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Recent Tasting Notes
O-Kay! This took me by surprise. I remembered trying it before and not finding it much better than the standard Yun Nan Dian Hong that Teavivre offers (which I love). I won the Teavivre sampler in their recent contest so I have two more samples of this to try again. I used about half of the pouch as this is a very full leaf tea and 7 g seemed a bit much at one time. Plus I am stingy. This is still priced at 3 times the standard Yun Nan so in my world this is a premium tea (at $15.90 CAD for 50 grams).
The dry leaf was a slap in the face of molasses. Oh my, does it smell good. Like I’m about to make brown bread and I’ve got my molasses, shortening and water mixed up and cooling with the aroma filling the house with sweet hot molasses! First sips do retain some of the molasses flavour but it has morphed more into finished brown bread with some ‘bakiness’ and a bit less sweet. Very tasty and smooooth. No bitterness anywhere ever. I think I could steep a pound of this for an hour and all it would be is strong.
I will definitely give this another steep or maybe two and will enjoy the rest of the samples. I am grateful for the opportunity to try it again (in a punctual manner, haha). It is too expensive for me to stock regularly but this is a nice change from my usual Yunnan rota. Mmm!
(Rating increased because apparently I was insane last time. I am not factoring in the price though, if I were I would have to put it down a bit. Cuz I’m still stingy.)
Flavors: Baked Bread, Molasses, Sweet
Trying this again today with much more leaf (the rest of my sample – 1.5, nearly two TSP). I am getting much more aroma during infusion than last time, likely because of the volume of leaf. I think this is overkill actually. It definitely wasn’t enough for two cups but too much for one. I just can’t win with this tea!
The liquor is deep brown and almost muddy – again a result of over-infusion. The aroma doesn’t yield any bitterness which is impressive. First sips are rich and slightly malty with no bitterness at all. This is very smooth but not yielding a variety of complex flavours like I expected. This is much better than my first try but still not a favourite. I don’t know why this one isn’t rocking my world like everyone else, but at least I gave it the old college try. Enjoying but not remarkable. Sipdown!
I was re-steeping yesterdays leaves and forgot about them. For twenty minutes. While I am amazed that this tea can handle a twenty minute steep without becoming undrinkable tar, I am equally amazed that it STILL doesn’t have very much flavour! It’s only slightly more flavourful than yesterday and still doesn’t wow me. Perhaps it’s too subtle for my tastes, but I definitely am not picking up on any of the flavours that other tasters have mentioned. I am glad that I don’t get any sweet potato though as I can’t stand the things. Blech!
I’m positive I’ve had this tea before now but apparently I have yet to log it. It’s good timing as I am considering another Teavivre order and was really impressed with the regular Yun Nan Dian Hong but wondered if the next level up was superior enough to justify buying that instead. This one costs approximately three times the price of the regular dian hong, so I am hoping for a remarkable experience. This has a remarkable quantity of golden leaves, I wuld say it is at least 3/4 golden tips. Very beautiful, and left lots of little tea leaf fuzz in the bag.
I am at work so I steeped this in a T-Sac rather than a brew basket or gaiwan. There is lots of room in it for expansion though, so I’m not too fussed. Three minutes in I have a lovely golden orange liquor and an appetizing aroma. Sweet cocoa, a sense of astringency but it’s not fully developed. It smells rich and almost has some aromas that remind me of bread. I can’t quite explain those so I’ll just enjoy.
First sips yield sweetness but surprisingly little flavour. I expected a POW of cocoa and tea, instead I get a whisper of each. I had some carrots as a snack earlier and I actually taste them more than the tea. Maybe this one requires more steep time? As I continue to sip the flavour builds on the tongue, but still doesn’t reach the level I expect of Teavivre’s teas, especially at this price range ($18.90/100 grams).
I will be fair and admit that this is an old sample (give or take a year) so it may have lost flavour in storage but it was stored well, in a double sealed bag. I will definitely try again, but this just didn’t have the punch I was looking for. A very nice tea but not the flavour I expect for the price and the quality of the leaves. I feel a little let down, but at the same time am buoyed as I can guiltlessly pick up the cheaper Yun Nan in my next order!
One of my samples from Teavivre. Thank you!! What a generous company.
This is my first Milk Oolong and what a treat. Dry, this tea looks like little rolled leaves, quite darn in color. However, once brewed, these leaves open up. You can appreciate the whole leaf and see how it was picked. The liquor is pale greenish-yellow. The taste is velvety, sweet, faintly vegetal/mineral. I can taste traces of honey. All and all a wonderful cup.
I think my tea preferences have changed… I’m surprised I only have this rated at 67! I really enjoyed it yesterday in spite of the fact that the package is probably getting close to 3 years old, and has been open pretty much the whole time (sealed as much as possible with a clip). This is a lovely oolong, with the roasty notes I crave from aged tieguanyins, and lots of creaminess, with a bit of that characteristic oolong “green” note (not vegetal, more paint thinner? In the best way possible.), and a minimum of floral. Upping the rating for sure, since this and roasty dancongs are my preferences now. May make a Teavivre order for my mom to share with people… and I think I’d include this.
blink So this package was already open… but I have no tasting note?? Weird. I wonder if I opened it and thought better of brewing it one day. Or maybe Steepster ate my tasting note. Anyways, thanks to Teavivre for this generous sample!
I need to look up whether monkey-picked oolong is somewhat aged, or what, because this tasted strangely reminiscent of the aged Anxi TGY from Verdant that I drank last night. Same sort of aged vegetal quality, and the leaves, although greener, were certainly not as green as, say, Verdant’s Tieguanyins, and the flavor was considerably different. Or perhaps it’s a consequence of taking too long to drink this…? Either way, it’s not bad, but not a favourite either. It worked nicely in the travel mug though, so I suspect I will finish it off that way. Second infusion, with the same parameters but in half the water, was equally tasty.
