174 Tasting Notes
After having a sample of the Mi Lan Xiang Phoenix Mt Dancong and finding it quite fascinating I asked for a sample of this.
The tea leaves are a dark brownish-green and slightly twisted. Dry and wet the leaves smell of roasted fruit. After a quick rinse I brewed this gaiwan style. My sip of this tea left me baffled as to what the taste was. First I thought oh there’s some sort of floral note, soft light note of jasmine. Then I thought hazelnut with the nutty taste and creamy texture. Then there was sweet toasted marshmallow followed by an orange note but more in the taste without the citrus texture, kind of like a creamsicle. The aftertaste was spearmint with the tingling sparkling sensation.
What madness is this?! It seems whatever I wished to taste I could find in the tea! As I continued tasting I came across a lightly buttered croissant, lightly grilled stone fruit, and some sort of pine wood. As the steeps continued the roasted flavors came out more and mineral/stone notes came into play as well.
This is a bizarre and wonderful tea than unfolds and shows so much in flavor. It is not nearly as bold and has less roasted notes than that of the Mi Lan Dancong. It still has roasted notes and mineral notes, which I am not a big fan of, but this tea is just so complex that it makes up for those notes!
Sample from Teavivre
Cold brewed this time. I just realized that I didn’t write my original tasting note in here…I’ll have to do that later. Anyways, Cold brewed I found this tea to be much more enjoyable. Before when I brewed it hot I found it to be very floral without much of the tea base coming out and it lacked a bit of the sweetness that I have found in other jasmine. It also had a bit astringency no matter how I brewed it.
This time when I threw it in the fridge over night I gave it a sip and threw some in my travel mug for class this morning and boy was it delicious!
The slight astringency was gone, the jasmine had a wonderful sweetness to it and I could taste some of the tea base. The tea base wasn’t very strong, it was there enough to taste it and help balance the jasmine. But the sweetness of the tea was what really impressed me since I wasn’t getting any of it hot.
I didn’t add much sweetener either, 1 Tbsp brown sugar (not packed) for a quart of water with 2 heaping tsp of tea. That’s how much sugar I always add to cold brews, but this had that natural nectar-like sweetness to it…delicious!
I only have a little bit of this left and it’s all going to be cold brewed!
Thank you Teavivre for this sample!
Backlogging from Sunday.
This was the biggest reason I wanted to try the Shang sampler and I had such huge hopes for this one. Wild honeysuckle grows along the roadside where I grew up and where my parents still live. I still love to walk down the road and to pick it and taste the sweet nectar.
My dad has a convertible and puts the top down when we go out somewhere in the spring and summer and I always bug him to take the back roads so I can smell all the honeysuckle blooming. It grows everywhere, even along the highways. It is one of my favorite things about spring and early summer.
So, I opened the little sampler bag and smelled a slight sweet floral scent. The wet leaves smelled of sweet hay with a floral note. The taste was sweet hay, slightly floral with a nectar note in the aftertaste. It didn’t jump out and say “Hey! It’s me, Honeysuckle!” it was very subtle, I almost had to look for it. It was a light enough floral that had I not been told it was honeysuckle I may not have guessed it was.
I had too high of expectations for this tea to live up to. I was expecting it to be similar to jasmine teas, to be able to scent and taste the floral notes and go “Yes! That is honeysuckle!” to be blown away. Unfortunately this tea is not that for me.
Even though my expectations were way too high for this, after getting past the fact that I was not going to be blown away by honeysuckle, this was a good white tea with a soft floral note added to it. It was more like the tea picked up the floral notes by growing in close proximity than actually being added to the tea, that’s how soft the floral notes are.
Last tasting note of the day…I can’t take anymore. I feel like my eyeballs are floating and I’ve got quite the caffeine buzz going on causing a slight headache. I can’t remember the last time I drank so many different teas in one day and each tea is being brewed at least 2-3 times. Tea drunk perhaps?
This one intrigued me because it supposedly resembles jasmine. Mmm, jasmine. The dry leaves appear to be mostly curled dark green leaves with some white leaves mixed in. The dry smell took me a while to place. It smells like the black licorice candies you get for Halloween. That put me off a little because I don’t like licorice. The wet leaves smelled like that candy licorice, some sort of citrus note, floral notes and a vegetal note hiding in the corner.
Taste was floral, not jasmine, a lot softer than jasmine, definitely not soapy. There were hints of sweet citrus and grapes and a tingling sensation on the tip of the tongue in the aftertaste. The licorice taste was still there but it wasn’t that icky sticky sweetness in the back of the throat. I didn’t care for it but it wasn’t entirely unpleasant.
