1413 Tasting Notes
I had two cups of this bagged tea with my scrambled egg, sausage gravy & biscuit at Steak N Shake. I deeply love and appreciate beautifully complex teas. That said, I have a soft spot for the inexpensive basic comfort tea. This one does a great job in that regard. Today it had a light amount of malt and maybe it was the food combination but I swear I was getting hints of smoke. This has become like family so I’m upping the rating.
Got this one from Tommy The Toad long ago. Went back and read my notes because I thought I had learned something new, only to discover I had just forgotten I already figured it out. Yeah, I’m confused too. Back on point, this is really good if you forget the brewing instructions and just go with a one minute steep. Going longer or using too much leaf results in an overpowering dark oolong cup. Short steep this is balanced. The orange is more of an orange Crush flavor than fresh orange but I like Crush so it works.
I read the reviews before posting. I am sure I had to have done something wrong. This smells really good. The taste was just muted. Like all the flavors cancelled each other out. Shoot. I love peach teas. Long lingering aftertaste so maybe it is just my taste buds today. I will retry. It was much more flavorful once cold. Thanks Nicole I will try this again. No rating yet.
I have been up since three. I could barely keep my eyes open at work. A friend battled colon cancer for a year and was declared cancer free. Now they say he has a spot on his lung and we are waiting for results. Two weeks from today I will be laid off forcing me into retirement with no insurance and less than half the income. I have no new job prospects on the horizon so I am having a little trouble with Fear Not. As gmathis said the other day, I know how the story ends, but can’t we just skip a few chapters?
I went to my drawer for a little comfort. I was looking for Golden Monkey black tea. When I saw this one I realized I haven’t had it in a long time. It was a great choice. While waiting for the water to heat I started noticing the leaf smell. It is like wheat and malt. Such a nice scent. The cup is so smooth. It is heavily malted with light cocoa notes. I notice today it is even slightly peppery. The malt and cocoa linger long after the sip is gone. It’s funny, not that long ago I had no idea what people meant when they said a tea was malty. I guess it is because I had never tried a tea like this before.
I am more impressed with this today by far than when I first tried it. This I believe is the least expensive version of Dian Hong that TeaVivre sells. I should check that before I say it I guess. Anyway, I think originally I thought it would taste more sweet potato and honey like Golden Tips. You tone those flavors way down into the background and crank the malt and you have this tea. The slight amount of rough edges at the back of the sip I think would even appeal to coffee drinkers. If you enjoy Chinese black tea and would like an everyday affordable version this would do nicely.
Thank you TeaVivre for helping to take my mind off the troubles of the day. Upping the rating.
Day two with the same leaf. When I put the chunk in the press yesterday it sure looked like whole leaves. Today I see almost entirely small broken pieces. I steeped cup 4 for a minute and a half. The brew is darker than the first cup but no where near as dark as the 2nd and 3rd. This tastes very bland today. I have to work way to hard to catch much of anything. I have only had three hours sleep. This is not going to do. I am done with it. The rating stands from yesterday’s tasting. On to the next.
Interesting. When I had this today I did not realize it was the same one Cody had such a foul experience with. I did notice how easily the chunk separated. I used my usual western method – half the sample and 12oz water. I used 1/2oz to wake up the leaf but decided not to pour off. Added the rest of the water and steeped 1 minute. The brew was Tetley tea colored – basically looked like tea. It smelled like shu poo. The taste reminded me first of grape leaves then an old fallen tree in the woods. Then it was like an old leather jacket – not the horse tack I normally notice. It had rough edges like bark in the throat. I liked it.
The second cup at 30 seconds was darker and smoother. More refined leather and some kind of fruity and spicy notes.
Third at 30 seconds continued on even smoother and very sweet.
That’s all I had time for today. Definitely a different (and better) experience than Cody. I thought this was pretty good.
I didn’t have time to post yesterday. It’s just as well, I was in a blue mood. The highlight early in the day was this tea. Last time I used waaaayyyy to much leaf. This time I went with the web site directions of 1 tsp per cup. The dark roasted oolong blend most excellently with the white and dark chocolate curls. The second cup was even more chocolaty. I could also taste floral oolong notes in the aftertaste. The third cup had more of a plant taste along with the chocolate. Did I mention the chocolate?
I am torn on this one. It is very bright metallic (aluminum) tasting at times to the point sweetener barely calms it down. On the other hand it has a smoky layer underneath and is developing leather horsey notes. At times it smells green then it smells barnyard. I think a while longer in storage and this will be a nice one. Of course I don’t have the experience to know that. No rating. I drank on it all day and couldn’t decide.
I see cardamom listed as an ingredient every now and then but usually with a bunch of other ingredients so I really had no idea what it tasted like. It is kind of like ginger and clove had a kid and maybe sprinkled it with a hint of cinnamon and nutmeg. It is sweet. It is not exactly perfumey, but more like soapy. I think I like it. I certainly would not turn down a cup. Not sure I would buy a box. I like the Ceylon base. Thanks Brett.