Featured & New Tasting Notes

66

Hmm…really wasn’t feeling this tea. It seemed like it was lacking all the bright/vibrant flavors that make green tea good. The wet leaves had a salty vegetal or seaweed aroma. The first couple steeps were alright, with some light corn sweetness and a bit of astringency. As the little balls started to open up, the tea got quite bitter, to the point where I had to lower my steep times back down. I got some vegetal notes and a brief citric note at one point. I will try this again with lower temp or cold brew.

I don’t know if this tea is just a little old for green tea or what, but it was pretty flat, bitter, and just meh overall.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
Rasseru

try it at 70c?

Matu

Yea that’s probably what I’ll do next :)

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I…am a monster. I have my three desks set up as a sort of cubicle, giving me access to my computer, Xboxone, tea desk, and painting station all at once (since I am always doing a million things at once.) Well I was sitting at the computer and rolled my chair straight back to get some tea…and heard a noise. I was unaware that Espeon was sleeping on the floor behind my chair, so I just smooshed my chair right into her. She is fine…glaring at me…but fine, and I feel like a jerk, sorry Espeon.

Feeling guilt for inconveniencing the cat aside, it is time to move to day two of the Gramercy Tea week with Mengding Ganlu Green Tea, a delicate, fluffy, green from Sichuan and a fairly recent discovery for me(recent as in the first time I had this type of tea was only about a year ago.) I’ve developed a real love for teas from Sichuan, and this tea has become a favorite. The aroma of this tea is vegetal, blending sauteed bok choy, artichokes, bamboo leaves, cut grass, and a touch of fresh broccoli. Alongside the veggie notes is a nutty starch quality blending cooked rice, sesame seeds, and the most distinct aroma of water chestnuts I have ever run into short of smelling a water chestnut!

Brewing the fuzzy leaves bring out even stronger vegetal notes, really ramps up the savory quality with notes of Lima beans, sesame seeds, water chestnut, bok choy, and edamame…it kinda smells like stir fry and the umami quality is making me hungry. The liquid is a bit of a contrast, with sweeter notes of snap peas, Lima beans, water chestnut and fresh bok choy rather than cooked.

The name Ganlu translates to sweet dew, and you know, it is a pretty apt name, the sweet and green taste is reminiscent of morning dew on plants. The first steep is thick in the mouth, with a slight tickle from all those fuzzy trichomes, It starts with a mildly savory quality of Lima beans and cooked Brussels sprouts. It them moves to notes of edamame and artichoke, with a sweet finish of snap peas and water chestnut. The aftertaste is also snap peas and lingers for a short time with a sweet vegetal quality.

Onward to the next steep, the leaves are really unfurling at this point! The aroma is quite green with notes of lima beans, snap peas, and asparagus with a tiny water chestnut finish. Second steep is super vegetal, strong notes of asparagus, Brussels sprouts, bean sprouts, artichoke, and edamame. It is very savory and has a subtle sweet finish of snap peas that linger, though not overly long.

The third steep is starting to show its age, the aroma is mostly sweet snap peas and water chestnut with a dew like quality. The previous steep was all about the savory vegetal quality, this steep brings the gentle sweetness, notes of water chestnut, fresh spring water, and snap peas dance around in my mouth, with a slight sugar cane sweetness at the finish. There is only a light aftertaste, like the fleeting morning dew disappearing with the afternoon’s sun.

For blog and photos: http://ramblingbutterflythoughts.blogspot.com/2016/07/gramercy-tea-mengding-ganlu-green-tea.html

MrQuackers

How much tea did you use? How long was it steeped for? This tea was sent to you for review.

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80

Today marks a week that I’ve been addled with this summer flu or cold or whatever it is: chest, cough, achiness, headache, exhaustion. Horrible. My taste buds are still away on leave, though a bit of the chocolate is peeking through so perhaps things are looking up.

The past week, teas have pretty much been comforting carriers for a big spoon of honey.

Zennenn

I hope you feel much better soon!

VariaTEA

Hope you start feeling better soon. Now is a goo time to drink up all the teas you hate :P

Sil

booooo on being sick. hope that is almost over for you!

Evol Ving Ness

Thank you! Absolutely on the mend here, but you know, the body takes its time. The problem with the whole sick tea concept is that when one is sick, there is no energy available to look for the teas you hate.

