Popular Teas from TeaSourceSee All 181 Teas
Recent Tasting Notes
Tea #8 from Considering a new TTB
This ended up being much more astringent than I had hoped for, perhaps it would be less so with a lower temperature. I opted for 175 because it is preset on my hot water pot, but the recommended temperature on the package was 160 – 180.
Tea #7 from Considering a new TTB
I had meant to stop by TeaSource while I was in Minnesota last year, but ran out of time, so I’m happy to see a few more of their teas in this box that I can try. This spring oolong is a little more toasty than I prefer, I tend to lean more towards floral oolongs, but other than that I don’t seem to have much of an opinion about this tea. I would drink it again if someone handed me a cup, but I wouldn’t order it for myself.
What a disappointment. White tea with peach, sounds delicious right?
My problems with this tea started in right off the bat. Yes there are nice large unfurled leaves, however there are even larger (2 inches+) sticks (plural) and other smaller twigs in this sample. I was willing to over look this because the leaves had a peachy, fresh, floral aroma. Once steeped the leaves took on a creamy quality.
The liquor tastes like fuzzy peaches – the candy- sans the sugar coating. That flavor was so dominant that I couldn’t get anything else from this tea. I genuinely don’t understand it. How can a tea that has REAL peach in it taste so artificial?
Amount: 6 tsp
Water: 750ml at 195°F
Tool: Breville One-Touch Tea Maker BTM800XL
Steep Time: 3 minutes
Dry Leaf Smell: sweet, floral, vegetal
Steeped Tea Smell: sweet, floral, nutty
Flavor: silky mouthfeel, sweet, floral
Liquor: translucent light yellow green
Co woker with the funny nose: must attic smell
750ml at 195°F for 4 minutes
more roasty and nutty
750ml at 195°F for 5 minutes
still beautiful, floral, honey
750ml at 195°F for 6 minutes
Rating: 3/4 leaves
Happy Valentine’s Day everyone (or Lupercalia if you are reading this from Ancient Rome) I hope your day is filled with love and happiness. Since today is all about hearts and romance…and quite frequently flowers, why not look at a thematically appropriate tea? I do love doing thematically appropriate reviews, though I doubt I will come up with a good one for President’s Day.Dark Rose Tea by Tea Source is a delightfully heart shaped compressed block of dark tea. What is dark tea, you might be asking, well in short dark tea (or Heicha) is fermented tea that is not from Yunnan. Technically Pu Erh is still a dark tea, but it is so specialized that it more or less gets its own category. This specific dark tea comes from Hunan and is mixed with roses, my personal favorite flower to have in tea. The aroma is a bit musty, like dry loam and old wood, similar to a forest that has not seen rain in a while. There is also a touch of leather and a very faint and delicate rose aroma.
Sadly upon steeping the compressed tea it no longer looks like a cute little heart, but this is expected. The aroma has become quite rosy and malty with only a touch of loam and oak wood. It is beginning to smell more like a moist forest floor in summer than a dry one. The liquid without the leaves steeping in them have a bright quality with strong notes of rose and sweet malt. It smells heavy and rich, not at all light and buoyant.
The first steeping of the little heart shaped nugget of tea happiness is quite rich and filling. Drinking it makes my mouth feel smooth and full, it is a slightly odd sensation because it also has a sense of weight to it. The taste is at first rosy and sweet, but this fades to oak wood and a mild astringency. The taste reminds me more of a strong black tea than the dark teas I am used to.
Giving the crumbled heart another dunking causes the mild astringency to vanish and makes the already smooth tea even more so, almost making it feel velvety. It does lose the weighty feel and now is just a bright tea. There is only the barest hint of roses and the tea has a finish of copper. I really do think this tea would be great for people who are scared off of Pu Erhs and other dark teas by their earthy quality, but for people who love that aspect it is a bit of a let down.
Flavors: Flowers, Loam, Malt, Wood
I don’t think TeaSource carries this any more. I am about to admit defeat. I think I have yet—in recent memory; this bag has been around a long time—to steep a cup at any time and temp that results in anything but bitterness. I just want it to work so badly—-it’s an Kopili Assam, which I love in black form. I hate not liking a tea!
I don’t personally enjoy darjeelings. This reminded me of a very high quality bud-only green tea I once had in china, with a slight vegetal astringency but generally not overwhelmingly so. This isn’t the kind of body I’m used to, but it’s not something that takes away from the tea either. As a person who normally turns my nose up at darjeeling, this is an excellent tea. I got this as a sample from some other tea I ordered from TeaSource.
Flavors: Flowers, Grass
1st Steeping: Sweet, almost like a very very sweet Dragonwell (Longjing) and kinda looks like it but did not get any honey taste out of this brew, slight chestnut taste. Might have to steep it differently as I have gotten a wonderful honey taste out of a different yellow tea. Really clean tasting, brewed in a small 21oz cast iron teapot.
2nd Steeping: Brewed for 2 min instead of 3 @ same temp. I am getting a hint of honey taste out of it. Still really sweet. Very similar notes and taste as the first brew.
