1906 Tasting Notes
The teabag smells quite fruity, though oddly enough the dominant scent seems to be citrus rather than strawberry. A look at the ingredients reveal that there are orange blossoms in the mix, though I’m rather surprised at how strong they taste.
The taste is fresh, smooth and ‘green’ with the fruity flavours coming at the back of each sip. Oddly enough I’m still getting a lot of citrus and not much strawberry. I’ll have to adjust the steeping time and see what I get before I rate this tea. :)
This is…get ready for it….the first time Jill’s ever made matcha!
I’ve had it often enough in latté form or the traditional form in various cafes and restaurants, but I’ve been too intimidated by all the equipment and preparation needed to try making it on my own. Then I saw this tea for sale on the 52Teas website and it sounded so awesome that I bought it on impulse, even though I have no matcha bowl, whisk, sifter, etc.
I let it hang out in my cupboard for awhile until I finally got tired of staring at it today and went for it. I decided to go with Chrine’s recommendation of 1/4 tsp in 8 oz of water just for starters. In lieu of a matcha bowl I used a ceramic cereal bowl (don’t laugh) and a little metal cooking whisk (is that sound I hear the matcha purists gasping in horror?). ;)
The matcha powder smells very strawberry-y with a bit of the green, grassy scent of matcha. When I added the water it turned into a colour that wouldn’t be amiss coming out of a swamp. The metal wisk and cereal bowl combo seemed to work okay for my purposes, although the matcha tended to settle quickly and I kept having to whisk it up again.
Taste-wise it’s a little watery for my liking, though not bitter at all, which is certainly appreciated. It has the powdery-textured, green flavour I usually associate with matcha with a hint of fruity strawberry lingering in the background. I kind of expected the strawberry to be stronger given how the powder smelled, but that may be due to the amount of water – next time I think I’ll reduce the quantity I add a bit.
Not bad for a first try, though it definitely needs some tweaking. Stay tuned for more!
Reducing the steeping time really helped get rid of some of that tree-bark taste this tea had. Now it’s more of a bakey flavour with some lightly spicy notes.
The second steep (@ 3:00) is light and sweet with notes of mild honey and fruit. The bakeiness is still there, faintly, mostly in the aftertaste.
I’m upping my rating of this tea – as it turns out the parameters just needed some tweaking.
I don’t normally drink strong black teas without milk, but this one was surprisingly pleasant taken plain. There’s very little mouth drying astringency or bitterness, and yet it packed an impressive kick that woke me up and cleared the cobwebs from my mind (no mean feet early in the morning!). It’s full-bodied and yet smooth with hints of maltiness and maybe even a tiny bit of smokiness.
Now that I’ve upped the steeping time, the tea tastes more like it’s supposed to tastes (theoretically). I can taste the citrus, though it’s light, and the chocolate notes are there – if I look for them that is. I’d still rather the chocolate be a larger part of the flavour profile.
This tea is ok with milk, but like I thought in my last post about this tea it doesn’t really add anything. Some Russian Caravan’s I’ve had (like that lovely one from Lavender Basics – *sniff *) went really nice with milk and actually tasted fuller and took on a slightly sweet note when drunk that way.
Like that Vanilla Date tea from 52Teas this one has been banned to a separate cupboard to keep it’s strong odor from permeating all my other teas. I’m noticing a bit of bitterness this time, though it’s mostly when the tea is quite hot and it mellows out as it cools. Maybe I’ll reduce the temperature or steeping time slightly.
The resteep is lighter and sweeter with a slight woody note that’s most noticeable when the tea is hot. It’s still quite smokey, but it’s a more unobtrusive sort of smokey.