New Tasting Notes
This was a sample from my dearest MzPriss! Thanks, pookie pie!
I like this one. It’s putting some pep in my morning. It’s pretty smooth, though it does have a little bite at the end.
I think it’s a pretty decent price for the quality and the age, too!
This was a sample given to me for review. As posted on Zen Tea’s review section:
I brewed this one Gong Fu style, keeping the temperature at about 80C for all infusions.
The first infusion was very light and seemed to have notes of coconut accompanying the green tea flavors. The expanded leaves are really beautiful (as are the dry ones but you can see those here)! Most of the leaves are whole with a bright green color.
The second infusion had more of a bitter background flavor that I personally really like in green tea. I think it happened because I steeped it for longer, creating a stronger brew. At this point there is an aftertaste that lingers and the coconut notes are gone.
The third infusion has had the bitterness recede and give way to sweetness.
The fourth and fifth steep were really weak and only had the lightest of flavor so I probably wouldn’t do a repeat of those but 3 infusions is pretty good for a green tea.
Thanks Zen Tea!
Dry leaf aroma: Malty with a hint of yeasty sweetness.
Dry leaf appearance: http://instagram.com/p/sZVQOaFcAE/
Wet leaf aroma: Malt and bread with a delicate earthy essence.
Wet leaf appearance: http://instagram.com/p/sZegualcJK/
Preparation: Brewed western style in a ceramic infuser mug.
First steeping: 3 minutes at 205 degrees. This tea is as much a pleasure to smell as it is to sip with its malty bread aroma. The liquor is velvety smooth with a strong freshly baked bread flavor and a subtle buttery mouth-feel. As the cup cools I detect a bit of sweetness and the aftertaste is bread with a buttery note that lingers pleasantly.
Second steeping: 5 minutes at 205 degrees. Very much like the first infusion. The buttery notes are more prominent and the mouth-feel is creamy with a yeasty aftertaste.
I wish I had time to do further steepings, as this is a tea worthy of taking your time to savor.
One thing to note, the key for me with Dian Hong is to underleaf slightly or it comes out a bit bitter. I think that has more to do with my taste buds being quirky rather than being an issue with the tea or my water. Regardless, this is an awesome tea. Lovely to look at, intoxicating to smell, and heavenly to sip!
Flavors: Baked Bread, Butter, Sweet, Yeasty
Good balance of black tea and rose petals. Scent of rose is overwhelming but taste is well balanced. This tea is good for both rose tea lovers and ones who don’t like the scent of rose too much. Perfect tea for enjoying and relaxing after a hard day.
Dry leaf aroma: Fruit and hibiscus with the faintest hint of cream.
Dry leaf appearance: http://instagram.com/p/sYeOEBFcI3/
Preparation: Brewed western style in a ceramic infuser mug.
First/only steeping: 5 minutes at 210 degrees. This tisane has a strong fruit and hibiscus aroma and brews a pinkish red liquor. The predominate flavor is tart fruit, with a very subtle note of cream at the end of the sip. While I cannot isolate the individual fruits, the infusion is neither too generic nor overly tart. However, the cream note throws me off and I am wondering if the Cream of Earl Grey sample packaged in the same mailing envelope contaminated this flavor profile.
I received this tea as a free sample, and I want to thank Good Life Tea for the opportunity to taste this.
Flavors: Fruity, Hibiscus, Tart
This is another sample from 221Tea – and this one I cold brewed. The idea was to try and recreate the delicious success I had with cold brewing Della Terra’s Minty Cow since these two blends are pretty similar. It worked.
Basically, this was like very smooth mint chocolate chip ice cream, but without as much vanilla in it as the Minty Cow. On the whole, Minty Cow is definitely better because of the vanilla aspect but for my mood at the time I drank this I think an absence of vanilla was more satisfying. Refreshing, and I suppose I’d drink it again if it was prepared the same way. Otherwise, not a restock and not a blend that holds my attention.
In a Timolino w. Milk.
But honestly the only reason I know that is because I wrote it down. I didn’t write anything else. This one just isn’t memorable and not worth my time, if I’m being really honest. I’m growing very sick of it very quickly.
This was probably a real waste of milk, too. Ugh.
Cold Brewed this sample from 221Tea who generously added it into are swap “way back” a few months ago. I’ve been sorta waiting for the so called “perfect” moment to drink it given how I’ve heard really good things, and I do love cold brewed coconut tea quite a bit.
And true to the reputation; this was amazing. I don’t know if I’d go as far as to say “life changing” or anything, but damn good. It was a refreshing, crisp and solid coconut taste with more of a confectionery edge to it than a tropic one and with nothing “tainting” or drawing away from the flavour. It even had a sort of frothiness to it that was very, very welcome.
Honestly, this could totally be my new “Coconut Grove” in so far as the strong, purely Coconut cold brewed tea department goes…
Except it’s a sipdown, so it’s not. But hopefully this’ll find its way back to me someday! I’ll be waiting, with open arms.
Welcome sipdown. This is one tea I definitely don’t need taking up cupboard space.
Anyway, I “flash” cold brewed this (three hours) after learning last time that this one gets really awful really quickly. And I mean really awful. But this time around it was drinkable, even if it definitely WAS NOT good. Basically it tasted like really, really, REALLY low quality coffee grounds.
I’m thinking I’m just not a “Roasted Barley Tea” kinda girl.
This is a dreadfully inaccurate sipdown number. My real sipdown number is actually much lower – but I’m very behind on recording notes, so this isn’t a true representation of what’s in my cupboard.
