Rishi TeaEdit Company
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Recent Tasting Notes
This was a gift, so I decided to brew the “legendary ancient tree” mini tuocha! The little guy is massively compressed with a slight earth coffee tone and some fungal aroma. I warmed my gaiwan and popped it inside. The pebble opens with some sweet cherry, dark cocoa, wet moss, petrichor, and a background of vanilla. I washed the leaf twice and picked at it, so I could begin brewing. The body is surprisingly full with earth and fungal tones. A light sweetness lingers on the palate. The brew is intensely dark. A strong woody tone comes out along with a bit of fruit. The tea is decent, but it is very basic. The inky drink continues with this earthy body and dry astringency for the rest of the session. The qi is warming and hot towards the head and stomach, but it stops there. Also, the leaves have a bit of green/ish in them. This was an average session, but I think these would be good for traveling.
Flavors: Dark Wood, Drying, Earth, Mushrooms
This one snuck up on me. Co-worker gave a bag to me months before. I finally decided to try it but couldn’t remember where I got it from. Only said Rishi on the bag with no identifying type on it. I brewed it and loved it. Love the bluberry, loved the whole flavor combination. Fruity, smells lovely, and caffeine free so I can drink it any time. For sure not for someone who is a green or black purist.
Honestly, to me it smells like candy when I open the bag. Every time I drink it someone in the office comments on how lovely it smells. It tastes smooth, peachy, and good warm or cold. I will steep it several times and it’s always a go to tea for me. Refreshing and light.
I have been so busy this week that I sadly have not had much time to review new teas. I’m still working my way through larger amounts of some teas I have already reviewed, so finishing them has taken precedence for me. Even when I have had the time to try something new, I have unfortunately had to rush through it or have otherwise been forced to evaluate it under less than ideal circumstances. Such was the case with this tea.
After popping in to a local high school for a follow-up, I swung by a local cafe that carries Rishi products and ordered a mug to go along with a bowl of soup and half a sandwich. I then had to rush back to the office and time the infusion while in my car on the way back across town. Needless to say, this got steeped at least 1-2 minutes too long. The fact that I then ended up having to drink it in my office out of a cardboard to-go cup didn’t help matters either.
Ignoring the distinct cardboard aroma undoubtedly contributed by the cup, I was still able to detect distinct scents of toffee, molasses, chocolate, and wood. In the mouth, I again ignored the influence of the cardboard, choosing instead to focus on the mellow notes of toffee, chocolate, malt, cream, sweet potato, leather, toast, and molasses. I could tell that I steeped this a little too long because the finish was more tannic and astringent than it probably should have been, but it wasn’t unbearable. Also, I could tell that this tea was maybe a little on the older side. The aromas and flavors one would expect of a traditional Yunnan black/red tea were there, but were less vibrant than they arguably should have been. Again, it could have been worse.
At this point, I am not certain that I feel all that comfortable assigning a numerical score to this tea. The combination of the age of the tea, the overly long infusion, and the vessel from which I had to drink it all served to skew my perception of this tea. From what I was able to detect from it, I would expect this to come off as a woodier, maltier Yunnan black with decidedly heavy notes of molasses and sweet potato under ideal circumstances. I will be a little lenient here and give my first impression of this tea a 71/100. Should I ever get the opportunity to try this one again, however, I will expect a little more from it.
Flavors: Chocolate, Cream, Leather, Malt, Molasses, Sweet Potatoes, Toast, Toffee
Not my favorite tea, but not the worst tea I’ve had. It trends on the bitter side and I find the lemongrass to be too overpowering. The delicious tropical fruits I was so looking forward to were masked by the spiciness of the lemongrass and overwhelming aroma and taste of ginger. I was expecting a smooth cup with traces of pineapple, papaya, etc. I haven’t tried it iced yet, but I’m hesitant to do so based on the taste when it is brewed hot.
Flavors: Bitter, Ginger, Lemongrass
Chinese blacks are not usually my favorites, but I find this one surprisingly delightful. It’s very smooth, more so than the Indian black teas I usually go for, and sweet and malty. It has a hint of that characteristic cocoa flavor that usually gets me (in a bad way), but it’s very mild. It actually reminds me quite a bit of an Assam, which is a good thing in my book.
