Hide

Welcome to Steepster, an online tea community.

Write a tea journal, see what others are drinking and get recommendations from people you trust. or Learn More

79

I’ve definitely been in the mood for darker oolongs lately, and apparently had yet to try this one! Apricot flavours? Sure, why not! I’m not sure that drinking this one after Sweet Leaf from Sheng is the best idea, but hopefully it won’t interfere too much. Thanks to David Duckler for including a sample of this one in one of my Verdant orders!

I used about 2-3g of leaf and as I couldn’t find brewing parameters anywhere, used about 8-10oz. of water for the first infusion, and 8 for the second.

First infusion (205F/30s): The flavour here is light, but acceptably so. A bit woody, but slightly sweet and fruity, I can see where apricot notes could have been picked up, although I’m not specifically tasting apricot. No, actually, I think I can taste apricot. Delicious! This infusion is definitely lighter on the woodsy taste than other dark oolongs I’ve tried, and it lacks the burny/toasty flavours as well (not a bad thing!)

Second infusion (202F/1min): Ok, this was too long, and I should have known better. Surprisingly, the tea actually isn’t too bad, but it’s definitely oversteeped, and turning bitter, with just a touch of astringency. Unfortunately, the bitterness kind of takes over here and all I’m really picking up is a peppery flavour (that seems to be how the bitterness is coming across to me). Probably would have done better with 45s.

Hopefully more infusions to come! I wish I hadn’t wrecked the second infusion; I suspect it could have been pretty good :( At least I have a cup’s worth of leaf left to try things out again!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

Profile

Bio

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.

Following These People