120 Tasting Notes

97
drank Da Hong Pao by Harney & Sons
120 tasting notes

It has been a while since I logged a new tea. I have been working through my stash, considering a purchase down the road but you know how it is, too much on the shelf to justify more. Well, this will be on my list, when I get the stash dwindled down a bit. I found this to be a lovely tea, somewhat light considering the notes. H&S says it is lighter than usual. Light yet robust? Yes and the deep, dark roasted oolong flavor is there, but veiled like a princess whose beauty is only hinted at through her eyes… Thanks to QuiltGuppy for this excellent experience.

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92
drank Indian Spice by Harney & Sons
120 tasting notes

Thanks to ashmanra, was able to try this loose and I am so glad she shared it with me. I prepared it according to the instructions (she graciously sent) and added a dash of honey.
This is a good chai, and one I think might appeal to those who want it mild. I will be ordering some of this in the future.

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97
drank Milk Oolong by American Tea Room
120 tasting notes

I have been reserving this for a special occasion, so I declared tonight “special” :) After a fine meal of grilled shrimp and cheese grits, a cup of this, from my gaiwan, on a nice fall evening is just about as good as it can get. Temp here on the front porch, 78, with a light westerly breeze. I have reviewed this tea before, nothing else to say except the right external conditions can make an excellent cup of tea into a tea memory. Did I mention the gorgeous sunset?
As is the case for many of us, QuiltGuppy is responsible for all of this.
UPDATE
One cup was not enough to see the sun disappear, I went four steeps, and like the sun, the Milk oolong faded slightly, until it was gone.

Angrboda

I’m beginning to suspect she actually keeps a separate stash to share with people…

QuiltGuppy

Actually, I don’t. :) I usually send teas that I enjoy to see what other people think of them, too. I think of teas and people in terms of personalities. Like you, Ang, you’re a smoky black tea person in my head. Teawing is an open to anything, but tends to like blacks more tea person. As I read the reviews, I remember details about people. Of course, I know people aren’t so limited. (I love oolongs as my preferred tea, but some of my favorites are white and green, too.) I still throw everything into my tea boxes, though. Speaking of which, I have to write a review about the Smoky Earl Grey you sent me that I didn’t think I’d care for and ended up steeping three times!

teawing

I think we do have tea personalities, perhaps this could be grounds for some research…I have noticed for instance that many of us “former coffee people” do lean towards the black teas…is it flavor, aroma, color steeped? I don’t know.
Green teas seem to have an appeal to only some…As much as I like black tea, keep the peruh away please. I wouldn’t want to stereotype, but it seems there is something going on. It may not be that complicated, and perhaps a matter of taste. But I am as fascinated as to why someone likes a tea, as I am listening to the accent they have when they talk. To me, both are expressions of who we are, where we are from, and what has shaped us.

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94
drank Queen Catherine by Harney & Sons
120 tasting notes

Celebrating the first cool fall evening on the porch with the Queen. She is always there for us, consistent, true, and always enchanting. Tonight I added a dash of milk. I was not disappointed as the Queen proved once again her majesty of flavor while complementing her loyal subjects, milk and sweetness. I have so waited the return of fall, the coolness in the air and a
hot cup of tea outdoors.

Jenn

STOP rubbing your lovely fall weather in my face! Fall is my favorite season and temps will be over 104 here by Wednesday. Gish… I’m happy for you though (sort of) :)

SimplyJenW

Hmmmm. We are in the high 60s/low 70s. It is heaven.
@Jenn-Isn’t your 104 low in humidity? At least that helps. A little, anyway.

teawing

We set all-time records for temp and consecutive days over 100, so I am very sorry you are still at 104, but lows in the 70’s and highs in upper 80’s feels like winter after the July and August we had…

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96

Backlogging
Sunday night, holiday Monday in sight, family, good friends, Fellowship of the Ring extended edition, and multple pots of Tower of London. If there is a more fitting tea with which to indulge in Tolkien, I do not know what it might be. I am open to suggestions though.
I love this tea, and only bring it out for special occasions.

SimplyJenW

I am drinking so this for our next LOTR movie marathon!

QuiltGuppy

I need to see LOTR.

ashmanra

Love, love, love LOTR. I went to the midnight premiers with my oldest kids. When the DVD’s came out, we were at the store at midnight to buy them! There are several of the Noble Collectionieces I would love to get. Son has Legolas’ vambraces. Beautiful.

teawing

I did the midnight premiers with my kids too, it had been a while since we watched and our friends wanted to do it. We have two more engagements on the calendar now to get Two Towers and Return of the King in…

ashmanra

Sounds wonderful! Are you going to have ToL again, or will you choose a “tea mascot” for each movie?

teawing

I will most likely pick a mascot for each, but will break out the ToL if requested.
Might need an Earl Grey, perhaps even the Queen…any thoughts?

