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Recent Tasting Notes
I had a sample from the VERY FIRST blend with the Yanxin’s Reserve ’04 Shu Nuggets.
After making my way home and shovelling the walkway in the winter storm that has consumed Edmonton, I decided to try this tea and a nice spicy pick-me-up.
The first steep (whole packet) gave me a really nice cuppa licorice ginger spice with that nice angel food cake-ness from the nuggets. It’s very delicious and nicely spicy from the ginger/peppercorns and sweet from the licorice.
I like this blend but the licorice reminds me of Licorice Twist from DT. I like this one wayyyy better though as it is a lot smoother with the licorice and spices.
Looking forwards to multiple steeps on this crazy winters night :)
Not really sure about what I think of this tea…I had actually wanted to try Laoshan Black 1st and then this, but I had completely forgot about that when I decided that I wanted tea when I got home tonight, along with also forgetting that it has a black tea base instead of green…so I’ll likely be for a long while…or not, I didn’t get much sleep last night and had to get up early this morning. I think I am going to wait till I have the 2nd half of this before giving a rating.
Last thing: I didn’t taste chocolate in this, well maybe a bit of bitterness that may have been the chocolate.
A half-finished package, so clearly I’ve tried this before… and have no note to show for it. Argh. I don’t even remember trying it, which is perhaps even more irritating, haha. Anyhow, it smells pretty nice brewed up – lightly spiced with a dash of orange and sweetness. It smells kind of like Christmas, because I guess orange spice = Christmas, to me. Flavourwise, that’s pretty much what it is – an orange spice tea, with some creaminess from the vanilla (presumably). Cinnamon is the predominant spice, but overall, it’s quite balanced, which I prefer. I would imagine there has been a bit of flavour loss here, given that this has not been sealed for a while (sample packet, so just clipped shut, and probably not all that well), but it’s pretty enjoyable. I’m not sure what the base tea is (I’m guessing Laoshan Black but have no real idea), but it’s really not terribly obvious here. Or maybe it’s an herbal? (I thought I saw leaves though.) Overall, pretty enjoyable, probably better when fresh, and I may throw another sample into a future order if it’s around, perhaps next Christmas, because I don’t think I’d drink this outside of the winter months.
This lasted through 3 wonderful steepings and may have even made it through more. I wish I could say I tasted all of the things everyone else did, but even still, the delicate jasmine flavor here was amazing! Just perfect. I will be buying some of this for sure now! Thanks, Ost, for letting me try it first!
Picked up an ounce (or two?) or this in my last Verdant order, because I like the roasty, creamy profile… and it did not disappoint. First infusion was for a travel mug (which is probably a bit of a waste, though still pretty enjoyable); I had two more infusions at my boyfriend’s place on the weekend, and am having a fourth now, though I think that might be it for it. Kind of that twiggy/autumn leaf pile oolong flavour, with a rich creaminess rounding it off. Yum.
So I tried Verdant’s Laoshan Black for the first time yesterday, and was curious what it would be like with chai spices. The answer? It’s AMAZING. I love the mix of spices they used here… There’s plenty of ginger, my favorite, and the sweetness from the berries is a great touch. Generally, I like to drink my chai plain (out of habit, because I drink most tea plain), and this tastes wonderful without anything added, which is a huge plus. The malty cocoa notes from the Laoshan base really elevate the whole blend. It’s savory and sweet, and the spicy aroma is mouthwatering.
Honestly, this might be my favorite chai ever. (Though I also purchased some Zhu Rong Chai… At the rate I’m going, it wouldn’t surprise me if I fell in love with that one too!) I love what Verdant Tea does with flavor in their blends. “Cozy” is the word that keeps coming to mind. With each cup, I just want to snuggle up in a blanket and savor the warmth. A perfect feeling for this time of year.
I need to stock up on this one for sure. (Despite the overcrowded state of my cupboard!)
ETA: So I just sniffed my empty mug, and guess what it smelled like? My grandmother’s homemade gingerbread cookie dough. Pretty much exactly. I’m so in love with this tea!
Got a sample of this one with my last Verdant order!
I hear a lot about this tea it feels like, so I’m happy to have gotten a sample of it.
The steeping aroma was pretty light and roasty.
The taste was more than just roasty-ness though. There were hints of floral that made it a lot smoother and lighter.
Wasn’t sure I’d like this one since I’m not really drinking a lot of roasty teas lately, but the floral notes really do balance this one out. Not bad at all!
