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1769 Tasting Notes

96

At last! I have reached the point where I am buying matcha flavors especially for ME! So far I have chosen flavors based on the preferences of family members, and in a way this one is influenced by that – I want to add this to hubby’s Carnation Instant Breakfast in the mornings so he will get his protein and vitamins along with the caffeine boost and antioxidants in the matcha.

When I opened the package, the aroma was wonderful…but not exactly what I expected! I thought it was going to smell sickeningly sweet, like a whole bakery full of cupcakes covered in fatty, sugary frosting, although I believed it would taste great. Instead, I am picking up an aroma that I normally find in a super fresh, newly unsealed pouch of tie guan yin. I don’t know if I am smelling the matcha base this time, or if oolongs have reminded me of vanilla all along and I just didn’t put a finger on the smell accurately. Any way you call it, this smells GOOD. There is nothing sickening or cloying about this, even in this Robust flavor level, at least not for me.

I wanted strong vanilla flavor, so I chose French Vanilla over Madagascar Vanilla and I ordered Robust flavor level. I knew I would love it so I ordered the large size, of course!

Here is where to get it:
http://www.redleaftea.com/matcha-tea/french-vanilla-matcha.html

Oh my goodness! I am so glad I got the large! For this first tasting I just added 1/4 tsp. of matcha powder and one teaspoon sugar to eight ounces cold milk. I used an immersion blender to mix it up and get some froth.

This is really good. When I was a kid I had milk with Nestlé Quik almost every day, but on special days my mom would let me make vanilla milk. Back then, that meant a few drops of vanilla extract and lots of sugar stirred into a glass of milk. I would put so much sugar that my vanilla milk would crunch – it was actually gritty, though I loved it.

This is taking me back to that drink, but with far less sugar, lots of antioxidants, and a bit of caffeine to kick me into gear. I can’t wait to experiment with it. This is going to make a marvelous hot vanilla drink, too.

Sil

ooooh this was on my short list. I was worried about the bakery sweet thing too.

Azzrian

Glad you are starting to buy for YOU now!

gmathis

I loved it when my Nestle’s Quik would sink to the bottom and there was goopy chocolate powder to drink at the end :)

ashmanra

I must confess I still drink it almost every single morning! And some evenings…
My dad briefly tried to cut back on how much Quik he put in my milk – he made our breakfast and usually packed our lunches, too, he adored my mom and totally spoiled her! – but I would hand it back if it wasn’t a deep enough color! LOL! We buy it at Sam’s Club, now, of course….

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Oh la la! It is still chilly (okay, it is about 52F outside but compared to the eighty degree temps we were having, that is chilly!) and it is completely overcast and drizzly. We have lots of geometry to do and it is puppy sitting day and I had Mountain Dew at supper last night (stupid, stupid, stupid) and hardly slept a wink last night. Time for fortification!

Most of the time when I set out to make tea, I know exactly what sort of thing I want. Today it took a few minutes to figure it out, but I sure picked a winner. I had five pearls remaining from my free sample and that is what I am finishing here, though I did get my own order of it last week, thus I get to click “Add to Cupboard.” :D

These five pearls have given me four eight ounce pots of tea. It is cocoa-y, smooth, and…manly. I don’t know how else to put it. It isn’t strong as in astringent, biting, or drying, yet it has a lot of presence. I am taking it plain, but I think it would hold up well to milk and sugar if such was your wont. It is very good with sweets.

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drank Marco Polo by Mariage Frères
1769 tasting notes

I was pretty surprised today when I made a pot of this tea, gave it a sniff, and realized that I was in the same boat as GMathis. If you put this in front of me without telling which of my teas I had, I would be hard pressed to tell if it was Marco Polo, Tower of London, or Anna’s Blend.

The big difference comes in the sip – this base is more like what I think of as a French base, though not all French teas have it. It reminds me of the base for Rose Congou from Upton. I am finding that since I no longer take milk and sugar, I prefer the Harney teas like ToL and Paris, or Anna’s Tea from Tin Roof Teas, to this one. I am going to make an effort to finish this tin soon as it is getting on up there in age.

It is a very good and I may come back to it, but for now I am preferring Anna’s or ToL.

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drank Booooo-long by Unknown
1769 tasting notes

Everyone is going to be so jelly! My kids and my husband all went off, it is the first chilly day we have had, and I have the house to myself for at least an hour with TEA! And not just any tea, but very exclusive boooo-long tea!

This tea was a surprise gift from GMathis, and it came in the CUTEST CARD YOU HAVE EVER SEEN!!!

http://www.flickr.com/photos/24998856@N06/8067387501/in/photostream/

The dangly spider even MOVES! I squee’ed when I got it! :)

And on top of that, I get a yummy oolong tea. (It was labeled boooo-long. Now how cute is that?)
This is a dark roasted oolong, not a green, and has that baked flavor and heft with a mineral quality that I enjoy, the very thing that makes me crave dark oolongs.

Thank you, GMathis! It is a perfect cup for this rainy, chilly day!

gmathis

Aw, shucks :)

Bonnie

Tea Crush! How cute is that?!

Spoonvonstup

That is so cute!!

Azzrian

Aweeeeee

DaisyChubb

SO jelly!

Nicole

Aren’t those cards the cutest!!!!

Rabs

Totally adorable! :D

canadianadia

Love the card – too cute!

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drank Da Hong Pao by Harney & Sons
1769 tasting notes

The Da Hong Pao I had Friday and Saturday had me hankering for more! I remembered that I had a bit of the H&S version left, so hubby and I shared a pot after exercising together this morning. (Before you get the idea that we are svelte triathletes, let me say we were mostly doing stretches from physical therapy and there was a bit of groaning and grumbling.)

