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Recent Tasting Notes
Sandy and I are making our way through some more delightful teas today.
This is the first high quality flowering tea I have had. I bought some at Southern Season and some at a tea room over a year ago and it was faded both in taste and color. I threw the reminding ones away. They were that bad. I had hoped to serve them at special events, but the tea was so flavorless and the show so lackluster that I discarded the idea.
This is another story! I love the color and shape! The two white dragons holding up the marigold unfolded sweetly and continued to expand and bloom. As delighted as I was with the show, the taste of the tea is equally delightful. It is sweet, not bitter at all, and there is a warm, nuttiness to the base that i have found in some oolongs. I am very pleased with this and would definitely be inclined to serve it at special occasions.
Thank you, Angel and Teavivire!
Friday means Asian Buffet take out! I called home and had my daughter make two 22 ounce steeps and put it in my tetsubin for when we got home. My husband thought it was dragon pearl, and with food it definitely can be mistaken for it. This is a great, economical way to have fabulous tea with your food. When I want a jasmine tea by itself though, the pearls win my heart!
I read on a website – I think Zen Tea Life – that they sell warmers just like the Scentsy and Yankee Candle tart warmers but they are intended for tea leaves. I tried it with three pearls last week, and it was a delightful…and SAFE…aroma. Then I remember I had this more economical open, so I am going to try them in a warmer this weekend!
On a sad note, a vase of flowers somehow fell over today and broke my favorite warmer! Boo!
I absolutely adore the Premium Jasmine Dragon Pearls and the Silver Needle Jasmine White tea from Teavivre. I can not afford to drink them all the time and still buy ridiculous amounts of new tea, too, so I bought this as an economical drinker to go with meals.
When served with food, this has that perfect level of jasmine flavor that I find I all of their offerings. I love that it only has to steep about one minute, because when I walk in the door with the takeout boxes I already to eat!
Because hubby is now enjoying tea with our takeout, I give this one steep, pour that into my huge tetsubin and put it on the warmer, and make a second steep right away and pour it in. That way there is enough for both of us to have all we want with the meal. No more being polite about who gets the last bit, or who will go resteep the leaves! LOL! And because it resteeps well, that makes it even more economical.
I got two bags of this so we should be good to go for a while!
For drinking without a meal, Pearls are still my number one, but with a meal these are quite delicious.
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!
Tonight’s tea with hubby while peaceful music plays on Pandora. I want to own every jasmine tea Teavivre sells. They are that good. The Jasmine Dragon Pearl and Extra Downy Jasmine Pearls are probably my favorite, or the white jasmine, with this one coming in as an excellent every day drinker, so much smoother and milder than the loose leaf I bought at the Asian Market. Lovely.
This was the final tea of tea party today, but I am posting it first because it is the easiest! One of the teas was a blend from two different companies that I put together, the first drink wasn’t a tea at all, but a spiced cider!
This was very good, and my guest enjoyed the jasmine flavor even though initially she was afraid it would be too floral for her from the aroma. I taste the green base in this one more than I do in the Dragon Pearls, and it is a more assertive base.
All of my Teavivre orders have come very quickly until these last two. They took weeks to get here! Teavivre shipped them quickly, but even USPS held on to them for a long time once they hit the US. Next time, I may upgrade my shipping if I want it here faster.
This is a tea worth waiting for – sweet, grape-y to me, though daughter says it smells like honeysuckle to her. A delicious jasmine with a nice green base that isn’t hidden by the floral taste. The jasmine is natural and not perfume-y.
I found an unopened sample pack of this, so I am guessing it came in an order I placed since I know I finished thoe free sample they had sent me to review! So either way, I know I got this free from Angel and Teavivre. Many thanks!
When I opened the packet, the jasmine smelled too good to describe! It was so sweet smelling I swear it was like holding a huge swig of grape Dimetapp in your mouth, and I was only sniffing the dry leaf at that point.
