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Recent Tasting Notes
Thank you Angel of Teavivre for this sample!
I could kick myself for not trying this tea sooner. It is exceptional. The infusion is a beautiful amber color, and it smells slightly bready. At the first sip I taste maltiness followed by a slight sweetness . Yum. Really yum. The tea feels smooth and rich, but it is also light. This tea makes me want to slow down and enjoy everything it has to give. One cup turns into two which turns into the whole pot. I have no regrets. :)
Looks like I’m going to have to make room on my shelf because this tea will become part of my permanent stash.
Hmm looks like I already rated thus one. I completely forgot I had it before. Doh! That means I have two sample pouches of this open. My brain is clearly on its way to dementia.
Well it’s worth reviewing against I seem to like this tea a lot more today. It is indeed fragrant. It tastes like a sweet potato roasted over a fire. Sweet and toasty and delicious.
Hmm… has the enchantment of black tea love come to an end or have I just been having a series of less than awesome blacks lately? This one tastes a little…not interesting. It’s not bad, but it doesn’t capture my attention in any way. I get a little floral perfume and taste of malt… Some fragrant sweetness. Vaguely stone fruity. My tastebuds are not all that interested.
So far, the black teas I like and plan to get more of are:
Laoshan black – Verdant
Zhu Rong Yunnan black – Verdant
Yun nan Dian Hong Black- Golden Tip – Teavivre
Rose Congou – Upton
Looks like I like Yunnan black teas. The Laoshan black is still my favorite. hmm… I’ll still have try the other Keemuns from Teavivre. I also have some other congou tea from Upton to try. I wonder where congou tea is grown? Is it also Keemun as wikipedia seems to suggest?
Many thanks to Angel and Teavivre for this generous sample!
My first experience with this tea was disappointing, I’m sorry to say. Jasmine teas are generally too strong for me, as I’m really sensitive to potent, perfume-y smells. I prepared it with the expectation that it was a scented tea and was blown away by the jasmine. A headache ensued, and I was not able to get through very many steeps. This was mostly error on my part which I discovered when inspecting the wet leaves. Jasmine flowers are mixed in with the tea leaves…Ahh no wonder. After that experience, I put the tea away for a while and let it rest.
After my nice experience with Pekko Teas’ Jasmine Dragon Tears, my confidence with jasmine teas was renewed. I gave the jasmine silver needle another shot and altered my methods. I went with cooler water (~160 F), maybe a bit less dry leaf (~1/3 100mL gaiwan), and ultra short steeps (one second for first steep, added one second for each successive steep, then three-five additional seconds each steep after the sixth). It turned out to work much better for me. The flavor was much more delicate, the mouthfeel became less syrupy and instead creamy. I was also able to pick up many more subtler nuances than I did the first time I tried this tea. Most notably this occurred with the first and second steeps which developed honey textures and a light whipped cream undertone, developing into something more savory into the next steeps. The “greener” flavors were more noticeable and tasted like fresh vegetables.
Into the fifth steep, a very faint, but intriguing, spicy note climbed up. It had the flavor of parsley and the texture of ground black pepper. Also in this steep, further heavy tastes became apparent, pulling the flavor profile together and giving the liquor a fuller body and thicker mouthfeel with the addition of a stone flavor and increased vegetal taste. Honey notes reached a minimum here, and rose again throughout consecutive steeps. After this point, the tea reached a balanced point in which jasmine flavors decreased to midtones, vegetal, savory, and fresh green flavors became most prominent, and stone flavors settled into undertones. These remained fairly constant and faded out together while jasmine notes slowly slipped away.
The leaves smell extremely potent to me especially during the first few steeps. In later steeps, this settles some and I am able to detect sweeter notes, and some stone aromas. The aroma of the liquor is syrupy, sometimes medicine like, although it is very floral with notes of fresh hay.
Conclusions: I’m a stickler with jasmine. However, going with my new method definitely changed my opinion of this tea and made it a great deal more palatable for me. The actual silver needle white tea has some very intriguing complexities to it, but they seem to be masked by the jasmine flavoring when using the suggested methods.
This is a fairly large sample from Teavivre (enough for three or maybe four brews) made in my new yixing pot :)
This is a very nice, mellow pu’erh! The flavor isn’t as heavy as the other’s I’ve had, and it seems like it would be a good “introduction” pu’erh with less shock factor than some.
Dry Leaves: The dry leaves have a pleasant and sweet roasted chestnut smell without any compost-yness. Its just nice and roasty, and smells the way I imagine a fully oxidized ti guan yin would. The wet leaves are fairly large.
Brewing: The tea is a nice bright red color, very deep, but not quite is brown/burgundy as the other pu’erhs I’ve tried.
