408 Tasting Notes
Wu Dong Shan Huang Zhi Shiang
This is much more astringent than the others I’ve tried. I also tried brewing it stronger on some steeps, but even so – more bitterness, higher caffeine. I can’t recall the description given here, but one of the 6 teas in the August box was described as reminiscent of a sheng pu-erh, and I’m betting this is it. It has the intense, dry, grassy, heady impression I get from those. Not my favorite, but certainly interesting
Flavors: Astringent, Dry Grass, Menthol
I created this aggregate tea page to track reviews of Verdant’s Tea of the Month Club, rather than cluttering Steepster’s database with limited availability teas with very similar names :)
Da Wu Ye Dancong
I think I love Dancongs. The first one I remember trying had a flavor strongly reminiscent of pineapple; both I’ve tried so far from this box have silky mouthfeel, floral notes, honey sweetness, and some of that same sharp fruitines. I’m still playing with the preparation, mostly trying to figure it out by color + tiny tastes of the brewing tea. Apparently the “classic” style to brew this is very very strong and fast, so there is a punch of bitter flavor contrasted by lots of lingering aromatics, but that’s a bit much for me
So a new shop opened near me recently, that carries fancy olive oil and balsamic vinegars, bulk spices, cocktail mixers, and a nice big wall of loose leaf tea form Divinitea! They brought in Linda Smith, the proprietor, to do a tasting a couple of weeks ago. This was one of the teas she was sampling, and I was completely won over.
I’m not a huge fan of coconut in general, but that’s mostly because it’s usually cloying and I hate the texture of the dried, grated stuff. But this… it’s not that it’s subtle, the coconut flavor is very strong. But it’s well-blended, with notes of vanilla, and a strong black tea base to give it some depth and backbone. Smooth enough to drink straight (if not oversteeped) but delicious with a splash of whole milk. I did four short steeps and mixed them together.
Flavors: Coconut, Creamy, Smooth, Vanilla
The dry leaf does smell like grape! In a good, earthy way, not like a fake flavoring. This is a very fruity black tea, distinct and ejoyable. Quite tasty, but not one I’d feel compelled to buy any more of, mostly because I can’t make up my mind about how to prepare it. Straight? With milk? With sugar? Any works, but none seems quite right.
I actually meant to prepare the Smoked Wuyi Black from this month’s TotMC, but accidentally grabbed this instead. I’ve had this a number of times already and it’s been a hard one to evaluate, because it’s so unlike what I’m used to from yunnan black teas. It’s not really sweet, or chocolatey, or spicy in the usual way. I can’t fathom putting milk or sugar in it.
I always notice the olive oil flavors, and it usually makes me think of Mediterranean food in general: olive oil, grape leaves, preserved lemons, savory spices. It’s very good! But I have to be in the mood for a grown-up tea, and I don’t usually prepare it in my yunnan yixing because it’s so atypical. It’s smooth like honey but not so sweet. Not very bitter, either. Just very distinctive all around.
I probably have more of this than I will ever drink – PM me if it sounds like something you’d love and I’ll get a few samples together to give away.