The one thing I really noticed about this tea is that it is really calming. I’ve been drinking so much tea that the caffeine is really making me twitchy and giving me a headache. This tea is calming me down even though I’m still very alert and my headache has calmed down to barely noticeable. A nice bonus.
I would rate this tea a bit higher, but that candy licorice is slightly off-putting to me. It’s the only thing I have bad to say about this tea. Other than that it is wonderful.
White tea Shang sample of the mid afternoon. Yes, I realize I’m drinking a lot of tea today and I have become close friends with the restroom because of it. My first jasmine white tea of Shang. This is a nice soft jasmine taste that isn’t overly perfumey. I’m getting a spearmint-like sensation at the tail end of the sip. The aftertaste has a slight drying effect with a hint of sweet hay note. This isn’t my favorite white jasmine tea, but it’s not bad by any means either, just doesn’t really stand out in my opinion.
Just a quick side note that I just realized…this is my 100 tasting note!
White tea of the early afternoon. I’m having a ball with these white tea samples! This one confused me dearly because it says white tea yet is says wu-long which I know is another way of spelling oolong…mind blown. I wasn’t quite sure what to do with it so I brewed it like I do any other white teas and I was very much impressed.
The dry leaves are dark brown and slightly curled with some fuzzy white curled leaves mixed in and smelled of apricot and stones. The wet leaves smell more earthy with hay notes…now I’m getting more confused. Taste…o_O sweet hay notes, sweet apricot notes, stone/mineral notes, a very smooth, creamy texture, like butter, yet it remains light. Is this a white tea or an oolong…I get notes from both types.
This tea is as confusing to me as it is delicious.
Another early morning white tea from the Shang sampler. This is divine. Beautiful white fuzzy buds brew up to have lovley cucumber notes, slight sweet fresh hay notes, a nice juicy melon dew texture. This tea is very light and crisp and subtle. The hay notes are one of the prominent notes but it doesn’t overwhelm your mouth and taste buds like other white teas can.
This tea reminds me of the beautiful early morning hours of pre-dawn right before the sun comes up when the sky is starting to lighten but is still nice shades of blue. This is the best Silver Needles I’ve had, it’s just so wonderfully light, crisp and airy.
Today is definitely a white tea day…and lots of it. Tomorrow probably will be too. I drank a sample of Shang’s yesterday and had an inner fight to not drink more samples late into the night. My will power won and I got some decent sleep and immediately started drinking this early this morning.
A lovely white peony that smells like sweet hay like most white teas do. The infusion was nice and light and had a slight sweet smell to it. Taste is what separates this. Sweet hay notes, slightly earthy and robust, and a hint of floral. Usually I get cucumber or melon notes but not a nice earthy robust flavor.
I’m preferring these Fujian white teas over Yunnan just a tad because the Yunnan whites I’ve had typically have some sort of spice/black pepper note and I am not getting any of that in any of these samples so far. Definitely a plus for me.
I finally ordered the sampler package after seeing so many good reviews on here and it arrived today, which is really fast shipping…3 days I think. Anyways, this was the first one I picked out, I want to save the ones I think I’ll like best for later, but I’m not sure how that will go since I’m already having an internal argument of whether or not I should try another sample since it’s getting into the evening and I don’t want to stay awake from caffeine, but I also have nothing to wake up early for tomorrow, and so my dilemma continues!
The actual tea now…dry and wet leaves smell very much like sweet hay. In taste is carries a very sweet note in it that is slightly creamy in texture, like honey. The hay notes are very prominent, fresh and crisp. There is a slight floral note that I cannot quite pinpoint it’s origin.
The one thing that really surprises me about this tea is the sweet, creamy honey notes. It tastes like it was added but I assure I did not add anything to this. I brewed it 175F for about 1 minute in a 12 oz vessel. A delicious sweet white tea, and a good start for the samples!
This is a very pretty tea, tightly rolled green balls with jasmine flowers ans little pieces of orange rind. It doesn’t smell much different than a regular tiequanyin. The extra pieces don’t seem to add much in smell.
Taste starts out floral, orchid and jasmine, but the jasmine is very soft like it’s part of the tea, like the orchid is, and not like a scented tea. There is the buttery texture with a rich mouth-feel lasting into the aftertaste. The orange rind adds a slight citrus note that compliments the floral and creamy notes quite well during the main sip. It also adds a bit of a sparkling quality on the tip of the tongue in the aftertaste. There is also an extra bit of sweetness to it, i might be from the saffron but that’s a wildcard for me.
The oolong is still very predominant and the extra add-ins compliment and enhance the tea.