Naivetea

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Recent Tasting Notes

drank Dong Ding by Naivetea
224 tasting notes

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First impressions of this tea is in the smell. The scent of the dry leaves smells a lot like candy, and smell very sweet. After steeping, the dry leaves and the tea liquor smelled a lot like the Acai Emergen-C vitamin C drink packages. I do not know what Passion fruit smells like, but this tea smelled very sweet, like acai, and had hints of crisp apple and peach in the scent as well.

Check out a more in depth review & a time lapse steep video at my blog! http://bit.ly/9flx7I

Lori

I just ordered a sample of this and can’t wait to try it…

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I like the light taste of the osmanthus..it intensifies the flavor and quality of the oolong.

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Took me a couple of steeps to get this one right. It wasn’t outstanding but still tasted pretty good. I’m not such of a strawberry person anyway.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 30 sec

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drank Golden Lily Oolong by Naivetea
181 tasting notes

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73
drank Dong Ding by Naivetea
613 tasting notes

Toasty, ricey, little hints of vegetal flavors here and there and pretty smooth. Not silky or creamy, just smooth and soft. The leaves expand quite well, as expected for an oolong.

This is my first Dong Ding oolong. Not sure I am enough of a fan to keep it around, but it seems to be a very nice tea and I wouldn’t turn it down if it were offered. And I will not make it through 7 steeps. I will probably never get through 7 steeps of the same tea in a row. :) Too impatient, too many teas!!!

Again, thanks for sharing, Tamm!

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 4 min, 45 sec
Tamm

I’m glad that you liked it! It was the first dong ding for me to try as well. I’m glad that you got to experience something new.

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72

Thank you Dinosara for this sample. :) I have been saving my more floral teas for warmer weather and the UK has finally seen the start of things to come. Hopefully the snow is behind us.

I don’t recall trying anything from Naivetea before but have tried Butiki Teas version of rose violet calendula Oolong so there are some means for comparison.

In raw form this tea consists of dark brown/black oolong balls with a few yellow calendula petals mixed amongst them. If you look very closely there are a few very small pieces of violet petals but I can’t see any rose in this 7g sample.

Upon opening the packet I could note a very strong floral aroma with particular rose peaks and Turkish delight essence.

Once steeped the tea is yellow in colour with a very light floral scent. Not as strong as it’s raw form but still present with a little sweetness.

The first few sips reveal a very mellow floral taste that has a pinch of sweetness and grass like essence. Despite a dark appearance this Oolong does have a very green flavour but it’s so mild that it’s characteristics leave a lot to be desired. To add to the list of flavours there is a powdery, floral perfume after taste that dries the mouth a little.

This tea would be suitable for people that like subtle flavours but for me it’s just too subtle. I brewed 7g into a mesh teapot that holds 2 and a half cups of tea so ideally it should have been more potent in my opinion. I remember Butiki being fresher and much stronger than this.

Overall while this tea is delicate and light it is also rather tasty, I just wish it was stronger. For me this is a slightly above average blend that works well before or after a meal due to it’s light aura. A nice cleanser but not suitable for those that like to be taken away with a floral taste and aroma to their own flower field…like I do.

Oh and just a side note – This is my 499 tasting review. Almost at the big 500 :)

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 2 min, 30 sec
Cavocorax

Nice! Are you going to drink a special cup for your 500th?

tea-sipper

happy 500!

Scheherazade

I’m hoping we’ve seen the end of the snow, too. There are teas I want to ice, and I’ve almost had my fill of chai lattes for this winter…fingers crossed!

KittyLovesTea

@Cavocorax – I want to review something special for number 500 but I just don’t know which tea. I may have to have a good rummage through my cupboard soon and find something. :) I can’t believe it’s reached 500 in just over a year.

@Scheherzade Today was warm and bright in Leicester so hopefully Norwich has seen the same too. :)

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92
drank Wen Shan Bao Zhong by Naivetea
1059 tasting notes

Thank you so much for the sample Dinosara! I wanted to try this one first because I’ve had a Bao Zhong before but never a plain one. I have had a coconut flavored one that I LOVED. This one is wonderful too! Might be my favorite oolong I’ve tried so far :D I can’t wait to get to my next steep, heh. It is light and buttery and floral YUM.

