Golden Moon Tea

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Recent Tasting Notes

drank Sinharaja by Golden Moon Tea
428 tasting notes

This tea brews up to a nice classic copper orange colour and smells of plum tinted with cherry, cinnamon, and malt with brown sugar. There is a hint of sweet potato as it cools and the spice becomes slightly floral reminding me of clover nectar.

It taste very smooth with sweet sugary fruit notes up front, strong ripe plum is evident sprinkled with brown sugar, followed by a soft floral note that is slightly powdery and finished with malt. The texture is almost creamy. Hidden in the malt is a bit of cocoa and sweet potato. There is a slight grain note like barley present. The flavour is rich but the tea seems to be too thin to add milk to. The aftertaste is a mix of bitter malt and sugared fruit. A very nice mix of fruit, spice, floral notes and malt.

Thank you so much Dexter3657 for sharing this sample for me. It is quite a nice Ceylon.

Preparation
4 min, 15 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
gmathis

I remember thinking how wonderfully unusual this one was.

yyz

It is quite nice in a muted, elegant way, I quite like it as well:)

TheTeaFairy

What a nice review, you make this sound so yummy!

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90

Well, I have pulled a muscle in my shoulder, apparently I am not enough of an amazon to move furniture around by myself, but that is really no surprise. I did, however, get my craft area and tea lair redone meaning I have a little more room. I still need to find a small table to place my computer on, giving my desk an L shape, I need more room for folding paper!

Today’s tea is Vanilla Mint from Golden Moon Teas. A blend of Gunpowder Green Tea, Mint Leaves, Black Tea, Mint Oil, Vanilla Extract, and Vanilla Bean Pod Slices. I was quite intrigued by this tea, the ingredients reminded me of Moroccan Mint tea but with a vanilla twist, and I do really enjoy those flavors together. The aroma is predominantly minty with a strong presence of sweet vanilla. Underneath these two dominating smells we have a gentle vegetal note, a subtle smokiness, and a tiny hint of malt.

The now quite soggy leaves are still very minty, but now they have more vegetal notes. There is an underlying sweetness and a faint smokiness. The liquid is all about the creamy vanilla, it is sweet and a little decadent. There is also a minty presence but it is more of a background coolness (it is even wearing shades and a popped collar) and a hint of smokiness. It is like a creamy mint milkshake with a hint of campfire, actually that sounds like a good camping idea.

Oh man, this tea has the best cooling effect, I love how mint teas warm you up and cool you down in the same sip. Combine that with sweet vanilla, slightly oak wood black tea, and a nice vegetal zing, and you have for a really interesting tea. The mint does not overpower, which is great, I notice that a lot of tea blends with mint make the mistake of having it be too minty…it kinda bullies the other flavors and you don’t notice them. My favorite part of this tea is the smoky finish, it adds a richness to an otherwise light tea. I decided to chill this tea and found that chilling it makes it a lot mintier, I think I prefer this tea hot, but I honesty do with most teas.

For photos and blog: http://ramblingbutterflythoughts.blogspot.com/2014/05/golden-moon-teas-vanilla-mint-tea-review.html

Stephanie

Hope your shoulder feels better quickly!

Amanda 'SoggyEnderman' Wilson

Thanks! It already feels better…the power of a good soak in a hot bath :)

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65

This sample came to me from Dexter3657. When I brewed it up , I could smell something I just couldn’t place. For taste I picked up the light white tea but just couldn’t detect the melon. I don’t know why. There are plenty of reviews here that say they can taste the melon. Then I read a review that said it tasted like liquid bread. Yes, that’s the taste I picked up – like a baker’s yeast.

Just not my cup of tea but thanks Dexter3657 for the sample. I’m glad I got to try it.

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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75
drank Coconut Pouchong by Golden Moon Tea
212 tasting notes

I’m gonna keep this quick, as fruit flavored teas are not my thing:
Incredibly delicious coconut smell. The taste pairs wonderfully with the light floral of the pouchong. It’s really surprsing how well the two pair as I was sort of expecting the very strong coconut smell to overpower the tea. It leaves a really dry feeling in the mouth and throat after 5 infusions or so gongfu style. Otherwise, really nice light flavor with a generous amount of coconut that surprisingly seems like just the right amount.

Flavors: Coconut, Flowers

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 45 sec 3 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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69

Since I had had a sample sachet of this for a while now, I decided to have it this morning. It wasn’t particularly remarkable even though I was hoping there was some Chinese tea blended in… as it seemed a bit sweet.

