58 Tasting Notes

70

Crunchy leaves as I shake into the tea strainer. Brittle and breaking as I help the leaves in. A quick rinse with 175 degree water. The leaves soften up a bit and become very dark. The aroma of fresh grass being cut from across the park begins to gently fill my nose. I fill the mug full of water and wait, as the leaves softly float to the top, beginning to spread open. I pick up the needy cat between my legs and give him a few scratches and head nuzzles. I walk into the office and turn on the computer, setting down my phone to signal my end destination. A quick pee break and back to the tea. How long has it been sitting here? 2 minutes maybe. I pick up the strainer and look at the color of the water and decide it hasn’t been long enough. 30 more seconds. My daughter is asleep in the bedroom, I have only a couple more moments left before she’ll wake. She’s on the last leg of her slumber and I’m starting to get restless in my wait.

I place the strainer aside while taking a huge whiff of the steam. It smells like a subtle green tea, no offensive aromas off the bat. I inspect the water color, it’s light, very light. I take a sip and walk into the office, sitting down at the computer. Now what do I prioritize first during this delicate chunk of free time?

The tea is as it smells and looks, light. Subtle smells, subtle looks and subtle tastes. No bitterness or offensive tastes. Just a smooth light, hint of metallic taste (probably from the strainer) and notes of soft fresh cut grass out of the lawnmower bag. I keep sipping, wanting more flavor to come fourth. It doesn’t, it stays beneath it’s lightness, like a feather dancing in a gentle breeze. I don’t think it’s one to shout about, perhaps a whisper goes well with this one. A whisper of gratitude and peacefulness. Namaste.

Flavors: Freshly Cut Grass

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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70
drank Exotic Assam by Golden Tips Tea
58 tasting notes

It’s hard to get my palette back into the many different flavors teas have to offer when I have started to develop a taste for good medium dark smooth coffee. The caffeine rush I get from coffee doesn’t compare to the light teas I’ve been drinking lately. Over a year of waking up a few times a night and never sleeping past 9 after years of oversleeping will turn one onto something with an instant kick. The huge downside with coffee is that it becomes addicting rather quickly and drinking it for pleasure soon becomes drinking it so I don’t get a grumpy massive headache. During my days of drinking lots of black teas, I did notice withdrawal symptoms when I hadn’t had my cup or two but it wasn’t anything a cup of green tea couldn’t fix. I’m in an adjustment period in my life, one that seems to be lasting awhile. I would like to get back on track with tea, as it makes me a better person, and I’m confident I will. I just need some more time and lots more black tea.

In my attempts of getting back on the tea train, I have been have one cup of coffee in the morning and one cup of tea in the afternoons, usually a black tea- with milk and honey. Today I’m drinking this Exotic Assam. I set some aside before tainting it with the sweetness of the honey and the creaminess of the milk. Naked, this tea is very very smooth. It’s not an offensive black tea at all. I could very well drink a full cup of it without my english ways. In fact, I’m starting to regret I made a cup with milk and honey. As the tea cools, I find I much prefer it very hot on the tongue. The velvety smoothness in my mouth is much more powerful at a higher temperature. The tannins are also noticeable sightly cooler. The aroma is sweet and golden. It’s a tea I can see myself drinking more of. Even with the milk and honey, I’m starting to no longer regret my choice as the tea settles into the cool air. It blends well and holds onto my taste buds coaxing them for more.

Flavors: Malt, Tangy, Wet Wood

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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77
drank Shan Lin Xi by Eco-Cha Artisan Teas
58 tasting notes

There are many steeps from this tea. I’m probably on the 5th or 6th steep now which is on the down side from its prime steep. It started off light and mild and increased to a filling flavor yet still keeping its lightness. Now off the cliff side it’s coming back around to the lightness yet still keeping the aromas but not as full a flavor. This tea came from the steepster select box from jan. 2014. A very yummy oolong that can be drunk in large quantities throughout the morning. It’s not too strong and it keeps up with the promises of fruit and pine qualities.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 30 sec

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drank Teh Asli by Sari Wangi
58 tasting notes

This tea is what it is. It’s bagged and it’s cheap. But, it holds a special place in my heart. We bought this tea in Bali, Indonesia on our honeymoon in 2010. (So add, old to that list of what it is.) While shopping in the grocery store there, something we always do when we’re in a new country, go to their grocery stores to get a feel for the culture. We saw this tea at almost every hostel, restaurant and resort. It was like their Lipton, so naturally I snagged it. And you know what? It’s a good solid cheap black tea. I like to put a little honey and soy milk in it. It wakes me right up and reminds me of the Lipton tea I used to drink in my early days of tea drinking. It’s a comfort tea for me with a special story attached to it.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 0 sec
seule771

I know what you mean about traveling in new country and going to grocery store to get a feel for the place. I do this when visiting new towns. Massachusetts has many, and their market stores are all differently at times nice surprise. I don’t travel, may be force to one day though. Best.

