35 Tasting Notes
Heya Steepsters, So I’d like to thank Martin at LittleRedCupTea for the generous sample. SIPDOWN!
It’s initial taste is one of a milder bitterness extent as found in walnut oil, only with hints of sasmine and green tea. The tea taste is a little vegetal and unbitter but not entirely sweet either, mmm complex and subtly jasmine.
Further, my cup of jasmine green is not overpowering with the jasmine bouquet in fact it reminds me of the smell of the actual jasmine bush with something a little bit camphor sort of pine tree at Christmas.
Further still, I must have let this last cup sit out too long and have to remind myself that there will be more steepings, oh yes,
Time to go down the rabbit hole of organic teas and venture into the new world of egcg rich natural grown chinese tea. My friends drink more chinese tea on steepster cause I’m old and people think I have more experience than I do, but I still gong fu most the time and keep it going on in the taste department for quite a while. So definate made my top tea list here thanks to LRCT Jasmine Green.
Hello and welcome to a belated taste note on the Verdant Tea (special) Wild Arbor Shu!!! .
Thanks to David Duckler of Verdant Tea for the exquisite Tea tasting experience! So it is my understanding that Shu and Sheng, but more often shu is served with Dim Sum when you request tea whilst there having lunch. My first impression of Tea at Dim-sum is that tea is extent in the meal as having it not really be the star of the meal, but as a complement. That impression has changed somewhat after sampling the Haixintang Shu.
Initially, the smell of mossy ground in the forest pervades the nose. I’m certain of one thing, it’s going into the cup for many steeps ( No rules apply here, among this despareate crowd, once you go in you are never coming out,…sorry I had a Star-One flashback) And the first steep is mild yet I can sense a thickness already. Quite refreshing in the throat, maybe it has a different flavor later on.
Further, it takes on clear fresh mint flavor by steeping three. I’m quite fond of mint leaf tisane and somehow it’s managed to get into my shu. I’ll be unsurprised if this doesn’t go for round seven and eight. Like eating at Dim Sum, I just keep refilling my teapot.
It would taste so decadent with some chicken shu mai, or a little fried potato and bacon cake. I know, how come my tasting notes always makes me hungry? Don’ worry it’s causing the same sensation for me.
Further still, The total steep I went up was the last one with a pretty conservative long steep(4min) so It’s got many of the initial tastes now, rather I have acquired the sum of all the flavors in the final cup and even much more of the camphor trace. I normally don’t get chem-traces from tea, but this one is unique! How like a sheng, or then again a trip to the international district might be in order. Looks like the comparison to sheng is that this one has a darker liquor and highlights of mint. I really can’t stress the mintiness on the later steeps enough, don’t forget to take this one all the way to 8 or more.
Oh when it rains it pours…TEA! The aged black tea is super this time of year. It’s initially kind of oily, like messing around with ripe black olives. Comes time for the SIPDOWN! I brewed it traditionally, if you need more info see other tasting notes. It responds alright to the chawan, first time for me this shu is creating a lot of high expectations. Well, it’s just okay. Further steeped, second try this is truly a red tea, just like I was told about in mandarin lessons. It might stain my tea ware but it’s definitely a unique flavor. Tastes smooth with a long lean finish. I need to keep drinking it to have the flavor not change to -unkown-fish taste. China Animal products and imports, yunnan tea branch, maybe was stored next to fish I just don’t know. This will take a while to explain, but anyway I was told by a friend to not try shu pu’ehr until I was absolutely broke. So I don’t have much dough but I have this big honking wheel of tea. I can’t say it’s depressing, because it really isn’t, I might never finish this tea cache. More on the starving artists budget: So I had to have makeshift tea and coffee in college cause of the dorm scene, but I left there after 10 years, and that’s ontop of four years of catholic style boarding school. I can’t tell you haw to deal with poor finances other than buy up some chitse beeng cha regardless of the year. Take care, happy tea imbibing, :)
SIPDOWN! this time the dog won’t step on the return key before I even get to the good stuff, like a real dufuss. Maybe I’m the dufuss because I made this tea piping hot and put in the thermos for later but I can’t wait. I’m getting kind of naivity from the green tea, like a tisane, almost. Very little actual tea flavor. It’s almost a japanese green tea taste. Mmm sweet olive oil color extraction and lots of tanniny biterness. It’s cot a clean tasting as a bancha but it has a sort of twig taste that could be sipped any time of day. I opened the tea pot after brewing and saw all of the little nodules of tea had expanded and blossomed, now the flavor is like coming into its own, and I’ve stopped thinking of foods to describe it although the mouthfeel is reminiscent of light olive oil. I wouldn’t necessarily sample this tea with food, but it could taste nice with udon noodles or some sort of seeded cheese and cracker. There is more of a layer on the tongue tastes of english breakfast, you know with the bacon on the plate. I like that one. If you like this one you might also like the Long Jing Lu Cha. It’s one of the more classical green tiea, but don’t mind clouds and mist either, thanks to DanLui for sending me that one.
