2709 Tasting Notes

89
drank Genmaicha Extra Green by Den's Tea
2709 tasting notes

Yum. Genmaicha has been one of my favorite teas since my macrobiotic diet days. I also drank a lot of twig tea by Choice Organic; I need to get that again someday.

Anyway it’s been a busy weekend, I’m studying for a copywriting class I’ve been taking so I’ve had a little less free time than usual. I felt like I needed a little bit of ooomph to get me through the rest of the evening, but not too much. Thanks to Incendiare, I have genmaicha on the brain!

This is quite a tasty tea from Den’s. It’s very green due to the matcha element, which also adds a bit of sweetness to the mix. You definitely get that savory sort of nuttiness that just seems very soothing and gentle. I like this one and will definitely be wanting more when my bag runs out… see previous notes for more info.

I hope all my Steepster friends are having a good Sunday night!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec
Fjellrev

Funny, I was planning on writing a tasting note for this tomorrow! Best of luck on your copywriting class.

ScottTeaMan

Keep us posted on your copywriting class Amy. :))

TeaBrat

Soon I’ll be editing all of you! j/k

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87

I went out to lunch and for tea with a friend today (blog post coming soon).

The tea I choose was a raw pu-erh and it was fairly bitter for me. When I got home, I just felt like having something sweet and mellow. I steeped this with some dried pink rosebuds and it’s light and elegant, really what I wanted and needed for the afternoon. Of course this tea is also quite nice by itself.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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94

I decided to try out this sample tea this morning. I am a fan of Tie Lou Hans, I’ve had a few and they usually do not disappoint.

I did a quick rinse of the leaves in my yixing and used around 180F water.

Steep #1: The tea liquor is an amber color and leaves smell very roasted after steeping. I found this cup to contain notes of plum, caramel and mineral with a sweet aftertaste. yummy! I gave this cup to the BF, who wanted one.

Steep #2 – Tea liquor has a delightful aroma of stone fruit. Second cup is similar to the first but I am getting a slight charcoal flavor in the mix. It is very pleasant with a lingering sweetness. Tastes very clean and soft, somehow.

Steep #3 – Similar to #2, sweetness is retreating a slight and mineral is coming forward more. Still quite delicious and going strong. I am noticing a toasted bread quality as well as a few raisin notes. Unlike the other tie lou han I have, this seems to be quite good in terms of resteep ability (note: I ended up steeping it 7 times).

Interesting for those of interested in Buddhism:
“Tie Luo Han (铁罗汉) translates as “Iron Arhat” in English. Luohan/Arhat is a term used in the many schools of Buddhism to denote a saint or a “sage” who has achieved enlightenment and is ready to escape the cycle of Samsara and enter the state of Nirvana. “Tie Luohan” is sometimes translated as “Iron Warrior Monk,” which most likely refers to the monk/spiritual practitioner doing battle with his/her desires to overcome his/her worldly attachments to attain enlightenment, rather than as an actual “war” warrior monk".

Anyway, this is a great example of a wuyi tea. If I was to have one everyday wuyi around, I don’t know if it would be this or a Shui Xian but maybe I can have them all. :-P

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 0 min, 30 sec
teaddict

The nice thing about Wuyi teas is that they are quite durable. You don’t have to worry about finishing them all off before the next season.

Azzrian

As long as tea is viewed as a worldly attachment I don’t think I will be reaching Iron Warrior phase!

TeaBrat

@teaddict, yes that is very true. I have one on the way that has a shelf life of 5 years!
@Azzrain – me either!

ScottTeaMan

Thanks for the info on Buddhism. I am always interested in leaning about different religions, spirituality, history and cultures. I love a good resteeper too, so I’ll have to keep this one in mind.

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93

We went to see the film “Moonrise Kingdom” this afternoon, which was wonderful. Then had Japanese curry and veggie gyoza at this weird little restaurant called “On the Bridge”. By the time I got home I needed something to settle my stomach and decided to treat myself to this delicious pu-erh. I got 2 oz. of it a few months ago, and am trying to make it last. :-D

I made it quite dark and luscious, even a bit creamy, and I am so happy with the effects! I’m not sure if I should resteep the leaves too often since I might be awake all night, but will certainly relish the yummy tea I have at the moment. This tea is now 16 years old and it smooth and superb. See previous notes for more info.

ashmanra

EEEE! I want to see that movie! I just had the kids watch the trailer last week and I can’t wait!