Not the most exciting tea for me personally, but none the less quite tasty.
such a luxury! since the leaves are “scented” from being next to jasmine flowers (as opposed to be infused with jasmine oil), the taste is not overwhelmingly floral. but the aroma is incredible! as the leaves unfurl, the aroma comes out and takes you to a japanese garden. the taste is of high quality japanese green tea with floral notes. make it in a french press and watch the leaves unfurl and savor the aroma as it steeps. naturally sweet. superb hot tea, decent iced tea.
i’m skeptical of blends that combine green, black, oolong, white, etc. this one has mate, oolong, and black tea in it, and my first thought is, “sounds like a year-end blend trying to get rid of all the tea that didn’t sell” i wish they had named this almond instead of chestnut. it smells like almond, and it tastes like almond. not as strong of almond as i would like, however. if i drink a flavored tea, i really want the flavor to stand out, and here, it’s really just ho-hum. it’s nothing better than what you could go buy at the grocery store in tea bags, it’s a perfectly okay, but mundane, cup of tea. so there you go.
I didn’t get the aroma of rose at all – not in the dried leaves, brewed leaves, or the tea itself. This just tasted like a straight pu’erh tea. I got a floral note as I swallowed but no more than any other non-flavored tea.
I’m not really a fan of pu’erh. The smokey/horsey quality was less intense than in the other pu’erhs I’ve tried.
It’s just not my thing and it left my mouth very dry
Received this one in round 2 of the Secret Pumpkin swap from Darby.
The smell of the dry tea is very much like apple cider.
The brewed tea initially tastes quite like apple cider. There is a strong apple taste, its sweet and sour at the same time. I am also getting mulling spices. It doesn’t taste much like tea at all. But sadly, as the tea cools, it looses all of the apple taste. It almost seems like the apple flavour was all sitting on top of the cup and I drank it all in the first sips. The rest of the cup tastes mostly like black tea with lots of cinnamon, there is a very slight apple flavour.
I enjoyed the first few sips but not so much after that.
This is critical of me to say, but this doesn’t taste like any Ruby 18 I’ve had before….which leads me to think that it isn’t a real one. Carries a bitter edge, lacks the complex nature that I’ve enjoyed in the others.
Does have a malty assam side to it…but wouldn’t order this tea again.
Dry leaves are large, dense, and tightly formed. They smell of gentle charcoal baking; sweet, light, and fruity. The darker green you would expect from a “light roast” is perfectly realized in the raw leaves. Once rinsed leaves smell of fresh orchird. Picking standard is three leaves, which grow very dark after steeping.
In the first steepings, you are met with a light yellow-green liquor. The taste is woody with gentle pear and apple notes. In later steepings, orange and hidden melon flavors sneak out in a thick golden orange soup. A fullness in the mouth and lingering fruity sweetness is felt throughout the impressive 15 or 20 steepings possible with the leaves.
However, don’t let this tea’s gentle color fool you; it is chalk full of tannins that attempt to stain your porcelain and the exessesive astringency that comes with them. This can be moderated by careful leaf quantity and water temperature selection. About 2.8 grams of the deceptively dense leaves per 50 ml of high fish-eyes water. Hard breaking of the gaiwan is also necessary to keep down the developing stuffiness.
Overall, an interesting tea that’s hard to work with, but very rewarding once all the specifics are dialed in. At about $20 for 4 oz., I would buy this tea again.
The loosely formed dry leaves smell fruity, sweet, with smokiness. Picking standard appears to be one leaf. Once wetted, the leaves develop a rather peculiar odor, that of dirty dishes and old socks. However, this unpleasantness doesn’t carry into the light amber-green liqour at all. It tastes sweet, fruity (orange and peach?), and goes down smooth. Smokiness is subtle at first, but grows with successive steepings. Slight astringency, subtle at first, but too grows with time. This tea is lighter and fresher tasting in a gaiwan; smoke dominates the profile in zisha-ware, while fruitiness muddles.
Overall, a very tastey tea. It has grown on me since I first got it; I’ll deffinetly buy it again at ~$25 for 4 oz.
this is in the style of pu-erh, but instead of the barnyardy tasting yunnan peninsula, this tea comes from the sweet earthy hunan peninsula. so it’s already better, and then it’s aged 3 years, blended with rose petals, and pressed into heart shapes. hands down one of my all time favorite teas. the rose petals do little more than add a pretty effect and slight floral aroma. the body is so thick, amazing for a tea. the aroma is of sweet black tea. savor the tea, it is slow and luxurious. i don’t add sugar, but you could. it’s borderline sweet enough on its own, but you might want a little bit.
i usually steep it 4 times. 2 minutes the first time, 3 the next time, 4-5 the next time, 10 minutes or more the final time. it is fairly consistent in taste in each steeping this way.
when i first saw this tea, i thought it was some kind of a gimmick, but nope, this is fo’ real. so there you go.