404 Tasting Notes
Ok, this morning, I need Thurbo as in turbo, propeller, fast fuse, or what have you. Just give me energy please. This tea will hopefully help me stay grounded, as I have big plans!
I like this Thurbo, another tasty Darjeeling from Butiki. It’s a little spicy and astringent, lots of muscatel. All these big flavours peak for me at second infusion which is the best one in my opinion. Later, it gets a little woodsy.
Although my favourite Darj from Butiki remains Castleton Moonlight, I still feel this one is an excellent pick me up!
I have a special day planned with a very special friend of mine today. Having had serious health issues for several months now, it’s my first attempt at a real outing with a friend and though I am quite anxious about the whole thing, I am beyond excited…this means I am doing better :-)
I haven’t slept all night but that’s ok, I’m used to it and I know I can still manage to have a good time. What we have planned doesn’t require acute intellectual abilities anyways, lol:
1)Breakfast at our favourite restaurant
2)short girly shopping session – only shoes and tea are on the list
3)talk some more and have some tea in the afternoon
She is such a good caring friend, I know that no matter how I feel today, she’ll be there for me. She doesn’t know, but I have prepared a little tea gift for her. I took a giant mug and filled it with a bunch of tea samples from tea merchants she never tried (she only knows DavidsTea!)
Hope she likes it!
I don’t resent coffee, I was a coffee lover for most of my life, alternating with tea, coffee in the morning, tea in the afternoon and at night. I ditched coffee about 3 years ago, when I started experiencing what real tea bliss was.
Why should I settle for coffee when I can have something like Premium Taiwanese Assam in the morning? From the first to the last sip, I have only 4 words in mind: Thank you tea God!!!
(I don’t recall ever thinking there was a coffee God when I was drinking it).
Malty, chocolaty goodness, even when I feel like sh…, you make my mornings look brighter and sunnier, love ya!
(By mistake I logged this note under DavidsTea Licorice twist, sorry big mistake, Butiki’s blend is far more superior! Now corrected )
Love how licorice is soooo soothing for my extremely soooo soar throat!
This blend is perfect the way it is, but feeling under the weather, I added one teaspoon of spearmint and it makes it pretty darn effective, I can breathe more easily already!
I’m in love with the scent. In itself, the smell of this tea when infused reminds me of one of my favourite perfume, Angel from Thierry Mugler. The sweet licorice is well balanced by the kick all the other spicy ingredients have to offer.
Feeling sick is not all bad when you’re lucky to have a nice fire going on right in front of you, and a large canine blanket to keep you warm :-)
Wow, this is pretty incredible! I know that my description demonstrates a lack of finesse and creativity in my choice of words, but this is what comes to mind: The taste of lychee is so…lychee!
People either LOVE or HATE lychee. Very seldom you will hear someone say «what, lychee? meh…it’s ok…» It’s usually more something like «Oh, I so adooore lychees!!!!», or «Bleh, lychees are gross little slimy-juicy-perfumy eyeballs». I realize I do possess a strong sense of exaggeration but you get what I’m trying to illustrate, right??
My aunt’s boyfriend was Cambodian. i remember the first time I met with him, I was about 11years old. There was a big crate of lychees on the outdoor picnic table. I remember looking at him peeling those strange little alien fruits. It was such an exotic novelty for me, I was just in awe! He explained that they had been picked only a few days before and he had them specially delivered to Canada. At the time they were really hard to find in regular grocery stores so he had managed to get his own private supply cause that the one thing he couldn’t live without since he had left his country!
He showed me how to eat them, and I fell in love with this gorgeous gift from Miss Nature.
This tea is clean and pure lychee. First, the oolong in itself is deliciously light and floral. And after one sip, lychee goodness invades your mouth in a joyful triumph, cause yes, lychee is the star here, it’s undeniable. I’ve had only a couple of lychee flavoured teas before, black teas so unmemorable that I can’t even tell what the brand was. They usually render a soapy flavour, way too «eau de parfum».
