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Teavivre

Recent Tasting Notes

76

The flavor of this Huang Shan Mao Feng from Teavivre is a lot lighter today than I recalled. Which is strange, because I thought that I had nearly doubled the leaves! Anyway, it tastes good. Maybe I got the brew right today: cooler water, short steep.

The liquor was more brown than green but quite pale, and the flavor was smooth and subtle. In fact, it did not really seem like the same tea. I have another generous-sized sample from Teavivre (thank you!), so I’ll definitely be exploring this tea some more in the future. After today’s brew, I feel compelled to increase my rating.

It’s funny, because my success with green teas seems to have much more to do with me than with the tea itself. There are so many ways to make mistakes, and so many variables involved.

Preparation
165 °F / 73 °C 2 min, 30 sec 4 tsp 18 OZ / 532 ML

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81

Spent yesterday and today on a Lapsang Souchong binge. I really like this tea, as my previous tasting notes will tell you. I’m not finding much time to sit and think about teas at the moment so focusing on one I know well gives me the pleasure of the tea without the pain of trying to write a detailed tasting note. Yummy smoky bacon, pine and camp-fire goodness. Slurp!

Flavors: Pine

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 1 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 8 OZ / 250 ML

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90

Not at all as good, when it is room temperature.

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90

This morning’s review is possible, thanks to Teavivre for providing the sample of this old, raw pu’erh!

Contemplating the package of sheng (raw) pu’erh in my hand, it seems that this is a worthy tea for using a small yixing pot that I have dedicated to raw pu’erh. I start heating the water and open the package of tea in the meantime. The small sample package contains leaves and clumps of leaves, broken from a tuocha or a cake. And the smell of the leaves…what a raw smell it is, and I do not just say that as a pun. A raw pu’erh from 2006 has had some years of aging in which to intensify in flavor. From the aroma of the dry leaf comes a very green scent, mellow but figuratively seeming to have come straight from the tea plant. As the water finishes boiling, I put the leaves into the pot, then pour some of the freshly-boiled water over them for a quick rinse of no more than ten seconds, which is discarded. Having added a large amount of leaf to the pot, I decide to begin with twenty second infusions, rather than my normal thirty. The rinse did the leaves a lot of good – it awoke the aromas and flavors.

The smells, rising from my cup, are complex. Deep in the heart of the aroma is the raw greenness that I noticed with the dry leaf. Yet spreading outward from that is the more mellow scents of earth and floral notes. The earthiness does not begin to compare to the deep, dark earthiness of a cooked pu’erh, as I have reviewed in the past, but is lighter and less intense. The first sip of tea is strong…very strong…but it finishes quite spectacularly. Like a strong green tea, the initial taste permeates one’s mouth and overwhelms all else. but in the finish of the sip come the taste manifestations of the aroma. Those floral notes, slightly reminiscent of the floral aspects of some oolongs, sit in the finish and the aftertaste, hovering on the edges and lending their complexity.

For the second cup, I steep the leaves for another twenty seconds. The leaves are fully expanded and fill the small pot in which I am brewing. The aromas have not changed much, but the taste is smoother. I would not describe the taste as more mellow, for it is still as intense as the first sip, yet it does not seem as overwhelming. The leaves last through several more infusions. The flavor is, in many ways, refreshing in its complexities. Yet, it can be consuming quickly and without much a thought to the depth, and one will still receive from it an enjoyable flavor. On my personal enjoyment scale, I would rate this sheng pu’erh a 90/100.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec

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82

Additional notes: Trying this one again, since it seemed like it didn’t turn out the way it was supposed to last time. I went with three teaspoons this time (even though Teavivre says a tablespoon (I’m guessing 3 teaspoons? for 17 ounces and my mug is probably only 9-10 ounces.) I completely forgot the rinse though. The temp was supposed to be at 203 degrees so I tried waiting for five minutes which then turned into 6-7. Two minute steep: This tastes better, has fuller flavor than the last time, but that is to be expected with more leaves/hotter temperature. The second steep was with just boiled water for three minutes and it resulted in a similar cup. It still isn’t my favorite black tea from Teavivre. The flavor just isn’t what I wish it was, no matter how I steep it. I don’t get what the description mentions. Maybe this flavor just isn’t for me (it’s the most like Verdant’s Laoshan Black from Teavivre and that one just isn’t for me either.) It’s definitely a good tea, just not as good as Teavivre’s other teas, in my opinion (I think I’ve tried most of their black teas.)
Steep #1 // 6-7 min after boiling // 2 min
Steep #2 // just boiled // 3 min

MissB

Yep, 3 tsp = 1 tb.

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71

Sipdown!

I’m bumping the rating downward on this (from 78 to 71) because while it was enjoyable, I’ve had a chance to drink more oolongs and get a better sense of what works for me. That said, this was a nice stepping stone along my journey. Light, floral, and with lots of resteep potential.

