3132 Tasting Notes

91

So! I am thrilled to have discovered today that this dragon well takes to the travel mug much better than expected! I brewed it up, poured it in, topped it off with some cold water, and drank it about 45 minutes later at my morning meeting, and it was delicious. So, I think that as long as I a) use an uncontaminated mug and b) drink the tea fairly soon after brewing, I can successfully take green teas to work as well. Exciting!

And of course, this tea was tasty as usual, although it’s getting on in age. I still prefer Verdant’s Dragonwell-Style Laoshan Green to most dragonwells, just because the sweet, caramely notes are more pronounced, but this is a pretty tasty example of a proper dragonwell. It was nice to have something a bit out of the ordinary in one of my mugs this morning!

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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86

Yuuuum. I think I prefer this tea lukewarm-ish… aka after it has sat in my travel mug all day. I just finished it up about an hour ago, after brewing it shortly before 8am (so it was in there for about 16 hours). Just deliciously chocolate, spiced goodness. No regrets at all buying a 2oz. bag!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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85
drank Caramelized Pear by Art of Tea
3132 tasting notes

This is definitely up there in terms of tasty pear teas, but I really wish the flavouring was paired with a nice green base like Butiki’s Huangshan Mao Feng, instead of a rooibos. Or at least honeybush. I just don’t like that I can taste the rooibos here, so it decreases my enjoyment of the tea. Although this definitely tastes like bosc pears (not d’anjou, which are my favourites), I also wish that there was a bit more caramel going on here. I should give it a shot with a ½ tsp of a crème caramel rooibos or something.

Thanks again to Azzrian for this one!

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more
Sil

hmmmmm…… :)

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80
drank Weeping Angel Tea by 52teas
3132 tasting notes

Not bad in the travel mug yesterday. Definitely tasted much like caramel corn. A few times it did taste a bit bitter, but I think that was because of the foods I ate prior to taking a sip, as it wasn’t consistent.

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 30 sec

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80

Yum, such bright citrus without crossing over into anything cleaner-like! Had a travel mug-full of this yesterday (and added about a tbsp. of rock sugar, as I still dislike guayusa unsweetened).

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more

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76

blink So this package was already open… but I have no tasting note?? Weird. I wonder if I opened it and thought better of brewing it one day. Or maybe Steepster ate my tasting note. Anyways, thanks to Teavivre for this generous sample!

I need to look up whether monkey-picked oolong is somewhat aged, or what, because this tasted strangely reminiscent of the aged Anxi TGY from Verdant that I drank last night. Same sort of aged vegetal quality, and the leaves, although greener, were certainly not as green as, say, Verdant’s Tieguanyins, and the flavor was considerably different. Or perhaps it’s a consequence of taking too long to drink this…? Either way, it’s not bad, but not a favourite either. It worked nicely in the travel mug though, so I suspect I will finish it off that way. Second infusion, with the same parameters but in half the water, was equally tasty.

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec

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82
drank Pistachio Ice Cream by Butiki Teas
3132 tasting notes

Arrrrrgh, Steepster. Sorry for the backlog, which I may not even be able to post….

Yum. Another tea I was silly to have given away much of before trying my own bag, as the sample I first had seemed to lose much of its flavor in transit (and then I purchased a sampler pack containing an ounce of this, which I stupidly wasn’t thrilled about!) I did use 1.5 tsp instead of the recommended 1 tsp… I prefer a cup with more flavor, and except in the case of very broken-leafed teas, I find 1.5tsp is much more reliably tasty for me for most teas regardless of recommendations.

Anyhow, it’s really hard to say whether this is actually pistachio-tasting or not; I’m personally getting more of a creamy, cardamom(?)-spiced tea, with plenty of background tea flavor. Pistachios to me are very savoury-nutty, which is perhaps not entirely captured here, but that’s not really an issue for me. In my opinion, this tea is much like Creamy Eggnog, in that there are light, creamy, tasty flavourings paired wonderfully with a chewy, vegetal green tea, a combination that not nearly enough blenders attempt. I think this is why although I’m generally not fond of flavoured greens, I do really like those by both Butiki and Verdant, as they use fresh, quality green teas instead of sticking to basic, lower-quality senchas (and if I’m not mistaken, Chinese senchas, not Japanese, which I prefer).

Second infusion, with the same parameters, had a bit of bitterness/astringency and wasn’t as tasty, but worthwhile.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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81

Well, I feel a bit triumphant now, because tonight this one has flavour. I gave it a full minute infusion, with two overfilled tsp in 8oz.

It almost tastes like a cross between a leafhopper tea and a green oolong, but muted… (but the Mi Lan Dancong may still be in my tastebuds…) …Nope, still getting those honey notes. It’s light and sweet, and there’s the oolong vegetal flavour, though it tastes… old/stale. But good old/stale… hah that’s a terrible way to describe it. Haters of vegetal teas would tolerate this better, though.

Ok, sorry for the sucky note, but I clearly have lost my vocabulary, so it’s sleep time.

ETA: Second infusion (1 min/boiling water) was very much like the first infusion, but lighter in flavor, although unlike last time I definitely got flavor! Mostly that aged vegetal flavor, which is actually quite pleasant. Lingering oolong aftertaste which I enjoyed.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 1 min, 0 sec
Ze_Teamaker

oooh, I need to finish this one of….

Kittenna

Yeah, I’ve barely touched mine, as I wasn’t fond of it the first time.

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91

Yum. Used about 4 tsp (the best tsp one can make with such wiry, long leaves) for about 8oz., and I think this is a good ratio for this tea. It tastes much like Butiki’s Gui Fei Oolong, though perhaps sweeter and less “dark”, however, I also infuse the Gui Fei for considerably longer – this cup got 45s, while I infused Gui Fei for 8 minutes.

Either way, this is yummy and sweet and I do wish I had time for more infusions tonight, but if I can manage to pass out soon, I think that would be the best thing to do (well, I have two more teas to try first).

ETA: Second infusion (1 min/boiling/half the water) was sweet-ish, with the leafhopper notes and a bit more woodiness. Still tasty. The next infusion will definitely need 2 minutes, I’m thinking.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 45 sec

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82
drank Golden Fleece by Verdant Tea
3132 tasting notes

In retrospect, I shouldn’t have brewed anything new up tonight, because I am not at all in a mood for writing tasting notes. But I did, and it’s expensive stuff, so I shall write something.

Trying this again as I wasn’t fond of it the first time, but since then my black tea preferences have evolved. The aroma from the bag was quite sweet – I think I may have noted this before, though. I’m primarily tasting what I think might be raw sweet potato. I’m not really getting much chocolate, and there’s a bit of astringency/sourness on the sip as well, although to be fair I did give this one a full minute.

Either way, it’s alright, but I’m definitely way more into the chocolatey blacks.

ETA: Second infusion, same parameters (but half the water): still tasty enough, but I’m just missing those chocolate notes. :(

Preparation
Boiling 1 min, 0 sec
Cavocorax

I hate that feeling. There have been several days where I feel guilty drinking something new bc I couldn’t or didn’t want to log it. Silly eh?

Ze_Teamaker

That feeling happens to me all the time. Usually when I first taste something(or when I am trying to focus and do so) I just write quick running notes. Then when I am in the mood I elaborate, fill it in, then post on here.

Kittenna

It is silly, haha – tasting notes don’t need to be written every time! Yet I feel compelled to do so.

Terri HarpLady

Me too! Especially if I’m drinking something new

Indigobloom

I used to feel like that. Nowadays I just write when there is something new or I have a life update… or I want to note something about the cuppa

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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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