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Recent Tasting Notes
Yet another sample from Teavivre! Thanks as always!This was an unfamiliar name that I was eager to try. The tight coils of leave had a cool, high mountain smell to them, which as I discovered, was because this is a type of high mountain oolong. Sometimes I wonder about how much I do not know! As the leaves unfurled, they produced a very sweet vegetal smell.
The liquid is smooth and delicate, with a taste of vegetal sweetness. Due to the mild nature of the tea, there is plenty of room to mess around with steep time without having to worry too much about over steeping. This would be a good tea for someone who enjoys more mild oolongs than some of the bolder flavors.
Okay Teavivre, I’ll admit, I was a skeptic at how much raving there was. But this deserves the hype. Its not a perfect tea, but it is darn good. Would I order again….I’m on the fence post. I love trying new teas. But this would be a good safety to keep in the cupboard.
As my tea brews I smell the notes of sweet potatoes that everyone comments on. To me they remind me of the sweet potato fries that are sometime coated with cinnamon. I also get some fermenting/oxidized apples. Like a red delicious that you ate half of in the morning, and then finished later that day. (after it had turned brown).
Taste is a little soft. I get a nice full bodied mouth feel, with a nice sweetness. But its subtle. Not as prevalent as I am expecting. This is a good afternoon tea.
I guess what I was a little disappointed in was the color. The tea immediately started brewing and turned such a dark color that I pulled out the leaves after 45 seconds. I’m not used to that in this type of tea. Another worrying sign was that the tea actually frothed. I’m not tasting any impurities in this brew, but I never equate a tea “frothing” just from the act of being placed in the water. The last comment about the brew is that there is a faint oil floating on the top. I’ve got another packet to go through, so maybe I will revise my ranking. I would also revise the price to be a little lower…but I can understand the enjoyment of this tea.
**edit 1 hour later…
Well, subsequent brewing have been more than lack luster. The oil flavor has increased and I am now having to soak my tea cup to try and get it off. I have one more packet of this tea to use…so hopefully next time I will brew it better? Dunno. I was so enthusiastic reading what other people thought of this tea, and now that I think about it, I’m not getting it. Maybe I’m just going off Yunnan black teas.
Sweet and lush with a very satisfying, soft and silky mouthfeel. Exotic floral notes and hints of fruit. I can taste notes of peach as well as a creamy note. A slight grassy tone in the background.
Another must try from Teavivre!
Here’s my full-length review: http://sororiteasisters.com/2013/12/03/superfine-taiwan-qing-xiang-dong-ding-oolong-tea-teavivre/
I got this sample with my first ever Teavivre order last week. Only one packet… 7 g of tea… I wanted to make sure I did everything right. There was no room for error.
I opened the package and smelled the dry tea. The scent was largely vegetal with a hint of creaminess. I wanted to compare so I popped open the package of Quangzhou Milk Oolong from David’s Tea, the only other milk oolong that I’ve tried. DT’s milk oolong dry tea smells very sweet and milky.. there is no doubt about it and very different from Teavivre’s.
I agonized how to prepare this milk oolong. Teavivre calls for boiling water, whereas I’m used to steeping milk oolong at 82C. After reading some of the reviews on Steepster I decided to steep it at 82C because some people did notice that the subtle milkiness of this tea was compromised when steeped over boiling water.
1st steep: 7g of leaf, 8 ounces of water, 82C, 3 minutes. I wanted to do shorter steep but noticed that at 1 or 2 minutes mark the leaves didn’t even unfurl. Given that I was steeping at a lower temperature I decided to give the first steep full 3 minutes.
The resulting liquid was pale green/yellow with delicate vegetal and floral scent. The tea itself tasted delicious. It was smooth, vegetal, slightly floral with a hint of a cream. The milkiness of this tea is definitely more subdued than that of David’s, you can’t really compare. I’ve come to the peace with a fact that David’s milk oolong is probably infused at some point of production, just like many other milk oolongs probably are. What I’m tasting in Teavivre’s milk oolong is natural milkiness, I’m quite sure of that.
2nd steep: 82C water, 4 minutes. The leaves are beautifully unfurled now… they take up most of the space in my little steeping pot. The liquid is still pale yellow but stronger than the first steep. All the flavours from the first steep are still present although I think it’s less creamy now. Still very delicious though and full of body. I detect lovely, very well balanced astringency throughout the sip. Given another chance I think 3 minute second steep would have been sufficient. This tea packs a lot of flavour.
Overall this is delicious tea definitely deserving of a shelf space. It’s so different from DT milk oolong though, I would have to own them both to be perfectly content. I definitely couldn’t replace one with the other.
Edit: 3rd steep 82-85C, 3.5 minutes. The milky flavour is back in all it’s glory. I think I definitely over did the second steep, should have stopped at 3 minutes.
This tea was quite different from the other fruit teas I’ve tried. Upon opening the package the aroma is quite tropical. I went to brewing for 8 minutes, the color was a deep red like the other teas but the difference is the taste was much lighter and less tart in comparison to the blueberry fruit tea.
I maybe use slightly above the reccommended water temperature but I still ended up with a very enjoyable series of cups. This one has more of a toffee/caramel note than my other Bailin http://steepster.com/teas/trust-to-trade-ltd/40377-bailin-kungfu , but it has less of the fruity spice notes that one has so it is a bit of a trade off. This one is more resilient though and I resteeped it 5 times. Altogether a very enjoyable and well balanced tea with a nice mix and complexity of flavours. Thanks Dexter3657 for this sample.
