2114 Tasting Notes
Sandy’s back! And the first tea we shared after her long trek to New Zealand and back was Vanilla Jasmine sent to me by JacquelineM! It arrived just a few hours before Sandy did. Since she didn’t get to try it with me the first time J sent me some she was eager to taste it. It didn’t disappoint! We shared fresh buttermilk bread and ginger nut cookies from McVities out of doors in the warm windy day, watching the thunderstorm blow in from the safety of the bistro tables. Here’s to tea friendships, present ones and virtual ones!
I am trying to find some green teas to like because I almost exclusively drink black tea and I think drinking green will make me feel somehow more noble! Since I am not a fan of green teas the flavoring is going to be key. This one is so aromatic it is palpable when you open the tin. Lovely! And the steeped tea was very drinkable for me. I thought I was tasting oranges but the description says lemon. Shows how much I know! Maybe the three flowers blended in had an effect! And on that note….this tea is BEAUTIFUL! If you are having a group over for tea, put this in a nice glass container with a tight lid and keep it out as part of the decoration because these petals are bright and colorful and cheering!
The dry leaves have an AMAZING aroma! There is a very high note that reminds me of mint, for some reason, but I do not claim to be experienced or good at discerning flavors! It smells rich, rich, rich.
The tea is lighter in color and heft than Hao Ya A and has a nice sweetness. It does not have the body or rich mouth-feel of Golden Monkey, but is quite good. I may be way off base in this comparison but the taste reminds me a bit of Teavana’s Golden Monkey. (Teavana’s GM has the aroma of Harney’s Golden Monkey but lacks the rich, honey-and- caramel flavor of it. )
The cocoa notes are there, but are not as pronounced as those in Harney’s Hao Ya A or in Premium Steap’s Emperor’s Red. This is a very nice tea. My guest loved it, youngest daughter says she still prefers Hao Ya A but thought it was very good.
JacquelineM, I will send a sample of this your way when I get to Southern Season to pick up Wild Forest Oolong!
Today someone was coming to my home who had told me she is a noncommital coffee drinker – just the grocery store stuff and just to get going in the morning – and she did not drink tea at all.
I asked my daughters to help me choose a tea that is pretty unanimously liked even by non-tea drinkers. We chose Paris. We chose well! We offered for her to stay to tea and she accepted. We have another convert….She didn’t even sweeten it, but said it was perfect just as it was.
For some reason this tea and I did not get along today! Perhaps it was because it was in the presence of such masterful teas as Golden Monkey and Hao Ya A. This is made DAILY at my house by one of my daughters, but I almost never drink it. I have seen it referred to as a premium tea in a review on a certain website that sells everything under the sun, but it isn’t premium in the way that Harnye’s Golden Monkey is premium.
A very good Ceylon! The leaves are HUGE and I do mean huge. There is a nice honey aroma and full flavor to this extremely smooth tea. This was actually made by accident today and became a fourth tea for the tea party when my youngest grabbed the wrong container. That was fine – we drank all the tea we made and then had to make an extra pot of Keemun Hao Ya A because we sat and talked for so long!
This keemun has the classic keemun flavor you would expect – cocoa and a little smoke. But it tastes like a resteeping of leaves you had already enjoyed! A while back we tasted this one side by side with the Hao Ya A from Harney and Sons, and this is weak and pale by comparison. If you want full, powerful Hao Ya A flavor, get Harney. If cocoa notes and light smoke are a little much for you, this one should do nicely. My youngest daughter loves this tea and our tea party guest liked it very much as well.