Arbor Teas

Recent Tasting Notes

93

This is a delicious Chinese green tea. Usually I’m more into Japanese greens, but this one might just change my mind. It has a soft (non-astringent) taste with note of butter…and maybe gingerbread? Like most Lung Ching teas, it is very subtle. But this one still packs enough flavor to satisfy. This is probably my favorite Chinese green tea I’ve had to date (today’s date being Aug 16, 2010).

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 1 min, 0 sec

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80

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Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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80

Trying to finish off all my samples before deciding which varieties I need to stock up on. I’m still not terribly impressed with this one, but it does the job of satisfying my black tea craving.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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80

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Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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90

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Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 0 sec

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90

Bumped up a few points because I’ve been getting a serious craving for this one lately. It’s becoming my go-to black tea.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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90

With a bit of amber sugar. I’m really digging on this tea.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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90

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Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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80

The last of my Indian tea sampler. I had no idea what to expect going in, but it’s a nice, smooth, full-bodied tea. I feel like I’ve been saying this a lot lately, but I kind of neither like nor dislike it. I’ll definitely drink the rest of it and enjoy it, but I can’t see going out of my way to get it. Maybe I’m just in a mood lately.

Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 0 sec

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80

I still haven’t decided how I feel about Darjeeling in general. I think I like it, but I still haven’t really put on finger on what it is I like or dislike about it.

It’s kind of… sweet. And fruity. And a bit spicy? Hmm.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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90

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Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 0 sec

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90

Breakfast blends can be a bit harsh on my stomach, so I was interested in trying something that was meant to be a bit more mellow. This was pretty basic… in a good way. A good staple tea.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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86

Used more leaf, less water than I usually would. Has a taste largely unlike other green teas. It’s somewhat savory, but hard to describe. It tastes like a food I’ve had. And also a little like genmaicha. It almost has a note of caramel but without the sticky sweetness. Its a nice, almost woody version of that taste.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec

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75

Finished this off by making an iced pitcher. Good hot, good cold. The cinnamon taste seems more suited to hot, but when made cold it’s pleasantly tasty.

Preparation
Iced 3 min, 0 sec

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75

Made an iced pitcher of this tea. I’m not sure if I prefer it iced, compared to hot, but it’s good either way.

Preparation
Iced 3 min, 0 sec

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94

This is a very interesting white tea! It has many different taste notes…very complex and somewhat paradoxical. Of course, it has a base of the classic gentle white tea flavor. But the schizandra brings a tangy edge to it that I haven’t seen in many teas. It has an herbal smell to it, almost peppery. But the taste and feel of the tea is something totally new to me as an American. It is very slightly tart with a subtle sweetness. I’m really not sure how to describe the taste of the schizandra, so I recommend you try it for yourself!

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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90

Not nearly as dark as it appeared yesterday, but still a good color. After adding sugar, I’m getting a distinct honey-like taste… which is interesting. I had to go back and make sure I knew which tea I’d actually brewed, because this morning’s cup seems completely different from the last. Yummy, just the same.

Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 0 sec

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80

I’ve never had Nilgiri on its own, only in a few blends I’ve tried. It smells and tastes similar to a Ceylon… a bit brighter and crisper than I usually like for a hot tea. Like Ceylon, it’s a taste I neither crave nor dislike. It should probably work well iced.

Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 0 sec

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80

Iced the rest of the pot with a bit of agave. Definitely works better sweetened.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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80

Only my second experience with jasmine, and I don’t drink much green tea otherwise, so I don’t have much to compare this to, other than A&D’s Damn Fine version. I wish I’d tried this first to get a proper opinion, because right now all I can think is that I just don’t like it as much.

The taste is a bit milder, and a bit less sweet. There is a flavor coming across that I can’t quite put my finger on… not altogether unpleasant, just different. Not a bad cup, just nothing that wows me.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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90

Part of the Indian tea sampler. (The Adagio black sampler taught me that I prefer Indian over Chinese, now I’ll learn which Indian tea I prefer. Good deal.)

I’ll have to remember to use one of my white cups next time, because the color coming out of the teapot spout looked much darker and more red than I’m used to, and I’d really like to see it. The flavor was very rich, very smooth and pretty malty. I’m a fan.

Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 0 sec

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93

After a one-minute infusion, I was left with a pale-colored yellowish brew. Its smell is subtle and somewhat buttery. It has a very pleasant taste – it lacks the overwhelming vegetal flavor of a sencha or gyokuro, but still has a nice savory roundness to it. Overall, it’s a very mellow tea, with no sharp or distracting off-tastes. Definitely one of the best kukicha teas I’ve had, because of this subtlety.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 1 min, 0 sec

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90

Got my teas from Arbor Teas less than 18 hours after I placed the order… I didn’t even know they were downstairs until my husband came home. Huzzah for local delivery.

The dry leaves smell like good vanilla extract… somewhat alcoholic, but delicious. The taste is soft and smooth, and works pretty well with a bit of sugar. Yum-my.

Edit: The empty cup now smells like toasted marshmallows. Weird and awesome.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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