Hrm. I don’t have any milk at work, otherwise I’d try this with the splash. As it is, I’m underwhelmed. It’s just slightly almondy black tea. I was hoping for something a little more taste-bud-popping.
411 Tasting Notes
I like tea.
But I have a problem with tea.
9 times out of 10, the tea always smells 10 million times than the brewed tea tastes. And no matter that I know this, and keep reminding myself of this, I always get my expectations up when I smell a tea blend that smells really wonderful.
Because they don’t live up to the smell.
This tea did just that. It smelled amazing. And it tasted like a nice green tea with a tiny overtone of wild strawberry. Meh.
Hrm. This is a very green oolong. Very bright, very lemon. A little too light for my tastes, actually.
I emptied my entire sample into my zarafina (I brought my zarafina to work, so there will be a lot of zarafina posts from me these days) and did my first brew as mild / oolong. It was almost overly watery. My second brew was strong / oolong, and while I got the appropriate mouthfeel for an oolong, but the flavor was lacking a little.
I tend to prefer stronger flavors, so this really isn’t for me.
Hey Steepster! Sorry I haven’t been around much lately. I went on vacation for a week, then we decided we wanted to upgrade homes (we have a very small little house, and we’re trying to get a larger one). If any of you have ever sold a home, you’ll know, it’s a LOT of work to get it ready to put it on the market. So I’ve been running around like chicken with my head cut off. The house goes on the market on the 9th. Cross your fingers for me.
Anyway, here’s a review I wrote a while ago for www.itsallabouttheleaf.com – one of everyone’s favorite teas.
These are some of the most beautiful leaves I’ve ever seen with a black tea. Usually black teas are all short pieces, small and fairly boring looking. This tea has long, twisty leaves with the occasional silver highlight. And the aroma.. oh it will take your breath away. Sweet, malty, and exotic with hints of dark chocolate.
These elements come across in the flavor as well. For an unflavored tea, its got a lot going on. And, it has a lot going on while being one of the lightest black teas I’ve ever had. There’s hints of malt, the chocolate, and some other dark flavors that all blend together and in the melding end up quite light, almost refreshing.
This is a must-try tea – even for those who are unmoved by black teas. This may be your gateway drug tea. (Come to the dark side – we have cream and sugar!)
One of my favorite parts of trying a new type of tea is that first moment where you’re opening the packaging for the first time; the first sniff where you get a hints of what will soon be filling your cup. I often sit there smelling a new tea long enough to get funny looks from the pets. Unfortunately, this tea did not give me that initial pleasure. When I opened the bag, the tea scent was almost overpowered with a scent of paper. Meh. Not really what I was expecting. The leaf however, looked gorgeous. Very light and fuzzy, just like silver needle teas are supposed to look.
The directions on this packet call for a heaping teaspoon per 6 oz. of water. My recommendation for any of you playing the home game would be to use a very generous teaspoon. My first steeping didn’t use much leaf, and resulted in basically a flavorless brew. When I upped the amount of leaf I got a much more flavorful brew with a lovely buttery feel to it – although a highly flavored white tea always tends to be a very delicate cup – unflavored white teas very rarely jump up and down and demand your attention. They are instead like the Easter eggs of the tea world. If you have patience and spend a little time looking you can occasionally find something great.
The overall flavor is lightly grassy and actually a little papery. However, unlike the initial aroma, the slightly papery taste was not unpleasant at all. The liquid slides around in your mouth like silk, and it’s a very smooth drink. The flavors also intensifies as the brew cools. Longer steeping times bring out additional flavor profiles with hints of apricots and almonds. This is a nice silver needle, and overall is fairly reasonably priced among the other offerings out there on the net. Those who enjoy light delicate flavors may very much like this tea.
Check out this review at: http://www.itsallabouttheleaf.com/740/tea-review-leaf-spa-tea-organic-silver-needle/
Hrm. This one didn’t do it for me. I think I’ll hold off on scoring until I try it again…. hrm. Not inspired, and the leaves look kinda tiny and broken. Meh.
The red peppercorns add an interesting zing to the flavor of this tea. I wish the pineapple and coconut were a little more to the fore, but overall, this is an interesting genmaicha. I can see how others came to the idea of carmel corn. I think the smell of the tea is definitely reminicent of caramel corn, but the flavor didn’t have that for me.
Num. This is a nice tea. The coconut and the vanilla blend nicely, and the rose is very subtle. The white tea is very much in the background, but the four worth together nicely.
Overall I’m finding this a soothing cup, and is making me want to curl up on the couch rather than being at work… :)
I got a sample of this and was really looking forward to it. I think I may have had my expectations set a little high, because while I liked it, it didn’t really stand out for me as amazing.
