2815 Tasting Notes


For me this is a sipdown. Thanks to Verdant and Steepster for introducing me to Wuyi teas. I did 3 steeps of this in the xi ying. The xi ying is great for wuyis teas and I am considering getting two more for shus and shengs.

This is a lot maltier than I remember it, especially at the first steep. Reminiscent of beer! I would certainly consider getting more of this but I have another red robe in my stash that I need to drink first, me thinks.

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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I was looking forward to trying this one, as Rare Tea Republic is quickly becoming one of my favorite sellers and – I’ve never had an oolong from the darjeeling region before!

Instructions for this one say to steep it at 195 F for 5 minutes, so I did that, steeping it regular basket style in a glass mug. I think the rest of this sample I may try in the gaiwan.

The tea steeps up to be a very light amber color and I am surprised at the light subtle flavor here. To me it seems a little woodsy with some light honey notes. The description says it has some light minerality which makes it evocative of a Wuyi rock tea, I am getting that only slightly. It reminds me a little more of a kind and gentle royal phoenix…

Because this is from a darjeeling region I was expecting a bit more astringency, but there really isn’t any. I wonder if that’s a typical feature of an autumn darjeeling or the processing method. I did a quick google search on other autumn darjeelings to find them described as more mellow and more forgiving than the earlier flushes. I am quite enjoying this but if you are in the mood for a typical darjeeling type of flavor with bite or muscatel you would be disappointed with this one…

I’m now eagerly watching RtR, Thunderbolt and others for the 2012 first flush teas to start appearing on their website. :)

195 °F / 90 °C 5 min, 0 sec

Amy: Everything I’ve heard about Autumnals (I can’t find it! ://), describe them as smoother, rounder, and much less astringent than first & second flushes. I’m glad you like it.

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drank Zhen Qu Tea by Stash Tea Company
2815 tasting notes

Happy holiday weekend all (to those of you who have a holiday). I plan to get lots of relaxation in as well as some tea drinking. :)

Thanks to ScottTeaMan for sending some of this my way. I never even knew that Stash had loose leaf tea, I guess I’ve never been to their website.

These leaves are very fun to look at, they’re curly and fluffy which shows a bit of love on the part of the maker. I ended up steeping mine at around 205 for 3.5 minutes. It’s a very smooth black tea, with some caramel/honey type flavors similar to what you would find in a golden monkey. I think next time around I will try steeping this for a bit longer because I doubt it will turn bitter very easily and I think my brew needed to be stronger in order to fully get the flavors. There are some definite chocolate notes as well. This was good plain but I also liked it with some soymilk. I’m just now waking up at 10:30 am but this is wonderful cup to start my day. thanks again Scott!

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 30 sec

Your welcome…….I’m glad you like it! It is one of my favorites, and has never been bitter, but I’ve not steeped it longer than 4.5 minutes. This tea reminds me of a black Bi luo Chun visually. I hope I gave you enuff for a few more steeps. :))


yes, there is more, thank you!

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drank Red Rocks by The Tea Spot
2815 tasting notes

Finished off the last of this sample today and enjoyed it, seems better than I remember. I also feel like I have a lot of tea swap/samples to get through right now! I wonder what kind of shelf life rooibos has? Thanks again, QueenofTarts

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I don’t know a lot about ceylons so I decided to pick a bit of this up at Whole Foods since they have it in the bulk bin section. I doubt this is a first class example of what a ceylon can be but I wanted to try some. :)

I steeped this for 3 minutes at around 205 F. It is very pleasant, somewhat brisk, a bit fruity with some astringency. I don’t think this is an orange pekoe but it does share some similarities with that style. I was able to drink it plain just fine but I liked it better with a touch of organic soymilk added to it. It seems good but I don’t have much to compare it to. In any case I am not totally loving it. I might try steeping again at 2 minutes next time.

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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drank Vanilla Nut by Teeccino
2815 tasting notes

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drank Autumn Laoshan Green by Verdant Tea
2815 tasting notes

This is my after lunch treat. I have had so many boring green teas lately and this one is really full of flavor – see my previous notes. I had to up the score a little bit today. I’m looking forward to more Laoshan teas from Verdant in the future.

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Thanks again to Tommy the Toad for sending me this sample which is the ripe version of the one I tried earlier today.

This one also smells very good, like toasted rice or buttered popcorn. Yummy!

I think we both agree that the green ones are better but this is very dark and smooth with a nice chocolate-y flavor. I did a quick rinse and then steeped it in an infuser mug for around 2 minutes at 190 F.

With the second steep, the rice flavor seems to have dissipated but it’s still very tasty.

200 °F / 93 °C 1 min, 30 sec

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Thanks so much to Tommy so sending a sample of these my way!

I’ve never had a rice scented pu-erh before, I really liked this! It smells terrific, much the same as when I have brown rice cooking in the kitchen. I could not resist putting the whole tuo cha in my gaiwan although breaking off 1/2 would have probably been sufficient.

I steeped the first round at around 60 seconds and then did two short ones after that at around 20 seconds each. It doesn’t need a lot of time since the sheng is lemony, a bit astringent and sour but the toasted rice is mellow so the combination is sort of like a genmaicha. It is very flavorful and brothy. I am going to order some of these for sure!

200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 45 sec

Sounds fantastic! I want to try this one too!


I ordered some today. :)

Thomas Edward(Toad)

I’m glad you liked them i knew ya would they are some of my favs :)


Amy – this is what you sent me, right?


@Krystalen, I believe I sent you one of these and one of the shu puerh rice touchas from Mandala tea?


This is some good shhhtuff.

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I’ve been neglecting my pu-erh a bit lately but I had a big meal in Chinatown and a nice shu just seems like the perfect thing to have afterwards. This is the last of this sample, sadly. Earthy and smoky, see my previous tasting notes. I hope this one does not keep me awake too long tonight. I may have to stop after 2 or 3 steeps.

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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


San Frandisco



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