300 Tasting Notes

drank Brambleberry by Tazo
300 tasting notes

So I’ve been wanting to try this since my husband mentioned he had some and it reminded him of a Renn Faire. He picked up two bottles today for fifty cents a piece, pretty good deal if you ask me. This tastes like pie to me. Blackberry and rhubarb pie, not that I have had that particular combination, but I’ve had strawberry rhubarb. There is no rhubarb in the tea but I think the hibiscus might be coming off that way to me and cinnamon is what is giving me that pie feeling. I shared my observations with the husband and then he reported that now all he can taste is pie (not sure how he could taste a Renn Faire before). So pie-tea win! Mind you its not really tea, its a hibiscus infusion with fruit juice and sugar cane juice, but its pretty delicious.

Alphakitty

Pie tea? I need to find some of this asap.

Azzrian

Yummy sounding!

Autumn Hearth

The husband picked it up cold by the check out at Wal-Mart ::shudder::. I have seen it at our local Marc’s discount grocery but not at the big Giant Eagle. If you are lucky enough to have a Barnes & Noble near you someone mentioned that where they got theirs. It is also very likely that Starbucks offers it seeing as its their brand, but I can count the number of times I’ve been to Starbucks on three fingers. Perhaps Target as well, either at the ones with Starbucks or just over in the food aisles!

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99

Hmm it seems I did not log this months ago when I received and drunk half of the complementary sample, as I thought I had, though I did comment on Verdant’s Facebook page that it was amazing as I was drinking it, so that must be where my memory got confused. No matter, I was so moved by my experience drinking it today that I was going to write a second note and bump up whatever rating I had assigned to it then.

Now me, I love my shu, I haven’t found a Verdant Shu I didn’t love, but this and Yaxin’s Reserve ‘04 Shu Nuggets (the angel food cake) are very different from the other shu’s. They are so sparkling and light on the tongue whereas say the Peacock Village or Elephant Tea Trail are dark and rich and nearly syrupy in their sweet earthiness, which I love, but this is just so fine!

It tastes of parchment but doesn’t feel that way mind you, no it feels like slippery silk especially in the second infusion, its downright scandalous! There is plenty of sweetness in its sparklingness and there is a lovely natural vanilla note. I’d love to wax poetically about ancient books and libraries but we are watching Pirates Band of Misfits and the husband is complaining I am not really watching.

September is tomorrow and I get one order of tea for the month. I’m going to pick up some samples of the new teas and order an ounce of this, I wish I could get more, maybe for the birthday or holidays. But I cannot not have this. Thank you David or sharing such a fine tea with us!

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec
Autumn Hearth

Enjoying this a second day because I can, this tea is very generous!

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Smells like nail polish remover (but then again so does Teavana’s Joie de Vivre) tastes pretty much like honeydew, smell is distracting though. I was only given a few sips of this by the husband, he says its a bit off.

Fjellrev

Ouch, nail polish remover! Can’t say I’m surprised though. Honeysuckle can be weird.

TracyFord

It used to be a great iced tea, but lately I’ve had the exact same experience. The smell of nail polish remover. I wonder if it’s actually fermenting?

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Picked this up in the grocery store as it was a brand I hadn’t heard of, I’ve never tried a honeysuckle tea and it was unsweetened. It’s pretty nice actually though I think it would be better cold (I’m sipping on it at room temp from a tiny glass). It’s mildly floral and delicately nectary. No idea what kind of white tea but I would guess White Peony. Husband got the honeydew which is sweetened but he has not opened it yet and might not tonight. May rate when I try this cold, putting it in the fridge as I’ve honestly had enough liquids this evening.

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I finally opened this one today, I have been saving it for some precious uninterrupted time alone or for guests. Well the guests came first ;) I finally had a tea date with one of my former co-workers Michelle, we’ve been meaning to get together for forever and I’m so glad we made the time for it! I had selected a number of teas for her to chose from for after lunch, we went with Peacock Village Shu for after the cous-cous then after five or six infusions, she suggested we try the one I hadn’t had, just the motivation I needed!. I decided against a rinse, feeling all the infusions on this would be very special and I didn’t want to waste a drop.

Oh my this was incredibly silky, like mushroom or eggdrop soup minus the spice and bits of things. Very delicate and airy and so unlike any black tea I’ve ever had. The second and third infusions brought new mouth feel, tingling at the sides then the tip of the tongue and toward the bottom of the cup a cool sensation at the center, reminding me of powdered sugar or camphor, the ghosts of cinnamon and honey came to visit as well. We found our selves oooing and ahhing after sips, mid-conversation as new sensations occurred in our mouths.

We enjoyed five infusions before she had to leave for an appointment and I have started reinfusing again. I think I could have used a bit more leaf but it is lovely. I sent her off with a toucha each of Cornfields Shu and Chicago Tea Garden’s Sticky Rice Pu’erh as well as my last single serving packet of Teavirve’s Bailin Gongfu to enjoy at home. Next tea date we shall get to the Taiwanese Orchid Oolong and perhaps some Yabao.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec

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94

Ooo interesting. This is chocolate and chai in a very different way than I have experienced from Verdant, the natural notes usually coming from Laoshan Black, Big Red Robe or Zhu Rong Black. This is a very complex and unique. It’s stoney and savory, fruity and honey sweet and that’s not to mention the spice and cocoa which are lovely and present but my mind or perhaps my tongue is interesting in picking out the Dan Cong notes dancing around. Very nice, going to do one or two more hot infusions before cold brewing the leaves as I just picked up a sample size. It tastes like there is already milk in here, probably the vanilla, so I’m not going to do any additives. Really glad I got to try this. Well done Verdant!

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 1 min, 0 sec

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Grr Steepster gobbled up my tasting note. So this was a sip down for this tea that I’ve had on three or four other occasions since I purchased it in a gift set that was 50% off at the Heavenly Tea Sale in January. It reminds me more of a tieguanyin in scent and taste though the leaves are not balled up. They are small, greyish green slightly twisted leaves that turn deep green once brewed and have nice little serrated edges.

It lacks roasted, mineral and honey notes though does pick up some subtle nuances of peach pits in the second infusion. The first is mostly orchid and vegetal, while the second turns a bit savory. The third is my least favorite, feeling dull and grey. I may try to resteep a couple more times, but mostly this reminded me of Teavana’s Monkey Picked Oolong. Much preferred the Oriental Beauty in this set, but alas it is no more.

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91

Sip down! So lovely and complex for a green. At times creamy, sparkling, brothy, sweet, vegetal, and nutty with hints of vanilla, mint and even cinnamon. Some steeps feel like soup and others are sheer dessert, rice pudding specifically. I know I must eventually drink through all of last year’s Autumn Harvests and then early Spring, making room for the harvests ahead, but I shall take my time.

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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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