Hide

Welcome to Steepster, an online tea community.

Write a tea journal, see what others are drinking and get recommendations from people you trust. or Learn More

Taiwan Tea Crafts

Recent Tasting Notes

85

It seems this tea has been discontinued, which is a pity as it is a surprisingly good tea. With a creamily floral aroma in the wet and dry leaves, and a light taste through 4 infusions, this was a nice surprise for me (especially as the best infusion is the last).

First infusion – 3 g. per 6 oz water, 90 deg., 2:00 min.

Second infusion – 3 g. per 6 oz. water, 90 deg., 4:00 min.

Third infusion – 3 g. per 6 oz. water, 90 deg., 7:00 min.

Fourth infusion – 3 g. per 6 oz. water, 90 deg., 10:00+ min.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 0 sec 3 g 6 OZ / 177 ML

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

Another tea from this morning AND one of the teas that i’ve been trying to work through lately because i have a number of teas from both TTC and Norbu that i haven’t opened or started yet! i like the fresh and fruitiness of this one even if it’s not my FAAAVOURITE from TTC. it’s still damn good and i’m happy to have it in my cupboard to drink!

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

90

Thank you Sil!!! (173)

This was a tea that really caught my attention when I read everyone else’ reviews. It sounded so amazing and now I have a cup and I’m so excited. :D It smells wonderful.

And the taste is quite divine! Wow. Seriously, wow. I better not dump those leaves by mistake because I need to get a few resteeps out of this. It tastes really juicy and fruity and, like Sil said, just a little savoury too. It’s complex. Each sip is a little different but they are all SO juicy. OMG.

I nearly broke my finger trying to hit the rec button. (slight exaggeration)

ETA: The resteep was quite nice but the end of that cup felt a little salty almost. So careful on the resteeps!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec
Sil

haha i’ve got lots of this and others from TTC if you want to “trade” for something

Cavocorax

Oooh. I would like more of this if you see anything of mine you’d want to swap for. :D

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

86

and my other tea from this morning. Still enjoying this but need to order from TTC in smaller quantities haha. Either that or have the BBB Box come around more often and split more teas that way heh

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

78

Thanks to Sil for sending me more samples of TTC black teas! I still have never gotten around to ordering tea from them, so it’s nice to try some more. I’ve tried #147 before (also from Sil), so I decided to try this one and see how it compares.

I am out of practice brewing these long, spindly Taiwanese black teas. At one point I had a decent eye for dishing out leaves but apparently I’ve lost it. I decided to use the entire sample in my mug, but I probably should have split it up a bit. Actually a shorter steep by only a minute might have solved it. The tea was ever so slightly bitter and just overall very strong (I realize this may be how some people like their teas, haha), but I thinned it with a bit more hot water and it smoothed out most of the rough edges incurred by steeping that much leaf.

I found this tea to be overall quite tasty and a pleasant cup to drink. A bit fruity, a bit malty. I didn’t have the same reaction to this one as I did to #147, but to be fair my steeping may have something to do with it. This one has more of that character of most Taiwanese black teas that I don’t particularly care for; that je nais c’est qua, but not in a good way. It’s not enough to make me dislike the tea and I would happily drink another cup, but it’s not something I love. Glad to have tried this, though!

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

70

This tea offers a pleasant balance of steamed green beans and roasted flavours in the first infusion, leaning more towards the former. In subsequent brews, the latter takes over to the almost total exclusion of the former. A good start but a disappointing finish.

First infusion – 3 g. per 6 oz water, 75 deg., 1:30 min.

Second infusion – 3 g. per 6 oz. water, 75 deg., 3:00 min.

Third infusion – 3 g. per 6 oz. water, 75 deg., 7:00 min.

Fourth infusion – 3 g. per 6 oz. water, 75 deg., 10:00+ min.

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 1 min, 30 sec 3 g 6 OZ / 177 ML

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

Starting the morning with this one, from a tea order Sil & I shared awhile back.
Such a wonderful sweet mouth thickening cup! I still haven’t tried this one gongfu.

