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Recent Tasting Notes
I bought a beeng of this because it was in the sale and I had heard good things about it. I’m glad I did. The dry beeng is warm and inviting with a grassy aroma. The tea, when brewed, is mellow, with a slight tongue puckering astringency that I really liked. I should note at this point that I was destruction testing this tea and brewing it western style per the instructions on the packet. I would not normally make it that strong or brew it for that long. Anyhoo, the astringency was quite pleasant with no hint of bitterness. The tea was earthy, mellow and slightly grassy, and I really enjoyed it.
I really, really love Teavivre’s Keemuns.
For the sake of transparency, I’m technically drinking a Keemun Grade 1.5 tonight, as it was a mix of remaining samples. But I like 2 better, so that’s where it’s getting logged. Nyah nyah nyah.
I drink this, and it pretty much cements in my mind that there’s no real need for Lapsang Souchong in my life. This keemun is rich and smokey, absolutely deliciously so, but without that really heavy smokey pine flavor. Which, all being said isn’t that bad (at least not Teavivre’s version), but is nowhere near as pleasurable as the just slightly smokey flavor of the Keemuns.
Missy’s awesome, she’s letting me finish off the pot because I like this so much. I’m totally drinking more than my fair share on this one… nummy nummy.
I have been waiting with great anticipation for my Teavivre samples to arrive. Though they actually did several days ago, with my recent accident I’m still less than mobile and my poor wife must do the running for two; on top of her very demanding schedule. And how do I repay my wife for her sacrifice…I stay up and drink the first sample without her. Hey, hey,… before you start hating on the Davyboy, Angel sent more than one of this selection that she actually suggested to me in my first week here on Steepster. Not only is the sample pack more than I expected, but when she first returned my PM (many of you know I offer a standerd hello with all follow/return follows) she openly offered to let me try her tea. Me being new she made several suggestions to present me some variety, yet still within what I described as my preferences, and then even sent a PM to inform me that she saw by tracking the package that it had arrived and was ready for pick-up. How splendidly thorough is that!
The sample didn’t give me a strong indication of the dry leaf smell, though I won’t hold it against it. After getting the liquor to a bright yellow with a tinge of red I was better able to secure a sniff of the leaf; it’s floral, almost fruity. This same floral note is one of the first things I noticed at first sip. Floral and light with an initial buttery mouthfeel that regretfully subsided half way through the cup. There’s an ever so slight vegetive note with just enough presence to give it a juicy feel as well, yet not too green or grassy. The combination of the light airiness of the drink and the delicate sweet notes that hint at floral and fruity, yet without wholehearted commitment, culminate into a refreshing easy drinker.
I look forward to my next meeting with this tea to see if I can learn anything more from her the next time around. It’s a pleasing tea that I would suggest to a new oolong drinker without hesitation and yet would share with another more acquainted with oolongs as well. I thank you again Angel and know that you’ve gained a future customer.
tunes-Buddy Guy=Five Long Years/Rememberin’ Stevie(Ray Vaughn)/Feels Like Rain/Every Girl I See/Ain’t That Lovin’ You/Where The Blues Begins(w/Carlos Santana)/I’ve Got Dreams To Remember(w/John Mayer)/Baby Please Don’t Leave(groovy song).
First of all, I appologize for how long it’s been since I last made a post. My allergies (dust mites) decided that last weekend was a great time to act up, so I’ve been suffering the effects of a severe head cold, but without the benefit of my allergy meds (which were left at home…). Byt the time a acquired my meds, and the three days that it took for them to become effective, a week had passed. If I had had the meds on the first day, that would have been hte end of it, but since this only happnes twice a year, I tend to forget about it after 180 days…
Anyway, now that I got that small rnat out of the way, on to the tea! I actually used my larger mug to brew the tea, and transfered it into my usual drinking mug. I let it sit for 15 seconds before the transfer, and actually managed to pour it all out without spilling anything. After letting it cool for a while, a took a sip and was immediatly reminded as to why this is one of my favorite teas. The sweet foretaste quickly transitinos into a delightful sweet ginseng, with the flavors almost perfectly balanced. The contrast is what really makes this first infusion special, since the bold flavors seems to dance arround your mouth before settling onto the roof of your mouth and the back of your throat. the aftertaste is kind of hard to describe unless you had Verdant Tea’s Orchid Oolong from about a year ago, since it’s almost the same, but not quite as good, but it’s still delightful to experience. This flavor lingers for several minutes, and reasserts itself every time you breathe in. Truly a unique experience.
