This is so beautiful and delicate looking, lovely light pink petals floating in the cup. The rose and the bergamot are indeed tame as other’s have noted, which I appreciate, though I did try the proto-type and if memory serves this tastes like it has a bit more bergamot. But the star here is the chocolaty Laoshan Black base. I love exploring all the different ways to enjoy Laoshan Black and it sometimes seems less intimidating to brew up a cup of one of these Alchemy Blends than the pure tea, so I could see myself stocking up on this and enjoying it more often. I have the perfect black tin with white cranes and delicate sprigs of pink cherry blossoms on it, the ivory colored one is reserved for a future order of Eight Treasures Yabao and the purple will receive Peacock Village Shu in just a day or two (I had originally thought I wanted Elderberry Pu’er but I much prefer the pure base). Though I may just wait for he autumn harvest of Laoshan Black and just stock up on that. But for now, I need to go reinfuse this!

195 °F / 90 °C 1 min, 30 sec

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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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