drank Oriental Beauty by Teavana
300 tasting notes

I thought it was only fair to come back to this, now that I have tried three other Bai Hao’s. It was a sip down and my fifth session with this tea. It has been a bit hit or miss and I really wish I could recreate the first time. This really did best with a 3 min steep, which is what I should have started off with today, but apparently I never learn. There was a fair bit of dust at the bottom of the tin and the leaves were on the choppier side. This yielded a more smokey, fiery experience, but there is also floral and sour notes. I’m lowering the rating, not that it makes a difference. No one else has tried it as its only available in a gift set with what I’ve come to realize are not so great teas. So, farewell my first Formosa, thank you for encouraging me to seek out the greater world of tea, beyond the tea wall.


The tea wall is a grand barrier for many people. Congratulations on transcending it!

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The tea wall is a grand barrier for many people. Congratulations on transcending it!

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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.


Baker Street, Berea, Ohio

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