Second cup, same temperature, 10 second infusion. It is a lot less sweet in the fortaste now, but the sweetness returns a lot for the aftertaste. The middle of each sip turns a bit lackluster, where the flavor seems to wane a lot, but it reasserts itself a lot for the aftertaste, which makes everything okay. Hoinestly, this tea starts at the peak of its flavor, and slowly fades into mediocaty. While sad, I realize that not all teas are like puerh, where you can get interesting flavor development for hours.
Backlogging from last night: We skipped a week doing our Chinese buffet take out so I was especially ready for it last night. For less than twenty bucks we got six meals, and enjoyed really good tea with it instead of dining in and having…water, because I am NOT taking their bagged black Lipton! LOL!
This was my tea of choice. This is the most soothing, delicious, smooth green tea with the most beautiful jasmine aroma. I was getting a little anxious that I might use up my favorite jasmines, but at last one of my orders has finally arrived in New York, so I could prepare a pot of this without fear of running out too soon. The one I ordered first is still showing as being in Hangzhou. Hmph.
Hubby used to drink just sweet iced tea, then started loving hot Tetley with milk and sugar and sugar and sugar, LOL! I watched him last night down a cup of this and reach for the pot and pour another. He has found a number of greens that he really enjoys and I am soooo glad! This is kne he really likes. He still doesn’t know the names of the ones he likes. I just have to keep track!
One of several teas I shared with my friend Michelle at our tea date today, thank you to the other Michelle for the sample! We had this after Verdant’s Taiwanese Orchid Oolong. They are a bit similar though this was a bit mellower and less smokey/charcoaly and the sensations in the mouth were less intense. Still this is very very nice, it starts out subtler but in a later steep this evening it left a cool coating on the sides of my tongue and roof of my mouth. I have been wanting to try this one for awhile and it is actually my first ginseng oolong and it is already a favorite. I’m glad I only used half the sample so I can enjoy this another day when it is not following the intense orchid oolong, that many describe as being ginseng-like.
so just a brief summary of my past week
so as alot of you probably do not know i am an avid mountain biker
so on friday last week me and a couple friends decide to go biking on the local hill
so since there is no lift we ride our bikes up switchbacks in order to get to the trails
so me and one of my friends started biking up and we got to the very top and then rode back down a little bit to meet up with two of my other friends
we met up with them and started down the trail
i like to kick up the rear so i waited a little bit before following after them
i very easily caught up to one of my 3 friends and passed him
i caught up to my next friend an stopped for a little bit to wait for the friend i had passed and then kept on going
i go to a place where the trail split into 4 parts and i was not sure where they had gone so i waited for my other friend to show me where to go then started biking again.
this is where it gets a little gruesome/interesting
my friend was 50 metres behind me and we were talking and riding and i hit a rock and my feet slipped of my pedals and i sacked myself very hard.
if your a guy you know how it feels so i hopped off my bike and started hopping around in pain. eventually the pain subsided and i hopped on my bike and kept going.
30 seconds later i felt a liquid in my pants and i screamed to my friend behind me " hahaha i pissed myself"
i looked down
there was blood all over my jersey and all over my shorts.
