8 Tasting Notes


Okay, I am really surprised by this tea. I do not normally like teas with added flavors but this tea is nicely prepared and the licorice flavor is subtle, yet it blends extremely well with the oolong. The dry leaves look a little strange at first but finally start to open up after the 3rd steeping—instructions say 3 steepings, but I went to 5 with good flavor.

So glad I joined Steepster Select. I NEVER would have purchased this tea independently. Now, I definitely plan to get some!

Flavors: Flowers, Licorice

195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec 4 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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~Dry Leaf
Appearance: Light green, large pieces, little dust
Scent: Hay, grass

~Infused Leaf
Appearance: Opened up after 1st infusion, little color loss
Scent: More intense grass, hay, now floral, vegetal

Color: Light green, clear
Aromas: Subdued vegetal, floral, grassy
Taste: Smooth, floral, light, sweet, buttery; almost like a sencha
Texture: Full body, thick, little astringency throughout all infusions

This was my very first “spring tea” and I was hooked once I opened the bag and smelled the fresh, tender leaves. The floral, sweet, and grassy notes certainly dominated this tasting experience. This dragonwell almost reminds me of Japanese greens, like sencha. I doubt that I can go back to aged dragonwells without being reminded of how wonderful the spring cup can taste. There is very little astringency throughout all three infusions and the intensity of the flavor seems to maintain a respectable intensity.

Flavors: Butter, Caramel, Grass, Sweet, Vegetal

175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 0 sec 2 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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drank Dragonwell by Zhi Tea
8 tasting notes

Decent but a little weak, compared to other dragonwells I’ve tasted. I tried increasing the amount, brew time, changing temperature, but nothing got my taste buds excited with this one.

175 °F / 79 °C 1 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 7 OZ / 200 ML

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Wow. This was my first gyokuro and I was blown away. Extremely delicate, so make sure you get the temperature correct. I brewed according to the instructions on the package from O-Cha (2 min @ 55-60 C). Light body, sweet taste and finish. Wonderful sweet grassy aroma. Very impressive.

140 °F / 60 °C 2 min, 0 sec 6 g 200 OZ / 5914 ML

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drank Kukicha by Adagio Teas
8 tasting notes

Probably my favorite tea from Adagio. Very sweet and medium body with no bitterness. Pleasant sweet grassy aroma! Excellent through 3 infusions (45 s, 15 s, 30 s @ 79 C). I know the 2nd one for 15 s does not seem like much, but it works very well.

Flavors: Flowers, Grass, Honey

175 °F / 79 °C 0 min, 45 sec 4 g 7 OZ / 200 ML

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drank Genmai Cha by Adagio Teas
8 tasting notes

Solid genmaicha at an excellent price. The popped and toasted rice tastes fresh, not stale like some others I have tasted. Good for 3 infusions (1.5 min, 30 s, 1.5 min @ 79 C) I like this tea in the afternoon, as it does not have a lot of caffeine. Great to have once a week or so.

Flavors: Corn Husk, Nuts

175 °F / 79 °C 1 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 7 OZ / 200 ML

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I really love this tea. To me, it is a nice bridge between Japanese and Chinese teas. It has a medium body with slight grassy notes. It is very mild in overall flavor, so I would suggest this for a beginner. Also evident are some woody, floral, and smoky flavors. The first 2 steeps are great, but it tends to quickly decrease in strength on the third. Great afternoon tea on a cold, snowy day!

Flavors: Earth, Flowers, Grass, Wood

175 °F / 79 °C 1 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 7 OZ / 200 ML

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drank Sencha Premier by Adagio Teas
8 tasting notes

One of the better sencha teas I’ve tasted. A bit expensive compared to others of equal and better taste straight from Japan. Of all the Adagio Japanese greens, this is my favorite. The first steep (77 C, 45 s) is grassy with floral notes and full body. The second steep (79 C, 30 s) is more cloudy, of course, with a bit more of the buttery notes. The third (79 C, 1.5 min) is the last pull for me, and it still remained above many other senchas.

Flavors: Butter, Flowers, Grass

170 °F / 76 °C 0 min, 45 sec 4 g 7 OZ / 200 ML

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Native of Atlanta, GA. Now in PA where I am a Chemistry Professor at a small university. I love green tea, especially those of Japanese origin. I’ve been hooked since the summer of 2013 after I tried my first quality sencha. As of 2014, my research group is beginning to explore new ideas in tea chemistry with various analytical methods. We have exciting plans on the horizon, as there is a lot of chemistry happening inside of each cup! Feel free to drop me a line if you have any science-related questions and or suggestions for research ideas.

My Ph.D. is in analytical chemistry, so brewing to me is like a scientific experiment: Everything is accurate and precise. I normally brew in traditional teapots, depending on the tea’s origin – digital thermometer in hand – digital timer – and quality water. I’m still new to this tasty world of tea, so I like to shop around and explore various types. Although Japanese greens are my faves, I also enjoy many Chinese greens, along with whites and yellows. Getting into Oolongs too (the slightly oxidized and still green ones for now) and raw Pu-erhs.

My Rating Scale
• Excellent
• Great, not in my top 25
• Good, one time purchase
• Able to finish, not buying again
• Nope.

I am also a former professional musician/singer (I still play for fun), amateur photographer, experienced chef, gardener, animal lover (cat person), and avid traveler. My favorite place on earth is the Big Island of Hawaii.


Pennsylvania, USA



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