11 Tasting Notes
This is the first tea I have tasted that really reminded me of drinking a beer/hard cider. The pear flavor really comes through as an effervescent sweetness that makes it feel like I’m drinking a Magner’s Irish Cider or Woodchuck Pear Cider. In fact, it isn’t as cloyingly sweet as some hard ciders can be and I have no idea what might cause the “beer” flavor in the tea. But now that I’ve used up the sample I bought, I’m going back for a bigger batch!
I recently wrote a review at my tea blog (http://teawritings.com/?p=127) of “teas that taste like tea.” This one came in a close second to the Assam Gold Rain from Teavana, which turned out to be my favorite.
I wrote “Delightfully delicious! A truly luxurious taste of TEA. The fuzzy golden tips have been rolled into rings that are pleasing to the eye, but as they unfurl in the cup the scent makes you think of everything that is soothing and wonderful about a hot cup of tea. The flavor is almost malty in its mellowness.”
I bought this not knowing what to expect when making a Teavana order, just trying to reach the level for free shipping. I saw it and the price wasn’t outrageous, so I tossed it in.
This is my new favorite tea among teas that “taste like tea.” (As opposed to flavored teas like rose, or jasmines, or even oolongs which have such a different flavor profile.) Malty and unbelievably SMOOOOOOTH. I had no idea assam could taste this good.
I wrote a bit more on it in my overview of recent teas I liked that “taste like tea” at my teablog: http://teawritings.com/?p=127
This is a beautiful tea made for visual effect as the flower “blooms” in the water, hence you should make it in a glass pot. It took a long time steeping though for the flavor to become apparent. The flavor is mild, though, and even leaving the flower/leaves in the pot for 20 minutes it never turned bitter. The lychee aspect is mild and the green tea like a gentle artichoke/vegetal taste. Very very mild. I photographed the whole process of the flower opening if you want to see how long it took for the tea to brew: http://teawritings.com/?p=120
Augh! I’m on my last pot of this tea and I need more. This is a reliably delicious tea that holds up to at least 4 steepings, still giving beautiful color and excellent flavor, though milder by the 3rd and 4th time through. It doesn’t hit you over the head with the rose too much, doesn’t muck it up with any other flavors. It’s truly one of my “staple” teas and I buy it loose leaf from the gigantic cans at the Ten Ren in New York Chinatown. I’m tempted to try some other rose teas just to compare, but now that I’m out of this one, I need to restock ASAP!
This is a nice, drinkable oolong on the ‘caramelized’ side of the flavor spectrum rather than the grassy. It reminds me strongly of the flavor mix of caramel/sweet one finds in some of the “sow mee white tea” I’ve bought in cans in Chinatown and from websites, and yet this is an oolong. The grassy notes come out at the end, when the tea is cooler and after swallowing. For the price, this tea was a bargain and I would order it again if putting in an order from this company. (I had originally only ordered it to make the shipping minimum and it turned out to be my second favorite in that whole order!)
As I wrote in TeaWritings.com (http://teawritings.com/?p=105) this was one of three strawberry teas I tasted this week (completely coincidentally!).
The first scent is intensely strawberry and I worried I wouldn’t taste the tea at all, but of the three I tasted this was the only one where I could also taste the tea and not just strawberry. I think the vanilla helped with that. I actually liked the second steeping better than the first. I would definitely buy this tea if putting in a Lupicia order or if I saw it in a store. (Sadly, nearest Lupicia store is 3000 miles from me.)
So I was stuck at JFK airport for several hours on the day after Christmas, in the Jetblue terminal. Even though it was after 10pm, there were several thousand people in the terminal with various flight delays and all the bars and restaurants stayed open past midnight. In our gate area was a sit down bar and an espresso bar with Illy coffe products. They had tea also, of course, and I had not had the brand of tea they offered. They had a choice of Earl Grey, chai, a few others, but the one I had definitely never had was described to me by the young barista as “strawberry tea.”
Okay, sure, I thought. I’m stuck here for another hour. I’m a little chilly. Worst comes to worst I’ll put sugar and milk in it and think of it as a tea flavored strawberry shake.
Turns out it was perfectly yummy just as tea. The strawberry sweetness was quite pronounced, and it normally would have been “too fruity” for me, but for a comforting hot drink in a challenging environment, it was very pleasant. I’ll have it again.
Someone accidentally left a tin of this at a tea party at my house over ten years ago. In guilt I didn’t drink it and hid it on my shelf until this week, when I figured after ten years has gone by I should get over it. In fact, I thought, it might not even be good any more, but maybe I should re-use the tin.
Turns out, it’s EXCELLENT. Far smoother and more flavorful than the Republic of Tea “Metabolic Frolic”, it stands up to four steepings, at which point it is just starting to lose its mango sweetness. Many fruit teas disappoint me. This one doesn’t.
For the whole story of the tea party, see my blog (http://teawritings.com/?p=101), but I was pleased to find this tea is still available and for only $5 per tin! At the rate I’m going, I will use this one up and need to replace it soon.
This is one of my favorite teas. The first time I had “milk oolong” it was at Vital-T Leaf shop in Seattle, where they brewed it for me to taste. Once I ran through that stash, I turned to the Internet to mail order some more. This particular one from Holy Mountain is one of the best of this variety I’ve mail ordered, and has been for 2 years in a row, so I will definitely order it again from them.
I find sometimes the flavor gets richer as the tea cools, and that the milky notes come out more when not scalding hot.