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Recent Tasting Notes
I swear I had already logged this one before… mmmm. Anyway. I’m in a FML day. I only had 45 mins of sleep, so I’m going to be drinking this one ALL DAY LONG
It isn’t my favorite, but it is good. It has a slightly creamy chocolate body and sweetness. But it has a vegetal/bitter aftertaste that I’m not a big fan of. Great tea for work though!
I read Azzrian’s review of this tea and it was a little different than my experience, though equally cool. I got the ale taste. She got tea drunk. If any of you woke up with a bad headache this morning – blame us.
I decided to have another go at it today. This time I am not getting the sweet potato that Azzrian noted (and which agrees with TeaVivre’s description). I am also not getting the strong yeast and ale that I noted yesterday in the first cup. Today this is more malt, bread or grain, and honey. It is still very good and so mellow, but I must admit I was looking forward to repeating yesterday’s experience.
I am trying to figure out what I did differently between the 2 days. Both days I used my press, 1/3 of the sample packet of leaf, 12oz water heated to 185d, steeped 2 minutes, and added sweetener. The only difference I can see is before I prepared this yesterday, I removed a few leftover dried up leaves of a highly floral oolong from the press. I then took a brown paper towel (the ones you often see in public washrooms for hand drying) got it wet, then wiped down the press to make sure there were no floral scents left over. This always leaves the press smelling a bit like the wet paper towel. I did not wipe down the empty press today because I was using the same type leaf. I have never noticed the towel affecting the taste before.
If that is not the difference then it was just one of those magic moments that happens every now and then that you cannot repeat. It’s all good, because this is a wonderful light Fujian with tremendous aftertaste. The aroma of the wet leaf is calling. Time for round two.
Round two is same as yesterday chocolate malty yum.
I have no idea what ginseng is supposed to taste like, but I really like this tea! It’s sweet, vegetal, roasty, seaweed-y. This is a nice change up from what I’ve been drinking lately! I can’t decide if this tea is more vegetal or roasty; because of the sweetness I’m leaning towards vegetal. However, most of the green Oolongs I’ve tried were also quite floral. This is not the same- the sweetness could be a floral taste I suppose. Oh, who knows. This is what happens when I try to describe a new oolong, ESP Oolongs! I just confuse myself!
Sum up, this is nummy. Thank you TEAVIVRE for this delicious sample!
I used a heaping teaspoon worth for my 12 oz cup.
Steepster is telling me that I haven’t had this since June! Boy, I have missed this tea. That familiar smooth, malty taste with slight chocolate notes. So comforting on this cold COLD COLD day. It is -45 degrees C with windchill today. I was going to run some errands today. But, I think I will just stay home and enjoy multiple steepings of this tea instead!
I am so glad that I ordered 100g of this tea to enjoy, this is one of my favs for sure!
So after reading the review KS just did I had to go look to see if I had a sample of this from my last order with Teavivre and lo and behold I DID! Yay!
Full review on http://sororiteasisters.com/ on Feb 9th but here are my snippits:
Superfine Tan Yang Gong Fu Black Tea from Teavivre offers quite a different experience. It has a lot of the same flavor notes that one gets from a Fujian black tea such as sweet potato, malt, and cocoa but Superfine Tan Gong Fu is much lighter both in flavor and mouthfeel.
As I sipped on this tea I found myself so relaxed, and spaced out that I checked my blood sugar (I’m type 1 diabetic) just to be sure I was not running too high. High blood sugars often mimic a spaced out state of dizziness and being sleepy. My blood sugar was perfectly fine. Outside of aliens having zapped my brain I am pretty sure it was the tea. I have had tea highs before, generally with pu’erh but now and then I get it in other leaf types. This is one of those times.
