2161 Tasting Notes
I am enjoying a second steep of this tea now, if rolling around on the sofa going “nomnomnom” is enjoying, and it occurs to me that I really truly do not believe this is a Puerh tea. Now, it might be Pu Er, as in, it was purchased in the tea trading town in Yunnan Province, China called Puerh, but I am convinced this is a Golden Mudan just like the one sold by Harney and Sons years ago. The company has this listed under both Pu Er tea and Black Tea headings. I think it belongs exclusively under black tea. There is no hint of she or sheng flavor, no appearance of Puerh, no extreme darkening of the tea when left for a longer steep.
Whatever it is, I love it and will probably buy more. But I still don’t think this is a shu or sheng Puerh.
This is my last little bundle of this tea. It is tied in a ball like a wonderful Golden Mudan that I had many years ago by Harney and Sons.
I do not really detect the Puerh in this, but I love…really, absolutely love this tea. It is on the lighter side as body goes and even the color is a tad light, but the flavor is so very, very good. It has a sweet, smooth brightness without astringency. I made it western style this time and have steeped two pots so far. I will be checking out the website right away to see if they still have this and how much it costs, because I hate to be without and it seems like a perfect summertime tea.
My eldest daughter took my youngest daughter to the Yucatan for a little adventure and I stayed home and kept the pup and the hedgehog. Today when I went to leave the animals and get my child back, this box was waiting on the doorstep! No, I didn’t open it! Never would I do such! But when they got home from the airport, eldest made a pot of it. She is a huge fan of mint and mint teas.
I am not a huge fan of mint or mint tea. I don’t hate, it just doesn’t appeal to me strongly, thought cool mint on a hot day can be very refreshing. So this was enjoyable, but not something I desperately have to have myself. I prefer spearmint to peppermint in Moraccan Mint tea, so the emphasis on spearmint in to pleased me, though the is peppermint as well. Alas, I didn’t pick up on vanilla very much. Perhaps if I had let the cup cool a bit I would have tasted it more. All in all a good cup, and if you love mint you can give it a try.
I love Tie Guan Yin. Sometimes I crave the greener types and decide they are my favorite, and then I start craving a nice roasty one. Charcoal baked in the title promises this to be roasty, but I was pretty taken aback at the instructions. Six minutes for a oolong? I was chicken and gave it five.
This was served as the first tea of tea party today. We had cream cheese cucumber sandwiches first, followed by fudge pie with homemade vanilla ice cream. The tea was good with the sandwiches but OH MY GOSH it was awesome with the sweets. We make our own vanilla and it seemed really strong in the ice cream today, and when I sipped the tea the floral taste exploded. This is definitely a baked oolong, but it isn’t quite as dark and smokey as some I have had. The sweets really brought a lot of personality out in this. I know how I will be serving it henceforth.
Fragrant is right on for this tea’s description. Fine tobacconist’s shop springs to mind first. I tried it gong fu and Western and got a whole afternoon’s worth of tea out of one sample packet.
Gong fu – the first steep was mild and pleasant. It had the flavors you expect in a Yunnan Dian Hong – sweet potato, a little walnut. Maybe light molasses. Second steep went a couple of seconds too long. WOW. Dark and rich, slightly astringent but good. Third steep – more careful with time but the leaves are now saturated and it steeps up very quickly. There is that definite aged sheng taste and feel.
Next I tried Western with the same leaves. Yes, got a whole pot that was rich in flavor from those same leaves. This is milder and sweeter. I had the gong fu tea by itself and the Western with a meal. It was great with food. At this price point, this is a fun tea to get to experiment with and try something new and different.
This is one of the samples of the new harvest that Teavivre sent me this week. I have had a Tai Ping before but I can’t find my review of it.
I have had a lot of tea lately, but it has been at breakfast or iced at a meal or with lots of company. I looked forward to having a quiet tea time with my best friend, steeping and resteeping and really having a chance to experience our tea.
I love the unique shape of these leaves and the pleasure of steeping them in a glass so you can see them dance and then soften and bend. The long, flat leaves stand straight up at first, and then begin to sag as the leaves saturate. It is really nice to watch in a tall, thin glass. Let yourself go and really lift and turn the glass and enjoy the movement, letting your hands join in the dance of the leaves.
The liquor is pale yellow to medium yellow (second steep). The overall taste is smooth and sweet. The second steep was stronger but never astringent. We kept all steeps at three minutes or less. You can go to five if you like it stronger. I think it would be a great introduction to green tea for people who have been turned off but bitter or sour grocery store, and the beauty of steeping it adds so much.
Then hubby and I had it again for supper tonight, made differently. Instead of drinking three individual steeps I placed the leaves in my large Kamjove that I bought from Teavivre. I made three consecutive steeps and let them combine in the pitcher before pouring any. It made a lovely, smooth green tea with buttery notes to drink along with our Asian takeout.
If I were introducing a tea “scaredy-cat” to green tea, I think this would be a great choice, even over Dragonwell. For those who love the bite of astringency with or after a meal, I am not sure if this would be your best choice unless you give it a full five minutes, which the label says can be done, by the way.
Thank you, Teavivre, for the samples. This is a really good one!
As promised, we tried it iced today, and sweetened. Youngest really thought it was the worst hot, and said it was okay cold. Just okay. Hubby tried it and said, “It isn’t terrible. It’s pretty good.”
I thought it tasted okay, not the worst by a long shot but if you don’t like anise, this isn’t a good tea for you. Once it is cold and sweetened it reminds me of those blends that have licorice root in them for sweetness. I like those, so this is okay to me, and certainly not “The Worst.” I will definitely drink it all cold this summer.
Another of my Mother’s Day teas. I can’t explain it, but I definitely felt like a renegade drinking it. I have always said that I badly want to be a “runs with scissors” but I am undeniably a diehard “plays well with others.”
I had this at breakfast and I felt…like a bad seed. Like a biker chick. Like someone with some sass. Don’t know how it works, but it works. So it might be a good tea for you if you need a little help in the mornings to get up and going, and have a “can do” attitude to boot.
I think my daughter bought this for me because she was intrigued by the name. The verdict: eldest and youngest daughters say it is The Worst! LOL Son-in-law and I say it isn’t bad. Smells interesting. Tastes okay, and I am really, really eager to try it iced because I think it just might be fantastic. I will let you know.
I agree with their description. This is a polarizing tea. You might hate it. If you don’t like anise or black licorice you won’t like it. But otherwise, you just might crave it.