3962 Tasting Notes
I started cold brewing this one last night, before I really knew that my cheek was infected and that that would affect my tea drinking tonight – though to be perfectly honest I wasn’t expecting great things from this cold brew anyway. The more I’ve thought about that initial first hot cup I had of this one the more I’ve realized it was pretty dissatisfying overall. And in general I just find cold brewed EG less tasty as well.
Turns out this one is breaking that trend though; even with ‘mouth impairments’ I thought that this was the smoothest tasting cold brewed EG I’ve had to date: the bergamot seemed to be at a more appropriate strength than it was brewed hot and I actually picked up on the vanilla notes I felt were lacking the first time around. It was silky, and had a rich, full flavour without sacrificing the flavour of the base in favor of a stronger bergamot flavour.
So, I’ve definitely changed my mind about this blend a few times now! Take that as you will – maybe it’s just not a super consistent brew? One thing is for sure – I still don’t think this is as sparkly as advertised; with the cold brew in particular the liquor ended up such a dark amber/brown that you really couldn’t pick up on the subtle sparklies at all.
C’est la vie.
Sipdown of sorts…
Because of my sore/infected cheek from whatever it was that cut it I ended up sipping down all of the loose cloves from the box today. I know, back from when the dental issues were at their very worst last year, that cloves are great for not only cleaning out the mouth but numbing sores as well so I definitely relied heavily on them today.
It sucks I don’t get the satisfaction of seeing my cupboard number go down though. In fact, it’s shot up because of the Dammann Freres teas that showed up today!
The pain I’m experiencing is definitely different than the pain of a toothache – but it’s just as intense in its own right. It hurts a lot to smile or even move my mouth to speak. This super strong, super intense clove tea helped though. I also learned that while I LOVE cloves in general I don’t like them super concentrated and on their own – this was surprisingly bitter!
Cold brew that I came home to Sunday morning after drinking with Billi and the gang…
I’ve been kind of mixed about this one; it’s got good qualities but it can also feel like too much is going on because of the vast ingredients list – and some of the flavours are a little weird together. This cold brew was under leafed specifically to try and avoid that.
It still came out tasting heavily of potpourri; cinnamon, rose and coconut in particular. However, with a very mild hangover there was something super, super appealing about that to me and I guzzled it down. In a normal “state of mind” I think I likely would have found it too intensely floral and perfumey. Maybe it was good I was kinda hungover?
Downside to having a hangover on a Sunday though? It happens to be the landlord’s day off too and lately his new renovation project has been replacing all the tile flooring in his half of the house. So from noon until about ten thirty at night (dear God; regardless of being hungover WHY is it necessary to be doing construction THAT BLOODY LATE!?) it was just constant hammering, pounding and drilling. Would’ve been annoying on its own – but was made that much worse by already having a slight headache.
Had a few cans of this one Saturday night; I went drinking with my friend Billi, her fiance, and a few of their friends – yes, the same Billi I got SUPER hammered with last time.
Things were pretty chill this time around; it was fun but not crazy. You know how I know it wasn’t crazy? I can actually remember the whole night. Billi actually wanted to get blackout drunk but (and maybe I was being a bit of a buzzkill – I did have the next day off afterall) I kept thinking of last time’s wicked hangover so I kept myself in check. Just a few beers and a shot of vodka chased by my Nestea.
We ordered pizza, played Mario Kart and, strangely enough, got into this half sober religious debate/conversation about the subtle differences between each type of Christianity and how Christianity in general relates to other religions.
Just a fun time, overall!
Today’s cold brew.
This is one of the blends I was hoping to see back for the summer collection, but sadly no. Maybe that’s for the best; today’s brew was very juice-like and didn’t quite hit the spot like it normally does, flavor wise. The apple definitely outweighed the flavour of the passion fruit and it was just a pinch too “juice crystal” sweet.