Dinosara

Yay, glad you like it!

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95
drank Li Shan Oolong by Naivetea
470 tasting notes

Earlier in the evening I really wanted to make something in my gaiwan, but I ended up with a rich latte instead. But the gaiwan bug wasn’t leaving, so I decided to just go for it! At 2:30 in the morning. Maybe no the brightest idea, but my packet of this from TeaEqualsBliss was calling out to me.

Rinse: 10 seconds. Okay, I know you are technically not supposed to drink this, but to heck with it! I tea how I want to! Yes, I just used tea as a verb. I was amazed at how fast the leaves unfurled. After a mere ten seconds in hot water they were fully expanded! And so pretty, all of them fully intact like they just fell off the tree into my cup. I almost overestimated the capacity of my little gaiwan, they’re right up to the lid.

This “steep” was like a punch of floral nectar, rich and thick like honey. Orchid and jasmine! Also a wee bit vegetal.

1st Steep: 20 seconds. This smells like vegetables, fresh buttered spinach. It’s still floral, orchid but now with a hint of lychee. Sweet, fruity.

2nd Steep: 20 seconds. Buttery! This steep has a creamy mouthfeel, not sweet but quite savory. I’m smelling kale! It’s less floral but still with the orchid element. More honey.

At this point I stopped, for some reason green oolongs (and ONLY green oolongs) have the tendency to make me a bit nauseous. I still love them, but 2 steeps + a rinse is my limit.

There’s such an interesting mix of sweet/savory here: butter, honey, spinach, flowers. It’s so complex, I saved my leaves and can’t wait to see what the next steeps bring tomorrow!

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67
drank Lavender Oolong by Naivetea
4 tasting notes

The initial aroma is rather strong, especially if you’re not used to lavender. However, I find that once steeped, the lavender settles down and doesn’t overtake the oolong’s natural notes, which is both surprising and pleasant. Quite relaxing for a late-night tea, as anything with pure lavender usually is.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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86
drank Dong Ding by Naivetea
541 tasting notes

What a wonderful tea! I had forgotten that I had this one. This has many roasted, bread like notes mixed with an almost herbaceous sweetness. There are also some underlying green notes that I really love. As an introduction to both dong ding oolongs and Naivetea in general, this is really wonderful.

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86
drank Dong Ding by Naivetea
541 tasting notes

This is another tea that I won recently! This is the first tea that I am trying from Naivetea. I’m having this after some popcorn (plain-ish) so hopefully that doesn’t interfere. This smells lovely dry. There is something about it that I can’t quite put my finger on; woodsy maybe?
I’m having a hard time letting this cool! It smells lovely; roasted and sweet. Wonderful! It is very roasty without too many malt tones. It has a sweet edge at the back of the sip. There are green notes midpoint in this that remind me of deep spinach. I really enjoyed this one!

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78

As others have noted, this is a decidedly more robust Bao Zhong than what I am used to. Sweet, but also vegetal. Substantial.

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80
drank Dong Ding by Naivetea
2094 tasting notes

Sipdown, 228. This is one that I have for some reason have had for a while but never got around to sipping down.

Oof, first sip was a little too hot… usually I am not so impatient but I wanted something to drink right away. I feel like there is something stuck in my esophagus low down and it won’t go away, but clearly there is not.

I enjoy this tea, even it if is on the roasty-toastier side of things. I don’t know why I am not a big fan of toastiness in tea, but it seems to be generally the case. Still, this one is toasty in such a way that it works for me, accompanied by a light sweetness. A pleasant afternoon tea.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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80
drank Dong Ding by Naivetea
2094 tasting notes

I had one Dong Ding oolong and really liked it, so I asked for some samples of others and luckily Amy Oh sent me a sample of this one! I tend to love the teas from Naivetea, so I am definitely excited to try it.

