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192 Tasting Notes

94

Today is my official 1st day of sampling Lapsang Souchong. i picked it up at 2013 NYC Coffee and Tea Festival. Joseph Wesley stand was my first stop. I did my little homework and was dying to try these teas. I was always afraid to drink LS because people described it as ashy smoky bitter. Whatever.
Steeped according to directions: 1tsp 8oz 195F 2min2 1/2min etc
This tea completely changed my uneducated and inexperienced mind. Its smooth, sweet with touch of smokiness at the end but its well rounded. it has this rye bread taste,sweet and toasty. i got myself a piece of cheddar since its written it pairs well with cheese. it does, but i can drink it without it. I know what would be great : toasted bagel cream cheese. I’m sure some maple syrup would make it complete. I’m going to try it next time.

Flavors: Baked Bread

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
ifjuly

oh, a toasted bagel with cream cheese and a good LS sounds DIVINE. yum. glad your first LS is such a good experience!

boychik

Thank you, ifjuly;)

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97

I picked it up along with two other tins yesterday at NYC Coffee and Tea Festival .
They didn’t offer this tea for sampling but how can you go wrong with Damn Fine Tea.
The dry leaves are soo perfect, same size black small like lashes. They almost look plasticky to me
Steeped according to direction : 1 tsp 6 oz 212F 5min
It is my first Keemun (except blends) so I have nothing to compare.
The brew is gorgeous sunny golden brown. Smells like toast. Tastes like dark chocolate. As it cools I find it kind of salty. Am I crazy? That’s it. It tastes like sea salt dark chocolate. I’m a big fan of sea salt chocolate. Resteeped for 7min. still strong. I’m so happy that I picked it up even without trying.

http://tinypic.com/m/i1l7qh/1
[IMG]http://i61.tinypic.com/juzfnk.jpg[/IMG]

Flavors: Chocolate

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 45 sec 1 tsp 6 OZ / 177 ML
ifjuly

i often find keemun kind of…vaguely salty too, so you’re not alone. (: so jealous about your weekend, it sounds like it was awesome if exhausting! and i’m on the fence with keemun—some i really enjoy, some i don’t, and there doesn’t seem to be a rhyme or reason to it—but this sounds lovely and as you say, how do you go wrong with A&D. hope they make it available online soon.

boychik

I still feel tired;) I pm you

ifjuly

you are one awesome lady!

boychik

Ha-ha;)

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93

i picked this tea at NYC Coffee and Tea Festival yesterday. i did my little homework before i came and I was going to pick this tea. I have several Golden Monkey (Teavivre, H&S) and I wanted to compare.
Dry leaves: greenish with lots of gold silver and hairy. Teavivres are black and gold.
As usual gongfu treatment
1 heaping TBS 150ml gaiwan 195F( I did the same parameters as for Teavivre’s GM, but the company suggests 212F) Maybe I’ll try it next time
rinse 5/10/15/20/30/45/1
This tea is great. Rich and malty. Not as much chocolaty as Teavivre’s. No sweet potatoes detected. But has grape notes and some slight sourness which is delightful. Some bread notes in later steeps.
To conclude, this tea is amazing. its quite different from Teavivre. And its a good thing. i wouldn’t be happy to have identical teas in my overflowing cupboard. i picked only 1oz (surprisingly they had such small amount, other vendors were pushing a lot of tea on you). When I run out of it i will definitely pick some more.

Flavors: Baked Bread, Chocolate, Grapes, Malt

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 15 sec 2 tsp 5 OZ / 150 ML

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94

Looks like i didn’t do a proper review for this Golden Monkey. i enjoy it a lot. Since i picked another Golden Monkey by The Meaning of Tea i want to review this one first.
my usual gongfu method
1 heaping TBS 150ml gaiwan 195F
rinse 5/10/15/20/30/45/1
This is very rich and satisfying tea. Malt, dark chocolate, some hay. Later steepings introduced some roast notes which are slight and quite enjoyable.
My hubby who doesn’t really know anything about tea (in fact he resists and just makes fun of me, i don’t care really) and says that its just all hot water asked for couple cups and it says a lot. Sorry for run-on sentence, my writing skills are not great but I’m trying;)
Bumping the rating up by 2 points.
i think Steepster should add some flavor description

Flavors: Chocolate, Malt, Nuts

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 15 sec 2 tsp 5 OZ / 150 ML
TheTeaFairy

Haha! Hubbies…what do they know :-)
( and your writing skills are just fine)

boychik

thank you. its JustJames who pushed me to write. I was quietly sitting and reading other ppl notes. he said it was the time i should write something. thank you James!