Superfine Tan Yang Gong Fu Black Tea
Sample provided by TeaVivre. I opened the package and took a deep whiff. It is like sweet fresh dried tobacco with maybe a hint of fruit. I want to say cherry but that may be because when I smell tobacco it reminds me of my grandfather and his cherry pipe tobacco. He always wore work pants, even after he retired, and a white v-neck T-shirt. He had his pipe in one hand and a glass of ice tea in the other – always. He also had a bottle of Maalox (antacid) next to him that he chugged like milk but we won’t talk about that.
He loved to watch the Flintstones. No, it was not because of he had grandkids he just loved the Flintstones. He also had a battery operated toy train engine that you put on the floor and when it hit something it backed up and turned, taking off again in a new direction. He would sit and laugh at that often. Even as a kid I didn’t understand how he got that much pleasure out of a simple toy. The train doesn’t work anymore but I still have it.
Ok, back to this tea – the leaf is thin twist curls of varying shades of brown. It reminds me of my wife’s needlepoint thread and is quite pretty. I used a generous scoop and steeped per the instructions of 185 d for 1-2 minutes. Once again it just seems all wrong for a black tea but TeaVivre has never led me astray so I am trusting them.
The resulting brew is lighter than most black teas. It is deep golden brown or almost bronze. The wet leaf smells of toasted caramel.
I took my first sip, put the cup down and walked away for a moment. I returned, picked it up again and sipped. My mind is trying to reboot. I saw on the label this is a Fujian tea. So I am expecting a certain flavor profile, yet this is altogether different this morning than my preconceived idea.
I am tasting yeast, lots of yeast. I am getting grain, barley I think. My brain keeps saying beer, no its ale. This tastes like ale without the bubbles, scratchy throat, or hangover. I did add sweetener, and that may bring out these flavors. As the cup cools it turns more towards heavy malt, which is what I expected from this tea.
Cup two at two minutes. I can’t wait to read other reviews on this one. Now this has become a light chocolate malt. A smooth and creamy chocolate malt. Mmmm. I might use that description on a half dozen other teas but this one taste different. It is simply a mellow delight.
Tuesday is Ike day, the day we keep Ike the puppy for my friend. When my friend comes to pick up his dog we often tea. Until recently my friend had only had Lipton black tea, hot with with milk and sugar. He has enjoyed puerh, smooth black teas with no additions, and oolongs, so I tried this one out on him today.
A loaf of bread was just coming out of the oven, so we paired the tea with hot bread and butter.
I love the lingering aftertaste, like exotic flowers at the back of the swallow, blooming well after the sip and staying for quite a while. My friend liked the tea but said he couldn’t taste the floral note much, probably due to being a smoker. A big surprise to me – after he got home he texted that his blood pressure was 127/88. This is phenomenal for him, as he has spectacularly high blood pressure and is about to have kidney surgery in an effort to lower it since his meds are not controlling it well anymore.
I would have thought that ginseng would raise, rather than lower, blood pressure, but it didn’t have anything to do with the tea at all.
I love this one, and since my tin is half empty I plan to reorder on Friday!
This is a sweet and gentle little dragonwell; safe to drink in the evening.
(Just sniffled my way through Downton Abbey Season 3 Episode 4. I wonder what kind of tea Carson serves when…well, you know…happens.)
(Late to see it because weather messed up PBS reception last night and we got the dreaded NO SIGNAL signal. Put me in a vile mood all day until I could get my fix online. That’s just kind of pathetic, huh?)
I forgot I even had this. And – lo and behold – I finished the whole thing in a two day’s stretch. The pots I brewed of it turned out perfect – smokey, sweet, and…nostalgic?
Hard to explain.
It was accompanied by several other “finali-teas”, which I had to expand upon here: http://steepstories.com/2013/01/29/a-week-of-lasts-finali-tea/
Point being, sometimes a perfect pot o’ tea is the perfect omen for a week of goods and bads.
Very nice. I think people who favor green tea, but want to venture out to more black teas would really like this one.
1st steep- very mild, vegetal like green tea.
2ns steep- more of the maltiness of traditional blacks.
3rd steep- still very dark, a slight astringency coming through this time. But still getting a bit of the vegetal.
