439 Tasting Notes

drank Gui Hua Oolong by Tealux
439 tasting notes

Pssst… Steepster… Did I ever tell you how much I love oolongs? Cause yeah…I do very, very much!!

This afternoon, I felt fancy…I’m a total tea snob, not gonna lie. Plus I’m a girly girl, so sometimes…occasionally…I pull out my really fancy gears.

That’s what I did today, and it made me really happy!

Now the tea. It’s lovely.

It Osmanthus oolong so be fully aware that it’s very floral and also fruity.

Unlike some others I have tried, this one doesn’t feel soapy in the mouth.

It has a very distinctive taste of peach, to the point that one might think it’s peach scented but it’s not.

Very creamy with a nice body. It’s not overly green, but it is somewhat grassy.

Also, for the price, this tea is an awesome deal. Beautifully rolled and crafted, large leaves when they open up.

I love it and it was the perfect companion to fit my precious antique teawares this afternoon.

Pics of the session:






That cup is perfect! The oolong sounds amazing too :D

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Oh lord this tea…. Wuyi rock oolong, you do rock!

Beautiful leaves, they render a warm golden amber brew.

So fragrant!

It tastes like grilled honey peaches and almonds.

So sweet, juicy, nutty and toasty!!

A real treat tonight. I won’t be able to save this for special occasions, no I won’t.

I will have it again tomorrow.

Oolongs are just amazing!!

Pics of tonight’s session:





Lovely pictures! Rock oolong does indeed rock :)


Mikumofu, thank you :-)


Sounds devine! And love your pictures! Will have to add this one to the wishlist.


Thank you Ubacat! I don’t think you can possibly go wrong with this tea :-)


Not the tea but my brewing skills still need perfecting! :-)

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(Backlog from 2 days ago)

If you are Canadian like me, you know it’s no fun to shop for tea from our dear American neighbors at the moment. Our dollar is sinking and the exchange is terrible.

I have turned to Tao Tea Leaf recently, they are based in Ontario. My love has grown so much for this company. They offer exceptional quality and you can find many different superior oolongs.

This one is no exception. It’s exquisite and sophisticated.

Baozhong is very lightly oxidized. It tastes like a breathe of fresh air.

Very floral, think lilac.

It’s also as buttery and creamy as can be, with a sweet aftertaste.

I could drink this every day that’s how much I like it. And I might just do that :-)

Pics of the session:




Breathtaking pictures!!
The tea sounds really fantastic, too. Buttery lilac… mmm!


So beautiful :)


I hear you on the exchange rates! I’ll have to check this company out. :)


Thank you DeliriumFrogs, the tea is fantastic indeed!!

Scribbles, thank you :-)

Fjellrev….sigh yes, damn exchange! You can’t go wrong with Toa. Been ordering also from the wonderful Camellia Sinensis in Montreal.

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It’s strong, it’s dark, it’s punchy.

It will wake you, shake you, smack you….and then…it will sooth you, comfort you, love you.

Yes, this tea is kind of abusive. “Stay away” you’re gonna say…but I can’t…I loooove it!!!

It’a Damn Fine Tea.

And it knows how to treat a fairy on a Sunday morning in her tea nook.




You are too fooooney!

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When I saw Dexter ‘s pic of Mandala’s milk oolong on Instagram, I felt compelled to have a Mandala oolong tonight also.

Colored Species is another favorite of mine…such a bright and delicate tea.

Vegetal and grassy, but I can detect hints nutmeg and cinnamon notes. Sweet and floral with a minty fresh finish, it’s everything I love about this type of oolong.

You won’t see it on the pics I took during this session cause I was in a zen mood and needed some candle light tonight, but this tea is really green, beautiful leaves to look at.

I steeped many times in the glass gaiwan, and it gave me such a peaceful session.

Now I have to remember to drink it more often!

Pics of the session:




It is Amanda :-)

Amanda 'SoggyEnderman' Wilson

I really need to dip into Mandala’s other teas, I was really impressed with their Puerhs from the samplers.

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When I first opened this cake two months ago, it was literally sweating oils, the wrapper was full of specks:


It just looked so luscious, I was really hoping to love it. I did.

It’s my favorite sheng of the moment.

It offers such a bright taste, with a minimum of astringency.

Fruity, (white grapes mostly) and a bit spicy, oaky with just a hint of smoke in the early steeps…that smoke disappears completely in the later steeps.

