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Recent Tasting Notes
I wanted to pick a special one for my 100. tasting note. Flowering one makes most sense.
It was a random pick: Jasmine Fairy.
Hope it doesn’t taste very jasmine-like ;)
Tea is very bright and yummy. Like white tea that’s smooth and slightly nutty. And flowery. Nice flavor. I’m not getting the bad side of jasmine here. Flower is quite nice but i got pics and video to show that. I intended to film the whole opening of the flower but managed to f* up (pardon my bad manners) the process. So there’s a clip with just a bit of it and a pic…
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4XmmWf_n654 (it’ll be better next time)
I always go for a lucky draw with the pu-ehrs.
This time the winner is… Kuding – raw. Kinda glad cuz raw’s ones are usually more drinkable.
Rinsed it twice and trying a short (25s) steep. Color is dark yellow and smells pu-ehry but way less than ripe ones.
Before trying it first a google lesson on Kuding:
Kuding tea (Chinese: 苦丁茶; pinyin: kǔdīng chá; literally “bitter nail tea”) is a particularly bitter-tasting Chinese tisane which due to their similarities in appearance is derived from several plant species.Two most common plants used to make Ku Ding tea, being the wax tree species Ligustrum robustum and the holly species Ilex kudingcha plant, the former being more commonly grown in Sichuan and Japan while the latter is most commonly grown and used in the rest of China.
So should expect bitter. Let’s see…
Indeed quite bitter pu ehr. I’m kinda starting to like the pu-ehr taste itself more than i did. Don’t think i could drink a lot of it but in small amounts it even suites me right now. I’m pretty sure i’ll find a pu-ehr that i enjoy drinking. Got some coming in from Life In Teacup. Maybe just maybe those will be the ones.
This one might be the best one from these samples so far. Even tho it’s bitter and bitter i generally don’t like. Raw is better than ripe for me – that i’m sure of…
Steeped the 2nd round longer – over a minute – and its even better. Bit darker now. Not so much stronger – more like smoother.
Pics (bit noisy cuz its dark in here):
Went for a lucky pick with my eyes closed. Picked ripe ginseng pu-ehr. We shall see :D
Doesn’t smell bad (for a pu-ehr lol). Less strong. But I’ve been trying to air them out a bit too.
Washing it off now few times. The puehr smell kicked in (eeek).
After 3 longer washings first steep. 15 seconds. Very short. Experience thought me its better. Smells just like ripe pu ehr. Color not very dark but i washed it off well.
First sip – not that bad as it has been with some. Almost kinda like it. Idk bout ginseng. I just taste pu ehr that is bit better than the others. Has an interesting bitter note. But i still must say these ripe ones all taste pretty much same to me. Some are just bit better than the others. By better i mean more drinkable. Oh well the search continues…
Had 2 more last few days. First one looked bit boring – like it didn’t even open properly. But second one was kinda awesome :D Here are links to the pics (http://twitpic.com/1lbxud http://twitpic.com/1lbxuf ). Tasted quite yummy too. It had something resembling silver needle. Like more white than green. Really not bad for a flowering tea…
First one was number 13 – Sky High Saussurea.
It didn’t look quite like it looks on the photo. Similar but without the extra white flower going high up from the red central flower. This one had just a big red flower and wrapped leaves around it. Rather big tho. Doesn’t look bad. In fact i left it standing in a glass bowl in the kitchen as decoration.
Tea is yellow. Rather light.
Tastes well herbal. Not so much as green teas I’ve had. Almost reminds me more of that special taste that silver needle has. White silver needle. It’s not as good tho. But it’s probably better than i expected.
Smells like silver needle. Didn’t taste that, to me, unpleasant jasmine taste. That’s a plus.
I filmed the opening of the flower – is nice to watch it. Might upload it on youtube and post the link sometime.
So it tastes similar to silver needle but not quite as goof but it looks nice. Solid rating…
Oh my oh my this one should be interesting. It’s raw glutinous rice sample. First raw i’m trying out.
It’s close to my nose and this smell – honestly i so don’t know what to expect. It smelled kinda like dryish hay and something id rather not say out loud ;) No tea i’ve tried so far smelled even remotely similar to this one. I spread the little cake yesterday and kinda liked the smell. It was promising comparing to ripe pu ehr. But now that i’m smelling the wet leaves next to me really dont know. Shoulda have left it in another room. Tea itself doesnt smell so strong and could be a nice surprise. Color is not like ripe. Its way lighter. Like dark yellow to orangy.
