59 Tasting Notes
This is a lovely, nutty, slightly salty rooibos. The first thing I tasted was nutty, but as it cooled, I could taste the sweet caramel notes more strongly. I definitely overbrewed it (close to 10 minutes). I might try brewing it a little less strongly to see if I can get more caramel and less nuts. I can definitely taste the high-quality rooibos base, that is not woody at all. It has a very slight minty aftertaste, which is the sign of a good quality rooibos (not a real minty taste thankfully, as I cannot drink mint teas). It even resteeped – and I’m currently drinking the resteep as iced tea.
It is really good and I don’t know of any other local teas like it. Thankfully, I am just a 15 minute drive away from this shop. I look forward to trying two more of their teas this weekend, and many more in the future. I would definitely buy this again and drink it often. It is very reasonably priced as well, making it even more attractive.
Flavors: Caramel, Nuts
Yep – still don’t like this tea! I need to get rid of this, so I’m drinking it. It is sour and only a little spicy. All I taste is tartness on the first steep. Later steeps are generally nicer, but I’m on steep 1 right now, trying not to add sugar. I’ll bet Teavana makes tea like this so that you buy their rock sugar.
I drink this tea each Tuesday to make everything better. It really helps to brighten a dreary day!
After drinking it back to back with Vanilla Silk from Whistling Kettle, which is the same tea as Silk Dragon from Tea Merchant, I decided that while it is nice, it is not as nice as that tea. That one makes me say “mmmm” after each sip.
I still do love this tea, but I think I am going to rate it down just a few notches.
I steeped this Western Style, 1 tsp in 8 oz of near boiling water. I might try this gongfu style in the future, but I don’t want to use this tea too quickly, so less tea lets me have more pots.
Steep 1: 3 min. The taste profile was roasted and oolong-y. Maybe a little floral. Definitely rich and smooth with a pleasant astringent bitterness. Yum! This is definitely a high quality tea with a depth of flavor. It required attention, too. I did not want to just sip it and ignore it, it kept catching my attention!
Steep 2: 3 min. Flavors still strong – unchanged, except a touch less better and less malty. But, the flavors were still smooth and it still had a rich quality to it.
Steep 3: 3 min, 30 sec. Significantly lighter in both color and flavor. There is a touch more of a floral taste to this steeping, but overall, the flavor is a bit washed out. I left part of it in the pot to steep longer, and it came out better, but just a little astringent.
Steep 4: 5+ min. Light in color, a pleasant pale gold. Very light in flavor – pretty much just a whisper. I think I need to use more tea leaves to get more steepings. Still pleasant, though, and not bitter.
I really love this tea. It is my first experience with a Da Hong Pao, and I look forward to trying more.
This is one of my new favorite teas. I take a sip and just smile and say “mmmm” each time, involuntarily! It is such a nice mix of bright flavors with a deep sweetness of rooibos (which I love). I do have to say, if you do not like rooibos, you will not like this blend. It is the primary taste, but since I enjoy a cup of straight rooibos, I’m glad it’s one of the main flavors. I don’t really taste black tea or chamomile, individually, but that’s okay with me. I like my blends to taste like a whole new tea, I don’t need to be able to pick out the individual elements.
Bonus: this rebrews quite nicely. It also doesn’t seem to overbrew, which is good for me, since I do not like picky teas.
I brewed this gongfu style this afternoon. It was my first time trying this tea, and I was really impressed. It is smooth and flavorful and actually gets more vanilla as I kept steeping it. I did at least 5 infusions, adding time each time. This tea is identical to one of my other favorites, Vanilla Silk Oolong from The Whistling Kettle. I’m inclined to think it is the same tea with a different name being sold by two different companies. This works for me since I live near the Whistling Kettle and can get the tea without shipping costs. I will always have this tea in my cupboard!