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80
drank CTRL+ALT+DEL by Pluck
1622 tasting notes

A sample from Miss B! This one has had me intrigued for a while, from the name to its rather odd appearance. I finally got around to trying it today, and the first thing I noticed is the incredible scent – sherbet lemons, pretty much as soon as the leaf hit the water. I went for a pretty quick brew time with this one – no more than 2 minutes. The leaf is so fine that I didn’t honestly think it’d need more than that.

To taste, it’s actually pretty good. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but it’s very much in line with the scent – a sharp initial lemon flavour, followed by a sweet sherbet-like hit, with just a touch of warming, spicy ginger at the end of the sip.

Rather unexpectedly, I’m a fan :)

Preparation
Boiling 1 min, 30 sec 1 tsp

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Drank this tea during a Google Hangout; more of you get in Slack and join us :)
https://www.instagram.com/p/BIQNXg2gLkl/

So… I pulled this out because I wanted an oolong right, but I really wasn’t ready for the complexity of this tea as I was expecting a tea that would die quickly with some fairly sharp note of light grass with sweetness and a floral punch like a tieguanyin normally is for me.

This tea opened up and brewed wonderful, middle level viscosity, sweet low roasted oolong goodness. I went to go buy some online while in the chat with the thought ‘yeah, I’ll shell out $10 this week for an ounce of this’ as I got to the 8th steep and it was still going. Well, turns out this is out of the price range I am looking for…
http://daoistmeditation.com/product/taiwan-organic-honey-tieguanyin/

It’s one amazing tea that doesn’t die as quick as you think it would. I got over 12 steeps and each one had the nice medium hue and thickness to the liquid. Quite an enjoyable session, now I’m left with only 18 grams; but it’ll do :)

Daylon R Thomas

Sounds lovely :)

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81

I am told this is the same as the 1998 White Tuo from W2T, but since I bought this sample from BTT, I thought it only fair that I review this here.

Whew! Talk about earthy! Brewed this gongfu style from 212 all the way down to 160 and back up. The strongest flavor is earthy and tastes very much like green peanuts. Green peanuts are a southern delicacy that barely taste anything like regular peanuts, so don’t go thinking I am calling this a nutty tea! That being said, since green peanuts are often moldy, I wonder how much of this tea’s flavor comes from mold, ha.

As the temperature of the water lowers, the peanut flavor reduces down to really, really old books.

As I keep stating, it was intellectually stimulating, but not a flavor I would seek out. In addition, this tea also gave me that shaky, over caffeinated feeling. I wasn’t a huge fan of that.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec
Matu

Was there visible mold on it? Or did it just taste kind of moldy?

Hoálatha

I didn’t see any mold on it, no. I’m thinking it’s just the storage type that made it taste moldy.

Wocket

The white tuo is notoriously dank. If you have more, let it breathe for a while before revisiting. Breaking a chunk off well in advance may also be warranted.

Matu

Fair enough :) Shou pu funk often evokes thoughts of mold when I taste it…part of why I don’t like shou that much lol

Hoálatha

I just have a sample in a sealed glass jar. Are you saying that I should leave it out of the jar next time?

Wocket

For a week or two ahead of time, I would.

mrmopar

Agree on letting it breathe.

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74

So after trying this gongfu yesterday and finding the flavors rather light, I decided I’d try it western style using some longer steep times. I used 5.2g in an 8oz teapot with steep times of 2m, 4m, 10m. If anything, all three steeps were even weaker than my gongfu session! So, I must conclude that this is just a very light tea. Nothing wrong with that – it’s also smooth and quite easy to drink. It never got bitter, even when steeped for ten minutes. Just a little light and a touch boring to my palate. Glad I got to try it though :)

Flavors: Malt, Plums, Smooth

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 0 sec 5 g 4 OZ / 118 ML

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70

Opened this one today. On first sip, it actually reminds me quite of lot of French Toast Dianhong, in as much as the creamy vanilla flavour is very similar, and the black tea base is quite light and definitely chocolatey. I used 1 tsp of leaf for my cup, and gave it 3 minutes in boiling water. I wasn’t sure whether to go with boiling at first because of the oolong, but I figured it was worth a try – I mean, what’s the worst that could happen?

I almost get vanilla chocolate brownie from this one, except the flavour isn’t quite as full or rich as that would suggest. All the elements are there, though, and I might try a longer brew time for my next cup to see how that impacts things.

