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Recent Tasting Notes
A review of Taiwan Dong Ding (Tung Ting Oolong) by Teavivre
Tea Name: Taiwan Dong Ding (Tung Ting Oolong)
Tea Type/Varietal: Oolong
Region: Dongding Mountain, Nantou, Taiwan
Steeping Vessel/Amt. Leaf: cup / loose leaf
Liquor Color: pale yellow
Leaf Characteristics: leaves are fine pellets and when brewed with hot water they are full and plump…two leaves attached as nipped from tea bushes.
Water temperature: 200 Fahrenheit
Time: 3 minutes
I am having another fixing of this Dong Ding Oolong sent to me by Teavivre. I consider myself very fortunate since they sent me a very large sample bag filled with their teas many of which are the same like this Dong Ding sample. I open the small packet and empty half of it into my cup and pour in the hot water and leave it for a steeping time of 3 minutes.
The tea leaves are fuller and plumper; there are two leaves attached to a stem. As I scoop out the tea leaves I see as well that they are green in color and smell very green, I think of veggies. Tea’s color at fist was a light green but is actually very light yellow and when I sip this Dong Ding it is quite pleasing and smooth with slight dryness on the tongue, not when swallowed but as one roll and play about with the tea in the mouth. There is slight bitterness to it as well; I say bitter but it more of the drying effect of this oolong.
Overall, this is a good tea to have after a heavy meal since it is so very light on the stomach; tea seems to wash down a heavy meal quite well. As it is morning, I have not had a heavy meal, but I imagine as much.
Thank you, Teavivre for sending me so many lovely teas to sample and experience.
A review of Taiwan Dong Ding (Tung Ting) Oolong by Teavivre
Tea Name: Taiwan Dong Ding Oolong
Tea Type/Varietal: Oolong
Steeping Vessel/Amt. Leaf: cup/ loose-leaf
Liquor Color: Light green
Leaf Characteristics: leaves are finely curled and when infused in water for rinsing than steeping the leaves become full and plump and are green in color.
Water temperature: 200 Fahrenheit
Time: 3 minutes
I pre-rinsed 1 teaspoon of the tea leaves with boiling water and then adding more of the freshly boiled water into my mug with the leaves inside. I place lid on tea mug and leave to steep for a few minutes.
Teas’ aroma is green and broccoli like with a light greenish color. When I do this take sip of the tea is mildly astringent for an oolong and the more I drink it I realize it is not bitter, just a freshly clean yet smooth cup of tea.
I plan on having this tea for remainder of the day by just adding more boiling water to it and letting it cool and sips and sips away.
This oolong is light in body with a mildly astringent when first sipping of tea and as I drink more of the tea I realize it is dry on my palette, lip smacking kind of dryness and with more drinks than the thirst is quenched.
I like this Ding Dong Oolong and I have sampled it before from other tea vendors (Fong Mong Tea Corp) and a teahouse in Seattle who purchases teas in Taiwan as well. I seem to recall mentioning that there are high grade Dong Ding and charcoal roasted Dong Ding which gives more a smoky and woodsy aroma as opposed to this Dong Ding which is very light in body and vegetal in taste and aroma.
Thank you, Teavivre for sending this sample for me to experience and write review of.
A review of Taiwan Dong Ding Oolong Tea by Teavivre
Tea Name: Dong Ding
Tea Type/Varietal: Oolong
Steeping Vessel/Amt. Leaf: cup/ leaf
Liquor Color: light green with shorter steep, then peachy with longer steep.
Leaf Characteristics: leaves were finely somewhat rolled than plump when brewed for few minutes and fully blown with even longer steep.
Water temperature: 200 Fahrenheit
Time: 3 minutes
Note: I brewed this tea for few minutes, as I watch the tea leaves unfold and the leaves are very green and always I think of green veggies. There was a sweetly aroma that came from this tea and when I took sip I was pleasantly pleased to find it sweet and smooth with a creamy texture not unlike greens like broccoli.
