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89
drank Mandarin Silk by Art of Tea
158 tasting notes

Guessing on the temp here, since I was impatient and added a bit of cooler water to my cup, then the 190 from the Zoji, and then submerged the leaves. Awfully imprecise of me, but this isn’t the first time I’ve had this despite the utter lack of tasting notes, so I feel qualified (finally) to talk about it.

Previously, the Coconut Pouchong from Golden Moon was the only pouchong I’d had, and it rapidly became one of my very favorite teas. I’d thought that the coconut milk was lending that pouchong the occasional scent of gardenia, but I’m getting it off of this cup too, so I’m wondering if it might not be a quality of pouchong? I should really go out of my way to get an exceptional unflavored pouchong to try.

The smell of the dry leaves echoes almost exactly the aroma and taste of the tea. It’s a creamy, soft, buttery, floral vanilla citrus, a bit dreamsicle-ish, but not tart at all — more rounded. My friend’s father used to have a mandarin orange tree when I was a little girl living down south. Our family always leaned toward bigger oranges and tart tangerines (which I still love to this day) — I remember thinking that mandarin oranges were watery and weak. Getting older, I can certainly appreciate their velvety subtlety more than I did when I was a kid.

Neither ‘pouchong’ nor ‘orange’ typically make me think, ‘I want to try this with milk!’, but with this tea I almost might. Maybe it’s the dreamsicle resonance. I usually find green oolongs unable to be iced without losing a lot of their flavor…but again, grown-up dreamsicle!

Definitely digging this one. It can stay.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 30 sec

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Ohhh, I dunno. I like tea but I’m kind of a tea newbie. At this point I can say with authority that I may never be anything else, no matter how many teas I try…there is always something new out there.

I write a lot.

I also play way too many video games.


Ratings! (Bout time, wot?) This is a new arrangement, so…subject to change!

1-10: Not potable. First-sip disasters.

11-30: Intensely unpleasant…won’t catch me finishing the cup.

31-50: I really don’t like it…but maybe somebody else out there would.

51-70: Drinkable, but probably not the first thing I’m going to reach for.

71-90: Pretty good tea, and stuff that there’s a good chance I’ll have on-hand. Will do in a pinch at the low end, all the way up to regular visitors to my infuser on the high end.

91-100: Teas I really do not want to be without.

Location

Boston/Cambridge

Website

http://sophistre.tumblr.com/

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