1254 Tasting Notes

Shameless plea for pity and attention:

My wife has been sick all week. This morning I got up with a pounding head, hurting ears, and I’m dizzy. Thought getting something in my system might help. Downed a glass of milk. Not a good idea. So now my stomach is rumbling. Drank grape juice for the vitamin C but realized my taster is on the fritz. So I brewed a cup of this. Even if it has only half the flavor it would on any other day, it is still good and comforting. I’m supposed to play at church in the morning. They may just be on their own.

Stay well my friends.


Well poo. I just realized I had never reviewed this one before. Looks like I should have looked before I brewed.


oh no! i hope you feel better soon!


I hope you feel better soon. Best to stay home and rest if you can.


If you have a chance to get tested for flu , tamiflu really helps but you should start taking it like 24 hrs you got symptoms. My daughter just got better after almost 2 wks of flu. All the rest of us were on tamiflu
Hope you feel better soon


I second the flu test recommendation and Tamiflu. When I had H1N1, they have it to me because I’m asthmatic. I Was sick for only a few days.


Hope you feel better soon!


Hope you feel better soon & can make church in the morning… I understand that frustration since I sing on occasion.


Oh no! lots of rest and liquid for you!


Aww, feel better! Both of you!


Thanks all. My stomach has calmed down. As you can tell I become a big baby when I get a cold – which is not often.

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Glass of milk – check
Honey multi-grain bagel with cream cheese – check
Grape juice – check
Morning cup of tea – check and double check

Not sure what I did different today but if I would salt this it would taste like movie popcorn. You know the kind with tons of drizzly butter. Oh yeah. As that rush fades a new one begins with luscious fresh green tea notes reminiscent of dragon well. This is good tea. Much love.

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drank Blue Lady by Darlene's Teaport
1254 tasting notes

I have never seen a Darlene’s Tea Port offering reviewed before – at least not that I recall. This one is old. I found it in the drawer today unopened and thought it needed to see the light of day. This came from Katiek a long time ago. Bad me.

I steeped this 4 minutes. It’s black tea. I knew better. It isn’t bitter but the black tea is pretty assertive with briskness and tongue tingling astringency. Shorter steep next time. There is no passion fruit listed in the ingredients but that is what I am getting in the taste. Along with it is a pepperiness. Not pepper from a shaker but little red peppers from the garden that ought to be adding a bit of heat except they are not. This is spicy tasting but not spicy hot. It is really kind of an interesting tea and currently is $5.49 for 4 ounces. Even old it is way more complex than the price would suggest.

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This is so much lighter than I expected. It has some tongue bite which is interesting. I get a light earthiness with what I agree is olive oil notes. In the aftertaste I get hints of malt. As the cup cooled this became far more flavorful to me. It developed more of the traditional Yunnan flavors I expected – honey, grain, and cocoa. An unexpected flavor is grape. It is more the leaf than the fruity berry but it is grape. It reminded me of the lovely Oriental Beauty oolong I drank yesterday mixed with a mild black from Nepal. Maybe this needed more leaf (I used 2 tsp) or a longer steep. I’ll try that with the second cup. Like not love this one – I normally go for subtle but not so much in my Yunnans.


this sounds so interesting. recently i sampled Yunnan Beauty by Mandala and it was similar to what you described. i love unexpected transformations

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drank Green Tea with Citrus by Lipton
1254 tasting notes

I bought a gallon jug of this for quick glasses of iced tea. I don’t recommend this for its high quality tea but it is a convenient and pleasant diversion from carbonated drinks.

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Meant to comment earlier but kind of got distracted. After multiple cups of Taiwan Oriental Beauty I decided to switch to this one. I was amazed by really obvious notes of peach and cinnamon. I had not noticed these before. So another reason to love both teas.



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It’s snowing here. Snow? It is spring according to the calendar. Someone should tell nature to knock it off.

Oolongs I like. I am always willing to drink one. On the other hand, I never wake up thinking I need oolong. This one may just be one that might cause that to happen. Seriously.

From the moment I opened the sample I knew this was different. The dry leaf scent is grain and malt. Malt in an oolong, who knew? The leaf looks like Bai Mu Dan but darker. The wet leaf scent is dry forest leaves and malt. The liquor is deep honey colored.