This one smells way more toasty than the dong ding from thepuriTea. The roasted grains aroma reminds me of some of the darker oolongs I’ve tried. When I breath in deep I get a nice autumn leaves aroma. The flavor is not unexpected based on the aroma but not exactly what I was expecting based on thepuriTea’s. That one was basically unroasted, but perhaps it is unusual? In any case, I do enjoy it a lot. It’s a bit vegetal, nicely roasty, a tiny bit sweet.

Thanks so much for this sample, Amy, I’m glad I got to try it!

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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94

Dry Leaf Aroma: The dry leaf has a refreshing toasted wheat like kind of smell if that makes sense. There is another smell too but I can’t describe it but it is not a bad smell.
Wet Leaf Aroma: I get a toasted smell that has a sweet smell I almost associate it with honey with a woody under tone to it.
Liquor: Has like a amber type of color.
Taste: I get like a toasted flavor with a woody maybe even smoky flavor with like a honeyed sweetness.
My Score: This is a 94 This is the best Ti Guan Yin to date I have ever tasted. This one is pricey but she is good.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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97
drank A Li Shan by Naivetea
2703 tasting notes

This is really a wonderful A Li Shan in my opinion…

It’s a bit floral-y but also very buttery, exceptionally creamy, smooth, rich. One taste of this and my mouth feels like it’s on vacation. I’m picking up some other things too, like a slight mango and perhaps a bit of vanilla. Not as light as some other A Li Shans I’ve had.

I seem to like this the best when it’s steeped at around 180F for 2 minutes but I would like to do some gong fu sessions with my remaining sample. If you’re looking for a good A Li Shan you might try this one. I would certainly buy this again. :)

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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86
drank Dong Ding by Naivetea
974 tasting notes

Tea of the afternoon……

I decided it was time to go forth with another new oolong. I have had this from the second Steepster Box?, but am just getting to it now.

It is similar in mothfeel to other oolongs; It tastes thick. It really kind of reminds me of Genmaicha as there is a little bit of a toasted rice taste. But it has a sweeter finish than Genmaicha. Good, but I tend to prefer a more floral type oolong. We shall see what subsequent steepings bring to the table.

Steeped according to the label (even though I see better suggestions on the main page for this tea…will try that next time)…. 2 tsp tea in about 12 oz. filtered boiled water for 3 minutes. No additions.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec
TeaBrat

Ah, this is one of my very favorites!

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81
drank Wen Shan Bao Zhong by Naivetea
2094 tasting notes

This is not my first Wen Shan Bao Zhong, but it’s close to it. I had a pot of Harney’s at their tea room in Soho once, and I wanted to buy a couple of ounces of it, but alas they do not sell it by the ounce, only in a tin! Being told “no, we can’t sell you this tea in bulk even though we have it loose in bulk right here” discombobulated me so much that I didn’t even think to look at the tin, which is only 1.5oz anyway.

So my point is that I liked that one, but I haven’t tried any other since then. The dry leaf on this one smells lovely, with a nice floral oolongy aroma. Steeped, a much more buttery aroma shows up. The flavor is very pleasant; floral, vegetal, a bit buttery. There’s an ever so faint whisp of sweetness that shows up at the end of the sip. Really, a lovely cup.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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88
drank Shan Lin Shi by Naivetea
2703 tasting notes

I’m getting around to slowly finishing off and logging all of my Naivetea samples – I believe this is the last one?

My first steep I think I accidentally steeped this in water that was too hot. I got a very vegetal buttery cup but not quite what I was expecting…

For the second steep I tried to use water that was around 170 or 180 F. Now I am getting some of the more subtle notes I would be expecting from this tea. It is indeed very floral and delicate but I wish it had a bit more… oomph? It’s very relaxing and sweet however.

Third steep, I did let this one go on for about 2 minutes. I was hoping to get a bit more flavor out of this tea although that probably just killed it… lol

This is lovely but I’m not finding a way to make it work for me today. I wish I had more at home to play around with, but alas…

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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81
drank Li Shan Oolong by Naivetea
2094 tasting notes

Sample stashbusting! I am steeping the remainder of my sample of this oolong gong fu style, in my ru teapot. I am basically steeping by the included instructions for this tea, with the exception that I did a rinse to “wake up” the leaves and I only did my first steep for 30 seconds instead of 50.

