2897 Tasting Notes

It’s been a busy day, so no real tasting notes on this, but I’ve reviewed it plenty of times. It’s a lovely buttery rich brew, no astringency, smooth & sweet, & I can drink it on an empty stomach whilst contemplating what to have for breakfast, & that’s what I did this morning.


I,ve had my share of black teas today, but now you remind me I could totally fix myself a cup of this wonderful tea :-)

Terri HarpLady

Glad to inspire! :)

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My final tea of the evening has been this Sheng, from last spring’s Reserve TOMC.
7G + 5 oz yixing (rinse) x 15/30/45sec etc…
For starters, this one has a fresh pine forest scent, which is very appealing. The early cups are instantly pine & camphor, & then maybe 4 steeps in there is also a sweet mint quality to it. The later steepings still remind me of Hominy (grits), taking on a butteriness as well. I’m not done drinking it just yet, I think I can still get a few more cups out of it, but this is the end of it, as this is a sipdown!

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It looks like today has turned out to be a Verdant Tea Drinking Extravaganza, lol. I didn’t plan it that way, but one tea led to another, if you know what I mean.
I am trying to finish out the month by drinking as many of the teas I haven’t had in awhile as possible, & I also wanted to vary my habit of drinking mostly black tea, so I reached randomly into one of the Oolong boxes (there are 3: Tieguanyin-new, old, & aged; Wuyi Oolongs & Dancongs; Other Oolongs – Taiwan, Oriental Beauty, & Flavored.) This one came out of the ‘other’ box.
5G + 4oz Gaiwan X 15/30/45sec/etc…
This is a tasty tea, bearing a strong resemblance to Laoshan Black, which is no surprise since they come from the same location & leaf material. It’s been awhile since I drank it, so I forgot that I actually prefer this one steeped in a cup, the same way I prefer Laoshan Black, 3min/5min.
Still it was a nice tea to sip on during the early afternoon.

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I didn’t realize I had any of this, but I came across a 1oz package this morning, so I figured, “why not?”
This is my least favorite of Verdant’s Black teas. It’s not bad, it’s still a delicious tea, but I don’t crave it. I’ve reviewed it enough times that I feel like I don’t really need to say anything more about it.
5G + 4oz blue lotus porcelain teapot X (rinse) 15/30/45sec/1min/2

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I’m never quite sure where to put the review for this tea, as it isn’t really the ‘summer’ blend, I don’t think, but the photo matches the current formula, so here it is. I really enjoyed the original formulation of this tea, but I think I enjoy the current formulation even more!
I love that this blend does not feature Darjeeling or Ceylon, favoring the Chinese teas that I love instead. My two favored Chinese blacks are in here giving a substantial chocolatey base, strengthened by the Jedi Master of Tea, master Han’s Shu. Add the sweet incense of Big Red Robe, & top it off with some thick & bright Bai Mu Dan. Yeah, baby!

This blend has seen various combinations since I first tried it, thanks to a sample Bonnie sent me when I first joined steepster. I hope Verdant will continue to let it evolve with whatever is in their cupboards, because I’m sure every version will be tasty. Call it Imperial Breakfast. Call it Imperial Breakfast Summer Blend. Call it whatever you like, I’ll call it delicious.


so I’ll call it YUMMMMM :)


Wow sounds interesting :)

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My taxes are finished!
My son Drew’s taxes are also finished!
My son Leif & I will finish his taxes tomorrow, & then we’ll do everyone’s FAFSA.
And then we’ll sign up for Health Care. All by Friday.

This was the tea I drank all afternoon, this was the one that saw me through.
I don’t have much to say about it. It is a lovely Dian Hong, & although the needles aren’t as Golden as the name would imply, it is still delicious, sweet, lightly malty, & thick in feel.
And now I’m going to bed. Hopefully the raccoon won’t be back at 5am again!


Yeah on taxes and tea. I don’t mean to be a downer but good luck signing up for healthcare by Friday – it took me months. They say it is fixed, so hope so for your benefit.


Also, right… taxes….
(We don’t usually get ours done until April, or later?)

Terri HarpLady

well….I’m not sure the healthcare will be happening anytime soon, not because of the website, but because apparently I am once again one of those people who falls into the cracks.
My income isn’t low enough for medicaid, but it’s not high enough to qualify for any of the subsidies (thank you state of Missouri for ruining it for people like me), so I’m excluded. The up side is I don’t have to pay a fine. For now, I’m not gonna worry about it.

A musician friend of mine skipped the website & used a local broker, who got her signed up for a plan, & I may set an appointment to meet with that person to see what they say. I was trying to set it up for myself & my 2 college attending sons. Maybe if I just do it for me only, and let them each do their own.
On the other hand, I haven’t been to a doctor in years, & have no plans to go to one anytime in the future. It is doubtful that I would ever even make the deductable, so I consider it all a waste of money anyway…money I could spend on tea! :)
Maybe Tony & I should move to Toronto…

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drank Black Gold by Mandala Tea
2897 tasting notes

I stayed up way too late, & then I woke up way too early! At 5am I kept hearing this gnawing & scratching sound. I also heard it last week one morning. I kept trying to go back to sleep, but finally just resigned myself to getting up. I located where I was hearing the sound, & at first I thought maybe a mouse was inside my wall, but it sounded too big, & I realized that maybe it’s something scratching around on my roof, because my room is an attic room, & it was in a roof corner kind of place.

So I banged on the wall, & it stopped for a second, then started up. I banged again, same thing. I banged a bunch & it made a weird noise. That’s when I realized it was probably a raccoon. My daughter has had 2 racoons dig out sections of roofing on their house to make a place to sleep, & the area on my roof that it was at is basically sheltered from 2 sides forming a corner, with an oak tree above it.

Lucky the coon moved on, and I’m really hoping it won’t try again. I love raccoons, & I love that there are lots of them in my neighborhood (along with foxes, hawks, etc), but I don’t want it to destroy my roof!

To hear the wierd sound the coon made, which turns out to be a ‘purr’:

So this tea has been a welcome addition to my way too early morning: bold, rich, a little sweet, & as it cools it gets a little grapey.


The raccoon must have wanted to get at your tea stash! Hope you’ve been sleeping like a baby since the incident :)

Terri HarpLady

cuz we all know how much raccoons love tea, right? :)


Tea: Giving raccoons the even-keeled energy that they need to carouse and plunder all night long since 3000 BC.

Terri HarpLady

You’re a genius!
Seriously, I think I figured out why the raccoon was on my roof. It looks like there is a small hole leading into the soffit there, & I’m guessing there’s a bird nest there.

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Sipdown! I have no idea what my tea total is for now, & I’m not even going to try to figure it out until next week. This Shu was sent to me from Spencer, & I’ve been sipping it all afternoon. The main flavor elements were semolina & cedar.
Thanks Spencer!

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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.


Sounds lovely :)

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drank Hunan Dark Tea by Tea Source
2897 tasting notes

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.

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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!


St. Louis, MO



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