2815 Tasting Notes

95

This is such a good pu-erh! I’m doing short steeps of 30 seconds this afternoon with the remainder of my sample. The tea liquor is dark and silky, I am getting all kinds of interesting flavors like chocolate, camphor, & cinnamon. Smooth and gentle, with no funky aromas. Mandala did a great job with this cake they commissioned. I will need to pick one up soon. :)

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 30 sec
Bonnie

I love the name! Phatty Cake! Gordita…so cute!

TeaBrat

You would probably like this tea Bonnie.

Bonnie

Sounds like I would!

Garret

Amy! I was drinking this tea today, too! I am so happy that you enjoy it. It’s one of my favorites and I’m so glad I got so many cakes pressed.

Sunday, I got together with David (Verdant Tea) and we sipped teas for 4 hours. It was great. He and I try to get together every couple of months for a “tea summit”.

I was thinking of you because I had brought along some of the “wild tree” mao cha that I am having pressed into sheng pu’er. It is one that I think you will love. David thought it was spectacular and we worked it quite a while. I think you’re gonna like this one.

While I have 66 lbs being pressed, I have 1 kg loose mao cha here and 20 more pounds on the way. It’s your kinda tea :)

Happy day,
Garret

TeaBrat

Hi Garret – I am looking forward to trying it soon!

CHAroma

What’s camphor?

ScottTeaMan

This is on my list.

TeaBrat

@CHAroma – it’s a tree, it has a minty sort of flavor

CHAroma

Cool, thanks!

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94

Decupboarding – the hard way!

I took this to work to finish it off, unfortunately when I was on the bus the can spilled out all over the bottom of my bag and created a huge mess. There’s no use crying over spilled tea, I guess!

SimplyJenW

Argh! Look at the bright side….now you have room for more tea!

TeaBrat

Well, it also came in a really nice washi tin that I can reuse for something else. :)

Scott B

I’ve done something similar. I’m sure it’s all Teavana’s fault somehow.

TeaBrat

@ScottB – lmao!

Bonnie

Sorry! They charge alot too! The guy in Teavana said it was one of their only good tea’s! (Kept making apologies for their low quality tea)

TeaBrat

Bonnie – it was a gift so I didn’t have to pay for it, but I agree it’s one of their better teas. :))

CHAroma

Aww, I’m sorry! That’s sucks. :(

Missy

D’oh! That sounds like some thing that would happen to me.

Indigobloom

eeep! that’s terrible! atleast it wasn’t a hot beverage that you burned yourself on (like I’ve done!)

ScottTeaMan

Amy….‘No use crying…’. That depends on the tera and the amount. I’m getting teary eyed just thinking about it! :*((

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88

This is a very interesting tea! I got a 10g sample of it from Norbu. The tea uses jin xuan (milk oolong) source materials but is processed like a green tea. I wonder if this is how that other tea from the Bird Pick is processed too? Anyway, the leaves here are a bit longer and wiry and not rolled. There are some stems in the tea but that’s the way the Taiwanese drink it, I have heard.

I steeped this for about 3 minutes at 180F. This tea has a very creamy and fresh green flavor. I am also picking up on a bit of a floral quality here. It’s nice and gentle and pretty delicious! Breakfast this morning is a bowl of bananas and raspberries and this is a nice accompaniment. It’s not as buttery as the Bird Pick tea but I am finding it very pleasant. I think this would be a very popular tea if more people tried it – give it a shot! The samples from Norbu are a bargain.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 0 sec
TeaEqualsBliss

It’s been a long time since I have had any Norbu Teas in my stash! Reading all of your tasting notes makes me ponder an order :)

TeaBrat

I am enjoying my teas from them, a lot!

TeaEqualsBliss

I especially used to like their oolongs and some pu-erhs – they really shine in those teas!

TeaBrat

Do you remember which pu-erhs you liked? I have the ye sheng wild tea log but haven’t tried it yet.

TeaEqualsBliss

I can’t remember them all but I do recall the Lao Mansa Sheng Pu Erh – it was when I was first getting into pu erhs and it was mellower one to handle at the time. I think my Norbu Pu Erh experiences were about 2 years ago :)

Missy

ohhh a mellow pu erh. I shall have to look that up for my journey into pu erh. :D

ScottTeaMan

I will try Norbu…….eventually! I’m trying to reduce my current stash a little.

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94

Monday morning? Is that you? How did you get here so soon?

I chose this to drink this morning, was somehow in the mood for it and not exactly sure why. Today I added a smidge of raw cane sugar. I like this tea! (see previous notes). Today it seems softer and even fruitier than I remember — I might have steeped it for longer before. See previous notes if interested.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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80
drank HOUJI-CHA Tea Bags by Maeda-en
2815 tasting notes

I have some loose leaf houijcha at work but I wanted some today at home, so I picked up this little package of 10 teabags in Japantown. This is a mesh teabag which is a little bit better than the paper ones. This houijcha is made from roasted sencha.

