1911 Tasting Notes
Sipdown, 141. I sent the package of this that I got in my happy bag away in a swap a while ago, but I still had the sample bag kicking around. I figured I should at least try it, although I was not optimistic because it had the dreaded darjeeling in it.
When I brewed it up, it smelled pretty good, honestly. I may have to explore assams a bit (beyond Butiki’s PTA) because I think they do have potential for me. I used to think that assams were the part of the blend I didn’t like, but now I think that it was likely certain (but not all) keemuns. Maybe certain assams as well, I guess. Anyway, when this was hot it was pretty decent, though not particularly interesting, but as it cooled it got very bitter for some reason. Not sad I sent the rest of it away, though I liked it better than I thought I would.
Well this is a sipdown but I somehow didn’t add this one to my cupboard, so my number remains at 142. I asked Stacy for a sample of this one with my last order because a marshmallow-leaf herbal sounded intriguing.
This was really tasty! Creamy, with a nice smooth texture, very dessert-y. I’ve never had Butiki’s Creamy Eggnog, so I can’t compare it to that, but I am happy with this one for sure. I don’t know that it screams ‘cake’ to me, but that’s fine really, it’s still tasty. Once it gets cold and I want to have an herbal tea every night in the evening I may have to pick some of this up… I’m always on the lookout for tasty herbals without rooibos (yuck) or hibiscus (only on occasion). This one certainly fit the bill.
I just had a thought… I wonder how the marshmallow leaf would do with cacao nibs for a kind of cocoa-marshmallow herbal? Mmm.
Mmm, a comforting milky-sugary pot of tea for the afternoon. I’m indulging in this one, which is delicious with additions. It’s so delicious with additions that it’s one of the only teas I would actually consider keeping around for merely that purpose. I love the almond-melon candy flavor. Calissons are not a common tea flavor, so I have to take it where I can find it!
I did a bunch of gongfu steeps of this one in my gaiwan but combined them into one big glass. It was essentially the same tea:water ratio, but instead of one long steep it was multiple 10 second steeps, so it would be interesting to know how it would taste different from a western steep of it. But of course teas like this seem to beg to be short steeped, even if you are just going to combine them.
This was fresh and lovely. Green, sweet, like sugar snap peas. I rarely crave a straight green, but I like having them around. Obviously this is not one I will keep around longterm, but it is a pleasure to drink.
I was up way too late last night because I went to see the Cornetto Trilogy (Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, and The World’s End) and had a long drive home, and then I had to get up way too early this morning to teach. Ugh. So now that I’m sitting down at my desk I brewed up a cup of this extra strong to hopefully energize me. Seven pearls this time, instead of six!
It turned out pretty well. This may be one of those teas that works better bolder than it does when brewed the way I usually would. It has more body, but hasn’t acquired too much bitterness or astringency. It is a bit like unsweetened cocoa powder in flavor, which is to say a little too bitter for me, but it’s not bad.
This is the tea I made (hot) to replace my cold brewed disaster. It was, of course, delicious. Peachy, floral, refreshing. The jasmine on this is fairly subtle but really makes this more interesting than just a standard peach flavored green tea. Glad to have a bit more of this one around.
I made some of this tea cold brewed, and I knew from the beginning that it was going to be bad. I think I never brewed any of this before in part because the dry leaf smells like nasty fake berry cough syrup, but it’s been so long since I opened it up that I had forgotten. I brewed some anyway on the off chance that it would settle down.
I am wondering if the batch of this that I got is different somehow than the ones that others have tried, because this was just bad. Same fake berry cough syrup flavor, along with some fake jasmine flavoring. I took a sip and dumped the rest, and I don’t intend on keeping the rest of the leaf; not only would I not wish this tea on anyone else, it’s also fairly ancient (though clearly that hasn’t diminished this crazy flavoring), and I have been pretty much unsuccessful giving it away anyway. So, unexpected sipdown, 142.
Sipdown, 143. Thanks again to Teavivre for this sample.
This time I brewed the entire sample pouch in my 12oz cup, at the recommended steeping parameters. I did that with my first pouch as well, but my water was off. This time it was totally awesome. The black tea flavor was extra bold, without tasting oversteeped or astringent. It’s rich and a hint cocoa-y. The rose is fairly subtle still, but it is certianly present. It just lets the dian hong really run the show. The dian hong isn’t as earthy when brewed this strong, and the flavors are more complex and interesting. Glad I made my last cup like this, I may actually have to pick more of this up at some point.
I think this is officially the last of the teas I brought back from Paris that I haven’t yet tried. It’s also the third of Dammann’s “Jardin” series of flavored oolongs. The dry leaf on this one smells fruity and very floral, which makes sense since all the flavors listed are a myriad of flowers, most of which I would not be able to pinpoint (acacia? waterlilly? aloe vera?). I think the fruitiness may be coming from the plum blossom.
Steeped, it smells pretty much like a bouquet. In a good way! This is a rich bunch of florals, but I feel like the fact that a lot of them are different from the usual florals keeps things interesting. It doesn’t smell as fruity brewed as it does dry, it’s more pure floral. Despite all of this, it is definitely not overwhelming in the flavor. Smooth, sweet, and floral. It kind of reminds me of Naivetea’s Rose Violet Calendula oolong, but with more florals that are kind of unique and exotic. I also don’t find this one to be overly floral, like I did with that other tea. When I’m in a very floral mood, this will definitely be the tea for me.
I haven’t had this tea in a long time. I am getting ready to send some out in a swap, so I decided to brew some up this morning. I remember the time when I had a huge number of different Earl Greys around, when I was searching for my favorite. Now I only have this one (that’s not some other variant like an Earl Grey cream), if you can believe it.
Yup, still loving this one. It’s a really well balanced Earl, and oh so satisfying. Glad to always have it around when I need it.