Taiwan Tea CraftsEdit Company
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Recent Tasting Notes
I tried Long Feng Xia for the first time a year ago and loved its elegant, citrusy flavor. However this batch from TTC reminded me once again of how drastically the same tea can change from one harvest to the next. It gives wonderful aromas of daffodils and tropical fruit but none of it comes through in taste. The flavor is mostly grassy-vegetal with noticeable astringency that hangs around for the first few steeps. Some fruitiness peeks through later but it’s muted and the flavor is flat overall. It doesn’t have the balsam notes nor the delicate floral quality of LFX of past. A very disappointing tea.
Flavors: Apple, Astringent, Orchid, Vegetal
As much as I love green oolongs, every once in a while I need to switch things up a bit with a baked tea. Most dark oolongs are too roasty for me but light baked teas such as this one fit the bill perfectly: green with a warming personality
The first whiff of the dry leaf reminded me of cream and butterscotch. Wet leaf had a toasted nuts scent to it. It was too roasty gongfued so I steeped it western style and grandpa with good results. First steep was light bodied but very sweet with notes of honey and baked bread. Second steeping brought out toasted barley, nuts, and caramel. Starting with the third steep, the tea begins exhibiting a greener character. The baked flavor diminishes and eventually disappears by the 5th steep leaving a mellow fruity flavor behind.
Overall, this was a satisfying tea without the heavy char you typically see in dark oolongs. I enjoyed its sweet, caramelized nuts flavor but wished it had some more depth and the florals of BTTC’s light baked Alishan. Also the gradual transition from dark to green doesn’t happen as smoothly as the BTTC tea.
Flavors: Baked Bread, Butterscotch, Caramel
drink drink drink. It’s supposed to snow this weekend…not sure if i believe it. I suspect it’ll be that gross slushy sort of mess that is almost more rain than snow. However…it’s “friday” today for me in the start of basically two months of working 4 day weeks. So yay! I’ve got a 4 day weekend coming up and i’m excited to do things like go find new glasses, drink tea, clean up…get ready for chicago next week heh. Started the morning off with this one and another to have some straight teas before i continue drinking up all the 52 teas heh.
So funny that i haven’t reviewed this, but honestly i’m just not sure what to make of this years teas from TTC, this is NOT the lot that i feel in love with, but this is pretty good and has that familiar cinnamon like taste to it, especially the more it cools. I’ll need to try this one at a lower temperature and see what i can get out of it
Another excellent bao zhong from TTC. This one is a treat for the nose. Lots of pleasant floral aromas that evoke lilac and daffodils. The taste is light and fresh with a lingering floral sweetness. There’s a grassy, seaweed note that hangs around for the first couple of steeps and then fades. Good mouthfeel and soft mineral hints appear in later steeps. This one doesn’t have the depth of body and thickness of competition grade baozhong, but is still very satisfying and delicious.
I steeped this 5 times starting at 195 F increasing the temperature a few degrees with each infusion. Steep times were 1m, 20s, 50s, 2m, and 3m.
Since I generally like oolongs from the Shan Lin Xi region, I eagerly picked this up when I ordered from Taiwan Tea Crafts almost a year ago. It says something about my tea stash that I’m only getting to it now. I steeped about 6 grams of leaf in a 120 ml vessel for 25, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, and 90 seconds, plus one more long infusion.
The dry leaf smells floral, sweet, and full of coconut and tropical fruits. These flavours show up nicely in the first steep, though they’re kind of muted, probably because the leaves haven’t opened up fully. They still aren’t fully open in the second steep, which is unusual even for tightly rolled oolongs.
I pushed the third steep a few seconds longer to open up the leaves, and it had the desired effect. The coconut, florals, and sweetness are much more pronounced. The body is light and smooth. By the fourth steep, I agree with a previous reviewer that this is like coconut cream pie. Yum!
The fifth 50-second steep is getting vegetal, but it’s still very enjoyable, and I get a hint of vanilla along with the coconut. The tea peters out by the seventh steep.
When this tea is good, it’s excellent, but between the first two weaker steeps and the last couple vegetal ones, its peak is relatively short. I’ll have to lengthen the steep times to see if I can get more out of it.
Flavors: Butter, Coconut, Cream, Floral, Sweet, Tropical
This is the stuff of dreams right here. Just an amazing taste and smell experience. The perfumey leaves emit heady aromas of lilac, gardenia, orchid, and jasmine. It gives a taste sensation that I can only describe as flowers dancing on the tongue. The refined floral flavor here is velvety smooth and complex accompanied by sweet warm grassy tones that evoke rainforests and springtime.
Grandpa style is the way to go with this tea. It’s not my usual steeping method, but it lets you fully experience the ethereal aroma and makes an otherwise pricey tea economical.
Flavors: Flowers, Gardenias, Jasmine, Orchids
My Evernote is getting full of tasting notes so it’s time to start entering them here.
This was a solid high mountain oolong. It has a floral, nectar-like flavor and a sugarcane sweetness as it cools. The body is light but becomes thicker and honeyed when western steeped. Though it lasts though many infusions, it doesn’t quite have the depth of flavor I’m looking for.
Flavors: Floral, Honey, Nectar, Vegetal
I’ve been drinking eta today but not really taking notes or wanting to review anything. I picked this one out since it seemed like it might be an interesting experiment to try.The leaves are tightly rolled but expand in to long leaves. The taste is smooth…no “oolongy” notes here, just slightly sweet though light in the brew. I’m going to play around with the steeping times and water to see if i can get a bolder flavour out of this one i think.
Still not sure how i really feel about the latest batches of teas from TTC. Maybe it was just this past year but they’re not nearly as juicy and honeyed as they have been in previoud years. That being said, this particular one if a new project so i don’t have anything to compare against it. The body in this one is fairly light, but there is flavour here. Not quite honey, but sweet notes nonetheless.