1993 Tasting Notes

80
drank Mo Li Long Tiao by Carrefour
1993 tasting notes

Today I tried to room-temp steep this by throwing some leaves into the bottle of water that I usually take with me to work. Let’s just say, it didn’t turn out well. Who knew a cold steep could be so bitter! I definitely need to go for far less leaves, I guess. I’ll try again next week.

But now I’m having this one hot again with dinner. It really is lovely, and oh so smooth. It’s just such a pleasant tea to drink, though I can’t see myself craving it and I think I would get bored of it, too, if it was the only thing I had. I guess I just crave more variety!

Preparation
2 min, 0 sec
SimplyJenW

Yes, craving variety makes sense! How many teas do you have at work? When I think of trying to get by on just a few teas, myself, I get kind of shaky….. ;)

gmathis

Dumb question—when Steepsters refer to cold brew/cold steep, is it generally room temp as you’ve described above, or in the fridge?

Dinosara

At work in the states is where all of my tea is, so I have a ton! I don’t drink the same tea very often.

gmathis: most people (and usually me) call brewing in the fridge cold-brew, I just called this room temp brew cold brew since it wasn’t with hot water. I’m not sure if there is a big difference with room temp versus refrigerated water, though.

Spoonvonstup

Carrefour! Gosh, I never even noticed they sold tea when I went there. I always went straight to the candy or cookie areas… not the best grocery shopper, I will admit.

Indigobloom

variety, YES!!! that’s part of what drives my tea cupboard to expand. That way, I can avoid having the same tea more than once a week, sometimes even in a month!

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81
drank U-Yo Milk Tea by Wahaha
1993 tasting notes

I had a bottle of this once before but didn’t get around to writing a note for it then. This is the “original flavor” milk tea, that is, basically unflavored. I remembered that the last time I was in China on a trip (2004), almost all of our bottled water was from this company, Wahaha, and it said that on the bottle in letters (not just Chinese characters). I will always remember one of our Chinese colleagues one time saying “Wahaha… the sound of children laughing.” Oh, Wahaha, you take me back.

Anyway, I enjoy this milk tea a lot. Not quite as much as the taro but not much beats taro. Actually there is a flavor to this that is similar to the taro (not surprising, since that one should have the same base as this), but I had thought that it was not just black tea, milk and sugar. Either the milk is slightly flavored with something else or the black tea is really tasty. I will never know! Oh well, I can definitely say I will miss this when I leave China. But it’s probably good, because I would probably gain 500lbs drinking this sugary rich drink all the time. :D

Jillian

I don’t know about ‘children’ laughing – the name sounds more like an evil supervillan laughing over his plans for world domination. ;D

I’ve never actually had authentic milk tea – what all is supposed to be in it?

Dinosara

You know I don’t really know exactly, but it’s definitely very sweet, so perhaps something like sweetened condensed milk mixed with a black tea.

Spoonvonstup

Wahaha happy baby drink!!! That is some good stuff. As you say, both sad and glad it’s not available here.

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80
drank Mo Li Long Tiao by Carrefour
1993 tasting notes

Yesterday I finally bought some other tea. I had been resisting until I make it to the tea market, but I don’t know exactly when that will be and I am tired of drinking the same tea day in and day out. So I bought some loose tea at the Carrefour (mega grocery store). I don’t know what brand this is, if it’s even listed, and I don’t have the energy right now to try and figure it out. I am so stressed about things at work back home right now, but being 12 hours off means that right now it is the end of the day there even though it’s the beginning of my day… which means I get to stew about my problems for at least 12 hours before anything happens with them. Guh.

