104 Tasting Notes

85

Such a nice blend for an afternoon cup of tea. I was watching a mini marathon of 1954-55 Sherlock Holmes TV programs yesterday, so of course had to have a pot of this. The blenders created something really special here with just a touch of smokiness that does not cover the base of keemun and darjeeling. Whole leaf blend actually holds up well to a second steeping and tastes good iced as well.

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95

On the rare occasion when I have a guest for tea, this seems to be the one most gravitate toward. I have to admit, it is one of my favorites as well, from the gorgeous little pellets of rolled leaves, to the heady aroma (both dry and brewed), to the amber brew with flavors of malt, honey and fields of grain and wildflowers. Had to add this to my shopping list since there was barely enough left in my stash for a mug this morning…

Preparation
1 min, 45 sec

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95

Over the past month or so I have been slowly working my way through the few ounces of this wonderful tea, enjoying the bright, mellow, impressive flavor and aroma. There are slight nutty hints like a good dragonwell tea, but more herbaceous notes that linger as an aftertaste. A nice buttery quality with no astringency or bitter aftertaste.

I first began brewing this in a small gaiwan, yielding at least 4 good short steepings, but also tried it in a tea thermos, adding 175F water over the leaves several times. Both methods worked well and there always seems to be flavor left in the leaves. Another very interesting and impressive tea from Mandala Tea!

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 1 min, 0 sec
Nightshifter

Sounds lovely!

Garret

Meeting these growers was a real joy – one of the greatest parts about my last tea buying trip. We had to drive an hour out of the village I was staying in, park and then walk an hour up the side of the mountain to get to the Wang’s garden. This was the tea they treated me to when I got to their home. Magical memories everytime I sip this tea. So very happy you are digging this, my brother! Thanks for the write up, too!!

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92

A very nice smooth Oolong with nice subtlety and gentle flavor and aroma. Slight nutty and floral tones blend nicely for a well rounded brew.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 1 min, 30 sec

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95

A very memorable and tasty tea. If you enjoy Darjeeling tea, then you really should give this one a try. My first taste of the product of Temi Tea Gardens, but definitely will not be my last. Full review at RateTea.com: http://ratetea.com/review/2838/

Preparation
3 min, 30 sec

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98

Sipping on this extraordinary tea all morning, breathing in the heady aroma and looking forward to another cup…

Full review at http://ratetea.com/review/2790/

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 1 min, 0 sec

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95

Warm and rainy afternoon today, so I have been having a nice session with a sample of 2011 Noble Mark Ripe Blend send by Garret with my last order from Mandala Tea. A very smooth and silky pu’erh with none of the harsh edges. Very much what one reviewer here on Steepster called a “gentleman shu” — with a tad of elegance and only a hint of earthiness below the surface.
Rich, balanced flavor with hints of cedar coming into later steepings. A really exceptional blend to introduce newcomers to pu’erh without scaring them away.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec
Garret

Brother, I am so glad that you tried and liked this tea! This has been my first tea of the day, every day, for over 6 months. I just don’t want to stop drinking it! And I guess I don’t have to! We had 320 250gram cakes pressed and 150 pounds of it in loose leaf. Just secured the same ratio of the various leaves from the same processor of this years ripened tea, too. It’ll be interesting to see how it differs. Thanks for writing it up!!

E Alexander Gerster

Hi Garret. Such a great tea! I will be putting together a new order soon, and this one is on the list… Shared a few of your teas with Alex Zorach who runs RateTea.com, and we have discussed several through Google+. He might be contacting you for samples since he really has been loving those I shared. One day I am going to have to come drink tea with you, :)

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Bio

I have been drinking tea for most of my life, and enjoy learning about Tea Culture from all around the world. I learned early about Russian and British traditions first, since my parents came from Europe, followed by the teas and culture of Ceylon/Sri Lanka and India. Since I have been a practicing Buddhist for the better part of 25 years, I have strong ties to Asia, and have slowly been learning about the teas from each part of the world I encounter. It is a wonderful and interesting journey.

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Raleigh, North Carolina, United States

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