Vital Tea Leaf

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Recent Tasting Notes

80

Very interesting! The flavor upfront is a nice mild oolong, nothing special, mouthfeel like plain hot water. Holding it in your mouth for several seconds yields a wonderfully intense, smooth, honeyed licorice aftertaste.

The leaves expand like crazy, so use a big strainer!

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drank Angel Green by Vital Tea Leaf
33 tasting notes

Not sure if I’ll get this again. If you steep the tea too long you get an extremely bitter tea. It almost hurts going down. By steeping it shorter, however, it turns out to be a nice sweet/bitter taste that is actually somewhat enjoyable.

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77

Thanks to Nicole for this sample! I already had this one in the infuser before I read other tasting notes and saw that this is really a black tea. I was really craving a yellow tea today! I guess I should have noticed that the leaves are really dark (much darker than in the picture, actually). This was otherwise a mild black tea — very sweet and honey while somehow still having a really dark brew. Not much else to say!
Steep #1 // 1 1/2 tsps // 14 minutes after boiling // 2 minute steep
Steep # 2// just boiled // 3-4 minute steep

Sipdowns: 1/30 None 1/31 Spice & Tea Exchange – Carrot Cupcake
…but I’ve added a few to the ‘next-time’s-a-sipdown’ list

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87
drank Iron Goddess King by Vital Tea Leaf
2816 tasting notes

I’m enjoying this tea that I got at the Vital Tea Leaf the other day. I stopped in to do a tea tasting with some tourists in Chinatown and tried a few things. I’m not usually the biggest fan of Iron Goddess oolongs but I found this to be well balanced and tasty. I bought 1/4 oz. This is not roasted as far as I can tell.

At home I’m drinking it out of the yixing teapot and got 4 steeps. It is vegetal and creamy in texture, with a slight butteriness in the 2nd and 3rd steep. By the 4th steep the buttery flavor had mostly gone. I could have gotten more steeps out of it but gave up after steep #4. It has a slight mineral quality that I notice in the Iron Goddess teas. The woman in the store told me this doesn’t have much caffeine in it, however I do notice it seems slightly energizing. A good everyday drinking tea.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 1 min, 0 sec
Kirkoneill1988

iirc, ive had IG before and it was ok, i should buy some and review it

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100
drank Lychee Black by Vital Tea Leaf
6 tasting notes

I was just introduced to this tea and it is fantastic for an everyday tea, especially if you like a sweet, honey flavor to your tea. This one is naturally sweet from the Lychee and it’s very smooth and creamy on the tongue. I’m sure it’d be great iced as well, but as of yet, I’ve only tried it hot.

Flavors: Creamy, Honey, Lychee, Smooth, Sweet

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 0 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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100
drank Siberian Rose by Vital Tea Leaf
6 tasting notes

I find the Siberian rose from Vital Tea Leaf to be a really great before bed tea. It doesn’t take many buds to brew a cup – 3 to 4 rosebuds for as many steeps – and it’s such a light, floral taste that is very relaxing. I’ve always liked rose tea and floral teas in general, though, and you definitely have to like the taste of rose to be able to enjoy this tea. I recommend it if you’re looking for a relaxation tea or want to try something new!

Flavors: Floral, Rose

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 0 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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Another interesting tea from the amazing Sil

Contrary to the name this isn’t a yellow tea. This is black. It is sweet though – very sweet.
It’s light, it’s malty, it’s sweet. That’s pretty much how I’m seeing it this afternoon.
I like it – not sure I love it, but for sure outside my “comfort” zone as far as the black teas that I typically drink.

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84
drank Supreme Yellow Sweet by Vital Tea Leaf
7763 tasting notes

This is another from Nicole and another one from a company that i’m not familiar with. This is a malty and sweet tea, and as i understand it, this is a black tea rather than a yellow one. Really enjoyed this one as well :) thanks nicole!

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I don’t have any info on whether or not this is natural pineapple but my guess is not. Isn’t a big deal to me but might be to others. :)

The pineapple scent is extremely strong and it’s nice. The flavor is a strong pineapple with a vague background of lightly vegetal, anonymous green tea. It’s nice, but with a teensy bit of added sugar it becomes good, not just nice. :) I wouldn’t keep this on hand mainly because I have yet to really love a green tea of any kind so much that I’d reach for it over my blacks. I’m pretty sure my mom will really like her share of this, though.