Unfortunately, now I read that it is just Ceylon tea, the one kind which instigates zero interest in me (although I must admit that it is pretty awesome iced), which would explain its almost mediocrity to me. Almost mediocrity, because I did detect some pleasant floral notes. I only wish they were a little stronger.

Also, the tea didn’t resteep very well. The second steep was really mild and weak even though I added 1,5 minute to the original steeping time. Not a bad tea, not anything that was a challenge to finish, but nothing particularly flavorful or sophisticated either.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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84
drank Vanilla Mint by Golden Moon Tea
675 tasting notes

Today’s the day I start my new freelance gig!

I decided to drink this because I really need to stop hoarding teas that I have a decent amount of, like this one.

The first time I tried it, I thought the blend of vanilla and mint was quite smooth. This time, I’m getting less vanilla and more mint, probably because I oversteeped it. As a result, I’m tasting that harsh, chemical taste I often associate with peppermint. So, a word to the wise: don’t oversteep this (4 minutes is enough). It could probably also use some sweetener to mellow things out.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 24 OZ / 709 ML
Veronica

Congratulations and good luck!

caile

Good luck!

mj

Good luck!

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84
drank Vanilla Mint by Golden Moon Tea
675 tasting notes

At first glance, this tea is an unusual mix of flavours: green tea, black tea, mint, and vanilla. I’ve found that I’m not a huge fan of mixing green tea and vanilla together, but I don’t mind black tea and vanilla, and mint goes well with both kinds. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I was prepared for something discordant when I tasted it, and that expectation was reinforced when smelling the dry leaf – smelling vanilla and mint together is just a weird combination for me.

But what’s this? When brewed up, it’s surprisingly smooth, and well blended! The flavours are distinct, but they don’t fight against each other, instead combining to form something even better. It tastes good both straight and with a little bit of sweetener added, though I prefer the sweetened version. Even better, despite the boiling steep temperature, the green tea didn’t become astringent.

So, this was a tea I expected to be weird and jangly and disorganized, only to have it defy my expectations and become a smooth, delicious cup. So what fictional character did this tea remind me of? You’ll have to take a look here to find out: http://christinavasilevski.com/2014/05/sunday-tea-books-vanilla-mint/

Flavors: Vanilla

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
Sami Kelsh

This does rather sound quite magical. Yummy!

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94

Sipdown of a very old sample, not even sure who sent it to me at this point!

I enjoyed this though, it reminded me a lot of Davidstea’s version of coconut oolong (the pre-lemongrass edition). Which I love and hoarded.

This type of tea is everything I want when I crave a coconut tea, that is to say it’s creamy, buttery and super coconutty! The buttery base definitely lends itself well to this sort of flavoring.

Since it’s so similar to the DT old version which I still have plenty of, I wouldn’t need to own this one, but I enjoyed it just as much. Thanks to whoever sent it long ago in my pre baby days!

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80

Sipdown and side by side comparison! Note: this is cross-posted with http://steepster.com/cvasilevski/posts/302699

A few months ago Golden Moon switched almost all of their blends so that they were organic. This was one of the affected ones, and I was mighty curious to see how the organic replacement, Masala Chai, would compare. When I got a coupon code from GM for free shipping, and since I’m in Canada, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to go for it. I’ve had a last smidgen of this Kashmiri Chai in my cupboard for the longest time and been dreading finishing it since it’s a lovely chai.

However, I was curious to see whether the Masala Chai would be a worthy replacement. So once the Masala Chai came on Wednesday, I decided to do a side-by-side taste test!

Both teas were brewed for 5 minutes in identical mugs using identical filters and a nearly identical amount of leaf. So here’s what I’m noticing about each tea.

The dry leaf: The leaf of the Kashmiri Chai looks larger and more intact, and you can definitely see whole chunks of cinnamon and pods of cardamom. In contrast, the leaf of the Masala Chai looks much more like a CTC tea, and while I can see the occasional cardamom pod, I see a lot of ginger and not much cinnamon. The smell of both varieties holds this up – the Kashmiri Chai smells much more of cinnamon and cardamom, while the Masala Chai smells much more of ginger.

The tea liquor: When they started brewing, the Masala Chai had a reddish tint to it and the Kashmiri Chai looked like more of a cool brown/umber colour. However, after a 5-minute steep, the colour of both teas was pretty much identical. The smell was fairly similar to the dry leaf: Kashmiri smelled cinnamon-ish, while Masala smelled like ginger.

