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Recent Tasting Notes
Bless me Cyril, for I have sinned. It is eight hours since my last cup of tea.
OK, so I’ve been asleep for six of those, but that’s hardly an excuse.
I’ve decided intellectually that I do not need to sweeten this tea, even the first infusion. So Let’s see if my tastebuds agree.\… they do !
The first sip or two filled the night-dried cracks inside my mouth but soon the sweet, juicy taste and delicate fragrance filled my senses.
I love the way the flavour of this tea fills your whole mouth.
I’ll start steeping the second before I finish the first. All is as it should be.
Didn’t have this yesterday. It’s been a while since I went a day without.
Nice long steep in a one person pot, then decant all of the liquor into a mug.
The aroma is so delicate that the anticipation of this tea is not in the smell, it’s in the memory. i know how good it’s going to be.
Even though it’s summer, this tea always tastes like spring. It’s like the smell of fresh pine needles after a rain; it’s a mood elevator.
Currently my laptop is playing up, and my tea is behaving. I think the answer is to enjoy the tea and worry about the work later.
At this point, according to my tea log, which probably gets half my tea activity, this is my favourite. I doubt that at any time in the past my top tea would be a white or green.
This morning, it’s 6:30 and it is my first cup of the day. I haven’t eaten for two days, apart from the mildly controversial jelly regular readers have commented on.
So, it’s a pai mu tan.
I haven’t used some delicate 120ml teacup, here I have a mug the size of a handbasin. I’ve made up one Cyril’s worth – about 500ml – and I’m not afraid to re-steep.
The first sip of this, while it’s still a little hot, cools itself by burning my tongue and then slips across a very dry throat. It’s like bringing life back to the Sahara.
Never mind letting it cool, it’s into sip 2.
It’s warm and woody today. There’s a real melon taste to this brew. (In fact. I think I’ll nip out and get some rockmelon for breakfast)
After about 50ml, vitality is flowing again.
My mother is on EPO – you know the stuff athletes cheat with. In her case, she’s in her 60’s and has kidney disease. She describes the feeling immediately after she has her fortnightly injection as ‘making her want to go and jump over a house".
This feels the same. I wonder if they’ll ban it for runners?
Pure Morning Bliss. 2 infusions.
I was about to shoot more on Assam but have gone off on a tangent with this.
I suffered a massive gall bladder attack last night, and rose several hours late, some what aspirin and codeine addled.
The was my saviour.
The whiteness is not exactly sweet, but yet not savoury. Like it exists outside of the normal rules.
3rd infusion highly likely!
OK, so this tea is my current obsession – I’m on my way to drop some change off to my son who is minding a small store today.
I’ve packed two japanese tea cups and a cute purple pot, plus my ever-dwindling Pai Mu Tan
We’ll be taking the water at 97% from the espresso machine, but I think the tea is unsuited to an infuser.
I’ll be commented as this Odyssey unfolds!
As foreshadowed in my last post, it’s now 6:31 and I’ve just added 250ml of boiling water to the 2grams of Pai Mu Tan that I brewed at 9 last night, and then re-steeped around 6:10.
6:33 – Leaves are sooo unfurled, just floating around. Swish the pot and they look like sea creatures drifting.
6:35 – Wisps of ginger coloured liquor are spiralling from the buds
6:37 – just went out to my veggie garden and inhaled the scent of growing tomatoes, capsicum and zucchini. Comparing the scent to the tea, but it’s not really the same.
6:49 – Has the scent of a rainforest. And it’s time.
It sparkled like a mountain stream as I poured it. And taste is delicate – like teak and oak and blueberries.
Might be my tea experience of the day!
I had a lovely cup of this exquisite white at 9pm. Drained the leaves, left them overnight and added boiling water at 6am when I arose.
Delightful. Smooth and soft, still has that characteristic gentle woody, fruity palate.
As soon as I finish, I’ll have another go. Think of the antioxidants!
Had six cups of this over the last two days. Rapidly becoming a favourite!
Nice slow steep brings out a mellow flavour. No bitterness.
Frangrant from about 5min steeping. Absolutely recommended to drain the pot as you drink and then resteep about 4 times over the day.
Aftertaste is a gentle lingering sweetness
Never have been able to source this one, but the price is still right at the Fox Farm bulk bin at a whopping 31 cents an ounce. It’s my husband’s favorite summer iced tea. Some oolongs get bitter when you sun-tea or cold steep them; this one has a roasted, nutty personality that takes abuse nicely.
It’s been my favorite kind of “get-to” day…been busy puttering (manufacturing a “fingerprint recognition sensor” for 9-year-olds with a ziplock bag of aloe vera gel) and shopping (buy 2, get 1 free used books at Vintage Stock). Believe I’ll pour me a big glass of this, put my feet up and rest from my exertions.
