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Recent Tasting Notes
first tea of the day (yes my notes are out of wack) this + maple syrup is always a great time. I just really enjoy the way the flavours blend. Must remember to always keep a stock of this in my cupboard since i seem to REALLY like this one the more i have it. :)
I thought I was making another milk oolong when I brewed this up. Oops! I’m going to refrain from rating this one as it was not acquired directly from Teavivre and then stored in less than idea conditions for a year or so (which I also know is getting old for such a green oolong). So, yeah, I’m going to brew the end of this one tonight and maybe add a touch of honey and have it with dinner. Should be rather good that way, but it’s not one to savor.
First of all, thanks to Angel for the sample! I have been absent from tea for a while now, but with the cold coming in and a much needed stress release from finals, this hit the spot very nicely to say the least.
This tea is really yummy and goes well with reading. I steeped it for 2 minutes at 205. The taste is light and florally sweet, much like how I like an oolong. I kinda want to say it’s what I think a standard oolong is like, but a good quality. This tea would probably sit well with people who do not normally drink oolong or who do not like overly strong oolong.
This is such a tasty smooth tea, my first cup this morning while I was stumbling around at 5:30 am, trying to get ready to go play my Harp for another early morning brunch gig.
I am very patiently waiting for the timer in the kitchen to go ding, yes it goes ding when there is stuff. Today’s stuff is Sushi rice, and by patiently I mean HURRY UP I AM HUNGRY!! While waiting I thought to myself, this is a perfect time for day 2 of Pu Erh week to come into existence.
Today I am reviewing Teavivre’s Ripened Rose Pu-Erh Mini Tuocha. Initially I reviewed this tea about a month ago and stored it in my notebook, but I decided to toss that review out the window (I actually did tear the page out of my notebook) and taste it again using my new Gaiwan. I want to be fancy while waiting for food! The aroma of this little Tuocha is fairly sweet, mixing faint roses with an underlying yeastiness. There are also notes of leather, earthiness, and a touch metallic. It has that slightly fishy ‘Asian Market’ aroma that I associate with Pu Erh (and really is my favorite thing about them) and makes me feel all tingly with anticipation. Time for some fancy Gaiwan action!
The steeped leaves look a lot less like a Tuocha now, as expected, with a little rosebud resting on the top of them, it is quite pretty. The aroma is intense! Rich earthy and mineral notes mixing with leather and heady rose. The liquid (in my little bubble cup, no less) is rosy, earthy, and a touch of that market aroma.
The first steep is a bit bitter, kinda like chewing on leather. It is earthy and rich with delicate notes of rose that smooth out the edges as an aftertaste. The bitterness is not unpleasant, it is not the ‘too many tannins, turn your mouth inside out’ bitter, but the same kind of bitter you find in certain wood. Yes I have chewed on wood, I like tasting random things. It specifically reminds me of oak. As it cools it gets much smoother, almost becoming buttery with a mildly metallic aftertaste.
The aroma on the second steeping is less like leather and more oak and rose, it is very mild and smooth. The taste is also much more oaky and sharp, this tea certainly lets you know it is there in your mouth. There is a slightly mushroom taste as well as a loamy note. The second steep has transported me to an oak forest and that is wonderful.
The third steep’s aroma is bringing in more of the market smell with a touch of underlying sweetness, like pipe tobacco. The taste is a touch milder, still very oaky but with more sweetness, like baked bread and pipe tobacco. Oddly this steep transports me to a Victorian Gentleman’s library, though oddly he has a few roses in his library. The rose sneaks in as an aftertaste and is very subtle.
The fourth is oak and roses and not much else in its aroma. The same can be said of the taste, mostly oak wood with just a hint of roses. There is a slightly metallic aftertaste and a hint of leather as well when it cools.
