Zhi TeaEdit Company
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Recent Tasting Notes
Tasted at Radio Coffee & Beer in Austin, TX.
I’ve been enjoying this tea quite a bit. Very smooth and satisfying. We resteeped this tea 3 times the other night and were very happy with the consistent flavor.
The only thing I don’t like is that the leaves are not full, they’re broken up into halves and quarts which causes smaller bits and pieces to break up and I have a layer of sediment that makes it through the strainer.
Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Bark, Toasty
Thank you for the teas, TheLastDodo! I don’t think I’ve ever had a plain “Cloud & Mist” green tea without additional flavors (like the delicious 52Teas blend). This one is a revelation though! The description mentions honey and peach and it sure is a sweet fruity something or other, especially as it cools. Green teas aren’t usually this fruity! I could swear this is peaches and cream flavor or something. The leaves themselves look like the closest thing to a gunpowder green. The second cup has more of a vegetal flavor that I’m used to. Still good but the first cup is magic.
Steep #1 // 30 minutes after boiling // 2 minute steep
Steep #2 // 30 min a.b. // 2 min
Thank you for this one, TheLastDodo! This looks like a really nice blend, lots of big spices. But it turns out it makes the black tea on the weaker side. Not a strong chai! The brew is such a light brown. I’d say somehow the coconut is the most prominent, though I don’t see big coconut pieces. It seems more like an added flavoring than flavor from coconut. But that just means the blend will last longer. The coconut is sweet and tasty. I’ll have to add more than a heaping teaspoon next time though, in order to get a caffeine kick.
Steep #1 // few minutes after boiling // 4 minute steep
Steep #2 // filled half the mug // just boiled // 4 min
Have I really never reviewed this tea before?! How is that possible as I near the bottom of my 2nd tin?!
I really love this chai. It’s a good staple in my cupboard. I’m trying to get my stash under control and haven’t bought any tea yet this year in that effort, but I’m going to have a hard time not immediately restocking this. Zhi chais tend to be heavy on the cardamon, which I really enjoy. This also has a good clove zing and a bit of cinnamon in the end of the sip. The cacao is more noticeable at the end of the sip and really shines in the aftertaste making it smooth. The Zhi blends that I have tend to be well caffeinated, which is appreciated on sluggish mornings like this one where I need that bit of extra help motivating.
I have one more cup worth of this tea and it’s going to be hard to say goodbye, even if I know it’s not permanent. Once my tea hoard is in a manageable state, I can start adding favorites like this one back.
Additional notes: Decided to finish this one (sipdown!) today because a couple days ago it actually hit the top rated tea on Steepster spot! Maybe I’m not finding the sweet steep spot, but this one doesn’t seem like the top tea to me. (Or maybe it’s in the name: ‘gong fu’ and I’ve always steeped it western style.) The flavor is fine though, reminds me of Bailin Gongfu but now it’s gone!
Steep #1 // 1 3/4 tsps. // 12 minutes after boiling // 3 minute steep
Steep #2 // later
Thanks for a little of this one a while back, MzPriss! I’ve tried this one before but didn’t write a tasting note… the flavor was a little elusive last time. It still is this time around. It’s interesting as this one cools, it seems to get more flavor (but I don’t mean the bitter kind.) It’s starts a little watery flavored piping hot. Then there is a sweet spot at the right temperature. The colder it gets, the tastier it gets, even what’s left in the mug the next day. The flavor is something like vintage chocolate, if that was a thing… and I’m not even sure what that means. I just realized I haven’t been comparing tea to chocolate lately, maybe because I haven’t been consuming as much chocolate… but a certain holiday lately remedied that. :D This is comparable to Teavivre’s Bailin Gongfu. I wish I had more to say on this one, and since it’s tough to pick out flavors, it’s probably not a tea I would need to stock up on. One serving left anyway!
Steep #1 // 1 1/2 tsps. // few min after boiling // 4 min
Steep #2 // just boiled // 4 min
I visited Zhi Tea this weekend and picked up a couple of teas to try. I love the store, I just wish it was slightly closer to me.
I cold brewed this tea overnight and brought it to class with me this morning. I thought I had added too much tea, but this still tasted great with no astringency. My suspicion is that this holds up very well to being oversteeped. The flavor is very light and delicate, with just the hint of floral rose. It is not an overwhelming rose flavor, and that’s due to the fact that this tea is not actual flavored, but instead gets any rose flavor from the roses mixed in with the tea leaves. Another bonus to that is that this is quite a beautiful tea to steep up, with the roses floating around. I’m really happy with this one!
Flavors: Floral, Rose
Dry leaf: Coconut Cream Pie with spices
Liquor Color: Cocoa Cola brown
Leaves: Dry – black broken leaves with stringy dried ginger, whole cardamom pods, cinnamon bark chips, and large strips of toasted coconut. Wet – all the spices have taken on the same color as the liquor. Still quite fragrant.
Notes: Ahhh, Coconut Chai. This has become one of my daily drinkers. It has one of my favorite two flavors ever, coconut and chai. The coconut is rich and toasty, and complements the spices well. As the for the chai parts in this blend, it’s a mellower chai and the cinnamon is the forefront. The ginger and the cardamom are there, just in the background. I love the shit out of cardamom, but some blends I have had lately use a heavy hand with that spice that adds a sickly rose-spice essence to the blend that I do not like. Fortunately for this tea, it was not the case. The combination of these flavors is a match made in heaven for me. The malty black base is also divine. It grounds the spices and the coconut and brings a fullness to the blend that makes it great for a cold morning, or even in a hot afternoon.
