Silk Road

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Recent Tasting Notes

68

hi, this is my first tasting note on steepster. for my first i have chosen the organic japanese sour cherry green tea from silk road teas.

i prepared this tea hot in my two piece tasting set (125ml/4oz), and cold brewed (first cold brew) in a 33 oz bodum french press. lets start with the hot brew..

the 1st infusion was at 71 C for 30 sec-
the cherry was present in the aroma but less so in taste. it had a tannin-y taste, slightly vegetal with a lingering bitterness that hits the tounge and cheeks and coats it with that sour, slightly citric taste/feel. not the most pleasant cup.

2nd, 45 sec, 74 C temp-
aroma was sweeter with stronger cherry. tastewise, chlorophyll was prominently picked up. this infusion as well as most of the others reminded me of the taste of a cherry flavored cough drop.

3rd, 60 sec at 75 C temp-
aroma: cherry comes at you with the vegetal smell, following is a sweetness.
still has an astringent, green taste with less fruity notes (at this pointed i suspected it’s life was coming to a end..)

..but i pushed for one more infusion- the 4th for 70 sec at 75 C-
aroma: strong smell of green (chlorophyll) with the the cherry twisted somewhere in there being harder to detect. taste: less bitter as a result of the tea slowly dieing i suspect. overall less of it’s previous notes and feel.

session duration: 1 hour

i would recommend this tea to those of you who are willing to pick this tea apart and like/love it for what it is. i personally appreciate it but would not dub it a favorite.. more of an educational experience. i believe i would order it again for one reason… cold brew.

indeed i commenced my first cold brew the same night of the hot brew. the thought that it may be the best way to brew this tea, just hit me out of nowhere.
i used 3 slightly heaping scoops with teavana’s perfect tea spoon. 33 oz of cold filtered vancouver tap water. i left it and went to sleep. 9 hrs and 53 min later i strained, decanted, and tasted it.

i love it, bitterness about 15- 20%, more of a lemony/lime taste in place of tannin. its quite sweet (as cold brew tends to produce,) and mellow. the cherry comes at around the tail end of the middle and through the last wave. unlike the hot brew the bitterness in no way dominates. i personally find it to have an almost honeydew/honey note, plus a note of sweetend grass underlying. despite the taste and aroma of the honeydew you still pick up cherry. the aroma is sort of like candied cherry instead of sour in my opinion.

will experiment with shorter cold brew times such as 2- 5 hrs for example.

i expect to brew this almost exclusively cold from now on unless the urge to refer back to hot comes up. may ice tea this also with a bit of rock sugar.

thanks for reading.

- Raswalt

Preparation
165 °F / 73 °C 2 g 4 OZ / 125 ML

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93
drank Lychee Fruit by Silk Road
382 tasting notes

how is it possible to be chronically busy? even on weekends? even in free time? it must speak to a time management issue or a problem with prioritization, and yet….

i got pictures of a snake basking in the sun today and got chased out of an urban exploration photo shoot yesterday by drug dealers… i found the snake much more relaxing, let me tell you! the rcmp and i are getting to know one another quite well ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4MNANgFCYpk) lol.

as i review this tea i am drinking a dreadful one, but that’s just the way it goes….

the first note i observed about this blend once the water was poured was a light wood essence. it verged on smokey, but didn’t quite cross the boundary. light sweet wood… maybe balsa by comparison. i wasn’t sure how that would factor into the tea. the smell of lychee wasn’t as strong as the wood element.

everything changed with sipping. i realized what silk road had been striving for (i think)… they weren’t trying to recreate a lychee flavour, they were looking to create a lychee experience. the wood element built the suggestion of the lychee’s woody rind in china town, the warmth of the beverage reminded me of the boxes of lychee fruit basking in the sun, the lychee notes themselves had a NEARLY overripe quality, almost bruised… that ‘peel and eat me as soon as you get in the door’ urgency.

impressive. if you’ve spent time in china town (1 block down the road from silk road teas) then you know that this tea is less a flavour and more a spring scenario painted for your nose and tongue. very clever.

back to being busy… royal roads begins at the end of august so it isn’t going to let up anytime soon, lol.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 30 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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81
drank Golden Phoenix by Silk Road
1448 tasting notes

OK so I didn’t get citrus from this at all. A bit of spice which I presume was the cinnamon and the rest was all puerh. A bright one, I’ll give it that. and I’ll accept that the brightness is possibly a result of the grapefruit, but I would never have picked that out, let alone something fruity. I also get something else underneath. Bread? that isn’t quite it. Hmmm.
I did really enjoy this blend. Maybe one day I’ll buy some :D

Wow these ttb pickings are hitting it outta the park!