Malt fruit, cherry note,spice, faintly floral.
40s. Longan malt, upper and deeper grainy tones, bright shasrp fruit on top. Bitter cocoa cherry note, spice, bright notes at first and dissipate to deeper maslty cocoa tones. Tea tastes quite light at first and deepens to a dense thick flavour note. Cherry note not as prominent as my other Balin but really nice. Spice and fruit is there with similar notes and a hint of caramel under the malt. caramel is almost more toffee to me it has that slightly darker taste that it gets as the sugar mixture moves to a hard candy stage. After taste has a spicy cherry tone.
40s. Caramel,spice cherry notes,malt underneath.
Much sweeter than first steep and smoother. Caramel, cherry floral more, cocoa bitter malt tones.long an note milder blended into cherry spice note. Sweet note at back of throat astringency felt at roof of mouth. Sweet aftertaste.
60s longan, spice, malt
Sweet tone, longan, malt, cocoa underneath, caramel like aftertaste.
90s malt, longan, cocoa, sweet aftertaste.
4min. Sweet cocoa and malt.
My first thought when I opened this…“Holy cow these pearls are ginormous!”
So pretty though! Mixture of black & gold.
I love watching pearl tea steep! It’s almost like blooming flowers ha ha.
Anyways, this was another tea from my BF order. And I have not been disappointed me yet! Leaving me in awe with every tea I try.
At first when the package said to steep it up to 10 mins I thought there is no wayyyyyyy!
But yup! On my third steep I took it there! Yup! 10 mins!
That’s crazy! How is that possible?!
Anyways this tea was scrumptious! Malty! Sweet! Chocolatey!
I will have to savor my last little pack of this! let’s just say when my stash is all cleared out I will definitely be reordering from them! I’m really loving all these malty chocolatey teas lately perfect for upcoming valentines day! I want a valentine tea :( a steepster valentine!
Look at these beauties:
Flavors: Chocolate, Malt
I haven’t been drinking much tea lately – it is hot in Texas! Was craving something different tonight though so I picked this out of my sample basket. There was a slight chocolate aroma to the dry leaves but not as prominent as in other Keemuns I’ve tried. After brewing the aroma changed to honey covered berries. I can’t exactly determine which berry, but it is definitely one of them. I liked it alright plain but I added a splash of milk. I love how milk “blooms” throughout a dark tea when you put a bit in. The taste is primarily of chocolate, honey, slight hay and a bit of smoke. Pretty good – I think I may need to have several cups of this tonight.
The first thing that I noticed when I opened up the package was the rose aroma. As i measured my tea i got full roses which was quite exciting to see. So i went to brewing the first time it was too light in taste & the aroma of roses was a bit much. The other time around i had it brew too strong & came out bitter. Maybe i should give this tea another test but from this time i didn’t enjoy it.
I brewed in the “Chinese Gongfu Way” listed on the tea’s website. With the recommended 5 pieces, and a quick 30s brew after a few seconds of rinse, I found the leather flavor overpowering, similar to few black Teavivre teas I’ve tried so far.
I don’t recommend the Western Method listed on the Teavivre website for this tea. I followed it as closely as I could, and ended up with the same headache and leathery aftertaste that I ran into with the Teavivre Balin GongFu steeped with its Western method. Steeped in this way, this tea has malt like flavor that reminds me a little of Guinness Draught, without the bitterness.
I will try the Chinese GongFu Way to steep my next sample.
For the first steep of my first sample, I cut the water amount of the Teavivre Western method for this tea to 2/3, since I had a sample of 6 balls and 1 little ball (so, a little over 11 oz). The tea steeped loose in a porcelain, 17oz teapot.
Oh my heavenly tea gods!!! This jasmine! Where do I start?!?! I got this with my BF teavivre order, I meant to buy the peach jasmine pearls but added these to my cart on accident instead. And oh my goodness am I ever so glad I did!!!
I drank this as I got caught up with last weeks Downton Abbey episode.
These Jasmine Pearls are so dainty and beautiful! So delicate but so perfect! This tea is so smooth, it literally melts in your mouth! How is this possible. This my friends… THIS Jasmine tea is by far the most outstanding Jasmines out there! I am at a loss for words. It is so succulent and so delicate! How?! How?! I am so so so so so so glad I accidentally bought this one and quite a bit of it too!! Wow! Just wow!
Mmm… this is exquisite tea. I’ve only ever drank the Teavana Silver Needle and was waiting anxiously for Teavivre one to arrive to finally be able to compare.
The first difference that struck me was that Teavana Silver Needle buds are of yellow-green color while Teavivre Silver Needle is more green in color. It also smells more vegetal and steeps more vegetal.
I used one full tablespoon of buds for 8 ounces of water and steeped it for 5 min. The result was pale yellow color liquid with fragrant, floral scent.
This wonderful tea is slightly sweet, vegetal, floral and full of delightful honey notes. Oh, how much I love the honey notes in Silver Needle. Comparing it to Teavana’s, it has more flavour. Putting it simply… it’s better.
It’s delicious… just so incredibly delicious. A+ Teavivre.
Uh oh… yeah.. Yum!
Again, this is so yummy… so yummy! Fragrant, floral, vegetal, creamy, everything I love.
I reduced the steeping temperature today to 90C and increased leaf to 7 gram per 8 ounces of water. 1 minute for the first steep and it’s perfect. :)