The oolong is a lot less prominent than I thought it might be. Mostly, I can taste the Fujian black and the vanilla, with only a little woodiness/mineral from the oolong. Also, something that’s putting me in mind of coconut. It works, though, somehow! A delicious start to the morning, and the work week.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp

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74

I think between group buys and swaps, I have three different Georgia Black teas to try. This is the first I’ve gotten to – acquired in a swap with JK7Ray I believe.

The dry leaves had a sour plum aroma, a little lesser after the first steep, surprisingly. This tea was light in flavor and body and quite simple as well, but I wouldn’t consider those negatives. Just different. I got 11 steeps with this black tea, starting with a couple at 12s, then 20s and increasing by 10s at a time until the last few where started increasing steep times faster. As I said, the flavor was consistent through most of the session – Malty plums, with an occasional sour note, not quite citrus fruit, more like an herbal lemongrass flavor. Only got it on like two steeps, and not consecutively. May try it Western style next time, as I’ve heard these Georgian teas can do better that way. So annoying to get out my big teapot and stuff though ;)

Flavors: Lemongrass, Malt, Plums

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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Excessive length warning
Also – if you’re reading this, shah8, don’t.

I walked into the office. Still no messages, no work, no anything. I lift the lid off the pot – nothing inside. I know the landlady will be by again soon, asking about the last two months worth of rent. Going to be another long day.

Suddenly there’s a knock at the door. I don’t really want to face her, but she has a key anyhow, and I’ll just look silly standing here not having answered. I prepare a conciliatory face and throw the door open.

It doesn’t take me long to realize that I’ve misjudged the situation. Leaf like this – she shouldn’t even be in this part of town. A gentle scent wafts to my nostrils. It’s going to take me a minute to bend down and retrieve my jaw from the floor.

When I finally manage to make eye contact, two things are clear. One, this is a reaction to which she is totally accustomed. Two, she has done a much better job sizing me up in the interim than I’ve done of observing her. Her eyes are penetrating, and she knows everything at a glance. Even more shockingly, she hasn’t cut and run.

“Are you going to invite me in?” she asks. I move out of the doorway and beckon her in, not trusting my voice yet. She makes herself at home, clearly in command of the situation. It seemed as if she would always be in charge, no matter what the situation was. But with that aura, men and women alike would follow.

“Did you make a wrong turn, Miss…?” I manage to choke out. She turns a wry smile on me that is clearly designed to turn off all rational brain capacity, and it’s working well. “Hugin sent me,” she said simply.

Ahhh, Hugin. Her name is legend around these parts. Nobody had ever made it out of this part of town – until Hugin managed it. Nobody seemed to know how’d she managed to break out of here, but rumors placed her in an impossibly nice part of town, drinking 88 Qingbing from a diamond encrusted gaiwan. An exaggeration, I had assumed, but if she could afford to pass something like this my way, perhaps I’d underestimated her meteoric rise of fortune.

“…and you are?” I probed, trying to gather necessary info without driving this opportunity away. “They call me the Ice Queen,” she said, gazing at me to judge my reaction. But I knew what had happened to my predecessor in this chair when he was unable to contain his mirth at a man who glossed himself the “God of Night Sweats”. He wasn’t seen for weeks, until the fishermen down at the bay started bringing him up piecemeal. I didn’t flinch or crack a smile.

“Shouldn’t you offer a lady a drink?” she asked, in a manner that answered the question. I decided I needed one too, to calm my nerves. I found in her presence that it went down immensely smooth, with a flavor that lingered in the back of the throat. After a few rounds it was becoming clear she’d still be going strong when I’d fallen under the table. It was time to cut to the chase.

Our discussions were lengthy, and frankly, none of your business. I was immensely comfortable in the lady’s company, but I didn’t have the resources to bring to bear for a situation of such magnitude. She left a memento “for me to remember her by,” and the taste even now lingers on my lips.

It killed me to watch her walk out my door, but I simply don’t have the assets to take care of a lady who’s grown accustomed to such a comfortable lifestyle. She’s totally worth it, but I’m just a man trying to make it in the cold, uncaring city.

If she knocks on your door, however, you should let her in. Treat her nicely, and you won’t regret it. As you sit in your chair, thinking of the unusually fine times in your life, if you don’t have riches or power, a day like that can bring a smile to your face when nothing else will.

And you can’t put a price on that.

Cwyn

Bravo! Nice review, fun story.

Zennenn

Loved it!

