An amazing surprise treat from JustJames! Our swap was loosely French themed, so now I have lots of beautiful Nina’s Paris, Mariage Freres, and Dammann Freres goodies to try (!!) and that wasn’t even all of it! I tip my hat to you, sir. (:

This is surprisingly subtle—if you’re expecting over-the-top-rich-roasty-nuttiness or sweetness a la Florence and its ilk, you may be disappointed. But this rewards those who like evocation more than straight up flavor replication, if that makes sense. There’s a woodiness here I quite like (you know me!), and a gentle warmth. Kinda like crawling up to your grandma’s attic and opening up her wooden chests full of pretty things. The roastiness comes out slowly and feels very genuine, not like an added-on flavor dimension so much as an inherent foundational component. This is very comforting, not the sugar dessert bomb I thought it might be but instead something a lot gentler but also subtly deeper. Deeply soothing. I enjoyed it with the chocolate from my Advent calendar late tonight, and it was perfect.

Resteeps like a dream too, and I’m usually pretty picky about that sort of thing.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 5 min, 0 sec
BrewTEAlly Sweet

Uber jealous of this swap between you and JustJames!!!

ifjuly

I have a feeling thanks to all this French tea craze that’s suddenly overtaken Steepster eventually there’ll be more folks who’ve placed real orders with some of the fancypants French shops and swaps will happen. I’m still curious about that The O Dor vendor, and eventually want to just bite the bullet and place a Dammann order (I make up a shopping cart like every week and save it as a .PDF file, that’s how crazy I am, ha). I’d be happy to swap with ya when/if that days comes (though given the Black Friday insanity it will likely be a while…but I’m sure not alone).

Dexter

Brew TEAlly Sweet I have a few Mariage Frères and a few Fauchon with some Dammann on it’s way – always interested in swaps.
ifjuly I don’t have any O Dor but anything else can be added to your next box :))

BrewTEAlly Sweet

Dexter3657 really?!?! Are you serious? Pinch me I’m dreaming!

BrewTEAlly Sweet

ifjuly ha ha I do that all the time. A girl can dream:)

JustJames

the o dor i have been the trick is DUCK THE TINS…. buy the bags, and suddenly they’re reasonable.

this tea is a chameleon. it and i are still doing the pasa doble, getting to know one another. i am so intrigued, but i keep muddling the results (yay me). i am not prepared to review until i’ve nailed it because i’m a huge DF fan.

so glad you like it!!

ifjuly

dreaming is half the fun or more! (:

Dexter3657, you are so awesomely generous. really really. you too, JustJames! and agreed, i was pleasantly surprised at how reasonable the o dor is in bags…it’s just the shipping, even from that place in california. i think it’d work out to be worth it if i bought lots of different teas, just don’t have the funds right now post-black friday. someday!

and i can definitely see how this tea could play tricks on a person. it’s not what i expected, but i love it! thanks again. :D

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

Comments

BrewTEAlly Sweet

Uber jealous of this swap between you and JustJames!!!

ifjuly

I have a feeling thanks to all this French tea craze that’s suddenly overtaken Steepster eventually there’ll be more folks who’ve placed real orders with some of the fancypants French shops and swaps will happen. I’m still curious about that The O Dor vendor, and eventually want to just bite the bullet and place a Dammann order (I make up a shopping cart like every week and save it as a .PDF file, that’s how crazy I am, ha). I’d be happy to swap with ya when/if that days comes (though given the Black Friday insanity it will likely be a while…but I’m sure not alone).

Dexter

Brew TEAlly Sweet I have a few Mariage Frères and a few Fauchon with some Dammann on it’s way – always interested in swaps.
ifjuly I don’t have any O Dor but anything else can be added to your next box :))

BrewTEAlly Sweet

Dexter3657 really?!?! Are you serious? Pinch me I’m dreaming!

