Verdant Tea

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Recent Tasting Notes


Shared an old a sample with Elinor, obviously a little stale now but still yummy.

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When a tea says the style of brewing you should use in its name, you should listen. Steeping this western style really doesn’t do it any justice. Steeped at 160 and now rewarming my water for another go around. It would be a shame to do only one brew with a gongfu session. 10 seconds seems too quick for me. I want to experience some deeper tones. Though it does have some interesting sweet notes mixed in with the twig notes. As you steep longer light compost notes develop. No astringency. It’s an unassuming black tea. Would not be good for milk or sugar drinkers as it doesn’t steep up briskly but also nothing incredible for the purists. A good tea to have in the afternoon during siesta.

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Taken quite a fancy to the heavily oxidized oolongs. Verdant does an amazing job with all the tea they procure. And this is definitely up there with my favorites. Dark leaves. Longer oxidation. Dry aroma, light muscatel notes. It has a drying sensation similar to whst you would experience in the dry heat of the desert. Hairs on the bag. Oh little trichomes, how I adore you. Full twisted leaves. A frenzy of flavors. Sweet but woody. Fruity in the beginning with tropical flowers. Mineral. Wet rocks. I’ve run out of water. Sad panda.

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Sipdown 3/28

Not particularly astounding or special. A pretty standard tasting tieguanyin- some notes of lilac, but overall kind of forgettable.

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I have had this sample sitting around for a while, but I don’t get too bothered if a puerh sits around because usually it is just getting better!

I have had two endoscopies and two esophageal dilations in the past three weeks. This tea came between the two procedures and I was drinking it because I needed the power of puerh. I was put on max dose of Nexium and got cocky and thought maybe, just maybe, I could eat the crust on fried chicken.

Lies. All lies.

What actually happened was that with the high dose I apparently didn’t have enough stomach acid to even remotely handle the delectable skin and crunchy seasoned heaven from the outside of Ashman’s dinner. (I didn’t steal it, he doesn’t eat it. Honest.) Gastric distress ensued and puerh came to the rescue.

It has a very strong aroma of barnyard, which I like. I love the whole farm vibe of shu. Where some of the golden tip shu has a cedar oil taste and oily mouthfeel, this one lacked the sharp high cedar and was less oily. It did, however, have lovely mineral notes to take the soprano line. There is also the aroma of dried pecan leaves that crunch underfoot for the mezzos and maybe a hint of orange. I really wasn’t feeling well and drank part of it hot and saved some to drink cold later. It was great both ways. I only did two western steeps and I am really regretting that I didn’t do more, but I just didn’t feel up to it.

This is one I would definitely buy to enjoy, and as medicine, I am convinced I began feeling relief pretty quickly as I drank this. Puerh always seems to help me with those bloated “you really shouldn’t have eaten that” moments.


This was one of those pu-erh teas that I tried early in my tea reviewing journey. I loved it back then, and since I bought several pouches of it, I have had numerous opportunities to reevaluate it over the years. In my opinion, it still holds up.


I tend to categorize shou into ‘too good to use for medicinal purposes’ and ‘acceptable for a tummy fix but not that interesting’. Its nice to have enough room for both in my cupboard. Hope you are feeling better and that the shou did it’s trick.


I have been neglecting my puerh. I need to get back to drinking it. I still have a bit of the first sheng I ever bought and I really need to take the time to see what it has been up to!

Ilse Wouters

It´s strange : I have stomach problems as well (endoscopies indicated my lower esophageal sphincter does not close anymore) – I´m currently having a mini crisis limiting what I eat to toast, boiled vegetables and no fat yoghurt – and what I have learned through the years is to avoid or limit deep fried foods, sparkling drinks and be very careful with fermented and sour foods/drinks, so when feeling “vulnerable” I won´t touch the crust on fried chicken or take pu erh tea, even when I like both a lot. For me, pu erh gives me the bloated feeling. Jealous now because it seems to help you however.


Ilse: I hope you get relief and can be more free in what you eat and drink! I am trying to formulate my recovery plan, and I know bedtime snacks with Ashman are going to have to be a thing of the past. We had cheese and crackers last night and my stomach was a little angry this morning.

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sweet aroma with a gingerbread taste. Lingering sweet aftertaste and a very subtle spiciness.

