2182 Tasting Notes
Another mango tea from the Happy Bag, and another I was happy to try. Whereas I am not on the lookout for a good lychee oolong, I am on the lookout for a good mango black tea. The dry leaf smells intensely mango-y, like mango candy for sure. If you like mango candy, it’s mouthwatering. It also smells like the base tea, kind of malty, which also smells good.
When I first tried a sip of this tea I was like “blech! bitter assam! too robust for me!” and that’s how it was when it was still really hot. But as it cooled way down, the bitterness faded away and it was a pretty tasty mango tea. I think this tea will be really delicious iced. Perhaps if I want to drink it hot I should try it steeped at a lower temp, although honestly assams never really get that palatable to me. I think if I want mango tea I will go with Lupicia’s Ripe Mango Oolong, and forgo the black tea base.
So continues the list of teas from my New Years Happy Bag that I haven’t gotten around to trying. This was a tea that I was interested in because I do enjoy Lupicia’s flavored oolongs, but then I could tell from the photo that it is actually a roasted oolong (unusually for them) and probably an Oriental Beauty base (flavor seems to confirm that). They aren’t my favorite oolongs and as a base for flavored teas they can be really boring. But! I got this in my happy bag so I got to try it anyway.
The good news is that it’s a decent tea. Lychee is definitely present, although I think I get it more immediately before the sip in the scent, and then as a lasting aftertaste. I definitely get the flavor of somewhat generic Oriental Beauty oolong in the main part of the sip; not quite roasty, but not green either, a touch minerally. I would prefer more lychee in the sip itself, although more does come out as it cools. I bet this would be good cold brewed. Wish they had put this one on a pouchong base, but then again I already have my perfect lychee oolong so I’m not too sad to not be in love with this one!
I was pleased to see this tea in my Happy Bag from Lupicia this year. It’s always been one that I have been curious about. I love mangos, I love oolongs, and Lupicia tends to do a good job with flavored oolongs. I think that I have actually drank this once since I got it but I never wrote a tasting note for it.
There is something about the scent of the brewed tea that is really familiar, but I can’t quite place it. This seems to be more of a pouchong (long wiry leaves) than a rolled high mountain oolong like many of their other flavored ones. The flavor on this is quite good. It’s a bit mango hi-chews, which are some of the best mango candy that I’ve ever had. That still means its a bit more candy than fresh mango, but fresh fruit is difficult to capture in a tea. Then again, maybe if I had tried a ripe mango fresh from a market in southeast Asia, maybe I would tell a different story. Still, this is very nice and the oolong does add a freshness to it. Overall I am glad I have it around.
This tea I drank just now. Yum. The base on this tea seems a bit more keemun-y than Dammann’s usual blend. Not sure what it is about it, but it reminds me a touch of the keemun base on Lupicia’s Earl Grey.
Love drinking my tropical mangosteen tea. This one I don’t crave like some of the other DF teas, but I think that’s because it’s a bit simpler. It’s definitely still very tasty, and it captures the mangosteen flavor well. I should probably try cold brewing this one, I bet it would be awesome.
Another tea I drank yesterday. I think I was in some kind of haze because I don’t really remember my session with this tea yesterday. I mean, I remember that I found it very delicious, as expected. Fruity and delicious.
I will say that I kind of love that Dammann has so many different Noël teas based on so many different places. And I love drinking them totally not at Christmas season.
I have some block against writing tasting notes lately. I drank a cup of this tea two days ago (and then another yesterday to, uh, remind me about it) and I still haven’t written a note yet. Well, here it is. I had a small order of DF teas at the beginning of this year, and this tea (along with the next two) is from that.
I did not expect to be in love with this tea when I first tried it, but it just hits all the right notes for me. Caramel, chocolate, fruity in a really good way… Just smelling it makes me happy. Bumping my rating because of that fact.
Flavors: Caramel, Cocoa, Stewed Fruits
I have been so bad about tasting notes the last two days! Just super busy I guess, and a feeling of not knowing what to write.
Continuing with the cupboard chronology, I finally picked up a few ounces of this tea last fall. I’ve only ever had it in my cupboard as random samples before, but I finally got to add a substantial amount. This tea is kind of amazingly expensive, but it’s also kind of amazingly good. Getting it at one of ATR’s many 20% off sales was key.
This is sweet and creamy, and it has a distinctly fruity character as well. It’s a tieguanyin, not a jin xuan or one of those quangzhou milk oolongs, so it’s really quite unlike other milk oolongs. I’ve never come across another oolong like it, which is kind of amazing. Happy I have some more, and I will probably hoard it a fair bit due to the price.
I drank this one yesterday but didn’t log it. I still think I need to drink this one back to back with my Beijing tan yang to properly evaluate it. It’s a really tasty tan yang, it hits what I normally expect from a tan yang. Wish I had some of Harney’s Panyang Golden Tips to compare as well! So this is a lame placeholder tasting note to basically say that I did drink it in my chronology.
I’ve made my way back around to my order from JK tea shop, of which two of the teas are left. The first time I had this I wasn’t super impressed. I mean, I enjoyed it but it tasted mostly like a regular Taiwanese black tea (so, fruity and honeyed) but it didn’t have a lot to keep me interested and there was an edge of bitterness at the parameters I brewed it.
Today I dropped my steep temp; I seem to prefer most black teas at less than boiling anyway. And today this tea is really quite delicious. I’ve lost a lot of the “harsh” fruitiness, that overly fruity quality that I dislike. Instead it is sweet, honeyed, caramelly, and the grains come out way more. Last time I said it smelled like a cross between a Fujian and a Taiwanese black. At boiling, the flavor was all Taiwanese black, but at 195°F, those notes relax a bit and the Fujian makes itself known. There is still a bit of fruity Taiwanese black hanging out, though.
All in all, this is a way more interesting and way more delicious tea. Glad I made it with these parameters.
I actually had a cup of this last Friday but it didn’t turn out quite like I expected it to. I realized that it was probably because I tried a smaller amount of leaf (2 tsp) and longer steep time (3 minutes) when in the past I had always used one sample pouch (7g, probably closer to 3-4 tsp) and 2 minute steep time. So this morning I tried closer to my usual parameters and it came out much better.
Nicely green and fresh, a little bit floral, and nicely creamy. It certainly isn’t a (flavored) sweetened-condensed-milk milk oolong, but I like it better that way. There is always something fake about many of those other milk oolongs to me. And this one is one of the naturally creamiest Jin Xuans I’ve ever tried.