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95
drank Sencha by Silk Road
18 tasting notes

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drank Waterfall by Silk Road
532 tasting notes

I really like the name of this tea, however one cannot rely on name alone…
The curling of these leaves was quite enjoyable to look at so I looked at them while the water heated up. I brewed them and went outside to read this morning. I drank an entire pot of this to determine how I would explain it:

Imagine you have an oolong tea that you would/have rated 90 to 92 on and once you pour the water on someone drops two tadpoles in your water. Though it’s only two tadpoles and not a dozen, they do change the taste of that beloved brew that you had coming up. Now drinking on this was quite interesting because there was an enjoyable oolong taste accompanied by this peculiar sour taste. I have nothing against tadpoles, but I do not enjoy their taste.
Please note, there were no tadpoles in this tea… it’s simply a taste comparison.

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78
drank Berry Victoria by Silk Road
2182 tasting notes

Had the last of this sample this morning. As always, I had a little more than I would usually use, so I dropped by steep time a bit. It was pretty tasty, although I find the flavor combo a touch overwhelming. Perhaps it is the lavender, even though it (thankfully) isn’t a very strong flavor. Still, a pleasant tea.

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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78
drank Berry Victoria by Silk Road
2182 tasting notes

Another tea (#1) from OMGsrsly! Thanks! At first I thought this had been slightly contaminated by the Blackberry Sage that she also included, but I think I was just smelling the lavender. I was worried this would be too “herby” for me, but the lavender definitely calmed down a bit in the brewed tea.

This is a tea I need to drink fast, when it is still hot. Then it was quite nice, with red berry and bergamot notes, and no bitterness to speak of. But as it cooled the lavender came out and it became a lot more bitter and astringent. Alternately I do need to try it with less leaf, as suggested by the company and OMGsrsly. :)

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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drank Snow Apple Spice by Silk Road
1925 tasting notes

There is spice. And apple. And I’m enjoying this mug of this tea.

Yep.

(1.5tsp/10oz)

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

But is there snow? :P

OMGsrsly

Thankfully no. Its unseasonably cold enough right now. I snuck out and turned the building thermostat up. :)

Sil

noms

Fjellrev

I love how you’re drinking all the Victoria teas I nearly got before moving away but didn’t haha.

OMGsrsly

Well, I went shopping on the weekend… :)

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65

Sipdown! Thanks Sil!

Interesting to try this tea, but I didn’t guess I’d be a big fan, and I was right. It’s bold and brisk (as would be expected from a tea intended for an antarctic expedition), and although my mug of it is not astringent, I prefer a bit of a smoother, mellower body. Taste-wise, I’m getting a mouthful of malt, and maybe a hint of chocolate, so it’s actually a profile I find reasonable, it’s just a little too bold and plain. Probably good with milk, though :)

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec

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drank Royal BC Museum Tea by Silk Road
1925 tasting notes

Sipdown!

This tea is tasty enough, but feels quite expensive for what you get. Especially if you don’t steep “Silk Road style” (1 tsp per 16 oz…).

So while I’ve really enjoyed it, and I might pick up another sample in the future, I probably wouldn’t get a 40-cup tin (It’s $16. Even though there are lots of local berries in this, that’s a lot.).

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 30 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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drank Royal BC Museum Tea by Silk Road
1925 tasting notes

This definitely tastes like a Silk Road tea, which isn’t all bad. I really like the berry flavours in this, but feel that perhaps the quantity of rosehips is a little much.

I’m drinking this with milk. I can totally taste the thimbleberries (YES! My favourite!) which is super cool.

I’m glad I just got a sample of this one. A larger amount would have been overkill.

(I’m totally not steeping this the way they recommend. IDK, somehow I think the flavours are more rounded at a lower temp with more tea.)

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML
Fjellrev

I’ve never had thimbleberries before! They look scrumptious. Are they similar to raspberries?

I’ve been meaning to pick this one up since I recall the dry leaf smelling fantastic.

OMGsrsly

Similar but also very different. :) They’re very dry berries.

Fjellrev

Mmm, I should keep an eye out for them at organic/farmers markets and such.

OMGsrsly

I’ve never actually seen them for sale. I always pick them and immediately eat them. :D

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85

This is a really delicious tea! It’s a nice, light black tea with a very delicate peach and champagne taste to it. It is a very refined and quintessentially summer tea! I could definitely see this being enjoyed iced, too, on a patio in the hot Summer afternoon. I love how mild the peach is, and the body itself is nothing too robust. Very likely the most refreshing black I’ve had before.

Flavors: Champagne, Peach

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76
drank Dragonwell by Silk Road
18 tasting notes

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69
drank Berry Victoria by Silk Road
6477 tasting notes

ANother from omgsrsly i was trying to get to 75 this weekend to start the year off at my goal for last year but then SOMEONE (variatea) decided i needed a few more teas…soooo i’m still aiming for 75 by end of day tomorrow but i certainly got put far away from it again. trying tog et that done AND go through all my YS teas again.

