404 Tasting Notes
It annoys me every time to have to classify a Darjeeling into black teas . Yet it is … technically . But the heart of Darjeelings remains green in my opinion. Darjeeling Chameleon should be the real name of these teas .
This Sungma is quite exceptional . At the same time I really like Sungmas …
The liquor is really orange , a dark amber.
This Sungma is not bitter , just a touch . The taste is sweet and fruity . Muscatel is indeed the guest of honor in this summer Darjeeling and normally of most of summer Darjeelings and I am absolutely delighted because this is what I love . It does not have a too green taste. The texture is light, almost Sparkly .
I still love this one and it remains a staple.
Pics of my session with Sungma are available here : http://thevangeliste.wordpress.com/2014/12/06/sungma-ftfgop1-mariage-freres-2nde-revue/
Warning ! I am tasting the second “monkey” of Teavivre . This is again a beautiful sample offered by Angel . Slighly roasted . Green . A teguanyin to sum up … but not just any!
A beautiful rolled leaf that unfolds entirely at the first infusion. It Looks like a salad :)
It is a so sweet tea , green , floral even very floral but also a little fruity. A nice fruit , peach, but not from a too sweet variety , too heady .
The long finish is impressive. The taste lasts and lasts … it makes me want to go directly to a second infusion. Let’s do that !
The body and texture of the juice remains intact for the second infusion but the peach is more present. The light creamy taste is still there too. Adorable tea. I don’t know which one I prefer between the first and the second monkey Teavivre . Alike and also dissonant . I like both .
Some pics are available here : http://thevangeliste.wordpress.com/2014/12/04/anxi-monkey-king-ma-liu-mie-tie-guan-yin-oolong-tea-teavivre/
Well, I decided to make me a full teapot of this one . This tea as the brand will disappear and I must say that I try to keep it as long as possible because I really love it. Its scheduled disappearance , I consider it as a drama.
Since 2 months I do not drink this tea anymore whereas it brightened all my Sundays or Saturdays mornings. I now have the experience of this tea and it is almost impossible to spoil it . Its whole leaves are so long , dark and bright that I have the same impatience every time to start their infusion.
The simple fact of opening the box where I store Taiwanese Wild Mountain Black is a delight. Its dry smell is just unequalled : dried fruits , honey … it’s an extraordinary fragrance.
And it tastes absolutely wonderful. The first time my daughter tasted in my cup she thought it was a flavoured tea and not a plain tea . And yet for sure nature is full of flavours exacerbated , no need of additives.
Stone fruits are the guests of honor of this tea : apricot, peach, plum . The raisin is not forgotten and honey is flowing freely . Each tasting is both the same and another tea, natural flavors by thousand hide or reveal themselves infusion after infusion.
This tea remains the most greedy, the most decadent , the most opulent I ever drank. Although I think I found his replacement with Taiwan Tea Crafts and its Oriental Beauty Oolong Premium Grade lot 342 , there are still in this unique black tea some tones and notes that the Oolong does not have .
Heartache in perspective.
Some pics are available here : http://thevangeliste.wordpress.com/2014/11/30/taiwanese-wild-mountain-black-butiki-teas-le-chagrin/
This very lightly roasted Oolong , I love it. It is exquisite.
Dark green oolong with rolled leaves go for 5 minutes into aboiling water.
The wet leaves look terribly like spinach branchs.
With the taste everything changes. Here is a festival of flavours . Peach succeeds honey, puffed rice to nuts and warm bread… It has also floral notes , characteristic of Tieguanyin but I prefer them in this tea vs the high mountain Oolong tea because these notes are not isolated here.
The texture is also interesting : fluid, light yet creamy , mellow . I really really love this tea.
I cannot resist to reproduce here what Teavivre explains about the name of this tea :
" Legend has it that the cliff is too abrupt for people to pick the Oolong tea leaves. Therefore, monkey is trained to climb the cliff and help tea farmers pick the Oolong tea leaves. Another saying goes that tea farmers need to tie a rope around the waist during the process of picking, just like a monkey. Hence obtains its name"
Lovely tea that offers a very pale yellow liquid.
You can see pics of my session here :http://thevangeliste.wordpress.com/2014/11/29/taiwan-monkey-picked-ma-liu-mie-tie-guan-yin-oolong-tea-teavivre/
Yesterday I went to the post to take what I thought was a letter (that is that the postman had written on the document ) and they brought me a small package … cute with Chinese inscriptions . It was my packet of Oolongs samples generously sent by Angel at Teavivre .
I get nice little oxidized leaves, from an emerald green. After 5 minutes into a boiling water , the leaves swell very impressively.
The liquor is of an exceptional transparency, very pale yellow/ green.
The texture of this tea is very light. It has no velvety body, it’s not smooth at all . Sometimes we get small spikes of bitterness that soar … and immediately fall , caught up , channeled through a certain sweetness .
This is an extremely floral and green tea. The aftertaste is essentially herbal. It leaves an intense feeling of purity . An extremely green and pure tea.
It will delight fans of Oolongs with a low oxidization. I’m more a fan of semi and highly oxidized oolongs , but I must recognize that this tea is from very high quality and very pleasant to taste .