I have 2 ounces of this so if anyone wants to try any, drop me a note. Happy to share. :)

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 30 sec 2 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

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drank Dong Ding Oolong by Vital Tea Leaf
1812 tasting notes

Backlog:
Tea-tasting with a friend, yesterday, he was looking for something to drink at work (and I was pushing him to give-up on Stash and Yogi teabags). Knowing his preference for oolong, Herman helped him settle on this and the Black Pearl Supreme Oolong, both with dark, roasted notes.

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Backlog:
Tea-tasting with a friend, yesterday, he was looking for something to drink at work (and I was pushing him to give-up on Stash and Yogi teabags). Knowing his preference for oolong, Herman helped him settle on this and the Dong Ding Oolong, both with dark, roasted notes.

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100

Of all the teas we were able to try at Vital Tea Leaf, this was my favorite. The gentleman who was steeping for us said that this wasn’t really a “yellow” tea but rather a red (black) but their website says it is a yellow so…

This was sweet, malty and dusty. Very unusual to me and I gravitate towards malty teas these days. This stands out. This is the one I chose to buy some of to bring home and I think I will want more sooner rather than later. :)

boychik

from the pic looks like Yunnan?

Nicole

That’s what I would have thought both from look and taste.

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80
drank Siberian Rose by Vital Tea Leaf
765 tasting notes

This was a beautiful tea! Nothing but rose buds. The scent was heavenly and the flavor was very light. I am not sure how quickly I would drink this one if I bought any but having it on hand for frou-frou tea parties would be nice. The dry “leaf” would definitely have to be on the table to admire!

boychik

so pretty

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drank Lychee Black by Vital Tea Leaf
765 tasting notes

This was my least favorite from our tasting session at Vital Tea Leaf. It was too sweet, almost in a saccharine way. I don’t think it has any sweetener – it’s just the lychee. Having tried a few lychee teas I am coming to the conclusion that lychee isn’t going to be a flavor I like much. :)

boychik

have you tried real fruit?

Nicole

I haven’t. I don’t think I have ever seen it in stores around here. I’ll have to keep an eye out when traveling. :)

boychik

for me its like if you take of grape skins and eat, slippery, juicy and nutty.

Ag

Try getting the fresh ones if possible, not the canned ones (which are incredibly sweet). Just beware of the pit inside after peeling. I like them (juicy, floral, kinda nutty), but find longan (“dragon eye” because it’s round, translucent, and you can sort of see the pit after peeling, unlike lychees which are opaque white) to be much tastier and complex in flavour.

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drank Blue People by Vital Tea Leaf
765 tasting notes

This was another from the tasting session at Vital Tea Leaf. I have only had Blue People one other time from another company and I didn’t care much for it. This still would not be one I would pick out to take home. I know it is the ginseng that I’m not liking. The quality of the tea seemed high and the ginseng was not overwhelming but could definitely be picked out from the flavors. My mother really liked it though and bought some to take home. So while it isn’t my thing, if you like ginseng oolong, this may be one for you!

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92
drank Jasmine Pearl by Vital Tea Leaf
765 tasting notes

Not a review for drinking this tea, but rather for sort of cooking with it.

This was originally posted by Tealeaves. I have modified the directions quite a bit to make it very simple.

5 ounce log of goat cheese (chevre)
5-6 teaspoons green jasmine tea (obvs I used jasmine pearls from Vital Tea Leaf)

Grind tea leaves fine in food processor, coffee grinder (one without coffee smell – I use mine for herb grinding not ever for coffee) or even with a mortar & pestle in old-timey manner. Roll cheese log in ground leaves. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill overnight.

Serve on really mildly flavored rice crackers or something similar. Or with a savory rosemary scone. Original recipe suggested drizzling with melted orange marmalade, honey is equally good.

These jasmine pearls have a sweetness to them that I think helps complement the sourness of the cheese. I don’t know how well this would go with a more floral jasmine. But I’ll try eventually. :)

__Morgana__

Sounds yum!