TheTeaFairy

James is awesome, good thing you listened, it’s much more fun to participte :-)

boychik

Now I can’t stop;) i’m addicted to Steepster

K S

Love this tea and loved your review. Keep up the good work on the husband. You’ll win him over yet.

boychik

Thank you KS. The man is stubborn . Im not really trying with him, i think he’ll get there. It would be nice to have a company than solo. Yesterday when I was at tea festival just proved that so many people are into tea.

K S

My wife can’t tolerate caffeine. So I fly solo as well. Before I retired I had a protege I was training. Occasionally he sends me notes from work telling me about a tea he shared with someone. Makes me feel all warm and fuzzy. If it weren’t for Steepster I am not sure what I would do.

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96

1TBS 150ml gaiwan 212F
rinse 5/5/10/10/15/20 to be cont
Another delicious offering from Mandala . I have Phatty Cake but didnt have it for a while so I need to refresh my memory.
This is what i like about shou -strong clean taste, smell of leather and prunes. Rich and thick.

Flavors: Leather, Stonefruits

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 7 g 5 OZ / 150 ML
TeaTiff

All of your tasting notes are making me want to place an order right now with Mandala! Need to practice restraint.

boychik

Stay strong:) I’m not

ifjuly

leather and prunes, yes! this is possibly my favorite pu erh ever. yum.

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92

Last night brew.
I really like Queen Catherine and I decided to mix it with Rose Scented( too strong for my taste). 2:1 3min 205F produced delicious chocolatey rosey cup of tea. Very soothing and comforting. 2nd steep was quite good, mellow but good. I’m going to have this way from time to time for variety.

Flavors: Cocoa, Flowers, Malt

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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93

This is a free sample with my recent order. Thank you Garret!
This time i decided to brew western style.
1tsp 8oz 205F 2 min
This tea is exceptional. Sweet, full of flavor. i didnt detect much earthiness. I had it plain but it tasted like i added some maple syrup. You dont need to sweeten this tea for sure. At the end of the sip its kind of spicy cool mint.
I still have some left to make it gong fu style (my beloved method). I may change my rating, I still believe western style doesn’t do a justice to this tea

Flavors: Malt, Sweet Potatoes

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Dexter3657

Why did I not order some of this? Me thinks there is another Mandala order in my near future.

boychik

And i secretly hoping for another Mandala sale…
You know I’m going to a NYC tea festival tomorrow and my hubby suggested I should pack all my teas and sell or give them out. What a fool. They are like my babies;)

Dexter3657

NYC tea festival – I am so jealous. I don’t think anyone else here drinks tea. Definitely nothing as fun as a tea festival. Have fun and don’t let your hubby get a hold of your “babies”. I can relate, I’m attached to some of my teas too. :))

boychik

Thank you. I’ll take pics if they allow and post them here

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95
drank Black Beauty by Mandala Tea
192 tasting notes

i’m so glad I picked this tea with my recent order. I didnt have a sample but had a feeling I’m going to like it. I love this tea. Dark chocolate, dried stone fruits, rye bread w/caraway and coriander seeds. its naturally sweet with some slight sour notes. Long sweet aftertaste.
Dry leaves are long and twisty and its hard to measure by spoon( I need to get scale). As usual short steeped.
a little more than 1 TBS 150ml 208F
rinse 5/5/10/15/20/25
later steeps introduce some smoke notes

Flavors: Baked Bread, Chocolate, Stonefruits

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 2 tsp 5 OZ / 150 ML
Garret

I knew it! I was sure you were going to enjoy this one. I was thinking of you this morning as we brewed some of this up in the tea shop. Your review of it is really nice. Thank you. It made me smile and also confirmed alot of what I think is going on in this tea. Yahooooo!!!!!

boychik

Thank you for finding such gems for us

mrmopar

Good stuff!

pyarkaaloo

wow!!! all these notes are things i love & i am so surprised they are all found here in one tea. thanks for your review, u always find such classy, complex teas..

also i think there is something to be said for short steeps…am planning to get a gaiwan very soon :)

boychik

thank you pyarkaaloo, but its all Mandala Tea fault. every their tea I tried is so unique, its hard to resist.
for gaiwan I recommend something like this:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Goldfish-Hand-Grabbed-Porcelain-Gaiwan-Tea-Cup-Teapot-150ml-5-3oz-/350927580204
Good seller, great quality,I got it in 10 days from China.

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