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Recent Tasting Notes
I’m just starting to get into Darjeelings – it’s more of a curiosity at this point, than having a palate for them yet. So this is one of my first, since I started learning a bit more about them.
Brewed 2tsp in 8oz of 85C water for 1 minute.
The last time I drank a Darjeeling from Margaret’s Hope I wasn’t too impressed. This, I’m liking a fair bit. Interesting combination of sweet grapes and char. Lightly astringent with a bit of a vegetal tang on the finish. Medium body. Very distinctive.
A second steep for 1:30. More grape, less char. Very nice.
Flavors: Astringent, Char, Grapes, Tangy, Vegetal
I made my sweetie a cup of peppermint tea last night and even though I washed the brw basket with soap and rinsed it multiple times, it still managed to totally taint this cup with peppermint.
Not what I was looking for but actually, pretty tasty. The mint works well with the malt and sweet potato notes of this.
Not rating for now, but I think this is quite a lovely tea.
Flavors: Malt, Sweet Potatoes
Overboard Traveling tea box
After having Assam “Black Beauty” #8, this just doesn’t even compare, even though it’s a different type of tea. It smells sweet and almost fruity in the bag, but unlike the Black Beauty, nothing translates to the actual tea. I added sweetener just because otherwise it just wasn’t special enough? I mean, why drink something ho-hum when you can have sweet potato in a mug?
It has been a long, long day of driving to the US and back and visiting family. It’s been a low tea day too, and even though it’s only 8pm I’m having a hard time staying awake. Sifting through my secret santa box, the smell of this was so incredible, it had to be my first try.
The jasmine and juicy passion fruit fragrances are strong and complement each other beautifully. Every time a tea smells this good, I have to brace myself to be let down by the flavour.
Steeped for 3min at 94C, the liquor is deep brown and smells just as delicious.
And huzzah! It also tastes amazing. The base mostly tastes like a basic black, with maybe a slight hint of vegetal on the finish suggesting the green. A touch astringent. The jasmine and passion fruit are balanced and distinct. The jasmine and a fruity sweetness that’s almost peachy leads the sip, and then toward the end and into the finish there’s that juicy passion fruit flavour. It leaves the impression of tartness while only being a tiny bit tart.
This is goooooood. So goood! Thank you so much teamaniac! <3
Flavors: Jasmine, Passion Fruits, Peach, Sweet, Vegetal
Do not like!
It isn’t bad. But something in there just puts me off. Something sweet and medicinal smelling, and a bit bitter – in contrast with the sweetness of the fruit I think the contrast is what throws me off.
Ah well. I gave the rest of my cup to Dad. Hopefully someone else will want the rest…
Overboard Traveling tea box
So this one is a bit odd. Without sweetener, it barely tastes like anything; maybe a little oolong, but it’s minimal. With sweetener, it tastes like sweetener, but there’s no specific fruit that I can detect, definitely not fig. And of course, it doesn’t have the buttery appeal of greener oolongs either so I’m quite meh with this one. Back in the box it goes.
Overboard Traveling tea box
Woah. Who would have thought I would like a plain black tea? Not I. This seriously smells like sweet potatoes and it tastes a little sweet even without added sweetener. Thank you The Cookie Lady for adding this to the box; otherwise, I wouldn’t have had a chance of trying this. Yum. Keeping the remaining sample.
Well, I’ve already gotten 2 steeps out of the leaves and I’m pretty sure I could get a 3rd; but I want to try some more teas before I’ve maxed out on my caffeine limit for the day. Tasty.
Light and flavoursome. All the ingredients are organic and it certainly tastes that way (or so I imagine). Very refreshing for the summertime here in Sydney.
Not too floral perfumey; the jasmine takes more of a background role with a decent green base that melds nicely together. The blueberry isn’t tart or cloying at all either. It’s more like a lightly sweet, very fresh hint of blueberry that keeps you coming back for another sip.
One of my favourites from the massive Tealux haul earlier this year.
Um….what? Excuse me, but….when you put “fig” in the name of the tea, I fully expect to taste figginess….and then, when I don’t, I get grumpy.
Let me clarify—this tea is not a BAD tea. But, well, it is very distinctly NOT fig. In fact, it both smells and tastes like liquid sweetarts to me. It has this weird, fake, tart, sweet thing going on. Not at all what I wanted.
However, this could be good to drink sometimes. Just not when you want fig or a mellow oolong.
Flavors: Sweet, Tart
I’m pretty sure I’ve never had a Darjeeling before, so yay for new experiences. This doesn’t really impress me, though. It’s not bitter at all, but it tastes rather rather like a vegetal. I’m not really a green tea person, when I drink it I almost always add lemon and maybe some sugar. This is not really my thing.
This smells and tastes very floral, not fruity at all. I’m puzzled about why someone would associate it with figs. I actually associate these scents with soap. It doesn’t taste soapy or anything, but my mind doesn’t really associate the flavor with food, which is kind of throwing me off. The mouthfeel is interesting, it makes my tongue a bit tingly, like mint or celery, or black pepper. I wonder where that comes from? Overall, an interesting tea, but probably not one I’ll keep.
… Where’s the pumpkin? Lies! This s the first of the teas I received from the generous Ubacat! Looking at the ingredients, I wouldn:the be able to guess that they were aiming for a pumpkin tea at all. With that out of the way, the primary flavor here is by far melon. Makes sense since it’s one of the top ingredients. I don’t really get any creaminess when it’s hot, but I can detect a hint of it as it cools. It is slightly artificial, and reminds me a lot of those melon candies the I used to get when I was younger. Maybe a bit of other fruit and the rooibos in the background. I actually am enjoying this tea, and had it been marketed as a melon tea, my rating probably would have been higher. It’s tasty, I might just have to re label it.
