Bird Pick Tea & Herb
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Recent Tasting Notes
Steepster tantrum backlog
Heather kindly passed down her last bag of this. Thanks a bunch! I love hojicha so I’m always up for trying more.
This is one of the toastiest teas I’ve ever smelled. So roasted that it’s like how coffee beans go a little bitter when they’re super roasted. Or even some roasted matés.
But that said, caramel is the perfect flavour to pair up with hojicha. It beats downing a sugar-laden caramel latte at a coffee shop.
The caramel comes a little more out of hiding as this cools.
Another sample sip down! (Which is good because I couldn’t sleep last night and when that happens I lose all restraint and get online and order tea. Yes, I did.)
I served this first at tea party today and I liked this best, but I really love oolong tea now. The other tea was quite good – it was Darjeeling 6000 from Grace Rare Tea – but I am not the biggest fan of Darjeeling in the world, though I have tasted a few that really were quite nice.
This has a high fruity note that almost borders on sour, but not sour tea, rather a sweet and sour fruit. There is a hint of that elusive and hard to describe flavor that I get from Tie Guan Yins, the one Bonnie described as oil paint and I realized it reminded me of the smell of my acrylic paints when I was a kid taking art lessons. (I was terrible at it but my mother thought I should take lessons because I am a lefty, I am a mirror writer, and I clutch pencils with a death grip. Art didn’t help that.)
This isn’t astringent but is very fresh and even though I started with it hot and now have let it cool to room temperature it almost tastes as though I refrigerated it. It is very light and refreshing.
I like this! Next time I order my beloved Premium Silky Green, I may add this to the order.
This is truly an enjoyable summer tea! It smells sweet when dry, with that crisp sencha scent.
Once brewed, it doesn’t taste as sweet, but maintains the delicious aroma, which is great because it’s simply outstanding. I’m not overly fond of sweet tasting teas, so it works for that. My one issue with this tea, however, is the name. Honeydew. I detest honeydew. If I hadn’t tried this one without knowing the name first, I may never have given it a chance. It does not taste like honeydew to me, but rather watermelon. Honeydew has a thicker sweetness to it, and this is more the bright, clean taste of watermelon… in a tea.
Yay, milk oolong time! Or, something similar. Thank you Mercuryhime for sending me this oh-so-delicious tea. It’s very much just in the same vein of milk oolong for me, so not one I’d need to replace as there are many more that are easily available. Still, a very tasty cup.
okay okay okay
i’ve been drinking lots of swap samples but i’m much too busy to make proper notes about each at the moment (hopefully i’ll get to it this weekend), BUT i just needed to take a moment because i MUST say that this tea smells awe-sum! and i think i got lucky and brewed it perfect! lots of sweet vanilla and green in the nose, just a nice polite green tea with a tiniest hint of vanilla mellowing it out in the mouth.
thank you Shelley_Lorraine this cup definitely brightened my day a little.
onto the second steep!
Thanks to Dustin for this sample
*The dry leaf smells equally grassy and of vanilla
*The brewed cup has a stronger vanilla aroma, but still picking up on the green tea base.
The vanilla is much more subtle and natural than in other vanilla flavored teas I’ve tried. It doesn’t smell so strong of alcohol/vanilla extract like some others.
The flavor is more on the green tea side, while the vanilla plays subtly in the back ground. I like it quite a bit, but don’t know if I like it enough to purchase more. I tend to prefer unflavored greens in my permanent stock.
Sip down! Sample from Heather at the Victoria tea meet.
I really like this one, and if it was available, I’d consider picking some up – either bags like what I received, or loose.
The toasty tea with the caramel is really lovely. And as a bonus, it’s lower in caffeine, so I won’t make myself vibrate with caffeine today. :)
Hubby used to drink only black tea, and even then it was loaded with sugar and milk. And sugar.
He got adventurous and started drinking puerh, greens, and oolongs – PLAIN! The past two weekends he has asked me after breakfast if I am making tea. When I ask what he wants, he says, “I don’t know. Nothing weird. Maybe something green.”
Today’s nothing weird something green was Premium Silky Green from Bird Pick, which we are pretty sure is a green oolong. It is so buttery and good.
