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Recent Tasting Notes

88

This tea has a delicious honey note, which I was surprised to find in such a dark oolong. It combines beautifully with the roasted flavor of the tea.

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77

Many thanks to Zennenn for sending me this tea and so many others! Many of the teas in this box are way outside my experience, so I’m really looking forward to exploring them :)

First up, “Yellow Sun.” According to the description this is an unusual yellow tea, but since I’ve never had yellow tea before, I’m not sure what the “norm” is. The package mentions hazelnut and mango notes. I can believe the hazelnut. Not tasting the mango. There is a strong roast flavor here, like a roasted green tea, and it does have a slight natural sweetness. I steeped it twice and it held up very well to a second steeping, not really any loss of flavor all.

All around, pretty good! Glad I got to try this one :)

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78

Has a very naturally sweet fresh aroma and thin spiny black and cream dry leaves.
I brewed it at 85 c until it was a clear light gold colour. The tea itself has an incredibly delicate and refreshing flavour, with an aroma of sweet dried fruit that fills the nose nicely.

Flavour started to diminish at the 7th infusion, and soon gave up at the 9th.

Flavors: Dried Fruit, Floral, Sweet

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 4 OZ / 120 ML

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75

100ml gaiwan, 195F, 5gish
Tastes of plum/prunes for 5 or 6 steeps. Good consistent tea, but flavor layers aren’t there for me. Very plummy, but one note.

Edit: sometimes my phone keyboard ugh

Flavors: Plums

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80

interesting. white tea that isnt white. Its golden hairs everywhere, like its sporting a giant afro.

smell is weird, I get sweetness & malt. Aroma is the same. Taste is a very very smooth golden tips with zero bitterness or astringency, just sweetness, honey, caramel. (although these arent strong like in other oolongs). I also get orange, but not citrus, very rounded orange taste. Malt, but not malty.

So its either a delicate light red, or a full-bodied white. This is very nice for me, who often wants my red tea to be more delicate/less malty. It certainly isnt chocolatey. Its got pretty zappy energy too. Even after a few sips i felt shaken out of bed.

Second cup I steeped it out a bit and got a very amber liquor, and was met with a dryness more akin to golden tips, so you can make it taste like that a bit more if you want. There is something cake in the body but I couldnt picture what it was (its not doughy or bready), also I was reminded of a 2nd flush tea, although this is Spring. (a bit woody & malty but not overpowering)

Depending on parameters you can get either a few steeps of something more white but full bodied, or a couple of steeps of delicate subtle but still golden tipped red tea, its an interesting mix!

Flavors: Cake, Caramel, Honey, Malt, Orange, Sweet, Wood

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 15 sec
Daylon R Thomas

I love how flexible this tea is. Hence it being one of my favorites along with its caramel note that should belong to a Dian Hong.

Rasseru

Yeah I read someone else gonfuing it & it working nicely too. I will try that out next

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93

(This review is for the Spring flush 2016)

Ahhhh, the taste of terroir..

Nepal borders Darjeeling , & i think this comes out in the taste in a big way. It tastes to me like very forgiving super sweet FF DJ rather than a fujian white. Or is that my brain knowing that Taplejung might as well be Darjeeling? (in India terms its a drive away, :lol:) Anyway I spent a while cross referencing FF DJ process vs White & they are very similar anyway, so great! I learnt something again today. And thinking back on it, they can be very similar, cant they.

I used quite a lot (~5g?) & about 3:30 80c, & didnt get any FF overbrewing. It is pretty delicious. Fresh golden water with essence of apricots, oranges, maybe even raspberry Mixed with the ‘hay’ taste of a white, also some FF nutty underneath. Amazingly delicate but unmistakable smell of candy apples & a sweetness in the feel that just coats the mouth with sugar, while not being cloying. The first cup went very quickly. Its pretty subtle & delicate, but really good.

Second cup I just left the leaf to steep, and drinking a cooler cup I also get a little milk with my fruit.