The resulting tea smells pretty different than I remember my western-style steeping of it. It’s way more vegetal, and even a little salty, like the smell of the ocean. I was just at the beach yesterday so it smells very familiar to me. And more buttery as well, which I think goes with the saltiness a bit. There are pretty much no florals in the aroma of this first steep. The taste is strong and vegetal… perhaps 30 seconds was even still too long for the amount of leaf I used (a little more than their recommended amount at a bit more than a Tablespoon for my 6oz teapot, but it seemed like a good amount). But there’s also a touch of sweetness and even a tiny hint of the oolongy florals. This steep is also a bit astringent in that way that green oolongs get, but moreso because of the slight oversteep, I think.

Second steep, following their instructions, 40 seconds. This steep smells way more floral and buttery. Still very fresh, but with a hint of that honeyed sweetness. The taste of this one is weird… almost perfumy in it’s florals, and just about none of the sweetness its aroma promises. At this point I’m wondering if I just don’t know how to steep gong fu style properly. I mean, I’ve watched people do it plenty of times and know the routine, so I don’t know what the deal is now.

Third steep, 50 seconds. This steep smells a lot like the last steep. Pretty much tastes like it, too, though as it cools it is not quite as perfumy and a little sweeter. Still there is something a little unpleasant about it.

The fourth steep, at 60 seconds, brings out some melon flavors that are really interesting! This steep is possibly the sweetest, but sometimes I can’t tell if it’s more of a sweetness that has built up over all the steeps. I think the note that is both perfumy and vegetal from before must be inherant to this tea because it is not going away. It’s just not something I tasted when I brewed this western style, and not something others have noted, so I feel like it’s somehow a fault with my steeping.

Fifth steep, 70 seconds, and this oolong is really hitting its stride now. Sweet, a bit fruity, floral without being perfumy. This is by far my favorite steep so far. It’s amazing how much a tea can change over the steeps! Sixth steep, at 90 seconds, is almost identical to the fifth steep, as is the seventh steep, at 2 minutes, all sweet and floral and fruity. It’s not really buttery or creamy at all, but it is very nice. I’m glad I stuck with it to this point, because I wasn’t really feeling the earlier steeps at all. This was a good lesson in how a tea can change a lot over gong fu steeping, which I hadn’t experienced at all before this. I am interested to try all kinds of teas this way now!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec
Spoonvonstup

How exciting! It’ll be fun for you to revisit some of your favorites and see a whole different side of them.

TeaBrat

I haven’t had a green oolong in ages but this review inspired me to steep one up. :)

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81
drank Li Shan Oolong by Naivetea
2094 tasting notes

I think this may actually be the last un-tested tea of my high-altitude sample pack from Naivetea. Woah, progress! This has been great because I feel like I know a little more about different types of green oolongs, though I have a ton more to learn. My goal is to have a decent sense of the most popular types of green oolong and which ones I like most before I go to China in late March, knowing that when I get there I will likely be overwhelmed in varieties I’ve never heard of. :)

The dry leaf smells green and vegetal and a hint floral. Steeped, the florals come out more and are joined by a light creamy/buttery aroma. The flavor is a nice balanced between fresh green leafy notes and soft florals. There is the slightest hint of sweetness toward the end of the sip which gets stronger as the tea cools. There is maybe the slightest hint of butteriness in the flavor, but this is really a much more fresh, green floral tea than some others.

I do admit that it’s difficult for me to keep all these Li Shan/A Li Shan/Shan Lin Shi green oolongs separate in my mind! They are all very tasty but none of them has really stuck out as spectacular to me. Maybe I’m a more of a Tieguanyin kind of girl. :) I have some others to try from thepuriTea, so my oolong journey is far from over.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 0 sec
TeaBrat

I feel much the same way about Li Shans and Ali Shans…

Dinosara

Yeah, definitely lovely and pleasant to drink, but nothing that I will likely be craving.