Flavors: Brown Toast, Coffee, Ginger, Honey

200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 30 sec 3 g 220 OZ / 6506 ML

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Slight aroma of ocean air and an expensive crab dinner – this is in aroma only, not taste. Very creamy with a coffee roastiness with a slight chalk/mineral note.

Flavors: Chalk, Coffee, Creamy, Mineral, Ocean Breeze, Roasty, Seashell

205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec 3 g 6 OZ / 180 ML

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Skysamurai’s TTB Thank you!
First gongfu steeping of tea from TTB. Batch: Autumn 2019.

Tea #10
This is a winner! At least so far. I plan to try two more teas.

I decided for gongfu this afternoon and it was the best I could do with this tea. I have used whole 5 grams I had available and steeped in my 125 ml gaiwan. 10 seconds starting time with 10… 15 s increments.

Dry leaf aroma reminds me mostly cacao, slight bitterness and malts.
Steeped? It was a symphony of sweet notes of cacao, chocolate, malt and barley, lightly even a rye, complemented very well with light floral notes and a wee bit of spices.

It deserves a better note.

Flavors: Bitter, Cacao, Chocolate, Floral, Malt, Roasted Barley, Rye, Spices

205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 4 OZ / 125 ML

I’ve never had the Laoshan Black from Verdant, but the ones from Yunnan Sourcing and What-Cha are great. Glad you enjoyed it!


This is one of my favorites, I always have it on hand because I crave it often.


I believe I will not read through all 814 tasting notes for this tea to confirm, but I believe I have had it and remember it being absolutely excellent!

Martin Bednář

I generally tend to like more malty teas instead of chocolate-y ones. But this one was… exceptional!

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2022 Sipdown 11/365!

Mastress Alita’s Sipdown Challenge January 2022: Tea with bean notes

Delicious beany/brown sugar green tea, but as I commented in my first note, the “reserve” part is lost on me, as I found it no better than other fresh greens I’ve tried. Perhaps if I’d drank it sooner and in direct comparison to a regular harvest, I’d be able to tell?

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5g sample of this tea. It was tasty enough, but nothing really stood out to me from other laoshan greens from Verdant. I think “reserve” harvests, etc., are a bit lost on me. Fresh greens are already quite delicious! Sweet, beany, lots of umami.

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drank Laoshan Black by Verdant Tea
1715 tasting notes

2021 Homemade Advent Calendar Swap – Day 12
From Skysamurai.

Autumn 2019 Harvest
Oh my goodness, this is such a treat! Verdant has such delicious black teas, and Laoshan Black in particular has been on my wishlist for a long time. I bought a few samples to try earlier this year, but I’m not 100% sure I’ve tried this particular harvest. Whether I’ve had it yet or not, this is one I know I will enjoy.

I used the full sample pouch for one cup of tea and steeped closer to my normal brew time for chocolaty black teas. It turned out to be a true bittersweet chocolate, dancing right on the edge of pure cacao but with enough sweetness that I can imagine myself nibbling on a fancy chocolate bar. In a word, luxurious.

Flavors: Dark Bittersweet, Dark Chocolate

Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 5 g 8 OZ / 236 ML

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2021 Sipdown 109/365!

Whoops. I guess I finished off both cups of this sample without making any notes, oh well. I’m pretty sure I enjoyed it, but it was nothing mind-blowing. That is all.

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This was another of my sipdowns from either late 2020 or very early 2021. I also think that this may have been the only pu’erh I tried in the last 12-18 months. I could be wrong, but I do not remember trying any others. Now before I get into the meat of this review, I would like to say that a big part of me kind of doubts that any of this leaf material was actually Banzhang material. I have no way of knowing for certain, and Longyuanhao does seem to be one of the more reliable pu’erh producers, but Banzhang is frequently used with various degrees of duplicitousness as a descriptor for any number of pu’erh teas that may or may not contain any authentic Banzhang material or replicate any of the traits associated with actual Banzhang tea. It should come as no surprise that as Banzhang tea became more valuable, numerous producers started releasing teas they described as Banzhang teas. Most have little if any Banzhang material. I would be shocked if that were not the case with this particular tea. All of the above being said, this was not a bad tea. It did not strike me as being particularly wonderful, but it was a rock solid basic sheng.

