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Recent Tasting Notes
Taiwan Ginseng oolong! I love you I love you I love you. You are delicious. You are addictive. When I make you, I make a lot of you, and I drink and drink and drink.
Tonight I served you with homemade lomein.
Now I asked if there is licorice root powder in this and was told no, and I am sure whoever it was doesn’t know it is there, but it HAS to be there. I taste it, and I have never seen a ginseng oolong that didn’t have at least a bit. I don’t care. I love it.
I tried another ginseng oolong and it was nothing compared to this one. I scoff at it. Buy this one.
Hubby and I drank a whole lot of steeps of this tonight. A single teaspoon in my little glass pot and over a liter of water, and it just kept giving with each resteep. We are drinking this because we love it and also because middle daughter has caught a nasty cough and cold and this tea seems to help me stay well when I feel something coming on.
On a side note, my eldest daughter married her Irish fiancé Friday. We had the wedding dinner at the Pit in Raleigh, NC. I didn’t realize it had been featured on a television show as one of the best restaurants, and it was amazingly reasonably priced. But best of all, the food was unbelievably good. If you ever have a chance, go! My son’s girlfriend is vegetarian and had the barbecued tofu and loved it so much she wants to go back with her mom.
Superanna, my daughter, congrats to you! You have chosen a fine young man who is a great addition to the family.
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!
I didn’t know anything about ginseng when I first tried this tea. I fell in love with the way it coated my throat and tongue, the way the sweetness grew in volume with each swallow, the way the sweet somewhat floral (to me) flavor blossoms, going from a pianissimo on the first sip to forte after the third little “shot” from my Teavivre double walled glass cups.
Subsequent steeps become less ginseng and more oolong. The color stayed a good solid golden shade through all three steeps, and I will probably steep these leaves some more tomorrow.
My guests loved loved loved it! I love it, too, and right now I am wondering how I keep myself from drinking it every day.
I love this tea. Did I already say I love this tea? Because I love this tea!
One of the ladies who didn’t like green tea just a couple of weeks ago said today that she doesn’t like ginseng. I said, maybe give this a try! Several cups later, this tea is on the list of tea she wants me to order for her! The taste of ginseng blossoms in your mouth and you are hooked! Hooked, I say!
Edited to add: I found this link about how it is made. They don’t mention sugar, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t there! This really describes the tea well…lingering floral sweetness, although one person drinking it said she wouldn’t call it sweetness, but rather a cooling sensation, followed by hearty toasted nut flavor. The sweetness really can linger for a while!
I LOVE THIS TEA! And to be honest, I am the only one around here who does! My son said Bleh, my daughter said ick, and my guest today said it was as bad as puerh. LOL! I like puerh. And I love what the ginseng does – that sweet, floral, herbal taste and FEEL that coats the palate and throat! It feels similar to licorice root to me, which the kids also dislike but I enjoy. More ginseng tea, please! This is great!
This is the tea I was most excited about in my new order from Teavivre. I had never had a ginseng oolong. The manager at A Southern Season had recommended theirs to me months ago but I was already buying all I should and didn’t get it. The next time I went, I tried to buy it and they were sold out and didn’t know when they would get more. I was so excited to see it in Teavivre’s website.
I steeped it in my gong fu pot, poured the first steep into a pitcher and immediately resteeped. It was that second steep that I tasted first since I wanted to try each steep separately, not mixing them in the pitcher, and I wanted to pour the second steep so I could go ahead and make a third. I took a sip….roasted oolong. I took another sip…roasted oolong. I was thinking that I really didn’t know what ginseng tasted like anyway when suddenly BAM! On the third sip something sweet blossomed in my throat and along the sides of my tongue. Every sip from that point on was a new adventure in delight. As soon as I finished my little cup, I went to the first steep in the pitcher. WOW! This is great. I am so glad I got this one. Sometimes you get excited about a new tea and then it lets you down. This one has lived up to my hopes. I do get the licorice root-like flavor that Dorothy mentioned. I find it very soothing and it seems to coat the throat.
I am going to have to label this as a favorite of hubby soon. We had it with Asian buffet take out again last night and he emptied the pot before I hardly had any! Then he….yes, HE….resteeped. I don’t know if he has ever made loose leaf tea by himself, but he went in the kitchen and made another pot. He was being sweet to me so I could have seem more, and of course he sat down and had more as well.
It is hard to describe how good this is with food. I am surprised I like it so well with food because it is a mild tea that you would think would get lost under the flavors, but instead it swirls across your palate and tastes so fresh and sweet, like sweet well water. I think this would have to go on the “if I could only have ten teas” list!
I am so glad I bought a lot of this! I made a 22 ounce pot to go with our Asian take out tonight, and had to resteep. Hubby was really throwing it back! Tonight we really went overboard and bought too much food, and most of it is pretty high fat and rich. We realized that we had been so busy today that neither of us had eaten all day – just had a glass of milk. No wonder we went wild when we got our take out!
As I sipped this tea with my meal, it was remarkable how it seemed to wash through the heavy food with a bright, lightly floral taste. I liken it to sunshine! There is a floral sweetness, a bright mineral flavor, and no sour or grassy taste at all. Delicious! The second pot is almost at an end!
