Teavivre

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Recent Tasting Notes

90

Dry leaf is vivid green, and once brewed remains bright and fresh in appearance.

Brewed tea color is very pale yellow, and the aroma is nutty and a bit spinach-like.

Tastes nutty as well, and is sweet and lightly buttery. Very clean, smooth and mellow without a hint of bitterness. First steep seemed the strongest but nice flavor in the three re-steeps that I did. Lovely and refreshing!

Thank you Angel/Teavivre!

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C

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87

Happy Mother’s day to all of you Steepster moms :-)

This morning, I’m thinking of my mother who is such a big influence in my life. This past year, she carried me through difficult times, don’t know where I’d be without her love and support.

So I chose a tea that reminds me of her beauty and loving kindness.

Jasmine is delicate, a beautiful flower that seems so fragile, and yet it will embrace you and comfort you every time you brew a cup.

My mom is not a tea drinker, but when she comes over, she always asks that I prepare a pot of “my special Chinese Jasmine tea” as she calls it.

My grandmother used to prepare Jasmine tea for us all the time, that’s how I started drinking tea at the age of seven! God bless her, my grandma is 88 and still very healthy and alert. That’s why Jasmine has such a special place in my heart to this day. She was using that loose leaf Jasmine black tea in the squared yellow tin with oriental designs on it. As a child, it looked like a magic box to me, it made me think of Aladdin!

I won’t be able to be with my mom and my grandma physically today, but drinking this beautiful tea this morning is like having both of them here with me.

See how tea brings people together?

This is my favourite Jasmine tea, it has everything I can wish for, and that’s why it’s the perfect tea to drink to honor the most important women in my life!

(See previous notes)

looseTman

An excellent Steepster tribute to your mom and grandma! Well done!

Veronica

Such a sweet way to honor your mom and grandma. If have to drink pots of coffee to do the same for mine. ;)

TheTeaFairy

Haha! Veronica, you can find another way to honor them I’m hoping :-)

yyz

Nice!

Ysaurella

I’ll have to wait until the 25 for mother day here but this is a very lovely tribute to your mom and grandma.

TheTeaFairy

Thanks Ysaurella! It never occurred to me that mother’s day wasn’t the same everywhere, nice to know :-)

Ysaurella

always the last Sunday of May here and Father day is always the third Sunday of June.

ashmanra

And they already had Mother’s Day in Ireland! I think it was a few weeks ago!

Suziqzer

What a great way to celebrate your mom and grandma!

tigress_al

Beautiful story!

MzPriss

I posted a comment to this from my phone – does it not work from your phone??? Anyway, what I said was something like: This is beautifully expressed and I bet sending a copy of it or a link to it would be an awesome Mom’s Day present.

Suziqzer

Sometimes comments don’t post from my phone either… :(

TheTeaFairy

Thank you guys :-)

MzPriss, that’s an awesome idea, though my grandma speaks only French. But when I tell her what it’s about, she’ll be so excited that I wrote something about her, she’ll probably post it on Facebook (yes, at 88, she can teach ME about facebook, lol!)

MzPriss

I don’t do FB – but I bet they would LOVE to see this. It’s very sweet!

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87

«Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again…»

Rebecca, one of my favourite book by Daphne Du Maurier. I hardly ever read the same book twice, as I feel there are so many books to read, so little time…

But some are so well written, I just feel I have to revisit them, it’s like I miss them if I don’t, hard to explain. Anyways, this is one of those…like a good friend to me.

Perfect companion is this tea. I know I’ve reviewed it recently, but I can’t say enough about it. The aroma brings the most exquisite jasmine breeze, and it tastes fantastic. I can’t help thinking about the beautiful flowers, hugging the tea leaves at one point during the harvest process, infusing them with their aromatic scent. Still my favourite jasmine tea!

Dexter

In those special books, it’s like you want to pop in and see how the characters are doing, like visiting a long lost friend…

TheTeaFairy

Exactly!!! I couldn’t have express it better :-) Glad I’m not the only one doing that!

gmathis

A friend recently gave me a copy of Rebecca. After enjoying it thoroughly, I passed it along to a friend. Her comment is how rare it is these days to find a book that truly require the reader to lay eyes on every word.

