513 Tasting Notes
Well this was an unexpected sipdown. I received a sample of this and it turned out to be a pyramid tea bag. It smells and tastes very strongly of toasted rice. It reminds me of the rice that is slightly burnt on the edges of a stone pot like in bibimbap. That part is always my favorite. Anyway, I’m not tasting the green tea base as strongly, but it is a very nice genmaicha. If I didn’t already have so much genmaicha, I would probably order this. Maybe I will when I run out of my current stash.
I really like the natural sweetness in this tea. It’s a very light, smooth tea that I think also goes well with meals. In particular, I had some salty foods today and this contrasted it nicely. I do get the feeling that this tea is just on the edge of being bitter, yet not bitter, which kind of makes me nervous while drinking it for some odd reason. I guess I’ve just had bad experiences with bitter greens in the past.
Sooo happy right now. My awesome mom bought this for me at the mall and sent it along in a care package, aww. The first time I tried this tea was actually with her at a bakery in California, so I have some fond memories. Anyway, the dry leaves smell so peachy and sweet like candy. In fact, the tea itself reminds me of Asian peach gummies in a liquid form. I don’t like to add sweeteners to my teas, so I love it when they are already sweet like this one. After a week of drinking mostly straight oolongs, the sweetness was overwhelming, but in a good way. I will have to try to cold steep it sometime and drink it almost like a juice. The selfish part of me is kind of disappointed that she didn’t buy the tin, but I’m so super grateful for this lovely gift and I will savor every teaspoon of it!
I might have gotten some extra jasmine blossoms in my teaspoon this morning because today this tea tasted a bit more floral and perfume-y than usual. Not so perfume-y that it was overwhelming and unpleasant to drink, but I just noticed it was a little different than usual. No big deal. There was some slight astringency, but again, no big deal. It was a nice, sweet tea to have throughout the day and resteeped surprisingly well.
Now that I’ve had quite a few more oolongs, I can say that while this one is on the lighter/greener side, it still maintains a nice roasted, nutty taste as well. I think I prefer the darker, roastier oolongs, so when I want something a little lighter, this one hits the spot without being too green if that makes sense. It’s also very naturally sweet, which I enjoy. This one is going on the repurchasing list!
Ok, so I didn’t exactly do a side by side comparison with the smoky roast because I’ve been swamped, but I will say that based on memory and multiple tastings now of both teas, I think I prefer this one overall. It has just the right amount of roasted intensity and flavor for a more everyday kind of tea. The smoky one was just a tad over the top to be drinking all the time for me. Now that I’m fully obsessed with houjichas, I now need to compare this one to the one I got from Den’s for my final final decision on which one to heavily stock up on. Or maybe I’ll just do both, haha.