(since i am a downhill mountain biker not alot of things scare me but this
this scared me)
i told my friend and we decided it would be best to keep going out until we got on the road.
i called my dad and he picked me up and took me to the hospital. it was a very short wait at the hospital and then i went into a room
ill skip all the disgusting details and get to the point
i ended up rupturing my urethra and i have to wear a catheter for a month which means no biking for a month
now to the tea
i stepped out of my comfort zone today as i am not a big fan of black teas
i brewed this one up and the smell of honey hit me instantly
steeped it for 3 minutes and its a browny reddish liqeur
i took a sip and its good
the thing i dont like about blacks teas is the sharp taste and maybe thats because i do not drink alot of black teas
i have yet to learn how to distinguish the flavor notes in a tea and that is something i will have to work on
in all a really good black tea
thats my story for the day
The first few times I tried this one I can’t say I was a fan, however after returning to it, it seems to have mellowed out a bit.
Let me explain: I had tried this type of tea once before and it was delicately sweet with hints of citrus so I was expecting something similar. But when I took a sip of this one I was immediately hit with a salty smoke taste that brought to mind smoked meat (if anyone wants to make a bacon-inspired tea perhaps this would work well as a base…). Now, some people might like this flavor in a tea, but I’m not one of them.
This time however, after my sample had been open for several months, the salty smoke was much less prominent and now I see what everyone is saying about the light “miso” thing. While the tea is now much more palatable, it’s still not really my thing (though I do love miso soup!) but to each their own.
Holy Hannah, these are huge. I expected pearls, not marbles – and I am in love. Taste and smell aside, these things are beautiful. I requested a sample of these a few months back and Teavivre graciously obliged…then they somehow ended up in a strange place and never got used. My bad. Teavivre, thanks again for the sample – I’m so in love with the look that as long as they taste halfway decent, I’ll be ordering more (and some Bailin Gongfu!).
I used 4 marbles and steeped them in nearly boiling water for 3 minutes (my standard black tea steep setup). The liquor is amber, but lighter than many black teas. The aroma is bold, reminds me of cigarettes/cigars. Typically that would be unpleasant, but this isn’t. It’s like the sweetness of tobacco mixed with something musty and rich. Old leather? There’s a hint of “ashtray” which I don’t like, but hopefully that’s just a smell.
First sips are rich, very rich. Like very dark chocolate, sans sweetness. There is a smokiness in the taste which probably explains the “ashtray” aroma I was getting earlier. It is mild, but very there. Reminiscent of a campfire with dark chocolate smores. Now, typically I don’t enjoy smoke or dark chocolate, but this is working for me. It’s very smooth, there is no bitterness, nothing with bite. It is very different from other black teas I’ve tried, but I think this is something I want in my cupboard. I don’t think of it as an every day tea, but I could totally get a hankering for this.
I’ll need to try it a few more times (and get the beau’s opinion too) but I think this is definitely something I should order. I’m running low on good plain black tea, so I should stock up. Right?! : )
I’m on my fourth or fifth pot of this and am absolutely in love. I opened one of the little packets it came in put it all in my steeper and just kept brewing pot after pot. I’ve been brewing it for less than a minute each steep, since that seemed to work best for other steepsterites and it still hasn’t become astringent! While I don’t taste the honey much, if at all, I love the taste of the oolong. It’s rich, but not overpowering, and just gives a wonderful soothing sensation after drinking. Once I run out of all the oolong samples I bought from Teavivre I will definitely consider buying a larger amount of this one. yum yum yum. Even all my roomates liked it, and they don’t drink much tea.
This is such a lovely oolong and is definitely everything that a good oolong can be. In a fit of clumsiness, my tea strainer decided to burst open, so I had to strain out my cup of tea so I wasn’t drinking sludge. I was able to get a good strong 5 steeps from this over the course of the day. Delicious!
I’m sitting in Starbucks, freezing because they have the AC on to an unreasonable level for it only being 20C outside, drinking this wonderful tea to help warm me up.
I love that this tea does not require a lot of attention to astound me, unlike some delicate unflavoured teas.. whites in particular require a lot of attention to me in order to grasp flavours (except the recent TTM Monkey Picked White). Does anyone else find this with certain teas?