SimplyJenW

Definitely the Queen for Return of the King. I think I ould be partial to ToL for the Two Towers, and some kind of Earl Grey for FotR. Hmmm. (Wistfully starts pondering tea for TWO Hobbit movies. Squee!)

teawing

@ SimplJenW Yes, in retrospect, ToL would have been a better fit next time…

SimplyJenW

Yes, but it was not so much for the taste as the catchy name…. ;)

CHAroma

Yay for Tolkien fans!!! Elen síla lúmenn’ omentielvo. ;)

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96
drank Golden Snail by Harney & Sons
120 tasting notes

Jenn gave me a sample of this to continue my quest for all things Harney & Sons.
WOW! I have not been overwhelmed by a tea for a while now. Dry, there was a hint of cocoa. Steeped, there is rich smoothness and an intensity of black tea flavor at the beginning of the sip. This diminishes quickly. It reminds me of some Darjeelings I have tried, and the black tea is similar to some Lapsangs sans smoke. This is VERY interesting. Lastly, the "Golden Snail name is fairly unappealing to me personally, and I actually found the look of the tea closer to the darker locks of fir in the family Shi-Tzu.
Anyone supportive of a name change to Golden Shi-Tzu? I didn’t think so… :)
Thanks Jenn for a generous and thought provoking sample.

Jenn

I’m pretty sure that Harney’s marketing team would shoot down the “Golden Shi-Tzu” name change idea :) I would love this tea no matter the name.

teawing

LOL, yep, I guess I agree.

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92
drank Indian Spice by Harney & Sons
120 tasting notes

I had a sample of this (in bagged form) lurking in my stash for some time. Unforgivably, I am at a loss as to who gave it to me. So I will take this opportunity to thank the many friends I have on Steepster who have helped shape my tea experiences. Steepster is such a special place.
I found this to be a little mild as far as chai/Indian Spice goes. I like it. The cardamom is not overpowering, and the black tea shines through. A little honey, warmed milk, this would be a good little cup of tea. Here at my desk, with a little splenda, it is just fine.

ashmanra

If you make it with milk per the enclosed instructions, it tastes like liquid pumpkin pie! MMMM!

teawing

I will try it! Thanks.

ashmanra

I have some loose leaf I can send if your sample is all gone!

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93
drank Irish Breakfast by Twinings
120 tasting notes

My sister is now supporting my tea habit, she helped me find this in the area. I had tried the bagged version, but I must say, being able to control the flavor better with loose leaf makes this tea even better. I have a personal philosophy about breakfast teas, I want them strong. So, I had a nice breakfast on my day off (inspired by Ashmanra and her torture methods of the weekend last) Fried egg with sausage, cheddar cheese on grilled rye with a dash of brown mustard. No potatoes in the house to pair with the onions, so I skipped that part. The Assam in this tea stays with you a long time after the sip, I like that, a lingering reminder till time for another. It is actually a cool rainy morning, not a typical August day at all. This tea, and a simple meal, on the front porch make for a wonderful start of the day.

Indigobloom

I had no idea Twinings did loose tea! I’ve never seen it on a shelf, anywhere. I’m curious now!

teawing

You can get it on their web page, but mine came from a kitchen gadget store…

K S

Their loose leaf selection is pretty limited but should be on most shelves in the super box store.

Indigobloom

Hmmm. I’ve looked for looseleaf at the supermarket and never had luck. Still, I’m def keeping my eye out :)

ashmanra

Our local grocer carries only two loose leaf, but A Southern Season has more. Of course, they were out of the one I wanted last time I drove up there…

Funny thing, I asked my daughter’s Irish boyfriend if he liked Irish breakfast tea the first time he had dinner with us, and he said he had never heard of it! He recently sent me some Twinings teabags from the assortment box they sell there, and the one we call Irish breakfast is simply labeled Assam.

gmathis

Here’s to loving family enablers. Haven’t found Twinings loose leaf locally, but the bagged version is a good, solid reliable basic.

teawing

I know another place in Tulsa if you ever go down I-44…
Loved you post about the teashop I’m Nashville BTW.
Consuming tea in antique cups is one of my hobbies.
:)

gmathis

Where in Tulsa? We go occasionally.

teawing

Pettys Fine Foods in Utica Square

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95

A long week, some hard things, I would rather escape with a good novel set in the 19th Century, but this will have to do for now. An old friend, constant, never changing, always there. I loved this tea from the very first sip and feel a bit sad when the cup is empty.
Blackberries, cream and a slight hint of smoked black tea. What a simple yet satisfying combination. I have written on this one before, but I have to say, it still inspires me, after all those cups.

UPDATE
Shame on me, credit where credit is due…
Thanks to SimplyJenW, for extending my sample of this. A true friend in tea.

Jenn

Every time there’s mention of this tea I’m reminded of how much I want it. I need to just order it all ready :)

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95
drank Kenya Milima by Harney & Sons
120 tasting notes

Today was hectic, so to relax a little this afternoon, I decided to try a sample I had been keeping back. YET ANOTHER sample from the thoughtful, dependable, generous, and friendly QuiltGuppy. Her tasting note made this tea sound so good to me, the tea exceeded my expectations, which were fairly high in the first place. The tobacco aroma is there at the beginning, but also black tea, maltiness is present. Steeped, the color is golden, a beautiful cup. The hint of tobacco at the start of the sip is incredible. Not a cheap cigarette grade, but a fine, aged pipe tobacco. In no way is it too strong, just a hint. The tobacco quickly dissolves into a malty assam-like flavor but very smooth.
The smoke at the end is a trace, faintly there.

I like this, and will be buying some with my next H&S order.

ashmanra

I must purchase this! Your description sounds enthralling.

teawing

Reading your reviews and seeing what you like, it does sound like a good fit for you.
I am about to have another cup…

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