TeaBrat

It was really good!!

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90
drank Happy Kombucha by DAVIDsTEA
2709 tasting notes

Thanks to my tea pal Indigobloom for this sample!

Is this tea perfect for San Francisco? Hippy-dippy and kinda fruity? I’m about to find out. Speaking of fruity, I have a fruit fly infestation right now which is such a drag — I’ll have to take these leaves out to the compost immediately after I’m done! After doing a quick read of the package, I used my small Finium teacup and filter and went with 180F for 5 minutes.

My cup ended up being a medium orange and smells very fruity! The flavor is incredibly peachy and pineapple-y. It’s kind of hard to taste the oolong underneath here but it makes a good foil for the fruit. I actually like those fizzy kombucha drinks even though they are expensive. This has the slight aftertaste of one of those, it’s a fermented almost beer like quality. I didn’t know you could even get powdered kombucha, so that was interesting to discover.

When you buy a fresh kombucha drink it’s $4 a pop, so I was thinking you could mix this tea with some fizzy water and have a reasonable substitute for a lot less money. I wonder if it still has the same health benefits as the fresh tea? This would be good iced, too.

I’ve never been the biggest David’s Tea fan, but this had me scanning their website for the price. I might need some of this in the future, but then again I have a ton of flavored tea I still need to get through. Are they ever going to open up a David’s Tea in California?

It’s a nice fun, fruity flavored kinda deal. I think I’m going to try cold brewing the rest of it overnight. Me likey. Thanks IB!

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 5 min, 0 sec
Indigobloom

hehe SO glad you liked this one. It was a choice between this and Long Life Oolong. They’re very similar but oh soooo good :)

TeaBrat

I liked it! Sadly there’s no hippies in Haight-Ashbury anymore, just chain stores and houses that cost 1 mil!

Bonnie

Yep! Good stuff! You can still find hippies in Berkeley and Santa Cruz and then there’s the mountain towns …shhhhh scary places!

Kittenna

I hate fruit flies!!! The only good thing is that their lives are so short, if you are really diligent about removing any possible food sources, they go away reasonably quickly. Last year we had problems with both fruit flies (downstairs, kitchen area) and fungus gnats (upstairs, apparently breeding in the sink drain). It was gross. Still see the odd one, but I think they’re from outside now.

Also, I bet they will open up a DT in California :P Looks like they’re expanding reasonably quickly!

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82

I always thought that a tea labeled Tieguanyin meant it’s an Anxi oolong from China, but this tea is from Lishan mountain in Taiwain, which would make it more of a formosa oolong. Anyway it doesn’t really matter, I was just a little surprised by that.

I decided to do short steepings of this in the gaiwan this morning.

Steep #1: around 30 seconds and yielded a light yellow liquor which is very vegetal and reminds me a bit of celery. There’s a bit of a nutty quality and a slight sweetness in the finish.

Steep #2: the leaves are just starting to open up here. A bit more of a nutty quality is emerging with a nice sweetness in the background. I went to Teavivre’s website to find this tea is baked and 100% fermented.

Steeps 3 & 4: seem about the same to me. Lightly roasted, vegetal, nutty, a hint of sweetness.

This is a nice, average oolong but I can’t say there is anything about it that causes me to feel it stands head and shoulders above the rest. Might need to try giving it a cold steep to see what happens. Not my favorite tea from them so far, but still enjoyable.

Thank you for the sample Teavivre and Angel!

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 0 min, 45 sec
K S

When I tasted the Fong Mong high mt. oolong, I kept thinking tie quan yin but yesterday’s tasting proved that wrong. Maybe I was close and should thought monkey picked. Point is I had tasted something very similar before. This may be it.

