239 Tasting Notes
I got this tea as a free sample from the reddit giveaway, and while I am grateful for the samples and what this person is willing to do to kickstart their business, I find myself a little disappointed with this one.
The first steep starts out wonderfully, just as an Alishan should. It’s sweet and floral, with a hint of that spice that reminds me of Christmas that I haven’t been able to put my finger on yet. It’s not as much of that spice as I prefer, but it’s there, and I’m happy. The mouthfeel is thick and creamy.
As the leaves open, it loses almost all the qualities I love in a good Alishan. The spiciness goes away. The sweetness goes away. I am left with an astringent flower bomb. The astringency completely overwhelms any flavor left, and now I just want some water.
I have to say that this takes the prize for worst flavored oolong I have ever tried. The leaves smell of vitamins and minerals, which would be great if I were trying to drink a supplement. It’s like saying Ovaltine smells like chocolate…right.
My first brew at 195 yielded chalky vitamin water that vaguely tasted of milk. The thick mouthfeel is pretty much all I can credit this for. It smells vitaminy too. My husband, who had no idea that I was even making tea, said that whatever I am eating right now smells like the dentist’s office. I didn’t smell it, but the experience is about as pleasant as a dentist’s office.
Brewed again at 212 to fix the chalkiness or something, and it seems to have boiled away the flavor. Now I’m getting the grassy floral of a really cheap TGY.
This is a nice friendly black that has some characters of a good white. It has that gentle honey and cinnamon taste to it, which makes it more of a bright black than dark. White tea also tends to have this vanilla type base that I think I can identify here.
There’s a bit of maltiness and astringency to it that clearly identifies it as a black tea. I haven’t tried a lot of Taiwanese blacks, so I can’t say where this ranks yet, but it’s very nice, sweet, and gentle.
So, for the base green flavor, it’s very similarto my Adagio matcha. It’s very very creamy with the slight bitterness of a dark green vegetable and the sweetness of snow peas.
Where it differs from the matcha? There’s the fungal flavor of a little mushroom in there, and the texture is oh so buttery.
Best. Kabusecha. Ever.
Thanks for sharing inkay!
This is a lovely surprise from a teafriend, and it made for a wonderful morning, so thanks!
It’s gorgeous. The smell of the brew is earthy, a little cocoa, malt, and flowers. The aroma and the initial flavor reminds me a lot of the simao spring tips from Yunnan Sourcing.
The brew itself is brown sugar, molasses, maple, floral, earth, malt, and a little fruit. It’s complex, sweet, and oh so comforting.
My first try of Bitterleaf, and oh so lovely!
This was part of a secret santa tea gift from inkay, which was incredible, by the way!
This was my first matcha latte ever, so preparation was a little iffy. I’ve never even had a professional one, so I kind of made it up. I started by making a paste with 170 degree water, then I used my espresso machine to make milk foam. I just kind of made up how much milk to add and stirred.
I wasn’t really feeling it plain, and my chat had recommended adding some vanilla, so that’s what I did. The result was what I would imagine green bean ice cream to taste like. It was weird at first, but it grew on me. It definitely has a different flavor than my usual matcha.
Less sweet, a little more bitter, and more vegetal, yet still somehow smooth. Very nice! Thanks inkay!
The dry “leaf” is pretty frightening. There’s so much sugar, coconut, and white chocolate pieces that the tea seems to be thrown in as an afterthought. But it smelled good, and I was craving coconut, so I got it.
The leaves were black, so I went ahead and brewed at 212. The resulting soup smelled deliciously coconutty, but it looked like mop squeezings after cleaning the cafeteria room floor of an elementary school on the last day before Christmas break.
The first sip was pretty horrendous, but it’s starting to grow on me the more sips I take. What little tea flavor there is lends a toasty flavor to the brew. I’m wondering if this is coconut sugar, but whatever it is, it’s a pleasant sweetness—heavier than I am used to, but not overwhelming.
The coconut flavor is strange. It’s a combination of fake coconut flavoring, thick and oily coconut (oil?), and something that reminds me of actual fresh coconut off the tree.
This might be great for when I am craving hot coconut cocoa. It’s THAT thick and sweet.