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Recent Tasting Notes
Sample from my first Teavivre order! I do love me some blueberries, so fingers crossed!
Dry: This smells like sweet blueberry, black currant, and maybe because I had grape tea earlier – grapes. I’m also picking up a bit of the roselle. It’s sweet, tart, and bursting with fruitiness!
Brewed: The blueberry scent has pulled back a bit, and I’m smelling mainly black currant. Don’t get me wrong,t he blueberry is still there. It’s just not standing out as much. Hints of grapes and other berries are present. It’s more tart smelling this time around, but maintains the sweet scent as well.
Taste: Very tart in the front, and slightly sweet at the back of the sip. I’m tasting more black currant and roselle than anything else. The blueberry is very faint. The grape is gone. I don’t think I’m diggin’ this one. I don’t know if it was me and my brewing or what, but this one is just too tart, not enough sweet. It’s almost sour. =(
I’m glad I tried a sample instead of buying a bag of it. Maybe I just don’t like fruit tisanes? Not something I’d repurchase, unfortunately. Wish it tasted more like it had smelled. Not undrinkable, but not somehting I want to finish, either.
I had a small sample of this when I ordered from Teavivre. Oh… my… gosh… the warm inviting scent of roasted chestnuts hit me when I peeled the packaging open. It brought back memories of me in medical school really getting into teas and trying them! This one was so memorable because I remember watching the leaves become bigger, and it was the first time I saw a large leafed tea! The taste was amazing too! This is a dark oolong and smokey like chestnuts NOT like lapsang souchong.
I used my yixing teapot set for this and shared it with my husband. This teapot is surprisingly big! 16oz! The two 4oz yixing teacups could be filled twice. The leaves expanded to a medium size leaf. I wish I didn’t put them in the tea strainer as to let them expand and dance in the water. However, I thought it would have been necessary since I didn’t have another vessel to place the steeped tea. I can see this tea becoming very bitter if left unattended!
The result was a nice dark brown tea with a toasted aroma. It became sweeter as it cooled more. This reminds me of autumn and the leaves that fell from the trees and dried up. The taste was smooth but at the end of a sip was slightly astringent. There was some cocoa and roasted nuts mixed with honey. Perhaps there were some mild raisin or fruit tones mixed with very mild florals. I love the complexity of this tea. Its as if it holds a secret! There was a hint of earthiness to it, not in the same sense as pu-erh though. I love the warmth to it like a big blanket on a snowy cold day. I absolutely love this tea. It just reaffirms my love for oolong teas… and especially non-flavored teas. This is a wonderful tea. And it is so pure yet so complex.
Its been awhile since I’ve had a pu-erh. I like to take some time with them since you can get so many steepings-16 for this one, according to Teavivre. So today, I have the time, and I’m motivated since my husband used my other sample yesterday, not realizing I was saving it for the right time. I start out in a conventional way using a gaiwan. Following the instructions on the website, I rinse 10 gms twice and start out with quick steepings, as follows: 10s, 10s, 10s, 5s, 5s, 5s, 10s,10s,10s,and 10s. I give my husband some of the later ones and he says, “Now that’s some good tea.” We’re in agreement on that. The first cups taste thick and rich, but all the steepings are nice. After ten 3-oz steepings, I do a final? two minute steeping for my husband with 10 oz of water, which he says still has plenty of flavor-so maybe we’re not done yet after all. The liquor is dark, the color of cola, with a pleasant earthy aroma. Sweet, earthy, and smooth are good overall descriptions, and importantly, there is no fishy taste, bitterness or astringency. So, for pu-erh lovers, or if you haven’t had pu-erh and want to give one a try, get a sample of this one. The pu-erh teas I’ve had from Teavivre do fine with either gongfu or Western style brewing.
I’m not typically a jasmine fan but after this sample from Teavivre I may be a convert. It was incredibly smooth with no astringency whatsoever, and the floral taste was fresh and bold without being overpowering. I had it at work and felt like I had momentarily escaped to a garden tea party. I just wish I had made this in something transparent so I could watch these little guys unravel more and more with each steep. Resteeped twice with just as much flavor as the first time. Another hit from Teavivre.
not so patiently for two weeks for this order to come, it’s finally here!
This tea is gorgeous! It blooms an amazing red color, and the green tea leaves expand beautifully. And it smells really good, too! Slightly floral when dry, with a really nice sweet, almost black tea scent (even though it’s a green). Once brewed the floral notes hit the background, and your left with delicious, sweet, almost wine-like honey notes.
Taste: So, taste wise, this tea isn’t as strong as I might have thought, given the strong, rich scent of the dry leaf and brewed tea. That’s ok, though. I’m still picking up some nice flavors. Some vegetal notes are present, with the nice sweet honey notes throughout. At the end of the sip is a light floral aspect. Overall, though light, this is quite yummy!
To be honest, I wasn’t holding out any high hopes for flowering teas…they looked too pretty to actually taste good. This one, however, has defied my expectations.
