New Tasting Notes
ladies and gentlemen..i am a slacker. I’ve been drinking teas lately but not logging them and i’ve barely felt like being in front of my computer when i’ve been home. Rest assured, i’m not gone, not running away…just taking a break but still drinking through my cupboard :)
I finished this one up the other day and while i’m sad to see it go, i’m grateful for a little more space in my cupboard lol This is another delicious offering from Mandala.
So, for the teas that I won’t have a chance to review on the SororiTea Sisters blog, I guess I’ll go over here and review them (I am still very very backlogged with the teas that I need to review that have already published on SororiTea Sisters, and maybe I’ll get around to that soon, but right now, I’m too busy with other things that I can’t worry too much about getting the teas posted in both places.)
OK, so when I first got this, I was a little worried because I thought that maybe the lavender might take over and it might taste perfume-y, but it doesn’t. The lavender is pleasant and subtle and melds really nicely with the spice notes. It’s not a particularly spicy chai, it’s got some gentle notes of ‘chai spice’ that tastes a little ginger-y and a little cinnamon-y with a hint of clove. The black tea is brisk and flavorful.
It’s a really enjoyable iced tea.
The kind Ost gave me this to try a while back, and I’m just now getting around to it.
Could Wedding Tea be the same as the Royal Wedding Tea? Maybe. I’m not sensitive enough to white teas. In fact, I know I am not. More experimentation is needed!
But the general opinion is positive. This is an interesting tea.
Note to self: buy MF in France, or Europe in general, where it’s half the price of buying it in Canada (not including shipping). When I grabbed this box of sachets in Holt Renfrew what seems like ages ago now, it was $25-30 (maybe $40? I remember it being ridiculous, but dammit, I wanted it). Same thing in France, when I went to one of the MF stores? The equivalent of $20 CDN. Getting it loose is much, much cheaper than that.
I knew however that I had some of this still at home, so I’m doing to drink and fully enjoy it before I buy more. Because as we all know, I already have way too much tea. (still over 500.. sigh)
Anyway, onto the tea. The French are the only ones that can do flowers in tea where I love it. I wish every tea maker took their lead with this… regardless, this is a bit astringent today (likely because I just had some unsweetened sea salt chocolate), yet delicately sweet, full in the only way tea can be when it’s got (good) flowers in it, and, well, marvellous. I think in the future I want to steep this one a bit less though… finding something a bit off (which again might be the chocolate).
Flavors: Flowers, Sweet
Definitely liked this more as it cooled (more chocolate) but the cinnamon threw me off. I haven’t had a cinnamon brownie before, and so this was a bit of an odd combination.
Yes, I know, this isn’t a new—to-me tea, I’ve had it since one of my first forays into mass quantity buys with Dexter. Thing is, I’d obviously lost it, so maybe this is a perk of having a housesitter that moves your entire tea stash: rediscovering teas you completely forgot about.
Flavors: Chocolate, Cinnamon, Thick
Grabbed this when I was at Pike Place Market maybe sometime last summer (?) when I ran into Kevin Smith and Jason Mewes in the elevator of my hotel room. Fun!
This seems like a straight black blend from the description, although I’ve yet to hear of a varietal called Lychee (like Ceylon or Assam). The staffer told me this was her favorite tea (I always buy a small sample that the person serving me suggests when traveling), so $0.81 and about, um, 12 cups worth and a year later, Í’m trying it.
Actually had it yesterday.. going on memory.. was surprisingly sweet on it’s own, full bodied like an English Breakfast, and quite lovely. Very different than most straight blacks I’ve had, with zero maltiness, just a sweetness that I can’t quite place.
I never have enough time on Thursdays, what was once my favorite day of the week is more and more becoming one of my least favorites. Oddly enough, I am being overwhelmed by gaming, who would have thought? Seafall Playtesting and D&D, while both being immensely enjoyable, just eat up so much time. And with sharing a computer and Ben needing it a lot lately, I have fallen so behind in things that it has become a source of massive stress. Tomorrow is shaping up to be crazy too, going house hunting and such, so maybe…just maybe…this weekend I can catch up on things. What I really need to do is stop letting things overwhelm me, go back to practicing Wu Wei and just chill out, be as water and let things flow.