Bitterleaf

That was better than anything I could have said about the tea. Well done!

sirturtletheknight

What great fun!

mrmopar

This is a fantastic note. I wish I had the eloquence for writing as this.

Wocket

Thank you all – I do enjoy writing my thoughts on teas, and nice ones like this tend to provoke a more… unique reaction?

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76

There are a variety of good and bad notes to this tea. First there was virtually no fermentation flavor, maybe just a tiny amount in the first steep but I’m not even sure about that. There was a nice semi sweet note to this tea from early on. There was also an unpleasant note that developed for a few steeps, I really didn’t identify it. I would say the main positive note might be described as mushrooms, maybe. Maybe something else would be a better description. Also, in my opinion the fermentation taste had been replaced by a kind of flat tasting note. It wasn’t real strong or anything. Just a bit of a flat taste mixed in with the good and the bad notes. I would also venture to say that it had developed some notes from it’s storage, not necessarily bad notes. I’m not sure if this was at least somewhat wet stored. It did not have the traditional note of wet storage so it may have been dry stored. As to the age, I have little doubt that Scott sold me an aged ripe. The lack of fermentation taste say that the age of 2004 is just about right. If it had cleared due to wet storage, not age, I should have tasted some wet storage notes. Overall I have mixed feelings about this tea. It was not bad, it just was not that great. For $50 I kind of expected a better tea. Although admittedly $50 is not a bad price for a 2004 tea in general. Part of me liked this tea, part of me did not. As to qi, I think I am feeling some right now. That to me is unusual for a ripe so I will call that a bonus for this tea. How often do you find a ripe with any qi to it. It’s more of an energizing qi than a relaxing qi. In the end I am not going to recommend this one or not recommend this one. It’s one that I feel was a nice experience overall. It’s just there were negative things about it as well as positive.

I steeped this tea twelve times in a 180ml teapot with 12.1g leaf and boiling water. I gave it a 10 second rinse. I steeped it for 5 sec, 5 sec, 7 sec, 10 sec, 15 sec, 20 sec, 25 sec, 30 sec, 45 sec, 1 min, 1.5 min, and 2 min. I stopped at twelve because I have really hit my caffeine limit but this tea would definitely go a few more steeps. It was not quite done.

Flavors: Mushrooms

Preparation
Boiling 12 g 6 OZ / 180 ML

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71

Opening the packet is tricky but I do it eventually. Once opened I pull out a large piece of cake which has remained whole despite it’s journey. There are quite a few golden tips present on the outside of the cake and a beautiful shine. Some of the golden tips have downy hairs that I can stroke, as though the Pu Erh were an animal. I don’t know why I decided to stroke it…perhaps the heat is getting with me? Further inspection shows dark brown leaves the colour of old, dark chocolate. The cake remnant bares a soft, dry wood and clay scent.

Steeping Parameters: 220ml Glass Gongfu Teapot. Tea Leaf 12g. Boiling Water. 2 Rinses each of 15 seconds.

First Steep – 15 seconds

Colour is golden orange with a soft clay scent.

Flavour is mild with some sweetness and an earthy, dusky wood tone toward the after taste. The more I drink the more I can define the sweetness to being brown sugar like.

Second Steep – 20 seconds

Still soft with brown sugar and dusky wood tones, but with added dryness.

Third Steep – 30 seconds

Darker though still soft. Less sweet and more musky now, with old wood and dry earth notes that linger in the after taste. Also the tea liquid is dark at this point too, like red soy sauce.

Fourth Steep – 45 seconds

Slightly sour in this steep and the wood is coming through with some cocoa notes. Still dry and mildly sweet.

Sixth Steep – 1 minute

Similar to the previous steep though with more clay and dryness. It reminds me of autumn, the dry, musky leaves crunching under my feet as I walk through a forest. The smells of an autumn forest match this flavour quite nicely.

Seventh Steep – 2 minutes

An increase of musk though still soft and the sourness is slight. Very wooden.

Overall – I found this Shou to be mild and delicate throughout the steeps which made it difficult to describe the flavours. At least it was consistent throughout. I would say this is an everyday Shou for Pu new drinkers or those that prefer softer teas. Personally I like strength and depth in my tea which this just didn’t have, though despite that it was drinkable and pleasant enough. I had some difficulty breaking up the cake piece so I did it by hand in the middle of my steeps, partly to see if it increased strength.

