2627 Tasting Notes

76

Another sample here from Upton – I decided to get this after reading Triumph’s review of it, thought it sounded kinda interesting.

This is definitely more on the full bodied side of green tea, which is appealing to me. It does have an earthy, almost woody note in addition to some vegetal ones. I also am picking up on the apple flavors of the tea. Upton’s note says Malt but it doesn’t seem terribly malty to me. The finish here is quite pungent with a plate cleansing astringency. This was interesting to try but I found it a bit acrid for my tastes, perhaps I will try a shorter steep next time… I have enjoyed trying it, but don’t think it will be a repurchase item for me.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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56
drank I Love Lemon by Bigelow
2627 tasting notes

It’s free and it’s at work – need I say more?

I wanted to reach for something caffeine free. I actually DO love lemon but between that, and the rose hips and hibiscus it is fairly tart. I hardly ever add sugar to anything but this one definitely needed it. Also peppermint… why? I fear this is going to give me a big stomach ache. Can’t say that I will be wanting anymore of this and it will be a struggle to finish the cup.

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec

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91

The last of my samples just arrived today from Teavivre – thank you again!

I know it seems like I was the only person on Steepster who was bothered by this, but I’m glad my samples all came in one large envelope this time instead of the little prepackaged samples each in giant envelopes. Yes I am fussy, what can I say. Go Mother Earth! heh…

I was glad to see this tea came from the Wuyi mountains and it has the characteristic smoky aroma that i have just come to love… yay! I did end up steeping this at a slightly hotter temp than what is suggested on the bag, they suggest 194F. The cup is a clear reddish/brown and was steeped via regular infuser mug method.

This is really nice! The smokiness is present but is definitely not overwhelming to me. The tea has a lovely, lingering sweetness in the finish which I really appreciate. If you don’t want to be overwhelmed by tons of smoke this would be a really nice one to try. I also feel like this has a slightly fruity element, a bit of peach albeit a pine smoked peach… yum. A bit of honey also and perhaps some cocoa? I would definitely purchase this one and may need to, soon!

If you’re not a fan of smoky teas, I doubt this will make you a convert, but I’m enjoying my afternoon cup very much. Compared to the Harney and Sons L.S. tea this is downright dainty.

I also got a respectable 2nd steep out of this, which is not as smoky but still good.

Thanks Teavivre for the cool samples. :)

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 30 sec
Bonnie

Since you said it’s cool in S F today (like that’s rare!) L S arriving is Perfect!

TeaBrat

Very much so!

ashmanra

Ooo, I got this one, too! And my samples came the same way as yours. Everything was in perfect condition, even the outer box. I am looking forward to this one. My youngest daughter likes smokey tea – she and I will probably have a special tea time for this together!

K S

I am a wimp. I turned this one down. If it has smoke in the name I get scared.

The Purrfect Cup

Nice, I wish this had been in my samples, I love a good Lapsang!

TeaBrat

KS – I used to be like you but now I have converted!

ashmanra

I dreaded my first Lapsang, but really wanted to try EVERYTHING. It surprised me, and I like many of them now. My fourteen year old loves smokey tea. Go figure!

Scott B

I got this in my free sample pouch today too-can’t wait to try it. Also broke down and bought Mark T. Wendell’s Hu Kwa.

TeaBrat

@Scott B – I love the Hu Kwa & hope you like it!

Scott B

Thanks, Amy. The Hu Kwa smells wonderful and unique, I will try it very soon!

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93
drank Mutan White by Harney & Sons
2627 tasting notes

I’ve had this sample for a little while but am just getting around to trying it. It’s pretty neat the way it looks like a silver needle but then you also see some tiny green leaves in the package as well. :)

Everyone else is complaining about the heat but it’s chilly here today… brrr. Bring on some more warm tea!

This cup steeps up to be a very light yellow. It isn’t as floral or fruity as some white teas I’ve had recently, but it does have a sweet and rich mouthfeel, almost similar to a green oolong. There’s a slight butteriness and the sweetness really lingers in the finish. As my cup cools, the flavor here reminds me a lot of fresh honeydew melons with a bit of cream.

This is my first mutan white tea but I was very impressed with it, it’s lovely! I would definitely consider buying more of this if I could ever get through the other white teas I have at home…

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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90
drank Mayan Chocolate Chai by 52teas
2627 tasting notes

Thanks to Krystalen for this awesome sample!

I’ve been curious about this for a long time, I like spicy things and for whatever weird reason cayenne pepper does not seem to hurt my stomach. And this just sounded so good. I’ve been known to add ginger and a touch of cayenne pepper to my rooibos.

I steeped it in an infuser mug for 5 minutes – definitely knew I would need soymilk so I went ahead and added some.

