Finishing up the last bit of it this morning – a very unique flavored oolong from 52 Teas. I hope to see more from them in the future with oolongs.
1577 Tasting Notes
This is a pretty nice Organic Nilgiri, overall I do not like it quite as much as the one I got from the Jasmine Pearl Tea Merchant at the bulk section in my local Whole Foods. It seems a bit more on the astringent-y, darjeeling-ish side so I had to add soy milk to mellow it out a bit. Probably will try steeping it a little less next time. I am enjoying it this morning but probably will not add to the “must have” list.
Part 1 of a 5 part sampler I got from Kusmi (discovered at the Bi Rite Market in San Francisco). I was pretty excited to find these locally, however they do not carry the large size of the tins in the store, only teabags.
This tea is not for the faint of heart nor the faint of scent. If you hold the tins to your nose you can smell the scent very strongly! Open them up and get a whiff of perfume! yowza…
We picked this particular one to try this morning based on the recommendation of one of the store’s employees. It is a strong and smooth black tea but predominately all you taste here is the spices. Smells very much like root beer! It is such an interesting tea… I am tasting a lot of clove here in addition to citrus and bergamot. The bergamot is nice and subtle and does not provide the same amount of bergamot as an Earl Grey. I am getting a lot of citrus but perhaps not that much vanilla.
I did try steeping it twice, the second steep was weaker and with a lot less perfume and also the citrus flavors are coming though more here so I am not enjoying steep #2 quite as much.
Overall I quite liked this but I suspect I will like a few of the other ones better since I am not a huge fan of grapefruit in tea usually. I also enjoyed this little piece of history on the Kusmi tea company:
I am rather fond of this stuff, yes basically it is a bag of anise, caraway and fennel seeds. This tastes like a cup of liquid licorice so if that’s not your favorite I wouldn’t bother. Probably will order this again if I buy more from TeaGshwendner, it seems to be a soothing after dinner drink.
I knew this would be a very light green tea from the description on the website. Steeped for 90 seconds at 160 degrees, the flavor was definitely too faint. Second steep was around 3 minutes. Definitely more on the floral than vegetal side, slightly buttery but nothing like a milk oolong for instance. Reminds me a little bit of a white tea. This is a pleasant cup and I will have no problems finishing the bag but I doubt it’s something I will need to purchase more of.
This kinda seems like something I would enjoy, but no… at first I thought teabags were to blame but I cut them open and so brewed it like loose leaf tea. There is a strange bitter-sweetness I don’t like here. I checked the box a few times to see if it had stevia, roobois or something of that nature. I think it’s just a bad combination, the licorice is fighting with the other ingredients and the result is a toxic mess that I need to hold my nose to finish drinking…. ewwwww. Just don’t go there!
Right on the heels of my cheap-o experiment comes one that is not so cheap…
I was recommended to try this tea by the shop person in Japantown who assured me that the green tea I’ve been buying at the grocery store is complete crap. :) I’ve had a few senchas but never a kabuse-cha. I did not get the chance to try this out before I bought it (silly me, it was $22 for 90g).
This is probably the most greenish, young and fresh green tea I have ever tried. The leaves are emerald. I really think I will eat this leaf after I am done drinking it… Supposedly this is halfway between a sencha and a gyokuru.
I used about 1 tsp of leaf and steeped at 160 F for 2 minutes in about 6 oz of water (yes, I used a thermometer to double check temp). I drank this out of a glass mug and it brewed up to a nice Chartreuse color (it is neon green, I am not joking).
Second steep – 30 seconds with a slight loss of flavor. Third steep, getting kind of weak. Will probably get 3 steeps out of it.
This is a very mild, very vegetal and soft tea, very much more sweet than bitter. The aroma is a lot like spinach. This is 18,000 times better than the cheap stuff I was drinking. So sadly (for my wallet) the salesperson was right, my brain is practically vibrating now. I will definitely be saving the rest of it for a time when I need a mental boost. This tea is shade grown for two weeks prior to harvest which is supposed to increase the theanine content.
