41 Tasting Notes

90

I’m upping my rating. The last time I had this tea, I was back in the midwest for 2 weeks in horribly hot weather in September, with amazing stress levels through the roof. As I had only received a sampler and was constantly interrupted trying to have a morning cup, I didn’t have a decent chance to really think about it, I was just trying to gulp down as much caffeine as I could get.

I like this one. I really like this one. If I could realistically afford it, this would be the one I drank most of the time. No bitterness, no astringency. A nice mouth feel, almost creamy or buttery like. A flavor element that makes me think of freshly baked whole wheat bread.

Added note – there is a small amount of astringency present once it goes cold. I wonder why that happens as this isn’t the first time I’ve noticed that with a tea.

Flavors: Baked Bread, Butter, Creamy

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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40

I am not fond of this one. I can’t identify the flavor aspect I don’t like (missing vocabulary again I suspect) but I’m not found of it.

Its not bitter, doesn’t appear to be heavy on tanins, just not my cup of tea. I’ll finish the order, but won’t buy this one again.

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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70

I’ve decided to up my rating on this tea. I’ve been drinking it a lot recently (cold weather always makes me want tea) and I haven’t really been noticing that odd taste when it cools down like I did before. Not sure what happened there.

There are others from Whispering Pines I prefer more (Golden Snail or North Winds), but this is enjoyable in its own right.

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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80

I’m upping my rating on this one. I’ve been happily drinking it all day so far and it just hits the spot for this cold wet day.

(Its 20 degrees warmer today than it was all weekend or last week, but the rain just makes it seem colder.)

I don’t think I’ve hit the astringency this time around. Maybe I’ve been drinking fast enough that it hasn’t had time to get cold. Busy day and I haven’t had much time to contemplate the subject.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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70

I enjoy the tatse fo this when it is hot. No real astringency, seesm smooth, etc.

However, when it cools down, and my tea always ends up going cold before I finish it, it has an odd sort of taste. Kind of like that instant iced tea mix that was popular when I was a kid (can’t remember the name). And that brings up negative associations.

The wet leaf is quite attractive. Kind of reminds me of shredded cedar chips that are wet from the rain. Looks very pretty.

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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85

I like this one. Such tiny looking curled up leaves are cute. Exactly what I’m wanting this morning. Warm, smooth, relaxing to sip on after a 2 hour commute to work this morning. Flavor stays good even after its had a chance to cool down (this office is way too cold).

And, of course, its out of stock. Otherwise I’d get more for myself for Christmas.

Ohh, but the Imperial Gold Buds are in stock again. My poor bank account,

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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80

I like this one. Its got a flavor I have been enjoying, though if it gets too cool a little astringency shows up. I got 3 very good steeps out of the leaves yesterday.

For the most part is a mellow flavor, but I find I don’t really have a good vocabulary to describe it well.

I can see myself putting this into my normal rotation on at least a semi regular basis.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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70

Day #2 now and still going on the same teaspoon of leaves. I did end up spreading the leaves out on a paper towel over night. When I got into work this morning, they almost looked like they hadn’t been used at all.

Anyway, they are starting to loose some oomph now. Boiling water at 4 minutes and its starting to get a little weak. The color is now a lovely light honey color.

Astringency is almost completely gone (though you still notice it once it gets cold).

Tried for a fifth steep, but I think I’m pushing it. Nice color still, but not much of any flavor left. Added a tsp of a coconut chai (its wet and chilly out) and that will see me through the rest of the day.

This really isn’t a tea I can see myself buying more of, but it was enjoyable and it was very close to what I was in the mood for.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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70

Any mothers out there ever noticed that as soon as you lock the bathroom door and start filling the tub with warm water that the kids start severing major arteries, break bones, set things on fire, flood what they don’t set on fire, break windows, loose a sibling or two, and electrocute anyone who makes the mistake of approaching the front door?

(Well ok, while I’m not a mother, I have numerous nieces and nephews and have witnessed this phenomena many times.)

I think of this every time I attempt to try a new tea while at work. Its like the universe is psychic, knowing exactly when the water starts to boil in the kettle. Access points go down, someone starts rebooting the router over and over (because the APs have gone down, which have nothing to do with the router). Machines start crashing, servers stop responding, vital passwords have been forgotten and must be reset this very instant, etc.

Yeah, this was one of those days.

So, to the tea. I got this as a sample in my latest Whispering Pines order. The name didn’t ring any bells and it was not listed on the site. With some searching around, I found an instagram post referring to this tea as something being tried out. Yay, I get to be a Guinea pig. :)

The leaves are very pretty and look to be whole leaves tightly rolled. Kind of hay like in color. I’m assuming this is a black (yeah, I’m real educated on tea here).

First steep finishes right before an all projects engineering meeting starts. Great, I need the caffeine. Cup is mostly gone and is cold by the time I realized I haven’t noticed one little thing about it. Try to pay attention to the next few sips. It seems a little astringent to my pallet. Not horribly so like you might get in a breakfast tea, but it is an element I notice the most.

Its now lunch time so after I eat I go for steep number two.
I’ve noticed the leaves have plumped out a little bit, but they really are still rather tightly rolled. Steep for another 3 minutes. The color of the tea is lovely. Kind of reminds me of the color of home made caramel sauce. The flavor is much less astringent, though there is still a little there.

The flavor is hard for me to describe. Mostly because I just don’t have the vocabulary, but also mostly just because I can’t taste all the things people list in their tasting notes. I do like it. The kind of thing I was wanting this morning. Too bad its afternoon now by the time I’m getting a chance to really try it.

Its now late afternoon and I go for a 3rd steep. Four minutes this time and I swear these leaves are still going strong. Color is still that of caramel. Astringency is now almost gone. Too bad its now time to go home.

I’m half tempted to spread the leaves out on some paper towels and let them dry over night so I can keep going in the morning. The leaves are still rolled up pretty tightly

I’m not rating this yet as I really haven’t had the chance to give this much attention. Maybe to be continued tomorrow.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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75

A long queued note as I needed some time to think this one over.

While in search of a chai that isn’t dominated by clove, this was recommended to me.

Results? I’m torn. First, no clove. Absolutely a plus! Otherwise, its good, but not something I’ll go out of my way for. There’s a flavor element I’m not 100% fond of and while I’m not sure what it is, maybe its the basil?

It is interesting enough to me, however, that I have just made a second purchase which includes the Golden Snail base for this blend.

I’m almost done with the ounce I ordered and I’ll likely finish it before the week is over.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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Profile

Bio

Rating Details:

100 – Amazing!
91-99 – Love it
76-90 – Staple
61-75 – If I’m in the right mood
46-60 – If it’s what is available
31-45 – Will finish out of guilt
0-30 – Gave or threw away

All reviews are purely subjective based upon my personal preferences alone.

Location

Seattle Area

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