The fifth and final steep, only final because my kettle is on empty and my rice is almost ready. I am almost positive this tea has quite a few steeps left in it. The aroma is heady roses and sweet tobacco. The taste is very mild, subtle roses, oak, and a hint of loam. As an aftertaste there is a honey sweetness with a hint of roses. I noticed as I was sipping this tea that I started feeling kinda odd, like sitting in a sauna or the like. I am pretty sure this tea is making me sweat out all impurities (does Pu Erh do that?) and it is making me feel refreshed. This was an awesome tasting experience, I certainly must do it again!
15g / 400ml ceramic pot.
Single infusion 8m @ 100C
Tart and fruity. My first fruit infusion and i like it. some black tea mixed in would be nice thou.
It’s been way too long since I had time for a proper tea tasting. After my last note, where I mentioned that a fried was seriously sick, I cough either the mother of all colds, a mild flu, or some combination of the two. I had terrible cold symptoms for over a week, and it only cleared up on the 29th. I couldn’t smell or taste tea properly because of the disease, and the decongestants and fever meds certainly didn’t help me stay awake.
Anyway, today is mostly free, so I’m going to try to work my way through this and maybe another of Angel’s samples today. Thanks again Angle!
I opened the tea and steeped it in my gaiwan for 15 seconds with near-boiling water. The aroma immediately started to fill the room, even though the gaiwan was still covered. It’s a bit overwhelming for me, I’m not used to tea smelling quite that strongly. Regardless, the taste and mouth-feel are both very pleasant. While the flavor of osmanthus is very prominent the vegetal base green oolong is still present to help balance the flavor out. Also, it’s amazingly sweet, much more so than I expect even from a green oolong. The mouth-feel is a nice balance between buttery and the classic high mountain smooth feeling, which works very well with the flavors of the tea to make the experience very relaxing. The whole experience is very delightful, especially after I got used to the aroma. IT wil be very interesting to see how the flavor develops and how long the Osmanthus flavor will remain prominent.
After Action Report
The next two steeps (Because it was really weak after three) were basically characterized by the osmanthus flavor predictably fading faster than the base oolong. By the third cup the flavor was very generic, but most green oolongs aren’t that great beyond 3 anyways, so I guess that can’t be held against it. It’s a very nice tea, it’s just not great.
This is one of my favorite teas, and so delicious on this wintery day.
Buttery sweet potato with orange and pepper. So rich and tasty!!
Going to re-steep for another cup as this one went fast!
I can’t remember what I said in my previous tasting note, and I’m too lazy to look it up right now. Anyway, the dry leaf had a sweet maple-like smell to it that I don’t remember smelling from last time. I also used more leaf than I did last time, though I can’t say exactly how much. The tea came out a nice amber/brown color. This time, the tea strongly reminds me of dried persimmons, which is a total flashback for me because I haven’t had those in several years. Anyway, it’s a very nice tea, but I probably won’t reorder because there are other oolongs that I prefer and I’ve spent waay too much money on tea this past weekend.
I Steeped 4 pearls this morning in boiling water for 2 minutes. It was nice and malty, smooth, light cocoa notes.
I think next time, I might try 5 pearls and see if it brings out more cocoa notes. Has anyone noticed a difference between 4 and 5 pearls?
I’m thinking that I used water that was too hot—at the forefront of the sip there’s a slightly astringent, bold fruitiness. It mellows out until I’m left with a sweet, smooth, malty caramel coating on my tongue. There’s a light floral undertone beneath the sweet that’s quite nice. I’ll lower my brew temp next time to see if I can lessen the acidity. (:
EDIT: Second steep was MUCH better, with the flavors described above, a bit sweeter, and no astringency/bitterness. This would make a wonderful evening tea!
This is just SO good!! It’s smooth, not bitter and it has a subtle chocolaty aftertaste with mild astringency. I could drink it all day long. It’s easily one of my favorite black teas.
I was up early this morning and dying of thirst and it got me thinking. What black tea is delicious yet un-offensive and best without milk? Bingo – these Fengqing Dragon Pearls. I’m sure glad I remembered about these little beauties, they perfected my morning cuppa.