Water temperature: 200 Fahrenheit
Time: 3 minutes
Note: I brewed this longer this time since I was planning to have my meal with this tea. It brewed a lovely peach color when I removed the tea leaves, there is hints of fruits like nectar. When I taste the tea it is that smoothly full-bodied effect that I had earlier with first steep. I find I always like oolong teas as they are good way to rinse off; no, I mean to finish off a good meal. I enjoyed sipping this with the noodles I had again this evening. I should say half noodles and half pasta since I must sample what I cook for the husband.
I remember sampling earlier this past summer some Charcoal Dong Ding Oolong as there was not a smoky aroma to this oolong. Well I trust that this palette is experiening this oolong correctly; in that it is smooth and lush, not so much of veggie taste with second steeps and third but more of a nectarine/raw peach flavor and I washed it down with dinner wonderfully.
I like oolong teas and thank you Teavivre for sending these samples for me to experience; as this one was definitely likeable by this reviewer. I am a fan of Oolong teas. Thank you.
A review of Organic Green Tea by Midori with a few pellets Jasmine “Dragon Pearls” by Teavivre
Company: Midori Trading, Inc. / teavivre
Tea Name: Organic Green Tea
Tea Type/Varietal: Green
Steeping Vessel/Amt. Leaf: cup/ tea bag + 2 pellets of the Jasmine Dragon pearls
Liquor Color: light green
Leaf Characteristics: This tea seems so very light that I thought to perhaps try this tea with some of the Jasmine Dragon Pearls to possibly liven the tea up, not that it need be, it is fine as is. Just curious.
Water temperature: 180 Fahrenheit
Time: 2 minutes
I take one tea bag of the organic green tea and two small pellets of the Jasmine Dragon Pearls and place them in my cup and pour in the boiled water and leave to steep with saucer lid as cover for few minutes.
I remove the saucer to find that the tea buds has bloom/plumpness fully and the tea is a milder green color and yes the bouquet permeating the air is Jasmine and smelling strongly. I take a sip and another sip and the tea is dry in taste at first when swallowed but the smell I cannot get past.
So I failed to liven up this organic green tea by introducing and mixing it with the jasmine dragon pearls as once again the scent of the jasmine over powers any enjoyment there could have been of this tea’s mixture.
I simply do not like Jasmine tea. It is not good.
A review of Jasmine “Dragon Pearls”by Teavivre
Tea Name: Jasmine Dragon Pearls
Tea Type/ Green
Region: Fujian China
Steeping Vessel/Amt. Leaf: cup/ loose leaf
Liquor Color: light amber/yellowish orange
Leaf Characteristics: very tight buds / pellets like and when immerse in water the leave unfold to become string like or small ropes.
Water temperature: 176 Fahrenheit
Time: 2 minutes
I received this tea with several other teas from Teavivre and I am finally taking the time to sample some of their teas. I am not a fan of Jasmine tea; so with this in mind, I cut open the tea sample and scoop out 1 teaspoon of the small pearl like buds and put this is my tea mug and add the boiling water to the cup. I cover and leave it to steep for two minutes.
After the allotted time I remove the saucer and find that the leaves are now: fine, small loose strings; more like coils of rope, short ones. It is kind of scary when looking at this in my cup. So I am imagining more bad things to come my way since I seem to be paying back or time to give back pass dues. The story by Steinbeck “The Pearl” comes to mind.
My in-laws enjoy dispensing justice of me since I am hardest of hearing.
Anyhow, I sip this tea reluctantly since the jasmine fragrant is strong and over powering. It is heady and must be left alone, perhaps for another time.
Thank you, Teavivre, for sending this tea along for me to sample. It is a lovely and very famous tea, I am just sorry that I cannot find enjoyment in the tasting and smelling of this tea.
Dry aroma puts me in mind of an Iron Goddess, it smells very much like a green oolong. There is a bold aroma, distinct sweetness with some hay and grass underneath it. I’m not much for greener oolongs typically, but this smells pretty nice.
