Interesting combination of herbs in this infusion. I shared it with my mother who is a big fan of Celestial Seasonings Blueberry Tea, and enjoyed it as a nice afternoon break. We both felt a slight tingling on the tongue, which seems to be a property of the sage in the mix. It has a beautiful aroma and color, and a sweet herbaceous flavor. I was surprised at the beauty the dry cornflowers brings to the dry product, and we both agreed it would go great with some real shortbread cookies… Thanks Tea Forte for this nice sample, and I definitely give this one a thumbs up.
76 Tasting Notes
I had a tough week, so last night I opened up my pouch of Den’s Gyokuro Kin, placed a good rounded teaspoon of leaves into my Sincha Kyusu and started to relax just smelling the aroma of this beautiful tea.
When Den’s says that “Gyokuro Kin is a cup of affordable luxury,” they are being modest as this is one really fantastic Gyokuro. There truly is a great harmony of natural sweetness and slight bitterness, supplemented by a mellow umami flavor and very light astringency.
1st cup: Water @ 160F; Steep 90 sec
2nd cup: Water @ 180F; Steep 30 sec
I couldn’t resist a 3rd steep, which was nice but gets a bit too astringent for me, and looses the mellowness. Truly a wonderful way to end the week!
What a beautiful Spring Oolong! I loaded up my gaiwan and brewed just as David suggested, yielding a nice succession of cups almost exactly as described. Wonderful aromas, wonderful flavor and a really pleasant morning sipping on this tea.
Since I grow orchids, I didn’t get this as the most prominent scent. Instead I get the sweet honeysuckle, with a background of orange blossom and jasmine. The first two steeps give a slightly green flavor followed by buttery creaminess in the later brews and some even have a faint aroma of pine or fir trees behind the floral bouquet.
An outstanding tea, plain and simple. ;)
I was pleasantly surprised by the nice medium body brew that I got out of this Tazo teabag. It was a little out of my usual taste preferences, but made for a nice refreshing cup of tea. Then again, there really is very little tea flavor that you can taste through the spices. This blend seems to have been created to be a good middle of the road chai, able to please the most people by being neither too spicy, or too weak, but having a nice bit of zip. Nice to taste a hint of Peppercorn, Cardamom, Cinnamon, Ginger, Cloves, and Star Anise. I am really pleased that I gave this one a try.
One of the great things about trying a company’s sampler pack is that you find something you really enjoy, but might not have tried on your own. I love Japanese green teas, and have had many cups of sencha, matcha and genmaicha over the last two decades. But this was the first time I tried a genmaicha with matcha in the blend. It was a true revelation.
ist steep: 30 seconds, 180F Bright green, cloudy liquid. Roasted rice aroma with a hint of sweetness. Nice comforting umami flavor with a little nutty and grassy character.
2nd steep: 15 seconds, 210F Bright olive green liquid with still a bit of matcha cloudiness. Aroma is a bit more sweet and less roasty. The flavor is still beautiful with just a hint of kelp flavor.
I look forward to adding more of this tea to my next order from Den’s Tea! :)
Although I rarely have had Houjicha (hoji-cha) at home, it is one of the teas I have enjoyed in Japanese restaurants. It is high in umami flavors, with rich pleasant, roasty aroma. It is one of those teas that goes well with almost any meal.
I received this tea in my sampler from Den’s Tea, and have to echo my fellow Steepsterites that anyone who loves Japanese green teas is doing themselves a disservice if they don’t get this sampler (and more!) from Den’s.
Now on to my tasting…
Color of the infusion is a nice reddish brown. there is a wonderfully savory and aromatic nuttiness that blends with the roasted flavor. I find myself salivating and wanting another sip, time after time—and then it is gone! Wait, time to go for another steep.
Soothing, comforting, and really a pleasant feel on the tongue. Another tea to go on my shopping list. ;)
No notes yet.
This Sheng Puerh certainly brews up to a beautiful golden color and one tasty cup of tea. But I get ahead of myself… you really should take a good inhalation of the dry leaves and smell the aromas of heaven and earth. Redwood forest, eucalyptus trees, and the smell of a distant campfire all come to mind. The first infusion brings out such a brilliant color, and definitely is assertive in it’s flavor. Smooth, bold, robust without being overwhelming.
Subsequent infusions are lighter in color and flavor but bring a new sweetness and aroma. A fascinating tea that leaves me wanting more to brew up. Too bad I only had a small sample bag to try!
