2627 Tasting Notes

91
drank Russian Country by Harney & Sons
2627 tasting notes

This morning’s cuppa. I really like the lapsang element in this and I don’t know why I can handle that and not keemuns as much. Yes I am weird!

Anyway I was working on a new blog post all morning and here it is. I wanted to add my new dragonwell tea to the database but Steepster is acting up once again so you’ll have to read about it over on Tea Trade. :)

http://sanfrantea.teatra.de/2012/05/27/ladies-who-lunch-and-drink-tea/

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 30 sec
ScottTeaMan

READ AMY’S BLOG STEEPIES…….IT’S REALLY GOOD! UM, no pressure Amy. :))

TeaBrat

ha – thanks for the endorsement!

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90

I got a sample of this and decided to break out the gaiwan to have a couple of steeps that way.

This is a very unique and lovely white tea, I definitely like all the white teas I’ve had so far from RtR. The leaves are BIG and slender!

This is definitely sweet, especially in the aftertaste. I definitely agree with the custard sort of description and it also reminds me of sweet buttered corn, nice! The one thing that disturbs me a teeny little bit is I have gotten a slight chlorine smell but maybe I am imagining things. My gaiwan steeping is probably not the most optimal for this, me thinks…

So I tried steeping it again in my Finium tea filter around 190F for 5 minutes. I thought perhaps that was too much but that’s what the instructions called for and these leaves were already steeped twice. Now the curious aroma is definitely gone and the light sweetness is still there, hmm. yummy! I don’t think I like it quite as much as the Sandapku or the Himalyan white but it is still rather yummy. A sweet pudding indeed. :)

ScottTeaMan

I’ll have to remember this:

RTR & Shang tea for my new whites, Mandala for Pu-erhs and China blacks (they have a coupl really nice ones)-and Bana for Puerhs.

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80
drank Original Tulsi by Organic India
2627 tasting notes

I’ve been experimenting a bit with this tulsi lately and I am finding it is good with some dried lemon peel and a bit of lemongrass. I also stuck some in the fridge to cold brew so I’ll see how that is tomorrow.

Cheryl

Blended my 3 Upton holy basils today too, then brewed with some dried bananas. It turned out pretty good, and even got a 2nd steep from it. Was thinking berries might be good too (need to pick some up).

ScottTeaMan

That sounds like a REALLY good cold brew blend.

TeaBrat

@Cheryl, I’ve tried blending my teas a few times too!
@Scott, I think it will be

gmathis

Thanks for the lemongrass idea. The two would definitely go together. And bananas…who’da thunk?

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66
drank Leaf Tea (Loose Leaf) by Typhoo
2627 tasting notes

I got this at the Middle Eastern market where I go to buy all my cheap teas. I just got it a month ago and the expiration label already says Feb 2012 so that was clearly my mistake.

It is strange that the leaves in this loose leaf pack are ground up so fine, it’s like they just used the same tea that they would use for teabags. Is it necessary to be THAT cheap?

Anyway I digress. I steeped this for 4 minutes with boiling water and it is generically average, mundane is definitely the word that comes to mind (see my rating scale on the right). I wouldn’t choose to bring this with me on a desert island but if it was there I would most likely drink it. :)

I think it might be a Ceylon, there is a bit of briskness in the cup, a slight bitterness. I did run off to get some soymilk to throw in this, but oddly enough I liked it better plain. I don’t know if this is my tastebuds adapting or what.

I’ve been thinking about doing an art project with tea and this would be a likely culprit. Though I reckon the tannins in tea would eat away at paper and such over the years.

ScottTeaMan

What kind of art do you like to create??

TeaBrat

Different things, I’ve done a lot of watercolor paintings in the past and collage stuff. I really need to get my act together and post them on the internets somewhere!

K S

This happens at the market where I shop as well. Buyer beware because they take nothing off the shelf. That’s why I will never buy loose leaf out of the bins.

Bonnie

Use wood board! Or use canvas and gesso it first and let dry!

