1858 Tasting Notes
Merry Christmas, everyone! It has been a very tea-full Christmas for me! One of my gifts from hubby was this tea, so among the many new teas I thought I should choose this one, just because of the name, as the first. I will continue to take tea journeys throughout the day.
On opening the tin I gave the leaves a good sniff. The aroma wasn’t powerful, but it was the kind that makes you growl jus’ a lil’ bit. Kind of like when you see George Clooney in a tux. Niiiice.
I thought I detected Assam in this, and sometimes Assam doesn’t like me. I kept a close eye on the steeping and checked it at 3 minutes. Nope. Needs more time. I gave it a minute and a half more.
Aaaahh. This is a bright cup of tea. It is really hard to describe. It isn’t strong like the Assams that give me tummy ache, those sharp teas that make my tongue curl up and try to hide. It is fresh and clean, there is a nice pure metallic taste – that melting frost taste I usually may find in green or white tea. And malt. And…muscat grape?
I don’t pick up any puerh taste like Azzrian. The fruitiness makes me wonder if there is some Darjeeling in here?
This is a great wake up cup, civilized, smooth, and the drying effect on the tongue builds gradually as you drink instead of assaulting you. (I guess you can tell I have been traumatized by Yorkshire Gold and the like.) It did not need milk and sugar for me. I did try it that way just so I could report the effect but I preferred it plain. A little milk was fine, but sugar did nothing to add to it for me. I generally don’t put sugar in my tea so those who do might prefer it that way. This is sweet enough for me as is!
A very nice offering, Hugo Tea!
I bought these to use for special occasions. There isn’t a lot that is more special than Christmas Eve in this house! I had hoped to entice some of the kids into trying it since it is so unusual, but the diehard puerh drinkers didn’t budge. They DID watch it bloom and appreciate it. No one else wanted tea.
So I ended up drinking three steeps of this myself! This is my favorite blooming tea so far. The flavor is light and smooth and the flowers add a delicate touch, but not so much flavor that you would dislike it if you are averse to floral teas.
I am going to have to label this as a favorite of hubby soon. We had it with Asian buffet take out again last night and he emptied the pot before I hardly had any! Then he….yes, HE….resteeped. I don’t know if he has ever made loose leaf tea by himself, but he went in the kitchen and made another pot. He was being sweet to me so I could have seem more, and of course he sat down and had more as well.
It is hard to describe how good this is with food. I am surprised I like it so well with food because it is a mild tea that you would think would get lost under the flavors, but instead it swirls across your palate and tastes so fresh and sweet, like sweet well water. I think this would have to go on the “if I could only have ten teas” list!
Last night I asked my son who is here for the holidays if he would like some tea. He said sure! I asked what kind and he replied that he would like the usual. The usual means Teavivre Puerh, usually ripened Tuocha.
This is the final Tuocha that was sent by AmyOh. Thank you, Amy!
This Tuocha is larger than the ones I bought at A Southern Season. I out it in an eight ounce g,ass pot and gave it a thirty second rinse because I couldn’t remember how well this one breaks up. The rinse was fine, because the next steep, also thirty seconds, was inky black. I made three steeps in rapid succession and combined them in one larger pot.
Great as always. I confess I still do not detect much if any rose flavor, though the pink bud is very pretty in the Tuocha and in the pot! This is a stronger puerh than Mengku Palace. It is not fishy but strongly horsey. Very good, and very soothing for tummies. That is a good thing with all the holiday cooking.
I invited a friend over today for soup and goodies. He is fairly new to tea drinking, having only had Lipton with milk and sugar until a couple of months ago when I started serving tea when he came over.
Today I made my bracing, fortifying standby. All hail the Queen! He loved it and said he could drink this all day long. I had to make a second pot. Hubby even drank it without milk and sugar and that never happens with a black tea!
This is a smooth blend of Chinese teas, strong enough to withstand additions but sweet and smooth enough not to need them unless you just enjoy them. It is almost time to order another pound because I am getting low!
I bought this because I loved the way it looked! These leaves are twisted and soft and fluffy, but they have great staying power for resteeping. I have reviewed this a few times before so this time I will just say that I still mostly taste oats, specifically plain Cheerios. This is not a contemplative, meditative cup for me, but rather a tea I make either to go with Asian food or when I want green tea but I want a tea that will get me going and keep me going. For some reason, this tea makes me want to attack my to do list! That is exactly what I have GOT to do today!
I needed a firm foot to the butt tea today. We are cleaning and cooking and cooking and cleaning for Christmas soup night. I need to go shopping at two groceries to finish but I have to get the first soup on. The second one cooks faster so it can wait a little while.
Here is my firm foot! I made a whole pot and put it on my beautiful new vintage cast iron warmer that was given me yesterday by the puppy I keep on Tuesdays! I love it!
Here is something you almost never see in my tasting notes…this one gets milk and sugar, almost always. But when you drink this, you KNOW you have had a cup of tea.
This was the final tea of tea party. By the time we get to our third tea, we have usually finished snacking or we are just nibbling the occasional cookie. It is unusual for us to have all black teas but this was an unusual tea day since we had soup and cake as well.
Since the final stands alone, I chose a flavored tea. I chose this one because A. It tastes great B. it is new and my guest had never had it and C. almond flavor reminds me of Christmas.
The aroma does not disappoint on this tea and the flavor does not let you down. We took it plain and enjoyed it but for those who like a dessert tea with milk and/or sugar, this would almost certainly be excellent that way. The tea base is prominent enough to hold up to additions. The aroma smells like Christmas to me, without smelling like a standard Christmas tea of cinnamon, clove, and orange.
After having Loaded Baked Potato Soup, I served Italian Cream Cake. I didn’t make it! A friend sent it to me and it came from Sam’s club and was delicious! The frosting tastes a lot like the Bavarian Cream matcha from Red Leaf, but there is also coconut and that adds a lot to this cake.
It is extremely rich, however, too rich for me unless I scrape off a lot of the frosting. I felt that it required a black tea with a lot of presence to pair with it.
I love this tea! I don’t know how to describe it accurately because there is an unusual texture or something that I only know how to describe as…cocoa powdery, and I don’t mean just the flavor of cocoa powder but even a dryness at the same time it was wet. It is not, however, the dryness associated with astringency. I do not find this tea to be astringent at all!
When I drink it, it FEELS dark and rich. Imagine if you put a tiny bit of cocoa powder on your tongue, unsweetened, and it wasn’t bitter at all. It is not a heavy bodied tea, but rather it seems to hang on to my tongue for a moment before I swallow. This is what made me feel it would go well with that rich cake. Again, it needs no milk or sugar, which was critical since this cake is so rich and sweet.
I think it paired very nicely, but it is also wonderful on its own and is great for gong fu sessions, too.