49 Tasting Notes
After spotting some of Harney’s chocolate tea in the local grocery, I developed a craving for something sweet. This tea pretty much fits the bill for me. Not a “fruits and flowers”!kind of tea drinker, so the sweetness of the bergamot and blue corn flowers were just right.
I like this as an Early Grey, but still prefer tea without additives.
Flavors: Bergamot, Molasses, Orange Zest
Surprised this isn’t ranked higher. Maybe a straight Assam is just too “plain Jane” for some. I like it. A lot! This is an unblended, single-origin Tea, and its simple, malty goodness is exactly what I was hoping for. Just as with art, there’s no accounting for taste, and one opinion is as valid as the next. For me – this was a welcome cup!
I feel like Veterans Day is too early, but since my wife has started to drench our home entertainment in cheesy Christmas movies, I decided I’d get in the spirit. Or at least play along a little. First I tried making my own “holiday blend” of Gunpowder Green Tea, Hibiscus and Peppermint leaves. Nice, but not enough kick.
So I tried blending a single cup of some Yunnan Black from Silk Road Teas with peppermint. (About 4:1) Very nice indeed. Not wanting to devote the last of one of my favorites, I decided to involve the most plentiful black tea blend in the house – Queen Catherine. Already a blend of Keemun, Panyang and Yunnan, I had little to lose when I added the peppermint leaves to make a full pot. (3:1 Ratio).
Bring out the holly! This is as refreshing and delicious as anything I could hope for! Another cup or two of this, and I’ll be almost ready to help get out the Christmas decorations. Almost.
A coworker gave me a box of these tea bags, and I really like it! I was on a self-imposed caffeine reduction thing for a few days, and this was perfect. I had to laugh when my coworker told me it tasted like dirt. I think it taste like pears!
I’ve blended my own lemongrass and ginger before, but this simple offering is far above my blend.
Flavors: Honey, Pear
I let this Harney sample sit for weeks because it’s a rare desire for a single cup of tea. Low or no-caff options, sure, but but caffeinated black tea.
Well worth the wait, this Assam was rich and flavorful. Deliciously malty with an edge of honey. I’m quickly becoming a fan of Assam tea, and this well-balanced variant is just right for any time of the day.
“It’s not you, it’s me.”
That line is a classic. Probably uttered in 80% of breakup conversations worldwide. But this time, it’s being offered as I reconcile my differences with Big Red Sun from Harney.
It was me; I steeped you too long the last time.
It was me; I failed to notice the toasted malty goodness you had within you.
It was me; I was expecting something other than the mellow sweetness that makes you who you are.
Forgive me. And thank you for another chance.
While offering to share a pot of Black Dragon Pearl with a friend who’s enjoyed many fine pots of home-roasted coffee with me, I said, “I don’t have any coffee right now”. Her response was, “I feel like I don’t even know you anymore”.
I feel the same way. I’ve sought, found, roasted and brewed some of the finest coffees in the world, and still have more than 2 kilos of sought-after beans waiting to be roasted. But TEA…so many exotic options. With the sheer number of variations of every leaf, harvest, storage and prep method, I just got lost.
But no more! I am roasting a batch of Maui Select, from the Ka’anapali Estate Coffee located on the West Maui Mountains near the historic town of Lahaina. Now. Today. I mean, as soon as I finish this pot of Laoshan Black from Verdant Tea.
From the Autumn 2016 He Family Collection, this tea is enough to stop anyone in their tracks. Its subtle hints of brown sugar and dark chocolate only increase as the cup begins to cool. The delicate looking dry leaves unfurled while steeping to reveal large black leaves 20x their original size. It’s obvious a great deal of care was taken getting this from the tree to my cup.
I wish I’d ordered more. Every sip is a treat, and it’s just one of 50+ reasons in my cabinet it’s easy to forget to roast coffee.
Flavors: Brown Sugar, Caramel, Dark Chocolate