20 Tasting Notes

64
drank Ceylon Sonata by Adagio Teas
20 tasting notes

The final specimen from that Raja sampler set. Gentle, light, and doesn’t seem to hold up too well for reinfusions. This is a fairly standard black tea; nothing too elegant.

NB: I made this note while sipping the first reinfusion (both at 4m, ~100°C).

EDIT: It does have a nice, mild sweetness that I hadn’t caught earlier.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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84
drank Indian Chai by TeaGschwendner
20 tasting notes

This is currently my favorite chai (and, paradoxically, another one I forgot to leave a note for). It can power through three reinfusions at the least, but I can’t help but wonder why the black tea is so minced up — it’s like the consistency of black pepper.

Anyways, this is a rather forgiving chai that probably won’t knock the socks off too many.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 45 sec

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70

First reinfusion. Mmm; very mellow now, and maybe a little sweet? I like it better than the first take. I’ll have to try it a few more times to balance out my rating.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 45 sec

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70

Another one from the Raja sampler set. Slightly orangey at first sniff, then kind of composty. I think this tastes like a weaker, greener Xingyang Nuggets 2008 Shu (a pu’er from Verdant which I somehow forgot to leave a note for..). In short, it’s a like an overinfused sencha — but composty.

Starting to think Darjeeling simply isn’t for me. Either that or my taste buds are schizo — plenty left to find out!

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 30 sec

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70
drank Irish Breakfast by Adagio Teas
20 tasting notes

First reinfusion: woops, I forgot time existed. No matter! This specimen was already spent in the first infusion and now it’s not even close to bitter. I don’t think I’ll bother with a second reinfusion.

Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 30 sec

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70
drank Irish Breakfast by Adagio Teas
20 tasting notes

Fruit: that’s what these leaves smell like. Another one from the Raja sampler set, and it is a touch more bitter than Yunnan Noir (even at 3m30s). As for taste, though, I am drawing a blank. I think it’s pretty standard for a straight black (this is me not knowing how to describe it) and it doesn’t really have any defects. This is so-so, but certainly better than Assam Melody (which doesn’t really have anything going for it).

Addendum: it doesn’t have any strange mouthfeel or aftertaste, so that’s nice.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 30 sec

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88
drank Yunnan Noir by Adagio Teas
20 tasting notes

First reinfusion. Holding up nicely.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 45 sec

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88
drank Yunnan Noir by Adagio Teas
20 tasting notes

Absolutely splendid! This is a gentle black tea: smooth & sweet, and it doesn’t seem to tend towards bitterness. Aftertaste started off with coffee vibes, but quickly moved into malty territory. Second specimen from my recent Adagio purchase that surprised me with its non-bitterness.

The leaves smell very interesting after an infusion.. but I can’t quite place it. If anyone could conjure up a cognate, I’d be grateful.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 30 sec

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51
drank Assam Melody by Adagio Teas
20 tasting notes

This one took me off guard. This is a very rich specimen, at least in the looks department; quick to infuse – I was afraid of overdoing it! – and surprisingly not very strong.

Heavy amber color and smells slightly smokey. Taste is very mellow — it reminds me of the Autumn Laoshan Black by Verdant, but gentler. Unfortunately, it doesn’t make much of an impact. There’s nothing wrong with it per se, but I probably won’t actually buy it (came with the Raja sampler set).

Might try 4 minutes for the first reinfusion.

EDIT: First reinfusion: yup; nope. There’s just not a whole lot in this thing.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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86
drank Quangzhou Milk Oolong by DAVIDsTEA
20 tasting notes

Third oolong! Sweet aroma and smooth taste; a very very light-colored brew. Seems like it can stand for quite a few infusions. Surprisingly not bitter for such a long steep time.

Too expensive to become a regular for me, but I’m really liking these oolongs.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 15 sec

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