1692 Tasting Notes
Bonnie was so generous to share this wonderful puerh that she received from mrmopar, so many thanks to both of you!
I was feeling out of sorts tonight, both physically and mentally. I have a cold or allergies or something and a lot of mental stress right now, as we are in the midst of making some big decisions, except that we AREN’T making them, if you get my drift! I know it is past bedtime, but I wouldn’t be able to sleep if I went. Tea and soft music sounded especially inviting! (I already did the “driving fast down the expressway with the Pulse blasting” thing, it was time for something different.)
I have saved several samples from various people until I feel it is the right time to appreciate them, and it is the right time for this one!
Because both Bonnie and mrmopar said to throw away the rinse, I did, though I often drink the rinse. This rinse looked pale, so I followed instructions. The first steep at 30 seconds was mild and very civilized. This has no fishiness, a nice well-oiled horse tack aroma, and a whisper of polished cedar beams. Each steep was about the same length of time, but the third and fourth were noticeably darker. There is a lingering sweet aftertaste, and I don’t know if this makes sense but the tea feels extraordinarily WET. I am drinking from a tiny double-walled glass cup, but if this was in a great big glass I think I could just throw it back and chug it. This is so smooth and thirst quenching. My angry throat is a lot less angry, and my stuffed head seems to be clearing a bit.
As I sit here waiting for steep number….what is it now? Seven? I feel as if my mouth is coated with a delicious infused oil. Is this what truffle oil would be like? I have never had it, but it is what I imagine it must be.
Body and soul are much more fit for having drunk this tonight. This is so mild, so smooth, I think this would be a fabulous introduction to puerh for anyone who is afraid to try it. Thank you, thank you, again, to Bonnie and mrmopar.
One of my kids liked this on the store, so I had her pick some up. I don’t know if she tried it hot or cold, but I am using it for iced tea. I added 1/4 of rock sugar and infused the mixture twice. It is a decent pitcher of iced tea, but I like 52teas much better, so I doubt I will invest in this again. I bought so little of it, I am not going to add to cupboard because it will be gone very quickly since I am making pitchers of iced tea. It is pretty and fruity tasting and would be fun to serve to guests who are not familiar with many teas.
I awakened to find that I still have the sore throat of yesterday lingering, as well as a general malaise and really whiny sinuses. The last time this happened, I drank lots of oolong tea and that seemed to boot it right out the door, so I am going to spend the morning getting to know this lovely sample sent by Nuvola for review!
The sample was packed in the most adorable little brown envelope with the string and two button closure on the back. (Forgive me, but I find pretty mail and packaging really exciting! I even love the little Par Avion stickers – I have it on display now in my cloche along with vintage ink bottles and nib pens. This is how cool it is!) The sample was wrapped in bubble wrap and was undamaged. The leaves were not crushed at all!
I made this is my eight ounce gong fu pot. The tightly rolled leaves were a thin covering on half of the bottom of the pot, and after steeping they have expanded to fill the pot more than halfway full of leaf alone! The leaves are now a deep, dark green color, almost black. This promises a nice roasted oolong flavor to come.
The liquor has a definite baked aroma. Oh, I do love dark oolongs! As I lift the cup there is a sweet fruity note teasing me. Hey, my sinuses may be angry but they are not blocked and they are on duty this morning. I believe I would call this a baked apricot aroma, with even the smell of the Maillard reaction coming through.
With each steep, the dark, heavy baked flavor subsides a little and the fruity sweetness comes out more. I feel as though the tea knew I was feeling poorly and gave me a nice roasty kick to start me up and then started wooing me with sweetness. I am on the sixth steep and seriously, this tastes like I have added something to it now, some sort of natural sweetener, but I haven’t added a thing.
The warmth has soothed my throat, the heat has opened my head a bit, and the delicious flavor experience has made this morning much more civilized than it would have been without this tea.
Thank you, Nuvola, for letting me try this excellent Ti Kuan Yin. I will continue steeping as I believe there are at least two more good steeps in these leaves.
I don’t remember who said they did this, but someone said they put their matcha in a water bottle, added a little cold water and swirled it around really hard, then added a lot more cold water and drank it. I had read this to my eldest daughter and she said it was probably a health food nut and that was why they liked it. LOL!
Well, I decided to try it myself with my caramel matcha. Wow! It isn’t bitter at all, and if you want some flavor and a caffeine boost, this is too easy for words! It really is good! I didn’t sift, didn’t whisk, didn’t add sugar.
Up to now, I have not wanted to order any fruit flavored matcha. That just changed, because I think this would be awesome done with a fruity tasting one!
I have ordered two flavors of matcha based on what my eldest daughter likes because I thought she would benefit from drinking matcha. She will have to pry the Pumpkin Pie matcha out of my hands now, and that isn’t even a flavor I would normally get attached to, but it is so good! I was good and let her take the Mocha Matcha home with her and I told her I will buy her a Pumpkin Pie matcha of her own soon!