Taste and mouthfeel: The Kashmiri Chai had a smooth sweet taste that coated the tongue and lingered long after the sip was over. I could taste the earthy base of the tea underneath, but could definitely sense the play of spices. In contrast, the Masala Chai smells and tastes strongly of ginger and malt, like gingerbread. Not quite a gingerbread cookie, but if you actually had a loaf of ginger-infused bread. I got a sweet potato note and a citrus note. I really can’t tell here what the base is, but it wouldn’t surprise me if the base were a Ceylon tea of some sort. It didn’t linger much on the palate, but was somewhat malty.

Verdict: I prefer the Kashmiri Chai tea, but considering they don’t make this blend anymore AND that this taste test was a sipdown of the last of the KC leaf, I’m out of luck.

Next, I might consider mixing the Masala Chai with some of Just Organic’s Just Charming Chai – the JO Charming Chai is too cinnamon-heavy, so they might complement each other really well. We’ll have to see.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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80

I’m nearing the end of this sample, and sad about it. It’s a lovely-smelling chai – very cinnamon-y and cardamom-y, without being too oppressively candy-like.

I really want to order the Masala Chai that Golden Moon offers since they switched to stocking organic blends, but I have no idea how similar it will taste. The reviews on Steepster so far are meh. (This makes me very sad)

Christina

ETA: I totally caved in and made the Golden Moon order once I realized that I had a coupon I could use. Will report on how similar the two blends (old Kashmiri Chai and new Masala Chai) will taste.

Michelle Butler Hallett

Stash carries a Kashmiri Chai made with green tea, spices, and some almond. Really good. And much better than their regular green chai.

Christina

I’ve found that I dislike green tea chais. Green tea generally has a sharp and vegetal profile that I think clashes with the sweet/savoury flavours of most chai spices.

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80

Man, I’m going to be sad when I finish up this tea. The cinnamon smell is so strong and sweet, I love it. I love the whole pods of cardamom, too. I think this chai is an excellent blend – though of course I know others prefer chais that are less cinammony.

Unfortunately, shipping from Golden Moon to Canada is so ridiculous that this definitely will not be a restock. :(

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80

Backlog from yesterday morning:

This tea is so cinnamon-y, and so tasty as a result. I can taste and see lots of cardamom in the dried leaf, and perhaps some clove or ginger, but the cinnamon is definitely the strongest flavour.

There’s an earthy undertone to the base leaf that I also find interesting. Adding a bit of cinnamon honey just kicks everything up a notch, in a good way.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 24 OZ / 709 ML

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80

Backlog from last night:

I took this with me in a thermos last night – my husband and I walked down to the waterfront to see if we could catch any fireworks. We weren’t disappointed. We originally hoped to see about watching the fireworks that took place a few km down the shore in the distance, but a bunch of random local people brought their own fireworks to set off. It was quite a show! We had our camp chairs and sat under a tree, and I sipped this.

However, thermos drinking really doesn’t allow the flavour of this tea to come to the fore. I need to get some more chais in my collection – this is nice, but the shipping cost from Golden Moon to Canada is ridiculous. Here’s hoping my order of Just Charming Chai from Just Organic Tea’s Kickstarter (it’s shipping in about a week!) will be just as good.

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80

OMG.

Last time I tried this tea, I brewed it the normal way – pour the hot water over the leaf, let the whole thing steep for a few minutes.

This time, based on reviews by others about this tea, I tried making it as a latte. I took 2.5 tsp of leaf, 2 cups of almond milk, and then simmered the tea in the milk. I then took a mug and put a dollop of cinnamon honey in the bottom. It took a few minutes at least for the liquid to boil, but once it did boil, I simmered it the boiling milk for 5 minutes, then poured this beautiful mocha-coloured liquid into the mug with the waiting honey, and then stirred.

Oh. My. God. This is good. The nuttiness of the almond really comes through, but it mixes so well with the earthiness of the tea and the spices. The flavour is just full and round inside my mouth – so full, that I have to drink this tea in slow sips or my tongue will get overwhelmed. It does leave a slightly sour aftertaste, but I don’t mind, since the milk is dairy-free.

I MUST DO THIS TO ALL OF MY CHAI TEA FROM NOW ON. ESPECIALLY THE CHOCOLATE CHAIS.

Oooh, this is tasty! I’m bumping up the rating accordingly, from 77 to 80.

PS: I just got notice this morning that a non-fiction memoir piece of mine will be published in an anthology later on this year! Yay!

Edit: I also think I’ll try to use up my cinnamon honey in the same way – with milk lattes like this. Yum.

Flavors: Cinnamon, Earth, Nuts

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML
Veronica

Congratulations on having your memoir piece published! That’s awesome!!!

