46 Tasting Notes

95

This tea tastes like Dan Cong that’s been roasted (unless they already roast Dan Cong… then I guess it tastes like it’s been extra-roasted?). In the aroma and the beginning of the sip, you get woodiness and toasty goodness, which is then backed by a light sweetness similar to peaches. It’s a lovely combination. It starts to get a more mineral taste by the third infusion, plus cocoa notes and a stronger fruit taste. I’m sure if I was better at tasting and brewing, there would be all kinds of flavors to list in this tea. Delicious.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 1 min, 30 sec
Thomas Smith

Oooh, I love toasty TGYs!

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67

In general, I prefer Japanese greens to Chinese, but for some reason I keep buying different Chinese greens to see if I can find one I like. This one’s not bad; it reminds me of really ripe honeydew melons. You know how they can get so ripe that the sweetness becomes heavy? Yeah, this tea tastes like that, even when steeped for only one minute. It doesn’t have the fresh vegetal note that I like in greens, though. It would probably be better for someone who prefers sweet, mellow teas.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 1 min, 0 sec

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90

As much as I love the Bamboo Tea House, it’s a little problematic that they don’t provide any steeping instructions for their teas. Normally I can figure it out based on past experience, but I’m having a lot of trouble with this one.

3 min at 180F has been my favorite attempt so far, but the flavors still feel buried. The aroma is very floral, like perfume, and the taste reminds me a bit of jasmine greens I’ve had, but more earthy. Other than that, though, I can’t taste much, and the resteeps I’ve tried haven’t been any better. I’ll keep fiddling with it.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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83

So, I previously said that I would never drink this tea in the morning because it leaves my mouth dry. I lied. I drink this tea almost every morning now. It’s absolutely addicting and tastes lovely with the oatmeal I eat for breakfast.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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92

I see Jasmine Green Tea as one of those staples that everyone needs to have in their cupboard at all times, maybe because I’m used to drinking it with dinner. This one is just lovely. The dry leaf is both dark green and white, with long twisted leaves. I’m fairly certain I see flower petals in there as well.

I was halfway through typing the previous two sentences when I decided to look at the dry leaf again to make sure the description was accurate, and promptly dropped my canister and spilled the tea all over my carpet! Since I don’t remember the last time I vacuumed, I figured I probably shouldn’t scoop it up and use it anyway. Sigh. Luckily, some of the leaves managed to stay inside my canister, so at least I’ve got those.

Anyway. The leaf has a very strong smell of jasmine — almost too strong, actually. I guarantee that if I came across a hand lotion that smelled like this, I would chuck it out the window.

The taste, however, is perfect. Very mellow chinese green that tastes almost creamy balanced with sweetness from the jasmine. And when I say sweet, I mean it. It tastes like I stirred sugar in here, but without the stickiness you get from adding sugar. Simple enough to have with meals, but wonderful as an afternoon drink as well.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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81
drank White Peony by thepuriTea
46 tasting notes

Sometimes I love Bai Mu Dan and sometimes I really don’t. I went through almost an entire sample of this without bothering to make a tasting note because I thought it was just meh. Today, however, it tastes amazing. Figures that it’s the very last of my sample.

I taste all kinds of things in here. Sweet, nutty, and reminiscent of apricots. It’s really full, not delicate in the way most white teas are. Then again, my opinion of this tea is apparently completely arbitrary. Still, very soothing when I’m in the mood.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 1 min, 0 sec

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96

Nom nom nom. I’m pretty sure that I could drink this tea for the rest of my life and be happy.

This tea reminds me of beaches and salt water and is more or less what I expect tea that comes from an island to taste like. Rich, vegetal green tea taste that is quite sweet, backed with a saltiness that reminds me of dried seaweed. The taste stays solid for three infusions and then starts to water down.

Preparation
160 °F / 71 °C 1 min, 30 sec

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67

This is the only kind of mate that I’ve ever had, given to me as a gift. It brews to a dark amber with a woody smell. I want to say bamboo, but I know that’s not quite it. The taste is, well, that same woodyness that I can’t identify. It also has a very slight sour taste, kinda like the way black coffee gets sour as it cools. Which isn’t to say it makes you pucker; it’s a very small amount of sourness that is mostly covered by a sweet chocolate flavor.

While I really enjoy this tea, the leaves are so small that they’re a pain to clean out of my teapot, and re-infusing them is never worth it, since the taste becomes watery on only the second steep. So, good on occasion, but not something that I drink very often.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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92
drank Bancha Suruga by Den's Tea
46 tasting notes

This tea is just so good! That’s it, I’m buying like a pound of it next time I’m by Den’s, because I already finished off my free sample. Marketing technique = success!

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 30 sec

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92
drank Bancha Suruga by Den's Tea
46 tasting notes

Oh man, I love this tea. Got it as a sample with my last order, but I think I’ll have to buy some more next time I’m near Den’s. The leaves smell something like green beans, especially when they’re wet, and the tea itself tastes of mild vegetables, but bitter and buttery at the same time. I could easily drink this tea every day.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 30 sec
Cofftea

Near Den’s? They have a B&M?

mostlymexican

Yeah, in Torrance, CA. The address is on their website. It’s not really a proper shop, just kind of a storage center for their tea, but if I go pick it up myself, they give me a 10% discount.

Cofftea

Sweetness!

Frank W.

You lucky dog! I have to settle for ordering a bunch when there’s a 15% off sale like this October — I feel so guilty for the $75 order I just got today that I hid it in the basement so Sue (my wife) won’t realize I ordered more Dens. :)

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A friend once asked me, if I could have anything in the world, what would I want? I immediately answered, “Superpowers, specifically superspeed like the Flash.” He said that didn’t count because it wasn’t real, so my second choice was a cupboard full of every flavor of tea in existence. He promptly told me that that was a waste of a wish and said he would ask for the world’s biggest yacht.

But the more I think about it, the more I’m sure that I made the better choice. Slowly saving up money for higher quality teas is helping to convince me. Off I go to taste as many teas as I possibly can (and maybe dream about superpowers along the way).

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