Happy To have tried this one! Thanks for the sample, Verdant! :D
Flavors: Floral, Roasted, Smooth
My 5 for 5 sampler from Verdant Tea just arrived yesterday! This is the first of their teas that I tried. And wow… It’s delicious. This tea is cozy and creamy and smooth, with lots of flavor. I steeped it according to the directions on Verdant’s website, including the short steeping time (30 seconds). It has a wonderful aroma, green and savory— the “soybean” description on the site seems very accurate. And the taste is sweet and creamy. I’ve had greens that tasted buttery to me before, but they were more vegetal in a leafy way, with less of a sweet bean taste like this.
I usually think of green tea as more of a spring/summer kind of drink (at least compared to more oxidized teas). But this one is very autumnal. I had several steepings, and they were excellent. I didn’t notice a vanilla taste like the site described—but I think that’s because I was tasting more cream than vanilla. And I loved the cream note, so I’m not complaining!
I haven’t been drinking much green tea lately, partly because I haven’t found one that I would like to keep as a staple in my cupboard. Well, I think this tea has changed that. I’ll definitely be ordering more. Thank you to Verdant Tea for the sampler—and for the chance to try this delicious tea.
OK, I was astonished that I needed to create a listing for this tea here, how is it that I’m the only steepster-type person to have tried this Earl Grey?
We must remedy that immediately – try this Earl Grey!
It’s rather unique. Two amazing black teas plus a Wuyi Oolong makes up the base. This gives the tea a solid “black tea” background and a softer texture from the Oolong. It also adds a hint of toasty, nutty flavor. These flavors meld beautifully with the chocolate and malt notes of the black teas.
The bergamot notes are strong … but not quite as strong as I’d like them to be. The vanilla notes are strong as well. It’s tangy, citrus-y, sweet, creamy and these two components with just an average black tea would be lovely, but when you combine them with the extraordinary teas from Verdant Tea you get a truly over-the-top, wonderful Earl Grey tea experience.
If I’m to offer any complaint, it would be that I’d like the bergamot notes to be stronger. However, I do like the way the base teas are the highlight of this blend, so I find it difficult to offer a complaint. I really enjoyed this.
Here’s my full-length review: http://sororiteasisters.com/2014/08/26/earl-grey-black-tea-from-verdant-tea/
Sample from the 5 for $5 deal!
Gongfu’d it at 205 degrees and with the instructions on Verdant’s website.
Okay, so I enjoyed this with some friends in my dorm lounge. Everybody was very pleased with the tea! I also enjoyed it. It brews into a very light liquor with a sweet honey smell.
The taste was very refreshing. That being said, I’m not quite sure I get the fanaticism behind this tea. Its good, but Steepster almost seems to treat it like the epitome of Chinese blacks. To be fair though, looking at the price, this is a very admirable quality tea with a nice pricetag. I taste honey and chocolate. It has a very mild earthy tone. It lasted well under about 10 steepings in my little Yixing. I think this would be really good iced… Next time I order from verdant, I might throw in some of this just for that purpose! Give it a try!
Flavors: Chocolate, Earth, Graham, Honey, Sweet
Tea & Chocolate TTB
Hmm this id s little spicy, a little bit orange, cream vanilla goodness. This is like a mellow chai, and I bet it would make a phenomenal chai latte, too bad I don’t have any milk. The rice is the blend makes me think of genmaicha, especially when unsweetened. But add a little sweetener and the roasty toasty goodness mellows out a bit and the spicy orange cream takes center stage. Both sweet and unsweet are super tasty.
I can see this pairing well with dark chocolate with orange, or even dark chocolate with chili.
So, I finally made some time to sit down and really enjoy this tea and I’d like to think it was worth it!
I followed the instructions on Verdant’s site, once again (boiling water; very short, frequent infusions; a LOT of tea (6 g for 140 ml water), including a very quick rinse). I can’t stress enough how wonderful the dry leaves smelled – so floral and fragrant.
The wet leaves were suddenly a LOT more vegetal. The same was true of the first two infusions (6" and 8" respectively). The tea had a lovely jasmine-like aroma, still, and was a pale-gold colour.
Infusions 3-12(and, tbh, it probably could have gone for a good few more, but I really think I’ve had enough for one day…!) were much more to my liking – these were 8-10" until the 8th steep, 9 was 16" (too weak), 10 and 11 were 30" (good) and 12 was 60" (excellent). These infusions were all deliciously floral, light and refreshing. No bitterness at all and had low astringency. In colour, they ranged from pale-gold to, for the later steeps, pale-green.
The latter steeps were particularly sweet and floral, excluding the slightly rubbish 8th and 9th ones (though I only have myself to blame for that – the leaves had been resting for 3 hours between the 6th and 7th steeps – the 7th was great because of all of the flavour retained on the leaves, but I should have ramped up the times a fair bit afterwards. Still, I live and learn). The 7th steep also had a very gentle buttery flavour, which was most welcome. Really delicious.
