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Recent Tasting Notes
ALMOST sipdown. I was so close. Gah!!! that is a frustrating feeling, when you dump tea in your infuser fully expecting to be done with it, and then realize that ooops… yeah there is still another cup or so of leaves in there. And that was after I made one for Dad as well. Who btw, loves Darjeeling, apparently!? He always lets me choose for him, and I know his tastes well enough so usually garner a thumbs up. Except this time that is, when he said that it was “wonderful”!
Not bad, considering my sample is nearly two years old now. Next time, I’ll give him a fresh first flush. I’m getting giggly just thinking about it. Yes yes I know, I am a tea nerd.
Anyhow, on another note… I’ve noticed that when I steep multiple types of tea at once, or throughout the day, I somehow end up choosing teas with scary similar profiles.
For instance, the rose congou I drank earlier (an actual sipdown, but I didn’t log it because it’s kinda embarrassing that I’ve had it in my cupboard for so very long!) has a rather unique taste, a floral one at that. Meanwhile, as I sip this darjeeling, I noticed that it’s rosey as well, though less so, and I psyched myself out for a moment thinking that I was actually drinking my second infusion of the coungou!
This seems to happen more often than not lately. Every time, I pick teas that I think are different enough to provide variety, and yet… well, they end up surprisingly NOT very different at all. Hmmm.
As I said before, yes I know I am crazy.
It has been a strange week so far… To start off, on Monday I assisted in my boyfriend’s endoscopy (I studied medicine…) and the Doctor found a huge hernia (it was the biggest I have ever seen…). So we now have an operation that needs to be programmed… Tuesday and Wednesday bunched together in my mind and I am glad that it is almost Friday… I can’t wait for the weekend… Thankfully I get to go the Roxette concert tomorrow which should make Thursday easier to digest… Now to actually review this tea.
I love rose flavored things so when I received this from Indigobloom in a swap I was super happy. The black leaves had a few rose petals scattered amongst them. The scent of the dry leaves wasn’t very rosey… It reminded me of a Pu Erh without the fishiness. I got a pleasnt leather note in the scent.
Brewed for 3 minutes it was a bit weak, so I brewed it for an extra minute. It smelled of new leather with a hint of rose. Somehow this appealed to me. The extra minute of brewing made it a tad bit bitter, but it wasn’t bad at all. A touch of sweetener fixed it all up. The flavor was leathery with the perfect amount of astringency. The after taste was a mouthful of delicate rose. Sweetened the after taste was enhanced for a delicious tea experience. It really was like a Pu Erh with all the fishiness removed leaving behind leather and sweet smootheness. I really enjoyed this.
I would recomend this to anyone who is looking for a lightly flavored rose tea. Yum… I wish I had more. : )
Sandalwood!! that’s what I was missing. This was mostly a very smooth, drinkable Darjeeling… pretty standard. Except for that one piece I couldn’t identify. and now I know what it was!! huh. I need to try this again at a lower temp, see if it brings out the other parts more. I didn’t see much fruitiness or muscat. (el?)
By the third steep, it was still good, if not a little weak. I added some honey and it was perfection :)
So there was a time I really didn’t like this tea. But now, with some honey… not so bad :)
Sorry I can’t say much more, as I haven’t got any other deets to give!
That said, atleast I can up the rating a few points.
I finally remembered!! to add some mint to this, that is. I daresay, it may have just salvaged this for me :)
It doesn’t taste all that different from my old blend of Chamomile and mint, there is a licorice note that comes out very strongly at first but fades a little, when the mint makes more of a play. Maybe I should just mix in the mint now, so that I don’t forget next time I make it…
I have that good tea glow going on at moment and dayum does it feel GOOD! Mmmmmm hmmmm.
I brought this home from the office so I could play with the steep parameters, and wow! I’m glad I did that, just in time for tea with my Aunt. She is staying the night at our place tonight, and being on of the few people(outside of steepster) who will indulge my tea-life, I took advantage =D
I really wanted to try one of the new samples from my very generous friends here but I knew they would never go for that, and I knew that Mum is a sucker for floral tea… so out came this rosey tea!
I made a big pot of it in the glass teapot Mum loves and everyone swooned. It made me HAPPY!
Mum doesn’t like her tea very strong, so I made it on the (very) light side. 6-7 tsp, in what the kettle said was 8 cups of water. Steeped for three minutes.
Overall, I am quite satisfied with the results. It came out exceptionally rosy, but with very little chocolate. In this scenario, that was a good thing. I doubt Mum would have liked a chocolate tea, as she wasn’t a big fan of another that I showed her awhile back.
So… I suppose it follows that I should use more leaf, and/or a longer steep to bring out the chocolate? Interesting.
Oh and I steeped it a second time, with only 6 cups of water. That was lovely as well! not as abrasive as the last time I double steeped. Perhaps I need to forgo that cocoa note in lieu of any sharpness. I mean, I drink it for the rose. A small sacrifice to make, considering I do have a few other choco-note teas to love!
Anyhow, I’m rambling now.
Ahhh what is it about roses that makes me feel so in love?! I recently bought a rose perfume as well. I suppose it’s my latest phase *happy sigh
I tried this again today. Yep, still not impressed.