Third cup I just did 90c & left it again, this one was less of everything else but with a hint of citrus. Still got the sugary aroma though. By this third cup I felt pretty warm & nice from the chi.

ive found quite a few Nepalese teas from Alistair now that I really like, this one I reckon with really pedantic brewing – accurate weights, pushing the citrus flavour out more with 85-90c or just longer steep times you will end up with something even better. Will have to experiment & report back if the fruit can be brought out using this method.

edit* The instructions say to use roughly 85c, I should have looked harder!

But even as it stands with my underbrewing, I would re-purchase this one for sure, & im already looking forward to tomorrow morning when im finishing the rest of the sample with a higher temp

Flavors: Apple, Apricot, Candy, Citrus, Cotton Candy, Hay, Nutty, Orange, Sugar

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 30 sec

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75

Beautiful leaves! So many colors!
Also, quite a smell and powerful flavor, I certainly wasn’t expecting that.
It was very nice to have a tea with such a strong flavor every once in a while.

Flavors: Artichoke, Floral, Peas

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 90 ML

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71

Dry leaf – bit smoky, earth, tea is very twiggy
200F, 5gish, 100ml gaiwan
Earth, fruity, smooth
It’s a solid black tea, but nothing spectacular. Lacking in actual tea leaves, mostly twigs.
https://www.instagram.com/p/BKPWhCtAwDc/
71

Flavors: Earth, Fruity, Smooth

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Backlog from Aug 28th- 175F, 80ml gaiwan, 4g
Soft, tangy melon, thick mouthfeel. Steeped it 5 times. Leaves never fully unfurled so I’ll probably try it with hotter water next time. I liked what I got, but feel like I didn’t get everything it had to offer.

Flavors: Melon, Thick

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78

a lingering sweetness and heaviness in the taste, like hot water with a spoon of honey.

Flavors: Honey

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89

Ah, the famed Red Buffalo.. finally getting my grubby mits on this Oolong after hearing people talk about it for ages.

First few steeps: really super smooth honey water with slight cinnamon/spicy notes, especially the aroma of the steeped leaf. In fact from the leaf aroma I would have guessed this was a Dongfang Meiren. I actually have a more spicy Oriental Beauty that would blend very well with this tea im pretty sure, I love it when there is a prominent sweet honey taste to counter the dry woodsy spice which can get a bit overbearing. I was surprised there wasnt a stronger roast, but it turns out its not that sort of tea.

Steeping it out the honey note fades & we are left with a very mellow, creamy & soft slightly woodsy tea – in fact If this tea was any more mellow it would be asleep. Such an easy drinker, & anyone with a sweet tooth its just totally up your street.

This is one of those teas that you give to the unenlightened with the hope you might save their poor nonbeliever souls, that they embrace the one true hot drink & find the pearly gates of Theaven. Its just that far removed from where most mortals think tea should be

Flavors: Cinnamon, Creamy, Honey, Spicy, Wood

Evol Ving Ness

Apparently I need some of this now.

Rasseru

I’m using it in a door-to-door campaign to grow the church of steepster

Daylon R Thomas

Glad you like it! This is one of my top teas personally.

Rasseru

I did. The other half is being saved for the next time I need to prove im not completely insane in my tealust

Zennenn

This one is not great for me, and I think it’s the element of dry woodsy spice. It strikes me as powdery. Is that note present in Dongfang Meiren? Part of tea exploration is finding what you love, part is figuring out how to avoid what you don’t.

Zennenn

Ah, OB. That’s not it, I really enjoy them.

Rasseru

Some OB do have a dry woodsy spice thing going on I have found, but I’ve never thought powdery I don’t think

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Backlog: I had a hard time with this tea. It distinctly tasted like licorice western which was really odd to me. I am not a licorice fan. Then I see the notes Alistair came up with, and he describes it being like anise. I totally get the anise. I will say this is a unique green tea making me glad to try this terroir. I might like it better Gong Fu, but I need to try it. Until then, it was personally not my cup of tea.

