1317 Tasting Notes

drank Nepal 2nd Flush Sencha by What-Cha
1317 tasting notes

I have really missed my time with tea and I am happy I picked out a good one today to get reacquainted. The last week has been basically Tetley and Lipton Citrus Green RTD. I like them fine but there is no depth. So yeah, for the good stuff today. I haven’t had Sencha in a long time. This one is a Nepali version of Sencha. Since I have no real working knowledge of Sencha I can only comment on the cup, free of all outside comparisons. Well except I don’t operate in a vacuum so I guess that can’t be true.

This has a steamed spinach aroma after pouring and the taste reminds me of either Chinese Mao Feng or Xinyang Maojian. It has that good bitter bite up front that fades into smooth grassy. What is different here is the grassy begins to be overtaken by a mineral note but before it completes the mission, the sip moves into a bright finish. I like this one. It is nicely complex and has many of the elements that amuse me in a green tea. It does have moderate mouth drying but doesn’t burn the stomach like astringent black teas.

170 °F / 76 °C 2 min, 0 sec 3 g 8 OZ / 236 ML

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drank Organic Green Tea Powder by Teavivre
1317 tasting notes

I haven’t logged anything in a week! The construction crew has officially left the premises. They made 99% o my vision a reality. Some of the 1% will get fixed before I pay them the balance. The rest doesn’t trouble me enough to make them change it – a choose your battles kind of thing. We still have a lot of work to do on our own but hopefully I am about to have time to drink and review tea again. This morning I made my morning glass of tea + milk. This time I added some ice – for the first time in my life I now have an ice maker in the door of the fridge. What a neat invention. It’s like power windows, until I had them I didn’t know I needed them. Now I don’t want to be without it. I discovered it made crushed ice too so… turns out crushed is not the same as shaved, who knew? Also turns out when you take iced tea milk outside when it is barely 50 F, you realize it is pretty chilly in a hurry. I don’t care about all that piddly stuff. This was awesome just the same. I am blessed.

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I have been sipping on this one for the last couple days. Thought I should do I note although you probably can’t find this one any more. I was digging through the drawer craving a ripe puerh, I grabbed this instead. I almost put it back because it is a raw puerh. I am so glad I didn’t. My only other note of this one is two years old so I wrote it while this was very new. I loved it then. After only two years it has lost almost all of its young sheng brightness. This is wonderfully smooth and mellow with solid obvious leather notes. It is no where near as intense as a ripe puerh but personally I find its depth and character to be super enjoyable. I’d like to see what happens in another two years but it just may not last that long.


I was incorrect. This is still available. Next order may find this in my cart.

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drank Nepal 1st Flush Oolong by What-Cha
1317 tasting notes

Prepared this two days ago and again today. First attempt was 12 oz. It was supposed to be 8 oz but there were 4 ounces left in the kettle from a previous gongfu session. The tea was very smooth with no bitterness or astringency. It had a mildly thick creamy feel. The flavor was rather straight forward and reminded me of fall leaves. My brain recalls it tasting very similar to a Formosa oolong I had a couple years ago. My brain very often remembers things quite wrong.

I thought maybe if I tried this again with less water I would get different results, and I did. The second time (today) I used 6 oz and 3 g of leaf. A squirrel named Google distracted me and I steeped this five minutes. Holy Cow! This was bitter! Except for that, the flavor was still light and woodsy.

If you are a big, bold, highly flavored, tea drinker, you will not get this one. I prefer light notes even in flavored teas – except my beloved Earl Grey, which must be able to peel paint when needed. This is a simple, light in taste cup, good for a quiet afternoon like today.

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Tasting note 1313. That being the address on Mockingbird Lane of the Munsters I thought I would tie the two together. In a 1964 episode titled Herman The Great, and totally unrelated to the plot, Lilly, preparing tea, says, “This Chinese tea always acts up when we put it in the Russian samovar.” I’ve been saving that for weeks just for this note.

Tastes like berries to me and help knock me out for 7 hours. Yeah sleep.