On a side note, and only the forty and over crowd will probably know the answer: there was a comedian/magician who was on TV in maybe the 70’s. He sort of hummed this little song as he did a trick where he hit his hands together and he was holding up several fingers on one hand and they would magically “transfer” to the other hand. I think it was on Johnny Carson. I have googled and youTubed exhaustively and can’t find the guy. Does anyone remember who it was? I did find someone doing the same thing, but it was a much newer video.
Received this one from Heather at the tea meetup over the weekend.
Since I have some time to kill before leaving to do more math today, I thought I’d try this one in a mug rather than relegate it to the travel mug.
The smell of the tea in the bag is intensely caramel. A lot more buttery and salty than the Red Leaf matcha caramel. Steeped, I think I used too hot of water. I smell and taste some caramel, and creaminess definitely comes through as I swallow. But the houjicha tastes more green than I was expecting, and that greenness isn’t really doing it for me with the caramel-creaminess.
As it cools, more of the toasty houjicha flavour is coming through, as is the caramel. However, there is still that greenness lingering in the back. I should try more houjicha teas. :)
I will sit here and slowly sip the rest of this mug, and I’m glad I have another tea bag to test out. Next time I’ll pay more attention to the water temperature.
I received this from Heather at the swap meet today. It smells like baked rice crispy squares with chocolate caramel drizzling. The flavour leans more heavily towards the strong roasted profile of the houjicha, with the sweet syrupy quality of the caramel appearing near the finish. It gives an overall impressing of oozing syrup from dry crisps.
This is the kind of tea I want near the end of a late night dinner and I think it was a good way to end the evening. Casual, firm, and sweet. Time to curl up and read some Terry Pratchett.
Second day Edit: the roasted sweet flavour gives off a coffee-like impression.
Dry, this tea definitely smells like rich honeydew. It is a smell that carries over when brewed, but it exchanges some of the richness for juiciness. The honeydew flavor is strong when the tea is hot, but mellows out letting the sencha come through as it cools with the honeydew hanging on for the aftertaste as if I just had a bite of melon. I love sugar in my tea and adding it did perk up the flavors a little, but somehow didn’t do much to make the tea better.
I’m not quite sure how I feel about this tea overall. It is well done and the flavors are good, but it’s not knocking me off my feet. Maybe in time…
When I got a whiff of this tea dry in the store, I was greeted by a deep smell of caramel with something salty, almost like dried seaweed. When brewed, it took a few sips and a little sugar to taste much. It has a deep caramel flavor that is strangely subtle. It reminds me of the tea I’m used to getting in Japanese restaurants but with a touch of caramel. Not sure how to describe the base of the tea other than that comparison. The caramel hangs on and lingers after each sip. If I could get used to drinking tea with more subtle flavors, I’m sure I’d love this, but as it stands I’m still a fan of bold bossy flavors. I’ll give it some time to grow on me.
Backlog…I picked up a bag of this on a vacation to LA recently. I just got the bagged versus loose as it came in a nice sealed pouch that would pack better for my return home.
This is a nice and easy tea to drink. Not bitter, not overly sweet (though things are rarely too sweet for me…though I am trying to cut down on my sugar intake), and the hojicha is supposed to be lower in caffeine, so I thought this might be a nice afternoon or early evening tea.
The bags unfortunately, are a bit dusty, and I wonder what the tea inside is actually like. I will have to open one to see.
I’d say that this is a nice and inoffensive tea that for someone who wants to drink something lower in caffeine and wants to use little to no sugar, this is a warm and roasted sweet caramel tea that brews up nice and dark.
Is it my favourite tea? No. Will I get more when I am back in the states? Quite possibly. My friend who lives there that I was visiting may come up later this year so I might get him to bring me another bag of this, and maybe some others too. There is a Caramel Ruby tea that is this tea, blended with rooibos that caught my attention too. Again, that would be lower in caffeine. I am trying to watch how much caffeine I am having daily as well as my sugar for fertility reasons, but general health as well.
I got this as part of Bird Pick’s Oolong Tea Sampler Set, which came with three other small tins of oolong. I like this tea. I am currently using it to stay up tonight because I couldn’t go to sleep and decided that better use of my time would be to do work (a.k.a. procrastination via writing about tea on the internet).