BrewTEAlly Sweet

ifjuly ha ha I do that all the time. A girl can dream:)

JustJames

the o dor i have been the trick is DUCK THE TINS…. buy the bags, and suddenly they’re reasonable.

this tea is a chameleon. it and i are still doing the pasa doble, getting to know one another. i am so intrigued, but i keep muddling the results (yay me). i am not prepared to review until i’ve nailed it because i’m a huge DF fan.

so glad you like it!!

ifjuly

dreaming is half the fun or more! (:

Dexter3657, you are so awesomely generous. really really. you too, JustJames! and agreed, i was pleasantly surprised at how reasonable the o dor is in bags…it’s just the shipping, even from that place in california. i think it’d work out to be worth it if i bought lots of different teas, just don’t have the funds right now post-black friday. someday!

and i can definitely see how this tea could play tricks on a person. it’s not what i expected, but i love it! thanks again. :D

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

Profile

Bio

“…you can never know everything about anything, especially something you love.”
-Julia Child on food and cooking, and I think it applies to tea as well!

note: i am currently taking a break from swapping/mail of any kind as money is rather tight. i apologize! i do love to swap but i can’t afford to right now. hopefully in a month things will change.

my cupboard includes any tea i’ve ever owned, including things i’ve sipped down, in order to facilitate swaps with people and keep a record—this way i don’t get redundant samples/order duplicates to try. if you are interested in swapping, i have a separate ever-updated list of teas i actually have on hand i can PM.

i like strong, rich blacks (including some choice old skool CTCs); juicy-fruity flavored green blends; buttery chinese greens; light floral oolongs; flavored oolongs (how sacrilegious!); earl greys; smoky blends; second flush muscatel darjeelings; verdant’s straight oolongs steeped in a gaiwan (mind altering!); anything from laoshan village it seems.

favorite notes include lavender, bergamot, violet, fennel, cardamom, melon, honey, sandalwood, smoke, nuts, roasty/toasty stuff, malt, wood, leather, creamy lemon, steamed rice, artichoke, garden-sweet snap veggies, earth/soil, forest and wet bark, and mushroom.

notes i generally can’t stand (at least in tea) include jasmine, rose (ok in small doses but i often find it overpowering and then everything just smells like musty old lady perfume), astringent apple (and general fruitiness really unless it’s with green tea), and chamomile (unless i’m congested or tired).

my current favorite tea vendors are butiki and harney and sons. i’ve also found some delicious teas and/or had good customer service experiences with the following companies: capital tea ltd., the devotea, verdant, mandala, golden moon, teavivre, lupicia, taiwan tea crafts, yezi tea, den’s tea, the tea merchant, norbu, fauchon paris, tao tea leaf, zen tea, fortnum and mason, townshend’s tea, joy’s teaspoon, new mexico tea company, persimmon tree, teajo teas, whispering pines, della terra, upton imports, mariage freres, samovar, justea, teabox, american tea room, steven smith, steap shoppe, utopia tea, and andrews and dunham damn fine tea. when i’m at the grocery store my “you could do worse” brands include stash, bigelow, tazo, taylors of harrogate, whittard of chelsea, and pg tips. and it’s a fact: you can’t make classic southern sweet tea without luzianne.

top picks, fall 2013

black:
verdant zhu rong yunnan black
verdant laoshan black
thepuriTea hong jing luo (no longer available :( )
thepuriTea red dragon pearl (no longer available :( )
mandala morning sun
golden moon honey orchid
verdant golden fleece
taiwan tea crafts red jade
yezi tea zheng shan xiao zhong “scotch” tea
capital tea borsapori estate assam tgfop1 (spl)
butiki khongea golden tippy assam
butiki giddahapar darjeeling extra special
upton imports fikkal estate
golden moon sinharaja
harney and sons new vithanakande
persimmon tree vintage black
teajo teas black manas
justea kenyan black
harney and sons kangaita op

