Dragon Tea House
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Recent Tasting Notes
Queued post, written May 25th 2014
Here’s another ancient thing that Fleurdelily shared with me. I’ve kept it for so long, partly because I was scared of it but mostly because I didn’t have the faintest clue what to do with it. It just had ‘yak butter’ written on it. I didn’t even know if it was actually freeze dried butter that I was supposed to use as an additive or if it was some kind of instant tea deal.
Luckily KittyLovesTea posted about this one recently, and looking at the picture I can see the pouches are identical to mine, so that’s what I’ve decided it must be. I asked her what I was supposed to do with it, and her reply has been sitting in my email for a while while I’ve been gathering courage and waiting for a good time to try it. I’m home alone this weekend, so here goes.
I’m still scared of it though, but it has to be tried. Otherwise I can’t empty the box. And if I can’t empty the box, I can’t get new stuff. Ever. This is the rule. New orders/swaps/whathaveyou require an empty box.
So I’ve made it up with Kitty’s instructions and am now staring sceptically at the cup.
It smells like puerh with butter in it. Which, I suppose, is what it is. The butter smells a bit… different from cow butter. A bit sort of wild. I can’t tell if that’s because of the puerh and its farm animal smell or if it’s something to do with yaks. Perhaps a combination? I find it quite off-putting to be honest. Cloying.
Okay, I’m doing it. I’m taking a sip (fully expecting something vile).
Oh! It’s salty! And buttery. LOTS of butter. FAR TOO MUCH butter! Oh ack! All I can taste is salt and butter. Flipping heck, but this is foul. I had to spit it out. At least I’m rid of it now.
I got this tea from DTH and I was suprise by the price (around 11€/ 100g)
At first when I open the package I saw the leaves rolls very small and tight. The smell from the package has nothing to do with “normal” Dong Ding oolong from Taiwan. It smells close to roasted Tie Kuan Yin with a merely scent of nuts, something that akes you feel strange if you have already tasted real Taiwanese Dong Ding !
When it comes to steeping, the tea doesnt develop any special flavour other then nuts and seaweed. The leaves doesnt develop much even after 2nd steeping + slight smell of dry and salted seaweed and a little bit smoky too. Nothing interesting at all.
I Dont even think this product comes from Taiwan and I surely wouldn’t recommend this tea not even to beginners.
Flavors: Almond, Roast nuts, Salty, Seaweed, Smoke
Happy Canada Day!! After spending a day outside in the beautiful sunshine, came home to this cold brewed tea. Maybe it’s just the heat, but this is super refreshing! I love love love jasmine teas and I definitely don’t feel guilty putting a large teabag of this into iced tea since it was not too expensive. This is very lightly jasmine, mostly green tea. One of my favs hot, but turned out pretty good cold as well =)
Felt like brewing something special today.
Been out running in the rain and came home all soaked.
this tea warmed me up plenty! Brought out the gaiwan and filled it up with 5g leaf. A quick wash and it was good to go. what really impresses me about this the is the strong grapefruitflavour in the early steepings. I have read its suposedly good for ice tea. will have to try before sipdown! Hope i can restock this since its just about one of the best ooong ivé ever tried. the leaf is rolled like most high mountain oolongs but it is high oxidized. Splendid quality.was/15/25/45/1/1:20 and so on to about 12 steepings :D not to bright before bed… ^^
Flavors: Cinnamon, Grapefruit
Read one of Terri:s reviews of a roasty oolong a while back and i´ve been itching for some wuyi gong -fu. Tonight i wathced the final episode of “How i met your mother”, it was… wait for it…. Legendary ;)
To accompany the show i brought out the wuyi heavy artillery and I was not dissapointed.
6g (half-full pot)120ml yixing pot, water from tetsubin.
20s +15 per steeping. clear roasty notes, but it doesnt take over there is some flowery notes as well. Very well balanced! And strong, the last steep i forgot and oversteeped by two minutes. This session got me teadrunk… :)
My bravery has grown enough for me to try this unusual tea so after dinner here I am with a mug of pale beige liquid that smells like butter milk (sweet yet sour and creamy). It’s….unusual…I was never a butter milk fan, or a milk fan since I was allergic to it as a child. Mostly this tea is to say that I have tried it, after all I will just about try any tea (I say just about as anything gross like animal dropping tea is a definite no).
Ok so butter milk, which is funnily enough what this tea is. My first sip was not great, it’s very sweet, extremely creamy and full on buttery….all that and it’s rather watery and thin. My stomach turned a little. It’s not terrible by any means, just that I am not meant for this tea and it is not meant for me.
