91

Thank you Teavivre for this huge sample! We wanted a second green tea tonight, and this one fit the bill well. Looking forward to it! I used maybe 2 tsp for my 250ml infuser.

First infusion (1.5min/80C):
Aroma’s a bit sharper and greener than the Gyokuro Yamashiro from DavidsTea. The flavour is smooth, with a sweet-ish aftertaste. Definitely not as green tasting despite my impression of the aroma, and definitely no bitterness. Quite delicious, actually.

Second infusion (2.5min/82C):
Not really getting an aroma(?), but the flavour this time is nuttier, with a “green tea” aftertaste. Still smooth, but almost a bit of… smooth astringency? Smooth bitterness? There’s a stronger flavour there too, but it’s pleasant, not objectionable.

Wish I could describe more clearly what I mean by a green tea or oolong aftertaste. It’s good though.

Again, this is as far as I’ll likely get tonight. Sigh.

ETA: Third infusion, 3min at 82C. Definitely lighter in flavour, but still nutty and a bit vegetal, and oh! There’s the green tea aftertaste. Sure sign that I’ll brew this one to the third infusion again. Yum. Still absolutely no bitterness; a very smooth cup. This tea is really quite good; I’m very impressed by the lack of bitterness/astringency. I’ll need to try more dragonwells before concluding anything, but I can see this one being a purchase.

ETA again: Fourth steep (84C/4min) nothing remarkable. Some astringency. And it tastes a little weird. I attribute that to how long the leaves sat out. My stomach sure gets tested sometimes…

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 1 min, 30 sec
smartkitty

I LOVE dragonwells! They’re so smooth and delicious! I highly recommend that you try Verdant’s Dragonwell-style Laoshan Green. It’s not quite traditional Dragonwell but it’s SO DELICIOUS.

Also also also – I still have a lot of trouble identifying flavours myself, so don’t worry too much about it. Vocabulary comes with time. BUT I think there’s a new post on the Verdant site about tasting, which may help ya out. (I tend to identify the green tea aftertaste as citrusy, whether or not that’s accurate!)

Kittenna

Hahaha, it looks like I am really going to have to place another Verdant order very soon…. goodbye money! :P

I think I saw the new post! Didn’t read it though, it’s kind of on my tea to-do list. I just wish I could describe the flavours I was tasting a bit better – right now it feels like a mini epiphany when I manage to identify something or link a taste/smell to a memory. I need more of those!

I have no idea what I would call the green tea aftertaste. Almost nutty, savoury? Probably not citrusy. Perhaps my goal will be to accurately describe characteristic tea aftertastes :D

smartkitty

Oh! Sorry, I thought you meant the sweet astringency. Savoury definitely covers some green tea aftertastes!

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smartkitty

I LOVE dragonwells! They’re so smooth and delicious! I highly recommend that you try Verdant’s Dragonwell-style Laoshan Green. It’s not quite traditional Dragonwell but it’s SO DELICIOUS.

Also also also – I still have a lot of trouble identifying flavours myself, so don’t worry too much about it. Vocabulary comes with time. BUT I think there’s a new post on the Verdant site about tasting, which may help ya out. (I tend to identify the green tea aftertaste as citrusy, whether or not that’s accurate!)

Kittenna

Hahaha, it looks like I am really going to have to place another Verdant order very soon…. goodbye money! :P

I think I saw the new post! Didn’t read it though, it’s kind of on my tea to-do list. I just wish I could describe the flavours I was tasting a bit better – right now it feels like a mini epiphany when I manage to identify something or link a taste/smell to a memory. I need more of those!

I have no idea what I would call the green tea aftertaste. Almost nutty, savoury? Probably not citrusy. Perhaps my goal will be to accurately describe characteristic tea aftertastes :D

smartkitty

Oh! Sorry, I thought you meant the sweet astringency. Savoury definitely covers some green tea aftertastes!

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I have always been a tea fan (primarily herbals and Japanese greens/oolongs) but in the last year or so, tea has become increasingly more appealing as not only a delicious, calming drink, but as a relatively cheap, healthy reward or treat to give myself when I deserve something. I should clarify that, however; the reward is expanding my tea cupboard, not drinking tea – I place no restrictions on myself in terms of drinking anything from my cupboard as that would defeat my many goals!

My DavidsTea addiction was born in late 2011, despite having spent nearly a year intentionally avoiding their local mall location (but apparently it was just avoiding the inevitable!). I seem to have some desire to try every tea they’ve ever had, so much of my stash is from there, although I’ve recently branched out and ordered from numerous other companies.

I like to try and drink all my teas unaltered, as one of the main reasons I’m drinking tea other than for the flavour is to be healthy and increase my water intake without adding too many calories! I’ve found that the trick in this regard is to be very careful about steeping time, as most teas are quite pleasant to drink straight as long as they haven’t been oversteeped. However, I tend to be forgetful (particularly at work) when I don’t set a timer, resulting in a few horrors (The Earl’s Garden is not so pleasant after, say, 7+ minutes of steeping).

I’m currently trying to figure out which types of teas are my favourites. Herbals are no longer at the top; oolongs have thoroughly taken over that spot, with greens a reasonably close second. My preference is for straight versions of both, but I do love a good flavoured oolong (flavoured greens are really hit or miss for me). Herbals I do love iced/cold-brewed, but I drink few routinely (Mulberry Magic from DavidsTea being a notable exception). I’m learning to like straight black teas thanks to the chocolatey, malty, delicious Laoshan Black from Verdant Tea, and malty, caramelly flavoured blacks work for me, but I’m pretty picky about anything with astringency. Lately I’ve found red rooibos to be rather medicinal, which I dislike, but green rooibos and honeybush blends are tolerable. I haven’t explored pu’erh, mate, or guayasa a great deal (although I have a few options in my cupboard).

I’ve decided to institute a rating system so my ratings will be more consistent. Following the smiley/frowny faces Steepster gives us:

100: This tea is amazing and I will go out of my way to keep it in stock.

85-99: My core collection (or a tea that would be, if I was allowing myself to restock everything!) Teas I get cravings for, and drink often.

75-84: Good but not amazing; I might keep these in stock sparingly depending on current preferences.

67-74: Not bad, I’ll happily finish what I have but probably won’t ever buy it again as there’s likely something rated more highly that I prefer.

51-66: Drinkable and maybe has some aspect that I like, but not really worth picking up again.

34-50: Not for me, but I can see why others might like it. I’ll make it through the cup and maybe experiment with the rest to get rid of it.

0-33: It’s a struggle to get through the cup, if I do at all. I will not willingly consume this one again, and will attempt to get rid of the rest of the tea if I have any left.

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