Featured & New Tasting Notes

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
1467 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
1623 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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88

This was a nice shou. I agree with the statement camphor and dark cocoa to this tea. There was also a spicy note under the tongue. And there was a sweet note too but the camphor was the strongest note. This was actually good as I have come to not mind camphor and somewhat like it. At one point I couldn’t stand a tea with notes of camphor. There was also a fair amount of fermentation flavor that I noticed for four or five steeps.

I brewed this twelve times in a 150ml gaiwan with 11g 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. The tea is still quite dark at twelve steeps. I’m sure this would go at least four or five more steeps if I hadn’t hit my caffeine limit. This is definitely a long lasting shou puerh tea.

Flavors: Camphor, Earth, Spices, Sweet

Preparation
Boiling 11 g 5 OZ / 150 ML
JC

This sounds nice to buy for the next winter. I like those cocoa notes and camphor combined.

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85

I decided to ice the last of this tea so it would be ready for this morning. While I was sad to see this tea go I thought icing it would be a nice send off.

This morning I served this tea with a slice of lemon. It’s a deep red/orange colour that is cloudy. It looks stronger than it actually tastes but admittedly I did make it a little stronger for a boost this morning. It’s wonderful, slightly sour which is enhanced and sweetened by the lemon. Lightly smoky from the thickness and a date fruit finish.

Why didn’t I ice more of this? If I knew how nice it would be I would have done it more often.

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75

I tried this one hot a couple of nights ago, and really wasn’t particularly impressed. I could only taste rooibos, really, and a pretty scratchy, woody rooibos at that. Cold, this is a much improved prospect. There’s still some rooibos lurking around in the background, but there’s also a delicious, sweet strawberries and cream flavour. It reminds me most of the Campino sweets that used to be available when I was a child. The flavour is pretty much identical to those, and just as creamy. That means, of course, that the strawberry is candy-like rather than natural-tasting, but I don’t mind that too much. It’s too good to pick faults with, really, and perfectly summery! I’ll definitely be using the rest of my bags for cold brews – hot has got nothing on this!

Preparation
Iced 8 min or more 4 tsp 68 OZ / 2000 ML

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Well, it is one of those days where I do not have much of an intro. I caught a spider and put it outside, I made a giant rice-filled sack to act as a cooling pad, and a drank tea. All the cleaning and redoing of my room I did yesterday left me very sore and worn out, so for the most part today I have taken it easy and tried not to melt in the oppressive heat.

Today I am looking at an herbal blend from Steeped Tea, Curious Cumin, a mix of…well a lot of things: Fennel, anise, cinnamon bits, silver lime blossoms, cumin, turmeric, goji berries, lemongrass, rose blossom leaves, peppermint leaves, pistachios, pomegranate blossoms, cardamom, sunflower blossoms, cornflower blossoms, safflowers, natural flavors. I was…ha…curious to try this herbal blend because it has a few ingredients I am rather fond of, especially cumin, cardamon, turmeric, and pistachios. These things show up a lot in Indian food, which is probably well known to be a favorite cuisine of mine. Plus the description lists it as savory, and I do adore herbal blends with a heavy savory quality, so when asked if I wanted to try a few teas, this one seemed like a good choice. The aroma was a bit of a cacophony, surprisingly sweet and very spice heavy. Notes of nuttiness, fennel, citrus, and flowers give it a strong perfumed finish. Totally not what I expected, a little odd and intense though not necessarily unpleasant.

Steeping in my glass apparatus, the aroma is pretty intense, it has a real weight to it. Notes of cumin, fennel, pepper, turmeric, and lemons. Surprisingly little flower and surprisingly sweet for such earthy spice notes, but fennel is like that. The aroma of the liquid is peppery and spicy, earthy and herbal, with an undertone of lemongrass and flowers. The main note is fennel, with cumin being fairly light.

