New Tasting Notes
Let’s get these samples down! Tonight I compared this one and Rabbit Hole’s White Delight. Both lovely, my favourite way to serve them is at crazy opposite ends of the scale. This one definitely tastes best for me with sugar and cream. A crazy good dessert tea. It’s a bit too bitter for me on its own. Even with just cream it’s good, but sugar too takes it to another level.
I bought this from YS as soon as it was posted. When I received it, I actually did not care for it. The roast flavor was too strong, and there was a persistent bitterness.
Now that the tea has rested, it is very nice. The roast character is beautiful now, and while there is still some bitterness, it is easily managed, and is crisp and welcomed. Dan Cong character all the way, the sticks around for more steeps than you would expect. I think this will get better yet.
Hello, Steepster, long time no see! I took up going to the gym and studying for the LSAT more seriously recently, so I haven’t been around my computer lately (which I think is a good thing overall – I used to spend too much time sitting at my computer at home!). I also have been drinking mostly just Lady Earl Gray at work so I wouldn’t have had anything interesting to say anyway!
I did, however, try this tea at work last week. I had a little sample tin from a gift my coworker gave me so I took it to work and brewed it after lunch. It smelled quite nice, a little bit spicy and cinnamon-y. After about 3-4 minutes the colour of the tea was still very light and the aroma still mild, so I left the tea in for a little longer. When I took a sip, my head almost exploded.
This tea is seriously SPICY. Like my-mouth-and-throat-are-burining-and-I-can’t-breathe spicy! I obviously waaay over-steeped it, but I didn’t even leave it in for that long! I leave most teas in for longer than the recommended time because they end up being a bit too weak for my preference if I don’t. I was pretty shocked at my result this time, to say the least. I gave it a couple more sips, but I simply couldn’t drink this tea. I am not a fan of most chai teas, and this one is definitely not one I’ll ever try again. Down the sink it went.
I gave the sample to my mom, who in contrast with me loves most chais. Even she said that she found it super spicy and was really surprised at how strong it was, despite its light colour. I think that was another thing that threw me off – the colour remained quite light even if I left it in a bit longer. My mom had the same thought and left it in for like 10 minutes, as she reported to me. She said she drank it though, so that’s more than I accomplished, haha. Well at least she can have fun with it. I am staying away.
Yup, this is awesome.
I had a ton of doubts about this tea. First, the dry leaf reaks of perfume that my grandmother used to wear. However nice that scent may have been I don’t think it belongs in my teapot. Second, I’m not a big white tea drinker, and third this is flavored, so it’s usually not up my alley. Regardless, I grabbed my glassware and got to brewing. The steeped liquor tastes so damn good. The flavor begins with a light coconut and moves into a light citrus tone with honey. I can pick up some banana in the background along with a smooth floral note. The brew finishes with a tanged hay taste and dryness that cleans the palette. This is perfect for just before bed as a light dessert tea. I’m really surprised that I like this, and I’m really glad to have tried this.
Flavors: banana, Coconut, Floral, Flowers, Hay, Honey, Sweet, Vanilla
Getting this one out from the 2016 Sheng Olympics Package.
I opened this up and weighed 7 grams out from it. Saving the other half for a later session. Kudos to LP on breaking this one. Much better than I do it.
The dry leaf doesn’t seem to punch you with much aroma. Maybe a little Summer hay or something. I got the Gaiwan out and gave a quick rinse. That seemed to bring the notes out. It has the young sheng notes we all know. Warm wet hay vegetal with some hints of floral to it.
I did 3 quick steeps in a big mug as it is still hard to move with the leg. The color was a light yellow. Not much of the green edge that some have.
The sips on the tongue give hints of citrus and pine and the back edge has some sweetness.This one hits the tip and middle of the tongue and seems a touch thin but seems to thicken up in the mouth. The brew is very clear and has a clean finish. It loses a bit of the thickness as the cup cools a bit. This one does leave you tasting it for a while and the Hui Gan is present a bit even in this young tea.
I think this is in line with the other HLH products. Most that I have had have been processed and stored well and this in no exception.
Flavors: Citrus, Floral, Hay, Pine, Sweet, Vegetal
The tea that I brought with me on my trip to Italy, the tea that holds dear memories. This is the Dammann tea that I’m most looking forward to buy again. I was curious but sceptic when I decided to buy this because the flavouring is quite special… Vodka, prunes… But it smells delicious and it tastes delicious!
I would definitely recommend this unique tea. Though the price is not for the faint of heart. This is a very small production and rare #18 cultivar. This is a very distant cousin of Assam, but after 80 years of refinement, it takes on different dimensions. Hints of cinnamon, camphor, a very very slight citrus, caramel. The color is deep earthy red, just beautiful. Never bitter, even if you forgot how long you brewed it for. it happens to me…a lot in the mornings.