TeaBrat

hmm. I wonder if the tea would sufficiently permeate the gesso? I’ll have to try it one of these days!

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89

Okay, I’ve never had a silvery jun mee before so trying this one out from Upton today. The leaves are dark with some silvery bits so perhaps that’s where the name came from.

It’s very intriguing but I can’t quite place the flavor. I am definitely getting the cocoa with a bit of sweetness. There is a bit of smoke in the finish but it seems quite subtle. It also isn’t quite as hefty as a keemun. This is an easy one to drink plain but could also accommodate a splash of soymilk, or regular milk… but it really has no bitterness or astringency that I am picking up. That is a definite plus for the folks like me with sensitive tummies. I liked this but am not necessarily sure I need more. Will have to think on that one!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec
ScottTeaMan

I’m pretty sure I have a sample of this one somewehre…….now where did I put it?

TeaBrat

@Scott – ha I know the feeling!

Autumn Hearth

Hmm this makes me curious, I love the silvery curls in Eastern/Oriental Beauty but Darjeeling also often has silvery bits and I still have mixed feelings about Darjeeling.

On a somewhat unrelated note I had a dream that I was in a grocery store named Upton Imports that had a food court (with next to no tea selection) and seemed to also have books, posters and flooring, I kept trying to find the tea aisle and my husband was trying to direct me on the phone, but I couldn’t reach it/him. I wonder want that says? Also I think it was in the UK, which is odd as I know it’s on the East Coast. I remember thinking perhaps this is Canton Tea? But the logos all said Upton Imports and I thought well I guess they import a lot more than just tea, no wonder it’s so affordable.

TeaBrat

@Autumn – you clearly have Upton tea on the brain! Is it time to place an order?
I did not find this at all to be like a darjeeling, FYI

Cheryl

Upton has a way of getting into people’s psyche, for sure … think it’s the endless possibilities : )

ScottTeaMan

……and great customer service and tea. :))

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89
drank Pot O' Gold by 52teas
2627 tasting notes

I’ve come to realize that flavored teas (and really most any tea, actually) is not at it’s best after about 12 months. I’ve heard that plain black tea and dark oolongs and pu-erhs can keep pretty well though. So I ended up purging some ancient flavored tea I got from TeaGschwendner which is not that great anymore. I could have tried swapping it but that doesn’t seem far to the Steepster community at large. And I’m drinking this tonight as a dessert of sorts, I still like it!

Vortegne

If your tea is worn out from sitting in the cupboard, you can always put it in the freezer for a few minutes and then steep it, it gives the tea a little flavor-boost

TeaBrat

@Vortegne thanks for the tip!

ScottTeaMan

By worn out, do you mean stale?? I don’t think it would help some of my tea that has gone stale. I would give it a try though.

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80
drank Toasted Walnut by DAVIDsTEA
2627 tasting notes

Thanks to Krystalen for sending me this lovely tea!

So it’s the afternoon here, and I’m about to embark on a 3 day weekend. I should be feeling a bit happier, but instead am kinda glum. Perhaps the clouds outside have something to do with it. And I have definitely not had enough tea for one day. :)

So I am finding this to be an interesting one. When I smelled it in the bag I thought it would be really sweet, but it isn’t… kinda glad! I’m definitely getting a nutty aroma here and the pineapple and coconut was kind of a surprise as well. I do think the flavor is subtle but that isn’t really a bad thing because I’m not a huge fan of sickeningly sweet, for the most part. I wonder how this would be a with teeeeeny bit of sugar, might need to try that with the rest of my sample. It smells a little bit better than it tastes but overall I liked it.

Thanks for the sample Krystalen!

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 15 sec

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91
drank Palm Court by Harney & Sons
2627 tasting notes

Just a short tasting note, you can see my previous notes for more info.

I was finishing off the last of this one from ashmanra and forgot how good it is. I will need to get some more one of these days. If black teas had personalities, this would be a well-mannered and handsome gentleman. :)

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 15 sec
Bonnie

Does he have money?!