Nicole/Tea-Historic

I actually have never read it, though I have seen the movie. Now that you remind me of it…

TheTeaFairy

Your friend is so right Gmatis, makes sense that it was written in 1938…

Nicole, the movie was good, but the book is simply captivating…the complexity of the characters is not projected well in the movie IMHO. I highly recommend you read it :-)

Terri HarpLady

I haven’t read the book (although I probably should), but the tea is lovely :)

Rosehips

I’ve never read it, but I want to. It sounds really good.

TheTeaFairy

Teri and Rosehips, I envy you for not having read it yet, hope you get to it eventually :-)

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87

I love florals… but Jasmine is a hit or miss depending on how well it’s balanced, a bit like how overwhelming bergamot can be to earl greys.

When I discovered Jasmine Dragon pearls from Teavivre, it was a no brainer, favourite jasmine ever! Then later, this silver green became slightly superior for my own personal likings.

I had to play a lot with it in order to find my sweet spot. 85c, no more than 1.5 min on first steep. That’s how my cup gets filled with sweet jasmine blossoms just in the right amount, not soapy or too perfume like. When I close my eyes and let it invade me, Jasmine’s scent really fills my head with spring and summer thoughts…

Then I open my eyes, and realize how winter has invaded me instead! Not complaining, still beautiful, even though it’s such a looong season here!

This week, the mild weather brought Mr. Huge Raccoon around. He stayed as a tolerated guest for a few days, feeding himself on bird’s seeds before probably going back to sleep until spring.

And this morning, looking outside sipping on this tea, I was amazingly surprised by a new comer, Mr. Squirrel. Now why would I be amazed by a vulgar and common squirrel you ask? Well this Mr. Squirrel should be renamed Mr. White… Yes, a white squirrel. Don’t know about your part of the world, but we don’t see white squirrels around here. And it’s not of a whitish kind a grey, try a stunning beautiful winter white furry ball!

The strangest thing is, I don’t think it’s albinos, cause the eyes are not red, which correct me if I’m wrong, is one of the criteria.

You know how I love to post pictures and links, so here it is, not my greatest shot, but it was early and I zoomed in a rush, before I scare him away:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/laafeevertee/11969474573/lightbox/

He escaped in the woods not long after that. Hope he will return…but maybe tomorrow will be Mrs. Deer’s turn, lol!

Love my country life!

Stephanie

What a fancy tea! And what a fancy squirrel!

cryptickoi

good pic…rare find…its wonderful to able to see all of the different critters…

__Morgana__

Wow, that’s some squirrel. Clearly adapted for snowy climes. :-)

TheTeaFairy

Stephanie, fancy is correct!

Cryptickoi, wonderful yes, most of the time…last year, I had an encounter with 2 coyotes…impressive but just a tad scary! Luckily, they didn’t attempt anything and just walk though the backyard…

Haha, Morgana, very clever, maybe that’s all there is to it :-)

TeaNecromancer

That is a beautiful squirrel! Also what a yummy looking tea, I need to add it to my ‘must try’ list.

Nxtdoor

Holy crap, I’ve never seen a white squirrel. I admit I didn’t even know they come in white :)

ms.aineecbeland

I shan’t look, thanks for sharing.

caile

What a gorgeous and unusual squirrel!!

Tuscanteal

Strange beautiful white Squirrel. I do enjoy your tasting notes. You have a flare for writing :)

I also love Jasmine, but feel that if it’s done wrong it can be soapy and perfume-y as well.

TheTeaFairy

Amanda: it’s a hit in terms of yumminess!

Nxtdoor: I didn’t know either!!!

Seule771: where have been? We’ve missed you :-)

Caile: that’s why I felt like sharing it :-)

Tuscantel: thank you, it means a lot…I hope to take some real English lessons someday to fix my second language flaws, lol :-)

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100

Really good! i like how its a little spicy! :D

Preparation
3 min, 0 sec

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74

quite good with a hint of peppermint (what i think it also has the taste of)

if you like flower herb tea try this one and see if you like it.

Preparation
3 min, 0 sec

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67

tastes good to me. try it and see if you like it. its best to rinse it first and then steep it for 1 minute

Preparation
3 min, 0 sec

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95

I used my last three pearls, and while I’m sad to no longer have this tea in my cupboard I really enjoyed this today. Wonderful dark chocolate and baked bread flavors. It’s as tasty as ever, and I enjoyed this cup from start to finish.

Cameron B.

Ugh, they need to get this back in stock! :)

Fjellrev

I’m proud of you for braving it out and actually using yours! I’m still hoarding my last two packets.

Veronica

@Cameron B. – Yes, they do. It’s been out for a while… at least it seems that way!

