115 Tasting Notes

92

Just got this a few days ago so this is the first tasting of it. I enjoy golden teas (yunnans, assams, etc.) so this one sounded like it would fit in. It’s a golden Fujian province tea which goes through a process that renders the beautiful gold and black colors. The aroma of the leaf has a fairly strong strain of chocolate. It is picked from young new leaf and buds so it is a tender thin leaf size, but still reasonably lengthy. I brewed for 3 minutes and only added sweetener. It has a deep golden color and the aroma of which is more like a golden yunnan. The flavor for me has chocolate notes mixed with sweet potato/yam notes… it’s smooth with little astringency. It’s tasty and good tea. I enjoyed it.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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91

Based on my love for a good golden yunnan and the rave reviews here, I decided to order this tea. It arrived yesterday night so today was the first chance at trying this. The leaf is as pictured, golden and a grayish black color, long and slightly kinky. The brew is a deep golden honey color. I steeped for my usual 3 minutes for this type of tea and added sweetener only. The flavor is very good, however I think I was light on the amount of leaf for my larger size cup. I should have weighed it out. The delicious flavor is a little light for my expectation because of this. I will reserve a more final decision on this once I’ve had another time or two to try it out. But for now I would say it rivals my all time fave golden yunnan…Emporer’s Gold from Tao. I may need a side-by-side taste test to compare. This is a very good tea.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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51

Sampling this assam this morning. It’s a broken tea with lots of tippy parts of coppery color. I shy away from small broken leaf such as BOP teas but many from India are in that category when it comes to Assam. I find this tea uninspiring. The flavor of the brew is ok but no “wow” factor for me. The taste is bold and mostly non-astringent after 2 1/4 min steep. The maltiness factor is mild at best. However I don’t find any notes that stand out. It’s just a mediocre assam for me.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 15 sec

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74

Trying the last of my sample of this tea. I measured out the normal amount for my thermos and had just a smidge left so I dumped it in too. What I ended up with is a very strong dose of tea. This tea is once again strong, very strong with the smidge extra tea leaf in the brew. This dark brew has a strong astringency even after steeping just 2 1/2 minutes. It’s stout…too stout to enjoy even with just sweetener so I added some dairy milk to it and wow that helps a lot! So with the addition of milk I bump the rating of this tea. As others have said, if you are a coffee drinker this might be the one for you to try first in the tea arena.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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97
drank Keemun Hao Ya B by TeaSource
115 tasting notes

Wow! This tea is one of my faves and it’s hitting a chord with my taste buds this afternoon! If you like Keemun tea you must try this one. It is really good. It is much like the Hao Ya “A” grade in both looks and taste but this one has some richer depth and notes of chocolate mixed in. For me it’s just a really delicious tea! I would encourage you to try it regardless if you have tasted a good Keemun or not previously. I drink it black with sweetener. Don’t assume all sources have the same quality if the name is the same. This source is quality… at least when I bought my supply. :)

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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88

This morning’s tea is this classic tea from China Hunan province. It’s a tea with wirey leaf that is dark, actually rather black colored with small amounts of gold color occasionally thrown in. The brew is dark with a bold flavor that has notes of fruit and dark chocolate. I drink it black with some sweetener added but you could add dairy to this.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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70

Got a sampler of this tea recently and gave it a try this morning. It’s a blend of Assam and Darjeeling teas. I steeped 2 1/2 min to reduce bitterness. I drank it black with sugar as sweetner. The brew is dark honey colored and full flavor. I can taste the Darjeeling muscatel in this a little stronger than the assam. I think the Assam adds a bolder character to it and a hint of maltiness. I find it a pleasing blend, there is a little astringency in the aftertaste. While not at the top of my list, it’s a tea I could go for again with no problem.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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91
drank Hong Jing Luo by thepuriTea
115 tasting notes

Got a sample of this recently. I love a good golden yunnan tea so this one is described as great for fans of that. I had to try this one.

The leaf is beautiful, curled up firmly and black/gold in color. It’s mostly golden brown that shows just like in the photo. I steeped 3 min and the aroma is distinctive and wonderful. Some teas don’t have a pleasant aroma but this one does, reminding me of baked sweet potato.

The brew is a dark golden honey color. The leaf unfurls and becomes straight and narrow leaves. The flavor is like the golden yunnan tea. It’s a vibrant flavor or multiple notes, sweet potato, brown sugar, caramel come to mind. It’s really good and I will have to add some to my next order.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec
Keemun

…I think if you would keep the steeping time shorter the sweetness would come out even more intense. Are you doing multiple infusions or you stay with one…love your review. Need to get my hands on a golden yunnan ASAP

Auggy

I just had some with the same notes – sweet potato and sugar. So good!

Keemun

…grrr…jealous

Teaman

I did two steeps so far. The second was just as good, a tad lighter as you might expect. Keemun have you had this one? I’ll have to try a shorter steep however the sweetness was great with 3 minutes.
Yes Auggy I noticed that about your review of the Golden Bud review you did. Interesting. I love baked sweet potatos with butter on them and this tea strangely reminds me of that flavor a lot. Sounds like that one you had is very similar. I wonder how they compare.

Keemun

…had a Golden Yunnan two years ago. Was quite good. But not as sweet and caramel-like as you describe it…more tobacco,earthy tasting… pu-erh.
Surprisingly smooth as I remember…but very dark in color. Strong fragrance.

Teaman

That doesn’t sound like a Golden Yunnan. Yunnan tea is used to make Pu-erh but aged in the earth. A good GY will not be earthy or tobacco-y (but then I don’t smoke so how would i know.) Get a good GY and you will love it. One of my faves is Emporer’s Gold from Tao of Tea. But I’m finding others that rank high on my list of GY teas.

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80
drank Himalayan Shila Black by TeaSource
115 tasting notes

This Napali tea is a complex tea. It’s a first flush which means the leaf was picked early in the season. The leaf is whole and large but being a 1st flush large means young new leaf which isn’t huge. Usually first flush teas tend to be on the greenish color side of the spectrum. This however is a mostly dark brown/black color with a hint of dark green mixed in. The leaf has a kinky twist and some occasional tip colored leaf thrown in.

The brew is a golden color. The aroma has a vegetal quality to it, which makes sense given its flush. After my 2.5 min steep the leaves had uncurled and were a greenish brown color. You could then see the wholeness of the leaf.

The flavor is similar to a darjeeling but is complex in nature, with notes of fruit and nut and some muscatel. It’s from a high elevation growing area so has smooth character. It’s a great change of pace and I enjoy this tea. I most likely will re-order when I run out. Another great tea from TeaSource!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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94

Had this favorite this morning. It is always very good. A great go-to tea when you need a great no-surprises tea that is there time after time. It’s a really mellow golden yunnan tea that is less strong than some of the golden yunnans out there. If you aren’t sure you will like a golden yunnan, go for this one. Flavor is delicious!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec
TeaEqualsBliss

LOVE the name of this!

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Bio

I love loose leaf tea! While I gravitate towards black teas, I’m getting more into oolongs, greens and whites. I’m always looking for great fresh new teas to try. This tends to lead to the problem of ordering more even though I already have way too much.

My collection of tea has kind of gotten out of hand. After taking over several kitchen cupboards, it has spilled into the back hallway now with containers of tea stacked up there. I think I need more hours in the day to drink it all.

I’m also a vegetarian who loves dark chocolate, photography, travel, computers, web programming, technology and cats.

Location

near Portland, Oregon

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