I am trying to not let myself get sucked in to the world of expensive, gourmet tea. Seeking out cheaper alternatives is a must have. I am very impressed with this. I’m not gonna lie to you and tell you I heard angels singing or the earth moved but this is an excellent value for the price ($4.00/oz as of today’s writing).
I steeped it for 2 minutes and used near boiling water with about 2 tsb of leaf and 10 oz of water. The website said to use fairly hot water in order to bring out the flavors. Very pleasant nectarine and peach flavors are coming through here. Not a trace of bitterness at all which can sometimes be a problem with these darker oolongs. Perfect for daily drinking…
Absolutely delicious when cold brewed for 12 hours overnight. If you have a tea like this you need to try it! I am getting notes of sandalwood, bamboo and cherry. Very refreshing.
Another sampler packet from Harney and Sons. Steeped Western style for 3 minutes with boiling water. A little afraid of oversteeping after yesterday’s Kenya experience.
This is delightful. Medium body tea with a definite strong fruity finish, a bit of caramel. Naturally sweet. Comparisons to wine are pretty appropriate for this leaf. Probably more of a spring/summer than a fall/winter tea for me but I am adding it to the Shopping List as something to remember for the future.
Prepared over the stove with traditional Indian manner, cooked with soymilk. My apartment smells great!
This does remind me a lot of hot chocolate and I am finding it tasty enough for my liking. There is lots of cardamom in here and also something slightly pungent (I assume the long pepper). I’m not a huge fan of mate so I’m finding that a bit distracting from the overall blend here. Overall this is very good and it definitely warming the frost from my Saturday morning as well as waking me up. :) I’m not sure I would buy it again but that’s also because I love the more traditional chai flavors.
Received it as a free sample from Harney and Sons in my last order. I am sorry, but the Rishi rooibos chai totally blows this out of the water. It’s way too rooibos-y and not enough spice at all. Not sure I even want to finish the cup.
Another thing I wish I had bought more of. My first experience with Tulsi, the Holy Basil herb of India. I wanted to get this in loose leaf form instead of those teabags you see in stores everywhere. This herb is supposedly an excellent adaptogen and good for stress relief. I am trying to find alternatives to caffeine all the time.
When I look at the picture of the tea on Tao’s website is a light yellow. I did not know how much leaf to use and I brewed this up STRONG! Mine is a dark orange… lol. Wow. It certainly is potent, I will need to scale back next time. Cooling is a very appropriate adjective for this herb. It reminds me of mint. I do not taste a lot of orange in this blend. I believe it is mostly tulsi with a very strong fennel aftertaste. I actually like fennel a lot so this is great for me, but be forewarned. I can see I will need to do more tulsi experiments soon…
According to Tao’s website: “Supporters of Small Organic Tulsi Farmers.
We work only with small-scale Tulsi growers that need
assurance for their harvests. As such, we provide up-front guarantees to purchase their produce and help sell it through a market-education development approach. As we grow, we envision our ability to help more small-scale and marginal Organic farmers in this process. Most Tulsi is still grown conventionally and the transition to Organics is recent. We hope to be among the few Tulsi companies that are in the forefront of this movement”.
Good for them!
Perhaps it is the power of suggestion but I already feel better after my potent tulsi tea…
I like both Nilgiri and Lemon Myrtle so I was pretty sure I would also like this blend from Tao of Tea.
It really doesn’t smell like much when you open the bag. I brewed this for 4 minutes with near boiling water. I think I may have oversteeped it a tad so I will go for slightly less next time. It smells and tastes very lemony but is not too tart. Having only two ingredients helps here I think…. The nilgiri makes a nice counterpart to the lemon. I can’t help but wonder what this would taste like with a darker and more robust black tea. But I am liking this quite a lot, it is pretty tasty and I’m sure it would make a fabulous iced tea as well. I am wishing for some cookies to dunk in this tea. Check this one out if you’re a lemon lover.
Sigh… I am really not a fan of this unfortunately. Do I even like drinks made with ginseng? Probably not. To me it smells like a stinky old root, which is actually what it is. I imagine this is a very good health tonic with ginseng, licorice and apple. It’s a little too much on the sour side with too much stinky root. A little too medicine-y so it will require sugar. If you like ginseng you may want to give this a try. Otherwise I can’t say I recommend it.
