If you haven’t heard, I have the best boyfriend in the entire world.
So, my boyfriend is always amused by my various obsessiveness. I tend to cycle through hobbies and pastimes pretty quickly, and he’s always along for the ride. When he found out that I was getting into loose leaf tea, and made my first order from Adagio, he surprised me with the Golden Moon Tea Taster’s Sampler set (http://www.goldenmoontea.com/Tea_Taster_s_Sampler_P56C28.cfm for those that aren’t in the know). It’s $20 for their entire catalog, 1-2 cups of each of their 31 varieties, and if you use the code “teareviewblog” you get free shipping (it worked when I ordered, at least). It was the perfect gift, and as a result, I have the chance to work my way through the various and interesting teas of a highly respected company.
The box is a bit daunting, so I figured I’d start with the basics. And what’s more basic than plain green tea? I don’t have much experience with green tea overall, but I read on here and elsewhere that this was just straight green tea, with a very mild flavor.
When I opened the little packet, I was sort of surprised at how much there was in there. The leaves were pretty and twisted, a wonderful verdant color. There were some broken bits at the bottom of the packet, but for the most part, most of the leaves were intact. I’d read that many of the offerings were really one cup only, but I measured out a heaping teaspoon of this, and I still had half left. Since I didn’t want to overdue it with the leaves, and add too many to the pot with no knowledge of the the temperament of this tea, I just did the one heaping teaspoon and sealed the rest of the bag up for another time.
The dry leaves smelled… leafy. Green in a plant-like way. Nothing distinctive. The resulting liquid after brewed was a light yellow color. A very, very pale goldenrod. The cup had literally no smell.
On my first sip I was a bit surprised. This tea doesn’t have a strong flavor at all. As someone that’s accustomed to blacks in the morning, it was a bit interesting. There are barely any tasting notes to be had while the cup is still piping hot. A hint of vegetation, a sweet aftertaste.
As the cup cooled, however, the sweetness really came into prominence. I only really tasted the “candied pineapple” tasting note once or twice (this is not flavored with pineapple, so don’t expect a strong flavor at all). The best thing that I can say about this tea is that if it was cold, it’d be immensely chuggable. And I mean that as a compliment. It’s refreshing and light and tasty, with a very pleasing sweet note. It tastes pure and refined. Does it taste like “tea”? No. So if you’re going into this expecting a flavor parade, you will be disappointed. It tastes more like drinking dew from a large leaf in the morning. What I would imagine the water served up on Olympus tastes like.
All great compliments, but when I’m drinking tea, I don’t really want water, I want tea. I really enjoyed the subtleties of this tea, and I’m going to try resteeping it (some of the leaves still have a twisted shape and didn’t unfurl completely), but I can’t imagine ordering more of this.