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Recent Tasting Notes
Wegman’s had their summer teas out today, so I did what any self respecting tea drinker who has too much tea in her cupboard would do and bought some. This one is nice and fruity – more pineapple than anything else – and I like the Ceylon base tea. It was good hot, but I think I’ll use the rest for iced tea.
I love this tea. It is truly my favorite loose tea because it is good on its own, or I can add a teaspoon or two to a pot of my mate blend to enhance the richness. It blends so well with other teas in my collection, so every flavor becomes more decadent.
I’ve had a lot of difficulty with this tea. I attempted to gongfu in hopes that it will be more appetising. I was right in my theory! The dry leaf is small BOP of orange and dark brown leaf. The aroma is a very earthy and fungal tone. The steeped leaf is actually a little fishy smelling. The flavor improved to a deep earth and lake flavor. This is still not a great brew, but it is doable once gong fu’d.
Flavors: Earth, Fishy
Wegmans is a pretty impressive company…quite a few options for good quality inexpensive loose leaf and bagged teas. Last time I was visiting my sister in Virginia, I bought their Tomo Sencha, and was pleasantly surprised. This tea is also very good. It’s a smooth and creamy sencha/matcha mix, vegetal with no bitterness. Sometimes I like bitterness, like with the sencha from Yamamotoyama, but I think I prefer this one. Gyokuro is still on top, when it comes to green teas, but this is a nice inexpensive alternative.
’Here’s Hoping’ Teabox Round #4 – Tea #8
A decent green tea – very light and sweet. I could notice lavender in the dry blend but surprisingly there isn’t that much flavor to the lavender. That’s too bad! Maybe the water needs to be a higher temp for the lavender to steep well? But then the green leaves ruin. I don’t think I’ve tried a green tea with lavender blend before. Disappointing for a lavender tea but not as a green tea.
My first cup back home from vacation. My friend did not enjoy this, so he gave me a pouch full.
This tea is a vibrant green with the classic small rice pebbles scattered about. I enjoyed it quite it bit. It has smooth wooded roast flavor and of course smells of rice cakes. This snack taste is covered with a vegetal umami and goes down very smoothly. Its nice to actually sit and brew a cup to enjoy, but I do miss being away from home.
Flavors: Rice, Roasted, Umami, Vegetal
This is a very inexpensive crowd pleaser. It is a simple flowering tea. This brew tastes great and steeps very well. The bloom is mostly BOP which is disappointing, but its centered by a vibrant amaranth. The taste is honey smooth and incredibly floral. I like this a lot and will continue to keep it stocked. I am always a fan of tea with jasmine.
Flavors: Floral, Honey, Smooth
The last cup of tea for the day. I decided on something light and smooth. The dry leaves are an assortment of shapes and sizes. You are given multiple large stems, green leaves and petals, all arranged in an eclectic bouquet. The brews flavor is rather odd. I taste an overpowering floral flavor. This reminds me of lighter gynostemma. The herbaceous tone is sweetened and leaves a soothing feeling on the tongue. This is not one of my favorites, but it did the job for tonight.
Flavors: Floral, Flowers, Herbaceous, Sweet
This was not a favorite of mine. I could tell by the appearance of the buds that this was of a lower quality. These “silver” buds were more of a tarnished grey. I brewed these in my glassware to enjoy its colour. This smooth and iridescent platinum gold always dazzles me with these white teas. The flavor, however, was not that dazzling. It had a dry grass or wheat taste. It carried a mild sweet note in the background. It reminds me of the yellow twine used to bind hay bales together. My friend enjoys this particular tea quite greatly, but I guess this just isnt for me.
Flavors: Dry Grass, Dust, Hay
I bought this only to season up my roasted oolong yixing. This is a very basic tea. I do not find it horrible, but it doesn’t stand out in anyway. The tea leaves are large but very flaky. They vary from a smoky black to deep crimson. The flavor is somewhat bland. It has a smooth smoke taste with a slight dark fruit tone. The wet leaves have a burnt sugar and slight charcoal scent. I picked this up for a great price, and I will still probably buy this again. This could serve as nice “everyday oolong” if there is such a thing.