I honestly cut this steeping short, originally I planned on 10 steeps rather than 7. Don’t get me wrong, it really isn’t a bad Shou when it comes down to it; my personal preference is just that and I can’t like them all. I still think that for the price it’s a decent every day Shou for new drinkers and would recommend it for that. If I can be nothing else then at least I’m honest.

Full review here: http://sororiteasisters.com/2016/07/23/2006-xinghai-golden-peacock-ripe-pu-erh-tea-from-yunnan-sourcing/

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They call this the story telling tea, but what does that mean? I suppose I should just follow the rules of storytelling and thankfully I am ready to do just that.
Really grateful to have obtained 13g of this tea as it is rather pricey, more so than Last Thoughts which is funny because I was given 10g of that.
The way I have decided to approach this tea was to figure out how it made me feel and the longevity of the tea itself rather than the taste and beauty since it’s what it does that’s most important when you shell out that ‘drug’ money.
So it’s been 14 months since I graduated college and my newer job that I really like is going strong at only what 4 months? I was looking to either do one of two things: save money for a down deposit and get a house in 2017 or find a roommate this year. My friend needed someone to live with so I went with the second option which means I am unable to save money currently, but it is a good situation for many reasons; like finally buying furniture and getting out of my parents place a bit earlier.
Finding the space I liked and what not wasn’t so hard; just had to have my own bathroom, not sharing that! So we got a pretty good deal and all, pretty excited to have my own place :)
Did all that furniture shopping and stuff which went by quick, but like most things… the issues arouse at the worst time.
First issue came when I was called on the 18th, only 2 days before we were to move, to be told that our unit was flooded and won’t be ready until August 15th. Yeah, that wasn’t going to happen so I ended up taking the offer to move into the only unit they had; which thankfully they had one.
On the day of moving UHaul didn’t have a larger truck so we lucked out there and had to make multiple trips, but sadly… the lady working at our place said we could drop stuff off in the garage and come back at our move in time of 4pm, but then the manager said that wasn’t going to be at all possible so at 2pm we were stuck at the office with a full truck trying to figure out what to do. Eventually we just waited and I apologized to my family who came at 2pm to unload the truck and vans because we were told incorrectly we could put stuff in the garage for 2 hours. I really hate inconveniencing my family.
Well, 4pm rolled around as it always will and it was time to move in. It was a long day so I just wanted to drop everything into the house. Unfortunately that would be a bad move because the carpet people will in there at 4pm and didn’t leave to 4:10pm… Wasn’t really feeling the idea of putting stuff on top of wet carpet. Awesome, it’ll be another day of moving stuff… so we stuffed the garage and checked the place out.
Fridge was broke. Got one on Friday which was nice.
Washer and dryer that we were told we would have was not there; still no word on it. Was told that the old unit had them and this one did not so the contracts are different… yeah, that wasn’t going to work so she said she will get them here for us.
I still have no blinds so at least 6 people have seen me in my briefs; no shame.
A bunch more stuff and whatnots… but on Wednesday night our neighbor came over and knocked on the door to introduce herself. Apparently we have two really gorgeous sisters living next door which is really good because it keeps me on edge about my appearance and health. This is the part of me that’s somewhat sad… it takes real motivation to cause me to do something like go running. Like many people, I dislike looking in the mirror because I don’t like what I see so when others acknowledge it, I am hurt. Many of you may say “but Andrew look at you” yadda yadda, but it’s an internal struggle as many have experienced. So there’s a positive, our neighbors do not have kids to come run in our yard and stuff nor are they going to be annoying because they are young and seem pretty laid back because they have a grill we can use and I am going to put a table in the shared yard.
So even with all the negatives that happened, I am able to notice that most of the bad stuff is temporary because change is always an option if you work towards it. I look forward to having a place where I can host tea meetups and maybe one day host a selective Star Trek viewing group.
All of that to say that this tea is an after work all afternoon type of tea. There’s something quite calming about this tea from the very second steep. The feeling that comes to mind, like your head, comes and goes within minutes but the calm sensation sticks around making you feel as if the weight you’ve been carrying is no longer there. With nothing to note about the appearance of the leaf or taste, this is one to drink alone for Netflix and chill alone edition. Things that don’t need be said, but they clearly are, is that Tuhao gives more of a kick in the butt and this is more like ‘pass me that bag yo, cause I’m a sloth right now’. Another thing that doesn’t need to be said, but will be, is that the first few steeps have this salted butter likeness to it that fades. This had to only be me that got this because it was so awkward and unusual that I am unsure what it was… anyways, it was a nice session that isn’t done. This is one that I would say is meant to be drank over a long period of time with something else as it is just a relaxing type of drink for me rather than one to drink for pleasure; unless turning into Snorlax is your cup of tea’.