SimplyJenW

Is he eligible?

Bonnie

Is he breathing?

TeaBrat

Ha ha! Well, in my dreams perhaps yes… but for now you can get some at Harney and Sons. giggles

Bonnie

You realize that I’m sitting in tea hell (STARBUCKS) right now writing on my Kindle about an imaginary tea flavor man! How pathetic!

ashmanra

This is also excellent with one teaspoon of Rose Scented added to the pot. Yummmmmm.

ScottTeaMan

I tried this tea many, many moons ago, and remember it being pretty good. Then I found it in the cupboard many months later, and it was stale. :-// I think I have a sample, and when I find it I’ll write a proper review.

Scott B

I bought this at the tea shop a couple weeks ago. Brewed it just once, but it was very good. Need to try some more.

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67

I was not planning on ordering any more teas for a while but after seeing the free shipping code I thought I’d check this out from RtR.

After reading Scott B’s note on the bitterness I decided to steep this at a slightly lower temp and came up with a medium bodied orange color. I thought I would be brave and at least try it plain once before deciding it needed anything.

I am getting some light fruity notes and a bit of sweetness. I definitely think there is some astringency in this cup but so far it is not overwhelming me. Dried plum, maybe. I’m not even sure I know what mace tastes like but it’s got a spicy element of some kind or another. It does remind me a bit of a second flush darjeeling. Just like Scott, as my cup is cooling off I am noticing the bitterness even more. Ick.

I will need to try this with some soymilk to see what happens…

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 30 sec
ScottTeaMan

That’s another thing I’ve noticed about teas-astringency, and bitterness are more noticeable as the cup cools.

Scott B

Sorry to hear about this. I was planning on trying it again maybe over the weekend. I really hate to put milk in my tea (except Masala Chai), but if it improves it, definitely let us know.
I have mace in my house. Doesn’t say “sweet” on the label-but it smells kinda sweet. I smelled it to compare with this tea and I didn’t really find it in the tea.

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78
drank Hao Ya 'A' by Harney & Sons
2627 tasting notes

Hmmm. I really haven’t been a huge fan of Keemuns in the past but I felt like I should try this sample again, plus I feel it’s good to broaden one’s horizons. When I look back on my tea tasting journey, I used to hate a lot of things which have recently grown on me.

This tea is very dark and I’m definitely getting the chocolate here. The aroma is a bit… interesting. Getting a bit of tobacco here, reminds me slightly of cigars and I’m also picking up on the smoke in the finish. It isn’t really a sweet kind of smoke like you might get with a lapsang, it’s more sturdy and earthy and as my cup cools I’m picking up on some bitterness so I’m going to try a shorter steep next time.

I know a lot of people love this one but I’m finding it a bit strong for me. I can definitely see why people put keemuns in breakfast blends, I think I might enjoy this more with a little something to help mellow it out. I definitely don’t hate it but I also don’t think it’s destined to become a favorite of mine.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 15 sec
ScottTeaMan

Don’t give up on it. :))

TeaBrat

I am nothing if not persistent! :-P

SimplyJenW

It is so funny that you think this is strong and I have issue with the East Frisian. Do you add soy/almond milk to East Frisian?

TeaBrat

normally, yes but I don’t seem to like keemuns with soymilk…

Doug F

I’ve never tried a Hao Ya ‘A’ I hear they are wonderful, if you like Keemuns.

TeaBrat

Triumph – they are not my favorite for some reason but I suppose that’s ok. We can’t all love everything, :-P

ScottTeaMan

Amy, I think you would enjoy H & S Supreme Breakfast Blend. I remember it being a rather well balanced blend of Assam & Hao Ya B…….so you get some malt and some smoke. I really enjoyed it.

TeaBrat

I got a sample of their Supreme Breakfast with my last order so I suspect I’ll be trying it soon.

ScottTeaMan

I hope you enjoy it.

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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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