The steeped tea is sooo good and so smooth. The jasmine is delicious. My guest really loves black tea best, but she said she really liked this green. Another thumbs up!
The jasmine in this is so well done that this is another tea worth investing in – every jasmine from Teavivre has been excellent. They are so soothing, and I have tried jasmine teas that were more disturbing than soothing! These hit the mark perfectly!
Thank you, Angel and Teavivre!
A jasmine tea, probably this one, will be going on my order to Teavivre. This is so soothing.
I looked back at my last tasting note and it was a stolen, peaceful moment in the midst of the chaos of a house full of teens, which I love but really, one must rest sometime! Tonight, I needed some soothing “me time” as I couldn’t sleep after the frustration of having to enforce chore time like a drill sergeant. Sigh.
I read once that people think lavender is the most relaxing herb, but that testing showed jasmine to be best for inducing sleep. Oh, I reached for this one, and one sniff of the pouch made my troubled brow uncrease! What a heavenly scent! I am so glad my first experience with bad jasmine black so strong and artificial that it gave me a headache didn’t keep me from trying other jasmine teas, because they are delightful when done well. This one is done well.
All is quiet, the wind is blowing in a cold front making the Buck Stove rattle softly, everyone else is in bed, and I am sprawled on the living room floor with a candle, Chinese flute radio on Pandora, and a whole pot of liquid tranquility.
The green tea is light. I steeped for less than two minutes and I think it could go longer. There is a slight drying of the tongue but absolutely no bitterness. This is smooth and comforting.
Thank you, Angel and Teavivre. Tonight you are my sanity. :)
This is a lovely sample from Angel at Teavivre! I have a house full of teens again, Rock Lobster blasting, and the sounds of Call of Duty Modern Warfare 3 filling one end of the house.
I made an escape to my tea table sanctuary and turned on Pandora radio to Chinese Flute. As Jason recommended, I lifted my little cup with the words, “This cup is useful in that it is empty.”
The dry leaves smell strongly of jasmine and just as strongly of fresh green tea with a woodsy, lightly toasted aroma. The steeped tea has a light and natural tasting jasmine flavor, not a soapy perfume jasmine like the one I bought at Southern Season and can not drink. The green tea base has a nice touch of dryness with no bitterness. I tried two small cups of first steep and resteeped the leaves.
The second steep is lighter on the jasmine flavor and the green tea base comes out more. The tea base is a little nutty, reminding me of bok choy. Now that I have had two cups from each steep, I will mix the two pots together into my tetsubin, light the warmer, and sip on this throughout the afternoon with the music playing softly. I hope Sandy stops by so she can try it , too!
Open this package and you will immediately see the wisdom in double packaging these teas, as the aroma of this one was quite strong! If it had not been in the outer pouch it would have scented the other teas, quite surprising to me since I thought of white tea as being rather weak.
The dry leaves have a strong buttery scent, sweet like Dixie Queen corn but with a fruity note as well. The leaves are large and fluffy. The steeped tea has a lot of color for a white tea.
We enjoyed this with no additions. It is a warm and peaceful cup, very contemplative. We will be drinking it again tomorrow to further compare notes. A very flavorful white tea!
I am sitting in my living room watching the dog sleep in his chair as a torrential downpour floods my garden and the last candle from tea party is about to gutter out. Youngest has become passionate about cooking and has made the most wonderful meals and treats for the past few months. Today’s tea party treat was Raspberry Cream Cheese Coffee Cake.
This was the first tea of tea party, chosen because it is unflavored and won’t compete with the dessert, and has enough natural flavor to stand out and complement at the same time. I had forgotten how great it is, but thanks to the generosity of K S, we had three magnificent teas for tea time today that brought sighs…every, single one of them.
Though the flavors section mentions astringency. I only tasted rich, malty goodness. Bready, yes. Cocoa, yes. This is a real tea shelf necessity and I am glad I got to refresh my memory on this one before placing my Teavivre order.
Thank you, KS, it was sooooo good. I wish where we have the option to recommend a tea, our choices were “No”, “Yes”, and “Yes! Yes! Yes!”
