98 Tasting Notes

100
drank Thai Chai by Adagio Teas
98 tasting notes

Thanks so much for this, Rebecca! Steeped some of this up this morning to try to banish my cold (which is leaving pretty quickly anyway). I added a little bit of unsweetened soymilk and a small dab of honey. Oh man, this is great…it’s definitely unusual with the bright notes of the lemongrass. I like how the pepper feels smoky along the back of my throat. It’s just what I need right now. Also, this resteeps really well (adding 1 minute for each additional steep), especially for a chai. I can still feel and taste the delightful spiciness. I’m on the third steep now and will try for one more, which I think it’ll be able to do. This is just…lovely.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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My first time trying this. I thought I nearly forgot to include it in the tea I brought home with me for break—perish the thought!

This had a less earthy smell dry, but all of that changed once I rinsed the leaves. Mmm. It’s like walking along a forest path.

I didn’t take notes for individual steepings—I’m a little less fastidious about documenting my tea consumption at home, maybe because it might make my parents think I’m odd as fish. Like they don’t already. But I digress. Onto the tea.

This is unbelievably smooth. I think my words were “this is niiiice…”
Foresty, very very creamy, and sweet in an earthy way. It also develops into a crispness at the end that is really refreshing. In later steepings I got something slightly spicy like cinnamon bark. Pu’erh is a pretty fascinating universe, and I’m excited to explore this more! It’s delicious.

I really want to have some more today, but I’ve just come down with a light cold, so it would be a shame to have such a beautiful tea when I can’t taste the difference between oatmeal and tabouli. This’ll be one for later. Much later, actually, because in two days I’m headed to Costa Rica for the rest of January. Tally ho!

TeaBrat

Have fun!

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100
drank Matcha by Teavana
98 tasting notes

Just had some of this whisked up with some cocoa…bliss.

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100
drank Genmaicha by TeaSource
98 tasting notes

Finally having some more of this. It smells so much like burned popcorn that it often puts me off, but as I’ve been ripping through the green tea lately (especially as I try to avoid a cold), I wanted to come around to this again. I love Popped Rooibos, and it’s been compared to this sometimes (what with the toasted rice and all). Anyway…

Oh holy yum. It’s toasty and has that tasty sencha flavor that I now like. Almost a bit sweet from the rice, but more toasted than anything. Carries that popcorny taste. I don’t really like popcorn because I don’t like how it makes my mouth feel (dry, salty, kernel hulls stuck in my mouth), but I like this. Mmm.

Preparation
165 °F / 73 °C 4 min, 0 sec
SunnyinNY

I love Genmaicha tea! I am particularly fond of the Adagio Teas version. I will have to look into TeaSource.

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100
drank Hulu Green by TeaSource
98 tasting notes

Backlogging from yesterday.

Bye, Hulu Green; I’ve truly enjoyed your company. You showed me how nice greens could be, first with the help of a little honey, then all by yourself. Under your tutelage I began to appreciate the vegetal, slightly grassy taste of a good green—the taste of spring. It was with fondness and a little melancholy that I poured out your last leaves into my basket, inhaling that sweet springy aroma for the last time in a while. (But absolutely not the last…more greens are on the way soon.) Thanks for the education. 2012 will be brimming with more discoveries.

Preparation
165 °F / 73 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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100

Oh, holy yum. Made this in my new pretty tea set (with built-in ball filter!) that my aunt gave me. I’m on probably the 8th gongfu steeping, and it’s fabulous. Every time.

Preparation
Boiling

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100
drank Sencha Uji by TeaSource
98 tasting notes

Backlogging from yesterday.
Man, this is good. It’s got that grassy but sweetish green tea aroma and taste that I’m finally starting to like. Brought some of this up to the Twin Cities yesterday on a trip with the girls. This is going on the shopping list, as the quantity I have is a 1-oz sample.

