Zen Tea

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Recent Tasting Notes

83

Oolong tea is so unique. I’m on the second steep now but it can go for 3 or 4 more? Wow! Grassy beginning with a mineral finish. Somewhat creamy. Definitely a flowery aroma.

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81

How has this one not been reviewed yet?? I’m on my second steeping right now and that wonderful grassy, vegetal, flavor is still going strong. It’s slightly more bitter then the first steeping but still have that wonderful fresh taste.

Preparation
2 min, 45 sec

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77
drank Anxi dark by Zen Tea
128 tasting notes

The liquor of this tea is a very light orangey-yellow, which is lighter than I expected, considering it’s both roasted and pretty oxidized. I definitely got some fruitiness from this tea, not sure if it’s peach, though that’s probably the closest to what I’m tasting. The roast adds a nice caramel-like sweetness to the flavor of this tea. Body was not particularly thick. I did get the sour note that I’ve experienced with some Tie Guan Yin teas that I’m not particularly sure I enjoy, but it wasn’t particularly prominent in this one.

Flavors: Caramel, Fruity, Malt, Roasted, Sour, Sweet

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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88
drank Coconut Oolong by Zen Tea
555 tasting notes

Green tea and colds don’t mix because you can’t properly taste anything. However, once you get better this is a good one to start off with! Floral notes. Hints of coconut especially in the after taste. My daughter is making faces at herself in the mirror and its pretty amusing (she’s 2.) Anyway, I’m going to try to cold steep this tea and see how it turns out.

Cold steep: I am a fan!!! I let it steep for at least 20 mins in cold water and yum. Quite good!

Preparation
4 min, 30 sec

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84
drank Cranberry Mango by Zen Tea
2044 tasting notes

Another one from Zen! The leafy green tea has tiny cubes of mango and certainly has a fruity scent to them! I didn’t really notice any cranberry pieces in the blend. There wasn’t a fragrance or flavor of cranberry either. But this slightly vegetal flavored green tea sure pairs nicely with this mango. It’s very refreshing with the sweet fruit and slightly bold astringency of the tea. Very delicious. I bet it’s great iced. The second steep has plenty of flavor too.
Steep #1 // 1 heaping teaspoon for a full mug// 33 minutes after boiling // 2-3 minute steep
Steep #2 // 25 minutes after boiling // 3 minute steep

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90

A tea I grabbed in Zen’s super generous Steepster 50% off sale. Basically I grabbed a few favorites and a bunch of samples. The dry leaves here are short in length and black — looks like the typical keemun to me! The flavor has that lovely slightly tangy quality that keemun has, like the tanginess of plums. Along with the tiniest hint of smoke, really not much at all. Otherwise, the medium bodied brew has notes of bread, wine, and the hints of bright brassiness that I usually notice in assam. It’s a great combination of flavor notes and a keemun I could easily stock up on.
Steep #1 // 1 heaping teaspoon for a full mug// 10 minutes after boiling // 3 minute steep
Steep #2 // just boiled // 3-4 minute steep

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93
drank Sweet Coconut Island by Zen Tea
117 tasting notes

Here’s Hoping Traveling Tea Box

Succulent, juicy, tropical fruit magic! I absolutely MUST remove at least another cup of this gem before I pass the TTB on this weekend. This fruit blend tea has several different fruity pieces that make up it’s bulk. I taste primarily Coconut and pineapple with a creaminess that must come from the coconut. I didn’t taste any of the hibiscus which others have, but I will agree with them as to the pina colada-esque flavour! I am very sad now that when Zen tea had that special steepster sale I didn’t have the funds to take advantage of their generous offer. :(
Anyway, if you get the chance to try this and you enjoy pina coladas I cannot recommend this tea enough!!

Flavors: Coconut, Creamy, Pineapple

Nicole

So… what are your thoughts on trying this turned into a slushy ice? :)

TeaNTees

Thanks sounds phenomenal Nicole! Scrumptious ;)

TeaNTees

That* lol

tea-sipper

I don’t think there is any hibiscus in this one… but I’m glad you love it. :D

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90
drank Strawberry Cream by Zen Tea
1232 tasting notes

The tea itself has an incredible aroma a strawberries and creme, it is like aroma therapy in a can. The tea tastes really good too. The flavor of the strawberries comes through strongly as does the creamy taste. It does not taste artificial.