This time I used a higher water temperature (90-100°C) because I wasn’t feeling too fussy, and this still turned out well. Low astringency, sunny yellow liquor. Happy trails, little oolong buddy.

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76

I received two generous samples of Bi Luo Chun from Teavivre (thanks!), and I just brewed up a nice-sized pot. I’m not really sure what the dose of this tea should be, as it is extremely light and airy, filled with spaces. It almost seems weightless! I ended up using about three teaspoons for the pot, but I’m not sure whether the samples are supposed to be measured as pot portions. Perhaps Angel could weigh in? ;-)

Anyway, this was my second experience with a Bi Luo Chun tea, the first having been one from Tealux. So now I know: this tea has a very subtle flavor, not at all vegetal, but still tasty and thirst-quenching. I like the comparison to flaky pastry, except that the texture and flavor are not at all buttery to me. Bi Luo Chun strikes me as a very neutral tea, which would work well as an accompaniment to any meal—or dessert!

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 2 min, 30 sec 3 tsp 18 OZ / 532 ML

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100

I love this stuff so much. So crisp and refreshing even in the hot Florida sun. Every day when i wake up I brew this in my gaiwan and have around 4-5 infusions. After you drink it you feel amazing. It leaves your mouth feeling fresh and clean, and your mind feeling totally awakened and ready to take on anything. my brewing times for four steeps would be…. 20 seconds 40 seconds 60 seconds 80 seconds. I use a good size pinch of tea and the water is 175 degrees F. Enjoy!

Flavors: Chicken Soup, Grass, Orchids

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 0 min, 15 sec 4 g 4 OZ / 118 ML

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75

I prepared this tea Western style in a small teapot due to time constraints this morning.

First impression – chocolate forward! My first sip was all chocolatey goodness, which surprised me a bit. It’s lightly malty, which is a good match for the chocolate flavor. The aroma of the liquor is like a heavy version of what you expect of a Yunnan Golden Tip. Almost like the aroma is weighted down with something more complex.

One thing I like to do with a tea is close my eyes, take in the aroma, and sip it a bit while allowing my mind to wander (I like to think of it as my medi-tea-tion). Many teas take me places in my imagination, and I allow the tea to tell me where that place is. This tea takes me to a forest in winter covered in dry snow. It is comforting in the abandoned place and a perfect complement to the experience.

When I have a free morning, I’ll be excited to try this tea again Gong Fu style to see what flavor subtleties I can squeeze out. Thanks again to TeaVivre for the selection of samples!

Flavors: Chocolate, Honey, Malt

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 2 min, 30 sec 3 tsp 14 OZ / 414 ML

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87
drank Golden Monkey Black Tea by Teavivre
4034 tasting notes

I have to say that this is another tea that keeps growing on me. Every time i have it, i seem to like it a little better and it gets a little more delicious. TOday it came across as particularly chocolatey and malty and made for an awesome cup at work.

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90

My stomach quit hurting late Saturday. Woke up Sunday feeling fine. Grabbed the guitar and played at church. Sat down afterward and my head started throbbing. Couldn’t concentrate on the sermon – could barely stay wake. Got home headed for the couch. Got up around 3 and fixed this oolong.

I am feeling like me today and I was still craving this. Imagine me craving an oolong. It figures that the two extreme edges of oolong – Pouchong and Oriental Beauty are the two I love most. I used yesterday’s leaf. This one is just so tasty without being overly floral or roasted. Fresh and lightly malty with awesome fruity notes. My taste buds declare this to be excellent.

boychik

Glad you feel better!

gmathis

Not sure I’ve ever consciously tried a pouchong…can you do a “for dummies” description of its difference from typical oolongs?

K S

If my understanding is correct – and I should have researched this first – Pouchong is lightly oxidized while Oriental Beauty is highly oxidized. This is my first Oriental Beauty. My First Pouchong besides Coconut Pouchong was Bao Zhong from The Persimmon Tree http://steepster.com/ks6/posts/222441

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85

Thanks to boychik for the sample! I first steeped it western style, 4 grams to 8 oz of 195F water at 1/2/3/4/5 minutes. Aromas of honey, spearmint, cinnamon, and grapes emerged over the various steeps. The cup was creamy, malty, quite tasty! The honey notes were more prominent in retronasal exhale than upon the tongue, but still very nice. The mild sweet potato aspect was most noticeable in the aftertaste, and a citrus note and pleasant bitterness emerged in the cooling cup. Later steeps had a hint of spice in the aftertaste. Overall a very nice cup.

