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Recent Tasting Notes
This was a free sample from Teavivre – thank you!
I brewed 4 “pearls” which, by the way, are adorable. I love the tactile way they rattle around in the tin.
I brewed this a little longer than I meant to, I was administering frozen pea first aid to my sister, but I caught it in time for it to be fine.
The liquor smells sweet and caramelly. The flavor of the tea black is a little sour for my taste, I think this is a tea I add milk too. I get malty flavors and a little bit of a nice… graham cracker taste? weird but good.
I want to try brewing this shorter again, but definitely fine how I brewed it!
Another Teavivre sample! Packaged in a way I had never seen before, too!
DANG I LOVE OOLONG SO MUCH and this is no exception. I brewed it pretty long so the taste pretty strong! Quite flowery too, which I wasn’t quite expecting actually, I think I was prepared for a more earthy grassy taste WHICH IS DEFINITELY THERE but there are certainly some strong floral overtones too. Very good, nonetheless! Especially because I’m a fan of jasmine which this is a bit reminiscent of.
As with most oolongs in my experience, I was able to steep it twice easily and could probably get at least one more out of it, if not two. I do steep mine longer than suggested though so I’m not sure how much that’s sucking out all the flavor HAHA. ANYWAY yes, good oolong, very fresh!
Free sample fro Teavivre! Haven’t gotten around to reviewing many teas recently, have just been enjoying old favourites on the run.
This tea tasted very gingery to me, an interesting flavour but pleasing none the less. My first steep was very sweet, the leave barely unfurled. After that the colour got darker and the earthy flavour became more dominant over the sweet notes. A very yummy brew, definitely unique!
MY TEAVIVRE SAMPLES CAME IN! I’m so excited! This blooming tea was something I was really looking forward to, as I had never had one before and they always look so cool! Unfortunately I don’t have a nice fancy glass teapot but I do have a really large glass mug.
WOW THIS IS LIKE… THE COOLEST EVER!? The flower literally opens up into 3 full blooms its insane IT IS SO TALL WOW my mug is JUST TALL ENOUGH TO HOLD ITS FULL HEIGHT. DANG. It’s so pretty! I kinda had a fear that the bloom wouldn’t be as cool as it is in photos, you know? BUT IT’S SUPER COOL.
Okay I think I over-steeped slightly because I spent so much time just looking at it and taking pictures HAH but it still tastes great! Very light and flowery, smooth and slightly sweet. Giving the rating extra points for the EXPERIENCE though because that was AWESOME.
I’m feeling kind of wonky, so I think that may translate into a wonky review. But here goes anyway! I’m enjoying my first cup of tea in my new apartment! This place ROCKS! But there’s sooooo much work to be done. Unpacking, organizing, decorating, and lots of trips to Lowes and Goodwill are in my future. I am super tired just thinking about it, so I thought this tea might be a good one to start with. Isn’t ginseng for energy? Well, there’s A LOT of ginseng in this tea! So, if you’re a fan of the taste, you’ll love this tea.
While waiting for the cup to cool, I read the purported health benefits. Prevents the decaying of teeth…?! Okay! Well, I can’t dislike this tea now! I wonder if that’s really true…anyway, this is an interesting tea. It reminds me of Blue People, but heavier on the ginseng and minus the awesome cooling sensation in the aftertaste of Blue People (see that tea here: http://steepster.com/teas/vital-tea-leaf/1803-blue-people).
First steep was 1 minute. Second steep was 2 minutes. Second cup is actually too strong for me. I don’t think I’d drink this regularly. The oolong is overwhelmed by ginseng, and I much prefer a plain oolong flavor. Still, it’s not bad and it fits the high quality standard of all Teavivre teas. It’s just not the tea for me. Also I’m still feeling just as tired as when I started drinking this tea, so not sure how energizing it really is… By the way, broccoli soup is gross. And it definitely does not go with ginseng oolong tea. Eww. I think I’ll call it a night and go to sleep.
Just a quick note. I wanted jasmine pearl tea and found to my horror that I was out of it and had to replace it with this one instead. I am craving jasmine at the moment :)
Steeped 6 times in my gaiwan and each cup was as beautiful as the last. Plus in the loose tea there are actual jasmine flowers amongst the white tea leaves and it looks so delicate and perfect, very warm and summery.
It started off gentle and refreshing with just a hint of jasmine and within a few cups it changed to become stronger and stronger with the jasmine exploding marvellously on my tongue.