Flavors: Camphor, Caramel, Chestnut, Cinnamon
Well I did it, I finally saw The Force Awakens, took me long enough. I might lose all of my nerd cred, but I am not much of a Star Wars fan, it has always been a franchise I enjoyed but could not really get into, so that is why it took me so long. That and I hate theaters, crowds, going out in public, and of course being in a car for very long…so other factors. I did enjoy it though, it was predictable and nostalgia laden, but these things made it enjoyable, plus laughing at Kylo Ren’s emo self was immensely entertaining. Reminded me of my goth phase in high school, when I wore a mask and had a lightsaber.
Today’s tea is from Yunomi, a company who I have not visited on this blog in a while, so I thought it was time to change that. Looking at their Ocharaka: Hojicha Baked Apple Flavored Roasted Green Tea, a different take on one of my favorite teas, Houjicha! I am not a big fan of flavored teas anymore, I still drink them on occasion but usually I got for pure leaf or a blend, but once in a while I am craving a taste and don’t have access to it, usually that craving is food related and imitated in tea, so I reach for it to satisfy a craving. This time I was craving apple pie, so it seemed a perfect time to try this tea I had in my stash. Blending Houjicha, Ginger, Apple and Flavorings, this tea smells like tart apples and ginger with a strong caramel undertone. It kinda reminds me of the apple pie caramel lollipops they gave with the apple pie blizzards at Dairy Queen where I worked, hated the blizzards but man did I love those lollipops! There is also a toasted note that vaguely reminds me of crust, but mostly this tea’s aroma is all ginger and apple.
Into my little kyusu the leaves go for steeping, this pot is the perfect sized for a single me sized cup, I like small cups and I cannot lie! The aroma is a lot less tart and more baked sweet apples, toasted crust, and ginger. It does not exactly remind me of pie, but does remind me of cobbler which works for me! The liquid is very sweet with just a hint of tart apples and pie crust. Ok this tea officially smells like pie now.
Mmmm pie, in fact it tastes like slightly burnt pie, where the crust is burnt and the sugar has caramelized a bit. It is quite sweet and smooth with strong toast and ginger notes with light apples, luckily the apple tastes like apple and not apple candy, which I was a bit worried about from the aroma of the dried leaves. I found the apple notes to be strongest in the aftertaste or when the tea had cooled a bit. It is not an exact pie match, but it was close enough to ease my craving!
This is good. Really really good. I fell in love with this at first sip. Then I had to do it all over again the next day. Seriously, this is not just because I am the company that sells this tea. This is my kind of tea. Our tea farmer hand roasted this tea just over 7 times, and yet the result is …wow. wow. you know that sometimes, you drink a tea, and immediately you can tell when it is good. It’s that feeling. Will I drink this everyday ? Honestly, no. Because seriously, I am addicted to my Puerh. But I would drink this tea may be 2 to 3 times per week. or whenever my friends come over, and we need a good tea that we can brew many many times over conversation.
Flavors: Floral, Flowers, Sweet
Honestly, this is one of those teas I think is superbly unique. The leafhoppers bite the tea leaves, and its enzyme interacts with the leaves to naturally produce this honey fragrance. Personally, and seriously, I am not saying it because my company is selling this tea. But I like my oolong, puerh, and a good cup of strong black tea. This tea can be that, but for me, I find that I like this tea to brew for longer and drink when it is cooled to just slightly warmer than room temperature.
Flavors: Caramel, Citrus, Citrusy, Honey
2016 Sheng Olympics
Story time: Instagram is one of my favorite places and I kind of enjoy looking at all the pictures, so it’s of no surprise that I have AllanK on my radar. This is someone, like many of us, who really enjoys tea. Now, here is where this is relevant, he buys tea by the car load and hires an Uber driver to deliver it once it arrives to the post office nearest to him. That’s the amount of tea that he has, now just imagine how much he has tasted and how critical he can be on tea. After about a year of observing his pictures, seeing the difference between the old and new phone, and reading what he has to say I can say this with no doubt: Allan has no bias towards any particular shop and is always on the hunt for good tea whether it is through Ebay or a well known vendor.
Now, let me first say that Allan does not hire an Uber driver to deliver tea and that it’s not a car load at a time. Humor just has to find its way in this because I’m sipping away at this 2011 Bang Wei when I shouldn’t be… there is other teas that I can drink that would be in a better order as I won’t be drinking the 07’ for some time. I’m drinking this because of the review I read, some trust is put in my tea friend as he made remarks of it being good and those thoughts ate at me…
Upon brewing this, the aroma hit me like: you sir will be my date tonight. Sure enough, 16 steeps into this tea and I’ll probably hit 20+ no problem. I will agree with everything Allan said about this tea and I am quite glad that I added it to the 2016 Sheng Olympics. Pretty excited to try the 2007 as well, hoping that it has the clarity and sweetness that this tea has when it comes to having a pure taste that doesn’t deviate from the earlier steeps.
This and the 07’ version will be compared to the CLT in regards to what to purchase as I suspect they will all be similar because the You Le (YS) is more of the medium level sheng for my taste buds so it fits in a different category.