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Recent Tasting Notes
Long ago, I had a bad experience with Dong Ding. It was from David’s Tea, and all I can remember is that I was incredibly unimpressed by it- so much so that I actively avoided buying any Dong Ding Oolong again.
Cue right now, where I’m internally grateful it was a part of my mass oolong sample order from Teavivre. My dead head and my deader stomach take up this fruit punch aroma like a peace offering. The flavour profile is akin to a vegetal lemon cream dessert- which is another reminder to me that it’s been a while since I’ve had some proper Vitamin C food. I would kill for a grapefruit or orange right now. No more junk food. Food illness sucks.
Another food this reminds me of is the Lemon Zest Sunflower Kale Spaghetti I sometimes make when I want vegetables and calories in a pinch. Maybe that should go back on the meal plan.
Steep Count: 5
(2016 harvest, I think)
Flavors: Cream, Fruit Punch, Lemon, Mineral, Mint, Spinach
I was ecstatic to discover this unused tea sample while I was taking inventory of my tea cabinet! I’ll never know how I missed it before since I am a big fan of Teavivre black teas and usually start drinking them as soon as I pull them out of my mailbox. Maybe the tea fairy brought it to me. It doesn’t matter. I am just thrilled that I found it!
When I opened the small silver package, I was greeted with dark brown twisted and glossy leaves. The aroma was slightly sweet and earthy.
I steeped the leaves for about 5 minutes at 190 degrees. The brewed liquor was a light golden orange. The odor was like sweet wheat.
Beginning with the first sip and ending with the last, the flavor was consistently mild and smooth yet full and complete. The taste reminded me of pancakes lightly slathered with maple syrup. The sweet flavor was delicately balanced and not overpowering. The aftertaste was also mild and did not wear out its welcome. There was no astringency whatsoever.
This is simply another fantastic black tea from the folks at Teavivre. It is one of those exceptional selections that seem to get even better after the first steeping. The maple syrup/pancakes flavor attributes make this offering perfect (in my mind) for breakfast. However, I wouldn’t turn this one down at midnight either.
Flavors: Pancake Syrup, Sweet
The aroma oddly reminds me of a Cherry Vanilla Coke. The flavour fulfills the promise made by the aroma but the soda has gone flat and woody. The cocoa/chocolate note is prevalent and dark.
All-in-all, it’s not my favourite Chinese cocoa-black tea (yes, that’s my special name for them), but it’s still a lovely cup to cozy up to on a rainy fall day.
Steep Count: 3
(2017 spring harvest)
Flavors: Cherry, Clay, Cocoa, Malt, Vanilla, Wood
I’m not sure how to rate this tea. It has a very clean feel to it, so it is rather refreshing. I find it a bit astringent (more than I’m used to with green tea), but fairly smooth in flavor. It definitely has that vegetal flavor, but not like I’m drinking spinach juice (I’m looking at you, last green tea I tried!). I don’t get much complexity with it, although there is a definite aftertaste. It’s OK, but I don’t find myself likely to go to this one often. However, unlike the previously mentioned tea, I will actually keep this one! I’m not going to give this a number rating because I just don’t feel like I am knowledgeable enough about green teas to judge quality.
Flavors: Astringent, Spinach, Vegetal
Just enough time for a cup or two more before I go, and this Pu-erh seemed like a good choice. I was wrong…it’s a GREAT choice!
Beautiful mahogany color and a subtle, mellow cup with a slight leather edge to it; nothing fishy at all like with some pu-erh. Drank a bit of the first rinse, but tossed it in favor of something slightly richer. I’ll be back. I have more!
My neighbor texted tonight asking if I wanted to walk a bit because she was feeling overly full after supper. I had just finished eating and didn’t feel that it was good timing for a walk, but I waited until she had time to go around the block and texted again and asked if she wanted to join me for tea. She said yes!
Naturally, we had puerh. She has lived all over the world and is very food-adventurous, and she liked it a lot. Best of all, she said that while the walk hadn’t seemed to help, the tea did. She no longer felt stuffed.
