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2495 Tasting Notes

And here is the third selection from the April TOMC.
To me, this is like a delicious dessert! Not too sweet, but rich & tasty. Warming the leaf up in my yixing, the aroma is of cream, hazelnuts, & berries. The tea itself is caramelized brown sugar, hazelnut, & a creamy mouth, with a sweet hint of berry, like a luscious, but not too sweet dessert. There is a vaporous after-aroma on incense, but it is only faint compared to that of the Dancong. As this one steeps out, rocky qualities rise while the creamy sensation subsides.

Normally, I’d only drink one of these oolongs on any given day. But it was fun & interesting to followed the suggestions sent along with the April TOMC, to see how these oolongs differed from one another, due to differences in growing location, & processing methods. It amazes me how teas can be so varied! I guess that’s why I love tea so much!

MsWhatsit

Wow, that sounds awesome.

Terri HarpLady

I’ll put some in your box! I sent you a Gaiwan, right?

MsWhatsit

Yep. Looking forward to trying it.

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This is the 2nd tea from the April TOMC. The dry aroma is a light incense, the warm aroma is of red grapefruit & sandalwood. It’s very addictive. I sat breathing it in, & I love it.

The first time I tasted Mi Lan Xiang Phoenix Mountain Dancong, it kind of freaked me out. I’d never had a tea with the vaporous after-aroma incense-like sensation in my sinuses. I also didn’t really care much for the feeling like I was drinking incense mixed with grapefruit juice. It just wasn’t right.

Amazingly, each time I drink it, I enjoy it more! It’s a very complex tea, best suited to a gongfu session. The early cups are gently sweet grapefruit, with a bit of the bitter rind, a pinch of clove, & the after glow of sandalwood, & with each steep it builds, like eating a sweet grapefruit in a Buddhist temple, the air heavy with incense & flowers.

Yvonne

Beautiful description – this sounds like a truly wonderful delight.

Nxtdoor

This is why I should not be writing tasting notes. Mine said something like “this tea makes me think of hot dog”. Maybe I should quit.

Yvonne

Lol, mine are worse! Yours are awesome – please don’t quit!

cryptickoi

hahaha,Nxtdoor…mine aren’t anything to brag about that’s for sure…

Sil

nxtdoor – not allowed! also…are you going to the tea festival this weekend (terri will let me hijack her note hahaha)

Cavocorax

LOL – I want to read about this hot dog tea.

Terri HarpLady

Nxtdoor, I love your review, LOL. We need reviews like that!
AND little terri said,
“I WANT TO GO TO THE TEA FESTIVAL WITH YOU GUYS!!! WAAAAAAA!”

Sil

Terri…i wish you could come too. Cavo has a sick little one so it’s just me, Raritea and Kittenna…though i’ll probably beat those two there since they’re SLOW POKES!

Terri HarpLady

awww, so sorry your kid is sick Cavo :(

Nxtdoor

What? A tea festival? What rock have I been under? Yeah, I wanna go. I have a think on a Saturday from 4 pm onward. Can we go Sunday?

Bonnie

Who has a TEA festival in the middle of Winter snow storms?! The abominable snow-teaman?!

Cavocorax

Thanks Terri! She’s much happier now (well, she’s sleeping now! ha), which makes me hope she’s through the worst.

Too bad about the tea festival. Part of me wants to just text Sil at the last moment and show up anyways but… aaaaghh.

The good thing is I’ll PROBABLY be in TO next year too. (And the year after? And…)

Cavocorax

Bonnie – I was wondering that too.

Hey Sil, is this thing indoors?

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Today I decided to revisit the Month of April selections from the Verdant TOMC. I’m gradually dismantling the file boxes that I’ve been storing those teas in, drinking through each month & then moving any teas I still have from that month to join their brethren in the shelves that are organized by type. So all the Tieguanyins will share a space, for example, instead of having them spread out in TOMC files, etc.

The April TOMC box featured 3 oolongs, with this one being the first.
Nuggets of green & gray, with a lighty green & floral aroma. Once I warmed the leaf in a hot dry Gaiwan, essence of apricot & yellow spring flowers arose.

The early steeps were lightly sweet & floral, with a tangy Apricot that gradually built up, so that the middle cups were thick, sweet, & tangy, with a pinch of salt. Later steepings took on the flavor of cream & apricot, with a citrus after-glow.

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Another tea I enjoyed this morning, a little malt & a hint of chocolate. I’ve drank a lot of tea since then, so that’s all I got, this time.

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Enjoyed a cup of this earlier today: lightly malty, lightly floral, today I picked up a little Cedar.

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I’m a sucker for Verdant teas, without a doubt. I’ll buy almost everything they offer, & experience has shown me that I am rarely disappointed.

I am very happy that I bought a cake of this. I’m really just getting started with it, maybe 5 steeps in, but really enjoying it’s complexity, starting with a blend of wood & incense in the early steepings, with a nice camphor mouth.

These middle steepings have an emerging fruitiness…
~~~~~~~~~~~~
Sadly, I got sidetrack & that is the extent of my notes, although I did continue to sip for a long time. I will probably up the amount to 7G I think next time, as I tend to like my Shu a little strong. All in all, I enjoyed it!

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I’m still working my way through the Verdant TOMC teas, & I’ve been enjoying this sheng all afternoon. I went with 5G, which is way more than I usually use for a Sheng, especially one this young! But I was following the suggested steeping parameters that came with the tea, so that’s what I did. I preheated my yixing, dumped the water & added the tea, closed the lid & let the leaf warm, & the aroma was wonderful! It was also familiar, but I can’t quite place it.

After a quick rinse, I started with 5 sec steeps, slowly building up a second at a time. The earlier steepings feature a crisp & savory character, with a lime garnish. I’m in the later cups now, & it’s sweet, clean, pure, refreshing even! There is still a hint of lime, & my mouth waters after each sip. In one of these later cups there was a hint of honey mustard, LOL. Needless to say, the energy of this tea is abundant!

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I really enjoyed drinking this, but don’t really have much in the way of comments at this time, as I was teaching while I sipped it & didn’t take any notes. Gratefully, I have enough to try it several more times, & hopefully I’ll have more to say next time!

cryptickoi

I’m looking forward to trying that tea..

Ysaurella

would you recommend it as a nice Oolong

Sil

Ysaurella – it’s a fruitier sort of oolong if i remember right…not green, not roasty…

Terri HarpLady

yeah, as an oolong it is very different from the ones I’m used to. So I wouldn’t consider it characteristic of oolongs.
I would recommend it as a nice tea :)

Ysaurella, if you’re interested in trying out some oolongs, I can put together a nice varied box for you, if you like.

Amariel

Hmmm, the Kenyan teas seem to be gaining popularity. I should consider trying some. I wonder if Stacy has thought of putting together a Kenyan tea sampler (assuming she has not and I haven’t missed anything).

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I finally have some of this back in my collection! It’s so good!
You think of Zheng Shan Xiao Zhong, & usually a smokey lapsang souchong comes to mind, but this is not that tea. This is a roasty chocolaty cup, but not smoked. It’s delicious!

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This is the type of tea I can drink with breakfast, which I did today.
It’s not the type of tea I could drink on an empty stomach, the brightness of the brew would not bode well for me.
But with breakfast, it’s great!

Sil

sniffles waaaaant… haha

Terri HarpLady

I’m sending you some in the next box, right?

Sil

yes please! heh

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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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