I may be able to source this one later; a work friend brought it to me and said she’d snap a phone picture of the box. She was disappointed because, and I quote, “I paid $15 for it and it smells like fish and paint thinner.”
(No, it doesn’t.)
Steeped, it has that characteristic, upper-end, fruity oolong fragrance. Nice yellow-orange color. Silky texture. Flavor is on the toasty end of the spectrum. Lick-lippy astringency.
This anonymous family favorite is launching my first excursion into cooking with tea. We found a lookalike recipe for P.F. Chang’s oolong marinated sea bass online and it’s soaking in the fridge right now. Well, cod instead of sea bass…availability and frugality caused that substitution. (The beauty is the fact we haven’t tasted the original yet, so we won’t know if it’s way off the mark!)
I’m thinking the store may have switched up—or mixed—the leaves in my favorite cheapie bulk bin oolong. This batch wasn’t as large and stemmy as I usually expect, but still a nice green-and-brown blend. Yard mulch. Steeped up light and nutty for a morning-long writing session yesterday; the rest wasn’t bad chilled. And still 31 cents an ounce, bless the store. Can’t beat that.
This still continues to be my favorite cheap-keep-the-canister-filled-at-all-times tea; someday I shall ask to see the bag so I can actually see the brand. (Yeah, I’m sure the store clerk will enjoy toting a 50-pound feed sack off the top shelf just to entertain the customer…)
In the meantime, I played a bit this morning and did 2 parts shaved unsweetened coconut chips to 1 part of these oolong leaves. I believe I’ve found a new favorite blend-in. Coconut and …. any suggestions?
Still haven’t unearthed the brand of this nice (and wonderfully inexpensive!) bulk tea from favorite local store, though I see big ol’ 25-pound bags on their shelves with characters I can’t deciper. It looks a little leafy and woody and stemmy dry, but is still a good pantry staple, especially on days when you want to be tugged awake instead of booted out the door.
We buy this in bulk…about 31 cents an ounce…at local health food store. Can’t beat it for the price! I’ll have to see if I can associate it with a brand. The leaves are big and loose and … well, leafy instead of tea-ey. It has a nice wet-earth sort of aroma and a hearty brown (as opposed to golden or black or chartreuse) flavor. Ices pretty well in the summer too.
I may be pushing the limits with this one. I debated whether or not it belonged on the board or in one of my own posts, but eventually I decided that since it’s made of primarily real tea and it’s built pretty much like my other posts so here it is.
Once upon a time I was in a travelling teabox, the very same that inspired the one I’m organising here (note! Sign up for the Travelling Teabox by emailing address and steepster username to me at [email protected] before dec 31st! Guidelines for participation can be found in this thread (http://steepster.com/discuss/102-travelling-teabox) on the board) and someone added these candies that I nabbed a couple of. Two red ginseng candies from Korea, containing sugar, maltose, red korean ginseng chunks, raw honey and peppermint, and two oolong tea candies from god knows where in Asia and containing oolong tea, maltose and sugar. (There were also a couple of maple candies which I’ve eaten long ago)
I’ve never had the guts to try either of these, but tonight I happened across them and I was feeling brave. It’s a sort of greenish dark grey colour and it smells vaguely of tea. It definitely does taste like a sweetened proper oolong tea, though. It’s like a dry cup of tea. It’s like…. sucking on the leaves after brewing. It tastes like the inside of the pot smells after a number of good steeps. I wish I could get my hands on more of these, because they’re really kinda yummy! One is definitely enough, but I could get addicted to these things.
(The ginseng ones didn’t actually have tea in them, smelled rather bad, and tasted worse… it was like sucking on a bit of dry toothpaste. The less said about those the better.)
Very nice and very unique tea I keep having at an Italian restaurant here in Kyoto. Unfortunately they keep their teabags in a glass jar so I can never find out what brand it is but the tea itself is lovely with a definite but subtle pine flavor. I believe it also contains mint and some other root like substance but I can not place the taste exactly. It certainly keeps me coming back again and again.
I brought this tea from a vendor at my local farmer’s market. Either I don’t remember the brand or the vendor blended it herself. After the first few tries, I decided I didn’t like it much so I haven’t drank it in awhile. It tastes mostly of chamomile with something else that is not distinctly citrus-y.
I made my husband a cup tonight since he has been drink teas in the evening with me when I offer to make him some and I’m trying out different kinds of tea to figure out what he likes, which is so far everything – he did particularly like a spicy holiday bagged tea last year though I can’t remember the name now. He rarely drinks a second cup unless I make a pot which he will keep drinking, even more than his fair share sometimes. So I brewed it again for myself. In a lighter version, it’s actually not bad but I’m not sure I actually like it still.
2nd brewing: 1.5 tsp.