Teavivre

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92

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Flavors: Caramel, Earth, Honey

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 1 min, 0 sec

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90

I have an interesting week planned out for myself. Mostly craft related, I want to do a little perler bead crafting while also folding stars, it is my goal to fill up the large pickle jar I have been working on for the past two weeks. Since I feel like I am trying to catch a cold or something I figure a nice relaxing crafty week with lots of tea is in order. If I am really lucky my other plan of finishing my tea research will be finished this week as well. Good times all around.

Today’s tea starts a week looking at some Black and Pu Erh Teas from Teavivre. Yun Nan Dian Hong Black Tea-Golden Tips was harvested in March of 2013 in Fengqing County, Yunnan, it is one of the most famous black teas in China, this beautiful gold pile of leaves is the highest grade available. The aroma of this golden tea is a blend of roasted peanuts and cocoa, but it is not the sweet aspects of these things, the aroma is quite savory. There is also a finishing note of beet root that gives the tea a slightly earthy quality.

Giving the teas a steeping in my gaiwan sadly removes the beautiful gold flocking (I know that is not the technical term for the beautiful fuzzy trichomes, but it does seem to fit). The aroma is quite sweet now bringing in notes of cherry and sweet cocoa along with roasted peanuts. The poured off liquid smells buttery sweet and creamy with notes of roasted nuts and a hint of cherries.

The first steeping is quite rich and strong, there is a roasted nuts and dark chocolate quality that leaves a dry mouth and slight bitterness. It almost reminds me of a really high quality coffee (specifically it reminds me of Sumatra Mandheling, the only coffee I still can tolerate) but with a much smoother taste. The tea finished with a sweetness that creeps in at the midtaste and blooms into honey sweetness at the end and lingers.

The second steep has the same roasted nuts and cocoa quality of the first steep but the sweetness shows up significantly earlier. There is still a dry mouthfeel and slight bitterness that wakes up the mouth and makes the taste buds alert and happy. There is also a loamy quality which blends really well with the nuttiness and sweetness present in the tea. I really enjoyed this tea, when I drank it, it was with my dinner, but I can certainly see this as a morning tea.

For photos and blog: http://ramblingbutterflythoughts.blogspot.com/2014/02/teavivre-yun-nan-dian-hong-black-tea.html

Flavors: Cocoa, Earth, Honey, Loam, Nuts

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98

Wow! This is a great Tie Guan Yin!!! It is really balanced with more than just floral notes!!!!!! It has notes of cream, honey, and muffin or bread along with a subtle floral note.
This is the tastiest Tie Guan Yin I have had. I am loving the teas from Teavivre,,,they have all been very delicious and high quality!!!
Thank u Terri Harplady & Teavivre for this sample!!!!

Flavors: Baked Bread, Cream, Flowers, Honey

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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60

I tried this tea partly because of Project Unflavoured Green, and partly because it’s so pretty. The leaves look like little hedgehog spines. I like hedgehogs. (A lot.)

In the bag, the scent is definitely vegetal, but with a little more punch to it than the green I last tried. This seems more robust. The slightly savoury note carries through into the brewed tea, which smells vegetal and a little brothy, with a metallic undertone.

To me, the taste seems like a very accurate reflection of what I pick up in terms of scent. The aftertaste adds a light, toasted/smoky note to the whole.

Overall, definitely a pleasant tea, but not one that strikes me as very original or that appeals to my personal tastes beyond the ‘I wouldn’t turn down a cup’ level. This is more like something I would enjoy drinking with food than on its own.

Thank you for letting us try this, KittyLovesTea!

[Sample from the second round of the EU Travelling Box, spring 2014.]

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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86

I’m so excited to be the first person to review this puerh. Thank you Teavivre for the generous samples for review!

My first steep is extremely creamy and nutty, and just a little mushroomy. It is earthy but not at all dirty tasting. Very full bodied and rich!

2nd steep is woodsy and brighter…this steep is clean but still very rich.

Very nice shu! Glad I have the opportunity to drink it a couple more times :)

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92

Sipping down a sample pack of this today. Trying to help myself decide what to order from Teavivre on Black Friday! I was able to snag one of the $10 gift cards over the weekend so I’m super excited!

I still like this one a lot but I think I’ll get one of the Yunnan Dian Hong teas that are on sale instead :)

Stephanie

Should I go for the full leaf Dian Hong or the regular? Opinions??

boychik

I like golden tip, then full leaf. I have regular, can send you . Out of three regular is #3 IMHO

Marzipan

Are you still coming to town tomorrow? I have several huge quantities of their teas you can try.

