I had the last of this a few weeks ago. It was lovely and tasty and I will miss it. There are just too many teas that I like.
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If only all green teas were like this …
A sample so kindly sent by Hallie (and yes I am breaking my two caffeine teas a day rule. Temptation is too hard to resist…), I was glad of a chance to compare with the dragon wells I could find locally and there is not much of a competition – this is really much better. At all levels. Weird taste note – there was a nutty taste which is lovely and which I can not quite describe. The seller mentions chestnuts, not to me – for me it was something more like pumpkin seeds or something even greener… Lovely just the same, even if impossible to describe.
PS – downrating this a little bit. Tried to resteep and it does not work! Second steep was extremely weak, even using my tricks of much less water and hotter, and third steep was plain hot water. My generic worse-quality dragonwells are more generous. I think it is usually unfair to expect a tea to be re-steepable, it does not work with ALL teas nor should it have to – but this is a dragon well and can not help comparing it to other dragon wells!
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.
8g / 200ml glaspot
1m/2m/3m/4m @ 75-80C
Wonderfully nutty and refreshing. Fourth infusions somewhat peppery tones. Worked wonders on my headache, totally relaxing.
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.
Very delicate, fresh, peachy pear, sweet, honey and floral notes! Organic Silver Needle also made a really nice cold steep!
Full review on my blog, The Oolong Owl http://oolongowl.wordpress.com/2013/05/21/organic-silver-needle-white-tea-from-teavivre-tea-review/
features Owly wearing his owl scouts sash.
To be honest, I’d picked this tea out on a silly whim. Today’s tea line-up: puer, oolong, black, and green, in that order. I just had to brew a white to complete my 5 Tea Types Bingo of sorts. Thus, this. This tea is anything but silly, though. While I’m certainly happy to have completed my childish little tea bingo (LOL;; endless lameness), I’m even more grateful to be reminded about white tea.
Having this at the end of such a tea-filled day makes it easier to experience how pure and sweet a Silver Needle is, and how soothing a simple scented jasmine can be. This aroma alone is clearing straight through these foggy senses; the liquor just takes that rejuvenating aroma further, providing a deep reset. It feels like this tea is everywhere, without being overwhelming, without being lacking. No vivid grassiness from a green, no skillful complexity from an oolong. Just… jasmine white, sweet, soothing, refreshing. Maybe a bit heady from the pure florals, but then the jasmine lingers for hours like a soft blanket…
I thought I was sleepy and relaxed, earlier; I see now that I was just happy-wired and sense-tired at the same time. Unbelievable how just two cups of Jasmine Silver Needle is enough to remedy that, and to foster peaceful rest.
Well, I was saving this for Fiance but he took too long and I have poor impulse control when it comes to tea.
I chose to do this gongfu style, which I only realised was a mistake when I had a baby allergy sneeze mid-pouring and ended up with a soppy mess and 3/4 of a cup on my third one in.
No regrets though! This is a fantastic Dragonwell. It’s crisp and vegetal with a little bit of roastiness (almost nutty). The mouthfeel is buttery and has a bit of sweetness on the swallow. It’s go so vibrant and clean! I wish I had more!
If spring had a flavor, this is absolutely what it would be.
The pretty, multi-toned dry leaves,smell sweetly fruity and floral. Not a ‘high’ sweetness but deeper almost licorice.
The steeped leaves create a beautiful straw-colored brew, which is a beautiful sweet melon and honeyed floral. Distinct, but not overpoweringly so. I bought this economically-priced white as a foil to my favorite (but more expensive) Silver Needle White. Both are decidedly different and if you like or want to try white tea, you owe it to yourself to try both. This is a lovely choice for an afternoon tea party. Perfect to share with friends in the garden, or on a rainy afternoon!
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While sipping the third cup I thought the second deserved a comment of its own. My wife made a spinach and strawberry salad with orange poppy seed dressing and a honey chicken Parmesan cheese thing she made up. This tea held up really well against it. The combination brought out some spicey notes that weren’t present before. Yum.
Tea provided by Teavivre for review
This is my first time trying a high-end/more expensive dragon well, so I chose to prepare it as Teavivre’s suggests.
