254 Tasting Notes

96

This is a showdown between the superior grade LS and this grade 2 from Life in Teacup. Let’s get started ‘cause my delicious smelling tea is getting colder by the word.
Dry: Smells of light sweet smokey fire. Nicely twisted dark chocolate leaves.
Liquor (1.5min): Smells and tastes like a camp fire. But sweet bacon and a little malty at the same time. Yum..
ok I just noticed the steep times of the other tasters and mine is wayyy lower. Next round I am trying a 4 minute steep. I’m nervous. Ohhh but it will be good. Here’s the thing – I touched the wet leaves and now my hands smell like salty bacon. Now I want salty smokey sweet bacon. I don’t ever crave meat products so this is weird.
5min: I got side-tracked looking at Life in Teacup Dan Cong. Looks like I will have to order some more tea soon. sips Whoa! New tea almost. Full bodied and with a gentle sparkle feeling around my tongue. Slight drying in the throat, but nothing too bothersome. When I try and think about the sweetness (which is mid-taste for me), visions of black currants pop up in my brain for some reason. Mmmm it’s like black currant syrup on non-crispy maple smoked bacon. I’m in love.
Thank you again Gingko… Life in Teacup has wonderful customer service and I really appreciate that!

Preparation
Boiling
ScottTeaMan

For the LS, I think shorter steeps would work for me.

If you’ve never tried a Dan Cong, I recommend more leaf than called for, water temp below boiling (175-185 to start), and shorter steeps (45,35-45), and a glass teapot with an infuser. Any teapot will do, as long as it’s large enough, and has a large enough infuser too. Dan Congs are oolongs with long, twisted leaves that need room to expand. Keep steep times shorter for the first 3 infusions, then gradually increase steep time & temp. for future steeps. Dan congs can easily become bitter if oversteeped.

Hope this helps. :)) It has always worked well for me.

Lynne-tea

Sorry for my late reply! I missed this when Steepster was so slow.

I did enjoy my initial steep with 1.5 min, though I found when I had the 5min steep.. it was so rich and full bodied! I think I tend to do shorter steeping times for most teas, but I think a longer steep time is more delicious for this LS in my opinion =) It’s amazing how different peoples tea methods are.

Thank you very much for your recommendation for the Dan Cong steeping times and methods. It seems that tea is a little high maintenance, though I am really wanting to master them and see what types of flavour I can get. So intriguing.

ScottTeaMan

Yes…….short steeps are important for Dan Congs. You can always increase times if you want to. :))

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90

I was so excited when my Life In Teacup order arrived a little while ago. So far I have tried their TGYs and jeez are they good! I waited to try the Superior Grade Vs. their grade 2 Lapsang Souchong. After a mixup, the grade 2 had been delayed. But thanks to their fantastic customer service – I quickly received the grade 2 for comparison (along with a few generous and lovely samples – thank you so much Gingko!)
Dry: Sweet and malty leaf. It has a very very subtle smoke hint, but not in your face by any means at all.
Liquor 1.5 min: Very malty and almost dark chocolate like. There is a clean and refreshing feeling at the end of the sip at the back of the throat/tongue. It’s nice and something new to me. Nice subtle roast to it, but not stand out smokey. Very different and mild LS.
5min: Smelling the cup – I detect no smokey notes. Just malty caramel sweetness. Interesting for an LS. Smooth caramel taste with a warm blanket feeling that is amazing. This is a good tea – but comparing to their grade 2 LS.. I honestly prefer the grade 2. I appreciate the refined taste of this tea with the subtle roast flavour and caramel sweetness, but I want some smoke. I want some intensity. This tea reminds me of a sophisticated afternoon high tea with one lady being a rebel and choosing the LS instead of an unaltered straight black (even though this tea tastes almost like a straight black..).
It is good but I am glad I only got a sample as I like more intense LS flavours I guess.

