112 Tasting Notes
I’m not even going to really review this one, because I’m pretty sure this is just me. For some reason, it smells almost exactly like Goo Gone to me. Like, the stuff you use to remove labels from jars… I can’t drink that! But I’m sure it’s not the tea’s fault. I might try a little bit hot with milk later…
I got this one from Lala, who warned me that she didn’t care for it, that it has a very chemical taste to it, and that it doesn’t taste like it smells. Which is unfortunate, because it smells pretty good! Like peach candy, kind of on the artificial end, which I happen to really like.
First tiny little sip: Wow, this is pretty chemical tasting. Not too bad, though. Oddly enough, it reminds me of the Harry Potter potions set that I had when I was little, although goodness knows what they put in those things.
Second, bigger sip: OH GOD YOU WERE RIGHT ABOUT THE BURNING. I’m… not really sure I can drink this. I think I’m going to try it as a latte, with lots of sugar. … and then I’ll probably send it along to the next person crazy enough to try it. =]
So after steeping them once in hot water, I decided to cold brew this one for the second infusion. One thing’s certain — it looks very pretty swirling around in the jar. I’m still not terribly impressed by this one, but I’m finding that if I drink it quickly, without stopping to think about every sip, then it’s pretty inoffensive. The goji berries with the fruitiness of the tieguanyin is pretty nice, and the pepperiness makes it a little more interesting. But I’m not blown away by it, either. I just don’t think this one’s for me. Probably won’t drink again.
I was a little skeptical because of all the hype this tea gets, but I have to admit I’m pretty impressed. I’m finding this tea really good in a really subtle sort of way. It’s very light and very smooth, and there nothing even a little bit thorny or offensive about it. All the flavors melt together perfectly, nothing really sticks out. And it tastes… like what a black tea should taste like.
(It also reminds me a lot of the Zhu Rong Yunnan Black, but vanilla instead of chocolate. =])
Oh man. This started off so well. I picked up a sample last time I made an order, because usually I love unusual variations on Earl Grey.
The dry leaves smell like bergamot, of course, but also like… firewood, and black pepper. All good things, in my book. Once it’s brewed, I think the bergamot gets lost a little behind the woodsiness of it. But the goji and the bergamot blend together really well — it’s hard to tell where one scent ends and the other starts. And somehow every time I pick it up, I smell something different. I’m still getting a pretty strong black pepper note. Maybe that’s from the frankincense resin?
And it tastes… a little disappointing, actually. The first sip was all earl grey with black pepper. I was looking forward to how the flavors would unfold… but it’s just very peppery, with a sour note from the goji berry (and I guess from the tangyness of the autumn tieguanyin) that I’m not sure I like. It’s even more disappointing because I really like the autumn tieguanyin, but it’s getting lost in all the other flavors.
All in all, I can see how it might appeal to someone… but it’s not for me. Maybe in the future I should stick to fruity or floral earl greys. I hope I like the laoshan one more…
I cold steeped this one and… wow. It tastes clean and crisp and has the most delightful fruity aftertaste — definitely some lime, but I’m also tempted to say kiwi although I haven’t eaten one in months so I could be wrong. I think this might be one of my favorite teas now. I’d better hoard some before it disappears forever.
Tried this one western style today, and it was everything I wanted. I enjoyed it a lot more than the davidstea yunnan black. It still has that earthy note that I found so disconcerting about that one, but it’s a lot less potato-ey, and it’s there almost as an afterthought, hidden behind the chocolate and the spice. With a bit of chocolate, it acquired a creamy note that I liked a lot — I’ll have to try this one with cream and a bit of sugar. I also think it would go quite well with honey, and I’d really like to try it in a chai…
Basically, I’m glad I have a whole ounce of this one, because I’m so not done experimenting. =]
Enjoying my fifth cup now. Next time I will have to keep better track of my steeping times, because the third one was oversteeped and the fourth one was a little insubstantial, and the fifth… well, I’m eating a (delicious) lemon bar, so I’m losing a lot of the nuances. (But the wet leaves smelled like ginger and graham cracker crust, and it was excellent.)
I am so grateful for this tea right now. My day so far has included a broken down train, losing a wheel off my suitcase, lugging said suitcase across three forms of public transportation and half a mile on foot, walking to the store because dammit I need to eat something only for them to not have anything that I was looking for (I did grab the last, slightly squished bottle of rooster sauce off the shelf), and finding that the moving/storage company has misplaced literally half my belongings. huge sigh
But, both of my Verdant packages were waiting for me at the front desk when I arrived, so I’m about to enjoy my second cup of this tea. I’m too tired for proper tasting notes, but damn is it good.