1012 Tasting Notes

85

Cheesecake matcha

This is my second matcha from Red Leaf teas http://www.redleaftea.com/ to try – I had a great experience with my first matcha from them, Caramel Matcha, so I was excited to put another order in.

I’m a big cheesecake fan that rarely eats cheesecake. I prefer to bake my own treats. Cheesecake, in my opinion, is expensive to make and quite a bit of work, so I make it on special occasions. The other issue I have is that my husband does not like cheesecake, and I need another person to eat it with me so I don’t eat the whole thing myself!
With that said, when I see cheesecake teas or other fun dessert teas, I jump on them. No to little calories and all the sweet deliciousness! Cheesecake matcha? Oh hells yes! Red leaf teas has great sales and within hours of it being posted on sale, I snagged it.

The specs on the matcha I ordered:

Cheesecake Matcha
http://www.redleaftea.com/matcha-tea/cheesecake-matcha.html
Size: Small
Matcha Quality: Starter (Basic Grade)
Flavor: Robust
I went with Robust flavoring this time (the last time I tried Delicate) because I decided to not mess around.

Red Leaf gives you lots of power over your matcha – you can set the flavor strength and matcha quality. Wanna go hardcore elite mode? Try a Imperial superior grade.

I ordered in the middle of the night, but my order was shipped the following morning. Red leaf is very prompt!

Straight out of the package, smells strongly sweet cheesecake goodness. I can’t tell that there’s supposed to be lovely green matcha in this package!

Note on packaging, their matcha (at least the small size from my experience) comes in gold foil non resealable packets. This time around I ordered a small tin, which is very handy if you do not have a small tin. The tin is good quality, size of a squat spice tin, but all metal with a twist top with plastic grooves inside to ensure a good seal. You don’t want the air to damage your matcha! I took off the sticker label off the foil packaging and stuck it on my tin – very handy!

I still don’t have all the pro matcha gear, so rest assured if you want to have matcha do don’t need all the gear to try it! At this time I just use a standard ½ teaspoon measuring spoon, wide mug, fine tea strainer to act as a sifter and a bamboo whisk I got from my local Daiso, a japanese dollar store. Previously I used a wire whisk but that takes more time to whisk but is very do able. If anything, sifting the matcha is the most important step I wouldn’t skip. Red Leaf also gives you the option to buy the matcha accessories along with your order.

I whisked up Cheesecake matcha following the instructions given in a pamplet in my order. I found this batch was harder to get the nice froth than my Caramel matcha. Cheesecake matcha is more brown green compared to Caramel matcha – I’m unsure if it’s the flavoring strength or different flavor that effects the colour.

Prepared traditionally with just hot water, the Cheesecake matcha is earthy, mouth watering, full flavor green tea. No bitterness. There’s an additional hit of smoothness in this matcha at the end of my sip. Very fun and delicious!

However, my favorite way to enjoy matchas is as a latte. I immediately had another cup of matcha. This time I added organic light vanilla soymilk, a teaspoon of sugar to a whisked cup of matcha. As a latte, the matcha changes into full force CHEESECAKE mode! Smooth, creamy and that hit of tangy cheesecake!

Overall, very good matcha and cheesecakey. For me, I want something more than base cheesecake, I’ll add some raspberry or caramel matcha for my next cup! Ahh, I love how flexible matcha is!

Now, my next evil plot: baking a cheesecake, but not just any ordinary cheesecake, a green tea cheesecake with this Cheesecake matcha in it! Red Leaf tea has recipes on their site (https://www.redleaftea.com/index.php?dispatch=pages.view&page_id=36 ), but googling around I found a couple matcha cheesecake recipes too. Unfortunately with watching my calories I can only have one small slice of cheesecake. Anyone wanna share it with me?

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C
tigress_al

Wow, that cheesecake would taste really stellar right now!

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95

So glad I got 6oz of this tea, I could easily finish it and spread the love!! This is my warm up tea today, tea to drink before I crack into my Red Leaf Matcha order!

Coconut Cacao! mmm! Insanely creamy and so delicious lightly sweetened.

I was sipping this tea downstairs watching the morning rain (I miss rain! It’s rained like 3 times since I moved here and I’m used to non-stop rain for week + back in Vancouver) and the roommates show up and ask why I’m drinking their coffee – since this tea is so black it looks like coffee.

Regarding my roommates coffee. It’s DISGUSTING and I’ve never tried it because yeah.. they make it the night before. Fill up a french press with 1/2 to 2/3 full of cheap ground coffee. Top with water and let it sit on the counter overnight. Then they drink it in the morning before work or sometimes drink it later that evening after work. EWWWW! Never drinking that coffee!