It was still really yummy.
Tried my sample of this last night and I LOVED it. Nutty and sweet while not too dark. YUM!!!
Trying this iced today – yum! Bumping my score, because this is really nice.
Picked this tea up this weekend on a foodie shopping trip. I was at Dean and Deluca and another local high-end food store and kept seeing all this AWESOME looking tea that was all way too expensive. So when I saw a decent looking oolong at 888 Market and it was less than 5 bucks I had to jump on it.
The tea is fairly meh – as might be expected. The package says boiling water, but I liked it better at about 190-195. But it’s definitely drinkable, and I have a feeling that it would be decent iced. There aren’t any standout notes. It’s a little dusky, so I think it’s slightly roasted. The leaves are surprisingly large and unbroken for being so inexpensive.
Smells good, lovely white wine color, but a little lacking in the flavor department for me – it’s too light. I can tell it’s a relative of the Ti Kuan Yi teas out there, but a little more of a wall flower. (Which doesn’t bother me at all, since it’s a little more expensive!)
I can taste a slight peach overtone, but not enough to make it an outstanding feature.
Another sample from denisend, and again, I made it up into iced tea.
Wow, this is very, puckering-ly, lemon. Who needs taste-buds lemon. Their description notes that it is a sweet and sour brew – I mostly got sour. Even when I sweetened it, it was still very “sour-lemon”.
I think I want to try this blended with something else (I know that’s what denisend does) because I can see how it would blend well. But I don’t know I’ll be drinking it straight again.
Not a bad pu-erh. However, I just gotta say that for the periods of my life where I qualified as a maiden, I doubt my ecstasy was much like this.
Warm, dark, earthy, and not fishtank-y. (Always a bonus). I am not getting the sweet that others are, but I’m enjoying my cup.
The depth of the color on this one is amazingly dark and wonderful.
A sample from Meghann M that got stuck in the back of my sample box. The aroma from the unbrewed leaf is lovely. I brewed it up in my zarafina while I got ready this morning (black, loose, medium).
I really liked the floraly fruity flavors on this tea, but there was a flavor in the background that didn’t quite fit. I think it may have been the actual tea. Like maybe a different base tea would have been better. Overall, it’s a good tea. I’d drink it again.
Had this as the sachet – they state that brew up to 12 oz of water – but I think that’s a little light. Overall it seems like a decent pearl jasmine. Very light color, nice aroma.
A sample from denisend. The temperatures in Kansas City just jumped from 70’s to 90’s, so the last thing I can think about are hot teas – I made up a batch of this iced. I can taste ginger, creamy coconut, and a background fruitiness. Seeing all the giant cardamon pods in the mix just thrilled me, the spiciness is great. I’m looking forward to trying this hot!
The most boring mint tea I’ve ever had.
I like mint tea, and this is boring, not minty and fairly blea. I’m not finishing this cup.
This has not been the most exciting tea day.
Very raspberry-ish. Not very green-tea-ish. Pink brew. This is a sample I got from TeaEqualsBliss. Interesting tea. It would be a decent iced tea if sweetened, I bet.
I am having more tea failure with this tea. First time I brewed it up, I followed the directions on the bag. Unfortunately they were written for a black tea, and this is actually a green. So I jotted down the parameters but jotted down tbsp rather than tsp. So when I tried to steep it this morning, I got a cup of tannic ick. So, I tried it again with less leaf, and it’s still a bit strong/bitey. I think this isn’t my cuppa. Maybe if you like teas like Rishi’s Organic Green Needles this would be for you.
Got a sample of this from denisend, and decided that since today was getting icky-muggy and hot, I’d make it iced. Not a bad cup, not at all. I think I made it a little light on the not-leaf, but I can taste the plums, and smell the spice, and it’s helping me not melt into the furniture. Yum.
Well, I’ve been playing with this tea a while, trying to get the best out of it. Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to get much.
The scent of the leaf is great. Milky and floral and oolong-y. I brewed it up to the reccomendations on the web site, and I got a very silky and smooth liquor, but it had a very light flavor – almost not there. When I added a little more leaf, the green and floral was enhanced. (Then I oversteeped it and it got all bitter. Not it’s fault – all mine)
Subsequent steepings have given me a still-silky brew, and a variety of green flavors.
It’s not a bad oolong, but not my favorite.
Sigh. I’m out of this tea now. I seem to be finishing up a lot of samples recently, but I have WAY too much tea, so even with finishing things up I still can’t get any more. Sigh.
Anyway, this tea is still lovely. I got this sample from the lovely JacquelineM a long time ago, and I’ve been savoring it ever since. Dark, nutty, almost a little woody.
Goodbye fair tea, I will miss you.