Flavors: Burnt Sugar, Smoke, Wet Rocks
Good morning! This is the winner from the teas that I picked up! I’m not saying that this brew is perfect or anything, but it does make for a great everyday black. The thick coffee liquor is sweet and slightly spiced. This is a light and bright black tea. There is a slight black tobacco flavor with smoke. These flavors may not sound all that light, but there is a underlining floral tone. This undertone brightens up the whole drink and makes for a great morning cup.The only problem I have is it becomes slightly astringent, but I’m sure I can tweak the brewing and fix that right up! I have found my staple for the cupboard :)
Flavors: Astringent, Floral, Smoked
I am finally home and picked this to wind down before the day must begin again. My favorite aspect of white tea is its colour. I absolutely love the iridescent pearl glow this tea brews. I always brew white tea in my glassware, so I can show off these beauties. The glass practically disappears and it magically distorts its surroundings. hahah I just love it! I know that this isn’t the best Bai Hao Yin Zhen, but it does hold its own. Its a very nice and general brew. Its dependable to say the least. The dry buds may not be porcelain diamonds; they do have some darker colors and mudded feel. This is still a simply enticing brew. It has a light honey flavor with a wisp of floral. It gives you a smooth nectar mouthfeel and finishes with warm hay. I enjoy it and always have. This is a great buy and it has always been my white tea staple.
Flavors: Floral, Honey, Hot hay
This morning I need something a little more bold. I brewed this up in my morning mug. It has the all too familiar malt aroma. I added a little extra leaves for that bonus kick to get me going. This tea has a lot of flavor. It has a smooth baked bread with malt in the background. There is a slight astringency in the undertone. The taste is a perfect morning brew. It paired well with my big breakfast and its perfect to soothe and energize me for the coming day.
Flavors: Astringent, Baked Bread, Malt
Good morning! I celebrated St. Pattys day in the “city” last night, so I managed to make a trip to Wegmans. I didn’t like using my decent Darjeeling as my everyday black, so I picked up various blacks. I’m testing to see which is the right fit. This is the first runner up.
The tea is described as a champagne from Sri Lanka. The dry leaves look like curled rubies. They have a blood red appearance with small black wisps. The dry aroma is smooth and mellow. I put a generous teaspoon into my mug and brewed. The scent from my mug is very light and fruity. Its a warm soaked earth with dark fruit tones. The taste is pretty similar. Its a slightly roasted mouthfeel, and it has a dark leather flavor. This brew is mostly silky except for slight astringency. I like this as a late morning brew. I’m not sure it has enough kick to wake me up these early mornings.
Flavors: Dark Wood, Leather, Wet Earth
HGTTB haha i hadn’t read the review of this one before i picked it out of the box to try. I don’t think it’s quite as bad as everyone thinks it is but i also wouldn’t brew this straight up western. It does have a little fishy smell to it but as far as the taste goes, it’s a pretty average cup. It’s nothing spectacular, but it’s not toss out worthy either :)
This is a very nutty and mellow tasting sencha. I had it stored with other tea samples and it seems to have taken on flavors from some of them, so I’m not going to do an in-depth review. I can say though that this one is mellow and a bit sweet, pretty good tasting. I’m getting hints of anise but I think that is from other tea scents that got into it.
Flavors: Nutty, Sweet
Got this one from Veronica from the Christmas card exchange in December! Reminds me a lot of Lupicia’s Cookie Lots of cinnamon and cookie flavors. I think I like Lupicia’s version the best because it’s a lot richer and just better overall in my opinion.
This one is still good though! Happy to have tried it! :D
Thank you for the sample, Veronica!
Flavors: Almond, Cinnamon, Cookie, Pastries, Spices
This is delicious! I absolutely love this tea! The leaves are slightly lower grade but still a typical japanese green. The small spines are emerald green and with small gold specks. The brew is a pale jade and refracts light well. The brew tastes of sweet honey butter! There are undertones of vegetable, nectar, oils and a very slight citrus tang. The wet leaves smell of algae, spinach, fresh grass and spring! This is a quality japanese green. The only problem with this tea is its price. The company I bought it from has it priced extremely high so I can only afford it within small doses. I also would rather spend my money elsewhere so this is the last of this tea that I will be buying.
Flavors: Molasses, Peat Moss, Stems, Summer, Sweet, Vegetal
The downside of drinking a tea without reviewing it and then you forget you really enjoyed it … is met on the other side by, after having forgotten, you get that surprised “oh, nice!” moment. Got that with this. Very enjoyable jasmine, fresh like spring, silky body. The jasmine is forward and juicy but not overplayed. I was hoping this would be sweet enough to satisfy a sweet tooth kind of afternoon, but… well, not quite. Baked pear/apple medley to the rescue, though.