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Nature's Tea Leaf

Recent Tasting Notes

32

Leftover sample snagged from momo. :)
Meh. Rose hip is definitely the main note here. Not that those are terrible or anything…it’s just a bit sour for me. I’m tasting a little of the green tea and orange peel as well, but not much. I’ll finish the pouch but won’t be chasing anyone down for more when it’s gone.

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88

Tea of the afternoon here. I’ve been feeling crappy since yesterday morning and I didn’t go to work today. I had some burdock tea earlier today but rosemary is also supposed to be good for colds and I figure the antioxidants in the white tea can’t hurt. This is an interesting blend of sweet/spicy. I always use rosemary when roasting potatoes so it’s difficult to get that association out of my mind. This is good however.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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Hadn’t had this one for a while, and forgot that at the recommended 1 minute steep time, all you get is delicately tinted water. Pleasantly delicate, but definitely not enough oomph for a morning tea. Next time, two minutes, minimum, for me to be able to taste a thing.

(Sorry…no refinement or elegance here :)

ashmanra

I think I gave this one three minutes. I loved it with Asian buffet take out!

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90

Last Sunday we had a silent auction at church. There was a tea for one set that I came home with for $5. So for my second cup of Silver Needle, I used the cute little cream colored tea pot to steep. I never use a tea pot and now I know why. It worked fine but I would need to get a tiny strainer from the kitchen to keep leaf out of my cup. I am not so inclined. I’ll probably just move the pot to the living room for tea bag use or more likely put it on a shelf as decoration.

The tea turned out fine. Much like the first cup. I just prefer my French press, besides I like to watch the leaf dance.

Soap box ahead and not tea related – I am sitting in my den surrounded by pictures of my wife and kids – two sons now grown. I sit here today reflecting on the joy and the beauty that surrounded me over the years and realizing how I did not fully appreciate the moments. I was so wrapped up in trying to get ahead and trying to please the boss who never shared the same loyalty and respect. As a laid off old fart I’m begging you, don’t waste the years trying to please your boss or be too devoted to your job in general, if it is keeping from fully enjoying the moment – start looking for something that will. I have 2/5ths the income I had a year ago, no insurance, and I am 100 times happier away from the rat race. I just wish I had my sons to raise over. I would be there more for them now. I am sure some of you older folks know exactly what I mean.

mrmopar

100% percent agreed.

SimplyJenW

I have been out of the rat race for just over 15 years. And I am hoping I don’t need to go back. Even when my kids are grown, there are so many worthy places that could use a hand. College is just around the corner, though.

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90

3:00 pm and my first cup of tea. sigh. Better than yesterday but not by much. Tomorrow is already set to be another busy one.

I used two heaping wooden spoons of leaf and let it steep the recommended 4 minutes. I am used to very subtle white teas. This is a little more pronounced though still light. Does that make sense? The main flavor I am getting is oats. There is also a peppery element. As it cools I get a fruity aspect along with a touch of earthy.

A nice afternoon cup.

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96

I got up and stumbled to the den in an early morning grrrr. Tea, must have Fujian Congou tea! Where is it? Look again. Nooooo! One more time. Dig deep. It has to be here (panic). Ooooh, glorious morning! I knew I had some of this left.

The ratings are a bit scattered, but I guess it depends on how you feel about Fujian black tea. This is really a good solid one. Molasses, caramel, malt, hints of yam, cocoa, even a wisp of roastiness. This just hits all my buttons.

I’m off to attempt to register for a fall course in 3D CAD modeling. I got permission from the Prof. to skip the prerequisites based on past experience. I am a little nervous health-wise but also looking forward to learning something new.

ashmanra

Oh, I thought this one was great!

gmathis

This was on my “please buy me a whole pound” Christmas and birthday wish list. Got ignored both times :( but next holiday I am going to highlight and put exclamation marks around it.

K S

Ask for money and buy it yourself – that’s what I do anymore. I gave up on the family grasping the need.

gmathis

Yeah, but then there’s nothing fun to open. Some things you just never outgrow…

Nicole

I find that with my family getting them to order online is the sticking point. They either never remember to do it in time or lose the site address. If they can go in person somewhere I stand a much better chance of getting the tea I want. :)

K S

Nicole, I agree. I just wish there was a brick and mortar within 30 minutes of home. I would get what was on my list then. Nearest place is 1 1/2 hours away. It’s a good one though.

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91

2nd cup. This time with a salad of fresh greens, banana peppers, muenster, and chipotle dressing. Tea was a wonderfully cooling creamy accompaniment.

ashmanra

I LOVE this tea!

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91

I’ve had this before and by the score, I really liked it. This morning I had it with a toasted bagel and cream cheese. Not the best combination. Really sucked the life out of the cup. Lesson learned.

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75

Sipdown!

Cold steeped! This one is pretty floral that it moves into the peachy zone. There is a hint of bitterness end of sip. Much better cold steeped than hot – the last time I made this hot, it was in a large pot for guests and it got pretty bitter undrinkable, thus cannot be oversteeped.

