1453 Tasting Notes
Had a long hard day yesterday. Won’t bother you with the details (how unlike me). Suffice it to say, I woke up today exhausted and in need of tea. I had my morning powdered green tea and milk breakfast. OK, I had a yogurt with it so it was officially a meal. Afterwards I was craving the hard stuff. I had a fresh tin of this just begging me to indulge. So I did.
Holy pine smoke Batman! This smells intense. Prepared it is lighter in taste than I was expecting based on the aroma, but make no mistake this is no light weight. This is without question Lapsang Souchong. The smoke is layered. It jumps through light and sweet crosses into the edges of ash (not ash tray) and then pulls back into sweet and smoky once again. Definitely not for the smoke wimps. Man if this only had some bergamot ;)
I crave LS regularly in the morning. This one left me satisfied today.
A lot of times I read a company’s description and wonder, “How did they come up with that?” Here I thought Green Terrace Teas was pretty spot on. The dry leaf smells of oats and honey. I used 3.5 g and steeped 1 minute with 190 F water. The wet leaf is like honey on raisin wheat bread. The taste is similar but adds a wine like note and malt. As it cooled I definitely picked up on the peach and plum in the aftertaste.
Cup two was the best of the four I prepared. The flavors were more pronounced. I also picked up a spicy note like maybe cinnamon apple? Honestly, I never could decide what it was. There is also a lot of caramel present.
Cup three was my least favorite. Too light. I added sweetener to coax flavor out of it. Light honey, mineral, earthy (as in woodsy). The last two were the most interesting as I wasn’t expecting them.
Cup four I steeped 3 minutes. It was still light but stronger than the third. I did add sweetener. This one was a mix of the previous cups. The honey was present from the first along with the spicy note of the second and the mineral/earthy notes of the third. In this cup I decided the earthy was actually more of a nutty touch.
I really enjoyed drink on this one this afternoon and look forward to trying my other samples.
I grabbed this one today for no particular reason. I like it. The peppermint gives it a nice cooling tingle. Mint is the primary component in the taste. The rose is secondary in taste but strong in the aroma. To me it is nicely done. Any stronger and it would be too perfumey. I can taste the white tea mostly in the aftertaste along with the tingle. Since it is a white you need to use a lot more leaf than you might normally use.
Update the guys below are correct the price I mistakenly thought was for 7 oz is actually for 20 g. Big difference. This is still a very tasty puerh.
Still drinking this one again today with yesterday’s leaf. I only went about 30s with my steep today and it is lighter and more orange in color. Still nicely leather. I looked it up today and there is a sale on it right now $5.12/7 oz with free shipping. That’s crazy cheap and had I not looked and found out this was an inexpensive puerh, I would not have known. If you are interested here is the link (hope I’m allowed to do this): http://www.ebay.com/itm/2011-Yunnan-Menghai-Dayi-Golden-Branch-Jade-Leaf-Loose-Ripe-Pu-er-Tea-/321166038132
In other news – our new porch is in the works. In preparation I had 3 oak and 2 persimmon trees cut in my front yard to make way. While the chainsaw masters were in my yard, we had 27 ash trees removed + 4 or 5 other trees. The ash trees had beetle infestations and were in various stages of being killed by the bugs. It is a big problem around here.
Not to worry, I still have lots of trees including about 80 persimmon and a couple humongous oak trees. Most of the ones we had cut were 50-70 ft tall. My yard looks like a war zone. I have a couple friends who are going to cut them up for firewood. It may take all summer. sigh.
I’m back after a week with no internet. No Facebook (didn’t miss it). No Steepster! Still shuddering over that last one. Today I broke in to this loose leaf offering. The leaf has lots of golden tips. The dry scent is light leather. I know we are going to be friends. In the Yixing it goes. The brew is a rosy orange as I pour. The wet leaf is a bit barnyard but there is nothing off about the mug. Mrmopar got apple out of this. I wish I did because that would have made this even more awesome. I got a cross between book leather and horse tack. As it cools a bit it takes on aspects of nutty – what many of you call chestnuts, although I have never had them so I can’t confirm. There is also a woodsy bark flavor. My brain keeps saying oak but the rest of me wonders how it knows. The point is this is very flavorful, at the same time it is a gentle easy to sip cup.
At first this is peppery with bite – not hot peppery, just spicy. Then the ginger, cardamon, and clove kick in to kick it up a notch. Under it I taste hints of apple coated lightly with cinnamon. There is pineapple and lemongrass here as well though I can’t single them out. The coconut adds just a touch of creamy to the mug. I would like the white base to be a bit more assertive but I really don’t miss a black tea base at all.
In other news, it is the 24th of the month and this will almost certainly be my last note until after the first of the month thanks to Verizon – the bane of my existence. I usually make it to the 30th. My son must be downloading games again. See you in July!
I wanted tea this morning. Thinking hurt. This is morning tea. Strong but not bitter. Brisk. Astringent – like most breakfast teas. Woodsy. Malt in the aftertaste. Never thought to call it this but Awkward Soul is dead one with raisin late in the sip. Not likely destined to be anyone’s favorite tea but it is more like that friend that is always there for you that kind of goes unnoticed – and shouldn’t.
The keys are located just slightly different on this laptop than on the desktop. I keep hitting something with my pinky and sending notes into oblivion. So I will try again. I wasn’t ready to part with the Zenjala Bohea leaf from yesterday. It still had some smoky goodness in the aroma. So I added some Ahmad Earl Grey loose leaf to see if I might end up with Cowboy Earl. Sadly, the Bohea is too far gone. Happily this is Earl Grey. Doing the dance of bergamot joy even as you read this. May explain why I keep hitting the wrong key.
Inexpensive but solid loose leaf Earl.
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.