430 Tasting Notes
This tea looks amazing, and such a fresh and clean sight.
I just wish I had found it even the least bit tasty. At best, I can say the experience was “interesting”. My mouth felt all tingly and it definitely tasted like wintergreen and mint and all kinds of tingly woodsy things. Actually, it tasted a bit like watered-down Buckley’s. Which, despite what my wife thinks, isn’t some kind of huge Canadian practical joke.
Mr Red Leaf, you make goooood Earls.
Seriously. I don’t think I’ve had a bad Earl from them yet. Anyway. More crappy junk food, more oolongs to counter it. This was a very, very tasty discovery from the uncharted depths of our tea stockpile. First steep was just a hint bitter, I would do less than two minutes for a nice balance of Earl and oolong, because it’s a very, very strong bergamot flavour, and it stick around for multiple steeps.
Thanks to Teavivre for this sample! Another that I stole from my wife. Broke in my new yixing with one of these little packets.
Brewed it gongfu style, starting with a five-second steep and then a few more seconds each steep. I actually lost track of how many steeps I did, but it was in the fifteen to twenty range.
Dry, the leaves are a very bright colour with a strong floral odour. Actually very visually pretty. Very verdant, with the bright greens and then the darker smoky leaves.
First steep: golden liquor, almost clear, but a strong floral flavour. Very crisp and clear.
Successive steeps: gradually a darker, more green colour. The floral taste faded a little with steeps into more of an earthy, vegetal flavour.
Overall, a very tasty ti guan yin. It was a relaxing cup of tea, perfect detox after eating way too much crap.
Thank you to Teavivre for their generous samples (that were sent to my wife – privileges of matrimony = delicious tea)! See her review of the Blueberry Fruit Tea for the heart attack she gave me when we opened the package of what seems like all the tea in China.
Dry: Long twisted leaves, much lighter in colour than I expected, with a golden dust. Very pollen-y scent, made me want to go back for another sniff. Then another. Then another. Until my wife asked me why I was smelling the tea like a creeper. So I finally made a cup.
First steep: 100C, about 2 minutes. Quite dark, considering the short steep and the light colour of the leaves. Not bitter at all, with no unpleasant aftertaste. Not much of an aftertaste at all, just a sort of vague sweet heady satisfied mouth. Reminds me of wine and coffee without tasting like either (thank goodness), but that same kind of dark richness, but really smooth. This tea would be great in the morning or as a lunchtime pick-me-up, one of the best straight blacks I’ve ever enjoyed. Just the kind of solid tea I was craving after a shift that seemed way longer than it should have. I would love to try blending it, because of that natural sweet, rich body, but I also don’t want to waste this sample!
Second steep: 90C, about 2 minutes 30. Brewed up with a lighter golden colour than the first steep, and I reread the package directions and realised that I steeped the first cup waaaay too hot. Luckily I don’t think I burnt it the first time around? Anyway, this cup was a much more mellow drink than the first, a nice all-around flavour. The sweetness continued unabated, but the tea was a much lighter taste than the first steep.
Think I might go for a third steep before bed, if I can dig myself off this couch.
Another tea that I forget how much I enjoy until I have a cup. Still nursing a box I picked up last Christmas, but I’m interested in trying the new blend they’ve brought out since they redid their teas.
The kettle yelled at me this morning. I had boiled it to make my strawberry black from Say Tea, and then went back half an hour later to make my traditional vat of tea for work. Brand new Thermos, too, it is working out really well. The cap, as well as being the usual cup (with teeny tiny handle!) has a hidden compartment for, as the label says, “condiments” – but it fits two or three DT sample tins just perfectly. Anyway. Kettle. I cranked it down to green temperature and tried to turn it on, only to have it glower balefully at me and turn back off. Rinse and repeat a few times before I figured out that the water was already hot enough for tea.
I just love this tea. It isn’t too sweet or too dark or too anything. It’s just an invigroating, tasty cup of tea. Just smelling it is enough to pick me up. Almost at the bottom of my first bag; definitely going back for more.
Not bad. Definitely need short steeps, but I managed to avoid bitterness, yay! A fruity tea, but I tasted more rose flavour than strawberry, with a bit of a perfumey aftertaste. Not terrible, but I don’t think I’ll be reaching for it again.
. . . ew.
I’m not sure exactly which ingredient really stuck out to me, because everything (except the cabernet) sounded pretty good. And it didn’t really taste like cabernet. I did get the earthy nuttiness described, but not in a good way. I’m sure there is someone out there who likes sweet honeybushy teas with wine notes, but that someone is not me.
OH MY GOD THIS TEA IS STILL AMAZING.
Made another Thermos of it, and it was just as wonderful as I remember. I’m in love with this tea. Still one of the top earls. Just a bit of sweetness from the raspberry without being overwhelmingly fruity, and an all-round delicious earl underneath it. Yum.
I have yet to be disappointed in a Verdant Tea offering.
In a Gift-of-the-Magi-esque situation, my wife and I both got the other a six-month subscription to Verdant Tea’s Tea of the Month club. Because David is awesome, he’s making them consecutive instead of concurrent, so we can look forward to a whole year of amazing tea.
Anyway. This yabao is incredible, I’ve never tasted anything quite like it. It’s a white tea, but there is a depth of flavour to it that’s quite incredible, especially since it brews up practically clear. From the colour, I was expecting a faint delicate flavour, but I was pleasantly surprised by the party that happened in my mouth. Very heavy and spicy, as promised. Definitely a tea to be savoured.