1355 Tasting Notes
Today I prepared the last of this one. I made it last two years. I’ve changed my mind, this is my favorite from Zenjala. I am moving White Monkey into that second spot. This has a wonderful smoky aroma but it is not super intense. This is a milder version of lapsong souchong. There is also a hint of malt in the dry leaf. Brewed this is kind of sweet. It’s very easy to drink with no bite or astringency that I am catching. The smoke is more in the smell. You can feel the tea gently along the sides of your tongue. There is a fruity woodsy presence. This was one of my early ventures into loose leaf and it still stands the test of time. One day I will have more of this.
Hurrah! I seem to have my tastebuds back. Actually it was an impaired sense of smell due to allergens in the air. The wet leaf is intoxicating with its steamed vegative aroma. The sip is crisp with an edge. The leafy green scent is also present in the mug. There is a light butteriness, and a nutty element. Despite the description this is not a bold cup. It is one of those whose great strength is in drawing you in to relax and enjoy. It does it well.
This is a well reviewed tea and I have nothing new to say about it. It is very good and worthy of the attention it has gotten. Rich and smooth.
I’m sitting here trying to relax by sipping Laoshan Black while I wait for 2:00 pm. I have to go to the vet and pick up Buffy. Poor little fuzz ball has a broken leg. Last night my son was trying to get his cat over its loathing of the newest member of the house. The cat was having no part of it. Of course Buffy loved the idea. So when my son stood up to carry his cat to safety, it jump from his arms and landed paw first on Buffy’s back leg. Her crying in pain was almost unbearable. It was ten minutes to five. We called the vet and they told us “Sorry we are closing. Bring her by at 8:30 in the morning.” If there were a better vet in town I would not go back. We bandaged her best we could and put her in her cage. I think Buffy slept more than we did last night. Jerks. What if that were a member of your family? On the other side of the argument – when we got there this morning there were 3 other injured dogs waiting in line… but still Buffy is just a tiny ball of fur… and she is ours.
This one came my way from CelebriTEA. I love jasmine pearls when they are done well. The peals seem smaller than others I have tried. Could be my imagination. They smell lovely. The bottom of the unopened sample pack was not completely sealed. That may greatly affect this review. After steeping the leaf really expanded. Almost completely on the first steep. Tastewise this seems kind of metallic tasting. Otherwise the jasmine is very nice. The one question I have with the Steepster samples is what’s the point? I mean, if this were the most incredible tea I had ever tasted, it appears it can’t be purchased anywhere.
I continue to learn this morning. According to Teavivre, green tea powder is steamed not pan fried. I have no idea where the roasted nutty oolong notes are coming from. I prepared a mug with hot water using the amount of powder I have been using with my morning milk – about 1 tsp. The tea does not resemble the cup picture on Teavivre’s site. Their’s is bright algae green. Kermit would feel at home. Mine is murky deep olive brown and looks a little (lot) scary. What creature lurks beneath these waters. My mind wanders to Poke Salad Annie. The gators got your granny. Chomp. Chomp. I digress… So too much powder on my part I presume. The taste without milk, or other additives, is strong and bitter. Even with sweetener this is bitter. Wow. Time to cut back on the amount. I also need to dial way back the water temp. Teavivre calls for 60-80 C on the description. I was way hotter than that (d’oh). I probably won’t have this again today but I will change what I am doing next time and give an update. One of the things Teavivre suggests mixing this with is chocolate, so you know we are going there at some point.
I’ve learned two things already this morning and it’s not even seven. First, peaches and cream oatmeal sounds far better than the wretched stench that I just had in a bowl. Ick. Of course there are more packets of it than anything else in the box. So there’s that.
Second, a little tired of trying to stir green tea powder in to cold milk, I used some hot water first before adding milk. The hot water released a roasted almost dark roasted oolong flavor into my cup. Very unexpected. So this morning’s mug is not the frap alternative I’ve been drinking. I did have caramel and vanilla syrup in the hot mix as well. Later today I have to try this as just a tea.
I haven’t been writing many notes lately. Nothing seems to have flavor right now. Since 90% or so of flavor is smell, I assume some allergy thing is robbing me of my enjoyment. I first noticed it with the Mao Feng a few days ago. I thought I under leafed. Now I am not so sure. Big bold flavors like from bottled and highly flavored stuff are still detectable. Subtle teas are just lacking. This white monkey is maybe two years old and that may be part of the problem today. I have always enjoyed it every time I have brewed it. Today all that is present is sweet and a mild earthiness. Looks like I’ll have to put it back in storage for the time being. Maybe I’ll switch to hearty black or flavored teas for a few days.
Enjoying the last of this today from Ocean Of Tea. This is an excellent Earl Grey. It has enough bright citrusy bergamot to cause the faint of heart to become weak in the knees – Sil ;P The black tea base is likewise assertive with enough astringency to make you notice without causing turmoil or harshness. This. This, is Earl Grey done right. Much love.
I feel like such a newbie today. This is the last of the spring samples from Teavivre to review. I think this is the third year I have sampled this. I should know what I am doing. Apparently that is not the case. I way under leafed. It is still very good but its just green tea. You know what I mean? All the wonderful characteristics that I know are here never have the chance to shine. It happens. I have one packet of this left, and I will prepare this gong fu (with skill) next time. I can tell you from last year this is an amazing tea.
I passed half of my samples on to a friend at church. She says she loves green tea. Upon questioning her, she drinks bagged tea from the grocery store. That means she has no idea how amazing green tea really tastes. I wrote out a page of simple instructions for her (that today I should have read). I told her if she puts the leaf any where near the microwave it will cry out to me and I will be forced to smack her fingers. I haven’t heard them cry out so I guess she is safe. Can’t wait to hear back from her.
Clicking recommend even though I messed it up.