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Recent Tasting Notes
Thanks again go to Angel at TeaVivre for providing me with these samples. So far I have really enjoyed everything she has sent me and have been constantly impressed by the quality of the teas. I’m also grateful that she included several sample packets of this particular tea because the first time I prepared it I discovered that I couldn’t taste a thing because my head was so stuffy from my allergies.
My first steep was a very pale yellow color. There was a slightly sweet yet mild vegetal flavor, but I didn’t seem to get much of the peony flavor that I was expecting.
That all changed on my second steep, the aroma and scent from this steep was lightly floral and the color deepened to a golden yellow. It was this steep where I can really taste the floral flavors from the peony, although they are still very subtle. One thing that I enjoy most about white tea are the subtle flavors that emerge around the second steep, although with this particular tea I had trouble distinguishing the flavors that emerged (this could just be a leftover problem from my allergies though). I was left with a vague sweet floral impression and this steep was noticalbly sweeter than the others.
With the third steep the tea headed back towards tasting vegetal, losing the floral flavors that I enjoy most about this tea.
With my last sample packet I increased my initial steep time to 1m30s, the second steep stayed at 2m and third steep was 2m30s. I found that the flavor was much more enjoyable for me that way and my first steep ended up with a less subtle flavor, my second steep stayed just how I like it and the third steep still had a stronger vegetal taste than I enjoy.
This is a great all around Yunnan tea when it comes to taste, smell, and price. Has the notes on taste that remind me of fig cookies. Nice, smooth, and medium bodied… not too light; not overly strong either. It doesn’t need sugar but I like to add some anyways, which tends to bring out flavors that make me think of mild molasses.
Iced it tastes a little bit like a Keemun tea. Very good hot or cold.
Directions call for 2-3 teaspoons at 194F. This smells good in the bag, kind of like honey and leather. Slightly tastes like a Dian Hong to me, except I’m getting the addition of earthy, oaky, roasty nut-like flavors, some sips even bring to mind coffee notes. That honey like smell comes through on taste too. This isn’t bitter what-so-ever (that is a good thing).
Pretty unique. I’m having a hard time thinking of how to describe the taste of this, but it’s good. It kind of reminds me of ripe grapes and/or raisin, except it also has some mild toast-like notes going on. I cold brewed my leftover leaves and it came out very flavorful.
Update: After drinking more of this, the best method for me seems to be a steep of <190F with some sugar. It steeps up tasty and has a creamy, smooth mouth-feel that I like quite a bit. Great iced.
This morning I enjoyed these lovely 2013-harvested needles over a two hour period. I understand the high reviews. It is quite a lovely tea.
Needles largely unbroken. The leaves themselves are green with the classic white fuzz and the liquid produced is a pale, pale green (almost yellow) color. The flavor is vegetal, floral, and nutty all at the same time.
Very smooth liquid and I definitely recommend to all. This is everything a silver needle should be – subtle, sweet, delicate.
Awesome! Rich, delicious, smooth, chocolate-y, caramel-y … just pure, black tea goodness!
For me, this tea falls somewhere between a rich, malty Assam and a smooth, even-tempered Ceylon, with notes that are familiar to a top-notch Fujian Black tea.
Love this! Here’s my full-length review: http://sororiteasisters.com/2013/03/31/superfine-tan-yang-gong-fu-black-tea-from-teavivre-2/
I have bought over 1000g of Pu Erh in the last few days… it would seem my tea cravings are for ripe rather than my preferential raw. Well I have this sample with me and now is as good a time as any to indulge myself with some Pu Erh magic.
This Pu Erh has beautiful reflective golden tips with dark brown and mature green leaves all compacted into one chunky cake piece. I love reflective leaves, like cats eyes, just so beautiful. The Pu Erh has little hairs and looks to be wonderful quality.
Still raw it has a sweet earthen floral scent. Like dirt and flowers and wood all blended together. A tree would be perfect to use in my explanation as it has all three.
I have my Gongfu teapot with me so I shall use that to brew this tea. Using Teavivre guide here is my layout -
Tea :10g 5 steeps:30s,1m,2m,3m,4m 100ºC/212ºF
First Steep – 30 seconds
The tea soup is light yellow in colour with a gentle wooden yet grassy scent.
Flavour is sweet and a little smoky. Picking up wood, grass, flowers and dark honey. All in one gentle and mild package.
Second steep – 1 minutes
Much stronger with new sensations of musk and perfume. Less sweet and no longer honeyed and has been replaced with a slight dryness.
Third steep – 2 minutes
Side note – The cake piece has almost fully broken apart and expanded to reveal fresh, long, green leaves.
Flavour is thicker with more musk and wood but carrying on well in style. Only a little astringent towards the after taste but still very nice.
Fourth Steep – 3 minutes
Side note – Pu Erh is completely broken up now.
Mellowing a lot in flavour and the astringency has completely gone. The sweetness has still not quite returned but it is more noticeable than the previous steep. As to what is left I can taste clearly grass, flowers and musk.
