159 Tasting Notes
I love music. All kind of music. I can start the day with The Black Keys and end it with Nina Simone. But my universe on Sunday morning usually gravitates torwards classical music. This morning, I chose Erik Satie. I love the odd atmosphere found in his pieces, Gnossienne no. 1, one of my favourite piano number ever. This slow movement version is the best in my opinion:
This tea has put a spell on me, I’ve been enamoured with it since I’ve tasted it for the first time. Sadly, I’m almost done with the year 2009 pouch I’ve ordered. But Garret also sent a generous sample of year 2013 to try so it will be interesting to compare the two.
I know I’ve reviewed it only 9 days ago, but it’s so special, I feel compelled to review it again.
This morning, what’s in my cup still reminds me of spring maple water and it’s even more appropriate with the bright sunny day we’re having so far. This beautiful tea helps me believe that spring might be on its way after all…As I look through the window, even the birds and the squirrels look happier today!
First sip and my mouth is invaded with sweetness and roundness that feel almost like pudding! But I’m immediately getting a faint woodsy earthiness, which reminds me I’m actually drinking pu’erh. Floral notes emerged today, more than I’ve tasted before, reminiscent of a light fragrant rose water. It’s very subtle though, I would never qualify this tea as being “floral”.
I like how this is complex but yet so accessible. I think any tea lover would enjoy this cup, whether they are white and pu’erh tea lovers or not.
Thank you Mandala for such a wonderful experience, it delivers time after time. I will have no choice but to restock on this :-)
Yay! Today I got my super giant mason jar mug from DAVIDsTEA!! I’ve been eying it for a while and finally decided to buy one.
I love it, I love it, I love it!!! There’s something so rustic and comforting about drinking from this big old fashion recipient.
It retains heat pretty well, the tea was still warm at the end of the 24oz I just finished!
To inaugurate it, I chose this generous sample from lovely Sil.
I like vanilla tea as long as it’s not “sickening vanilla”. When it’s done right, it can be really good.
This tea is interesting, it’s actually a very decent caramel tea. No mistake here, I said caramel cause that’s what it tastes like, yes very toffee like and burnt caramel. a good base tea, probably Assam I’m guessing, but can’t call it a vanilla tea at all. It’s somewhat creamy, but not in a vanilla kind of way. Anyways, that’s my impression.
Nonetheless, I still enjoyed it a lot and I’m glad I got the chance to try it in my super mug, thank you Sil!!!
Once upon a time, we used to cherish a month called March. After a long and cold winter, we’d get all excited to see March arrive and bring along the promise that spring was well on its way.
Yes, spring, remember that? Used to be one of our four seasons…but nowadays, winter seems to be the only season left…On March 4th today, it’s freakin MINUS 20 CELSIUS!!!
Thank god I have this tea to remind me what spring season is like.
Mmmm, Darjeeling, with its fresh citrusy notes. A beautiful first flush this tea. Sweet but slightly astringent and very juicy. It’s what I call a sunny tea :-)
Thank you so much for sharing this “sunshine in a cup” with me Sil. Such a good pick me up on this cold winter day!
Not always the biggest fan of white teas, but I do have my favourite Bai Mu Dan and Silver Needle. Never had a white pu’erh until I’ve tried Mandala’s teas.
Another first is the look of this tea. Very unusual cute little white buds, they are just perfect. The look like mini pinecones.
Since it’s my first experience with this type of tea, I diligently followed Mandala’s instructions (If you know me, you know I’m usually not so good at following “the rules”!)
The brewed liquor is really pale, almost colourless.
This is sweet and fresh at the same time, it reminds me of the purest maple water. It’s almost candy sweet and It’s got that soft mineral alkalinity, it’s round and velvety in the mouth. It’s similar to some yellow tea I really love. It’s subtle, but there’s still a nice distinct pu’erh earthiness to it.
Awww…I’ve fallen in love with so many teas lately! Thought I was all set with my usuals, and now I keep adding to my staple list. That’s your fault Garret! (And Dexter3657’s, and Sil’s, lol!) But that’s what I call a good problem, is it not?
It was pretty spectacular, it provided a beautiful relaxation moment… This was a blind buy and I’m so happy I went for it. It reminded me of happy times when I was just a little girl.
My grand father was everything to me, he was a mentor and his influence made me who I am today. He was a hard working farmer, and a maple syrup producer. He was a master at transforming quenching maple water into the most amazing treat ever. I’d spend hours at the sugar shack watching him perform his art. He’d let me drink the maple water directly from the bucket that had collected the precious nectar from maple trees. If you ever tasted maple sap, you know it’s unlike any other beverage. Here, we now find maple water at the grocery store, just like coconut water. Not quite as good and fresh as having it directly from the tree but close enough!