Philosophy and stress aside, it is Thursday, meaning it is time for a Throwback! Today we are taking a look at Golden Moon Tea’s Coconut Pouchong, a blend of Pouchong Oolong (Bao Zhong as it is also called) and Coconut Extract. At the time of procuring this tea, I was having a serious coconut craving and just kept being disappointed by various ones I tried. I should have immediately gone to oolong blended with coconut, but for some reason the idea sounded kinda nasty, in hindsight, maybe it was because I was drinking mostly roasted oolongs at the time, I could see roasted oolong and coconut tasting weird…or really good…not sure. Anyway, I am rambling, the long, curly, and fairly green leaves smell really delicious, like mouthwateringly so, blending creamy sweet coconut (like breaking into a fresh coconut rather than coconut milk or water) with chestnuts, toasted almonds, and a slightly distant floral finish. The aroma is super creamy and rich, bordering on buttery, it is super intense, definitely the most ‘coconutty’ of the various coconut teas I have sniffed.
In my steeping basket, the entire room smells like coconut. Feel bad for Ben, since he hates coconut with a passion, like he doesn’t even like curries with coconut, and those tend to be really mild, so tragic! Really though, it is pervasive, like a tropical breeze slowly drifting out of my cup like a heady mist. All I get is coconut in the wet leaves, the liquid, however is joined by nutty notes of chestnut and a delicate orchid aroma.
First off, let’s discuss this mouthfeel, it is super creamy, it is one of those mouthfeels that coats the entire mouth, bordering on oily…much like eating coconuts! The taste, well, unsurprisingly it starts out with a full blast of coconut, like blending fresh coconut and refreshing coconut water (I love that stuff, one time on a 22 hour bus trip I brought two huge containers of it and drank nothing but coconut water, good times) it is intensely rich. The midtaste is chestnuts and sweetness, and the finish has a delicate touch of orchids that lingers. As the tea cools (one of the joys of drinking out of a mug, you get to experience the slow taste change as the tea cools) it brings out more of the floral and chestnut notes.
I went for a second steep, the aroma is still intensely coconutty, but it no longer fills the entire room turning it into a tropical adventure. There is a note of spring vegetation and chestnut as well! The taste is still intensely coconut, and the mouthfeel smooth, but this steep lets the Bao Zhong base shine through more, bringing out more the floral and fresh vegetation notes. Notes of orchid and honeysuckle blend delicately with growing things and fresh leaves. On a whim once I gaiwaned this tea and got a whopping eight steeps out of it before the coconut died, oddly brewing it in a gaiwan made it less nuanced, which I found fascinating. I got this as a sample, loved it, and then bought a large pouch of it…drank a few cups…and then have not touched it since. The coconut is so intense in this tea that you really have to be in the mood for coconut, and this tea satisfied that craving so thoroughly I have not really craved it since. I know I will want it again, which is why I have not traded or gifted it away.
Flavors: Chestnut, Coconut, Floral, Orchid
Not really much to say here. I’ve kind of lost interest in green teas for awhile, although occasionally I enjoy a cup, but there aren’t very many in my collection anymore. I have Teavivre’s beautiful nonpareil cha wang tai ping you kui, some kai matcha in the freezer, some gunpowder green than Steph sent to me awhile back, the last of the meditative mind (teaspot), & this (sent by SIL, of course!). So…it’s ok, but not something I’d ever crave or want. It mostly takes like laoshan green, which is one of my preferred greens when I’m into them, and it makes for a nice afternoon cup, but that’s about it. Sip down.
This one makes a really damn good London Fog, The Vanilla and Bergamot in this one is quite gentle but the flavor is quite nice. I don’t think of it as a Darjeeling but as an Earl Grey version, I usually like earl grey with really strong Bergamot but I appreciate the subtle bergamot in this one, its lovely.
I like it :)
Flavors: Bergamot, Fruity, Vanilla
Aha! Friends, if you could see me, you would see in my eyes the madness of a woman on a sipdown spree. I am on a mission. I want things out of the cupboard!
So, I’m finishing this up this afternoon. Farewell, oh White Chocolate! You and I never really got along, through no fault of our own. Alas!
I never really got the chocolate part of white chocolate out of this. I got floral instead! Of all things!
But oh well. Its just a memory now. Sipdown!
Another great sample from Garret!
Definitely get vanilla throughout all the steepings that gets creamier the longer you steep.
For some reason I couldn’t get the flavor strength to my liking, despite some extended steep times(4 and 6 minutes after the initial 45sec.)
I still have 4g left, going to experiment with the last bit with even longer steep times and will update afterwards.
Flavors: Cream, Leather, Vanilla