1804 Tasting Notes
I was wondering if I would be able to tell much difference between the two reserve dancongs from the last box, being that I am not usually keen on dancongs. However, I can definitely tell a difference here.
True to name, the Mi Xian was fruitier and more honeyed in flavor. This one is somewhat “crisper” feeling to me, and more floral. Learning that it’s name translates to orange blossom make sense… There is a somewhat bright citrusy note here. This one is more vegetal, and becomes more minerally and a touch stony in later steepings. I definitely enjoyed this one although when it comes to dancongs, I think I liked the Mi Xian more. Glad to have tried this!
Sipdown, 122. I am officially back down to where I was before my swap with Sil, almost exactly one month ago. I am happy I got to try these teas from Yezi because they are clearly high quality.
This one isn’t quite blowing my mind like the last time I had it, but that is not to say that it isn’t delicious. It has a malty, grainy base that I love in a black tea, with some honeyed sweetness. A bit chocolatey, though not as chocolatey as some black teas I’ve had in the past. It’s super smooth with a great texture, not overly thin or lacking in body. Quite a nice tea overall.
It is SO cold in my office right now! Wish I could go home, ugh. Instead I’m having some of this. I might have also thrown in a raspberry leaf tea bag that is giving this a sweetness and kind of muddling the cider flavors, but it was necessary.
I’m not sure I love guayusa, although I still do like it with citrusy flavors at least. I just don’t crave it a lot. For a while I was also a bit turned off by the smell of the dry leaf, but that seems to have passed and I am enjoying this cup.
Sipdown, 124. With a short steep time, a cool temp, and a moderately small amount of leaves, this tea works pretty well for me. It is quite fruity, slightly sweet, and moderately floral. There is also somewhat of a grain-like quality to this tea; not really malty, but slightly like toasted oats. Not my favorite Taiwanese black tea, but a pretty decent one when you get the parameters right.
Thanks to Teavivre for this sample. I actually tried this tea last night in a gongfu session but did not write about it because I didn’t feel comfortable doing so. See, it was really quite bland and uninteresting. Kind of vegetal, but otherwise I couldn’t get much flavor out of it. Perhaps I should have used a smaller brewing vessel, but I dunno.
So, I decided to do a western steep of this. Mash all the flavors together and see what comes out, haha. Unfortunately for me this is still sort of uninteresting. It SMELLS divine. Floral, buttery, creamy. But the flavor falls flat. It is so light, barely there. Slightly floral, a bit vegetal; very similar to the gongfu steeps last night. Perhaps I’m just not one for Ali Shans (I’ve never been wild for them in the past). Other people rave about the flavors in this one so I think it must just be me. I have one more sample pouch of this; perhaps I will try it in a gaiwan session with it.
Mmm, now this is a yunnan tea I can get behind. Sweet and a bit nutty, with hay and squash notes. Malty and sweet potato-y. This is one of those teas that I enjoyed so much that I drank it down without thinking about it too much, and it was suddenly gone before I was ready. Thanks for sending this one along, Sil!
Sipdown, 125. Thanks again to Yezi Tea for this sample.
I brewed this one a bit longer this time to try to bring out the richness in it, but I think I would have been better off with a higher leaf-to-water ratio. It was still quite tasty, but perhaps not as sweet and nuanced as my previous cup. The added boldness also came with a slight rough-around-the-edges quality. I still really enjoyed my cup, though!
Another tea from Sil! Thanks! I never picked up this one from DF because although I love rhubarb, I am not huge on strawberry-flavored things (I do love fresh strawberries).
This one was less successful for me than many other Dammann teas that I’ve tried. Not sure why; there was almost something weird about the base blend, which usually is invariant across their teas. It had almost a hint of astringency to it, which it never has. Maybe the tartness of the rhubarb was messing with my mind? That said the flavoring is definitely well done in my opinion, with nice authentic strawberry and rhubarb flavors. Glad I never picked up a full pack of this one, but I wasn’t really in danger of doing that anyway. It does help me toward what seems to be my quest to try all of DF’s teas, though, haha.
Sipdown, 126. I drank the last of my sample pouch of this today. I do still have two individual small samples of this, but those are the spread-the-world “gift” pouches that I am supposed to pass on to others, so I will save them for future swaps, and I am counting this as a sipdown.
I had it with a bit of maple syrup, which was divine. I still think I probably shouldn’t drink assams (Kenyan teas being the C. sinensis assamica varietal of the tea bush) on a nearly empty stomach (with just some cereal) because my stomach wasn’t too happy with me after a pot of this. Still, it was quite tasty. Thanks again to JusTea for this sample… I just saw that they have some neat Christmas gifts on their site now, if you missed the crowdsourcing campaign they had earlier!