Preparation
165 °F / 73 °C

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99

Had some of this this morning with my mum. She started feeling a cold coming on last night and we had to cancel our New Year’s Eve travel plans…bummer. I’ve been plying her with tea whenever she’s awake, especially green and rooibos. I love this one, and it didn’t disappoint this morning—clean, grassy, sweet, tangy, and fruity. She said this was mild and that she would like one with more flavor—when I asked her what she meant she said she wanted something darker. (Her taste buds are probably a little muddled, because I think this has lots of flavor!) I made her some Popped Rooibos to try too. She’s sleeping but I’ll ask her later what she thought…

Preparation
165 °F / 73 °C

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100
drank Matcha by Teavana
98 tasting notes

Back from school. Done with finals. At home.
I recently got a beautiful white bowl from an artist friend at school that has a lovely speckled eggshell glaze. I knew it would be perfect for matcha! (The bowl I had been using for matcha before was bright orange. It made the matcha look scary and horrible. Don’t do it.) I was super excited to try it out.

Used about 1 tsp, ~160 F water, and my chasen whisk. It was a little tricky to whisk it without splashing tea over the side of the bowl…maybe I filled it too high. I had a little trouble getting the foamy consistency, but this is only my second or so time. It’ll come with practice.

Anyway, onto the tea. This is my first time drinking matcha without any soymilk, agave, etc. I took a sip…delicious! I really like this. I’m glad, because it’s one of those things I’ve been trying to get myself to like. Very vegetal, slightly sweet, thick, comforting, warm. When I got to the bottom there was some sediment…I guess that’s unavoidable, especially if you take your time drinking it. I just added a little more water and whisked it again.

Yum!

Preparation
160 °F / 71 °C

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Backlogging from several days ago.
1 T leaves to about 5 oz water
1st steeping (5 second rinse): Strong vegetal aroma with a little floral sweetness. As I walk over to dump off the rinse water into the container I use to water my plants (they love it!), I can smell the deep, green, grassy aroma of cooked veggies…maybe asparagus. On a slightly related note, I’ve always preferred the bottoms of asparagus to the tops—they don’t get mushy and have much better flavor. Which made me an oddball of sorts. Go figure.
2nd steeping (about 5 sec): Lilac! Fresh spring greens, cut grass, spinach from the garden, lilac. Mmmm. Upon sipping, it’s slightly vegetal but mostly smooth and creamy.

E Alexander Gerster

This is an amazing tea!
I get the asparagus, creamy spinach and lilac flavors too. Sounds horrible, tastes great! :)

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Profile

Bio

I’m a college tea drinker.
I cook feverishly.
I draw.
I make movies.
I knit.
Someday I wish to own chickens.

I love tea because of the complete sensory experience it offers me. Clock time fades away as I lean into my cup, watching the delicate cascades of steam waft up from the brew. Peace. Stillness. Feeling centered. It’s my meditation…

To give you a little background on my tea preferences (which will put my ratings into perspective)…

I love teas that are strong without bitterness and have earthy flavors to them, like rooibos or a really good black tea. (A few favorites in this category: Toffee Almond Supreme, Popped Rooibos, Oh Canada, Nutcracker Sweet.) Vanilla, cinnamon, and nutty are some of my favorite flavor notes. After about a year of warming up to greens, I absolutely love them—from the sweet, nutty, green-tea-ice-cream-like to the bold, grassy earthiness of Gunpowder Temple of Heaven. I also enjoy a nice white every once in a while. Fruity teas aren’t my favorite. I do have a few fruity teas that I love though, like TeaSource’s Green Tea with Pomegranate, Lemon Solstice, and Blueberry Fields.

I drink all of my teas unsweetened; if a tea needs sweetening, I usually don’t like it. A couple of notable exceptions: I sometimes sweeten straight green teas and matcha, and I drink my chai with soymilk (but no other sweetener). I sometimes like my black tea with a little dollop of soymilk.

Location

Northfield, MN

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