Steeped at 90 degrees for about 2 minutes, the beau thinks we under-steeped it a bit and I tend to agree. There is a very slight oolong aroma and taste, more sweet than vegetal but it was barely there.
The second steep (of 5ish minutes) shows more strength of flavour, with a fairly strong floral aroma and taste. Still fairly unassuming, but nice. Green oolongs aren’t really my forte and this doesn’t really change that but it was a perfectly palatable cup of tea.
I think this is one of those times where I should have followed the instructions and used boiling water, but boiling water doesn’t work with oolongs for me very frequently. I still have three more little pouches, will try again at some point. Thanks Teavivre for this sample! (From ages ago, whoops!)
Thank to Teavivre for this very generous sample!
I feel crummy today and I still have almost 2hrs. before I have to start my homework so I thought I’d relax with some nice, pure tea. I’ve been in quite the flavored tea stint so all this plain tea tasting has brought me back to what I really love to enjoy.
Dry, this tea smells almost similar to a Bai Mu Dan; especially the light hay notes. There is also an almost nutty smell coming through. I’m not sure how much to add to my tiny cup, so I’m just eyeballing it as covering the bottom. I’ve only had one other Dragon Well and to be honest, I hated it. It smelled and tasted swampy.
Wow! Even though I only steeped this for 2min. the smell is very strong. There are lots of pea notes in the front of this brew. It is very crisp and I’m really loving the nutty notes. This particular steep is reminding me a lot of sencha. There is almost a milky-ness to this tea, as I saw other reviews state. Compared to my last run in with Dragon Well this is amazing! This is easily one of my favorite greens and I would really recommend it for anyone new to green teas.
I have just finished work and a bit of house cleaning and could do with a few minutes to relax and my thirst for a pu erh has been growing hence why I chose this tea.
As taken from the Teavivre website:
Gaiwan 3oz Tea:10g
9 steeps: rinse twice,20s,30s,40s,50s,1m10s,1m30s,2m,2m30s,3m30s
Following this rule here is my review:
First steep – This has dark amber coloured liquid that smells mildly of dry leaves. The flavour is slightly sweet and earthy and refreshing all at the same time. The tea at the bottom of my tea bowls is stronger and is much earthier with a touch of astringency.
Second steep – Same dark amber liquid with a more predominant fragrance of flowers. The flavour is also now somewhat floral but still gentle and refreshing. Its also a little woody now also.
Third steep – The liquid is now very dark and reminds me of soy sauce but with a red glow. It’s also much earthier and woodier now but still with that gentle floral touch. Smell wise it reminds me of damp earth or fish but not strong. (I buy cat treats that smell similar).
Fourth steep – The compacted cake pieces have now broken up to resemble dark brown loose leaves. Still getting stronger and stronger with both fragrance and flavour with the most notable being the earthiness. Very nice and full bodied pu erh so far and it keeps improving.
Fifth steep – The red glow has darkened now so the soy sauce appeal is even stronger. Rather astringent and strong, a little smoky but still very earthy. The smell is still reminding me of cat treats.
Sixth steep – Again stronger than the previous steep and earthy…it resembles cocoa, not chocolate but more nib. It’s dark and smoky and earthy and slightly sweet and astringent. Beautifully pu erh.
I will leave my logging there but shall update as I increase the steeps exponentially. :) So far it’s a nice aged pu erh but nothing completely unique. It does quench my pu erh thirst though.
I feel bad because I have had this free sample for review from Teavivre for forever, but I hadn’t ever gotten around to it. Partly because I don’t know how I feel about ginseng. Yesterday I thought of it because I happened to see something that said ginseng is good for a cold, and I seem to have the sniffly beginning stages of one. I portioned it out into my ru kiln pot based on proportions listed on Teavivre’s website, which ended up being about 3 perfect teaspoons (4.5 actual tsp) for my 6oz pot. Then a million things came up, and I never ended up brewing it yesterday. So it was waiting for me this morning!