I brewed this once in a 16oz Teavana Glass Perfect Tea Maker/Gravity Steeper with 3 tsp leaf and boiling water for 3 minutes.

Flavors: Creamy, Strawberry

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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84
drank Vanilla Chai by Zen Tea
2044 tasting notes

Mmm, this one satisfies the chai craving! The smooth medium bodied black tea has the perfect balance of spices and hints of sweet vanilla. I wish it were superpowered vanilla but I can live with this. The vanilla really lingers. The spices are perfect on this day of reappearing snow… in April. The cup was gone in a flash. The second steep didn’t seem as awesome as the first, losing a little of the vanilla qualities and transforming into more of a typical chai. Still good though!
Steep #1 // 1 1/2 teaspoons for a full mug// few minutes after boiling // 3 minute steep
Steep #2 // just boiled // 6+ minute steep

I also just finished Zen’s Raspberry Vanilla rooibos the other day. Though ancient, it was still pretty tasty.

TeaNTees

Ugh, after the Tea box and your reviews I fear someday soon I’ll have to place an order with Zen Tea…
;)

tea-sipper

haha. :D They are usually pretty delicious teas…

tea-sipper

Just saw you won the 52Teas box! Congrats!

TeaNTees

Thank you!

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84
drank Sencha House by Zen Tea
128 tasting notes

Tried this in my 20oz cast iron enameled teapot this time rather than attempting to use a gaiwan. I used 6.3g of leaf and 160f water (increased to 165 after two steeps) and did steeps of 1m, 30s, 1m, 2m.

The first steep was the best – Crisp and vibrant grassy flavor with a lightly fruity finish that lingered in the mouth. The flavors of this steep seemed to explode in the mouth.

Second steep was a more subdued version of the first.

Third steep had a sweet and grassy start with a bit of a dry finish. The fruity notes were no longer present.

The fourth steep was more a corn sweetness with a bit of a mouth drying effect.

I much prefer sencha this way to attempting to do it in a gaiwan, and I’m excited to try it with some other small sencha samples I recently received in a swap!

Flavors: Fruity, Grass, Green, Sweet

Preparation
160 °F / 71 °C 1 min, 0 sec 6 g 20 OZ / 591 ML

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84
drank Sencha House by Zen Tea
128 tasting notes

My first sencha! I thought this one was pretty decent. Not particularly suited to brewing with a gaiwan due to the small leaves, but I made it work. I used 3.6g and did longer steepings than usual: 30s, 20s, 30s, 60s, 2m. Liquor looked like yellow gatorade lol. Very grassy flavors and something remaining on my palate that reminds me of some sort of fruit, but I can’t put my finger on what kind. Extremely smooth tea, and body was decent as well.

Flavors: Grass, Green, Sweet, Vegetal

Preparation
160 °F / 71 °C 0 min, 30 sec 3 g
CWarren

Congrats on your first sencha. There was a period in time where all I was drinking was Japanese green tea especially shincha. You might want to invest in a teapot just for those teas if you start enjoying them more often. I have a houhin just for fine leaf teas like gyokuro and kyusus for other greens. You’ll also notice that they can get bitter at longer temps and times depending on leaf quality and size. The higher quality senchas always seem to tolerate so much more but I suppose that’s the case for many teas. After reading this, I just might have to make a pot again soon. Thanks for sharing!

Matu

Yea, right now I’m diving headfirst into raw puerh, but I may start to try some more Japanese greens. This was pretty tasty. Once I start really going down that road I’ll pick up a kyusu or something.

Actually, I have a 20oz. cast iron teapot I bought from Teavana quite awhile ago. Maybe I’ll try the rest of my sample in that :)

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80
drank Earl Grey Cream by Zen Tea
1232 tasting notes

I notice a few notes to this. There is a creamy note. There is a note that seems spicy to me, I suppose this is the bergamot. The tea itself seems to have a slight malty note. Overall this is good.

