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Herbal White Blend
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Edit tea info Last updated by Jason
Average preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 15 sec

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20 Tasting Notes View all

  • “I think I'm in love. I had never tasted white tea before in my life. The closest I'd come to it before this was that Lipton bottled stuff flavored with raspberry. And while I enjoyed it as a...” Read full tasting note
    94
    teaplz 186 tasting notes
  • “I just finished watching a Modern Marvels show on tea ( http://bit.ly/11xMMn ). The History Channel is so cool. Anyway, it made me want something more on the green end of the tea spectrum so I...” Read full tasting note
    20
    aug3zimm 911 tasting notes
  • “#2 from my Golden Moon Sampler, selected by plunging my hand into the basket and grabbing. Today I was a little more careful. I used only 4 ounces of water. I still don't think I'm getting the...” Read full tasting note
    61
    Doulton 255 tasting notes
  • “Huzzah! I have officially gone through the Golden Moon sampler box. Happily, we end things on a high note. It occurred to me that perhaps I had been unfair in many of my GM Sample ratings, for I...” Read full tasting note
    77
    bleepnik 117 tasting notes

From Golden Moon Tea

The rarest of all loose leaf tea, White Tea takes on a subtle, yet complex flavor with the addition of a chrysanthemum flower.

Golden Moon Tea was the first nationwide importer of White Tea.

This long-term expertise with White Tea brings the finest flavor and quality to our diverse line of White Tea.

Ingredients:

Chinese white tea, chrysanthemum flowers

About Golden Moon Tea View company

Golden Moon is dedicated to offering outstanding, whole-leaf teas of the greatest quality and finesse. All Golden Moon Teas are hand-plucked and meticulously crafted to enhance leaf character, aroma, color, clarity, body, complexity, and above all, flavor.

20 Tasting Notes

94
186 tasting notes

I think I’m in love.

I had never tasted white tea before in my life. The closest I’d come to it before this was that Lipton bottled stuff flavored with raspberry. And while I enjoyed it as a throwaway soft drink, it would never, ever compare to something like this.

I was really anticipating this particular steeping. I’ve been hearing a lot about whites and their wonderfulness, and I figured it was time to give one a try. So I sifted through my Golden Moon sampler and picked out the most basic white in there: White Tea. I’m not quite sure what kind of white tea this is, but my sampler had a chrysanthemum blossom in there too.

The leaves were so many different colors when dry! A beautiful deep green that reminded me of evergreens and Christmas. Some brown-speckled leaves. And these beautiful little needle-looking things with downy fuzz! I was so intrigued by this that I picked one up to feel it. So velvety and soft! I’d love to make a coat out of that fuzzy wonderfulness. These were the most leaf-like out of any of the leaves that I’d seen loose before.

I was really nervous about this tea, because I don’t have a thermometer and my kettle is not clear. So I waited for it to boil and let it cool for around 5 minutes. Then I made sure to steep the leaves for the 2 minutes that Golden Moon recommended. There wasn’t much dancing and grooving in my IngeniuTEA. I think it’s because the leaves were already pretty much open.

When I poured the lovely tea juice into my cup, it was a pretty light yellow color. The wet leaves didn’t smell like much, but the liquid smelled a touch floral, and for some reason, buttery. I braced myself, and took the first sip.

And my head jerked back in surprise! Because whatever preconceived notions I had about whites was wrong, or at least off. The taste is, in a word, incredible. It’s extremely delicate but succulent. When the tea was piping hot, it was a bit difficult to pick out any flavors, but as it cooled, it came together. Each sip had a light floral component to it, that gave way to one of the most delicious sweetnesses I’ve ever tasted. Like nectar from the gods. Honeyed and delicious and lingering. I was in heaven. I know I really like a tea when I pace around my house, sipping it and thinking and smiling. This was one of those moments.

The sweetness only got stronger as the cup cooled. There was a slight astringency, but nothing that detracted from the taste. In fact, I think the dry feeling enhanced the sweetness. And that ambrosia-like sweet lasted in my mouth for several minutes after I’d finished the cup. This tea’s quiet beauty really reminded me of a dance routine I saw on So You Think You Can dance last night that gave me a serious case of the goosebumps (Jakob and Mollee’s Viennese Waltz: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fz3quyRMiGI and watch!). It just had this soft touch, this beautiful taste that really lightened up this awful, awful rainy day.

