet!! thanks Terri, you are awesome!

Terri HarpLady

Aww, shucks! Thanks Indigo!

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I’m finally getting over the brain numbing experience, and I was looking for something black that I could enjoy sweet. This fit the bill!
The was a major sip-down, it was just so tasty. Like a toasted croissant, or maybe more like a toasted and buttered bagel, with some kind of rosey orange marmalade on it. I’m gonna miss this tea when it’s gone!

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I drank a cup of Matcha, and now I’m going herbal.

This herbal tisane is tasty with added sweetness (in my case, stevia). I’m craving something a little sweet, so this is my first attempt at satisfying little Terri.

Nik

Ginger and lemongrass are two of my favourite things. I have to order this at some point!

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I followed the instructions on the verdant site, to brew this tea gongfu style. The wet leaf is of an old ancient pine forest, deep and earthy, black as night. It’s a smell I love.

The flavor is both bright and dark, if that makes sense. Very earthy, a little drying, slightly sweet, and there is the ‘fresh’ sensation of mint, but not the flavor.

I’d like to say, at this point, that I’m hypersensitive to a lot of weird things. A few days ago I drank a puerh that made my head feel numb. This one is doing the same thing, only in a much crazier way. I don’t feel that I’m in any danger, but I am going to put the tea away for now. I am going to describe what’s going on, because I want to know if anyone else has ever experienced anything like this from drinking puerh.

As a preface, a little personal history. In my youth I did a lot of hallucinogens, especially of the fungal nature. (I’ve been drug free for 29 years) Having said that, right now I feel like I’m on a mild shroom trip. My entire brain is tingling, especially in the 3rd eye area (front and back), & I feel a little numb mentally, but also strangely alert. If I didn’t have students coming soon, this would be a good time to go sit in meditation. With my eyes closed, this actually feels really good. With my eyes open, I’m having some photo-sensitivity (which I have sometimes anyway). I’m not having any other visual distortions, but the tingling/cooling sensation is also spreading, first down my spine, and also throughout my body.

Again, I don’t think I’m in any danger, I just feel weird. Maybe this is what they call ‘Chaqui’?

Claire

I’ve had some “tea drunk” feelings before with really good pu’erhs and oolongs. Mostly I just get really drowsy and blissful.

Terri HarpLady

Not all Puerhs effect me this way. So far, it’s this one and Puerh Poe from Adagio, and one other, but I don’t know which one. I just started a list in my Tea Journal. I’ve drank several others and not had this effect. It’s like a 3rd eye stimulant, and the tingling has subsided, leaving behind a mild headache, drowsiness, & some of my typical migraine symptoms: difficulty focusing my eyes, & sensitivity to sound & light. I’d go lay down & take a nap, but I have students all afternoon (until 7).

The funny thing is, part of me wants to do a couple steepings, just to see if the numbness returns, LOL.

Claire

I actually got a scratchy feeling in the back of my throat with this same pu’erh, and I thought it was an allergic reaction at first.

Bonnie

First I’d ask if it only happens when you drink tea. If not I’d go to a doctor. If so, the feeling in the head feels like a numbness for me sometimes, and I think I feel it more than some people because of my brain issues. Having an empty stomach can increase the feelings too or give nausea. I get good feelings from puerh that help my migraines most of the time. Don’t drink your puerh too fast. Too much other tea also. Too much caffeine is as bad as too little for people with migraines.

inguna

Sounds like some sort of allergic reaction.
I’ve had problem with migraines as well so I really sympathize. It is not fun at all.
Tea Trail 2004: Willow Grove Workshop, however, is one of my favorits from Verdant Tea.

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It’s been a busy morning! I started with Shagadelic English Breakfast (Tea Spot), then a cup of English Breakfast (Butiki).

Then it was time to start teaching, so I broke out the Gaiwan.
This Aged Traditional Anxi Tieguanyin has been a really tasty treat!
It tastes like I imagine Bananas Foster would taste, a roasted background with bananas and vanilla creaminess (especially if you add a pinch of stevia, which I usually do after I’ve drank several cups plain).

I only have enough to drink this 2 or 3 more times…I will miss it. Today I’m making one 4 oz cup at a time, sipping and enjoying. I have no idea how many steepings I’ve been through so far, but each one has been tasty. I started with 5grams of tea in a 4 oz Gaiwan, for 6 seconds, but have gradually upped the time, & now I’m steeping for a minute or something like that, and it’s still tasty!

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Right now this is my favorite Shu.
It’s amazingly delicious, and I could drink it all day.
I think I will.

MsWhatsit

That name just lends itself to puns. If you get some more from a different company, you’ll have a pair of shu’s. But they won’t macha :o)

gmathis

Ouch! :)

Bonnie

I’m Imelda Marcos then, I have lots of Shu’s!

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I’m trying to get rid of a headache by slamming down several cups of black tea, this wonderful Keemun being one of them. I’ve already reviewed it before, but I’d like to say that I really love the backdrop of rose petals that I taste (although it doesn’t have rose petals in it, it just has a taste of them). I’ll need to order some of this, because it is tasty!

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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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