Definitely glad I gave this one a try :D Now that I have this delightful green oolong to use as a benchmark, in the Gaiwan, I think I can finally set about doing some Gong Fu brews of some of my Butiki oolongs – they all smell so wonderful (though very different) that I’m sure I’ll love them all too.
Flavors: Floral, Jasmine, Orchid, Vegetal
This is from the Lewis & Clark teabox! (I’m not sure what year this harvest is from – possibly 2014 since it was in the tea box directly from Verdant?) I love the other Laoshan green harvests – they might be my favorite green teas. I tried to steep this exactly the same as the Summer harvest I tried recently – I don’t think that one could be any better. These twisty shiny green leaves might not have as much flavor as the Summer, but the Summer harvest has such a full flavor! Still a very flavorful green – nutty, sweet, a creamed corn vegetal flavor happening. I prefer the Summer harvest over the Autumn or Spring but any of the harvests are the perfect green to have around! I’ve got a couple teaspoons left of each anyway!
Steep #1 // 1 tsp. // 32 min after boiling // 55 sec steep
I didn’t see this pu’erh on the site anywhere, it was a reserve one I picked up from Verdant when they had a pu’erh sale of some reserve ones. I have been apprehensive to try it as there aren’t any reviews to teas similar to this at all, and the fact that it wasn’t on Steepster always makes me a bit nervous lol. No idea what to expect, so here goes!
The dry smell is a light, pleasantly honey aroma. At least it smells like sheng in the bag! This is my first purple buds tea, also, anyone have any info on this type of pu’erh? I googled but couldn’t find a whole lot of information lol. Anyways, back to the tea! There were no brewing directions anywhere, even on Verdant’s site! So I winged this in my gaiwan, did a 20s and a 15s rinse then about a 5s steep lol. Taking it slow to start with! The steeped smell is quite strongly tobacco, similar to a pu’erh I had from Teavivre this summer that I wasn’t a huge fan of. Not off to the greatest start…
WOW, the flavor is so crazy! I totally was not expecting that taste! Now how to describe it…so juicy, quite sweet, fresh, full..a tad smoky, but it works here, it melds with the sweetness…Maybe it is white grape then? It’s almost tropical in nature to me. The smokiness is present in the aftertaste, an almost leather smoke taste. Light though. There is a freshness present, a slight tingly feeling on my tongue. Uh oh, this one has all the qualities of being a pu’erh that will get me right tea drunk. LOL. The sugary sweet fruitiness is so interesting here! I have never had a sheng like this before.
Steep 2 – Not as sweet and fruity, but super mellow smoothness, still a sweetness, just not as pronounced of a fruity flavor, the smoky taste is a bit stronger but more green now, still melding beautifully. Oh and the juicy mouthfeel is still in full swing. I wonder if the smoky flavor is considered camphor? I am not sure what that is supposed to taste like, it would be good to identify it haha. Oh, I am also eating a dinner of mild pasta to help temper the possible pu’erh buzz, although this tea has led to more of a clear headed feeling than just super fuzzy and tea drunk at least :)
Steep 3 – The sweetness is still there, but the strong green flavor is taking over, not as smoky but definitely quite green. Mmm and the fresh feeling this leaves in the mouth is lovely, that sinus opening feeling..love teas like this for my allergies. A nice relaxing but slightly energizing feeling is coming over me too. A perfect tea for a long day of washing the floors haha.
I will stop updating with steepings now, but I am very pleased with this tea. It has many qualities I enjoy – it surprised me with its flavor, it was a flavor I have been enjoying, it’s complex, delicious, and opens my sinuses. Excellent tea, and I am so happy I picked up an oz of this while it was available, even though it was pricey!
Flavors: Fruity, Green, Smoke, Sugar, Tobacco
Bought a sample of this because it intrigued me.
Sometimes I like teas with roses in them, i ALWAYS love LB, and I usually enjoy Earl Greys. So I figured this might be good.
Once I smelled it dry I wasn’t quite sure, though it was really pretty to look at.
It ended up being pretty tasty though! The flavours seem to work really well together. I will have some more steeps of my sample tomorrow for sure, this is not one to use once and throw away!
I would consider buying some, but it’s not a MUST HAVE for me or anything.
None of the flavours seem to overpower the others, though the main thing I taste is LB, which is probably why i enjoyed it so much.
The next thing I notice is the bergamot, but it’s not overwhelming. The roses are pretty faint, which is probably a good thing because a super floral tea can be too intense for me.
Overall, enjoyed this one!
Back when I tried this tea, I tried it during some of our hottest weather of this past summer and it definitely is a refreshing summer tea. Even served hot, I found it very refreshing to sip – it’s really good iced too.