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 45 sec

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85
drank Grape Oolong by Butiki Teas
1012 tasting notes

Noo, my internet has been hiccuping so I lost the tealog I wrote! And I don’t want to retype the whole thing!

I tried Grape Oolong for 3 infusions, the 2nd being the best. Very nice floral oolong with a twang of grape that got better on the 2nd infusion. There was a bit of astringency on the first infusion but worked with the grape taste. 3rd infusion was good but not as grape flavored.

Very yummy (thanx for the sample Kittena!) I might have to get more of this!

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 4 min, 0 sec
Babble

Ugh, I feel your pain on losing what you’ve written. This is why I like to keep them all in a word document. Helps with spellchecking too.

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100

BACKLOGGING MODE!

So, I steeped up a small pot of this to drink while I work on my knitted shawl of doom last night. However, I cheaped out on the leaves so it was a little weak. With less leaves it wasn’t as melony, but still good. Before bed I was planning on drinking out of a huge pile of rooibos teas I haven’t tried and couldn’t bear to toss out WMX’s leaves, so I did a resteep with much less water. Still delicious!

I guess I need to order more, YAY!

I did let the tea hating husband try WMX. He was like “it’s sweet and then it tastes like tea.” thus, he didn’t like it. I’m sad as I thought he’d like this tea (and I’d love to find a tea he likes) but happy at the same time because it’s MOAR TEA FOR MEEEEE!

Butiki Teas

I must know, what does a “shawl of doom” look like? Bummer about the hubby not liking tea. There has to be something he likes. FYI, WMX is going on sale very soon.

tigress_al

lol, shawl of doom….I had a blanket of doom last year that I made for our good friends’ wedding….but it took FOREVER!

On sale!!! I might have to buy this!

Awkward Soul

gasp, on sale!! Ooooh! That means I should really try the samples I have from you in case I need to order out of those too!

The shawl of doom is http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/cloud-illusions and I thought I could have it done by April for my civil ceremony wedding, but barely got halfway. Now I’m hoping for October for when I have my wedding celebration with family. I’m a fast lace knitter, but this beast of a shawl is taking forever! Dreading when I get to the beading /cry

Butiki Teas

Love the style. Good luck, I hope you get it done in time for your celebration.

Well, don’t worry the sale will be a month long so you have some time for sample tasting.

ashmanra

That is a beautiful pattern!

tigress_al

Very pretty shawl!

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90
drank Cashew Turtle by 52teas
1012 tasting notes

Uggg, had a horrible sleep. My bunny Benson was being an absolute terror all night. He has this wooden house in his cage for hiding out and chewing. I guess since he has been cranky about his shedding, he took it out on that wooden house waking me up multiple times of him clawing and pushing the house around the cage. I had enough and got up and took out the house and he tried to escape the cage. Bratty Bunny! I’m hoping this fun sounding tea sample from Kittena would perk me up!

DRY: lightly nutty smell.. oooh cashew piece!

STEEPED: A classic brown coloured black tea, but with a chocolately nutty smell.

TASTE: Smooth, nutty and slightly malty black tea. Not bitter or astringent.
Sweetened with rock sugar, slightly caramelly creamy with a soft nuttyness. Totally reminds me of a chocolate turtle!

I got distracted with emails and my tea got cold and it’s pretty good cold, sweetened!

COMMENTS: Turtles Turtles, rahrahrah, turtles turtles ha ha ha, I love turtles! (whoa.. does this commercial jingle date me? I youtubed it and I only saw 1980s commercials lol!)

Very yummy, if this tea gets reblended, I’ll probably snag it.

EDIT: resteeped it because I’m lazy and CT became more mellow – still caramelly nutty with a hint of chocolate!

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 4 min, 0 sec
gmathis

Hmm…I thought I was the only zombie bunny owner around these parts :) (Long story!)

Kittenna

Glad you enjoyed this one! It was reblended somewhat recently (I gathered), and I picked up a pouch as it sounded tasty. I also enjoyed it :)

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70

I gave this tea another shot this morning and it turned out better than previous times I made this tea. Before, I found the tea not very creamy or fruity, thus unexciting.

200f, 3 minutes + a couple lumps of plain rock sugar + 1/4 of the vanilla bean pod (I had scraped out the yummy insides for a huge batch of pancakes and kept the empty pod for steeping teas – FYI buy vanilla bean pods off amazon for ultra cheap prices!)

The result: very creamy and strawberry! I think before I was using too hot of a temperature and too long of a steep. And probably adding the vanilla pod cheated some more.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec
Sil

Hmmm I’ll have to check this then and see if that helps with me, since we were kinda in the same boat as far as this tea goes…

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70
drank Swampwater by DAVIDsTEA
1012 tasting notes

Thanks to Kittena for a sample of this tea!