Wow – this is good! Yummy, even. It really reminds me of a spicy hot chocolate. The cayenne is very prominent, so if you can’t take the heat I would not even try going here! I’m also getting a fair amount of ginger in this cup. What a yummy tea for the cold and foggy weather (which is just about every day, here). The cardamom and the pepper are a little more faint but they are definitely in here. I can see how this is either a “I love it” or “I hate it” kinda thing but I’m loving it so far. And – these spices are good for your health.

I think I will need some the next time I place an order with 52 teas!

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec
Missy

I knew a man who had ulcers bad enough he was looking at an operation. He started taking cayenne pepper every morning and with in 3 months his ulcers were better, enough so he no longer required an operation.

TeaBrat

very interesting!

Missy

It’s also good to keep your toes warm. ;)

Kittenna

Glad you liked it! So delicious :D

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81
drank Green Coconut by TeaGschwendner
2627 tasting notes

I had some of this today and it way past its’ prime so I decided to chuck the rest, too bad.

Armed with this knowledge I am definitely trying to not buy a lot more green tea… or green oolongs. I just don’t seem to be drinking them fast enough. :(

Scott B

don’t buy nearly as many green teas as compared to black. I definitely like the ones I have, but I just have to be in the right “mood” for a green tea. Moroccan Mint is probably the only one I can drink any time.

TeaBrat

I like them both but black tea has a much longer shelf life…

Scott B

Yep. The only tea that I ever had go “bad” on me was green tea that I had not had that long.

Bonnie

Yes but Amy lives in a cool damp city and tea ages faster in that environment right Amy?!

TeaBrat

Bonnie – I don’t know, you maybe right. But I was told by my Chinese tea shop guy I could keep the green tea in my refrigerator and isn’t it cold and damp in there too? :)

Bonnie

I don’t know but I was reading this morning about what ages tea especially Pu’er. Dampness, scent exposure are two bad ones. I won’t put coffee let alone tea in the frig because the air is damp and the smells like foods (good smells). But I think you have to trust your own gut instint! It’s your tea!

TeaBrat

Hmmm. that’s too bad because I was hoping my pu-erh would age okay even though I live in San Francisco. I guess I’ll find out the hard way!

Bonnie

No don’t worry I think there are things you can do to help like what it’s stored in. But length of time can be less according to the article. I have the opposite issue with semi arid environment. It’s nice to be able to dry leaves in a half hour but you wouldn’t want brittle bricks of Pu-erh!

TeaBrat

I always heard a cardboard box or the original wrapping was fine but some people use clay pots, I think

ashmanra

I think puerh is usually stored in something that breathes a ittle. I had some fishy puerh and after reading on here, left it sitting out. The fish smell dissipated and the tea still tasted fine. It was only out for a week or so and was still in its little paper wrapper. I think on purepuer.com they have a puerh gift that comes in a little woven storage basket. WANT! My Japanese neighbor keeps all her tea in the refrigerator.

ScottTeaMan

I don’t refrigerate my teas because of the different food aromas can affect the tea flavor-especially sharp aromas. I’ve also heard that clay pots were good for storing Pu-erhs.

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93

Enjoying this cuppa from Rare Tea Republic, a delicious and hefty assam! I was eyeing more assams in the Upton Tea catalog last night which inspired me to reach for this one. It’s cold and foggy here today. Sorry to hear about everyone’s problems with Steepster, let’s hope it gets better…

gmathis

Is it a sign of illness when you read the Upton catalog with a highlighter in hand?

Mercuryhime

@gmathis: naah, it’s a sign of your excellent organization skills!

TeaBrat

LMAO- I was doing that last night

gmathis

Of course, I’m not sure why I do it…by the time I drink down my stash to an order-justifiable level, the catalog will be out of date ;)

TeaBrat

I’m thinking about getting some samples but I need to wait until pay day!

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82

Thanks to Scott Tea Man for this one, the last of my pre-chingming samples!

I steeped this in a glass teapot for 3 minutes at around 175F. The color of the tea is a very light yellow and I agree it looks kinda like a white tea due to the large furry leaves on this!

This is a very light and delicate tea, I am definitely picking up notes of honeydew melon and perhaps… cucumber? There is a slight sweetness to it as well, a corn husk aroma.

I’m trying to appreciate the subtle flavor of some of these lighter green and yellow teas, it is a bit challenging for me at times, but I am coming to appreciate them for what they are and enjoy them at different moments when the mood might strike. It’s great to have some teas that are devoid of astringency and I would place this in that category as well.

As always I am grateful for the sample and have enjoyed trying something new. This is fairly tasty but not something I’d go out of my way to purchase.

Happy Memorial Day everyone!

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec
Bonnie

You’re havin a good tea day! Nice thing about the CITY is that it’s always good tea drinking weather! Did you go to the bridge 75th? Both my parents were kids and walked across the day it opened to foot traffic only. I have the original ticket (brochure). I went to the 50th with my kids. Don’t think I’ll be alive for the 100th! (hum 89 maybe).