Preparation
Boiling

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88

This is sad. I was so looking forwards to this tea and had high hopes for it. But it’s giving me nothing.
Dry: Smells of caramel honey. Long luxe leaves. I like.
Liquor: After a rinse and three steeps.. I’m really not getting very much. I am being a stickler for temperature and amount of leaf, but I am still getting hardly anything. For my fourth steep, I cut my water in half (from 6oz to 3oz for 2 generous tsp of leaf) and upped the steep time to about 2 minutes to get Something.. Anything..
Nothing. My last few sips had some carmel to them, but generally nothing stands out to me. Perhaps my tongue is too untrained? Or perhaps it’s the tea (I have never encountered this before to be honest… sad.) I have enough of the sample left to attempt this again..Hopefully that round will give me something. Maybe I will go back to steeping my old toucha leaves. Thank you so much Tony for this sample from Chicago Tea Garden! I am glad I got to try it (my first Dancong and hopefully not last!)

Edit: Okay – fifth steep is the absolute best so far. I can taste creamy honey and a drying in the back of the throat that I get with honey. A touch of mayyyyybe dried apricots if I stretch it.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C

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96

I’ve fallen in love with this tea. It does such wonderful things in my mouth I can’t help but love it.
Dry: Smells malty to me with dark dark chocolate coco notes. Nice twisted leaves.
Liquor 30s: Nice amber color which tastes like umami and salty flavours (salty like a calmed down soy sauce..). Very nice on the tongue. To be honest – I don’t get carmel or sweet type flavours at all. All of them are malty umami soy sauce. I am extremely happy those are the flavours I get as they are ridiculously good in such a surprising way (hence why I have been drinking this often).
45s: I think I get a lot of these umami and salty flavours when its hot. That is when they are most prominent to me. This is definitely more smooth in the initial taste.. then unfolds into a sparkly malty deliciousness. I still sense the same flavours from the first steep, but this time they have changed slightly. Some sips I even encounter a surprising smooth creaminess. Fantastic tea.

I will write more steeps another day. Today I must conquer genetics. Hmph.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C

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96

I was so very very excited to see this wonderful package arrive all thanks to Tony from Chicago Tea Garden. I am so thankful I got to try a very generous selection of their teas. Now that I have some time, I can really get into these teas and see what they have to offer. So far – impressed. Very impressed.
Dry: cute little pu-erh touchas that have a mild smell. Earthy and starchy.
Liquor: 30s Light yellow liquor that smells like buttery rice. It also tastes like buttery rice. Sticky buttery rice. Ooooh yUm!
35s: A darker yellow/toasted color. More intense in the buttery goodness – more of flavour than of feeling. Very very good. I like it. Thick and toasty almost. Buttery roasty toasty.
48s: Sweeter buttery rice. As though a rice wine vinegar and sugar mixture was added, but without the acidity. mmm goodness.
1min: Delicious. Much the same as 3rd steep.
1.15min: Whoa mouth butter. This covers my tongue in that butter sensation.. like a melting pat of butter on my tongue. Slow and warm creep with a touch of a salty sensation (like a tingle almost.. your taste buddies get excited and I picture them dancing for joy – creating the slight tingle/bright sparkle feeling). I think this may be my favourite so far. But that is hard to say as all the steeps were soo very delicious. I do think I will be able to get at least another 4 steeps out of this with strong flavour as it appears the pu-erh was just changing it up a bit for the fourth steep
In the end – absolutely wonderful comfort tea. I am drinking this on a hot sunny day today. Is that crazy? No.. it’s absolutely suiting in an odd way. Personally – I will drink this tea whenever I crave buttery sticky rice…. surprisingly often to be honest. Thank you again Tony for your generosity. I am so happy I got to try this!

Preparation
Boiling
Fjellrev

This one has been calling my name for quite a while now. Should just order a sample already! It sounds awesome.

Lynne-tea

You really really should. I find it such a comfort…. whoa maybe right now would be the perfect time to drink it. I have a wicked cold and just had a death in the family… Goodbye oolong hello sticky rice tuocha!