Either way, I am working on a few essays at the moment and this tea is a perfect accompaniment to the process, like a lovely warm companion who is there for support when you need it. It does not distract me by being high-maintenance to grasp flavours, but rather shows its support by surprising me with lovely umami flavours upon a malty background.
I could ask for nothing more.
This isn’t my first pu-erh but it might be my favorite, I’ve had the mini aged tuocha from Teavivre as well, which was far darker and of course more condensed then this loose leaf.
The first thing you’ll notice about this tea is how fragrant it is, and the light golden leaves, I steeped my first batch in an cast iron teapot; at about boiling for three minutes, its kinda neat how black those lightly colored leaves turn, the hot water seems to release something in them, its by far and again the blackest tea I’ve ever seen. (Including the Pu-erh toucha’s) the leaves come out of the steep pitch black/brown.
The tea itself when piping hot has a sweet aroma with a little hint of iodine, which gives it a slightly fishy taste, not in a bad way, just sort of like really good sushi, as it cools down this taste seems to disappear, replaced by something like burnt molasses and hay, at the very end there’s a copper aftertaste, again not strong, as long as you don’t mind the odd flavor at the start and end, which in fact I enjoy, its an amazing tea, with that earth warm body that I’ve grown to love with all the dark teas from Teavivre.
It might be a little strong or a little scary as someone’s first pu-erh, a flavored would be better suited, but if your feeling adventurous, or like a tea that’s black enough to put most coffee to shame, then I recommend getting this, or at least just a sampler, its amazing.
I think I’m discovering that my tastes lean towards the darker teas (though I’m yet to order any samples of puerh—I’m afraid of it!). But that’s not to say that I haven’t enjoyed all of the greens and whites I’ve had. I haven’t had that many oolongs yet; this may be my third or fourth one. Descriptions I’ve read of Dong Ding in general and of this one by Teavivre sound delicious.
As usual, I’m following Teavivre’s recommendation of steeps of 1, 2, and 3 minutes with boiling water. I’m using the whole 7g sample package for 200-250ml.
1st steep: Opening the package I found lovely scents of gardenia that remind me of my mom, sweet grass and a buttery note. The wet leaf is amazing: I found it hard to keep my thoughts together as the scents raced around, full of cooked greens, heavy white florals, a light vanilla (but only just), and then butter, butter, butter! I could not believe that a tea could have this much butteriness just in the wet leaf, let alone the liquid! In the cup it was a pretty pale yellow, very smooth feeling and maybe a little oily. There was a very slight bitterness, but that seems really fitting with the flavor full of buttery greens and white florals that are lighter than in the wet leaf.
2nd steep: It’s hard to pour the right amount of water in the pot this time because the leaves take up so much more space in the infuser, so there’s probably closer to 250ml or maybe even more. Despite extra water, the tea is darker now as a nice light sunshine yellow. The flavors are also more equal now between the buttery greens and the white florals, but the florals really linger in my nose. Lil’ Miss is watching her shows now, but even with Postman Pat and Peppa Pig on, I manage to feel a little refined while drinking this on the couch.
And once again, the day took over and I never got to a third steep.
Time for an oldie but a goodie! I’ve only tried this milk oolong (or any milk oolong for that matter) on one other occasion. It was delightful!! And I believe I even forgot about it at one point and let it steep for an hour or two and it was still good!
I’m definitely in the mood for oolong, so I picked this one out of my stash, set the tea kettle to boil, and pulled up my favorite application, Word! Today is going to be the day of exclamation points, I can just tell. ;) I can hear the water beginning to boil, and I’m getting super excited!! I’m going to try the first infusion at 1.5 minutes.
It really feels great to be drinking tea and blogging again. It’s very relaxing. And God knows I could use some relaxation after the non-stop dishwashing tour I went on this afternoon. Stupid dishwasher is broken. The maintenance guy came in, looked at it for 15 seconds and said it’s irreparable. On top of that, they don’t have any replacement dishwashers in stock. So, I’m on my own for the foreseeable future.