Frontier-Gunpowder-Green, letting my mind wander, projects I have had to complete independently for my Conservatoire training sipping teas and coffees till the wee hours, when I was young. I wouldn’t trade those experiences for anything they’re who I am, but I’m still young, so is the day I have to get through ten books, flashcards, and my dog is liking
So I’m a bit of a cheat, I actually spent yesterday working out with kettlebells instead of boiling the kettle.
I did however drink up some remainders of the bag of Dancong oolong in some quick pour over. I keep thinking it’ll taste as good as the first time, when I said to myself that’s my favorite tea. The first time I drank this one, it had such a nice mellow and smooth mouthfeel. I sipped it out of my eggshell tea cup and was smelling it the whole time, a sort of sweet autumn leaf pile smell.
You might have guessed that I steeped it multiple times, and that’s just what happened. It’s going from full bodied to just a whisper in a matter of minutes. The journey it’s taking me on is wonderful.
I soo very much liked this tea sample from Verdant and no doubt will continue my search for other Phoenix teas from China in my travels.
Lately though I’ve not left the city, working so hard to finish learning sufficiently for my PCAT exam in two months.
Maybe when I’ve got into med school I’ll get a hold of some more Phoenix. Until then, Aut Viam, Aut inveniam faciam!!
I work very hard, probably the hardest of anyone I know, too hard if you ask me. I feel like sitting and sampling teas in chinese fashion at a tea shop in china town is well deserved. So I go to the ‘International district’ in Seattle with my old friend and ask for the gongfu cha? The tea proprietor say in chinese ’ what you want to drink’ now I am no stranger to mandarin but I could not understand her to save my life so we just started speaking in good ol english.
To my surprise she actually had two teas she was sampling, one a aged loose leaf shu puer, and the other dragonwell green. Long story short, the tea was delicious and I had to buy zhen zhu jasmine pearl tea.
I have been exclusive to loose leaf tea for ten years, and yet the sound of the pearls dropping into the pot makes me happy.
It’s fine when you’ve steeped it long enough, I probably drank the rinse with this one because I assumed the leaves would react with the hot water faster than they did. I personally don’t mind drinking this closer to room temp. The smell of jasmine flower and the mellow tea makes for a sweet cup, simple and lovely.
I dedicated the last of the bag to a time when I really need a grade A tea so while I drank it all pretty quick there’s still a 10grams left.
I keep thinking I’ll go back to Seattle for a refill but it’s just too hard to find a place to stay, even though my friend lives there and I crashed with her once. She of course had tea with me out of curiosity rather than obsession, so I might have to find a tea place closer to SPokane. I still have to thank New Century Tea Gallery for the aposite service to me and my friend at our one on one high school reunion.
It’s been a long week with lots of tea, had to see if I couldn’t unwind with a decaf. I didn’t open the bag until I got it home. Usually I’m smell conscious with tea, though I thought it was fresh smelling straight from the bag.
Initially, on the trek through the forest there are dank smells and surroundings are woody, so too was this tea, like stopping dead in your tracks on a trail because you’ve spotted deer. I steeped it long as it was not changing color right away as a normal red tea.
Further, deep in the woods on the path there are glimpses of astringency and a tonal cadence very english breakfast. I like the sweet taste and mellow but full mouthfeel. Its probably best to drink it slowly despite my urge to slurp it down.
Further still, winding up the trail to the summit of this tea experience is my own realization that I was drinking far too much tea and coffee this past week.
I sat up late one night waiting for sleep when I had the image of loose leaf teas being cupped someone at a different time zone. I then figured well it’s ‘tea time someone’ I brewed up only hot water, drank a full glass and sat in my bed with a new mystery novel. The mind races and anything could happen if Ceylon could be made decaffinated.
End of story