I STILL DO NOT HAVE INTERNET. Imagine how writing this up was for me :/

Lala

That was quite the story :)

Leah Naomi

I totally feel you on the furniture. I am a year in to my first big girl job and am FINALLY getting myself a real bed. Common spaces in my apartment have become very cozy and nice looking while not being overly “done up”, but at the expense of my bedroom. It looks like a homeless person is squatting there. Not anymore, as of next month when I get double pay. :)

Cwyn

A fabulous chapter in Treachery. Love it. TwoDog will have a book of chapters on this tea when the year is done.

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85
drank Sangria by DAVIDsTEA
3772 tasting notes

This is a queued tasting note.

So like I said yesterday, the last week and a half or so I’ve not been that well physically, and by extension mentally. Basically, it all started with one or two weird bumps on my arm, and and a few days later that had escalated to more than 50% of my body covered in these horrible and incredibly itchy welts/hives/whatever you want to call them. It was scary, and terrifying and I went through a million possibilities of what they could be (bug bites, hives from an allergy attack, etc.) with nothing actually quite fitting the bill. I’ve also missed a lot of work since then because they’re super painful and itchy – and also kind of make me look like I have leprosy.

Turns out that the whole debacle basically boils down to being a “viral infection” that the doc says would have likely been caused by cutting or scraping myself with an infected/contaminated piece of metal. Well, what do I do for a living? I work in a thrift store sorting through donations 40 hours a week. Thousands of pounds of other people’s dirty/unclean donations. I cut or scrape myself on a pretty much daily basis. So, while it’s not possible to track exactly when or what caused this stupid infection it’s just incredibly frustrating to know that I’m dealing with all this bullshit because of a 99% chance I scratched myself on the one in a million item at work that was contaminated that some asshole decided to drop off.

The good-ish news is that I’m taking a few different kinds of prescribed antibiotics, and they should hopefully resolve all this bullshit within ten days or so. Fingers crossed, at least. In the mean time I just have to try not to scratch my fucking skin off… Yay!

As for the tea…

I made myself a small pot of this when things were in the in between stage of slightly worrisome and “holy shit something isn’t right here”. It was around this point that my tea drinking went a bit downhill, and I basically went to having one cup or mug of tea a day because I just lacked the ambition/drive to do anything more than that. The flavour of this was good; usually I drink it cold but this was hot so there were a few differences. The key one being that it read as a more tart strawberry flavour. Still lovely overall: strawberry, orange, bubblegum, and licorice type notes.

AllanK

Sounds like you have a worker’s comp case.

Super Starling!

At least it’s not shingles? Those are a drag.

Indigobloom

You might be able to get comp for the time off! WSIB should cover it

Indigobloom

Feel better soon xo

Roswell Strange

@AllanK and Indigobloom,

While the idea of that is certainly interesting – I wouldn’t even know how to go about handling that. And, I don’t know exactly how I’d qualify since I can’t exactly isolate a specific event/scratch that caused the infection? As well, no work place injury forms were ever filled out because they were all minor scratches/cuts and this is something that happens almost daily…

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94
drank Rummy Pu by Liquid Proust Teas
109 tasting notes

I have to admit that I was afraid to try this tea after a mini session with LP. Putting 5 or so needles in a cup full of water yielded a pretty strong rum taste. What on earth was a full session going to taste like??

The dry leaves smell very strongly of rum, but there’s also a fungal, earthy sort of aroma beneath it. That aroma comes through in the scent of the brew and the flavor of the liquid.

Rum, of course, is the strongest flavor. This is particularly great for me because I like some aspects of certain alcohols, but hate that burn that comes with it. This tea allowed me to experience some of that great rummy flavor without the burn. This rum flavor lasted through several steeps.

The base is also nice. As with the dry leaves, the brew is a little fungal, but it is also sweet and woody. It’s rather clean and refreshing for a shou. Later steeps reveal the brew to be more like a dark brown bread, which pairs well with the subdued rum flavor.

This was my favorite of the LP blends so far. Great job!!

Flavors: Baked Bread, Mushrooms, Rum, Sweet, Wet wood

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec

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Oh. My. Goodness.

