I see buttery used in a lot of reviews. Is this a taste, a feel, or maybe both?
For me, it can be both. It’s a thick, creamy (buttery!) feeling in the mouth. If it’s in the taste, then it’s probably slightly sweet with a bit of salty or savory flavor.
I find buttery textures in oolongs, like Tieguanyin / Iron Goddess of Mercy (especially autumn pickings). Or anything with saffron in it, I think.
Buttery flavors I often find in green teas, especially greens that are sweet and beany (like stuff from Lao Shan). But then again, I’ve found buttery flavors in white teas and pu’er, too.
Hope you find something buttery- it’s a fun flavor to come upon naturally!
This is basically how I use buttery. It’s a texture, sure, but also definitely a flavor. Sometimes I identify a sweet, thick creaminess as buttery because that is, after all, basically what butter is. Also in some teas that come across with pastry-ish flavors, I get the kind of butteriness you get in a croissant. It’s definitely a flavor I only seek out in a natural form, such as oolongs.
When I think of buttery as a texture, it’s kind of a slick coating in my mouth. As far as the taste, I think it’s more evident in TGY, but also certain green teas, and it’s reminiscent of putting butter on certain veggies (peas, or lima beans). To me, anyway.
Regardless, it’s quite a pleasant note, whether I find it in taste or texture!
I use the word buttery with a lot of Tieguanyin oolong.
I just came across this after having reviewed a Ti Guan Yin! : ) I agree that buttery is both a flavor and a feeling and also that it is very adequate in describing Ti Guan yin!
We all agree then, TGY’s do really have a buttery quality to them.
Good question, K.S. I’ve often wondered myself what the heck a buttery flavor meant in regards to drinking tea, and you all have done a great job explaining what the heck it is. What the heck, thanks! :p
I’ve only recently had a tea that I described as buttery, but only with help from Steepster. It happened to be an oolong and thoguh I originally thought it was milky, buttery seemed more accurately to capture the whole picture (taste, aroma, mouthfeel, etc).
I’ve had some Oolongs that taste buttery while others taste milky, and some are more like cream than either milk or butter. That’s one thing that I love about Oolong is that they can be so diverse from one type of Oolong to another… even those within the same type (like Tie Guan Yin, for example) can be different. Such an amazingly vast world of flavor within one type of tea.
Thanks all. Milky, and creamy, I get. The buttery thing is a bit clearer now. I guess I just haven’t had one yet that hit me this way.
When I say buttery, I think I am mostly picking up the flavor and feel you would get if you cooked squash, buttered and salted it, and then drank the juice that comes off of the buttered squash. Sometimes, though, it does remind me of another veggie that has been cooked and buttered (and salted) like the juice from bok choi. I don’t think I have tasted any yet that taste like buttered greens, such as kale, spinach, or turnip greens.