Butiki’s rendition doesn’t do that. Works perfectly with oolong it seems. It’s a burst of juiciness, and as it cools, it becomes even more tasty, and it lingers long after the last sip. Dang, wish I had bought more…I’m glad this is good at least for a few re-steeps!
I love, love reading reviews here… What about that moment, when you read a post and get instant craving for that tea AND you happen to be so fortunate to have a suply somewhere in the cupboard?
Don’t you feel like the luckiest of them all then? (Once you are able find it that is)
It took me a frustrating 5min. Call me crazy (it’s ok, I know I am), but I became obsessed during that frantic search. I had one goal only: FIND IT AND HAVE IT, NOW!!
Premium Taiwanese Assam, you know how much I adore you, but get out of my way, you’re not the chosen one today!
Ahhhh…there it is, one oz left, plenty to make me a gigantic pot!
The bold and the beautiful…with that «in your face» assam taste, (I like to abuse it with steeping time), warm crimson red/copper color, the intoxicating aroma reminiscent of good quality pipe tobacco…(what could she possibly know about good quality pipe tobacco you ask? Well I had a grandpa that I loved very much !!).
That’s the tea I needed and I didn’t even know until I read Terri HarpLady’s post…the beauty of Steepster!
Thank you Terri :-)
(More details on previous note)
Today, I had planned to dedicate my day to drinking my favourite teas.
When I woke up and looked outside I had a shock: the scenery had no pigmentation left in it, only white EVERYWHERE! 60cm added to what was already there… took me hours to get out of the house. The joy of having 4 seasons :-)
Daba, you will be missed… I have tried to extend your life for as long as I could, but sadly, it all comes to an end today.
You have been a good companion, I think I have treated you well, making you my official favourite green tea.
You didn’t sell for cheap, that I remember, but tragically, you are not for sale anymore, that’s right, you’re hometown Butiki doesn’t seem to carry you any longer.
I’d like to think that we’ll meet again in this life, Daba chéri, my cute Lilliputian green tea (see previous note )
This tea order was not eco friendly…The boxes reserved for parcels at the stand where I get my mail delivered are always full (welcome holiday season!!!)
So I end up getting a notice card, drive 30 min. to go pick it up and therefore ditch I don’t know how much carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Not proud of myself.
To my small town, I say this: please invest in more mailboxes, I want «greener» tea supplies!!!! (end of rant)
Zen Tea is not very present here on Steepster but it’s a company I like more and more. They don’t carry the biggest variety, but what they have is good at a very decent price. Plus they send 3 generous samples. I could have asked for my own sample choice, but decided, hey surprise me! I appreciate the fact that they have chosen samples according to the tastes expressed by my orders with them. I got some breakfast blend, earl grey and oolong. Now that shows attention to details, thank you very much for that!
I love Oolongs and I lost count of how many I have tried…It never cease to amaze me, how different they are from one another, in taste and in shape.
Tie guan yin will transport you to a rich and luxuriant garden, invading your senses with the mysterious and attractive floral scent of orchid, coating your mouth with silk and butter. She’s a Seductress.
Roasted aged oolong will take charge of your taste buds in a more assertive fashion, almost assaulting your ability to identify its notes. It’s a chameleon, transforming even before you can grasp its true essence. It’s roasty, it’s nutty, its sweet yet slightly bitter, it feels simultaneously cool and warm. He’s a Player.
There’s Baozhong Pouchong , looking so much different from the previous mentioned. Instead of little rolled nuggets, this beautiful tea is crafted in long twisted strands. Almost considered a green tea, the taste is very delicate, floral and sophisticated, and it’s one the most elegant looking of them all… He’s a polished Dandy.
So where I am going with all this you ask? Wiki-oolong or something?
I think, hey, I have seen oolong in any way, shape or form.
And then there’s this fragrant branch thing and I’m baffled. What is this?
