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80

Trying these bad boys tonight. I bought a sample of them in October when I learned that the DT closest to me actually got a stock of them. I had resisted before based on not knowing how I feel about jasmine, but the smell is just hypnotic. I have had jasmine in other teas but always have this fear in the back of my mind that it will be too strong and perfumey – despite that never having happened!

The dry smell of these pearls (really, like the Teavivre pearls, they are about the size of marbles. SO beautiful!) is sweet jasmine with a hint of bitter black tea underneath. I’m thinking the sweetness of the jasmine is so striking that it makes the black tea seem bitter in contrast, hopefully I don’t get any of that once steeped.

The beau and I did 4 pearls to our medium pot, steeped at 95 degrees for about three minutes. The first cup was basic black tea, a bit mild with a hint of sweet. Thre was a hint of jasmine at the back of the sip, but it was so unassuming that I almost thought it was just part of the tea itself. The second cup has quite a bit of astringency, but no bitterness. I’m thinking some crumbs may have been in the pot and continued steeping. The jasmine is stronger here too, it rounds out the tea quite nicely, but the tea itself is a bit too one-dimensional. I would like to get some malt or chocolate here, something with a bit of depth to balance the jasmine.

All that said, this is a nice tea. This is a special tea. I get that. This is NOT an amazing tea. For the price ($14 for 50 grams) I was pretty disappointed. I would much rather have Teavivre’s black pearls or Davids Yunnan Black. While I will definitely re-steep this and enjoy the remains of my 20 gram sample (about 20 pearls) I won’t be buying more. Hopefully I remember to try to steep it a little differently next time and see if I can improve it. If it cost less, it would get higher rating but at that price point I expect my tea to be more interesting. I think a better base tea could have made a big difference here.

Uniquity

The beau “really likes it” and would give it a 90. He says he gets some peppery notes from the dregs of the pot. I really hope I can improve my opinion of this one.

LiberTEAS

This one intrigues me because it’s a black JASMINE pearl … and I love me some jasmine, so long as it’s done right.

DaisyChubb

Good point about the price point! This is one I enjoyed getting in store to-go, just because I could get 4 pearls that way to one cup and not feel guilty about it. haha!

Uniquity

I will say that the second steep was much better than the first – I may have under-steeped initially. I still think it’s way too pricey, but it’s definitely nice. Drinkable, but not the liquid gold I would expect at that price. : )

Tina S.

I’m not a jasmine girl but this one was tempting. I got to try it in the store when the staff had brewed up a tasting mini-pot for themselves. My store wasn’t supposed to get it so the girls were grabbing it while they could. It wasn’t a bad tea, but I definitely agree that I don’t think it is quite worth the price point.

Uniquity

It seems like every store had it – though many of them had to send it back. I wonder what was up with that! : )

Tina S.

I was just sad they didn’t get the two I actually wanted to try and have to travel into Toronto to get. :(

Uniquity

I was super interested in the Gyokuro Black (I didn’t even know such a thing existed!) but nowhere near here got that one.

Nik

Awesome review, thank you!

Uniquity

Thanks Nik!

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Comments

Uniquity

The beau “really likes it” and would give it a 90. He says he gets some peppery notes from the dregs of the pot. I really hope I can improve my opinion of this one.

LiberTEAS

This one intrigues me because it’s a black JASMINE pearl … and I love me some jasmine, so long as it’s done right.

DaisyChubb

Good point about the price point! This is one I enjoyed getting in store to-go, just because I could get 4 pearls that way to one cup and not feel guilty about it. haha!

Uniquity

I will say that the second steep was much better than the first – I may have under-steeped initially. I still think it’s way too pricey, but it’s definitely nice. Drinkable, but not the liquid gold I would expect at that price. : )

Tina S.

I’m not a jasmine girl but this one was tempting. I got to try it in the store when the staff had brewed up a tasting mini-pot for themselves. My store wasn’t supposed to get it so the girls were grabbing it while they could. It wasn’t a bad tea, but I definitely agree that I don’t think it is quite worth the price point.

Uniquity

It seems like every store had it – though many of them had to send it back. I wonder what was up with that! : )

Tina S.

I was just sad they didn’t get the two I actually wanted to try and have to travel into Toronto to get. :(

Uniquity

I was super interested in the Gyokuro Black (I didn’t even know such a thing existed!) but nowhere near here got that one.

Nik

Awesome review, thank you!

Uniquity

Thanks Nik!

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Profile

Bio

I am a lover of many things, but my passions include my records, tea and books (not necessarily in that order!) I embrace local food and good cooking as much as I can, and place great value on time with family and enjoying the bounty of nature. As of January 2014 my husband and I finally moved to the country to be closer to family and continue our journey in a family home. We have been wanting to do this for a couple years, so we are very excited to follow our hearts. We also have a wonderful kitty named Emma that is the princess of the house.

I am drawn toward good Chinese blacks, enjoy some herbals and the odd roasted oolong. Greens and whites can make me nauseous, but I will have flavoured ones on occasion. While I don’t yet adore puerh, I am giving it my best effort. Chamomile and coconut are the devil though, I wish they didn’t exist. Mint has been a particular favourite of mine since childhood, and I enjoy both flavoured and pure teas though unflavoured blacks are tops for me.

As for ratings, I try to only log teas once or twice because I drink a lot of the same ones repeatedly. My rating is based on my perception of the tea at first tasting and is adjusted if anything notable occurs in subsequent cups. I may also factor in the price and customer service but try to note that when I can.

81 – 100: WOW. This is the cream of the crop.
71 – 80: This is a solid tea. I enjoy it, and would recommend it to others, but may not repurchase.
61 – 70: Just okay. I can drink it, but it doesn’t stand out to me. May try again to improve.
41 – 60: Bleh. Might finish it, but it’s not to my taste OR just doesn’t impress me at all.
0 – 40: No thank you, please. Take it away and don’t make me finish the cup.

Location

Canada

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