So with all those aroma notes being so sweet I was expecting a mouth full of syrup, but no, it is fairly savory and earthy, bordering on medicinal. Strong notes of fennel and turmeric, with a middle of cumin and pepper, and a finish of lemongrass and a sweetness that just shows up and lingers. When the tea cools a bit it starts being sweeter in the middle and picks up more floral notes. I am not sure if I like this blend or not, there is definitely a lot going on, and the flavors do clash a little. It is not unpleasant but there is a lot of mouth noise and I found it hard to focus on just one note, also I was a little sad there was no real sign of pistachio in the taste, but since pistachios are one of my favorite things ever, me being sad is only expected. I say give this tea a try if you are a fan of really chaotic herbal blends/teas, or ones very heavy on spices and herbs.

For blog and photos: http://ramblingbutterflythoughts.blogspot.com/2016/07/steeped-tea-curious-cumin-tea-review.html

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50

Before sipping, I noticed that this tea smells like a decaying and possibly haunted house.

I guess that’s the pu’erh?

The taste is very strongly orange rind. It’s like very citrusy & acidic. If you miss halftime orange slices at childhood sports events, this will take you there.

This tea is o-kay, but it’s a bit one-dimensional. Aaaaaaaand it makes my burps taste like orange rind. So there’s that.

Flavors: Astringent, Blood orange, Orange, Orange Zest

mtchyg

I’ll have to revisit this one. I do remember it being very orange-y. I don’t remember the haunted house. Maybe they crammed a dead orange in the flavor essence and now it haunts the tea. Like, “Ooooorange yoooouu pithed oooffff that yoooou triiieedd thiiss? Looook ooouuut. I’m riiiight be-riiind yooou.”

Super Starling!

Oh my god I am dying right now at this comment.

mtchyg

Heh, I aim to please

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95

Wow, I think this is some of the best quality puerh leaf I’ve had yet. I’m kicking myself for not having tried this before I made a big W2T order, because I may want to get a cake of this one. Maybe I’ll find somebody whose order I can piggyback on ;)

I used 7g in a 100mL gaiwan with boiling water. This tea would not quit. I got 16 GOOD steeps and then a couple faded ones at the end as well. It was very interesting, and rather consistent over a long session. Right from the get-go it was a thick, milky/creamy brew with sweet floral and honey notes. There was also something else I sort of struggled to describe – almost a savory note that, within about four steeps, started to morph into a slight bitterness which, far from taking away from the tea, added great complexity and depth. It wasn’t as bitter as like a Bulang sheng or anything like that, but it was enough of a bitterness to temper the sweetness, preventing the over-sweetness I sort of experienced with Poundcake. The strength and quality of the material really came through with this layered experience – sweet with bitter notes underneath and a very good honey huigan. The sweetness and body did not even begin to fade until around 14 steeps in.

Aside from the wonderful flavor, this tea’s quality was also apparent in the body feelings I got from drinking it. I could feel the liquid going down my throat, and after swallowing, got a bit of a throat constricting feel, like it was remaining there in some way. I could also quite clearly feel it settle in my stomach, not like making me feel ill or anything, but it kind of plopped down with that heaviness it possessed. About halfway through the session, I started feeling a relaxing qi, beginning in the belly and spreading throughout my torso.

I think I agree with the description the site, noting this tea’s high value:quality ratio. I wish I had tried it before I ordered a bunch of 2016 teas and stuff, because I would’ve gotten a cake of it on that order. For me it’s “If You’re Tasting This It’s 2 Late…” Sorry ;)

Flavors: Burnt Sugar, Creamy, Floral, Grass, Honey, Milk, Smooth, Sweet, Thick, Vegetal

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

> I could also quite clearly feel it settle in my stomach, not like making me feel ill or anything, but it kind of plopped down with that heaviness it possessed.

Fun physiology fact: did you know your gut has as many neurons as your central nervous system? I think the gut-brain gets high on good puer.

Matu

That is interesting! I’ve read/heard that you can “taste” with your stomach, but never heard that fact about neurons before.

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85
drank Tuscan Sun by RiverTea
1623 tasting notes

MJy final RiverTea, gone forever. I used the last of this leaf up for today’s cold brew. I’m glad I tried it this way, because the flavours come out much more clearly than they do hot. Wonderful, sweet, strawberry awesomeness. A very sad sipdown :(

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

awe…

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75

I tried this tea hot last night and mentioned it would be nice iced, so after I wrote the review I got my ice tea bottle and prepared some. I left it in the fridge overnight so I can have it in the morning. While it’s not as hot as yesterday it’s still going to be a scorcher.