Evol Ving Ness

Indeed. Delicious.

Fjellrev

Nice idea!

Nicole

I am going to experiment with some other teas as well. It turned out much better than anticipated. I thought the tea leaves would be dry and prickly and throw off the texture, but after sitting overnight and especially the 2nd day, the moisture in the chevre had really softened them up and the jasmine started to flavor the cheese as well as the tea.

Evol Ving Ness

Mmm, even better.

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92
drank Jasmine Pearl by Vital Tea Leaf
765 tasting notes

When I had this one tonight it honestly came across as more sweet than floral. Almost in a bubble gummy kind of way. It was seriously tasty. Still jasmine but not the perfumey jasmine that I also love. This might be a jasmine for people who want to like jasmine but can’t stand floral teas. :) I get a few small bitter notes as the cup becomes completely cold. But I used a lower water temp than I think I have before and steeped for less time. Might also have contributed to the surprising sweetness. Upping rating based on this steep.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 15 sec 2 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

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92
drank Jasmine Pearl by Vital Tea Leaf
765 tasting notes

Now that I have this in my cupboard I can give it a proper review. The scent is unmistakably jasmine. The pearls are so lovely. The first steep (mine was longer than the package recommends) was deeply sweet and mildly jasmine. The second steep was more bitter, more floral and more jasmine. The sweetness vanished. But, I did steep for much longer than recommended for my first. :) But overall, this is a really good jasmine pearl.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 2 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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92
drank Jasmine Pearl by Vital Tea Leaf
765 tasting notes

Had this one in a tasting session at Vital Tea Leaf. It was an excellent jasmine pearl. Floral and jasminey but not overwhelmingly so. Good scent that was just a little stronger than the flavor.

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88

They made this when I was at the store for a tea tasting, I might have even suggested it. Smelled very fresh and fruity. The flavour was sweet and did taste nicely like the fruit. Since that is one of my favourite fruits I was glad I got to try the sample.

I also liked watching the store staff brew things by gaiwan.

Flavors: Lychee

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97
drank Blue People by Vital Tea Leaf
1 tasting notes

This tea is amazing! After about 10 seconds you get a nice honey aftertaste. Great tea to wake up to. And Kenny over at Vital tea is an awesome guy. I highly recommend going in for a tasting if your ever in SF chinatown.

Flavors: Earth, Honey

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 0 min, 30 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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drank Blue People by Vital Tea Leaf
257 tasting notes

I first tasted this tea in Seattle at Vital Tea Leaf. They have a wonderful sit-down tasting complete with gong fu and you get to try lots of different teas. This one stood out among all the ones I was tasting. I started getting a warmth and a serious high off of it. It is so sweet and fantastic. The qi alone is worth drinking this tea but it is also a fabulous high mountain Oolong that is super sweet. It is blended with high quality ginseng powder.
The lady told me there are different qualities and types of ginseng so you can get different effects from them. I bought some of this to take home and am super pleased that it is brewing up to taste just like her brew did. I love it.
Dry Leaf: smells so good, it is little rolled Oolong nuggets coated in a moss green colored ginseng powder.
Method: 195F – 10 oz ceramic Gong Fu pot 45" steep 1 tsp tea per 8 oz water Steeped 3 times but can go up to 8
Wet Leaf: Large dark green leaves that some have been cut and would appear some have been leaf bitten which might be contributing to the sweet scent and flavor.
Liquor: Light golden color with a sweet scent.
Flavor: Sweet and delicious Oolong. This tea affects you with qi. It has a sweet aftertaste—all the while you are really focusing and getting a bit high lol. I really feel it in my eye area and Crown Chakra area which is really cool.
Definitely going into my cupboard.
____________________________________________________________________________
7/17/14
Having some of this today and I needed it after a bad sleepless night!!!! It’s helping big time!!!

Flavors: Honey, Sugar

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 45 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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drank Blue People by Vital Tea Leaf
1812 tasting notes

Backlog:
Tea-tasting, yesterday, and this tea always gets served at some point in time. A favorite of my father’s and definitely one that I enjoy.

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drank Blue People by Vital Tea Leaf
1812 tasting notes

It is a Blue People kind of morning!

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