mud and leaves

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Recent Tasting Notes

70

I drank this later at night than I should have done, but I regret nothing. I just really wanted to try a new tea.

When I think of a classic oolong taste, this is it. A bit mineral, fairly complex, slightly roasted… At least in the USA, most oolongs that are easily available seem to be done in this style, but this one is exceptionally well-balanced. I wouldn’t count it among my favourite oolongs because it’s not really exceptional, but it would make a fantastic daily drinker.

Flavors: Mineral, Roasted, Vegetal

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 0 min, 15 sec 3 g 60 OZ / 1774 ML

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63

This tea has a squash-like flavour – pumpkin, I think – but with less sweetness than I usually find in teas with that taste. It’s oddly vegetal for a black tea, but it works pretty well. All of the Taiwanese black teas from Mud & Leaves that I’ve tried have been very different, which is nice.

Flavors: Cinnamon, Pumpkin, Toasty, Vegetal

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 90 ML

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73

This had an unexpected taste! I used leaves from spring 2020. It’s somewhat floral, with a milder taste of fruit and some minerality. The flavours balance out well against one another. There’s also a slight bitterness which reminds me of a lot of the black teas from Africa I’ve tried, though it’s less pronounced in this tea than in those others. Overall, I like it.

Flavors: Bitter, Floral, Fruity, Mineral

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 15 sec 3 g 2 OZ / 55 ML

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55

I tried a younger variation of this tea (from 2002) on the same day for comparison’s sake, as it had arrived as a free sample from Mud & Leaves. This tea was more mineral and less malty than the 2002 version. I’d say it is a comparatively gentler tea, but not mild.

The roasted taste lasted longer than that of its younger cousin, and there was almost a note of so-called ‘Thai red tea’ there as well. It lasted five steeps rather than the younger tea’s six, and the first steep was more watery, so it’s a less durable tea than the other one. I think the taste is slightly better, though.

Flavors: Malt, Mineral, Roasted

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 0 min, 15 sec 3 g 2 OZ / 55 ML

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51

Mine is from 2019. Interesting flavour. It has a malty, dried-fruit sweetness reminiscent of figs or even prunes. There’s some taste of cocoa, but it’s not prominent. Despite its sweetness, the texture is drying and almost acidic in feel. It’s not a tea I would get again, but it is definitely unique.

Flavors: Cocoa, Dried Fruit, Drying, Fig, Malt

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 15 sec 3 g 2 OZ / 60 ML

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82

I tried the Summer 2020 version of this ‘bug-bitten’ tea. While not heavily roasted, the leaves are a dark brown colour and the brew is rich gold. It has a very nutty, sweet flavour that’s complex and strong without being overwhelming. The texture is smooth and full.

This is one of my favourite oolongs, though some dan cong oolongs provide close competition. It’s certainly my favourite roasted oolong. I originally had it in a sample pack, but ordered a larger quantity afterwards.

Flavors: Honey, Nutty, Round , Smooth, Sweet

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 3 g 2 OZ / 55 ML

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55

A lightly roasted oolong with a classic taste. I had the 2020 version. There were some nut flavours and some astringency – kind of a standard mixture. While I enjoyed it, I didn’t find it as interesting as some of this company’s other teas.

Flavors: Astringent, Nuts

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 3 g 2 OZ / 55 ML

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55

This was a somewhat darker roasted oolong, but it didn’t have much of a roasted flavour. Very mineral, with some tart dried fruit taste. A good quality tea, but not up my alley.

Flavors: Dried Fruit, Mineral, Round , Tart

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 3 g 2 OZ / 55 ML

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