Today I brewed this tea in my western-style teapot and took it with me in my oldest thermos. No sugar, no milk. But I bet this would be great with some coconut milk :D
Flavors: Cardamon, Cinnamon, Coconut, Ginger, Malt
The green part of this tea is nice and smooth. Mellow with a touch of hay on the end. The jasmine is present in the scent, but just barely there in the taste. I don’t get that soapy taste that I have found in some jasmine teas, but I’m not getting much jasmine either. I like my jasmine bold, not shy. Kind of a bummer cause if they upped the jasmine it would be excellent.
This was another in Veronica’s Christmas card! The scent of this was completely misleading to me. There wasn’t much of one and then a nice, moderately malty taste hits. There were some sour notes as well but not in a bad way. This can take a long steep. I forgot about it and it sat for quite awhile. :) It was tasty and I’m glad I have enough for a few more cups!
From the Here’s Hoping TTB, Round 4
Happy Thanksgiving! I was supposed to make pumpkin pie but didn’t prep enough so I’m making due with apple pie and some green bean casserole.
This tea smells deliciously sweet and creamy. Almost too creamy. I never really got into lavender scents until recently, and this certainly appeals to that sweeter type of lavender. It ends up just smelling delicious instead of bathroom-perfume-herbaly.
The tea is actually kind of brisk, which is a nice contrast to the how thick it smells. It’s a little astringent in that good way, and makes for a very nice morning cup.
I am really enjoying this as a decaf option! I can taste the bergamot, but I swear I’m tasting lavender as well. It tastes like a toned down version of their Violet Femme which is a super strong lavender EG that is also quite delicious. A little cream and sugar is making this a very nice evening dessert like cup.
No notes yet. Add one?
Flavors: Coconut, Floral, Pineapple
Wow, I don’t usually favor oolongs, but this is nice! I read a review that someone posted about it the other day and went into Zhi for a sample today during the East Austin Studio Tour which is this really cool event where artist open up their homes and studios to show and sell their crafts. Zhi is right in the middle of a lot of the action, so it made for an easy detour. The gal that works there said the tea was like honey without the sweetness, but I’m not quite picking up on that. I do get a faint floral taste in a very rich and smooth feeling sip. On the aftertaste I get a hint of spice… maybe cinnamon? It is strong, but subtle enough that I can’t put my finger on it clearly. The tea smells slightly roasted with a hint of a grassy bite that never really ends up biting. This is pretty good for an oolong! Could this be my gateway oolong?
Thank you so much MzPriss! This one sounded amazing: bergamot, cream, lavender on a base of assam. Cornflowers make the blend look gorgeous. And the scent makes me want to drink it… now. Maybe I didn’t steep it well enough, but the flavor isn’t as strong as I’d wish it was. Everything is kind of mild here… just hints of the bergamot, cream, lavender and even the tea which should be stronger because it’s an assam. At least none of the ingredients of the blend overpower the others. The second cup accidentally steeped for six minutes but it was a bit tastier anyway. I love the name. I had a Violent Femmes song in my head yesterday for some reason.
Steep #1 // 1 tsp // few minutes after boiling // 3 min
Steep #2 // just boiled // 6 min
This sample comes from MzPriss after seeing my Milk Oolong off. Thank you!
This tea is wonderful BUT, I can’t think of it has a milk oolong. This tea is lacking the creamy/buttery notes that to me make a milk oolong a milk oolong. I will think of this as a golden lily oolong and nothing more. This was a light tea with very nice fruity floral notes. This team almost seemed like it had added fruity flavoring it was so juicy. It was a very crisp clean taste with no bitterness. I didn’t get to do as many infusions as I would have liked to with my first cup. I hope to revisit this tea this weekend and have more to say about the flavor. When I get a chance to order the Gong Fu Black this will definitely be in my order. Thank you for sharing this one with me MzPriss!
For the past few days I’ve taken a break from tea because nothing was tasting right. I even drank several cups of coffee, and I haven’t touched my coffee maker in months and months! Today I was missing my morning tea ritual, so I thought I’d give this tea a chance. (From reading this you’d think I’d stopped drinking tea for months instead of less than a week. I may be addicted, but I’m ok with that.)
This was exactly what I was hoping it would be. It was lovely and full bodied with baked bread and chocolate noted. Absolutely delicious! I’ve already resteeped it once, and I’ll probably get one more steep out of it before the morning is over.
Tea of the morning. Today this tea is full of dark chocolate and baked bread notes. It’s making my mouth very, very happy. While the tea was steeping I smelled a strong hay note, but I’m not detecting it anywhere in my cup. That’s ok though. I’m satisfied sitting here with this tea and enjoying it just the way it is because the way it is is amazingly delicious.
(From the Unflavored Traveling Tea Box)
Tea of the morning. This was a luck draw from the UTTB. I steeped it knowing nothing about the tea, but it turns out that it is an excellent breakfast tea. This lovely is hearty and bold with great chocolate notes and a roasty toasty thing going on that I like. A lot. At the end of the sip there is a strong fruit note that finishes with just a touch of dryness at the back of the throat. Very cool. Very nice.
I don’t really see anything special about this tea. I’ve tried it several different ways, using water from 200F to boiling, steeping anywhere from 1-5 minutes without getting a cup I thought was really spectacular. It’s a straightforward breakfast-y tea. A little astringent, some fruitiness, some really light cocoa notes and a winey quality about it. There’s a sweetness to the aftertaste that builds slowly. I can tell that these hints of flavor are there, but it always falls flat to me. I know there are plenty of people who like it more than I do…Maybe someone else will be willing to swap or just take it off my hands?
Flavors: Astringent, Cocoa, Fruity, Muscatel