242 Tasting Notes
This tea is great for editing a term paper and listening to Mozart’s Requiem mass (if only I had a better recording…). Anyway, I don’t have time for a full review of the tea, but I can say that the first infusion is a bit sweeter than last time, which results in a fruity flavor is making itself known. The flavor profile claims it’s currant, but I’ve never had currant before, so I don’t have anything to compare to. Regardless, this is delightful to drink, especially when frantically working on a paper.
The second cup was marked by an increase in the sweetness, the development of a floral flavor (Hibiscus? I’m not sure, because, once again, I haven’t had all that much exposure to this flower), and the completion of my paper! I’ve started to read a book You are not a Gadget: A Manifesto, which I need to read by Wednesday for my final in Posthumanist philosophy. I also had a delightful little discussion on classical music recommendations (see the comments, and if you like classical music, check these albums out.).
Anyway, music and philosophical ramblings aside, The tea continues to develop along the same lines as last time, providing a delightful experience. I’m actually kind of sad that my living situation doesn’t really allow for a gongfu tea set, as I would really like to experience this tea’s development in smaller increments. When brewed the western way, the flavor profile changes greatly between your steeps, and I’m sure that smaller steps would provide a more rewarding experience. For example, the first infusion was a delightful mix of dark chocolate, with undertones of fruit, yet the second infusion was much less chocolatey due to the strengthening of the fruit and the emergence of flowery flavors. The flowery taste came out of nowhere, but if I had been brewing gongfu style, it is likely that this flavor would have emerged more gradually.
The third infusion hasn’t really gotten malty, but the cinnamon is definitely present. It isn’t very strong yet, but it strong enough to be distinct. This steep is really complex, which means that I’m in the latter half of this session (which is kinda sad, but that’s how western-style breweing works. I really need to put some effort into getting a gonfu set…), and I can certainly expect the tea to gain complexity over the next two infusions. If I end up getting more than five, I’ll be surprised.
This is the forth and final infusion, mostly because if I wait longer, I’m going to have too much caffeine in my system to go to sleep at 1. Anyway, the cinnamon has developed nicely, but the chocolate is now gone. It is also interesting to note that the fruit flavors have changed. Again, the flavor profile claims it’s the appearance of raisin flavors, but I haven’t had raisins by themselves in years, and I certainly don’t remember what they taste like. Hmm, actually, that might make a good snack right about now…
Anyway, it’s still delicious, and I’m glad that I’m ending my day with this tea.
I decided to drink this to celebrate my last class of the semester. From here until the 15th, all I have to do is study like crazy for exams.
Anyway, I kinda forgot about the tea for a bit while watching a friend play a game, and the resulting tea was actually pretty bitter. To be fair, it’s still way less bitter than the 2011 sheng samples I have from Douji, but it still had a lot more flavors than usual. Hopefully I won’t flub the next infusion.
EDIT – Yep, didn’t mess up the next infusion, and the bitterness is gone! See my previous notes for more info.
Just a quick cup before class this morning. I don’t have time to write anything now, but I’ll probably update this note after lunch, when I have a few hours of peace.
I got a good five infusions out of these leaves, which is why it’s my go-to black tea. You just can’t go wrong with it. I particularly like how sweet it got near the end, as I had been generous with the amount of leaves I used, and had brewed it extra strong, and I was probably due for something sweeter by that point…
Anyway, run-on sentences aside, I’m gonna be a bit infrequent with logging my teas until the 16th, when my finals are done. Such is the life of a university student. Best of luck to the rest of you!
I’m backlogging this as I woke up this morning, and found out that 8 hours of work I did yesterday all went down the drain due to a freak accident involving how SAS saves files. Needless to say, the past 6 hours have been full of frantic programming, colorful cursing, and tons of tea. I think I got five steeps out of these leaves, but don’t quote me on that. Anyway, check out my first note about this tea for more detailed information.
It’s been a while since I had this tea, and as I decided to work my way through my remaining samples, I picked this one. It’s pretty good, and it’s certainly a lot better than most Jasmine teas that I get at restaurants, but it’s not great. It’s sweeter than some jasmine, but I still prefer my Japanese greens.
It was still raining today. And it was cold. REALLY COLD. And it was windy, so my umbrella was pretty much worthless. I desperately needed something bold and warn to help recover from my brief trip through the elements, and this tea fit the bill.
I was generous with the amount of leaves I used (As much a one can be when using a tea ball), and I let it sit for a good five minutes for the first infusion. the result is a deep red, bordering on black, and with a taste that was a nice creamy, yet strong, malt. Anyway, I’m sitting here writing, this, and it’s already starting to warm me up, so it looks like this was the right decision.