The scent of this one was not as nice as some of their other offerings at the start, but the taste was good. It is perhaps not as complex yet as I would like. I will keep aging it and try it again. My neighbor enjoyed the aftertaste and even as she was leaving said she liked how the flavor was still lingering. She felt it “tasted like tea” but had more body. I don’t think it tastes like generic black tea but it does not have the powerful horse barn or cedar taste that I love. That could be simply the way we made it, and I might play with my steeping parameters a bit. I did go light on it since she had never had puerh before,
Since it is late, we didn’t try matcha, but since she was interested in it, I got out several tins of mine so she could see the difference in color and sniff the difference in aroma. When she got to the Harney and Sons mid-grade, she said, “Oh, that smells green!” When she got to the Harney and Sons best grade, she said, “Oh my gosh, that one would be addictive!”
“Congratulations!”, I told her. “You have managed to pick the most expensive one as your favorite!”
We now have an appointment to introduce her to the taste of matcha later this week! Another tea convert in the making…
I bought the Oolong sample set from Teavivre and had been discouraged after trying a couple of them. I thought maybe I should just stick to Puerh teas and Oolong wasn’t for me! This tea changed that all for me however. It has a smooth flavor with none of the bitterness I experienced from the other samples, even in the early steeps. The later steeps became sweeter with some vanilla notes that were very pleasant. I can’t wait to give it another try.
Flavors: Floral, Grass, Menthol, Pleasantly Sour, Sweet, Vanilla
The Professor took out the bag of tea which looked like a dried up green ball, but then once she added in the hot water the flower slowly but surely started to react with the water, and eventually it blossomed into something so beautiful and so tasty. The tea itself was smooth and sweet there was literally no need to add other outside components to this tea, because it had already complimented itself.
Flavors: Cherry Blossom, Floral, Flowers, Freshly Cut Grass, Smooth, Sweet
This tea may be for somebody, but it wasn’t for me. It has a strong rice flavor that seemed to mask all of the other flavors even in later steeps. After the fourth steep, some bitterness started to creep out. If you like the rice flavors in your tea, this is the tea for you. If you like a more traditional tasting pu-erh, I would shy away from this or stick to a sample.
Flavors: Rice, Tobacco, Wet Earth, Wood
Kinda hurried today, but these are my thoughts on this one:
For the first few steeps, I get primarily freshly baked bread with a touch of chocolate. After the third steep, there’s more of a honey-like flavour. Deliciously smooth throughout, with no bitterness or astringency. First steeps around 2-3 minutes, later ones around 3-4 minutes, always in boiling water, no additions.
Another excellent tea from Teavivre, would absolutely, definitely purchase again.
And here I am doing nothing productive on a Sunday (again) because it is caffeine day and I’d rather devote my time to steeping teas. This seems to happen a lot.
This green is quite vegetal, Notes of hay and cut grass that has been left drying in the sun for a few days. Light hints of spinach and fruits (apricot, citrus, chamomile), lightly bitter and yet still tasty.
Flavors: Apricot, Bitter, Citrus, Cut grass, Dry Grass, Floral, Herbs, Hot hay, Spinach, Vegetal
Thank you to Teavivre for the free sample of this.
3g leaf to 450mL hot water (not boiling), ~3 minutes until the tender needles/small leaves uncurled.
Dry leaf is sweet, green, notes of edamame (cooked soybeans) and snap peas
Brewed, the liquor is less sweet than expected. It is vegetal, but delicate. Cooked spinach, green peas, pear, seaweed. This is a very good quality green tea and would make a fantastic cup for someone who likes green tea/vegetal. I am not as fond of vegetal notes, so I probably wouldn’t have this again (except finishing up the rest of my sampler pouch).
Flavors: Green, Pear, Peas, Seaweed, Soybean, Spinach, Vegetal
august 24/17 the peaches and cream taste is actually pretty good, but this isnt really what im going for with a milk oolong. what i like best is something a bit toastier, this is a bit too clean and light to be my go to, but i wont have any problems drinking the 100g i got.
Thanks for this one Teavivre! I believe that this is my first Dan Cong. I’m looking into exploring oolongs this year, which I’m learning is a lot more expensive than the black teas I’ve been getting.
This one is nice: buttery, florals, and a hint of peach. I’m drinking it Western this time, which I think I prefer.
Flavors: Butter, Floral, Peach
I was actually impressed with this tea. For the price, it is quite solid aged white.
The flavor is of paperback books, honey, and woodsy. The final infusions got dark and slightly medicinal. Some more age likely will get more medicinal and date notes. I love the colour of aged whites as they steep up light gold, then finish off dark like a black tea.
I should really buy a couple cakes to stash to age, maybe at the next Teavivre sale.
Full review on Oolong Owl http://oolongowl.com/2012-fuding-shou-mei-white-cake-teavivre/