So when it was my turn to pick a flavor just for me – though I wanted to get something I think hubby will like, too – it was so very hard! This is ridiculous! I go to the Red Leaf website several times a day at least and salivate over the flavors and try to choose what I will order next and after that and after that…
Well, this time, the winner was Caramel. I thought it would be great to mix in with hubby’s Carnation Instant Breakfast. He is very picky, he needs the green tea, and he needs the energy for his long days at work but still needs focus. So in a way I guess I am still ordering for others, but I will enjoy it, too.
I ordered the large size tin and large matcha, and I chose the Robust flavor level. Get the tin! (You need a screw on lid tin so the powder doesn’t go flying, and once you get a collection of them you can just start refilling them.) You can order it here:
I did not sift the matcha, but just measured it into a small bowl and got out my kitchen whisk. The aroma is the intoxicating scent of a bakery full of cupcakes and birthday cakes! Swoon! I added hot water and whisked, then I put an ice cube in the matcha for just a moment to cool it a little, then took the ice out and poured in milk and added a pack of vanilla Carnation Instant Breakfast in. I was making two glasses at a time, so one of them I just stirred and tasted. That was for me.
For my youngest daughter, I got out the Bamix and mixed the drink with the aerator blade so that it was very frothy and milkshake-like. She made a face when I asked her to taste it, I guess because of the slight green tint, but her face changed as soon as she sipped. She loved it! And if she loved it, I know her Dad will, too. She asked me how on earth they do it. I told her I have no idea but I hope they keep on doing it!
Now I can get some antioxidants in hubby in the mornings to make me happy, some caffeine to make him happy, and he doesn’t have to give up his quick breakfast of choice!
The big problem now is….what matcha do I order next? There are so many amazing flavors from which to choose!
I haven’t had this in ages, but youngest made it as a third “surprise” tea for tea party today. I used to want milk and sugar in it, but today I had it plain and really liked it that way. It is always nice and chocolate-y but I thought it tasted nuttier and was really tasty with our cookie plate. Seasonal AND Candy Corn Oreos, woo hoo! Not very hoity-toity, but it was yummy!
In my cupboard. Woot! Yahoo! Uh-huh, uh-huh, uh-huh! It finally got here!
I served this at tea party today and as always it was DELISH! The jasmine smells like grape candy in this to me, incredibly sweet, and the flavor is just perfectly floral and not perfume-y. I really love both types of Jasmine Pearls they carry, who can choose just one?
I got this sample from Liberteas and held off making it so I could serve it for a tea party day, plus I was hoping for cooler weather to serve it. I got my wish today! Well, I consider 70F cooler weather, anyway.
I am a little leery of some spiced teas as they sometimes overdo it for me. Harney’s Hot Cinnamon Spice is one that makes me hide under the bed, but several of my friends love it. This one smelled really good but I was afraid I would be assaulted by cinnamon. Instead, I was sweetly wooed.
I really agree with Liberteas on this one. I felt that I tasted more clove than cinnamon, though, but even that was mild. I was really excited to have this since my daughter gave me a few sips of her spiced apple cider from Starbucks last week and it was sooo good. This reminded me of it, though I drank it unsweetened and I am sure the SBucks stuff was full of sugar.
The tea base could be a little stronger for my taste, but I am seriously inspired to try to make a mulled tea this good. this was really tasty. Thank you, Liberteas, for the delicious tea!
As I mentioned in last night’s note on Marco Polo, I usually only steep that one for 2 1/2 minutes. It is fussy, but it is worth the trouble because you get a really amazing cup of tea. But hubby was a little disappointed in last night’s pot of tea because it went for about four minutes before I got the leaves out. I told him I would try to make it up to him soon by making this one, Anna’s from Tin Roof Teas. It has a similar taste but the base is more forgiving and a bit smoother, without being a generic Ceylon base. I am pretty sure there is some Keemun in this base and possibly a little Darjeeling.
He tried it tonight and said he liked it better than Marco Polo! At first he said he thought it was more floral, which I thought strange because there is no floral flavor at all in Anna’s, yet there is in Marco Polo. He adds milk and sugar to both, I take them plain. The bottom line was that he likes this one better, and that is great because it is less expensive.
The bag I sent to my oldest daughter’s BF in Ireland reached him today and he has already tried it. He liked it as well, and commented on the fresh berry taste. So it is a hit in general, and is somewhat comparable to Marco Polo, Paris by H&S, and Tower of London.
Supper time tea with Chinese buffet leftovers. Yum. Hubby didn’t mind it – he drank two cups so it must have been okay! I can tell this is starting to show its age, which is why I was drinking it. It lacked some of the creamy goodness of the first time I had it.
I am trying to purge my shelves of the oldest stuff. I have been very undisciplined and purchased more tea than we can drink, and since I mostly by what I really like, I keep thinking I will make this and that and use it up, but there is more than I can use! First world problems…