This tea? strangely not for me. I’m not sure if its all the other berry teas that i’ve had over the past week but this one fell flat for me. the base wasn’t cooperating with me and then the flavours where just sort of there. ah well, can’t win them all! thank you though omgsrsly! always appreciate the share!

Bear With Me

This one appears to have replaced the 150th anniversary blend :’(

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83
drank Black Dragon by Silk Road
692 tasting notes

SSTTB #2…I’m having deja vu with this one…it tastes exactly like the Big Red Robe I had recently from Teavivre. Is this a Big Red Robe? It has to be. It is the same level of toasty-ness and body and everything, though the leaves were a bit longer than the Teavivre ones I had (also from the box). This tea was comforting today, as the toasty warmth seemed to keep the rainy bone chilling away. Either that, or me being under a blanket with my laptop watching youtube videos. Maybe all of the above.

That said, it is a little plain tasting, though I did get a whiff of chocolate from the dry leaf that was promising, but that is not very present in the steeped leaf. It;s an ok tea, but I feel like there is something missing. I keep thinking I am drinking a houjicha green, and not an oolong. I think, ultimately, I prefer more mineral or stone fruit dark oolong teas, or leaf hoppers, than this roasted one.

It’s a good tea, but not my fave. As I have Silk Road in town, I have the option to repurchase more in the future if I change my mind on it.

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79
drank Mountain Rain by Silk Road
6477 tasting notes

tea from omgsrsly i was a little worried as this one brewed up because it had a really floral scent to it. however, the actual tea is much more mellow and almost, dare i say it, boring? There’s a freshness and a sweetness here that is really nice…and there’s none of that dreaded oolong taste that i don’t like…but it’s just kinda…boring. lol not sure how else to describe it..maybe it’s just a little light in it’s tastes? Still a good cup, and as far as green oolongs go this is really nice…just…subdued. :)

OMGsrsly

Uh oh! I haven’t managed to try this one yet. But that sounds about right for Silk Road. Expensive, and yet somehow really simple.

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94

I’m a sceptic when it comes to a food product curing the common cold however, I have to say, if I have a cold coming on and I drink this tea, my symptoms go away. And it tastes awesome!

Flavors: Lemongrass, Orange Zest

Preparation
2 tsp 2 OZ / 59 ML

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85
drank Green Dragon by Silk Road
7 tasting notes

A Spearmint tea that hits the right notes without being overpowering. Sadly I can no longer find this tea on the Silk Road tea website, I will follow up to see if it is no longer available or just renamed. If you can find it, it will be well worth your time.

Flavors: Spearmint

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 2 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 17 OZ / 500 ML

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72
drank Victoria 150 by Silk Road
6477 tasting notes

Bear with me sent this one my way and i’m pretty sure his words were “you won’t like it” haha Funnily enough, i actually liked this one more than the cardamon black hat i also had. Not enough to hold on to it and be a greedy guts, but i did enjoy my cup with breakfast this morning :) thanks Bear with me!

Bear With Me

I am actually shocked yu enjoyed it since it is a floral tea! Glad to hear it! I will send the new Victoria tea next time. I think it will be more your thing. :)

Sil

I won’t be craving this one but it was a good cup!

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drank Berry Victoria by Silk Road
1925 tasting notes

I actually quite enjoyed this at lunch today. “Red berries” flavour plus some floral from the lavender, and a black tea that surprisingly did not go bitter on me, even though it was in the travel mug with no milk or sugar.

Not something I’d get again, but a nice enough tea to have around!

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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drank Berry Victoria by Silk Road
1925 tasting notes

Had this morning (way off this morning) with some milk. Delicious berries, with an herbal undertone. I really like it, and think it’d be great iced or with a touch of honey as well.

:)

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML
OMGsrsly

And I added it to the wrong (&^&*& Silk Road.

Sil

lol just change it?

OMGsrsly

Oh weird! You can actually go in, tea-by-tea, and change the company.

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Ohh, ginger and lemon tea. Yay!

I did NOT steep this the Silk Road way… Instead, 2 tsp tea for my 16 oz cup, plus some honey for extra goodness while I’m sick.

I can’t really taste it, but when I stick my face in the cup I can smell the ginger and lemongrass. :)

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML
Sil

mmmmmmmmmmmm

OMGsrsly

I’d share, Sil, but I only have 1 tsp left.

Sil

don’t stress haha i like adding things to my wishlist that i can’t sort…. sigh

OMGsrsly

Yeah. It’s pretty impossible to search through peoples cupboards for teas to try these days.

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Thank you, CrowKettle! I appreciate you including this in your package.

I quite like it. Not much green tea, mostly just ginger and lemony goodness. I added a bit of honey for extra comfort.

I did steep this the Silk Road way. 1 tsp leaves to 16 oz water. So YMMV, etc.

Flavors: Ginger, Lemon

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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