Relaxing this evening with some nintendo DS, Castlevania (order of ecclesia) and tea! Bleh, I’ll lift weights tomorrow! I thought I’d grab a DavidsTea out of my sample pile to switch it up a bit.

DRY: cute orange sprinkles and little black kitties! Makes me think of halloween!

STEEPED: very very weird steeping with my DT Steeper. It looks the typical brown tea. However, when I poured my tea into my cup, it became this weird foresty dark green… uhhh.. what happened? /brain explosion

TASTE: slight fruity tang and sugar sweet. Green rooibos mellow and nutty background. Very nice fruity after taste. Not bitter.

COMMENTS: Very very weird tea. I really like the after taste. Swampwater reminds me of almost bubblegum in a way. The fun factor in Swampwater is super cool, but I’m wanting something more stronger or brighter in taste.

However, I think this iced would be really good and bring out the fruityness.

My tea hating husband got a sip. He was confused about the colour and said it tasted like weird tea and thought it was bitter. (weird)

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 5 min, 30 sec
Fjellrev

It is awesome iced.

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90
drank Choco Cinnamon by Tea Desire
1012 tasting notes

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95
drank Dragon Feelers by Butiki Teas
1012 tasting notes

I don’t know whether it was drinking a buttery tea this morning (Buttered Cinnamon Raisin Toast, 52 teas) or just my overall weirdness, but I while I sat at my computer working, I began CRAVING dragon feelers with a raging passion that cannot be denied.

I held out until I was finished my work and stormed to the kitchen. I went all out too – steeped up a small pot worth instead of my usual single mug and I’m drinking it out of a nice tea cup (nice to me, it’s from Daiso and I paid $1.50 for it).

Now I’m rocking out ChthoniC (Taiwanese metal band of screechy goodness) while gently sipping this light, crisp, butttery sweet pea tea. With that said, I’m having an awesome Sunday afternoon.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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80

Thanks to the amazing Kittena for a sample of Buttered Cinnamon Raisin Toast (BCRT)!

I got lots of samples to try out, yay! That’ll keep me busy drinking tea and not eating snacks! But out of my pile, this tea screamed at me – I think it was me writing down all the suggested steep times for the samples and I saw the picture of that buttery piece of toast and was all “YUMMMM”!

DRY: slightly sweet? Wasn’t much of a strong smell for me.

STEEPED: Reddy brown colour, zingy cinnamon scent.

TASTE: black tea base, a blast of cinnamony spice and aftertaste of raisin. The more I drink, the more raisiny BCRT gets. Slight bitterness.
Sweetened with plain rock sugar, I find the butteryness comes out but the cinnamon blast goes down. I think if I get more of this tea, I’d use less sweetener.

COMMENTS: Very yummy! I am the bitter tea police, but the slight bitterness worked well here, brought out the raisin, if that makes any sense. And Mmmm buttery teas! I’m a sucker for buttery or creamy!

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 5 min, 0 sec

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Profile

Bio

I’m a crafty knitter and crocheter that loves to work on a project and drink tea. I worked as a counsellor and I chain-drink tea to keep me calm and grounded.

I’m a tea blogger – The Oolong Owl
www.OolongOwl.com – I do tea reviews, obsessively photograph teas with mischievous crocheted Owls and get tea drunk.

I was raised on floral oolongs and green teas, mostly “beauty” teas. Early on as a kid, I can guzzle an entire pot of tea (or two) at a Chinese or Japanese restaurant.
These days I like adventurous and interesting tea blends. I’m fearless in trying new teas! I’m into oolong, pu’erh, white, green, black, guayusa, mate and herbals. I’m not into red rooibos but I keep buying it anyway.

The tea brand that got me started into loose leaf teas was DAVIDsTea. I used to live in Vancouver Canada and had access to their shop, however that is now limited since I moved to southern California.

However, the perks of living in the US is ultra cheap, fast shipping! Since then, my tea stash insanely expanded.
My recommended tea shops:
Mandala Tea
Steep City Teas
Butiki Teas
DAVIDsTea
Della Terra Teas
Lupicia
Verdant Tea
Yunnan Sourcing
52 Teas / Zoomdweebies
Yunomi.us
Red Leaf Tea
New Mexico Tea Co
Bluebird Tea Co
The Persimmon Tree

Other stuff I’m into that sneaks into my tea notes: Brazilian jiu-jitsu, metal music, drawing, painting, cooking, photography and nail polish.

I have a husband and a bunny who both hate tea. More for me!!!! MUUAHAHAHAHAAA

Location

Long Beach, CA

Website

http://oolongowl.com/

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