I feel like I steeped this a little too strong but it’s probably right on. Raspberry notes are more sour and it’s floral with a perfumed after taste. Slightly dry too. It’s refreshing and hydrating in this mornings heat.

Out of the two I think I prefer it iced, so now I know what to do with the rest of my stash. I think I have around 40g of this left so that is a good few batches of iced tea.

……………..

On the cat front, the new stray I have rescued (called Misty) is a little more settled today. It’s still less than 24 hours but she loves her fuss and has finally had something to eat. The litter is another story, I will have to see if she uses it. I haven’t seen her go at all so far but she may have in the night.

I’ve had a feral cat before, Honey became my best friend over time. She took almost all of my patience over the first couple of years but she settled and became happy. She died earlier this year but she was going to be put down without my care, and I feel the same with Misty. She may be younger than Honey was when we got her but no one wanted her and RSPCA refused to take her in. She would either die outside from the dangers (heat, foxes, dogs etc) or someone nasty would find her and hurt her. I still think I am doing the right thing. My other cats are not sure what to make of her but it’s early. And my husband is grumpy…but at least I can sleep knowing I’m trying my best.

Rasseru

Im pretty jels of your cat stories.. I really want a kitty but i’m single/not settled & I dont know if I should have the responsibility – I’m basically still mourning the loss of my (still young) cat a couple of years ago

Rasseru

Also really enjoy hearing them, so keep us updated on Misty :)

KittyLovesTea

I know all too well what that feels like. Honey was fairly old (roughly 13 years…she was a rescued feral cat) but that doesn’t make her passing any easier. A few years ago I had a newly turned 1 year old cat die from a sudden heart attack. The vets didn’t pick anything up on his physical a few months earlier but from what I described his last moments they revealed a heart problem. We have his brother from the same litter and he still looks for him at night time.

Misty has moved into my bedroom now, there is a good hiding spot in my wardrobe. She tries to get outside which makes sense as she lived on the street for a few months. For now I will give her space and visit her from time to time for fuss and bonding. Hopefully she will fit in well with my other cats.

Rasseru

awwwww. give her a hug from me if thats possible

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This week is going to be grossly hot, making me rather cross (other than my usual animosity) because I am finally feeling better and I wanted to go to the zoo! Since it is too warm to do outside things, and I had a ton of restless energy, I decided to redo part of the room…again. Including hosting an archaeological dig under my bed, which was exciting! Mostly under there was storage boxes, but Espeon is notorious for dragging random things under the bed (and under my desk, but that is easier to fix) so in the far corner was this pile of straws, ribbons, tassels, cat toys, and an empty chewed on bag of cat treats I am pretty sure I threw away. It was so sad the look on her face as I remove her stash, but I am putting the bed on the floor, so she will need a new stash spot soon!

Today I am taking a look at an herbal blend from Nelson’s Tea, Really Root Beer, a blend of Sassafras bark, sarsaparilla root, birch bark, burdock root, dandelion root, licorice root, fennel seed, anise star pods, ginger root, and flavoring. Oh yeah, we have a blend with the beloved Sassafras, one of my favorite herbs and flavor notes, this pleases me. It is kinda funny, as a kid I hated root beer, loved the smell of it but hated the taste, now as an adult it is one of the few sodas I don’t find gross (along with cream soda, birch beer, and occasional Dr Pepper) and is the soda I order when I go out to eat, because you know unless it is an Indian restaurant or Dim sum I am not subjecting myself to the tea most restaurants sell. I am getting off on a tangent, this herbal blend is the focus, and you know, if you were to blindfold me and hold this under my nose I would tell you ‘why are you asking me to sniff root beer and not tea?’ Seriously it smells just like root beer, fizz included, it is a little uncanny! I love it, but wow, that is a pile of root beer.