Also, I give this one a A for beauty. It’s not as out there as some of the other ones I’ve seen, but it’s simple and colorful. Nothing wrong with that. =)
Can’t wait to try the others!
NOTE: Second steep was a little more floral, but still had some nice honey-ish notes, as well as an earthy aspect I hadn’t caught before. Neat.
I’m addicted to Tie Guan Yin. The first sip is always hard, especially if you brew it more than 6 minutes.
The second sip, mild. but afterwards it will gets hard again.
I’m not preferring sweet inside this tea since it will spoil the tea itself (note this is my opinion).
oolong has quite enormous amount of caffeine.
Tie Kuan Yin is always best served hot.
My 4th review!
Water: 8oz Boiling
Leaves: Dry leaves-Small circles & Wet-The leaves were huge,the biggest tea leaves I’ve seen so far with my brewing experience!
Steep: 3 minutes
Aroma: The scent was the strongest of any of the previous teas made,I was surprised. It took me quite some time to type the aroma,floral.
Color: deep pale yellow
Taste: I rinsed this tea first due to reading that it’s good to rinse Oolong teas first. I did so for 30 seconds then brewed regularly.The taste was light with floral accents despite it’s deep yellow appearance.
I was in a green mood today so I desided to make this for my roommate and I. The dry leaves looked deliciously green and had a sublte smell that I could not really make out. Once they were steeped they produced a medium gold liquid that smelled of a sweet grassy scent.
The first steep went for 2 minutes at 195. The tea is not grassy but definitly vegetal and slightly sweet. It also has a strong bitter after taste that stays on your tounge that might be too much for some people but could be change with less steep time.
The second steep was also for 2 minutes at 195 to see if it kept the bitterness. This time the bitterness was not too overpowering and the taste was more defined by the beautifully vegetal taste. I liked this tea and would drink it whenever I am in a mood for green tea. It looks to me that this tea could go on for a few more resteeps.
My first Teavivre! This came as a lovely surprise in my mailbox from Terri Harplady much appreciated!
I sipped this all morning. I followed the directions on the website for three western steeps. The first steep at 1 minute was quite pale and weak. Steep 2 had a sweet, juicy taste to it. My favourite steep. Steep three was less juiny, but still fruity and I probably could’ve gotten another steep out of it, but my daughter forced me to make cupcakes.
Long, spindly thin black needle-leaves.
Yesterday I steeped a tumbler of this hot, and it was good. In between classes, though, I didn’t have enough time to heat water and wait for it to steep, so I just filled my tumbler with cold water and let the second steep cold-brew on the way to class.
It was so good! There was a beautiful honey-like sweetness that blended surprisingly well with the smoky notes! And any astringency or maltiness had faded, so it was a much softer brew.
Finally got to spend some quality time with this one. I will have review on my blog in a couple days. The first time I fixed this it was tainted by onions from our chili making. The second time I knew I liked it but wasn’t sure how it differed from other Chinese greens. Now I think I latched on to what makes this a winner. The dry leaf smells fresh and green. After steeping the leaf reminds me of stew beef – I love it when it does that. The liquor is nearly clear. The sip starts buttery and veggie then mid sip I catch moments of floral like a green oolong. I have never caught this in a green before. Awesome! Late in the sip it changes back to sweet green. There is no bitterness. I really found this to be refreshing.
I guess I am not done giving rating numbers.
Still not ready to rate or give a full review with this one. I Got rid of the onion power that distracted me on cup one. This is cup two. It has a very nice green vegetal flavor. There is no bitterness. No astringency.
I wanted to try this one to see if I am not a big fan of HuangShan Maofeng or if I just wasn’t deeply moved by brand X’s version. What I know at this point is this is nothing like the previous version I tried. I actually find this one easy to sip. What I haven’t determined yet, is what makes this different and stand out from other Chinese greens. I think that will have to wait until I start with new leaf.
This is another I specifically asked to try. The brew is nearly clear as expected. I let it cool a bit then sip. Onions. What???? We fixed a pot of chili this morning and it looks like my wife (who I love dearly) picked up my cup while chopping onions. Grrrr. So I guess that means I will have to wait to see what this tastes like.
I see that I am not the only one who was lucky enough to try this fantastic tea!
The dry leaves and buds are full with a beautiful strong green color to them. They smell wonderfully of a strong vegital scent that for some reason reminds me of some senchas I have had (maybe thats just me though).
The first steep went for 1:30 at 175. The wet leaves have a strong sweet smell and produced a pale gold liquid that matched the leaves scent. This tea taste slightly nutty and sweet with a strong aftertaste that gave me a warm bite expected of some greens.
I resteeped it for 2 minutes also at 175 and it was just as delicious as the first. I wish I went into more detail here but as I was writing this I was also reading for a class, but that is college. I continued to resteep this tea and it powered through. An absolutly great tea and I would recommend trying this to any green tea lovers.
Testing out a new way of reviewing!
Water: I boiled 8oz water on the stove,then let cool for 4-5 minutes.
Leaves: A beautiful shade of light shade green.