First steep tasted very delicate, light, buttery, vegetal, sweet (with some cinnamon background) and crisp. I couldn’t detect any off-putting flavours.
Second through fifth steeps were consistent, with the flavour building up in my mouth at each sip. It weakened very gradually, which was enjoyable.
Overall, I had high expectations and this tea met them. Can’t say I’ve tried a lot of dragon well teas (or high end ones for that matter), but this one really pleased me. Definitely worth trying once.
As a side note, I really like the flavour so I went ahead and prepared my second sample “western style”. It’s still really good, but I prefer short steeps (plus I love watching the leaves in my gaiwan).
Steep parameters (Teavivre’s recommendations):
100ml gaiwan, 4g, 5 steeps (rinse,20s,40s,1m10s,2m,2m30s)
(spot on directions, it turned out wonderful)
I am generally a pretty easy going guy. Today trying to get everything organized to make a cup of tea proved to be almost too big of a task. I didn’t completely loose my cool to the point of embarrassing myself, but it was close. Didn’t break anything but there are a number of tea puddles that I am attempting to clean up.
This tea. This is my third Huang Shan Mao Feng. It is the first nonpareil. I looked at my reviews of the other versions after I tasted this one. This wins hands down. I used the entire sample, a Finum basket and a mug. It started as like clean mineral water that quickly changes to a smooth creaminess. The flavor begins, to my tastes, as grain (oats) accompanied by more vegetal notes. What I call oats, other reviews refer to as chestnut. Next, a wonderful green astringent bite kicks in. TeaVivre calls it brisk, and it is, but not like the bite I associate with Assam based tea. The aftertaste is fresh and hangs around like it is begging me to take another sip. So of course I must oblige. There is a fair amount of cooling sensation present as well.
As you can tell I really liked this one.
I am thrilled to get to try this tea because all the Gong Fu teas I’ve had from Teavivre have been fantastic. Just having this sample reminds me of all the black teas I need to reorder.
The leaves are indeed very fine. Practically none of them are broken, and they are all very narrow and pointed at the end. Each of them seem to be a different shade of chocolate brown and gold. It reminds me of a little bird’s nest as it sits in my infuser while I wait for the water to heat.
As they steep, the tea smells deliciously toasted and warm. It’s a very comforting scent. I’m somewhat reminded of cocoa and whole wheat bread. The flavor is even better. I’m getting notes of sweet potato, cocoa, caramel, and malt. I’m catching myself trying my best to drink it even though it’s too hot — it’s like I can’t stop myself.
This is the most perfect tea I could have on a wet, cool day here. It’s definitely going to be in my next Teavivre order.
This time when I made this tea I mixed it with green tea the a second batch with white.It was better from when i first tried it.My first time blending teas together.
This is a sample of the new harvest, generously supplied by Teavivre. Many thanks!
We have been away for a week and I was so happy to get back to MY tea things! I know everyone on here knows the feeling.
I believe these leaves are darker than last year’s, and the aroma stronger. And I thought last year’s was great! We made two steeps and combined them as we usually do when serving the tea with a meal. This has the trademark oat flavor I expect from Bi Luo Chun. Hubby loves Cheerios, so it isn’t a surprise that he loves this tea. It is one of the few that draws really specific comments from him. The liquor is golden, there is no hint of astringency, and the oat-y flavor is so smooth.
Mmmmm! This milk oolong is GREAT! Creamy, floral, sweet and vegetal in that order! Definitely my kind of tea. Thanks so much Angel and Teavivre for the sample. This one is highly recommended. I am digging the mineral notes as well. Very smooth and well balanced!
Been crawing this tea for some time now. Putting it of in favor for new teas.
Still absolutely wonderful, my favorite yunnan black.
9p / 220ml Zhuni yixingpot.
1m/2m/2:30m/3m. 4 infusions was enough for today but the leaves could easily handle a couple more.
The overall flavour was honey, chocolate, malty. Naturaly sweet!
I have been making a lot of cold brews, and I decided that I really, really, like oolongs cold brewed. I had been using flavoured oolongs, so I thought I would try something straight.
But I failed to take into account that I had been using quite roasty, more oxidized oolongs. This one didn’t turn out so great. Don’t get me wrong, it tasted like a delicious greeny oolong, buttery, nutty, smooth. But something about it cold just didn’t work.