Preparation
Iced

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89

Backlog:

A remarkably fresh Silver Needle, I loved how fluffy and soft the needles were. Sweet, delicate, vegetative … notes of hay. Crisp and really pleasant to sip. A very impressive Silver Needle.

Here is my full-length review of this one: http://sororiteasisters.com/2013/04/04/organic-silver-needle-white-tea-from-natures-tea-leaf/

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80

This is another tea from the tea box!

To be honest, I was expecting this tea to be a mess because 1) I decided to cold brew it even though it’s supposed to be brewed hot and then iced, and 2) I forgot about it and left it in the fridge for almost fourteen hours. Yeah, I thought it was going to be bitter from start to finish. Much to my surprise it’s a very nice cup!

The liquid is a very pale yellow, and there’s not much in the way of smell. A slight hint of something herbal, but that’s about it. The taste is unique. It comes in waves. First, it’s the peony, then a mix of lemon and ginger, and finally the rosemary. The rosemary lingers on the tongue, so the next sip is a peony/rosemary flavor which is actually really nice. I can’t say that all of the flavors meld together, but it’s still an enjoyable tea.

I doubt that I would ever order this one, but it was definitely a fun tea to try. It’s also made me curious about white iced teas. I’d love to try more of those!

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95

I have a Monday deadline for a project I’m working on, so after dinner I decided to make myself a cup of tea before grabbing yarn and hook. I chose this tea out of my sample drawer and set about making a cup. The tea leaves caught my eye because of their golden color and length (long and spindle-y). Interesting. My mind kind of wandered as I was preparing it, and the tea had a few minutes to cool because my son wanted to show me his latest drawings. When I came back into the kitchen I picked up my cup, took a sip, and wow! Oh-holy-yumminess!

This tea taste like poached stone fruits drizzled with honey. It’s sweet and light, but the finish has almost a syrupy feel. If I didn’t know better I would swear it was a dessert tea. I’m glad I was caught off guard by this tea because it made me stop what I was doing and just enjoy. I haven’t tried many Yunnans yet, but now I’m intrigued and looking forward to trying more.

One more for the shopping list, but this one is getting bumped to the top.

Edited to add: This tea is from the tea box. Thanks Tea Sipper for yet another great tea!!!

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75

Additional notes: ICED! This is my first oolong to try iced, and I don’t love this one hot, so why not try this one cold. Not my favorite oolong, not even from Nature’s Tea Leaf. A couple days coldbrewing and this one isn’t bad. There is a bit of a bitterness to it, but really I think that was just because the leaves had been steeping for days. I think it’s much better just brewing it cold than if I had hot brewed it and then left it in the fridge. But I almost expected more bitterness from leaves that had been sitting so long! I love seeing a mason jar full of leaves though. It looks like a tea snow globe!

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drank Milk Black Tea by Nature's Tea Leaf
1624 tasting notes

Tazo the cat said I needed a cup of this today. (Yes, he’s still outdoors.) And then promptly tried to keep me from drinking it by head-butting my hands until I petted him according to his specifications. Both hands, full attention.

If you like cream in your tea, or sweet and pastry flavorings, this is one to try. Best with a very light touch on temp and time to keep the milk from tasting like hot milk, if that makes sense.

JustJames

you named your cat tazo? that’s excellent! this sounds like a tea i would like.

gmathis

Black shorthair, jade green eyes, a battle scar or two; it fit perfectly.

JustJames

excellent, and completely appropriate… does he/she steal tea when you’re not looking?

gmathis

Not yet. To the amusement of several fellow Steepsters, we have not made a formal full-time indoor commitment; just visiting rights.

JustJames

my grin has wrapped around my head two times, lol.

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drank Cherry Pu-erh by Nature's Tea Leaf
1624 tasting notes

Well, whaddya know…a sipdown. Haven’t had one of those in a while…

This one has been a nice, gentle introduction to the wild world of pu-erh, which I still don’t know that I understand. You experts with your sheng and shu baffle and impress me :)

At any rate, this is gently dark, accurately cherry; smells like pie. Pie is always good.

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85

Backlog:

Thank you TeaEqualsBliss for sending me some of this tea! It’s really a beautifully crafted tea – the leaves scrolled up in little rings. So lovely! It’s fun to watch them brew too!

Delightfully vegetative with notes of fruit, overall, I’m finding the flavor to be mellow yet invigorating. A really lovely cuppa.

Here’s my full-length review: http://sororiteasisters.com/2013/03/16/daughter-rings-green-tea-from-natures-tea-leaf/

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90

This is a much needed cup of peace. I love white tea and this is a good one. Sweet, creamy, wonderfully fresh flavor.