The taste is wonderful honey soaked in malt. There is a light earthiness with some fruit and floral notes. This is not strongly geranium floral like most green oolongs and it is definitely not roasty tasting. It reminds me as much of Bai Mu Dan as anything. This is not so subtle that you have to search flavors out but it it is not overly anything either like I generally find in oolong.

Reading through some of the tasting notes, I think how you feel about this will depend as much on how you feel about oolong as anything. Those of us who don’t crave oolong seem to view this very favorably. Count me as impressed.

185 °F / 85 °C 4 min, 0 sec 5 g 10 OZ / 295 ML
Amanda 'SoggyEnderman' Wilson

The little bit of snow we got melted this morning, but it is still frigid. I am so ready for spring. Also this tea looks delicious!


It’s snowing here, too. Blah.


any peach or chestnut detected? i really like it gongfu style. do you have enough to try? i can share some if you want.
we expect snow tonight and gusty winds tomorrow. Snow in Brooklyn end of March….


boychik, I have more to experiment with. I did not detect peach. Chestnut might have been there but my mind doesn’t think that way without prompting. Funny you mention peach. After drinking multiple cups of this one, I switched to Keemun grade 1, and I was just about to log it when I saw your comment. With this oolong as the lead in, the Keemun had very strong and obvious peach and cinnamon notes. I don’t recall catching those before.


turned out I never logged it. Will do it tomorrow. Maybe peach is just my imagination;)


Boychik, it’s not just you. I’ve defintily found peaches or stone-fruits in this type of oolong before.


Sometimes when I am cooking vegetables, especially sautéing them in olive oil or butter, I will smell something that triggers the most intense cravings for oolong! I generally HAVE to make some right away.

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I started today by giving the screen in my press a thorough scrubbing. I didn’t realize how long I had let it go. It could use an overnight soak to get the rest of the stains out but it will do as is for now. Heated extra water for a bowl of brown rice. Ended up with about 16 oz water left for the press. I used yesterday’s leaf. Steeped 15 seconds – not 4 minutes like yesterday. I filled two cups and based on the strength of the tea this will go more, maybe many more. I had 24 oz yesterday. The brew was beautiful burgundy colored. There are no rough edges in this cup. It is leather and honey, along with what I am still calling wood although who ever updated the product info (Teavivre?) called it loam and orchids. While the leaf in the press has a barnyard scent, there is nothing even close to that in the cup. When you pay attention to what you are doing this is really good. Now I feel comfortable checking recommend.

Flavors: Honey, Leather, Wood

Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 10 g 16 OZ / 473 ML
Sami Kelsh

This sounds really sexy.


I’m with Sami.

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So I think my tea tasting of this one is plagued or something. I used the whole sample – something I almost never do – I prepared this in a 12 oz mug and the sample was mostly one intact piece. I should have used half. Then I went with the website directions instead of the label. 3-10 minutes is way too long for the steep. I went with 4. I had to add sweetener, something I would eventually do anyway, but it was necessary here to try and tame the harsh edges. The second mug I tried to do a 15 second steep but I haven’t soaked my press screen in a while and when I neglect doing so it develops a tea resin build that makes the holes in the screen so small it creates a vacuum and won’t pour properly. So once I realized what was happening I pushed the plunger down on the press breaking the seal and so the steep ended up being about 30 seconds. The brew is dark. Not quite molasses but close. At least the taste is not harsh. Now I can tell this is leather and wood with cinnamon notes. It is not bitter or astringent. Pleasant, drinkable, but I know it is capable of better. Later I may try using the leaves again as they show no sign of giving up. If all else fails I have another sample. Right now it reminds me of the cute little straight ripened toucha. I prefer the rose one as I think the rose knocks the rough edges off the cup without really adding any flavor.


Your best soaking solution for a brew basket? Mine is getting clogged, too.


When my wife is watching I soak it in Cascade. Takes hours. Yawn. When she isn’t, I use Kitchen counter cleanser with bleach. Works nearly instantly. Woot! Just have to make sure to rinse thoroughly. Shhh, don’t tell on me.

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drank Green Tea with Citrus by Lipton
1254 tasting notes

Apparently I haven’t had this in 3 years. The diet version sort of jumped into my cart at the store today. Very sweet. Nicely citrus. Supposedly has tea. Forgive me. I know I’m weak but I like this stuff.


We all have our weaknesses. Tazo Chai iced lattes being one of mine :D

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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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