120 Tasting Notes

94

I will forever be indebted to Ginko from Life in a Tea Cup for giving me my first sample and introduction to Lapsang Souchong.
Being new to tea, I am sure the veterans will appreciate my awe and wonder inspired by the multitude of new tea flavors with their complexities and character.
I knew a little of what to expect with this, from reading reviews and learning how the tea was made. But nothing prepared me for the experience.
The aroma was smoky of course, but immediately made my mind race to memories of campfires, fireplaces, bonfires, and other burnings. The first sip was full of smoke at first but like a whiff was gone and the flavor of black tea appeared. The aftertaste followed with a whisp of smoke that lingered…and was gone.
Sip after sip followed the same path…guiltily, I felt almost as if I was smoking…savoring each pull, holding in and releasing after each taste, hoping it would never end.
I learned something, you don’t “drink” this tea, you experience it. After the first cup, I realized the smokiness was calling me back to an earlier time, the Fall of 1999 and fighting forest fires in Northern California. Hardwoods had been the fuel of choice growing up, in the hearth at home, on campouts. Hardwood smoke has it’s own character. The Pine forest we worked on in ’99 had a scent I will never forget…and thought was lost in memory…until I tasted this tea for the first time.

QuiltGuppy

Well said, although I can’t help but wonder what the “other burnings” were. ;)

teawing

Well, there was that small section of woods set alight by a bottle-rocket battle…
but we were only kids :)

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81
drank Ti Kuan Yin by Million Trading
120 tasting notes

2nd of day of Snowpocalypse. 8 inches of snow yesterday and -5 last night. Not the sunny south at all…

I got this at an Asian market before the storm hit. This tea has a smooth nutty flavor. The aftertaste is pleasing and somewhat different than the taste at the beginning of the sip.
A little earthy, but nothing like the Pu-erh I have tried. More than a hint of it though. It is in a decorative tin with scenes painted on each side.
The woman who sold it to me said in accented English “this very good!” I have to agree.
Just wish I knew more about it…

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90

Just needed some good black tea late morning…

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90
drank Jasmine Tea by Sunflower
120 tasting notes

2nd steep of the day, this is very good. I wonder if I would like it more with the Jasmine toned down a little.

I like it though, very much.

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80
drank Pu-erh by Butterfly Brand Fujian
120 tasting notes

Started my day with this. It is a different experience. I am going to have to try some others and compare.

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93

Sample #2 from Chi of Tea (out of Little Rock, just down the road) thanks guys!
Glad to see some folks down south doing tea right! Ok, as much as I enjoyed the Orange
Chysanthemum Pu-erh, I LOVE this one! The orange is refreshing and just enough ginger (which can be overdone for my taste) to compliment the Oolong base. Strong on the orange side, not understated at all. The woody Oolong flavor appears with the aftertaste.
This is a delicious blend and I WILL be ordering some! I think this
would be very good iced as well. I will give it a try and review that sometime.

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89

Braved the snow drifts to get to the mailbox and my efforts were rewarded with samples from Chi of Tea!
While this is only my second Pu-erh ever, there are many differences in this and the bagged I tried yesterday. I have so much to learn!
The characteristic earthy feel is there, but pretty subtle. The orange is on top, with the Chrysanthemum close behind.
The orange channels blossom rather than zest, a less mature presence than ripened peel. Brewed, it is a dark, coffee-brown color.
After the sip, the orange lingers and draws me back for more. I really like it and am a little surprised, it is much lighter than the other
Pu-erh I have tried.

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90
drank Jasmine Tea by Sunflower
120 tasting notes

My other special purchase at the Asian market…the simple joys of trying something new and imported.
I won’t attempt to out verbalize other tasting notes on this tea, I just want to say that for me, a converted coffee drinker, it is joyous.
I actually drank it most of the afternoon, had multiple steeps (can’t do that with bags) and even iced with my evening meal of chicken parmigiana.
The more I sip, the more I want, the more I want, the more I sip…repeat. I am going to read up on Jasmine Green, I want to know more about it’s origins
and history. One thing is for sure, I can understand why it is so popular. Taking in a sip, iced or hot brings in a pre-taste aroma that is so refreshing.
The green tea is crisp, snappy, but the Jasmine provides a delicacy that restores balance. If I had this much fun with a so called average Jasmine, oh boy,
bring on the quality. However, for the price, I am going to love this one for a long time, I can tell.

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80
drank Pu-erh by Butterfly Brand Fujian
120 tasting notes

Picked this up the other day at the Asian market. It is bagged, but right off, the “earthy” word comes to mind with the aroma in the cup and the first taste. The earthiness reminds me of mushrooms, truffles maybe but it is subtle. There are hints of hibiscus maybe? A small trace of menthol, hard to pinpoint. What ever it is, it does not linger, just is present then absorbed in the rest of the flavor.

This was my first ever Pu-erh and it is unlike anything I have ever tasted. Many mysteries yet to unravel with it…

Preparation
4 min, 0 sec

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80
drank Raspberry Royale by Bigelow
120 tasting notes

I like this, any berry seems to go well with tea, this is no exception. The raspberry is centerstage but not overpowering. Like peanut butter and chocolate, the flavors of the tea and berry compliment and create something new. It will be good to compare this to other raspberry flavored teas in the future as a baseline.

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