987 Tasting Notes

95
drank Special Dark by Mandala Tea
987 tasting notes

I’m recovering from overeating on cookout food yesterday! All I want is shu today :)

I drank lots of teas this weekend but didn’t drink any new-to-me teas because I knew I was too busy to write tasting notes! I hope everyone had a nice holiday <3

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I drank a cup of this earlier this morning. Thanks Terri!

I feel bad because I wasn’t paying attention enough to write a good note while I drank it. I wasn’t blown away but luckily I have a couple more servings to work with it…

I won’t be drinking any tea this afternoon because I got peer pressured into a fancy iced coffee beverage on my lunch break. They were buy one get one FREE and my friend wanted one…also they offered to make it for me with soy :)

Happy Friday folks!

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94

Oh yum. Thank you Terri HarpLady!

This is super rich and fruity! Very complex. This is something I would totally drink again. Sweet stuff. There are notes that remind me of a Dancong oolong. I loves me some Dancong. It is like a cross between a Dancong and a Yunnan black! I love the lingering stone fruit taste it leaves in the back of my throat.

Terri HarpLady

This one is an interesting one, eh?

Terri HarpLady

I think I ordered the newest rendition of this in my YS order.

Stephanie

I think the only purple teas I’d had before this one were purple greens.

mrmopar

The Wu Liang Ye Sheng puerh cake from them is pretty killer too, as well as the 100 gram brick.

Stephanie

Way to temp me with some sheng, mrmopar :)

Terri HarpLady

Mr M, I’m not allowed to look at YS’ site for awhile…lol

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This is a wonderful Sheng! Thanks so much Terri HarpLady for letting me try it :D

So much going on here…where do I start? Pleasantly astringent, mineral notes, a little bit of resin or fresh cut wood, and a wonderful strong cha qi. I’m still in the midst of several steepings, so I may update this later if it morphs again. It is really opening up for me now :) It is a little grassy with a faint fruity or floral aftertaste…gah, I love sheng so much! Gives me a happy :D :D :D

boychik

any bitterness? sounds heavenly

Stephanie

Not bitter at all, but astringent to the point that maybe some people wouldn’t prefer it.

Stephanie

If you want a REALLY fruity sheng, you should check out Butiki’s new offering…its crazy!

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92

Thank you so much Terri HarpLady for a sample of this!

I have been drinking this all day. The leaves just keep going and going, huh? This is VERY nice shu. Rich and creamy with just enough earthiness and sweetness and no funk. I love that it is organic, too :)

This is a shu I would definitely reach for any time I have a puerh craving! Glad I got to try it.

Marzipan

No funk is good!

Stephanie

I can totally see why, even sans the funk, that puerhs can be an acquired taste. I mean, it is a taste unlike anything else! If you aren’t sure what to expect I could see it being off-putting at first. Once you get used to it though it is totally craveable!

Garret

Well…. some funk is good! A fella’s gotta dance, after all :)

Stephanie

Good call Garret. Plus, some funks are good funks! Take “stinky” French cheeses for example! ;)

Garret

Amen, sister!

As far as acquired tastes with pu’er – i have been showcasing alot more of the raw pu’er teas these days here in the shop and in tea classes with great results. The raw pu’ers are completely different in flavor, color, aroma. And the energy (cha qi) one gets from raw pu’er is quite different than ripe. I love it.

I though Westerners would be more averse to raw pu’er, but I am finding out that was a false assumption.

But still, I’ve started every morning for the last 2 yrs with a large pot of the Noble Mark ripe. Great ripe tea is a fantastic way for me to start the day.

All my best,
Garret

Stephanie

I think raw puerhs are quickly becoming my favorite type of tea actually, and I attribute that to the cha qi I get from them! They’re so fascinating :)

Marzipan

Steph we need to make a road trip to MN for tea tastings.

