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Recent Tasting Notes
oh dexter… you always spoil me. this is a lovely tea from Norbu and one i greatly enjoyed, though for the life of me, i can’t recall well enough to write a proper note. It was one of the teas that i had yesterday before running off to do my overnight and it was a great start to the evening. But man, it feels like i drank this a billion years ago. I’d be inclined to pick some of this one up again as it really was great.
Not enough sleep last night. Must be the cat’s fault.
Running a little late this morning, about to leave, when that inner voice asks…
Do you have tea in your purse for work? Shrug, Dunno
Reach out and grab a random tin of black tea off the shelf and walk out the door.
An hour and a half later, letting a client vent about something that has nothing to do with us, I’m reaching into my purse for that tin of tea.
Some tea gets dumped into my infuser basket. Hang up with client.
Take basket to kitchen, add hot water, return to my desk. Answer 3 questions.
Crap forgot about my tea. Remove leaves. Take a sip….
AND THE WORLD STOPS
It’s like the stars aligned, the atmospheric pressure is perfect, the clouds part, and the sun shines through. I have the perfect cup of tea. Exactly what I’m in the mood for at the exact time that I need it the most.
I actually said out loud – What the hell am I drinking?
Co-workers look at you weird when you say things like that…. don’t care, I spent a few minutes basking in the moment, then went back to work.
This is easily in my top 5 favorite black teas. Amazing.
This came from Nicole. For some reason, I didn’t realize that this is a Darjeeling… Don’t ask me how, the fact that it says “Autumn Flush” probably should have been enough. I guess the fact that it’s called “Imperial Gold” just made me think Yunnan instinctively. And the leaves don’t look terribly different from a less-tippy Yunnan…
Anyway, long story short, I think I underleafed this severely after looking at Nicole’s note… The flavor is extremely light, too. But the flavor that’s there is nice! I don’t think I’ve ever had a Darjeeling before, so I don’t really know what the typical flavor profile is. This kind of tastes like a very light toast with some autumn leaves and a little bit of sweet floral.
Luckily, I have enough left to do another cup with double the leaf sometime. :P
sipdown! I am falling behind, BUT i managed to travel for work and NOT buy more tea even though i did find some lol. I had the last of this today in an effort to have a cup that could kick me into action. it didn’t work all that well. I did really enjoy this in the morning though, as it was a little cooler than normal :)
i think i like this one a little more than the verdant version, but i need to do a taste test since my ratings certainly don’t reflect that. but i had this one again today and it was just a bit more smokey and seemed a bit more tasty than the verdant version from the other day. maybe i can squeeze in a comparison this weekend….
mmmm while this claims to be a lightly smoked tea, there is something in this cup such that, while i agree, it’s also a smoke that lingers, so it feels, after drinking it for a while that it’s more smokey than it is. i hope that made sense. lol I am digging this one, even without my usual maple syrup addition, as i wanted to try this without additions first. I can see this being a possible hit with my tea sister terri :)
this is sweet and smokey and slightly malty. I am really enjoying taking the time to drink my norbu teas today :)
I’ve had this a few time over the past couple of days but haven’t had time to log things. Since it’s my last cup, i figured i should at least get something in here :) On the whole, i’ve rather enjoyed this one – preferring it to the marangi estate assam that i also picked up from norbu. Mostly, i’m just left wanting to try a whole lot more teas from norbu :) thanks again NoFarS for introducing me to them!
i also had this one earlier today as well. I am a fan of this one from norbu. I wish i had the opportunity to drink more of these teas in smaller quantities. it’s one of the few companies i’m hoping will have some sort of sale in november for folks. they do spring clearance and other such things from time to time, i just always forget to check heh
VariaTEA – this one might work better for you. This particular assam from Norbu is maltier than the other i had this morning, and a little smoother. It’s still got a medium sort of heft to it, but it’s quite tasty, especially if you drink it hot. Cooled, i can see this working incely as a cold brew iced tea in the summer with lemon and honey heh.
having a bad tea morning. this one is bitter today but i know it’s just my stupid taste buds having a crap day. On the upside, it’s still an ok cup to get me gonig this morning, so no hard, no foul..but i’ll stick to tea i know doesn’t ever taste weird for the rest of today or until my taste buds seem to reset lol
having finally had a chance to try this one, i can understand why VariaTEA found this too bitter for her tastes. She’s a newbie to the dark side, and i can see why this wouldn’t be a happy thing for her palatte. This is 100% a bold, brisk, assam with a bit of astringency. However, on my side of things, this is a great sort of morning tea. There’s just enough kick to get you going and it’s not overly astringent – but there is some there. I do enjoy these norbu teas…just wish they had sampler sizes :)
It has been a very long time since I’ve had this tea! I decided to use up the entire sample packet today. I received this in a nice swap several year(s)? ago.
I noticed right away a nice smokey scent to this. I brewed this Western style in a 6oz pot. The leaves were dry, brown, and various texture and lengths. The liquid was a light golden honey color. The scent of the liquid was a little smokey and tobacco-like. It was savory and delicious with some mild astringency toward the end of the cup. There was a hint of sweetness to this as well. Good brew!