So I decided to sign up for an account after being appalled by the low rating of “74” this tea has gotten. This tea is simply brilliant. It is sensitive, yes, and I have found if it is brewed longer than two minutes on the first brew at above a temperature of 80celcius it can get bitter. However, if brewed properly it is absolutely divine. It clears the mind wonderfully, and I feel it has really high levels of theanine (which is what I look for in a tea). It has a very clean, fresh, feeling- much like the early days of spring. Of course I have had higher quality green teas before, but with rating a tea I take in account the price. At $49 a pound, it is quite the bargain and that is why I give this tea a solid 90. I highly respect Rishi tea company and I trust them very much. I have never had a tea from them that tasted “dirty”. Again, just be careful not to over brew this tea and you’ll be soaring high on Jade Cloud 9!!
Yay! Found a pure green tea I like!
While this has a typical green flavour, it is also a bit sweet. Lots of tannins without being astringent or bitter at all (if only steeped for a moment, in cool water), and not too stemy in flavour.
Flavors: Green, Honey, Honeysuckle, Malt, Milk, Sweet, Tannin, Tea
While this does not taste like lemon to mint like I expected, it does have a pleasant herbal flavour that would be nice in a blend. Nothing really stands out for the flavour, but it reminds me a bit of catnip. Tea tasted fresh and resteeped three times without the loss of flavour.
Flavors: Dry Grass, Herbs
Rishi teas are usually solid and reliable. When I saw their English Breakfast black tea in our Whole Foods store, I knew it was worth giving it a try.
A rich malty aroma instantly charged from the metal tin and inner foil envelope upon opening them. The dark brown leaves were extremely short compared to my other Rishi teas. Maybe that is the signature of English Breakfast tea?
I followed Rishi’s brewing instructions and steeped the leaves at 200 degrees for four minutes. The color was bright amber. The smell was malty and slightly sweet.
This tea had a very well-balanced malty and sweet taste, like cocoa. It also was extremely smooth.
The flavor was quite different from most of the other English Breakfast teas I’ve tried. Those all seemed to emphasize the raw taste of the teas that comprised the blend. However, this selection, although definitely not hiding the tea flavors, expertly coated them with cocoa sweetness and malt. The result is the perfect breakfast tea for those of us who like it sweet but straight-up!
The aftertaste was light and smooth. Astringency was not in this blend’s vocabulary.
I bought this product hoping to find a pleasant breakfast blend. Instead, I hit the jackpot. This is an exceptionally robust, full-bodied, and delicious morning tea. My taste buds didn’t locate the advertised cherry notes but that didn’t hinder my sweet and lovely morning ride through four cups of this awesome find.
Flavors: Cocoa, Malt, Sweet
Was there pineapple in this? Huh. Didn’t taste any.
Lovely flavored tea that smells and tastes like fresh coconut milk, rather than coconut perfume. Despite a couple of over-steeps it never developed bitterness or over-potency. Would make a great “chaser” for pu’erh!
Flavors: Coconut, Milk
Nice comforting cup.
I tasted in this order: Peanut shell, dark chocolate, red wine, creamy coffee, muddy earth notes. Maybe a little raspberry. I can see why it’s a “ruby” oolong. Lingers on your tongue. I don’t really have much to say here; it’s very pretty.
Update: re-steeped twice the second time I made this. Now I get apricot. Still really yummy.
Flavors: Dark Bittersweet, Dark Chocolate, Red Wine, Wet Earth
I see what is going on here. This should work in theory: the tart hibiscus and elderberry should complement the grape skins, and evoke the tannins in tea. The pu’erh should evoke the ripe earthiness of a full red wine. But ultimately, it doesn’t work like that.
It reminds me of when you’re making a cold process soap with beer or wine. The basic pH kills off any wine or beer aroma, so it’s necessary to fragrance it with something with oatmeal or citrus or chocolate notes so you kind of get the “impression” of the beverage.
I guess the old formulation, with raspberries on the front and no hibiscus or elderberries, reminded reviewers of a Berry Zinger. The new formulation is all hibiscus and elderberries. Which is great, if you enjoy the tart juiciness of those flavors, but less great if you were expecting something like a woodsy merlot.
Definitely an okay sipper to replace poorer bagged fruit teas, but not a must-have.
Flavors: Berries, Hibiscus, Sour