2580 Tasting Notes

99

A big thank you to David for including a sample of this in my last order.

I got lazy and decided to make two quick steeps of this in the gaiwan and then put them together in a glass mug – I used water that was around 205 degrees but did my steeps for 30 seconds each.

I wasn’t sure if I would like the charcoal roast but it’s pretty yummy. The color is dark yellow, and yes it is toasty tasting. There is an underlying buttery flavor and a nuttiness that reminds me of toasted chestnuts or pecans, perhaps some buttered toast. This has a very smooth mouthfeel and is very clean and bright.

I also did steeps #3 and #4 together in the same mug and now that the leaves are opening I am getting a honey, nectar like sweetness along with the chesnutty-ness. It also reminds me a bit of a good quality – walnut oil? Or something of that nature. I’m amazed it feels so rich and decadent without any calories at all!

Their instructions say a full 3 minutes at 205 F (and that it’s a great pairing for afternoon sweets), but I rather liked it this way using shorter steeps in the gaiwan. It’s very yummy – another outstanding oolong from Asha. Definitely recommended if you like roasted style oolongs.

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

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61

Every so often I need to try making myself drink things like this that I’m not hugely fond of. I do like cinnamon and plums but this tea is very light, and weak. I wonder what base they are using here for the black tea, perhaps it’s a ceylon, I’m not really sure. I would not be too tempted to buy this one again, it’s overpriced. You’d need to use at least two teabags in an 8 oz mug.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec
Amariel

That’s what I found when I had this many years ago. I expected to love it, but it was just meh.

TeaBrat

I have yet to find a Republic of Tea that I think is really good… I am just planning to not buy them anymore.

Amariel

I was the same way…I really really wanted to like them, but I just didn’t. My husband (mostly) created their logo many years ago, incidentally.

ScottTeaMan

I agree completely with your review Amy.

TeaBrat

Maybe I should try cold brewing it before I throw the rest out, not sure I can bring myself to finish it

ScottTeaMan

I think cold brewing it would work fine…. you probably already know to add extra tea for cold brewing. ;)) I even add extra RoT tea for hot tea.

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85
drank Pu-erh Blood Orange by Rishi Tea
2580 tasting notes

It was a beautiful day in San Francisco this afternoon and after a very long walk I took a nice nap and am having a bit of this to revive me. I really like the blood orange and grapefruit blend mixed with the pu-erh here. It’s still good even with the hibiscus, which I normally loathe (see my previous tasting notes). Steeped for 4 minutes with boiling water.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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84
drank Lemon Drops by The Tao of Tea
2580 tasting notes

It’s been a while since I’ve had this and I am enjoying it this morning. The blend of nilgiri and lemon myrtle makes for a very zesty, fruity and citrusy cup. This would make a really great iced tea, I need to try it that way someday. It is also very fragrant! If you don’t like lemon I would not bother… see my previous notes

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90

Part 3/4 of the basic darjeeling set – I know this is sounding snooty of me but after I bought this I was really wishing I bought the premium set that was a little more expensive. But now I have a lot of darjeeling tea I need to finish before getting more. :)

This was steeped in an infuser mug for 3.5 minutes with boiling water that had cooled off slightly. This is a great tea to drink plain without milk or sugar. It is light bodied and a bit on the fruity side, slightly earthy. Little to no astringency and no strong tannins which makes it a good one for me. Very enjoyable. Not as aromatic as some darjeelings I’ve had, there’s not a pronounced floral smell. I would consider purchasing this again as an every day type of tea.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 30 sec
ScottTeaMan

Yes, this would be a good one for everyday. Some of the soft withered 2nds I was talking about aren’t real flora either, but they are tasty everyday 2nd flushes.

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34
drank Fukamushi Superior by Teavana
2580 tasting notes

I tried cold brewing this last night and it is still very bitter so I don’t think it’s a temperature thing or anything to do with me. I lowered the rating more because I don’t think I can finish the can. Does anyone like bitter green tea and want to swap? It may be destined for the compost bin…

Lindsay

yum bitter green! lol. That is unfortunate though…

TeaBrat

I know, I’ve made it sound so appealing haven’t I? ;-)

SimplyJenW

Um…the tins are pretty? :o/

TeaBrat

yes – I will recycle/repurpose the tin!

SimplyJenW

See…not a total loss! LOL!

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76

After seeing the tasting note of gmathis the other day I decided to go ahead and get this today at the grocery store. I learned recently that rooibos is supposed to be good for heartburn so I am really wanting to learn to like this stuff!