This is a dark roasted oolong, but it is not heavy at all. It is so smooth that it really goes down fast concept it is cool enough to drink. I am realizing that this is yet another tea that I want to have on my shelf at all times. It is great with food and great by itself, a nice contemplative cup if you wish, or great to share with a friend.

Update on Doctor Who scarves – you saw the one for youngest, now behold Samwise! He is really rockin’ the scarf! We ordered jelly babies for my daughter to carry so I guess we will have a little bag of milk bone minis for him to pass around!

http://www.flickr.com/photos/24998856@N06/8065212053/

fleurdelily

that is one SMART looking dog! adorable!

ashmanra

Thank you! His name is Samwise and he is a ten month old rescue that we fostered and then adopted. We absolutely ADORE him. (As perhaps you can tell!)

Indigobloom

love it! He is adorable :P

DaisyChubb

Wow what a little model! Love it!

JacquelineM

Sam, I want to kiss you!

Azzrian

Aweee I love your pup! And LOL at the moaning and groaning … I can relate!

Rabs

::melts from teh cutes::

ashmanra

@Rabs: he has me wrapped around his little dewclaw!

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This is the last of my sample from Teavivre, and once again a sample has caught me in its nefarious snare. I will probably be buying this one on my next order.

I got three steeps from this today and possibly could have made more, but I was cooking lunch and needed to get moving. This is so smooth. The leaves are very dark presteep. This is a dark oolong, not a green oolong, but it doesn’t have the mineral punch of a monkey picked (which I love big time, just saying it for comparison) but there is a lot of nutty smooth flavor.

As requested, I am posting a link to the pictures of the newly completed Tom Baker Fourth Doctor season 16-17 scarf, the largest and longest of the entire series. A scarf for Sam the puppy is now underway.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/24998856@N06/8060458307/in/photostream/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/24998856@N06/8060460390/in/photostream/

JacquelineM

Wonderful! and Long! and oh my Sam grew!!! :)

ashmanra

JacquelineM: I believe it is twenty feet! If not, it will get there quickly as it stretches under its own weight. That is what happened to the original. Sam is about 44 pounds now!

ashmanra

Oh my gosh! They are both great pictures but that first one with the close up of his face is PRICELESS! What a sweet kitty face! I would be smooching him all the time!

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If anyone is afraid of puer or even actively dislikes it, but wants to drink it, here is the tea for you.

Rich, decadent, dark chocolate aroma fills the room and courts your tastebuds. Then fruity, grown up strawberry flavor follows, not candy like, but think of real dark chocolate covered strawberries. The puer adds a dark, rich note without being being musty and absolutely not fishy – not even a bit.

Tunes: Accidentally Like A Martyr, Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner – by Warren Zevon.
(Perhaps I should explain – we were listening to Roland to help my daughter remember some facts about African history, though there are several errors in the song, and it made me remember the other song, which I used to love!)

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97

Okay, don’t get on my case. No need to throw stones.

I really wanted some bubbles after lunch. After eleven years of being on Omeprazole I am trying to get off of it. Rebound reflux is trying to get me. But I also wanted matcha. LIGHTBULB!

I mixed 1/2 teaspoon of black cherry matcha in a little bit of cold water, whisking it well with my plain metal kitchen whisk. This was then poured into ginger ale! Now I have my bubbly cold drink and my matcha at once!

What does it taste like? Have you ever had a ginger ale and sherbet float? I love them. We usually use lime sherbet and pour cold ginger ale (kept in refrigerator) over it and wait just a second so ice crystals form. That is the kind of flavor treat I am having right now!

The fruity cherry flavor goes great with the ginger ale, but I bet the lime flavor matcha would be a dead on match for my lime sherbet floats!

LiberTEAS

I love the sherbet and ginger ale floats. YUM!

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I have been holding this sample until my cold was lots better, and I think I am finally getting there! A Bi Luo Chun requires additional attention from me because I have had only a few, so I wanted to really get to know this tea.

This is a free sample provided for review by Nuvola Tea. The dry leaves are mostly dark green and curled – lovely! I was surprised at how much they swelled during steeping. I didn’t remember this type of tea doing that. It smells wonderful!

I must say I am really pleased that I have this today because it is delicious! This has the wonderful oat taste of Bi Luo Chun, but it also has a great warmth and fullness of texture. I am drinking fast because it feels so good going down – think of the expressn “slaking your thirst” and you will know just where I’m at! I feel like I can see “amber waves of grain” as I drink this. K S once pointed out a Bi Luo Chun tasting like original Cheerios, and that is an apt description!

The first steep was so refreshing, and then I oversteeped the second one because of poor multitasking, but it did not ruin it! It was still quite good.

I am on the third steep and this is still going strong.

Thank you, Nuvola Tea for this delightful sample!

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I really wanted Lupicia’s Chocolate Strawberry Puerh today, but my guest really doesn’t like puerh. I really think she would like that one because the puerh flavor is really muted and all you taste is rich desert-y chocolate covered strawberries. I mixed two of my teas to try to get the flavor I wanted.

Did I succeed? No. My guest loved the resulting tea, and I liked it fine, but it really was just strawberry tea and I could not smell or taste chocolate. I guess if I try this again I will go heavy on the chocolate flavored tea and just use one teaspoon of strawberry black. It did not satisfy the longing, but it was good with our cupcakes! (And cookies, don’t forget the cookie plate!)

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Profile

Bio

I am a music teacher and homeschooling mom who started drinking loose leaf tea about four 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.

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

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

Location

North Carolina

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