1673 Tasting Notes
Life is hectic. I could go into details but we all have a lot going on in real life. In the rush, making time for proper tea has been near impossible most days of late. I am so glad I have had these crystallized teas to get me through.
I was highly skeptical at first. Yes they are convenient to the extreme. Pour into the cup, add hot water, drink. Don’t have hot water? Pour into an icy water bottle and shake. Nothing is simpler except over sweet bottled tea. The best part is they taste and smell way better than probably necessary. Are they going to replace your loose leaf stash? No, but if you don’t have time, what’s it matter?
This one smells intensely of green vegetation. I immediately picture tiny spring green leaves from China when the aroma hit me. Turns out this ‘sencha’ is grown in China and shaded the last week or so before picking.
The cup is light honey yellow. The taste is vegetive. There is a sharp clean citrus bite. The aftertaste is green, slightly sweet, and lingering.
I’m about to grab another packet and a water bottle before facing RL head on once again.
The ingredient list on Steepster wouldn’t let me add organic sugar cane or wheatgrass. They are in here with the matcha powder from Japan. This is a new to me company.
I learned a valuable lesson with the cute little sample tins. Don’t try to open them unless you are awake enough to pay attention. The lid was very tight. I didn’t stop to think it through (twist moron, twist). Yep, matcha all over the desk. Not the first time. Won’t be the last.
I was concerned about the additions to the matcha. I had never heard of wheatgrass. I have heard of sugar – which probably best explains why I have not heard of wheatgrass.
It is listed as 15 calories per serving so it is not even remotely as sweet as a green tea frap. The powder color is a pleasant spring green. I could not make it foam despite the use of a handheld frother. The cup color is a deep green.
While sweet, this is not candy level overdose. It is about where I would sweeten it myself. The taste is nicely grassy. The sweet grassy aftertaste lingers.
I also made a cold milk latte. With milk this foamed really well.
For me the only negative was the pre-sweetened mix, however as I said I was going to make it this sweet anyway.
Where did my previous logs of this go? Yesterday I used the last of my open unflavored matcha. This morning I didn’t want to mess with the unopened bags (I have 2 lbs in the freezer) especially since they are not in resealable bags. I did have 3 opened samples of flavored matcha. This one sounded fun at 6:00 a.m. I mostly wanted to play with my new frother. Abt 1 tsp and 3 oz cold milk in a 12 oz tumbler. Nearly filled with foam – so, happy with the frother. I haven’t had acai in a while and I kind of forgot what it tasted like. I was surprised it actually tasted good in combination with milk. Fruity, not tart. Good choice. Went down fast.
The other day I reviewed Petit’s Opulence version of Cashmere Saffron that is an aluminum infuser stick version. This is from the Om series and is a silk pyramid sachet.
The dry aroma of both is nearly identical. It is a floral that reminds me of lavender talc. Here I also catch notes of the cardamom. I steeped two minutes in 175 F water. The color kind of reminded me of sunflowers (wishful thinking I guess).
The taste is as different as it is similar to the infuser. This one leads strongly with the floral saffron without being perfumey. I taste the green cardamom under the saffron. It supports and fills out the flavor. This trails into a mild bite from the green tea. The bite is much less intense than I experienced with the infuser. I don’t really taste the cinnamon at all here, which is surprising as it was the leading edge of the infuser cup.
At first I was not sure what I thought of this one. It is very different than anything I would normally drink. The more I sipped the more I began to get it. I think this would appeal to floral lovers and possibly the chai fans. Very different.
We have a major lake in the back yard from heavy rain. Thankful. In northern Indiana they are getting heavy snow. I hate snow. I hate winter. I thought I hated spearmint.
This is a spearmint and sencha green tea in crystallized form. While my brain keeps telling me this is instant tea, my taste buds remain unconvinced. Super easy to make. Pour the packet powder into the mug add some water at 175F. Drink. I don’t even need to stir.
Instead of tasting like toothpaste which I never ever buy spearmint toothpaste – ever, this is just different. I am thinking it is like jasmine, which I thought I didn’t like until I had a better one. This is obviously spearmint and intense, but not icky intense.
It is accompanied by an equally intense amount of grassy bite. It reminds me of the level of bite often found in Ceylon tea. I rather like that.
I’m pretty sure if someone handed me a cup of Pique tea and didn’t tell me, I would not know it wasn’t home brewed loose leaf. It is an interesting idea, done well.