At least the tea is tasty. This is a jasmine tea that translates to something like “Dragon Strip” or something. The leaves are nice and long with a few bits of flowers here and there. I let the just-boiled water cool for 4 minutes in my kettle before I steeped it. The resulting tea is sweet and jasminey, with a kind of robust green tea backdrop. Definitely tasty, and I’m glad I have it around. Now if only it would relax me enough that I will actually be able to get work done today instead of worrying all day… :P

Preparation
2 min, 0 sec
Dylan Oxford

Hey, you just got over being sick… stop worrying about stuff in a different country and start enjoying your AWESOME TEA VACATION that we’re all totally jealous of ;)

Dinosara

Haha thanks but this trip isn’t really a vacation, it’s a work trip (that I’m squeezing some tea into), so the worry stays. :)

Dylan Oxford

Ooooh… well… carry on then :)

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drank Lemon Ginger Tieguanyin by Custom
1993 tasting notes

Even though my head cold is next to gone these days, this morning I had some uugghh tummy troubles, no doubt from something I ate last night. I’m actually fine now, but I decided to brew up a cup of this to have with lunch anyway just because it’s soothing and pleasant and tasty. I added honey, which helps mask the flavor of this tieguanyin that I am tired of drinking but have so much of. Seriously, why on earth did I buy 100g of this? Clearly it was some misguided feeling that I had to, or something. I think I could have asked for less, but language barriers. They suck.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec
Indigobloom

Ahhh, I’d have stopped drinking tea by now entirely if I was you! hang in there…

Dinosara

Haha, I think a sane person would have bought other tea. I did just buy some cheap loose jasmine green at the grocery store so I am excited to try that one.

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drank Rose Tieguanyin by Custom
1993 tasting notes

With this morning’s cup of this blend, I threw in a scoop of the dried jasmine buds I got at the store. I have to say I’m a little disappointed! This isn’t nearly as jasminey as I had hoped… in fact, the added flavor doesn’t seem like jasmine to me at all, just some kind of odd, earthy floral. Maybe I need to just do jasmine and tieguanyin without the rose and see how it plays out.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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70

I am a sucker for pretty packaging, which is why I picked up this bottled tea in the grocery store the other day. Also the grocery store also labels things in (really small) English, so I knew this was a jasmine tea.

This has an odd taste that I can’t put my finger on. It was in my fridge, and thus pretty cold, but it almost tastes like ice, if that makes sense. Like jasmine ice. As it warms to room temperature, it tastes more like a standard jasmine green, but it’s still oddly “frosty”. I’m not sure where this flavor is coming from, and it’s not bad, but it’s unexpected. All and all a pretty decent bottled jasmine tea, but that weird flavor might keep me from returning to it.

Birdman

That label is pretty fantastic. For those of us NOT in china, here is a link to what the package design for other bottles look like.
http://www.trendhunter.com/trends/nongfu-spring-oriental-tea-packaging#!/photos/113705/3

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drank Rose Tieguanyin by Custom
1993 tasting notes

Good news, guys, I got myself some Claritin (or “Clarityne” as they say here) and I am definitely feeling better. Not perfect, but much better.

This morning I made up the rose version of this tieguanyin, and I threw in some ginger for good measure. I didn’t taste much ginger (surprising with the amount I put in there), but that’s ok, it was all rosy and lovely anyway.

Preparation
Boiling
TeaBrat

glad you are feeling better. Do you think the pollution is the cause of it?

Dinosara

I think the pollution is the cause of my nagging cough, and it certainly isn’t helping with everything else, but I think I’m also just allergic to pollen of chinese flowering trees, though I’m not allergic to any other pollen. Now with a fair amount of allergy medication I’m doing better.

SimplyJenW

I think the body gets used to your regional pollen over time. I know when I travel anywhere in the Spring, I am in for problems. I am a sneezy, weepy mess. We used to visit my In-Laws where I currently live and my allergies here were almost unbearable then. Now that I live here, it is not quite as bad as when I was just visiting prior to 14 years ago. I try to eat my local honey, too, which helps.

And glad you are feeling better. It is such a downer to be sick on such an adventure!

Invader Zim

Glad you got some meds and are feeling better.

ashmanra

Have a wonderful time now that hopefully the allergies are under control!

Dinosara

Thanks everyone!

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66

I haven’t had this plain since I first got it, mostly because I wasn’t that excited by it in the first place. I’m just not as much a fan of roasty teas, and this one is a roasty, more traditional tieguanyin, not a floral green one. How can two teas have the same name and be so different tasting? sigh For this cup I let the water cool (though I’m not sure to what temp), and I steeped it for only 2 minutes. The tea is perfectly fine tasting, but not very exciting.