Fifth steep – 4 minutes
Very little left at all in this now. Wood, grass and musk in a pinch can be tasted but personally for me it’s one steep too much.
Overall – It’s been a nice raw Pu Erh but it was not as special as some others I have had from Teavivre. I love raw Pu Erh (despite my recent cravings) and it’s such a shame that I didn’t love this one. I really liked it though and enjoyed drinking it. Would not buy it again in the future mainly because I prefer a few others but would drink it again very happily.
Okay, this one blows the Bailin away. I thought that was tasty, but this one is by far my favorite. The color of the brew surprised me with how dark it was and I couldn’t really figure out what it smelled like. The flavor totally shocked me. So dark and rich. Like baker’s chocolate complete with that bitter flavor bakers chocolate has, but in a really good way. And each subsequent steep got darker and richer. This will most definitely take up permanent residence in my already overflowing cupboard. I still have like 6 more black teas samples from Teavivre to try but it’s tough to imagine any of them being this good. But if they are, I’m in for a huge treat!
I would like to thank Angel with TeaVivre for providing me with this sample. When I first opened my package I was surprised with the care they took when packaging the sample. Not only was it vacuum sealed in a foil pack, but the tea inside was also wrapped in plastic to preserve the flavor.
My first steep was a pale golden color with a tinge of green. The aroma and scent from this steep was very floral, almost overwhelmingly so while it was hot. There was a bit of astringency while the tea was still hot, but it disappeared once it cooled. It also had a subtle sweetness that I noticed towards the end of each sip.
My second and third steeps were slightly darker in color and more golden. One thing that I have noticed is that the floral flavors become much more apparent with each additional infusion. There is also a bit of a mineral taste with these steeps that I only noticed while the tea was still hot. Once it cooled to room temperature it, as well as the slight astringency I noticed, completely disappeared.
This tea has such a depth to it that makes it a little hard to describe and I noticed immediately that the flavor isn’t like any other oolong that I’ve had. It very quickly became my new favorite oolong.
Woo! One of the stragglers from my birthday order since the others ship so quickly. I’m gonna try to cut down my reviews a bit from now on too.
I really enjoy this tea so I’m glad I purchased a good amount of it. It’s usually difficult for me to find green teas that are really strong, but the only reason I don’t like more delicate ones is because they don’t taste like this! Usually for me, lighter green teas just taste bland and grassy, and literally my least favorite flavor I can find in a straght tea is anything reminiscent of my lawn.
This however is really delicious because though it’s very delicate and not strong at all, it’s SUPER nutty and sweet and has no grassy flavor that I can taste. Definitely getting vegetables, but more like vegetables pan fried with butter than steamed or raw. It just has a very smooth and warm flavor and I absolutely adore nutty green teas so I’m in love. Really delicious and bound to become a staple!
Rumpus Parable sent this to me AGES ago and I feel terrible I’m just now making a tasting note for it. thank you so much for sending! This is in the Steepster Select pouch, and wow those Steepster Selects must have been fun. I’ve only had one blooming tea before. I think it looked exactly like this one too.. just from a different company. So I had my clear mug out and I think I waited too long for the water to cool…it wasn’t quite boiling. This is a green tea after all and I thought the flavor would go bitter. The bloom was floating and it did take a while to unravel. I waited five minutes and decided to have a second steep later to watch the entire bloom unravel with actual boiling water… the green leaves unfurled, seeing a bit of the red flower. The flavor isn’t bitter at all and has a seaweed and asparagus flavor.
The second steep I used just boiled water and the bloom opened right up. I decided to just keep the bloom in the cup as I was drinking… I thought it’d be nice to look at! But twenty minutes later I took a sip and the cup was FULL of undrinkable bitterness! I guess twenty minutes was a bit too long. Any other tea I would have known this, but it was so nice at five minutes which is very unusual for a green tea. Ah well. Somehow this is elaborate but the flavor wasn’t quite right even in the first cup. Luckily, everything else from Teavivre is much more delicious!
The first steep of this tea surprised me with the subtle floral flavor and creamy notes. I wasn’t sure if I was going to care for this one because it struck me as being overly subtle. The second steep is what changed my mind about this tea. The leaves have completely unfurled in my pot and the flavor isn’t quite as subtle as it was before. The floral flavor really comes through and there is a slight sweetness that I really enjoy as well slight bite to the end of each sip. This was by far my favorite steep of this tea out of the three that I made.
Overall I found this to be a very enjoyable Oolong tea, however, I still prefer the stronger flavors of Tie Guan Yin.
The dryleaf looks really weird= like rocks made of felt! The dry leaf smells very much like the kind of green tea I don’t like, but it turns out I didn’t have to worry. The taste was mellow, roasty, and slightly sweet. The ginseng aftertaste works its way up the nose and back of the mouth. Overall it was pleasant and refreshing.