I brewed this one time in a 16oz Teavana Glass Perfect Tea Maker/Gravity Steeper with 3 tsp leaf and 200 degree water for 4 min.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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95
drank Sweet Coconut Island by Zen Tea
1105 tasting notes

I needed another tea to cold brew without the dreaded hibiscus. I don’t mind hibiscus when it doesn’t overwhelm the tea, but it gets a little tiring when it is in EVERY fruit tea. Anyway, there’s none in this one so yay!
And really, I couldn’t pass up the 50% off sale they had in March. I have so much tea already, so what’s a little more right ;p. I picked up 100g of it because it was so cheap!

I cold Brewed this tea for about 20 hours. This tea is sweet coconut and pineapple. It tastes very tropical and almost like a pina colada, which is my favourite alcoholic drink. Yum

Mookit

Wow, that’s a long cold brew! Did it end up pretty strong in flavour?

Kristal

I totally agree on the hibiscus thing. I’m thinking in the summer I may go to a bulk store and buy dehydrated fruit pieces and make my own fruit blends without hibiscus. Also, I was looking around at a local tea shop and they sell individual herbs/ingredients including elderberries and orange peel, which may be fun to experiment with :)

tigress_al

Mookit— I usually cold brew my herbals for that long, I don’t find that they are super strong in flavour when brewed this way.
Kristal— keep me informed how your experiments work out! I was thinking of trying that too the other day!

Kristal

Will do! But it’ll prob be a couple months til I get to that- it’s still snowing here in my hometown and often under 0 Degrees Celsius :(

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86
drank Coconut Chai by Zen Tea
117 tasting notes

Here’s Hoping Traveling Tea Box

This is a creamy, toasty coconut-y chai. I enjoyed both steeps that I had of this. The first I added some honey and almond milk to it which was really yummy. I felt that the chai & coconut flavours were spot on and mated with the black tea very well. It was a cup of comfort really. The second steep was slightly less coconut and cream flavoured but still a nice chai blend with a hint of coconut. I’d have it again if offered. :)

100 Hooray!

Flavors: Coconut, Cream, Spices

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87
drank Phoenix Pearl by Zen Tea
117 tasting notes

Here’s Hoping Traveling Tea Box

Another wonderful black tea! Nice notes of cocoa, and baked bread abound in these lovely little pearls. I infused them 6 six times (all day!) I did however brew these at 180 degrees, which is slightly less than the requested temperature I believe. I was able to watch the leaves unfurl a bit each time which was really quite lovely. It was interesting to see a black tea pretending to be a green oolong. You know what I mean. Hehe.

Flavors: Baked Bread, Cocoa

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97
drank Taiwan Milk Oolong by Zen Tea
555 tasting notes

If you read my note here before you could probably guess I was sick and couldn’t taste anything correctly. My apologies to Zen Tea because this is a great tea. I’m a little disappointed that they had to add milk flavor to it but of all the Milk Oolong I’ve tasted thus far only one has been a true milk oolong. This one is by far my favorite in the flavor added category. It’s rick and smooth. Milky, of course and I detect flavors of melon too! It’s light and leaves a good feeling on your tongue. The dry and wet smell are also amazing.

Preparation
4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp

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75
drank Raspberry Vanilla by Zen Tea
1232 tasting notes

This blend tastes of raspberry, it tastes of vanilla, and for better or worse depending on your perspective you can taste the rooibos. It is a flavorful blend. I think I would like it better if the rooibos were a little less strong. But still, it is good.

I brewed this one time in a 16oz Teavana Glass Perfect Tea Maker/Gravity Steeper with 3 tsp leaf and boiling water for five minutes.

Flavors: Raspberry, Rooibos, Vanilla

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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Being sick is really doing weird things to my taste buds. The more you steep is the earthier it becomes. I’ve cleansed my palate with the first brew. Hoping for more floral notes on the second brew. A bit of floral notes along with some grassy notes. Going in for a third round. Hmmm nothing much in the first couple of minutes. Third infusion was very bland. …. I feel that I need another cup of this tea. You know maybe its because I’m sick but I really can’t quite get the floral notes from this that I was hoping for. I’ll have to come back to this later after I’m better.