Thank you again to Angel for allowing me to test this tea and to take me out of my comfort zone. It ’s thanks to Angel I am knowing by now I am really enjoying pu- erh teas. I need to be a little pushed and shoved in my convictions and preferences sometimes .
you can see some pics of my session with this Oolong here : https://thevangeliste.wordpress.com/2014/11/29/taiwan-high-mountain-oolong-tea-teavivre/
Another Mariage Frères arriving to me straight from Lisbon : obrigada cteresa.
It had been super wrapped by Teresa to not contaminate the other samples and it was so right because that Lapsang Souchong has a smoke smell really stronger regarding the others I had until now.
I have a very soft and mellow cup of Lapsang Souchong , medium bodied. This is a very nice tea, very smoky so rather not recommended for novices in Lapsang Souchong unless you have an highly developed taste for all that is smoked.
Smoke , despite its strength, is extremely refined – the wood used was probably selected on high profile and one can clearly feel it in his cup. It is extremely enjoyable. I just finished my full teapot .
you can see pics of my session with this tea here : http://thevangeliste.wordpress.com/2014/11/23/lapsang-souchong-imperial-mariage-freres/
Flavors: Smoke, Wood
Well, it’s done. I now have tasted all the teas of my Taiwan Tea Crafts order .
Beautiful leaves, very long and crunchy dark, were waiting for me in a nice dark green package .
This is also delicious. I’m really satisfied with my oder . The advantage of this brand is to offer tea in mini bags of 25 g, which is really ideal to taste new teas. But then the disadvantage is that you regret having bought only 25 g . And with this order it is the case for the majority of the teas. … Terrifying when you think about it …for the wallet .
This tea is no exception to the rule but it is a little below those of TTC I’ve tasted so far. The texture of the liquor is a little too light to totally seduce me. However my daughter does not stop to serve and re serve it again and drank half of the teapot. It’s true that I love Mi Xian in general, but this type of tea does not cross the barrier of my top 10.
Fruity and honey are there and are absolutely divine- There are too some touches of cereals. But I just wish there was a little more body to the liquor. Nevertheless, it is a small reserve , really.
Some pics of my session with this tea are available here : http://thevangeliste.wordpress.com/2014/11/22/baguashan-mi-xian-black-tea-lot-302-taiwan-tea-crafts/
Flavors: Fruity, Honey, Oats
So how to say that with elegance ? I see no other possibility than that: This tea takes me out of my seat and I almost levitated … When I think that one year ago I was afraid to taste Pu-erh … if I had started with this one I would not have waited another 6 months to try the second.
I have a "packed"leaf typical since my sample is a piece of a cake . We can admire large pieces. This is a Pu- erh Sheng (raw and green) and not a shou .
Look at this beautiful whole leaves of a bright green and yellow…
The liquor is a light golden yellow . The taste was a festival of yellow fruit with delicious little acid notes. But that’s not all , it also has an herbal taste and even a taste of hay (although I am not stupid to the point of having already hay for dinner … but I ’m sure it has that taste , hay ) . Very little bitterness , just a touch .
This is simply exquisite . Thank you to Angel from Teavivre for allowing me to discover this delicious tea. It goes directly into the wish list … but why… why did I just pay my local taxes … misery …
You can see some pics of my session with this lovely tea here : http://thevangeliste.wordpress.com/2014/11/21/fengqing-wild-tree-yesheng-raw-pu-erh-tea-cake-2013-teavivre/
Flavors: Hay, Herbs, Stonefruits
Another tea that comes from Lisbon , from a with cteresa … Teresa Obrigada ! yes, I know I could find Tea Tibet here but I did not want to buy it and this is really a good way to taste before you buy a tea that you might not like at all.
It is a blend that is unremarkable at first , dark black and green twigs ,shot cut. It smells Jasmine and Jasmine and a touch of rose.
I decide to brew it 4 minutes no more.
I get a very dark liquor , more than I would have thought given to the colour of the leaves that are very green once infused .
I start to taste it : it’s pretty amazing. So here I remain quite quiet … cannot tell if I like it or not . Very strange . It is relatively floral : Jasmine is the star. The rose softens the entire body of the cup. We can also clearly detect citrus . bergamot . and ? So I jump on the MF site and I read that it is supposed to contain as well mandarin . I ’m not sure to get it.
I am at the end of my mug … and if I drink this tea without displeasure I cannot say that I am excited . Probably too floral for me. Yet I like some very good jasmine teas . But there, blah . I understand that one can appreciate it but it is really not a cup for me.
Here are some pics : http://thevangeliste.wordpress.com/2014/11/16/the-au-tibet-mariage-freres/
I am enjoying another tea from my order at Taiwan Tea Crafts . Again this is an oriental beauty and very different vs the 2 ones I already tasted .
It is on the fruit and honey side of Oriental Beauty but is not as sweet and honey as oriental beauty premium grade Oolong lot 342. It is a tea somewhere halfway between the latter and Oriental Beauty Oolong Superior Grade lot 341 .
This is a very well balanced and absolutely delicious tea. The premium grade Oolong lot 342 remains my favorite though.
You can see pics of my session with this tea here : http://thevangeliste.wordpress.com/2014/11/16/oriental-beauty-select-grade-oolong-tea-lot-340-taiwan-tea-crafts/
Flavors: Honey, Stonefruits