I decided to cold-steep this one, it could very easily be steeped hot, but in all honestly warm soda is probably my least favorite thing, so even a tea that tastes like soda I don’t want warm. After steeping for a whopping nine hours the aroma of the ingredients and the liquid is still pretty much identical to root beer, however it is not as sweet, which I like, as I frequently wish soda was a tad less sweet.

Tasting this tea was peculiar, it had notes of root beer for sure, with a subtle sweetness. However it was not an exact match, there were also earthy notes of burdock, sweet licorice, and gentle fennel. It is a more earthy and less sweet root beer and man, was it immensely refreshing! I am tempted to get more, cold-steep it in soda water, and then add a bit of sugar syrup and cream to make an Italian cream soda style concoction. This is the first soda themed brew I have had that actually evokes soda, the others I have tried have been nightmarish, this was tasty and different, I could certainly tell it was evoking root beer!

For blog and photos: http://ramblingbutterflythoughts.blogspot.com/2016/07/nelsons-tea-really-root-beer-herbal-tea.html

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Thanks again to twinofmunin!

I’m very glad to have sampled this instead of purchasing it. It’s definitely a lot more complex than other shengs I’ve had. Throughout brewing it, I whiffed and tasted zucchini, pepper, and grape skins. Still a bit on the bitter side for me, but a lot sweeter than other Pu’s I’ve had.

I brewed 3 grams in less than 3 ounces at 200 F, beginning with 15 sec and going up in 15 second increments. I got about seven cups before I gave out. The rest of the brews were just vegetal and bitter at that time. Oddly enough, I wasn’t really tea drunk. I got a euphoric buzz of clarity, but that’s it. It could be due to how I brewed it and how much of it I drank, or maybe a tolerance. Who knows.

I enjoyed the experience.

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75

What a crazy day! It’s a heat wave with highs of 33 degrees c (which is 91.4 Fahrenheit) and because work is a glass building I had to work outside in the heat. I have also got a new cat now to make number 5. This morning when I pulled in to work someone near by said she has a cat living there and no one wants her. She is black, fairly small and lives in a hedge. I have been talking to my husband all day and after some arguing I brought her home anyway. She has been here for about an hour and half, she’s in my living room with my other female cat. Though they are not seeing eye to eye Cassie is being patient and gentle, the perfect introduction I think. My boys have had to be kicked out of the living room as they stalk her, she needs to be introduced slowly. For now she has no name but I am thinking Misty.

So for a change of my usual tea taste (which has been black and Sheng) I pulled this out of the cupboard. Originally I wanted a green tea but saw the osmanthus in this and thought it was perfect for the heat.

This smells very sweet and floral, the osmanthus clinging to my nostrils like perfume. The steep revealed the leaves are not great quality (some discolouration and holes) but it tastes nice enough. It’s sweet with a slight sourness to it like raspberry and the Oolong is light and milky. On the whole it’s only mild strength and the osmanthus doesn’t last long in the after taste.

Further steeps remain consistent, even the raspberry quality. Essentially it tastes like creamy raspberry tea which is not a bad thing on a hot day. It was 50g for around £3 so I didn’t expect much from it, needless to say it is nicer than I expected. I can see myself using this for iced tea in the near future.

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95

I couldnt find an entry for this one? if there is one i’ll merge..

I totally love this tea – out of a blind test of 8 teas this one topped my scoreboard & here is the review:

’Liked this one the mostest. smaller tighter balls than others. Had nice fruit & floral aroma. Some veg. Taste had a nice fruit (cherry & pineapple?) & floral on the tip of the tongue and up the nose while swirling around in my mouth. A bit dan cong in the oil of the leaf, with boldness in this flavour which worked with the fruit. didnt have so much a milk aroma though, unsure if Jin xuan?

Liked this one, defo would buy’

Its a really fruity yummy great tasting green Oolong which I very selfishly waited to purchase some before reviewing just in case it all disappears, and is my current ‘wait for autumn golden lily harvest’ tea.

Great stuff.

