69 Tasting Notes
Drinking this today gongfu style for the first time. It is really sweet and light for the first infusion. Subsequent infusions were more green tasting, but with a smooth floral hint. Nice and light. I am surprised how many infusions I have gotten so far. I’m on number 4 and I think there are at least 2 more to come. This is surprising; brewed western style I am lucky to get three and the third tastes quite watery.
This is the first tea with bergamont oil that I’ve had in years. I did not like Earl Grey at all the first time I tried it, and I’ve been avoiding it for years. But this, this tea is divine! I bought it for one of my students and decided to have a cup with her. I loved the balance of lavender, vanilla, and citrus. It has no bitter aftertaste, but that might be due to the honey I added. I also only steeped it for about 3 1/2 minutes. The only downside – I don’t normally drink strong black teas and I got a bit jittery since I was also enjoying my normal morning milk oolong tea in my Timolino. Definitely a tea to put on my re-order list!
This is a lovely, smoky oolong. It is smooth and impossible to over-steep. I drink it often, like today, by putting the leaves in the bottom of my Timolino and drinking through the filter. I am currently sipping on the third steep made this way and it is almost as flavorful as the first one. It has a smoky, woody flavor that makes me think of tea served at high quality Chinese restaurants. Definitely a keeper! My only complaint is the leaves are small, so I do need to brew with a filter.
Brewed this in my brand new 16 oz Timolino. I put 2 tsp in the bottom of the tumbler, poured in the hot water and just let the leaves hang out. I’m still getting used to how hot the tea stays in this tumbler, but that was definitely to my advantage. The first brew of this tea was much better hot. I poured some out into a cup to do a temp comparison. Much better hot. The taste was a balance of orchid and true (not artificial) vanilla. Very strong flavor. Next time I will add some sugar to this first steep. The second brew was much milder and more pleasant. I did add sugar to mellow out the orchid and bring the vanilla taste forward. The third and final steep was light and lovely with no need to add sugar. What a fabulous tea! Definitely balanced and vanilla-y, like a floral cupcake.
Mmmm…berry good :) I taste mostly raspberries, but there are strong hints of cocoa as well. It has a great smell. I sweetened it with some of Teavana’s rock sugar, which is good, but I’ll be looking for a cheaper source in the future. When hot, this tea had a stronger cocoa flavor. As it cools, I’m tasting more berry notes. I’m starting to taste the hibiscus, which for me is not unpleasant. But, on a day when I really want a cocoa flavor, I would need to drink this hot. Overall, I’ll be rebuying this when it is on sale. I’m haven’t resteeped it yet, I’m excited to try that and I will post again once I’ve done it.
Steep #2: I left the tea bag in my 20 oz cup all morning, and refreshed it probably too soon. I still had quite a bit of cold tea in my cup, so the 2nd cup was pretty dismal. I will retry this in a tea pot where I don’t let the leaves stew. I think then I might get two decent steepings out of it. But, there is not enough actual tea in this blend to get more than that. It is sort of like drinking chocolate potpourri with a splash of oolong. I am struggling to taste the oolong at all. I’d rather buy this as an herbal mix and pay less for it.
I don’t know if this is my exact brand of Alishan, as a student gave it to me. But, I drink a tea that is just like this one. It is a lovely green oolong, and is brimming with floral notes. I drink it all day long, just keeping the leaves in my cup. They are so large when unfurled that they rarely get in my way. The first steeping gets a little astringent, but the third steeping is my favorite tea! This is the tea that got me hooked on oolongs.