TeaBrat

I still have the rest of my samples from them I need to try. I always feel like an oolong needs to be gong fu’d at least the first time I drink it, so it may take me a while to get through my sample stash, lol. :)

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93

Tea of the morning, today I am revisiting this tea from Asha and my initial impressions still stand. Very malty with quite a bit of smoothness and no bitterness. Now that I know this tea is an assam cultivar all is becoming clear… ha!

Preparation
2 min, 0 sec
Bonnie

I’ve been reading more about this myself since having a ruby red oolong blend a few days ago. Now I’m finding it everywhere! Interesting.

TeaBrat

very interesting…

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90

Tea for the afternoon… Bana does pick some very lovely shengs. I steeped this in the xiying and am having a great session drinking out of my glass mug. I wrote an extensive note on it a while back. It still seems lemony and a bit earthy, flowery. I still think the Bana sampler sets are a great deal for anyone wanting to explore a lot of good quality pu-erhs.

Missy

Thanks for the heads up. I am going to look into pu-erhs some time soon. :D

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100

I don’t believe I’ve had a Huang Guan Yin before, but I like wuyi oolongs and was looking forward to trying this. Because I was at home today, I decided to do more of a gong fu preparation.

I used my little yixing teapot devoted to wuyi oolongs and did a quick rinse of the leaves.

Steep #1: 30 seconds. I got a very sweet, honey-like tea liquor that’s a medium yellow. I feel like there are some peachy notes in here as well as a slight roastedness. Definitely has a nice lingering aftertaste. Norbu compares it to a graham crackers but it reminds me more of toast with a bit of marmalade. Definitely liking it so far!

Steep #2: 20 seconds. Now the graham cracker flavor is definitely coming to the forefront. Definitely much less mineral-y and plummy than other wuyi teas I’ve had in the past. Still getting lots of honey and orange marmalade notes. Not a trace of bitterness in sight, which is great! I have to say I am finding this quite delicious.

Steep #3: 10 seconds. The lighter steep has brought out some lighter, fruitier notes, more peaches and apples seem to be present as well as a bit of butter. This is one non finicky tea.

Steep #4: Still insanely good although getting a bit lighter in flavor. Like a honey drizzled peach over a graham cracker crust. Heavenly! Flavor is still great.

I happen to like light to medium roasted oolongs and this was definitely a surprise. I was expecting something quite different but the result was great. Gets high marks from me for flavor, resteepability and non-astringent/bitterness.

I did like this quite a bit better than the Fenghuang oolong I had a few days ago. This isn’t as aromatic and flowery, but you can’t have everything in life. I have been fairly impressed with Norbu tea so far.

Final verdict: YUMMM! I’m not sure how this could get any better for me personally, so I’m just going to ahead and give it 100 points.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 0 min, 30 sec
Hesper June

Wow! This sounds so Delicious!

TeaBrat

Yep – I definitely loved it though I know some people don’t really like roasted oolongs as much as I do.

Bonnie

AMY! YOU NEVER GIVE 100! (Well, not easily!) This must have caused another earthquake!

Azzrian

OMG I have to get this NAOW! Graham Cracker!!! WOW!

TeaBrat

@Bonnie – I just checked my ratings and I’ve given 10 100’s but I also have 1,003 tasting notes!
@Azzrian, if you decide to go for it, I also thought the
Feng Qing Gold Tips were good!

Cheryl

Amy, you single handedly make my wishlist grow daily (others contribute). Keep on keeping on :)

Missy

ohh this is going straight to my shopping list after such a review!

Azzrian

Thank you I will go look up the Gold Tips too!
I have never ordered from this company!
So one more to the list of not just teas but companies to try! LOL Oh boy.

Azzrian

ROFL its already on my shopping list! Haha

Bonnie

Hey…where’s Scott?

TeaBrat

@Bonnie, I don’t know but I’m sure he’ll be back. :)

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90

It’s been a hectic day so I decided to sit down and finish the rest of this sample I got from Arbor teas. This is a lovely oolong that reminds me of roasted plums with a sweet finish. Quite mineral-y too. I’m a happy camper with my wuyi oolongs, this cuppa is dreamy and I’ve gotten at least 3 good steeps out of this tea even when steeping it Western style. See previous notes for more info.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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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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