Very strong qi, it provides that warming feeling I like so much, without making my heart race. It’s just so soothing…

Now I’m just hoping there’s still some cakes left…cause I need a few cakes as backup.

I need more…and I’m very surprised there’s only one review here, it deserves more attention…

Pics of the session:



Amanda 'SoggyEnderman' Wilson

Oh man, this tea looks so good! Of course your pictures add to its appeal ;)


Those pics are gorgeous!


Thank you Amanda & Kaylee :-)


I love that teapot.

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First to review this, really? Well let’s try to do a good job at it then, it’s worth it!

I was quite intrigued with this tea as soon as I saw how unusual it looked like and read its description….I knew I had to buy some. Anything that has maple in its description gets my attention. (My grandpa had a sugar shack, I grew up literally “in” maple!)

Interesting fact, this tea was compressed and aged in bamboo baskets.

Its dry appearance is light and flaky. It looks like giant flakes of roasted maté, and pretty similar in terms of color.

Its smells a little like damp moss and seaweeds.

I rinsed once as recommended.

The first steep was a beautiful golden yellow.

It feels round in the mouth, almost oily, very nice.

The taste is super sweet, with a light earthiness to it. Maple water, yes please…the description did not lie.

I get a nice fresh camphor finish just like some puerh do.

It’s so tasty, some sweet spiciness emerges in the background, reminds me of anise.

Bonus: it provides a very relaxing and warming qi. I feel giddy :-)

This is a superb tea and I’m now adding Liu Bao to the list of favorite tea! It will be interesting to also try their 1996.

I take this opportunity to give some love to the wonderful teahouse that Camellia Sinensis is. When I used to live in the beautiful city of Montréal, I was a frequent customer of theirs. Superior product and impeccable service.

Americans, take advantage of our low Canadian dollar and encourage them! They even offer free shipping to the USA for all orders over $50. (Did I mention they have exquisite teaware? Cause they do!!)



Pics of this amazing tea:




This tea sounds AMAZING!


I’m right there with boychik… amazing! (and, I checked out their teaware, and it’s gorgeous! Thanks for the link, and the beautiful pictures!)


Boychik, it’s very different and unusual :-)

DeliriumFrogs thank you and you’re welcome! Hope you get to experience them someday :-)


Their Sencha Ashikubo gives me delusions of being 25 again.


Cwyn, I’ll take some “feeling 25 again” please, dilusional or not ;-)

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We already know he’s a tea prodigy and does things like no one else does.

He decided that dried mushrooms should be incorporated to tea…and that’s exactly what he did, as if it should have been done all along. Cause this is what you’ll think of when you taste this little marvel for the first time: where have you been all my life oh mushroom tea!!

Don’t think this resemble Mirkwood, his other mushie tea, cause it doesn’t…not even one bit.

Mirkwood is more brothy and savory. This is desserty!

Candy Cap Mushrooms, who knew??? They smell like maple candies! My whole kitchen smelled like candy after I opened the pouch, to the point that it got me worried, I sure don’t want my tea to taste that sweet.

But just like all the blends he creates, this tea offers the perfect balance. Dried fruits plus woodsy and cocoa notes. The star here though: natural maple goodness. And no worries, this ain’t Aunt Jamaima type of fake sweetness. This is gloriously tasty, with only two ingredients: Premium Chinese black tea and mushies.

Having said that, I don’t taste mushroom so please mushroom haters, don’t deprive yourself from this little gem. This variety brings sweetness, woodsy notes and layers of complexity. No damp or earthy funk.

Brenden sure is Michigan’s National “Teasure” , he likes to think outside the box and it pays off. Bravo!!






if you want a mushroom tea try this one: http://steepster.com/teas/hung-phat/43331-lotus-reishi-senshi

also i have some tasting notes there


awesome tasting note though :)


Thank you Kirkoneill, I do know reishi tea, very healthy, no camellia sinensis tho. Willow is actually real black tea with the addition of mushrooms, that’s what makes it unique in my humble opinion :-)


well i don’t see any point of adding an ingredient if one cannot taste it. (unless…. its to make the main taste unique) :)


Lol kirk it DOES bring something unique: MAPLE!! That’s why this variety of mushroom is called Candy Cap. It’s also a bit woodsy, and like I mentioned, it brings layers and complexity to the mix :-)


Candy cap mushrooms are delicious probably Lactarius fragilis or L. camphoratus. Really good addition to food. Also, adding Clitocybe odora to tea would be very interesting as well.