@Fjellrev – I’m trying to break my pattern of hoarding teas. It’s entirely possible I’ll be crying into my tea cup at some point because all of my favorite teas are no longer in my cupboard, and my pocketbook says I can’t buy any more! :)

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95

Tea of the morning. I used four pearls and had a robust cuppa full of bread and malt notes. Definitely worth waking up for. I only have three of these pearls left, so my next cup of this will be a sipdown, but this will be reordered. No doubt this one deserves a spot in my permanent collection.

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95

Tea of the morning. I don’t have many of these left, so I’ve been hoarding them. Today I was up eariler than usual and thought it was the perfect time to enjoy this tea. There are so many flavors going on in my cup: cocoa, malt, raisin, bread, and a surprising floral note that I’ve never tasted in this tea before. It’s not a strong note, but it was enough to make me wonder. Regardless this is a wonderful little tea, and I’m glad it was my wake up cup today.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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95

Tea of the morning. I had two cups of this. The first was mostly cocoa and malt notes with some rich raisin flavor popping out as the tea cooled. The second cup still had the malty notes, but there was also leather with a sweet honey finish. Both cups were excellent and a great start to the day.

Also, I’m now completely out of Dragon Pearls! Not good!!!

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 6 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Stephanie

Good stuff…sad sipdown

MzPriss

There are a bunch of them in the UTTB

Veronica

Oooh, I might have to snag a few! Maybe I can make them last until my Teavivre order in July. :)

MzPriss

I think i stuffed the pack of that pretty full

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95

Tea of the morning. I love having this in my cup. It’s chocolaty and fully of wonderful malty notes. Plus it has a thick rich feel to it which makes it a wonderful tea to wake up with.

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95

Tea of the morning. This is quickly becoming a favorite of mine. It’s wonderfully malty and has rich, dark chocolate notes and a hint of sweetness. The second steep is sweeter than the first with notes of raw honey playing against the chocolate. Delicious.

The generous sample Angel at Teavivire sent me is almost gone. Another one I need to order!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec
Tealizzy

This is a great morning tea. I finished off my sample from Angel, but my order is on it’s way! Can’t wait!

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95

This is such a rich tea. I am really loving the depth of flavor here. It’s nice and malty with a wonderful dark cocoa flavor. It is a bit dry on the back of my throat, but it is not an overly astringent tea. I’m glad this one found its way back into my cup. I forgot how delicious it is!

Flavors: Cocoa, Malt

Stephanie

Yeah, this one is REAL good!

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95

This was my first cup of the day and a great cup to wake up with. I guessed and used four pearls for my 10 oz. mug. It was a good amount of tea. It brewed into a wonderful dark liquid that smelled like crusty french bread. The taste was rich and malty with lots of chocolate-y notes. Excellent. The second steeping produced a cup the was more mellow and much less malty, but the chocolate notes were a bit deeper. Wow, this tea was a treat!

Thank you Angel at Teavivre for the generous sample! This one is going on my shopping list.

Stephanie

I loved this one too :)

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78

This is the last of the teas for me to try from the Taiwan Oolong trial pack that I won in Fall (thanks again Angel!!) and I’ve pretty much enjoyed them all (some more than others but that’s to be expected.). It’s surprising to me since I would never have considered myself an oolong lover previously but I’ve found that I really do enjoy them.

Dry this tea presents a fresh green scent with many sweet floral notes and a slight roasted (almost nutty) undertone. A quick rinse, followed by a 25 sec steeping gave me a bright yellow-green colored liquor.

With my first sniff of this freshly brewed cup I got so many warm, roasted nutty (but sweet) notes that I was truly surprised. Given how fresh and floral the dry tea was I couldn’t believe that this was the same tea. I will note that as it cooled those sweet floral notes started to shine through. The flavor was sweet and mellow, with just enough floral notes to give some nice highlights to the flavor profile with some deep roasted notes underneath.

The second steeping was also for 25sec, and while the color and scent profile were similar the flavor had deepened in this cup. My first few sips tasted of roasted nuts with the floral highlights only showing up in the finish. As it cooled the floral notes started to come forward sooner but this cup as significantly deeper and darker in flavor than the first. The mouth feel though, still light, was creamier too.

The third (30 sec) and fourth (60 sec) gave similar cups, gold in color with a sweet rotated aroma and a few fragrant floral highlights. I noticed a few dark vegetal flavors in these steepings which mixed well with the sweet floral notes that have been consistently present in this tea. The mouth feel while full and creamy was still quite light.