Indigobloom

I’m so sorry about your loss Lynne-tea. Feel better soon

Fjellrev

I’m incredibly sorry for your loss too. :(

Lynne-tea

Thank you both.. The tea helps heal in all ways =) Soon I will be as good as new I am sure.

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94
drank Raspberry Oolong by A C Perch's
254 tasting notes

Yay!! Raspberry Oolong!
After a beautifully sunny and warm bike ride (finally!) – I arrived to find a white parcel sticking out of my mailbox. NO way! No Way No Way! Angrbodas wonderful parcel! Which meant that A. C. Perch samples were just waiting for me to drink them. So, me and my massive smile made a wonderful cup of this legendary oolong (with filtered water! Finally!)
Dry:…It is beautiful. Smaller green and larger, twisted black pieces of leaves with raspberry chunks. Oh jeez this is the bees knees. The smell brings me back to ANY raspberry bush I have had an intimate encounter with (by intimate I mean scouring a bunch of bushes for 2 or more hours in order to eat any raspberries in sight).
Liquor: The smell is not super raspberry on the nose, but more of a linger in the background. The forefront smell is a combination of roasted and green oolong. The taste – delightful. It is a very well balanced cup. I can clearly taste a light raspberry.. which reminds me of raspberry iced tea. But not fake flavouring. The roasted note is mild but definitely present… and I feel like the last bit of a sip has a more green buttery/baked goodness to it.
Wow. Well rounded delicious tea. I am on my second steep and this time around I did a longer steep (1.5 min vs. 5 min)… This is different for me as usually I steep oolongs for shorter periods of time at lower water temperatures but this definitely needs a longer steeping time and high temp to bring out the raspberry. Ooh jeez my cup keeps draining so fast. I swear there is a small leak at the bottom of my mug and sneaky sugar ants are drinking it all up. Or it’s me… but that means I will have to order some more of this tea. hmph.

Thank you SO Much Angrboda! A great tea that is very much appreciated!

Preparation
Boiling
Angrboda

Heehee! I knew it! There’s a reason this is one of my absolute favourite teas to share, you know. :D

Azzrian

This sounds great!

Kittenna

Haha, agreed. Going onto my shopping list, but if A C Perch is an overseas company, I doubt I’ll ever end up trying it. Sad sad!

Lynne-tea

It’s Awesome. =D Very good tea and I am so happy I got a chance to try it. I may sometime talk myself into buying some… sigh Thank you again Angrboda!… and Krystaleyn – if/when I end up getting the tea I can definitely send you a sample to try.

Kittenna

Oooooooh I will try to keep an eye out to see if you pick some up! Alternately I may beg and plead with Angrboda one of these days :D Good flavoured oolongs are severely lacking in my cupboard.

Angrboda

Krystaleyn, I can totally spare you a sample. Shoot me a message. :)

Lynne-tea, unless you want to buy enough things from them to get to their 500g limit on abroad packages anyway, hold on until august, because then I can definitely forward an order for you. It would be much cheaper for you, since I can send a smaller package than they can and therefore also a cheaper one. There are several other Steepserites who might be interested in it as well, so I’ve been entertaining thoughts of some sort of bulk buying mission. I haven’t quite got the exact details and economy of it worked out yet, though, and I need to wait until after the wedding for a project of this sort anyway.