I prepared this tea gongfu style. After a 10 second rinse, I steeped 6 grams of loose tea leaves in 4 fluid ounces of 205 F water for 5 seconds. This infusion was followed by 19 additional infusions. Steep times for these infusions were as follows: 7 seconds, 9 seconds, 12 seconds, 16 seconds, 20 seconds, 25 seconds, 30 seconds, 40 seconds, 50 seconds, 1 minute, 1 minute 15 seconds, 1 minute 30 seconds, 2 minutes, 3 minutes, 5 minutes, 7 minutes, 10 minutes, 15 minutes, and 20 minutes.

Prior to the rinse, the dry tea leaves produced aromas of hay, straw, alfalfa, smoke, petrichor, seaweed, and corn husk. After the rinse, I noted new aromas of almond, pickled cabbage, green bell pepper, sesame, sour cherry, and grilled corn. The first infusion added aromas of grass and crabapple. In the mouth, the tea liquor offered up flavors of green wood, smoke, corn husk, grass, hay, grilled corn, pickled lettuce, pickled cabbage, seaweed, green bell pepper, and crabapple that quickly gave way to subtler impressions of sour cherry, cream, almond, and petrichor. The bulk of the subsequent infusions introduced aromas of minerals, cedar, chestnut, pine, lemon, and grape leaves. Stronger and more immediately detectable notes of sour cherry, cream, and almond emerged in the mouth with impressions of cedar, minerals, chestnut, pear, orange zest, grapefruit, green apple, lemon, pine, grape leaf, alfalfa, and radish in tow. There was also a subtle sesame note that came out here and there. As the tea faded, the liquor continued to emphasize notes of minerals, green wood, grilled corn, smoke, pickled lettuce, hay, grass, radish, orange zest, lemon, and grape leaf that were chased by lingering hints of chestnut, almond, green bell pepper, sesame, crabapple, cedar, corn husk, and green apple.

This sheng displayed a unique aroma and flavor profile, but unfortunately, I found the tea liquor to be a bit thin and sharp in the mouth. This was basically a bitter, woody, vegetal, and citric tea, and I would have liked to see a bit more sweetness and nuttiness. I think that would have made this tea come across as more balanced. Overall, this was not a bad tea. I just kind of doubt that it was what it was advertised as being and feel that it was missing a few little touches that would have made it more appealing.

Flavors: Alfalfa, Almond, Bitter, Cedar, Cherry, Chestnut, Corn Husk, Cream, Fruity, Grapefruit, Grass, Green Apple, Green Bell Peppers, Green Wood, Hay, Lemon, Lettuce, Mineral, Orange Zest, Pear, Petrichor, Pine, Sesame, Smoke, Sour, Vegetal

6 g 4 OZ / 118 ML

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Sipdown 170-2021

Pretty sure I got this as a sample in a Verdant order at one point. Can’t say I love it. It’s very much a generic charcoal roasted oolong flavor that I’ve just grown really bored of.

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This sample came from Shae, it’s about time I tried it.
The first steep is nutty and salty and smoky. Reminds me a bit of barbecue, or maybe that’s what I had for lunch. It’s quite smooth and the aftertaste a bit malty.
Second steep is roasty, nutty, malty and astringent.
Third steep is smooth, weak and still roasty.
Certainly a candidate for grandpa style brewing, and I might be tempted to add to an order, bu not to seek it out. Thanks for the sample, Shae, glad I got to try it.

Flavors: Malt, Nutty, Roasted, Smooth

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It tastes quite thick, with some faint wood and nutty notes just being overshadowed by this thoroughly dry mouth feel. It’s one of the older teas I have ever sampled, and it’s definitely interesting. I once got a hint of menthol on a sip which was unexpected in my second steep. It is an interesting tea, always worth tasting history

Flavors: Thick, Wood

Boiling 2 min, 0 sec 5 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

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This tea has a lovely juicy quality to it that makes it really easy to drink every day, which I have been doing. And now, it’s gone.

And it’s a sipdown!

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Ancient for a green tea. Still, though the intensity has faded, the pleasant previous flavours are still there.

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Another one that made me very happy!

And it’s a belatedly posted sipdown!

#long time ago internet hiatus sipdown

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I adored this one.

And it’s a belatedly posted sipdown!

#long time ago internet hiatus sipdown

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