My first roasted oolong! This is so cool. So it has a roasty flavour in the bag, and the leaves are all compressed into these deceptively small little nuggets (honestly, one of my favourite things about oolongs is watching the leaves expaaaand). :) As it’s steeping, the roasty scent gets much stronger, but there’s also something sweet there. Like some sort of pastry with toasted coconut on it? The liquor is gorgeous and dark, reddish I think (it’s not a white mug, so, colours are deceptive). The flavour is complex but mellow, slightly sweet and very toasty. I like this.
Edited to add: I think I resteeped this about 5 times? Impressive.
Flavors: Grain, Pastries, Roasted
Thank you so much to The Cookie Lady for sending this sample in her generous swap package! I’m afraid I may have under-steeped this one, as the color was rather light and the flavor somewhat mild. I will try a longer steep time with the remainder of my sample. I taste the raisin notes as well as a nice mingling of cinnamon, nutmeg, and vanilla. I wish there was a little bit more of a buttery cookie flavor here, but it’s still a delicious dessert tea!
Flavors: Cinnamon, Nutmeg, Raisins, Vanilla
Took my new gaiwan for a test run with this! I wanted to start out with a tea I had tried before, for comparison purposes. I’m still totally entertained by how these leaves start out so small, and end up so big. And with my glass gaiwan, I can watch it happen! So. 4g of tea for 4oz of water. I can’t remember exactly how I timed the steepings, but I think it was something like: rinse, 20s, 20s, 30s, 45s, 60s, 1.5min, 2 min, 3 min. It’s not dramatically different from steeping western-style with multiple infusions, but there’s definitely more of a progression of flavours. It starts out light, gets sweeter, then creamier, then grassier. Also, I think I’ve found a solution to the “holy crap that’s a huge (cumulative) amount of tea” problem: I set up a pyrex measuring cup next to me on the table, and with each steeping I poured 2oz into my little cup to drink and 2oz into the pyrex cup. At the end the pyrex cup got a covering of saran wrap and went in the fridge, so tomorrow I’ll see what it this Jin Xuan tastes like cold. :)
Oh, yum. So first of all, the scent of the dry tea is ridiculously sweet and creamy. It smells like some sort of candy, and makes me seriously question the notion that there are no flavourings involved in this tea. The leaves are very tightly rolled little balls. I used a generous teaspoon for 8oz of water, and that came to about 4g. After several steepings, the leaves had completely filled my little infuser basket. I got a 1/3 c. measuring cup and was able to get all the leaves to fit in there, but it involved a little bit of squishing. Crazy! A lot of the leaves come with a bit of stem attached, which isn’t very obvious in the dry form, so the first time I looked at the steeped leaves I was like “where the heck did all these stems come from??”.
Anyway. The tea liquor is quite a pale yellow, and in the first couple of infusions it has a very milky fragrance; after that it gets milder and more floral. The flavour is amazingly milky in the first infusion especially, but underneath you can tell it’s quite a green oolong – it’s light and sweet and completely lacking in astringency or bitterness. I’m on my… 5th? I think? infusion and it’s starting to get bland so I think I’ll stop (also, that’s a lot of liquid! I’m going to be peeing all night as it is). I steeped for 2min initially, the added 1min for each subsequent infusion. Lovely.
Flavors: Floral, Milk, Sweet, Vegetal
I’m going to have a really hard time describing this one, partly because it was so freaking good and partly because I’m not super great at identifying flavor nuances yet.
First, I thought that perhaps I was tasting the burny outside of a roasted marshmallow minus the sweetness (which totally doesn’t make sense…)
Then, I moved on to imagining that perhaps it was toast …but like…maybe with something on it? Except, I don’t even know what. So unhelpful.
So…I finally caved and read the flavors others had listed here and….maybe it’s sweet potato? Malt was a given, being that it is an assam…but sweet potato is to only other flavor listed that I can attribute the other flavor to. I feel exceptionally bad at writing tasting notes right now.
The main point I’m getting at here is ohmygosh I want to drink this nearly every day. Thank you Tealux/Tealyra/Teawhateveryouwanttocallyourselfnow for making delicious teas.
7 spears for about 10 oz. of water. The result was pretty light in flavour, but quite sweet. It didn’t taste like any oolong I’ve ever had though, without the lovely aftertaste I usually crave. I’ll have to have it again (and/or resteep it) and make more detailed notes, because unfortunately I don’t remember much beyond a bit of mineral and a lot of sweetness, but it was certainly pleasant. Doubtful, though, that it will be interesting enough to get me to repurchase.
ETA: Resteeped it a couple days later, in 90C water, leaving it for quite a while – it actually ended up being quite flavourful, although also more astringent than I’d like. The flavour was really unlike almost anything I’ve had before, and I was struggling to figure out what it was that it reminded me of. I am thinking purple tea? It still didn’t have an oolong flavour, but wasn’t like a green either. Definitely tasty though (I diluted my too-astringent cup with some additional boiled-cooled water until it was at a bearable level). Next time, I’ll try to give it an even longer first infusion (if I remember).
Oh man, now I wish I counted how many pearls I used for my cup! All I remember is measuring out a teaspoon, then adding one pearl, then removing a little one, to make 2.5g. It’s always fun to watch pearl teas unfurl as they steep, and this one expands into what seems like quite a lot of leaf! It has an amazing lychee smell as it steeps. The lychee flavour is quite strong – sweet and juicy and no weird artificial taste. I love lychees (though it has been years since I had a fresh one, boo) so perhaps it’s predictable that I would love this tea. The base tea is malty with a bit of cocoa. Very nice.