Ohhh myyyy bitter. Hehe luckily i don’t intend to kiss anyone after drinking this.
While drinking the bitterness doesn’t make it very pleasant. But i’m trying to define the taste that sticks after. Do i like this or not. Think i actually kinda do. Its very ummm – spreads all over. Tastes like it smells – very very weird – quite strong herbal i guess. Or of that thing i don’t wanna name.
I’m quite confused. Don’t know what to think about it. It’s certainly memorable, it does have a nice color, it smells and tastes very particular and quite strong and it is quite bitter at first. I wont rate it. Can’t decide on this one… would be tho somewhere between 0 and 50. I should be sure for a higher rating ;)
Oh the weirdness…
2nd steep was instead of like 20-25 s more like 15seconds. That made it quite less bitter and better. The taste wont leave my mouth. Is that kind of a drink…
Haha had to try and find what other people thought of this tea: i liked this comment a lot and it did ring a bell to me about what the smell reminds me of – farm, animals, hay. You know typical farm stink.
c/p comment of the dude i found on a forum:
“Haichao teablocks are small slabs of tea just big enough for a single cup’s worth (about the size of a small postage stamp & thinner than a pencil).They’re individually wrapped like pieces of candy. Apparantly, someone in yunnan decided to apply the pressed tea concept to several varieties of tea—Puerh & Jasmine (ho hum) black & green, and one I hadn’t heard of called Mi Xiang, which the package has described as having a “unique taste.” Naturally, I had to try the one I hadn’t heard of before. Problem is, the unique taste seems to be horse sweat.
The company’s website (http://ynhccom.ec51.com/) indicates that this tea is
scented with “sticky rice leaves.”" (Jeff)
this sample is most likely just plain ripe pu-erh (again not sure cuz the wrappings are in chinese. only thing i can read is 2007).
i tried breaking the little cake (idk how they call it) thing yesterday and i aired it out for one day. tea still has a strong smell. steeped it just like 15 seconds we shall see. the earthy taste will be there for sure. it probably shouldn’t be nor very bitter nor very sweet.
yep exactly as i assumed. comparing to the last 2 samples (chrysanthemum and globe-amaranth) its nor bitter nor sweet. just a strong earthy taste. maybe even little stronger than it was in the other two. it has just a pinch of bitterness in the end. its easier to drink than the other two. lol i’m on a roll. by the time i reach the 18th sample it might actually taste ok ;) slightly bigger score than the last one…
btw if you found a pu-ehr kind that you really like pls tell. i’d really like to try some quality stuff that i might like…
had another one of these today. probably globe-amaranth one. it was slightly better than the one from 2 days ago. i managed to drink 2 cups. not with much enthusiasm tho. it still has that weird slightly unpleasant smell and taste. starting to think that’s just how pu-ehr tastes. this one wasn’t sweet at all. just the opposite – it was quite bitter. but bitter proved to be more drinkable for me this time. weirdly…
slightly higher rating but still not near to the smiling face…
have to try to air the samples out a bit. maybe it will then have less of that weird taste…
my first pu-ehr try…
most likely its Sweet Chrysanthemum sample. looks so and tastes so (sweet). not sure because the wrappings have Chinese writing on them.
rinsed it twice first (assumed its necessary because of the smell). water gets dark red really fast. smells slightly unpleasant.
taste – i expected bitter. but after trying it huge surprise. it’s by far the sweetest tea i’ve ever tried. has a bit of the weird taste – relating with that smell. earthy maybe. idk it’s hard to define. but all together it’s lets say drinkable. more than i expected it would be.
ok drinking more i can say that the sweetnes is too much for me. kinda drinkable but don’t like it. wouldnt wanna drink it regulary.
ok lets try steeping it longer. maybe it will be better…
it is stronger and sweetness is less obvious but i don’t like this other taste much either. gonna have to search more for a pu-ehr i like…
so i made 2 cups and didn’t finish either. actually for me it was barely drinkable. not sure how its supposed to be. so i’ll give it a low rating and hope that the next one suites me better…