Steep: 2 minutes the first steep. Even when steeping for 3 the flavor is great!
Aroma: I smiled when the scent hit my nose very pleasant,reminded me of Sencha.
Color: Pale yellow
Taste: I decided to make this tea because it was one I haven’t tried from my Teavivre samples. I was preparing to watch one of the Ted Talks. I took a sip this tea is light & very refreshing! It made watching the video that much more relaxing experience.
Today I had one of those meals that seem like a good idea at the time but put you into that i-could-doze-off-at-any-moment haze afterwards. Unfortunately I was at work, so couch sprawling was not an option. I was craving something “clean” and refreshing to perk me up, and decided to go with this sample from Teavivre, mostly because the name sounded pure and cleansing. The smell was very grassy, which made me unsure, but the taste wasn’t at all. It was light and delicate and floral, but still flavorful and full bodied in its own way. Mid-sip a sweetness emerges, but a soft, natural sweetness that satisfies the craving without venturing into dessert tea territory. I don’t think I’d have this one first thing in the morning as it’s very light, but it’s perfect for relaxing. Or successfully emerging from a food coma.
I absolutely LOVE oolongs, and I unfortunately don’t have a lot of them. My tea cupboard comprises mostly of blacks and herbals! I decided to treat myself today with this tea. I ordered 2 sample sizes of this tea a couple of months ago from Teavivre when there was a sale.
I opened the small metallic wrapper and immediately saw the bright, fresh green balls of this leaf with a stem on each one. It reminded me of cooked spinach! It smelled so delightful! It was sweet smelling and vegetal.
I recently purchased a beautiful yixing teapot set! I wanted to use it, but I felt like I should make my first cup with my husband. So another day with that! Wow I really went off topic…
Anyhow, this tea, as with most oolongs and other teas, withstood several steeps. I always watching the first steep because it is beautiful to see how the leaves “dance” in my gaiwan.
First steep: 30 seconds, 190 degrees. The brew was a light yellow color. This one smelled very vegetal, not like nori, but almost like a green. The taste was amazing! Light and airy florals dancing in my mouth. It was smooth like butter! There was a slight sweetness to it as well.
Second steep: 50 seconds. The leaves are nearly unfurled at this point. Brew was a jaundice/neon yellow! This brew was more floral and bolder than the first steep. It is sweet and juicy like a berry!
Third steep: 1 min. This steep was lighter and became more fruity! Delicious! The floral tones were fading more. There was a bit more astringency, but it still went down like butter!
I finally decided that I’m not going to put it off any longer and that I really, really wanted a rose tea. Today is the day I’m trying the ripened rose pu-erh mini tuocha.
I did a few seconds rinse followed by a short one-minute steep with a two minute steep waiting for me in my little red tea pot.
First, the tea is so dark it looks like coffee in my tea cup! I didn’t realize how light the teas were that I had been drinking until this morning, but this settles it. If nobody knew better, they would think I was drinking black coffee. I also enjoyed watching the tuocha fall apart in my french press. The rose on top of it also grew as it steeped which was lovely to look at when I re-filled it for the second steep.
The first steep of this is really, really mellow. It isn’t very strong at all. Instead it is rich and very slightly earthy. Just enough there to remind you that it is a pu-erh. I think the rose might have lightened up the taste, but I don’t taste it yet. Just lovely and smooth pu-erh.
I think if I gave this cup to my Dad he would drink it without realizing that it wasn’t coffee because it kinda tastes similar to it. Less bold than the brand he drinks of course, but it could pass off as a nice morning cuppa to some coffee drinkers I know. And it is so smooth that they could drink it without milk or sugar.
I’m starting to taste a slight malt as I’m reaching the end of my cup. I only brewed enough for one cup with the first steep, so once it is gone it is gone. But I’m really liking this mysterious malty flavor that popped up. I wonder if it will show up in the second steep or not.
The second steep has to be even darker than the first steep. There would be no question about it. If somebody saw me drinking this, they would think I was drinking black coffee out of a china tea cup. I think I can smell a tiny bit of rose with this cup. Just a touch. Maybe the rose will be more present in this steep.
The second steep tastes a lot like the first, but I think I am picking up a floral taste. Everything is blended together so well that I am having a hard time separating one thing from the other. Complex indeed.
There is a slight bitter twang at the back of my throat, but it isn’t unpleasant at all. A very dark taste that lightens up and reminds me of roses. Ah ha! That is where the flower taste really is. I can taste the roses lightly in the sip, but that bitter twang lightens into that smooth floral rose.
The more I sip it now, the more apparent the rose in the back of my throat becomes. This is why you need to be patient when drinking tea and that why we need to slow down to really taste what we are eating. I think I might be in love and I am so glad that I get two little tuochas per pouch.
I might try a third steep later after I enjoy my little second steep pot full.
Thank you for letting me try this Angel and the Teavivre team. I never would have ordered this by myself and letting me sample this has opened up a new world of pu-erh beyond what Numi offers. And I think I like it even better now.