Lynne-tea

Angrboda – I would absolutely love that! If you need me to do anything let me know. I think a bulk buying mission would be perfect and I am sure there are many people here would would like to get some of this lovely tea. That is a great idea to wait after the wedding.. I couldn’t imagine how intense planning/having a wedding would be. Have fun with it! =)

Angrboda

We’re nearly done with the planning and organising. We just need to get the last things for our respective outfits and I need to make some hair appointments. I haven’t seen the inside of a hairdresser’s salon in YEARS so that’s going to be interesting. At this point I just find myself needing a bit of normalcy and quiet before the storm so I’m postponing any projects to afterwards. :)

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86

How delicious!
I wanted something chocolate and flavourful. My water was around 85C so I thought I might as well go for this one as it is chocolatey and has a complex and delightful aftertaste to accompany the chocolate.
I have just finished up three steeps with this tea. All delicious. Halfway through my first cup I added a little brown sugar. It was wonderful and I feel it woke the cup up a bit as the smells were so strong, but the flavour was subtle and needed coaxing. I rarely rarely rarely add anything to my tea anymore, but this just fit tonight.
Chocolate, berry taste (black? blue?) with a cinnamon spice trailing behind. I like I like!

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 4 min, 15 sec

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83
drank Vanilla Oolong by DAVIDsTEA
254 tasting notes

The dry leaf smells deliciously of vanilla and flowery cream. Nice long twists of oolong leaf amongst pretty yellow lemon myrtle and marigold pieces.
The liquor is a nice pale greenish yellow that smells delicious. Vanilla cake… or pudding… hmm. Definite creaminess to the oolong with a light vanilla taste. I’m definitely getting vanilla pudding. I wish it had real vanilla bean pieces in it to bump up the vanilla flavour. Its delicious and delicate though…. but I still wish it was a little stronger with the vanilla flavour. It’s still very pleasant.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 5 min, 0 sec

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42
drank Southern Belle by DAVIDsTEA
254 tasting notes

I needed a comfort tea so I decided creamy peach would be perfect.
Liquor: I think my palate has been tuned to natural teas a lot more lately so I can definitely taste a bit of an artificial flavour now, but I don’t mind it. It really is not blowing my socks off like it originally did… Perhaps it was due to my absentmindedness and failure to closely watch steep times. It’s nice though – peachy cream. I can taste a semi-decent black base that is slightly smokey/malty. Nice. Okay it’s growing on me again. To be honest – I like this more than Long Life Oolong. A lot more… Especially the aftertaste. The aftertaste alone makes me want to drink this tea more.

Preparation
Boiling

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81
drank Long Life Oolong by DAVIDsTEA
254 tasting notes

I was somewhat excited to try this. I do like my oolongs simple with nothing added.. but I figured I might as well try this too.
Dry: Smells pretty peachy apricot wonderful. Yum. Nice pieces of almond and orange peel.
Liquor: Um.. okay ew. For some reason the color of the ‘tea’ has turned into an electric yellowish amber that reminds me of the antiseptic liquid they apply just before surgery to sterilize the area. I hope they didn’t add a dye to this tea under ‘flavouring’. Guh! The peach is definitely present, same with some apricot tones. I sense a little oolong playing around under all the stone fruit tastes. Oh boy..I don’t even like to swirl my cup to try and cool down the tea as all I see against the white of the mug is antiseptic wash >.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 30 sec

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Bio

I am very excited to delve into as many different types of tea as possible… so this should be interesting. I am really looking forwards to tasting all the wide array of flavours that can come from pure tea leaves.

Currently, I am having a love affair with oolongs. Mostly green, though I am stretching out into more oxidized oolongs. Black teas are also in my love fest as they can be so surprising sometimes (I used to drink bagged red rose x.x)
I would really love to get to know green tea a lot more and white tea.. all tea to be honest. I want to know them all.

Tea rating system:

0-50: Do people actually enjoy this?
50-60: Slight improvement, not recommendable.
60-70: Alright, though easily forgettable.
70-80: Good flavour, though not a ‘go to’ tea.
80-90: Great tea – complex and memorable.
90-100: Extremely delicious and complex teas that leave me craving more.

On top of tea, I have a love for music. Generally all music, though I am partial to indie rock/folk/pop/electronic. Follow me if you also enjoy indie music and would like to trade some artists!

I’m always open to new tea and music suggestions. Happy tea drinking to you all.

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Edmonton

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