Flavors: Cherry, Floral, Green, Milk, Pineapple, Vegetal

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96

I have already written about this tea on my blog. My note there says everything about this tea but does so in themes using a local folklore style and a true story from my life. Perhaps that note is best read after spending some time with this tea, because the details about the tea are less important than the experience and the reason why you might choose to drink it. This is a very high quality experience, you have to gut yourself in every way in life to get to a place where you need something more. But details matter for purchase decisions, they don’t matter to me on my blog but make more sense on Steepster. I also don’t want more people asking me about it, so here are more details for people who really need them, or for the merely curious person who won’t be buying.

I drank approximately 6g per 100 ml with boiling or just a few degrees under. I brewed the tea in a Lin’s ceramic teapot, and eventually transeferred the tea to a very thick porcelain teapot. Both pots hold very high temperatures.

This is a very high tier of puerh evidenced by the thickness of the stems, the durability of the leaves and a myriad of physical effects that you must drink a lot of tuition tea to recognize. The tea is motor oil thick, even with the cake still very wet and with the lighter amount of leaf I used. Flavor explodes in the front of the mouth. The liquid then goes into the throat like a ball of Nyquil and remains there. Finally, it settles into the stomach and stays alive there.

Top notes are both apricot and the grape, early steeps are bitter with honey sweetness creeping in much later. Peppery and medicine in the throat but without the medicine taste, just the burn. Right now the tea is very green and wet and has a lot of settling down to do. Some steeps were yellow or greenish yellow, suggesting that the tea is still green tea. Processing of course is top notch. Some older leaves in the mix of buds and leaf/bud combination stems.

Mega steeper and I’m still trying to steep the tea out after four days. Lost count now past 15 steeps. However, because the tea is wet I’m getting some degradation of the leaf due to high brewing temps that will not be the case in 6 months to a year. That wet vegetal needs to dry out a lot more. I’m amazed the tea holds up so well in the wet state, for example last year’s Poundcake, a lower tier tea, broke down after 8 steeps while this wet. This tea is definitely much more durable. Qi is energy in the middle of my back. I’m not noticing any psychedelics yet, might be too early and too wet. I did, however, get heartburn from the tea which is due to the greenness. I never have got a heartburn from a tea before. But this is powerful stuff, and I expect the greenness to turn and it won’t happen again. I didn’t get any bowel effects as I would from cheap tea though.

I plan to let the tea sit now for at least six months and then I will drink it up. I don’t have time to wait in my life to age this, though I expect that lower notes and many more interesting aspects of the tea are yet to come as it changes. There is strength and bitterness to age but I’m too old to wait. I think if a person is older than 35, just plan to drink it. I don’t want anyone else to drink this but me.

If you want to complain about the price, the size of the cake, the lack of details and marketing issues, then go buy cheap tea and drink that. I’m not trying to make too many more notes here than what I’ve written on my blog except to give a bit more for people who want to buy this now, because it won’t be around for long. This is conversation tea in its very early days, and I hope more people decide to go for it and we can all talk about it for the next year while we enjoy it together.

Flavors: Apricot, Beany, Bitter, Grapes, Honey, Pepper

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
TheOolongDrunk

Beautifully said

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Writing a review as I ride to a funeral. Yesterday I drank this tea and it was wonderful…. But thoughts: my family kind of deemed me to be the family member who is going to hell when I started dying my hair and getting piercings so I’m not close to them. These family events are awkward because I disagree with them on so much. Religion is a touchy subject because they are going to say so and so is looking down on us from heaven now… Ugh, I’ll leave that idea alone though.

Anyways. Moving in two days and the place was flooded. Now I get to find out how I’ll switch everything over to the other unit they offered instead. What a fun day, and I had no idea the funeral was today until two hours ago. Stressed x100

So this tea smells wonderful like a dark chocolate that’s dusted with cocoa. The brew comes out much lighter than expected. The nutty notes from the dong ding are so faded and taken over by the disaapering roast that has turned into a charcoal chocolate with some burnt sugar. When a roast is done right and the tea is stored correctly you get an almost dry caramel taste because the sweetness from the tea can shine over the harsh roast but it is faded due to the leaf losing its vibrancy. This is a wonderful tea and can easily hit a top 10 for aged oolong because of its unexpected notes that pop. I didn’t even brew this carefully either which means it can be even better :)

mrmopar

You have an extended family on here. You will never be by yourself.

