Chi of Tea
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Recent Tasting Notes
I found a couple samples for Chi of Tea in my cupboard – no idea how old they are. ¬_¬ Clearly this is a sign that I need to concentrate on drinking up all my older teas and samples.
The scent makes me think of bubble gum, which is a bit odd as I’m used to pu-erhs smelling very earthy. The earthiness comes back in the flavour, though it’s fairly mild compared to some pu-erhs I’ve tried (admittedly my experience is pretty limited). I can taste the orange flavour clearly, though it’s more like a sweet mandarin orange rather than a sour, acidic navel orange type of taste. However I noticed that each sip ends on a weirdly dull note that I’m not sure I care for – maybe I just need to steep the tea longer or hotter.
So it is possible to ruin a chinese black through oversteeping. 45 minutes should do it. Poor thing rendered undrinkable.
Why do I not have a rating on this? I’ve had it before, I know I have because I had two samples of it at one point. I had one left now, which I’ve ruined, but I must have had an opinion on the first one… Odd.
I generally don’t like black currants, but received this in a Chi of Tea order ages ago, unearthed it today and decided to try it. The dry scent is suprisingly nice – quite sweet and fruity. I can see lots of blackcurrant pieces in the leaf. The smell of the steeped tea isn’t very pleasant. I can’t find anything I don’t like about it, but something about it is a little off. This doesn’t translate to the flavour, though, and it tastes much more like the dry scent – sweet and black curranty. The black currant isn’t overdone, which is good, because I can still taste the body and depth of the nilgiri base.
This was the third free sample I got with my last Chi of Tea order. I’m glad I didn’t order this – it really is not for me. I just don’t like Chi of Teas orange flavouring. It is sort of powdery and artificial. The orange in this blend was very dominant and although the ginger and oolong were present, they seemed to almost be an afterthought. I definitely wouldn’t purchase this.
Another free sample from Chi of Tea with my last order. This is very perfumed – I could smell it strongly through the packet. It smells sort of like rose flavour turkish delight. It tastes pretty similar to the dry scent – very sweet, rosey flavour. But it is so strong it comes across as a little artificial. I steeped for 2.5 minutes – perhaps if I steeped a little longer the sencha minght come through a little more?
Well. I love rose scents (and am always worried this will make me smell like a little old lady), but was a bit hesitant with this one. Opening up the packet, the tea did smell rather perfumey. But, I thought it might be a nice and soothing cup after my first time in the gym in months. And, well, it does taste like I’m drinking rosewater. It’s strange for me. Not unpleasant, but as though something’s made it to my mouth that isn’t meant to be in there. I can’t really taste the sencha through the strong floral flavour. I suppose I’m just not accustomed to this!
A sample of this came in some tea QuiltGuppy sent to me. Nothing really to add to the reviews here. I will say this, I like it. I think the vanilla is just right, the cream effect is perfect
and the tea flavor itself is present in the proper context. Like another reviewer, I had visions of pralines and cream, but then, that should be expected. I am from the South y’all.
I got this as a free sample with a recent Chi of Tea order, and I was curious about this one because I have not really ever had a great EG.
The scent of the dry leaves is very strong and I definitely get notes of vanilla, though the bergamot scent is very harsh.
The tea itself smells very sweet and the taste is odd. The bergamot is very overpowering, and I don’t get any of the vanilla I smelled in the leaves. I don’t really like this, overall. I don’t seem to have very good luck with flavoured oolongs, but I will try this one again to see if it is any better with different steeping parameters.
Another old sample dug out from my tea cupboard. I’ve never tried a Hawaiian oolong before this – in fact I never knew Hawaii grew any tea at all. The fist steep (at 4 min) is rich and full bodied. It’s lightly sweet and slightly fruity with a hint of warm spiciness that reminds me a bit of ginger.
Subsequent steepings were lighter and a bit more woodsy/evergreen-tasting, but they still kept a hint of sweetness. It’s a unique and complex tea that I really enjoyed. Sadly my sample was only one cup’s worth and since Chi of Tea isn’t in operation anymore I’ll have to see if I can track down other sources.
Another old sample I uncovered during my cupboard re-arranging. The tea seems to have stayed relative fresh, thankfully. The Darjeeling oolong was a good choice for this tea as it gives the blend a smooth, subtle sweetness without loosing that quintessential tea flavour that seems to belong to Indian black teas. The vanilla is rich and creamy and there’s just the right amount of bergamot to compliment it rather than overpower it. It’s a shame the company is no longer selling tea (though their website is still up) as I think I would like to buy more of this blend when the sample is finished.
Fantastic Yunnan. Lots of flavor. Sweet, floral, fruity, and with a nice spiced undertone. Incredibly smooth. It has a hefty flavor to it, like it’s got what it takes to get me going.
This, as well as every tea that I clicked on at the Chi of Tea website is out of stock. I hope this does not mean that Chi of Tea is out of business, because they really do provide wonderful teas, including one of my favorite (probably my #1 favorite) yellow tea. If anyone else has any information about this company, please comment and let me know.
This tea also goes quite excellently with a milk at a higher steeping time, I’ve discovered. The Nilgiri base instead of the usual Ceylon was a great choice for this tea – it supports the vanilla and gives the tea body without becoming too strong or astringent and drowning the flavours out.
Yum, this tea is a good one. The smell alone could have told me that – it was a real, raw-vanilla scent rather than something artificial. The tea itself is wonderfully flavourful and the creamy vanilla is nothing short of delicious. The tea is full-flavoured without being bitter or astringent and I have no problem drinking this cup without milk.
I received this tea as a sample with an order I placed a few months ago. I stumbled across it this morning as I’ve begun to reduce the amount of tea in my home. (Whew!) I realized (with chagrin) that I hadn’t stored this one properly and worried about how my neglect may have affected the flavor.
My first real concern set in when I tried to smell it and couldn’t detect the scent. I steeped this one at a lower than recommended temperature, for the maximum amount of time recommended.
Now I can smell the tea. It’s slightly… floral? Yes, floral. I can detect the scent of honeysuckle. It’s a sweet scent, with a delicate floral note.
The taste is amazing, quelling any concerns I had about flavor. It’s not bitter at all, which was one thought I had when I saw the recommended steeping time. Instead, it is gently floral, but so sweet, too. It’s a beautiful green, tempered with the very slight vegetal taste a traditional green brings to the cup. It’s one of the best green teas I think I’ve ever tried.
Now, Chi of Tea, where are you hiding this gem? I hope this is something that will be considered to offer as a purchase because it is amazing!
The first thing I noticed was that the leaves are in very small pieces. Don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t expecting a whole leaf tea or anything, but with the pieces so small you get more of the tannins leeching into the tea and a very strong black tea flavour. Which wouldn’t be as big an issue if the spices were stronger, but apart from the mint they’re pretty tame and get overwhelmed by the rest of the tea. Mind you, the mint was a nice addition, it wasn’t too strong, just a hint that lingers on the tongue.
Taken as a whole though, I’d only consider this chai to be okay rather than great. They’ve got a good thing going with the mint, but they need to work on the rest of the tea.