190 Tasting Notes

95
drank Organic Xia Xing Chun by Grand Tea
190 tasting notes

A free sample from Grand Tea

It didn’t come with brewing parameters, so I brewed it at 195F like I would an Oriental Beauty oolong as it sounds like something similar.

The dry leaves are curly and medium-small. Mostly medium brown with some redder and greener leaves and white tips. The aroma is slightly sweet and herbaceous.
It brews a light yellow-orange. It’s got a strong note of ripe, juicy peach and dried herbs; sort of mint-basil-cinnamon-spice cabinet. Slightly floral with a honeyed coriander sweetness. A very enjoyable tea, even my non-tea drinking father approved.

Flavors: Coriander, Honey, Mint, Peach, Spices

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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92
drank Little Red by White2Tea
190 tasting notes

A bold and malty black with notes of chocolate, cumin, and sweet potatoes. Thanks Haveteawilltravel!

Flavors: Chocolate, Malt, Spices, Sweet Potatoes

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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A free sample from Grand Tea

This is the oldest sheng I’ve yet to try and my first Hong Kong stored pu’erh. Brews a dark, coffee-like brown. The first steep tastes of damp earth and menthol with a sweet tangyness like beets. There is no bitterness or astringency to speak of. Also no off flavors. I hoped that the flavor would evolve with subsequent steepings, but the flavors stayed more or less the same; wet earth and beet root. While it was unoffensive, I wasn’t as impressed with this tea as I hoped I would be.

Flavors: Tangy, Wet Earth, Wet Wood

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 90 ML

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83
drank Yunnan Golden Buds by Dobra Tea
190 tasting notes

Visited Dobra on a recent vacation to Asheville. Oh how I wish my area could support a nice tea house! Looking at their menu I planned to try their Gui Fei oolong, but they were out. The worker there recommended me a Thai Honey Oolong which was quite similar to Gui Fei and it was very good. In retrospect I probably should have bought some to go, but I decided to go with my staple Yunnan black since I hadn’t brought any with me to the mountains.

The Jin Zhen/Golden Buds is a fairly nice, very smooth black tea. It hints at fruity cherry and soft milk chocolate notes, slightly tart, as well as the standard malt and sweet potato. It’s good, but the flavors are not as full/defined as I’ve been accustomed to with hongcha from Yunnan Sourcing or Teavivre.

Flavors: Cherry, Chocolate, Malt, Sweet Potatoes, Tart

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 5 OZ / 150 ML
ashmanra

Did you go to Biltmore?

tperez

Not this time, we have in the past though and it was awesome

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80

Got this as a free sample with my last YS order

A pretty strongly bitter young sheng. Not unpleasant, but pretty burly. Light fruityness, green grape maybe. I don’t get a lot a flavor complexity off of it, but it has a very nice lingering quality in the mouth. Fairly heady cha qi.

Flavors: Floral, Fruity, Vegetal

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 8 g 150 OZ / 4436 ML
JC

Nice note. I agree with it completely, it isn’t complex at all, but it is pleasant. If you end up getting some I’d recommend storing it in a jar that breathes, it won’t get any more complex but I swear it seems to get a bit richer/honey like. A great everyday or work Puer for sure.

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70

Glad I bought a sample of this before going for a cake

Brews up a dusky burnt orange color. It has fairly strong tobacco and leather notes. Theres a bit of camphor and a light fig fruityness. The main thing that I find off putting is a strong sour/vegetal note that reminds of sauerkraut or artichoke.

The spent leaves look pretty nice. Mostly whole with thick stems and an olive green-medium brown color.

It’s not a bad tea, and I can see someone liking it a lot, but that someone is not me

Flavors: Artichoke, Camphor, Fig, Leather, Mint, Sour, Tobacco

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 90 ML

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88

Got this nice sample in a swap from Haveteawilltravel. Smelling the dry leaf it exudes the word “green.” The aroma carries over into the taste with notes of green wood, green apple, green grapes, and celery. Basically all things green. It’s also lightly floral and mushroomy. It’s got a light sweetness, slight mineral note, and a thick hui gan. It’s a very mellow and friendly drink with little bitterness or astringency. The sweetness is unique and lingering and reminds me of stevia leaf. I’ve heard that huang pian has lower caffeine, which would make this a great night time drink.

Flavors: Celery, Floral, Green, Green Apple, Green Wood, Mineral, Mushrooms

Preparation
5 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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94

A very refreshing and sweet black tea. Oxidation is on the lower side. A strongly fruity tea that reminds me of plums and eucalyptus. Slightly mineral and floral, there’s a yammy/sweet potato note and a sweetness a bit like marshmallows. It’s a sweet potato casserole tea!

I think I’m feeling a bit of qi off this tea, a relaxing, steadying sort of feeling. I guess that makes this a magical sweet potato casserole tea!

Flavors: Eucalyptus, Floral, Mineral, Plums, Sweet Potatoes

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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96
drank Wild Tree Black by White2Tea
190 tasting notes

The dry leaves have a strongly fruity (fruit loop?) aroma. The flavor has a matching fruitiness as well as prominent notes of yam, malt, mint, flowers. As often is the case with fruity teas, the second steep has even stronger fruit notes. I try to think of a specific fruit to name, but it’s more of a generic “fruit” taste like gummy worms or other candy. Reminds me slightly of a Taiwanese black tea or Yunnan Sourcing’s Ailao High Mountain.

Flavors: Fruity, Malt, Mint, Yams

Preparation
8 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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Mystery pu! My grandma recently moved to an independent living facility and wanted to get rid of a lot of things from around her house. One was a tin labeled “Pu-li tea”.
http://imgur.com/SFpGwuM

She said she had had it for years, and bought it for the tin, though she can’t remember where she got it. Giving it a sniff it’s obviously some shou pu. So I brewed it up!

The taste is, as I expected, not particularly good. There’s a camphor note and maybe a bit of cocao, but mainly just the smell/taste of decaying wood. I’ve had far worse shou, but that said this isn’t very good. Maybe I’ll brew it up again next time I get some greasy take out.

Flavors: Camphor, Cocoa, Decayed wood

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 5 OZ / 150 ML
AllanK

From the picture of the tin I’d say supermarket puerh. They can once and a while be decent but are usually pretty low quality. They Asian Market that is a 20 mile drive from me sells similar. I have bought them and would say one in three is decent, the other two suck.

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Profile

Bio

My name is Thomas,

I’ve loved tea and coffee since I was little, but only started getting into the world of high quality teas about four years ago.

My favorites are pu’erhs, Yunnan blacks, and oolongs. I’m not much into flavored teas or jasmine/florals, but I love a good cup of chai or adding a spice or two to my teas sometimes.

Currently working on a degree in environmental sciences.

Other than tea I’m a nature lover, guitar picker, and unabashed nerd.

My Rating Scale:
95-100 Wowza!
90-94 Pretty darn good
80-89 Nice
70-79 Decent
50-69 Potable
0-50: Blech.

Location

Clearwater, FL

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