Whispering Pines Tea Company

Clitocybe odora would be neat for sure! :)


Are you two tea makers bonding over mushrooms? That’s adorable. :)

Whispering Pines Tea Company

Hahahaha, mushrooms are just…sigh…so beautiful.


Wow, Tea Fairy, great pictures. I love how you captured the detail in the dry leaf. Of course, I love all your tea ware too! So glad I took a chance and ordered this tea. Just got an email a few days ago that it is on it’s way!

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This came as a sample in my last Yunnan Sourcing order. As usual, YS does not disappoint with the quality and the size of their samples.

Though Jin Jun Mei are usually not my favorite black teas, this one I must say hits the mark.

It’s good.

The scent is beautiful, and so is the color of the brew, stunning.

It has a nice body, feels thick in the mouth.

Sweet and somewhat savory, slightly salty, the main note I can detect is definitely yam or sweet potato.

It has a bit of smoke, but very subtle.

If I had one Jin Jun Mei to keep in stock, this would be the one for sure. I might purchase this.

I needed peace and focus tonight, and this tea gave me just that.

Relaxing session by the candlelight…






Beautiful pictures and a beautiful-sounding tea!


Yes, the tea sounds great and I love the photos.


awesome! i may try that someday :D have you tried this one from YS? i have some on the way from 2014. this one is 2013 but has an accurate picture. http://steepster.com/teas/yunnan-sourcing/45328-pure-bud-bi-luo-chun-yunnan-black-tea-autumn-2013


Mikumofu & Roughage, thank you :-)

Kirk, I sure have and here’s what I thought of it at the time…keep in mind that new harvest might be different though.


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This tea is still my favorite jasmine tea. I know that Jasmine Dragon Pearls are more popular, but this one wins by a small margin for me.

It’s so sweet, with just the right amount of jasmine. It has none of the soapy perfume taste often found in this type of floral tea.

The green tea never turns bitter and is good for multiple steeps.

After looking at some of Boychik’s pics on Instagram, I’ve decided to start using my fancy antique bone china more often. What is it good for if you don’t use it right?

Well, it actually made my tea taste even better :-)

Pics of this afternoon’s session:





Such a pretty cup!


Thanks Kaylee :-)


Oh, those pics!! SO MUCH GORGEOUS!! :D


Aww, thank you so much DeliriumFrogs, tea is my inspiration :-)

Maddy Barone

Yes, I love using my grandmother’s tea set that she received as a wedding present in 1919. I save it for special occasions though,and use a vintage tea cup I bought on Ebay for more casual times.


I really need to start using all of my tea ware. What’s the point of having it, if it just sits in a box or the back of the cupboard and I never enjoy it.


It looks so beautiful in that cup. How did you brew it?


Maddy, that must be such a special set!! :-)

Anlina, same here, that’s excactly why I started using mine!

KiwiDelight Thank you! I just brewed it in a simple Gaiwan :-)

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Time to update this profile of mine…it’s 2015!!

I am French Canadian, so please forgive me if my English is not always perfect :-/

My relationship with tea in a nutshell:

I’m married to straight Black. I have torrid love affairs with Oolong and Puerh. I party with Green and White occasionally. Flavored are not my BFF, I usually stay away from them.

Love Steepster, a place for tea lovers, where you learn and share with others.

About me:

I am a free spirit, I let people be who they are and expect the same in return.

Books! I love classic literature, but also modern and pretty much anything that captures my attention.

Music is also something I can’t live without… From Bach to Nirvana, my ears know no boundaries…

Animal and nature lover, amateur photographer.

I’ve been drinking tea for as long as I can remember.

Drinking tea is a sensorial experience. The name in itself “Camellia Sinensis” lingers the promess of an adventure for the senses…

Not a big «swapper», but will occasionally. Not because I don’t want to share but because I’m trying not to hoard so much.

Also, I have narrowed down the teas I really like over the years, and I don’t feel the need to try and buy everything the way I used to. (Maybe I have become a tea snob? Sigh…)

My ratings: because I pretty much drink only teas that I judge exceptional, my ratings are usually high. Don’t be shocked to see lots of 90’s and a few 100’s. That’s because I’ve had my share of crapy teas and I’m done with that ;-)

You can find me on Instagram here, I post about my tea sessions mostly, but also about the beautiful nature that surrounds me, and my fury companions :-)



The Laurentians, Canada

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