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I need to drink this tea again. I don’t know if what I tasted was a result of sickness, but all I got was a malty black tea with a drying citrus edge. This was Western, so I need to do it Gong Fu next time. And next time be less congested. I will play around with it Gong Fu and Western with what I have left.

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This was one of my favorite new teas I’ve tried this year, with mostly positive aspects and a unique nature. The general effect is that of a bright, sweet, pleasant lightly roasted oolong with a nice range of flavors. Flavor aspects include fruit and floral range, with fruit in the range of melon and floral not completely unlike Dan Cong, the typical honey orchid aspect. I compared it directly in tasting to a nice Dan Cong and it gave up a little related to presentation of refined, clean flavors, not the kind of thing one might notice straight away, more in comparison. I obtained a sample directly from the producer, not from What-Cha, but since it is generally available in the US and Europe through What-Cha I’m reviewing it listed as their tea, identified as from Toba Wangi by them. A more complete review appears here: http://teaintheancientworld.blogspot.com/2016/04/wu-mei-oolong-from-toba-wangi.html

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Smooth, fruity, thick. As it’s cooling it’s getting sweeter and fruitier – it would probably be great iced. More malt and astringency on the second steep.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 5 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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75

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Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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85

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Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 4 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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91

NOTE – this is not the Feng Huang tea, but the 2016 Taiwan Gui Fei. See the comments below.

This is great, the almost-sweet citrus prickliness on the tongue resolving into a thick smoky chocolate – it’s got more body than the greener leaf-bitten oolongs I’ve tasted. The leaf/water ratio is approximate and I know it seems small, but it works.

The liquor is a light red-brown with a touch of orange, and the leaves steep up a smart, very dark green with some brown.

NB I’m 99% sure this is the right tea. Mine doesn’t say Feng Huang anywhere, but it is What-Cha’s Taiwan Gui Fei Oolong, and it looks exactly like the picture.

Flavors: Chocolate, Citrusy, Smoke

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 15 sec 2 tsp 6 OZ / 180 ML
Rasseru

Maybe the wording is a mistake on steepster, unless Feng Huang also means something in Taiwanese. It would be a bit weird though, as this defo isnt ‘Feng Huang’ Oolong

Ive got this one to try in my box :)

What-Cha

This Steepster listing is for a different Gui Fei I used to have, the 2016 Gui Fei is from a different source.

Happy you liked this one :)

Moanerette

Ah, thanks. I’ve edited the note to make it absolutely clear. It can be quite tricky trying to navigate Steepster’s labyrinthine tea database ;)

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A bit more of a grassy aroma that reminds me of a Tieguanyin. The wet aroma is less floral/grass any slightly creamy and milk. The brewed tea is a bit on the light side but really does have some nice milky flavors reminiscent of a milk oolong but not as extreme. I wouldn’t say this tea is my favorite but its still quite enjoyable and decently priced. I would but more of this if I was looking for a daily green oolong.

Flavors: Creamy, Floral, Grass, Milk, Sweet

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 0 min, 30 sec 5 g 4 OZ / 118 ML

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This is just a really good priced Taiwanese green oolong which is for sure on the floral side of things. Not too complex but something I would for sure recommend for people who enjoy floral teas, has a taste similar to jasmine. As for me I found it to be a bit too floral and lacking in other things, but I was still able to enjoy it.

Flavors: Floral, Smooth, Sweet

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 30 sec 5 g 4 OZ / 118 ML

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Thin and somewhat drying, with very light notes of hay and an indistinct fruitiness. A vague, peculiar medicinal quality comes out in the finish. This is an altogether unusual oolong with uneven oxidation and mildness of flavor.

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85

This was a very nice floral tea. Evolved through multiple steeps, and very tasty.

Flavors: Fruity

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