89

Trying this a second time (paying more attention), and am definitely enjoying it. A 30-second infusion (with no rinse) gives a very caramelly brew, kind of like a toasted caramel sort of flavour. Very tasty. I was tempted to let the first infusion go for a full minute, but am glad I didn’t – I’m getting a bit of astringency at the end of the sip which is bothering my somewhat-sore throat. I had been craving this tea (inexplicably, as I didn’t really know what it tasted like!) since last night, so my palate is finally satisfied. Hopefully I’ll get to additional infusions tomorrow; it’s past my bedtime!

ETA: Honey, caramel, a bit of chocolate…. this second infusion (30s) is truly delicious. The third infusion (45s) is definitely a bit more watery, and could probably have either used less water or a longer infusion (it also could be that I’m comparing it to this unbelievable second infusion). Either way, this one’s a treat. I’m not getting “tea drunk” the way that other perhaps have, but I’m quite enjoying actually getting these tasty flavours here. There is definitely a dark chocolate undertone and aftertaste in that second infusion for me. Glad I picked up 2 oz. of this stuff, so I’ll be able to enjoy it for a while. Now, I just need the light roast version to produce some magic for me…

ETA again: Whoops! Apparently the fourth infusion can be oversteeped! Yikes! It’s not terrible and I’m getting some interesting notes in here, but it’s kind of bitter. Not sure how long it was left for (5 or so minutes?) but given the relative lack of aroma of the leaves, I assumed they were almost done. Apparently I was wrong. I’m getting a bit of the “ice wine” flavour that I’ve had from Butiki’s Gui Fei oolong, so kind of a rich, dark sweetness (but not really sweet), plus a bit of floral? And a woody/dark kind of background, as previously. Hrm. Maybe I won’t throw those leaves out yet, although I would really like to empty out all my infusers… gotta start reviewing all my Butiki straight teas!

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

I really need to try my sample of this one today…

Bonnie

I cold brew my spent leaves and the taste is really nice in my opinion.

Kittenna

Good to know! I have limited fridge room so can’t cold brew much, but hopefully I can try it at some point!

Babble

LOL. I usually have at least 2 teas cold brewing in the fridge at any given time. My dad is like, “Why do we need all these jars in the fridge??”

Kittenna

Hahaha, nice! I was like that briefly during the summer, but with big plastic cups :D

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Comments

Sil

I really need to try my sample of this one today…

Bonnie

I cold brew my spent leaves and the taste is really nice in my opinion.

Kittenna

Good to know! I have limited fridge room so can’t cold brew much, but hopefully I can try it at some point!

Babble

LOL. I usually have at least 2 teas cold brewing in the fridge at any given time. My dad is like, “Why do we need all these jars in the fridge??”

Kittenna

Hahaha, nice! I was like that briefly during the summer, but with big plastic cups :D

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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.

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