Steeped this at the same time as another Jasmine pearl which I shall not name here.
The initial aroma from the other pearl was more evident (tho the scent was stronger from this package than from the other one)
I left both teas steeping until I finished sipping them.
This Jasmine pearl had a deeper color liquor and stronger aroma. But it was not too strong for me. It was: just right!
The flavor was perfect too! I also love that it was super smooth…
Thank you Kasumi and Teavivre (samples from them arrived at the same time and Kasumi’s was a surprise! shouldve picked a different tea to sample from Teavivre, hahaha)
will report on resteeps later
Day two with the same leaf… petals… flowers, ummm whatever this is. The second cup is darker in color. Still very see through but with a golden green tint. This has no bitterness. It still makes me think white tea with its melon and light cucumber notes. I thought this last night but wasn’t sure until today – this has a cooling effect making my lungs feel more open. My wife is going to try it later since its caffeine free. It didn’t work as a sleep aid for me like chamomile but it doesn’t pump more stay awake in your veins either. I’m am ready to commit to a rating. I like this.
My husband (an oolong fan), and I received a sample of this premium Oolong (October 2012 harvest). My husband asked me to order more, telling me it was the best Oolong he has ever had. It has the floral aroma and taste you would expect from a high quality Tie Guan Yin. It has a clean, refreshing finish. Very nice.
New Samples from TeaVivre! Woot! Not going to rate this until I get to fix it without the microwave. I quickly looked at the picture and thought what came out of the bag would be hard like nuts. Nope. It’s real soft. I steeped with below boiling water for maybe three minutes. The resulting brew is pretty clear. It has a little bit of honey color but not much. I’m wondering will this have any flavor? But of course. The website says it has a persimmon aftertaste. I was expecting closer to chamomile. It does not taste like our persimmons and definitely not chamomile. What I got is something very similar to white tea. Subtle but deep. Even prepared poorly I like this. If I were to rate it I would say mid to high 80’s. Don’t fear the Herbal. Need more cowbell?
It is raining, but the rain is freezing is freezing instantly on the car, the steps, the bridges….
Nevertheless, we ventured out for our Friday evening Asian Buffet take out. For several weeks I noticed that hubby now likes green tea so much that I have to go resteep halfway through the meal. Last week I decided to start making the resteep right away and pouring all the tea into my large tetsubin on a warmer. It works out great! We both drink as much tea as we want.
Teavivre’s jasmine offerings are the best jasmine teas I have ever had. This is what I consider to be my budget jasmine, as it costs a good bit less than the pearls. With food, you can tell little difference and I save my Premium and Superfine Downy Pearls for solo sipping.
Even with a first and second steep combined, the tea is a rich, golden color. The instructions say to use one to two teaspoons per eight ounces water and one to two minutes. I used four teaspoons for a 22 ounce pot and resteeped immediately for just over one minute. What a fantastic company!
This tea was delicious- very smooth and sweet, as well as floral and light. It seemed to have a stronger taste of jasmine than other jasmine dragon pearls I have tried, which I enjoyed very much. This is a good tea for any time of day, and I would highly recommend it.
I’m finally getting around to opening up this sample so graciously provided by Angel at Teavivre.
It’s really cold outside, and I was looking for a tea that would be clean and clear and very light. I’ve had this one for awhile, so I decided to try it.
Upon opening the package, the leaves are very thin, long and twisted. They have a strong dark green scent, like that of spinach or kale, and they’re the dark grey-green of kale as well.
I put ~2tsp into my 20oz Amsterdam pot, steeped at 180 for 2 minutes.
The liquor is transparent. It looks like nothing more than water. The smell is similar to the kale smell of the leaves, but it is very faint.
The flavor, however, isn’t. It’s not a strong, punch-you-in-the-face kind of flavor, but this definitely isn’t water I’m drinking. It has that sweet grassy sort of taste I like in green teas, with a little bit of natural vegetal sweetness that sparkles towards the end of the sip. It’s a little bit like seaweed, to be honest.