Indigobloom

OOooh!! Mucho congrats. That’s awesome!

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80

My aunt and uncle came over today, and when I asked them what tea they wanted, they told me to suprise them. So why not surprise myself too with something I haven’t tried yet?

This is very spicy and full of cinnamon. However, there was a taste of earth in the leaf that I wasn’t sure how I felt about. I’d LOVE to try making this with boiling milk, though, like others have tried with this tea. I bet that would be amazing.

Note: this tea doesn’t do quite so well on the resteep. It’s a bit weak.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 24 OZ / 709 ML

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75

Well all, I am starting to feel better, it seems whatever was wrong with me is mostly on the mend, the only problem is I am bushed. I keep feeling really exhausted and sleeping a lot so my sleep schedule has gotten weird and I have some serious confusion as to what day it is! A few hearty meals and some rest should have me back to normal in no time. I did use some of my time today working on a new origami piece, a modular star themed kusudama that was a real pain to assemble when using slippery chiyogami, but worked quite well with junky memo paper.

Break out your Beret, because today’s tea is French Breakfast by Golden Moon Tea, a classic black tea from Kenilworth Estate in Sri Lanka (or Ceylon if you are old fashioned about it). The website recommends this tea for people who like ‘standard’ black tea or who are starting out on their adventure into loose leaf tea. I am most certainly not new to loose leaf tea, but I am always on the hunt for a new breakfast tea. The aroma of this tea is bright, bold, and malty with a hint of pecans and dried leaves. Very much a standard black tea indeed!

The brewed leaves are very bright and quite sweet with a berry like quality to it that blends with an oak wood aroma. It does not have a brisk quality, just bright and sweet. The aroma of the liquid sans leaves is malty and sweet, like caramel, with a nice oaky finish.

This tea has a nice mild briskness, just enough to wake you up but not too much, no need to worry about your moth turning inside out. There is a bold malty and oak wood taste that fades to a sweetness reminiscent of berries. Adding cream and sugar takes away that mild briskness and replaces it with a very smooth morning cup. I agree with the company’s description, this is a great beginners tea, but it has enough going on that it does not bore a more experienced sipper.

For blog and photos: http://ramblingbutterflythoughts.blogspot.com/2014/04/golden-moon-tea-french-breakfast-tea.html

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94

I had this as my breakfast travel mug tea and it was fantastic. The sugar and caramel flavors are dead on, but the oolong is what really shines here. It’s smooth and… hefty, for lack of a better word. I did the second steep at 185f for 3 ½ minutes and it came out weaker than expected. The sugar and caramel came to the fore. The oolong kind of just dropped out of the show in the second act. The inverse happened after the third steep (boiling water, about 6 minutes). The sugar and caramel faded into the background. The oolong took on a new flavor that I can’t describe. It tastes how I imagine a maple tree would taste. Not maple-y, but dark and woody. Really tasty. Thanks for this one, Christina!

Dexter

This sounds awesome – I just got my first Golden Moon order, and haven’t tried this yet. Kaylee what were the parameters that you used for your first steep? Would like to try and replicate your experience. :))

Kaylee

1tsp/8oz,180f at 3 minutes, per the company’s suggestion.

Dexter

Thank you.

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87
drank Sinharaja by Golden Moon Tea
244 tasting notes

Delicious cup this early AM. Sweet with a subtle honey flavor. Decided to try to enhance the flavor with a bit of cream and sugar – sweet, creamy decadence! Just what I was looking for…….

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 15 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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70

Oh. my. gosh.
THIS TEA SMELLS DIVINE.

Thank you tons to QueenOfTarts for sending me a sample of this!

It smells like caramel cookies and brown sugar and ahh I just love sugary smelling teas! I have high hopes for this one :)
Now that it’s steeping, it definitely started smelling like an oolong!
I love oolong so freakin much okay. Partially because I love seeing the leaves unravel, but dude, I love all the oolongs I have okay.
I think this might actually be my first dessert oolong so I’m quite excited for that.