My mom also really loved this one. She took a sip of it, gave a thumbs-up, and said it tasted delicious, delicate, and sweet.

I’m almost afraid to steep this again, because I don’t know if the magic will happen twice. But I’m going to try it anyway, and see what happens. Stay tuned!

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 2 min, 0 sec
Angrboda

:D Yup, there’s a reason my tea for celebrating moments is a white. :)

sophistre

White tea is wonderful! So lovely and weightless.

kat

Whites FTW!! I can usually get at LEAST 3 good steeps out of my whites. How did yours go?

takgoti

Gyah. I love your logs.

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20
911 tasting notes

I just finished watching a Modern Marvels show on tea ( http://bit.ly/11xMMn ). The History Channel is so cool. Anyway, it made me want something more on the green end of the tea spectrum so I rooted around in my samples and pulled out this one.

Okay, this bag? Has like the most minuscule amount of tea ever. One gram. One. For the way I make tea, this isn’t even half a cup. Even using Western style brewing, this isn’t even half a cup. Shame on you, Golden Moon. That’s pathetic.

I went ahead a brewed up a full cup of this but I’m honestly not expecting much. The resulting tea is less pale than I expected but the taste… Initially all I could taste was hot water and Splenda. I did not, however, add Splenda to this. It just tasted like I did (and while they say it doesn’t, Splenda totally has a taste). As it cooled, the Splenda taste became a bit like… well, something a little more flavored than Splenda but I can’t get enough of the taste to figure it out. Maybe honeyed soybean water. Which is probably the chrysanthemum (the honey taste) and the white tea (soybean water). The chrysanthemum dominates but the white tea pokes out more if I slurp but slurping also brings out a weird vegetal bitterness.

The more this cools, the more actual taste I get but I’m underwhelmed. The aftertaste I’m left with once my cup is done is that of Splenda-ed soybean water. So perhaps it is a good thing that I had such a tiny amount of leaf in my sample packet. Because I don’t think I’d like this taste at all if it were more intense. At the same time, maybe if there were more leaf, I’d get more depth to the flavors and not be left with a Splenda-like aftertaste.

I did a second steep of this one (@3mins) to see if I could find anything like what others have found (or anything at all redeeming) and all I got was soybean water with a little Splenda. I decided I didn’t need to experience another whole cup of that and poured it out. My rating is based on the first steep.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 0 sec
Cofftea

AWESOME!!!

Cofftea

^ in reference to the show, not the measly amount of tea.

Angrboda

What is this splenda business anyway? Some sort of artificial sweetener or an herb or some such? I’ve heard (or seen rather) people talk about something called stevia, which I’ve gathered must be some sort of herb.

Auggy

@Cofftea, it really is an awesome show. Even if a lot of it is about Lipton and CTC teas, not orthodox.
@Angrboda, Splenda is an artificial sweetner made from sugar so it is supposed to taste like sugar. It sorta does – closer than other fake sweeteners out there. But I’m not a big fan. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Splenda

Angrboda

Okay, thanks. I’ve been wondering about this for a while, having seen both and getting them mixed up a lot. I’m not familiar with either. No clue what artificial sweetener is like over here, except you get them in little tablets. I expect it’s probably more or less the same. I prefer real sugar myself.

Auggy

Sugar rules! :)

Angrboda

Indeed. :) If it ain’t broken, don’t fix it. Unless you’ve got diabetes. In which case it’s broken.

…or something.

chana

I can buy stevia leaves in the market here, at spice and herb shops. Putting a couple of leaves in a cup sweetens the tea, it’s not a sugar taste, I can’t really think how to describe it. The local organic market also sells stevia in a liquid form – that has more of an aftertaste though.

teaplz

Awww that you didn’t like this, and that’s SO WEIRD. My sample packet had around a teaspoon and a half, and I dumped the entire bag in. My version was buttery and floral and naturally sweet-tasting. I can’t stand artificial sugar… wow. Totally different! Oh well, there are many white teas under the sun! Did takgoti give you any of Samovar’s Bai Mu Dan? Cause that tastes really delicious.