I’ve been avoiding new teas today; I cut the inside of my right cheek open yesterday and when I woke up this morning it was heavily swollen and infected: I’ve been using an over the counter oral paint/antibiotic to treat it and it does make it feel better for a while after applying it. It also tastes totally dreadful though; I’m wondering if it’s at least partially responsible for why this tastes funky – though the other teas I’ve had today haven’t appeared to be affected by it.
I really want to try something new though; my Dammann Freres teas from the group order put together by the incredible Marzipan showed up and they’re just sitting on my kitchen table right now, taunting me…
Early afternoon iced latte!
I hardly ever make iced lattes, but because I forgot about this one as it was steeping (it got a painfully extended 20 min. steep time) today I was able to make that happen – and it was really good! Because of the super long steep time the flavours were very strong, albeit pretty duo-tone: chocolate and cinnamon. Definitely tasted like really fancy chocolate milk but in a good way.
Refreshing with the caffeine buzz snuck in there (and finally kicking in a few hours later).
I was supposed to be going to the Saskatoon Forestry Farm/Zoo today with a coworker and her five year old niece, but plans changed last minute (oh well – there’s lots of summer left to do it later) so I get to go through some of the backlogged tasting notes from this week! That’s actually kind of nice ‘cause I was itching to write but didn’t think I’d have time to today.
This one was made in a timolino but had tragically gone lukewarm by the time I got to it on the walk home from work so I was drinking it at a weird and less than desirable temperature. It tasted strongly of vanilla custard, orchid and spinach and had a weird drying taste as well – possibly from timolino prep but possibly from the temperature too? It was something unpleasant that I haven’t noticed with prior times I’ve tried this one though.
Hopefully just a fluke.
I keep seeing cute postings about Killian/Emma from Once Upon A Time on my dash and I’m starting the ship the two of them even though I don’t watch the show. Is this something I should be getting into? I’ve already got Steven Universe, Big Brother, WLIIA, and Bones to keep up with weekly and I’m trying to get caught up on Continuum and Brooklyn Nine-Nine too, but if it’s worthwhile I could probably make room for a new show…
So last Saturday, Sobeys was hosting this weird “Food Fair” event where we basically sampled out a WHOLE BUNCH of the new summer food/stock – it was the perfect day to forget to pack a lunch. We were one of two stores in Western Canada picked to do it, or something like that? That’s kind of cool I guess.
Some of the things I got to try (there were a few other things, but they weren’t vegetarian) were:
- Rootbeer Flavored Zevia (A “healthy” kind of pop made with Stevia)
- Some kind of really fancy corn chip from the Gluten-free part of the store
- Brie cheese topped with sour cherry preserve
- Raspberry & Cream Italian soda
- Watermelon w. Balsamic dressing
- Pecan topped ice cream
- A savory grilling cheese
- Vegetarian spring rolls w. mango
And, tea related, a peach infused iced green tea that we’re going to be selling at our coffee bar all summer (along with the Italian sodas)!
Visually, this definitely looked like green tea – it was a surprisingly dark, spinachy green colour. However, it just tasted like artificial peach which was pretty disappointing. Like, the “flavour shot” was so sweet/strong it drained out any of the green tea’s flavour and it just wasn’t a good flavour to begin with.
Still, this was the most popular flavoured iced green tea we sampled out – and I guess I can see why. A lot of the people who actually ended up buying a full sized one were the sort of type that (and I know I’m totally stereotyping here) seem like they’re into green tea for the ‘health perks’ and not the tea itself. So this was something easily justifiable as “healthy green tea” despite sugary additives…
Sad Sipdown (114)!
This is a queued tasting note.
Cold brew to finish off this tasty, but “out of season” blend. The melon was very exaggerated with lots of sweet vanilla notes to soften it up, and a brisker, more bold black base than usual. I love this blend but having the extra tin space for incoming Dammann Freres blends is probably a good thing, and this is not a blend I’ll be drinking regularly during the summer.
