363 Tasting Notes
Thanks to Tommy for sending this one. Today I’m working on trying to load some new books onto the kiddo’s tag reader. If you are familiar with these…then yes it not going quick. Had my first two cups before we went sled riding yesterday. Thirty second rinse and followed by one minute steeps. I have to admit I’m liking the flatter Tuocha. It’s pretty coo. First steep I was a little bit concerned there was an overwhelmingly fishy aroma emanating from the cup. Not to worry though. After it settled for a bit there’s the deep dark earth like smoothness that I love from the Pu-Erh. This one is quite a treasure. They only cost .35 per tuocha and I’ve gotten 10 good steeps out of one tuocha. I’m on number eleven and it still hasn’t gone full mushroom water. An excellent brew.
This was my to go tea this morning. A great price so I pulled the trigger. I love the artisan factor being that it is a rosette. With my previous brewing I was in awe watching it fall to the bottom of the cup. Like a blooming green. I think this is a good tea. It reminds me of nice Chinese black. Malty. I don’t know if I get chocolate out of it, but it’s definitely grainy and has that nice baked flavor. Either like bread or potatoes. See Bai Lin Gongfu tasting. I let it sit in my travel mug for the drive to work and did not get bitter. I have to agree though that 40 for the tin is a tad steep…no pun intended. However the post steep rosette does have some cocoa notes wafting up. It’s also fun to freak out my co-workers with the urchin like appeal. Some of you may remember a song from R.E.M that came out ohhhh circa 98 by the name of Lotus. I was a freshman in college and had just started getting involved with the campus radio station. WBWC still has a soft spot in heart. http://youtu.be/vu2jN3d2zzU Haven’t you noticed…I ain’t the lotus. Make it rain :)
I needed a kick in the rear this morning. Ha ha yeah this delivered quite well. For the first time brewing this is could smell the earthiness of the Pu-Erh….excitement! Then that combo of cinnamon, ginger, peppermint, pepper and clove hits like a freight train. The ginger and the peppermint took care of a little stomach funkiness, as I was getting swaps ready to go. I’m not sure why but this tea makes me think of Mardi Gras. I do have a Mardi Gras story…but that is for another tasting. That reminds me of an amazingly beautiful song by Dr. John-Litanie des saints http://youtu.be/E4W7a0zWfqA I added a little turbinado sugar to it. Normally I do not add any sugar to my tea, but not bad. It reminds me a little of pfeffernusse cookies. Hasenfeffer incorporated :)
I actually have Caravan pulled up on rhapsody right now. Songs that are as long if not longer than Iron Butterfly’s In A Gadda Da Vida, and in the similar progressive rock style. I could listen to this all day long but there is news to report. Right now I’m rocking out to L’Auberge Du Sanglier / A Hunting We Shall Go / Pengola / Backwards / A Hunting We Shall Go – Reprise (Medley) from The World Is Yours – The Anthology 1968-1976. They also sound a little like Rush and Yes. This is good music….and good tea. I’ve had this one a while from a swap with Brandy. It is no secret that I love lapsang. The only other Russian Caravan that I have to compare to is Peet’s. This is quite an excellent mix there is the nice smokey undertones of lapsang and what maybe a black Gongfu. Along with the smokey there is that bakey flavor like potatoes, and grain that I have tasted in the Gongfu or maybe Yunnan Golden tips. I can see why A&D teas are rated so highly.
Wow! This has quite the punch to it. Peppermint. Cinnamon. Licorice and there’s a sweetness that I’m not sure where it’s coming from….but I like it. This reminds me of a decaf version of Teavana’s French Quarter Spice Quartet. However the bottom the cup is tongue numbing cinnamon. It’s decent and I would probably pick it up in the store.
I’m glad I’m not the only one who did not quite enjoy this one. It was given to me when I visited the newly reopened coffee shop in town. Smelled good. Then I added water. It kinda reminds me of the friendship tea that I think all of us despise that you usually get at church Christmas bazaars. I tried to like it but it’s weak in flavor and black tea base. Tastes more like tang with cloves. I try not to be overly critical when given a tea, and tasting tea. I can stand most teas like most coffees even if they are not high quality, but this doesn’t quite reach the bar.