Auggy

Yep, I have some of that one – I’m looking forward to it!

Ricky

Haha, you should try Harney & Son’s Bai Mei. I thought this one was decent, Bai Mei was way worse than this. I have about half the packet left, want it? :D

I don’t recall how much I had in this sampler, but it definitely wasn’t enough to ration it into two servings.

Auggy

You make it sound so tempting! :P

Ricky

Comes with ♥, ★, rainbows and a complimentary red balloon as well! =D

takgoti

@Angrboda Yer funneh.

@Ricky They’re magically delicious!

Angrboda

Tak, thank you, one does one’s best. :p

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61
255 tasting notes
  1. from my Golden Moon Sampler, selected by plunging my hand into the basket and grabbing.

Today I was a little more careful. I used only 4 ounces of water. I still don’t think I’m getting the full effect. I’ve noticed that the tasting notes are all over the place on this tea. I can smell the floral aspects which are pleasant but not to-fall-in-love-with. I can also pick up on a sun-shiny buttery aspect of the tea.

I think my palate prefers the big boom to the delicate touch. In terms of being a tea drinker, I feel a bit like Sir Walter Scott felt about Jane Austen: "The Big Bow-wow strain I can do myself like any now going; but the exquisite touch, which renders ordinary commonplace things and characters interesting, from the truth of the description and the sentiment, is denied to me. "
The exquisite palate is denied to me but I certainly enjoy those Big Bow-wow teas.

My ratings, by the way, reflect my own pleasure in the tea and have nothing to do with the tea’s actual merit or lack thereof.

Preparation
2 min, 15 sec
denisend

How else would you rate the tea?

Janefan

GREAT use of that quote! I actually won a GM sampler from a blog contest about a month ago, but it hasn’t arrived yet. All these sampler reviews lately are making me impatient! “I must have my share in the conversation, if you are speaking of music TEA.”

teabird

Trying to rate a tea on objective “merit” seems like an exercise in futility to me. Your descriptions and imagery are much more useful (and interesting!) than any attempt at an impartial judgement.

gmathis

Reminds me of Robin William’s tirade on J. Evans Prichard’s textbook preface in “Dead Poet’s Society” … you can’t rate poetry (TEA) like you do American bandstand…it’s got a good beat, but you can’t dance to it! Poetry (TEA) was meant to be savored! Begone, J. Evans Prichard! Rip it out! Rip! Rip! I don’t hear enough ripping! (Sorry…getting carried away…)

Doulton

Denisend, I was just reflecting that I’ve had no tea-tasting classes and I don’t know enough about the history and pedigree of teas (not to mention each year’s harvest) to speak to that aspect of tea-tasting.

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77
117 tasting notes

Huzzah! I have officially gone through the Golden Moon sampler box. Happily, we end things on a high note. It occurred to me that perhaps I had been unfair in many of my GM Sample ratings, for I use 16oz./~475mL water, which may be too much for the sample packets. Naturally, this thought occurs to me on my very last GM Sample. Oops. This thought was emphasised when I opened the packet and saw just how little tea is in this particular sample. =\

The dry leaves have a wonderful fragrance. It’s delicate and floral, with the chrysanthemum coming through clearly when I inhaled deeply, but very very subtle when taking just a quick sniff.

Steeped, the tea is pale and fragrant, still very delicate. I generally like bolder flavours, but this was really nice. The only sad thing is that the caffeine hit me like a freight train, so it’s unlikely I’ll be stocking this. Still, if I had more I’d happily drink it. =)

Tea amount: 1 sample packet
Water amount: 8oz./~237mL
Additives: 1 tsp Demerara sugar
Dry mouth factor: 4/10

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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63
933 tasting notes

Golden Moon sample No. 17 of 31. Still no Kashmiri Chai. Sigh. And I’ve not been looking forward to this one as I have recently discovered I don’t care for the way dried chrysanthemums smell to the point where it sets my stomach on edge. I have also discovered that I am able to drink the plain chrysanthemum and enjoy it reasonably well (though I wouldn’t buy it after the sample is gone), as long as I don’t allow myself to smell the dry leaves, or to inhale the aroma of the tea too deeply while I’m drinking. The steeped aroma is just a shadow of the dry, so it’s not quite so problematic for me.

