2485 Tasting Notes
I thought it was Stacy’s Birthday today, because FB said it was so.
In celebration of Stacy’s Birthday I’ve been drinking some of her teas today, starting with this one. It’s such an interesting & nuanced cup!
After I posted a Happy Birthday to Stacy on FB, I started thinking that last year on her birthday she had some big sale or contest or something. hmmmm….
It’s been awhile since it had this one in my cupboard, so with all the recent sales, I restocked! Some of the bolder breakfast teas that I love make me queasy on an empty stomach, but Dian hong don’t share that feature. The buttery richness might be the reason, but more likely it is the lack of astringency. This is not a bold tea, but it’s not a wimp either. The ensemble it inspires In my mind is all wood, bamboo & air today: Breathy bamboo flutes of varying sizes, a variety of wood/temple blocks, rain stick (sound of running water), bamboo wind chime with a gentle breeze. Soothing, random, ambient.
I had a cup of this at Tony’s house this evening. It smells awesome, but the aroma doesn’t translate fully into flavor. It was ok though.
Something I noticed: The ingredient list on steepster doesn’t completely match the ingredient list on the sample Tony has. The sample included ‘natural & artificial flavors’. It figures.
I got a package from Awkward Soul!! Yay!! Sil & I are splitting this box, so I might as well get started on them, then I can send her half along when the BBBB comes. I’ve never had a ginseng oolong. I used to enjoy dehydrated Ginseng slices a long time ago. Anyway, this is pretty nice. The tea is an olive drab colored nuggets, basically a coating of ginseng & licorice (one of my most favorite herbs ever). So the first cup is sweet from the licorice, & really quite nice. The oolong was lightly present, but most of the flavor came from that coating. The re-steep featured a little more oolong, a little less herbs, & left my throat feeling a bit scratchy. Cup #3 is more straight oolong, & there is a slightly fishy aroma to the leaf. :p
Thanks Awkward Soul!
On the topic of mints, I have been enjoying mint a little more often lately. All of the mints in my garden are grown in containers, in an effort to keep them under some semblance of control. Most of them stay outside through the winter, coming up in the spring, followed by the lemon verbena, stevia, & other perennials. I started some Chocolate Mint this past spring, & since it’s in a smaller pot, I brought it into my sunroom for the winter. Since I’m in a minty mood, I picked some & made a cup. Of course, the chocolate taste is more in the aroma than the actual tisane, & there is an odd tone to the mintiness that I can’t quite place, although it is familiar. I made a fairly strong brew, & between all the Ginger & Mint I’ve been sipping on, my gut is starting to feel better.
I go in & out of phases with mints. Sometimes I love them, sometimes I don’t. There are also some mints I enjoy more than others, with peppermint being my true favorite, & spearmint not so much. I used to love drinking Republic of Tea’s Moroccan mint over ice, it was just SO refreshing! Anyway, for the last couple of years I haven’t really liked mints in my tea so much, although I do enjoy it shredded in a Vietnamese style salad, especially freshly picked from my back yard. I grow several mints, & I used to grow an amazing curly peppermint, which took over a large portion of my yard at my old house. I meant to bring some with me, along with the jewel weed, but in the hub bub of moving, I didn’t. I went back later to get some, & they had dug it all up. There was none to be found. For a long time I couldn’t find that mint anywhere, but I recently found a source online, & I’m looking forward to getting some!
This is a pleasantly nostalgic cup, & I love the addition of lemon myrtle especially, an herb which I’ve always enjoyed! The aroma of the dry leaf is amazingly fresh, thanks to the peppermint, & the tea itself is lightly sweet & reminiscent of my younger days :)
Another Sipdown from my Sil Box!
Thanks So much for knowing that I love Ginger, Sil! BTW, I ordered a ridiculous amount of Sichuan Caravan, LOL.
I think Ginger is one of the best things with Shu, or really with any dark type of tea. This one strikes a really nice balance, with the ginger & puer both at just the right level. The Shu is a nice one, a little earth, a little semolina. It’s perfect for my day, as my guts are a little out of sync still. I made myself another bowl of soup (chicken stock, chicken, spiralized sweet potato, green onion, garlic, ginger, coconut milk, & a little red curry paste). I’m having soup, the puer, & a bottle of ginger kombucha.
Sil just informed me that another box is on it’s way! I’ve barely touched the box she sent last month, so I guess I’d better get my act together! This one is from that previous box, probably meant to entertain me during the HoliDaze season, but I was so busy in the month of December that I pretty much stuck to teas I know & love, for familiarity, comfort, & caffeine. This week I’ve been enjoying a reprieve, & it feels so good to just sit around a little bit. It’s almost noon, & I do have a some things to do, a few errands to run, some desk organizing work. But for now, I’ll enjoy a cup or 2.
This tea makes me think of a lovely lemon curd with a little crust under it, but it doesn’t quite capture what it’s aiming for, in my opinion. It’s not bad, but I would like a base that is a little thicker & chewier, if you know what I mean. Still, as an afternoon tea I can see that many people would enjoy it.
First sipdown of the New Year! 363!
My guts are a little achy this morning, so I broke out the spiralizer, spiralized a zucchini, pulled some stock from the freezer, made some tiny meatballs loaded with ginger & garlic, loaded the stock with ginger & garlic too, adding the last of the bunching onions from my garden, shredded a little romaine in there, & voila, breakfast soup. Add a side of root kimchi (the last of last winter’s batch, it was so good, time to make some more). I think that soup was just what I needed.
And a pot of this tea as well.
This tea gives the initial impression that it might have bergamot in it, but it doesn’t. It has orange bergamot mint, a variety of mint that I’d like to add to my garden (in a pot, because all mints can be terribly invasive!). This tea also has Anise Hyssop, which I’ve wanted to add to my garden for awhile, & there are a few other herbs, & Ginger, which I always love in anything. I think this was the first tea I ever purchased from Republic of Tea, back when they were THE company for interesting teas. I don’t drink it as often as I used to, but it is a lovely & naturally sweet cup, especially nice in the evening after a meal, & good for tummy aches too. I use 2 bags.