1621 Tasting Notes
Double Sipdown, 170. This was a combined cold steep of this tea and the Mango black from thepuriTea (half and half). I had about half a tablespoon less than I usually use for cold brews, but I left it in the fridge for at least 30 hours and it still was very pale in color. I worried it wouldn’t have enough flavor, but it was quite tasty! These two teas do cold brew very well, and they were great together.
Yeah today is pretty much all Traveling Tea Box (group A) samples. I’ll try pretty much any tea that lists rose as a primary note, so this one came out.
It certainly smells rosey, in a way that I love. Sometimes rose + fruit ends up smelling like cookies to me. I don’t know why, but I’ve come across it a few times now, and it seems to be a peculiarity of my nose/taste buds. Whatever, it’s awesome for me!
Woah the rose flavor in this is intense. It isn’t quite soapy or perfumy to me, but it is walking that line so those with less rose inclinations would likely find it that way. I am surprised at how much more intense the flavor is than the aroma. There is that slight cookie taste to me, but I get no fruit from this. Decently tasty, but I’m not sure it does exactly what it says.
Another TTB sample. This was possibly the one I was most interested in because I’ve had reasonably good experiences with Simpson & Vail teas.
Mm, this smells buttery, creamy, vanilla-y, and caramelly in a burnt-sugar way, all what I would expect from creme brulee. And those are all present in the flavor as well; I particularly like the burnt sugar flavor, which is subtle but definitely present. The black tea base isn’t the star of this show but it has body and makes a decent background. There is a touch of astringency to this that is somewhat at odds with the creme brulee feeling of it; I would expect smoothness and richness, but this is a touch brighter. Definitely a pretty tasty tea and I’m glad I got to try it!
From the Traveling Tea Box! There a few rooibos blends in here and since I am way low on herbal teas for the evenings, I’ll be trying them out. Also, it is awesome to be able to sample all of these teas without having to add them to my cupboard.
So usually I don’t do mint teas, and usually I don’t do rooibos, but together they seem to be working out for me. The mint is smooth and not too “brisk”, and it seems to totally mask the weird, fruity, medicinal quality that rooibos often has. It does taste like Junior Mints or maybe a York peppermint patty. Definitely one of the better rooibos blends I’ve tried!
Sipdown, 166. Started drinking this one earlier this afternoon and decided to go ahead and finish the rest of my sample of it.
I’m a little less taken with this one than I was the last time I had it, but it’s still quite nice. Not quite getting so much sweetness, but the floral notes are lovely (especially in the aftertaste) and it’s still very impressive to me as a white tea! Definitely a fun one to try out.
I have a lot of this tea. The first round of samples that Teavivre sent out over a year ago were incredibly generous and I still have some of them around! This one included. I probably have at least 2 more cups of this left, and that’s with generous leafing and shorter steeps.
It is a really delicious tea, and I am interested to see how the new harvest nonpareil dragonwell samples that I just got compare. This one is so buttery and nutty! I had it with lunch today, and who would have guessed that dragonwell would be such a good accompaniment to mexican food.
Sipdown, 167. The Traveling Tea Box (A group) is out for delivery today to me, so I need to make some room in my cupboard! Not to mention my swap from Shmiracles, Verdant Reserve Club May edition, and eventual order from Verdant that will get here sometime in May.
Sometimes you just want a tea that tastes like candy, and this is totally one of those teas. I mean, floral, yes, fruity, yes, but it reminds me so much of mango Hi Chews candy! Which is totally yum to me. Is it the most subtly-flavored, nuanced blend? Are the base teas very fine or even really present in the flavor? No, but I find it very tasty nonetheless. Don’t know if I’ll ever buy anymore, but I definitely enjoyed this.
Sipdown, 168. Sad to sip this one down, but sipdowns must be had and I can’t be hoarding. Actually there are two teas with one cup left in them that I am, in fact, hoarding, but I can’t bring myself to sip them down yet.
I think the best brewing parameters for this tea (for me) are: 5 pearls, 12oz water, 212°F, 2 minutes. This one was brewed with 4 pearls for three minutes but it could have possibly used even more time. It’s a little thin, but still chocolatey and grainy and delicious. It’s like chocolate museli. I know I’ve used that for a tea before, but I’m not sure if it was this tea or another one! But this one defintiely gives off a chocolate museli vibe. This is a must have tea and eventually it will make it back into my stash.
My stomach is feeling better but not 100%, so I definitely wanted to avoid flavored greens as lately they’ve been turning my stomach a bit. I opened up my sample drawer and these were sitting at the top, and they sounded like a great idea.
This is good, if a bit strong today. With fresh pearls, I used 5 for 12oz and 2 minute steep, but have knocked it to 3 minutes in the past once the pearls have gotten a little old. I though these might fall into that category, but apparently they are still fairly fresh because at 3 minutes this cup is edging on a slight bitterness. Like bittersweet baking chocolate more than dark chocolate. Well, I only have 4 pearls left, so I’ll get to futz around with steep times next time as well.
Last night there were too many margaritas, too much mexican food, and too much ice cream, and now they are all having a war in my stomach. I have heard numerous times that puerh is supposed to be good for upset stomachs, so I decided to give this a go, finally. I’ve had this sample for quite a while now, and must apologize to Teavivre for only now getting around to sampling it. The truth is, I’m still a little afraid of shu puerh. But onward!
I remembered why as soon as the water hit the leaves and I got a kind of slightly seaweedy smell. Just now I am realizing I should have rinsed them once, but I didn’t. Ah well. Fortunately any fishiness has gone away after a full steep, and the liquor is opaque and dark as night. It smells like sawdust, pretty much spot on.
The flavor is amazingly smooth. Not a hint of bitterness or astringency, and a thick, luscious texture. It is, also, lightly sweet. The main part of the flavor is earthy, saw-dusty (though without the feeling of ‘dust’), woody. As far as I can tell, its a very nice example of this type of puerh. Not fishy or off-tasting, just smooth and relatively pleasant. I just am not super into drinking earthy sawdust, heh. It may be settling my stomach (hard to tell), but hopefully so!