Another I haven’t had in a long while. The dry leaf looks similar to bi luo chun. Technically a green this taste more like a white with melon notes but it also has a buttery taste. Feels thick. This appears to be the same tea as sold by Teas Etc. If you like greens and whites this is very good.
Zenjala Tea Company
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This sample came from my liberteas tasting box. It tastes good slightly vanilla and sweet but nothing super memorable.
No notes yet.
So its been a few months since I bought this, my first pu’erh purchase, done on a whim with no research. When I bought it, it smelled, and tasted like, a moldy sack of mulch with just a tiny bit of mellow sweetness. I resisted the urge to throw it out, and let it air out for a while to see if there’s any improvement.
The bag still has a bit of mold smell, but now it also has a nice pu’erh sweetness. I decided to brew it in my gaiwan, because honestly I don’t trust it enough to let it near my yixing.
I did two quick rinses, brewed it up, and hey, not half bad! Not especially good, but much better than it was a few months ago (its actually drinkable) It brews a nice red color with flavors of raisin and cedar, but still has a bit of young shu flavor, as well as a touch of penicillin, but its enjoyable, and it was cheap at half price. It made seven steeps, which I guess isn’t too bad.
Honestly, its not a very good value when you can get an awesome Menghai Red Rhyme or Yunnan Sourcing mini-cake for a similar price. If you do buy this, prepare to let it air out in your closet for a few months.
It IS an acceptable, drinkable tea now, which is much better than it was when I first tried it :P I would give it a better rating if it had come tasting like this, but a much lower one had I reviewed it when I bought it, so I feel like 60 is a reasonable midpoint.
Appearance: large med brown, knobby oolong
Aroma when Dry: fruity, chewy, tobacco notes
After water is first poured: floral, fruity
At end of first steep: chewy, fruity
At end of steep: hints of yellow
Staple? Type no, would use brand again
Preferred time of day: any
At first?: bitter, chewy fruity finish
As it cools?: gets bland, slight butter notes
Additives used (milk, honey, sugar etc)? No
Lingers? only slightly, with brothy textures
Second steep (5 min)
Aroma: same, warmer
At first: fruity, peach, grape, pear notes
As it cools: stays fruity, buttery notes surface
Third Steep (7 min) brothy, salty
Fourth Steep (8 min)brothy, salty
Appearance: curly, bicolored green, white. Slightly fuzzy
Aroma when Dry: very faint melon
After water is first poured: melon cucumber
At end of first steep: sour, slight melon, slight fruity notes
At end of first steep: hint of grass
Preferred time of day: any
At first: slight floral and melon, grass, closes with a creamy melon note
As it cools ? tea gets a bit grassier, melon notes get deeper, fuller, tea gets a bit brothy, then all notes flatten
Additives used (milk, honey, sugar etc)? No
Lingers? Yes, primarily the melon notes
Second steep (2min)
at first: weak melon notes
as it cools: starts to sour
Big almond slivers, shredded coconut, and large pieces of sencha leaves. Mmmmm. The brew itself is light green and more cloudy than I am used to seeing. This is what I want a coconut tea to taste like. The only thing I can think of to improve it would be to scrap the sencha and go with a chocolaty Chinese black tea base. Until that happens, this is very tasty.
This is a nice Earl Grey. The bergamot is a little lighter than I normally want but the addition of just a touch of vanilla is a great trade off. Normally vanilla overpowers everything, so I am impressed by the more subtle approach here.
My second favorite from Zenjala – the first being White Monkey. This one smells so wonderfully smoky. Just a year ago I was whining about half this amount of smoke. This is so good. Right now I am dunking peanut butter cookies stuffed with M&M’s. I would be jealous if I were you. An excellent combination by the way. Pronounced Boo-hee this is apparently a mistranslation of Wuyi. Once an expensive highly prized tea that fell into disrepute after being tossed into the Boston harbor, paving the way for Starbuck’s to make a killing selling overpriced coffee. Tunes: CCR – Bad Moon Rising, Barry McGuire – Eve of Destruction.
I really enjoyed this tea. It wasn’t syrupy like some apple teas end up being. It had a pleasant cinnamon scent, and a very slight flavoring of it. Mostly it tasted like roasted apples. A nice tea that I’ll be having again.
