Golden Moon Tea

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Recent Tasting Notes

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
6338 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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82

what a beautiful, delicate cup. i’ve had this twice already but have never logged it. again…the weight & the color of the liquor are so sylphlike! my experience with many oolongs is that they are very delicate. never harsh. no bitterness, no astringency. conducive to meditation (although i don’t meditate). a tea i’d recommend for those who do!

Golden Moon’s Coconut Pouchong was also meek & mild, and while Butiki’s Maple Pecan Oolong is bursting with fragrance, the brew is surprisingly light, as is this one. either way, i certainly enjoy such a tea, although i wish there were a bit more weight to the body. something tangible.

aroma of the tea liquor: sweet, honey, light maple syrup all mix together to make banana bread!! Sugar Caramel. there is definitely a sweetness, but i don’t quite get caramel. i truly get banana bread. warm, sweet banana bread that is soft and moist. and it’s funny because i was never much a fan of banana bread til recently. i’m starting to develop a taste for it. then when i smelled this tea dry, it was unmistakably sweet banana bread, perhaps soaked in kahlua and drizzled with caramel syrup ;) yum!

the flavor: as the aroma suggests—-lightly sweet, with notes of banana and pecan. unfortunately, the richness of the fragrant dry leaf doesn’t translate fully when infused. but it is beautiful nonetheless.

Flavors: Honey, Nuts

boychik

i just received a sample of it. i should try it asap. All your description of banana bread made me hungry:)

DeliriumsFrogs

I’m right there with boychik…my stomach is now rumbling (and my mouth is watering, because this tea sounds delightful!).

pyarkaaloo

hahaha…what do u plan on having? if you have not yet eaten, smelling this tea will really make you hungry, it smells so luscious. i find the fragrance far more decadent than the liquor, but if that’s par for the course with oolongs, i’ll be happy to know it isn’t me.

i really need to get a gaiwan asap. something tells me a lot less water will let the flavor truly shine.

boychik

you should get yourself easy gaiwan, not to delicate and you won’t burn your fingers
http://www.ebay.com/itm/NEW-Chinese-GongFu-Tea-Porcelain-Five-Bat-Gaiwan-Tea-Set-3-Pcs-/390595014580

pyarkaaloo

thank you so much, boychik :) that set’s adorable! i truly wonder what you’ll think of this oolong. look forward to your review.

thank you, deliriumsfrogs for ur kind compliments- i think you’d perceive a lot from this tea :D

smelled my sample tin again- brown sugar and banana, perhaps caramelized. pecan or walnut comes out in the steep (for me) though Golden Moon mentions chestnut.

DeliriumsFrogs

I had a salad, with egg and avocado… but I would have really much rather had banana bread. lol
That gaiwan is so interesting, boychik! I’ve never seen that type before. I tend to still burn my fingers sometimes when using my gaiwan (ifjuly sent me one, and it’s pretty much my most loved possession).
That whole set is really beautiful. :)

boychik

the seller is very good too. reliable and fast. i think i got it in about 10 days, maybe less. its a life saver, i use it everyday. Mine has diff design, called blue fish.

boychik

I did tried the sample. while its lovely you are absolutely right the smell doesnt translate to taste. Rather weak, but clean and nice,nothing wrong. Again, im not a green oolong lover with one exception – Madala Milk oolong. teavivre strawberry oolong is good too. I dont know if you tried Silk Dragon by Tea Merchant. i think its amazing.

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74
drank Peach Oolong by Golden Moon Tea
218 tasting notes

I can’t believe I actually had to add this one to the database! I’m sorry I didn’t put any picture up. I couldn’t figure out how to save it from GMT website since the simple “save image as…” option did not appear, probably of all the picture zooming fanciness they have going on there.

Anyway. I had a sample of it last night, and, as I had predicted, it didn’t floor me but it wasn’t unpleasant either. I even re-steeped it. The peach flavoring is mild but agreeable with no artificiality to it. The oolong base has very little character but isn’t otherwise funky.

An okay tea. Nothing to crave or die for, but decent. It probably would work a little better iced?

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Anna

(Well, that was a really silly site interface – I added the picture for you.)

Kat_Maria

Thank you, Anna! :)

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98

this is a sample from very generous ifjuly . Thank you so much!
I decided to try it today,its last day for free ship on GMT. I have this sample for a awhile but wanted to sample just before placing the order.
The leaves are gorgeous long black twisty its hard to measure with a spoon so I dump the whole sample, my guess at least 5-6g. 8oz boil 3min steep
produced dark golden brew. the taste is strong of honey and roast. i say roasted buckwheat drizzled with buckwheat honey. very smooth. I love it. as I read other ppl reviews complaining about pale color and not enough taste i came to conclusion that they underleaved it. Seriously, this tea is nothing short of flavor. Havent noticed any flowers, it reminds me more of Laoshan Black smell. Cocoa, honey,roasted buckweat.
2nd steep. @ 4min less honey,still roasty and some rye bread notes.
I’m sold. if ifjuly wouldn’t give me a sample I really dont know if i blind buy it. its not cheap and not offered as a sample.
Thank you ifjuly for being you!