I’m trying to get motivated, because one of my college students has her Senior Recital Hearing today at 12:30. She’ll play the recital for myself & 3 other faculty members. There are forms for their comments, & of course, they have to give the go ahead for the actual recital, which takes place next month. It’s mostly a formality, & I’m sure she’ll do great.
That’s the main thing on my agenda today :)

Angrboda

Doesn’t that sort of thing make you extremely proud as a music teacher? I think it would for me. :)

Terri HarpLady

Oh yeah! My students are my ‘other children’, & this one has been with me for over 10 years. She did a great job yesterday, & her recital, on may 10, will be wonderful!

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

another tea from earlier this evening. I still haven’t decided how i feel about this one from TTC. it’s similar to the others that i’ve had but also different. there are some underlying notes to this that i haven’t quite wrapped my brain around. I may need to have a gong fu session to unlock my feelings on this one. still enjoying it..just….not settled in my opinion :)

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

86

Another cup from yesterday – I realised that in my effort to sipdown a number of my teas, there are a bunch that i haven’t had in a while. So the past couple of days i’ve been trying to pull out some of my other favourites as a reward for getting my cupboard down. I’ll have a few sipdowns in the next few days but mostly, i’m drinking what i want for the first week of april just to explore and try a few of the teas i haven’t had before. I have had this one before – it’s the reason i ordered another bag of it. This is a juicy, sweet taiwanese assam. It’s not bold of malty or in your face. Similar to stacy’s taiwanese assam but different – there is room for both in my cupboard. :)

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

I have a tendency to go overboard when I measure out tea, & today was one of those days. I over-tea-ed, & it was too potent. I divided it between 2 cups, adding more hot water to each, & then it was better, although I realized afterwords that I much prefer this tea brewed gongfu style. The leaves are gigantic, & I feel that the short potent steepings do it much more justice.

Jiāng Luo

Obsessed with Hong Yu at the moment can’t believe a black tea can go from cinnamon to date to wintergreen it’s what I expect when I think of a high quality oolong and has completely humbled my view on black teas.

Terri HarpLady

I love all the changes that these teas can go through as well :)

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

96

I’m trying some of this because I had to open the package anyway to send some to boychik. I really don’t know how TTC finds such incredible teas. There is an amazing combination of sweet spices in this. Their teas are unlike any I’ve had from other vendors. This is an incredible tea.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 8 tsp 32 OZ / 946 ML
boychik

I’m intrigued ;) on the other hand I’m sorry you have to open new bag

CharlotteZero

Haha. I’m not sorry! This was a great way to start my day. Headed to FedEx now. :-)

TeaExplorer

I’ve never ordered from them, but your description has me intrigued! Just had a look at their site. I have too many teas already, but some of their offerings look really good :)

CharlotteZero

Let me know if you ever want me to send you some samples. I have quite a few of their teas (more than what I’ve added in my steepster cupboard), and would be happy to send you some…

TeaExplorer

Thanks for the kind offer! I’m going to hold off for the moment, however, since I have such a huge backlog. When I read reviews on Steepster I feel like a dog in a yard full of squirrels =:-}

CharlotteZero

I understand that feeling…Only I am mostly unable to resist the impulse to chase them all, so now I have soooo much tea. Let me know if you ever change your mind, though!

TeaExplorer

I will … thanks!

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

Another tea I drank yesterday. No real comments to make about it, but I’m realizing that I’m not as much of a fan of Taiwan blacks as I originally thought I was. I do love the Sun Moon Lake Assams, & the other ones aren’t bad, or anything like that, but I’d much rather drink a yunnan or Fujian instead. Just saying…

Now I have to go practice! For tomorrow’s wedding, the recessional is ‘One Love’, by Bob Marley! That will be fun!

JustJames

i love it when people move outside of tradition =0)

Terri HarpLady

Me too! I generally play at least one wedding almost every weekend, sometimes 2 or 3, although I love them all, the big lavish decadent weddings can become a little old. Plus, I feel like when people include music that is meaningful to themselves, its just more heartfelt.

gmathis

Someday, you’ll have to post your “best wedding set ever…” (If you could choose your absolute favorites all for one ceremony, they would be…?)

Terri HarpLady

hmmm….I’ll have to get back to you on that, gigi :)

JustJames

=0)
have you ever ‘dr. who theme song’ed’ a bride down or up the aisle? >;0D

Terri HarpLady

Funny you should mention that, James! Just a few days ago I had a phone consultation with a bride from Boston, & she asked if I could do game of thrones!theme for the recessional, at the end of the ceremony, followed by i am the doctor. I told her I’d take a look at it this week & get back to her. Nobody has asked me to play the Ian dr who theme, although, being a fan of the dr, I’ve played around with it a bit.