I have tried one other taiping houkui in the past. I tried it several times with varying parameters. While I learned to appreciate the cup I never really reached a point of deeply liking it. When TeaVivre offered the latest round of samples I wanted this one included. I wanted to know if it was the tea I wasn’t crazy about or the particular version.
The scent is grassy and fresh in aroma. I used the whole sample and steeped for a little over a minute. The resulting liquor was green tinted. The wet leaf made me think ocean and vegetal.
This bordered on bitter and sour but never crossed the line. The taste, to my poorly trained palate, is somewhere between a cross of bamboo shoots and celery leaf. It becomes sweeter as you sip. The aftertaste is long and lingering in a good way.
I enjoyed this without additives sweetener added nothing and really was more of a distraction. You will rarely hear me say that.
I can say once again TeaVivre has impressed me. While this may never be a must have staple in my tea drawer, I did greatly enjoy it and would gladly accept a cup if offered.
Ah Keemun, my old friend. Oh how I missed you. I’m celebrating this morning after buying my first Yixing teapot. Here is a picture https://twitter.com/kittylovestea/status/375925148878008320/photo/1
I’m thinking of using it for Pu Erh – Ripe but nothing is yet set in stone…or clay I suppose. I also purchased a travel yixing flask from Teavana and have yet to decide what to flavour that with. Perhaps black such as this beautiful Keemun. It’s the first picture on the left http://steepster.com/teas/teavana/21174-yixing-travel-tea-tumbler
I’m going away for the week tomorrow to house and dog sit for my parents. So I will be taking a smeg load of tea to review :)
If you want an actual review for this tea then check my previous notes. If you haven’t tried this one before then I highly recommend it.
My two brothers in law are still at my house so I thought I would try them with this tea. They are the kind of no nonsense tea drinkers that want something basic, similar to my husband really. Must be a Davies gene. Well so far so good, they really liked this tea. I said before that this tea tastes like a strong English breakfast tea and that’s what they thought of it too. They had no idea its Chinese. Its nice to share one of my favourite teas with my family :)
I enjoy having Keemun as a breakfast tea. Even if I am naughty most of the time and miss the most important meal of the day I never forget my morning tea. Keemun is so rich and malty that it works well as a breakfast tea. Most Brits like anything strong and black tea based to wake up with.
This is thick, sweet, malty, rich, floral and smoky. It all adds up to one delicious Keemun. Glad I stocked up on this with a 100g bag :)
I’m “up tiddly up up” very early this morning eagerly awaiting for the arrival of a parcel that I have asked to be re-delivered. My first tea this morning is a Gongfu of this premium Keemun due to craving something rich.
Malty, rich, slight sweetness in scent. Dark brown red in colour. In flavour this is thick and rich with a strong malt tones that have a little sweetness. Though it is strong it is also clean tasting with a subtle sour tang.
It’s a nice Keemun overall and great for a breakfast/all day tea.
I just got back from the new Star Trek movie. I loved it. Lots of classic cliche lines. Lots of cowboy type action. A good follow up to the reboot of the franchise.
The tea – I am writing a separate note for the second cup. This one was delightful. Sweeter than the first, greener, creamy and mineral at the same time. The bite is mostly gone and the aftertaste really lingers.
This is the 2013 version of this tea. I used the whole sample in my Finum and my 6oz cup. That is twice the leaf and half the water I used with last years batch. I notice two big differences right away. To me the late sip reminds me of corn. I have never used that in description before. That’s cool. The other is rather than buttery, this seems thinner and has a fair amount of bite. I like it fine but pretty sure next time I will try it using my frugal method. I think I prefer it that way. Leaving the rating alone.
This is the first day since I was let go that I have not had meetings or had to make phone calls. I still didn’t get to just relax. I intended to get to some of my new untried samples. Grabbed this instead. Very buttered veggies. Not bitter just sweet and delicious. Several cups and just now getting to write about it.
The scent of the dry leaf reminds me of a fresh summer field. The leaf is long and plump. From the description I was expecting a strong grassy green. Instead the sip is like buttery beans. Maybe creamy is a better word. This is definitely classic Chinese green tea in flavor.
There is no bitterness, and no harsh edges. The longer you sip the sweeter it becomes. It has a healthy drying affect on the tongue. Strangely, the aftertaste disappears rather quickly.
On the second cup I immediately caught a nice amount of a spicy almost floral taste. Though familiar, I couldn’t pull a name for these notes out of my brain today. Let’s just call it tasty. The second cup seems less creamy and more ocean or mineral. As the cup cools it is tasting a little peppery.
Thank you TeaVivre for the sample. This is another very nice cup.
I do enjoy this one… but It’s not my favourite varietal of black tea that’s for sure.
I crave maltiness in my black teas, and this is not strong in the malt factor.
I get notes of raisins, orange and almost a candied ginger note?
A sweetness develops on the second cup for me (gongfu style with ~86˚C, 30s).. it’s nice and accompanied by a slight drying at the back of the throat.
I like it.. I don’t love it.
Thank you Angel for the sample.
So I found a little rust in the inner edge of my electric tea kettle. I am so upset about that. What do I do about it? Should I toss it or is there a way to salvage it?
I finished this tea up. I used a pot to boil water and make this tea; however, this tea tasted strange after steeping it. This is a good tea overall though. I love the dry leaf that is furry and curly.