Flavors: Cocoa, Honey

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 5 g 8 OZ / 236 ML
Stephanie

Sounds amazing :D

pyarkaaloo

this sounds terrific! thank you for your nuanced description :)

ifjuly

I’m so glad you like it! I think a lot of people who’ve tried it because I went on about how much I like it feel disappointed—it’s a little delicate maybe?—so I’m glad you could taste the honey, yum.

And I know what you mean about it. It’s hard to get—hidden on the site, and sometimes they don’t have any in stock when I’ve ordered it—and definitely not cheap. Alas. It’s one of my “I’ve been really good and it’s been a terrible day” treat teas. (:

DeliriumsFrogs

I’ve gotta put this at the top of my ‘future order from Golden Moon Tea’ list…. it sounds fantastic! I love your description of it all…I could see and smell everything. :)

ifjuly

DeliriumsFrogs, i’ve got some i can send you to try! it’s way pricey so try before you buy is a good thing in this case. i will throw it in the “send to DF someday” pile.

boychik

Thank you DeliriumsFrogs. its hard to describe this complex tea, but i tried:) ifjuly is better at descriptions

ifjuly

sooo untrue. i love your logs, boychik. (:

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69
drank Madagascar Vanilla by Golden Moon Tea
253 tasting notes

This is April Fool’s Day. This tea April Fooled me :( The dry tea smells great like vanilla beans.
The flavor is vanilla and
it has a briny orange flavor to the liquor that is different. I don’t know what tea this is made with :(
This is what Steepster is for so you can know about a tea before purchasing. This is tea like you get in the grocery store, ok but not high end and you don’t know what you are drinking. :(

Flavors: Orange Zest, Vanilla

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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80
drank Coconut Pouchong by Golden Moon Tea
253 tasting notes

When I opened this package, I was overwhelmed by a strong piña colada scent and I was a little scared.
The leaves are large, slightly twisted, and mixed colors of dark brown and moss green.
But after I brewed this Oolong, it tasted pretty good!! The Oolong gives a pineapple scent and flavor then the accent of the coconut makes it taste very island drink like but in a hot tea. The scent when you bring your nose up to the cup is spot on piña colada.
No bitterness or greenness to the Oolong either.
This is a great one for people who like flavored teas and especially piña colada.

Flavors: Coconut, Fruit Tree Flowers

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec 4 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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17

I don’t like roses. But since I have this sample, I thought I would give it a shot.

Smells like roses, even small rose petals in the tea. Tastes like it smells. Tried it hot and iced. Tastes the same.

I still don’t like roses. I’m sure this is good for people who like roses. The black base doesn’t overpower the floral, perhaps tones it down some, because I can only imagine if you steeped only rose petals, it would taste different than this. If someone loved roses, I would totally recommend this to them, and gladly hand them my cup! :-)

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86

Why not go with another GM sample sipdown? I’m not sure why this gets such a low rating! It’s a nice representative of Darjeeling… the standard flavors are there. However you could describe a Darjeeling. The flavor here is kind of bold – probably because the sample actually had closer to two teaspoons. Classic delicious Darjeeling. I’m a fan! Not much else to say, but I don’t understand such a low rating for such a tasty Darjeeling (growing to love them, I guess.)
Steep #1 // waited 13 minutes after boiling // 2 1/2 min
Steep #2 // 13 mins after boiling // 2 1/2 min

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82
drank Kashmiri Chai by Golden Moon Tea
1721 tasting notes

Here is one of these unwieldy metallic packaged GM samples sipdowned. I felt like chai today! I don’t know if it was just my sample, but this one seems to have mostly cinnamon (and black tea of course – though the description on the label says it should have also contained green tea – eww no.) A hojicha chai might be nice. But it looked like there is just black tea here.- not a CTC leaf but kind of smallish. This is pretty good – nice black tea with a decent briskness. The cinnamon shines. If I were to pick a favorite chai ingredient, I’d pick cinnamon.

I think my tastebuds recently changed… there was a week where my tongue was sore… like if I had eaten eggplant, though that usually only lasts an hour. Some things are tasting differently now. Ketchup is almost unbearably strong now. If taste buds change every seven years, that means the last time was about a year after I started drinking tea and that was mostly teabags. Hopefully none of my favorites are terrible now! hmmm…

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80

Oolongs aren’t my favorite teas but I keep on trying because I know there are lots out there and someday I might hit on one that is perfect for me. The aroma of the dry leaves is vegetal with an overtone of caramel. The initial sip is too vegetal with only a bit of caramel sweetness. After letting it cool a bit and adding a drop of stevia the caramel pops! I am not noticing any astringency or over-vegetal taste that I thought there might be when I first poured it. Nothing bad but nothing to rush out to buy.

Flavors: Caramel

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

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65
drank Jasmine Pearls by Golden Moon Tea
1736 tasting notes

The pearls are neat – small, slightly fizzy and striped with dark green and silver when they were dry. The leaves were a bit slow to unwind and the first steep at two minutes was a little bland. A second steep (@3:15 min) gave the leaves more of a chance to unfurl and the end result almost looked like a bunch of curls. I found the flavour was fuller and much improved on the second steep as well.