Terri HarpLady

I just read my post, lol, & I’m not sure how Sil’s fiance’s name ended up in there, but I’m sure it, & any other errors, are courtesy of my iPad & auto-correct :D

Terri HarpLady

Translation:
Ian = original

JustJames

=0))))))))
so much fodder for FB.
can’ wait until Sil claps her eyes on this thread, lol.
oh, the GOT theme will be very majestic. here’s to hoping the bride can walk in heels! on mustn’t stumble with that theme… no no.

Terri HarpLady

I’ve played the GOT theme several times now, including as an entrance for the groomsmen, which was kind of fun!

Terri HarpLady

Oh, & I forgot to mention, they were wearing kilts on THAT wedding!!

JustJames

very nice…. kilts are good for airflow, if worn correctly =0D

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

93

I’m in the mood for some more Oolong, something to put my mind at ease for tomorrows doctors visit. I’m having my first cervical screening tomorrow, I’ve had scans of an intimate nature done before but those were to show my ovaries are in the wrong area and that I couldn’t have kids. My mum had cervical cancer as did my nan and my aunt so honestly I’m preparing myself for the worst, but since my husband had testicular cancer a few years ago I agreed to be on time for any intimate scan. Promises are promises but I’m sure you girls know how nervous it can be. And the guys are probably cringing lol.

Anyway focus on Oolong, my good old friend Oolong. Taiwan Tea Crafts still has this one in stock so I can read some information on it. “No other Lishan tea shines with the same purity and authenticity as this one.” Ooohhh that sounds promising :) “produced by Mr. Gao, a member of the Atayal Nation”.

The balls are a nice size with a rough average of 4mm. They are a mixture of two dark greens. They smell sweet and floral, like geranium perfume. Also getting a buttery scent.

Water : 3oz / 85ml 194℉ / 90℃
7 Grams Tea
8 steeps : rinse,25s,25s,30s,40s,60s,90s,120s,180s
Gaiwan
Rinsing time is around 5 seconds

First Steep – 25 seconds
Mild, sweet, floral and mineral. Like mild geranium water spray.

Second Steep – 25 seconds
Toasted geranium and grass with a honeyed after taste.

Third Steep – 30 seconds
Very sweet and floral but more perfumed and dry. Yet still clean tasting.

Fourth Steep – 40 seconds
Very perfumed and florally thick but also more grassy. Heavy perfume after taste.

Fifth Steep – 60 seconds
Still perfumed and geranium like but remains pure and sweet.

Sixth Steep – 90 seconds
It’s still think and carrying on it’s flavour very well. It’s still thick yet with no astringency and the geranium is still fresh and sweet.

Seventh Steep – 120 seconds
Softer than the previous steeps but still very floral and clean.

Eighth Steep – 180 seconds
Very soft and back to the strength of the first steep. Buttery and sweet once more.

It tasted like spring water with flowers inside rather than a tea and it was very refreshing yet flavourful. I had high hopes and it raised the bar to be possibly the best Li Shan I have tried. It had little dryness despite being heavily perfumed and it left a beautiful after taste, I feel like I’ve breathed in spring!

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 7 g 3 OZ / 85 ML
QueenOfTarts

I hope everything goes well for you tomorrow! Glad you have some nice tea to comfort you. Sending good thoughts!

keychange

I hope all goes well tomorrow, too. And hey—the idea of anyone poking around our nether-regions is anxiety-inducing. Hopefully it’s over quickly.

MzPriss

Positive thoughts for a positive outcome. And you get to be anxious – I don’t think that’s anyone’s idea of a good time.

looseTman

You’re very wise to be evaluated and to keep all follow-up appointments given your maternal family history. Hopefully, your father’s side of the family reduces your risk. We’ll be praying for a good outcome.

KittyLovesTea

Thank you everyone! I can happily report that everything is over and done with now and my results will be in two weeks, though she said from her point of view everything looked healthy. As an added treat my new gaiwan tea set arrived and I love it. Will use it in a bit when I’m up to it. http://www.dragonteahouse.biz/accessories/tea-sets/dragon-phoenix-porcelain-gongfu-tea-set-6-pcs.html

looseTman

Excellent! You should reward yourself for having done what’s medically prudent to maintain your long-term health. Perhaps dinner out or a very special tea in your new beautiful gongfu tea set?

