1876 Tasting Notes


This is a magnificent tea. It reminds me of the finest tie guan yin, but with even more flavor, more sweetness. Well worth the price, I will continue to buy an ounce or two at the time and cherish each steeping.

I shared some with my 18 year old male student who is rather new to “real” tea and he said it was his favorite so far. I don’t know when I should break it to him that he has very expensive taste in tea!

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Backlog from last week: There is one student to whom I offered at every week, but he never took me up on the offer. He is eighteen, and when his mother and little sister used to come with him, they would always get a china cup and have tea together during the lesson.

He drives himself now, so the past few weeks I didn’t offer tea. But this time he came in and said, “I know you always offered me tea and I never took it, but today I really need some because my allergies are making me feel terrible.” Yippee! (For the tea, not for him feeling terrible.)

I steeped pot after pot of this and he said it made him feel better. It was his first time having tea other than fruit flavored black, except for the one time he accepted (and liked) some puerh.

He ended up staying an extra two and a half hours, watching YouTube with me. I introduced him to Steam Powered Giraffe and he introduced me to Foals and David Garrett!

carol who

Yeah! Another tea convert on his way!

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This is a free sample that was sent by Teavivre for review. Thank you!

I was a bad girl. I took this packet out with the intention of having it later with a student. The more I looked at it, the more I wanted it NOW! I told myself I would just make one steep and save the rest. You see where this going, right?

So…for the first steep I ignored the package directions. I gave the leaves a ten second rinse, then steeped for about two minutes with cooler water than they recommend, around 204F. I was having this with some cantaloupe after a light lunch of ciabatta bread, toasted, and smeared with goat cheese, then topped with seasoned, diced tomatoes and pesto. My first thought was how much I was tasting a melon flavor in the tea apart from the cantaloupe I was eating. I think it was more honeydew than cantaloupe, though.

I love Dong Ding teas and usually purchase moderately roasted ones, but this one was good enough to keep on the shelf.

I made two steeps at a low temperature and then for the third steep increased to boiling and two minutes. Now it has a little astringent kick at the end of the sip. There is a light nutty aroma as I lift the cup but mostly….flowers! I am really enjoying this. I thought it would probably go about three steeps, but I am thinking I will get a fourth and possibly fifth out of this. Poor student. Ah, well, perhaps I will offer him a different tea…

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A couple of days ago I asked the kids if I could get tea for Mother’s Day. A day later I said, “I TAKE IT BACK!” I went through my stash and saw soooo many teas that I love that really need to be enjoyed before they get older, so I will try (just a little) to put myself on a buying restriction. We have managed a lot of sip downs lately. I do not include samples in my cupboard unless they are really large, so when I went through to delete some we had finished it took me down to 175, but then I discovered that some of my teas are not listed BAH!

Well, this one will be a SIPDOWN on the very next pot, so I am going to go ahead and remove it from my cupboard.

This is just the right strength for a morning wake up tea for me. I like to take my tea with no additions and this one is right there on the border of strong-enough-to-need-it but makes it just fine as long as I am having breakfast with it. By itself I would probably add a splash of milk.

There is a little fruity high note in this. Youngest takes milk and sugar, though she has cut back in the amount of sugar quite on her own (YAY!) and she quite likes this one. It has been her morning pot of tea every day for about a week now.


Never tried this tea, but Full Steam is amazing.

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My eldest daughter and her husband just went to Williamsburg, Virginia and when they saw this tea they thought of their “little” traveling companion from last fall….her youngest sister. Youngest daughter loves hearty teas like Assams, Irish Breakfast, and Lapsang Souchongs….the stronger the better. They brought home a packet as a souvenir for her.

It is reasonably priced at 10.95 for four ounces. The dry leaf smell reminds me of smoked bacon.

Steeped, the clarity made me wonder if we should have given it a little more time, but the taste says we did it perfectly. This is light and sweet, with a clear, fresh water taste, like filtered cold water when you are thirsty. The smoke is present but not very strong. The base is sweet. It reminds a bit of Upton’s Black Dragon. I dare say this could be a favorite Lapsang for me.

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I love this tea. Way back when I first got it, I had a sore throat, the kind that hurts when you swallow and means you are getting sick, not just a scratchy throat from allergies or drainage. I drank several steeps hoping the warmth would soothe my throat, and instead, the sore throat never fully manifested. I noticed that the pain stopped and didn’t come back.

A friend came over and tried it and I told her about what had happened. She said at first she couldn’t figure out if she lately liked the tea as it was very unusual to her, but then she couldn’t stop drinking it. She ended up ordering it…twice…. And still drinks it when she feels a cold coming on.