Garret

yeah… I love raw pu’er. Investing a lot more in mao cha to have pressed into pu’er these days. Just sipped some of our Autumn Song pu’er here in the shop with two Teavana employees who had only ever had bad ripe pu’er before. Boy, oh boy, did they get turned on! It was fun to watch. They were so excited. Great to have Teavana employees buying some tea from us :) Good times.

Stephanie

Marzipan I would LOVE to visit Mandala’s tasting room some day! :)

Terri HarpLady

Stop by & pick me up along the way, will ya?

Terri HarpLady

I initially like shu better than Sheng, but that has changed. In part, due to the amazing energy, without a doubt.

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91

Another beautiful tea from the generous Terri HarpLady :D

I love the look of the dry leaf on these fancy yunnans. So shiny and fuzzy and golden. I love tea I want to pet!

The taste is all malty and sweet. Bold and full bodied with a nice kick, too. Everything a good black tea should be :)

I can see why everyone is enamored with these Yunnans! I’m enjoying this very much. Thanks again, Terri!

TheTeaFairy

Haha! Pet your tea people!

carol who

Ya know, No one else except Steepsterites would get that!! ;-)

Terri HarpLady

Yay, glad you like it!

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98

I’m SOOO happy TerriHarplady sent me some of this in my box! Thank you Terri! :D

My absolute favorite green teas of all time are from the He family in Laoshan. I’ve never had the honor of trying some of their more special offerings like this one. It does not disappoint! Buttery, creamy, and vegetal like all good Laoshan greens but with a hint of roastiness/nuttiness and a bright freshness about it. Very very good nom nom nom!

I guess I should consider joining Verdant’s TOTM club, but honestly $30 a month is more than my ENTIRE tea budget and there are other things from other sellers I want sometimes, you know? I’m sure I would love it though :)

Terri HarpLady

You sure you don’t want some of the Bilochun or Summer green? It’s not too late! I could pop them in the mail…

Stephanie

I have a package of summer green already, and I just finished a bilochun! Unless they are first pickings or otherwise fancy? You are awesome though thanks!

Terri HarpLady

no…lol…they are from last summer…I need to drink them…

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71

Finally tried this cold steeped overnight in milk, which was slightly better. I still strongly prefer the plain caramel matcha over this one, but overall neither one are my favorites. Both are drinkable but there are MUCH better flavors from Red Leaf! :)

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I am drinking a green base version of this, from Marzipan! Thanks!!!

I can find nothing to complain about here. I like cherry and almond and vanilla together. It isn’t blowing me away though. I think I would reeeeeely like this one cold steeped as iced tea, and maybe with a little sugar added. I dig fruity greens that way! I shall try that with the rest of my sample :)

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I had to try this one. Forgive me for forgetting which box it came from!

I love Japanese greens but I’ve never had a Japanese black! I was unsure on steeping temp so I went a little lower than I would for another unknown black, just to be safe.

Not sure if I underleafed or if this one is suffering from its age? I feel like there is a lot of potential here and I would really love it if it was just a tad stronger tasting. It is a mild, somewhat nutty definitely black tasting tea, with some vegetal/mineral/sea elements that I enjoy in my Japanese greens. This is definitely something I would like to explore further. Bring on the Japanese blacks!!

KiwiDelight

Maybe I missed this one. Sure would’ve liked to try it.

Stephanie

Must have been in box #1. I still have 1 serving left. I’ll send it to you next time we swap! Unless I have procured a better Japanese black by then ;)

TheTeaFairy

I’ve had Japanese oolong before but never a straight black, interesting…

KiwiDelight

Oh that’s OK. I’m not so curious :)

Jennkay

Huh, sounds interesting. I’ll have to start looking into Japanese blacks!

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Bio

Graphic artist, printmaker, lover of tea.

I love pretty much every type of tea camellia sinensis can produce. I like herbal teas sometimes but I can’t stand rooibos.

Butiki, Verdant, Mandala, TeaVivre and Den’s are my favorite online retailers so far.

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Southern Indiana

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