Tealizzy

I’m doing the same…trying to figure out what to get on Friday! I have a $5 giftcard and $9 worth of points! :)

Stephanie

I’m still coming to town tomorrow Marzi. I’m meeting with a gallery at 10am, and figure I’ll text you when I’m done with that and see what you are up to! Probably around 11am. I have had the golden tip Dian Hong and really liked it! Full leaf has the biggest discount, so I’ll probably go for that. Might get some rice shou if I have leftover money. $10 gift card plus $7 in points :D

Marzipan

Ok I’ll be here!

Marzipan

You have my address? Just come to the house when you’re done.

Stephanie

Ok I’ll still probably text you and give you a heads up that I’m on my way :)

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92

Wow I’ve been SO busy this weekend I didn’t have time to read OR write tasting notes until now! I taught my first block printing class on Saturday, AND hosted a baby shower…it was awesome but exhausting. I made this tea in a to-go mug for my Sunday afternoon errands. Still one of my fave black teas.

Terri HarpLady

sounds like an awesome weekend to me!

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92

2nd Teavivre sample treat of the day! Thanks Teavivre!

This is a very rich, satisfying black. Very honey sweet and malty with faint floral and cocoa notes. This is the kind of tea I could definitely develop a craving for in the future! Absolutely no bitterness or astringency. Top notch stuff!

Flavors: Baked Bread, Chocolate, Honey, Malt

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 30 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML
Courtney

This one is delightful.

TheTeaFairy

In love with this one, a forever staple!!

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83

I want to preface this by mentioning that I don’t generally care for flavored teas. They just aren’t… my cup of tea. [sic] But when Angel offered to send this Strawberry Oolong with some other samples, I wanted to give it a try and see if perhaps my tastes had changed or perhaps this was an exception to my “rule”.

The tea itself smells exclusively of strawberry to me. But it’s not a sugary, candy-like strawberry. It’s a natural smell.

Following a brief rinse, I gave it a 15 second infusion and it smelled faintly of sweet strawberries and had a slight buttery aroma. The tea is super light and certainly is not overpowering in any sense. It is pretty easily one of the best flavored teas I’ve had to date.

The second infusion was a little less sweet and there was more emphasis on the buttery/creamy flavor. In a way, it made me think of eating pancakes with a strawberry puree at a local diner here in town. The strawberry flavor is definitely still there and adds a nice extra touch.

The third infusion is where the strawberry really starts to fade and you get a little astringency from the oolong. Overall, I would like to try this as a single full cup from a single, longer infusion. I think I’ll do that next time and let you know how it goes.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 0 min, 15 sec

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75

I received this tea along with a few others as free samples from TeaVivre, and I can’t be more excited! The dry leaf is a gorgeous dark loose oolong with a rich aroma. Following a brief rinse, the leaves unlocked a lightly vegetal and spicy scent. It reminds me a little of a Da Hong Pao, actually. Just a bit!

With the first 30 second infusion, the liquor is a light amber color and starts to give off a light floral scent. The tea itself is slightly astringent and the flavor is nicely mild. It no longer reminds me of the Da Hong Pao, but I’m intrigued to continue tasting further infusions.

The second infusion pulled out the astringency and led to a more full flavor. I started to identify some floral notes in the flavor. With the third infusion, it left most of the floral behind and went the vegetal/grassy route.

Overall, I enjoyed this tea, but it probably won’t be a daily preference. Definitely one to bring out with company I’m teaching about tea, though!

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 0 min, 30 sec

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100

This is amazing. The dry leaf smells so strongly of malt it seriously smells like something I’d get in trouble for having at work! Steeped it is just as malty. It’s deep, cocoa-y, smooth, buttery and yet not heavy. I had a little square of a Valrhona Guanaja Grue 70% dark chocolate bar with cocoa nibs as I finished the cup and that really brought out the more cocoa-y notes here.

Much like high quality dark chocolate, it doesn’t take much of this tea to satisfy a need. I don’t feel like I’d need to drink a full pot of this or like I’d need to drink it all day long. So while I absolutely adore this, it will last for a little bit at least. :)

I overleafed this by a bit. But this is simply a fantastic tea, heavy on the leaf or not. And I will certainly be resteeping.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 30 sec 6 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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80

A delicious tea for a lazy Sunday! Smooth yet brisk, with some gentle fruity, citrus notes. I’m definitely going back for a second cup!

You can see photos here:
http://wordsabouttea.blogspot.com/2014/02/golden-monkey-black-tea-by-teavivre.html

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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Thanks so much to Teavivre for providing another round of samples for me to review. I just love trying new teas!