I think this is one of the few Teavivre teas I have ordered that I bought “blind” rather than having already had a sample first.
I really shouldn’t be up, but I am hoping to stay up late enough to get some big news and I have had a brutal day working at early voting. I needed a soul soother tea and picked this one.
This is so light and creamy that it reminds me of drinking white tea. It is smooth, never sour, never bitter. The more I drink the more I want to keep drinking, which is good because I had no lunch today and couldn’t even go get water for the longest time. I am so glad I bought this one.
Tomorrow, I am taking a bottle of matcha water to stay hydrated and keep my energy up, because tonight I am seriously flagging.
My daughter and I continued drinking green tea when she and her dad got home from the movie theater. She had never had this one before, so we made a pot and broke out the Milka bars. We never eat a whole one at one sitting, but just off a few squares to enjoy.
The leaves are long, thin, wiry, and therefore impossible to measure in a teaspoon! I put four big pinches in my Stump pot, which makes about 20 ounces of tea, and steeped for two minutes. This gave us a light yellow liquor with mild creamy scent.
The tea is incredibly smooth, and the flavor is very good, but I want a little more oomph. I think I will try increasing the leaves. This is a great tea to go with a meal. It really does have a creamy texture and a very pleasing flavor profile. At times, I taste a mineral/frost quality. My daughter seemed to enjoy it.
This was pre-movie tea for hubby and myself. We went to see The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel at our little local art house theater where they sell gourmet popcorn, wine, and a pretty extensive collection of Numi teas and a fair number of Tazo teas. The movie was pretty good, by the way, and only had one F-bomb, a real feat for an art house movie, it seems!
I made this in my largest pot because we seem to drink a lot of it at a time. It is smooth and sweet, very lightly butter-y, and goes well with food. We had it Sam’s club white meat chicken egg rolls, LOL! Hey, don’t judge, they were pretty good! And the tea went nicely with it.
I found some Kashi flatbread style pizzas at Sam’s club and thought it was something my husband and son would like. It has a whole grain crust with spinach and three kinds of mushrooms. I wanted something healthy to drink to go with our healthy pizza, but it had to be something my son would drink, and he really isn’t a tea drinker other than one or two puerhs.
I chose this one because I think it is great with food. There is absolutely no bitterness and no sour taste. It is a very smooth green with a light butter flavor and a lightly floral/fruity aroma and aftertaste, but nothing to interfere with your meal.
I liked it and drank several cups, and it must have been pretty good because my son finished his cup. I had to go off before we had finished the pot, and I drank the last cup when I got home. It was quite cool, yet still very tasty and still had no bitterness at all!
I am on the second steep of this one, and that is as far as I will get with it for now because I can barely hold my eyes open! So sleepy…
I gave this a two minute resteep and was rewarded with a nicely colored liquor, perhaps even darker than the first steep. The flavor is now lightly walnut-y and somewhat mineral. This is a nice green, very mild but still flavorful and interesting. I will probably mostly pair this one with food.
WE’RE HOME! I love being on vacation, but I also love coming back! I just barely made it to the post office before they closed so I could pick up my new tea. It was so hard to pick which one to try first, but since I am hungry I chose the one that I thought would go best with food.
I can not remember what made me want to order this one. I just looked at reviews and none of them stand out as being the reason. I know a tea shop owner mentioned recently that a Chinese Mao Feng green was his favorite right now, so maybe that had something to do with it.
The dry leaves are long, thin, and light. The aroma is what I would consider to be medium high notes…a little toward fruity/vegetal and not leaning toward darker roasty tones.
The liquor is so so pale! I have used a middle of the road amount of leaf and steeping time. But once it cools enough to sip….oh my. This is going to go nicely with my meal. Soft and milky! The more you drink the creamier it seems to get. I am not getting lots of fruitiness or peach like others did. Maybe my parameters were different. I will enjoy this one just as it is! I agree that if you are a fan of DragonWell, this one is probably right up your alley.
So I requested samples of all three of the Yun Nan Dian Hong and unintentionally started with the most affordable. As such I won’t give this a numerical rating until I’ve tried the full leaf and the golden tips, which hopefully will be today.
However initial observations are that while this is a very good value and has decent leaf, it is not well suited to short steep times, which is fine as I am looking for a Yunnan for my husband who prefers western brewing anyway and I will prepare it for him in that matter. At the moment I am just trying to educate myself on this variety, I’m very curious how my taste buds will react to more tea buds.
This third steep at around a minute is really quite delicious and has much more flavor that the two previous at 15 and 30 secs. I unfortunately have a sore throat today, but this is quite soothing. This is the sweetest of the infusions and it also has some initial spice that smooths out later in the cup. Thank you Angel and Teavivre, I will add more are I do a side by side brewing this weekend with the husband.
I’m at work, gulping down a glassful of this tea.
Pleasant. Malty. Slight fruitiness present, could be more. Thinnish.
This works fairly well brewn in a glass grandpa style.
Colour is beautiful golden brown, as it should be. Leaves are shorter than I would have expected from Dian Hong-
This isn’t very interesting. Not particularly intense, not complex, no notable qi, npt strikingly harmonious.
