116 Tasting Notes
Stunt tea, strange and wonderful. Drinking it plain, there’s a tinge of sweetness from the apple pieces but mostly I’m getting peppermint and juniper. Very palate-cleansing!
And very weird. But definitely worth at least sampling, if the description appeals to your taste, imagination, curiosity, whatever.
Hmm. Sweet, not unpleasant, but doesn’t rock my boat. I tasted plain, added Sugar in the Raw and tasted again, added half-and-half and tasted again.
Not as delicate as I expected, not as distinctly cherry-flavored, no discernible tea flavor. I will withhold a numerical rating for now — maybe the cherry bits settled in the packet and that’s not why I’m tasting them in this first cup. The packet was very full.
I poked around in the wet leaves left in my infuser and didn’t spot anything except tea leaves and coconut pieces. That tends to bear out my theory that I didn’t get any cherry bits, rose petals, or bits of rosebud in the basket — probably just the aroma absorbed by the leaves.
The dry scent was fruity-floral. That’s sort of what I’m tasting, too. I can tell it isn’t jasmine, but I would be hard-pressed to identify it as rose in the background.
I’ll try this one again and post an update in a day or two.
Yay, I got my David’s Tea shipment!
Just awhile ago I wrote about my errors with The Path of Tea genmaicha, which was lovely brewed in my French Press at home with an appropriate amount of tea and a carefully timed steep. When I used my Tea for Life set, the curved blue cup with the metal infuser, I blew it.
So, mindful of that, with David’s Tea I used the Tea for Life set again, but measured only a gently rounded tablespoon and steeped for about 2 1/2 minutes.
The dry tea looks like it’s about half tea (fairly regular, needle-shaped leaves about 3/4 inch long) and half toasted rice, with a fair amount of popped rice kernels. It looks pretty much like the photo. Could not really detect a toasty smell in the dry form.
Steeped, I have the lovely toasty aroma rising from the cup, not with the buttery note I found in The Path of Tea version, but pleasant.
First sip: seem a bit weak. I think it needs a bit more in the filter when made this way. I’ll try increasing the amount of leaf slightly next time and steep it for the same amount of time. I may try a re-steep, adding another teaspoon of fresh dry leaf. And I’ll try it in the French press tonight or tomorrow.
Going to withhold a numerical rating for now, but so far it’s quite nice and I’m looking forward to more tweaking.
Update: I just tried Daniel Scott’s discovery of this technique and I’m getting much stronger toast notes this way even though the tea has cooled down quite a bit:
1. First, exhale completely.
2. Take a sip of tea.
3. Hold the tea in your mouth across your entire tongue and inhale deeply through your nose.
Update 2: Re-steeped as planned, with addition of another tsp or so. Pleasant but still not there. Next time will try with more leaf to start with.
Took this to work with me yesterday and blew it. I used my Tea For Life set with the metal infuser and WAY too much leaf. The leaf soaked up a good third of the water and didn’t turn it loose, and I think I oversteeped by about 30 seconds to a minute, so I ended up with strong, bitter tea.
I cut it with a dash of half-and-half, which helped, but locals reading this beware: this was definitely user error. Exercise moderation in all things!
I got my David’s Tea shipment so will be reviewing that genmaicha shortly.
Re-steeping. This time I used a timer set for exactly 3 minutes as recommended on the packaging.
Lovely floaty show in the French press again, like watching the old Aquarena Springs mermaid show in San Marcos when I was a child.
Brewed, the buttered-toast aroma is still there but fainter, as I expected. Flavor milder, again as expected, but a bit stronger than I expected. I don’t have much experience with re-steeping so honestly, I expected bleaugh. It’s actually quite pleasant but I don’t think I will try a second time. The toasty flavor is best at the back of my tongue.
I would certainly buy this again.
After spending most of Friday night/Saturday morning awake while monitoring the process of a server replacement, and THEN realizing I needed to go in to work Saturday afternoon to re-enter data that didn’t make it, I was desperate for something comforting and I became fixated on finding some loose genmaicha to take with me.
The Path of Tea delivered! (Well, not literally. You know what I mean.) I was lucky enough to find one of their designated parking spots open. I dashed in and whimpered, “I need some jin-MY-cha!” mangling the pronunciation badly. With a Texas accent.
So after a few moments of gentle confusion during which they thought I needed to sit down and have a nice quiet cup, or maybe a whole pot, and I learned how to pronounce it (hard G, matcha rather than MY-cha) I walked out amid sweet smiles and choruses of “Come back again!” with a small bag of loose tea and continued on to work.
Oh, the tea itself? Excellent.
Lots of rice kernels among the tea leaves. I did not see any popped kernels as shown in the photo. Dry, the leaves were smallish and did not exude much aroma.
I used a clear glass French press so I could see what happened to the leaves and I may have steeped a bit too long because of my fascination. Everything rose to the top of the water. I never did see the rice among the steeping leaves because of their buoyancy. At last the leaves began to unfurl and some sank through the water, every shape imaginable – some long and bladelike, some like little shreds of torn silk. The water in the press seemed a little murky so I suppose there was some tea dust as well.
In the cup the aroma was fabulous. Buttered toast! The first sips — ok, gulps — were exactly what I craved, very sweet, almost as sweet as if I had added honey or something. Then the toasty note took over as it cooled a bit. As it cooled more, a slight bitterness was there but I think that was my fault for oversteeping. I didn’t even time it but it was probably over 4 minutes. There are a few shreds of leaf in my cup that got through the press and yes, a little fine residue that looks like dust.
I have two more small quantities of genmaicha on the way, from Den’s and from David’s tea, and at least one more local potential source of organic free-trade genmaicha. It’s going to be fun deciding which turns out to be my favorite.
If I had to drink this stuff every 4 hours to maintain an even mood I’m not sure I’d consider it worthwhile.
In fact, I’m lowering the rating — which is primarily a reflection on its palatability. I can’t tell whether it’s helping with the mood. I’m pretty cranky right now, even with a yummy cup of sweet Bengal Spice in between doses.
OK, trying this stuff again. We are having “issues” with the database I help manage at work, so I decided to try this as recommended therapeutically by Yogi — 2 teabags per cup, long steep, every 3-4 hours. On cup 1 now, with half-and-half.
Flavor is distinctly medicinal. I’ll be back after a bit to say whether it seems to be helping on the cheerfulness/optimism front.
Bought this out of curiosity after having my mind blown by Amethyst. Having it with a dash of half-and-half.
I can taste a bit of spinachy oolong, but it’s pretty timid. Not bad and I would drink it in a pinch but I think I’m already spoiled and will not buy this again when it’s gone unless it’s the only oolong I can find.
I have been trying to do a sipdown of the way-too-many teas I have on my shelf and this one came to work with me today. I brewed it strong — 2 bags in my usual cup — and maybe a bit longer than recommended. I’m drinking it plain because I just didn’t want to dilute it, after a whiff of that toasty nutty scent.
This is still the only genmaicha I’ve tried and I still love it. Next time I’m going to try a loose variety, though. I think Numi offers this loose on their website, or maybe I should try Adagio. Any other strong recs out there aside from Adagio?