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Recent Tasting Notes
15: first taste is a dark sort of musky mud/soil. Fishiness that is barely discernable. The orange presents in the center of the tongue as dark heavier round taste than I’m used to in citrus pu-erh. There a light-fishy-yellow flavor that develops after it cools some. During this all, the citrus is transforming into a tiny zing that grows in size and shape til it is almost a burn that settles in that same center tongue area but also the very front inside lips and center roof of the mouth.
That zing/burn is not unpleasant, just of a sort of tea sensation I’ve never had before at all. It’s oddly unique.
The ginger develops in clarity at the point where the tea sips become cold. Until then it just develops that feeling described above with the orange. The citrus leads the way with the ginger being it’s support, unnoticed and hidden until the temperature drops. Then it shows itself clearly.
Another weird one for me these past couple days.
The fishy isn’t strong but just a tone to that musky/muddy.
I’m not a fan of the strong fishiness some pu-erh has so that rocks.
First steep is nifty.
10 sec: fishy mud is stronger but not very much, still, and ginger zing is more and more cleanly ginger. Orange rind is very strong and black and surrounds the outside edges of the back of the mouth…a range of over the tongue, up the insides of the cheeks, and then nestles into the back of the top throat, that gap that goes slightly upward behind the roof of the mouth stops and the throat extends a bit (maybe where others still have there adenoids?).
As it cools is all blends together into a more balanced taste, something whole rather than a ton of separate experiences. It’s somewhat thick and round in texture with a flowing sense to it.
Darker and more complex steep, unsurprisingly.
10: this one seems almost like water except the ginger hits the mouth a moderate amount. Totally worthless one to me.
I tend to only report on three steeps, so it may develop more as I do more and up the time now, but that’s where I stop writing today beyond to say that the pu-erh flavor isn’t clear or defining in this tea. It’s a meh item for me, but I might change my mind. So far lackluster.
Flavors: Citrus, Earth, Fishy, Ginger, Mud, Peppercorn, Round , Thick, Wet Earth
the aroma of this tea both steeped and just in the bag are devastatingly delectable. I mean, it would make a beautiful potpourri, it really smells that good. however, the flavors of the tea after prepared are terribly subtle to my palate unless steeped a bit longer than recommended, which bothers me because I like my tea quite hot. for its aforementioned shortcomings, it still is a pleasant tea. its better in my opinion with sweetener, though I generally prefer teas that do not necessitate sweetener to realize their full potential. If less expensive, I’d probably buy with more frequency. As is, I’ll definitely drink that which remains in my tea cupboard, though I am not convinced I’ll repurchase when I’m out.
Flavors: Almond, Apple, Candy, Caramel, Cinnamon, Oats
Full disclosure: this is the first Lapsang Souchong I’ve ever had. I’ve been curious about it for a while and finally decided to try it.
This tea is not for the faint of heart. At first sniff, it reveals a formidable aroma of smoked pine. I was overwhelmed and somewhat put off at first by the intensity. However, the smell itself wasn’t unpleasant, and after getting used to it, I was able to pick up the refreshing scent of pine beneath the smoke, which I found very pleasant.
The liquor is a surprisingly clear, light rust color. The intensity of the scent and dark dry leaves led me to expect a very black brew. The flavor is at first very earthy and woody, but the significant trait is the lingering smoked pine that sticks to the back of the throat, reminiscent of campfire smoke that gets into everything. This pervasive smokiness could either be a very bad or very good thing, and it leads me to conclude that this tea, for my personal preference, is best consumed alongside food with flavors that are enhanced by the smokiness. After trying it a few different times by itself, I finally had mine with a goat cheese, roasted vegetable pizza. It was delicious. I had some of the tea after it had cooled down for curiosity’s sake and I must say that this tea is terrible cold, as one might have guessed. All I could taste was soggy wood.
Final verdict: Intense, smoked pine aroma can be polarizing. Delightful paired with the right foods (and likely disgusting with the wrong ones). I would not personally like to drink this tea by itself right now, but I could see growing to like it enough for that. Avoid drinking cold at all costs.
Flavors: Earth, Pine, Smoke, Toast, Wood
I have added several new teas to my list of favorites recently, but Japanese green teas were my first love and will always be on top of my list. I have not had genmaicha in a while, and I was excited to see a genmaicha/matcha mix in the loose leaf tea section at the Wegmans near my sister’s house. The roasted brown rice/popcorn flavor is dominant, as with all other genmaichas I have had, but the matcha adds to the smoothness and creaminess of the tea, and it makes it a nice dark green. I think the matcha also helps to round out the tea as well, as that roasted flavor is not overwhelming, like it can be with straight genmaichas. I purchased 4 oz, but I may have to go get more before I head back home! Wegmans always impresses me, quite a high quality neighborhood grocery store chain!
This past week was awful so I finished up this one as a pick me up. I accidentally steeped it for not quite long enough but used my Ingenuitea so there was no going back (normally I try to take a small sip out to taste it before but forgot.)
Nonetheless, this was wonderful at always, creamy – I noticed that someone said eggnog before and I could totally see that. It’s definitely sweet and I taste the cookie flavor, a little more almond might be nice but hey, now I’m just being nitpicky :P
Flavors: Cake, Cookie, Creamy, Eggnog, Sweet
Hnnng. I went through my collection today to find teas that are on their last legs (I’m planning on making an advent calendar of sorts with my sipdowns!) and I was bummed to find out there’s only a few cups left in this one. I love the mild, creamy, sweet flavor that is spot on to the taste of cookies.
Flavors: Almond, Cream, Eggnog, Nutmeg
Well I tried making my first tea latte with this but it was pretty much a failure. Not sure if it’s me or the tea.
1 cup unsweetened almond milk + .5 cup water, heat until steaming/tiny bubbles, add 2.5 tsp tea, whisk & heat for 2 min, remove from heat and steep for 4 min, then strain. It didn’t have much flavor. I added 1 tsp vanilla extract and 1 tsp honey but that didn’t really boost the flavor at all.
I received this as a part of a trade- this was my person’s favorite tea and they enclosed a sample for me to try. Didn’t disappoint. Currently satiating my craving as I hold off on buying ATR’s Brioche for now- cinnamon spice, sweet almond, and floral vanilla. Fairly mild blend, but tasty.
Flavors: Almond, Caramel, Vanilla
On the third day of sipdowns…
The rest of my family had waffles for dinner that smelled EXACTLY like this tea so I fished this out of the sipdown pile. I didn’t notice this before but there is some apple undertones beneath the oatty, nutty, almond flavors. There’s some spices, namely cinnamon that round it out a bit.
Flavors: Almond, Apple, Cinnamon, Nutty, Oats
This is similar to DavidsTea’s Alpine Punch I think minus the rooibos.
The brew is bright red but I can’t figure out why – I can’t taste any hibiscus, pretty much the only flavor I can taste is nuts. It’s alright and I’m sad to see the bottom of the bag but I’m also okay with making room for new teas.
Flavors: Almond, Nuts
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.