Yesterday my bestie came over and she sounded AWFUL. She has terrible allergies and was slurpy and sniffly and miserable. I used 1 1/2 teaspoons and made several steeps of this tea ( about a liter total) and served it with pound cake and strawberries. She stayed a really long time. When I called later that evening, she said that she felt really good for hours and hours after drinking this tea. Maybe it is the ginseng? She said she normally doesn’t like tea that leaves an aftertaste but she really loved this one.

I have offered her some of mine to tide her over through allergy season. This is one I hope I will ALWAYS have on hand. I tried one from another company once and it wasn’t even close to being as tasty and delicious as this one. It really turned me off, but this one is addictive.

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I was pretty excited to see a new jasmine in the Teavivre lineup because they do jasmine so very well. Bi Luo Chun is one of my husband’s favorite teas to drink with Chinese takeout so I am eager for him to try it, too.

This is a free sample they sent to me for review, and many thanks to Teavivre!

Since my daughter made the tea for our tea time yesterday I didn’t get to smell the dry leaves yet, but when I gave the pot a sniff I knew it was Teavivre’s classic jasmine. Just smelling it made me relax and sigh.

Since Bi Luo Chun is an oat-y tasting tea I wondered how it would blend with jasmine. No worries. It is beautiful. With our food, I did not pick up on the briskness, but when I had some later I did. Not sour, not mouth-puckeringly astringent, just brisk. And really, really nice.

Hubby hasn’t tried it yet as he came home from work exhausted and literally went to bed as soon as he had supper! Maybe tonight he can try it and I can give him a sample. My youngest, who doesn’t really drink greens, tried it and said it was very good.


This tea is produced by adding jasmine flower petals to the Bo Luo Chun Green Tea during processing, so infusing this tea with a subtle fragrance and taste of jasmine. After scented with jasmine flower for 8 to 10 hours, the flower petals are removed, leaving the tea with its unique taste and fragrance.


Thanks for sharing how it’s processed! That’s neat!

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This is the first tea I am trying out of the new batch of samples from the ever generous Teavivre. Thank you, thank you!

The leaves are thin, medium size, a little twisty, with lots of golden ones. The aroma dry is sweet potato, so much so that I immediately put one in to cook while making the tea.

The first steep has a medium orange color and the scent of sweet potato and citrus, maybe oranges, is still present. The taste reminds me of my beloved Golden Monkey, but is perhaps a little lighter and cleaner, while GM is heartier with more malty flavor. This tastes like gold and honey on the tongue.

I had youngest try it even though she had her own pot of Assam and she liked it. She said in particular that it completely lacked astringency, and she liked that very much.

This is what I would consider a possible conversion tea, one to give people who think they don’t like black tea. Even though I haven’t tried the other samples yet, I think this tea will probably be on my next order. It is a gentle civilized afternoon tea that still has all the characteristics I love about tea.

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Backlogging from Thursday night: One of the men who attends our writers’ group came in with a gift bag. He said it was something from his wife to me. His wife is Japanese and knows how much I love tea even though we have only met once, and briefly then.

The bag contained a rainbow wood scoop (so cute!) and this tea. Naturally I steeped up some of it for the group to try. :) I ended up making four pots because everyone loved it.

The ginger isn’t too biting in this one as ginger can sometimes be, at least to me. The peach is very nice but sniffing the dry leaves AND the tea we really picked up lots of citrus, and I realized it was a very strong lime aroma. The lime as there in the taste also, and I think it was really the green base that was carrying it. Perhaps the sourgrass nature of the base (did everyone else grow up chewing on sourgrass in the summertime?) mixed with the peach flavoring combined to make lime.

It was very favorably received by all the green tea drinkers in the room, and at the rate they were drinking it, I have a feeling this pouch won’t last long. It was a lovely surprise!


Your writers sound like an appealing and gracious bunch of people! Fiction? Non-fiction? Would you adopt a freelance curriculum writer who’s perpetually behind deadline if she could manage the 13-hour commute on Thursday nights? ;)


We would love to have you! We actually have one young writer in college who Skypes in when he can’t make it in person. He writes devotional poetry, essays, and sci-fi. My girls write sci-fi/fantasy. The older man writes autobiography and fiction based on his life. He was a wartime soldier who married a Japanese woman and he has based a novel on their life, on her family disowning her, and his conversion. We also have a playwright and fiction writer, another poet, and one who writes articles for emagazines! We drink a lot of tea. A lot. Of tea. LOL!

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I am a music teacher and homeschooling mom who started drinking loose leaf tea about five years ago! My daughters and I have tea every day, and we are frequently joined by my students or friends for “tea time.” Now my hubby joins us, too. His tastes have evolved from Tetley with milk and sugar to mostly unadorned greens and oolongs.

We have learned so much history, geography, and culture in this journey.

My avatar is a mole in a teacup! Long story…


North Carolina

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