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85
drank Japanese Treasures by Zen Tea
117 tasting notes

Here’s Hoping Traveling Tea Box

While I do believe I got more of the green tea flavours that make up this blend in my sampling of it, I really must refer you to Tea-Sipper’s Review. I agree with it completely. It was a primarily strawberry flavoured green blend. I didn’t detect much, if any, citrus flavour at all. I was able to get a roasted green flair in my cup from the genmaicha in the blend though. I enjoyed it. Thanks Zen Tea & Tea-Sipper!

Flavors: Roasted, Strawberry, Vegetal

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86
drank Fengqing Golden Buds by Zen Tea
117 tasting notes

Here’s Hoping Traveling Tea Box

What a yummy sweet potato delight! The heaviness of flavour was remarkable so I knew I would be able to steep it many times. I got about 6 or 7 infusions before I gave out (it was bed time!) I think I could have maybe gotten another steep too.

Flavors: Malt, Sweet Potatoes

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90
drank LongJing (Dragon Well) by Zen Tea
128 tasting notes

My first Dragonwell, and I think it’s probably my favorite green tea I’ve tried yet. Really love the crisp flavors from this, quite refreshing. Sharp grassy notes, almost resinous, dominate the early steeps. Crispness remains but drops off to some degree in later steeps. Also get a lot of nice, nutty sweetness tempered by a bit of astringency. Body had some almost creamy aspects to it, but was not extremely thick. Very refreshing tea. If there’s a green tea that I would enjoy enough to want to order a lot of, right now it’d be Dragonwell for sure.

Flavors: Grass, Nutty, Resin, Sweet

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
bozisuk

Haven’t tried Zen Tea’s Dragon Well, but if you like the taste be sure to try some of Teavivre’s dragon wells. They have multiple kinds, organic, non-organic, ming qian etc. Anyways, it’s some of the best I’ve ever had.

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87
drank Oolong Jade 2015 Winter by Zen Tea
1232 tasting notes

This is pretty good oolong. It had a bit of a grassy note at first. There was something of a creamy note too. There was some bitterness in the first couple of steeps that slowly turned into more of a sweet note. This was an excellent green oolong tea. It did start to get a bit watery in the seventh and eighth steep. I think this is an oolong that doesn’t resteep real well or maybe I just needed longer steeps.

I steeped this eight times in a 120ml gaiwan with 7g leaf and 190 degree water. I gave it a 10 second rinse. I steeped it for 5 sec, 5 sec, 7 sec, 10 sec, 15 sec, 20 sec, 25 sec, and 30 sec.

Flavors: Bitter, Creamy, Grass, Sweet

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 7 g 4 OZ / 120 ML

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Today’s tea party teas were chosen to revolve around our dessert from start to finish. Youngest made the French Almond Cookie Cake with Apricot Cream Cheese Glaze. Yes, yes, look it up in Pinterest cuz it was yummy. Keep in mind that she uses freshly ground whole wheat and homemade vanilla when she bakes, as well as fresh eggs right out from under my chickens, so small wonder I have gained weight since she started baking.

Our first tea was Fairmonth Breakfast, plain and medium strong to stand up with this super sweet dessert. This was the second tea and Marzipan Black from Tin Roof Teas was the third, carrying on the fruit and almond flavors of the dessert.

This was listed as a free tea on the Zen website. You could choose one free tea with each order, and I got chai for my eldest daughter last time so I got this one for youngest this time, as she likes peach tea. It says the free teas do not meet their quality standards or are older than they will sell but are still fine to drink. I don’t know which this was, but we will drink it up gladly!

I am not a fan of strong ginger but this tea has a nice balance with the peach. It is smooth and tasty, and I would have no problem paying for it – it doesn’t taste like tea that a company would just give away! My youngest likes it a lot, and everyone seemed to enjoy it today. The base is smooth and not weak and dishwatery like some decaf. The flavoring is at a very good level to let the base come through but still have lots of impact.

Fjellrev

Sounds and looks simply divine!

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This tea has a mild note of malt and a note of what I can only think to call spice on the back of the throat. It is pretty good but not spectacular. It falls into the category of tea I will try to finish but probably not buy again.

I brewed this one time in a 16oz Teavana Glass Perfect Tea Maker/Gravity Steeper with 3 tsp leaf and 190 degree water for 2.5 minutes.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 2 min, 30 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML
Dr Jim

You hit the same sale I did. I haven’t tried this yet.

AllanK

It was good but not spectacular.

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