2859 Tasting Notes
At my desk this morning, I already booked a wedding, fielded a series of emails, while drinking a cup of Organic Superfine Keemun from Teavivre. I don’t have anything new to say about it, so I’m just logging it here. During my breakfast break I drank a pot of Red-Tailed Hawk, & I’m sure I should also give it a separate review, but I really need to stay on track & get somethings (taxes) done!
Now I’m drinking this Hand curled Golden Buds Dianhong.
5G + 4oz blue lotus tiny porcelain teapot X 15/30/45 sec….etc
First off, this tea looks exactly like Yunnan Sourcing’s Pure Bud Bi Luo Chun, with roughly the same ratio of gold & everything. YS’s gold is slightly more golden in color, like just a hint of orange to the coloration. Neither one has much in to offer in the dry aroma department, but the wet aroma of these leaves is distinctly that of honey! That’s all I’m going to give by comparison of these 2 teas today, but I have enough of this one to drink it one more time, & I believe a full on comparison will be happening then! Just sayin’ :)
So, this tea IS delicious. It’s honey & cream, honey wheat toast. I think I’m on the 6th steep, & now back to my taxes.
Here’s another tea from the Steepster Select box. For some reason I thought this might resemble a sheng puer, but it really doesn’t. I followed the steeping parameters suggested by SS. The initial cup has a grapey brightness, more like grape peels to me, a creamy vanilla taste, & for some reason reminds me of waffles. There is really nice fruity aroma too. The 2nd cup is more ‘dry’, but not in an astringent way, and a little more savory. I’m not done with it, but that’s all I have for now. I’ll try to do a gongfu session with the 2nd serving of this.
I get my vanilla from Penzey’s, & when you get to the bottom of the vanilla bottle, there is harp of a vanilla bean in there. The main thing I used vanilla for is almond flour pancakes, so I usually squeeze out the seeds into the batter. Today I dropped the bean into my cup of this tea, just for fun.
At first I thought it might be a fail: I could smell the remaining alcohol from the vanilla, but I let it sit for a few, added a little sweetening, & it was damn right tasty! We had pancakes, so this made for an after breakfast treat.
Back in my vegetatian/vegan days, we used to eat a lot of buckwheat at my house: Soba noodles, buckwheat pancakes, & Kasha (not to be confused with Kashi). I have a ton of tasty recipes that I miss, & I might have to try eating some Kasha soon, to see how it digests, since it’s not a true grain. Most buckwheat noodles have gluten in them, although I think Eden (or some other company that’s been around awhile) makes one that is 100% buckwheat.
So this tea was a trip down memory lane for me, like having a bowl of Kasha, without having to chew it. It’s not the first Soba Cha I’ve had, but I haven’t had one in awhile. A pleasant evening tea, roasty & sweet.
I originally ordered this tea because it has the words ‘fu shou’ in its name, bringing to mind my beloved Anxi Fo Shou, but it is not that tea, & & I figured that would be the case, but a girl’s gotta try, right?
Regardless, it is still an interesting tea, rich & malty, and a little sweet. I still haven’t got my steeping parameters worked out, but I’ve only drank it a few times. The first time I used a little too much leaf, this time I could have used a bit more, as it’s a little on the thin side. Like Goldilocks, next time it will hopefully be just right :)
Today is day 2 of the fish tank redo. Yesterday we drained & cleaned the tank, moving all the fish to a smaller tank. Today we’ll set it back up. Tony leaves for KC tomorrow, which will give the water a chance to settle & then we’ll start adding fish again.
I’ve been drinking my way through some of the Steepster Select teas today, and at the same time Tony & I have been draining the gigantic fishtank. This has been an ongoing process. Last weekend we set up a smaller tank, & today we had a fish catching contest (I won. I have crazy reflexes that are at times dangerous to me, LOL). Anyway, I’ve also been sipping teas.
This is a really tasty one, nicely malty & honey sweet. I didn’t find it to be overly astringent, but it does have this one taste that I haven’t been able to label. It’s a rustic kind of bitterness that I actually enjoy from time to time, & some of Mandala’s teas share this same feature.
Years ago, when the internet was young (yes, children, there was such a time), there were only a few tea companies I knew about that actually had real full leaf teas. Republic of Tea was one of them, & for awhile they had a ‘rare teas’ page (or something like that). These were teas that weren’t offered on their displays at the Natural food store. Did I order from there, way back when?
YOU KNOW I DID!
This was my first introduction to Oolong teas, & I ordered them like I do everything else, with wild abandon! I fell in love with Orchid Oolong (& some others).
This is a lovely cup, gently floral, smooth, lightly roasty, with a sweet & slightly nutty taste. I steeped 4/5/& 7 minutes, & I don’t think a 4th cup will be happening. I can’t tell you if this orchid oolong is the same as the one they carried. That really was a long time ago. R of T was amazing to me back in those days, so amazing that I wrote a song & dedicated it to them. Here’s the link, if you’d like to hear the song, called “TeaMind” http://harpsinger.net/Terri_Langerak/My_CDs.html
Here is another of the teas I shared with the BBBB. I was gonna try to compare this one to the Pure bud bi Luo, but got sidetracked, so there is not much to say.
This one doesn’t have the buttery aroma of the other, but is, in my opinion, maltier & a little more floral. Both are sweet, but this one is a little deeper.
Both are delicious.
I just noticed that Yunnan Sourcing has their spring 2014 teas up on their website now…sigh…I’ve been very happy with everything I’ve gotten from them.
This is one of three teas that I sent to my BBBB sisters, which I hope they will both enjoy. Tender buds, hand rolled into the ‘spring snail’ shape, with a sweet aroma & a large ratio of gold. The flavor is heavenly, at least to me, with a thick creamy kind of feel, & a buttery sugarcane taste.
I’m convinced that in some past life I was a high class Chinese concubine to some emperor, laying around dressed in silk, sending some servant to some sacred spring to bring water for my teapot. In some other past life, I was a servant going to fetch that water, sneaking a sip to see if the water was really as wonderful as the legends claimed.
In some other life I was a Shaolin monk…
I feel that these past lives (& others) explain my affinity for Chinese teas over all others, & my need to do Taichi every day (or not feel ‘right’).
Yup, I think that explains it.