162 Tasting Notes
This is a tea that I would summarize as having awesome mouthfeel, great smell, above average taste and barely noticeable cha qi.
There is very little aroma in the dry leaves, but once wet, especially after a few infusions once they open up, it becomes exhilirating. It is sweet, warming and fruity with notes of coffee, gelatine sweets, blue grapes, dried fruit and brazil nuts. The taste is smooth and sweet with very little bitterness. As for the mouthfeel, I found the tea to be very mouth-watering, thick, slimy and soft at the same time. It induces a slight alcohol like tingling sensation.
Flavors: Alcohol, Coffee, Dark Bittersweet, Dates, Dried Fruit, Grapes, Nuts, Raisins, Smooth, Sweet, Thick
After the rinse, this smells heavenly – sweet, fruity and woody. Unfortunately, otherwise the tea didn’t really speak to me. My main issues are that the body is too light, and mouthfeel too powdery (a little banana like). The taste is ok, but neither too complex nor satisfying. It is actually quite citrusy and slightly roasted. I didn’t get much of the fruitiness or sweet floral honey notes.
Flavors: Citrus, Dark Wood, Drying, Fruity, Lemon Zest, Roasted, Sweet, Yams
And here’s another sample from derk ♥
This one is very light, smooth and fairly thick (for a green tea). I didn’t pick much in the smell, but that could very well be due to the fact that it’s from 2017 Autumn pick. The taste is a mix of savoury and sour, the notes like olive and lime mentioned in the description are present for sure. Like derk, I also find it hard to describe. My favourite aspect of the tea is probably the drying and vegetal aftertaste, which is very pleasant. Overall, I think it’s an ok tea that I wouldn’t mind getting at some point. However, I feel like it’s a little pricy for what it offers, I suppose as a result of being from Darjeeling.
Flavors: Dry Grass, Drying, Lime, Olives, Pleasantly Sour, Tart, Thick, Vegetal
I love star anise, so I was really looking forward to this sample I got from derk. The dry leaf aroma displays star anise and black licorice. I didn’t pick up anyhting behind these, but truth be told, my olfactory abilities are still very much impaired by the sickness. Same goes for the wet leaf smell, which is much more pungent and very woodsy. Amazing aroma, there’s no denying that.
The taste is also reminiscent of licorice, but I think I actually like it much more than licorice itself. It doesn’t overpower the Ai Lao black tea characteristics, which are present, rather it is a nice complement to it. It’s fruity, sour with a bitter finish and fragrant aftertaste. I’m loving it.
This is probably the first scented/blended tea that I actually liked. I feel that the scenting here adds to and complements the experience rather than covers a subpar (at best) tea. I will need to pay even more attention to WPT. Several times, I already almost placed an order on their teas, but got put off by the high shipping costs.
edit: The second steep is far less spectacular, I would definitely recommend western style brewing with probably just one infusion.
Flavors: Anise, Astringent, Bark, Bitter, Cherry, Fruity, Licorice, Medicinal, Sour, Wood
Today I am having ripe pu-erh by Pinky Out that I pulled out from the Discovery TTB. Despite being sick, I can tell the tea has a pungent smell that’s very pleasant. It seems that it requires longer steeps than what I am used to with shou. It has a very good body though. Once I tasted it, I felt that there is something missing in the higher notes, which are there but give way very quickly to the earthy/savoury ones. Therefore, after two washes and two infusions, I added some orange blossoms, which complemented the tea very well. I have a feeling it works better than chenpi which is usually used, at least for this particular tea.
Flavors: Bitter, Dried Fruit, Earth, Tart
I am finishing a day of samples from derk with this Baozhong. The expectations are high!
I am not going to dwell too much on the particular flavours and aromas. However, I do get some grilled sweetcorn on top of the sugar snap pea, which wasn’t mentioned before. Overall, the taste is very well balanced between vegetal & floral. It verges on the sweet side, but there is some tartiness too. The milky flavour is definitely noticeable although not too pronounced, which I appreciate.
The most memorable aspect of the tea for me is probably the mouthfeel, I adore it! First two infusions were more milky/creamy, but then the liquor became much more oily/buttery, thick and super smooth. Throughout the session it is really mouth-watering and slightly bubbly. There is almost no astringency to be found.
On the other hand, where I found the tea to be lacking a bit is the aftertaste. It’s not bad per se, but doesn’t present anything exceptional.
Nevertheless, this one is definitely among the best green oolongs I’ve tried so far and possibly the best one from Taiwan.
Flavors: Butter, Corn Husk, Floral, Green Apple, Milk, Peas, Sweet, Sweet, warm grass, Tart, Thick, Vegetal
Another one of the samples I received from derk :)
Initially, the dry leaves have a light fruity aroma. When wet, the smell actually reminds me of some Yunnan black teas – there is definitely a strong malt note there, as well as some cocoa/chocolate. However, it is more complex with extra layers of rose and roasted like aromas.
The taste is quite herbaceous and somewhat earthy, but the finish is more on the fruity & tangy side. I also still get the malt and rose notes. The aftertaste, apart from being slightly drying and fruity, also displays noticable medicinal, spicy and nutty aspects. Overall, it is a very complex and tannic tea that I have no chance of getting to know by one session alone. I will definitely try to get more though.
Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Bitter, Chocolate, Cocoa, Fruity, Herbaceous, Malt, Medicinal, Nutty, Roasted, Rose, Tangy, Tannic
Thanks Derk for the sample! As has been pointed out numerous times, this is a very unique tea. The bouquet is mostly floral while the taste is vegetal and slightly sour. The main notes I get are rose and dill, and they are surprisingly pronounced, especially the latter.
One thing that this tea has going for it is the pretty looks. I am glad to have tried it, but this is not a tea I need to have in my cupboard.
Flavors: Dill, Floral, Rose, Sour, Vegetal
I made this as koicha today and it confirmed for me that this is my fovourite blend of the three main ones offered by MMU. It is incredibly rich with a strong and long lasting umami taste. I would say that it is slightly less smooth as MMU02, but the difference is not big.
Flavors: Sweet, Umami, Vegetal
These are also really convenient for a cold brew. Cheap, chopped up leaves so that the extraction time is shorter and there’s no need to pry a cake and/or weight anything. I made use of that on Saturday and on Sunday I had a liter of pu-erh to fuel me throughout the day as I was wandering around Toronto. To be honest, 10g/1l makes a fairly strong tea even when brewed just overnight like I did. Depending on the intended use and steeping time, one might want to adjust the ratio.