KittyLovesTea

I may stick to the tea for tonight as tomorrow night I’m having a meal and some drinks as part of a hen party (which I don’t want to go to but have no option to back out). I’ve been on my Oolong recently so I may find space for some more to open and sample as my treat :)

looseTman

You should definitely treat yourself!

I typically have black tea for breakfast. However, I’m running low on black teas samples. How are oolong, green & white teas for breakfast?

KittyLovesTea

Green teas are rather good to have in the morning, Japanese greens in particular have a strange effect on me and I end up skipping all day and being happy. I think the idea is to have green teas highly concentrated in the morning so that the impact of caffeine is larger for the extra boost. Oolong and whites I find too relaxing in the morning but they would work well on weekends or days off. I tend to mostly go by what I feel like that morning, sometimes my first cup isn’t until lunch time.

Angrboda

Pap smear tests are offered to all women between 20-something and 50-something every few years here. It’s a preventative routine screening.

KittyLovesTea

Yet it’s surprising how many women ‘forget’ to go all because of a little embarrassment. I know about it well as cervical and ovarian cancer run in my family.

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

81

I got this tea as part of an Oolong collection sold by Taiwan Tea Crafts but they don’t seem to have this tea any more or I at least can’t find it on their website. It would have been nice to know a little more information on this tea but never mind, it just means I’m blind taste testing.

The balls are a nice size measuring an average of 6mm and consist or dark green almost brown and medium brown colours. They have a sweet and creamy scent, also lightly toasty. Like honeycomb ice cream. :)

Water : 3oz / 85ml 212℉ / 100℃
7 Grams Tea
6 steeps : rinse,25s,35s,45s,55s,65s,75s
Gaiwan
Rinsing time is around 5 seconds

First Steep – 25 seconds
Subtle in flavour with strong cream tones and mild sweetness. Liners in the after taste.

Second Steep – 35 seconds
Toasted and almost wooden, the sweetness is present but now matches the cream. Also a little like straw.

Third Steep – 45 seconds
Again it’s increased in strength and it’s not focussing more on toasted straw than cream. It has a pure flavour, natural and beautiful. I’m also getting a fruit flavour, perhaps kumquat.

Fourth Steep – 55 seconds
Lightening in strength again which makes this another creamy steep. It’s soft and sweet but also now sort of perfumed and dry.

Fifth Steep – 65 seconds
Very similar to the second steep at this point. The cream is shining through again with minimal toastedness and just the right amount of sweetness.

Sixth Steep – 75 seconds
Yes and back to the first steep. Creamy and sweet and very gentle.

Overall this was a delightful milk Oolong that gained charm in the middle steeps. Milk Oolong is not a favourite of mine which could result from me being allergic to milk, but this particular Oolong was subtle and pure which I found pleasant. So while this doesn’t get top marks in terms of being an Oolong it does go towards the top marks for Milk Oolong.

Preparation
Boiling 7 g 3 OZ / 85 ML

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

82

mmmmm i do like TTC’s teas. This is not one of my favourites, but it is a pleasant, taiwanese cup of tea. Likely won’t reorder this variation from TTC but only because there are others that i love from them, so why settle for a mostly yummy tea when i can have amazing yummy tea? :)

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

Ohhh, all I can say is this is a nice, nice tea—so nice I’m too busy enjoying it to think. My gosh. I like how the brassy elements one might wish to have smoothed out in a typical Indian Assam are indeed gentled or just plain not there thanks to the (what’s often for me too subtle, mind) Taiwanese style, which in turn gets amplified when given the backbone of a substantial general tea type like Assam. Wow I didn’t write that well. Hrm. The second steep yields more chocolate, delicious.

I’ve been impressed with Taiwan Tea Crafts (and grateful as always to Steepster—ain’t no way I’d have learned of them otherwise)—I love that they offer fancier teas in reasonably small amounts that make them a possibility for me, and that they have promotions and fair shipping policies if you want to try before you commit. And even when one of their teas proves generally not something I’d reach for often given my own proclivities, I have yet to encounter any where the care and quality (indeed, the craft) in producing the leaves wasn’t readily apparent from dry leaf aroma to finished cup and unfurled leaves. And some have knocked me completely off my socks (that one Red Jade!) with qualities I’ve never tasted together in a single tea before. We’re so lucky to live in this age when incredible tea is being crafted so many places AND thanks to modern transport and the internet etc. someone in a place as un-hot-tea-focused as the US has ready access to some of said tea. AND can learn and trade notes with fellow fans to boot. Awesome.