I resteeped it and threw it some chamomile. It turned out nicely. I was able to taste the oolong more, but the cinnamon apple flavoring was definitely still there.
I have thoroughly enjoyed this tea every time and in every way I have prepared it. It’s familiar and different at the same time. Technically a green tea, this looks like a white and is even labelled as white. Today I decided to try my hand at cold brewing for the first time after reading a Vicony Facebook post on cold brewing white tea. I steeped about 3 hours. This pretty much looks like water in the cup. The taste is really good. This tastes more green prepared in this manner. It’s kind of Dragonwell meets Bi Luo Chun. It starts crisp then turns buttery followed by the good kind of lingering bitter bite of a Chinese green. This is an awesome tea that tastes different using different methods. At the moment the cold brewed version is my favorite. Really good.
Not sure what I really did different today. I put a mug of water in the microwave for 1:40. It boils at about 1:55. I poured the water over the leaf in my press. Helped my wife for a couple minutes. Nothing seems out of the ordinary – maybe the water is a little cooler and maybe the steep is a little longer. Regardless, the result is delightful. Imagine halfway between Yunnan Dian Hong Golden Tips and White Peony. That is what I got today. It has generally tasted more white peony but with heft. It has always been really good anyway, but this is awesome.
Took the day off trying to get the necessary paperwork to apply for my pension so I will at least have some income after the impending permanent lay off. I am still waiting on a copy of our marriage license to arrive in the mail. I also tried to secure some help getting my oxygen when the job and insurance ends. Nothing but roadblocks. All in all a less than stellar day. Tea helped. As did the drive. One of the most gorgeous fall displays ever. Southern Indiana is so beautiful with its rolling hills and farm land.
Backlog: I just realized that I did not log this tea from the other night. This is really quite tasty. It is a darker Ti Kuan Yin, with hints of roasted flavors that meld nicely with the toasted hazelnut flavor and touch of creamy vanilla. It is sweet, nutty and really quite a comforting tea. Very autumnal. I quite enjoyed it.
Smoke and malt. That is what I get when I open the tin. Steeped for about 4 ½ minutes. I recall this one took me by surprise. It is the first smoky tea I found to be delicious and enjoyable. Today, the brew is a beautiful dark caramel. Smoke and fruit scents are rinsing in the air. Cool down so I can drink you! Finally… Ahhh. Yep, still a good one. I don’t notice the malt in the sip. This is smoke and fruit.
Sipping this tonight and trying to learn a little more about it. IF my research is correct this is technically a green tea, but it is listed as a white and sure looks like a white. It also has many of the light delicate characteristics of a white but has more heft. I think this is also known as white monkey paw. What ever it is or what name it goes by, this is delicious. Love it.
Steeps 3 and 4 of this flavored oolong sent by K S – thank you!
These are so different from the first! The oolong is coming forward as the Meyer lemon and lime flavors start to fade. By fade, I mean they are coming down to the normal level of flavoring you would expect to find in a flavored tea. I don’t mean that in a bad way – quite the opposite. The first two steeps are candy candy candy! I don’t add sweetener, but if you did I bet you would feel like a kid in a candy store on allowance day. And it is a strong citrus flavor without being perceived as tart.
Now we have a nicely flavored adult beverage, still sweet and tasty enough to be a treat, but not candy-like anymore. I love how many good steeps you get from this tea without telling yourself you are saving money by resteeping on the last cup just to get through it because it is so weak. Four steeps, and this one isn’t weak yet.
Thank you, K S!
K S shared this so generously with me! Thank you!
I was warned to get past the first cup, as he found it a bit strong, so I made two steeps in rapid succession and blended them together. The dry leaf looks like a very good, very pretty oolong. Now the tea…This is like having a cup of lemon lime candies in liquid form! Some teas don’t taste candy like until you add sugar. Not this! This is almost a Sweetart. At first I thought it was more lime than lemon, then I looked at the description and saw that the lemon is Meyer Lemon, something I was just introduced to this year. And it is delicious! It isn’t puckery tart to me, just lemon lime and sweet. The flavors are powerful enough that on these steeps I am not getting a ton of oolong flavor, but I bet that is going to come out in the next ones!
