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I have a tin and a half of this from the heavenly sale. I thought it might be nice to have a less vegetal green in the house for the husband, though I believe he has yet to try it. Of the greens I’ve been drinking these last two days it is certainly the least vegetal, it also feels the least sweet which. I know this is described as sweet and smokey and I’ve described it as such myself, but I’m not really getting that in this cup. Mostly I’m getting flowery and dry and something that is reminding me of Bai Mu Dan. Maybe it’s the pepper others have mentioned.

Earlier in the cup I was questioning why I liked it enough to buy a tin of it. I didn’t drink it that often at work when it was available. But later in the cup I found a dry sophistication that reminds me of Darjeeling (minus the sour bits) so I suppose that’s it, it made me feel sophisticated. I still have Tai Ping, Dragonwell and Huang Shan Mao Feng left to review of the Teavana Chinese greens, but that won’t be tonight. 50th tasting note, whoo!

Update 5/5/2012: I brewed this alongside Teavana’s Song Zhen Needle (another green from the Tea Prosperity gift set) and Emperor’s Cloud and Mists. This was the clear looser. I’m going to give the tea and everyone who liked it the benefit of the doubt and say the leaves are probably just too old as most of the good reviews were written a year ago. For Teavana’s only USDA certified organic tea, it tastes the least fresh and natural.

I would imagine that SimpliciTEA’s suspicion about this being a SpecialTea’s variety is quite right as it was the odd certified one and was retired this year. I will attempt cold brewing this and maybe upping the temp to 180 once but I’ve decided it’s not worthy to send to Angrboda as she is trying to be turned onto greens and I feel this could only turn someone off. Emerald Buds you are simply not worthy, which is unfortunate as I have so much of it.

However if there is anyone who did like this and would like to confirm or deny my suspicion that it’s an old batch, I’d be glad to send it off. The good news is that Clouds and Mists surprised me with lovely fruity notes today. Song Zhen was once again just meh, so that eliminates two out of 12 greens.

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 1 min, 0 sec

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Bio

Druid, artist, poet, mum, lover of tea, ritual and myth. I grew up on Celestial Seasons herbals but fell in love with straight loose leaf tea working at my local Teavana for a year. I am grateful for the introduction and the experience, but have moved on.

I see tea as an experience for the senses, I like to imagine tasting the land and the weather as well as the effect of sun, air, fire and the human hand. I have a soft spot for shu pu’er, yabao, scented oolongs, wuyi oolongs, taiwanese tea as well as smooth naturally sweet blacks, creamy greens and surprisingly complex whites.

I began ordering lots of samples from Upton to educate myself on different varieties of tea we didn’t have at work and have fallen head over heels for the unique offerings from Verdant Tea. I am learning things I like: buttery mouthfeel, surprising sweet or spice notes, woodiness, mineral notes, depth and complexity and things I don’t: astringency, dry and sour notes.

I collect tea tins and am in danger of collecting pots, though I am trying to restrain the urge due to current lack of space. I brew mostly in a glass infuser mug or a tea maker, only using cast-iron for company now (still need to get a gaiwan) and tend not to sweeten my teas unless they are British or fruity and iced, which is not often.

As far as ratings, I lack a definite system and haven’t been assigning numbers lately, wanting to spend multiple sessions with a tea first. I usually only log a tea once, unless it is a new harvest or I have significantly different observations, but will go back and edit or comment if I find something interesting or new.

Location

Baker Street, Berea, Ohio

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