This is a very savory.
Hard to detect any sweetness as it is overwhelmed by the savoriness of this tea.
Reminds me of baked beans or something similar.
I’d imagine this tea to best be drunk during a meal.
The tea has tiny little balls of fur here and here, which I was told was an indication of a high quality tea. I was told that they form when the tea is pan fried, and the hairs from the tea naturally clump together into these tiny balls, also indicating that the leaves used were young as they have more hair than older leaves.
Still, this tea is not for me.
I re-visited this one tonight to go with dinner, I made a sweet chilli vegetablenstir fry with rice and thought this light black would match it wonderfully. I was not wrong. Last night it was too subtle for me so I used a little more leaf this time and it was spot on. Adding that extra 2g gives it sooo much more caramel and chocolate flavours with a sweet malt background. The rating for this tea just went up and this is now one of my top black teas (at this moment in time).
Yesterday my wisdom tooth broke in half and fell out while I was eating soup, so I went to the dentist today and it turns out my tooth is much worse than I thought and I need an operation. Part of my gum needs to be cut out as well as the jaw bone sanded down before they can extract the tooth. Ten month wait minimum if I want to be gassed and knocked out or three months if I have it done awake and under heavy sedation. Two weeks to decide while I’m on anti biotics. I’m thinking of just going ahead and having it done without being put under, the quicker the better.
So as a treat I’m using my Chinese gaiwan set and trying this black tea. It smells beautiful in raw form, like chocolate and soft burnt wood. The leaves are large and curly but match it’s wonderful scent. I like a full leaf black.
First Steep – 1 minute –
Light in colour, scent and flavour. Very sweet, like raw sugar cane and caramel. A little malty in the after taste.
Second Steep – 2 minutes –
Still mild but still getting a pure sugar cane flavour. The after taste has increased however and now tastes like malt, wood and caramel mixed with chocolate.
Third Steep – 3 minutes –
Very similar to the first steep again, as sweet and pure in flavour too.
Next time I may try adding 7g instead of 5g to see how it comes out but I enjoyed the gentle caramel and sugar that this tea offers. It doesn’t taste black but it did stand out in a positive way. A good start so far but will experiment to get it perfect though honestly it’s not far off.
Flavors: Caramel, Chocolate, Malt, Wood
I received this is this month’s Hapa-tite tea swap from my paired swap-buddy KittyLovesTea thanks Kayleigh! I actually received the package probably a week ago, and have tried several of the teas included but have been too busy to review any. I also have to send mine off (sorry, Kayleigh) which should be done today. I mentioned in my last post that life is kinda hectic at the moment, and annoyingly it still is. I have to write 2000 words by Monday, and then another 2000 by the next day, as I totally forgot I’m going away for a week and won’t be back until the essay deadline! So yeah, panic mode. I’m making a little time to write this up, though, because A) I wanted to thank Kayleigh for my package (which was totally amazing – so many wishlist teas I can now tick off!! Thank you!!) and B) as it was a sipdown which I actually had yesterday, and I don’t want to leave it so long I forget what it was like.
When opening the package, this really intrigued me, as I’ve never seen anything like it before. For some reason I had it in my head that it would be sort of sour, or salty almost, so I decided to have it as my wake-up tea. This turned out to be a complete misjudgement, as the tea is in fact thick, with a little touch of sweetness, and very very buttery. A little too rich for my not-quite-awake-yet stomach, but my tastebuds sure did appreciate it. The dry mix smells sweet, which should have been my first clue, and the liquor, which I expected to come out a dark brown (I seriously have no idea where I got any of this from) actually came out at a creamy light browny yellow – pretty much like a standard British cuppa with a lot of milk added. I drank this plain, and it was sweet enough as is to not need sugar, and so thick that I think adding milk to it would be as bizarre a thing to do as adding it to a green tea.
Other than what I’ve already said, I can’t seem to find the words to explain the taste. It is so very unlike anything I’ve had before that the only thing which I can find to say is that it’s buttery, which goes without saying! The other flavours and notes are new to me, and I am very glad to have had the chance to try such an unusual yet tasty tea. Who knows – perhaps at some point in time I may find myself purchasing some of this. If I came across it in a shop, I would definitely be more likely to pick some up now I know what it’s like.
A very enjoyable, if surprising, cup. Thanks again, KittyLovesTea!
I’m drinking this at work tonight (trying to balance drinking older teas and samples, this one fits both categories). This is a tea that I received from KittyLovesTea eons ago. I have drank it before, and am a little surprised that I don’t have any tasting notes on it.