Next time, maybe an add of mint will break up the cloudiness in the brew. (I’m not kidding, it comes out a dusty brown colour)
The description names mint as an ingredient but it doesn’t make an appearance in the flavour, maybe a hint but not enough!
If more spearmint fails to save the day, this goes on my share list! Lemongrass and and chamomile together just aren’t doing it for me. Separately? heck yeah!
*sighs…. makes me sad that they don’t play well :(
Not bad not bad!
More rosy this time, I think, and yet still chocolatey… not as smooth though.
Oh, and I tried it with milk. Nicer than I expected! It reminds me of what I imagine Earl Grey tastes like to the normal folk out there- the EG I so fervently wish I could partake in!
So…. I’ve made myself a compromise. Henceforward, in my mind, this is an “Indigobloom Early grey” :)
Why oh why did I splurge on this? I certainly do not regret my purchase, it was ahhhhmazing!!!!! but really, my wallet sighs every time I enter that shop!
Maybe this tea was calling to me. It smells like a rose garden in heaven, intensely floral and sweet and mmmmmmmm.
I was a little worried that it’d turn me off the way bergamot does, so I’m very grateful that it didn’t!
Steeped, it’s still incredibly floral. The taste is less so. I do wish that there was more rose but I also over-steeped it, and thus it’s possible I drowned the rosey part.
Besides the rose, I’m getting a strong chocolate note. Given that this is a Chinese black tea, I understand why!
Next time I brew it, hopefully the chocolate will be less dominant but it seems to me that it’d have a stronger profile than something floral in most any tea (except maybe bergamot which I can’t indulge anyhow)
The second steep of this was even less floral, but smoother and milder in the chocolate sense as well.
It reminds me of the Golden Monkey I have from Tao of Tea, only less harsh. Also, I’m tempted to see how this would fare iced. I suspect the cocoa would do nicely there, and that’s coming from a tea-freak who generally dislikes iced drinks.
and the rating? I’m tempted to lower the score from the 95 I want to give it, because the rose isn’t all that strong in the flavour… but then, I need to give it a few steeps and play around with it first. Either way, I’m in love. Fitting isn’t it? Roses, and love… this should be my Valentines tea, if I have any left by then!
Soooo….. I bought this because I wanted a chamomile tea, but I also wanted a change from the Egyptian standard. It was between this and another tea, mixed with spearmint… but the other was heavy on the mint so I went with this one. Not that I dislike mint, I just wanted chamomile to calm the nerves when I feel jumpy.
Then of course, on the way back into the office I bought a coffee, and well, you can guess why I needed to de-jitterize!
Which I didn’t mind, because I was SO looking forward to trying this, it smells heavenly… I just love the scent of citrus in a tea.
Unfortunately, I am just now figuring out that in a tea, fruit + flowers + my odd preferences (besides chamomile that is) = not a good combo.
It was… not quite right. The chamomile tasted fuzzy, cloudy even. The floral part was muted, and the fruit was all awkward. Nothing meshed well!
ODD!! is the word I would use to choose to describe the blend. I miss the “mmmmm” factor I get from the Egyptian pure tea. None of that to be found here *sighs
Overall, it’s drinkable. It does the job I purchased it for, so I’ll drink it… but not too happily! If anyone wants to try this, let me know, I would love to see what your opinion is!
Disclaimer: there IS hibiscus in here, which could be partially to blame for the oddness!
Thank you TeaEqualsBliss for sending me some of this tea!
I love this Darjeeling! It’s really good. Such an intriguingly complex set of flavors to this cup. Definitely one of the best Darjeeling teas I’ve yet to taste. Excellent!
I’m finishing up my bit of this that Brian sent via the Secret Santa Swap! Thanks again! This is probably one of my favorites – if not my favorite – darjeeling! YUM!!!! Nutty and semi-muscatel – very nice
I received this from Brian for the Secret Santa here on Steepster! Thanks so much!
This is a rich brown color post-infusion-wise. The aroma before infusion is very light…almost comparable to a sweet wood smell. After infusion the aroma magnifies and is Distinctive and intriguing. It sort of smells like sweet-wood combined with a little floral yet nutty aroma and a hint of sweet-cocoa or chocolate. Magnificent!
There seems to be a bit of chewy-ness coming out as it cools at room temp a little too! YUM!
The taste is rich, nutty – like almonds (almost), a little woodsy, sweet, I can taste the darjeeling trade-mark but not overly so because there are so many other wonderful tastes swirling around my mouth! This is really good. This could, perhaps, be my favorite Darjeeling to date! WOW!
Thank YOU Brian! You made my day!!!
This is my first taste of a 2010 first flush and it is very welcome. Tea Emporium has provided me with some superb teas in the past and this is another one. I’d also like to give Tea Emporium props for good descriptions. The one for this tea is quite accurate with its references to apples and mangoes. It has all the qualities that I love about first flush Darjeelings. It’s light, vibrant, fruity, and the kind of thing that can be drunk hot even in the middle of summer because it seems somehow cooling. Overall, this is a really excellent tea. I highly recommend both this tea and this vendor. Brewing note: I recommend just sub-boiling water and a short steep (2-3 min.) for FF Darjeelings.