Asha Tea House
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Recent Tasting Notes
I think I got this from Lindsay? I’m not sure. sorry! Well, anyway, I got this maybe a month or so ago and I never got around to trying it. Something about roasted oolongs are a turn off for me. I know that all oolongs are pretty much roasted or cooked or something, but the ones that promote roastyness…I dunnoooo. I like my oolongs green and fresh. So yeah, I was a bit nervous. But then, I was asked for this in a swap and I figured I’d better try it before I get rid of it. :)
I make myself a small tasting sized pot of this and hmmm…it’s not bad. It’s not as green as I prefer my oolongs but still, it’s got a bit of a honeyed note along with more traditional ti guan yin flavors. Quite good in fact. I probably wouldn’t buy it myself, but it’s good enough to enjoy. The second infusion is so average tasting though. There’s some creaminess in there, but I’m not sure if that’s left over from the coconut pouchong I was sipping earlier.
In any case, good experience!
And now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ve been drinking tea all morning without a bit of food in my stomach…
I’ve tasted about a dozen ali shan offerings (most of them quite green, slightly-roasted like this one). Upon comparison, this is a standout. When it comes to floral aromas, I found some lovely ones within, lilac among them. However, it’s not as strongly floral as some I’ve had (and I do cherish those floral notes). Where this Pure Heart shines is the leaf freshness and tenderness and the even coverage of oxidation across the leaf. Obviously there was a lot of careful attention paid to bruising this crop, and it delivers a great drinking experience. Rich flavors of butter and corn are a delightful contrast to a light-bodied liquor which is clean and sparkling like champagne.
The pickers took complete budsets down to the third open leaf, yielding finished nuggets of dry tea that are large and fat. Many of the nuggets sport a ‘handle’ of stem which I’ve come to associate with hand-picked products. Gazing at the steeped budsets transports me to the tea fields in my mind’s eye. They are so juicy and tender that I am inclined to gobble up 90% of the leaf and stem, as if it were steamed asparagus. I wonder what it would taste like with a little bit of vinegarette dressing … something to explore with a future session’s results. I’m having my tea and eating it, too! This ali shan is an opportunity to discover the sweetness of stems, which are often sweeter than the leaves. This revelation has caused me to view stemmy tea with a less doubtful eye.
5 grams tea / 3 ounces water. Short rinse, followed by a rest … then steeps from one to ten minutes, with higher temperature in later ones.
ahhhhh. I decided to be super amazing and shovel the whole drive. Well, I got about 75% of it (the part where we walk and park anyways). It took about an hour and I have to say, I’m aching. I have a bit of a migraine from trying to do homework and staring at my screen all day. This tea is the perfect pick-me-up because it is my go to favorite oolong right now.
I’m currently on my 3rd infusion and this tea is still going very strong. For tasting notes please refer to older notes. Today I have to say that my two favorite unflavored teas are this and Hashiri Sencha. They are both perfect, complex, and just what the doctor ordered.
This second steep is getting its own review because it was so different!
This was a little under boiling for 1min.
The second steep reminds me of stones in summer for some strange reason. The texture is really evident in this tea. There is a great deal of mineral in this cup and it is followed by light fruitiness. It almost reminds me of the insides of grapes. This cup is also more green tasting than my past one.
Still a really unique tea and one that I’m looking forward to drinking again!
I love this oolong. There is something distinctly mineral in the flavoring that I find interesting. But the main attraction is this almost lychee-like flavor. It tastes more like lychee than artificially lychee teas I’ve had! This tea also seems to have more body than other oolongs that I’ve tried. There is a sweet, honey,and fruity juiciness to this tea that makes it one of my favorite oolongs.
omigod I made this exacting to the instructions set out by the steeping instructions. It smells crazy! There are roasted, honey notes that are very surprising for the 30sec. steep time. I’m really surprised because my last dan cong did not really smell quite like this; I’m starting it might be the steeping instructions? The liquor itself is very light, almost as clear as white tea.
Mmmm this tea is excellent! I was expecting it to be more harsh. But it was very light, very slightly roasty, and lots of honey. There is a very light amount of floral flavor at the back end of this sip that is really awesome. I am a convert to dan cong now. :p
drool as this cools another flavor stands out. It has this almost lychee flavor! The stark clean flavor of lychee is what I’m noticing. I would recommend this one!
I love the name of this oolong. It sounds delicious!
First Infusion: Lightly buttery, clean & fresh. Very smooth, not astringent in the slightest.