I admit, I don’t know what to do with it, I’m intimidated… No one else has reviewed it, so I have to be the first to experiment here. How do I brew this, heck, how do I measure it? I decide I’m going to spend a lot of time with it cause it deserves a traditional Gongfu brew and I opt for the scale, 5g. For a 8oz Gaiwan. I have a feeling it will expend quite a lot.
First and foremost, it visually is stunning, looks like one of those intricate asian artsy tree paintings. It is obvious that the leaf is rolled while still attached to the little branch and I can’t help thinking how tedious this job must be…
I did not research it, so I have no clue what kind a benefit the branch portion will add to the brew.
First steep and the leaves are already unfurling. It’s light and fresh, the smell is a lot stronger than the taste, floral and woodsy bark aroma.
I get floral sweet notes, but in a lot more subtle way than with a tie guan yin.
I feel there’s a light citrus astringency in the background that is waiting to emerge in the later steeps, and that’s exactly how this tea evolves. At the fifth infusion, the floral notes are almost gone and I get that fresh citrus along with musky and more earthy bark vibe. That’s where the branch portion becomes game changer. They have tripled in size and the gaiwan feels overwhelmed now, not much room to breathe! The twigs are no longer wrinkled, having soaked all the water they needed. The leaves are perfectly shaped, not damaged at all, really a beautifully crafted tea
I will be able to sip on this for at least 4 or 5 more infusions I think.
This oolong is a showstopper and it knows it. It enjoys spreading its splendour before your eyes in all its glory. He’s a Peacock.
Writing about tea is an inexhaustible source of inspiration, isn’t is? Sorry for this way too long review!!!! My curiosity and amazement got carried away…
P.S. I wonder if these guys are on Steepster…I think they are the cutest, I love the way they review together :-)
Though I don’t drink as much flavoured tea as I used to, I still keep some variety around and I especially like to drink them during the Holidays.
This is a casual conversation between me and my brother on his last visit (M=me, B= bro)
M: Want something to drink? I’ll make some tea.
B: I’d prefer a beer.
M: I didn’t buy any, I’ll make you some beer tea.
M: Yes, I have a tea that tastes exactly like peach beer, pretttt-ty awww-some!
M: What, you don’t believe me?
B: Not even tempted. Do you have cola, rootbeer?
M: Hmmm…no. Sorry…but…dare I say it…I have rootbeer tea, does that count?
B: Sis, you need to see a doctor, really. I worry. It’s bad. Addictions need to be treated.
M: Well, before we rush to the emergency, sure you don’t want to give peachy beer a try?
B: Either that or tap?
M: Pretty much, yep…
B: Alright, but just to please YOU! Promise this never happened, I don’t want urban legends to start spreading, I have a reputation to preserve, I’m a beer guy and I don’t do peachy girly tea!
M: Oh, common, just quit it Macho Man, we all know you watch General Hospital every day. A little bit of tea won’t kill ya!
B: General Hospital is underrated.
M: Whatever… So? How do you like them now, peachy beer tea?
B: Honest? Tastes just like day after lukewarm flat beer that accidentally got mixed with peach baby food puree during the party. I. Don’t. Ever. Want. To. Drink. This. Again. Please?
(Sorry Stacy, that’s not MY opinion but HIS, remember?)
M: Ah!!!! So you admit it does taste like beer!!! Told you! Please admire and appreciate this as it should. Takes hours and hours of practice and immense knowledge and wisdom to create that kind of magic. Requires tea alchemist skills that only Stacy has acquired. Respect. Remember that, bro.
End of conversation. At this point, we lost it. We are cracking up, crying of laughter.
Me and my brother have always «played» together like this. As any healthy brother/sister relationship, we love to tease each other. His visit was a big surprise, I wasn’t expecting him. He didn’t say so, but I know he came to check on me, to make sure I’m ok. His presence chased away the darkness for a little while. He’s got my back, he always has and I love him so much for that. Family is everything folks…
Cheers bro, love ya!
P.S. To make things clear, I do love this tea!!!