This is fabulolus tea. The dry leaves smell fabulous, the wet leaves smell fabulous, the tea smells fabulous. Ah, yes! This is really good. Which is exactly what youngest said when she took a sip of hers. If you want some premium black tea and would love to pay a more than reasonable price for it, order this. Right away! Ahhhh. I will be putting this on my order along with the blooming tea selection, the best blooming teas I have tasted yet.
Thank you, Teavivre and Angel Chen for these wonderful samples! They just arrived today and I invited Sandy and my youngest daughter to join me sampling them.
We began with this lovely black tea. It is very smooth, lightly honeyed, and naturally sweet. The aroma is a very clean and natural tea aroma. I intended to try it plain, with sugar, and with milk and sugar, but by the time I had my third cup I realized I hadn’t made any additions. It doesn’t need them! But youngest always adds milk and sugar and she liked it that way, too.
I love that this tea is organic, and there is so much information on the pouch. I am looking forward to trying the rest of these! If you like Teavana’s Golden Monkey, you really should try this one as it is just as good or even better but costs less. You will save money without sacrificing quality or taste.
Many thanks to Teavivre for this tea!
I decided to brew this one for minute, then increase a minute on each steep.
The leaves are very green, and very pretty. When I removed my brewing basket after my first steep the leaves were practically glowing :)
This is a very, very, very green oolong. It is almost like a green tea to me. A little more vegetal than some others I have tasted on this first steep, although it does retain that…Tie Guan Yin-ness! Interestingly enough, I’m really enjoying it despite the idea I have in my head that “I don’t like green tea.”
(I am now beginning to think it’s not that I don’t like green tea, but that I LIKE CAFFEINE and green tea has less. I don’t get the fiendish jolt from greener teas. Maybe that’s a good thing?!)
The leaves have unfurled even more on the second steep. They’re huge! The taste is a little less green, but more round and buttery and Mmmmmmm! The delicacy remains.
I’m really enjoying this, and am looking forward to at least two more steeps! Maybe I’m ready for a little “bump” in my horizon widening :)
I just drank the last of the leaves I had of this tea. Sad.
Delicious! So caramel-y sweet and rich despite it not being a bold tea. One of those teas which is pleasant to drink all day — it resteeps so beautifully. Here it is 4:30pm and I’m still resteeping from 9am! It’s that good!
Today was a good tea day! Three pots of sweet potato goodness :) A very nice flavor to ease into the autumn with. I am also enjoying the orangey tea liquor in my glass cup. Is matching my tea liquor to the season Too Much? As Mae West said, too much of a good thing can be wonderful!
So delicious! Light but rich. Sweet potatoes and a hint of orange peel. I’m enjoying the second steep right now, and it’s actually MORE sweet potato-y and orangey than the first. I am looking forward to many steeps today :)
Another tea which is supremely lovely in the summer.
Many thanks to Teavivre for this generous sample!
Oh, this one is fantastic! Gentle, golden, BRIGHT sweet potatoes! I’ve had only one other of this type of tea, and in comparison, this has a bit of…orange? to it. Sort of like you put a touch of orange juice in your baked sweet potatoes? And let me also emphasize the word baked. There is definitely some sort of delicious crust to this ;) This is one special unflavored, delicious exactly as nature produced it tea!!!!
I have to also add that the leaves are so fluffy and gorgeous! They smell so wonderful, too.
Rumor has it that this is an excellent resteeper, and what good timing – I am in the mood for steep after steep today! Off to make some more water :) This is GREAT!
Mmmmmm! This is a great example of a Gong Fu Black tea! Roasty cocoa, sweet and very even-keeled. Maybe even a little fruity on the end of the sip. It is extremely flavorful but does not feel strong – so nice and easy to drink. Not a bit of bitterness or astringency. Smooth as can be! I adore it!
I also love the little packets :)
Thank you Teavivre for this generous sample! It’s FANTASTIC!!