Tasting: The tea is very mild and sweet with flavors of milk chocolate, walnut, buckwheat honey, barley, and roasted mushroom.
This tea arrived today promptly from Teavivre. Brewed in an ‘inginuiTea’ grandpa style. 30 seconds, 1 min. 2 min.
Dry: faint aroma of smoky fall leaves. sweetness
First: 30 sec. Smooth. Slightly green flavor. Sweet. slightly smokey. Dry finish. Faint aroma of sugar caramelizing in the distance.
Second: 1 min. Considerably better flavor. Smoother yet. Green flavor gone, as sweet. Faint smokiness. Very clean flavor.
Third: 2 min. Aroma of almost caramel corn, smoky. Smmoooth. very similar to the second. Good.
Really a nice tea. Recently into Oolong teas. I fell in love with Phoenix Dan Cong and thought I’d try this one. Not a disappointment.
Very good quality tea. Super smooth and clean taste.
Footnote: This tea really lasts. I brewed it 7-8 times and it kept me alert for a long day. The taste remains nearly equal to the third brewing. amazing
I am currently enjoying my third and fourth infusion of this tea. It’s really quite lovely. It started out with a distinct mineral-y/charcoal-y kind of taste, with notes of flower in the background, and a warm, toasty kind of overtone. Now, I notice some of the mineral/charcoal notes have begun to wane, and a woodsy note seems to have taken their place, and this melds wonderfully with the warmth of the roasty-toasty taste. The floral notes have begun to reveal a honey-esque tone that is quite lovely.
I like that this tea is not overly floral, offers hints of fruit (I notice a slight peach-y undertone), and that it has such a warmth to it, especially since I’m kind of dealing with COLD bones because I’ve been working off and on in my studio, and dang it’s cold in there! I come in here to warm up with a cup of tea, and this tea does the trick.
so this tea i got free from Teavivre They gave me like 5 teas and this is the 2nd one i have gotten to try.. Also this is my First Milk Oolong!
The color is such a pail green i had to Look at other peoples tasting notes to see that this was how this tea was suppose to look. the smell i cant place its such a nice sweet smell but i cant place the other notes its too hot for me to Drink at this moment in time so we must wait as to not burn my mouth and kill the Beauty of this tea…jeopardy Song plays i can not even tell you or put into words now wonderful this tea is… its making me speechless… the sweet notes are wonderful and there is that hint of warm milk with the smell of the beauty of earth in a little leaf… how can one put into words such a wonderful tea! i love this tea! And will be searching for more Oolongs!!
Thanks to Rachel Sincere for a sample of this tea.
This may or may not be my first Keemun, I’m not sure. I definitely don’t have much experience with them. Teavivre said to use 7g of tea for an 8oz cup, but that seems a bit much. That’s almost 3 teaspoons, is that right? I just used 1 and a half, and steeped it for a minute. It tastes fine to me.
There’s some interesting notes in this tea. I’m getting some chocolate, malt, and some heartiness, too. As it cools I find that it’s still enjoyable and doesn’t get too bitter too quickly. There’s definitely fruity tones to it that pop more, as it cools.
Also, according to the description this tea has lots of flouride. No need to brush my teeth now (haha – just kidding).
This my first sample and tea from Teavivre. Thank you for the chance to try your teas. It will be a great help in my discovery of this world of tea.
I brewed 7g in 8oz water for 1m. It has a wonderful creamy, vegetal taste. It finishes with just a bite of bitterness (the good kind). I love this tea.
2infusion 2m, similar to the first
3infusion 3m, smoother, but still flavorful.
leaves are wonderful to look at in the glass.
This one is a long time coming, I apologize, it has been a busy year!
The dry leaves were beautifully wound balls, very fragrant and sweet smelling. They were a healthy green shade with some white as well.
As they steeped they unfurled nicely. They revealed full leaves and buds with a damp smell, almost like an after rain smell of jasmine.
The first steep was for 1:30. This produced a pale gold liquid with a light fragrance. The tea tasted strong but not overwhelming of jasmine.
The second steep went for 1:40. The leaves unfurled completely producing a slightly darker liquid with a light fragrance. The tea lost some of the strength of the jasmine but I think that it would have been better if I steeped it longer, still good though!
Gaiwan 3oz Tea: 5g 5 steeps: rinse, 25s,45s,1m10s,1m40s,2m30s 90ºC / 194ºF
The leaves are a nice quality with a fresh and gentle green smell.
Once brewed the leaves gain strength and sweetness.
The tea soup is pale yellow in colour.
Flavour wise it’s sweet and fresh and a little green tasting. The sweetness is almost like subtle sweetpea.
