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Recent Tasting Notes
Another from my ocho sampler from Joy’s Teaspoon. This tea is from Nepal and according to the website, is processed at a factory owned by the tea growers and run by a woman. I’m all for that, so I was hopeful that I would like this one. And I do! I found a winner for the BBBB! Now I have an excuse to order more Cinnamon Roll from Joys Teaspoon, too!
I dumped the whole tiny tin into my gaiwan to make this one. It is very similar to a Yunnan, but spicier. Along the lines of Zhu Rong. Not as chocolatey though, more caramel I think. But man, spicy. And a touch of toasted rice flavor. I’m really enjoying it! I’ll add updates if the flavor profile shifts at all through the steepings, but steeps 1-3 are really enjoyable.
The last time I got the sampler from Joy’s Teaspoon I got this and really liked it so I got another sample of it this time too. I need to order a small bag next time. This is really good. The cinnamon isn’t that fakey cinnamon flavor that puts me off from so many teas (ahem… monkey bread)… This is just a really good cup. I’m already sad that my sample is gone. I want more right now.
ETA: I was able to get a very decent second steep out of this. I normally don’t resteep flavored teas, but I wanted more!
I’ve been looking for some more interesting teas to share with the BBBB ladies so I ordered the ocho sampler from Joy’s Teaspoon. I love that sample set. You can choose any 8 teas and they each come in a tiny little tin perfect for a mug full, 2 cups, or a gaiwan session. Just the right amount. I pulled this one out this morning as it smelled pretty interesting.
This tea tastes like…. tea. Like the unflavored iced tea that comes out of soda dispenser at a restaurant. Very similar to a ceylon, but it almost tastes like it has lemon in it already. This wasn’t for me as I don’t love Ceylons, but I can see using this as a base to make really good iced tea. I"ll have to order another sample next summer and test it out, but for now, its not going to be reordered for the BBBB.
This tea is most enjoyable – pleasant aroma with a sweet and nutty taste. No astringency at all. I made the purchase because I’ve never had a Nepalese tea and I was curious but I really like this one! It’s in line with many of the Black Yunnans I typically enjoy. I’ll definitely be buying more.
Update: 2nd steeping reveals flavors that have become much more spicy. The flavor shift is a bit surprising but both cups were very enjoyable.
This Darjeeling is positivly mellow! Its got a little bit of a coppery taste to it, and less of the greeny undertone that I have come to expect from a Darjeeling.
An excelent cup for this afternoon. I need caffine, and a good afternoon tea is just the ticket.
A million thanks to Fuzzy_Peachkin for providing me with the cutest little tin of this that you ever did see.
So fruity! I love it. I’ve discovered while I still generally hate tart-fruity flavored black blends I don’t mind an abundance of fresh fruit smell and flavor when paired with a fresh-tasting green tea base. Den’s Tea Pineapple Sencha was a green tea gateway this spring, I loved ATR’s Nirvana (sencha with fig, berries, kiwi, and rose petals), and this makes me cheerful in a very similar way. It’s very juicy and bright, like eating a big bowl of fruit salad on a sunny morning. Hooray!
I am in LOVE with this blend! I was super apprehensive at first, though. Earl Grey is my most favoritest tea in the world, so adding anything to it could seriously shake my world.
Money has been tight, so I have recently written a few companies and inquired about samples. Joy’s Teaspoon generously sent me Strawberry Oolong and the Earl Grey Cream. I am suspicious that someone actually read my profile and tea preferences, because I can’t think of any two of their teas that I would like to try more.
Anyway, back to the tea. I brewed this early Sunday morning before I went out to sit on the porch with my husband. It was an unseasonably cool and cloudy morning, and with the addition to this tea it was a perfect experience. The blend has the full body of a solid Earl Grey but with a lovely creamy malt. To my surprise, though, it is just as refreshing as a non-cream counterpart. I was so pleased that I forced my husband to try some, and even he really liked it, and he’s not big on Earl Grey.
I will be purchasing this blend in the future. Thank you, Joy’s Teaspoon, you’ve earned a customer!
So I decided to make it a Darjeeling day! The dryleaf of this doesn’t smell quite as much like Oregano and herbs as Butiki, but it is extremely similar. The first smell I have of the liquor is eerily similar as well.
The taste of this is different from the Butiki’s Giddapahar Darjeeling Extra Special in two ways: 1) The coppery note is not as bright and I actually prefer it this way because then I don’t have that much of a pucker reaction. 2) There is no seaweed green tea quality, it’s much more like a black tea. Although I don’t miss the seaweed, I miss the creaminess of the Butiki tea.
In this one the two flavors combine better just because they are not as distinctive, which results in an apricot or citrus type taste when I taste them together. They don’t fight each other for dominance.