This morning I forgo my beloved green teas, and ventured back to Yunnan for another round with one of my favorite teas from Rishi. Having brewed this up both western style, and in a gaiwan, I wanted to try this in my new little Chinese clay pot—gong fu style. Another success. This is proving to be one of the most adaptable (and forgiving) black teas that I can turn to when sitting quietly by myself, or sharing with friends. Nice bold amber color, heady aroma, and a lingering caramel aftertaste that complements the earthiness.
I followed Den’s Tea’s instructions for brewing, even though a 30 second steep seemed short for this type of green, and they were absolutely on the nose. This is a wonderful Sencha, with a gorgeous light emerald color and nicely complex vegetal taste. There is a light taste of the ocean, and taste of the fields that makes for a very satisfying infusion. The second steep was just as nice, with a bit more taste of spinach. A really savory tea!
I also have to echo some of the comments from my fellow Steepsters (Steepsterites?) that Den’s service is really spectacular. My sincha teapot and teas were delivered extremely quickly, accompanied by a variety of reading materials about their teas, and a full catalog/price list of their offerings. Their packaging is top notch, assuring that your tea arrives in the best condition. I am looking forward to working my way through some of the samples they sent, as well as the Gyokuro Kin I purchased for a special occasion.
This is a really nice oolong from Taiwan, that creates a nice coppery infusion from the nicely aromatic leaves. Sweet, subtle and warming. The wet leaves have an amazing aroma, and can be steeped at least three times. A very good introduction to Taiwanese oolongs, that is very nice on it’s own or pairs up nicely with a variety of foods. I think I’ll go and make myself another cup!
Everyday that I drink this tea, I like it more and more. It has such a nice full body, and beautiful balance of strength and delicacy. If you like really good Longjing (Dragon Well) tea or high quality Japanese Sencha, then you really should do yourself a favor and try this Laoshan Northern Green.
This tea is amazing! I received this sample from Verdant Teas in with the rest of my order, and I have to say it is going on my shopping list. A beautiful roasted Tieguanyin that has a wonderful light aroma and nice lingering taste. It is highly addictive, and makes you keep coming back for more steepings. Truly one that you must try.
This is one of those teas that has me mystified. I have read all the positive reviews, and I am a big fan of Yunnan Yabao tea, and yet this version tastes nothing like I had hoped. I have made three valiant efforts over the past week, doing multiple steepings at different temperatures, and all I get is tea water that tastes of old hay. :(
I’m not putting a numerical rating for now, since my experience was so different from everyone else — I thought I had a pretty good palate, but this leaves me with a big question mark…
This is one of those puerh teas that generally age well, if they are stored properly. When I first purchased my beeng (disc) of 2006 CNNP Yellow Label, I was surprised at the quality of the leaves (good mix of leaves and buds) and the pleasant, lightly smoky aroma. Be careful if purchasing through a local Asian market, as it does tend to absorb odors from around it, and you must give it a good sniff before purchasing. Better yet, purchase it from a tea vendor that has taken care to preserve and store it carefully.
As with most puerh’s of this type, the first infusion should only be for washing and awakening the leaves — trust me you will be sorry if you start out by sipping before the second infusion! I like the creamy earthiness that prevails, and multiple steepings can take amazing journeys through subtle woodiness, sometimes conjuring memories of a stroll through the forest, or of fresh sawed lumber.
This is not a terribly complex puerh, but if you value a good simple and interesting tea, often at a true bargain price, it may be one for you to try.
Rainy day in Miami. Hot and steamy outside, cool and comfortable inside. Time to brew up my sample of 2006 Artisan Revival Stone-Pressed Shang…
Beautiful leaves with a lovely aroma. First leaves I pull out are a bud and two leaves—open and full; a good sign. Gaiwan gets loaded up, leaves rinsed, then a three minute steep at about 200 degrees.
Clear golden amber liquor. Smooth, sweet, woodsy and a lingering earthiness. Hmm, and an extra aroma of what… flowers in a forest? This tea is good… seriously good. In fact, I turned off the TV to really focus on my second steep.
There is that aroma again. Alluring and sensual. Taste? Even better! Same smooth woodsy earthiness, with just a hint of dryness, like fresh hay. It looks as if I am going to write one of those over the top reviews… for a tea I just met. I would write more, but I think it is time to go back for a third steep. :)
The aroma of corn (or buttered popcorn, as another reviewer mentions) is almost overwhelming on the first steep of this puerh. I have to say that I much more enjoyed the multiple steeps that followed, where the taste of the tea could actually compete with the aroma!