TeaBrat

@ Bonnie, I did not go to the bridge anniversary, was kinda busy last night. :) There were lots of fireworks here though.

ScottTeaMan

This is one of the pre-cm’s I would reorder. Glad you liked it amy. Hope everyone had a good Memorial Day! :))

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96
drank Gyokuro Suimei by Den's Tea
2627 tasting notes

Definitely a nice treat for this morning. I usually just drink gyokuro on the weekends which is a good thing, since it’s kind of costly.

Lovely and sweet, vegetal and seaweedy kind of cup. I got two excellent steeps out of it, which was great. See my previous notes for more info.

Preparation
160 °F / 71 °C 2 min, 0 sec
ScottTeaMan

This wasn’t the Shincha you ordered from Den’s is it?? That reminds me, I have to order mine in the next day or two.

ScottTeaMan

How much tea did you use??

TeaBrat

No, this was another tea I ordered from Den’s. They recommend a lot of leaf – 1 tsp. for 2 oz. of water.

ScottTeaMan

I’ve gongfu’d Sencha-I would guess, using 6 grams, and got 3 quality steeps, but i use 6-8 oz H2O. I’ll have to try abiding by steep instructions when I order my Shincha.

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82
drank Lapsang Souchong by Harney & Sons
2627 tasting notes

I’ve had so many lapsangs lately but I thought I would give this one a whirl too, to see how it stands up to the competition!

The aroma is very smoky – woo! This tea certainly packs a wallop. The aroma is definitely that of a campfire I would say. The aftertaste is definitely not as sweet as some I’ve had so I’m missing that a bit, this is more like liquid smoke all the way!

I thought I would try adding some soymilk to this but I accidentally got vanilla soymilk at the store instead of my normal plain. Could not resist the urge to try it with this tea, it actually isn’t too bad… ha ha

There’s something about a lapsang that seems strong and fortifying. I thought this was pretty good but there’s a few I like better right now.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 15 sec
Bonnie

Woman after my own heart!

ScottTeaMan

The only straight LS from Stash many years ago-and it reminded me of this review-campfire & liquid smoke, but I seem to remember quite a bit of sweetness. I really liked it alot at first, but put it aside for months. When I came back to it something had changed! I ended up drinking half of the 2 oz sample, and threw the rest out. Maybe it was stale. ://

Anywhooo, I suspect Bonnie may be sending me a LS sample or two, so I’m getting back on the LS horse. Speaking of horses, I can’t forget about the Belmont this Saturday!

Amy, next time you order from Upton Tea, I think you would enjoy their Baker Street Blend:

http://www.uptontea.com/shopcart/item.asp?UTid=385-7-10616397&afterCart=/shopcart/item.asp&from=catalog.asp&itemID=TB75&begin=0&parent=Teas%3EMiscellaneous%3EBlends&category=Afternoon&sortMethod=0&categoryID=40

Vortegne

I just ordered my LS, waiting for it eagerly now :)

TeaBrat

Scott – i have had the Baker Street and it’s nice. I am still partial to Hu Kwa and also the Lapsang from Mandala tea.

ScottTeaMan

I’m looking at a Fall order from Mandala, so I’ll keep that in mind. To me LS teas are more for Fall…….however, the whole smokey, campfire thing is a summery activity. What am I trying to say?? WTH!!…….It can be enjoyed anytime of the year.

TeaBrat

Well, in San Francisco the foggy summers make it feel like winter anyway. :)

ScottTeaMan

I know, yesterday it was 92 here…….I was wondering about SF and you had a high around 62 and a low of ?? like 49. Cool nights to be sure.

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Profile

Bio

My profile pic is of a pink dahlia at Golden Gate Park.

Hobbies include: tea, making art, animals, vegan things, buddhism, nature, creativity, books, writing, cooking, meditation, yoga.

I am a fan of many different teas but my favorites are blacks and oolongs, chai, also like darjeeling and pu-erh. I’n always learning and expanding my horizons!

Dislikes include: bergamot, jasmine, highly tannic or bitter teas, overly judgmental and bitter people. :)

Live in San Francisco, I’m a SINK (single income, no kids) and love the urban life, but traveling out to the middle of nowhere is always fun too.

I tend to not drink things I know I will hate so a lot of my tea ratings are on the higher side. Here’s my rating system, sorta

95-100 I love this tea and would like to keep it around

94-90 An excellent tea which I may or may not repurchase

89-80 Pretty good, above average

79-70 Acceptable

69-60 Mundane – Will probably drink it if I have it

59-50 Ick

49 and below Nasty

Location

San Frandisco

Website

http://sanfrantea.teatra.de

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