Next I tried the remainder of the sample Gong Fu style just to see what that did (7 grams to 130 ml of 195F water in short 3 to 4 second steeps). Many of the same notes emerged one or two at a time over the various steeps, with sweetness in the early ones and the spice aspect emerging in the middle steeps. Although a decent cup prepared this way, the tea was more enjoyable when brewed western style.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 1 min, 0 sec 4 g 8 OZ / 236 ML
Terri HarpLady

“Retronasal Exhale”
Now that’s an interesting term, which I think is the same as what I refer to as an “after aroma”, which I especially experience with Wuyi Oolongs like Big Red Robe. :)

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Backlog from this morning and a few hours ago.

I dialed down all the variables this time; cooler water temp, less leafage, shorter steep time. It seems to have done the trick. The tea isn’t quite as astringent or in-your-face.

I… don’t really have much to say about it though. My concentration is not the best right now, and I completely forgot to search for that evolving-flavor effect. I still think I prefer their regular Dian Hong.

Damn I’m tired. And out of it. I feel like I’ve been removed from reality for the last 52 hours and I don’t wanna go back. I think my hormones have been a little kookoo the past several days. Among other things. At least I’ve mostly been optimistic and happy and excited about stuff. Can that be a permanent change?

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95

This is one of the many samples I got from Teavivre and today I finally decided to try it out. I put in a bit less leaf than usual, since I wanted to get another steep from the remaining sample. The color of the liquor was a light amber and it smells like, well… Oolong tea. Very closely resembles gunpowder green tea (which is one of my favourite teas), but once you taste it, you can notice some differences such as this one being less vegetal but mildly floral instead. I can appreciate the slightly baked flavour as well. Overall, I think it’s a fantastic tea to have after meals.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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100

Backlog! I sipped the rest of this one today while getting my little ferret ready for a play date! I know… It sounds ridiculous but it’s quite entertaining to watch them run around together :3
Archie and Nibbles playing:
http://instagram.com/p/mLjTCoIKrM/

Nicole

Soooo cute!

Stephanie

cute ferrets :D

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This morning, courtesy of Angel Chen & TeaVivre, I brewed Organic Nonpareil Ming Qian Dragon Well Long Green Tea Western style: 7g / 8 oz / 176*F / rinse, 1, 2, 3 min. without sweeteners, milk, or cream. (This sample packet contained 7.1 g.)

Intro: I’ve been enjoying black tea all my life. To date, my green tea experience has been limited to Gunpowder Green tea. Yesterday, I enjoyed my first ever cup of Organic Superfine Dragon Well Long Jing. It will be interesting to see how these two Dragon Well Long Green Teas compare.

Leaf: Beautiful whole leaves: 2.5 cm long x 5mm wide & flat – not as large as the Superfine.
Fragrance: A pleasant green tea fragrance that is hard to describe given my experience as a black tea drinker.
Liquor: Light gold
Aroma: Very sweet
Flavor:
1 min.: Wow! TeaVivre’s Organic Nonpareil Ming Qian Dragon Well Long Jing is so very smooth and rich. It’s like a slightly salty, sweet butter with mild savory notes. The buttery smoothness persists on the palate. There is no hint of astringency, bitterness, or off-putting strong vegetal flavors all the way to the bottom of the cup. I’m very impressed with this excellent green tea.

2 min.: The 2nd cup also tastes like the first with just slightly less butter & slightly stronger savory notes. There’s no hint of astringency, bitterness, or off-putting strong vegetal flavors.

3-min.: Very similar flavor profile to the previous cups with slightly less body. Like the 1st & 2nd steeps, there’s no hint of astringency, bitterness, or off-putting strong vegetal flavors.

Impressions: This is the elegant, understated, more refined version of Dragon Well Long Jing green tea and should not to be missed – highly recommended! The similar Organic Superfine Dragon Well Long Jing is half the cost, and thus, a very good value: http://www.teavivre.com/organic-green-tea/.

Thanks to Angel Chen and TeaVivre for their gracious sample of this superb tea!

Method:
RO water re-mineralized with an Aptera filter http://steepster.com/teas/teaware/39532-puregen-aptera-alkamag-water-filter
http://steepster.com/teas/teaware/37731-my-weigh-durascale-d2-660-digital-scale
Brewed western-style conveniently in a tea mug with a brew basket http://steepster.com/teas/teaware/29177-finum-brewing-basket.
http://steepster.com/teas/davidstea/36677-thermometer-and-timer

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 7 g 8 OZ / 236 ML

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I drank this earlier this afternoon, before I left to play an outdoor wedding on the 8th floor patio of a hotel here in St. Louis (photos on my FB https://www.facebook.com/terri.langerak).
It was cold up there, & windy too.

gmathis

Brr! My ears and the end of my nose are cold just looking at the picture!