This MIGHT be my first straight keemun?? If not, I am definitely not well versed in them, regardless. I am finding this to be a perfectly bold malty breakfast cup, and although it is sweet, there is a twinge of something a tiny bit sour or tart at the end. But don’t get me wrong, not in a bad way at all! I find this element adds some fruity interest and keeps the tea from being too basic or boring. I think I am going to try it again another day before I give it an official rating, as I’m eating oatmeal with spicy Indian pineapple and golden raisins for breakfast and it might be influencing my palate. Also I am not getting any smoke from this tea even though I hear all the time that keemuns are smoky!

Very enjoyable tea :)

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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92

Backlog:

I love LiShan Oolongs! And Teavivre is one of the best companies when it comes to awesome Taiwan Oolong teas!

As I said in the intro of my full-length review: http://sororiteasisters.com/2014/12/11/nonpareil-taiwan-li-shan-oolong-tea-from-teavivre/ – I knew I was going to be a happy sipper when the first sound I emitted when I tasted this tea was “mmmm” and the first words I uttered were, “Oh my goodness, this is lovely!”

And lovely, it is!

Creamy, smooth, sweet. No bitterness or astringency. Sweet, warm cream notes with hints of orchid, and whispers of peach, melon and apple. Later infusions became more unified, creating a medley of the fruit notes that meld with the lovely florals. Still creamy, the creaminess becomes a little subdued and mingles with the other flavors.

A definite must try!

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92

Backlog:

A gorgeous LiShan! Of course, I expect no less from Teavivre. They rock when it comes to awesome Oolong teas. (Or any tea for that matter. I haven’t had any real memorable bad experiences from Teavivre … I can only recall pleasant memories!)

Floral but not sharp. More like a sweet orchid with maybe hints of honeysuckle in the distance. As I continue to sip, I notice the floral notes becoming more complex.

Thinned creaminess – that is to say that it’s creamy but it isn’t a thick, heavy creamy taste and texture. Soft and silky!

I almost taste a cake-like flavor to this … imagine if you would an orchid infused cream cake. Sound good? Try this tea!

Here’s my full-length review: http://sororiteasisters.com/2014/01/14/nonpareil-taiwan-li-shan-oolong-tea-teavivre/

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92

This is a resteep with the leaves from yesterday. Since I had good results for a long steep yesterday I did it again today and got a very good cup out of it. The strawberry is still going strong but the oolong is coming out a little more this time. There are some mineral and green notes and they mix beautifully with the berry. I actually like this cup better than the last one.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 8 min or more

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92

I let this steep a long time this time and wow. I like it even better this way. The strawberry is much stronger and the mouthfeel is creamy, almost silky. The berry flavor is more like a dried fruit than a fresh one, like before, but I love how intense it is. I think a long steep really suits this and I’ll have to keep that in mind for my remaining supply. Upping the rating!

Preparation
8 min or more

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92

Resteep. This actually didn’t work so well. I might try more leaf in my next cup just to see what happens. The oolong flavor is much milder now and the strawberry is stronger, oddly, but in the middle of the sip the oolong taste isn’t strong enough to hold up. It feels as though something is just…missing. The fruit flavor is good but this one actually may be too subtle for me.

Anna

I like resteep notes – sometimes it seems like absolutely anything can happen.

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92

My samples from Teavivre came today! I was not expecting such a large bag, but I think I’m going to be very happy for it. I couldn’t resist brewing one up right away.

This smells delightfully fruity both dry and brewed. The taste is much more subtle than I expected from the smell, but it’s delicious and I wouldn’t change it. The taste that comes first is actually the oolong, with a freeze-dried strawberry taste coming afterward. The oolong itself is green but has a little bit of the roastiness I would expect in a darker oolong. The mouthfeel is amazingly juicy, and I’m liking it more with each sip. This isn’t a fruit oolong that whacks you over the head with the fruit flavor, but everything blends together in a delicious way.

Jennkay

I love getting samples from Teavivre. Something about the neat packaging makes me happy, haha :)

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80

Received this one from Teavivre’s free tasting activity.

This one is an interesting oolong. I was expecting a normal Taiwanese oolong, but there is a bit of a surprise to this one.

It is a light green oolong, with some floral scents. It is smooth and creamy, almost like there is a bit of milk oolong in there. There is also a pleasant metallic taste, as well as a spice to it. On my first sip, I almost thought this was a ginseng oolong, but there is not real ginseng taste to it. The more I drink it, the less like an oolong it tastes to me. It is taking on a more bold, very slightly roasted flavour. I am hardly getting any sweetness. It is reminding me of a green and black tea blend. It is quite good. I am a little sad I have waiting so long to try it.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 1 min, 0 sec 7 g 20 OZ / 591 ML

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