847 Tasting Notes

96

This is a backlog- cold brewed 15 g. of this in 1/2 gallon water for 8 hours.

I really do like this cold brewed – the peach flavor is quite refreshing. It probably is a travesty to go this route with such an expensive tea, but it’s just so nice this way!

Preparation
Iced 8 min or more

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100
drank Coconut Cream Pie by 52teas
847 tasting notes

Life has been SO BUSY lately. This is the first proper cup of morning tea I’ve had in a while- between family visiting (& all the prep work going into it) and mid terms I just haven’t had the time.

But tasting this, the wait was worth it. I will be ordering more (so much more) as soon as I have the spare funds, which will need to be soon as I only have enough leaf for about 2 more cups.

It was a lovely reintroduction back into the world of tea!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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100

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98

Prepped my usual way, with milk and sugar added.

I’ve started running again so I think my metabolism has amped up. Tonight I wanted something sweet but we didn’t have anything in the house – except for all my lovely dessert teas.

The syrup and butter are really popping out of both the smell and taste, and it is totally hitting the spot. And as an added bonus, it’s doing so for a lot less calories than a big stack of pancakes would!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 30 sec

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100

YUM.

It’s been a while since I’ve had this, and it’s been even longer since I’ve had this without additives, but I wanted it plain tonight. And it is fabulous – tangy and coconutty. The boyfriend thought it smelled vanilla-y and since vanilla and coconut are similar scents I’ll give it to him. He still won’t try it though – he thinks the more desserty sounding teas are “too weird”. Ah, well, more for me!

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more

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94
drank Momoko by Lupicia
847 tasting notes

This was the free sample that came with the Lupicia magazine this month.

The dry leaf smells super peachy with a touch of vanilla. I didn’t smell much of the green tea when it was dry, but it still was amazing. Almost to the point of overwhelming – but from experience with Lupicia’s tea, the strong scent of dry leaf turns into the perfect amount of flavoring when it is steeped.

And this was no exception – once steeped the buttery green tea came out more in the scent. The taste was perfectly balanced – green tea then a candy-like peach, with hints of vanilla in the background. The vanilla adds that extra complexity that really takes it over the top. It doesn’t need anything added to it – the sweetness of the peach and vanilla are perfect.

As good as this is hot, I think it really would have been amazing iced – I will likely have to get some for that purpose. Peach candy green tea will be a wonderful complement to this coming summer, I expect.

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec

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69

Another free sample generously provided to me by TeaVivre!

Dry leaf: Small and dark green leaves that smelled of spinach. They were whole, but the leaves were so small that they resembled a BOP grade, almost. I understand the reasoning behind the short steep time when looking at the leaves.

Steeped leaf: Once steeped, the liquor is a light brown – the fact it is so dark is surprising given I’ve steeped some greens for 2 minutes and only gotten a pale green. The smell is quite brothy and savory, and as it cools, almost…floral, strangely enough.

The taste is…strong. And very different. It’s drying like a white wine on the tongue, but not thin or watery. It seems kind of bitter, but that plum aftertaste was there – it seemed a bit metallic, though. It is definitely memorable and different than any other green tea I’ve tried. As it cools most of the dryness and the sharpness in the aftertaste fades away. It leaves more of a sour nuttiness in its stead.

Overall: I’m glad I got to try it but I don’t know that it’s a tea I want to keep on hand. It could be the fact that it shares so many qualities with wine or sake – I don’t drink alcohol because I can’t stand the taste and so this is has unpleasant associations to me. Maybe later steeps will be more to my liking?

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 30 sec

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84
drank Earl Grey Creme by Teavana
847 tasting notes

And that’s the last of this tea.

I am having it plain today and it tastes thin (despite the 3 tsp. of leaf) and watery, with a strong vanilla note on the swallow/aftertaste. It smells primarily of a vanilla black tea. The bergamot peeks through a bit in the middle of the sip and the scent but it really isn’t as big of a player as the vanilla.

Oh well, off to bigger and better Earl Grey Creams, I guess. Any recommendations?

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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83

This was another free sample generously provided to me by TeaVivre. Thank you so much!

Steeping notes: 3 tsp. leaf to 500 ml water at the below parameters. No additives.

Dry leaf: Small, dark, and compact. There was a slight smoky smell but really it smelled more cocoa-y and slightly musty than actual smoke.

Steeped leaf: A dark reddish brown color. The smell was quite similar to that of the dry leaf – a touch more musty once it was wet, though. The taste was not smoky at all, which was a really good thing for me – I was nervous about that aspect of the flavor but it is not present (maybe because I lowered the steep time?), so yay!

Frankly, the strongest taste I’m getting is dark chocolate on the swallow. It’s bitter like dark chocolate, but not bitter like an astringent tea would be, if that makes any sense. The texture is verging on thin, but that’s more down to my chickening out on steep time than anything else. As it cools the musty scent is transferring into the taste, but it’s still not smoky, so I’ll take it.

Overall: I think this must be a milder Keemun, and even though I wouldn’t venture much further as a matter of personal taste, I think it would be a good gateway tea for those who do want to explore smokier teas. As it cools I’m finding it somewhat abrasive on the back of my throat so I could definitely decrease the steep time when I have it again and see if that improves. Not bad at all!

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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91

This was a free sample provided for me by TeaVivre – thank you so much for your generosity!

Preparation notes: Around 3 tsp. of tea leaves in 500 ml. water at the below parameters, with no additives.

Dry Leaf: Dark green and very thin, like pine needles. There were leaves and bud pairs interspersed throughout and it smelled very clean and floral.

Steeped Leaf: The floral characteristics were still evident after steeping, but with a nutty overtone – and there’s a brownish tint to the pale green liquor that reminds me even more of nuts. It’s not a roasted nutty note like with genmaicha, however – maybe more of raw walnuts or pecans?

The texture is buttery and smooth, and there is no bitterness at all in the taste. This makes me think that it could probably be quite forgiving if the tea were oversteeped. There is some grassy flavor in the tea itself, but it is a sweet grassy flavor, not overpoweringly vegetal.

Overall: This and the Dragonwell are probably my favorite greens from TeaVivre so far – and this would be the one I recommend to anyone who prefers a green tea on the less vegetal side, or someone who is just starting out with greens and needs a wide margin of error as far as preparation goes, and a gentler introduction to the flavor profile. It is definitely going on my shopping list!

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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Bio

I have come to the point (as of October 2014) where quality in tea is more important than quantity. Especially because I’m a seasonal tea drinker where hot tea is concerned, and a SLOW one to boot. I generally don’t resteep only because I’d be here all day if I did, though I do break out a gaiwan from time to time.

I adore French teas in practically every iteration, Japanese Sencha (specifically from the Uji region, as they offer the most seaweed flavor), and Dan Cong oolongs. I am trying to focus on plain teas and so companies like Verdant, Upton, and Butiki are on my favorites list.

When it comes to tea, I feel like the 10th Doctor says it best:

“Tea! That’s all I needed! Good cup of tea! Super-heated infusion of free-radicals and tannin, just the thing for healing the synapses. "

Location

Atlanta, GA

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