The doctor at the disability exam was very nice and kept asking questions to bring things to my mind so he could write it down. After I answered his first question he said, well that pretty well explains it all. Then he added he would do what he could to fight the bureaucracy (his word not mine this time). We were three fourths of the way home when they called and said they just noticed I was supposed to have a pulmonology exam. I had to turn around and go back. Long day. I hurt all over now and am worn out. I am fully convinced the decision makers at the state level will deny my claim. Our state has one of the worst records in the nation. I will get it when it goes to the federal level but that may take a very long time and only the lawyer will make money off it.

The cup has really cooled off and is lightly peppery now. So good.

Nicole

Good luck

Stephanie

Yes, best wishes!

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67

Having this again today… it’s a little bit better than I remember it but what I’m hoping is the flavoring will fade over time and I’ll just be left with a nice loose leaf puerh. It isn’t terrible but it doesn’t taste much like raspberry anything.

Why haven’t I been drinking any puerh lately? I have no idea…. I miss it!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 15 sec
mrmopar

I just started a discussion on pu-erh. Keep it going!

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Here where I live the weather gets really hot and sticky and buggy pretty early in the summer. Spring is really the best season for me! But today was beautiful! The sun was shining yet the slightly cool breeze kept the temperature just about perfect. It was enough to make me pine for a nice pot of black tea after I went out to tend the chickens.

This is a sipdown of my sample from Nature’s Tea Leaf. I have to thank them for their generosity as their samples are large and leave you plenty of leaf for experimentation. A number of their teas are on my list to order as soon as I get my cupboard down a bit. I am still at about 175 and my small bags and samples are not included in that, so I am trying not to order anything right now. When I do, their Dragon Pearl green tea (non-jasmine) and their Fujian Black tea will be some of the first teas I order.

This is a wonderful example of Yunnan Golden Bud tea. It is sweet and has the nice sweet potato flavor, is smooth enough not to need milk or sugar, and resteeps well.

On a side note, has anyone heard from Bonnie? She hasn’t posted here or on her blog for over a month.

Hesper June

I too have been wondering about Bonnie. I hope everything is okay with her.
This sounds like a tasty tea Ashmanra!

looseTman

I too have missed Bonnie! Per mrmopar, she is just cutting back on writing and trying to get out a little more.

Perhaps if we let her know how much she’s missed …?

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73

Another tea from Michelle’s swap we did just before Christmas. Wow was that lovely Steepsterite generous, I still haven’t made it through her collection! Seriously, I’m never doing 2 swaps at once again, its given me too many things to try and I’m not sure I’ll ever get through it all! Yep, exaggeration of course…

Anywho, the lovely other half did my tea pickings for today, and he suggested this one. I’ve just brewed it up in my Timolino at work, and even though this is meant to be an iced tea, its quite tasty. I can detect each of the spices included (the ginger, rosemary and lemon), as well as a hint of the white base. Its a very easy to drink tea hot, and is going perfectly with our cool yet sunny day.

If you have some of this in your cupboard try it warm, its quite tasty.

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84

Last night I had a beer that was called “golden monkey,” which made me want a golden monkey tea this morning. Unfortunately, I have not a lick of golden monkey in my stash, so a somewhat generic “Fujian congou” will have to do.

This is a solid Fujian black tea, and could possibly be a good everyday tea (if you’re into having the same tea every day; I am not). It’s very malty and grainy, slightly honeyed, with a touch of raisin to it and a hint of cocoa. Very pleasant and a nice morning tea.

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

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68

Sipdown, 164. Cold brew.

The cold brew of this unfortunately did not taste like much. I did use a little less leaf than normal because I’ve been having green teas “oversteep” when cold brewing, but this still turned a deep yellow so I’m not sure it was the leaf amount. As it warmed up a bit it tasted more like grass, and finally at the end I got a hit of bergamot. It was perfectly drinkable merely because it was very inoffensive, but still, it wasn’t very tasty anyway.

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82

I went to Nature’s Tea Leaf just now and saw a few reviews that look like they were taken from Steepster people – I hope they put the reviews there themselves and they weren’t taken from the site (it’s happened before with other companies).

Anyway this is a really nice yunnan! I bought a lot of flavored pu-erhs from Nature’s tea Leaf which I was not totally crazy about but this is really good. It does have a rich, honey type of taste mixed with some woodiness and a bit of pepper. That does sound strange but it’s so good. Smooth and mellow too. This is one of the only few yunnans I have in my tea collection and I have no idea why. I will definitely enjoy finishing off the rest of the tin.

I would order from Nature’s Tea Leaf again, they have a range of interesting looking teas in their line including some herbals.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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68

I got a sample of this a while ago from Lazey, but just found it in one of my tea boxes recently. Thanks!

Also I went through my cupboard and discovered two teas in there that shouldn’t have been there, thus I am down to 164. Woohoo!

So this fits into my recent trend of disliking most flavored green teas, particularly sencha bases. Especially when I sipped it hot, it was too peppery and savory, with a strong grassiness as well. As it has cooled down it’s mellowed, and the bergamot is coming out more as well. Definitely better cool than hot, and probably better still cold, which is probably what I will do with the rest of my sample.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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