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Recent Tasting Notes
Let me start by apologising for the lack of posts over the last few days (as well as the upcoming week or so). Unfortunately I have a herniated disc in my lower back and my physical ability to move has been severely altered, so much so that every now and then I can make it a few feet to fetch something. Otherwise I am hunched over/tilted in pain just trying to get comfortable. It was my fault but an accident all the same. On Saturday I was asked to fetch some cat litter as the new kitten Ollie (Oliver) has meant we used up our stash pretty quickly. The shop is only a 2-3 minute walk away so I thought it wouldn’t be a problem, well it seems 3 bags of litter was too much and my back went crunch. An hour or so after that while I was resting at home someone came to claim Oliver, they said they had been looking for him and were told we had him. Heartbroken and in pain I had no choice but to take him over and meet them. They were to put it frankly, stupid, and had no idea how to look after him. They claimed he was a girl (which he obviously isn’t if they bothered to look at his ‘berries’) and that he must have jumped out of the bedroom window and escaped. After some arguing and me lecturing them I left him with them, hoping he would be fine. The short walk home in agony from my back and tears down my face ruined my make up and I ended up looking like The Joker, but didn’t care.
An hour passed by and me and my husband shed tears for a boy kitten we wish we got to know better but really hoped he would be fine in his original home. Then there was a knock on the door, I asked Richard to answer as I was pretty much sofa ridden and unable to move at this point…plus my Joker makeup. He was talking and I saw him take something from whomever knocked, at this point I decided to try and stand up and see what is going on. It was Oliver and his owners, they said that they named him Nelson and that they hadn’t bonded with him and really she didn’t want a boy cat. They also said it seemed like we bonded with him (too right, had him for 5 days and the first day he kissed me and slept in my arms) and asked if we wanted to keep him. I cannot describe the joy I felt to have him back, I thought I would never see him again. So Oliver is lost no more, he is officially home and part of the family. As much as Richard said he wasn’t having any more cats he was as upset as me to see him go, such a softy at heart really but he would never admit it. Even though I’ve done my back in and may have to miss a concert I was going to on Thursday (and had a hotel room booked as it’s not local) I am still happy with how everything worked out, it’s all worth it just to have him back with us for good. I will question what went on in that hour he was with the original owners since they seemed adamant they wanted him back, but either way I am just over the moon he is mine again.
Long story I know but pretty much that is where I have been and why I’ve been absent. Even writing this is painful as I’m not in a comfortable position but unable to move, but I am determined to do it.
Why write this on this tasting note? Well I’m actually drinking this and have been for a couple of days now. I decided to try it cold steeped so left it in my cold steep wine bottle gadget for a couple of days until it became a cloudy yellow and looked fairly thick in flavour. (Forgot where I was due to large back spasm and cramp). Oh yes I waited for the thickness as I like strong iced tea if it’s green based.
It worked a charm as flavour is thick, grassy and sweet but with a refreshing clean finish and floral aftertaste with only a touch of dryness. Not as thick as if it were to be brewed hot but enough flavour to tell what type of green tea it is. Plus since it’s been a few days I finished one bottle last night and re-steeped the leaves overnight. Again the strength is pleasing and it was well worth the re-steep. Plus honestly at the moment it’s easy for me to grab the bottle in the morning with a glass and sit down so I can help myself throughout the day. It wont be ice cold but it’s nice luke warm too.
So this was a story that started off badly but really turned out for the best, injury and all. Nothing is more important to me than my kitty babies, that goes for all five of them. :)
Let me start buy saying this was purchased a while ago, seeing as it is a 2013 harvest, and I’ve only just remembered about it. I put it to ‘rest’ for a few months but have left it for the better part of a year and half. My mistake! I’ve been looking around trying to find some information on someone else doing this but when it comes to aging and resting greentea there is little to no information on it. Most say to drink greentea asap while it’s fresh and that is should never be kept for too long as it loses flavour. Well I had this in the hopes to ‘mature’ it a little to see what would happen. At this point I think all I can do is give it a try.
The leaves are a beautiful, glossy, dark green that form curly/squiggly pieces. Not bright green but not brown or dull either.
The scent is toasty yet sweet and ‘smog’ like, so a hint of smoke in it’s thickness. Also mild floral tones. Overall it’s quite strong though on the ‘mellow’ side of strong. As you keep sniffing it gets sweeter and sweeter.
It’s quite late (11pm) and I’m pairing this review with watching anime so I think I will use a gongfu teapot across three steeps. Using roughly 5g of leaf and 80C water.
Steep 1 – 1 minute
Colour is yellow.
Scent is sweet and honeyed with light toasted grass and floral tones.
Flavour is soft and sweet at first with honey, orchid and toasted grass with a buttery finish. As I continue there is some dryness in the aftertaste.
Steep 2 – 2 minutes
This steep is more floral and still as sweet and buttery. Perhaps less toasted now though if anything. The dryness is still the same but it rather adds to it’s charm. Some astringency, like thick grass.
Steep 3 – 3 minutes
Soft flavours with astringency. All that really remains is butter, mild toasted grass and sweetness now likened to sweetcorn.
This was a success for me, and was perhaps a good thing I rested it for so long. While I have not tried this specific companies tea, I have had Lao Shan green’s before and found them to be ‘full on’ and ‘thickly smog like’ at times. While that is all well and good I do think that perhaps I have to be in the right frame of mind for it. Whereas with this long rested period it’s smoothed those tones out but the sweetness mixed with toasted grass and honeyed flowers blend beautifully to create a more ‘balanced’ version of a Lao Shan green. At no point while I was drinking did I stop and think “Wow, this tastes old” or anything similar to that effect. In some ways it was comparable to an Oolong, like Jin Xuan.
So my mistake was not costly, not in the slightest it would seem. I know that the rest of this can be enjoyed in the very near future. Perhaps I can take some to a party my mother is hosting soon to show off her new summer house, see if anyone is ‘daring’ enough to try it. If not then more for me, but if someone manages to strike up a conversation about tea with me while I’m there it would make my day.
Flavors: Butter, Grass, Honey, Orchid, Sweet, Toasted