This wasn’t what I intended to have but it certainly cured my taste for jasmine. Yum yum.
Raw – This looks like a good quality white silver needle tea as it’s fresh and beautifully coloured (it reminds me of American white sage) and it smells potently floral. Plus when this states needles they mean it, there are lovely long leaves in the mixture.
Brewed – A quick steep (as recommended) and you are left with a pale yellow liquid that smells of fresh and fairly strong jasmine. It smells like pure jasmine flower (I use the essential oil often at work so I know the smell well) so for me it shows very good quality. It’s lovely.
The first few sips are mellow, floral and very delightful. You can taste the jasmine which is floral, sweet and fresh without any bitterness or being overpoweringly perfumey (like some others tend to). The white tea gently lifts the tea to complete the balance and add extra freshness and lightness.
After half the cup you can taste more of the jasmine and it gets slightly sweeter and stronger. This is such a beautiful jasmine tea and for someone who is used to drinking jasmine green rather than jasmine white I think I may have to change my ways and experiment more.
I received this one from a random sample swap from Meowkattack! I was so excited when I got this one because it was soaked in honey. I have never, ever seen a tea that was soaked in honey. Well I went to Teavivre’s site and read up on it. I decided to do multiple steeps with this oolong. So here it goes!
212° for 1 min.
The color of the liquor reminds me of watered down honey. The smell is light, sweet, and with a hint of fresh veggies. The flavor is kind of floral and sweet. I can get a slight hint of honey in the background.
212° for 2 min.
The color has gotten much, much brighter. Almost to a yellowish-green. The smell is very vegetal. The flavor has gotten a little more deep into the oolong with hints of vegetal and savory flavors.
212° for 3 min.
The liquor has turned to a light brownish-yellow. The aroma has turned deep and vegetal with buttery notes. The flavor has a slight mineral taste to it along with a deep oolong flavor. There is still a slight buttery/vegetal flavor to it but it’s very light.
This is the first oolong I have tried steeping multiple times and I loved it! I think it is so amazing how the flavor changes with every steeping! Thanks again!!
This was my first ever pearl tea and it seemed strange that it wasn’t in loose pieces when it started but looked sort of like black seaweed after it was steeped.
The biggest surprise to me was how smooth this tea was from the first taste. The first steep was only 1 minute and the color was very pale, but the second steep I left for 2 minutes and of course the color was deeper, but still it was a smooth as the first steep, but I did feel like it left a lingering taste on the back of my tongue that I couldn’t identify. I decided to do a third steep, but got distracted and it was left to steep for 5 minutes. Being in a hurry afterwards, I just poured the tea into a glass and later in the evening decided to try it with ice…what a surprise to find that it was great, and so much so that I might plan on doing a long 3rd steep again in the future to use for ice tea.
Thank you for the samples, Angel!!!
Last night I had a minor tragedy and lost TWO plants to mealybugs, so I needed the cheering up. I had clipped a few leaves from my purple basil for dinner and discovered dozens of the fluffy white menace. This plant shared space with some cilantro I had been having trouble with and was neighbors to the dendrochilum I had just performed surgery on yesterday. With chemical assistance I could have saved the herbs, maybe, but I wouldn’t want to eat them. I decided to throw them out before they had a chance to infect everyone else.
What a way to be cheered, though! I was fortunate enough to have today off, and the s.o. was working from home as well, so I was able to sign for my long-awaited samples from Teavivre and we both got to try this one! I started with the ginseng oolong because it was the one most likely to attract the curiosity of the non tea-obsessed. This impressed us both. I fixed up a little pot and we shared it.
The only reason I am not ordering more already is because there are more teas to sample and I want to make sure I try them. Oh, and combined shipping for the ones I decide I must have. If I order more of this now it might be all I drink till the weather turns. But I really love it. I have never tried anything really ginseng-y before, there is something tingly and clean and healthy feeling about drinking this, like a hot honey cough drop, but wonderful.
I hot-brewed and chilled this to see how it would fare… I think it was best before I inadvertently let it warm up to room temp. The hibiscus was a bit less noticeable while it was cold. However, still pretty refreshing and is helping to rescue me from this terrible humidity! (I’m a total humidity wuss, I’m used to dry heat, not repeated evenings of fog because there’s so much moisture in the air…).
Another sample from Momo, thanks!