Alas, this was the last of this blend. I cold brewed it, and it was a pretty delicious send off. Rather black currant heavy, but still captured all the usual flavours really well regardless. This was definitely one of my oldest teas (almost a year old) and I feel that while the flavour did definitely deteriorate a little bit, this remained very consistent and true to the flavour when I bought it despite the age.
Side bar; I asked for wine recommendations a while back and I did pick out a red wine to try. Or rather, I had the really nice lady at the liquor store pick one out for me based on what you guy suggested and stuff (I tried on my own, but I was so out of my depth). I then got home with my wine, and realized that I do not own a corkscrew.
However, I “Life Hacked” the cork out of the bottle. Or rather, I should say into the bottle. Since I could find any of the commonly suggested tools for pulling a cork out without a cork screw, I pushed it into the bottle instead. It worked ok, actually. But it turns out, red wine might just not be for me – it tasted very nasty and overwhelming to me. And oddly enough had notes of french bread and very sharp cheddar. And that weirded me out, because aren’t those things you’re supposed to pair with the wine? Not taste on its own?
Anyway – Red Wine: Probably not my thing. This tea: Definitely gonna restock eventually, just not for a while. I’ve burned through a lot of this, and a break might be nice to spend time with other flavoured whites.
God, that sounded like a really fucked up breakup line.
Prepared in my timolino, drank something like 10 hours after actually making it. The deterioration of the temperature (this was pretty well just above room temp) really took away from the whole taste experience, and I feel like this was a waster thermos of tea.
That said, I did pick out some relatively askew notes of fig, dates, caramel, and plum. Base was a touch bitter; probably from sitting all day.
This was from the week where I worked 45 hours; all 9 1/2 hours days. I would get home after standing at till for nine hours straight or unloading/stocking freight for nine and a half straight hours and my everything would hurt and ache. I would hobble from the door to the couch and basically go straight to sleep.
My personal tea notes sucked last week; I struggled to put the effort in to write my usual list of short jot notes to guide my longer tasting notes. Even typing was a pain.
This one was in a timolino. Writing now, I vaguely remember it tasting smoky overtop of the faint, floral lychee notes. This is the only jot that I recorded that night though:
- Peppery Black Base?
Flavors: Black Pepper, Lychee, Smoke
It’s late, I’m tired, and Steepster’s server sucks right now but my tea queue is building to an almost scary point and I wont have much time to log stuff tomorrow because my best friend ever Robyn gets back into town for the new semester! She was gone all summer (because the lame-o lives in Regina, and is just going to school here in Saskatoon) but now school is starting again, and tomorrow is move in day!
I’m gonna go over later in the afternoon after she’s got all her stuff into the new dorm (this year she gets an apartment style dorm instead of the dinky ‘little cubby’ she had last year) and we’ll order pizza while I help her unpack! I’m so excited! Not that all you wonderful Steepsterites aren’t great, but in person friends are fantastic too.
So even though I’m tired I’m dedicating the next hour to as many tea notes as possible (so pardon the likely excessive typos) – starting with this one, which was a cold brew.
And, it was actually a pretty good cold brew. Like the hot cup, the raspberry was super fresh and super present – but somewhat unlike the hot cup, this cold brew definitely had more of a confectionery buttery pastry taste and frosting vibe to it. It wasn’t just raspberries; it truly was a raspberry poptart. And a refreshing, low cal’ one at that.
Also interestingly, the day I drank this tea I wore my “Cross Word” T-Shirt to work, which I haven’t done before. I really don’t think of this shirt as anything special; it just has a pattern over the whole thing that makes it look like a crossword before anyone has filled in any of the questions. Apparently the seniors at my mall got a real kick out of it though; at least four times in the day I had groups of seniors commenting on my crossword shirt and “how fun” it’d be to fill it out. I also had one senior, with an obvious lack of personal boundaries, reach over the counter at till and directly touch my shirt/me as he “wrote down some funny words” (as he put it).
Creepy, and uncalled for.
I Had to drop my rating down, after about 9 months my kettle up and died. The little readout still works but it won’t heat up my water anymore. Maybe I used it too much and it exceeded its lifespan…live fast and yard and die young.
I am so bummed about this, since this is pretty much the cheapest variable kettle on the market (with the ability to set and know the temperature) I am probably just going to get another one since it is all I can afford. And of course this happened when I have a million teas to review on my blog, thanks tea kettle…no really, you were awesome…but why did you have to die?
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Flavors: Almond, Anise, Apple, Apple Candy, Apple Skins, Apricot, Artichoke, Artificial, Ash, Asparagus, Astringent, Autumn Leaf Pile, Baked Bread, Bamboo, banana
I’ve had fresh lychee recently so I felt rather spoiled until I ran out. I was craving and this was an impulse purchase. This lychee oolong is a rather mild lychee flavor, much milder even than generic grocery store lychee tea. As an oolong the base was smooth, light, and more on the green side than roasted. Actually probably not at all roasted. I will repeat that the lychee flavor is mild and maybe kind of muddled because of it. For me it tends to be a odd mix of lychee/logan/other fruitiness.
It’s nice, but I think I much prefer the one from Butiki.
I’ve been browsing through jetpens and amazon for some new fountain pens. Some of my daily carry pens were stolen recently and the lack makes me sad all over. I’m thinking of trying the pilot metro in F, or perhaps a good sturdy Lamy Safari. There’s apparently also a new line by Kaweco called Skyline. Anyone have recommendations under $40?