418 Tasting Notes
Once again the smell of this tea is almost bang on. Both the peach and pineapple are present. The peach smells a little like Tim Horton’s peach drink and the pineapple is juicy and slightly floral in scent. On the tongue the pineapple is apparent at first sip with a sweet, juicy, slightly floral tone. At times it references chamomile even though chamomile is not an ingredient. The peach is present behind it. It is a warm, cooked peach kind of flavour, that is given just a hint of tartness by the hibiscus in the blend. Once again this ingredient is used to enhance rather than overwhelm the flavour. I’ve quite enjoyed this series of fruit teas. They are quite well done and with only 10 bags to a box, I don’t feel guilty having a few of them in my cupboard.
This might be my favourite Andrews and Dunham tea so far. It is a nice moderately smoked tea where the smoke is strong enough to leave a slight tingle at the back of the throat but not enough to overwhelm the rest of the flavours of the tea. Instead it contributes a certain spiciness to the tea as well as a certain depth to the flavour ranging from roasted smoke notes, pine and pine tar. It is not as smooth as you would find in a straight Lapsang Souchong. The base tea is slightly tart from red fruits and has a bready note and texture. There is a hint of molasses heading towards a maple note, and a bit of cocoa. There is a bit of sharpness and astringency to the tea.
I did two steeps of this tea at around 95°C at 3 and 4 minutes. The resteeps was flavourful, and was slightly sweeter and fruitier. This makes for a nice cozy and flavourful tea. Thanks boychik for the opportunity to try this tea!
This one definitely falls into the fruity spectrum of Yunnan’s with the brewed tea smelling of apricots along with something a little bit sharper, leather, malt honey and grain.
I steeped 1 TSP in 220ml of water three times at about 95°C.
1 min. Apricot, honey, grain, and hints of malt and leather spice. The tea is sweet, grainy and rich. As it cools, deeper malt tones become apparent and a prune note appears.
2 min. Apricot, honey, leather, cocoa and grain.
4 min. Malt, leather, grainy notes, and a bit of cream.
Nice and different from my existing Yunnans
Thanks boychik for the sample!
This tea reminds me of the corn syrup my mother used to pour on ice cream as a child. It has a rich sweet flavour, mixed with roasted notes, cocoa, a hint of malt and sweet dried fruit. It is really smooth brewed at high temperatures and very short steeps ( boiling and 5-10s to start). In later steeps it mellows to a caramel. The aftertaste is very sweet and lingering. It resteeps really well and I ’ve steeped it past 11 times. When brewed western style the flavour becomes too much for me and heads to an acidic molasses. The liquor is red edged with gold even at short steeps.
The dried leaves are small, very tightly wound and like to interlock with each other. It can make it difficult to get out of the bag. They are shiny black, with reddish copper buds and smell like raisins. It makes a fantastic dessert tea.
The dry leaf smells a lot like butter pecan flavoured coffee which reminds me a little of this wonderful woman I worked with when I was in university. She often brought me food and coffee when I worked with her. She kind of mothered me but her kindness was always appreciated.
The tea smells of coffee, honey and roasted pistachio. There is unfortunately something a little soapy in the scent as well.
The tea has a biscuit like note, with a coffee note, a good dose of honey and a nutty note. The base tea is bready and flowery,with a touch of fruit. It brews to a rich red orange. The flavour is pleasant but the floral note seems out of place. As it cools the floral note dissipates and the base becomes much more fruity with red berry notes. I much prefer this to the floral notes when hot.
This is a nice tea for those who miss flavoured coffee or who like a mix of bitterness balanced by sweetness in their dessert teas.
Thanks JustJames for the opportunity to try another tea guys tea. It suits a certain craving of mine.
The makers of this tea did a nice job of scenting this tea. They managed to keep the rose subtle, juicy and spicy and minimised the bitterness you can sometimes get in rose teas. The rose in this tea ranges from bright citrusy tea rose to sweeter and spicier damask. The base tea underneath is soft with cream, lemon, honey and peach and pineapple notes. It is also savoury with notes of white sweet corn, green beans, sandalwood and aged cedar. This tea resteeps quite well and has an interesting and changing taste profile. The floral notes are mostly from the scenting as any in the base tea seem very subtle. It took a couple steeps for the rose to develop in flavour. My favourite steep was probably the third but I came to really appreciate this tea.
Today I tried the spring harvest of this tea using short steeps and boiling water, covering the bottom of my 150ml Gaiwan with leaves. My timings were 15,20,40,65,100,120s.
This is the spring harvest of this tea and I am not sure whether the differences I found in flavour are the result of using different techniques or a different season.
I found that this time the cocoa notes were intensified over my previous tasting. The fruit notes found were longan and blackcurrant. Cashew butter and cream notes were also present. The caramel notes were present but not as distinct and I did not find the grainy notes of the last steeping. I’ll have to try my longer steeps and lower temperatures to do a true comparison with the previous season, but I did really enjoy it this way.
This is the final sample that this wonderful company sent me. This tea had stronger bread and pastry notes than some of the Taiwanese blacks I’ve had before. It also had a heavier base supported by cocoa, malt and molasses ( in the earlier steeps).
The first steeps were very fruity smelling with citrus notes and a reference to dried sulphured fruit, that translated to a light flavour of plum and citrus notes. This was mixed with spice notes of cinnamon and pepper and the base notes created a reference to Christmas cake in the first steep. Also present were a sweet and soft floral spice note all mixed in with a flaky pastry note.
In later steeps the floral note became stronger and in one steep I detected coconut. The molasses became more honey like and the spice elements became stronger, especially as it cooled. A hint of nutmeg joined the spice elements and the flavour of cream introduced a new element as well.
All together this was a very nice tea. At times it reminded me of Indian Assam’s more than other Taiwanese teas I have and the fruit was heavier and not as bright. It had a very nice blending of all of its flavour elements creating a sweet, spicy, dense feeling brew. Very nice Green Terrace!
I did 9 steeps of 1 TSP in a 150ml gaiwan. (45,35,45,80s, 2,3,4,6,10min).