Second Infusion: Stronger butter scent. Floral notes are definitely coming through now. Not as smooth as the first infusion. Flavors are more floral and with a little bit of bite.
Third Infusion: Still a bit astringent. The dominate flavor is of flowers, but with something like buttered greens in the background. Quite tasty!
I am going to stop steeping now, only because dinner is on the way. This is a very fresh and clean tasting oolong with nice floral flavors. I prefer a bit more milky/buttery notes in my oolongs, but drinking this tea gets me in the mood for spring!
This tea has a aroma that really brings me to some wonderful morning memory, I just can’t seem to put my finger on what it’s reminding of, it’s almost like the smell of the hull of the toasted peanut. It has a great roasted rich burnt coffee aroma and taste, but the most unexpected sweetness that kind of tingles a little in your mouth and lingers long with the after taste. The first infusion was much more complex than the proceeding but it keeps it’s originality throughout.
Striking aroma from the leaves after first brewed, so sweet! Its very true to its name, wonderful honey floral taste almost like a honeysuckle, just a little hint of oxidation, smooth with a good heaviness on the tongue due to the astringency. I got to sample this with BTVSgal and was very sad upon learning it’s no longer for sale.
I received this gracious sample from David at Asha Tea House. It was enough for two tastings. This was put on the site 3 days after I ordered the San Lin Xi sampler, and I was a little upset with myself for not waiting a few more days,but here it is.
After reading the description of the tea, and where it produced my expectations were set really high. One because its Asha, and I have never had an oolong that I was not really impressed with, and two because of the price $32.00 for 1.76oz of tea.
I could not get a decent smell from the dry leaf so I warmed my gaiwan and cup to start the tasting. The wet leaf smells great, sweet and brothy. The taste I really could not put my finger on. A little floral, and broth like at the same time…strange I know. Then I tasted it again and all I kept thinking was that its smooth and clean tasting. I did not get buttery just smooth. I know that it does not make any sense but thats what I got.
I waited two days and did the other half of the sample that David gave me, thinking that maybe my taste buds are a little off. I got the same, but a little more floral and light tasting.
My ending thoughts about this tea are little mixed so I will try and explain them. It is a great tea, but It did not stand out to me like his Alishan, or the San Lin Xi that he has available. If it was a choice between the three teas I would pick the other oolongs that he has to offer over this. I say this because of the price. For $32.00 I was expecting something different, an experience. A good example would be the Hawaii oolong that Samovar teas has. it is $25.00 for .88oz, but I know that it will not taste like any other oolong I have tasted in the past. Since I have had all of Asha oolongs I find that if I were to tell others to buy from Asha (which I do) it would be the San Lin Xi sampler that he has, which is a great experience to see how one oolong can change from the roasting.
While I was not blown out of the water by the tea, it is still the main place that I buy oolong from.Its always fresh and tightly rolled. The patience of his oolongs are also pretty impressive. Usually by the 7th steep the leaves are fully unrolled. If you are on the fence I would get the sample pack, and then go from there.
Thank you to BTVSGal for this sample. Wow what flavor! This is buttery like buttered popcorn! Fantastic…and who would have thunk it! The White Tea floral is still there but not in the front knocking you down. I like that. There is such a weave of flavors that you think would not go together. Buttered popcorn and orchids? But it goes together like popcorn in the park on a Spring day. So good. I lightly sweetened mine. The second steep 2 minutes was longer than the 1 minute of the first. I can smell the charcoal and a little rubber in the vegital. Not a big deal. Still buttery and floral and light golden. I believe this is going to take multiple steeps better than any tea I’ve had thus far which makes it a bargan. I only used 1.5 tsp for 8 oz. and estimate it will go at least 4 or more steeps. Nice with chunks of salted cantalope or crenshaw melon.
The last of my San Lin Xi Oolong ends with this. It is a nice finish to a great tea. Seeing how a tea can change in the roasting process is a rare thing, from start to finish. Smooth and sweet. Not fruity like I thought it would be. The sweetness carries through nicely. A great tea.
Tea of the morning here. I don’t see this on Asha’s website anymore, but perhaps they renamed it to “High Mountain Black”?
This is a very smooth Taiwanese tea, light in body and fruity with notes of cherry. I’ve also had good luck cold brewing this one and it’s fairly nice that way. To me this does taste like an oolong cultivar. I’m not normally into this as a morning tea because it doesn’t have the heft of an Indian assam, for example. It is yummy however…