drank Sweet Leaf by Shang Tea
2606 tasting notes

Thanks for sending me a bit of this to try, Azzrian!

Had this not been labelled, I definitely would have assumed it was an oolong, by the appearance of the rolled up leaves. I have to admit that I wasn’t a big fan of the smell of the leaves while this tea was steeping. It was a very vegetal, somewhat familiar aroma, and it just didn’t appeal to me. It almost smelled… fridgey? You know, that sat-too-long kind of smell? Luckily, the tea doesn’t have that same aroma, and smells more like Nestea’s green tea with lemon, or something like that.

…. oh my. This is crazy sweet. It seems I should have used about half the leaf I did! This is quite good though, but honestly WAYYYYY too sweet for me at its current level. I used the whole baggie of tea that I received (I didn’t measure it, but maybe 1-2 tsp) in a large-ish mug, and it’s very, very sweet. Almost… like golden raisins… why am I getting that association?? I’m getting a bit of that fridgey taste, but I have a feeling it’s just something in the leaves that’s causing it, not an age thing.

The flavour definitely reminds me of when I’m plumping up raisins for oatmeal raisin cookies, so raisins in water in a bowl in the microwave, making lovely raisin water that I drain out.

Anyways, I don’t think this is a tea I’d drink as tea… however I noticed that the recommendation was to add a bit to other teas to sweeten them, and I think that’s a great idea that I’ll have to try sometime… because I think I spotted an extra baggie of this in my box from Azzrian so I do have some left (that must have been an oops?? :P)

Thanks for a sample of this one, Azzrian! I’m always up for trying new, interesting things! :D

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C
Azzrian

Yes for me this is WAY too sweet as a tea. I had actually made a post on this that you might have missed. It is EXCELLENT for sweetening other teas though – which you did find out I see. :)
My daughter however does love it on its own but she is a sweet tooth girl all the way.
I love it when I want to make a dessert tea pop.
And it only takes a few rolled nublets! :)

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Azzrian

Yes for me this is WAY too sweet as a tea. I had actually made a post on this that you might have missed. It is EXCELLENT for sweetening other teas though – which you did find out I see. :)
My daughter however does love it on its own but she is a sweet tooth girl all the way.
I love it when I want to make a dessert tea pop.
And it only takes a few rolled nublets! :)

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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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