More than likely I’m going to be going up to Regina again for Christmas though, so I’ll stop in to Cuppa’T like I usually do and take a look to see if they’ve brought it back for the Winter season – I’d definitely like to get to drink this one again.
Today’s word of the day is… Pittance.
Pittance is “a small portion or allowance, especially of money”. It’s funny; this last paycheck I kind of started doing that with my money without knowing there was a word for that. I just considered it a kind of budgeting. But basically I set aside the amount of money I normally do for rent/food and stuff, and then I divided the rest of the money by the amount of days left before next payday – the number is the amount of spending money/impulse money I have each day, and if I want to spend more than that I have to not spend money on a prior day. It’s working well so far!
Thank you TheLastDodo!
I’ve only tried a few different Rou Gui oolongs before, most of them from Nannuoshan, but so far I haven’t found one I dislike – the wide range of flavours experienced with the different infusions very much appeal to me so this Rou Gui oolong from Tao Tea Leaf is just going to further my exploration of the class. To stay consistent with the other Rui Gui I’ve tried I had a Gong Fu session with this one using my gaiwan.
The leaves for this are very dark, almost charcoal or black, and decently large. The smell of the dry leaf is very roasty with some fruity sweetness layered underneath. It’s perhaps a touch peachy? I did a ten second wash with this one; as the water hit the leaves my kitchen was instantly filled with a very robust, borderline earthy and roasty smell.
Infusion One: 10 Seconds – This is surprisingly sweet right off the bat despite quite strong toasted barley notes. It’s a little nutty and definitely has some stonefruit notes as well; like dried peach drizzled with honey. There’s maybe some cinnamon too, but not much. These notes comprise the start of the sip and the body. The finish tastes of corn chips and flax to me with a very intense presence of raisins in the finish. I’m usually quite anti-raisin but I actually like the way it tastes here. The taste of the raisin lingers in your mouth for a very long time after swallowing; minutes. For the most part it’s very smooth though it did leave my front two teeth feeling very dry. Leaves are barely opened up at all and smell quite roasty with cinnamon notes and something maybe vaguely like coffee grounds?
Infusion Two: 15 Seconds – Still tastes strongly of roasted barley but it a bit more nutty and has woody notes at the start as well as much more defined cinnamon notes. The body is comprised mostly of rich peach and raisin notes. The honey notes have also gotten stronger, and are tightly tying in with the raisin. Some floral notes have begun creeping in as well. I’m almost reminded of a roasted trail mix with dried fruit/raisins mixed in. This subtle transition of flavours is keeping true to what I’ve observed with other Rou Gui. The leaves smell subtly fruitier.
Infusion Three: 30 Seconds – Ooh! This was not a good pour; I spilled tea everywhere. The flavour is really starting to turn. I’m observing a dramatic decrease in roasted flavour. Definitely strong peach/raisin notes; the strongest so far. The peach is less so a dried peach flavour now, and closer to something fresh. Significantly more floral with more defined floral notes like orchid. Almost seems buttery. Leaves are almost completely opened up and smell sweet like honey and quite floral. There’s absolutely no dry feeling on my teeth from this infusion.
Infusion Four: 40 Seconds – There’s essentially no barley, nut or roasted flavour left. The liquor tastes quite floral with strong raisin and honey notes. The peach has faded quite a lot which is actually kind of disappointing; now that the focus is more on the taste of the raisin I’m losing interest. Also, it’s definitely very buttery. This is the lightest and most watery infusion yet. I’m sure I could probably get a decent fifth infusion but for my own personal tastes the leaves may very well be spent. They are, however, fully opened and smell sweet like honey and flowers.
This is definitely similar to the other Rou Gui/Cassia Teas I’ve tried but unique in its own right too – I definitely experience some more unique notes with the first steep like corn chips and flax, and I don’t remember really tasting raisin with the others I’ve tried. It’s definitely something I’d serve to other people and I would totally drink it again myself.