I like the base which is a blend of Oolong and Green teas and I like the utilization of bergamot in this blend. It doesn’t taste “Earl Grey” here, instead, it just adds a unique dimension of citrus to the cup that enhances the overall citrus flavors.
Sweet, citrus-y, toasty, nutty and beautifully crisp from the spearmint. The spearmint is the star of this cup, in my opinion because it adds just the right touch of cool, refreshing flavor without overpowering the cup and turning into mouthwash.
Really good. Here’s my full-length review: http://sororiteasisters.com/2014/08/20/summer-garden-citrus-mint-blend-from-verdant-tea/
I had a lovely Gong Fu session with this tea, whilst visiting my boyfriend down in London. In the cold weather, it was really lovely to just sit with him, drinking really delicious hot tea and get all warm-and-fuzzy feeling… :’)
But yeah, the tea was marvellous when made like this. I was quite surprised by how different the first couple of infusions tasted, compared to my previous Western-style brewing – they suddenly tasted a lot more like a Roasted Oolong than a black. But the more I drank, the more delicious it got. Steeps 3-6 were definitely my favourites.
Incidentally, as well as being initially more roasty, brewing it this way really brought out the ‘citrus’ notes of the tea. When drinking it Western style, I didn’t notice it so much. But a number of the of steeps were almost like chocolate-orange – so delicious!
I carried on drinking it throughout the day, enjoying its chocolate-y, malty smoothness. Definitely no complaints here! :D
Flavors: Citrus, Dark Chocolate, Honey
Well now. What a treat.
I took this along to the Hospice with me this week, as they have an ace filtered water-heater, so I knew I’d be able to enjoy it properly. The other volunteers were really impressed by how the leaves looked and smelled – lovely long, slightly curly leaves with an amazing dark chocolate and baked bread smell. Heavenly.
The brews didn’t disappoint me either. An amazingly chocolatey, bready cup. It has an exceptional, dark, almost savour aroma that so deliciously compliments the golden-brown/mahogany liquor. I got through 3 or 4 steeps before I had to leave (and, unfortunately, had to throw out the leaves, which probably could have gone again once or twice more).
As with the Yunnan White Jasmine, I oversteeped the second and third cups a little (making them a little more bitter than they probably ought to have been). It was still delicious, though, and (if anything) made the tea a little more yeast/bread like, with wonderful honey notes – definitely not a problem! It just reinforced the lovely chocolate-in-the-bakery atmosphere this tea had already conjured up.
I just can’t fault this tea. Marvellous.
Flavors: Baked Bread, Dark Chocolate, Honey, Yeast
I’m not gonna lie – I was super excited about this tea. The updated description of it, on Verdant’s site, just added to everything. When it arrived, it was the first I opened to smell and my goodness – what a delightful smell! So sweet and almost pungent with Jasmine. But it really did (and does!) smell like real blossoms; not artificial, at all.
So, I went and made myself a good mug-full of this yesterday, after receiving some extremely distressing news about an elderly lady I’d grown to love. I needed a good distraction, and something sweet and comforting, and this tea really seemed like it would fit the bill.
After the 30" steep (6g in 300ml, as per instructions on Verdant’s site), I was hit by just the most wonderfully sweet, honey-like Jasmine aroma. And the taste… Well, I was sceptical when I saw a description of bubblegum-like. But it almost is like a perfect, fruit-flavoured bubblegum. Honey, jasmine, vanilla, cinnamon, banana… Just amazing! Though this is obviously a jasmine tea, it’s so complex and wonderful. There’s a mild, fruity astringency, but no bitterness in this cup at all.
I drank another three steeps yesterday (all amazing, though I overbrewed the second and third so they were a little bitter) – they were slightly less complex, but still flavoursome and full of jasmine.
I did another two steeps so far today (2" and 3" respectively) – the silver needle base is more prominent now, with its delicious peach-and-apricot notes. The jasmine is still very much present – I can’t believe how long the flavour has lasted for! I still have the leaves and will probably have a cup or two more with them (and, perhaps, a few more if they’re still going).
My only caveat with this tea is how damn expensive it is hahaha. $8 for 1oz, which only makes 4 lots of brews in this manner, is quite a lot to ask for. I can appreciate that, given how thorough and no-doubt labour-intensive it is, the production requires a fairly steep asking price. But it is nonetheless, for me, a small downside.
Still, it doesn’t take much away from this incredible tea; I’ll just have to make it a treat and really make sure I savour every drop. I can’t recommend it enough.
Flavors: Apricot, Banana, Cinnamon, Honey, Jasmine, Vanilla