Red Leaf Tea included 4 free samples on my last order – this is the last of them. The aroma is sweet white tea with a hint of rose… as is the flavor. Huh. I was expecting this to be more overpoweringly floral and am pleasantly surprised to be wrong. Delicate white tea with a hint of rosebuds, not perfume. Nice!
380 Tasting Notes
Mmm, this is quite nice. Strong and full flavored, a little harsh plain (but I may have oversteeped a touch), smooths out easily with a little milk and sugar. Hints of cocoa, fruit, and spice, but I’m not actually getting a lot of malt from this one. That’s fine though, the flavor is round and satisfying regardless.
Still my favorite oolong? Yep.
Apparently boiling water into room temp tiny glass pot → 200°F starting temperature. This is a little hotter than the last time I had this tea, and the aroma is roastier than I recall. There’s still some fruit, fortunately. Likewise for the taste: a little toast, but still peachy, and a nice tropical fruit aftertaste (or maybe that’s orchid? I haven’t eaten an orchid before). Still, think I understeeped this a little – more leaf next time.
2nd steep at 195 and 4 minutes
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Wanted something comforting tonight – Florence fits the bill. Like hot chocolate for anyone who’s outgrown
most of their sweet tooth .5tsp/3.5oz is a little weak at 3 minutes, but I wanted to get two steeps out of it.
This opportunity to try Andrews & Dunham’s Series 1 Nepal is brought to you by – Ricky! Which is great, because that was the one tea I really wanted to try out of series 1.
Others have described the leaves well – large, multicolored – but the liqueur is a lovely shade of amber gold. The aroma is fruity, spicy, and definitely reminding me of last night’s darjeeling blend. My first thought on tasting is – citrus? Orange? Not what I expected from a plain black tea. The “black tea” taste, in fact, is quite faint. There’s a tiny bit of astringency, but certainly not enough to be offputting; it’s growing as the tea cools, though. I think this was better hot.
I didn’t mean to brew this at such a low temp (I just didn’t warm the pot well) but it came out pretty nicely. I would NOT add milk to this one, though honey or a squeeze of citrus would likely go well.
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Mmm, this is delicious. On the advice of some other Steepsterites, I’ve resolved to use more leaf when steeping whites, so this was 1tsp/3.5oz. The brew is a bright almost-but-not-quite-greenish yellow; it smells fragrant and delicately fruity. I don’t know that I’d call the flavor champagne, almost like grape perfume perhaps, but it is sweet and delightful without being overpowering.
I’m a little confused as to how to rate it, though. It’s very tasty, but I really prefer strong blacks still. I wouldn’t pick this over any of my “breakfast” teas, but it’s certainly not worse than them. Ah well, maybe I’ll just consider this on a separate “whites” scale.
Another 2 steeps around 4-5 minutes each came out quite well – champagne/grape flavor still present in the 3rd steep
This is from Ricky’s Darjeeling package! With 1/2tsp in the 3.5oz pot, this brews up a bright golden orange color. It smells fruity, and sharp, and little spicy. The taste is light and fruity, light enough that I’m not sure I’d call this a “Breakfast” tea. There is a touch of astringency, not overpowering, but enough that I wouldn’t want to steep this longer or stronger. Overall: very pleasant. All the flavor characteristics I hear Darjeelings are supposed to have without mouth-drying bitterness
Another cooked puerh – they’re definitely starting to grow on me, but I still have trouble distinguishing one from another. I’m starting to taste more interesting things – spice, molasses, minerals? – but not enough that I’d pick a puerh over a good black or oolong for sheer drinking pleasure. For education, well, that’s another matter ;)
So very yummy. I prepared this accord to takgoti/teaplz’s instructions ( http://steepster.com/teaplz/posts/20967 ) and now I think I need to re-rate all of my chais so that this one doesn’t have an unfair advantage. I had been preparing my chai like normal black tea – hah! I only added a little bit of stevia for sweetener, but it tastes much sweeter; something about heating the milk, I think? Anyway, very very tasty.
I always forget that there’s black pepper in this chai blend, because it’s very understated – mostly cinnamon, cardamom, and cloves – just enough to give it a little bite. I can barely taste the assam, but it enough there to make this taste like tea, and to keep it from being too sweet.
I really adore this tea. The dry leaves smell almost overpoweringly fruity, and are very pretty with the yellow, red, and blue flowers. The liqueur is a bright orange-gold, and smells more like apples than any other fruit. Actually, if you made hot apple cider and tossed a few strawberries or currants in the pot, I think this is how it would smell. The taste: a sweet, light, fruity black tea. But then I always get this deliciously creamy aftertaste, and that gets a bit stronger as it cools.
Must buy more. Someday. When I’m allowed to buy tea again :(
This has really pretty leaves, with some golden tips mixed in, and brews up a surprisingly dark red-brown color. I’m still not really getting the vanilla, but there smoke and chocolate are less overwhelming too, so I think some of that may have been proximity to dear Florence and the Caravan. This is still quite tasty, just a bit subtler now. Drinkable plain, with a heavy sweet mouthfeel, but definitely strong enough to hold up to milk; the milk softens and smooths it, and brings out more of the chocolate/vanilla flavors. This one is growing on me!
And oh hey! Now the numerical ratings show up when you over over one of the “previously rated tea” hashes! Thanks Steepster guys!
I had this for the first time at an amazing little tea shop in upstate NY (which I now have to find and rate among the Places). I didn’t buy any in bulk there, foolishly, so I hunted down a company online that seemed to carry the same blend. Yes!