morning blends:
butiki the black lotus
harney and sons queen catherine
harney and sons eight at the fort
harney and sons big red sun
harney and sons scottish morn
golden moon irish breakfast
harney and sons irish breakfast
utopia tea english breakfast
fortnum and mason breakfast blend (needs milk!)
andrews and dunham double knit blend
steven smith no. 25 morning light
butiki irish cream cheesecake

earl greys and scented afternoon blends:
teajo teas silky earl grey
harney and sons viennese earl grey
upton imports lavender earl grey
american tea room victoria
lupicia earl grey grand classic
harney and sons tower of london
tao tea leaf cream earl grey
zen tea earl grey cream
della terra earl grey creme
upton imports season’s pick earl grey creme vanilla
upton imports baker street afternoon blend
harney and sons russian country
della terra professor grey
verdant earl of anxi

flavored black:
herbal infusions moose tracks
american tea room brioche
steap shoppe cinnamon swirl bread
della terra oatmeal raisin cookie
butiki nutmeg cream
kusmi caramel
david’s tea brazillionaire
lupicia banane chocolat
butiki hello sweetie
fauchon paris raspberry macaron
butiki blueberry purple tea
herbal infusions marshmallow snowflake earl grey
herbal infusions creme brulee chai

pu erh:
mandala loose and luscious lincang 2007 shu/ripe pu erh
mandala special dark 2006 shu/ripe pu erh

oolong:
verdant shui jin gui wuyi oolong
verdant hand-picked early spring tieguanyin
butiki 2003 reserve four season oolong
harney and sons formosa oolong
tea merchant silk dragon
golden moon coconut pouchong
zen tea coconut oolong
american tea room coconut oolong
teavivre taiwan jin xuan milk oolong
butiki flowery pineapple oolong
butiki lychee oolong
lupicia momo oolong supergrade
butiki strawberry oolong
butiki pumpkin milkshake darjeeling oolong
52teas tiramisu oolong

green:
verdant laoshan bilochun green
verdant autumn harvest laoshan green
tao tea leaf hou kui
harney and sons tencha
harney and sons gyokuro
new mexico casablanca
butiki with open eyes
american tea room nirvana
joy’s teaspoon mahalo
den’s tea pineapple sencha
harney and sons tokyo
butiki potato pancakes and applesauce
butiki holiday eggnog and pralines
den’s tea organic genmaicha with matcha
golden moon hojicha

white:
butiki cantaloupe and cream
butiki champagne and rose cream

no caf:
harney and sons soba buckwheat
butiki birthday cake
della terra lemon chiffon
52teas strawberry pie honeybush
butiki mango lassi
joy’s teaspoon italian dream
butiki coconut cream pie rooibos
butiki peppermint patty
persimmon tree mint chocolate chip rooibos
art of tea velvet tea
fusion teas chocolate cake honeybush
american tea room choco-late
steven smith no. 40 bon bon
townshend’s tea dark forest chai
utopia tea decaffeinated earl grey cream

sleep aid/medicinal/therapeutic:
new mexico extra sleepy bear
stash white christmas
verdant ginger sage winter spa blend
samovar turmeric spice
butiki the killer’s vanilla guayusa

coldsteeped wonders:
whispering pines manistee moonrise
harney and sons fruits d’alsace
utopia tea berkshire apple and fig
culinary teas peaches and cream
butiki peach hoppiTea
butiki ruby pie
whispering pines gingerade

besides tea

born in seoul, raised in new england and upstate new york, went to college in pittsburgh, currently in memphis with an eye toward philadelphia, portland, or asheville eventually.

i like cats, most beverages really (i also like good freshly roasted coffee, craft beer, wine, whiskey and gin-based cocktails, and soda/soft drinks like agua fresca), art (mainly writing but also visual and music) and critical theory, feminism/genderqueer politics, historiography, statistics, children’s literature and librarianship, travel, and food/cooking. also have recently gotten into weightlifting (mark rippetoe and stumptuous!) and sprint training (HIIT, plyometrics) and i love it.

Location

Memphis, TN

Website

http://facebook.com/ifjuly

Following These People