963 Tasting Notes

[spring 2024 harvest]

This black tea is very well balanced, but less sweet than similar teas. It is also not very bitter, but it has a distinct bite in the aftertaste.

Dry leaves smell of leather, caramel, and wet soil. On the other hand, wet leaf aroma reminds me of cherries, wood, chocolate, fur, malt, fennel, and celery at times.

The mouthfeel is thick and creamy. The liqour feels light in the mouth though. There is very mild astringency as well as a cool tingling sensation.

First infusion is vegetal and smooth with umami, woody and spicy flavours, such as those of miso and pumpkin. Second steep is sweeter and cooling. There are notes of bread, citrus zest, mint, butter, and licorice. Later on, the tea also showcases more flowery, malty and bitter sides. Further flavours I detect are like beer, chocolate, and orange blossoms.

The aftertaste is cooling, biting, and perfumy with an additional flavour of maple syrup.

All in all, it is a particulaly complex and engaging black tea that I can really recommend.

Flavors: Astringent, Beer, Biting, Bitter, Bread, Butter, Caramel, Celery, Cherry, Chocolate, Citrus Zest, Cooling, Fennel, Fur, Leather, Licorice, Malt, Maple Syrup, Mint, Orange Blossom, Perfume, Pumpkin, Spicy, Thick, Umami, Wet Earth, Wood

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One could say that this tea is more aromatic than flavourful, but really it is of hig hquality overall.

Dry leaves smell very pungent with notes of malt, sawdust, eucalyptus, and tomato vine. During the session, I can additionally detect a smell like chicken meat.

The mouthfeel is smooth and oily and a little astringent. Taste is bitter with flavours of citrus fruits, tree bark, and nectarines.

Flavors: Bark, Bitter, Citrus, Eucalyptus, Malt, Meat, Nectarine, Plant Stems, Pungent, Roasted Chicken, Sawdust, Tomato

5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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Aged yancha is usually pretty pleasant to drink, and this one is no exception, even though it is a bit basic overall.

It has aromas of sweet wood and spices, while the taste is earthy, sour, metallic, and a little astringent with an oat flavour.

Flavors: Astringent, Earth, Metallic, Oats, Sour, Spices, Wood

205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 5 OZ / 140 ML

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I got a cake of this tea blind, but the ripes from YS are a fairly safe bet I find.

This one is very smooth and creamy. It smells of black currants, red wine, earth, and fireplace. The taste is sweet and nutty with mild sourness and astringency.

Flavors: Astringent, Black Currant, Creamy, Earth, Fireplace, Nutty, Red Wine, Smooth, Sour, Sweet

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This pu-erh has a very sweet aroma that primarily reminds me of apricots. There are also notes of peach, forest, yoghurt, and a grassy meadow.

The taste is a bit like green tea: bitter and flowery. It is also a bit milky with flavour of custard and nut oils.

Flavors: Apricot, Bitter, Custard, Floral, Flowers, Meadow, Milky, Nutty, Oily, Peach, Sweet, Yogurt

205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

The way you described this made me think it’s a Mengku tea. It sounded similar to what I’m drinking right now — 2017 YS Nuo Wu Village — so I looked at the description. This is from Mengku!

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Yesterday I pulled this one out of my storage. It wasa very pleasant session, but didn’t wow me. I detected a fireplace aroma and an overall warming character. The flavours reminded me of roots, wood, white wine, and yeast.

Flavors: Fireplace, Roots, White Wine, Wood, Yeast

205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec 5 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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Very enjoyable sheng, cooling and bitter with a complex profile. The dry leaf aroma is a mix of menthol, fruit tree flowers, and vegetal notes while wet leaves also smell of bread, fireplace, allspice.

The taste is nutty, medicinal, vegetal and really quite bitter when brewed longer. There are notes of spices, black pepper, eggs, cabbage, and eucalyptus.

Flavors: Allspice, Bitter, Black Pepper, Bread, Cabbage, Egg, Eucalyptus, Fireplace, Fruit Tree Flowers, Medicinal, Menthol, Nutty, Spices, Vegetal

7 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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This tea is very savoury vegetal and smell a bit like sencha. There is no bitterness or astringency, and also very little sweetness or florals. The main note I get is fenugreek.

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I’m back with one of my favourite pu-erh teas that never disappoints.

This time, I found aromas of menthol, wild garlic, and earth. The tea is refreshing, complex, and wonderfully tasty. It has a pungent flavour that is sweet, fruity, herbaceous and woody. The aftertaste is cooling and very strong and protracted with notes of taro and other root vegetables.

Flavors: Cooling, Earth, Fruity, Garlic, Herbaceous, Menthol, Sweet, Taro Root, Vegetables

205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 7 g 4 OZ / 130 ML

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Pretty cool tea. It is quite a savoury one with strong umami and flavours of green vegetables and fern. The aroma also reminds me of matcha, mint, spinach, leek. There are also floral and woody notes of fresh tree branches.

Flavors: Floral, Green, Leeks, Mint, Plant Stems, Spinach, Tea, Umami, Vegetables, Wood

195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 30 sec 4 g 5 OZ / 140 ML

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Hi, I am a researcher in math, physics and computer science. Apart from teas and mathematics, I enjoy sports and traveling, as well as music of all kinds. Connect at https://rateyourmusic.com/~Togo

I had been drinking Japanese green tea for a while before discovering the world of tea in 2017. I rarely drink blends and generally avoid artificially scented teas. Other than that I try to keep it varied.

My rating description:
100 _ Unforgettable tea, an experience that changes your life.
90 – 100 _ Excellent tea.
80 – 90 _ Very enjoyable, I will buy again.
70 – 80 _ I enjoyed it, but I most likely won’t be buying it again.
60 – 70 _ Decent.
50 – 60 _ Average, forgettable.
40 – 50 _ I didn’t really like the tea, but it is drinkable.
0 – 40 _ I would prefer to avoid the tea.


Innsbruck, Austria

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