This tea is fairly similar to the jasmine green all told – there’s maybe a bit more substance to the base and a bit more character but to be honest in my opinion both of them are nothing special. Part of that I think is because I’m generally not a fan of jasmine teas (Harney & Sons’ Dragon Pearl Jasmine being the only exception) and that biases me against them somewhat.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C

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63
drank Jasmine Tea by Golden Moon Tea
1736 tasting notes

A few months back I purchase the Tea Taster’s sampler from Golden Moon – 31 new samples to try – whoo.

There seem to be two jasmine teas in the sampler – jasmine green and jasmine pearls – I’m curious as to whether there’s any difference so I’ll try the pearls tomorrow and compare them.

This one is a pretty basic jasmine green tea. I’m generally not a big fan of jasmine – too often the tea blenders over-do it and it’s super-cloying and ends up tasting like perfume or soap. This one isn’t bad however, as the jasmine is pretty mild. The green tea base is rather uninspired though – it’s nothing special just your very basic green tea.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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69
drank Honey Pear by Golden Moon Tea
218 tasting notes

I’m finishing my sample of this. It’s okay. That’s all that can be said about this – OKAY. I think pear might not work for me as a tea flavoring. And it makes tea smell a little bit like urine.

However, I did give in to the Golden Moon’s free shipping offer (code: freeshipping, US only) and today ordered an ounce of Sugar Caramel Oolong (it was dirt cheap – $4.99) and about 9 samples of their teas that I haven’t tried yet.

Also, I’m waiting for some nice day off to sample swap teas or the ones that I have recently acquired. I don’t work many hours a week (~25) but DO they wear me out…

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

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69
drank Honey Pear by Golden Moon Tea
218 tasting notes

I must say, this tea didn’t move me one bit.

I love honey and I love pears. But when their flavors are combined into tea, it doesn’t seem like a mix that sits with my taste buds too well. Or maybe it’s just this one.

The flavoring is not extremely strong, as is the case with other Golden Moon teas, but it verged dangerously on the artificial, and I didn’t like that very much. I was mostly getting pear with a promise of honey (a promise that was never kept) and the base was much too weak – but perhaps it is my fault, I could’ve underleafed it slightly.

I still have a serving-worth left, I’ll try to perhaps steep it longer and we’ll see how that goes.

I still love Golden Moon teas, though!

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 15 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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drank Honey Pear by Golden Moon Tea
787 tasting notes

Sipdown on the sample! And it didn’t quite make a second 12 oz. cup, so I added some French breakfast in there, which turned out to be an excellent idea because I think I tasted more honey this time. This is definitely a delicious pear tea, dessert-y and not too floral. If I were to order more pear tea, this one would be it!

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drank Honey Pear by Golden Moon Tea
787 tasting notes

I only bought a small sample of this tea because I wasn’t sure if I’d like it. When I opened the sample, the dry leaf had a very strong, almost harsh pear scent. I immediately thought of Della Terra Teas’ perfect pear tea, which was okay, but too perfume-y. Once steeped, however, the tea still had that strong scent, but the taste was lovely. It was much more smooth, and kind of the perfect pairing of pear and honey. I actually really liked it! It’s not as harsh as it smells and no where near as perfume-y as DTT’s pear tea. Hmm, maybe I should have gone for the 1 oz. pouch…I guess there’s always next time!!

Sil

ooooh good to know. :)

Stephanie

Yum, this one sounds good!

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This is one of the better vanilla teas I’ve had. Much more vanilla bean-y, which is what I prefer. The black base is smooth too. Definitely a winner. :)

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I drank this tea in my new color-changing whale mug from DavidsTea this morning. I’ve never owned a color- changing mug before, and it’s AWESOME! It’s like magic, like it shows the color only while you’re drinking the tea, so it’s like tea is the magic element! Ha!

This tea is a solid breakfast tea, but I like the flavor profile of Sinharaja loads more. Honestly, the delicious honeyed smell I get from the dry leaf didn’t really come through in the steeped cup. Maybe I’m killing it by adding soymilk? I don’t know, but I do know the whale mug is AWESOME! :)

Stephanie

That whale mug is so cute!

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81
drank Vanilla Jasmine by Golden Moon Tea
82 tasting notes

Was very productive today…cleaned out two of my tea shelves. I mainly wanted to pull out teas that need to be cleared out. I found about 4oz of Yumberry Wulong separated it different spots. That is a clear sign I have too much tea.

So I figured I really need to sip down teas that are in baggies from swaps. This could have been in my cupboard for a year! I really have no idea when I got it.

Upon opening I really did not smell much in the way of jasmine or vanilla! In fact I really couldn’t smell even the tea base so had to come on here and look it up. Once brewed though I could clearly smell the jasmine and vanilla!

Being this sample is old I really don’t taste too much jasmine. In fact, I really dislike vanilla teas because tea companies don’t seem to pair them with the right black base. This is perfect in both regards. I’m definitely going to get some of this some day…fresher of course – lol.

Nicole

I haven’t had this in ages but I remember liking it.

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