This is another of the aluminum infuser type teas from Petit. The ingredients are listed as green tea, cinnamon, and cardamom. However, their pyramid sachet lists ingredients as green tea, natural saffron, natural cardamom, cinnamon & other natural flavours. I believe the same ingredients are in the infuser. As soon as I removed the outer plastic wrap, I noticed a floral scent that kind of reminded me of a lavender talc powder. After steeping 2 minutes this mellows way down and I now also catch cardamom in the aroma. The taste is completely different. I first notice cinnamon. It is a pleasant adult level (not over sweet, not grab you spicy). Next I catch the cardamom with its light clove like notes. I catch the green tea briefly just as the aftertaste kicks in. All this blends in the brain with the floral aroma for a kind of exotic experience.
Bought in 2011. 6 oz of pu for $5.99. It smelled and tasted really bad back then. Still has a not great but tolerable smell. With time the taste has become mild, sweet, cedar, loam, and light leather. Has a hefty dusty note as well. Certainly not great puerh but a pleasant everyday sip. Worth every penny :)
So in the last few days I have survived preparing my taxes, fixing a candlelight steak dinner for my wife on Valentine’s Day. Yes the smoke detectors were going off during the meal as apparently stove top iron grills smoke – a lot. Later it snowed like mad. Very little stuck but looked near white out at times. This morning the fog was extremely thick. The worse part of the weekend is my frother suddenly stopped working. I think the batteries are too big around to fit properly. If different batteries don’t get it up and running I will immediately order a new one. I need my morning froth.
None of that has anything to do with this tea. 3Leaf blends their own flavored matcha and hot chocolate. They also have a select amount of loose leaf. Furry Peak is a Mao Feng. The leaf is really dark with light green and yellow streaks. It is covered in fine hair. Dry scent is grassy, ocean, and malt. Once steeped the aroma becomes a wonderfully hefty umami. I just want to get a fork and eat the soft delicate spring green leaves. The brew is green tinted yellow. The taste is fresh, crisp, and lightly grassy, with a mild clean bite. Seems far more savory than sweet to me, but I have no desire to mess with this beautiful cup by adding anything to it. If you are a Mao Feng fan, this is worth considering.
I feel like I have too many things going at once and I am not doing any of them justice. I’d give you a list but I’m sure you have your own. Tea is on the list. I don’t seem to have time to drink just for the enjoyment much less serious meditation on the cup for reviews. With that in mind, I have been enjoying the alternative brewing methods that have come my way lately. Of these Pique tea is the simplest and most convenient. Cut the individual serving packet open. Pour the crystals in the mug. Add hot water (or add to cold bottled water). Drink. Except for RTD there is not a simpler method out there. Unlike almost all bottled RTD there are no piles of sugar added. Pique says they use only organic whole leaf to brew their tea before crystallizing it. While it is essentially instant tea, it is unlike anything remotely instant I’ve had before.
This is a scented green made with jasmine blossoms (not flavored). It has a very natural jasmine fragrance. The brew is golden in color. The taste is sweet, floral, jasmine. It is not overly intense but definitely not a wall flower. If you want a mellower cup add more water. The green tea jumps forth halfway in the sip and finishes with a clean bite. The aftertaste is sweet, grassy, and lingering.
This is really pretty good. Better than any bagged jasmine I’ve had. As good as many loose jasmines I’ve tried. The however here is if you are accustomed to the higher quality loose leaf, the crystallization process does seem to scoop some of the nuances out of the middle of the sip. If you need something for everyday on the go drinking, or a convenient fast way to have tea in the office, in my opinion this would be a solid one to try.
It snowing. I hate snow. Its cold. I hate cold. OK, maybe hate is too strong a word. I confess to being very ready for spring, though our winter hasn’t been that bad. It just feels forever since I was able to sit on my porch, at dawn, with a cup of tea, sipping, while the world wakes up. So here I sit instead, in my den, dreaming of sunshine.
On to tea – I grabbed this one today because… well, because. The box says use boiling water. I didn’t. It said to steep 3 minutes. I was typing and went 4 minutes. My opinion might be stronger if I followed directions.
I like these infusers. They are great for the lazies. I just didn’t feel like messing with the pot today.
The tea is a delicate green color. It is like a white tea in that respect – you look at the cup and wonder if you made it correctly (of course I didn’t – but you know what I mean). Dry it had a light grassy scent. Brewed, I’m not getting much of any scent. The taste is delicate. It is quite grassy, just very light. There is also a citrus like bite that gives it character.
I would never guess this is a Darjeeling green. It reminds me of Tazo green tea (but lighter) which I believe is a sencha. It has a sweet grassy aftertaste.
I did add sweetener halfway through the cup – my recommendation is don’t. It takes sweetening fine but tastes better without it. Take that Splenda monkey.