Hmm. The sugar/caramel bit does get lost. I’m kinda sad about that! It smelled sooo nice dry, but the flavour didn’t carry out through the steeping process, and now it just tastes like any regular slightly roasted oolong. It’s good, not gunna lie, but the sugar/caramel bits that I was looking forward to didn’t come through.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 3 min, 15 sec 4 g 12 OZ / 354 ML

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72

T&C TTB #19

I had a cup of this last night. I think I am learning that I really have to be in the mood for flavored oolongs as well as coconut. This was nice, but nothing that knocked my socks off. I could see this being really good iced. I don’t think this is something I would purchase, but I am glad for the opportunity to try it.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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drank Sugar Caramel Oolong by Golden Moon Tea
6146 tasting notes

this has been on my wishlist for a while and dinosara was kind enough to send some my way for me to try. “But Sil! it’s an oolong” you might say…. I’m well aware, but i’m always open to trying things that a bunch of ppl seem to love. Turns out? this is a really boring tea for me. It’s not even oo-wrong…it’s just meh. It smells delicious in dry form, but then brewing it up…SNORE FEST. it’s not even enough of an oolong to get me all riled up about how i don’t like oolongs. it’s really just sort of there. hanging out. being BOOOOORIIIINGGGGGG…. lol

CHAroma

LOL! Sorry this tea was so boring for you. Best to move on to something more lively!

Sil

haha i’m trying a bunch of things today. sad that this one was just kinda there…but glad i tried it, as always :)

Dexter

OH SNORE FEST is not a good thing. I actually have some of this in the mail to me right now – interesting….

TheTeaFairy

Haha! Hilarious!! Oo-wrong…almost as funny as bleeergamot!

Stephanie

I like it a lot…but I’m also a big fan of oolong in general :)

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80

I remember this being a very decent earl grey, slightly on the creamy side, but still with a fair dose of citrusy bergamot (blergophobics beware!). The base tea was top-quality and very, very tasty.

While this would not win the earl-grey-on-hand spot in my cupboard, I am really glad I tried it. It was certainly a good cup and it resteeped very nicely too. Anyone who is on a hunt to try as many EGs as possible should check this one out!

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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52

Ok, this is the second EG tea of the day for me.

When I got this tin last week, I opened it up and was unprepared for the sheer tidal wave of lavender scent that was unleashed. Seriously, the lavender smell was overwhelming, and I was worried that it would taste like a bar of soap.

Tentatively, I tried this today to compare to the other EG I’ve got, Davids Tea’s Cream of Earl Grey. And oh boy, were my fears confirmed.

I opened the tin. The overpowering lavender smell escaped. I carefully measured out a spoonful and put it in my infuser. I poured the hot water over the leaf. Upon first sniff, my fears were allayed – the immediate smell of the wet leaf when it was brewing was bergamot.

Then, as I let it steep, the lavender smell returned, albeit not as strong. I pulled out the infuser, set it aside, inhaled, and then took a sip.

God, this tastes like soap. I have never had lavender in a tea before, but if they’re all like this, then I will stay FAR away from it in the future. As a perfume? Great. As a soap? Lovely. But as a tea? Blech. As the tea cools down, the lavender flavour becomes more apparent, and actually feels like acid or something peppery on my tongue. The tea itself is not astringent, but the lavender in it contributes to an astringent sensation. Not sure if I’m explaining this right, but the mouthfeel is definitely affected.

I can smell bergamot in there and taste it in the aftertaste, but this is NOT a good mix. Someone, anyone, if you’re reading this: I will gladly send it to you as a swap. Pretty please?

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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82

walnut sweet sugar, i think a squirrel fell into my cup (oh wait, those are acorns…)

so delicate, perhaps a bit too mild & i just wish there were something to hold onto- anything—-the buttery texture or sticky rice pudding flavor of Coconut Pouchong, the buttery mouthfeel and green floral tang of Maple Cheesecake Ti Kwan Yin, or even the ‘honey bunches of oats’ in Maple Pecan Oolong.

but this does smell outrageous & and is certainly a pleasant cup. nothing i’d ever refuse! maybe they could pair the ‘Sugar Caramel’ flavoring with a more roasted oolong, like say, a Laoshan or Formosa! even a TGY that has somewhat of a pucker to it. so that the sweet seemingly banana flavor can cling to something well, tangible.

then again i’m no tea connoisseur or mixologist. perhaps the wonderful taste i attribute to the flavoring could be coming from the oolong itself! i just wish i knew what kind they used.

keep in mind this note comes after the 2nd steep of this tea- maybe something more will reveal itself in the 3rd infusion?

Flavors: banana, Burnt Sugar, Oats, Walnut

gmathis

This one is certainly not what you expect—but once you get over the shock, then you realize how excellent it really is!

pyarkaaloo

haha yes indeed! the same thing happened to me with their Coconut Pouchong! once you become attuned to the delicacy and subtle nuances of oolongs, you really get a lot out of them. the nose on the dry leaf for this, Sugar Caramel Oolong, is one of the yummiest things i’ve smelled by far!

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