This tea was a good reminder of those happy memories…
This morning I made fresh peanut butter to have with my toasts. It was warm and so creamy, I ate a big spoonful before spreading it!
Not all teas make the peanut butter list. (K S already know that) I usually have my regular straight Assam, Yunnan and Keemun to pair with it. Don’t like any flavoured tea with it.
You have to understand that I’m picky cause peanut butter is considered heaven food in my household.
K S mentioned in a recent post that earl grey came highly recommended on his PBJ tea list so I made a mental note of that (I personally am more of a purist, I prefer classic unaltered PB on my toasts, I ditched the J a long time ago).
So, I chose this favourite Earl of mine. I usually prefer this version cause the creamy part mellows the bergamot I sometimes find offensive in blends. The reason I like it so much is that unlike other EGC, this one doesn’t scream vanilla. I don’t mind vanilla when it’s done right, but it can be heavy and a little sickening to me. Here, it just rounds the edges of Miss Bergamot. It’s a perfect cup! And yes, it complimented wonderfully my PB toasts this morning.
So K S, thank you, earl grey officially makes THE PB list!!!
Thanks you Dexter3657 for this special offering…
First, I do realize I a m drinking Morning Sun at night. Well, I checked and I couldn’t find any Evening Moon in my cupboard…besides, nothing stipulates that it should be drunk only in the morning, right?
The leaves are so pretty, they look like sunny little spirals. I basket brewed for only 3 min. as I watched and smelled the beautiful golden liquid, I knew it was enough. I’m usually a heavy steeper, but this tea is quite potent.
It may sound a little weird, but I get the sharpness of green peppers in this tea. But it’s also sweet and slightly woodsy. It feels thick and dusty in the mouth, it’s kind of hard to explain. I also get something reminiscent of a baked potato peel, earthy and roasted. I like it a lot. It has floral notes to top it all. It does have similarities to some Golden Monkey I’ve had, but I find this to be more complex.
Most of the time, I don’t re-steep black teas unless I gongfu brew. But this one had a lot more to give, the leaves were not fully unfurled, I managed to get three very tasty infusions.
So glad I made this part of my recent Mandala order, I know I have many more cups to come, and yes, will be able to experience the joy of having it in the morning!
Thanks Dexter3657 for another tasty treat :-)
I’ve been thinking about it for months now but haven’t had the guts to actually do it. I want to start painting again. I stopped a while ago due to complicated reasons. But I feel time is right now. Just need to kick myself in the petuli and get my “clutter closet” in order, where all the painting gears are.
You know that space in your home where things get cluttered over the years and one day you open it and think, what the hell happened in there? Well that’s the closet I’m talking about. Am I the only one with such a problem?
Well I was up at 5h30 this morning, thinking, you can do this girl, it’s early and will take just a couple of hours. Just have a cup of delicious tea and read a little before you start. Several hours later, still sipping good tea and reading. WTF?? Come on fairy, gather some energy and just do it already!
Think this Guayusa combo might help? I just mixed whatever I had left of Good Morning Sunshine in the Tangerine Creamsicle jar. I made a large pot and hoping the Guayusa will kick in soon.
Beside its high energy concentration, Guayusa is delicious. These blends from Butilki are some of the best I have tried. There’s something about citrus and Gayusa that makes the flavours just explode! It is so fresh and bright, should have had it right from the start, my closet would be in order and I’d be painting by now!!!
Oh well, it’s never too late!
Thanks Butiki for being part of my creativity project!
On a good or a bad day, I have tea. Yes, it’s part of my life everyday. It’s something that brings me pleasure no matter how shitty my day is. I’ll take pleasure over happiness. Happiness isn’t reliable, you can’t expect to be happy everyday even if you want to. But you can experience the pleasure of having tea everyday :-)
Tea pleasure is reliable and measurable. This one is proof to my theory. It’s not a concept, but a moment in time that exists and is seizable, a simple pleasure in its purest form.
It is with such a pride that I broke a piece of my first sheng cake today. I know I have already reviewed this tea not long ago. This is just a quick addition.
It is stunning… a mossy-earthy-smoky feel and fresh minty grassy notes that make it so enjoyable… if that’s even possible, it tastes better than the first time I had it!
Dexter3657, I must thank you again for sending a sample in the first place.
(See previous note)