Would be happy to drink this one hot any time, not so much cold.
Tea provided by Teavivre for review
Just received Teavivre’s samples yesterday, and this is the first one I picked out to try. Good black teas always have a special place in my heart, so I was eager to taste this. I’ve also been wondering for a long time “what IS tan yang black tea like?”.
My initial steep tasted; fuzzy, sweetness/caramel, earthy.
Second to fourth steeps started to really build up a strong earthy flavour, that had a nice roasted, woodsy, syrupy, and slightly floral background.
Fifth through tenth steeps maintained that strong flavour, only weakening slightly with each steep. The last cup was still very flavourful considering it was the tenth.
Overall it met my expectations. Teavivre’s steep guidelines were spot-on, I enjoyed the flavour brought out in the shorter initial steeps. What I liked about this tea, is that held onto a strong flavour throughout my steeps. That being said, I’m not impressed with the level of “charm” Tan Yang brings, and I’ve tasted similar teas with different names (this is a really minor point, not meant to be taken as negative).
Compared to the other black teas Teavivre sells, this is probably my second favourite (first would be their Yunnan Dian Hong Golden Tip). If you enjoy resteeping your black tea a lot, this is a very good option to choose.
Steep parameter (as suggested on their website)
100ml gaiwan, 5g sample, 10 steeps: rinse(10s),5s,5s,10s,20s,30s,35s,35s,60s,2m30s,3m30s
Sipdown, 160. Somewhere along the way I drank the rest of the other sample I had of this but didn’t log it. Ah well.
I went home early today (but still doing work, unfortunately), so I am doing this gongfu while I write. I definitely think I prefer this one western style. The gongfu brewing really brought out the vegetal notes. The first steep was probably 15-20 seconds (no rinse) and tasted like vegetables and sugar, which is kind of an odd combo. Later steeps brought out more of the florals and became increasingly vegetal and less sweet. It was a pretty tasty TGY, but I am getting pickier and pickier lol. If I had to have certified organic (which I don’t really care about), this would be a good pick.
I bought this tea on the same day that I received the Teavivre news letter featuring an all new ‘Strawberry Oolong’. I hadn’t known Teavivre to do anything flavour wise other than Jasmine and I decided then and there to treat myself. Well it arrived yesterday and I have had to wait until tonight to sample it.
The smell is divine, sweet and fruity strawberry with a clean and mouth watering juiciness. It looks like any other late harvest Oolong and without the smell I wouldn’t have thought anything else of it (had I known known the information on it and was blind tasting). However it really is a very nice scent, it smells a little unnatural but not too much to spoil it.
Once steeped for 3 minutes this Oolong is cloudy yellow in colour with a soft but still juicy strawberry aroma. So far it smells so fruity that it resembles a fruit only blend.
Wow! It has the same sweet and juicy flavour as it’s aroma but there is also a gentle floral and slightly toasted depth to it too. Not too sweet but at the right balance for me and it’s nice to be able to taste the Oolong beneath it all. Overall it’s quite light and refreshing but with enough flavour to be pleasing. The sweetness is almost honeyed. Very smooth and delicious!
I think it would be a good tea to try iced, maybe even worth a try at cold steeping it. Very happy that I was naughty and bought this tea despite my promise to drink what I have first…oops.
I’ve reviewed this tea before, but this is an update on the Spring 2013 batch:
The long flattened dry Dragonwell leaf is a beautiful bright green color, with a strong, fresh toasted vegetal scent.
The steeped leaves open full and fast, clearly displaying their paired tip leaf & 1st leaf. The smell of the tea’s steam is vegetal, roasted, nutty almost porridge-like. The spring 2013 batch doesn’t disappoint. Teavivre’s is still the best dragonwell I’ve tasted. Nutty, slightly roasted, slightly vegetal, but deliciously smooth. Last year I ordered three 100g bags late in the year and finished all. It’s my everday/all day and never tire of it tea. I’ve found the leaves very forgiving of temperature and steep time (It wonn’t burn or taste off.) A tasty affordable tea for everyday use. A very distinct, bold green, satisfying even to those lovers of stronger more oxidized teas.