Badda-bing! Herman was just a big ol’ cuddle bunny, wasn’t he?

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drank Angel Falls Mist by Good Life Tea
1317 tasting notes

I knew as soon as I opened the sample that I would not like this one. I have not changed my mind. Hibiscus. No. Just No. At least not at this level. I can taste apple but could not bring myself to care enough to keep trying to pick out other flavors.

On the other hand, my wife who can’t have caffeine loves this type fruit tea. She gulped down the first hot cup and told me to make another. That one she iced. She insisted I try it. It is cold and watered down but it still is not fit to drink. She disagrees. Pick a side of the fence to stand on based on the ingredients. You are not likely to change your mind later.

Thanks Good Life Tea for letting my wife try this fruit tisane

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I first tried this tea when Steepster was behaving badly. I am actually glad I couldn’t post a review. My first experience was not the best. I did a western style per directions (176 F, 3 minute steep, and 3 g of leaf). There was almost no taste.

Next I brewed it in a 90 ml gaiwan. I used 3 g and 190 F and long 3 minute steep. It was better. It reminded me of potato with some White peony notes and a pine note late in the sip. Later steeps developed a TGY like aftertaste.

Today, I prepared it western mug style with the last 3+ g of leaf, 190 F water and an 8 minute steep. It was the best cup yet. Slight potato when hot but as it cooled that faded. The cup was more white peony like but as with the gaiwan I really thought it closer to camellia flowers which are more wood like in flavor. It had some light fruit notes and maintained what to me is a light green oolong aftertaste.

Definitely requires long steeps to develop the flavor. My least favorite from What-Cha but the neat part of the experience is getting to try a purple varietal white tea – from Kenya.

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drank Earl Grey by Ahmad Tea
1317 tasting notes

Last week we ran all week long with almost no time for tea. This week we begged each other to please stay home. I still haven’t had tea. So busy. This morning we sat out on our under construction porch for a few minutes before the workers arrived. It was like 55 degrees – awesome. My son who lives next door popped over carrying a cup. It was earl grey. I could smell its awesomeness from 10 feet away. I had to have tea. So I brewed a cup drank half of it and hours later I got to finish the cup. It was great as always but we are too busy. Hoping tomorrow is much slower.


How nice that you live next door to your son! I wish I lived next door to my parents!


Yeah, I know that feeling of too busy to properly sip tea. I drink tea every day – several cups – but don’t get as much time as I’d like to sit with it and do multiple steeps and really appreciate what’s in the brew. Clearly a lifestyle adjustment is in order.

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Feeling a bit exhausted. Things are a little too hectic at the moment. So I could whine, or curl up in a ball and hide, or I could just have a cup of tea (maybe six). I choose the tea. I finished off the sample. I am not sure if I have more of it somewhere or not. If so I’ll stumble on it later and be surprised. I have always really liked this one. The leaf is beautiful. The wet leaf scent is so vegetal and inviting. The best part though, is just sitting quietly with the cup and enjoying it. Excellent refresher.


This is one of my faves too. It gets even better on the second steep.


If it counteracts the urge to whine, I’d better get my order in now.

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drank Belgian Chocolate by Good Life Tea
1317 tasting notes

Out of the bag this smells really chocolaty. Once brewed the leaf scent is rooibos while the mug has a chocolate aroma. The taste starts rooibos, without the harshness so common to this type drink, then mid sip it changes to a nice chocolate. At first I thought it tasted a bit thin and ended with a mineral taste. Then I added sweetener and the flavors got bigger. Now the rooibos and chocolate seem to swirl around each other and in between there is a neat minty like thing going on. I am not generally big on rooibos but I liked this one.

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Having a passion for tea and living in rural America is a tough combination. The nearest tea vendor is 65 miles away. Joining Steepster has completely changed the direction of my tea journey.

My Rating System

90-100 Love it enough to keep around
80-90 Like a lot, would drink often
70-80 Above average
50-70 Average – take it or leave it
0-50 I don’t like it and don’t want to like it


Indiana, USA



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