Speaking of, the dry leaf aroma on this one is a splurge. It’s rich and grapey, deep without being cloying like so many sweet grape-smelling teas. And the appearance of the wet leaves! Big and gorgeous, with these ripples of brilliant brighter red streaks here and there. I am surprised sometimes how often big, beautiful leaves can sway me. Admiring them makes tea even more of a pleasure.

Dexter3657

Really happy that you are enjoying this tea. I agree with your thoughts on how wonderful it is that we live in a time that we can experience and learn about all these wonderful teas.
Just when I thought I was beginning to understand, I see a name like this one. Sun Moon Lake is in Taiwan. Assam teas are from the Assam region of India. How can a tea from Sun Moon Lake be an Assam? It hurts my poor head. I guess it doesn’t really matter as long as you enjoy it. :))

ifjuly

my (admittedly patched together, mostly from the harney book and the internet, might be wrong/off) understanding is that in the last 10 to 30 years (partly thanks embargos with china lifting which forced them to switch from simply palely imitating the chinese tea not available from china at the time to using what they had already invested in re: tea making to create new teas not meant to compete directly with chinese styles but rather offer novelty and their own branding) taiwan has really become a game changer in terms of sharing innovative new tea styles and whatnot, and one of those new things has been taking varieties of tea leaf and seeing how they do in taiwan when “mated” with native tea plants (i could be getting the specs wrong there though; it’s been a while since i looked into it). so yes, it’s weird that assam is named after where it’s grown and yet they’re growing that in taiwan now too. be kinda like taking a darjeeling plant and discovering it grows well in, i dunno, florida once you melded it with something native to florida. ha. i know TTC mentioned how leaf and what exactly it is in more detail somewhere on the site, at least they did when i bought this but it’s been a while…
not the same type (i do feel excited the mint thing is recognized in the jade teas though! i thought i was crazy!) exactly, but a quick explanation:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taiwanese_tea#Black_tea

Dexter3657

Wow, ok – thanks so much for this. I feel that the more I learn, the more I realize how little I really know. I keep trying to take a tea class, and it keeps getting cancelled from lack of interest. I must be the only tea drinker here. I think I really need to find some time to do some research on my own. Thank you so much for posting this and nudging me towards learning more.

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

90

Review for lot 267.

Large beautiful twisty leaves which brew up a fragrant cup of tea.

Smooth, gentle and fruity. A bit like bread with jam. Very tasty!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

How did the day go by so fast?
Earlier I reported that I attempted a comparison between this lot & Lot 154.
That was hours ago, & although I can report that the dry leaf aroma of this one was even ‘jammier’ than the dry leaf of #154, in the cup they were very similar. Jam & chocolate! Admittedly, I was busy with taxes, & then busy with students, so I wasn’t as attentive as I could have been. I have enough of this one to enjoy 1 more time, thanks to the generosity of CharlotteZero! Thanks!

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

Sun Moon Lake Tea comparisons – Part 1
I made back to back cups of this one & the lot 269 version that CharlotteZero graciously sent to me, using the same amount of water & tea.
Both are fruity & wonderful, & although it was my intention to compare them, I was also working on my taxes, so although I enjoyed both cups, I can’t say that I really noticed a lot of difference, at least not in the first steepings.
In the bag, the 269 has a fuller aroma (although that may be because it is fresher?)
On to the 2nd round, which will be reported upon under the review for #269 later.

Dag Wedin

I so want to try this out. I´ve been stalking their website… ;)

Terri HarpLady

I still have some left, if you’d like me to send a sample :)

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

Taiwan Tea Crafts has some lovely & interesting teas, & this is another one of them.
If you’re looking for a knock your sox off bold tea, this is NOT it. But if you want something subtle & soothing, but still within the black tea genre, this might be the tea for you :)
There is a creamy quality, a honey & cream of wheat thing, a little pumpkin.
It kind of reminds me of Butiki’s wild mountain black, kind of.
Thanks to TastyBrew for including this in our latest BBBB!

Login or sign up to leave a comment.