Thank God I’m leaving this ****hole in a month. It’s just one thing after another. Earlier this week, I went to check the mail and my key didn’t fit in the mailbox. I went by the office and they said they “accidently” changed the lock. What idiots. Seriously, who does that? Ugh.
So yeah, I could use a nice relaxing cup of tea. Mmmm, this is a yummy first cup! It’s sweet and floral and very honey-esque. I’m going to have to take the second infusion to go because I’m off to meet my fiancé, father, and step-mother for dinner. Although it wasn’t a whole lot of time to relax, this tea definitely settled my Ch’i. I’m feeling good!
Thank you so much Angel! Teavivre is just AMAZING! :D
I’m alive, lovely people! I’ve been drinking tea, but mostly bagged, and just quick in between classes or on the weekends. But I’m here! :D
This one…I smelled milk with the dry and steeping, and it’s a nice smell.
The taste is one that I can’t place, to be honest. I’ve got some milk in there, a creamy flavor, and another flavor, kind of floral flavor. It’s…really yummy, but I can’t give it a name.
It’s really good, and I’m going to try it with cream, even though I always feel like I will ruin certain teas with cream.
This tea is really yummy, floral, creamy, just lovely. I am sorry I don’t have a lot of nice descriptors for this tea, but it’s great!
I’ve been holding off trying this sample because I’ve just been a bit afraid of it. I don’t know why; maybe it’s the legend this tea has created for itself, high expectations that my yet-learning mouth doesn’t want to dash in its immature tasting abilities. Maybe the Southern Girl predeliction for sweet teas in which I am trying to re-educate myself.
I used half of the sample pack, and that worked out to be about 2tsp for 200ml. I followed Teavivre’s recommendation of 1, 2, and 3 minute steeps.
1st steep: The wet leaf smells of cooked and subtly sweet vegetables, kind of like zucchini, with some toasted notes. I like toasted notes. With this shortest steep, it’s the palest of mint greens in the cup, and it has a thick, broth-like feel in my mouth. One of the kids did something, or made some sort of noise that made me look quickly in that direction while I was lifting the cup to my mouth, and I ended up missing. As it rolled down it honestly felt like a milkshake, albeit a warm one, on my chin. Now that sounds like I’m a dribbler. I do not currently need someone on hand to mop me up. But my imagination tells me that’s what it feels like to dribble a warm milkshake. You can stop shaking your heads. It’s the truth. The taste is very much like the wet leaf scent. I’m liking this!
2nd steep: A little darker color in the cup, more a pale yellow-green. And the same flavors only stronger this time, but a light orchid flavor comes out as the cup cools. This is really very nice!
Unfortunately I didn’t get to the third steep. Evening came up with everything it brings for me to do. Next time I’ll make sure to get all the way through! Looking forward to it!
Much more tart than the other blood orange-type herbal I had! But I am liking it.
This one had a lot more bite than I was expecting (the smell from the dry tea I had wasn’t terribly strong), but as I’m a fan of oranges and citrus flavor, I do enjoy it. I tried it hot + unsweetened, hot + sweetened and then iced + sweetened. I think in the end, I prefer it much more as a tangy hot drink than a sweeter iced one. The sharp taste was almost comforting when warm.
I did 6 steeps: rinse, 40s,1m10s,1m30s,2m,2m20s,3m in my gongfu pot today.
Using this brewing method, I find that the jasmine is much lighter and it seems like the green tea isn’t as strong. But it is less sweet somehow. The jasmine remains delicious and not overpowering. However, I do prefer the western brewing metod for this tea.
I can’t wait for my first order to come from China! These pearls are in the order!
I brewed this in my little gongfu pot today.
I did 7 steeps: rinse,25s,35s,45s,55s,65s,75s,85s.
It took longer for the creamy taste to develop using this method. And it seemed to be more vegetal when prepared this way versus western brewing. It is still buttery and floral. And definitely enjoyable. However, I think I do prefer the western brewing method with this particular oolong.