It is earthy, light and a delight to experience. It was really appropriate on the Fourth of July, as there was no roasted corn on my table. There is a roasted corn drink that is made in Korea, and I wonder if it tastes anything like this? Definitely could not be as good as this wonderful tea…
There are many cheap Darjeeling teas out there, but I doubt you will find one this good at this price. I picked up 10 ounces for less that $5 at my local Indian Grocery, and was pleasantly surprised. Good flavor and just the right hint of muscatel in the very pleasant aroma. The tea leaves are not the highest quality, but what a value for the price of a loose leaf Darjeeling.
A good tea to pair with an Indian meal. I should mention that you should never steep this tea for more than 3 minutes. The tin says steep for 5 to 7 minutes, but this will be a bitter brew that looses any of the delicate nuances. Maybe it is this way for their Russian clientele who use this more in a samovar — and thin the tea as needed.
Yesterday I received my first shipment of tea from Verdant Tea, and I feel like the proverbial kid in a candy store! I quickly took a good look and smell of all the contents, and tried a pu’erh that I will review later. I saved this Laoshan Northern Green to start my day, and have to tell you that I absolutely love it. Beautiful aroma, rich and comforting.
If you like Chinese green teas like Huang Shan Mao Fen, LongJing, or Tai Ping Hou Kui — then you will probably enjoy this solid northern green as much as I do. This morning I tried it in three steepings, loading up my Korean infuser cup (from Rishi). Soft, rich, earthy, vegetal and a bit of mossy character coming out on the last steep. And if you seek out what true ‘cha qi’ is, you might just find it in this cup. :)
Thank you David for importing such a wonderful tea!
Talk about a nice oolong. I enjoy the sweet grass note from this autumn tea, where the faint floral fragrance is mostly like orchids. From the first steeping you can tell these are premium leaves, prepared with care. Through multiple infusions, you take a journey of tremendous gratitude. I was truly lucky to receive 50 grams of this tea as a gift, but now that it is gone… I guess it is time to check out Yunnan Sourcing’s website. :)
I love a good mug of Ceylon black tea, and waited to try this out on a rainy day… but the “Sonata” was not what I had hoped for. Perhaps the tea-meister was having a bad day when he blended this batch. Brisk? Oh-yeah, and how! But perhaps the sample bag was old, or ?? Tried two infusions, then made the rest into a pretty good iced tea. If you are looking for Lipton in a loose tea format, then this might be the one for you.
As a regular drinker of Maeda-en’s Genmai-cha, I was happily surprised by Adagio Tea’s version. The first thing you notice out of the bag is that it has a much sweeter aroma, and the sencha green is of a much deeper hue (higher grade sencha?). The first steep has an almost overwhelming aroma of roasted rice and popcorn, which subsides quickly so that you catch a bit more of the vegetal green. Nice!
Now the true test for me is the second steep, which I enjoy even more. True to form, the sencha flavor comes forward, and there is a freshness which I never find in the Maeda-en teas. There is a nice balance here, and I am beginning to think this will become the new staple in my cupboard… The Adagio Genmai Cha is about double the price of Maeda-en, but I think life is much more about quality than quantity, especially in tea!
Maeda-en Gold Genmai-cha has been a staple in my cupboard for most of my adult life, and is an all time favorite. I like it in the evening, when I am just winding down, and is one of my favorites to drink when eating light Asian foods. Veggie Sushi, brown rice and veggies or a simple mushroom soup go well with this tea. In fact, pouring this over a bowl of rice and veggies makes for one satisfying meal. Real comfort food.
Having just opened my Black Tea Sampler from Rishi Teas, this was the first tasting out of the group. I am a big fan of Yunnan teas and brewed this with trepidation, a bit of taster’s skepticism – and a big dollop of hope. I was very pleased! Nice robust flavor, with that distinct malty aroma. No acidity and a wonderful caramel finish. This is a tea of exceptional quality and is organic and fair trade certified as well.
This tea is also gorgeous to look at and to smell coming fresh from the bag. Totally different scent when dry, reminding me of walking into a tobacco store (in a good way). I wonder if I can make up some kind of device to hang around my neck so I can sniff at this tea all day! :)