I only bought one? Heading over to SBT to buy more now!

Strawberry. Real strawberry. Like you cut up strawberries, added sugar, let them sit a while and then puréed them and poured them in a glass of sweet tea. Somebody please stop me from drinking the whole gallon at once…

ETA: Alas! Out of stock! Weeping sounds…

Maddy Barone

Geez, from your review I was ready to head over there myself! LOL

Evol Ving Ness

What is sbt?

ashmanra

Southern Boy Teas, owned by Frank former owner of 52teas

Evol Ving Ness

Ah, thank you, ashmanra. So, is it an old one by 52teas from the time of Frank, or is it a new one made by Frank under SBT label now?

ashmanra

This was a new one from SBT.

Evol Ving Ness

Thank you for clarifying.

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97

Short note, more later!

Also swapped/gifted by CWarren.

Reminds me of chocolate mousse. Very sweet, chocolaty, light, smooth, malty, and rich. All the nom noms.

Flavors: Chocolate, Creamy, Malt, Sweet

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drank Earl Grey Green by Adagio Teas
1689 tasting notes

It was supposed to be mid 90’s today with a heat index of 113 F. That is too hot even in the A/C to drink hot tea. Woke up to thunder. This afternoon it is 80 feels like 85 F. To celebrate that I can actually breathe today (hot, humid, and oxygen are not good friends), I made a much needed cup of Green Earl Grey. I used extra leaf and over steeped on purpose. I love my GEG to stand up and fight for itself. Fixed per Adagio parameters it is a quiet pleasant cup of citrus. My way is far more brutal. Much love for my barbarian mug this day.

gmathis

So you’re the one hogging all the cool! (We just quit looking at the thermometer. HOT is HOT.)

K S

After writing this, the sun baked away the clouds. The near 100% humidity cranked the heat index well over 100, so no, no hogging here. Just a brief reprieve. I hate that I’m looking forward to summer ending.

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90

This is one of those lovely golden fruity assamicas that ive luckily had the pleasure of – not your average Assam you would buy in the supermarket..

Assam & fruit aroma sorta melts in my mind into amber & black treacle. There is a lovely perfect not-too-sweetness & a every-so-slight Assamica malt character thats present when the leaf is pushed giving it a robust body & glossy edge.

Citrus/nectarine sweet n sour hidden away as well, and the first few steeps had a lovely lingering fruit aftertaste. Lovely body in the mouth & lovely clear qi energy.

Beautiful red purple green leaf as well.

Im not really much of a straight Assam drinker but this is really good quality stuff

Edit* found out its ‘historic Sinensis with newer Assamica, Dum Dum Manipuri and Cambodia’ So not just straight Assam

Flavors: Apricot, Honey, Malt, Orange, Sweet

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86
drank Hepburn by Nina's Paris
1464 tasting notes

What a delectable chocolate orange tea. More orange than chocolate, plus the base is smooth and not too astringent. My favourite chocolate orange tea to date.

I’ve been drinking orange juice lately (bought it for blueberry tarts which were devoured in a couple days) so especially after that refresher, the pulp-laden orange juice makes this taste like candy. It’s quite sweet in comparison and doesn’t have the bite that zest/peel can. The dry leaf itself doesn’t have that much orange peel in the mix. I’ve had this a few times now and every time I made a big mug of this, out of every 4-5g of tea, I’d maybe see one little piece of dried peel drop into the infuser basket. Sometimes, not always.

The chocolate is on the semi-sweet side. Realistic and not artificial or waxy at all, although I would have liked a little bit more. Overall, I can see myself grabbing up more of this.

Maddy Barone

That sounds pretty tasty.

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83

This is soupy, savory, some marine overtones – umami in a big way.

The taste stays with you as the broth coats your tongue and mouth. With the addition of fish or vegetables, this would make an excellent soup base. A really interesting tea that is far out of my normal likes but this one, while not one I would reach for simply due to personal taste preferences, is a highly interesting green that I would not turn down if offered. And I’m going to be experimenting with that soup idea sooner or later…

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90
drank Caramel Apple Oolong by 52teas
1622 tasting notes

Today’s work cold brew. I’ve never cold brewed an oolong before, so I was really hoping that it would work out okay. I’ve got a litre of it at work with me, so it would be pretty dire otherwise. Fortunately, all seems to be well. I was worried that it would have turned bitter, or that the oolong would be very much at the forefront rather than the flavouring, but neither are the case.

