8 Tasting Notes
A very special tea in the best sense, and quite different from other jasmine teas I have tasted.
The fragrance is overwhelmingly rich but very pleasant and memorable, so that opening the package was a real surprise for me. I could sense peaches (or apricots) and banana intertwining with the jasmine but it is a good fresh ensemble, not something stale or over the edge.
The needles are quite long so that the dosage has to be more guessed than measured. I tried to use 2 somewhat (unwillingly) sparse teaspoonfuls per 250-ml cup but perhaps I should experiment with even a bigger quantity.
The first steeping is, without doubt, most impressive. I can feel no bitterness, and I can taste the same peaches and bananas next to the jasmine. It seems to me (maybe it is only me) that this tea is very lovely, maybe at its best, when steeped at around 70-75 degrees centigrade. At that temperature, the fragrance feels closest to what I smell when I open the bag.
When the tea cools down a bit, the taste becomes even deeper and lingers for quite a long time after I have finished the cup.
Somewhat surprisingly I could taste a very slight hint of bitterness in the 2nd and 3rd steeping. Not something really irritable but many jasmine-scented white teas do not do that. Maybe it was because I have done those steepings at a slightly higher temperature, around 80 degrees centigrade. Anyway, I could taste the pine needle, as promised by many, at the end of the 2nd steeping.
I would use only superlatives for this tea but first I have to figure out whether the slight unsmoothness or, perhaps, spicy tingle in the aftertaste (in all steepings) is a pro or a con. I have felt it also in some other good jasmines but not in too many. It will certainly not discourage me from ordering more of this tea, which I definitely want to do. This tea is definitely a masterpiece, somewhat addictive and warmly recommended.
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This tea is the premium jasmine-scented tea from Seven Cups and I am drinking, right now, the version of the year 2013.
The light green pearls produce a superb fragrance, which apparently does not turn oversweet soon after opening the bag (as is the case with some jasmine teas) but retains its freshness. The leaves as they open in water are young and fresh-looking, quite small and mostly not broken. The buds look just cute.
I actually used 3/4 tsp for a 250 ml cup.
The tea is very mild-tasting. The presence of jasmine is strong but almost perfectly balanced. The result is pleasant and enjoyable: not too sweet, nothing bitter or irritating. One of the best jasmine teas I have ever tasted. Sometimes I drink jasmine-scented tea with food, especially oriental food, but this tea should probably be enjoyed separately from anything else in order to capture all the nuances of taste and fragrance. The first two steepings (2 mins each) share the same magnificence. On the 3rd steeping (2 mins 15-30 secs), the jasmine part weakens slightly but I can still taste Chinese spring in it. I would characterise the result of the 4th steeping (2 mins 30-45 secs) as a delicate and subtle green tea with a touch of jasmine. And my gf, who is an occasional but demanding tea drinker, classified this tea as ‘excellent’.
Flavors: Honey, Jasmine, Nectar
I ordered this tea because I am still looking for a perfect combination of peach flavour and green tea (or oolong) and because the company stresses on their webpage under this tea specifically that they use “certified organic essential oils and natural flavourings”. As peach or apricot flavour in teas would usually involve (chemical) flavour enhancers, this tea seemed an exception. I ordered it from Golden Teahouse (a Canadian company) but on the bag that arrived, it says “Anjing. anjingteas.com”, so I do not know who actually produced it. And unfortunately, this tea did not live up to my expectations. I cannot say it tastes bad or smells bad and I can imagine people who could like it more than I did. The apricot pieces are clearly visible and seem genuine. But for me, there is too little apricot. The apricots are somehow there but this tea still tastes more of something else than what I would hope for. Or perhaps, it could be very ripe and sweet dried apricots. The taste is quite full, even rich, but it lacks the freshness and the slight, barely traceable acidity I would expect from apricots. The same goes for the smell. On the basis of this (no specifically strong apricot taste or smell) I would suppose this may be an honest green tea and apricots blend without a flavour enhancer. Overall, a mediocre tea for me, but it has its quirks and a recognisable taste.
The first thing I noticed when tasting this beautiful-looking green tea was its remarkable sweetness (given that it is a non-scented green tea). Absolutely mild-tasting but strong presence and recognisable, perhaps even soothing character. Very light green colour. A neutral but not unpleasant aroma, tending towards sweet (both in the bag and after brewing.) My girlfriend, who tasted it too, also emphasised its remarkable mildness for a green tea but said she also felt a barely distinguishable bitter aftertaste, which I did not feel at all. For me the long-term aftertaste was a bit drier than usual for a green tea, though. This will not be my everyday tea but as of this moment, I think I would buy it again. Overall, a pleasant experience.
This was my first online order from Golden Teahouse (a Canadian company) and these jasmine pearls are not their premium jasmine pearls. What makes me a little wary is that in their own description of the tea, they say “scented five to seven times with fresh, aromatic flowers (mostly jasmine)”, “mostly” being an indication that there may be magnolia flowers involved in addition to jasmine. Whether that is really so or not, I cannot say as I did not see any purple traces of magnolia among the pearls. Nonetheless I found the tea quite all right (jasmine teas are my favourite). This tea was not perfect as for me it seems that the jasmine (or possibly magnolia?) dominates a bit in the smell, making the smell more sweet than fresh. But the tea tastes good (rather mild, somewhat sweetish) and I used up the first 50 gram bag I had within a little more than a month quite smoothly without any bad emotions. Not sure if I will buy it again but maybe. Overall, a decent jasmine tea but not special.
This tea, marked as organic, did not strike me at first as something special but as I am a lover of jasmine teas, it has grown on me over time. And now, for months already, this is the tea I usually start my mornings with. I have to say this is one of the best non-pearl jasmine teas I have tasted. The taste of jasmine is there but for me it is not as strong as in jasmine pearls. The result is very mild-tasting, friendly and well-balanced: the green tea does not get lost behind the jasmine but does not dominate either. What is a bit rare for a jasmine tea is that it tastes really fresh (and refreshing — not grassy though). Special points for exquisite aroma of the tea while in the bag. Be careful not to oversteep.
Still in the package, this Indonesian Oolong has a nice delicate and recognisable, likeable and warm fragrance. The leaves are rolled and somewhat resemble gunpowders, also by the colour.
The taste is quite lovely: smooth and rich, yet light, not far from sweet, still grassy. I would say it inclines towards the green end of Oolong. Some discreet astringency in the aftertaste but you will have to look for it. The fragrance of the dry leaves made me have some olfactory expectations, which were not fully met by the infusion: it smelled a bit too grassy for me (but the smell is rich, perhaps also a touch of hay), particularly on the first steep.
A decent tea, enjoyable and not bad at all but I am not sure if I would buy it again. Still looking for perfection and character.
Flavors: Grass, Green Melons, Mushrooms