2895 Tasting Notes
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.
I’m not really going to say a lot about this tea, except to say that I enjoyed multiple steepings of it all afternoon while I was working on my taxes. The first time I tried this tea, I hated it, but that was due to my own ineptness at the time. I’ve learned to keep the steepings very short, & then I am rewarded with amazing aromas & tastes: Honey, lovely floral aromas, incense, & then it becomes grapefruit. There is more to it, & I know I’m not really doing it justice, but that’s all I’ve got.
I’ve been working on my taxes for a couple of hours, going through receipts & stuff, in preparation for opening Turbo Tax & entering all the info. Every year I say I’m going to spend an hour once a month doing this stuff & although there have been a few years when I did & my taxes were quick & easy (or at least as quick & easy as it can get when you have a home office), this is not one of those years. In fact, although this isn’t my worst year ever (it was a nightmare, back when I was new at this), it’s one of those years where I just threw things into a file draw, without any sorting, & hence it’s taking me weeks to do what could have been done in one day.
Add to that, I relocated my office a few months ago from the 2nd floor to the first, & I still haven’t really begun to unpack everything (most of it is piled in the corner of my bedroom in boxes on the third floor). But luckily, I did set up my tea shation in my office, so I have tea.
So this tea is from the Reserve TOMC from last spring. It is actually very nice, with a creamy kind of texture, sweet & light, & the one taste that really stood out to me at some point was sourdough bread. I did 4 steepings at 30sec/60/90/120
& I might still do a few more. The last steeping had a nice tanginess to it.
This is, in my opinion, a nice breakfast tea. Sure, it’s all cut up into teeny tiny pieces, which really resemble course coffee grounds and have a spicy aroma. But for making a pot of tea to enjoy with breakfast, it’s a no-brainer, & it steeps up fast! The cup is nicely bold, malty, & has some interesting flavors that I will have to pay more attention to next time.
The trees (& god knows what else) are pollinating in St. Louis, & we have all of our windows open to let in the fresh spring air, but unfortunately for me, that means allergies. I’ve had them my entire life, as does my mom & as did my gramma, & they bring with them a tendency towards lung issues. I’ve resolved the chronic lung issues I had by deleting gluten & grains, legumes, dairy, & sugar from my eating, & the side benefit of that has been no more arthritis, tendonitis, & other inflammatory problems as well. But I still have allergies.Bring on the Nettles! This is the best natural anti-histamine I’ve found, & I’ll be drinking a lot of it to keep myself functional. My formula:
1 heaping Tb + mug of hot water X just let it steep awhile then drink it.
AND, because 1 cup might not cut it:
1/4 cup leaf + 1 Qt of hot water X let it steep until cool, drink a cup, put the jar in the frig & strain as needed throughout the day. Make a fresh Qt every morning.
The effect of Nettles is not cumulative. I usually notice an improvement within hours. The down side of this is that if I don’t drink it every day (& I do get tired of drinking it), the symptoms come right back. So I’ll be drinking a lot of it again this year, starting today.