I am looking forward to the upcoming steeps.
I got a surprise in the mail yesterday! K S so generously sent me this tea and several others to try! Thank you!
Since this is one that is supposed to resteep well, I decided to gong fu steep it today. As soon as I smelled that first steep, I knew I had to call youngest in to try it with me. This is exactly the kind of tea she loves! I still find it astounding that my youngest child loves smokey tea and strong cheese!
I believe this is only my second Bohea ever; the first one, if I recall correctly, was a sample sent by TeaEqualsBliss on my very first ever steepster swap! I wanted to try Bohea because of its history, but I love its taste now that I am over my fear of smokey tea. It took about six months of sniffing Lapsangs at the tea shop before I had the courage to try one!
This tea has a thinner body or texture than Baker Street, a similar level of smoke, and it is oh so sweet! This is delicious! I would say this is just a hint less smokey than the Teavivre Lapsang. We had two good, strong steeps, and now a third that is much lighter but still tasty and still has a sweet smoke. But something strange is happening to the texture…good strange! I think of Baker Street as being CHEWY because of how much body it has, and this one was not chewy. Now however, the third steep, while lighter in flavor, seems to be coating my lips and mouth with a buttery smooth taste that I can only liken to a later steep of Mengku Palace Ripened Godlen Buds Puerh, which I have compared to old beams polished with Murphy’s Oil Soap. Would someone please express that better for me? LOL! I really like it, but my description does not sound appealing even though it IS!
So…thank you, K S, for this morning’s tea adventure and for this delicious tea!
Saved this sample from K S for a day when I could have time to enjoy it. And enjoy it I am. This is candy in a cup, even without aditional sweetening. Junior Mints. I am having to strain to detect any puerh personality at all, though I’m sure it’s creating a rich base for the chocolate.
Looking forward to more steeps! My thanks.
Oh wow! This is good. Sweet shredded coconut, almond slivers. Mmmm. You don’t really taste the green tea which seems a shame but you really don’t miss it because, well its coconut and almond. I gave the second steep to a co-worker. He buzzed me later and said, “You have got to try this on ice” So I did. He was right it was a great glass of sweet refreshment.
As I was drinking this I kept thinking I have got to mix this with the chocolate mint fusion puerh. I am thinking Almond Joy in a cup. I will make this thought a reality come Monday.
I used yesterday’s leaf and steeped three more cups (total of five – 12oz mugs). The last still had nice floral flavor and the lemon and lime were still mildly present.
Rehashing a bit the first cup was so lemon lime it tasted fake – like you would expect from a flavored tea bag. Maybe if I used a short first steep it would be greatly improved. The rest of the cups were excellent and highly floral like a high mountain oolong with lemon lime more in the background. I think the base is Huang Jin Gui (Golden Osmanthus) and it is very nice. Really like this one. If I can figure out how to improve cup one I may up the rating even more.
Not a full review yet. I opened the bag and it was heavily lemon lime. Kind of too heavy to the point of smelling artificial. The first cup was not nearly as heavy as it smelled but I couldn’t make up my mind about it. The oolong base was coming through but in the background.
As I steeped cup 2 I noticed how full of leaf the press had become. This time the lemon lime are greatly reduced. This is a good cup.
As the cup cooled the highly floral oolong bagan to shine. Sweet, sweet honeysuckle. Now this is a great cup. I don’t have time to take it further tonight but I think this will go a lot longer.
Until I get to see what comes next I won’t rate it. The first cup was a mid 70’s. The second strarted mid 80’s and became a solid 90.
Between White Peony and Silver Needle in complexity but with unique characteristics I haven’t seen in a white tea before (hint – chocolate). A longer review on my blog http://theeverdayteablog.blogspot.com/2012/07/zenjala-tea-company-golden-monkey.html
Today I could taste the vanilla. I didn’t catch it last time. It is very light. The bergamot is nice and medium but the light touch of vanilla makes it very smooth. This is a really good Earl Grey.
My wife is having gall bladder surgery tomorrow. The hospital just called wanting enough money up front to buy a small car. Are they serious? Don’t they remember they took all our money last year? sigh. I need tea. Oh, and they aren’t getting a dime until it clears insurance.