The last two steepings (70 & 80 sec) also gave similar cups, light gold and subtle in fragrance and flavor. A nice balance mix of floral and vegetal, roasted yet sweet; not overly complex but at the same time not too simple either.

I found this to be a lovely, well rounded oolong; definitely a good introduction to this type of tea. Though I still prefer the Oriental Beauty I could see keeping some of this on hand when I’m looking for something floral.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C

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70

I kept meaning to get to this sample from Amariel but I always kept reaching for something else instead. Last sample from her from the summer. Thanks!

I’m not getting that much maltiness like others are, but perhaps because when I think of malt I think of Assams and Laoshan Black, so in comparison, there is almost no malt in here. Also, I immediately pick up on smokiness and earthiness instead, perhaps because I’m not that into smoky blends to begin. Yes, it’s not nearly as smoky as a Lapsang, for example, but it’s palpable, and in the forefront.

This Keemun is also on the astringent side. Not my ideal flavour profile, especially for unflavoured blacks, but I appreciate it. Nevertheless, I look forward to trying more of Teavivre’s in the very near future.

TheTeaFairy

I know what you mean about the smoke, not a fan of this type of keemun. I much prefer the fruitier ones like Organic Superfine Keemun Fragrant Black from Teavivre, my favourite Keemun tea.

ashmanra

I like the smoky ones when I am eating really sweet or strongly flavored foods, but prefer things like Superfine or Keemun Mao Feng by Harney when drinking it by itself or with delicately flavored things.

Fjellrev

Thanks to both of you for the suggestions. I’ll have to pick up some of the Superfine when I order. Angel sent me some Premium Keemun Hao Ya in my sample parcel so I’m curious how it’ll compare.

OMGsrsly

Sil swears by maple syrup in her keemun. 1/2 tsp in a giant Sil-sized mug. :) I add a little more, and it’s a really nice flavour combo.

Fjellrev

Oh yes, I read that earlier today! I just need to get some maple syrup. Sounds lovely.

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39

it was OK. but i did not know i had to discard the first steep (infusion) so it tasted like trees and shrimp. I’ll be sure to do it right next time

TeaVivre

I’m sorry for that. Usually, rinsing the tea leaves is to rinse away any impurities gathered from production or storage. After rinsing the tea leaves, you can discard the water which is not for drink.

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84

I found a little packet of this tea on top of my microwave this morning and it couldn’t have been more perfect. I had friends over last night for dinner and the new MarioKart DLC (yes, we never grew out of it), and the gin and tonics devolved to whiskey shots. Lemme tell you, this is not a morning for coffee or anything harsh.

I’ve reviewed this tea before, so I’ll keep it simple. It’s soothingly gentle, smooth, and floral. Exactly what I need right now.

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 30 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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84

Ooh, a Fujian oolong! I have developed a serious love for this tea region over the years. One might say almost a fetish.

The leaves are rolled up into much tinier nuggets than the other two I’ve tried in this tasting. They are of the same consistency, however. Mottled dark green and lightly floral scented. I copied ashmanra and gave the leaves a quick rinse before hitting them with boiling water. Even though I’m coming down with a cold, I could smell with delight that this was going to be another creamy oolong.

The water was a light greenish yellow after two and a half minutes. When I put the leaves in my mesh infuser, they were barely enough to cover the bottom. Steeped, they practically fill it to the top! They fluffed out much more than I thought possible. Each leaf is whole, hardly damaged at all by processing. They’re narrow and pointed at the end. Maybe an inch long.

The flavor is definitely buttery and a tad vegetal. I’m getting hints of flowers, too, especially in the finish. Is it possible for a tea to be floral and vegetal at the same time? Because I think it is. It’s not as creamy as the Ali Shan, but there’s definitely some cream flavor there.

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 30 sec
TheTeaFairy

Mmmmm, I’m with you :-)

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88

Lucky me: I found a sample of this tea among my New Zealand travel stash. Is it my favorite Mao Feng? Perhaps. I shall restock!

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88

Today I bid a fond farewell to Teavivre’s Huang Shan Mao Feng, having enjoyed fifteen sessions of this fine China green with a mild demeanor at once vegetal and ever-so-slightly sweet.

No cause for sadness, however, because this packet was produced on 4 April 2014, so I presume that the 2015 harvest is right around the corner!

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