This is a really nice, light, bright, sheng with just a hint of citrus notes. It has all the usual earthiness of pu’erh, but it’s not as “sharp” as some shengs can be. I’m enjoying it tonight.
Thank you KittyLovesTea for sharing this interesting pu’erh with me.
I did not have a good night last night, in fact it was one of the worst in a long time, not meaning to start drama but it consisted of no sleep, a spouse argument, broken tea drawers and me applying for a residential Visa to China. Why China? I imagined I would have little trouble finding a job there in the tea industry, even if it’s just production or warehouse storage. Though chances are I won’t get my Visa. I would have applied to America but I need the job before applying, much stricter regulations. Same goes for Canada.
So as a little pick me up I’m having this Jasmine green along with a bag of vanilla fudge for breakfast, perhaps not the most nutritious but right now I don’t much care. Not sure if it’s the fudge but the jasmine is not as strong as I remember it being. Oh well, it’s still nice and refreshing.
Thank you Dag Wedin for this tea from the EU travelling tea box round one. It shall be my morning tea, as I have the day off due to everyone at my work being ill I’m going to be using my Gaiwan all day and treat myself to some of my favourite teas. Natural teas will always be favoured over flavoured blends in my house.
I shall be following this table:
Water : 3oz / 85ml – 176℉ / 80℃
Use 3 Grams Tea
4 steeps : rinse,20s,40s,80s,120s
Rinsing time is around 5 seconds
The leaves are a nice medium green colour and are very reflective and shiny. Averaging a rough estimate of 4-5mm long these needles/points are nice and crisp to the touch. They have a beautiful sweet grass scent with some perfume present.
Steep One – 20 seconds
Pale yellow colour with gentle sweet grass scent. Flavour is light and buttery with sweet grass and flower notes and a touch of dry perfume in the after taste.
Steep Two – 40 Seconds
The sweetness has increased and is now heavily floral. The butter is still present as is the perfume. Reminds me of orchid or lily.
Steep Three – 80 Seconds
Not as sweet this time but still floral and with a touch of astringency. Rather dry and perfumed now but still mild overall.
Steep Four – 120 Seconds
Very light, even more so than the first steep. The only thing that remains is a gentle sweet lily that lingers nicely in the after taste.
I will admit that while I adore green tea Long Jing just isn’t one of my favourites, it’s either too dry and perfumed or too astringent for my taste. Luckily this Long Jing really is nonpareil and it made for a very nice tea this morning. Sweet and floral throughout with only a little astringency and dryness to speak of. Definitely something I will be happy to drink more of.
7g / 120ml Yixing pot.
wash/25s/+15 per steeping.
Clear wuyi oolong taste. Somewhat like da hong pao but a little less intense, milder with more of a floral note. But still it is highly oxidized. Lighter roast.
Nice but VERY expensive. I will stick to da hong pao i think.
10g / 360ml banko-yaki kyusu water from kunzan tetsubin
1m @ 75C
Decent green, very refreshing. Light and nutty, veggy. Been awhile since i´ve tried this one. The leaves smell fantastic. The flat shape is also very pleasing to the eyes.
Not to fond of greens, however Arya Emerald SF darjeeling is an exeption :)
3g / 200ml glaspot
2m @ 75C
Anna was kind enough to remind me i infact had a jasmine tea in my cupboard. Found it faaaar in the back.
Very seldom drink jasmine teas. To me it is a very comforting tea for a late night in front of the fireplace.
This tea uses my alltime favorite white teas. The flavour of the tea balances the jasmine perfectly.
Perfect before bedtime :)
5g / 90ml celadon gaiwan. water from kunzan tetsubin.
wash/25s/15s/25s/30s/40s/1m/+20s per following steeping. Water @ 90C
Oh this tea is just magnificent. first infsuions is shockful of grapefruit and lots of cinnamon. It is as if someone squeezed frsh grapefruit into my cup! Later steepings tasted less of grapefruit and more cinnamon.
The tea is rolled into tiny pearls but unfolds really nice. My gaiwan was filled to the brim with leaf.
will try and find more of this when i get a chance. Very expensive thou. But it can handle a #"¤"load of infusions.
120ml yixing, filled to 1/2 with leaf.
wash/25s added 15s for a couple of infusions.
This is what i call an oolong. Full of smokey burnt flavour. very powerful. Long aftertaste. To bad its all gone. :/
Luckily i have a bag of Gue zi jin wuyi oolong waitning for my pleasure! :)
I wonder what tea i will start my x-mas celebration with. :)