This is a good, pleasant, casual Dian Hong.
(This is the GRADE 1).
I found this tea to be somewhat bitter. I steeped it only three minutes at just under boiling temperature. Its not a “bad” bitterness, though. It has a nice aroma that seems slightly perfumed, and a subtly smooth mouthfeel. Drinking from a black mug (since my white one broke!) brings out the dark reddish undertones in the liquid- very pretty. For me, this is a tea I might drink as a morning pick-me-up, perhaps because of the slight bitterness. It’s not one of my favorite teas, but definitely not one I’d want to discard. I need to drink it more in order to appreciate its qualities.
I bought a sample sized pouch of this and made a quart of iced tea with it last night. It was probably only enough for really half that, but I let it sit for a nice long time so I think it all worked out in the end.
I feel like this is what that “blueberry merlot” tea from TeaForte should be. This definitely reminds me of a red wine. I was worried I was going to need to add sugar, which I completely forgot and wanted to do while it was hot, but it’s perfect. It’s tart, but not mouthpuckering tart. It could probably use being a little sweeter, but I like it how it is. Definitely tastes like it’s been sweetened by blueberries.
I needed more fruit after having some peach Pinkberry for lunch (SO GOOD.) and now I think I’ve had enough for at least now. I’ll go have my fruit and added sugar to yogurt sugar high somewhere outside!
I’m surprised nobody has logged this one yet. I should probably start with the one without flavoring, but I was more curious to know if all the other milk oolongs I’ve had are definitely flavored. This is the first that has actually been upfront about it.
When I took the steeper basket out, all I could smell was the milky scent. I can definitely say that I’ve never had that happen before.
So then I was worried it was going to be SUPER strongly flavored but it’s not. It does though taste like a couple milk oolongs I’ve had, namely the first one I ever bought from a local shop.
Not really a problem, because I bought 100g of this tea. I like to have the milk flavor last for a couple infusions, as I’m sure it will given the smell of the leaves. First one was very creamy and buttery, with a floral aftertaste.
Second one coming up after I finally call my mom to wish her a happy birthday. Although I may not return because the person who has just moved in above me is extremely obnoxious after two days. So, if I kill him, bail me out with tea.
Oddly this empty threat made him and his buddies go inside. I was getting really mad last night because he dropped something RIGHT above where I was sitting while working on my paper and I nearly had heart failure since I was really into the paper at that point.
Anyway. Second steep. I was distracted on the phone while drinking it, but it really tasted very similar to the first steep. A bit more floral, for sure, but still good on the creamy taste. I can’t help but go with one more for the night now…
Still creamy on the third steep! I think all my other oolongs have probably been flavored just a tiny bit judging by this and what others have said about the unflavored version of this tea.
Though I must say, I love that Teavivre even puts the name of the flavoring company on the product page for the tea. Cool to know!
This tea is fun to watch steep. Not as fun as flowering teas, but close.
This tea is really sweet and chocolatey. It actually kind of reminds me of a mocha. It’s a bit malty too. I’m not getting much of other notes than that. That’s not to say it’s boring. It’s super smooth, and the flavor is really enjoyable.
I imagine this will be good for a couple resteeps since the pearls didn’t entirely come apart. I think this would be really good to have in the morning too! I’m hoping it’ll get me back to working on my paper but I had so much tea arrive today I just want to try it all. A cup of something new per page, perhaps?
I am trying the very last sample of this tea brewing it with the mug style. I have a nice clear mug that I can see my leaves in. I am mostly waiting for the tea to cool down to a drinkable temperature and trying to figure out how to drink it without chugging down the leaves. They are halfway unfurled at the moment and half of them are floating.
The color is a nice clear pale green. It smells wonderfully fruity which I have come to expect. It also smells faintly buttery. I feel like I am doing an experiment in tea leaf reading.
It is very light and delicate. I have a feeling the flavor will get slightly stronger the longer I let it sit. I am learning how to drink tea all over again. I have to keep my lips far away from the leaves as I sip out of my mug and it is starting to look like a forest in there. I will update later as I finish my tea and make more steeps this way.
Edit: It tastes like I’m getting a more of a nutty flavor out of it and it is less sweet than when I steep it in the press. Still delicate and I have no idea how long the leaves have technically been steeping in the water. Almost done with the mug. I might pout some more water on it later because it filled me up.
Try that again…entered this under the wrong oolong.
After my parents decided to do a date night of a movie and snacks after, my fiancee and I decided to go out and have a dinner and game date night. Then we got into the hot tub for a while. When I got back home I brewed another steep of this to wind down for the day.
This is the farthest I have pushed an oolong so far. Four steeps with the last at six minutes. The flavor is still nice, light, and stomach settling. The fruity taste has dwindled but I am still getting sweetness. Instead of the fruity sweetness it reminds me of a slightly saltier dew. Well, not so much saltier as more savory. More like a sweet grassy dew the morning after a rain storm. I wasn’t expecting it to morph like that. It is nice.
I have one more sample packet of this before I am out. I think I am still going to explore green oolongs. I feel like I have discovered a brand new tasty world!