The instructions on the package say to steep for 30 – 60 seconds, but that seemed a bit light so I ended up going for 90 seconds in the end. The aroma is delightful and flavor is pretty good. It has a very caramel, burnt sugar flavor but I’m detecting a tiny bit of vegetal bitterness in the finish. The other houjicha I have is a loose leaf from Den’s Tea that’s made out of roasted bancha. I have to say I prefer the Den’s version because it is sweeter and more aromatic (and it’s loose leaf, which makes a difference as well). But this is still a nice everyday tea, and good for the evening because there’s less caffeine. I need to try cold brewing it sometime! Yummy!

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 1 min, 30 sec
Alphakitty

I really love Den’s Houjicha! And as a flavor it seems to be getting pretty popular, my local Japanese mart actually has houjicha flavored soft-serve.

ScottTeaMan

HOORAY HOUJICHA!! :))

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92
drank Wen Shan Bao Zhong by Naivetea
2815 tasting notes

I haven’t had this tea in eons and I have no idea why – it’s wonderful!

I’ve been gong fu’ing oolongs mostly, but I have my copyediting homework to do soon, so I thought I’d just sit down and brew myself a small pot. This tea is very smooth, flowery, sweet and a hint of creaminess like coconut milk is present. I was worried this might be getting stale/old but it still tastes wonderful to me.

I re-steeped this also Western style for 4 minutes and it still has a lot of flavor.

Lately I’ve been wondering when Naivetea is getting their formosa oolong back in stock, it’s been ages from what I recall. Naivetea does some lovely oolongs…

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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drank Chance Combinations by Custom
2815 tasting notes

Now that I have a proper freezer that I can actually use for making ice, I am sure more herbal tisane experiments are coming!

This ended up being delicious: mix equal parts plain organic tulsi, spearmint and lemon verbena. Brew hot and pour over ice or refrigerate. It’s delicious… :)

ScottTeaMan

Amy, do you think you’ make actual iced tea or stick to cold brew. It’s interesting how I used to ice hot tea, but since I’ve been cold brewing lately, I like it better. I prefer cold brewing in the fridge, because it just tastes better to me-not watered down like iced tea can sometimes be. It just takes sssoooo long and I can be impatient at times! ;-))

ScottTeaMan

what happened to my LL’s? you’ll

TeaBrat

Cold brewing is great but today I didn’t have enough time, I wanted instant gratification!

ScottTeaMan

I know whaat you mean…hehe!

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78

This is a 10g sample I recently got from Norbu Tea. I more or less picked it at random but now after looking at it closer, I see that it’s a Pre-Qingming tea. I think this just means it was picked very early in the spring.

I decided to steep this Western style so I used the glass teapot for 3 minutes with water that was 180F.

The tea liquor is very mild and light yellow in color. It reminds me a bit of the pre-chingming Snow Dragon I was graciously gifted by ScottTeaMan. This is a very mild and gentle green tea, the tea liquor is very soft with some light vegetal notes of artichoke and perhaps a bit of cucumber.

It is nice but I generally prefer something more robust and flavorful. It isn’t bad, it’s just not my “thing”. I think I will try gong fu’ing the rest of this sample at a later date to see what difference that makes.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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87

The first cup of the day. This tea is proving to be quite a versatile mixer for experiments, today I mixed it with some ceylon from the Jasmine Pearl Tea Merchants. Drinking it with soymilk and sugar for the full-on eye opening experience.

By the way I have a bit of news, I got a new refrigerator/freezer from my Landlord. The old one must have been over 30 years old and still requires a manual defrost. The new one is beautiful, compared to what I am used to. I feel like such a modern woman. ;-)

Missy

yay for new fridge/freezer!

CHAroma

Awesome, congrats!

TeaBrat

Matcha popsicles!

ashmanra

Woohoo! You go, girl!

TeaBrat

I feel like such a part of the 20th century! :-D

ScottTeaMan

The newer ones don’t last 30 yrs though…….but enjoy the marvel of 20th century tech! :))

Bonnie

Whoopie! I love a new appliance!

Bonnie

somehow that sounded wierd ;/

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91

Post yoga drink – I blended an equal part of this green tea with some original tulsi from Organic India and I am quite liking the results. I don’t think tulsi would blend too well with Japanese green tea but it’s pretty good with this Chinese green. The savory, vegetal qualities here mix well with the cooling mint tulsi. I’m trying to increase my tulsi consumption!

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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Profile

Bio

My profile pic is of a pink dahlia at Golden Gate Park.

Hobbies include: tea, making art, animals, vegan things, buddhism, nature, creativity, books, writing, cooking, meditation, yoga.

I am a fan of many different teas but my favorites are blacks and oolongs, chai, also like darjeeling and pu-erh. I’n always learning and expanding my horizons!

Dislikes include: bergamot, jasmine, highly tannic or bitter teas, overly judgmental and bitter people. :)

Live in San Francisco, I’m a SINK (single income, no kids) and love the urban life, but traveling out to the middle of nowhere is always fun too.

I tend to not drink things I know I will hate so a lot of my tea ratings are on the higher side. Here’s my rating system, sorta

95-100 I love this tea and would like to keep it around

94-90 An excellent tea which I may or may not repurchase

89-80 Pretty good, above average

79-70 Acceptable

69-60 Mundane – Will probably drink it if I have it

59-50 Ick

49 and below Nasty

Location

San Frandisco

Website

http://sanfrantea.teatra.de

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