Evol Ving Ness

Family events are awkward when you are the odd one out. Totally get that. Big hugs to you, Liquid Proust. Breathe. Be kind to yourself.

Rasseru

Yeah ive heard you mention it before, that must be really hard & not something I have personally been through but you have my empathy for sure. :)

Rich

I found this to be an excellent tea as well.

Eric Honaker

I definitely hear you about not seeing eye-to-eye with the family. I’m far and away the most secular, liberal, etc member of the family, as far as I know.

Cwyn

Hang in there, LP! I enjoy who you are very much, and the sense of playfulness you bring to all things tea. Religious baggage is a gift in the end, it brings a depth within because early on we learned to look more deeply and open the brain up to receive what there is.

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I am back from my wee hiatus, feeling better, though still with a bit of recovery left to go, but I am able to write at least a little so as far as the blog is concerned I am perfectly fine. The past weekend was Evo (and I apologize to my twitter followers, I was quite vociferous compared to usual) and what a fantastic one it was. For the first time Street Fighter finals were aired on ESPN, an awesome achievement! It has been fun watching tournaments change over the years, as esports and the FGC become more pro, though I do miss how the commentators have had to clean up a bit, meaning the FGC’s distinct lingo is sadly dying. Not that it stops Ben and myself from still using it to the confusion of those around us!

Today’s tea comes from Denong Tea, Elegant Tranquility, a 2015 spring Sheng Puerh from Lincang. I actually have not had a lot of experience with Lincang material as a Sheng (pretty decent amount for Hongcha) so sadly I won’t be able to say ‘oh yeah, this is classic Lincang’ instead it is a bit of an adventure into the only lightly known! I will say this, the combination of the name and the wrapper is so evocative, definitely one for the wrapper collectors out there. The aroma of the tea is very springy, fresh and light with notes of spinach, hay, sharp eucalyptus and a slight undertone of raw honey. It has a subtle woodiness as well, but it is fairly light.

The aroma of the leaves after a rinse and first steep is so green, sharp notes of eucalyptus and lemon leaves, cooked spinach, crushed hay, thyme, and a bit of greenwood and bamboo at the finish. The liquid smells light and a balance of green and sweet, with hay and honey balancing out spinach and bamboo with a hint of lemon leaves.

I was pleased with the initial thickness of this tea, from the first steep onwards it has a great mouthcoating thickness, and considering this tea has a really light start that is impressive. The first couple of steeps are green, with notes of spinach and hay, with a building lemon leaf and eucalyptus leaf finish, giving a great cooling effect. Around steep three it starts to pick up some kale like bitterness and a touch of dryness in the middle that quickly switches to lingering lilac nectar sweetness, that floral note was surprising and pleasant.

So here is where things get weird, around steep four the sweetness increases, as does the lemony aspect, now the tea vaguely reminds me of lemon cake! It went from being spring like in the beginning to summery in the middle, how fun! I really like how instead of being bitter the middle has a sour quality, it goes really well with the sugar cane like sweetness and the green fresh spinach and lemon leaves. Towards the end of the middle steeps, so steep six, it gets a fresh crisp bamboo note and the gentle eucalyptus note builds to an intense cooling. I had a bit of a sore throat while I was drinking this tea and the cooling was immensely soothing on it, so points there.

One of the biggest compliments I can give this tea, it is a young Sheng that doesn’t give me the dreaded gut-rot stomach ache. Even mild ones can start to cause discomfort towards the latter steeps, this one not so much, so I was able to outlast it. The finishing steeps are a combination of eucalyptus cooling and sugar cane sweetness, with a very long lasting sweet aftertaste. Definitely a tea where you want to go a bit between steeps to really appreciate how long the aftertaste lasts. The last couple of steeps also picked up a wet slate note at the middle, and the eucalyptus notes start to fade until gone, though the sweetness remains. The very last steep was the only one without a thick mouthfeel, it was light like water. This tea is light, though not at all dull or boring (as some teas touted as light can be) and I greatly enjoyed my session with it.

For blog and photos:http://ramblingbutterflythoughts.blogspot.com/2016/07/denong-tea-2015-early-spring-harvest.html

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