Second steep: it is fairly easy to pick out all the apple and ginseng so that’s what I’’m doing. it’s not a total loss. At least I’ll have a nice oolong.
Backlogging – this was my most favorite thing I ordered from TeaGschwender – it has been gone for ages. Very smooth, sweet-ish, chocolate-y, rich and delicious. I should like to have some more of this someday.
This is a pretty nice English Breakfast tea from TeaGschwender. Very well balanced and flavorful and nice for this rainy morning in San Francisco. This is not really my favorite type of tea – I looked in the cupboard this morning and thought: “Gack – is this STILL here?” But it is pretty good, I just need to stop neglecting it… :)
Another sample from the Harney batch. Not really a favorite of mine – I steeped this for 4 minutes per the instructions of H & S. I fear this may have been too long. The website says this tea is light in body and a mellow brew. I am finding it to be fruity but quite astringent and with a bitter aftertaste. Reminiscent of a Ceylon to me and not an Assam.
I would like more of this to do some experiments on the steeping time but all I have is this one little pot and I won’t be getting more I suspect.
This is so good… it is even better when you follow the traditional chai cooking instructions on Rishi’s website. I used soymilk instead of milk. They suggest 3 tablespoons of sugar? Sugar is not required at all IMO. This tea will not last for very long in my house….
yum yum yum
It’s true you can’t taste a whole lot of oolong here but I am kind of wondering which oolong of theirs they used here as the base, I am guessing the bai hao but I could be wrong.
Again, more hibiscus what is up, I think someone at Rishi owns stock in a hibiscus plantation. Thankfully this is downplayed quite a LOT so the aftertaste is not really tart at all. Or perhaps the oolong is providing a nice counterpart to the tartness of the fruit. I am getting mostly plum here and it is done very, very well. Happiness!!! bliss! It’s fruit paradise!
please note: your mileage may vary… ;-P
I ordered a nice little package of this in my most recent shipment from Rishi. Although I like pu-erh a lot, I also like it mixed with other things sometimes.
I was a little worried about this because there is hibiscus in it. It seems Rishi is mad for hibiscus since it finds its way into so many of their blends.
This is VERY citrusy. When you open the bag it practically knocks you down with an intense fruit smell. I liked this, a lot. Mostly the flavor is of orange and grapefruit so it’s kinda hard to taste the pu-erh in here. I believe the pu-erh is grounding the tartness of the citrus with some earthy dark flavors, kind of like orange chocolate. I am finding it refreshing and delicious.
This is an organic and fair trade tea which is also a plus as far as I am concerned. I only wish I had purchased a bigger bag!
I received two small sample sizes of this from Golden Moon with my iced tea set. I am a bit puzzled by it. The dry leaves smell great but when this tea brews up it definitely smells like alcohol as a few other people have mentioned. It does smell like a melon scented beer. I am not sure if I like the aroma.
The taste of it however is very nice, perfectly smooth and sweet . I am not sure what else to say, it was interesting but not something I would purchase for myself.
I’ve been drinking this tea for a few years now, I like it pretty well but I just finished the tin and I don’t intend to run out and buy any more soon. I am used to drinking my tea strong so I normally put two teabags in a cup. I like the balance of flavors here between the blackberry, the sage and the black tea. Not at all tart and also no hibiscus because it’s really not a favorite of mine. Sage is supposed to be good for people with asthma so I got it for drinking during the winter season.
I have been daydreaming about this tea ever since the lovely Jenn sent me a sample a little while ago. Thank you, Jenn for fueling my addiction, hee hee. I had to buy a tin of it.
This is a yummy flavored tea. I am not usually much of a fan of chocolate in tea but here it works somehow. The hazelnut is definitely there as well, perhaps it’s the combination of the two that works for me. I see a lot of tea that claims to be nut flavored but the nut hardly comes through at all. I have no idea if people drink this kind of tea in Italy but who cares! ha! It is lovely here in San Francisco and taking the chill out of my November morning.
This tea also need to be tried with rum in it or maybe brandy! woo!