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89
drank Supreme Ben Shan by Aroma Tea Shop
58 tasting notes

I enjoy this oolong a lot. It’s light, and grassy and green. I can steep a yixing pot of a teaspoon or 2 for several times over, while still keeping a flavorful cup. For the first cup, I tend to steep for 45sec-1:00, sometimes going shorter in the first few cups. Then, once the leaves have fully opened and I’ve gotten some peak cups out of it, I’ll start brewing for longer. Sometimes up to 3:00. It’s a very strong oolong, keeping it’s smoothness without ever getting offensively strong. Having this around in my tea cupboard makes me very happy as it’s a rare treat!

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 45 sec

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89
drank Supreme Ben Shan by Aroma Tea Shop
58 tasting notes

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34
drank Mango Ceylon by The Republic of Tea
58 tasting notes

Been drinking this tea for lack of a better black tea in my tea cupboard. I’ve really been needing the extra caffeine boost, plus, I’m trying to drink all my old ugly teas so make room for some newer fresher yummier teas. This black bagged tea has been floating around my cupboard for years now. It’s old. It tastes old and weak. But it’s still drinkable. I usually like to make an iced tea out of this. Brewing a hand full of bags in a large carafe, and then putting it in the fridge makes for a nice lift midday. I’d love to make a sun brew with this, as the subtle fruity notes would make a great tropical natural drink. Not enough sun where I’m at tho. All in all, it’s okay. I don’t mind the fruity taste, but I can definitely find a better tea.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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8
drank Chai Green by Stash Tea Company
58 tasting notes

Ack! No good tea at work! I forgot to bring in some teas. This has been sitting at work for sometime, forgotten. And for good reasons. It’s gross. I feel like I need to put some spiced rum in it to kill the spicy metallic taste of bad green tea. That’s not a good sign if I feel like I need to add something to my tea in order to make it taste better. Big thumbs down to this. But I need some tea this morning, and this is all I got. Thinking of running out to grab a Tea’s Tea.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 0 sec
nonygray

Maybe it had been sitting too long? Mine wasn’t anything like that.

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75

Not entirely sure if this is the exact Dragonwell I’m drinking. I do know it is from Red Blossom.

I went to @VegaatLangton and asked for this tea without the water. The Batista looked at me funny then laughed. “You just want the tea bag? Do you want a cup?” She laughed again. The reason I asked for just the tea is because they sell this very tasty loose leaf tea from Red Blossom, but they only have one hot water source and it comes from the coffee machine. The hot water it produces is scorching hot, even above boiling temp. It would burn the delicate green tea and destroy it’s flavors. I gave her 2 bucks and took the handmade tea bag and went back to work.

I emptied the leaves from the bag into my infuser. It’s the perfect amount. I thought about keeping it in the tea bag, but there wasn’t much room for the leaves to take flight in. I’m on my second steep this morning and the flavors are much more than I would ever get if I had just ordered a cup of tea from this hole in the wall coffee shop.

The brews are lightly colored, but strongly grassy. Definitely has remembrance to a warm humid summer day, looking out on corn fields, while watching grasshoppers and gnats take over the golden sky as the sun sets in middle America.

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75

I think this is what I’m drinking… Not sure. I was falling asleep at my desk at work, so I decided to hit up the new coffee shop that opened up in a garage around the corner. I had my mind set on a soy latte, assuming they wouldn’t have any tea that met my standard. Well, behold they have loose leaf tea’s from Red Blossom in Chinatown! Far superior tea any coffee house usually carries. So I grabbed the Oolong, but I forgot to catch what kind of Oolong it was. From the look and taste of it I THINK this was it. It’s super tasty! And now I am more awake then I have been all day. I am so glad I didn’t get a coffee. Long live tea!

Auggy

I’ve really been impressed by their teas – I only wish I had something nearby that served it!

Blair

Oolongs are by far my favorite teas, but I’m not sure about flavors added to my tea. Did you have this straight up?

Des

I never put anything in my tea, expect for the occasional green tea soy latte (unsweetened). Oolongs are a fav of mine as well.

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Profile

Bio

I have bounced between tea and coffee for years now. When I’m involved with one, I dive into the flavors and am constantly on the hunt for the smoothest brew. My first real love affair with tea was the traditional english way. In my mid 20s I dove head first into Greens and Oolongs and Pu-erhs. My most recent loves are Blacks, mainly because I’m trying to kick a coffee habit that snuck up on me. Having a kid did that to me. Moving forward I’m looking to rekindle my love for tea and save coffee for the occasional cup.

Location

San Francisco, CA

Website

http://www.dnbpost.com

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