At one point I even thought the tea tasted like gummy peaches… but that could have been a momentary hallucination because I didn’t taste it anymore after that one sip. Maybe I just want gummy peaches and not darjeeling anymore. hmmm…
14 ozs of water, 2 ozs of half and half (the only milky substance I had on hand), 1 tbs of matcha and a dash of honey. All went into the shaker bottle for a cold, yummy morning treat as I try to work up the courage to run in this hot, muggy weather. The treadmill at the gym is looking mighty appealing right now.
I’m using up the last of this, and it’s been about a year since I last logged it, so I’m pretty proud of the fact that I was able to make a sample last an entire year. College helped, because I could not make loose leaf in school—too messy, and not enough space.
I don’t remember what I said about this tea in the past, though I’m sure I loved it. I love it still, as it has the wonderful Bergamot flavor, but toned down just a bit, with a hint of berry. The description says Raspberry, which I think is mainly what I’m tasting. Any of the other berries, I wouldn’t be able to name outright, though I can taste the flavors. I think blackberry would possibly be one, though.
All in all, it’s a very rich, wonderful taste, and I’m enjoying this tea as it rains, and rains, and rains. Good weather for tea!
So tonight I’m doing a comparison of this tea and a 2011 Noble House Riesling. I steeped this tea at 180 degrees this time and it came out even better than before! It brings out the creaminess of the tea and the grapes. The best thing is that it does taste like the riesling! They both are light, sweet, fruity, a tad tart, and a little dry in the aftertaste. They both hit smoothly in the middle of the mouth.
The biggest difference is that the tea is creamy, while the wine of course is not. Also the riesling has that alcohol flavor, which I probably wouldn’t want to try to copy in a tea anyway because it would probably taste artificial.
The grape taste in the tea is made fuller by the berries. If I hold it in my mouth I can differentiate between the grape and berries, but only slightly. The base is amazingly creamy, just the teensiest bit astringent, which frankly works here because it gives it that slight wine-like dryness.
I’m quite enjoying this comparison! Too bad I don’t have any more of this tea!
Annnnd, another sipdown!
I probably shouldn’t have had three cups of matcha because I feel a bit outta it now. Too much, man, that was too much!
This was a lovely tea that I’ll miss. I added a bit more leaf and steeped it a bit longer and it tastes more like pastry than it did before. And it’s almost like baked goods cinnamon (instead of fake cinnamon). Very nice!
I’m also a bit wigged out atm because we have movers in our office and they seem like idiots. They’re complaining a lot, and looking around at everything. I was pouring hot water into my timolino from the fancy coffee machine and the one guy just stared at it, and flicked my mug with his finger as he appreciated the machine. NO TOUCHING! :O Bah. Time to go home soon anyway or I’ll get trapped on the stairs while they move stuff around.
This was my first time making matcha at home. I used this matcha in some muffins a couple of weeks ago with much success. I mixed up a tablespoon of matcha and some hot water with a small whisk and it frothed up quite nicely. I also whisked up some almond milk to add to it. I made enough for my brother and I to each have a latte. I added a spoonful of alfalfa honey to each.
The matcha was pretty smooth and my brother who has had more matcha then I have thought it was better than even some of the restaurants he has been to, even if it wasn’t the best of the best. I might try sifting it next time round. It had a strong, leafy green tea flavor that reminded me of green tea ice cream. I could definitely get used to these lattes.
There is nothing subtle about this tea! It’s in your face pear and cinnamon. It’s a good thing I like both of those. The pear is nice and natural. We have pear trees in the back yard and I love eating them in the fall, so this evokes harvest memories. The cinnamon is slightly artificial, but not so much so as to be a complete turn off. I added a little brown sugar in hopes of toning down the connamon and making it a little more complex. I think I’ll have to add a pinch more. I don’t taste the base, but being as there is no bitterness or astringency I’m ok with that.
So far this is my favorite from the Joy’s Teaspoon sampler I got it. The smell of this tea is intoxicating and fruity! Even though I steeped it in boiling water because I didn’t remember it was a white tea (I was too lazy to look up steeping directions on the website), it was still very yummy! The base tasted to me like a buttery green tea. The fruity tones were very prominent, maybe a little more raisin rather than grape. It was a little dry feeling in the mouth, but that works if you’re trying to imitate a wine. I have just enough for one more cup at a lower temperature steep on another day. I’ll look forward to that.
Smells so, so, so good. I love a good pear as much as and sometimes even more than a perfect apple (seriously, I think 3/4 of my dessert recipe files are pear-based), so I had high hopes for this one. Also some trepidation though, ‘cause I’ve found I can’t stand apple in tea for some strange reason (despite loving apples otherwise). So I was a little afraid. This has the juiciness and magic of a pear combined with lots of warm holiday-ish spices, particularly cinnamon. And…I don’t hate it, I like it a lot! Yay! That painful astringency apple tends to bring doesn’t show up here. Eventually you even get the slightly reed/woody mouthfeel of having eaten a juicy pear (which some of my friends hate but I adore). This is a tea that automagically puts me in a good mood.