During the second and third steeps the colour becomes golden yellow and smells gentley floral, like flowers in a breeze.
A green vegetal flavour becomes prominant during the third and fourth steeps.
Thank you, Teavivre, for this sample!
This is a very nice blueberry tea. Not too tart, but not so sweet that it taste like Kool Aide. I could taste the grape at odd moments which I thought added to the fun of the tea. Definitely enjoyable and something I would try again. Next time I’ll also try it iced.
A sample from Teavivre. The day after Thanksgiving here in the USA, much thank to them!
A tea I have no experience with, I’m looking forward to giving it a try. I was in the mood for something different, rather than my usual Longjing fix, when I remembered the handful of samples I’d received from Teavivre.
Brewed in my Finum I find this is just the perfect single serving Gaiwan-like experience with out all the hassle of dealing with hot lids, multiple cups and fairness pitchers. Plus I get the added benefits of double wall clear glass. I dump the whole sample pack into my 5 oz. cup
With my 1st steep at 30 seconds I get smoke. Not overt, but there. Vegetal, with light mildly astringent brightness and a creeping sweetness that played around the periphery. “Yellow-green” in color, as Teavivre describes it, would be accurate. I’m liking it. I’m not bowled over, but I’m liking it.
2nd steep I take a little less time at 20 seconds. I tend to find that brewing this way. The first steep takes a moment to wet the leaves, but by the 2nd, the wet leave are primed and ready to go. Third and onward I’m coaxing out flavor, extending the time bit by bit. Color is still true. Smokiness clear, but still not overwhelming. The notes from the first steep, if anything more defined.
3rd Steep and it’s all smoothing out for me. Everything’s still present, just leveled out, coasting across my palate. Color’s maintains its vibrancy, sweet tones are somewhat more pronounced. Mouthfeel is expansive.
4th steeping is the most agreeable for me. Water temp in my kettle has dropped considerably, and I can’t be bothered to get up and get any hotter. Smokiness has been reduced considerably and it’s become more about the things I like about this tea. That being the subtle sweetness and the afterglow that it leaves.
5th steep now with fairly hot water, probably verging on 190˚F. Oops, that had to be over a minute there as I searched for the degree symbol on my keyboard. Oh well. It’s pretty hot, so I’ll let it sit for a bit. Smoke is back as I slurp to cool. Colors still pretty vibrant. Overall I’m pleased with the experience, but not dying to repeat it. That’s funny… candy cane. Just the smell, not the the taste. Hmmm.
I’ll probably be able to get a 6th and maybe 7th steep out of this. But I’m losing interest. If it’s anything particularly notable, I’ll add more details later. In the meantime, I’ll let this rest.
Caffeine? Nothing terribly noticeable. I’d say fairly low. I’m pretty sure I could drink this and go right to bed.
Another of the samples sent by the lovely Angel from Teavivre.
As others have mentioned, this comes vacuum-sealed and boy does this smell fresh!
I separated my first steeping of this tea into three cups, each steeped for a minute longer. 1 minute was light, as you would imagine, and pleasent. Not tasting any honey at this stage, but the overall flavour makes me look forward to cup #2. 2 minutes and the flavour was beautifully rounded. I could taste the honey just barely and it complemented the oolong beautifully. 3 minutes and the vegetal oolong comes out. For personal taste, I’ll probably steep it around the 2 minute mark from now on.
I thoroughly enjoyed this tea and have marked it down as one to purchase. The little packets would make great stocking stuffers actually. Might have to pick up a bunch for Christmas!
I have had a terrible day today thanks to a mixture of ill health, busy work and a complaining customer. I drank Jasmine Phoenix Pearls and wished I had gone for something stronger so I pulled this one randomly out of the samples I had from Teavivre’s Pu erh sampler pack.
The raw tea looks amazing, the same colour as chocolate and in large pieces of wood looking sticks that smell earthy.
Not sure if it’s because I just had the Jasmine Phoenix Pearls but this is super strong. It could be the Paddy flavour (whatever that is, all I can imagine is ground up Irish leprechauns).
A few steeps in and I can taste flowers and earth, it’s very strong and a little ear waxy( don’t ask me how I know that). I would think that I brewed it too strong as it tastes that way but I used 10g which is a sample pack as recommended by Teavivre. I am also following their steeping rules on website.
The liquid is dark honey in colour and looks a little cloudy. Perhaps when I mentioned flowery earlier it should have said perfumey, the strong floral tang that reminds one of perfume but in the mouth…I’m picking that up.
Overall it’s nice but just not going it’s job today. I have rated according to my taste test for today but I do have more samples and will adjust my rating in the future so if I am having an off day when it comes to tasting I would have put it right.