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76
drank Osmanthus Oolong by Naivetea
2094 tasting notes

This is the last of my infused oolong sampler from Naivetea that I have yet to try, though I do have a few of the high-mountain ones left. I put this one off at first because I remembered not being totally taken with the aroma of the dry leaf, but then when I just smelled it now the scent was a strong, lovely floral. I’m not super familiar with osmanthus as a flower, though I’ve had a few different osmanthus oolongs that I believe I’ve enjoyed. I feel like they all taste pretty different, though, so I never know what to expect.

They weren’t kidding about the intense osmanthus aroma. Steeped, this tea is incredibly floral to the point of being perfumy. There’s a slightly buttery vegetal aroma hiding somewhere underneath those flowers, but it’s being swamped! The level of florals reminds me of the Rose Violet Calendula Oolong. The flavor of the tea is slightly sweet and super floral. Wow, it’s even a little strong in the florals for me, and that’s saying something. I feel like I am drinking a bouquet, or perhaps even some osmanthus perfume. After reading Amy oh’s tasting note for this, I’m thinking that this is one that definitely needs multiple, short steeps. One long steep brought out so much osmanthus that the rest was kind of overwhelmed. As it cools, the florals calm down a little (or maybe I’m just getting desensatized to them), but it’s not so perfumy. I’m defintiely tasting more sweet, buttery, creamy notes. Not my fave from the pack by a long shot, but I think once I get my oolong gongfu set up, it will be a great tea for that.

ETA: I’m starting to wonder if somehow my samples of the floral oolongs were more heavily scented than others have tried… all these tasting notes talking about light osmanthus, hah! The Rose Violet Calendula oolong seemed stronger than I had before, as well. Odd!

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 0 sec
TeaBrat

AH, I recall I loved this one for some reason… :)

Dinosara

I know, it’s crazy because you loved it and you’re not a fan of strong florals, but I am and I’m kind of lukewarm about it. I guess you can never tell. :)

TeaBrat

yeah for example the Rose Violet Calendula was way too much for me. :)

K S

I think it was TeaEqualsBliss that commented in a review that they put flavored samples up for a few weeks before tasting so the flavors have time to work into the leaf. I tried this with some Empire Tea Services teas and it did make a big difference…. Worth a try.

Dinosara

I do agree that flavored samples sometimes change, especially with fresh blended ones, but these samples have been sitting in my cupboard for almost 2 months now, lol.

K S

In that case, nevermind! lol

Spoonvonstup

Maybe your tongue is just morphing into a super-tasting instrument? Interesting experience! I also find that what I drink before a tea can really influence my tasting.

Kashyap

I generally find when my taste buds go into overdrive its either a dietary shift or a cold coming on…but I hear what your saying about those teas, but after having suffered through many versions of osmanthus, I felt that this was about the best balance of creamy, buttery, green and fresh oolong and bold, swanky osmanthus…and the osmanthus didn’t come off as synthetic, but rather, it was a saucy, sauntering “take me as I am”….I liked the Lychee (of the flavors) best of the bunch…and ordered a pound and have been using it in cuppings and talks to the stunned ‘wow’ of the crowd…if you have a chance that one is amazing

ashmanra

I had my first osmanthus in late December in the osmanthus puer from purepuer.com. It must be very mild because I don’t taste it very much, or even smell it all that much, though it is pleasant enough. It just isn’t overpowering. My kids liked plain ouer better, though. I received a sample of Osmanthus oolong from Dammann Frères. Maybe I should give it a try today. It is the tiniest sample I have ever seen, definitely just enough for one small cup, so I hope it resteeps well!

Dinosara

I have a sample of the Lychee as well and agree that it is awesome, but my fave is actually the Passion Fruit. They’re all quite delicious, though!

Dinosara

@ashmanra- ooh, an oolong from Dammann, I am interested to see how that is! Not that I need more things to add to my wishlist there… :D

TeaBrat

I thought the Passionfruit was great too. :)

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