Honestly I’m not sure that this note has much relevance because I can hardly smell anything right now. My congestion is one of the reasons that I haven’t tried to go tea shopping yet, because I feel like I won’t be able to taste anything properly. Hopefully it will clear up or I will find a remedy soon.

Preparation
2 min, 0 sec
Indigobloom

Good luck clearing that congestion! fingers crossed for you :)

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91

I discovered this bottled milk tea at the grocery store in Xidan Joy City the other day and snapped it up… I love love taro flavored anything, and especially taro milk tea which I usually get as a bubble tea. Maybe I’m overreacting but I am so in love with this bottled milk tea right now. I will be very sad when I can never get it back in the States. It’s milky and taro-y (which I always associate as kind of an almond flavor, but not quite), and the black tea (apparently a blend of Yunnan and Keemun) peeks through a little. I mean it’s not much but for me the star of the show is the taro so I don’t care. I have a bottle of regular flavor in my fridge so we’ll see how that goes, plus I found out that the green bottle is apparently jasmine so I am super excited to try that one too. When it comes to milk tea I am a girl obsessed, though I am sad to find that rose milk tea is not as prevalent around here as I had hoped (or at least, I haven’t found it yet).

At this point my sickness/allergies/reaction to pollution symptoms come in predictable waves… I have horrible coughing fits in the morning when I wake up, the middle of the day I often feel pretty good, and then night comes and my nasal passages close up completely and I feel generally like crap. Today I spent all day outside but a little ways outside the main part of the city, so hopefully the air was better there. Although I did pretty much confirm that the flowering trees are pretty much the only thing on the planet that I’m allergic to. Remind me to avoid Beijing in spring in the furture!

Indigobloom

ahhh! I loooove taro!!! so yummy. In fact, I had a taro bubbletea (my friends and I pm it as “bbt”) the other day. So good :P

Mercuryhime

I love sweet taro flavors as well. If you live by any Asian or Hispanic markets in the US, they usually have taro and you can make your own taro whatever. I particularly love the Chinese sweet coconut taro soup my grandma would make on occasion. It’s so simple. See this link:
http://userealbutter.com/2011/02/03/chinese-taro-tapioca-soup-recipe/

Also, Beijing air is terrible. I went several weeks before the Olympics so they had shut down the factories and restricted the use of vehicles for quite a while already, and still I developed this cough. Ugh. I totally understand why people are constantly coughing and hacking up phlegm right on the streets.

Dinosara

Awesome, thanks for the recipe Mercuryhime! My local grocery store in NY has taro root (it trends toward hispanic).

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drank Lemon Ginger Tieguanyin by Custom
1993 tasting notes

Today I used two lemon slices and it was almost too lemony! I think I’ll stick to one large or two small. I must have ended up with less ginger because I didn’t taste it as much, so I’ll try to remember to put more in. Added plenty of honey, too.

The air quality is supposed to be better today in Beijing (yesterday the air quality index was “Unhealthy”), so I’m hoping my lungs will get a relief.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec
ScottTeaMan

That’s one thing my friends didn’t like about Beijing…….pollution! Other than that they really liked China.

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Bio

I am tea obsessed, with the stash to match. I tend to really enjoy green oolongs, Chinese blacks, and flavored teas with high quality bases, especially florals, bergamot-based teas, and chocolate teas.

In my free time I am a birder, baker, and music/movie/tv addict.

Here are my rating categories, FYI:
100-90: Mind-blowingly good, just right for my palate, and teas that just take me to a happy place.
89-86: I really really like these teas and will keep most of them in the permanent collection, but they’re not quite as spectacular as the top category
85-80: Pretty tasty teas that I enjoy well enough, but definitely won’t rebuy when I run out.
79-70: Teas that I would probably drink again, but only if there were no preferrable options.
69-50: Teas that I don’t really enjoy all that much and wouldn’t drink another cup of.
49 and below: Mega yuck. This tea is just disgusting to me.
Unrated: Usually I feel unqualified to rate these teas because they are types of teas that I tend to not like in general. Sometimes user error or tea brewed under poor conditions.

Location

Ohio, US

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