So, this is a very soft berry rooibos tea with a few floral notes. You can see all of the flavors in the ingredients, which I love: currants, blueberries, rose petals, and lavender. The lavender isn’t so much a flavor as an aftertaste, an almost menthol tang, but it all comes together surprisingly well. This is a unique tea, that I have to be in the right mood for, but when I am it’s delicious!
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I like the smell of this better than the taste; there’s a lot more creamy vanilla and fruit than you’d expect from the spicy description. The black tea taste (ceylon?) is fairly pronounced, and it’s… more sour than sweet? I’m not really a fan of sour teas, so the tart fruit undertone is putting me off a little, especially compared to the sweet aroma of the dry leaves and the liqueur.
I wouldn’t want to add anything to this, though; I think any sort of cream or sweetener would overwhelm it (unless perhaps you brew it stronger)
Edit: Wow, this is getting a lot softer as it cools, more what I expected from the scent. Less sour, more cream.
I probably shouldn’t admit how old this tea is because, uh, it’s more than a year. And I have no idea why, because it’s delicious! Looks like a nice full leaf sencha, with a very mild blend of chai spices. The cinnamon/clove comes through most out of them, with a bit of almond and rose present, but the tea flavor is very much there as well.
2nd steep, 4 minutes, equally good
1st steep, 1st impressions: okay, so green/raw/sheng puerh is clearly a whole different animal from black/cooked/shou. Noted. Seconds impressions: smoky aroma, warm cream/pale orange color, smoky/grassy/complex flavor profile. Not a hint of barnyard or fish. Did I just spoil myself for lesser puerhs? :(
Holding off on the numerical rating for some longer steeps
Steep 2, ~2 minutes, boiling water into room temp pot. Same warm gold color, slightly fainter aroma; this is reminding me of a Formosa Oolong in character.
Steep 3, ~3 minutes I think I’ll try cooler water on the next steep, because I’m getting some very roasty toasty notes but not a lot of depth; this tastes like it ought to be bitter, but of course it’s puerh so it isn’t actually.
Steep 4, 4 minutes. Did the boiling water → cup → pot this time, so it ended up around 180°F. I don’t think I mentioned yet, but the leaves are big and beautiful, dry and wet. Very little scent; I think I should start upping the steep time more, but I’ve certain these leaves have more to give. Still a nice pale gold color, and the flavor profile hasn’t changed much (smoke, hay, roasty), but the flavor isn’t as intense this time around.
Certainly a fine example of a cooked puerh, from my limited experience. Looks and smells a bit milder than Maiden’s Ecstasy, but also a bit… sweeter? More floral? Sipping: either I got used to the barnyard taste overnight, or this is a better puerh than I’ve had before. The latter seems more likely. It’s still there, but muted; more sweet hay than dirt. There’s a bit of spice, too. And some fruit, now. It still doesn’t have the kick of a black tea, but this is definitely growing on me.
I’m finding that the mood/energy effects of puerh are more like yerba mate than regular tea or coffee; smoother, and more drawn out.
Steep 2 at ~2 minutes is rather weak; need to up the steep time I guess
Steep 3, ~5 minutes, scent is getting weaker but color and flavor are still good. Starting to lose some of the nuances I got on the first steep though
Steep 4, m sure with a higher leaf/water ratio it would give more steeps.
Tried this one without milk this morning, and bumping the rating a little because it’s way better than I expected (or remembered) plain. Lots of complexity, sweetness, yes cocoa and spice, but also some floral notes I wasn’t expecting. (There is black tea, too, if you’re wondering). I used boiling water, but poured it into a room temp mug for steeping, so actual temp was more like 200˚F – I really think hotter water can ruin this one. Still, at $8/4oz, I’d call this a steal – I’ll certainly be buying more at some point.
Alright Steepsterites – I’m not even sure I like puerh (yet), but I spent the last ten minutes holding this under my nose while I waited for it to cool. It still has the barnyard smell/taste I’ve gotten from other puerhs, but somehow that’s not off-putting. It’s… satisfying? Addictive? This was a very short steep, so I didn’t get a lot of complexity in the flavor (at least that I can discern), but it is sweet and nice. It’s a very spring sort of flavor: wet earth, new grass.
I’m having a really hard time ranking this, though. It’s a whole different type of tea! It’d be like trying to rank coffee on the same slider. So… no number yet.
Steep 2, 1:15 min (1 tsp leaves, 4oz servings)
Steep 3, 2:15 – I do love how well the lid on Samovar’s yixing pot stays on; the lid for the glass pot likes to fall into my cup while I’m pouring, if I don’t remember to hold it.
Steep 4, 4:15 is a little weaker in both aroma and flavor, but still going really well with last night’s carrot cake.
Steep 5: ~6 minutes
Well, it’s a good thing I got the tiny teapots from Samovar, because I broke my regular one last night. Rather than going back to mugs and infusers already, I decided to make a little cup of this.
From JacquelineM, this brews up a lovely dark orange. It smells like a straight up Ceylon, at least when hot. In the flavor, I’m actually getting more smoke than vanilla. Adding milk brings out the creamy flavor a little, but this still isn’t quite what I was expecting from the description and the scent.
2nd steep might be better than the first, for me: still nothing I’d describe as vanilla, but rounder, more harmonious flavors. It almost tastes like a blend, with some Assam and/or Keemun in there. I am getting the chocolately notes everyone else mentioned now. Very tasty.