When I smell the dry leaf right off the bat, it kind of smells green and oolongy, a bit vegetal. But if I blow into the pot with the leaf and smell the air that is released, woah. Very savory and brothy, with a bit of toastiness. For some reason it is appealing to me even though I wouldn’t normally be into that aroma profile.
I did a quick rinse, then a perhaps 5 second steep. And now I feel even worse that I never got around to this tea because I am finding it delicious. It’s kind of light a lightly roasted tieguanyin at first, but then this sweet-savory flavor comes out. It is a bit bready, and I like Bonnie’s suggestion of sesame. The aftertaste is so incredibly sweet, it’s like sesame candy. I didn’t want this steep to be over!
The liquor from the second steep (about 10 seconds) is much darker, kind of a yellowy-orange with a hint of green. This one is more vegetal, though as it cools a bit the sesame sweetness of the ginseng definitely makes itself known. The mouth-coating sweet is kind of amazing, and it would probably be awesome on a sore throat.
Third and fourth steeps (also 10 seconds) are even darker, an amber color. Now the roasty-toastiness of the oolong is starting to come forward. And, against my expectations, that sweetness lingers. The main part of the sip almost verges on bitterness, which is so odd, but then boom, the sweetness is back. It’s a weird combo.
At this point it has taken on the characteristics of a roasted green oolong without much else going on, so I will cease my steepings now. But this one worked out well for me. I don’t know that it would become a regular tea that I crave often, but it’s definitely tasty and could be nice to keep around for its cold-busting properties.
Profile: Liquor is a pale yellowish green. Aroma is mildly vegetal. Taste is mildly vegetal as well; fresh green beans with a hint of smokiness. Aftertaste is brief and clean. Mouthfeel is thin and slightly drying to the tongue, without any bitterness.
Other notes: One could compare it to Dragonwell, though it is thinner and without nuttiness. Also worth noting is that I detected no spiciness or sweetness, which is contrary to other reviews.
Verdict: An inoffensive cup, but not my preference. The complexity of flavors simply wasn’t there, and while it is bolder than some other Chinese greens, still too mild for me.
Received this tea from Teavivre. Thanks so much! My first time trying Teavivre tea and first time drinking a Jasmine Dragon Pearls Green Tea. Brewed this tea for 2 minutes. The leaves were not completely open. After 2 more minutes they were. I used a teaspoon in 8 oz of water. When you open the bag a strong beautiful smell comes to your nose. Steeped two times, and was as good the second time. This is becoming a favorite of mine. Teavivre delivers. Drinking this at the end of a stressful day and this tea is soothing and relaxing.
I found this tea is definitely better iced and with a shorter steep time than the package recommends. It’s a very pleasant blueberry tea and really yummy. I found that when I steeped it hot or for too long it took on a medicinal quality.. or at least I think so. It might just be the black currant coming out more though and medicine is what my brain is thinking. So the bottom line is DRINK IT COLD.
My order from Teavivre arrived (yaay) I decided to try this one first. I think it would be better iced. I tried this straight and didn’t like it much so I added some splenda. A little too much splenda but it taste better sweetened I just have to balance the splenda a bit better :D
Ahh! This smelled so, so good. Licorice-y and caramel-y, very sweet and dark. I could sit there and smell it all day.
Brewed up it smells even more delicious. It may be my mind playing with me because of seeing “pine-needle shaped,” but I even feel like I’m getting a pine-y taste. It’s like a combination of a woodsy and medicinal (which is in no way negative for me) feeling – it tastes like something that could have once been called an elixir. This is one of those where I actually whispered a little “wow” after the first sip. There’s a lot about the taste that I’m not experienced enough to name (though I know I love the full-bodied-ness of it) – I see a lot of other members mentioning malty, which I think is what’s making me think of medicinal things.
My amazement might come from never having had a non-flavored, high quality black before. But I love this! I am so glad Teavivre sent this sample along with my flavored sample pack, because this one really impresses me.