I used 2 tbsp of leaf in 2 litres of cold water, and it went into the fridge for around 10 hours overnight. The result is a sweet, primarily caramel flavoured brew. There are hints of crisp apple in the mid sip, though, and that slight sharpness is a very welcome counterpoint to the initial sweetness. It is possible to taste the oolong, but it’s not overpowering. It’s a mineral flavour, like licking a wet rock, but it mostly stays in the background.

I’m glad I took a chance and tried this. I’m less scared of oolong than I used to be, but sometimes it’s still very much an unknown quantity. Now I just have to decide whether to finish off the last of my pouch with another cold brew, or to save the remainder for drinking hot come autumn. Decisions!

Preparation
Iced 8 min or more 8 tsp 68 OZ / 2000 ML
Rasseru

omg dont be scared of Oolong. Its such a wondrous tea.. I would be happy just drinking Dan Cong & high mountain green for the rest of my life

ColumbiaKate

Oolong! I agree. I’m a recent fan of cold brew and saving already hot brewed leaves for rebrewing cold. Oolong is especially good for this IMO because of the large leaf and so much room for more brew.

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95

My favorite out of the 2016 Floating Leaves High Mountain oolongs. This one has good balance of floral, buttery, and sweet with a thick body. The thick creamy body is what I like best about this oolong. It does well gaiwan or bowl style. I even boil this oolong and it doesn’t get too dry.

Full review on Oolong Owl http://oolongowl.com/hooty-tea-travels-floating-leaves-tea-seattle-part-22/

I did a 5 oolong comparison. I found ShanLinXi was my favorite. The DaYuLing tasted better (gaiwan only, it wasn’t good in a bowl), but the ShanLinXi price is much better for me, haha!

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 1 g 1 OZ / 15 ML
juliebeth

oooooh this made me crave a nice oolong! it’s super hot outside though, i may not get around to it for a few more months. sigh. putting this one on my wishlist.

Daylon R Thomas

95 is a pretty high rating. Darn. What would you rate the others?

Oolong Owl

yeah Im too lazy to put them all on steepster. Dayuling 95, lishan 90, alishan 85 or 90, hehuan shan 70 or 75.

Daylon R Thomas

Still, that’s promising. I’ve always wanted to try a good Dayuling. Then again, there’s Andrew’s next group buy with some Hawaiian green tea…

Rasseru

Ive had good Dayuling with these wondrous apple & pear notes, i’ll try to remember which one it was

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96

Ordered this tea from blogger Wilson’s new store adventureineverycup.com. He is selling off some of his rather sizable collection. He likes to travel from Singapore where he lives to China and other destinations to buy tea.

This tea arrived with a nice smell of light traditional storage on the wrapper, a sign of a more humid climate like Singapore. The cake is nicely browned. I broke off a generous amount of leaf, maybe 7g and brewed in a Novak mineral clay teapot. I cold rinsed the leaves and then two hot rinses which I probably didn’t need to do.

The initial nose is a whiff of Chinese medicine that goes away quickly and changes to that fabulous old book storage flavor which I love and am always looking for. Tippy buds. Thick, motor oil tea leaves a bit of char in the strainer. The brew is very brownish red which makes the tea look like it has aged already.

But make no mistake, this tea is nowhere near aged. This tea is tongue curdling, ass puckering bitter. My eyes are watering and my hemorrhoids went up into my throat. Lively in the mouth is an understatement. The returning sweetness is almost because the tongue runs and hides and has nowhere left to go. I’m sweating like a pig in a mire on a hot summer’s day, and my scalp is coming off the top of my head. Straight up Menghai profile, cool in the throat with camphor and my mouth swallowed an unripe lemon. Omg wow…

This tea is one powerful son of a gun, and if you bought this, contact me and I’ll buy it right off you. Wish I’d bought more. I don’t care if it real LBZ or not. This tea is kicking me up left and sideways, and tongue rape in the afternoon tea saloon is just fine by me. Hell yeah. This is why I drink sheng. Still flash steeps at eight.

Points are 70+15 for Wilson’s fine storage and another 10 on the tea for what it is, whatever it is. Plus one for kicking Cwyn’s arse.

Flavors: Camphor, Honey, Lemon, Medicinal, Oak wood

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 7 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
Brian

that sold out quick.

Cwyn

Yeah it was gone the same day I posted on my blog about the new store. Maybe only twenty or so cakes for sale.

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