I was a bit wary of this one because of the roselle/hibiscus, but was curious anyhow. I kept the infusion time a bit shorter than recommended though, as I’d like to be able to drink this, not have to pour it down the sink!
The aroma is fairly generic fruity… oh damn, hazards of tea near computer… just spilled on my keyboard. No major crisis though…
Anyhow, flavourwise, this one is definitely quite tart! However, it’s a pleasant sort of tart even though I know it’s from hibiscus, and I’m actually enjoying it! I wonder if the pineapple is taming the hibiscus somehow (although I have also read that roselle is not quite as…. potent? as “regular” hibiscus.
Either way, I agree with Missy that this is rather like a fruit punch, although tart, so I imagine it would be delicious iced! Always love when the tartness of hibiscus is actually used effectively!
ETA: Second infusion is… pineapply-tart? Odd. Probably would be good sweetened. I don’t think this has another infusion in it, but it is a herbal after all.
From the moment I cut open the bag and caught a whiff of the strikingly golden brown tea leaves, I knew this one would be special… and it did not disappoint! I used numerous 30 second Gongfu style steepings. The first steeping was mild in flavour, but not without aroma. Perhaps I didn’t wait quite a full 30 seconds, as an immediate pronounced rich colour developed. The second steeping was much more pronounced in flavour, aroma and colour, yet it still defied description. My nose perceived a floral, perfumey sweetness; my tongue perceived a malty tartness. Even at the fifth steeping — or was it the sixth, it was no longer possible to keep track — the liquor remained a deep golden brown. I will make it somewhat stronger next time to see if I can more precisely define the tastes.
Well, I have to be honest and say I was a bit dubious when this sample came from Teavivre to try. I love oolongs but was not sure what to think about ginseng with oolong. So, it’s been sitting at the back of my tea cupboard waiting until I drank my other samples. But, with the release of the new straight teas from DAVIDs, my interest was piqued. The description and the picture caught my attention. Perhaps there was a picture and description on the Teavivre site, but I must have missed it or not looked. Anyhow, in light of it all. I decided to break out my sample and try.
Initially, I read the most recent reviews and thought I was in for a treat. And then someone commented on undertones of anise, menthol and something else…I wanna say camphor or eucalyptus. Anyhow, I was worried at they point. Those are not things I care for. At all. I didn’t really detect any if those tones when I smelled the dry leaf, but I could taste them when brewed. So, unfortunately, this is not my preference in oolongs. Luckily, as the tea cooled, the licorice and mint tones were more subtle.
I will probably not have the rest of my sample, but I will scout out my friends who have a palate that likes those flavours.
So as I suspected, this is a brilliant cold brewed tea! Where it’s a nice tangy hot tea, it’s a fantastic cold tea! Tethered a nice berry taste, there’s a bit of tang and the colour is wonderful :) I don’t drink a lot of cold tea in winter but this is likely something to go on my shopping list for summer! Thanks azzrian
So this is a sample from Azzrian and I have to say, it’s pretty tasty. I totally don’t get pineapple when I drink it but what I do get is a nice tangy refreshing beverage. I think this would be pretty awesome cold so I’m going to use the last of my sample to give that a try tomorrow. This would be a really nice drink on a hot summer day…even hot :) it’s that right balance of sweet and tangy that throws a party in your mouth that your mind can dance to heh thanks Azz!
This tea is beautiful!! I have had a sample of this from the ever generous Teavivre for quite some time; I have been waiting to brew it up until I had a friend over who would appreciate it! We used boiling water and steeped for a little over 2 minutes. We like how it tasted; very light with floral nuances. Everyone who saw it thought it was pretty neat! We steeped it twice; it was nummy both times.
Thank you to Teavivre for sending this wonderful set of samples! They finally arrived today and I can finally start digging in.
I am in a black tea sort of mood so I figured this would be a great place to start, that and the tea came in a little once cup pouch so I didn’t have to do any measuring!
The dry leaf smell reminds me of soy sauce with a hint of sesame seed, which is making me really hungry as well as get this tea going. The steeped tea is a nice dark amber color and smells a little soy saucey still with a hint of chocolate.
The taste is very nice. There is no astringency that I can detect, which is very nice and makes for a smooth tea. There are some nice chocolate notes that are coming out as I sip this as well as a hint of chili. I might try less water when I resteep this to try and make it a little more to stronger.