Flavors: Honey, Smoke, Tobacco
After the mildness of the 2012 Shuang Yu yesterday I opened another sample packet I had bought today and got quite the hit. The dry leaf promised something wild and robust with its solid hay and floral aroma. The brewed tea was a strong amber colour and provided the same hit in a different way. It is sweet and smoky with a mild tobacco edge and vegetal notes. The liquor is creamy and coats the mouth and throat so the smokiness and sweetness endure in the aftertaste. Despite its strength, there is little bitterness or astringency, only enough to enhance the other flavours. This tea is much more in my comfort zone than yesterday’s. I can wrestle with it and expect it to fight back instead of having to nurture it to bring out its best properties.
Flavors: Smoke, Sweet, Tobacco, Vegetal
So I attempted pouring a “splash” of maple syrup once again and though I may have been just a touch heavy handed with the syrup, the result is quite nice. The maple and smoke are both very present which is leading to a flavor reminiscent of tasty maple bacon or delicious BBQ. What an amazing combination! Plus, this is a lovely tea. Thank you Sil for both the sample and the maple suggestion. It would be interesting to try this out with an even smokier blend such as lapsang as I feel it would be quite pleasant.
So when Sil gave me the sample of this tea she told me I had to have it with just a touch of maple. I don’t usually sweeten my teas though so when I poured, I didn’t know when to stop and I may have added too much. And by that, I mean I definitely added too much. This is one cup of sugar and it is just too much. This got dumped and I will try again. Thank you Sil!
I’ve been sipping on this tea all morning and it’s still going strong. The dry tea scent promises cocoa, a roasted note and a grainy bready note. These notes do appear in the brewed tea but the grainy note does not make a strong appearance until later steeps. A lot of my other Bailin teas have been very fruity, this one is not although it does have some nice plum notes. What it does have are notes of molasses(more than caramel to me), a roasted note, cream, sweet potato , plum, a floral note, a hint of hay, grain notes, a hint of leather(in later steeps), cinnamon and malt. The tea tasted more robust in later steeps, but remained very smooth throughout.
I brewed this tea using 1.25tsp in a 150ml Gaiwan and used a water temperature of 92°C.
I used steeping times of 30,40,50,70, and 120s and will probably get at least one more good steep out of it. The tea brews to a pretty deepening maple shade.
This is a nice mellow tea, that has made a pleasant companion this morning. Thanks Sil for sharing!
I received a generous (10 gram) sample of Hong Yu Taiwan Ruby Black from Norbu and have been looking forward to trying it.
The very dark dried leaves are beautifully twisted and elongated, and they unfurl upon infusion into fairly large leaves. The liquor is orange amber, and the flavor is nice. I would describe it as somewhere between a Ceylon and an Assam. I drank my glass au naturel, but next time I may try it with cream.
second infusion: this was so tasty and much better than the first! Perhaps I should start heeding the advice of those who advocate tossing the initial infusion. The real question is: could I knowingly dispense with all of that caffeine????
third infusion: it is virtually unheard of chez sherapop to do a third infusion of a black tea, but tonight’s Taiwan Ruby Black Tea proved to improve with each successive steep! I really loved the third infusion and was tempted to do a fourth, but the evening slipped away from me. It was only after three steeps that the leaves had expanded to their full size—wow, they are really huge!
I’m probably going to buy a supply of this excellent black tea before it disappears, now that I have discovered how excellent the later infusions are. Who would have guessed? Well, perhaps a true black tea connoisseur, but I for one had no idea!
I have increased my rating of this tea and suggest that those who are unhappy with the first infusion, simply move on to the second!
(Blazing New Rating #32)
This tea seals the deal for me. Thanks to the lovely Dexter3657, I think I will now place my first Norbu order.
It’s a beautiful one, but very hard to describe. I think I’d have to borrow yyz superhuman taste buds to give it a proper review!!
It’s malty, woody and chocolaty. What makes this tea very distinctive IMHO, is a mineral saltiness that coats the mouth, it creates such an unusual mouthfeel.
I’m tempted to say there’s notes of hay but it’s a bit more fragrant than that, reminds of dried flowers, straw and light perfume. Nothing offensive, it just adds another layer of complexity.
I’m at steep #5 gungfu style and it keeps on giving, very potent.
Thank you so much Dexter3657 for allowing me to try such a high quality tea. (Now I highly recommend you start drinking it for yourself, lol!!)
The last sipdown until later this evening, as I’m gonna be leaving to play at a wedding in a little while, & I need time to dry out a little, if you know what I mean!
The wedding is at this neat old lodge in Grafton, Ill, & I was thinking it was about an hour away, but I just realized it’s actually more like an hour & a half, so time to get moving! Here’s the website of the place, located north of Alton, IL, & also north of Elsa, IL (big attraction for Christian Scientists, they have a college there), along the Great River Road (big tourist attraction, especially for Bikers). It’s a gorgeous day, so there will be hundreds of motorcycles along the way. By the way, anybody wanna buy my Harley? 1200 Sportster, 05. Her name is Ruby, kind of like this tea, & she is lava sunglow red. I never have time to ride anymore…
The tea: Another one from Sil. It’s tart, rich, & spicy, but again confirms that although I enjoy some teas from Taiwan, I much prefer teas from Yunnan & Fujian more. There is this underlying taste to some Taiwanese teas that doesn’t always sit well with me. That doesn’t mean I wouldn’t drink a cup of this, if offered, however.