This is another tea from my swap with stephanie
I’ve been in a green oolong mood these days and I have become particular about what I like and don’t like. This oolong is heavy on the creamy texture side, but lacking in complexity of flavor. It was a pleasure to drink nonetheless.
Apparently this is the tea I wanted so late at night! Nothing herbal. Nothing flavoured. Just pure black tea in all it’s delicious glory. Honey and malt and awesomesauce.
I’m starting to get a little low on this one, but it’ll just have to last me. I did a count and I have ~77 teas right now and roughly 67 incoming after this weekend. Some of them are just small swaps from Steepsterites, but I have a few 100g orders coming too! I’m pretty excited – this will definitely liven up my cupboard!
Was in the mood for a straight green while I try (once again) to get started on my last paper for the semester. It is a family case study with regard to health policy, so pretty boring to research and write about. At least to me. :/
Anyhow, I was happy to find one more sample bag of this hiding behind the flavored matcha. I used a little bit less leaf than last time and it is still great. Fresh, sweet, and a bit buttery with that hint of water chestnuts that I like so much- just what I wanted this fine afternoon.
First off, thank you to Angel from Teavivre for the free sample. I got this one as part of the Fall give away that Teavivre did back in September and only now have had the chance to actually sit down and try it at home.
Dry this tea smells slightly floral, but it’s more of a fruit flower scent, with definite hits of honey. There is also a slight vegetal aroma but not so much as to make this tea seem astringent. Overall it’s quite a refreshing scent profile with very little bite.
After a quick rinse I steeped this tea for about a minute, and it gave me a clear orange liquor which smelled like sweet cut alfalfa. This first infusion had a rich, creamy and oh so smooth mouth-feel with a complex flavor profile. Earthy and yet sweet with honey notes. Sweet and yet high fruit notes help bring it all together.
The second steep was 2 minutes long and gave off a pale orange liquor. The aroma profile has become subtle with the honey notes now coming though clearer; it almost reminds me of a clover flower. This infusion has the same rich mouth-feel and creaminess as the previous steeping. Flavor wise I taste honey but it’s not as sweet as before, while the fruit notes have turned citrusy; brighter but still earthy.
My last steeping was 3.5 min long and I ended up with a gold-orange liquor that had very subtle, sweet grass aroma. This last infusion had a lighter mouth-feel but was still creamy and smooth. The flavor profile this time was of subtle honey notes mixed in with a bit of grassiness.
I was really very impressed with this oolong, it was so complex but yet so smooth; a wonderful change from other oolongs that I’ve had in the past.
Another tea from my afternoon with Raritea I have to say, for anyone who hasn’t placed an order with teavivre this weekend, that i am a fan of this particular keemun, which happens to be going on sale tomorrow. :) I adore this one with a splash of maple syrup! I also chose to bring this one with my today because it’s another one that i haven’t had in ages. I was waiting to find out if the box i sent to terri would ever make it before drinking it, since i was ready to split my half of the order again if it hadn’t come back to us. But it did, so now i can enjoy it and bask in the delight of this mildly smokey, delicious tea!
I just finished breakfast: omelettes with Brussels sprouts, leftover crumpled sausage, & garlic. Tony had dilled havarti on top of his, & toast with jelly. I only had the omelette, which was plenty, believe me, but I’m finding myself feeling resentful regarding food today. I want what I cannot have, & it pisses me off. Not at anybody, just really at my food sensitivites & at the consequences of dumb choices on my part recently. There, I’ve vented.
Anyway, breakfast was very tasty, & I’m following it up with this equally tasty smokey tea. It is a sample size, sent to me from Sil, & as a Lapsang, it is the perfect blend of smokiness & sweetness. A little maple syrup would be a wonderful enhancement, but honestly, it’s lovely rich cup as is. Even though I’ve already spent more money on this weekend’s sales than I ever imagined spending, I’m pretty sure I’ll have to stop by Teavivre’s cybermonday sale & get a few things, including some of this!