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50

The earthiness some puerhs have is light in this one on first steeping, not deep or strong. The tangerine aspect doesn’t come across as fruit at all, that sweetness the is still in the rings usually… Instead it gives a pure rind hint to it where the fact that it’s tangerine is in no way clear. It’s just that hint of rind that very vaguely comes from them.

It’s a light and subtle puerh on first steep. Nifty but nothing special to me.

Second steep, much earthier. There’s no clear tangerine influence of any kind detectable unless that bit of bitterness in the back of the throat is it….

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 30 sec 2 g 2 OZ / 59 ML
TeaVivre

Did you brewed this tea together with small Chenpi pieces? If you prefer a stronger flavor of orange in the tea, you can break 3 or 4 small pieces of Chenpi off from the whole peel, and brew the tea together with Chenpi.

Rumpus Parable

Yep yep, had pieces :)

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96

Another lovely sample from Teavivre! thank you! They would certainly be my go-to for stocking up on keemuns. However, the three I’ve tried aren’t as smoky as I expect keemuns to be. I don’t know what happened to Teavivre’s steep instructions cheat sheet/ site I had. It seems like they are on the page for each tea but it already confuses me since it says 17 ounces for western brewing. I know my mug isn’t that big! Teavivre suggests 194 degrees, 1-2 teaspoons, 2-5 minute steep time.

Steep #1 // 10 min after boiling // 2 min
The leaves smell like a dry field of grass. I used 1 3/4 teaspoons for this steep… probably shouldn’t have though! I’d go with one or 1 1/2 next time. The leaves are cut smaller, so this cup was a tiny bit astringent. Before sipping, the fragrance from the mug was like a tasty pastry. I haven’t had a cup of tea that smelled like that before! The cup is very deep red in color. The flavor is very nice! Not at all smoky, but it’s like dark chocolate, much like Teavivre’s premium Hao Ya, but not as much chocolate. There is also a lovely underlying flavor of deep sugarless plum that I just love.

Steep #2 // 8 minutes after boiling // 3 min steep
This cup was nice but the first steep had a lovely depth of flavor that this one didn’t have as much. The plum is missing. There is a lighter fruity flavor, I can’t tell what it reminds me of. In my opinion the Keemun Grade 1 is very similar to the Premium Hao Ya Keemun and both are slightly better than the Organic Superfine Keemun. But with Teavivre’s amazing sample program, it’s very easy for each tea lover to try all of them before finding their favorite. I love the first two I mentioned, I will try the remainder of my samples to see which I love more and the keemun I choose will DEFINITELY be a cupboard staple.

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This morning, courtesy of Angel Chen & TeaVivre, I brewed Organic Superfine Dragon Well Long Green Tea Western style: 7g / 8 oz / 176*F / rinse, 1, 2, 3 min. without sweeteners, milk, or cream. (This sample packet contained 7 g.)

Intro: I’ve been enjoying black tea all my life. To date, my green tea experience has been limited to Gunpowder Green tea. This is my first ever cup of Organic Superfine Dragon Well Long Jing. Why have I waited so long to explore better quality green teas?

Leaf: Beautiful uniformly large – 4 cm long x 6mm wide & flat
Fragrance: A very pleasant green tea fragrance that is hard to describe given my experience as a black tea drinker.
Liquor: Light gold
Aroma: Moderately sweet
Flavor:
1 min.: Wow! TeaVivre’s Organic Superfine Dragon Well Long Jing is so smooth, rich and thick. It’s like a slightly salty, sweet butter with savory notes. There is no hint of astringency, bitterness, or off-putting strong vegetal flavors. I’m very impressed with this excellent green tea in just the first cup!

2 min.: The 2nd cup tastes like the first with just slightly less butter & slightly stronger savory notes. There’s no hint of astringency, bitterness, or off-putting strong vegetal flavors.

3-min.: A well-balanced cup that is both a little less buttery & savory than the 2nd steep, but still very smooth. Like the 1st & 2nd steeps, there’s no hint of astringency, bitterness, or off-putting strong vegetal flavors.

Impression: This buttery-smooth green tea should not to be missed – highly recommended!

Thanks to Angel Chen and TeaVivre for their gracious sample of this superb tea!

Method:
RO water re-mineralized with an Aptera filter http://steepster.com/teas/teaware/39532-puregen-aptera-alkamag-water-filter
http://steepster.com/teas/teaware/37731-my-weigh-durascale-d2-660-digital-scale
Brewed western-style conveniently in a tea mug with a brew basket http://steepster.com/teas/teaware/29177-finum-brewing-basket.
http://steepster.com/teas/davidstea/36677-thermometer-and-timer

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 7 g 8 OZ / 236 ML
TeaVivre

Thank you so much for liking our tea. We are pleased to hear that you enjoyed our dragon well green tea. This is what we are always willing to do. we will keep providing more delicious and high qulity teas.

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