I was looking for something fun to try tonight while get ready to watch some Sherlock Holmes episodes staring Jeremy Brett (my first Sherlock). I was digging into my sample bin and I found this one. I was nervous to try it at first because I am not a huge fan of lots of bits of tea getting into my cup. (Long story)
I went for it. I’m glad I did. Not only did it brew up a pretty pot of tea. But it is also a pretty yummy cup of tea. Very fragrant and also smells slightly sweet too. The taste reminds me of something between a green and an oolong. I might be in love! I might also have to ask Santa to bring me some for the holidays!
So this is another of my free teas samples that I got from Teavivre. It seems like it might be something interesting, so here we go.
Dry Smell: Like peanuts, more specifically when you open a new jar or tub of peanuts from the store. Making me hungry.
Wet: Smells like wet spinach with a little bit of the peanut smell lingering in there.
Taste: Like peanuts and spinach. It’s kind of like a salad, which is interesting. I would drink this again.
This is a backlog from Sunday. I had a friend over, who was not a big tea drinker, so I made this to share. Unfortunately, it’s the last I had, so now it is gone. I am very sad. :( I really love this tea, it has a beautiful, full jasmine flavour, while still being light and sweet. It’s a pretty colour, and this time, I added cream—non-dairy, powdered—and it was HEAVENLY. I didn’t think Jasmine tea with cream would be good, but oh my goodness, it’s phenomenal!
I’ve got to get more of this sooner than later or I will start having withdrawals. Seriously, I love this tea so much.
Flavors: Creamy, Floral, Honey, Jasmine, Sweet
This is one of my all time favorite teas. I’ve logged it once, drank it…twice, I think? But maybe only that once. I was craving it today, and decided to make some.
Last time I made it, it steeped light, nearly colorless, but still kept a great flavor. This time I steeped it, and it was a bit darker, and STILL had the great flavor. I honestly think I cannot do anything to make this tea less in any way. The jasmine flavor floods your tongue, but doesn’t overpower you, the tea is light and refreshing, perfect for summer time. I’ve never drank it cold, but I’m sure it’s just as good cold as it is hot, and again, I seriously doubt it’s possible to ruin this tea, but again, I’m a bit biased because, well, I just think this tea rocks.
Every sip makes me happy, it’s just smooth, floral filled, and wonderful. Go make yourself a cup if you have any, and if you, for whatever insane reason, do not like it, you know someone to pass it on to!
On a serious ending note, though, this tea is splendid, and it makes me love tea even more, and it has every good thing in it.
So I want to say THANK YOU to Angel at Teavivre, and also apologize for being slow on the reviews. School has made it hard to really sit down and enjoy a cup of tea, though I’ve gotten a few bagged teas in.
To be honest, I’m still adjusting to the different flavors of Chinese tea. I think since Chinese tea is probably the most natural compared to bagged teas or other loose leaf, learning how to taste and like the different flavors has been an interesting challenge. So far, I like many of the teas I’ve tried, and then there are some that I need to taste a few more times.
However, this tea has blown my mind first try. JASMINE BLOSSOMS ARE YUMMY! Or at least in tea, I’ve never eaten a full one. Haha, but no, really, the floral smell hits you right out of the bag and is light enough to not choke you but strong enough to be enjoyed, even with my slightly stuffy nose.
Steeping it’s just as strong, and the first sip I literally went “Ooh!” because there was just this explosion of floral, jasmine awesomeness and then a very light, mellow taste of white tea. It blends so well and is just really pleasant, I have no complaints.
Just for anyone’s reference: This tea steeped really light in color for me, which makes sense because, duh, it’s a white tea, but it was much lighter in color than some white teas I’ve tried. That being said, the flavor was not missing at all, so if you feel that it didn’t steep strong enough, I’d try it first because it is PERFECT for me. Of course, tastes and preparation varies from person to person, so do it your way! Either way, GO DRINK THIS TEA! With a good book or movie! And something sweet to eat with it! (Although I’m craving popcorn…)
UPDATE: Each sip gets better and better! I LOVE THIS TEA!!