In any case, after reading Rabs’ note on this I realized for the first time this actually did have chrysanthemum in it so I was a little worried about trying it. Fortunately, I do not have the stomach-driven aversion to the scent of the dry leaves here, perhaps because there are only two flowers in the sample. Or perhaps because the salty/marshy note to the white tea that I noticed with the snow buds is present here as well and it overpowers any smell the chrysanthemums might contribute. Or it could even be that this is a different kind of chrysanthemum. It is white, where the others were purple.

In any case, no problem on the smell front. The dry leaves are interesting in that they have some flat, open leaves in them. Almost as many are flat and open as are twisty-pointed. I am not well versed enough to know what kind of tea this is but if I was guessing I’d guess white peony as it is fairly dark in color and seems to contain mostly leaves.

The sample wasn’t big enough to make a full cup, so I’m making about 2/3 of a cup. It makes a pale yellow liquor with a sweet, delicate, lightly floral aroma. No problem here either — either the flowers smell different or there aren’t enough to contribute to the aroma in a significant way.

Tastes like… chicken! Not really. I just have always wanted to say that in a tasting note and just finished having some broiled chicken breast for lunch and was wondering how that would affect the taste if at all.

In reality, it doesn’t taste anything like chicken. It does taste a fair amount like the tea base for the Numi white bagged teas that I was writing about around this time last week, only not as heavy and fresher. It’s sweet and slightly green/floral, with an interesting almost black tea note to it.

At least in my experience, White Tea is an apt descriptor here as I don’t really get any chrysanthemum flavor, unless it’s an intangible contributor to the overall sweetness of the tea. But from my perspective, not getting the chrysanthemum is a really good thing.

I’d probably just as soon try it straight, though. I do worry that in a full tin, the chrysanthemums would be harder to avoid and perhaps have a different effect than I experienced here. That’s enough to make me not want to take a chance on buying more of this.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 0 sec
Rabs

Ooh – now I’m really curious to try Snow Sprout. Maybe it wasn’t the chrysanthemum that was bugging me so much in this tea. Maybe I just don’t care for GM’s white tea. I’ll edit my note if I make some discoveries from Snow Sprout. And I’m uber-glad that this wasn’t as horrific as you’d feared. :)

__Morgana__

Snow Sprout! Yes, that’s it, I called it snow buds. Lol. Yeah, I think I gave this one a higher rating just for not being as chrystanthemummy as I’d feared. ;-)

Stephanie

I actually do think white teas taste like chicken sometimes! But I’m weird like that. ;)

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64
80 tasting notes

I’ve been feeling gross lately, and I went for the white tea sampler :)

It smells silver needle…ish. I almost wish they were a little more specific with what type of “white tea” it is. hmmm not bad. I think i might have steeped it too long. The color came out pretty dark, and it has a slightly bitter flavor to it. I’m getting some of the chrysanthemum flavor, which i’m not a huge fan of. This is a good cup, but I’ve drank so many better white teas before.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 1 min, 45 sec
Cofftea

Boo for feeling gross!

Kathryn Ann

yeah, been eating a lot of fried foods, my body isn’t happy. ):

Cofftea

Do you have any matcha? I stir a TB into 16oz of hot water (the heck w/ my chawan, I tak this chance to use a 16oz mug that’s special to me). A couple mornings of that (on top of my regular matcha OJ) and I’m pretty good. You may want to try fermented teas like Pu Erh and Kombucha as well.

Kathryn Ann

Hmmm, i do have 52tesa strawberry matcha. I haven’t tried it yet, and i even got a matcha set recently as a gift hahah! Somehow drinking green tea when I feel gross never occured to me, usually oolong and white teas are my go-to. Thanks!

Cofftea

Matcha is very detoxifying to me (maybe due to the high mineral content?) I even call that ratio “detox matcha” lol! Wow how do I get to know this person and get in their gift giving list, they give great gifts! Tea is one thing, but matcha… tell him or her I’m impressed- do they drink it themselves?

