Yellow tea!

The last in the H&S Green Tea Sampler.

Steeping for the time and temp in the Harney note, approximately. The Breville doesn’t have settings in 15 second increments, so I’m rounding up.

Beautiful, long fuzzy leaves/buds. They feel soft to the touch and remind me of little caterpillars. They have an interesting, nutty fragrance. It’s sort of reminiscent of some oolongs and some darjeelings, but more delicate.

It’s funny, I don’t know that I would have come up with “spice scented rose”, but wow, it’s there in the aroma. Which is pretty interesting, since the aroma is very very delicate. It’s the kind of thing where if you don’t spend time with it, you could miss it.

Very very pale yellow liquor. Almost clear. The flavor has a spicy lilt to it, which I wasn’t expecting at all. It is like a ginger, like a ginger that almost isn’t there and makes itself known mostly through feel and secondarily through taste. I’m getting some nuttiness on the back end. Very mild nuttiness, like the meat of macademia nuts minus the salt.

This wasn’t love at first sight for me, as I was sort of hoping it would be. But it’s positive enough that I’m willing to go out on a few more dates and see what comes of it.

175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 30 sec

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I’ve updated this bio as it’s been a couple of years since I “started getting into” tea. It’s now more accurate to say that I was obsessed with tea for a while, then other things intruded, then I cycled back to it, and I seem to be continuing that in for a while, out for a while cycle. I have a short attention span, but no shortage of tea.

I’m a mom, writer, gamer, lawyer, reader, runner, traveler, and enjoyer of life, literature, art, music, thought and kindness, in no particular order. I’ve recently started writing fantasy and science fiction under the name J. J. Roth.

Personal biases: I much prefer to drink tea without additives such as milk and sugar. If a tea needs additives to improve its flavor, its unlikely I’m going to rate it high. The exception is chai, which I make on the stove top using a recipe I found here on Steepster. Rooibos and honeybush were my gateway drugs into the harder stuff, but once I learned how to make a decent cup of tea they became far less appealing to me. That said, I’m not entirely a purist, and I enjoy a good flavored tea, particularly flavored blacks.

I like all kinds of tea depending on time of day, mood, and the amount of time I have to pay attention to preparation.

Since I find others’ rating legends helpful, I added my own. I’m revising them slightly to make them less granular as I don’t really find myself hating most things I try.

I try to rate teas against other similar versions. So I rate Earl Greys, for example, against other Earl Greys, rather than against all teas. If something rates very high with me, though, it probably means it’s a stand out against all other teas I’ve tried.

95-100 A once in a lifetime experience; the best there is; will keep this stocked until the cows come home

90-94 First rate; top notch; really terrific; will definitely buy more

80-89 Excellent; likely to become a favorite, will likely buy more

70-79 Very good; would enjoy again, might buy again if in the mood for this particular one or a better, similar version not available

60-69 Good; wouldn’t pass up if offered, but probably wouldn’t buy again unless craving this particular flavor

50-59 Okay or run of the mill

Below 50 So-so, iffy, would definitely pass
or ick. The lower the number, the closer to ick.


Bay Area, California



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