I steeped this for 5 minutes with boiling water and used two teabags because I was planning to use my BIG mug with the owls on it (neither here nor there, but it is cute). I was very impressed with this stuff, it’s certainly one of the better red rooibos teas I’ve had. It isn’t sickening or medicinal, for one thing. :)) The vanilla is definitely there and it’s nice, not too sweet or anything. A splash of soymilk made this really good.

Bonus points for cheapness as well… this will be a really nice thing to have around.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec
Ninavampi

Ooo… I had no idea Rooibos was supposed to be good for heart burn! I will have to look into that! I will have to learn to like it as well!

TeaBrat

It supposedly has lots of health properties!

gmathis

Glad you like it!

Lisbet

Anything with chamomile will also help with heartburn!

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79
drank Silver Needle by The Tao of Tea
2580 tasting notes

Part 3/3 of my white tea sampler from Tao of Tea purchased on Amazon.com.

I have been steeping this in the gaiwan with short infusions with around 180 F water. The leaves are quite beautiful, long and fuzzy with a celadon green type of color.

My infusions are all coming out the same, a slightly milky vegetal flavor with a tiny bit of sweetness. Probably my least favorite of the three I purchased and ultimately kind of boring to me. Still it is pleasant enough and I will probably end up blending with something else like licorice root or rose petals. I haven’t found a silver needle yet I’m really wild about – anyone have a good recommendation?

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C
ScottTeaMan

This tea is not strictly silver needles, but it is quite tasty and at a reasonable price:

http://uptontea.com/shopcart/item.asp?from=catalog.asp&itemID=ZW85&begin=10&parent=Teas%3EWhite%3EChina&category=White&sortMethod=0&categoryID=59

Afriend of mine also sampled #ZW90 WHITE POINT RESERVE and really liked it. :))

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92

Thanks so much to Scott for sending a sample of this my way along with the hand written brewing instructions! :)

I really enjoyed trying this one. I did notice how the dried leaves even smelled so aromatic in the bag. I was trying to not too be too stingy with the leaf so I used about 3 tsp in the gaiwan with around 180 F water. I’ve been keeping my steeps short, around 30 – 60 seconds.

I am getting delicious peachy-plum notes with some charcoal essence. This tea is a lot sweeter than I thought it would be (although not cloyingly so). The sweetness reminds me a bit of blackstrap molasses in the finish, kind of dark and tangy. Or perhaps a bit of caramelized sugar.

Around the third steep it is turning into more honey like notes and has the loveliest fragrance wafting in the air. This is really much better than I thought it would be. Really a treat!

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 1 min, 0 sec
JoonSusanna

I love dan congs – they are by far my favorite oolongs. Sounds like you got a good one!

TeaBrat

Can you recommend some others that you like?

ScottTeaMan

I’m really glad you liked it, and I’m not sure I got thr charcoal, but that is what makes reviewing interesting! I really liked this Dan Cong:

http://www.teaspring.com/Feng-Huang-Dan-Cong.asp

I posted a review their on 5/18/2008. The newercrop may be a different experience, but it looks the same as the 2008 lot. I think it was a higher grade, than Uptons, or maybe a better lot. My experience was that it was slightly more astringent than Upton’s, so if you don’t want that keep steep times around 30 seconds. :))

TeaBrat

thanks Scott!

JoonSusanna

I haven’t tried many, but I like the Dan Cong from thepuriTea. It is very fruity (peach/apricot fruity) and has this lingering aftertaste that is apparently characteristic of good Dan Congs (the Tea Trekker website told me that, anyway!).

The only thing is, it was really expensive for my budget (even though it’s not a bad price at all – I’m just a broke student!) and it frustrated me that there were no additional details on the specific varietal. But they offer a sample size for a relatively nice price, so if you ever order anything from them it might be incentive to add that too…

ScottTeaMan

Peach is the main fruit I get from both Dan Congs I’ve tried, but the one from teaspring allowed for one or two additional steeps if my memory is correct. :))

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88
drank Shan Lin Shi by Naivetea
2580 tasting notes

I’m getting around to slowly finishing off and logging all of my Naivetea samples – I believe this is the last one?

My first steep I think I accidentally steeped this in water that was too hot. I got a very vegetal buttery cup but not quite what I was expecting…

For the second steep I tried to use water that was around 170 or 180 F. Now I am getting some of the more subtle notes I would be expecting from this tea. It is indeed very floral and delicate but I wish it had a bit more… oomph? It’s very relaxing and sweet however.

Third steep, I did let this one go on for about 2 minutes. I was hoping to get a bit more flavor out of this tea although that probably just killed it… lol

This is lovely but I’m not finding a way to make it work for me today. I wish I had more at home to play around with, but alas…

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 0 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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