Kathryn Ann

Nah, but they know i really love tea (and anything japanese)… and got it for me as a really late bday present :)

Cofftea

One of the 7th graders at my church and her friends are all into Japanese culture so I’m taking her out for matcha for her birthday. Who says 13 year olds aren’t cool? :)

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80
154 tasting notes

Taken plain.
Starting is a sweet smooth chrysanthemum taste with a floral over tone that fades quickly to sweet and toasty and then finally to the white tea base.
This tea is exactly what Golden Moon advertises and it is wonderfully smooth and calming.
Pairing chrysanthemum over the white tea adds interest to a very simple flavor and accents the mouth feel to make this a more full bodied tea.
The tea leaves prior to brewing show full chrysanthemum buds so if you have certain plant allergies you may want to check to make sure this wont bother you.
But if you can drink this it is wonderful.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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49
382 tasting notes

Golden Moon Sampler Tea #29
And then we all pulled out the white tea at the same time!
So I’ll be honest, I didn’t even know Chrysanthemums were edible. Drinkable. Whatever. And I also totally thought that this was just a straight white tea. Oh well!

So since I didn’t realize that the stuff was edible, I can’t really say that the knowledge that it was in the tea made me happy or disappointed. Intrigued is the furthest I’m willing to go. It WAS kinda neat to see the flower among the tea leaves, but that’s about it.

After drinking the tea, I still don’t really have an opinion. If the mums are providing some sort of extra dimension to the white tea taste than I either don’t have the required white tea baseline to be able to differentiate or just did not get enough of them in my sample to judge. This tastes basically like white tea, very light, kind of reminiscent of hay. There’s a slight bite and a sweetness in the aftertaste that may or may not be the mums, it’s a little reminiscent of chamomile maybe. As the water cools the chamomile note starts getting stronger. Interesting.

I can’t say that I’m that enamored of straight white tea, and as far as chamomile goes, for one thing there is my regrettable association and subsequent nausea, but aside from that I prefer it in foxtrot or chacha. So I’m pretty meh on this tea.

Preparation
150 °F / 65 °C 2 min, 0 sec
Rabs

HAY! I think that you nailed it with the hay – for me it was much stronger. Maybe I had the temp too high and it became more aggressive?

Ewa

When I think back, I may have used too much water, which would account for yours being stronger. Mind you, it worked out well for me, since I didn’t really WANT more of that taste. :D

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49
356 tasting notes

Chrysanthemum! ::shakes fist in the air::

I actually didn’t read the sample packet on this one until I’d poured the leaves into the pot and noticed a single white flower. I was somewhat confused since I thought that something called “White Tea” would contain just white tea. Then I read the packet. I’m not a big chrysanthemum fan.

I won’t go into details because I’m having a horrible time figuring out how on earth to describe it. I just feel like a perfectly good white tea was spoiled by one singular flower. It just sort of added an unpleasant taste for me. I think that what it reminds me of is when I was a child I loved dandelions so much that I tried eating one. I’m not gonna try that again to compare, but I just remember that bitter plant taste and being so disappointed.

I must admit that I did do two steeps. I don’t hate it, but it’s something I’d never purchase. M

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 2 min, 0 sec
__Morgana__

Uh oh, now I’m worried about this one. I did not love the last chrysanthemum I had. Maybe I’ll like it better with some white tea in there to take off the edge.

Rabs

Oh lordy – I cannot imagine straight up chrysanthemum ::shudders:: I’m quite curious to see what you think since I really have an extremely limited reference point taste-wise (I’ve only had a couple of loose leaf white teas).

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89
224 tasting notes

Leaves look promising. Large chunks, a flower, very diverse white ingredients. Smells nice. Colour’s yellow as it should be. I think I might like this one.
Mhm white tea FTW. At first it’s slightly sour. But then white tea kicks in with that full nutty taste. I love it and I missed drinking plain white unscented tea. It’s not quite ‘Silver needle – awesome’ but its quite delicious.

Good job with this one Golden Moon.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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